Tuesday, August 9, 2016

The Library Book ... by Ruth

Tessa and Ruby were close friends for a long time. In fact, they're still friends. Their friendship began when the girls were in their third year at Scarlett Primary School and now Tessa is the school's librarian and one of two principals. The other principal is Ruby, who is also a wonderful teacher.

One day, Tessa got a student teacher Cassy, but Cassy wasn't into returning books, scanning books and talking about books. In fact, she was really shy and more interested in drawing than reading. She was so good at drawing that she was legendary at Scarlett Primary School. She was so good that when the library was open at lunchtime, everyone would come and draw on their notebooks while they watched Cassy doodling. She was so good, that the sketch pads that Cassy and the children used were official library books.

One sunny school day, while Cassy was showing the kids how to sketch a scarecrow, Ruby glanced over at one of the girl’s drawings of a scarecrow wearing a top hat. This girl’s name was Roxie, and her scarecrow was surrounded by a garden filled with glorious vegetables and flowers. The lovable scarecrow looked more real than a drawing, more real than a painting, more real than a photo, more real than a video... REAL!

The scarecrow was alive! It was the exact same one as the girl Roxie drew! Everyone stared and gasped. Instead of being a kind scarecrow, slapping high fives and telling jokes, he shoved display racks down and yelled swear words. In short, he was a monster.

Roxie hurriedly flipped through her notebook to get as far as she could from the page with the offensive scarecrow on it. She turned to a new page just then and a tiny prep kid's scribble leaped off the page and roared like a dinosaur while rudely chewing up books. And on another page, when Cassy's drawing of an adorable panda left the page and got patted; the kid who was patting got scratched and a fountain of blood poured out of his arm.

To everyone's surprise, Cassy cautioned: “This notebook must be haunted! The haunting happens annually. The drawings have the same qualities as the illustrators' imaginations except that they are evil. To stop this madness you have to get in that book and burn it. To get into the book you just have to put your hands and a pencil on the page you want to go in and imagine being in the book.” Roxie, Tessa, Ruby and Cassy each put a pencil on a page in one of the notebooks, closed their eyes and imagined being in the book. Suddenly they were in a beautiful garden with a T-shaped post in the middle. Then Ruby realised that they were in the notebook.

Cassy went to the end of the garden and pointed to the last flower that no one could see behind. “Come over here and push,” she said. The others puzzled over that command but soon they came over to the end of the garden (where they could just see the flower and swirling blackness) and pushed.

Suddenly, they were in a new double page. Half of it formerly had the scribble dinosaur but it was now blank. And the other half had a rushing waterfall, which had been occupied by Cassy’s panda. Roxy took off her shoes and socks then rushed to the waterfall and started to wade in it. “No, don’t do that, unless you want to leave your shoes and socks behind, of course,” warned Cassy. Then Tessa yelled, “Follow me!” and leapt across some stepping stones that no one else had noticed before.

On the next page, there was a little house, which was the illustrator’s dream home. Instead of a roof, the house had a painted rainbow as well as some grass painted at the bottom of it. They walked inside the house and looked at the bathroom, the lounge room and the bedrooms. Just as the girls were leaving, Cassy said, “The inside of this house is just pure imagination.” And then she asked, “Are you ready to leave this world?” The others said, “Yes.” The student teacher fished a matchbox out of her pocket and grabbed a matchstick. She lit the match and then pressed it on the page.

Suddenly, they were back in the library. The scarecrow, the scribble dinosaur and the panda had vanished. And the notebook had turned into a blank sheet of paper. Tessa scrunched up the page and put it in the bin. Everything was back to normal. Ruby thought Cassy would make a great art teacher, but Tessa thought she would make a great librarian since she was not so shy and she had shown that she could be bold and brave at the right time

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