The WVMS Literary
and much more!
Table of Contents
Short Stories & Essays
Cover photo taken by Anastasiya Kuchynska,
Back cover taken by Ava DuQuella
When the Earth Awakens
By Kaden Nagel
The Bluebirds whiz into the sky like lightning,
And the grass meanders up after them
The hikers walk by with their laden pack,
The flowers bloom lighting up the meadow with color
As the sun starts shining brighter than the stars.
The trees open up like old fashioned umbrellas,
As the rain starts to come like tears from a newborn’s face.
Then all is still and peaceful;
Mother earth is up from her deep winter nap
And nothing but green can be seen for miles on end
A hawk sits on his throne of timber
Butterflies lift off without a whimper
All is right and all is well
Just has it has always been and always will
The Unforgettable Shores
Standing on the sand,
watching the harmony’s unfold.
The sun, the wind, the sea,
and the land, along with us,
are able to harmonize on glistening shores.
“Truly it would be taken for granted”,
no, not for me.
I watch the children play,
along with the waves.
I can’t tell who is having more fun.
On days like this,
with the salty breeze,
the warm rays,
the bubbling white foam,
and the squishy,
There is true harmony.
Mother Earth and her children,
found together once again.
You must see how this could be you,
find the truth, that is within you.
For this could be you.
Look at an ant climbing a tree trunk,
and put yourself in his mind.
Feel the weight of a leaf on your back.
Feel the need to guard your Queen.
Look at the mother bear staring through the forest,
and put yourself in her feet.
Feel the pain of fighting for your cubs.
Feel, the motherly love.
Look at the bully across the hallway,
and put yourself in his point of view.
Feel his hurt and pain.
Feel, his fear.
Once you truly feel others,
you finally see the universe,
and find your place within it.
They are always on the heels of Death,
and watch living things take their final breath.
They follow the human’s, destruction in their wake,
“These human’s never take a break”.
Turkey vultures swooping down,
I wonder what they found.
Turkey vultures flying all around.
They fly past my window panes,
I wonder if they see something in pain.
They make my heart go insane.
1, 2, 3 . . .
I count them on the tree,
wondering what they see.
Turkey vultures in the sky,
passing us by.
As I turn a blind eye.
My Little Butterfly
By Molly Rudnick
I have lost my soul,
my mind, my spirit,
my hope and heart.
All is lost,
just like you.
But she is still there.
She has your eyes,
your smile, and your laugh.
This is who will live on.
Who will live with me.
Who will love me as you did.
Who will give me butterflies.
She’s my little butterfly,
who has risen from the ashes of our story.
A love so deep I gave you my all.
I gave you my mind.
I gave you my soul.
From this day on I will give you my all.
I shall give you my tender loving and care.
I will give you my hope for us.
Soon I will give you everything.
My thoughts and emotions are yours.
My heart is yours to keep.
Today, you're in your bed.
Lost forever in your mind.
You have left for good.
Now you're gone,
“What can I do?”
I have nothing,
for everything is lost in our little universe.
by Phoebe Paddock
You’ve worked so hard to get here
To have your last show
The costume, the makeup, the solos
The last “Goodluck” before stepping on stage
No last group circle
No final goodbyes
Before smiles and tears
Now only tears
Not going to hear “curtain call”
Or “Places everyone places”
The butterflies that were once in my stomach,
Have now flown away
The lights have been shut off, the cameras are no longer on,
No action anymore
Waiting for Four
by Ariana Elias
Four years of waiting
The dress, the makeup, the hair
All for one night
You put on the biggest smile
Trying to get that one really good photo
With all your friends
That photo with your favorite teacher
Then you go and dance all night with your friends
The popular music
You dance til your feet hurt
Four years of waiting
The last day
You say goodbye to your teachers one last time
Walk through the Middle school halls for one last time
You clean out your locker
You walk up on that stage while everyone’s staring at you
Parents in tears
Just for the Middle School Graduation
It’s time for high school
My Random Autobiography
by Olivia Scotto
I enjoy staying up late.
Sleeping in until noon.
Watching the sunset.
Swimming all day,
Laying on the beach.
I enjoy life,
I once saw
off the coast of Maine.
Twice I've been riding
over sand dunes
on a dune buggy.
I like my coffee
over almond milk,
a teaspoon of sugar.
I like fresh
I enjoy the thrill.
Thrilling roller coasters.
Thrilling water slides.
I once held a cold scaly snake at my
birthday party when I was 10 and I was nervous.
I swung off a tree rope
swing in 50 degree
Weather and landed in the cold reservoir, I had goosebumps everywhere. Learning to ride a bike was fun, the scar on my leg proves how hard I tried.
I’ve ran around in a thunder storm and gotten frightened by the loud thunder, the lighting struck the ground right in front of me.
I’ve gotten pinched by a tiny crab, it hurt really bad and it was red.
As a toddler I wandered away from my family at the Zoo and got lost.
I don’t remember as much as my parents do.
They said it was terrifying.
Twice I went to Bethany Beach in Delaware, it was a great time and I wish I could go back.
I have been to Florida, we drove there in our old mini van, it took 24 long hours.
I am scared to move…..
I am also scared of ghosts and spiders……
My happy place is when I am with my friends and family, I feel comforted around them.
Being on stand is a rush, I feel like that is where I belong.
Random Autobiography by Anonymous
I tell you sincerely,
when I love to travel.
Long car rides
to big cities
or long car rides
to small towns.
in the woods
over the ocean,
I tell you sincerely,
when I love to travel.
I have witnessed,
with tiny sea creatures.
of soaring birds.
with sharks and seashells.
