Here's the last chapter for this story! Thank you for everything. :) See you on the sequel!
Disclaimer: Don't own anything!
Home Before Dark
A bird began to sing.
Sabina opened her eyes. She was still pointing at the picture of the Frog Creek woods.
She peeked out the tree house window. Outside she saw the exact same view.
"We're home," whispered Charisse.
The woods were lit with a golden late-afternoon light. The sun was about to set.
No time had passed since they'd left.
"Sabina! Charisse!" a voice called from the distance.
"That's Aunt Annie," said Charisse, pointing.
Sabina saw her mother far away. She was standing in front of the house. Her blonde hair that was always in pigtails was following the movement of the small breeze. Sabina looked exactly like her mom except her hair - brown hair.
"Where are you?" another voice called.
Charisse shrieked. "Dad's home already?!"
It was Uncle Jack, Charisse's dad. Over-all, Charisse looked exactly like him. The dark eyes they both shared though Charisse was dark brown, love for books and both wore glasses because of it. The only difference they had was Charisse's light brown skin and ultra black obsidian hair.
Sabina remembered that night when she secretly sneaked out of her room and accidentally heard Uncle Jack and her mom talk about Charisse. She remembered that they believed Charisse's light brown skin, and ultra black hair came from her mother.
"Sabina!" Annie called.
"Charisse!" Jack called.
Charisse stuck her head out the window and shouted, "Coming Dad and Aunt Annie!"
Sabina still felt dazed. She just stared at Charisse.
"What happened to us?" she said.
"We took a trip in a magic tree house," said Charisse simply.
"But, it's the same time as when we left," said Sabina.
"And how did it take us so far away?" said Sabina. "And so long ago?"
"You just looked at a book and said you wished we could go there," said Charisse. "And the magic tree house took us there."
"But how?" said Sabina. "And who built this magic tree house? Who put all these books here?"
"A magic person, I guess," shrugged Charisse.
A magic person? Is that even possible?
"Oh, look," said Sabina. "I almost forgot about this." She reached into her pocket and pulled out the gold medallion. "Someone lost this back there… in dinosaur land. Look, there's a letter M on it."
Charisse's eyes got round. "You think M stands for magic person?"
"I don't know," said Sabina. "I just know someone went to that place before us."
"Sa-biina! Cha-arisse!" came the distant cry again.
Charisse poked her head out the window again. "Come-ing!" she shouted.
Sabina put the gold medallion back in her pocket.
She pulled the dinosaur book out of her pack. And put it back with all the other books.
Then she and Charisse took one last look around the tree house.
"Good-bye, house," whispered Charisse. "Thanks for bringing us back on the time of the dinosaurs. Too bad I didn't seen my favorite dinosaur."
Sabina's head turned to the direction of Charisse. "What is your favortie dinosaur? Mine is the Pteranodon. I'm so happy that I saw it personally!"
"It's the Ichthyosaurus! The one Annie Cunning discovered!" Charisse exclaimed.
Sabina slung her backpack over her shoulder. She pointed at the ladder.
Charisse started down. Sabina followed.
Seconds later, they hopped onto the ground and started walking out of the woods.
"No one's going to believe our story," said Sabina.
"So let's not tell anyone," Charisse suggested.
"Uncle Jack won't believe it," said Sabina.
"He'll say we're like Aunt Annie," said Charisse.
"Mom won't believe it either," said Sabina.
"She'll say it's just our own imagination and we're ought to be an author like her," said Charisse.
"My teacher won't believe it," said Sabina.
"She'll say you have a vivid imagination and you're starting to be like your mom," said Charisse.
"We better not tell anyone," said Sabina.
"I already said that," said Charisse.
Sabina sighed. "I think I'm starting to not believe it myself," she said.
They left the woods and started up the road toward their house.
Sabina and Charisse were always together. Just like Jack and Annie. Since their partners were not with them, they just stayed in their old house and lived together. It was like they couldn't do anything without each other. That was why Sabina and Charisse grew up like them.
As they walked past all the houses on their street, the trip to dinosaur time did seem more and more like a dream.
Only this world and this time seemed real.
Sabina reached into her pocket. She clasped the gold medallion.
She felt the engraving of the letter M. It made Sabina's fingers tingle.
Sabina laughed. Suddenly she felt very happy.
She couldn't explain what had happened today. But she knew for sure that their trip in the magic tree house had been real.
"Tomorrow," Sabina said softly, "We'll go back to the woods."
"Of course," said Charisse.
"And we'll climb up to the tree house," said Sabina.
"Of course," repeated Charisse.
"And we'll see what happens next," said Sabina.
"Of course," said Charisse. "Race you!"
And they took off together, running for home. Charisse couldn't wait for another adventure while on Sabina, she couldn't wait to know who M was and how did the tree house bring them back in time.
Here's a special preview for the second book of J&C Adventures! It's entitled, "A Place of Knights!"
Charisse couldn't sleep.
She put her glasses on and looked at the clock. 5 AM. The usual time she wakes up into in order to go to school.
But it was currently the weekends. Too early to get up.
Yesterday, so many strange and yet fun things had happened. Now she was trying to figure some out. Though it should be Sabina's work. But she wanted to.
She turned on the light. She picked up a notebook. She looked at the list Sabina made before going to bed. Yeah. Charisse sneaked into her room last night. She also aspired to be an author. Can't let the spotlight shine only for her cousin, eh.
She found the page and saw Sabina's neat cursive handwriting.
Charisse and I found tree house in the woods.
We also found lots of books in it like we were in a huge library.
I accidentally made a wish.
And then, the next thing I knew, we went back to the time of the dinosaurs.
I didn't have so much fun except for that amazing ride. Unlike me, Charisse had so much fun she wants to repeat it once again.
