Shiori and the Lantern

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Shiori and the Lantern

Post  Pigeon. on Sun Apr 22, 2012 12:22 pm

Mum and Dad were going to Ireland for their 5th wedding anniversary and I had to stay at my Nana's house for two weeks during my parents' vacation. As my parents drove to my Nanas house in the forest, I was too excited to sit still because I had always loved to climb the trees and catch butterflies when I was little. I hadn't been there for a while, so I was also nervous about Nana smothering me in wet, sloppy kisses.
When we finally arrived, I didn't even wait for my dad stop the engine. I quickly unlocked my car door and dashed to the front porch of my Nana's little cottage and knocked three times while my parents were back at the car, separating my luggage from theirs then carrying them to me.
"Nancy, you should remember to do things on your own if you want to live in the forest like Nana", my dad grumbled as he set down the suitcase beside my feet.
"Your dad's right", my mum said, as she handed me my other suitcase.
"Mum! What did you put in here? Bricks?" I exclaimed, and dropped the suitcase on the floor.
Just then, Nana opened the door, grinning at us with her white teeth, I was surprised that she hadn't lost them yet.
"Hello, dears", she said in greeting, with her kind, soft voice.
"Hello, Nana", we all replied, each giving her hugs.
I braced myself for the wet, sloppy kisses but they never came. Instead, she gave me a big, tight hug that made me feel like my ribs were being crushed.
Woah, she's really strong for her age, I thought to myself.
I picked up my suitcases and the four of us walked into Nana's house. I breathed in the smell of old paper and wood, a smell that was familiar to me and smiled to myself.
"Follow me, Nancy. I'll show you where you'll be sleeping", Nana said, smiling at me as she led me through the hallway, where there were cross-stitch artworks were hung up on the wall-papered walls.
We finally ended up in a small, cosy room which had a single bed, a bookshelf which only contained picture books and a small closet. The walls were painted with a soft pink colour, and the door was purple, which was my favourite colour.
"Well, do you like it?" Nana asked hopefully.
"Of course! It's cute" I replied, smiling at her.
"Alright then", Nana grinned,"Start unpacking while I get back to your parents".
She walked out of the room and I started to put my clothes into the closet, folding each piece of clothing neatly.
When I had finished packing, I opened the door and walked through the hallway, looking at each of the cross-stitch pictures. I entered the living room where my Nana and my parents were chatting quietly and sipping tea.
"Well, we better get going," dad said, putting down his cup of tea on the coffee table, "Or else we're going to miss our flight".
"Bye, Nana!" mum said, waving to Nana as her and dad left and closed the door. I listened as the sound of the car engine disappeared into the distance.
It was getting pretty boring, so I decided to go on the internet and chat to my friends.
"Nana can I go on the computer?" I asked.
"Sorry, dear, but I don't have a computer, and even if I did we still have no internet connection", Nana said, shrugging, "But I can tell you a story called Shiori and the Lantern if you want, it's in the bookshelf behind your couch".
I turned around and examined the bookcase, looking for the book. Then I reached up and grabbed it, then handed it to Nana.
"Shiori is believed to be an elf that lives in the very same forest that I live in", Nana began," She protects all living things, including animals and plants but no one has ever seen her. It's also believed that Shiori can only protect the forest if she has her lantern, which lights up when danger is near--"
"Nana, this story is boring, can we have dinner?" I groaned.
"Well, alright then", Nana said, with a slight disappointed tone in her voice, and she stood up and went off to the kitchen to cook us some tasty dinner.
While she was cooking, I noticed that there was a little goldfish next to where I was sitting. I shifted to the edge of the couch, to where the goldfish was, and tapped the glass lightly. The goldfish didn't do anything- it just kept swimming. So I stuck my finger in the water and poked the fish. It still didn't do anything.
This place doesn't seem as fun as I expected it would be, I thought to myself.
"Nancy, dear! Dinner is ready! I hope you like spaghetti!", Nana called out from the kitchen.
I sat down on one of the dining chairs in the dining room and looked around the room. There were three doorways- one leading to the hallway, one leading to the kitchen and the other leading to the living room, where I could still see the goldfish swimming around.
Through the kitchen doorway, I could see Nana with a ladle, scooping up the spaghetti from a big bowl and putting them in two smaller bowls. As she walked into the dining room carrying the two bowls of spaghetti, she saw me staring at her and she smiled. She placed one bowl in front of me and one on the other side of the wooden table and went back in to the kitchen to get us both silver forks. She handed me one then sat down on her chair and started eating straight away. I started to eat the spaghetti slowly, remembering my table manners and chewing with my mouth closed.
"So, do you like it here?" Nana asked, breaking the awkward silence between us.
"It's fine", I answered," But I miss the internet".
"Don't worry", Nana assured, "You'll get used to having no internet for two weeks".
I doubt it, I thought.
Nana finished her spaghetti and went in to the kitchen and put her bowl and fork in the sink then went to the living room to rest and feed the goldfish. I found it strange that she barely made any sound when she did anything. But I finished eating my spaghetti and went to the kitchen to put my bowl and fork in the sink, accidentally letting go of the bowl too early, which shattered into pieces.
"Nancy, did you break anything?", I heard Nana's voice. She walked into the room with a concerned look on her face ," Did you hurt yourself?"
"Erm, I didn't hurt myself but I broke my bowl. Sorry", I said, "Do I have to clean it up?"
"No, don't bother, dear, I'll do it".
The tone of her voice made me feel even more guilty than I already was, so I slowly padded to my room and flopped on to my bed. I closed my eyes and sleep came quickly.

