By Keaton W. Smith, age 11
“The brother gave a wave through the rear window, but the other two didn’t even look back. Miss Honey was still hugging the tiny girl in her arms and neither of them said a word as they stood there watching the big black car tearing round the corner at the end of the road and disappearing forever into the distance.”
Matilda, R. Dahl
I awoke with a jolt. The visions from a book I had read when I was smaller had returned to disturb my sleep. My face was uncomfortably warm so I got up out of bed, walked to the bathroom and rubbed cold water on my cheeks and forehead. When I was satisfied that my face had cooled down I went back to bed.
That morning, as I was preparing for a school field trip, my older brother came into my room. He was not one of those brothers who annoys his siblings nor one who lets his siblings annoy him. He was a kind and gentle person.
“How did you sleep last night?” he asked.
“Not the best,” I said, “I had a dream that I haven’t had in years. When I woke up, my face was really hot.”
“How is it now? Your face,” he asked. I shrugged and said, “I washed it with cold water but my eyes are still warm.”
He started to make my bed. “Don’t think too much of it. I’m sure it was a one-time sort of thing. And besides, you have a field trip today and you don’t want to be distracted. You’re distracted enough as it is.”
He’s probably right, I thought. I came to help him fold and tuck in my thick sheets and then we went downstairs for some breakfast. We found cereal and bowls on the table and some milk in the fridge. A few minutes later, I heard the sound of the bus horn outside. I jumped up from the table, grabbed my backpack and made a run for the front door.
“See you later,” I called to my brother.
The bus was packed. My entire eighth grade history class, of over forty people, was stuffed into the thirty-seat bus. I pushed through a group of people standing in the middle of the aisle and got to the back seats where my friend Alexis Oakley was sitting.
After taking a seat next to her I said, “Any news on where we’re going?”
“No news,” she replied. The bus drove us to the school where our teacher, Miss Henderson, boarded. Miss Henderson was a small, frail old woman who would be retiring later that month.
“Good morning, class,” she said.
“Good morning, Miss Henderson,” everyone chimed. As the bus started moving again, Miss Henderson continued. “Today we are going on a field trip in the city’s downtown area.”
Eventually the bus pulled into a parking space at the Royal Ontario Museum. The students and I got off the bus and followed Miss Henderson through the museum’s front door and into the grand hall. When we got to the dinosaur room, Miss Henderson said, “I think we should take a little break here, don’t you agree?” As she said this, I felt my face getting warm again. I watched Alexis and her friends take pictures of each other. One of her friends beckoned her underneath an enormous fossilized skeleton held up by a rope tied to a hook imbedded in the ceiling. My face kept getting warmer and warmer and my eyes started to burn. Just then, there was a cracking sound. I looked up to see the blades of a ceiling fan come clean off. Two of the three blades flew and shattered against the wall while the other flew so hard and so fast that it severed the rope holding the skeleton above Alexis. I shouted as the skeleton fell. Then I fainted just as I heard the crunch of fossilized bones.
I awoke lying on my back, and my face was freezing. I saw only the colour blue. I reached up and touched my chin to find that a sack of cold, blue gel covered my face. I removed the ice pack. Miss Henderson was nearby, watching me.
“Oh, thank goodness you’re awake. You gave us all quite a scare,” she said when she noticed I was awake. I was lying in a white bed in the museum sick room.
“What happened?” I asked.
“See for your self,” she said, holding up a cell phone. I took the phone, tapped the play button, and watched the incredible video. The skeleton came to a halt just above Alexis’s head. It reversed its course and crashed on the floor a few meters away.
“How is this possible?” I asked, holding up the phone.
“It seems that you are one of the very few people in the world who can use a power known as telekinesis, which is the ability to control things with your mind.” As I stood there dumbfounded, she continued, “However, this ability is extremely rare and can only be used to a very limited extent.”
“But–” I tried. “But–ceiling fans don’t just explode! How did–”
“Until now I have only known of one living phenomenon like you. Perhaps you know a certain Gregory Davidson from your class.” I recognized the name. She continued. “I’m sure this is all a lot to take in, but…”
I interrupted, “The fossil. I know how to fix it.” Miss Henderson looked at me with a confused expression on her face. “The skeleton was broken beyond repair and not even someone like you could fix it.”
“I might not be able to fix it on my own,” I said, “But two of us might. Could you please arrange a meeting for me with Gregory Davidson?”
Miss Henderson turned away and tapped a number into her phone. After a brief conversation, she walked me back to the great hall. When we got there, Gregory Davidson was waiting.
“Mr. Davidson,” Miss Henderson addressed the boy, “this is the one I told you about on the phone. The one just like you.” Turning to me she said, “Attempting such a feat could be potentially disastrous. What you did a few hours ago overloaded your brain’s capacity. That’s why you fainted.” I shrugged, determined to do something productive with my new power. Gregory and I walked to the dinosaur room. I was surprised to see that the pile of stones on the ground had not been made off-limits to the public.
“Do you know how to control your mind’s power?” Gregory asked me. I stared at the pile of rubble, willing it to move. “Yes,” I said when one of the bones shifted it position. “Then let’s begin,” said Gregory.
I began by mending the ropes that had held the stones together while my partner properly arranged the enormous fossil so it would lie on its hard chest, legs spread out on the floor. Then came the difficult part. Before we continued, I looked around to see the amassing crowd of spectators. Among them was Alexis. Then, Gregory and I began the hard and painful task, pushing the giant’s body with our minds up to the ceiling inch by inch to where it finally hooked into place. The prehistoric lizard was complete and the crowd gave a huge cheer as the two of us gasped for air. Miss Henderson joined us in the center of the crowd.
“Good job,” she said to us. To add to the excitement, I used the last of my mental energy to cause the huge head of what I thought was a Tyrannosaurus Rex to give a deafening roar.
I went home that evening and told my brother everything that had happened.
“Hogwash,” he said, when I was finished telling the story. “Total hogwash. Falling dinosaurs and roaring skulls.”
“See for yourself,” I said.
“What do you mean?” he asked.
I held up my phone with the entire day’s video footage on it.**