One night during study hall a boy was just doing his homework, alone. His name was Tristan. He got bored so he decided to get his speaker from the downstairs of the Sturtevant Hall. He went down the creaking stairs and turned towards the hall. Tristan saw his speaker, but out of the corner of his eye there he saw a red door. Out of intense curiosity Tristan went over to the door. There was a sign that read “employees only“. He opened the door and went into the room. There was a big heater. He saw a spider on the side of the wall, and Tristan has a huge fear of spiders. He heard a lot of creaking noises behind a regular door in the room. Then there was a loud BANG!!!!!! Tristan runs to the red door, but it is locked. He ran behind the hot heater and all he could see were a pair of bloody legs that walked out of the red door. Tristan looks at his phone and it is at 27%, and it is 9:13 pm. He runs towards the red door and it opens, Tristan frantically ran out. He went upstairs, and went into the reading room. He relaxed and did the rest of his homework, with a heart beat that felt like it was going to burst out of his chest.
When Tristan had finished his homework, he headed toward his dorm and noticed the man and that he was full of blood. He got into a white car and drove off. Tristan ran to Atwood and into his dorm for the night. But his dorm partner “ Sidney “ was still awake. Tristan says, Sidney, do you want to go check something out that I saw. What did you see?, he asked. I saw an interesting room with some stuff, but come on. Ok let me get a sweatshirt on. He said.
When Tristan and Sidney got back to Sturtevant Hall, they went downstairs to the red door. You went in here?,Sidney asked. Yeah, of course I did. Tristan replied. They went into the room. There is more blood. Sidney freaks out. Tristan walked into the door that the man came out of but there was only another door. He persuaded Sidney to come with him and sure enough he went along.They walked through the door and there was blood everywhere still. Tristan walked further into the room to see a handsaw and a hammer. He ran into the room that the man was in. There is not much blood but a gun and a load of knives. The knives had blood on them. What is with all the blood, Sidney said. We shouldn’t be here. I agree. Tristan said. First, I am going to look around for a sec. You can go if you want. Ok , Sidney agreed. Tristan looked around and the room was really smelling bad so Tristan looked around for a sec more, and then he heard a yell of pain behind him. He looked through the window and Sidney had an axe in his leg. He was kneeling on the concrete floor. Tristan gets away from the door and hides under the workbench. He plugged his ears to not hear the screams. Then the man comes through the door that he was in and grabs a rope and walks out. Tristan gets up and he sees him wrap the rope around Sydney’s other leg and drag him out the red door. Tristan then gets out of the room and waits 5 seconds then runs out of the red door. He saw no one there but took a run for it. Tristan ran to the bottom of the stairs and the man was standing there at the top of the stairs. He turned around and saw another guy with a mask, he had a bat. Tristan punches him in the face and grabs his bat. He takes the bat into the air and knocks him out. He runs but the red door is locked. He runs towards the other door to a teachers office. The door is locked. Tristan only has one option, and that one option is to fight. Or at least try to. He runs toward the man and the man but the man trips him. Takes the bat and knocks Tristan out. Tristan woke up in his bed thinking it was all a dream. He opened his eyes and saw the man standing next to him with a handsaw.
For God’s sake, you’re not going crazy. You’re definitely sane. Your mind is at its best. You’re not crazy, you’re ok, you’re fine, you’re perfectly calm. Yes, calm. Calm… like your mind. It’s not you, you’re not crazy. It ‘s them.
They grin, showing off their white teeth and plastic fake smiles. You close your eyes and sigh. You’ve tried to. You’ve tried to change it, but they’re not coming back.
Your family has been replaced by a bunch of imposters.
Nobody believes you? Fair enough. You wouldn’t either, if you were them. But yet you try to desperately explain.
Since you’re little, every single day after school, Mom makes the perfect ham and cheese sandwich, the bread slices lined up perfectly, the Gouda cheese sliced sharply, the Turkish ham establishing harmony between those rare but delicious ingredients…
However, in the last two weeks, you’ve noticed that the bread doesn’t have that crunch to it, the cheese is not Gouda but Cheddar, and the ham breaks a perfect order and makes it, well… unpleasant.