I am girl who has seen many things,
Been many places,
Committed many sins,
And been through many stages,
I still remember my first pet Mr. Fins,
He had died the day my mom got her new braces,
The sight was probably too much to take in,
I remember the expressions on people’s faces,
All of the times I’ve had competition wins,
Some were glad, others mad and some didn’t care,
Just like my feelings towards my favorite subject in school,
I like writing in my notebook when I have time to spare,
Although the times we have to share in ELA are cruel,
And I also dread sitting in that rolly chair,
I enjoy swimming in pools,
Although I can swim anywhere,
As long as there is no sharks or scary fish, that is my one golden rule,
Because animals give me a huge scare,
And I may sound like a fool,
But that dog bite gave me a great amount of despair,
Random Autobiography by Julie Ramos
I will never forget the day I lost my bravery,
Just like that day I tried my first macaron,
My taste buds had been made happy at my now favorite bakery,
But my taste buds favorite feeling is the creaminess of a chocolate bon bon,
The time we went there my dad had been in a great hurry,
I was clueless as to why since my ears were filled with the song “Black Swan”,
We had been shopping in the mall of Woodbury,
The night before my sister and I had stayed up until dawn,
Our foolishness had made us a bit weary,
My sister and I have always had a knack,
We both had bad ideas,
She mainly did it for payback,
I did it just to tease,
My favorite band had just had a comeback,
Their music has always put me at ease,
Except for the time where my misery had caused us to backtrack,
I remembered their song playing when I scraped my knees,
My friend helped me after the wicked attack,
My sister had tripped me at a birthday party leaving me displeased,
I didn’t even eat anything which reminds me I need a snack.
By Holly Purta
Now that school is coming to an end,
And everyone’s ready for summer,
I’ll be the only one sobbing,
Cause of our memories we have made together,
Life isn’t perfect right now,
And you know that is true,
Yet we’ll see each other soon,
When this is all through
My Random Autobiography by Molly Rudnick
I’ve seen faces carved in stone,
and out of stone.
I’ve seen the magical place of Hogwarts, and Diagon Alley.
I’ve visited friends and family,
but have lost both.
I’ve touched the luscious fur of a kitten. Touched the rough fur of a puppy. Felt the scaly skin of a snake,
and saw friends become snakes.
Found life has ups, and downs. Found friends, and foes.
Found my love for the beach, but not the sand.
Found my love for the sea breeze, but not the sea.
Found my love for sweets,
but not chocolate.
I have stories,
but I have fears.
I am a romantic,
but haven’t found romance.
I have heard many things, I have found many things, and met many people.
I have seen many things,
I have felt many things,
I have lost many things,
but I have earned and learned much more.
As the winter days will pass
We will see the sun at last
It has been so cold right here
That now we will see the spring premiere.
As the winter days will pass
We will here in the forecasts
That the spring-iee day will bring
The beautiful flowers and sunshine in the spring.
Spring is Here
By Anastasiya Kuchynska
½ cup Butter
1 tsp baking powder
¼ cup sugar
1 tbsp Drinking chocolate
½ cup flour
½ tbsp cocoa
Beat butter and sugar until fluffy. Add flour,cocoa, and drinking chocolate. Make into balls and flatten on cookie sheet. Bake 350 for 10-12 minutes.
By Flora Gilley
What is auflauf? That’s a surprisingly common question. Auflauf is a german recipe that is like a casserole. If you would like to try it and see how it tastes, here’s a quick tutorial on how to cook it up!
1 stovetop pot
1 large bowl
1 baking dish
Vegetable oil/ something greasy
1 box of rotini pasta
1 ½ cups heavy cream
Some frozen peas (optional)
1 lb. sliced ham
1 bag shredded mozzarella
Some garlic salt
A dash of nutmeg
Some garlic salt
3 spoons of flour
Boil the box of rotini pasta
Cut the ham into thin strips with a knife
Mix the heavy cream, eggs, nutmeg, a little bit of garlic salt, peas, ham, flour and half the bag of cheese in a large bowl.
Pour the mix into the baking dish that has been greased. Top with the rest of the cheese!
Bake at 400 degrees fahrenheit in an oven for about 32minutes, or until crispy on top.
Chocolate Cookie Mix
By Nora Finnegan
By Molly Rudnick
Taken by Isabel Coppola
Short Stories & Essays
If I told you we could create a time machine with two zucchini and a mountain, would you believe me? Being that most of you reading have never had the chance to be in a physics course, almost everyone would disagree. If you put one pickle on the floor of your house and one on the top of a nearby mountain, theoretically, one pickle, the pickle on the mountain, would be moving through time faster than the other. Robin’s had an aneurysm, eh? Nope, this is called special relativity, and it was theorized by your favorite sockless scientist, Albert Einstein.
The best way to explain this is to talk about the basics. Matter and energy distort space time. You can prove this by putting a zucchini (and maybe an atomic clock to keep track of the difference in time) on the top of a mountain, and keeping one at your house (with another atomic clock). Since a mountain is further away from the center of the Earth’s mass than my house, time should run slightly faster at the peak.
For most of our history, we believed that time was uniform, moving at a constant rate at any given point. We now know that’s fictitious, thanks to Albert Einstein. By 1950, Einstein already knew that the speed of light is always constant, that, no matter where in the universe, no matter what speed you are going (we’ll get to that in a moment), the speed of light will always be the same- travelling away from you at about 300 million meters per second. This is “Special Relativity”, the thing I’ve been rambling about for 3 paragraphs now. If light travels at a constant speed, no matter your speed relative to it, the universe compensates by increasing your mass and slowing time down for you as you accelerate. Special Relativity is the reason why if you sent a baby off into space, going 99% the speed of light (296,794,533 m/s), it would come back to Earth still a baby, while its twin, having stayed on earth, would be middle aged. Or old. Or dead. Einstein also comes up with “General Relativity”, which applies to stuff that aren’t exactly moving, like our time travelling pickles. He realized that it isn’t just moving fast that affects time and distance, but that it’s matter and energy, too.
And sure enough, if we measure the time difference between our two cucumber-like-vegetable-sausages, we can see that down here on the ground, maybe a few hours have passed, but up there on the mountain, we can see that there is... No difference whatsoever. Because I can’t afford an atomic clock, much less two atomic clocks, being that I am in middle school, writing this at three AM, and don’t have a job. Also, the difference between the times would be so miniscule, that we would not be able to tell them apart.
Special and General Relativity is, for all practical purposes, magic. It sounds ridiculous, but it is proven, and verified. Space and time are malleable things, bendable at speed’s, and matter’s will. We can assume that, some time in the distant future (or not too distant given the amount technology has advanced in the past few years), we can hope to preserve people using a speed close to that of the speed of light, to cure diseases once cures are available. But that’s a thing of the future, and we have to get there first.
