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"Mom, this is so unfair! Why do I have to go, there will only be the popular and pretty girls there! And we both know I'm neither!" I screamed at my mother from upstairs. My mother was making me go to a party that one of the girls in my grade was hosting. This was one of the first parties of the year, and the first party I had been invited to. Raina Simmons was the most popular girl in the seventh grade. She had it all, she was pretty, smart(sort of), funny, pretty, did I already say that? It’s true. If you took one look at me you’d wonder why is she even here? 

To be honest I was filled with excitement that Raina had invited me, but I know it’s because she’s just really nice. Or at least when an adult is around. I didn’t bother to make any friends this year, so I’d be all alone. Plus who wants to see a loser like me at Raina’s party. You got it, absolutely no one. 

I know you’d find this hard to believe, but it’s one of my biggest accomplishment’s in life so I’m gonna tell you. Fifth grade was the best year of my life! Raina and I were best friends! I was actually a bit popular (I told you it would be hard to believe)! Oh, but sixth grade, the evilest grade I have ever faced. You guessed it, it all went downhill from fifth grade. Sarah Reynalds was new. She had the most stylish outfits, she had the beautiful hairdos. Raina started to notice I was more of a dork than a person. She left me for Sarah. And bam just like that they were besties, and Raina was the most popular girl.

Since then I haven’t wanted a friend. So I definitely wasn’t going to my ex-friends party. Knowing her she would just find some way to make me look even more dorky than I already was. “Annabelle Grace Clonagroon, you are going to that party and that’s final,” My mom called up to me. AHHHHHH!! I had to go! Dang it, stupid Raina! 

I had to get dressed. I put on my jean skirt and light pink cropped top. It was the only outfit Raina had said was actually okay. I wore my black boots, and hopped in the car. My mom turned and smiled at me. I pretended not to see. 

I tried to imagine that I was in a nice big house with a huge family, all happy never fighting! I opened my eyes just to see Raina’s house. Bummer! I always wanted a big family, but since my dad left it’s just been my mom and I. 

I opened the car door and got out as quick as I could. I really didn’t need to hear one of my mother’s pep talks. I waved her goodbye and walked up to the front door. I rang the bell, and Raina’s mother came to it.

“Anna, so good to see you! I’m glad you came! Come in, come in.” Raina’s mother still called me Anna! I hadn’t seen her in like a year, didn’t she suspect something was up between Raina and I? 

I walked in still unsure of myself. Once I was inside I saw exactly what I thought would be there. Raina and Sarah were gathered by what was considered their friend group. I knew this was a bad idea. Before Raina or Sarah could see me I ran out of the house. I didn’t know what I was doing, but I had to do it. I didn’t know where to go. I couldn’t go home, my mom was there. So I just kept running down the street. I came to some alley that I decided to hide in. I didn’t know who I was anymore. What would my mother say? I didn’t care. 

After what felt like hours I spent in that alley crying, a black shadowy figure scurried toward me. I didn’t know what to expect. I was scared and confused. It came into the light where I could see it. It was a dog! It was the skinniest dog I had ever seen! It was adorable! It walked up to me and started licking me. It was black, but turning a grayish black. It looked like it hadn’t eaten in weeks. I found an old piece of bread in the garbage can next to me and gave it to the dog. It gobbled it up. I was lost, we were lost, we had each other. 

I decided to name it Chuck. Ever since I was two I wanted a dog, and I wanted to name it Chuck. I named it so now it was my dog. He didn’t have a collar so I decided he could belong to me. We would comfort each other through the hard times. I could even teach him some tricks. 

Chuck was my only friend. I was lost in an alley with no one but Chuck. I didn’t want to see my mother. But I kinda wished I didn’t leave Raina’s party. I mean I didn’t want to go to it, but if it meant I wasn’t here than yeah, that’s better! Well, actually I am happy that I met Chuck. 

The more time I spent in the alley I felt more hungry and thirsty, and the worst part was I missed my mom, only a little, okay a lot. I wanted to go home, and bring Chuck with me! At that moment I started to cry. I felt like a hurricane was built up inside me and couldn’t escape. Chuck started barking, and I turned to look at him. He started walking out of the alley and onto a shady street. I had nothing better to do, so I followed him. 

We passed houses all without any lights on. There were barely any trees. To be honest I was kinda scared. Chuck was a fearless little dog. He led me through a bunch of little streets. My legs were starting to hurt. Chuck turned around and saw me panting, so he  stopped. He was such a cute dog. We both sat down on a sidewalk under a shady tree. 