I pointed to the picture of Frog Creek woods and made a wish.
Suddenly, we came back home to Frog Creek.
Charisse pushed her glasses into place. Who was going to believe any of this?
Of course, she and Sabina had already swore they shouldn't tell anyone. Besides only her thirteen-year-old cousin, Sabina would believe her. She'd gone with her to the time of the dinosaurs, after all.
Charisse's thoughts were interrupted when the door burst open and there stood a panicked Sabina.
"Charisse! Have you seen my notebook?" she asked frantically.
Charisse already knew she'll be dead if Sabina will see her reading it. She instantly hid it behind her back.
But suddenly changed her mind.
"Yeah, I saw it!" she said as she tossed it to Sabina in the doorway.
Sabina didn't have time to catch it so it fell. She picked it up before glaring at her.
"Jeez, Charisse! You should ask for my permission first! No wonder you love Hermes! You're both thieves!" Sabina rumbled.
"Well, sorry, Ms. Know-it-all. Why didn't you write about the gold medal?" she asked, hoping to distract her enraged cousin. And it miraculously worked.
"You mean the gold medallion," said Sabina as she approached her cousin.
She then grabbed a pen from Charisse's pencil case and wrote:
I found a golden medallion in the dinosaur time.
She proceeded in drawing the medallion.
"Aren't you going to put the letter M on the medal?" asked Charisse.
"Medallion," corrected Sabina. "Not medal."
She added an M:
"Aren't you going to write about the magic person?" asked Charisse.
Sabina laid on Charisse's soft bed.
"We don't even know if there really is a magic person," said Sabina.
"Well, someone built the tree house in the woods. Someone put the books in it. Someone lost a gold medal in dinosaur time."
"Medallion!" corrected Sabina for the third time. Charisse was so stubborn. "And I'm just writing the facts. The stuff we know for sure."
"Let's go back to the tree house right now," said Charisse. "And find out if the magic person is a fact."
"Are you nuts?" said Sabina. "The sun's not even up yet."
Charisse rolled her eyes.
"Maybe I am," she muttered and said, "Come on! Maybe we can catch them sleeping."
"I don't think we should," said Sabina. Kill Joy, Charisse thought. But she could see on worry on her cousin's face. Like she didn't believe anything about the magic person.
"Well, I'm going," announced Charisse as she stood up and prepared herself.
Sabina looked out the window into the dark-gray sky. It was almost dawn.
Before Sabina could say something about not going out this late, Charisse interrupted, "Are you coming or not?"
Sabina sighed. "Fine. Get dressed. I'll meet you at the back door. Be quiet."
Charisse smiled triumphantly before Sabina went into her room. Charisse put on dark blue jeans, warm gray sweatshirt and black shoes. While thinking of bringing something, she noticed her favorite flashlight on the floor. It was a special flashlight commonly used by detectives. Charisse smiled. Perfect, she thought and grinned in a daredevil way.
She crept downstairs.
Charisse waited patiently at the back door. She kept looking at her purple watch. But then, she heard a faint sound. She smiled. She already knew it was Sabina trying to go downstairs carefully.
When she heard the faint sound stop, she shined her flashlight on Sabina's face. "Ta-da! A magic wand!" she said cheerily.
"Shhh! Don't wake up Mom and Uncle Jack," whispered Sabina. "And turn that flashlight off. We don't want anyone to see us."
Charisse nodded slowly. She hated the dark that was why she always brings the flashlight with her. She hated the fact that she inherited it from her father, Jack. They both hated darkness and ghosts.
She turned it off and clipped it onto her belt before grabbing Sabina's arm. She then closed her eyes and let Sabina guide her..
They silently slipped out the door into the cool early-morning air. Crickets were chirping. The dog next door barked.
"Charisse," Sabina whispered.
Charisse slowly opened her eyes and saw that there was a faint light. She smiled. Well, at least there was light. Better than nothing! She thought.
The dog next door barked once again.
"Quiet, Brownie!" whispered Charisse.
Brownie stopped barking. Charisse didn't know why but animals always seemed to do what she says.
"Let's run!" said Sabina.
They dashed across the dark, wet lawn and didn't stop until they reached the dark woods.
Charisse started shaking once again. She truly hated the dark. She sticked into Sabina's arm like a glue and closed her eyes.
"We need the flashlight now," said Sabina.
Charisse blindly took it off her belt and gave it to Sabina.
While on Sabina, she switched it on.
Charisse finally opened her eyes and step by step, they walked between the trees. Charisse held her breath. The dark woods were scary.
"Gotcha!" said Sabina, shining the flashlight in Charisse's face.
Charisse jumped back and then frowned as Sabina started laughing.
"Cut it out!" she complained.
"I scared you," said Sabina as she started laughing once again. Charisse sighed. She wished Sabina didn't know about her weakness.
Charisse glared at her.
"Stop annoying me!" Charisse whispered. "This is serious."
Sabina stopped laughing and put her hands up in defense. "Okay, okay."
Sabina shined the flashlights over the tops of the trees.
"Now what are you doing?" asked Charisse.
"Looking for the tree house," said Sabina on her isn't-it-obvious tone.
The light stopped moving.
There it was. The mysterious tree house. At the top of the tallest tree in the woods.
Sabina shined her light at the tree house, and then down the tall ladder. All the way to the ground.
"I'm going up," she said courageously. She gripped the flashlight and began to climb.
Charisse knew Sabina was trying to be courageous for her. Charisse was also brave... if she wanted to. But sometimes, fear overcame her.
"Wait!" Charisse called. She didn't want to be alone on the ground!
But she was gone. The light disappeared. And Charisse was left alone in the dark.
I hope you like it! ;)