Jamie was visiting Earth for the first time ever. Of course she was very lucky to be doing so at this age. Only a selected few would visit Earth from Saturn in their entire lives. But Jamie was different. Her wealthy father had all of the resources, and she had the will power to climb the highest mountain on Saturn when she was nine. So when she left for Earth with her family, the entire Saturn community celebrated her achievements. Another reason for her journey to Earth was to save her planet's rings. They were not getting the fresh air needed so she hoped to find something that might help Saturn.
When Jamie arrived on Earth, she smelt a really different, clear air. There was green everywhere and there was a white wet substance on the ground called snow. Jamie had never felt so excited in her life. A week had passed and Jamie was eager to experience all the things that the solar-system famous Christmas entailed. She had heard so much about it and wanted to use it to help the people of Saturn.
Finally, it was the glorious day if December 24th. Eleven-year-old Jamie was very excited about seeing Santa Claus for the very first time. Her thirteen-year-old brother, Charlie, mocked her by saying that Santa was just fragment of her imagination, and the people on Earth simply joked around. But she refused to believe her petulant brother. So on this day she forced her Uncle Steve to take her to see this jolly old man, and as the snowflakes gracefully glided into the New York City pavement, Jamie skipped into the local toy store. In her haste, Jamie cut all of the kids in line and gleefully sat down on Santa's lap.
"Santa, Santa! I want something to save my planet for Christmas!" Jamie told Santa.
Santa stared questioningly for a moment.
"Santa I'm from Saturn's rings and our home is filled with dirty gas. It is becoming extremely unhealthy and people are dying! Can you give me something to help clean it?"
"Alrighty! Merry Christmas to you and I hope we'll meet again!" Santa replied.
Jamie was a bit disappointed. As she started getting off Santa's lap she asked, "But what about my present Santa?"
Santa suddenly grabbed Jamie by the arm and she turned around very surprised.
"I am not the real Santa," he whispered in her ear.
Then Santa swiftly disappeared into a mysterious fog. Shocked and scared, Jamie stood there in disbelief. All that was left was Santa's hat with a candy-cane in it. Attached to the candy was a note saying "I kidnapped Santa."
Jamie stood in disbelief. She could not believe that there were fake Santas roaming the streets, nor could she believe that the real Santa Clause had been kidnapped. She knew that the note was meant for her. She knew that it was her responsibility to save Santa in order to save Christmas and her own planet. She ran out of the store to inform her brother and uncle at the hotel they were staying at. But instead of finding her relatives, she found a strange man standing in her hotel room.
"W-who are you?"
"I'm King James. Listen Jamie, I don't have much time to talk. You have to go through the wardrobe. Do you hear me?" But Jamie had no time to ask more questions because the strange man was fading away into the very wardrobe he had spoken of.
Feeling compelled to save her brother and Santa, Jaime decided not to ignore his piece of information. It was time for her to take action.
The wardrobe seemed fairly normal, well, if having no back wall was considered normal. It was oak, slightly used but in serviceable condition. Jamie idly wondered whether or not she could sell it on Ebay. Surely someone would be interested in portals to worlds unknown.
"I wouldn't suggest that," said someone.
Jamie flinched and turned around. There was another person in the room.
"You might end up damaging the space-time continuum. By the way, would you like me to accompany you? I'm Lois."
It was getting chilly. Two mysterious people had appeared, and Jamie decided not to question their motives. In a few minutes, the room was empty. It started to snow. Jamie was walking, with Lois ahead. The dim light from the entrance was fading away.
"It's dark in here."
"Your eyes will adjust."
As they walked further on, Jamie began to recognize indistinct figures passing by on each side of them. As the darkness got sharper, she realized they were doors.
Then, there was a click, and then the sound of a door slamming shut. Jamie spun around, but she could not tell whether or not they had simply traveled too far for the light to catch them. Lois stopped and Jamie bumped into her.
"The door is closed"
Jamie looked to the right, and sure enough, the door was closed as where all the other doors in the hallway.
"Where are we?"
"We're in the limbo; we're out of loop. We're in the place where all times and places converge into one."
"We're in no place of importance, but we need this door to open."
Jamie walked closer to the door, and put her hand on the doorknob. It hurt. It was cold. She snapped her hand back.
Lois explains, "Oh just turn the knob!"
She put both hands on the knob and tried pulling it. It wouldn't budge. Lois turned to Jamie and said, "It will only open for you."
"That is inconsequential!"
"I'm going back. This is crazy!"
"There is no back to go back to!"
Jamie ignored the comment and started walking. After a little while, she saw a figure in the distance. It was Lois.
"Take the knob."
Finally, Jamie grabbed the knob and quickly twisted it before the cold could saturate her soul. It twisted with a click. The door opened.
Now Jaime stood in the middle of a great field covered in snow. She walked for what seemed like forever, and came across a bridge stretching over a murky river. As she was about to take a step across, she heard a voice say, "You are not going to pass that way!" A very cute girl was looking at her accusingly.
"Who are you?" Jamie said.
"I'm the Keeper of the Bridge. If you want to go across, you have to prove that you are worthy."
Jamie blinked. "What?"
The little girl sat down primly. "Make me bows out of irises to match my dress."
Jamie looked around, and all she saw was snow.
"But there are no flowers around," she complained.
little girl's frown deepened. "Then too bad, I won't let you
Jamie's mouth flew open, "What else can I do?" she demanded.
The girl crossed her arms, "Make me a garland of dandelions."
Jamie looked around. There were no dandelions.
"Oh no, what shall I do?"
The girl grinned deviously, "Then make me a dress of snowdrops."
Jamie looked around. There were snowdrops in the distance. Yes!