An old man walked by us and he stared at Chuck. Chuck dove onto my lap and turned over onto his stomach. There I saw a huge scratch. I looked up at the man and he said, “That is a special dog, they are real smart. Until they go crazy. That dog attacked me, so I gave him that.” He pointed to the cut on Chuck’s stomach. I looked away terrified. Please walk away, please walk away. He walked away finally. I looked at Chuck and he whimpered. What did he mean ‘until they go crazy’? I pulled Chuck in close and hugged him. I got up and so did he. I followed him again until we reached a street that I recognized! 

It was Elm Street one block down from where my house was! I started running now. Chuck really was a smart dog! He must have smelt me and known where I had come from! 

I ran and ran and ran until up ahead I saw my house. I started bawling with tears. Chuck looked up at me and it looked like he was smiling. I ran to the front door and rang the bell. I wiped away my tears and fixed my hair. I could hear my mother’s feet rush to the door. 

I heard the click and then the pull and the next thing I knew I was face to face with my mother. “Anna? Anna! Honey, your home!” My mom pulled me in tight and kissed me until I was covered in lipstick. We were both crying now. My mom let me go and looked down at Chuck. She picked him up and hugged him just as tight. 

“He helped me get back home mom, he saved me! Can we keep him please!” I was panting still, practically begging on my knees. My mom didn’t say anything, just smiled and nodded. More tears were flooding in, but they were happy tears. Chuck barked his happy bark. We were all happy I was home! 

When I walked inside I went straight to the shower. Once I got out I checked the time. It was four in the morning. I guess I had been out for longer than I thought. I still had school tomorrow. I popped on my pj’s and jumped into bed. My mom hugged tight again and kissed me on the head. I fell asleep almost instantly.

I woke up to the shine of the sun through my windows. I got up quickly, put on my school clothes and went downstairs to eat breakfast. I had been so happy to see my mom, and to keep Chuck that I totally forgot to eat last night. My mom was downstairs making breakfast. She was making a feast(which was what I needed). She was making pancakes, fresh fruit, and a side of bacon! I eat it all in about ten minutes. Then I picked up my backpack and hopped in the car. My mom let me bring Chuck. In about fifteen minutes we were there. I got out of the car and so did Chuck. I hugged him goodbye, and he got back in the car and they drove away. 

As I was walking a boy with brown hair and blue eyes came up to me. “Was that your dog, it’s super cute!”

“Thanks, I just got him. His name is Chuck. I’m Annabelle.” Normally in this situation I would run away. I hated people, but I decided I needed friends.

“I’m Caleb! I love dogs! I have a golden retriever. Hey, maybe we could walk our dogs together?” Caleb sounded nervous. 

“Oh, I’d love that! So see you in class?” 

“Definitely!” We walked in together, and sat next to each other. I could see Raina and Sarah look at us during class. We were passing notes, trying to get to know each other better. 

Caleb and Chuck were my two new friends. They were my best friends. We continued to walk our dogs together everyday after school. We become the bestest friends. We were inseparable. Same with Chuck and I. Chuck really had saved my life, and he always would. 


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58 comments

Olivia Osen
23:50 May 21, 2020

This was a super cute story! Just make sure to watch your punctuation throughout the story, a specific example would be, "Why do I have to go, there will only be the popular and pretty girls there!" I personally would have put a question mark after the "Why do I have to go?" I found myself loving all the descriptions in your story and would have loved even more descriptions of the people and places! You could also possibly elaborate on what the man meant when he said, "Until they go crazy. That dog attacked me, so I gave him that." I would'...

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Evelyn Cloonan
14:51 May 22, 2020

Thank you so much! I'm glad you enjoyed it! Also thank you for the feedback!😄

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Zuriel Wurah
18:49 May 16, 2020

So I liked the lightheartedness of the story. Although a few things I noticed is that the story was rushed a little too quickly and if we had been able to dive into Anna's feelings of loneliness, of isolation, of not fitting it, when she was in the alley, the story would have been greatly enhanced. Also I think you should've developed why Anna decided she needed more friends. A way to look for rushing and plot holes is to take a short time off from your story, and then read through it with fresh eyes, so you can fix any mistakes.

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Evelyn Cloonan
21:20 May 16, 2020

Okay, thanks for the feedback! I will defiantly try to include that in my next stories!

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05:23 Jun 24, 2020

This was an amazing story! I noticed that most of your stories have the characters! This makes it easy, and you don't have to read them in order!

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Evelyn Cloonan
20:43 Jun 24, 2020

Thank you so much and you are so right!

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Jessica Hill
16:53 May 19, 2020

Love this story, Evelyn! Really cute and sweet! Great job.

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Evelyn Cloonan
18:05 May 19, 2020

Thank you SO much! I'm glad you enjoyed it!