Your parents have never cared about you, about your day… Everyday since you can remember, you open that old rusty door and silence reigns in the house. However, these last few weeks, as you walk in, Mom smiles widely and asks about your day. Dad waves from the living room, as he’s “helping around” with the house chores. Sissy comes running to give you a big hug. Yet, all these nice and valuable gestures are not what they seem. They’re warm, yet cold; light, yet dark; ordinary, yet uncanny…
And then the smiles… They never stop smiling. It’s like a Dollhouse, but it’s not “time for you to play”.
You wipe your tears away, leaving no trace of sadness as you enter the feared house.
As you walk in, Mom greets you warmly, kindly offering a ham and cheese sandwich. You accept it cautiously, and savor those dry bites of bitterness. Sissy hugs you joyfully, pulling your shirt, asking you to come play. All those plastic smiles, those shining eyes, those perfectly styled locks, those neatly ironed outfits…
“In a sec, Sissy” you mutter as you approach the kitchen.
This has to stop. It has been going on for too long. Two weeks is too long. You can’t go crazy. That’s just not you. You can’t.
You close your eyes as your arms reach out searching for it. You find it and grab it strongly by the cool and smooth handle. You take a glance at the mirror as your anger rises. You enter the living room. This perfect family is fake. They took Mom, Dad and Sissy away. They don’t deserve to live.
You hear the laughs, that, two weeks ago would’ve been joyful, yet now you only hear malicious shrieks of laughter. You get goosebumps, as you slowly approach those monsters. You close your eyes and raise your arm decisively once you’re next to them. Three strikes. Three screams. Three seconds of satisfaction. You sit happily between corpses, playing with the knife, blood dripping all over your white pants.
“I’ll wash them” you say as you sway your legs innocently.
You see a car stop by the house, and you excitedly scream. They’re back! You open the door, only to find out that it’s not Mom. It’s not Dad, or Sissy either.
The cops surround you, and you start crying.
“You don’t get it, they were fake. They were not real.”
They nod with their heads, but you can tell they don’t believe you. In fact… they’re mocking you!
“Don’t you dare make fun of me!” they all flinch and shy away from you.
They’re not mocking you. They’re afraid of you.
As they take you away handcuffed, the knife still dripping on your left hand, you turn around and take a last glance at the mirror. And you finally see. You see the real you, pounding the glass weakly, desperately crying, trying to break the wall between the mirror and the crime scene. Your reflection falls down, gives up, and curls up into the fetal position in despair.
I’ve been in and out of jobs since I dropped out of college. I was never really a school person, and I just couldn’t deal with it anymore. Looking back, I probably should have just sucked it up and gotten my stupid degree. Sorry, where are my manners? I still haven’t introduced myself. My name is Phil and I’m 24. While I’m doing anything I can to make rent, my true passion is nature. I’ve always loved spending time alone in the woods, enjoying a short break from reality. After losing yet another job, I wasn’t in a good place. I was a failure who couldn’t do anything right. I decided to go out to the local pub and get a few drinks.
“Hey Phil, how’s it going buddy?” I looked over at John in the corner, smiling at me with his yellow, chipped smile.
“Same as always, John.” I gave the most basic answer I could think of; I wasn’t in the mood to talk. John was a usual at the pub, and knew that if I was there I was down on my luck. When I sat down on the other side of the bar from him and ordered a gin and tonic, he got up and came over to me. He paid his bill, and leaned over my shoulder before leaving.
“I know why you’re here. Don’t do anything stupid. Luck comes and goes, yours will turn around eventually. Just give it time.” I scoffed and brushed him off.
“You’re starting to sound like my dad John, and I haven’t talked to him in four years.” With that he walked out, and I was alone with the bartender. After my fifth round of drinks, the bartender cut me off and I angrily stood up to leave. On the way out, I glanced over at the job adverts as I usually do. I almost walked out before stopping in my tracks. I immediately sobered up and walked back to the wall. While there were the usual adverts, I spotted one that was never there before. “Park Ranger wanted. No experience required. Call the number below to apply.” I was shocked. This could be my way out, my luck finally turning around. I ripped off the whole poster and walked out to shouts from the bartender. I didn’t listen; I had a call to make. I managed to get back to my apartment, dreaming of getting my life together and having a second chance. When I dialed the number however, all I heard was static. I tried again and again, all with the same result. I slammed the phone on my bed. This was my chance, my lifeline, and I was too late. They must have already hired someone else.