Zucchini, a Mountain, and a little something called Special Relativity
by Robin Allen
2 | Outdoor Magazine Oct 2016
This Is My Story
By Flora Gilley
By Little Duke
The whole thing was exhilarating at first. I could hardly sleep. I was going to be the first girl to live on the Moon. But there were some cons.
It’s hard to keep in contact with your friends on Earth and have food for Earth transported to you. But my family and I would be docile on the Moon, due to the technology by NASA, MPT (Moon Phone-Trackers).
It was also risky, too. We’d have to, either make a truce somehow or battle with, real native moon extraterrestrials. There were four tribes, the Kaetwowah, Chemhoovi, Khumeyai, Uknate Kustan.
We had to have ubiquitous oxygen tanks. No matter where we were, huge 110-pound oxygen tanks were on our backs. Thanks to the less gravity on the Moon, it felt like a 6-month-old baby was strapped to my back.
But, other than that, everything was perfect and apropos. When everything is too perfect, that’s when you sense it. An evil ethos. An underlying plan that was going to follow soon after a certain point in history—an event. And that event came.
To Be Continued...
This is my story. If you’re not interested in the truth, then don’t read my story. If you like the simple fairy tales, with talking animals and innocent little heroes, throw this book as far away from you as you can. If you like that, then walk away. However, if you want to know the truth, after years of being lied to, turn the page. If you want to learn what really happened, the real story, and read the truth- read my story.
My name is Elizabeth Brownings, I am sixteen years old, and my story is world famous.
I was thirteen years old, and developing my newest invention: AnimalRead. I had been working on it for Mama, who works at an animal shelter. She always told me that she wished she could understand the animals there, so, for her birthday, I decided that I would make an app for her phone that roughly translated the animal’s body language from a video recording you took! I bet you didn't know that I’m an Inventor. It’s all I wanted and still want to do. I’ve invented all sorts of things! I even invented a threader that threads a needle for my Abuela, who loves to sew. Unfortunately, her hands are getting a bit shaky, and it’s harder for her to thread a needle. (For my birthday, she made me a red hoodie using the threader I made her! It’s my favorite sweater ever; I wear it almost every day.) Anyway,I had just finished making some tweaks to AnimalRead, and decided to test it out. I told mama I was going to visit Abuela, which was technically true. My abuela had a ton of cats, so I decided I could try out the app on them. It was also convenient, because it was a nice October day, her house was a 30 minute walk away, and I could show Abuela the red sweater! Smiling, I set off down the road.
To get to my Abuela’s cottage, you need to walk about 5 minutes of walking on a “bikes only” road, and take a left, which leads onto a small trail in a cute little forest. I always got a thrill when I walked into that forest. There used to be a native american settlement here, so there’s a nature reserve almost in my Abuela’s backyard. That means that there’s no developments, roads or anything in or near that forest. It creeps me out how it seems to swallow you whole, and how it feels like it’ll never end. (To be honest, I love it!) As I entered the mouth of the beast, I got swallowed whole, and a shiver went down my spine. Already slightly creeped out, it was no surprise that I had to fight to suppress a scream when something jumped out of the bushes, coming straight at me.
My natural instinct had to be obeyed; Before I had time to think, I was crouched on the ground, my hands tightly gripping my phone, which I held in front of my face like a shield. As I peeked through one eye, I saw that the animal was gone; but I also realized that the AnimalRead app was open, and my thumb had accidentally pressed the “record” button as I crouched in fear. Standing up and glancing around me warily, I pressed the replay button. Now, I won’t pretend that I didn’t groan as I watched a tiny little fluffy bunny rabbit hop out of the bushes, and look up curiously. However, It also made me really happy because I knew that the bunny was curious! On the side of the screen, it read: Leporidae. Emotion: Curiosity. Probability of curiosity: 86.25% My heart leapt with joy when I read this, probably because I’d spent hours on the internet, and at the animal shelter, learning and observing the behavior and reactions of all different animals. I was also relieved that my least favorite part of any invention had worked: statistics.
Overjoyed, I searched the bushes for the rabbit. Instead, I found three sets of tracks leading into the forest. Slightly disappointed, I followed the largest of the tracks off the path… deeper into the woods. Boy, was I dumb.
I wondered what sort of animal I was following. The tracks were big, but not big enough for a bear. I bent down to examine them. Maybe, I thought, following the largest tracks was not the safest idea. There were claw marks visible in the damp earth, which meant that it was a member of the dog family. Maybe it was a feral dog? But, no… the tracks were too big for that. So… it must be... I felt my entire body go rigid with realization, and held my breath. There was only one other animal that could have made these very fresh tracks… a wolf.
I sat there, frozen, not daring to move a muscle… or even to breathe. I could hear breathing coming from somewhere close behind me. It had to be the wolf. Could it sense the horror I felt right then? I could feel it’s hot breath down the back of my neck, could almost see the drool running out of its mouth, as it got ready to eat me up. Somewhere, in the back of my mind, I heard reason.
It won’t kill you. Or maybe it will. After all, you are a defenseless little girl… but still. Gathering my courage, I took a deep breath in, and turned around.
The first thing I saw were the eyes. Great, big, yellow eyes. They seemed to stare me down, contemplating me, taking in every inch of me, looking for the best place to attack. Slowly, I stood up, and a low growl issued from its throat. His snout wrinkled, and his lips pulled back to expose fleshy pink gums, which were attached to inch long fangs. Staring it dead in the eye, I growled back- It was, at the time, the only thing I could think of doing-and, in a moment of panic, flashed my lit up phone at him, and ran.
The only thing that I could hear was my feet hitting the ground, and the sound of my own heavy breathing. As I ran, I remembered a story my abuela used to tell me. It was a story about how she, as a young woman, had moved into the forest, and the first thing that happened to her was that she came face to face with a wolf, and escaped. She told me that from that day on, the wolf would follow her to her cottage, and built a den near it. It didn’t occur to me that it might not have been the smartest move to run straight to my abuela’s house.
I skidded to a halt in front of the old pine door of Abuela’s little cottage. And there, rear end sticking out of the door, was a wolf.
Cold horror washed over me. I wanted to race inside, to get to my abuela, to lock the wolf out, to be safe. But I couldn't-that might just put everyone in even more danger, by making the wolf mad. Then a strange feeling came over me. How could I just stand there while the wolf hurt my abuela and her cats? As if on cue, Eliza, one of the many cats, came rushing out of the front door, hissing and spitting.
