Monday morning, twelve-year-old Pippi Longstocking was walking to school with her friend, Applebloom. They lived near each other so they always went to school together. Suddenly, Applebloom turned back and, without saying a word, ran home. Pippi started after her but she fell behind. She had thought that Applebloom had been acting strange ever since her brother, Daniel, got lost. Every day he had needed to remind her to take her lunch, so this time she must have left it behind or something. Pippi turned around to continue on to school when she was aware of someone else there!
Pippi looked around. She saw no one at all until she realized that Twilight was out clipping her hedge. The middle-aged lady waved at Pippi. She walked over to the girl and handed a small box to her. Twilight whispered something to Pippi's ear so nobody else could hear.
"Pippi, you must keep this box and deliver it to Klentina Malina. Until then, never open it or let anyone else do so."
Pippi agreed, and put the box in her backpack.
A day later, Pippi was in her room, chanting. "San dares tan Catalie than thence seven. San dares tan Catalie than thence seven. San dozen tan Klentina there thorn doormen. Sandorea tan pastel than thence Catalie seven. San dares tan Catalie than thence seven..."
The box that Twilight had given her was open in her hands. Her sister, Babs Seed, was at Pippi's door and she heard strange words, along with a voice that sounded nothing like her sister's.
The words that came from Pippi's mouth were in a language called Sandorean. She sounded as if she were under a spell or something. Indeed, as she was currently under a very powerful enchantment. Babs Seed had gotten their father and he heard the same chanting. It was as if someone had recorded the chant then was playing it back.
Two weeks later, Pippi still had the box. She never left her room! Not a single person in the family dared go in there, for fear of Pippi casting a spell on them, although she really didn't know any spells at all.
"Pippi never leaves her room, Twilight!" Babs Seed told her, "She just stays there with that box. I can't see why?"
Twilight knew what it was; she handed Babs Seed a sheet of paper and said, "To break the spell, read the words on this scroll inside Pippi's room. It is daring but you must do it."
Babs Seed did as she was told. She stood by Pippi's bed and silently opened the folded sheet of paper. Then Babs Seed read, "Break the spell upon this girl, break it now for Klentina Malina!" The moment she finished saying the last word, a bright light enchanted the room. Pippi immediately got up and opened the box. The same ghostly voice that was always heard in the room said, "Tomorrow you will meet a very special person..." Then the box disappeared.
The next day, Pippi, Applebloom, and Babs Seed were walking in the woods. Applebloom suddenly spied a gleam of light coming from the edge of Golden Valley. Quickly, the three girls ran toward the light. They were startled to see a young lady dressed in a pointed black hat and a long black dress that completely hid her body. She was carrying a sparkling golden staff which had a huge ruby at the end of it.
"A witch!" Pippi whispered.
"Do you think she is a witch?" said Applebloom in a soft voice. Just then the 'witch' turned toward the girls and introduced herself.
"I'm Klentina Malina but you can call me Klentina. What are you doing here anyway? I didn't expect company."
"Are you a witch?" asked Pippi, shaking.
"Of course I am," said Klentina, "What did you think I was, an octopus?" Everyone giggled. "Come on over to my home. Follow me."
She led them through the thickest part of the forest until they came to a clearing. A sparkling stream ran by a little cottage with a straw roof. "Welcome to my home," Klentina proudly said. "It isn't much to look at but it is a nice place." Pippi looked around the beautiful clearing with such thoughts in her mind. Hours later, Applebloom and Babs Seed had gone home.
Three months after that, Pippi was wandering around the woods, looking everywhere for a sign of her village. She suddenly heard laughter through the trees. As Pippi approached she saw a group of children playing hide-and-go-seek. A smile brightened her face as she crept around to a path.
Pippi looked everywhere for a path but by the time she got to it the children were nowhere to be found! She started to cry. Would Pippi Longstocking ever find her way home?
"Listen, Pippi. You can't go home until you tell me why you went into the forest in the first place."