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A lovely read, you flowed in quite well, kept me hooked till the end, hope you don't mind....a few mistakes to point out, just check out your grammar mistakes. For instance, the "please walk away, please walk away" part you could have changed it to italics, just to make it dramatic. Overall, I would rate it a ten out of ten!

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Evelyn Cloonan
13:02 May 19, 2020

Thank you so much! Feedback is always appreciated! I will make sure to do that next time!

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Lara Macgregor
03:21 May 18, 2020

This is a nice, light-hearted story. :)

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Lara Macgregor
03:21 May 18, 2020

This is a nice, light-hearted story. :)

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Evelyn Cloonan
13:03 May 18, 2020

Thank you so MUCH!!!!

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Lara Macgregor
00:14 May 19, 2020

You're welcome!

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A. y. R
06:32 May 16, 2020

What a lovely story! A few grammar stuff to edit here and there. Other than that it flowed really nicely - simple and elegant!

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Evelyn Cloonan
22:57 May 16, 2020

Aw.. thank you! That means so much!

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Rhondalise Mitza
00:03 May 14, 2020

Hi, Evelyn! I liked your story but was wondering if you would mind some feedback? It's okay if you don't but there were just a few things I noticed that could use some work. Nothing major though, you're doing really well!

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Evelyn Cloonan
13:13 May 14, 2020

Actually I'd love some feedback! I am always looking for ways to improve my writing!

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Rhondalise Mitza
23:40 May 17, 2020

So basically it's the little things other people have mentioned, like grammar mistakes and some plot holes, sentence structure and character development. Again, though, this is a short story contest so I know there's not a whole lot of room for character development, but when there is some you don't want it to feel forced or rushed. :)

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Evelyn Cloonan
23:44 May 17, 2020

Okay thank you! I will defiantly try to improve on that! It is a little hard though since it is a short story contest, like you mentioned. I really appreciate the feedback! Thank you!

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Adrie Byman
15:23 May 13, 2020

Aww, that's so sweet. A great read. Thanks for writing, Evelyn!!

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Evelyn Cloonan
15:30 May 13, 2020

Thanks for reading! I'm glad you enjoyed it!

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Adrie Byman
15:31 May 13, 2020

no prob 😉 Stay safe! keep writing!

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00:09 May 13, 2020

This story is so realistic and adorable. Keep writing, for sure! Stay safe, Evelyn! -Brooke

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Evelyn Cloonan
00:33 May 13, 2020

Thanks Brooke! That's so nice of you to say!

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00:55 May 13, 2020

No problem!

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15:37 May 13, 2020

Okay, let's talk Harry Potter. Who's your favorite character?

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Evelyn Cloonan
15:40 May 13, 2020

Defiantly Ron! He can be pretty funny!! Who's your favorite!?

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15:41 May 13, 2020

I don't have one single favorite. Probably Hermione, Dumbledore, or McGonagall. Harry's one of my least favorites, though. Just because he's over dramatic and can't do anything by himself.

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Ayomide Ajayi
00:14 Jun 17, 2020

Great one. Love it.

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Evelyn Cloonan
13:15 Jun 17, 2020

Thanks for reading!!!

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Sadia Faisal
06:09 May 23, 2020

nice story, pleae like my story if you like it and follow me

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Evelyn Cloonan
18:14 May 23, 2020

Thank you and I will!!

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Kathleen March
20:41 May 21, 2020

Animals do make abig difference in our lives.This story is another great example. Just a friendly note: I think the plurals in your title should be Ups and Downs, without apostrophes. Only meaning to be helpful.

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Evelyn Cloonan
21:03 May 21, 2020

I'm glad you liked it! Also thank you for telling me!!!!! :)

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Thomas Mai
12:02 May 21, 2020

Sorry darling but your participation is against the Contest's regulations. You must be at least 18 and your BIO says you're 11.

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Hailey S.
14:08 May 20, 2020

This story made me smile :) Great job and definitely keep writing!

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Evelyn Cloonan
14:14 May 20, 2020

Thank you! You too!

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Emily Nghiem
00:41 May 20, 2020

This is a cute, uplifting story. I could see it illustrated and simplified down to make a good children's book. Some punctuation, spacing and other minor errors which might be from copying/pasting: (a) space missing around parentheses (b) Too many unnecessary exclamation marks that should be removed (c) apostrophe errors (accomplishments, you're, ex-friend's) (d) Chuck and I (should be "and me"). To make your opening stronger, I would break up the quoted words: "Mom, this is so unfair!" I screamed from upstairs, throwing my books on the dres...

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Evelyn Cloonan
14:12 May 20, 2020

Thank you! And thanks for the feedback!

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