Amazing Kids! Magazine

Growing Hero

By Edmar J. Martinez, Age 15, California


“Quick, run!”

The last words Percy heard from his friend Tyler. Percy had been running from a noise that rumbled from the woods. It seemed that his road from terror seemed endless in his eyes. As he ran through the trees that surrounded him, he struggled to see the road in front of him with only the moonlight as his guide. The air was filled with the sweet smell of moist wood as he ran and felt his cold sweat drip into his eyes. As he ran he remembered how this all started, but with all his thoughts circling in his head he lost focus and stumbled over a fallen tree. As he got up brushing leaves of himself he saw a tall figure in front of him as he lost consciousness…

It was a late autumn season where joy filled the air of the young mind and fun was just beginning to come around as the seasons changed into winter in the city of Groversburg.

“Hey Percy want to go to the park and see how far any of us will dare go inside the woods?” Tyler, a friend of Percy’s, yelled out.

As young children being only nine, they like to create challenges that made life fun. They had competitions such as who could run the fastest or who could jump the highest. Percy often enjoyed participating in events such as these just to prove that he was not afraid to. Bravery was often key in any one of their little contests.

As the day went, Percy found himself on his way to the park after school where all the kids where all ready grouped up. He joined there group and went in line where the challenger would hold a rope and run into the woods and stretch the rope with his/her distance. Rick was known to be the champion in all of their childish events; he would run like a cheetah and jump so high he would disappear into the clouds in the eyes of the kids. When he grasped the rope, he ran as the air filled with sound of children screaming in joy as their hero came to show how brave he was. Rick used almost all the rope until a scream was heard. He came running back in tears as he began to tell his story of his adventure into the woods.

“I ran and ran then I saw a tall covered figure approach me and it said something I could not understand. Its voice was dark, low, and raspy, it was impossible to comprehend what he was saying,” whispered Rick through fear and anxiety.

They all began to panic as they saw that their hero was stricken with fear. Through the chaos Tyler and Percy agreed that they would both seek out the “monster” and become the new heroes. Tyler and Percy ran into the woods with a stick only to see that they were going into the woods at a very late hour and that the moonlight would not be a sufficient light source. They decided that the safety of their friends meant more and that they could seek out the monster before it got too dark. As they walked further into woods, they began to give up on looking for the alleged monster.

“Let’s go back Percy there is nothing here,” said Tyler through gloom eyes that called for a warm bed.

Percy decided that it was time to go only where would they go? All roads seemed the same and they had no clue which one led them home. They began searching through each path until they came across two more.

“Let’s split up and yell if we found the correct path,” they both said in agreement.

As Percy went down his path, he noticed the same cross that they passed on their way into the woods. Percy was just about to yell for Tyler as he heard a scream.

“Quick run!” A voice yelled that sounded familiar to Tyler’s.

Percy immediately ran towards the noise. He saw his friend Tyler stuck under a branch from a distance. He immediately began to run in his direction as a tall shadowy figure came in front of him walking menacingly towards him. Tyler immediately signaled him once again to run away. Percy turned around and ran away leading the tall figure away from his best friend. He kept running and running until he tripped over a fallen tree and hit his head on the ground. He got up immediately and brushed off leaves but as he did so the figure caught up to him and his injury made him lose consciousness.

The next day he woke up to see his friend Tyler on a bed across from him. Tyler had a cloth wrapped around his leg where he had been trapped by a branch. Percy tried to get up but was stopped when he felt a pain on his head approach as he moved. He tried to whisper and get Tyler’s attention but Tyler was still asleep. As he tried to get up he heard a woman’s voice come from outside the cabin they were in. The walls of the cabin reeked with an odor that could not be distinguished. It was a blend of unpleasant scents. There was an enormous pot that was bubbling and sizzling. It smelled horrific but the warm air it released made Percy feel better.

“Finally captured some of those autumn leaves to continue the potion,” uttered a lady with a raspy voice.

The mysterious lady walked in with a bunch of weird crafts in her hair and dress. She walked straight to her pot and dropped them in there.

“Come Lobo,” she called.

In the cabin came the mysterious tall figure. Only now it seemed to be longer and had four legs. It had a long black coat over its body. The mysterious lady walked towards it and removed the coat. As the coat fell off Percy noticed what it really was. It had been a gigantic dog almost the size of the cabin.

