Manasa Makam, class of 2022

My body aching, still recovering from that 50-foot fall. Water dripping, spiders around me. Cobwebs in my glossy chestnut hair, my school uniform all dusty. There was not a speck of light, but I wasn’t scared, I was trained for this. I could feel it, it was here! In this cavern! This was it! The place! I couldn’t believe it! This was a dream, it had to be, but it wasn’t! I Maddison Boyce had found the prototype of the biggest weapon made by criminal masterminds.

“Maddison! Maddi! Maddi! Are you okay? We are coming down,” said Skye worryingly.

“Skye I’m fine! I promise, no harm done!” said Maddi hoping Skye wouldn’t notice the unsteadiness in her voice.

“Maddi, as my best friend you should know where there’s trouble and danger, I’m in!” Skye said convincingly.

Skye is an athlete, the best runner I know, an expert climber, she is also the best aimer in the world. She hates being messed with. I have known Skye for 3 years and we have become very close in those years. She and Ben have saved me before, and I’m very thankful they were there. Her ex-boyfriend had worked for an agency which was in control of a criminal mastermind, that fact still haunts her.

“Hey Mads! How are you? It’s been a while.” Ben said in his smooth, calming voice. I could just imagine him running his hand through his glossy, thick, dark brown hair.

“Ben? What are you doing here? Skye!” I yelled confused.

“It’s okay Mads! We decided somebody needed to stay up, in case anything happens,” he said slowly. But I wasn’t an idiot to believe his alibi.

“So you came down for me?” I asked abruptly. Checked my phone and I had no signal.

“Mads, listen to me. Please. You know I’m always here for you.” He said, being such a boy.

“Ben, this is not the time for this. We can continue this conversation, after we complete the mission and find the prototype,” I said in my bravest voice.

Then we heard footsteps, there were people. Coming for us. They had torches. I was half scared to death. There were many. I was freaking nervous. My hands were cold, I couldn’t feel my body, and I was twirling my hair. I had so many thoughts. How are we going to get out? Will they kill me? What will happen to Ben? What if they find us? I wondered, hoping I had not said them out loud. I was praying that they wouldn’t find us.

As if Ben could read my thoughts, he whispered, “It’s okay Mads, I promise. We will be fine. Don’t worry. They won’t find us. They are going to have to fight me and you, we will go all crazy on them. We will kick, punch, and fight like little girls. No offense. Nothing will happen. Trust me.”

“I trust you Ben. None taken, I don’t become offended easily” I told him, I felt his hand slip into mine. His hands were rough, but I didn’t mind. In all of this chaos, Ben managed to keep me calm.

I let myself wonder a little, and really regretted it. I wondered if Ben maybe came down here for me, I kind of liked the thought of that, I have to admit. Maybe he came down here for Skye, maybe he came instead of her so nothing would happen to her. Uffff I was frustrating myself thinking too much. Maddi, stop it I told myself, feeling like a idiot. What if Ben likes Skye? Omg, that would make me a third wheel. No, that would be like totes awful. I was overthinking, and couldn’t stop. I was chewing on my thoughts. I figured this was going to be hard if Skye and Ben fell into a relationship. I have to admit I have a crush on Ben, he is cute and his personality is great. He is friendly, nice, honest, and hilarious. He has saved my life before, really brave. Then a voice interrupted my thoughts.

“Ladies and gentlemen! Welcome to my lab! You are the first to witness a mock-up of the weapon we are looking for, and you shall be the first to witness the damage caused. Then you all will get a marvelous opportunity to decide whether to join me in my hunt, and live in a world where criminals will rule,” declared James Blackwell, the most skilled and highest ranked criminal mastermind of all time.
James Blackwell had put the president against bars by hacking his personal computer. He can hit bullseye on a target blindfolded. He knows how to uses every single weapon in history of mankind. He has agility, he is very talented. He can do all gymnastics, knows every technique there is. He can hack any computer, and put false information. He makes the best alibis. Can impeach almost anyone. He has that power, even being a criminal.