"I was just going for a walk, Klentina. Is that permitted?"
"I have a feeling that it was more that a walk...Have you ever heard of the Magic Box of Catalie?
"What is that?"
"It is a small purple box with yellow moons and stars on it. The box could put you in a curse until I weaken it."
"Yes. I think your latest weakening was me." Pippi said quietly. Klentina Malina looked at her in amazement. Her best friend was under a weak curse!
"Listen, Pippi, Catalie is the name of the horrid Wicked Witch of the South. Her accomplice, Klarisa, used to be my best friend.
"But what does that have to do with me?" questioned Pippi.
"During the years, Klarisa began to get good at magic. Then on that terrible day - Friday, September 13 - She stole Catalie's magic staff and ran off; later to become the Wicked Witch of the North."
Pippi looked confused, "That still doesn't explain why I can't go home!"
"Listen to me, Klarisa is jealous of you because I have a new best friend. She never lets you go home. Lets look on the good side, Pippi, Isn't this a nice place to live: A lovely waterfall, a trickling stream, the beautiful forest, what more could you want?"
"Family," Pippi answered simply.
"Family." said Pippi. Klentina's mind began to wonder. She had a family - a brother, a sister, a cousin, and many more. But she had not seen them for so long that she had almost forgotten about them.
"What's wrong, Klentina?" Pippi said sympathetically.
"Nothing, Pippi," Klentina said, with a tear in her eye. She didn't want Pippi to know about it.
"Klentina!" cried Pippi, on a sunny Saturday morning. Klentina Malina was nowhere to be found! "Klentina, where are you!" Pippi shouted. Where was her friend?
"Over here!" yelled a familiar voice. It was Klentina! Pippi ran to her friend, who was fixing a bridge. When the witch turned to Pippi, she noticed a confused look on her friend's face. It seemed to say what are you doing? "Come here, my friend, I have to tell you something." Klentina said. Pippi obeyed.
"Listen, Pippi, this is very important," began Klentina, "This is the only bridge that can reach a place called Sandorea, and every year, a great flood destroys it. I am the only one who knows how to repair it." Just then, a white streak glided swiftly past the two girls. They ducked and held on to each other tightly. But before Klentina Malina could get a strong hold on Pippi, a witch on broomstick grabbed the lost girl.
"Pippi!" Klentina called, as loud as she could. Apparently, Pippi didn't hear. Klentina heard an evil laugh that she recognized as the horrible cackle of Klarisa, the Wicked Witch of the North.
Frightened as she may be, Pippi kept calm. She knew that Klentina would find her. The witch's broom was speeding. Pippi was forced to decide whether to hold on tight, or to fall a hundred feet to the ground.
The witch threw Pippi in a smelly dungeon that was part of a dark and dreary castle. The sorceress stood in the hall across from Klentina's friend. She shouted, "Nobody makes a fool of Klarisa! I was once a true friend to that Klentina. But I didn't know that Catalie was so bad! With Klentina's help, I would have been able to escape! But no. She ran away." After hearing both sides of the story, Pippi knew that she could help.
For days, Pippi was stuck in the cell. But one morning, Pippi found a book out in the hall that she could reach. In it there were tiny words. One of the chapters interested her. It read:
April 15, 1289
I took a walk by a pool with every color of the rainbow. Therefore, it was called the rainbow pool. A great sorceress threatened to drain it.
April 28, 1289
Today I saw the very last of the magnificent rainbow pool wash away to the ocean. I managed to save one bottle of it. On my shelf, I thought it was safe, but later today, a squirrel knocked it over. Now, there was still some left, but not much.
May 2, 1289
Today I gave the remains of the rainbow water to my sister, Klentina Malina. I told her that to restore the rainbow pool to its color again, that she must pour the water in the place where the pool was.
Pippi, being startled at this moment, pushed the book out of her cell. Klarisa would never know about it. It was a good thing that Pippi did this so quickly. The witch's footsteps could be heard coming down the spooky stone hall.