In a sudden burst of daring, I scooped up Eliza and ran to the front door with her. Making myself as big as I could, I held up the furious cat, and began yelling at the wolf. I could see him retreat back into the open, seeming confused. Acting on a sudden inspiration, I released the struggling cat back into the house and banged the two strips of metal from my bag together, still yelling. I could almost sense the wolf losing confidence, shrinking back into the shadows. And, after one particularly loud yell, a man came running down the hill, fully armed with a gun… and a muzzle. For a second, I was puzzled, until I spotted the shiny badge on his chest reading animal control. A moment later, the muzzle was over the wolf’s head, and he was being held down by three or four other animal control officers.
Just then, Abuela rushed out of the house, phone in hand, and I could see the number 301-743-2222 on hold. A moment later, she had me in a bone-crushing hug. I remember her saying. “Oh, Lizzy, you were so brave! Are you sure you’re alright?”
Afterward I learned that Abuela had called animal control as soon as she saw the wolf. She told me that when she thought I was the one scuffling around on the porch, so she opened it up and a wolf was waiting for her! The animal control ended up taking the wolf away. Now, I don’t like it when wild animals are looking at me with thoughts of dinner, but that doesn’t mean I want to be cruel to them. So, I remained worried for a couple days, until mami told me the wolf pack had been sent to live at Yellowstone national park, where they would be safe. My uncle Wilhelm is a children’s book author, and he thought that I had a really good story to tell, so he… twisted it up a little, and made me a clueless little girl, and the wolf could talk. That’s his story. This is my story.
Oliver--my best friend, basically my brother-- has progressive amnesia and it’s all because of the car crash. Once upon a time--NO. This is not a freakin’ fairy tale story. It all started...no. It was an August summer night. We, my mom, Oliver and I were driving home in his mom’s car from a rollerblading party and a huge truck crashed into us, causing Oliver some brain shock that was not known to the untrained eye. Oliver went straight to the emergency room. We thought it was a minor concussion and some cuts and bruises. But it was more than just minor injuries.
After a stressful and lonely three weeks had passed, Oliver finally came back home from the hospital, alive.
But, he seemed to deteriorate with every step as we were getting our school supplies from the store and on the first day of school, he suddenly felt a wave of inferiority complex and I felt it, too. His face turned as white as paper. He said he seemed to only remember his family, my family, me and his biggest crush, Hazel. This year, for Oliver and me, would be a really hard one. Luckily, we were in all the same classes. At least there would be less avenues for Oliver to embarrass himself during the first year of high school. But we were vacuous in ideas and Oliver had no motivation due to feeling a lack of his usual self-confidence. I had to find a way to help Oliver win Hazel’s heart before Troy Hunter (the Archery Ace) could. But how? Oh, by the way, I’m Thomas.
“H-hi. I’m--I’m Oliver and--I, uh, am 14 y-years old. I--uh--don’t exactly r-remember what h-happened to me. Honestly, I d-don’t remember much of anything. My f-friend, T-Thomas, says th-that we got into a c-car crash and the c-crash gave me so-some br-brain damage. I--uh-- like to r-rollerblade and p-play video games.And that’s it!”
Oliver quickly sat in his seat, which was next to mine. We shared the desk because my parents and his parents sent a note saying that I was supposed to help in his circumstances. Oliver sighed with relief, I patted his shoulder. Introductions, they’ve always been hard for Oliver. This year was only harder because he couldn’t remember a lot. Like he said, ‘he doesn’t remember much’.
To Be Continued...
by Bliss Woods
Translated Spanish Assignment
by Elijah Fiol
My creature is called Fresamar. He is a squid mixed with a strawberry. He was born Fresamar on February twenty-seven, two thousand and twenty. His nationality is Fresian and cephalopod. He doesn't have a last name.
He is red and green and he has nine parts. He has a head, two eyes, and six tentacles. Some parts are strawberries! He is one foot long and seven pounds.
Fresamar's mother is a squid and the father is a strawberry. Fresamar has a neighbor. She is called Eighth. She is a grape mixed with an octopus. They like arm wrestling. She always wins because she has more arms.
Fresamar’s home is a container for fruit but it is big. His house is in a good neighborhood. He has a sponge for a bed. He doesn't have much furniture. He has to wash the house once a day.
Fresamar goes to school at seven in the morning. At school he learns architecture in the morning. In the afternoon he learns art. Fresamar does not like art class. The teacher of the architecture class is Señor Madera De Deriva and the art teacher is Señora Pera.
Fresamar does not have much clothes but for special occasions Fresamar has a suit and fedora. The costume and fedora is made of dark chocolate. Fresamar gets her clothes to the fondue machine.
For food, Fresamar likes tacos and hamburgers and fries. Fresamar doesn't like burritos or hot dogs or potato cake. Fresamar drinks water.
Fresamar likes to play water polo. He likes to watch synchronized swimming. He does not like to sing or ski.
Fresamar lives in the sea but is made from ocean spray. Squid are mollusks like the snail. The strawberry seeds are the fruit. Berry is not fruit.
The Tribulations of Agatus
By Flora Gilley
Forevermore will the muses sing of Agatus, the most tender-hearted person to walk this earth, and his heroic trials to redeem himself in the eyes of the gods.
As a son of Zeus, Agatus was ill-wished by Hera, Zeus’ wife and queen of the gods, ever since he was borne by his mother, Agape. However, despite Hera's pursuit of him, Agatus remained a kind-hearted person, helping whenever and wherever he could.
One day, as Agatus was walking up a path to the temple of Athena, he spotted an old man on the side of the road.
“Young man…” the old man rasped. “I can see your kind heart. Please give me food and shelter, for I am weary from my long journey.”
“Of course!” exclaimed Agatus. “I would be honored to help you. Come with me now, for I was on my way to pray to Athena. I shall ask her for you to improve in strength and health.”
Agatus, as per his word, nursed the old man back to health until he was fit to continue traveling.
Soon after they said farewell, Agatus climbed the mountain Parnitha to try to gain Hera’s favor at one of her temples. As he laid down his offerings of roast lamb, the statue came to life before his eyes-and the goddess Hera stood before him in all her wrath.
