Written By Aahana Chakrabarty (Grade 6)
Three days had passed. Mrs Dane had gone to Willson’s school to inform them that he wouldn’t be going to their school anymore. Mr Dane had quit his job and helped his wife get all the things on the ground floor of their house. Wilson had got a little used to the idea that he didn’t belong to Earth. His parents had told him all about Velentice. Wilson now forgot all his sorrow and began to look forward to going there. He was excited about transferring to a whole new planet. He helped his parents and kept asking questions every now and again.
‘Mother, will I go to a new school?’ Or ‘Dad how are we different from earthlings? We look exactly like them!’
When it was time to go to Velentice, Will was overjoyed. The last three days had felt like three years to him. Will, his mother, and father went to the ground floor and looked around. The room looked very different now. Instead of tables, objects and birds, there were portraits all around with an empty space in the middle. Mr Dane went to a portrait with a blue-green fire painted on it. He touched the portrait and the fire in it came alive. It did not burn his hand, it simply let it go through it. There was a huge hole behind the portrait. Mr Dane found a small lever behind it and pulled it down. At once, in the middle of the room started shining as if it was drizzling glitter. In front of them, there was a familiar cave-like structure with a beautiful colour show inside it. Wilson looked at it very closely.
‘So, this is a tremlin,’ he whispered to his mother.
She nodded. Quickly, they put all their belongings through the tremlin and after everything was transferred went in themselves. Wilson went first. He felt the sensation that felt as if your body was being stretched from every side. When he had reached the other side of the tremlin, he found himself in a completely new house. It had a huge living room with a very comfortable looking sofa near the corner. It was well furnished with an electric fire in the corner, near the sofa and some amazing armchairs. Willson’s parents entered after him. His mother smiled at him.
‘This was our house in Velentice,’ she said. ‘It feels good to be back here.’
Wilson saw that there were three people standing near them. He recognized two of them, which were Michael and Oliver. The other man was a short plump man with a small moustache and neat jet-black hair. He was looking directly at Wilson with suspicious grey eyes. He, like the other two men, was wearing a black business coat. Michael smiled at Wilson while the other two looked closely at him.
‘Welcome to Velentice,’ he said. ‘Me and my colleagues are here to talk to you all about our decision and some other important things. Let us introduce ourselves. My name is Michael, this is Oliver and over here is Fred.’
Will’s mother introduced Wilson, his father and herself.
‘So, your name is Wilson huh,’ Fred said, still looking at him as if he expected him to be a bomb.
‘Yes, that’s how you separated me right,’ Wilson said.
‘Oh no Wilson,’ said Michael. ‘We knew that you were the one because of your last name, Dane.’
Willson’s parents were showing tremendous respect towards Michael. They kept looking at Wilson, asking him to show some too.
‘Now let us tell you some very important things,’ said Michael pleasantly, smiling at Will. ‘Oliver, explain the first part please.’
‘Yes, sir,’ Oliver said, though in a rough voice. ‘You will be coming to the H.V.F on…’
‘What’s the H.V.F?’ Wilson asked.
‘Highest Velenton Force,’ Oliver replied with his jaws closed tightly.
‘On Saturday at 3pm. We will examine the boy for the signs. The boy’s parents will not be given permission to enter as……’
‘Not be given permission to enter,’ Mrs Dane shrieked. ‘What if you harm him? We will not even know on time!’
‘Don’t worry ma’am, we will not harm him,’ said Michael. ‘I can take care of that.’
Willson’s mother looked relieved at his words. She nodded and waited for an impatient looking Oliver to continue.
‘They will not be given permission as we will need the boy alone,’ he continued. ‘When you come to pick the boy….’
‘When do we have to come?’ Mr Dane interjected.
‘WOULD YOU STOP INTERRUPTING!’
‘Oliver,’ Michael warned.
‘Sorry, sir,’ Oliver said, still throwing bad-tempered glances at Wilson and his family. ‘When you come to pick the boy you will be given permission to enter by these cards.
He produced two bright cards and handed them ungracefully to Wilson’s parents.
‘You can pick the boy at half-past 3,’ Michael said looking at Mr Dane. ‘We expect both the parents.’
‘Yes sir,’ he said meekly.
‘Are you a part of this H.C.T, sir?’ Wilson asked Michael.
‘H.V.F,’ Michael corrected. No, my dear boy, I am not.
