‘”Did she say anything before you left?”
“Not really. She just said: ‘Wow, the moon looks so pretty. You know the jungle well, don’t you? Let’s go into the jungle.’”
In a hole in the ground, there lived a hobbit. Everyone feared him. Legends had been told that if you went in that hole, you would never come out. But not all legends are true…
“Hello, Samantha, how are you doing on this fine day?” John asked.
“I am doing very well, thank you,” Samantha replied. “Great day to take a walk. Would you like to come along with me?”
“I would love to go anywhere with you,” John said. “IAN!”
“Do my job here at the front desk of the Italy Hotels here until I come back from taking a walk with my lovely lady, Samantha. You know her, don’t you?”
Ian nodded his head. Ian was a young man nobody cared about. Nobody believed in him. Samantha was the love of his life, and John knew that. John was always bragging that he got girls. Ian thought he was a failure.
So while John and Samantha were out on their little date, Ian had to work. He hated working, and John also knew that! John tortured Ian so much that sometimes he couldn’t even sleep.
John came in the door, with Samantha laughing, and John said, “We had such a great time. Tomorrow calls for good weather. Maybe we can go out again.”
“I would love to,” Samantha replied. Ian’s heart sank.
About a month later, in the middle of June, Samantha and John were out on a walk, when John came running through the door of the hotel.
“HELP!” John shouted.
“What happened?” Ian said, rolling his eyes. He’s probably playing his trick on me again, he thought.
“It’s Samantha! She’s gone!”
“Don’t play your little tricks on me again.”
“I’m serious. Please believe me; it’s for Samantha’s sake. Please help me find her,” John pleaded.
“I’m done with your little tricks. Just stop,” Ian said seriously.
A tear rolled down John’s cheek. “Please.”
John never cries. This must be serious. If he is joking I’m going to get him… Ian thought. “Fine,” Ian agreed. “Let’s go.” John led Ian to the last spot he saw her.
“She was right here!” John said. “I just left to get her a present! I came back, and she was gone!”
“I’ve got a plan. But you need to be serious,” Ian said.
Ian took John to the apartment that he had rented, then got a notepad and pen. He offered John a seat. He made two cups of coffee, put them on the table, then took a sip. He was serious.
“Some of these questions will sound silly, but they have purpose,” Ian said. “Now, what was Samantha wearing at the time?”
What does this have to do with anything? John thought. “Umm, she was wearing a pink sequin dress. And the same colored hat with feathers,” he answered.
“Thank you. Second question. Did she say anything before you left?”
“Not really. She just said: ‘Wow, the moon looks so pretty. You know the jungle well, don’t you? Let’s go into the jungle.’ Then I said: ‘Not yet. I need you to stay here. You’ll be happy.’ Then I left, then she left.”
Ian’s face lit up. “Thank you so much.”
The next day, around 8:00 a.m., Ian called John, who was sleeping, and woke him up.
“What do you want?” John said in a drowsy voice. “I’m sleeping.”
“It’s Ian. I’m picking you up in my car. Get ready.”
“Ready for what?” John asked.
Ian got to John’s house. Of course, he wasn’t on his porch, waiting for Ian. Ian knew he wouldn’t be there, so he found parking, walked up to his door, and rang his doorbell. Brriinng! That’s how John’s doorbell sounded.
I should really move out of here, John thought. John came out with dark circles under his eyes. Ian looked at John from head to toe.
“You are wearing different shoes on different feet,” Ian said to John. John blushed.
“Well, umm, you know I wake up at 10:30 a.m.,” John said, “If I wake up before that time, I get cranky.”
“You can go back to sleep. I’ll just save Samantha by myself…”
“NOOO!” John shouted. He knew Ian couldn’t do it by himself. But even if he did, he would be lonely and Samantha would fall for Ian. And that couldn’t happen for John. “I’m coming with you.” John led Ian back to the last place he saw Samantha. “It was here. What are you going to do now, smarty-pants?”
Ian hated being called smarty-pants. “Well, look here, I just found a pink sequin trail.” Ian said, trying to outsmart him.
