The Spring Break Trip

It was a cold and dark night in October, and there was a huge storm, snowing and raining at the same time. There were six of us: Me, Phoebe, Fillippa, Keanu, Atlas and Mykel. I, Gemma have blonde hair and blue eyes, Phoebe was a brunette with brown eyes, Fillippa had bright red hair with green eyes, Kenau and Atlas both had brown hair and blue eyes and Mykel had blond hair and brown eyes. This was an impromptu offroad and camping trip we decided to have as a spring break getaway. We went on a road trip from Utah to Tomales Bay campground in California. The first night, we were sitting on tree logs around the fire, somehow it had not gone out. It was at this time we saw it, a black figure about twenty yards to our North but we all decided to stay out and agreed that it was a deer, we were in the woods so it made sense. Though we decided it was a deer, I was still uneasy so we decided to call it a night and go to bed. The next morning we noticed some of our belongings missing from outside of the tent. These belongings included a gas canister used for cooking, a red sleeping bag that had been left out and one of the logs we used as a chair. After figuring they must have been blown away in the wind, we continued with our plans for the day to go on a hike and gather some more firewood and a new log for a chair. As we were on our hike we saw some enormous footracks which we were unsure what breed they belonged to, maybe we encountered a new animal. We had all forgotten about the figure the night before and did not make the connection. Once we got back to the camp we changed to go to the pond that formed after the storm and cool down, but before we knew it it was night time and we had to head back. We ended up getting lost and finding a hut that looked freshly made, we did not know who or what the occupant was so we decided to divert and travel the other way. We finally made it to camp at what we thought was around midnight, and noticed another gas canister was missing and those same huge footprints, that looked half human half monkey, that we saw on our hike earlier were around the camp. Now we decided we would have alternating “guards” to make sure no more belongings go missing or no unwanted visitors show up. At this point, we were concerned with what might be lurking in the thick forests of the Tomales Bay Campground, but we were determined to make it a great spring break. There were only five days of our trip left and we did not want to waste them, we made a plan for the rest of our time, we would off road for two hours maximum, then take a break and explore, and go back to offroading, we continued this for the next two days, forgetting about the figure. The second to last day of our trip we travelled to a new trailhead we hadn’t heard of before, but when we noticed the large half human tracks again. We shrugged it off seeing as we had seen them before and nothing bad had come to us, this was a mistake. This day I decided to not go on the hike with my fellow classmates as I was feeling ill. There was little service, but every chance there was I got pictures of the beautiful and tall dark green trees, which looked to be like the lupien which were populous in this area, any interesting flowers which my friends found and lastly this intriguing cave with a perfectly rounded entrance a large yellow tree like a umbrella with a pile of rocks that reminded me of a doormat. They then decided to explore. I was nervous for them because we had not researched on how to safely go through caves. It had begun to get dark and the nocturnal animals were starting to stir, yet I had not heard from anyone. I decided to not risk my safety and go out at night due to the possibility that they had decided to camp out rather than risk getting lost at night. The next morning, the last day before we planned to leave, my friends had still not made it back to the vehicles. This is when I decided to call search and rescue. I showed the image of the cave, but there seemed to be no caves on the campsite whatsoever based on maps. This is when the rescue team left and told me there was nothing they could do. I decided to search on my own and found an area which looked like where the cave was with a large yellow tree beside it and a pile of rocks near where the entrance used to be. The only difference between the picture and this location was a huge boulder the height of an eighteen wheeler and the width of a trash dumpster covered the entrance. By the time I had found this the sun was going down and I had a flight to catch. They were never found and I never saw them again, but I am determined to figure out what happened to them. 

