Word Count: 1,000
I remember my tenth birthday as if it was yesterday. I was in my home village Zimbabwe which is in Africa. My parents had told me they needed to hide me. They had made me a hut in a forest and got me everything I would need to survive. My parents did not know how long they would be gone. It was in the late evening when they had left me in the forest by myself.
I missed my parents a lot and wondered everyday whether they were coming back for me or not. I remember them saying, “Keziah, we love you and be safe” as they both kissed my forehead and left. For an entire month I had stayed in the hut, then I decided to just look outside. I saw a message in a bottle. I thought it had possibly been a message from my parents and I was right. I had opened the bottle and looked at the paper. It had looked a little old. Then I had realized it was from the day my parents had left me.
I remember looking at the letter they left me. I could not believe it. I remember it saying that they had to hide me due to evil tribes coming to kill all the children. I remember on the back of the letter there was a map that said to follow the red paint on the trees. At that time I did not know how long it would take me to get to the destination so I had put food and water from the hut in a bag for me to carry. I had walked until I was in need of water or food. I had found a tree marked with red paint and by that tree I had seen a blooming flower. The flower still had the scent to it. As I moved the flower I saw a note that said, “Keziah, go find the tree from which this flower came from” with an arrow pointing forward.
I had been in the forest for a total of three months before I ever found the tree. There beneath the tree, lay another bottle with a message. I opened it and heard something not far from me. I had hoped it wasn’t one of the evil tribes. I thought quickly and climbed up the tree. I waited then read the message that said, “You are closer to finding us go ‘til you see another red mark on a tree.” I did what the letter said. I wondered if they were at the destination or if I was traveling all this way for them to not be there.
I waited for the person walking to come out in the open. I then saw walk out clothed in black with weapons on him and a mask to hide his identity. I waited for him to pass where I was hiding. I then slowly climbed the tree. I started...