“Sorry my last potion fell on you pal,” the dog began to articulate noise out of its mouth just like Rick had told them.

As the lady heard his raspy noises, she gave him a big bowl of water and let him drink.  He drank nearly the entire bowl of water and began to clear his throat. He then let out a big bark in joy of the delicious water. He had never been able to speak the entire time. The lady looked in his direction and noticed he was awake.

“Good now child, I see that you have recovered, my name is Aisha” she said in a raspy voice with a slight Jamaican accent. “Now then let’s see how your friend is doing.”

Tyler got up immediately worried and frightened but stopped as his leg ached. He grasped his leg to see it was only bruised.

“Who are you?” Percy asked.

Percy had been staring at the enormous dog the whole time as he got up. The dog immediately leaped towards him to give him a huge lick.

“Lobo stop it!” Aisha yelled.

The dog listened and went back to where he had been sitting. Lobo seemed to be a very peaceful and loving dog. As questions circled around Percy’s head, he tried to get up but still had an immense headache.

“Sit, forcing yourself will not help your headache,” Aisha explained.

She got up and went to go get a drink that seemed to be some sort of tea but with herbs Percy had never seen his mom buy to make tea. She handed the cup to Percy and he looked deeply into the cup. He looked at Tyler who had the same beverage.

“Drink so you can go home already,” Aisha said to the confused children.

They both did not trust the drink. Percy had tried a trick his father had shown him. He dipped the tip of his tongue into the drink and waited. His tongue was not numb meaning it was safe. Percy nodded at Tyler and they drank it. In a few moments, Tyler and Percy felt healthy and strong again.

“It’s good you two do not trust strangers, but Aisha knows what’s good for you. Now then let me tell you what happened last night. My dog Lobo had been sniffing through my drawers when a potion fell on him. Lobo got scared so he ran outside where he began to grow and grow. I knew he was going to cause trouble so I put a coat on him and tied him to a tree. Lobo being curious chewed the rope and went exploring in the woods. When I came back I saw the chewed rope and went to go look for him. After an hour I saw him sniffing what seemed to be a child. I ran towards him and moved him aside. I saw you collapsed on the ground and your friend asking for help to nothing but the air. I put you and your friend on Lobo and brought you two to my home where you could be better,” told Aisha to Percy and Tyler.

After hearing this story and drinking what was left of the tea, they felt a little more comfortable in the cabin. Percy and Tyler thanked Aisha for her help and were about to leave when they saw Aisha about to pour a potion on Lobo. Lobo cried in agony as Aisha smiled menacingly. They ran back inside to see what had been happening.

“What are you doing here I told you to leave home already!” Aisha yelled.

Lobo who had only received a couple drops of the potion began to feel sick and whimpered.

“What did you do to him?” asked Percy.

Aisha backed up about to grab a potion when Percy and Tyler yanked Lobo by the collar and began to run outside.

“Come Lobo it’s time to go!” Percy yelled to the sick dog.

Aisha came running behind them. Lobo who had been sick ran slowly in another direction. Tyler looking at Percy tugged on his shirt and they kept running. They made it to the entrance of the woods where they first left their friends. They saw flashing red and blue lights. It was the police who had been looking for them. They ran even faster now to their rescuers. They made it into a police car where they were told to stay put. Aisha who made it to the entrance was arrested immediately and placed into a police car. The potion she had was taken from her and placed in a bag.

As the police drove them home they wondered what ever happened to Lobo, and what would their parents say when they came home, would they be in trouble? As the policeman stopped the car they got out to see a bunch of people waiting for them at their houses. All of their friends and family were waiting for them. Parents had tears in their eyes and children cheering for them. Their families knew that nothing could defeat them when it comes to those two. Among their friends however, they were now seen as what they had always wanted to be, heroes…

As time passed Percy and Tyler did go back to park but never dared to go deep into the woods, for legends speak of a beast that was like no other. No one knows for sure if these stories are just tall tales but it is said that every child who lingers through the woods is confronted by the animal. Adults have tried to find this mysterious “dog” but no one knows if it is just a tall tale imagined by kids for only Percy and Tyler know whether the furry giant is real or not…