“What does that mean? Just some lousy metaphor again?”
“No, she was wearing a pink sequin dress, right? It’s a trail of her dress!”
“Yeah,” John was embarrassed that he hadn’t seen that. They followed the trail of sequins until it stopped. “Why did it stop?” John exclaimed. “It doesn’t make sense!”
“I remember she had a coat. That probably stopped the trail!” Ian realized. They kept going straight.
We are never going to find her. I wish we could have a real detective find her,and not just some amauter, John thought.
“Look here!” Ian shouted. “I found something!”
“What is it?” he said, groaning. “I am so tired, and hungry, and thirsty, and—”
“Stop complaining and come over here! I found something and it’s important,” Ian said. “I found a notebook. Here’s what it says: ‘In the jungle, always go straight, then two lefts and a right.’ Why would she write that?” Ian asked himself.
“Well, she did tell me that her father knew the jungle and used to take her when she was little, and always told her that in the jungle you always ‘go straight, then two lefts and a right’ and you’ll find something interesting. And we were going to go to the jungle after I came back, but as we know now, she went to the jungle before me.”
“That’s it! All we have to do now is follow what the note says!” They went straight, took two lefts and a right, and then stopped.
They came to a hole.
The hobbit’s hole. The one that everyone feared. Samantha went into that hole, and she would never be coming out. Even John was scared, and he was never scared. But Ian was brave and confident. He was going to go in that hole.
“You’re going to go in?”John said, laughing.
That was the time where the only confidence Ian had died down. The angel on his shoulder told him to stand up for himself, and the devil on his other shoulder told him to give it up. But always follow the angel, and that’s what he did.
“I’ve got a plan. We’ll go back to the—” Ian said. But before he finished that sentence, rain started pouring down on the two men. That meant they couldn’t go back to town. So they had to survive the night in the jungle. Since Ian was the clever one, he had a plan.
Ian created a path from the hole and a cave he found. John and Ian ran down that path, hoping to find food in the cave.
They got to the cave, which was dry and toasty. Sadly for them, there was no food.
Ian wished he had food, umbrellas, and all he needed to survive in the jungle right in front of him.
“Perfect!” Ian shouted, “I can use an umbrella to get us food!”
“Ian, there aren’t any umbrella shops in the jungle. Don’t act stupid,” John told him.
“I know that! I can make an umbrella!” Ian said with a big smile on his face.
“How are you going to do that? Magic?”
“No! Nature! I can take sticks and a leaf. I will get food.”
“Oh, great, thanks. Now, go make the umbrella. I’ll wait here,” John said, yawning.
He is so lazy. Doesn’t he ever help out? Ian thought. Ian got sticks and a big leaf. He let the leaf dry but then realized something. How could he build an umbrella without glue?
He groaned. “Why didn’t I think about that?”
“What’s wrong, Buddy? Magic didn’t work?” John said, trying torture him.
“No, I don’t have glue. Never mind, there’s no food yet,” Ian replied.
“I wouldn’t do this in any other situation, but you’re getting me food, so I have something you can use. Sticky Glue, the superglue. I’d never do this any other time because I hate you, but you’re getting me food, and I’m really hungry, and —” John went on and on.
“Okay, thank you, but you are getting food soon, so STOP COMPLAINING!” Ian shouted. John rolled his eyes.
Ian put together the umbrella by getting one stick, then making a hole in the leaf, then putting glue around the top of the stick. He put the part of the stick with glue in the hole of the leaf. He broke small sticks and glued them to the bottom of the leaf so it had some structure. He went outside, and the umbrella worked!
“I am getting food,” he said. But just as he was about to step outside into the pouring rain of the Hawaiian rainforests, he realized something. Where was the food? He had to find it! He didn’t know where the food was! So there was a 54% chance he would get lost. But he had to risk it. He was hungry, and so was John. Especially John. He wouldn’t stop complaining! But something in Ian told him he had to save Samantha. And he wouldn’t stop.