Tap, tap, tap. The sound echoed as Klarisa walked. Pippi stepped quietly back into the shadows of the dark castle. Klarisa, being a witch, let little light in.
Klarisa undoubtedly didn't know that Pippi had read the book. She just picked it up casually and walked on, without even seeing Pippi. But the witch did look in the cell. Frightfully, Pippi went back another step. Klarisa walked on.
Soon, Pippi put her other foot on the stone. A slight downward movement of the loose brick caused Pippi to fall over. As she was getting up, her hands pushed against the same stone. This time, Pippi fell into an underground passageway.
The straw-lined tunnel gave Pippi a soft landing. Another brick, somehow, fell into place and completely darkened the walkway. Pippi sat there for a few moments. She was trying to concentrate on finding a way out. Then she saw a round, bright light coming toward her.
This startled Pippi. From this surprise, the lost girl slid down the straw pile. Forgetting the light, she yelled in fright. Soon, Pippi heard running footsteps. Then a warm hand was helping her up. Afterwards, she saw a familiar face. It was Daniel Corey, Applebloom's lost brother.
"Daniel!" Pippi's voice echoed. Soon she heard a rustle, like straw, as if some creature in this tunnel were scrambling for safety. Forgetting the darkness, Pippi went toward it. Daniel came too. They both saw a small green and purple spotted animal with three shiny horns on its head.
It was a Tricorna. He ran, rustling the straw as he went. Daniel said, "Pippi!" as she was running after the sound. Shadows flickered in the darkness.
Pippi tripped over some sort of book, hidden within one of the piles. Being curious, and also letting Daniel catch up, Pippi opened the book. In it were words of another language.
"Sandorean," said the Tricorna, who had appeared when Pippi wasn't looking, "this is what I've been looking for."
"Who are you, anyway?" said Daniel.
"I am Zena. But the question is: who are you?"
"I am Pippi and this is Daniel. This looks like a map." said the girl as she pointed to a maze. Under the map there was a message.
Thinking it may be important, Pippi wrote down the message to the best of her ability, and put it in her pocket.
"Pippi, this is the only way to get to Sandorea. It is a map of the maze that zigzags and twists and twirls so much that you can only find your way out when you take all the right paths!"
In the meantime, Klentina was wondering what to do to find Pippi. Suddenly, a letter floated down the river. Klentina picked it up to read it.
Dear Klentina Malina,
Could you do me a favor, my sister? I have been caught by Catalie! Please get me out of here. But also, Catalie has started to capture and keep the unicorns of Sandorea! Save the unicorns.
Your Darling Brother, Makina
"Makina," Klentina said, "I haven't seen him for hundreds of years." And indeed she hadn't. Nine hundred years ago, Klentina and Klarisa were in a cage in Catalie's castle. First thing Klentina knew was she was in a cage. The next thing she knew was she was on a bed in a cottage deep in the woods of Golden Valley.
Makina had come to Klentina's cottage once, then he left to Sandorea. Klentina never saw him again.
Klentina quickly crossed the bridge of Sandorea and saw a beautiful land. A land with a forest that held more different types of trees and bushes than she could name stood before her. There was a meadow with a rainbow of wildflowers and in this meadow Klentina saw dozens of unicorns lying and resting in the morning sunshine.
Meanwhile, Pippi, Zena, and Daniel were walking though a maze. Suddenly, around a corner, Daniel spied a bit of light. They ran toward the glimmering sliver and soon came upon Sandorea, at last. Pippi was surprised to see Klentina stroking a pure-white unicorn with a blue mane and tail, and a yellow star on its rump. Quickly, Pippi ran toward her friend, soon being followed by Zena and Daniel.
"Hi Pippi, hi Zena." said Klentina.
"How did you know Zena, Klentina?" asked Pippi.
Klentina answered, "Klarisa created her."
"How did you know that?"
"Klarisa is my sister. And who is this?"
"This is Daniel Corey. Who is that?"
