What Lies Beneath?

By Becca Sweigart (Sun Valley High School, Aston, PA)

The little boy was wandering through the woods all alone.  He saw a lady dressed in all silver and he decided to follow her. She went to a wood building, the door had a handle made from a tree branch and had a screen in it. When he followed the lady in the building it was small and pitch black. It smelled like wet, musty, old wood. The door slammed behind him. Once the door shut, a whole world appeared in front of him.

The lady asked “What is your name?”

“Alex,” he replied.

The lady, who’s named Maggie, informed Alex that he was in the year 3000. He did not fit in here.

Maggie told Alex, “We need to get you cleaned up young man. That’s not the way to walk around here.”

“Why? What I’m wearing is perfectly okay,” Alex stated.

“Well you stand out because you are really young, your clothes are not up to standards, and you smell,” Maggie replied.

“This is what I have been wearing for almost a year and it is acceptable where I come from.” Once Alex was cleaned up and dressed, he and Maggie went into the new world and started exploring.

Alex became frightened at what he saw; people were floating in the air all around him. The people had on silver pants, shirts, or dresses. Girls’ hair was pulled back in buns and the guys had nice combed hair. Everything was in place, everyone looked the same. Soon Alex’s feet started to lift off the ground.  He tried grabbing the grass but there was none. This place was strange and scary. Alex knew he did not belong here.

As they started floating around he saw that all the houses looked exactly the same. Each house was two stories and they were purple. He noticed that there wasn’t any grass, never once did he see a tree or flower, and there was not a pond or creek in sight. Alex wanted to go home where his feet were on the ground, houses looked different, and where grass and tree existed.

Years passed, and Alex still was scared of living here. Every year the houses would all change color at the same time, the people would change the color of their clothes. Nobody celebrated a holiday like Thanksgiving, Christmas, or New Years. Not one person asked Alex where his parents were even though he was the only kid that walked around without parents and lived on his own.

Alex was now 26, he had grown used to all the new things around him, they weren’t scary anymore. He found a girl who he married. They now have a child together and another on the way. His wife Loren was at work and he had the baby, so they went for a walk on the edge of town. As they were walking around Alex saw leaves, something he thought he would never see again. He came upon a door, quickly realizing it was the same door he walked through 20 years ago that brought him to this crazy world.  Alex walked through the door and was back to the little six year old boy. Nothing had changed in the 20 years he was gone. It was like time stood still.

Now, Alex wanted to go back home to his family, but when he walked through the door again everything was gone. The place he spent 20 years of his life in, where his family was. Alex ran around the woods looking for another door that would take him back to his home. Unfortunately he found nothing. So he tried one last time. He ran to the old wood door and opened it. Yet again, nothing was there. Alex started crying and punching the ground, screaming “why?” over and over again. He wished he had never walked back through that door. Alex did not know how much he missed in this world. He knew he would never be able to forget about his wife and daughter.

Alex was now 26 and wondered if going through that door was a picture of his future in the real world. He got married and his wife’s name was Loren, they had a daughter with a son on the way.

That door in the woods twenty years ago changed his life. Not only did Alex get to be 26 twice, but he got to see what his future would be like. They did not float around or wear silver clothes. They still had water, trees, grass, and the houses all looked different. But for the most part everything remained the same from how he grew up to how he met his wife at a concert.

He would not change a thing and still went through the door to bring him back home.

He’d then experience it again, twenty years later.

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