January Story Contest

Adventures in Arabia
By: Onaneagle
Age: 7

Scoop, a 15 year old girl, sleepily opened her eyes and wiped away the sleep fuzzies. Scoop’s real name was Sarah Coop, but everyone called her Scoop. She was an orphan, and lived with her aunt Dotty.
She dressed, ate breakfast, and started for her barn.
As she was stroking her mare, Orphan, she thought, ‘What a perfect day for a ride!” It was a cloudy, rainy day, and Orphan splashed through puddles.
Suddenly, as they galloped, Orphan slipped and they both fell.  Everything went black.

Meanwhile, another 15 year old girl was cantering her horse through grassy fields. This girl had lost her mother in a car accident. The girl’s name was Winnie Willis.
“Come on, Nickers!” Winnie urged her white horse.
Then as Nickers loped lazily through the flowers, a car appeared from nowhere, playing loud rap music. It swerved toward them and Nickers reared.
Winnie fell and blacked out with her horse.


Scoop spit sand out of her mouth as she woke up for the second time that day. She blinked and looked around.
“Orphan!” Scoop called. The only sound she heard was the wind whistling past her ears.
“Where am I?”  Scoop thought. “When am I?”
She squinted her eyes and heard a faint whinny. “Orphan!” Scoop cried.
She ran toward the repeating neighs, but discovered not Orphan, but a white horse, stuck under sand. Even though it wasn’t Orphan, Scoop helped the horse out. “You’re pretty. Who do you belong to girl?”
Then she heard the sound of crunching sand and felt slobbery lips nibbling her back. “Ow!  Orphan! Stop!” But Scoop turned to see a paint horse ridden by a man who looked like a cowboy. “Sorry,” the stranger said in a western drawl.
“W-Who are you?” Scoop asked.
The man was about to answer when suddenly an Arabic man cantered by. The stranger galloped to catch up and soon disappeared behind a sand hill.
The white horse nickered and Scoop sighed. “I might as well ride if I’ve got a horse,” she thought.
As they trudged through sandy desert, Scoop pondered. “If there are Arabs here…and an seems like a race,” she thought.
That night she wondered, “Where am I? Where is Orphan? Where…..”


Winnie opened her eyes and shouted in pain, “OW! I got sand in my eyes!!!”  Then she groaned, “Ohhhhh. My back hurts.”
Winnie managed to get up and wondered aloud, “Where am I? Where’s Nickers?”
Her stomach growled and Winnie remembered the food in her pockets. She ate a light breakfast of a biscuit and set off. After two or three hours, Winnie bumped into something and fell down. When she looked up, she gasped. An enormous white horse was about to step on her…
“Hey! That’s Nickers!” Winnie scrambled to her feet and hugged Nickers.
“This is your horse?” the rider asked.
Winnie gasped. “Who are you?”
“Scoop. Sarah Coop, Scoop. I’m 15. Your name?”
 “Uh….Winnie. Winnie Willis. I’m 15 too! This is Nickers, my horse.”
Scoop sighed as she watched the two reuniting. “I’m missing my horse Orphan.”
Winnie stopped and asked, “Why is she called Orphan?” Scoop told how she was an orphan.   By then it was night, and they slept soundly.


Scoop walked down the stairs. There she saw her parents holding Orphan. They were trying to give Orphan to her, but nothing happened. Scoop walked toward them, and they vanished. She opened the door and looked out. She saw Winnie and Nickers. Before her very eyes, Orphan appeared. Scoop found herself riding Orphan. She glanced around and found BC, her little brother, and Dotty, looking at her with sad eyes. Scoop wondered why they looked like that. Suddenly a lady appeared, all dressed in black, riding a pitch black horse, at full gallop, right toward Scoop and her mother, who was standing in the middle of them. Scoop tried to steer Orphan, but nothing happened. She screamed at her mom, but her mother was unhearing. Scoop looked at the lady’s eyes. They were neon blue, with circling, swirling colors. She stared, hypnotized, at them, and heard her mother calling. “Scoop! Scoop!”  
“Scoop! Wake up!”
Scoop, rolled over, sweating. “Huh? W-what? My mom!” she murmured. Scoop looked around, but there was no lady in black, no nothing.
“You had a nightmare. You were sweating and rolling all night. Oh, here’s a granola bar for breakfast,” Winnie said.
Scoop ate the bar and stood up. “Orphan! You found her!”
“No, she found us. Something was nibbling at my ear, and I said, ‘Nickers stop.’ But then she started eating my hair, so I got up and saw Orphan, not Nickers,” Winnie explained.
Scoop brushed sand off herself. “Hey what’s that?” Winnie said, pointing to a black spot. Scoop walked over and examined it.
“I-it’s a locust.”
Winnie walked over the sand hill and screamed, “A whole army of locusts! We have to cover us and the horses!”
Scoop’s mind raced furiously. “My raincoat! We can fit in it, and put the saddle blankets on the horses!” Quickly they squeezed into the raincoat, and looking like a one headed monster, they put the saddle blankets on the horses.
Over a thousand locusts ate everything in sight.