“Foolish mortal!” She proclaimed, Her voice echoing around the temple like thunder. “Do you not see what you have done?”
Trembling, Agatus answered, “No, my queen. I am not aware of any wrongdoings that are severe enough for the queen of gods herself to visit me in this humble city!”
Hera smiled, but there was no warmth in her eyes. “One week ago, you took in an old, sick man from the side of the side of the road. This is correct?”
“Yes, my queen.” Agatus stammered. “Is that so wrong? He looked as if he had suffered much, and I was merely obeying the rules of hospitality. ” Hera’s eyes flashed, and the sky overcast with clouds.
“Did you give no thought,” She thundered, “as to WHY that man suffered?”
Agatus knew it would do him no good to lie, so he looked straight at Hera and said; “No, my queen, I did not.”
“Insolent fool!” Hera shrieked. “If you must know, that man you helped was none other than the traitor Aeschylus, who burned down a temple that was built in my honor. He was punished by the gods and left to die and go to tartarus, But you helped him, and now YOU must be punished in turn!”
‘If a goddess could spit fire,’ Agatus thought, ‘I’m sure Hera would.’ He did not, wisley, say this out loud.
“You shall undergo three trials. The first will begin at dawn. Come to the temple to receive this challenge then.” And with that, Hera, almighty queen of the gods, sat upon her stoney throne, and became a statue one more.
At dawn, as Eros rode through the sky, announcing the coming of her brother, Helios, the sun, Agatos reached the temple where he found Hera waiting for him.
“As punishment for your treachery, the twelve gods of Olympus have agreed that your first trial will be to retrieve the oracle bird, a magic bird who knows all the secrets of the earth.” She told him that the bird is fiercely protected by a group of wood nymphs, or tree spirits, and that he would have to get through them to bring the bird back to her.
Hera thought that Agatos would try to fight the wood nymphs-and get himself killed, or that he would try to sneak past them, but hera had warned the nymphs of Agatos’ arrival.
Agatos, however, tried no such thing. He walked up to the wood nymphs and asked if he could see the bird.
Before the nymphs could utter a single word, however, a dozen huge gadflys swooped down upon Sandrine, the oracle bird. Kind Agatos could not bear to see the little bird hurt, so he threw his arms around her, and no gadfly touched the oracle bird.
When all the gadflys had gone, the nymphs showered poor Agatos with praise and thankfulness. As a reward, they let him have his wish, and allowed him to take the bird.
When Agatos showed the bird to Hera, she was furious.
“Fine!” she snapped. “You have completed your first challenge. But now you must solve the riddle of redemption!”
Uh oh. Agatos thought, who was never really an expert at riddles. But he couldn't back down now.
“You will go overseas until you find sirens. They will lure you in, but wear earplugs so you don’t jump overboard. Instead, guide the ship to their island. Ask to escape, but you will have to answer the riddle first. Best of luck to you.” And with that, Hera floated up into the heavens.
The next day Agatos set sail for the island of the sirens.
As he neared the island, Agatos stuck two pieces of moss into his ears, and soon after he could see the sirens, beckoning him over to their humble home.
Agatos landed his ship and walked up to the queen of sirens, who wore a crown of seashells on her head.
“You are now a prisoner of the sirens!” The queen thundered. “Do as we command, or you will suffer the consequences.” Agatos gave no response, for he still had moss in his ears. Agatos knew that if the sirens started to sing, they would cast him under a spell, and he would be effortless to stop them.
However, Agatos’ kind heart did not want to upset the sirens, so he did what they told him to do. For the next two days, Agatos harvested seashells from the ocean floor, braided seaweed into baskets, and attended the siren queen’s every need. All the while Hera watched, laughing, from a throne of clouds.
At the end of the second day, Agatos went to the siren queen and bowed.
“My queen,” He bagan, looking the siren in the eye. “I am tired of the hard labor I am being forced to do. I ask for you to let me go back home.”
The siren queen was stunned. No one had ever simply asked to leave the island before. But, being the queen of sirens, she always had an idea at hand.
“I will give you a riddle, and if you answer correctly, I will let you go.” she said slowly, “ Because you have been good and kind.” Agatos, who had been expecting this, smiled. Then the siren gave her riddle;
What is in front of you but can’t be seen?
There is no backwards; there is no behind
There is only “next time”
Agatos thought long and hard about this. Next time...is in front of you… no backwards means you have to go forward... to reach next time..! And then suddenly he knew.
“The future.” said Agatos. He looked the siren queen right in the eye and said, “you need to go forward to reach the future; you can't go back for it. “Next time” is where the future will bring you.”
The siren tossed her flowing red hair and sighed.
“You have guessed well, little hero. You are free to go.” And Agatos once again took the wheel of the ship and set homeward.
Not two days after Agatos had returned home, Hera visited him in his dreams.
“You have done well,” She told him. “But now comes the most dangerous trial of all…” Agatos held his breath. “You must subdue the chimera, a child of Typhon and Echidna.” And with a smirk, she disappeared.
The next day, Agatos raced up to the temple of Hera, but not before helping a snail without a shell cross a busy road. Hrea was there when he arrived.
“Queen Hera,” Agatos gasped.
“Do not forget your place, mortal.” Hera hissed. “Bow before a god or goddess if you have the good fortune to have one honor you with their presence.” But Agatos was already on his knees.
“My Queen,” Agatos whispered. “How do I fight a monster such as the chimera? I am no Hercules.” Hera was not pleased by this. Hercules was another child of zeus, and she had made him undergo trials, too.
“I have no advice to offer you, mortal.” She sniffed. “However, Athena has taken a liking to you ever since you solved the riddle of the sirens, and she wanted me to give you this.” She held out a golden flute, and Agatos took it gingerly. “She provided no note as to how or why you should use it.” Hera added, and then disappeared.
Agatos, who did not want to disobey the gods, set off for Lycia that very afternoon, tucking the flute into his pocket.
As Agatos reached Lycia, he saw large golden gates shielding the city from someone-or something.
There was a roar behind him, and Agatos did the first thing he could think of- he grabbed the magic flute and began to play. The tune that escaped his lips was spellbinding, and even the muses stopped to listen to him. Agatos turned around slowly to stare straight at the chimera, it’s eyes drooping, and his mouth drooling. The beast then closed its eyes, put its head on its paws, and began to snore.
