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Chapter 5 – The Twists in the Tale

On reading the message in the sand, Edward felt sick with worry, it was as if his stomach was tied up in tight knots. Being a Ninja, Jo was quick to think on his feet, and he thought of a plan and he thought it quick. They would do anything to get their faithful companion back, even if it meant putting themselves in danger.

‘A-ha! I have a plan’ said Jo triumphantly. ‘It’s a bit risky, and probably the most dangerous part of our quest yet, but it just may work…’

At that moment, Edward thought about just how far they had come on their quest, and how many challenges they had overcome, and this seemed like it could be the biggest obstacle in their quest yet. ‘I’ll do anything, let’s hear the plan!’ exclaimed Edward.

‘Well, we’ll need to trick the Dragon and Cheetah. They said they wanted stars, and that’s exactly what we’re going to give them’ said Jo. ‘But the howler monkeys said that they would use the wishes for bad things’ interrupted Edward. ‘We’re not giving them the wishing star, we’re going to give them a different kind of star…have a look around’ replied Jo.

Edward cast his eyes along the beach, and his attention was drawn to the millions of golden star fish which coloured the beach and made it shimmer and dazzle. ‘They didn’t specify which stars they wanted, so let’s give them the star fish’ laughed Jo. Edward smiled at his friend and his stomach started to untie itself. Jo’s plan brought a wave of relief and hope back to their quest like a beacon of light in the darkest place, guiding them where to go.

The sun was setting in 1 hour, so the plan took shape immediately. Under the message left by the Dragon and Cheetah, Edward took a shell and careful carved a message which said:

We’ll take the stars to the blue rocky lagoon; we’ll meet you there under the glow of the full moon. PS don’t forget our cat…we really want her back.

As soon as the message was written, a wave crashed on the beach, dragging the message into the water and back to the Dragon and Cheetah. ‘What about the predators which the Dragon and Cheetah have assembled? How are we going to overcome an army of scaled demons and monsters…there’s only two of us’ asked Edward. ‘Well, we’re going to need to use the star, the Northen star for another wish’ replied Jo.

Retrieving their treasured jewel form the belly of the Robot Shark, Jo cradled the Northen Star and held it up high. ‘I wish for a sound catcher net’ requested Jo. Just as before, a shower of sparks descended, dancing above their heads like an eclectic storm until the spark took the form of the wish.  

‘Oh Jo, not again, stop wasting wishes…we’ve only got 1 left!’ said Edward. Jo smiled and said ‘Actually I didn’t waste a wish; this is part of the plan. I remember hearing a story when I was young about ships that crashed into the rock pools when the sailor’s heard the song of the Siren…’

‘What’s a Siren?’ asked Edward. ‘It’s a beautiful woman who has a broken heart. She lives at the bottom of the ocean and tricks people into following her lullaby. Her song is deadly and will make anyone or anything freeze on the spot and smah into a million pieces.’ Taking the net, Joe explained the plan on the way into the water. They would catch the deadly lullaby in their net and then release it onto the Dragon and Cheetah. ‘We’re going to need the Robot Shark for this, not even her song will be able to get through these thick metals walls.’

Tying the net to the fin of the Robot Shark, they dived to the depths of the Coral Sea, weaving in and out of the rainbow reefs. ‘There she is’, pointed out Edward, ‘Look, down there’. Sat on an anchor, the Siren was wrapped in the coral reef, surrounded by the tentacles of sea weed and blood thirsty piranha fish. As soon as she saw the Robot Shark, her song began. In the protection of the Robot Shark, the adventurers saw her mouth move, but they heard no sound. The net collected the notes of her sad lullaby until it could carry no more of her song.

Spiralling back to the surface, Edward handled the netted song with care and hid it away in his pocket. Last minute preparations were made, as the sun disappeared on the horizon. The Northen Star was replaced by the golden star fish, and Edward and Jo nervously waited on the beach for their unwanted guests to arrive.

As the moon crept into place, it was eclipsed by the parade of predators;  winged, scaled and lizard like. Swarming over the island like a disease, they surrounded the adventurers, teasing them with their forked tongues. Completing this monstrous show was the Dragon. The moon beams shone between her skeletal wings, revealing the Cheetah who clawed himself to her back. Her landing sent an almighty sonic boom throughout the island, making the land shake and change shape. The Cheetah leapt off her back, gracefully landing on the sand.

‘We have the Northen Star, do you have Nora?’ demanded Edward. The Cheetah and Dragon gave each other a sly look and sniggered. Dragon held up Nora high in the air, displaying her like a trophy. She looked like a bag of bones; thin and weak. ‘Hand us over the Northen Star and you will get your cat’ spat the Cheetah. Taking a deep breath, watched by the thousands of eyes of the predators, Edward marched towards the Cheetah and Dragon, handing over the silver bag. The Cheetah swiped at the bag and snatched it off Edward. ‘Now, give me back Nora’ demanded Edward.

Using its thunder claw, the Dragon took hold of Nora and blasted her out to sea. Like a rag doll, Nora flew lifelessly in the air until she splashed into the water and sank.

‘NOOOOOOOO!’ cried Edward as he dived in after her. The Dragon laughed and claimed her prize, dizzy with greed and evil satisfaction. Opening the bag, the star fish flopped onto the floor. ‘You little pests, you tricked us!’ yelled the Dragon. Before the Cheetah could make its deadly attack, Jo revealed the real Northen Star, ‘I wish for a sword’ he shouted. In a flash a sword darted into his hand, and he drove it into the heart of the Dragon who let out a piercing wail. Green blood came flooding out of the dragon, spilling towards the sea as Edward emerged holding Nora. As the Cheetah and predators were about to take their revenge, Edward cast out the net, releasing the Sirens deadly lullaby. Covering their ears, the adventures watched as the predators froze like ice and smashed like glass on the beach.  

When the song was sung, Edward laid Nora on the beach. Tears filled his eyes and heart as his faithful companion lay in a deep deadly sleep. He wished and wished for one more wish – for Nora to be with him by his side forever and forever. As his tears fell, he closed his eyes…and woke up with tears on his pillow.

Spinning his gaze, the island disappeared and his bedroom came into view. It was all a dream, none of it real…or was it? Nora was curled up at the bottom of his bed fast asleep. A knock came at the door, and King Wallis entered.

‘Dad, I have had the strangest dream I have ever dreamt. There was an adventure, and I was on it. I was the hero!’ said Edward triumphantly. After sharing his excitement, a cloud loomed above his head and his smile fell. ‘What’s the matter son?’ asked the King? ‘Well I only wish it could of been real, that I was a real life hero’ replied Edward.

The King smiled and said, ‘You are a hero. You always have been, you just never knew it. A real hero is someone who isn’t afraid to dream.  When I was your age, I was the biggest dreamer who had the biggest dream.

And that’s how the King came to be King, and how this story ends…for now.   

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