It was a perfectly ordinary Tuesday, an April 3rd, 2009 Tuesday, when it happened. An army of shadows split the Earth apart and devoured the life growing in it. Once devoured, the beautifully green meadows of life created by Mother Nature were completely gray. Once the shadows devoured all life, they turned into light. Fortunately, one brave woman stood broadly and sewed all the shadows onto her. From that day on, all shadows were forced to follow that woman. All the shadows aged and started to pass away, but that woman was very powerful and was immortal, so she did not pass away. Unfortunately, she passed her D.N.A. onto one young shadow, making that young shadow immortal. That shadow was stitched onto her forever.
Soon, that woman felt if she was the only living being in the world, it would be greedy. That woman gave up her immortality. However, before she passed away, she gave life to a daughter and a son. Her shadow was sad that she passed away, but soon multiplied and lived on her daughter and son. From that very day, shadows were known to follow people around and be one’s best friend, no matter what.
A young girl hopped around on her mattress. “Wow! Mommy, is that legend real?” Her mother smiled mysteriously and responded, “Well, your grandmother used to tell that story to me all the time. Now go to sleep.” The little girl nodded obediently and plopped herself back on the mattress. Her mother closed the door and stepped down the stairs.
How upset would she be when she figures out it’s not real, her mother observed. She shook her head in regret. I shouldn’t have told her that story.
Years passed, and the little girl grew into a beautiful young woman. She moved from her little village in England to a tiny condo in Brooklyn, New York in the USA. She was packing for her business trip to Tokyo, Japan when her phone rang. Ring! Ring! Ring-a-ling!
“Hello?” she clutched her favourite sweater in one hand while she held her smartphone in the other. “Hi, Erica, it’s me,” her coworker, Evelyn, greeted. Erica smiled. “Evelyn! Hi! What’s up?”
“I remember that our boss announced that you would be going on a business trip to Tokyo, correct?”
“Yes, that’s correct.”
“Oh! Well, have fun! Also, can you pick up this travel makeup pack I purchased on this Japanese website for me? I’ll pay you when you come back.”
“Thanks, and okay! You don’t have to pay me though. Oops, I gotta go on the bus to the airport. I’ll tell you when I arrive. Bye!”
Chink. Erica declined the call and hastily raced down the sidewalk.
“Hello, ma’am,” the bus driver saluted and handed Erica a ticket to the New York City Airport. “Are you planning to go to NYC Airport?” Erica gasped for breath and gradually nodded. “Yes, it’s a business trip.”
“Well, come on here then.” The bus driver motioned her in and then called, “Last call, people. Last call! Is anyone going to the NYC Airport? If so, last call, then we’re leaving!” Erica carried her luggage up the stairs and stepped on.
WHOOOOSH! The instant Erica’s foot stepped onto the stairs, the bus transformed into a spiral of crazy lights. Unaware of what was happening, Erica was immediately slushed into the spiral. She screamed. “JUST-- JUST-- WHAT IS GOING ON?!” Her voice vibrated at the strong pressure of the spiral.
Whooo...weeh! SLUSH! Plump. The spiral abruptly stopped, sending Erica straight for the ground. “Ouch,” Erica whispered. She held her stomach, as it felt excruciating.
Just when Erica was standing up, WHOOOOSH! The spiral picked up again and deteriorated. Erica detested this kind of motion and started to feel her motion sickness kicking in. She held her stomach and her mouth.
The spiral went on for hours. Erica despaired of ever finding the way back again. I must be way too late for my plane, Erica realized regretfully. It must have departed hours ago.
Plump. The spiral stopped again. Erica was aware because of experience, and waited before standing up. When the spiral didn’t pick up, she stood up slowly and felt a great jubilation in her heart. She grinned and ran to explore this new world.
Erica ran towards the boardwalk near the beach. It was nighttime, so it was difficult to navigate around an area she wasn’t accustomed with. But Erica managed. She sat on the boardwalk and stared at the magenta sunset followed by the gorgeous horizon. This place was awesome.
Erica fished out her phone. Ooh. It must have been terribly damaged in the great ordeal. Erica shrugged and glanced at her digital watch. Uh… It’s probably not very accurate. (It says that it is 2:00 PM.)
Erica laid down on the boardwalk and relaxed her tense muscles. Ahhh, she thought. This is life. This is the destination I’ve always meant to be. Just as Erica was about to fall asleep, a feeling of nostalgia kicked in. What if she never returned to Earth? What if she was forced to stay alone forever in this-- this universe? She couldn’t let that happen.
Erica abruptly stood up in alert and ran back towards where the spiral had begun. She loved this world indeed, but she did not want to sever all communication with her family and, well, Earth. She wanted to voyage across the horizon and see what would be there. However, she was missing one thing: a boat.
Erica was brainstorming when, out of nowhere, came an avalanche. She squeaked in terror and started racing away from it. First the avalanche, and now a blizzard. SHA! SHA! SHA! “OOF! Where on Earth is all this snow coming from?!” she shrieked.
Then, she figured out what was making all of this happen-- it was a shadow! Those kinds of evil shadows that her mother had told her about-- but it wasn’t a shadow anymore. It was light!
Erica knew that this shadow-- I mean, light was challenging her. She needed to conquer this sinister creature. She found a crevice in the middle of the setting and jumped in, disappearing.
Just as she jumped in, she realized how foolhardy she was to jump into a completely unknown place. A voice started to lure her over to where it was. Come, Erica! Come to me! Erica was an optimist. She liked to keep things on the bright side, but she had no choice right now.
She followed the voice through a strange route. Then, as she climbed up into the summit, the voice said, I shall help you thwart all of your enemies. Erica was frightened terribly and could only respond with a terse reply, “H-how?”
You’ll see, the voice sounded closer. After I eat you! Erica screamed and ran down into the stairs, completely vertically. She deposited her purse on one of the stairs and kept on running. She skidded to a stop when she found a shadow she was familiar with.
“A-aren’t you my mother’s shadow?” she whispered. The shadow nodded politely. “I’m just here to tell you who sent you here. It was Evelyn, your best friend. She was jealous that you were chosen to go to Tokyo instead of her, which caused her to do this to you. Jealousy, as I would say, is poison.”
“What?” Erica gasped in sadness, anger, and shock at the same time. “I-I thought she was loyal! She was so nice to me. Oh, I can’t take it like this. No!”
Erica was so furious that she bursted into ashes, leaving no trace of her.
The moral of this story is to trust only people you have met for a long time, and to never be jealous of someone for a long period of time. Jealousy is poison, like Erica’s mother’s shadow had pointed out. It starts out as a tiny emotion in your body and explodes later on, causing you to hurt innocent residents around you for no proper reason. Be kind. Remember: the main moral of this story is that Jealousy. Is. Poison.