“Interesting,” Tom said, “I hope she hasn’t overheard,” he continued.
“I don’t think so,” Jane said. Indeed, Sandi was focusing on her genie-magic enhanced bowling...
“And the point is?” Tom asked, referring to Jane’s earlier comment that Sandi’s bowling was ‘suspiciously good.’
“There have been rumours of magic occurring at school today,” Jane said.
“Really? Is that all?” Tom asked.
“No, Daria and I overheard Quinn and her trio of admirers talking about a classroom filled with water. Daria made a comment to Quinn about it, and Quinn retorted that it was true, and the three admirers backed her up on it.
“A classroom filled with water?” Tom asked dubiously.
“One of the admirers, I think it was the one whose name Quinn constantly forgets, said that it just appeared,” Jane said.
“Really?” Tom asked, even more dubiously.
“And then there is the extra floor on one of the school buildings. Ms Li would never be able to hide that, no matter how paranoid she is!” Jane said.
“An extra floor on a school building? I suppose that could be proof of magic. So you are saying that Sandi is involved and is somehow enhancing her bowling using this magic?” Tom asked.
“Exactly,” Jane said.
“Any more rumours?” Tom asked. Jane shrugged and bowled her turn, which had been held up whilst she and Tom had been discussing. She then told Tom about the Genie rumours she had heard. They continued talking through their game.
After she had finished bowling Sandi went home and hid the emerald in her room. She stayed there doing her homework until her mother came knocking on the door demanding that she come down for dinner.
Quinn Morgendorffer arrived home at 7:30, having spent the afternoon talking to Stacy, Tiffany, Jeffy, Joey and her other admirer about Sandi and the genie. Their discussions had been inconclusive. ‘One thing is for certain, things are never going to be the same again,’ she thought as she opened her door.
Jake, her father, was watching the television and going on yet another rant about his childhood, whilst her mother, Helen, was on the phone talking to her boss. Slightly depressing Classical music was filtering down the stairs from Daria’s room. She closed the door and smiled. ‘At least things are still normal here,’ she thought.
“Daddy! Your Heart!” she said as she went to her father. His rant was getting serious...
“Hi, Quinn!” he said.
One of the squirrels assigned to the Varmittan Glen Oaks Post saw Quinn enter the living room from his vantage point next to the sliding door. He then went to inform Captain Jaywi that all of the Morgendorffers were home.
“Captain, the entire family are home,” he said, once in the oak tree.
“Good, you and Yogez go down and watch near the kitchen door and listen for information about the Non-Normative Event whilst they have their ‘dinner’,” Captain Jaywi said.
10 minutes later, the Morgendorffers were sitting around the table for their usual dinner, micro-waved lasagne.
“Did anything interesting happen at school today?” Helen asked.
“You wouldn’t believe the half of it!” Quinn said.
“Why wouldn’t I believe it, Quinn?” Helen asked.
“’Cause it would sound totally crazy! The events were totally fantastical!” Quinn said.
“I wouldn’t say, totally
fantastical,” Daria said, with her usual sarcasm.
“Maybe not totally
fantastical, but the events at school today were rather close!” Quinn said.
“Fantastical, in what way? What has that Ms Li gotten the student body into now?” Helen asked.
“Mo-om! It has nothing to do with Ms Li!” Quinn said. Helen had a confused look on her face, Quinn was being rather elusive.
“Mom, if one talked about magic, extra floors appearing on school buildings and rumours of pool water in classrooms the listeners would be convinced that the speaker was going crazy, or that they were making up a story. And that is just what I had heard by the end of the day,” Daria said.
“You are right. I would think that someone saying that would be crazy. I also think that is a great
idea for one of your stories,” Helen said.
“I wish it was,” Daria said. Helen could tell that her older daughter was telling the truth.
“Quinn, is what Daria is saying true? About magic and extra floors?” Helen asked.
“That wasn’t the half of it. Much more stuff occurred,” Quinn said.
“Isn’t this like a Disney movie?” Jake asked. “Not that I ever got to see a Disney movie when I was a kid! I wanted to see 101 Dalmatians
! But no! My Father
said that animal and Disney movies were for sissies!”
“Didn’t we see The Lion King
when it finally appeared at Highland’s cinema?”
“Yes, we did, kiddo. Thanks. What were we talking about?”
“Quinn was saying that fantastical events occurred at the High School today,” Helen said.
“Right, I became aware of it when I heard Tiffany ask why Sandi was floating. I then saw that Sandi was
floating,” Quinn began. She continued to spill the beans about what had happened at recess and during the following period.