Five years later

I am now graduating as a scientist in the field of genetics, but have not given up efforts to find the answer to what happened to Gemma, Filippa, Keanu, Atlas and Mykel. I have recently discovered that there was a chimpanzee that scientists were studying the effects of gene editing on near Tomales Bay, but their lab was shut down for ethical violations. There are no records of what happened with the specimen, but the last recorded sighting was six years ago as a tall dark approximately 500 pound half human half monkey. I decided to talk with the scientist and gather information about this beast. After the discovery of details, I knew this was the monster that took my friends. The most valuable factor which I found out from these scientists was they installed the gene which makes the breed deadly allergic to peanuts. This was a sign of hope for myself. Finding a group of people to travel with me to California and hunt a creature who may no longer be alive was a challenge, but I collected a group of graduates who wanted adventure. I created a specialized tranquilizer in the case that I come in contact with this crossbreed. I led the group of 11 others to the site where I last had contact with my fellow classmates and very little had changed, the big yellow tree still worked as an umbrella shading sun and the pebble mat had not changed, but the boulder was slightly off center from the cave opening. With the help of a car and 11 people pushing, we got the boulder to move enough for us to enter. The moment we entered there was an eerie silence and feeling, a feeling of 100 eyes staring down from the roof, at that exact moment a large flashlight was turned on which illuminated the bats lining the walls of the cave, as well as the bones on the floor, with my years of experience I knew these were animal bones, but I also knew bats could not eat any animal of this size on their own. We continued down the cave and found what looked to be a room with tree branches and a sleeping bag which I immediately recognized as the red one which went missing on our first night in these woods but now it was frayed and discolored . It was at this moment that we heard a loud screeching which sounded like a train trying to stop quickly on wet tracks. The moment I saw the figure it was clearly the large black figure from five years prior. Immediately the tranquilizer was shot and the monster was down. After further investigation, we found the belongings of each one of my friends and they were declared officially dead due to time missing. The large black furry animal is now being researched and the scientist were charged with murder due to creating a lethal weapon. Tomorrow I am having a memorial for Phoebe, Fillippa, Kenau, Atlas and Mykel. The main lessons that I have learned from the loss of my five closest friends is to never stay after sighting a large black figure, and that I will never let my children and their friends go on Spring break to forests unless I am accompanying them. 

Gene Editing Gone Wrong 

Five years ago.

Yesterday the government introduced a new gene editing program to make lives longer. One weird incentive that was offered was life on a luscious island with thousands of tall palm trees and beautiful teal waters with the most precious wildlife known to man in the middle of the Pacific ocean that had “just been discovered.” I, Atlas, decided to not join the movement because there were many questions. I had just turned 20 and was starting my second year as a science major at the historical Stanford University in Stanford California. Luckily, I was intrigued by genetic engineering and did some research of my own from the studies to lengthen life span, and none of this was by the book. About two months after this was introduced, it was announced there was no more space on the island and the science would be required for anyone over the age of 18. Yet, there were no strict laws enforcing this, so I did not get it. 

Four years ago.

It is now January 2120 and military forces are now in use to force genetic modification. I decided I need to hide or be caught. My friend Leah, a girl with long brown hair and blue eyes, came with me. We had found an old bunker from the war which was not in use anymore, it was dark, cold and smelled like mildew, but it was better than the latter. We knew we could not stay for long, but needed to continuously move. One night when we were traveling from the old dark bunker we caught a glimpse of what the editing was doing to people. There were lines of hundreds both long and wide of people with blank faces and synchronized movements. This was the moment we knew, there was more to the story than we knew. On this cold and dark night, we thought we had got caught by guards, but it turned out to be others hiding from the government as well. They were two men, one whose name was Mykel who was tall and had brown hair and blue eyes and one who was Jethro with Blond hair and brown eyes. Jethro and Mykel had graduated years prior and had a bunker hidden in the woods which they had been working on for years. This bunker was fully equipped with enough MRE’s to last all four of us at least four years, it was ventilated, had LED lights, separate rooms and a whole science lab. Leah and I were skeptical at first, but we figured it was better than getting caught by the government. 

Three years ago. 

It had now been a year, the bunker did not seem as nice anymore, and going outside was a blessing. We had been researching for a year straight to see what the gene editing concoction had in it so we could create an antidote and bring back a sense of normalcy to the world. We had found out that scientists created a mRNA sequence which was injected into the body then introduced into the nucleus to change the DNA of the recipient. The main problem was, the only way to make an antidote was to get a sample of the edited DNA. We spent weeks collaborating on a way to collect this sample, but no logical way came up.

Two years ago.

It had now been two years of living in the bunker with Leah, Mykel and Jethro and tensions started to rise due to lack of fresh air and food. One day I thought of a plan which seemed almost impossible but also seemed sure to work. The plan was to infiltrate one of the groups of near-robots and take the place of one while the other three grabbed the affected person and got a sample. We decided that this was the most logical idea and created a plan. We decided that Jethro would be the one to take the place in the lines while Leah, Mykel and I got the sample. Two weeks passed and it was finally time to go through with our plan. Everything was going smoothly until Jethro sneezed which had not happened with any of the injected persons. This caused us to have to grab the samples faster than we wished and get out of there. Somehow we all made it back to the underground bunker and were not caught, now it was time to research even more.

A year and a half ago.

Nearly six months had gone by since we got the sample and we had invented a pre-trial version of the antidote. Knowing there were only four of us, we could not risk anything going wrong with this drug. We gathered some bunnies from the woods around us and injected some with the genetically edited DNA from the government, and let them sit for a week to allow circulation.  After the week, the bunnies started exhibiting the same behaviors as the humans, glossy eyes on blank faces and this confirmed that it had properly been injected into them. We made sure to leave some bunnies natural, to imitate ourselves. After the waiting period, we injected both groups with the antidote we had created. It was a success! Neither group passed away, and after three weeks all the animals were back to normal. The last study to perform was to confirm that the antidote protected from a relapse of edited DNA. We re-injected the mRMA sequence into the bunnies for a last time and allowed two months of observation before we concluded that the antidote was efficient in neutralizing and preventing the mutation. 