Wait, that wasn’t a reason to cut off the number. And wouldn’t I get an automated message if the call wasn’t going through? That’s when I started hearing something coming from the phone. Through the static I thought I could make something out. I listened closer – nothing. Then, very quietly, I heard three quick taps, three long taps, and then three quick taps again. “Hello?” I asked questionably into the phone. This was weird. Was I being pranked? Suddenly the tapping stopped and the phone line went dead. I went to bed that night creeped out, but mostly upset over the missed opportunity. I would have to go out and look for another job soon.
When I woke up the next morning however, everything changed. I received a text from an unknown number. It read “Hello Phil! This is Amy with the Alaskan National Forest Protection Association. I am led to believe that you are interested in working as a park ranger with us. If this is true, you’re hired! We need you as soon as possible. We will fly you out and send you a few thousand dollars to get all the gear you need when you land. I hope to see you soon. Best, Amy.” I was confused. This was all surreal, and it felt too good to be true. I didn’t notice the hundreds of red flags, like how they got my name or how they knew I wanted the position. I was curious, and what could be the harm in replying, even if it was a joke? I sent a text back saying that I was in fact interested and asked what I needed to do. Amy responded almost instantly. Weird, I thought. Maybe she was on her break or something? We texted back and forth a few times, and it ended with her sending the details to my direct flight to Anchorage, Alaska and me having $3,000 in my bank account. I was left in shock, I didn’t think it could be real. I had never had this much money at once, and I thought about just keeping the money and refunding the ticket. It would leave me with enough for a month or two, giving me plenty of time to get a job. Just then my phone buzzed one last time. “So sorry, I somehow forgot to mention the salary for this position.” Below the message I thought she had sent me another phone number. It must have been a mistake. I sent her another message, but all she did was confirm the number.
I immediately started packing my few belongings and got a taxi to the airport. Seven hours later the plane landed with a thud. I quickly bought my essentials for the next couple weeks and then it was another three hour drive to the fire station I would be staying at. I pulled my car into a run down parking lot with a small reception building that looked abandoned. The dull brown sign said “Welcome to the Gates of The Arctic National Park.” I got out of my car and breathed in the fresh summer air as a smile spread across my face. I was finally free. I was where I belonged. I walked up to the abandoned looking building and saw a sheet of paper nailed to the door. It was a note, directing me to my watch tower and giving me other instructions. I didn’t question it. I stopped asking questions when I learned the salary. I quickly figured out which way to go, and set off on my journey. The trails were beautiful and I lost myself in my new environment. Every few minutes I stopped to listen and admire the views. It was all so surreal. After a few hours of this, I realized that my hike was going to be a lot longer than I planned. It would probably take me the rest of the day and almost all of tomorrow to cover the distance to my tower. I decided to start looking for a place to set up camp close to the trail. I didn’t think anyone would be out on the trails so late and not have camp set up already, so I didn’t go very far.. I found the perfect spot in a small clearing of grass. After setting up camp and having a quick meal, I decided to go to bed and get an early start in the morning.
I awoke in the middle of the night to rustling near my tent. I laid there with my eyes open and listening intently. It sounded like a small animal, maybe a squirrel or racoon. I decided there was nothing to worry about and tried to go back to sleep. Suddenly, whatever it was by my tent gave a start and jolted into the woods and I heard it fade away. That’s when I heard footsteps. I couldn’t tell where they were coming from, but I assumed they must have been a hiker on the trail that was trying to finish a hike in the night. It was almost a full moon so there was good visibility, but I couldn’t see out of my tent. I waited for the footsteps to fade and quickly fell back asleep. When I woke up the events of the previous night were like a fog in my memory. However, the second I unzipped my tent, I was horrified. I looked outside at my gear scattered across the whole field. Something, or someone, had gone through all of my stuff.
I started picking everything up and retrieved my food from the tree I stashed it in. Luckily it was untouched. When I came back to the site, the events of the previous night started coming back to me, and I came to a horrifying truth. The footsteps I had heard were coming from the direction the head of my tent was faced. This wouldn’t be a big deal, except the fact that my feet were pointed towards the trail. This means that either something very large was by my tent, or someone was walking off the trail, in the middle of the night, this far into the woods. This thought sent shivers down my spine, but I shook it off and packed up my bag to start hiking. No matter what had happened last night, I knew for sure that I didn’t want to sleep in a tent out here for another night. I convinced myself that it must have been a deer or even a moose and started off at a brisk pace. I had around 15 miles to walk today and I was already off to a late start.