‘What do you work for’
‘I work to keep every Velenton safe and healthy, make laws and keep them obeyed, and make the important decisions,’ Michael said.
‘So, you are basically a ruler?’
‘Kind of, yes.’
‘Okay,’ Wilson said, now understanding the reason for his parents to show such respect to him. ‘I don’t know the laws of Velentice,’
‘Don’t worry, there aren’t too many,’ Michael said. ‘If you’re a good person, you’re okay. There are only basic laws. Like respecting the legendary fire.’
‘Soo, I am going to prison?’
‘No, you won’t.’
‘But when I was born…’
‘That’s different,’ Michael said. ‘ Just be careful of what you do now.’
‘So, what do I call you, your majesty or sir?’
‘Sir would be better.’
‘How did this fire come to existence as…’
‘Okay, boy, you asked too many questions,’ Oliver interrupted.
‘How many questions am I allowed to ask?’ Wilson said.
‘Infinite, Wilson, but not now,’ said Michael.
‘The boy’s education will be taken care of,’ said Fred. ‘It is not too late for him to start grade one.’
‘But I am ten years old,’ Will said.
‘Velentons start their grade one when they are ten years old,’ said Oliver, in a cold voice.
‘The teachers will teach him like a normal child,’ continued Fred. ‘You don’t need to worry about rough behaviour from any of the teachers.’
‘Yes, thank you Fred and Oliver, you may leave,’ said Michael pleasantly. ‘Mr and Mrs Dane, I need to talk to you a little privately.’
‘Does that mean I have to go too?’ asked Will.
‘No, Wilson, you can come,’ Michael said.
Wilson and his father sat on the sofa while Michael and Mrs Dane sat on separate armchairs.
Michael looked directly at Mrs Dane.
‘As you might remember, ma’am, the second your child, Wilson, was born, the fire beside him burned very fiercely and later turned purple. This has never, in the history of Velentice, been seen before,’ he said, still looking at Mrs Dane. ‘I would encourage you to take much care that no signs are revealed. If the slightest is shown, we will have to take action.’
‘Yes sir, I will take care of that,’ said his mother. ‘But I would be pleased if some of the scientists do research on this as Wilson has never shown any signs that means he is different. I have observed him my whole life.’
‘You may be right, my dear girl, he might have not shown it in the past but things can change very fast. And many scientists are researching what happened that morning and it has been proved that when the fire turned purple, it was getting poisonous. Now the fire, such a great blessing, would never try to kill the innocent. Wilson, being the only one with such a situation, has to be well observed. With the fire’s warning, then the only way for him to be alive is to change him. Remove the evil.’
‘But sir, what if the fire is wrong,’ Will’s mother protested. ‘What if Wilson’s a gift, not a devil.’
‘There are too many “what ifs” in that, Mrs Dane,’ Michael said. ‘We are doing whatever we can to find the truth. And the legendary fire would not try to kill him if it wasn’t sure of itself.’
‘Well maybe it knew Wilson was good and did it on purpose,’ said Mrs Dane angrily.
Michael stared at her for some time.
‘Are you saying the fire is bad, the real devil,’ he said quietly.
‘No no no sir, I didn’t mean to say that,’ Mrs Dane looked ghastly. ‘ I just said it in anger. I really didn’t….’
‘I understand, girl,’ Michael said, giving Wilson a weird look, almost fearful Will thought. But then a bright smile came on his face and Wilson thought he had imagined it. ‘Everyone gets angry, it’s all right. Well, I should leave now, meet you on Saturday, Goodbye.’ With that, he got up and left the house. Both of Will’s parents looked at him, worried.
‘Will, you need to be very careful,’ his father said. ‘Some of these people will take any opportunity to harm you.’
‘Any opportunity,’ Wisonl repeated. ‘If they were so anxious to do so, why won’t they just do it.’
‘They can’t do it without reason,’ his father explained ‘Murdering is very serious. If they do it, they might be in prison for a lifetime.’
‘What kind of prison is there in Velentice?’ Will asked.
‘Oh, it is a dark, tall building with prisons and guards,’ said Mrs Dane.
‘What kind of guards?’ inquired Will
‘People who have guarding as their amazing talent,’ his mother explained.
‘Amazing talent, ‘Will repeated. ‘A talent is a talent right.’
‘Oh, didn’t we tell you, Velentons are different from earthlings as they each have one separate talent in which they are very, very good. What earthlings call talent is pretty less.’ said his mother.