One year ago.

It was now time for us four college students to try and end this ongoing nightmare. We first created an inter-nasal form of the antidote and a mister to distribute said antidote. The time had come for Mykel, Jethro, Leah and I to give ourselves the antidote, there were no major side effects which we encountered. We agreed on a 3 month waiting period before leaving the bunker and risking our lives to save the world as we had once known it. From our calculations it was now the summer of 2123. We had one last shindig before our outing in case we did not make it back. We splurged on the food we had been rationing and left just enough for six months in the case we did make it back, we blasted music because we all loved it and were not able to before due to concerns of being found, but we no longer cared. Then it was go time, we had been stocking up on internasal antidote for six months now and had enough for the population of the world. We went to the camp where people were being held and sprayed the mist in copious amounts. Almost immediately there were guards who spotted us, but it did not matter because we flooded the area with the mist and were out as fast as we could. Six weeks later we went back out to find the lines of people we once saw were no longer and it had been a success in this small area. We informed the people of what had happened. It was hard at first but when we provided evidence everyone believed us. Now it was time to arm everyone who was back to normal and correct the rest of the world’s genetics. The plan was to gather persons who could fly and fill planes with the gaseous antidote, then have them fly across the seas and cover every camp with the gas, and have every able-bodied person move on foot go to surrounding camps with hand held dispensers and provide the gasses in that form.


It has now been five years since we first went into hiding in an old military bunker with no light, warmth and little food. It is now the year 2124 and my 25th birthday. Somehow us four college students: myself, Leah, Mykel and Jethro, saved the world with science. We are being recognised by the people of the world as heroes.

“Don’t go in the basement”

A long time ago in a land far away there was a family who lived in a castle. There was a mom, Jenna, a dad, Mark, and a daughter, Sky. This family had moved into the four level stone  castle five years ago when Sky was five. The one rule that Jenna and Mark had for Sky was ‘do not go in the basement.’ On Sky’s tenth birthday she got curious about what was in the basement and when her parents left, she went downstairs. The walk down was eerie itself, the stairs were stone and there was only a single dim light in the middle of the stairs. Once Sky got all the way down, she looked for a light switch but could not find one, at this exact moment the door behind her slammed, the light bulb flickered and candles lit seemingly out of nowhere. Immediately she started crying and did not realize there was a doll standing in front of her. After Sky had calmed down, she realized the doll was cloth and there was no way it could stand on its own. She tried to run up the stairs behind her but they had disappeared. This is the moment she knew she would not be seeing her family again. When Sky turned back around the doll was at her feet holding a candle. Sky was wearing a thin nightgown which caught fire immediately. Sky did not survive, and her parents never got an answer to where their daughter had ended up.

The Monster’s Spirit

While on a trip to the local museum, a 34 year old tall blond guy named Jeremy touched the egyptian tomb of a monsters’ spirit. There had been a slight opening in the tomb, and the spirit entered Jeremy. The effect was slow but steady. After going home that night, Jeremy started growing long dark hair on his body and craving meat. For a reason he could not explain, he traveled to the woods near his house which were heavily populated with large brush, trees, deer, and elk. Jeremy looked in the pond and did not recognize himself, he was now a large ugly wolf looking monster, this immediately increased his rage and caused him to go to the streets and attack anything in his way, Jeremy now could flip cars over and punch holes in the sides of buildings. No one knew what to do. One archeologist realized what had happened and had been preparing for this day with an immunization to release the spirit from the affected person. This man, a short and stout 50 year old man came and restored the peace in the streets of Boulder, but not the damages. Once Jermey was back to himself, he was told what happened and given the bill, this bill may have been the scariest item in Jeremys’ life.

Image Citations:

“6 Roof Top Tents Ideal For Your Jeep.” Off Road Tents



Yong, Ed. “What Are You Looking at? People Follow Each Other’s Gazes, but without a Tipping 

Point.” Discover Magazine, Discover Magazine, 21 May 2019, 




Depositphotos, Inc. “Old Stone Castle.” Depositphotos



Geggel, Laura. “Linen-Wrapped Mummy Found Inside 3,500-Year-Old Tomb in Luxor.” 

LiveScience, Purch, 11 Dec. 2017, www.livescience.com/61163-two-ancient-egyptian-tombs-discovered.html.