I quickly got into a rhythm and completely forgot about the chaotic morning I had. I was back in nature, in my safe place, living my dream. After about 12 miles of hiking, I came across another campsite. There was a one person tent, an old campfire, and some bags of equipment laying out. I decided to look around, but I couldn’t find anyone. I assumed this must have been whoI heard last night and I called out for them. No luck. They must have set off for a day hike and left their heavy equipment behind. I continued on my journey, and made it to the watchtower just before dusk. It was surprisingly new. I looked around the base, and saw a massive stack of firewood and some food stashed in bins to keep the animals out. I climbed the seemingly never ending stairs up to the top of the tower, and went inside. I dropped my bag and pulled out the instructions I took the previous day. I was exhausted, but I wanted to make sure there wasn’t anything I had to do before I went to bed. I read through the dry, normal sounding instructions and tasks I had to do, and it all seemed normal. Just before going to bed, out of the corner of my eye I saw a sheet of paper on the nightstand. I walked over, picked it up, and began reading. It went as follows:
Greetings, new Park Ranger. I assume you fell for the same trick that I did. The dream job. Getting to live out here all alone with nature and making that unbelievably high salary. I regret to inform you that you are in for the hardest challenge of your life. I wrote this to give you a better chance than I did. Here are the rules I figured out.
What was this, some sort of joke from the last Ranger? I was skeptical, but I continued reading.
Don’t leave the tower between 10pm and 8am, no matter what you see.
Always keep the door locked when you are inside. It won’t come in unless you let it.
If you hear sprinting up the stairs, get under the bed immediately and pray that it wont find you there.
Suddenly, it felt as if a freight train crashed into the tower. I was thrown to the floor, dazed and confused. Then it started. That dreaded scratching up the stairs. Oh God. I pictured some demon sprinting up the stairs at full speed, running into the railing every time it turned a corner. Whatever it was, it was huge, and it was fast. I remembered rule 3. If you hear sprinting up the stairs, get under the bed immediately. That was the fastest I had ever moved. I threw myself under the bed and braced myself for when it reached the door. Bang! Crash! Slam! Then silence. It reached the top balcony. There was only a door between that monstrosity and me. I froze. My skin went cold with goosebumps as I looked back to the second rule. Always keep the door locked when you are inside. It won’t come in unless you let it. Had I locked the door? I prayed I had. Oh God, please God, please tell me I locked it. I almost cried out when I heard the rusted handle start slowly turning.
Squeeeeeeeek. The door’s rusty hinges slowly turned, and the door was open. I looked towards the door from my hiding spot and almost screamed right then. The light from the sunset reflected off of the creature.The edge of the bed blocked my line of sight, and I could only see its feet. It had gnarled claws sharp as talons. Its skin was a grayish brown, and it was pulled tight around its extremely skinny legs. It took one long step into the room, and I heard something drag along the ceiling. It must have been at least 10 feet tall! Tears streamed down my face, and I struggled to stay quiet. It walked over to the bed and stood there. It was taunting me. It knew I was there, and I was going to die. I heard it’s deep ragged breathing and I held my breath for as long as I could. Right when I thought it was going to pick up the bed and reveal my hiding spot, it let out a rattling scream that startled me and it turned around to walk out. I heard that horrific scraping back down the stairs as it threw itself down them just as fast as it had come up. I waited, and gasped in air like I had never breathed before. I jumped out from under the bed and ran to shut the door and lock it. What had I just experienced? I didn’t sign up for this. I was terrified, but I picked up the list again and continued where I left off.
If you see the man in the morning, you must build a bonfire in the field with the firewood provided. Do this just before dusk, and leave the lights on all night. You must stay awake until 2am. I don’t know what it’ll do if you fall asleep before then.
If you are outside and everything goes quiet, you have a five minute head start on the creature. Do not return to the tower, it will already be there if you try.
Don’t try to leave. It likes toying with you, and it won’t care about the rules if you try to leave.
I know this all sounds like a joke or a prank, but I assure you it is not. Whatever this thing is, it likes to toy with you. Use that to your advantage, as it is all you have keeping you alive. Goodluck. I think I hear it now. It’s knocking on the roof. I think it wants to come in, and I don’t think I can stop it.
