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  • Max

Hannah Samuels is playing her KoKron’s Revenge game on her PlayStation 5. She is about to start level 1 – she has just bought the game. When she presses ‘PLAY’, she feels her body tingle as her cells become pixelated and she shrinks. The screen expands and wraps her into its glowing folds. She has been sucked into the game!

She finds herself armed with an axe. A voice speaks to her. “To escape the game, you must complete this level and defeat Moro. Do you accept your quest?” “Yes,” replies Hannah, as she can see no other way of getting home.

Hannah regrets buying this stupid game but she has no time to think as a kangaroo starts throwing boomerangs at her. Hannah ducks under the boomerangs and wallops the kangaroo, with her axe, before the boomerangs return. The evil creature collapses on the sandy ground. Hannah continues forward and scales a cliff by jumping across narrow, rocky ledges, defeating three biting mountain goats by stomping them into submission.

Then comes KoKron’s minions, the Totoninis. They sit on a mountain peak like stones. Hannah leaps onto the top of the cliff, alerting the Tototininis. They are short people armed with bazookas. Hannah weaves around the missiles, walloping one Totonini after the other. She is aching all over. Hannah stops to catch her breath, just for a second. A missile hits her, destroying two hits. Hannah notices a checkpoint and activates it. She defeats another Totonini. It squeals and falls to the ground.

Another missile hits her, shattering her first life and a hit. She scuffs her boots on a rock jutting out of the meadow grass as she falls down. Hannah defeats the rest of the Totoninis without being hit again. Out of nowhere, Moro descends onto the peak. “MORO FIGHT!!!” he roars. Moro is a giant troll with a small patch of hair on the very top of his head. He is wearing a green shirt and a belt loaded with red hot chillies – they are his weapons. Moro throws a chilli missile at Hannah. She sprints sideways and climbs Moro’s boot by grabbing onto the decorative buckles. Our hero makes Moro scratch his head by throwing a bit off shirt fluff up there. She hitches a ride on his hand. Our warrior then shuffles down to Moro’s neck. She pushes her axe against Moro’s chin. Moro’s head juts up and Hannah falls to the ground. Moro pounds the ground and throws chillies at Hannah. In return, she gets up and attempts to restart her climb. This time, she chops Moro’s hair off.

Hannah is looking for a sensitive spot – Moro’s legendary head lump. Her axe quickly makes contact with it, so Hannah pummels the lump with her fists. It eventually disappears. Moro roars in pain and plucks Hannah from his head. He throws her into his mouth, where she has to battle plaque ghosts and toothpaste devils. She throws saliva on the plaque ghosts, rendering them frozen. As for the toothpaste devils, Hannah covers them in the remains of the plaque ghosts. Finally our fierce warrior smashes Moro’s teeth with her axe. He spits her out and collapses. The ground rumbles and cracks under his titanic weight!

Some more text scrolls down the screen. You Win! Hannah feels that she is being stretched out as she realises she is returning to the real world. Her mum comes in. “Are you enjoying your game?” she asks. “Yeah,” replies Hannah, “It’s a really realistic one”.

By Max

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  • Max

The library is bustling today. Laila Brown, a librarian, is helping a little girl called Sam find The Runaway Train. They search everywhere in the library, but it just isn’t there! “I’m sorry, Sam,” Laila says, “but someone else must have the book. I’ll check when it’s due back and tell you next time you visit. Goodbye!” Sam walks away sadly. I have to find that book, Laila thinks.

She stays behind when the library closes that evening and checks the database for who has borrowed the book. Laila is surprised to find that no one has borrowed it! She begins to search the library again. While she’s searching, Laila spots a blue glow behind a shelf. She pokes a finger into it and plummets downwards!

As she falls, Laila notices streaks of white and red on the walls of the hole. Eventually, she reaches the bottom with a surprisingly soft landing. The ground tingles below her. There are piles of books everywhere, and the walls and floor are glowing bright blue! Laila looks through the piles of books. There is Susie and the Bouncy Wall, Gordon the Grumpy Iguana and the Pilot Pete series, but no The Runaway Train. She searches every pile but doesn’t find the book Sam wants.

