Maureen Suldid had always loved beautiful Madrid Park with its calm, wooden cottages. One of those cottages was her home. It was her place where she felt safe.
She was kind, always helped animals, and enjoyed reading. Other people saw her as a sad, lonely girl, but Maureen disagreed with them. Once, she had kindly made a bed for an injured bird. Her mother passed away and the life around Maureen had forgotten her mother.
She walked over to the window and reflected on her comfortable surroundings. A sliver of the moon shone through the window when she spotted someone running toward her cabin.
Maureen gulped as she didn't want to face the person running toward her. It was the figure of Solace Tresco. Solace was a clever painter who had bright green eyes and a talking pet parrot.
As Maureen stepped outside the warmth of her cabin, and as Solace came closer, Maureen could see the massive scowl on Solace's face.
"Look Maureen," she hissed, with a selfish glare that reminded Maureen of a growling tiger. "It's not that I don't want you to have it, but I need it back. I only said you could borrow it!"
Maureen looked back, more concerned, and still fidgeting with her keys. "Well," she said, "I must obtain both halves. So, if you would be willing to make a trade with me, I will find something of value to you in return for me to keep this part and have the other half as well.
They looked at each other with burning feelings, like two thorny, cacti grinning at each other.
Maureen thought back to the first time when she met Solace. It was at a dinner party that had piano music playing in the background and tasty donuts for dessert. And most importantly of all, her mother had been alive. But all of that fun was forgotten now with the turn of events over these years.
Maureen studied Solace's rigid hands and mean eyes. Eventually, she took a deep breath and walked over to where Solace stood. Then she whispered something to Solace and watched as her eyes grew larger with every word.
"No!" objected Solace quietly. "You're lying!"
"I am not!" retorted Maureen. "Just go away. I'll find a way to get the other half from you," Maureen finished.
Solace looked surprised, her water bottle falling out of her hands. Maureen watched Solace's container shatter into millions of pieces and trickles of water seeped out from the broken glass.
"I di-didn't know our friendship would end li-like this," she stammered, before turning on her heel and running away into the distance.
"Bye! Have a good day today, Maura" her mother called after her.
"Ok, Mom. Love you," Maureen quickly replied.
She swung her backpack around her shoulder and ran ahead to catch up with a green-eyed girl, walking on the sidewalk.
“Sol, wait up for me,” Maureen shouted after her.
“Okay, okay, calm down. I'm waiting for you,” Solace responded.
They walked the rest of the way to their school and parted ways before heading to their classes. The day continued ordinarily and the two friends met up for lunch.
“Hey. How was art? Did you make anything cool?” Solace asked.
“No, we’re still working on the watercolor pinwheels,” Maureen replied with a frown. “I want to move on to digital art, but our teacher says that will come next month. How is theater for you?” Maureen asked.
“Well, it was okay. My teacher gave Lucy the leading role and gave me a solo in the choir instead. Although, I’m glad I don’t have to do understudy, like Martha. That would be worse than the choir.” Solace replied.
“Well, whatever you get, I’ll be there at the performance cheering you on,” Maureen encouragingly replied.
“Thanks, Maureena,” Sol replied with a smile.
They finished the rest of their lunches in silence and ended their day with a fun homeroom class together.
“I am so happy the day is over,” Maureen said to Solace, as she grabbed her books from her locker and shoved them into her backpack.
“Me too,” Solace replied. “Come on, let’s go home now.”
The two friends walked on the sidewalk talking about the different classes they had during the day, and how they wanted to have a sleepover during the weekend. They finally arrived at Maureen’s home, where Solace said goodbye to Maureen and continued walking in the direction of her own home.
“Mom, I’m home!” Maureen shouted through the house.
“Hey Maura, how was school today?” her mother asked her.
“Fine. We still haven’t moved on from watercolor pinwheels in art class though,” Maureen replied with a sigh.
“Well, hopefully, you will start a new project next time. Speaking of projects, I’m making pasta for dinner tonight, because dad’s coming home!” Maureen’s mother said. “Now go finish your homework, so you can be ready for Dad.”
“Okay, Mom. Thanks for making pasta,” Maureen replied smiling as she headed upstairs.
Maureen’s dad rarely comes home, as he travels for his work. But when he does, it is always an occasion to celebrate. Maureen doesn’t know what her dad does when he travels or why he even travels at all.
“Ok, Mom, I finished with everything, now can I watch some TV before Dad arrives?” Maureen asks as she races down the stairs.
“That’s fine, but only one episode, no more.”
“Ok, Mom. Thanks!” Maureen says as she rushes to the couch to turn on the TV.
After Maureen watches TV, she helps set the table for dinner. While setting the table, she hears the doorbell ring. That could only mean one thing, she thinks. Her father! She runs over to the door and opens the door with her mother following close behind. Standing in the doorway is her father. She gives him a big hug, before coming inside, and setting his stuff down. The family sits for dinner and eats a wonderful tasting dinner of pasta.
“Maureen, your father, and I have something to tell you,” her mother says as they are eating their ice cream.
“I understand that you don’t know why I travel so much for my job, Maura. I travel because I am looking for a solution to recover your mother,” her father says. “Your mother is destined to die at the peak of the next blue moon. The next blue moon is supposed to be in 82 days from now. Each generation 3 people suffer this fate. Your mother is unfortunately one of them.”
Maureen sits in shock as she processes her father’s words.
“I have however researched over many years and found a cure to help your mother overcome this,” her father continues. “You know Solace, your friend? And how we introduced you to her when you were just 4 years old. Well, her aunt has one half of what we need to cure your mom.”
“Bu-But what is this object we need to cure mommy?” Maureen asks.
“They are two halves of a magical healing book. When the two halves are combined, the letters will rearrange themselves to read how to help the thing you most desire. However, the book only works for the person who arranges it properly and it also works only once.
“Do you know where the other half is?” Maureen asked.
“Yes. Although only one specific person can unlock the realm containing it. You. However, we must betray Solace.”