“So Quinn, can anyone else back up this fantastical story?” Helen asked.
“The idea of Sandi Griffin with the power a genie can give her is frightening,” Daria said, her voice showing a trace amount of fear.
“Dar-i-a! Didn’t I say that?” Anyway, Stacy and Tiffany can back me up. So can Jeffy, Joey and Jordan. Mr O’Neill can vouch for the water filled classroom. Then there are the other members of the class. Ms Barch was aware of the extra floor almost from the outset. That Goth chick was present when Sandi was one-upped by the genie. That Ted guy is also aware from Elias telling him...” Quinn began.
“That is enough Quinn,” Helen interrupted. “As soon as we’re finished eating, I’ll be calling the Rowe’s and the Blum-Deckler’s.”
“Ok,” Quinn said.
Helen called the Rowe’s and Stacy filled her in on her point of view of the happenings that day. Stacy corroborated Quinn’s story and gave Helen much more extra information.
Tiffany also corroborated Quinn and Stacy’s stories and gave her extra information (though nowhere near the amount that Stacy did.)
Over an hour later, an almost exhausted Helen clicked off the phone from her conversation with Mr O’Neill. His story and those of Joey, Jeffy and Jamie corroborated with those of Quinn, Stacy and Tiffany.
She briefly considered calling the Griffin’s but decided not to. If the idea of Sandi with a genie was frightening to her older daughter, who wasn’t usually frightened by anything, then the idea of Linda
with a genie was even more frightening!
‘There is nothing that can be done about it tonight. Quinn and her friends will have to keep an eye on Sandi tomorrow at school and then tomorrow afternoon I will see if I can get off work and talk to their parents,’ she thought. She hoped that she would be able to get off work, Vitale, Davis, Horowitz, Rhiordan, Shrechter and Shrechter had a large case load, and she wasn’t sure whether she could trust Jake with trying to talk to the other parents. She then went up to bed.
Meanwhile the junior squirrels had reported to Captain Jaywi the information that Quinn had divulged to her family.
“So it is a genie; just as the Emperor suspected!” Captain Jaywi said.
“Yes,” Yogez said. Captain Jaywi was in thought.
“The Emperor has to be informed. This Griffin girl could cause a lot of trouble with that genie,” he said. He then looked at the sky. It was way past sunset and the moon wasn’t visible, it having been the new moon the day before.
“It can wait until the morning though,” he continued. The Varmittan Empire only conducted its business at night if it was an absolute emergency. As serious as the Non-Normative Event sequence appeared, it was still not an absolute
“We wait until morning?” the other junior squirrel said.
“As soon as most of the stars have disappeared, I will go to the Palace-Tree,” Captain Jaywi said. The two junior squirrels agreed.
The squirrels were not the only eavesdroppers upon the Morgendorffer family’s discussion about the events of the day. A family of sapient mice living in the space between the ceiling of the kitchen and the floorboards of Daria’s bedroom had also overheard their discussion.
After Helen had called Stacy, the mice went into a discussion of their own...
“...this is serious! There hasn’t been a verified genie in Pennsylvania for decades!” one of them said.
“What can be done? It is a human with a genie! It is not like we can just grab it off this ‘Sandi’ person. She’d just wish us away!” one of the other mice said.
“Maybe the Varmittan Squirrels can help us?” another mouse said.
And so the mice argued amongst themselves for over an hour about what to do, before deciding to convene with the other mice of that section of Glen Oaks Lane in the morning.
At 8:30 Stacy Rowe went up to her bedroom. She was tired from her discussion with Quinn’s mother about the events of the day. Her own mother had hardly believed what they were talking about, until she had talked to Helen herself.
Stacy opened her most recent diary and began writing about the events of the day.
Diary of Anastasia Elizabeth ‘Stacy’ Rowe – February 18, 1999
If someone had told me yesterday that the events that happened today would happen in the next 24 hours, I would have told them that they were crazy. And yet they have happened and so I am still trying to come to terms with them. I keep expecting to wake up to find out that it was just a dream!
It all started when Tiffany and I arrived at school...
Arriving at School – Where is Sandi? Waiting for Quinn, looking for Sandi.
Information about meeting Sandi and Jean outside the history classroom.
Summary of History notes
Summary of Mathematics notes
The weird events of recess, beginning with Tiffany’s noticing that Sandi was floating until Sandi’s confrontation with Brooke.
Events of the aborted Language Arts lesson.
Language Arts Lesson
I thought that the problems caused by Jean’s mischievous nature would not have had continued into the next class. After all she hadn’t caused problems in History or Mathematics. But I was wrong, very wrong. I had got out my copy of Charles Dickens’
David Copperfield and my notebook and then the classroom filled with water!