What have I gotten myself into? I was terrified of what was to come, and I pictured my inevitable fate. I was going to die to this creature. No matter what happened, I would eventually break the rules or run out of food. I made sure the door was locked, and I checked it again. I tried to go to sleep, but I was shaking and couldn’t stop. That night I had countless nightmares of that creature stalking me, and what would have happened if it checked under the bed. The next morning I was still shaken, but I tried to do something to get my mind off everything. I decided it was best to unpack my bag and make myself at home, as I wouldn’t be going anywhere any time soon. In the middle of unpacking I heard something coming from outside. I saw a hiker by the treeline waving and screaming at me. Fire! Fire! Fire! The man repeated over and over. I saw smoke coming from the direction of the campsite I had seen the previous day. I was about to step outside when the man stopped yelling. This caught me off guard. I looked at the clock. It was 7:58 am. I remembered the rule. As I looked up, I briefly saw the man turn around and run into the woods on all fours. At this point I knew I was screwed. What was this thing? I waited until it was 8:20 to go outside, and I decided to venture down the stairs. I heard birds chirping and singing, and I was happy to know it had left me alone, at least for now. I started chucking firewood into the ring that was burnt in the grass from previous fires.
I spent most of the day in the tower, thinking about how I could get out of my situation. It was only when I started to see the sun touch the horizon that I snapped out of it. I jerked up out of my chair and ran down the stairs. I dumped a can of gasoline on the massive pile of firewood, threw in a match, and darted back up the stairs. It was time to wait. I sat in my chair, overlooking the fire with the false sense of security that the tower gave me. Nothing was happening. I don’t know what I was expecting to happen, but I thought it would be something. Minutes turned into hours, and hours passed by with nothing happening. I was starting to doze off, when around 1 am I heard a shriek coming from the woods. I shot up, fully awake, not sure what I had heard. Suddenly, I saw four figures entering the clearing. They all took the appearance of hikers, but I knew better. Who could say what was really under their disguises. I was terrified. There were more of them. I thought there was only one up until now. This was when I noticed something. They seemed to avoid the fire. Although it was dying out, they only went as close as the outer ring the light from it formed. With this, I came to two realizations. First, they are afraid of fire. Second, the fire was very quickly dying out. When I came to this conclusion, they all looked up at me in unison. Shivers immediately shot down my spine. All I could do was pray that the fire held out for long enough, for who knew what they would do to me if that fire went out. When the clock struck 2 am, as if it was clockwork, they all sauntered back into the tree line, just before the fire went out. I decided to go to bed before anything else could happen that night. I left the lights on like the rules said, and again dreamt of that thing finding me under the bed.
The next day I found myself out on the trails. I was wandering about until I came upon a campsite. It was the one I had passed a few days ago. I approached it, but suddenly stopped. The tent was ripped to pieces, the equipment thrown about. It was destroyed. After looking at the site, I realized something was wrong. I couldn’t hear anything. Oh God I was so screwed. I didn’t know how long it had been since the forest went quiet, so I didn’t hesitate to dart into the tree line to look for a spot to hide. I found a half dead tree, and crawled my way inside the trunk. It would have to be good enough. The second I got into my spot, I heard that gut rattling scream. It was close. I peered out, and saw it in full clarity for the first time. The thing must have been ten feet tall. It was humanoid in shape, but everything was wrong. Its limbs were long, too long. It didn’t make sense. And it was so skinny. It was as if it hadn’t eaten anything in its lifetime. But the worst part was its eyes. They were a red so bright it looked as if a fire were burning in its sockets. This thing had come straight from hell – from my nightmares. I was going to die, and there was nothing I could do. The creature suddenly snapped its head around, looking straight at me. It felt like it was staring into my soul. Those piercing red eyes left an imprint in my mind. It let out a shriek, and as I began to sob, I saw an unnaturally wide smile spread across the creature’s face. At this point I just wanted to curl up into a ball and wake up from this nightmare. It started walking towards me. Oh no, oh no no no. This was it. When it was about two steps from my hiding spot, I heard another piercing shriek from off in the distance. It stopped dead in its tracks. Then it yelled back. The noise that came out of its mouth was so strong and piercing that I thought it ruptured my eardrum. It began to stalk away, back towards the other shrieks. I listened to it, and it was laughing. This thing was toying with me. I knew it now. I decided I had to run. It was my only chance to escape. If I went now, I could make it to my car in maybe three hours. It was worth the risk.
