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Fresh Prints: Student work

Jasmine Pesold, Treasure Mountain International School freshman

Quietly, I sneaked through the dense, pitch-black woods. No moon sliced though the gloom, and this was exactly how I wanted it.

A rustle close by! I snapped my head to the left and merely found: a deer’s tail, glowing white as it bounded away from me. "No wonder you’re not tame anymore, little buddy."

I could already hear the machines roaring. I followed the noise at a painfully slow pace. It had taken me several months to build toward what would happen tonight, and I wouldn’t spoil it by being caught.

As I came closer, the sound of saws, trees falling, loggers shouting, and the vibrating ground joined together to become a monotonous, overloud pulsation. Like the cacophony in front of me, the anger inside steadily grew to a roar. Here we all were, mere miles from a national forest, and loggers were illegally cutting trees!

I had contacted the administration of the state. They said there was nothing they could do. I contacted the central government. They told me, in pseudo-polite tones, in cold tones, that they didn’t care, and also where I could put my concern. For fifteen years, I had seen our government grow steadily more unsympathetic about our land. Now, hacking away my personal guardianship? This blow to my pride was too much. Thus, tonight’s plan.

My arrival at the chopping site drew me from my musings. Workers were strolling from one bit of planet-killing machinery to another in the sickly yellow floodlights, dumping oil (carelessly dripping on the ground) into the beasts’ joints. The tattered stumps strewn about had no effect on the loggers or the monsters that had huge serrated mouths, capable of greedily devouring three trees at a time.

I glanced at my watch, silently urging it to hurry. The watch oozed pale blue light along with the time, which was eleven fifty-eight. Stretching, I was glad of being so short. No risk of being felled by a larger creature here. Unless I was caught. But, all bets would be off then, so it didn’t matter, heart already pounding or not…

BEEEEP! There went my screaming watch. It seemed so loud! Was I captured? I snuck my eyes over the bush I was hidden behind. In my panic, I had forgotten what was to happen at midnight. Just as planned, the machines had halted abruptly . Now, with mouths of both machine and worker hanging open stupidly, I stabbed a button on the side of my watch. Small flames engulfed one of the machines, a broken one that had been set out for the night. The workers gathered about like moths to a flame, trying to starve the hungry flames.

Time to go. As I left, the workers were too preoccupied with putting out the fire to notice a hint of Earth-friendly polyurethane dome entrapping them about the flaming vehicle. In about ten minutes, the fire would go out, leaving them trapped inside a dome that was completely impenetrable. The dome would later sink back into the ground, perhaps with the loggers still inside.

I marked this forest as my livelihood. Did you think someone so passionate would leave it unprotected?

Jasmine Pesold is a Freshman at Treasure Mountain International School. This piece was written for Iris Durfee’s creative writing class.


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