Pranks


Sandra never meant for it to get this far. A few pranks. A couple laughs. That's all she'd wanted. It was just to ease her boredom. After they'd closed the movie theater down last year, there was literally nothing to do in this town.

So Sandra had turned to pranking. Nothing mean or too crazy. Just enough to keep her interested and occupied. She replaced all of Eddie Vance's pens with pink, fuzzy ones. She let out all the gerbils in the science room (one was still missing). And at the homecoming dance, she'd stuffed jalapeno seeds in all the finger food. She did feel kind of bad though that the school put the blame on the bakery that made the food. But it was all harmless. Stuff that made her classmates laugh or the teachers roll their eyes.

Until now.

This had been a mistake. Sandra sat behind the big box of Kleenex with her legs pulled up to her chest. In front of her, the brooms and mops leaned against the cinderblock wall. The odor of bleach clung to the air. Sandra wanted to get off the ground. It was cold and she had goosebumps climbing up her legs.

Sandra took a breath. Maybe it was gone now. Maybe she was back.

All she'd wanted to do was throw glitter down the grill in Madison Groff's locker. Well, Madison and like 10 other people's lockers. But when Madison came up out of nowhere, when she was supposed to be in class, Sandra had just ducked in the nearest supply closet. It didn't occur to her that's where Madison was heading too.

She stood slowly, crouching, though there was no real reason to. She put her hand on the handle of the supply closet and slowly turned it. She opened the door a hair.

Shoot. Still there. Sandra looked down on the wet, lush forest beneath her. Thick ropes and wooden bridges connected platforms and wooden houses built into the trees. Bushels of mangos and papayas hung suspended in the air above the homes. Soft lights lit up the whole place. And people were flying from platform to platform on brilliantly colored, giant butterfly wings.

"Ok," Sandra said to herself, shutting the door. "Ok, ok. Well, this obviously has to be a dream. Or hallucination? Yeah, that's possible."

Sandra pressed her lips together. Well, she wasn't going to solve anything sitting in a supply closet. Ok.

Sandra opened the door again and came face to face with Madison.

"Sandra!" she cried. "Oh my God. I am so sorry. If I'd known you were in here, I obviously wouldn't have opened the door."

Sandra nodded. "Oh, for sure. Obviously." She glanced behind Madison. Two purple and blue wings had sprouted from her back. "Madison, what's going on?"

"Well, this is where I'm from." Madison gestured to the forest behind her.

"I thought you said you were from Philly."

"Not exactly. And this door is what brings me back and forth."

Sandra glanced at the row of extra toilet plungers. "In supply closet?"

Madison rolled her eyes. "The elders don't exactly understand the layout of the human world." Meredith glanced behind her. "I could just send you home, but since you're here, do you want to take a look around?"

Sandra peered up at the sunlight streaming through the trees and down at the lush greenery blowing in the wind. She put her extra tube of glitter back in her pocket. "Absolutely."

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