Ian was running, searching for food. He found some berries but wanted to keep looking. Then, Ian heard something growl. He stood behind a bush. It was a bear! Ian opened his mouth to scream, but no sound came out. The bear growled at him again. This is when the sound came out. “AHHHHHH!” he screamed. “HELP!”
That’s when somebody came running to Ian.
“Here, Jenny, girl, come on; go back to your cave. This is a friend.”
And the bear listened to the man!
Ian didn’t know exactly who this man was, but for some reason he recognized that voice.
“Hey, Ian! What are you doing in the jungle?” the man said.
“Dan!” Ian finally recognized him. “What are you doing in the jungle?”
“I go every summer for a week. What are you doing here?” Dan said.
“It’s a long story,” Ian sighed.
Dan was Samantha’s crazy uncle. He always had liked Ian and wanted him to marry Samantha, but he knew about John and how Samantha liked him. He didn’t like John. He thought he was irresponsible and lazy. Dan trusted Ian, and Dan would have liked to have a nephew.
“Why are you out here in the rain?” Ian asked.
“I have to survive here, so I go out in the rain,” he said proudly.
“You can make an umbrella,” Ian told him. “It’s easy. I can make one for you if you’d like.”
“I would like that; thank you,” Dan said.
“I need help finding food. I got a few berries, but I need more. I also need to feed John. And if I don’t bring back food he’s going to bully me again,” Ian told him.
“Oh, John is with you. He is so mean to you. I don’t trust him,” Dan replied with a stern face. “I’ll help you find food. I don’t want John torturing you again. Come with me. We are going hunting.”
As Dan led Ian to a fish pond, they started talking.
“How did you get that bear to listen to you?” Ian asked.
“Oh, that was Jenny, my brown bear friend. She didn’t want to hurt you. She just thought you were an enemy.”
Wow. That’s so cool! I wish I had a friend who couldn’t bully me, Ian thought.
“Where is Samantha? She didn’t come to say goodbye to me yesterday when I came here.” Dan was starting to get worried.
“She went into the hobbit’s hole. I’m are going to get her out.”
“Oh, I know I want you to believe in yourself, but here I can’t tell you that now. She’s never coming out.” Tears rolled down Dan’s cheek. “The last time I saw her…”
“We need to keep going. I am starving, and so is John,” Ian said, trying to keep Dan’s mind off Samantha.
They got to the pond, and Dan went in. He felt for fish, trying to grab some. He grabbed four pieces of fish. Ian went back to cook the fish.
“FOOD!” John was so happy.
“We have to cook first,” Ian said. John rolled his eyes. They cooked the fish then ate it.
Yum, they thought.
It stopped raining. They needed to get back to town, so they got ready. Ian went to see Dan. He was going to save her!
It was about an hour walk from town. They were both really tired. John wanted to stop, but Ian wouldn’t stop. He had to complete his mission.
They got back, and Ian drove John back home. Then, went back home. They both collapsed on their beds.
The next day, Ian woke up early, around the same time as the day before. He was about to call John, but thought: Why? Why should I bring him along? He is my enemy, and he is no help. I’ll do this on my own.
He left to go to the hardware store to buy a rope ladder to go into the cave and to come out. He got to the hole. He was really tired, but he wouldn’t give up. He put the ladder down and climbed in. He was scared, but that wouldn’t stop him.
“Samantha!” he called out.
“Ian? Is that you?”
It was her!
“Yes. I’ve come to get you,” Ian was really excited inside.
“Oh, thank you! I want you to meet someone,” she said, smiling. She led him deeper in the hole. “This is Hayley the hobbit,” she said. “She’s really nice.”
“The hobbit is nice? That’s great!” Ian smiled. “Let’s go.”
They got out, and Ian said one more thing before they left. “Will you marry me?”
“Yes!” she answered. “Thank you for saving me.” They went to tell everyone and then John, who was very jealous. And then they told Dan, who was holding tobacco-filled jars. He got out of the forest earlier because of Samantha.
“I brought Samantha back. And we are getting married,” Ian said, with a big smile on his face.
“Thank goodness!” said Dan, laughing, and handed him a tobacco-filled jar.