‘Really, what do you think is my talent,’ Will asked eagerly.
‘I don’t know Will, time will tell,’ Mrs Dane smiled. ‘And one more thing, we call this amazing talent “gift”.
‘Earthlings do so too,’ Will said.
‘Yes, they may, but in Velentice, nobody ever uses the word “talent”,’ his mother said patiently. ‘It is for earthlings.’
‘Go to sleep now, Will,’ his father said, looking at the time.
‘What, how is it night? We came in the morning!’ Wilson looked surprised.
‘We are on another planet right now, Will. Of course, the time will be different. Go to bed’
When Wilson opened his eyes the next morning, he saw that instead of a blue sky with a bright sun, there was a purple sky with billions of stars still visible. There was a white ball in the sky and it seemed to be the sun of Velentice. Will went downstairs for breakfast, only to find another strange man waiting for him. He was a plump man with dark straight hair. He was wearing spectacles and the black suit every man here seemed to wear.
‘Wilson Dane,’ he asked, eyeing Will.
‘I have come here to inform you that your new school, Velenuture, is going to start next week,’ he said.
‘Velenuture,’ Will repeated. ‘That’s basically Velentice and future combined.’
‘Precisely,’ said the man. ‘We need you to be ready to go there, with the uniform etc.’
‘Goodbye, good day,’ the man said, leaving the house.
‘Wilson,’ his mother called?
‘Do you want to see the fire today?’ she asked.
‘The fire, the one that turned purple for me?’ Will asked.
‘I would like to see it, when are we going,’ he asked.
After breakfast, Wilson went around the house. He had not explored the house last night as he had to go to sleep. He realized that it was a three-story house with a terrace and a garden (which was a mess). Every floor had at least a dozen doors leading to different rooms, bathrooms, kitchens etc. Wilson explored every room closely. By the time he was done examining every corner, it was a quarter past ten. When he realized the time, he quickly went to the living room and waited for his mother to arrive. After a few minutes, they left the house and headed towards a hospital. When they entered, they saw a blonde lady behind a large, blue desk. The lady looked up when they entered and smiled.
‘Hello, do you want to meet a patient?’ she asked cheerfully.
‘No, I was hoping to show my boy the fire.’ Wilson’s mother said.
‘I see, would you please give your names,’ said the lady.
‘Veela and Wilson Dane,’ Mrs Dane said.
Suddenly the lady’s smile vanished. She looked at Wilson.
‘Wilson Dane, did you say,’ she asked.
‘Yes,’ Will said. ‘ That’s my name.’
The lady nodded and wrote something in a big book. After writing their names on the paper, she looked up at them, her smile not as cheerful as before.
‘Please sign here ma’am,’ she said, handing the pen to Will’s mother.
Mrs Dane signed her name and put the pen on the desk.
‘Room number 13, 2nd floor,’ said the lady. ‘I’ll take you there.’
She signalled a man beside her and the man quickly took her place. The lady took Will and his mother to the second floor and stopped in front of the third door. She opened the door and asked them to come in. When Will entered the room, he saw a large, green, fiercely burning fire placed in the middle? When Will came close, the fire turned purple? It started burning more fiercely and many small sparks flew towards Will. Some even touched him, though surprisingly, they did not hurt. Mrs Dane’s face went pale when she saw the purple fire. The lady standing behind them stared in turn at the fire and Wilson. Suddenly, a little portion of the fire separated and fell close to Wilson. The lady shut the door and looked at Wilson’s mother, who looked sick.
Suddenly, they heard a knock on the door. The lady hurriedly opened it and the smiling face of Michael was visible. When he saw Wilson and the fire, his smile disappeared and he looked bewildered. Michael entered the room and stood beside Wilson. As soon as he came close to the fire, its furious sparks lessened and it became a little calmer.
‘Wilson, step away from the fire,’ Michael commanded.
When Will did so, the fire became a brilliant blue from down and went a faint purple from up? Will’s mother stared while Will looked at Michael.
‘Will, let’s go,’ said Mrs Dane afraid.
‘No, wait down,’ Michael said.
Will’s mother looked fearfully at Michael for a few seconds before obeying him. They left Michael in the room and headed for the basement. The lady came with them. When they reached the ground floor, Mrs Dane turned towards the lady.
‘How did Mr Wolfer know where we are?’ she asked rather sternly.