I woke up to a sweet voice calling my name.
"Nancy, come, I need your help".
The voice was coming from outside the window, so I opened the shutters and peered outside, rubbing my eyes.
"Who's there?" I whispered into the darkness.
"Quickly, I need your help".
Without thinking, I jumped out the window and landed on the soft grass outside.
"Follow the sound of my voice". There it was again.
I followed the voice, relying on my ears to guide the way as it was pitch black.
"Keep talking!" I shouted, not knowing where to go.
"Come on, follow me", the voice said.
I started to run and entered a small clearing in the forest, there were oil lanterns on the ground.
Who put these here, I thought. It surely couldn't have been Nana, she wouldn't be able to walk this far.
"Hello, Nancy". The voice came from behind me.
I jumped with a shriek and I turned around slowly, my heart pounding.
I was surprised to see a pretty girl, with long brown hair and bright green eyes. She was wearing clothes that appeared to had been Nana's.
"Did you steal those clothes from Nana?" I asked sternly.
"Oh. Yes.. Sorry", she muttered.
"Never mind that. What's your name?" I asked, trying to sound friendly.
"Shiori", she replied, looking away.
"Shiori.. The protector of the forest?" I gasped in disbelief.
"Yes", she said, smiling.
I stared at her for what seemed to be minutes until I realised she was staring back at me.
"I need your help", she said impatiently. I've--"
"B-but this is impossible, you can't be real!", I cried, "How do you know my name?"
"I heard the elderly woman saying your name. I am real, Nancy, reach out your hand and see". She reached out her hand to me looking me in the eye. I cautiously reached out my hand and touched her finger and gasped that she was indeed real, and this isn't a dream.
"What can I help you with?" I gulped. This felt like I was doing business at our store back at home.
"I'm glad you offered. Collect as many fire moths as you can", she said with a grin on her face.
"What are fire moths--". I stopped in the middle of my sentence as a moth with wings of fire flew in front of my face.
"That's a fire moth", Shiori smirked.
I put my finger under the moth's legs and it hopped onto my hand. Amazingly, I wasn't burnt- I was filled with a calming sensation.
"Put them in this jar", Shiori said, handing me a glass jar.
Another stolen item from Nana, I thought.
As I caught the fire moths, they made beeping sounds which sounded like a melody. Even stranger, Shiori was dancing to the moths' "melody".
I felt so calm after I had collected 6 of the fire moths.
"The forest is so beautiful!" I exclaimed with delight.
"Yes, but it will be destroyed if I don't get my lantern", Shiori cried.
Wait, this is the story of shiori's quest that Nana was going to read to me, I thought to myself.
"Follow me. I know the way through the forest", Shiori said, straightening up.
I follow closely, not wanting to be grabbed by some other unknown creature of the forest but we were stopped in our tracks by a fox. But it wasn't any ordinary fox.
It was the size of a bear and it could talk.
"Hello, elf. Would you like you and your friend to be my dinner tonight?" It snarled and licked its lips.
I cried in fear and shot a glance at Shiori, to show her that I was counting on her not to get me killed. To my surprise, Shiori gave me a look that said, "I'll protect you".
"Begone sly fox, I do not fear you!" Shiori shouted, "...Oh no!"
"What's wrong, Shiori?" I asked worriedly.
"I've lost my quiver and arrows", she replied, with fear in her eyes, "I must've dropped it back when we were walking!".
The sly fox laughed in amusement at how scared the both of us looked. I knew what to do even before Shiori told me.
"Keep him busy!" I yelled, as I ran back to search for her quiver and arrows.
I searched in the darkness, frantically clawing at the dirt. When I had thought the weapon was lost, a fire moth appeared a few metres away. I grabbed it and ran through the forest, stumbling until I finally found the quiver and arrows.
I quickly sprinted back to where Shiori was, and I saw her desperately fighting the fox.
I knew that there was no time to simply hand over the quiver and arrows to Shiori so I aimed at the fox's front leg and the arrow sliced through the air and struck the fox. The fox howled in pain and fell with a thud, trying to get away.
"We're not going to kill you", Shiori said to the fox as it growled at her.
I gave Shiori her quiver and five remaining arrows, carefully walking around the fox.
"Leave me!" The fox snarled, barring its teeth.
Shiori left and I looked at the fox one more time, then followed her through the darkness.
"Where exactly are we going?" I asked.
"To Kal the golum. He is who stole my lantern", Shiori replied, eyes straight ahead.
"How do you kno--"
"Who goes there?!". A low voice echoed through the forest.
"That's Metheus, Kal's guard", Shiori whispered to me.
"I said who goes there!" Metheus shouted again.
"It is I, Shiori, to retrieve my lantern!" Shiori replied with confidence.
Metheus stared at Shiori and I with his black beady eyes. He stood tall on his two hoofed legs and held his head tall, showing off the ram horns on his head
"I will let you pass", Metheus said," But only if the human passes my test!".
I was surprised that there was no fighting involved, but had enough courage to speak.
"I am ready", I squeaked. Maybe not that much courage.
"Who is the goddess of love?" Metheus began.
"Aphrodite", I replied. I remember watching shows about these gods and goddesses when I was young. Maybe we can pass after all, I thought.
"That is...Correct", Metheus said," The God of death?"
"Hades", I replied with a smirk.
"And the King of Gods?", he asked.
"Zeus", I grinned.
"It looks like the human knows much of our realm", Metheus mumbled," Go through the archway of trees and you shall find Kal".
Shiori got her quiver and arrows ready as we walked through the beautiful archway of trees. There were fire moths everywhere, lighting up the whole area.
Finally, we arrived in a small cave.
"Shiori, what are you doing here?" the golum asked. "Here for your lantern I suppose?"
"Give it back Kal!" I exclaimed.
"I-I can't" He said, surprisingly with hint of sadness in his voice.
"Why not?" Shiori asked softly.
"I have insomnia", Kal replied, looking ashamed, "I need it".
I glanced at Shiori as I came up with an idea.
"You should sing him to sleep", I whispered.
Shiori nods as the fire moths start to beep their melody again.
"Be at ease, golum, I shall sing to you nature's song. The song that flows through me", Shiori said softly and began to sing.
I watched in awe as the whole forest lit up. The creatures of the forest were all singing.
When Shiori finished her song, Kal was fast asleep. I took the lantern from above where Kal was sleeping.
"I've got it, Shiori!" I exclaimed.
"Thank you for your help, Nancy!" Shiori squealed,"The forest is saved! Have a rest on this pile of leaves, you look quite tired.."
As I set myself down, I felt myself drifting off to sleep..


