By Giovanna Doliber, age 10

I woke up to a loud CRASH! I gasped and sat up in bed, my green eyes wide with surprise. I stared around the room. “Casey?” I tried to cry out but all I could manage was a choked whisper. Casey was my little six-year-old sister. Where am I? I thought. I looked out my window and saw red and orange flames devouring our backyard. I screamed and jumped out of bed. My blankets fell to the floor with a soft thump.

“Mom, Dad, CASEY?” I finally managed to yell. I had no idea what was happening and I looked outside and saw a tall, pale man wearing a black cape. The man stared at the fire with an evil smile and laughed, and I stared at his pointed fangs and passed out. “Wake up, Wake up, WAKE UP!” a voice yelled. I gasped and sat up, looking wildly around. I was no longer in my room, and I was no longer alone. A young girl was sitting beside me, but I could see right through her! She had long black hair and her skin was pale. She seemed to be radiating light.

Her eyes were teary, and she looked as though she had been crying for hundreds of years. I wanted to say, “What are you?” but felt it would be too rude, so I said, “Where are we?!”

She looked at me sadly and said in a small little voice that seemed to echo from deep inside her throat, “We are far away from Earth, and right now we are on the planet of beaches. There are only beaches here.” I looked at her with shock. What did she mean? Different planets? “Who — who — who are you?” I managed to stammer.

“I am Annalee, and I promise I won’t hurt you.” I was speechless. Not only was I talking to a ghost, this ghost was saying that I was on a different planet? This must be some joke, I thought. Yes that makes sense, someone playing a mean joke, that’s all, that’s all. I only wish that I had been right, for, little did I know, Annalee and I were soon to be in grave danger.

“What’s going on?” I asked.

“Your planet has been taken over by the king, the ruler of all monsters . . . Count Dracula!”

I gasped. “No, no this can’t be true. It just CAN’T BE!”

“I — I can’t believe it.” I looked around and all I saw was beaches, but no people, all empty . . . “So this is what Terran looks like,” said the ghost girl staring at me with big blue eyes.

“Ter — what?” I said.

“Terran means that you’re from planet Earth,” she explained with her small, echoing voice. “What is your name?” Annalee suddenly asked.

“I’m Mat,” I told her. “Let me go home.

“Well Mat, get ready for the adventure of your life,” she said.

Oh boy. I’m in for a wild ride, I thought.

“The Fight for Earth” was published in 826NYC’s last chapbook of 2020, It’s Raining Gemstones, Again. A collection of student writing from 826NYC’s Write Away Workshops and Write After School program, our latest and greatest chapbook encompasses the curious voices of our young authors. Help support the unique voices of our young authors by sharing their stories and making a donation! To receive notices about opportunities for your child, sign up for our youth writing opportunities newsletter.

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