‘We had to inform him that you had entered,’ the lady said. ‘Those are his orders.’
‘But you could have told us,’ Will’s mother protested.
‘I’m sorry, ma’am, but I didn’t want to do it in case he didn’t like it,’ she said.
‘Why did he ask you to do that?’ asked Mrs Dane.
‘We don’t know,’ the lady said. ‘Maybe to see the reaction of the fire on meeting your son again.’
Will’s mother sat down on one of the visitors’ waiting chairs, as white as paper. Will sat down too and looked at his mother’s worried face, he was about to say something to her when the door swung open. Michael entered the room. He sat down beside Will and looked at him.
‘Interesting, the way the fire behaves with you,’ he said.
‘Please, I think there might be an explanation, sir,’ Will’s mother said. ‘Please don’t judge by…’
She stopped as Michel raised his hand.
‘It’s ok, my girl,’ he said. ‘The thing that grabs my attention is when the fire turned blue when Wilson stepped away. That’s interesting, very very interesting.’
My mother looked at Michael.
‘Maybe that means Will is special,’ she said. ‘Maybe that is why the fire did not kill him.’
‘No, you have got it wrong, girl,’ Michael said. ‘I will do my best to find out the truth.’
‘Yes, sir,’ said Mrs Dane. ‘Thank you, sir.’
‘Mrs Dane, I request you to sit outside for a few minutes,’ said Michael. ’I need to speak to Will, if you may let me call you that.’
‘Yes, sure,’ Will said.
Mrs Dane got up and left the room. Michael looked at Will. His hand dived into his pocket and removed a small locket. Will looked at it curiously. It was made of gold with small, beautiful diamonds on the side.
‘Yes, Velentice also has gold, diamonds and all that stuff with more,’ Michael said, following Will’s gaze.
‘Oh, does Velentice have everything Earth has?’ Will asked.
‘Yes, and much more,’ said Michael.
‘What did that fire mean, sir?’ asked Will. ‘It turned blue from down and faintly purple from up.’
‘Yes, I don’t know what to think yet,’ he replied. ‘Blue means talented but why purple from up,’
‘Does it mean I am a talented devil?’ asked Will. This was not a really clever question to ask. Will seemed to realize that after saying it.
‘No, Will,’ said Michael, smiling at Will’s alarmed face. ‘It did not mean to say that. I want to talk to you about how you felt when the sparks of the fire fell on you.’
‘When the sparks fell on me,’ Will repeated. ‘I felt nothing.’
‘Nothing,’ Michael repeated, looking perplexed. ‘But, but…’
‘What is it, sir?’ asked Will, surprised. ‘Is that bad?’
‘Yes! I mean no, no it isn’t,’ Michael said looking flustered.
‘You just said yes, then said no. What does that mean,’ Will asked, feeling half curious, half surprised now. ‘Do you need some water?’
‘No, I’m OK,’ said Michael, though he did not look ok. ‘You can go back to your mother now, Dane.’
Will got up and walked back to his mother.
Why has Michael suddenly started calling me Dane, he thought. He seems to be hiding something.
His mother looked up as he entered. She was reading some newspaper about the day before. Will saw the headlines: “Wilson Dane Has Returned To Velentice.”
‘So, I am the headline?’ said Will. ‘Don’t they have anyone else to trouble!’
‘Apparently not!’ his mother angrily. ‘It won’t be very easy to settle down now! The whole of Velentice now knows you have returned! And the things they have written about you below! They said…’
‘Quite a rude thing, I agree,’ said a voice from the side. Michael had come into the room and was smiling at Will and his mother.
‘Sir how do they know all this?’ Will asked.
‘You’ll learn it later, Will,’ Michael replied.
‘Sir, Do you have any thoughts on what happened with the fire today?’ asked Will’s mother hopefully.
‘No, Mrs Dane, I do not,’ Michael said.
‘How will you look into the matter?’ asked Will eagerly.
‘You’ll study that too,’ said Michael, sitting down beside them.
‘Sir, sir,’ a woman blasted inside the room. ‘There has been an incident at the main lab. They need you to help them.’
‘What,’ Michael said sharply. He got up and hastily left the room. Will looked at his mother.
‘Accident in the main lab,’ he repeated, perplexed. ‘What’s the main lab?’
‘A very, very important lab, Will,’ answered his mother. ‘This is bad, very bad.’
Featured Image Courtesy – Wallpaper Access