"Her name is Starlight. She is one of the unicorns of Sandorea. She wanted to help me find Makina."
"Who is Makina?" asked Pippi, starting to stroke the unicorn.
"My brother," said Klentina.
"Klentina, you never told me you had a brother or a sister. Why?" said Pippi.
"I couldn't, my friend, don't you understand, it was too sad to talk about. I could speak of my sister, but not for very long. But when she took you, I didn't know what to do. She's so terrible"
"You must be mistaken. Klentina, both of you are mistaken. I know the way to her castle but it's too hard. A maze."
"Wait," Zena put in, "I know another way! The river!"
"But Zena," said Daniel, "how can the river take us to Klarisa's castle?"
"Simple, we make a raft and we will find our way to the castle," answered the Tricorna.
"Zena's right, Daniel. The river will take us to the castle. Pippi, let's go find Starlight." - Klentina stood up - "I have a feeling that Klarisa will lead us to Makina."
Since they could not make a boat, Klentina and her friends would go by unicorn. Starlight and her friend, Melody allowed them to ride on their backs. Pippi saw Starlight spread two beautiful, silver wings, and Melody wings of azure. But they didn't seem to be wings, Melody would fly with wings made of music, not music notes or the sound of music, music that you feel.
Starlight had wings that appeared to be made of the stars themselves.
Klentina and Pippi sat on the back of Starlight while Daniel was giggling at Zena, who could not seem to have an easy time climbing on Melody's back. When Zena had finally managed to take his place in front of Daniel, the two unicorns took off. Pippi looked in amazement seeing Starlight's wings glittering in comet-like streaks and Melody's wings as they sang through the air.
Over the river, they sailed, with eight dainty hooves just touching the water. After Klentina's words about them nearing the castle of Klarisa, Pippi began to get the frightening feeling of when just a few days ago she was riding on Klarisa's broomstick, and it was not much different from riding a unicorn.
Without warning, a large branch was flung into Pippi's face. Her eyes filled with tears as she immediately covered them with her hands, nearly falling off of Starlight. Klentina held her friend tightly as she told the unicorns to slow down. Accidentally, the witch lost her grip and Pippi fell in the ice-cold water.
Because the water was shallow, Pippi had a painful fall. She tried to walk a few steps, but somehow she fell into an underwater tunnel. After the day's events, the twelve-year-old was not surprised. Amazingly, Pippi could breath in this water. It was quite wet, but her eyes did not feel so much pain anymore. Soon, She hit something hard, a flat rock or wood. Pippi crawled out of what was now a waterfall, and she stood up, realizing where she was for the first time: The Great Falls of Sandorea.
"Hmm," Pippi said, "I always wondered where this came from." She looked around to see a neatly kept place; no dust was found on the floor or any other place. A large flat stone stood in the center of the dome-shaped room. Around it the girl noticed four wooden stools, she guessed it was a table and a set of chairs. Around the corner there was a tunnel, or perhaps a hallway, which lead to another room. This one had a straw bed in one corner of it.
"How interesting," thought the curious girl, "some creature must live here or something." Little did Pippi know that this was the home of Ivan the Dwarf.
The young girl continued down the hallway. She saw on her left side yet another room, this one obviously was a storeroom, for leaning against one wall was a two-foot-long broom which reminded Pippi of Klarisa, not to mention Klentina, who was probably looking for her this very moment. Pippi thought she should go back, but before she could, she heard a splash.
Pippi saw a small man, just a bit taller than Zena, coming around the corner. "You're trespassing!" he said.
"Who are you?" said Pippi, not too sure of herself.
The little man answered, "I'm Ivan, and you're trespassing!"
"I didn't know that. I was just falling."
"A likely story," said Ivan, "now get out!"
"That hallway, trespasser. Get out!" shouted the dwarf. Pippi started running, trying not to upset the little man, she didn't know what he could do. When Pippi was completely out of sight, she slowed down.
Strangely, Pippi saw straw lining the tunnel. Ahead of her she saw a ladder. Pippi climbed it only to see the back of a witch.