From where I was hiding behind a boiler, sweat rolled from my forehead down to my neck. I wasn’t sure how Ben was, but it wasn’t the time to worry about him, he could help himself. My phone vibrated… I was worried they would find us if I checked it, but I checked my phone anyways. I had a text from Skye. It said, I am going to cut the power for you guys to get your chance to escape! Good luck!

I found Ben and told him what Skye had said. He gave me a hug and said, “I’m very sorry for what I’m gonna do. I don’t have a choice. I don’t want to do this.”

I didn’t have any time to digest what he said, I was very confuzzled as I say.
It all happened in a sudden! Ben pushed me out into the open, I wasn’t behind that boiler. I could see everything and everybody. Why did he do this to me? I can’t believe I trusted him. I am a spy but at times I get stumped too. I didn’t know what to say.

“Hi!” Really, Maddi, I thought, that’s all you can say.

“Hello Maddison Boyce, daughter of Mackenzie Boyce,” said James in an utterly pleasant manner.

Then came the silence… in midair Ben started speaking, “Hello stepdad, how are you? It’s been a while.” I could feel my brow rising, I was clueless. Ben started walking towards his so-called father, that I just then learned about. He put an arm on my shoulder and said, “Sorry for the shock.”

As soon as he said that, the power broke. I heard shots go off. Just my luck, I thought. I didn’t feel the bullet reach me or go through me, but then came the pain, the sudden rush of adrenaline. I knew in that minute the bullet had hit me. It was near my thigh. A voice whispered, “Maddison, Maddison.” I couldn’t feel my body, I felt very light headed, the world was spinning.

I woke up to find myself strapped to a table. Black complicated straps, that only somebody with agility could undo. Possibly a lab table, I looked around and found myself in a science lab. I worried that I would become just another lab rat. I looked around, took in my surroundings. I saw a green couch like the one back at home, brown curtains, and even a plasma 60 inch TV. It was cozy at the same time, it made me feel like I wanted to stay.

It was the same voice again, “Hello Maddison Grace Boyce. It had been a while since I have seen you my dear. Before I go, I shall tell you something you shall sleep on. The bullet it didn’t do much damage my sweet daughter, so you are pretty well. I know what you are thinking, let me help you out, dear. Yes, I am your dad, and you are my daughter. Also my sweet little pie, Ben is here because he wanted to save you. Take some rest, we shall talk later.”

Rest, I thought. How is that going to happen? I’m strapped to a table. Just then when I had lost all hope, a person with a white lab coat, goggles, and gloves unstrapped me from the table. I was hoping he had come to let me out. He motioned for me to get down, I followed him. He led me into another room. A room with nothing but a table and chair in the middle. He again motioned for me to sit in the chair and I did, wondering why he wouldn’t talk to me. I sat in the chair, and a screen appeared in front of me, with writing. On the screen was were words that said, “Close your eyes,” so I did. I was twitching, something was moving me. I didn’t know what to do. I felt ashamed. Somebody was coming, I heard footsteps, they were heavy, I felt like I knew who was coming.

It was Ben, he was here. He started talking like everything was okay, but it wasn’t. I had a mission to complete, and my messed up relationship with Ben wasn’t going to come in the way. I wasn’t sure how me and Ben were, and in what stage, situation we were in.

“Maddi! It’s you! Thank God! OK, so hear me out. I am truly sorry, from the bottom of my heart for what I did. You mean a lot to me Maddi. I promise, I would never hurt you on purpose. We are in an alternate universe, I know it’s very hard for you to believe. They built and activated the weapon, it created an alternate universe, and they threw us in it to see if we would survive. Now we are here. Maddi, I want you to know I was always on your side. Anyways we need to get out of the alternate universe before a time loop sucks us into the afterlife.”