the story I wrote for class in year 6:
by Taylor M. Gorham
Harold was a very backward dragon. He hated his name and he hated his life and he was just plain sick of it all. He thought that every one else should be sorry for him but of course, they weren't. So Harold came up with the idea that he wouldn't listen to anyone who didn't call him "Flamer," even though he couldn't breath fire. No one could except of course the dragons on land. Which were very very rare. One day when all the other dragons were playing they're favourite game Harold skulked in a corner of his favourite cave bunched up in a ball so that he couldn't hear a thing. He could do this all day if he wanted to, and he usually did. He only uncurled when a particularly large something bumped the top of his cave. Now particularly large somethings don't bump the tops of caves very often, especially if they are somethings and not pieces of your imagination trying to trick you. So of course Harold had to investigate. None of the other dragons were there. "Oh no" thought Harold. Everything was quiet and dark. He looked up "Wow!" He was gripped by the hand of curiosity, controlled by it. There was a large dark shape protruding from the surface of the water. Even though he was forbidden to Harold swam to the top of the water and popped his head out of the surface. "What a boat!" It was a streamlined, red painted, gleaming motor boat. There was a man drawing in a fishing trap full of lobster Harold gasped in horror. Unfortunately the man heard. A grin spread across the man's face he rubbed his hands together. Harold dove but unfortunately, he dove the wrong way right into a fishing net. Harold thrashed and clawed and ripped but he only got more and more tangled. The man started to pull him in. One second he was in the water next second he was in he air. It was like being dunked but then finally he was pulled up onto the boat. He could hardly breath out of water because he was an ocean dragon if you remember. The man grabbed him by the tail and flung him into a wooden crate. Harold was too tired to protest. Then the boat started to move. There was a fierce roaring noise from the back of the boat. Harold's crate slid to the back with an unpleasant bump, the kind that mixes up all your insides so that they feel like lead. Harold's head drooped. He felt so dried out. "Why did this have to happen to me?" he thought. His exhaustion eventually got the better of him and he went to sleep.
Mervin and Ijema
Harold awoke to the sound of human voices and stamping feet. At first everything was blurred but soon it all cleared. There was the man from the boat debating something called "price," or prize was it? with a few other men. Then Harold noticed something different, his body was strangely squashed. He was no longer in his crate but had been stuffed into the entranceway of a very small tank. At least there was water but it was still very small compared with the great fields of sea grass at home. The very thought of home made him almost cry. Harold went to explore his tank. He discovered that the back wall was hidden by some thick turtle grass, which made it much smaller than it had first seemed, the floor was scattered with opaline stones and in one corner there was a small creature with eight long tentacles. He looked kind of creepy but he turned out to be alright. His name was Mervin(short for Mervinioulys Culvin Spenz). Harold thought of how much his mother would have loved these opaline stones and how nice it would be if he could bring some back to her. The men had started yelling at each other and stamping their feet. "sixty and that is my last offer!" The fisherman stamped off in a huff. He grumbled "you can never find any decent people any more, stupid gits. The two men who were left had started poking around his tank staring at him. They were wearing long white cloaks with many pockets, one had long brown hair tied up in a tail, the other had short reddish hair and was wearing glasses. "Scine-tists," they were called or so the fisherman had said, they were the strangest things Harold had ever seen and they seemed even stranger because he had never got a good look at hair before. Their staring was getting kind of uncomfortable so he went inside his private clump of weed to talk to Mervin. Mervin was quite interesting but sometimes very dull, so after an hour when he was starting to get bored and Mervin was on one of his particularly boring stretches of ands, ifs, buts and perhapses, Harold slipped away He heard a tapping on the glass and he wanted to investigate. To his great surprise (and relief) Harold found a black lizard tapping on the tank. The scine-tists had gone. She scuttled up the glass to the top of the tank. Hello, she whispered over the bar. "Who are you," her voice was silky. "Harold " said Harold. It turned out that she had come from India as part of an experiment but she had escaped. Harold talked with his new friend until almost nightfall. By that time she had to leave.
After talking to Ijema Harold was full of escape ideas but most of them were highly unlikely and they kept on getting more and more impossible. He thought of them until he could bear it no longer .He was going to escape and he wouldn't rest until he had done it. First he would need a bag, oh why hadn't he listened to his mother when she taught him how to read? He guessed at the labels on the many draws and cabinets trying to make out what on earth they said. (The scine-tists had left the lights on) "Good thing they don't know that I happen to be a master jumper," he thought as he cleared the six foot bar in one leap. Harold flopped onto the floor "now I can find out where they keep the food and where I can find a bag to put it in, but he could hardly move as a result of having no back legs. "This is going to be a lot harder than I thought." He clumsily flopped over to the first set of drawers and opened one. It held a selection of smelly vials that would have been interesting to touch but Harold decided against it. The second drawer was full of the same kind of thing except that they were more jelly like than liquid, Harold spilled some of these on the floor to see what they would do. There was a purple one that hissed and melted the moment it hit the floor, another yellow one burst and fizzled out some brightly coloured smoke, the next one burnt a hole in the floor so Harold left them alone after that just in case one exploded and the scine-tists came back. There was also a cabinet that had a box full of needles and bottles and one with some interesting black gew that smelled strongly of petrol , Harold didn't touch that. He went on like this for some time until he found a small brown backpack with pockets on the sides. "This will do," he thought happily taking it off its hook. He swung the backpack over his shoulders so that one of the straps caught on his spikes. Now to find the food. Harold wandered into the next room in search of food, the scine-tists were nowhere to be seen. This room was very strange indeed, it seemed like there was hardly anything in it. What could it be used for? If, that is if it were used for any thing at all, but why have an extra room if it had no purpose? This particular room puzzled Harold very much and it didn't seem to have anything useful in it so he left. There were two more doors to choose from, Harold took the left one but stumbled into a clutter of mops and brooms, "Aw Yuck! A broom cupboard." Harold hurriedly stumbled out again and took the right hand door. This time he entered room with an assortment of tables and chairs. There was a sink and a big white box in one corner. "That looks like a likely place for food." Harold walked over and inspected the strange box. It smelled like food but he couldn't figure out where it could be. He sniffled around the back and he jumped on top of it to see if the food was there but it was nowhere to be found. "If I can smell but I can't see it where could it be?" Taking one last check on top of the strange box his foot got stuck in the handle sticking out of the side and it wiggled. "What the.." He slid down the side of the box as the handle swung away from his perch and landed smartly on the middle of his nose. "OOOOOOWWWWWCCHH!" "I think I'll save finding the food until tomorrow," he thought rubbing his nose. He hid the bag underneath the tank and slid into the water with a satisfying splash. (After getting lost a few times and investigating a few draws that he simply couldn't stay away from.)
