Emily woke up with a bang. She had studied all night and was still tired.“Uhh, what was that?” Emily asked, getting up. She has never heard a sound like that before, or has she? Her memories are always getting jumbled up. The dark room had one desk two beds and a wardrobe. The walls were a light shade of cream.
“Must be the wind hitting a tree. Don’t worry it’s nothing,” Jen said, she had shiny brown hair and wore gym clothes and a pair of white sneakers. She seemed to be getting an early workout, “Thanks again for letting me room with y—” BANG! “Okay, I think we should go outside and see what it is,” Jen said.
“One second I need to get ready,” Emily said fixing her auburn locks into a braid. She washed her face and put on some black leggings and a white t-shirt. She grabbed her book and bag and ran to the door.
When Emily and Jen stepped outside they saw a machine that explained all the noise. The machine was mostly grey and a tint of green was on it. It was a Mcladin. Mcladins insert televisions. Emily looked up, and saw a sight that made her gasp. A banner hung by two poles said, “People of Wittyfield, visit the town house at 3:00 p.m. for an announcement bigger than you.”
The Emily and Jen gasped. “Jen, I think we should go pick up Sophie a little early,” Emily said, “We need to talk about this.” Emily pointed to the banner. There hasn’t been an announcement in years.
The two girls ran to Sophie’s house so fast that when they rang the doorbell they were out of breath. A sweet, pale girl appeared at the door. She had soft, blonde hair and a twinkle in her green eyes, that made you wonder about the existence of the smallest bit of magic. She wore a neat, pink dress which had a nice, even gold lining around the bottom and white flats that matched.
“Hello,” the girl said sweetly, “Why are you up at this hour? It is 6:30 a.m., so if you don’t mind, may you please leave?” Sophie saw the look of worry on her friends’ faces and opened the door for them to come in.
Sophie was one of the richer folk in the town. Emily and Jen were lucky to have a friend like her. Sophie is extremely smart. She also has a little sister, Lilly, who is extremely smart for her age. She knows how to do diameter and pie at the age of twelve.
Sophie’s house has a pink and white theme with most of the rooms prohibited to guests. “So, what’s up?” Sophie said, settling onto the couch. “Well, there is going to be an announcement and you know who the announcer is… Wait, why are you dressed already?” Jen said, “I thought you were just asleep.” “Count Woke is back?” Sophie said, dismissing the question.
“Yes and I have a feeling this announcement is going to be big. We need a plan,” Emily stated, taking out her blue notebook, “How about running away? I have heard that there are bigger and better towns out there.” Emily started taking notes.
“Sure, but what about our families? How about instead, we go through the announcement and start a rebellion? I have read about a character in a book standing up for her beliefs and starting a rebellion. In the end, the character created peace for her land,” Jen said daydreaming about an adventure awaiting them.
“Maybe, but let’s just go through the announcement and see what happens. Ugh, I am hungry let’s get a snack,” Sophie said, getting up, “I’ll get us a snack. How about apple slices?” “Yes, thank-you,” Emily and Jen said together.Sophie came back with three bowls of apple slices. Emily and Jen grabbed their bowl and started munching on the apples and creating small chat. Watching the clock tic and toc, waiting for the clock to hit 3:00 p.m.
Finally, the horror hour came. It was 3:00 and the town was packed inside the town house, waiting for the ferocious count. The count entered in his usual manner. Two men carried the count onto the stage, each wearing white robes with colorful feathers. The stage was a dark grey in color and was very small.
“The people of Wittyfield, today we are going to change humanity. The population is growing too quickly. We need to find a way to balance the population,” he said with a sneer, “Well, since I am so amazing and smart, I found a way for us to make this happen. I, Count Woke, created The Testimonies!” Everyone gasped and started whispering among themselves. Except for Emily, Sophie, and Jen, who just stared grimly at Count Woke.
“The Testimonies are different tests to see if you are worthy of existence! The one with the lowest grades in the end will be eliminated or killed. Yes, I said grade. Grades will be given at the end of each task. Twelve to eighteen year olds will participate in three rounds, each consisting of twenty-eight days. There will be four people in each round.