Laila spots a glowing red door, with a red stained glass window full of flames, on one of the glowing blue walls. She opens it and finds a monster with red spines along its back and burning auburn hair covering the very top of the creature’s head! Laila spots The Runaway Train on the monster’s forehead! She grabs a tuft of auburn hair on the monster’s belly and heaves herself up onto it, causing utter pandemonium. The monster screeches and throws itself at the walls, desperate to get Laila off its body. Despite this, Laila manages to grab on to one of the spines on its back, reach the monster’s shoulder, and knock The Runaway Train onto the floor. She is thrown off almost immediately, landing on the floor, which, unlike the previous room, is as hard as a boulder.

Laila swiftly picks up the book and sprints through the door. She quickly notices a ladder at the end of the tunnel and climbs carefully to the top. What a disappointment it would have been if I had the book, then fell back to where I began, thinks Laila, poking her head through a gap in the bookshelves and finding herself back in the library.

The next morning, Sam comes into the library. “Hello, Sam!” says Laila, “I’ve found your book!” Sam runs over and the pair walk into the children’s section and pick out The Runaway Train. “Thanks, Laila!” grins Sam. “You’re welcome,” Laila smiles back.

On her way out of the library, Sam notices a blue glow from behind some books. I wonder what that is? thinks Sam. Once she has passed, a red claw snatches two books away into the glow…

By Max

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  • Max

Rio is a very fluffy tabby cat, who thinks he’s a dog! He is sitting on the roof of his owners’ car, watching them as they go out for a walk. Rio jumps off the car roof, onto the bonnet, and then down onto the uniform concrete driveway. He walks past the potted roses and the hedge. Just like a dog, he likes to follow his owners when they go for walks. He also likes to sit with his owners, whatever they’re doing.

He follows his owners around the end of the road and to the junction. Without warning, a large truck zooms past startling Rio so much that he leaps into the hedge! He skids through the hedge and finds himself in a narrow alleyway. He is about to scramble back through the hedge when his ears prick up! He can hear something – a muffled squeaking. Rio pinpoints the sound and tracks it down. He paws aside an empty packet of crisps and finds a mouse! But before he can pin it down, the little creature escapes!

Rio hears more rustling. The mouse must be escaping through the hedge! He dives into the greenery and follows the rustling. He pops out by a wall. The mouse is sitting on top of the wall and he climbs up silently. The mouse doesn’t notice him. He is about to catch it when a fox appears and eats the mouse whole! Rio backs off and finds a sparrow to catch instead.

He walks along the wall until he reaches a road. He loves going on adventures, but hates walking, so he has a cheeky habit of catching the bus to where he’s going! Rio sneaks onto a bus and gets off near the park. Then he hears lots of meowing! He tracks down the sound into an empty driveway. A group of cats are singing a cat song! “Come on, Kitty! Leave your knittin’!” sings one. “Come here Mew! We need you!” raps another. “Errr… Hello?” says Rio. The cat band stops its practice. “Hey, dude!” says the singer, “want to join Cool Catz, huh?”

“Errr… actually it’s my first time seeing a cat band…” Rio says uneasily.

“Well, have a go being in one with us! Come on!” the cats grin.

“OK…” Rio said.

“What song would you like to make, dude?” asks the cat singer.

“I wish I’d caught you, Speedy Mouse!” begins Rio, “Not that silly, silly fox!”

“Foxy, foxy, foxy fox,” another singer sings.

“Go for it, Milky!” says the singer. A white cat plays a popular cat guitar riff with her Feline Rock 12 guitar. Dow Dow Dow, Dowdede Dow!

“I run hedge, alley and wall,” sings Rio.

“But still that naughty fox takes it all!” sings the singer.

“Except a little sparrow; nothing at all!” sings Rio. Dow Dow Dow!

“Silly fox takes my mouse, miles away from my cosy house, I run and run, but there’s no forgettin’, such a vexin’,” raps the rapper.

“Oh, the Speedy Mouse and the Silly Fox! The two creatures of this tale! Oh, the Speedy Mouse and the Silly fox!” finishes Rio.

“OK, we’re good. The Speedy Mouse and the Silly Fox,” said the singer, “next band practice tomorrow. We meet here if it’s sunny; if it’s rainy we meet under the human zipwire in the park”. Rio caught the bus home from the park and curled up in his igloo-shaped bed. He dreamt about Cool Catz and his first ever concert.

By Max

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