Winnie removed the raincoat and stared at the locusts.
“Orphan! What are you doing?” Scoop shouted.
“Eating locusts, that’s what.” Winnie laughed.
Scoop bent down and crunched her teeth into one. Winnie pretended to gag.
“No, really, they’re good! Try it,” Scoop insisted. Soon everyone was munching away on locusts.
“Let’s put some in our bag!” Winnie suggested. So they filled their bag and pockets with locusts. Scoop and Winnie mounted their horses and galloped away.

After over four hours of cantering, they saw some riders in the distance.
“Rats! I wish I’d brought my binoculars with us!” grumped Scoop.
“Oh well!” sighed Winnie. “Let’s try to catch up with them.”
So the exhausted horses galloped over to the riders.
“Hello! Where are we?!” Scoop and Winnie shouted together.
Then they heard the rider speaking Arabic.
“Hmm. Arabic. That means we’re in Arabia, or close,” Scoop thought. “Hey Winnie, he can’t understand us.”
“Oh well. Look! There’s someone who’s not talking Arabic. He’s speaking English!” Winnie said, surprised.
They led the horses over to him and asked, “Uh…..hello sir? Um, where exactly, uh….are we?”
The man said, “Howdy. I’m Frank Hopkins. You’re in a race in Arabia, about 100 miles from the finish line.”
Scoop’s mind snapped. “Oh! Y-you’re Frank Hopkins! Your horse is Hidalgo!”
Hopkins looked surprised. “How’d ya know that?”
“We’re from the future. We can’t tell him he wins,” Winnie thought.
As Scoop opened her mouth to speak, Winnie burst in, “Um, we’ve seen you race before.”
Scoop stared at her.
Winnie ducked her head and thought, “I feel terrible for lying, but how do you say, ‘I’m from the future’?”


“Can we ride with you?” Winnie asked shyly the next morning. “We’ve got horses.”
Scoop glared at her. “Uh…no. We won’t bother you.”
Hopkins laughed. “No, it’s fine. I get lonely out in the desert like this.” 
The trio mounted and trotted slowly through the sandy land.
Scoop reflected on the past afternoon. They had caught up with Frank Hopkins and talked. He invited them to sleep there. They had eaten locusts; apparently Hopkins had the same idea as them, because he had locusts in his bag too. They slept and started riding.
“How did I get here?” She wondered aloud.
“What?” Asked Frank Hopkins, turning.
“Oh! Uh…nothing.” Scoop chuckled nervously.
Scoop had been riding Orphan on a rainy day. Orphan slipped and everything went black. “How, I wonder, did Winnie Willis get here?”  Scoop considered the idea. “Maybe she slipped too.”
Later she went alone with Winnie. “Winnie, how did you get here?”
“I was riding Nickers, when suddenly a car playing blasting rap music almost hit us. Nickers reared, and we both blacked out. I woke up here. How did you get here?” Winnie replied.
Scoop told her, and Winnie sighed, “I’d like to go home.”
“Home?!” Scoop almost shouted.  “Winnie! Frank Hopkins wins! We’re encountering a famous man who will go down through history!”
“Like Columbus!” Winnie said.
Scoop frowned, “Not funny.”
They walked on when it hit Winnie. “Scoop….we could make him lose the race. And change history!”
Scoop gasped. “We gotta, we gotta start riding!” Hopkins, Scoop, and Winnie mounted and trotted until sunset.


The next morning, the trio woke and mounted again. But as they trudged along, a few miles to an old abandoned city, the wind started to pick up. Suddenly a billowing cloud of sand towered above them!
“Sandstorm!” screamed Scoop.
She, Winnie and Hopkins clucked and urged the horses into a gallop. The horses, with the whites of their eyes showing, galloped furiously. Hidalgo, in the lead, followed closely by Orphan and Nickers, veered left into a street corner.
They huddled together for hours while the wind shrieked outside. 
Scoop thought about her dream. “I miss my parents. That’s why I had the dream.”
In late afternoon they started out again. Nickers gingerly touched the ground, as if it were going to bite her.
“It’s okay, no more sandstorms!” Winnie stroked Nickers.

They walked, and walked, and walked, walked, and walked some more.
Finally Hopkins squinted. “Hey, I think that’s the finish line! I can see the city!”
Scoop and Winnie stared at the end of the race. But as the girls were watching, an Arabic man riding a horse cantered by.
Hopkins shouted, “Giddup!”
Hidalgo galloped away and Orphan and Nickers followed. The end came nearer and nearer, and Hopkins was neck to neck with the Arabic man, with the girl’s horses following very close behind. Then Hidalgo raced as fast as he could and passed the Arab, winning in a tie with Nickers. Orphan came in 5 seconds after them.
Everyone cheered (not the Arabic man, he was scowling) but Orphan just cantered off again. Hidalgo and Nickers followed. The horses splashed around in the sea, and Hopkins gave the girls a turn riding Hidalgo.
Suddenly a great wind blew past, and Scoop and Winnie shut their eyes.
When they opened them, they were back home.
Scoop and Winnie sat side by side on Orphan and Nickers, both holding a few strands of Hidalgo’s mane.


Winnie giggled---Scoop was wearing Frank Hopkins’ hat.  Scoop led Winnie to her home, and Dotty was pleased to meet Winnie. Now, the girls sometimes visit each other, and the hat is held in a cabinet in Scoop’s room.