I waited for the sounds to return to the woods, and sprung from my hiding spot. I slowly made it to the trail. Then my fear got to me, and I started full out sprinting the opposite way from the tower. I put probably six miles between me and the tower in about 40 minutes. I thought It was going to be okay. I even slowed down to catch my breath. This was a mistake. Just then everything went silent, as if someone flipped a switch. I started sprinting. I had a five minute head start and I wasn’t going to waste it. I felt eyes on me from all directions. I was running faster than I ever had, my veins pumping with adrenaline. The trees rushed past in a blur. I wasn’t going to let it catch me. Suddenly, I couldn’t believe my eyes, I saw the parking lot. This only made me run faster. I heard it behind me now. It wasn’t going to let me get away. I ran faster with every step, giving all of my energy, until it all went dark. Something flew into the back of my head and I fell over instantly. I wasn’t knocked unconscious but I was dazed and couldn’t move. I heard it stalk up to me from behind, then from my sides. They were surrounding me. I gave up. I accepted my fate. Everything went black.
I awoke in the night in the field in front of the firetower. It was the middle of the night. It brought me back to this hell of a place just to mess with me. I got to my feet and started slowly climbing the stairs. I was about halfway up them when my worst nightmare came true. I heard the scrapping frenzy of limbs climbing the staircase below me. Every crash threw me off balance as I struggled up the rest of those stairs. It was so close to me I felt like it was going to reach out and grab me. I reached the top and I threw the door open and jumped inside. Then nothing. It was all quiet and still. This brings me to where I am now, writing this story as a warning to you. If you find a job like this in the middle of nowhere, it’s probably too good to be true. I hear it now. It’s tapping on the roof. That pattern; I remember it. I thought back to the phone call I had made that got me into this mess. Those three quick taps, followed by three long taps, and again by three quick taps. S.O.S. It was taunting me again. I think it wants to come in now, and I don’t think there’s anything I can do to stop it. I heard a thud behind me as it fell to the balcony. The door slowly creaked open. It’s behind me now. I can feel cold shuddering breaths on the back of my neck. I took a deep breath and swallowed. It’s watching me write, and I’m afraid what it’ll do to me when I stop. I pictured the scene in my mind, of this towering creature bent down behind me, waiting to pounce. My warning to you: If you ever find a strange set of rules, follow them.
Often when looking at sports programs you may notice the star athletes, possibly the clean jerseys the team wears, or the coaches. However, behind it all are the athletic trainers that make sure those athletes stay on the field in those fashionable jerseys and they definitely keep the coaches in check. At Hebron it is no different, Ms Raymond, who unchoicefully goes by Ms. D or Ms. Desmos keeps all the sports teams in line and healthy. Whether it be one of the Soccer players trying to get out of running sprints or another one of the countless Hockey injuries she is always there to fix you up and pester you about doing your rehab. However, she doesn’t limit herself to getting mad at the players, the coaches get their fair share of her thoughts. Although Ms. D is able to see through everyone’s antics and is happy to voice her opinions on it, she is always there for everyone. Her door is always open and practically everyday students will come to her for any range of help whether it be advice in personal life to being taped up for practice or just to grab ice and say “hi”. I personally account for many visits for all varieties and I know many others can as well.
So from Hebron Academy to you Ms Raymond(Desmos), Thank you for everything you do and have done for our community.
Pictured above: Previous assistants to the athletic trainer- Nick Theodos ’23, Anthony Lombardo ’23, Noah Parmenter ’24, and Ms. Raymond (Ms. D)
Students in Ms. Waterman’s World Literature class read Kafka’s The Metamorphosis and were asked to reimagine the iconic opening lines from their own perspective instead of Gregor Samsa. Here is Regina’s piece!
When Regina woke up one morning from unsettling dreams, she found herself changed in her bed into a chameleon. The last couple of days, Regina didn’t feel herself. Her humor changed quicker than the minutes that passed through the clock. She hadn’t figured out her emotions completely, but deep down she knew why she was reacting in such way. There were two weeks and a half of her life in Hebron Academy and she was not prepared for it. She had done such beautiful friendships, she was not ready to say goodbye; time had already run out, and it felt like she had just arrived to Hebron a few hours ago. Regina wasn’t managing to complete her homework, her projects, exercise, or even spend a good quality time with her friends because she was always in her own world, inside her head, overthinking everything.