"Okay," she told the girl.
She went over to the snowdrops. As she bent over to pluck one from the ground, a voice suddenly spoke next to her.
"Don't touch that!" He was young, and had a lazy expression upon his face. "I'm David, the Keeper of the Garden. It belongs to me."
"I can help you through. If you want my snowdrops, you must follow me. I'll take you through the door another way."
She watched him, interested. He was smiling lazily, but his eyes were keen and piercing. A light zephyr blew pass the area, billowing the Keeper's long black cloak and his shoulder length hair, making him appear threatening. Jamie stepped back.
"How?" she asked.
"A little of this, a little of that…" He plucked flowers from the field and looked at her. "A little of your soul…"
"No!" she shrieked the spell of interest over. She swooped down and ripped out some snowdrops, then turned on her heel and ran, kicking snow and petals into the air as she went. Behind her, the Keeper of the Garden glared murderously and disappeared in a cloud of petals.
Jamie arrived back at the door and tossed the flowers into the little girl's lap. The Keeper blinked, picked up a blossom, studied it, and then shrugged.
"I suppose this will do," she sniffed haughtily, and absently waved her hand. The door creaked in response, opening slowly to reveal a bright white light.
"Well, what are you waiting for?" the girl said.
Jamie took a deep breath and stepped through.
Heat washed over her; she blinked spots from her vision and peered at the plump woman whose image appeared in her vision. Her red velvet dress and fluffy white collar complemented the crackling fire in the hearth nicely.
"Hello, dear," Mrs. Claus said kindly but wearily. "Welcome to my home. Do make yourself comfortable. We have to chat, I'm afraid."
Jaime sat down in a chair as the woman had suggested. Mrs. Claus, in a stressed voice, related to Jaime all she knew.
"I don't know how it all happened, but it did. All I can tell you is who took Charlie and my husband."
Jaime began to get anxious.
"You do? Oh, please tell me where he is! Please!"
"Jaime, calm down. We will find Charlie and Mr. Claus. Actually, only you can. You are the only one strong enough. I can't. All my energy has been quenched gathering information about the criminals. Please, Jaime. Promise me you will be strong and determined in saving your brother and my husband. Their lives lie in your hands. Promise me, dear."
With that, Jaime was given weapons and the information on the criminal. As she bid adieu to her Mrs. Claus and stepped out the door, she felt like a whole new person. Her spirit was lifted as she gained the confidence and courage she felt she never had. For once in her life, she was focused with a goal. She was no longer the meek, lackadaisical girl that daydreamed, but was now the girl with strength and bravery.
Jaime used the information Mrs. Claus had supplied her. Using the GPS system Mrs. Claus provided her, she found the location of the kidnappers. She threw a boulder with all her might into a window. The sound of shattering glass was loud enough to get anyone's attention. Soon enough, the criminals were peering cautiously through the other windows. One criminal aimed at Jaime with a gun. He shot at Jaime, but she quickly moved out of the way and the bullet only grazed her leg. She fell down to her side instantly and shrieked in pain. The pain was so intense that she passed out, and the criminals rushed out to bring Jaime's limp body inside. They locked her up with Charlie and Santa Claus. Charlie stood to one side and watched as Santa tended to her wound. Her brother cried angry tears, but he was soon stopped by Jaime's hand.
"Enough," she said as she pointed to her healed wound. "Thanks you two for caring. Let's get out of here."
Jaime took out a secret weapon that Mrs. Claus had given to her with one rule – it was only to be used in emergencies. She pushed the button on the strange device and it transformed into a club. She then hacked away at the door. The kidnappers arrived after hearing the noise. And Jaime used her weapon and hit them hard until they fell unconscious. The three quickly escaped the criminals' hideout and headed home. Jaime was no longer the same girl; she was now a hero.
When they got back to Santa's house, he rewarded them with what they had been originally looking for. It was the Tree of Life. Jaime climbed up the Tree to get a better look at it.
"Jamie! Get off the Tree. We have to take off to Saturn and restore the youthful spirit," Charlie urged.
"One minute. I'm still inhaling the nice Earth scent. Can we take everything here back with us, too? No wait… can we just stay?"
Suddenly, a figured appeared in front of them, revealing himself to be the Keeper of the Gardens. A bunch of flower petals and leaves whirled around the group and a low bellow was heard.
"You got us into trouble again Jamie!" Charlie shouted.
"NO! I DON'T WANNA GO BACK TO SATURN!" Jamie shouted.
Without warning, an angry tree sprouted next to the young Keeper. It shot a ball of fire and disintegrated, creating a fire dangerously close to Jamie and the Tree of Life.
"Never mind," Jamie said. "This is insane. I want to go home."
"Yeah, let's go," said Charlie.
Unexpectedly, a fiery Phoenix rose from the ashes.
"You made the right choice," the Phoenix said. "I shall reward you by taking you back home to Saturn."
And so the Phoenix carried everyone back to Saturn. As she was taking them home, she said, "Your task now is to convince the citizens of Saturn that this oxygen-producing organism will benefit the production of your beautiful, yet endangered rings."
"Yes, I understand. Thank you. May the gas be with you," Jaime replied
The Saturnites gazed at them as the phoenix landed on a large rock.
"We have come back to save our rings. The oxygen released from these trees will filter our rings, and our rings will survive another trillion years!"
And everybody cheered. The heroes were back.
Author's Note: This story was a collaborative assignment done in my English class, making each 5 groups of students in the class write up a part of the story based on the Hero's Motif, and then putting it together with the use of transitions. That was the reasons for some slightly random parts. I also added a few extra transitions on my own to make it flow better.