“Everyday there will be a riddle telling you what the day’s tasks are. They can be physical or mental tests. The only way to find out is by solving the riddle,” Count Woke stared at Emily and her friends when he said this. He always seemed to be reading their minds.
“The first four will be chosen by chance, unless. Unless someone wants to volunteer,” this time he stared straight at the three girls. “Me, I volunteer to save humanity!” Emily announced. “Me too!” Jen said knowing what Emily was planning. “Me three!” Sophie said also knowing what Emily was planning. They knew each other too well.
Then something unexpected happened. “I volunteer as well!” a boy around the same age as Emily and her friends said. He had neat, brown hair and green eyes. He wore a grey t-shirt and jeans. “Ok then, we don’t have to do anything.The four of you come over here,” Count Woke said with a straight face. The four volunteers walked up on to the stage, each wearing a grim facial expression, wondering why they even volunteered.
“Congratulations and follow me to the train,” Count Woke said, leading the four of them to the train. The train was a normal train, but a little fancier than the ones they see every day. Instead of a ceiling light there was a chandelier and instead of ripped seats the seats were made out of strong leather which made the seats look new. It was truly amazing to those who didn’t have the money to get these fancy trains, but for those like Sophie who had the money, the train looked normal.
Each volunteer got their own room. Emily’s room had a bookshelf painted white with more books than Emily has ever seen. Jen’s room had a small soccer net. Sophie on the other hand had a desk with two shelves. Each book on the shelf got stranger and stranger as you read the book titles.In the corner of the room there was a strange pot with glass bottles in the strangest of shapes. The boy that also volunteered had a small kitchen, so the boy can bake. Each room also had a bed and closet.
“What is your name?” Emily asked the boy after dinner. “Eric. I’m the boy at the bakery. Remember?” he said. “Oh ya, didn’t your father design Sophie’s birthday cake?” Emily said, grinning. “Yes, he did,” Eric said with a kind smile. It was time for them to go to sleep, so they said goodbye and headed to their separate bedrooms. Emily was feeling strange after that conversation.
The next morning, the four volunteers and Count Woke met up to discuss the Testimonies. “We will be dropping you off in an arena built for this event. Each of you will have your own shack with supplies. Your riddle will be next to your uniform.”
Each of you get your own color to represent you. Emily your color is blue. Jen your color is green. Eric your color is orange and Sophie your color is pink. There are no rules so you can create allies and do the challenges together. Am I clear?” Count Woke said. “Yes, sir,” they all said, following his every word.“Okay, now go eat breakfast,” Count Woke said normally, like there was no big test that used your every effort to get a good grade.
Emily and her friends met up at 2:00 pm. In four hours the girls would be put to the test and fight a battle bigger than can be thought out. “So, his name is Eric and his father decorated Sophie’s cake. Am I right?” Jen said after Emily explained what happened last night. “Yes and I might have a small crush on him. Don’t tell him though, okay?” Emily said, blushing. “Got it!” the girls laughed.
An hour later the volunteers were all in the training compartment of the train. They had example riddles to solve and had to complete the task given to them. They were all ready to start training. The girls looked at their riddles and thought of the answer faster than you can say Mississippi. Eric also figured out the riddle, but wasn’t as fast. Emily noticed and told him he could be allies with her and her friends.
The volunteers split up and raced to complete their tasks. Emily was done first, hers being to braid her hair blindfolded. Then Sophie, her task being to make a rainbow with whatever she had on hand. Then Eric, who had to eat like a monkey. Another minute or two and Jen came racing in the training room. Her task was to run half a mile.
Count Woke walked into the room to congratulate them, but the room was empty. Only the wind being heard through a wide opened window. Count Woke sneered. The train stopped and the main entrance opened. Two guards walked in, holding the volunteers by their collars. “You thought I was vulnerable. You thought I was weak. Well, you just earned yourself a ticket to harder riddles and tasks,” Count Woke said growling, “Off to your rooms, NOW!”