Regina had never laughed so much in her life than in the last eight months of her life. She never had so many true friendships. Regina hadn’t gained self confidence before school. Regina never had a boyfriend. Regina never had such a close relationship with her teachers. Regina never lived a white winter or a leafless fall. Regina never lived a blooming spring, or a saddening summer, saying goodbye to friendships that would depart to different countries, different states, and different schools. Hebron Academy had become her home, and soon, she had to say goodbye forever. Regina was very thankful for the best decision she had ever taken in her life, which was choosing that exact year to study abroad in her boarding school, otherwise, she wouldn’t have met the people that would impact her life the most. People taught her to grow self-confidence, and learn to have conversations with people. People taught her to be careless when appropriate, and enjoy and thank for everything that she had experienced there.
When Regina realized she was a normal size chameleon, she was so frightened, she couldn’t stop changing colors. When Isabella, her roommate woke up half an hour later, she screamed. She knew what her roommate was going through, but the last thing she would’ve thought, is for Regina to transform into a chameleon. “How did that happen?” she asked. Isabella and everyone else were able to understand everything Regina said, so communication was not a problem. After the girls told Dr. Tobey what Regina had been feeling lately, and her problem of being turned into a chameleon, she advised the roommates to take Regina to Ms. Willer, the psychologist. Everyone was very confused on how she turned herself into a chameleon, but everyone was looking for answers. When Regina arrived with Ms. Willer, she explained how she felt time was flying faster than ever. How she knew those worthy friendships would soon return home, and their home was not necessarily near her. She wouldn’t have to walk two minutes to another building to meet her friends, she wouldn’t be able to sneak out in the middle of the night to her neighboring friends in Halford without the dorm parents listening. Her time was up, and Regina felt like she had to hide from everyone from time to time, understanding how her life would be without them, which is why her, being a chameleon, made sense. Regina could camouflage wherever she wanted; from walls, to desks, to anything she liked. Regina wished she could have her whole life recorded, so that she could remember every single detail possible. She felt guilty for not remembering everything she lived perfectly. All of these thoughts, were representing the bombshell of colors Regina was changing into. She was feeling lonely, although that was the farthest thing far from the truth.
Carlota was a fan of chameleons, she loved to learn everything about them and so she was called over to help try and figure out what was going on with Regina. Carlota told the psychologist that chameleons are naturally very stressful animals, and there are many potential causes for their stress; in this case, the countdown to leave for home was her weakness.
While Carlota researched for more chameleon facts, JD was trying to calm Regina. He was telling her that everything would be okay, and things would be back to normal before she knew it. She was having a panic attack! What would happen to her? She hadn’t finished the school year. Would she be able to finish high-school and start college? Would she be able to go back to Mexico City? Would her family accept her back? Everything was unclear, and there was nothing Regina could do to know what would happen next. She just had to wait, let everything happen in its time.
Isabella, Carlota, Alejandra and JD were trying to do everything to calm Regina down. Nothing worked. Jokes, or anecdotes, pictures nor hugs. Talking did not help, but crying didn’t either. Something Regina loved about her Hebron memories, was that her friends opened her mind to more music. She learned to enjoy it, she learned to want more of it. She found a way to relate songs to memories she lived, so every time she thought of specific songs, a flashback would come to her mind. Regina learned to help express her feelings through music, and she loved it.
Everyone was tired of trying to find a solution for Regina’s problem, because nothing seemed to work. They were so exhausted; Ms. Waterman suggested to take a break and listen to music. They played Regina’s favorite songs, and something unexpected happened. When Regina stopped thinking of everything that bothered her, and just concentrated herself on the lyrics of the song, she transformed back to a human. Everyone was shocked at what they had just witnessed, but Regina turned into a chameleon again. Ms. Willer then came to the conclusion, that when Regina got really strong emotions, she would turn into a small talking chameleon; but they had found the solution: music.
Alpine skiing is an individual sport, yet Hebron’s Alpine skiing team made it feel like a team. We kicked off the season with warm weather, no snow on the ground, but so much excitement. During two weeks of sweat, complaints, and hard work, we never hit the slopes but after all of that, the break did hit. I got to be on the team for two years and I have to say all members improved since last year. One example is girls becoming the M.A.I.S.A.D. champions. This year’s team contained people from all around the world. Countries including: Poland, Germany, USA, Sweden, and Spain.