Agatos thought about what Hera would want him to do, and to slay the chimera. But Agatos had a kind heart, and he could not bear to do harm to any animal, so instead, he sat down beside the chimera, and decided to befriend it.
Hera was absolutely furious when Agatos arrived with the chimera at his side! But they had made a deal, and Hera would honor that deal, as long as Agatos did. Agatos honored this deal until the very end.
Agatos had redeemed himself, and was now forevermore a favorite of the gods. To reward him, Zeus gave Agatos Agafya, a lapith princess as his bride. Agatos became the best of kings, wise, clever and kind. He had many great and powerful children who brought a time of peace and prosperity to the kingdom, and he lived a happy, full life.
Welcome to Millie’s 8 Ball, a paper game show where I, Millie Pritchard, have an orb filled with an unknown liquid answer all of your anonymously submitted questions! Here’s how this will work. Steve’s (My 8 Ball) answers will be first, and I will elaborate for him.
Millie's Magic 8-Ball Tells All....
1. Will quarantine ever end?
Steve says ‘Most likely’. Quarantine will come to an end, but Steve may be implying with his indefinite answer that it may last a while, or there will be multiple quarantine periods. It will definitely end though.
2. Is running around better than reading for 5 hours straight?
Steve replied ‘Signs point to yes’. Running and reading are good for different reasons. Running can help to build strong bones, strengthen muscles, improve cardiovascular fitness, relax the mind and reduce stress, and it can help maintain a healthy weight. Reading can also reduce stress, provide mental stimulation, Memory Improvement, and stronger analytical thinking skills.
3. Will the Olympics really happen in 2021?
Steve answered ‘Not likely’. As I’ve further researched, Steve may be right, as countries like Japan might be able to contain the virus by the 2021 games, other countries such as the United States and Brazil may not.
4. Will it take long for everything to be normal again?
Steve says ‘Very doubtful’. I feel that things may not be normal ever again, but they may become close to normal. We may have to wear masks for a while, but we will be able to participate in small gatherings soon.
5. Will I ever find more books to read?
After a flurry of ‘reply hazy try again’s and ‘ask again later’s, Steve simply answered ‘No’.
I think Steve’s mad at me.
6. Is J.K. Rowling better than Rick Riordan?
Steve replies ‘most likely’. I like both Harry Potter and Percy Jackson, so I don’t have an opinion- but Steve certainly does.
7. Is drawing digitally easier than drawing on paper?
Steve says ‘Don't count on it’. For Steve and I that is the case, but it's all about practice. Whatever you use more, you will tend to find easier.
8. Is a hotdog a sandwich?
Steve’s answer was ‘Don’t count on it’. And I think he is completely right. We, the student body, were cheated out of that Jeopardy game! I DEMAND JUSTICE!
9. Is cereal soup?
Steve stated ‘As I see it, yes’. I can go either way on this one. Dictionary.com defines soup as “a liquid food made by boiling or simmering meat, fish, or vegetables with various added ingredients”, though aren’t cold, liquid-based dishes like gazpacho and ceviche themselves soups? And can we really call milk broth? Sure, we could call milk multi-purpose, but you would get some pretty weird looks if you chugged a bottle of chicken broth.
10. Is slime a liquid?
Steve replied ‘yes’. But Steve is sort of wrong. Slime is actually between a solid and a liquid, also known as a non-Newtonian fluid. Most slimes as we know them are more towards the liquid side, as Steve said, but the most popular one closest to the middle of the spectrum is oobleck, a mixture of water and cornstarch.
11. Is water wet?
Steve answered ‘don't count on it’. I’m not quite sure how to respond to this one. Water itself is not wet persay, but it can make other materials wet by sticking to it. Wetness is the ability of a liquid to adhere to the surface of a solid, so when we say that something is wet, we mean that the liquid is sticking to the surface of a material.
12. Are kids spending too much time on their phones?
Steve said ‘my reply is no’. This answer can differ between people. On one hand, phones unlock a whole giant bank of knowledge to people, fitting all in one pocket, but on the other hand, it's not good to spend all your time on it. I agree with Steve on this one.
13. Will summer 2020 be boring?
Steve replied with ‘yes, definitely’. Thanks, Steve, for your reassuring words. Summer will be different this year, as we will have less things to do and less overall freedom. But if we stay safe this year, next year can be close to normal.
14. Are Naruto and Sasuke friends?
Steve says ‘without a doubt’. Naruto always considered Sasuke his best friend. Sasuke always felt this way too, though he seldom showed it. In their last fight in Naruto Shippuden, Sasuke forfeited and finally admitted that he had always been jealous of Naruto, and he had felt their friendship all along.
15. Do penguins have knees?
Steve says ‘outlook not good’, which doesn't make sense. Penguins do in fact have knees. Do you remember those exercises that the gym coaches made you do, where you would put your back against the wall and you would sit on an invisible chair? Wall sits. That’s what penguins are doing their entire lives. Every second must be excruciating.
Celine Arizpe Benitez
I’ve seen many other people with this idea, and would like to share it with you. Some families have based their costumes off of a specific TV show, or movie. You could also do characters from a video game. This idea is very creative, since it involves the other members of your family as well as yourself.
5. Clean out your room
Supplies: A room
Do you ever get bored of a plain old notebook or sketchbook cover? If so, here’s a task that may interest you. First off, you can do the boring option, and order stickers off of a website. Or, you can do the more creative/ time consuming option, and print and glue pictures to it. First, you look up various images (or just a single image) you would like to include in your project, and place them into a google doc. Next, you print out everything, and cut it all out. Place these on the cover of this book and enjoy!
This project is for those of you that get bored of your phone case easily, and like to change it often. I tend to do this a lot myself. Grab various images from google, and place them into a doc. Make sure that these images are relatively small, and would fit inside your case when you cut them out. Keep in mind, if you have stickers lying around, you can do this project with them as well. If you plan on using stickers instead, use a little tape, and tape the non-sticky back to the back of your phone, which allows you to reuse them and switch them out easily. If you go the paper route, print the page, and cut the individual images out. Now you want to tape them to the back of your phone and place the case over it. If your case isn’t clear, just glue (or tape) the images to the case instead.
