Highly Commended Story - The Forbidden Treasure Of The North
“The Forbidden Treasure Of The North” by Shriya Salil Shetty, Podar International School, Cbse, India, is the Highly Commended story in the senior category of the second biannual Short Story Contest 2020.
Shriya is an explorer as she is a very curious, imaginative child who loves her world of fantasies and mystical creatures. She has always loved painting, writing stories for her little sister. A very conscientious child and silent observer who always points out the right thing to do. She persistently pushes beyond her own boundaries, learning new skills. Her hobbies include watching old Hindi movies, karate, cycling, badminton and nature trails.
The Forbidden Treasure Of The North
“It was a time when the world had started coming into its own. With ships sailing on the high seas, planes streaking the skies and the transportation services excelled, the world had grown much smaller. All the secrets in the world had been unravelled, except for one place steeped in mystery called THE DEVIL’S TRIANGLE. One could hear only whispers about this place & how a few had disappeared mysteriously. It was claimed that the area was devil’s hunting ground. But in the same location, existed the island holding the key to THE FORBIDDEN TREASURE OF THE NORTH. It was said that a being of some form had left a hidden mystical gift for the beings of earth in exchange for their good deeds. It was said whoever held this treasure will possess extraordinary powers, which would be more powerful than Shaktimaan’s and even Superman’s power. So the person will be most powerful being on earth and could bring back the dead, to life. But it isn’t so easy! My child, to get there” said the grandmother.
Mary asked, “Then how do one get there?” .Grandmother answered, “O my dear, you need to be patient and alert. You shall meet a path finder on the way; he may come in any form. You should trust him and always listen to his advice”. Curiously Mary asked, “Does this treasure really exist?” Grandmother answered, “It’s for you to discover”.
Mary lived with her grandmother in a small village. Having heard about this story from a very young age really fascinated the curious girl. One fine day, she packed her bag and left her house even before sunrise before her grandmother could wake up; on a small boat she set out on a journey to the mysterious island. Soon a heavy fog appeared making visibility difficult. In a few moments her boat hit the banks of the island. After a few hours of roaming around, a wisp appeared whispering faintly in her ear, “Follow me”. Soon Mary reached a city made up of crystals. It was looking gorgeous, equipped with advanced technology but there were no people around. Mary followed the wisp to a beautiful temple with marvellous architecture. In front of her was an enormous structure of a goddess decorated with precious jewels and gems. The wisp entered the body of the goddess and the eyes of the structure started twinkling. It started speaking, “I am the spirit of this forest, and you seek the forbidden treasure. To seek this treasure you have to bring me the crystal stone situated in the head of Shisha Asura who dwells in the Mountains of Kanti.”
Mary went to that mountain where she felt a lot of silence, no animal dared to go there. There were decaying remains of many creatures which had fallen off the cliff. There was a blood trail leading to a cave. Mary was full of fear as she entered the cave. She saw many beautiful and twinkling objects looking like bright colourful bioluminescent stars floating in the dark atmosphere. Suddenly a reflection fell on her and she fell down unconscious. She didn’t understand what had begotten into her. She thought that the monster, the big hideous monster has caught her and is going to cook her for lunch. She came into consciousness and saw a reflection of a monstrous creature which was floating in the atmosphere. She said to herself, “I wish this monster wasn’t so big and scary. It should have been beautiful, like a fairy.” Suddenly the monster turned into a fairy. The fairy used her wand and threw Mary into a river. She however, didn’t feel the chill of the water and speed of the river. She opened her eyes and saw that she was floating in the water. She said to herself, “I wish I could fly and fight the being. I wish I had wings to fly. I wish I were invisible.” Suddenly she transformed....She could fly and become invisible. Then she understood; whatever she imagined came true. So the Shisha Asura could only be defeated by the power of imagination. But she kept thinking of dreadful things and so she couldn’t control her mind. Mary lost in utter confusion, could not think of anything.....then she tried to calm down. In her mind she only could think of her grandmother, she told her, “Be patient and alert.” Mary told to herself, “You are creator of this land, you are the creator of this demon, and you can do anything.” She said, “I wish that this demon transforms to its original self is caged in a book.” And so, the demon transformed in a beautiful maiden with the shining crystal in her forehead and was locked inside the book. Mary turned over the pages of the book and saw her. Mary took an eraser and rubbed the drawing of the beautiful maiden except the crystal jewel. She made the crystal jewel back to its original form and held in her hand. She felt something leaving her body; she didn’t understand what was happening with her. The next moment she found herself lying on the ground and felt the breeze blushing along the trees. Later she made her way back to the temple. Then the wisp told Mary to fit the crystal jewel in the head of the Goddess’s Statue. She went there and held the crystal jewel close to the head of the statue of the goddess; the jewel got pulled into its head. Soon the whole temple was filled by brightness of the jewel. Some of the energy in that jewel flowed into Mary. Mary got the powers of the crystal jewel. Now Mary could fly, turn invisible and moreover she got the superpower of imagination and whatever she wish for came true!!!
She closed her eyes and in the next instant she was with her Grandmother.