After the break, the alpine team had their first practice in Lost Valley, furthermore the day after we also had our first race. It was slalom and the majority of the team preferred GS. Even still, we manage to jump straight in, getting three members in the top ten overall. That’s also when I realized, we were the LOUDEST winter team this year. The alpine team cheered for anyone no matter what school they were from, and cowbells were necessary. We came up with different cheers: “It’s all downhill from here”, “Dunkin is after this” or we did wordplay with last names. Every member had an addition to the team, some added fun and noise, some showed care and made sure everyone was included, and some sacrificed their time into making the gear ready.
Each one of us, before our runs, got a ‘main character moment.’ Everything was about you; the coach was focused on you, the peers were cheering you on, and all you could concentrate on was your run. You could hear coach Stokes, A.K.A. Swaggie, telling you “It’s not icy, it’s fast” or “Do your best” and that’s how you knew, it was your time to shine. We ended the season with probably our best runs at M.A.I.S.A.D.S. We showed how much we improved both individually and as a team. All the girls secured top ten finishes, as well as four boys were in the top ten of each category.
The 6-19-2 Lumberjacks Varsity Boys Hockey Team has been through their fair share of great triumphs and heart-wrenching losses. The Jacks came into the season with hope and energy with some wins early on and even proving they can hang with the big dogs only losing 2-1 to Holderness and 6-3 to Kent. The team started to shape up with catching a few wins before going into winter break with the team eager to hit the ice in January. With a solid return to play the team started to get back into the swing of things, we saw vital players to the team starting to take injuries. In a matter of a week the Jacks lost seven of their players including their starting goalie. This hit the team harder than expected, with Hebron going on an eight game losing streak. While most teams would roll over and take what happens Hebron has worked hard and started to show signs of promise once again. With players starting to join the lineup once again we have seen a spark among this team. Most recently with a 4-3 loss against Bridgton Academy they have proved they have not lost hope and will continue to battle. This next week will be big for them, going into playoffs the Hebron Lumberjacks will be the underdog. Can they shatter the expectations the league has set?
Children everywhere put their naive minds at bay and get tucked in for bed time. Before drifting off to the land of their imaginations, many settle down and begin to listen to a “goodnight story.” For some it may be Doctor Seuss, others Shel Silverstein, but for the unfortunate – Margaret Wise Brown’s Goodnight Moon.
From the soft illustrations by Clement Hurd to the vivid lyrics by Brown, parents think that children seemingly fall asleep in the sweet rabbit’s infamous “great green room.” While on the surface this book is short and sweet, once inspected a little closer, the true story emerges.
This is first seen when one scans the first image, in which a rabbit is portrayed sitting in its bed. Upon further scrutiny, one can notice the clear foreshadowing giving away the rest of the book. Seen in the back are, in order of appearance in the book, the cow jumping over the moon, and the three little bears sitting on chairs, a comb, a brush, a bowl full of mush, a light, chairs, clocks, stars, air, and most revoltingly, noises everywhere.
On behalf of the children of the world, I would like to personally say that this is appalling. For if I were to sit down with my father as a child and read this I would be outraged. For starters, if I am reading a novel, I do NOT want to have the entire thing spoiled in five seconds. To even glance at the illustration would ruin the entire story-telling process, and not to mention the child’s night. I guarantee that after being read this, ninety-nine percent of the kids sit awake and stare at the ceiling wishing that they had parents who loved them, parents who did not dare to put them through a reading of the horrid Goodnight Moon.
After they finally get over that (after many years of counseling), they would still be upset about the discontinuities thrown about the book. As seen on page four, there are a pair of mittens and a pair of socks set up to dry, but as soon as you turn over page thirteen, the socks are nowhere to be found. And guess what? Turn to the VERY NEXT PAGE, and guess who’s back… the socks! The audacity! Also, wander over to page three and tell me what you see, because what I see is a chair with no “quiet old lady who was whispering hush,” who seems to have magically appeared by page six.
But, what is by far the worst sin this book has committed is the fact that the color pallets change on every single page. I know that almost every kid reading this book knows their color theory, so there is no doubt in my mind that they are disgusted with this aspect of Hurd’s illustrations.
After reading this too many times (even though one is already too many), I have concluded that this “book,” if I can even call it that, is overall horrible. Not a single person in this mortal plane would enjoy this. Overall, 0/10.