3. Custom Phone case
Supplies: phone case (preferably clear), paper
2. Sketchbook/ notebook cover
Supplies: paper, glue, scissors, and a notebook
I’ve done this one, and it’s personally my favorite on the list. This project is one of those ones you may or may not be able to do, since not everyone has access to a printer, or card- board. To begin, you need a picture of your favorite human being, real or fake. Download a picture of this person standing upright. There are quite a few websites you are able to do this from, so choose one, and import the picture you most recently saved. You can also decide how tall this cardboard cutout is, which is all up to you.
This is another very easy task, but also a very helpful one. If you find that you have a lot of stuff lying around your room, It might be a good idea to go through some of it, to make room for new stuff. This is often helpful if you are planning on redecorating your room.
You may be sitting around all day, contemplating your life decisions. You may also be looking for various things to do to keep yourself occupied, while stuck at home. If so, keep reading to help cure your boredom.
1. Cardboard Cutout
Supplies: Cardboard, printer, lots of paper
4. “Themed Dinners”
Supplies: A family & costumes
5 Odd Quarantine projects to do while bored in the house
by Isabel Coppola
Things to Cure
By Abigail Gatdula
Do you ever find yourself on your phone, scrolling through hours and hours of tik tok? Or watching T.V. or Netflix just drifting away? Did you ever have plans to try a new hobby or waste away the quarantine by doing something productive but ended up procrastinating that just as you procrastinate everything else? Are you ever BORED? Honestly, same. But fret not! Fear not! Do not fret! Fear the fret not! Fret the fear not! Because I have a solution for you!!
#3) Count the atoms in the air
Apparently you can’t do this unless you have some microscope but it’s still fun!! After further research you need the transmission electron microscope. So if you have that, that’s awesome. Put it to use!! If not, it’s only $100,000+ so buy it lol. It’s a great past-time because there is just so much in the air you can never run out of atoms to count!!
#4) Time Travel
When I time traveled, I decided to go back in time to the Spanish Flu epidemic. Why I went there? To ask for advice! Duh. The answer is classified however. Sorry not sorry.
#5) Actually listen to your conductors
Practice your instruments. Maybe someday you’ll become a big star playing some instrument and you’ll look back and thank your conductors for always hagging you to practice.
#6) Memorize where the states are
Did you know that Wyoming is a state?? Like, since when? I thought only Florida, NY, California, Pennsylvania, Nevada, NJ and Florida were states. Turns out there’s 50 of them!!
#7) Count the stars
Yeah, yeah, I know. Why do I keep involving math into everything. Well as Mr.Kelly once said (I think. I don’t really remember lol.), “Math is everywhere”. Anyways, don’t stop until you have finished. Only stop until your heart does. JKJK.
That’s all folks! Thank you for reading this. Hopefully you got some good ideas of what to do during quarantine! Have a great summer break.
#1) Count Grass
One thing I learned during this unfortunate time is that there is something called nature which we apparently need to live. That’s cRaZy! A fun past- time I like to do is count grass. Why? Because it’s fun and fresh and who knows? Maybe it will be the newest trend. Make your friends think you’re cool by declining their non-social distancing party invitations by saying you’re too busy counting grass. Fun right?
#2) Memorize all digits of PI
Knowing all 2.7 trillion digits of pi is something that will blow the socks off your household appliances who you now call your “friends”. Just imagine you reciting it and someone comes up to you, “hey, that’s pretty impressive” that person soon becomes your soulmate. Y/N and said soulmate become lovers for eternity. You live happily ever after.
Reflection by Flora Gilley
Everyone agrees; quarantine is bad. There’s no friends, no going anywhere, and there’s a global pandemic going on. Is there any good side to this?
The answer to that question is “yes!” For more reasons then you might think. Here’s the list- yes it’s enough to make a list!
We get more time to practice the things we like to do outside of school on our own a lot more in our spare time.
There’s a lot less cars on the roads, and studies show that the air is getting better everywhere! Mother Nature is getting a breather.
We get to spend more time with our family, or whoever we live with. Between getting up to go to school at about 6 in the morning and after-school activities, you might not see your family a lot. So, now’s your chance to spend quality time with everyone!
You can enjoy the nice weather more, with all that extra time!
You can learn new skills, like writing, drawing, making life-sized cardboard cutouts, and more!
I know there’s more that can be added to that list! So here’s my challenge to you:
Make your own list of things that are good for you in quarantine and hang it up somewhere! Keep adding to it as you discover more things!
Reflections on Quarantine
What are some positives you've discovered during quarantine?
Some positives are that you have more time to discover new hobbies and to sleep in. You can still go outside but not for things like being with friends. And you have more time to virtually see your friends.
What are some things you've been able to do during quarantine, that might not have had the time for otherwise?
I had recently had time to talk to my friends almost everyday. I have also colored digital pictures, listened to more music, played my musical instrument and read a lot of books.
What are some things/people that you miss?
I miss being able to go to my friends’ houses and traveling to different countries.
Submitted by Ava DuQuella
During the quarantine, I have had more time to draw and play video games. I have been setting up an arena in the game Minecraft and I am going to have a tournament in the arena when it is complete. I have also been trying to create a comic series, but I don’t have any ideas for it so it’s not going well. I have also started listening to power metal, it’s a great music genre. Nothing else has happened that’s worth mentioning, I’m bored most of the time.
Submitted by Bo Kennedy
enitnarauQ no snoitcelfeR
On March 13, the Warwick Valley School district took steps to protect our community by closing school buildings amid the Coronavirus pandemic. These changes continued throughout the remainder of the school year, greatly impacting our students' lives, socially and academically. Though teachers and students alike were resilient in their efforts toward continued instruction, everyone experienced our "new normal" in different ways.
We asked the Literary Magazine staff (our awesome 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th graders)
to reflect on their experiences during the past four months for this important piece.