‘Oh no! Why are Sandi and/or Jean acting like this?’ she thought, beginning to panic. She looked around. She saw that Sandi had appeared and was glaring at Jean. ‘Not entirely her fault then,’ she thought. She also saw Quinn glaring at Sandi. ‘Good, Quinn,’ she thought, feeling the usual fondness for her best friend.
‘OMG! If Jean doesn’t displace the water we’re going to drown!’ she started crying and her heart rate went up. At least with the water no one would notice the tears, but she knew that an accelerated heart rate wouldn’t help matters at all.
She then saw that the water was going down. She looked over to the window to see Tiffany float out!
‘Tiffany!’ she thought in anguish.
5 seconds later the water level was down to the level of the windows.
” Quinn yelled.
“Oh, dear!” Mr O’Neil said, it was clear that he was trying to make sense of the situation. Stacy went over to the window and saw that Joey was asking Tiffany if she was ok. ‘Good of you, Joey,’ she thought.
“I’m Free-ezing, and my hair is ru-uined,” Tiffany said in response to Joey’s question. She could see that Tiffany was ok. Joey then jumped back into the classroom, causing a splash.
Stacy then listened to the conversation in the classroom.
“I am a mischievous Genie,” Jean said.
“But Genie’s don’t exist,” Mr O’Neill said.
“But, how would you explain what just happened?” Stacy asked, wondering how else Mr O’Neill could explain it.
“I don’t have an explanation,” Mr O’Neill said.
Elias and Jeffy opened the door and the water emptied from the classroom, carrying many books and chairs with it. Quinn was angry. She blamed Sandi for the happenstance. I was angrier at Jean. It wasn’t really Sandi’s fault that the Genie that she has found is mischievous.
End of Flashback
The conclusion of the happening in the Language Arts classroom and discussions about the genie.
Summary of Science notes
Summary of discussions at lunch
Summary of Geography notes
Summary of Economics notes
Post school discussions about Sandi and the genie at the Blum Deckler’s house.
Arrival at home and dinner
Discussion with Mrs Morgendorffer and Mom
In conclusion, the events of the day were confusing and frightening. We do not know what is going to happen tomorrow or on any of the days after that. I do hope that Sandi will not use the power that the Emerald is giving her for ill. Tomorrow I will be meeting Quinn and Tiffany at Quinn’s house before going to school. I hope that tonight’s sleep will allow us rest and that clearer heads will allow us to come to some sort of decision before we go to school.
Weather forecast for tomorrow: Maximum temperature 50 degrees Fahrenheit, overcast with possible rainfall or snow later in the evening.
Having finished writing in her diary, Stacy set her alarm to 7:00 and tried to go to sleep.
White House Situation Room, Washington DC
President William Jefferson Clinton was looking at a satellite image of an area of a town, centred around a high school.
“What is significant about this Pennsylvania town anyway?” he asked.
“A variety of weird events have been reported from Lawndale and its vicinity ever since the town was founded, Mr President. However the reason why you are here is a specific happening that happened today.”
“What is that event?” the President asked all business.
The image changed zooming into the High School. “This is Lawndale High School. This image was taken this morning at 0800. This is the school as it normally is, Mr President,” the National Security Advisor said.
The image changed, showing the extra floor on the science block. “And this is school as it is now. This image was taken at 1400.”
The President looked at the image with incredulity. “Is that an extra floor on one of the school’s buildings?” he asked.
“Precisely, Mr President, there are many theories as to how this has occurred, but all of them involve magic.”
That got the President’s attention. He had been briefed on many organisations and groups that used magic shortly after his inauguration, but none of them had been active anywhere near Pennsylvania. “The closest group I can think of is the Salam Coven,” he said, thinking of the most active group that he was aware of.
“They have been inactive since last September, Mr President. They have gone into hiding,” the National Security Advisor said.
“What is your theory?” the President asked.
“Our experts in the matter have largely theorised that it may be what is termed a ‘genie’, Mr President.
The President was surprised. He hadn’t been informed of the possibility of the existence of genies. He argued with the National Security Advisor about why he had not been informed (most of the evidence was indirect and there hadn’t been any activity that would be conclusive evidence on record in American territory at any point after 1776).
The briefing went on for another 20 minutes.
Other organisations, both part of the United States Government and not
part of it, were aware of some aspect of the events in Lawndale and were each making their own plans and preparing to send agents to the suburban town...
Conclusion of Chapter 1