I woke to birds singing and the daylight pouring in my window.
I rubbed my eyes and looked around the room. A closet. A bookshelf. A bed. I'm back at Nana's house. I looked over at the window, which was wide open.
Still half-asleep, I walked to the living room to read a few chapters of the book "Shiori and the Lantern".
What? How can that be? I thought as I read the last chapter.
" Shiori began to sing and suddenly the whole forest came alive with the creatures of the night. The forest glowed and danced to the elf's angelic voice and soon Kal had fallen asleep. Shiori looked over to see that Nancy had wasted no time, they dashed for the lantern and retrieved it, saving the day as well as the forest."




Last edited by Pigeon. on Mon Apr 23, 2012 6:58 am; edited 1 time in total
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Finished !

Post  Pigeon. on Sun Apr 22, 2012 4:46 pm

So , I've finished, I'm just checking for mistakes. Just in case I miss some, can some of you look too?
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Re: Shiori and the Lantern

Post  Admin on Sun Apr 22, 2012 5:23 pm

I edited any mistakes I could find, the only thing I would recommend changing would be separating it more, giving it more paragraphs, rather than a few large ones, try more small ones. Very good story, by the way. And a surprising ending! It was very good. Would you like it moved to serious critique or completed?
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~

Post  Pigeon. on Mon Apr 23, 2012 6:49 am

Admin wrote:I edited any mistakes I could find, the only thing I would recommend changing would be separating it more, giving it more paragraphs, rather than a few large ones, try more small ones. Very good story, by the way. And a surprising ending! It was very good. Would you like it moved to serious critique or completed?
I'd like it moved to completed, thanks c:
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Re: Shiori and the Lantern

Post  Admin on Mon Apr 23, 2012 6:52 am

OK, Done!
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Re: Shiori and the Lantern

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