My Quarantine Experience by Anastasiya Kuchynska
Many people say that they don’t like this quarantine and that they want to go back to school/work, you reading this might think the same. But not me! Let’s start from the beginning when I got the phone call that school was closed for 4 weeks. From that very moment I was really excited that I'll get to stay home, because my godfather was coming to America. I haven't seen my godfather since fifth grade when I went to Ukraine. I don't have any relatives in America so when they come I get really really excited. he came on March 12th and the very next day all borders we're closed, therefore he could not return on the date he had originally planned for. Spent many nights playing cards and different board games, going bicycling on the trail nearby and much much more. I really enjoyed the time with him, but there were some things that I missed such as my student of the month celebration and my moving up ceremony to the 9th grade as well as my concert from Orchestra and chorus. I love that the amount of homework that teachers give you are a lot less, and that they will give you retakes and different quizzes and tests, which helps me get the best grade possible. truthfully, I was very happy when the Regents was canceled because I was worried for both the earth science Regents and the algebra 1 regents. the one thing that I'm excited for the most is this summer I'll be going to Italy, for vacation in August. yes yes, you may be thinking why are you going to Italy, he was the epicenter of the Coronavirus, but the situation in Italy is improving and my family believes that by the time we go it will be much less restricted.Ups and downs of the Coronavirus, but I'm happy for everything. For the good and the bad.
My Life in Quarantine
The moment the school called to cancel school for a month, I thought it was the best moment ever. What kind of kid wouldn’t dream of a moment like this? Doing whatever you feel like for most of the day was a dream come true, for most anyway. The first week in quarantine was very exciting. I was happy and focused very hard on my work. If only I had known we wouldn’t be going back to school any time soon. Week two was a bit harder, since I was still sort of excited about being at home, but I was beginning to miss my friends. Week three was probably the turning point in my mentality, and I began procrastinating before starting my homework, and not looking forward to finishing it. I just wanted to see my friends again. Weeks four, five, and six were basically the same. I was slowly losing my ability to focus on schoolwork, and tried my best to stay focused when I needed to. Weeks seven, eight, and nine were especially difficult, so I attempted at binging some shows to keep my mind busy. This task definitely helped me, and I began to focus harder on my work instead of my mental state. Week ten was probably the most difficult, since my sleep schedule has definitely taken a toll on my mood.
Week eleven was better, since I had begun to sleep a little better, which helped me focus on school more. Since, as I’m writing this, we’re in week twelve of quarantine, and things seem to be getting a little better. Parks are beginning to open up, and I’ve gone to the town rink a few times to skate with a friend, since my parents allowed us to, as long as we practiced social distancing.
I’ve only gone out of the house a few times. One time I had to wear a mask. It’s certainly difficult to wear masks in public, since you can’t really see that well, and I definitely tripped a few times on my own feet. Now that people are questioning whether or not we’ll be going back to school physically in September, nobody is really looking forward to the start of school next year. I’m still hoping we do go back, and at least go half days, or even if we have to, we could wear masks. Overall, I have mixed feelings about quarantine.
enitnarauQ no snoitcelfeR eroM
At first, I hated quarantine. I hated not being able to see my friends and not having something to do at every second of every day, but that has changed. I’ve discovered that this isn’t all bad. During my time at home I’ve had many positive, memorable experiences that I probably never would have had otherwise. For example, we’ve been baking a loaf of bread every day. We never would have had time to do that during school, and over the summer we wouldn’t be bored enough to try it. Also, I’ve been watching an ‘80s movie almost every day. I’ve discovered so many new favorite movies that I might have never seen otherwise. I’ve adopted a new normal that the future me will likely look back on with envy. With being able to do my assignments at any hour of the day, I have very little stress. In fact, I’m writing this at 1:00 in the morning. I feel like the cancellation of the regents has lifted a huge weight off of my shoulders. Although I am a little disappointed that I was robbed of a traditional eighth grade year, it was replaced with something much more memorable and unique that I will certainly remember for the rest of my life.
Submitted by Nicole Klein
More Reflections on Quarantine
Celine Arizpe Benitez
My quarantine had been pretty chaotic, if you ask me. At first, I was a mess with school work and wasn’t used to my schedule. I ended up with 2 whole weeks on school work and nothing else. However little by little, I was able to place a certain amount of time into school work and be able to finish it all. After figuring out my schedule, I had to figure out what I was going to do with the rest of my time. I first thought of writing and drawing, but I ended up hurting my wrist. So then I realized, “I could finish the anime I was watching”. So I pulled out my laptop to pull up my anime. Then the realization hit me. I could do digital art. So now I spend my time off of school work, watching anime, doing digital art, reading and writing, or just yeeting my siblings into the pool. And that’s my quarantine. :)
This quarantine has affected me so much but at the same time so little. I’m an introvert so I don’t go out in the first place, I stay inside. Yet I can’t help but feel torn between 2 thoughts. Either I crave to go outside or I don’t ever want to see the sun again. It’s something that has never happened before. I haven’t been doing anything productive besides school, so I haven’t been doing any of my hobbies. I haven’t even been watching any shows and this would be the perfect time to catch up on everything right? I don’t mind quarantine, I just don’t like it that much. It feels like summer for me but worse.
Submitted by Anonymous
Warwick Valley Middle School Literary Magazine
The staff of the WVMS Literary Magazine would like to say CONGRATULATIONS to the Class of 2020!
We would also like to send our best wishes to our fantastic 8th grade class as they move on to high school. We will miss you!
We would like to thank all of our incredible, hardworking students that helped with the creation of this magazine, even during Distance Learning. You rock!
Lastly, we would like to thank you for your continued support of the
Quarantine, despite introducing me to utter boredom, has made me try many different skills, one of which is sewing. I’ve come to love working with felt and creating different patches. As boring as it may sound, it’s helped me get through the solitary-confinement like hours. I’ve also been doing other things like hiking, exploring the deep swamplands in my area, scrapbooking, lock picking (I’m really good at it), and other random things I can’t think of at the moment. I’ve also been seeing how important small interactions really are to me, and how much I wish I could have just one last day in middle school to see everyone before moving up to high school. Google meets help me get through the day, too. They give me that little interaction with my teachers and classmates that I really enjoy. All and all, I’m not as good at being a hermit as I thought I was.
Submitted by Anonymous
Quarantine has been an eventful few months and I can’t wait to go back to our normal lives. Some positive things came however like I was able to get over an injury, and I won the Odyssey of the Mind World Finals by 15 points which is a huge margin. I’ve gotten to gain new experiences and say I’ve lived through a pandemic. I watch TV a lot and talk to friends frequently. I have lots of time to do work and relax so quarantine hasn’t been all bad. In times like these it’s a priority to stay positive. Happy Quarantine!
Submitted by Sophia Samborski