"Klarisa!" shouted Pippi. As she turned, the door beside her opened, and through it came Klentina, Daniel, and Zena. "Perfect timing," laughed Pippi.
"How did you get here?" asked Klentina.
"I still don't know," said the twelve-year-old girl.
"And, I ask, what are all of you doing here?" cried Klarisa. She sounded very annoyed. Something changed her mind when she saw her sister.
Suddenly, the two witches ran toward each other. Two pointed black hats flew off to reveal chocolate brown hair and back capes fluttered in the air to land in a heap in the corner of the room and in the midst of all of this, the sisters were hugging each other.
Klarisa had changed, no longer was she seen as the horrid Wicked Witch of the North, but now she was seen as a just a child who only cared for her sister, her friends, and the hope of rescuing her brother from Catalie.
When the group had returned outside, Melody, Starlight, and another unicorn were waiting for them. Starlight whinnied and nuzzled Klentina. Then Klentina said, "All right, that was kind of you."
"What did she say?" asked Pippi.
"She said that they went back to Sandorea while we were in the castle and got her friend, Moondust."
"Where are we to go now?" said Daniel, "It probably wouldn't do any good staying here."
"We are to go to the home of Ivan the Dwarf."
"No way! I'm not going there again!" cried Pippi.
So Klentina and Klarisa made the girl get on the back of Moondust. The witches rode Starlight, and Melody carried Daniel and the Tricorna. One at a time, wings spread, revealing music, stars, and moonbeams.
"I'm sorry the way I treated you at our first visit but I had no idea who you were, Pippi." Ivan greeted her kindly this time. She sat on one of the wooden chairs around Ivan's stone table. Right now, the table was covered with a white tablecloth. "What brings you here, Klentina?"
"It's about Makina. He's been caught by Catalie."
"Oh, Catalie, is it? Well, I've got just the thing to fix her." Ivan pulled a small beige sack out of his pocket. In it was a powdery white substance.
"What is it?" asked Daniel.
Zena said, "Mesa Syrup!"
"What are you going to do with that?" asked Klentina.
Ivan chuckled and said, "When mixed with water, this powder has two qualities: it works as a magnet and weakens the power of any witch close enough for one full day."
With the syrup and water in hand, Ivan went to Catalie's castle with Zena, Pippi and Daniel. The witches had to stay behind. Once inside, Ivan headed for Catalie's spell room. He looked inside to see Catalie sleeping in a chair, snoring loudly. Her keys had fallen to the ground.
"This will be easy!" whispered Ivan.
Quickly and quietly, the dwarf got the keys and, followed by Pippi and Daniel, he headed for the dungeon.
As soon as Pippi had gotten there with the keys, she unlocked Makina's door and the four of them left. They didn't want to stay one minute longer than necessary.
In Sandorea, Klentina, Klarisa, Makina, Pippi, Zena, and Daniel were talking to each other. Completely by accident, Pippi stuck her hands in her pocket to find the message she had written down.
"Klentina," she asked, "Do you know Sandorean?"
"Of course. Why?"
"What does this say?" She handed her friend the note. Klentina started crying.
"What's it say?"
"It tells about the Malina family reunion tomorrow, arranged by my cousin Tesara. I have been waiting for centuries for this to happen. Where did you ever find it?"
"In a book under Klarisa's castle."
"Klentina," asked Makina, "Do you still have the last of the water from the rainbow pool?" He said read the message:
In Sandorea at the Vale of the Rainbow Pool,
August sixth, 1991 will be the Malina family reunion. All of those related to the Malinas are invited to come and greatly welcomed. The list would be so large, but you know who you are. Friends of the Malinas are also invited.
It was amazing. Pippi Longstocking was going home. It was August 7th and now was the time to say good-bye to her dear friends and Sandorea. Suddenly, Catalie flew by on her broom and shouted, "I'll get you someday! Someday!"
Thus ends the tale of the Secret of Golden Valley.