Harold was flouting into the ocean to see his parents he looked out across the field of grass feeling peaceful. All of a sudden he was jerked by the tail out of the water. Harold opened his eyes. The scine-tists were back. They had hauled him out of his tank and were attempting to drag him up onto one of the tables in the room with nothing in it. How embarrassing! Letting the stupid people drag you out of your tank without you noticing. "Ok, people I've had enough of being dragged around thank you very much!" Harold wriggled free of their grip before they even knew what had happened. He dashed for the door, racing blindly through the halls with the scine-tists stumbling over each other trying to catch up with him. Harold didn't care where he went as long as he was far away from these people. Finally he slowed down, the scine-tists had been too clumsy to catch up with him properly but he could still hear them yelling for him to come back. Huh, like he would come back just because they yelled at him. But where was he? This room was definitely not one of the ones he had explored last night. In fact it wasn't anywhere near them. Still there wasn't any time to worry about that, the scine-tists were gaining on him. Harold dashed for the nearest door but unfortunately it was a closet full of stuff, but this was interesting stuff. It seemed like a long hallway. It was the perfect place to stay until the scine-tists were gone. Well okay it wasn't that perfect but at least the scine-tists didn't know where to find him. Harold started off along the hallway looking in the various boxes and shelves and occasionally stopping to sniff something interesting. At the end of the hall was a little pile of pillows and gauze, he started toward it in the hopes of finding a comfortable bed of some kind, but right on the half way mark there was a needle on the floor and Harold was too careless to notice ............. All of a sudden he felt very sleepy, he barely noticed the sharp pain in his foot. Stumbling and slipping Harold felt his eyelids droop, everything was hazy. Harold slumped on the floor dead asleep, the tranquilizer dart still in his foot.
When Harold awoke some hours later he was still in the closet unnoticed. His vision was still hazy but he was otherwise unharmed. As his vision started to clear gradually Harold noticed a pair of eyes staring at him in the darkness. No wait was it only one pair of eyes? Harold shook his head, he slowly became accustomed to the light. There were about six pairs of eyes glaring at him. Those eyes came from six rats in a cage on a shelf next to him. Harold could see four more asleep in a corner behind them. At first Harold felt sorry for them but then he realized, those eyes were filled with malice and hate. All he wanted to do was get away from those eyes. Harold slowly got up and walked towards the door, the rats followed him with their eyes all the way out. Harold could tell they never wanted him to come back ever again. Harold went out into the hall. Now to get down to business, he had been here too long! Harold set his course for the left-hand door. Which turned out to be another closet. "Why do I keep on walking into closets?" Harold around looked for the door that he had come through but it wasn't there. The door had been one of sliding glass and now it was closed. Harold's eyes fell upon the glass, he eyed it carefully, looking at the room beyond. If only he could get through the clear shiny stuff. "Maybe it was the kind of thing that only looked solid but wasn't." Harold tried to step into the glass but was greeted with a hard smack in the nose. "Want to play rough huh?" Harold flung himself against the glass, it didn't budge. He growled and tried a second time, there was now a long thin crack down the side. Harold let out a loud bellow and landed a hard blow with the spikes on his tail, harder than he had ever done before. The glass shattered and sharp shards flew everywhere. Harold started uncertainly onwards through the remnants of the glass but he stopped when he heard the scine-tists yells coming toward him. His mind raced wildly but not it didn't race quite fast enough. The scine-tists were coming round the corner to him.
Harold without knowing what he was doing spun a round and ran as fast as he could away from the scine-tists . The trouble was, there wasn't really anywhere to run. "A dead end, after all this they're going to get me." The scine-tists were nearly on him. "Got ya!!" Right as the red head jumped on top of him Harold leaped up. Harold had seen the window. The red headed scine-tist, glasses and all came crashing down into the sea of shards face first. The one with the ponytail came crashing down on top of him trying to pull the red head back upright. Harold jumped out the window, the air whooshed by. It was a wonderful feeling, the ground came rushing towards him, THUMP Harold landed on the grubby sidewalk, or was it the sidewalk? No it was a hat, and the hat was on somebody's head. Quickly Harold jumped off before the man or his wife who was next to him, realized that there was a small dragon sitting on top of his head. Harold could smell the salt air. He was near home!
Harold raced towards the smell of salt. "There was the water." Harold was so happy he didn't even notice his surroundings (a dock piled high with cargo nets and wooden crates) He plunged into the water and sped downwards. Before his breath had been little more than a rasp, now that he was in the water again he could move freely and breathe easily. Harold could see his house in the distance. Finally he was free to go on his journey home.