Story #4: Isle of Time: Valley of the Cavemen

Hello! Sorry I haven’t written for ages. I hope you’ve been enjoying all my stories so far, and if you have, well then, you’re in luck! In this post I’m going to share with you a story I wrote in my free time. I started it in Year 4, then left it for a while, and came back to it in December. It’s the first one in a series called Isle of Time. I’ve made a huge achievement with it that I’m massively proud about: it’s been published in my school library! Some of my classmates have read it and now I’m going to share it with you…

HOPE YOU ENJOY!

Isle of Time:

The Valley of the Cavemen

                          By: Ella Ridgway

Chapter 1

The Island

“Come on Scott!” 11-year-old Evie Michaels called, “Let’s go and explore!”

“Coming!” 13-year-old Scott Michaels replied.

Their parents had agreed to let them go and look around. After all, it was only a small island. The two siblings rushed out of their thatched cottage, Evie’s blonde, wavy hair streaming behind her in the wind, Scott’s patterned, too-big shorts blowing around his legs. They had moved to the Isle of Time only yesterday and were itching to explore.

They discovered Sunset Beach, which Evie very much admired, for it lived up to its name by providing a gorgeous sunset that stretched along the glittering sand, and they had soon left Time Village. Though the citizens had warned the two kids not to stray because of ‘bad things’, they were an adventurous family, so the twosome ventured out to ‘Frightful Fruit Forest’ as the villagers called it. They crossed over the River of the Unknown, via an ancient, rickety bridge that wobbled and creaked as they stepped over the planks as fast as they could, for fear of the bridge finally falling into pieces.

A few minutes later, Evie halted in her tracks, mouth, subtle pink lipstick and all, gaping.

“What’s the matter, E…?” Scott’s words were washed vigorously away by the wind.

Evie leisurely put up her hand and beckoned her older brother to come forward.

“A-it’s… a-a… golden…uh… gate!” she stammered, catching hold of Scott.

And there, indeed, stood a Victorian gate, covered in intricate designs and glowing golden in the mild sunlight.

“Shall we go through?” Scott asked eagerly.

“Yeah, yeah we will. That’s a splendid idea,” Evie shook herself.

They gently heaved open the looming gate, so as not to warn the people of Time Village. When they got inside, they both gasped in surprise. Why, surely they were BINS!!!

“How strange!” Evie voiced what they were both thinking. “This must some kind of a joke.”

Scott nodded in agreement.

“Let’s take a closer look,” he suggested.

Peering closer, Scott observed an extraordinary glimmer around and apparently from within the bins. He diligently opened the lid of one, and immediately felt the peculiar feeling of being sucked in.

“Evie, help!” he cried.

She leapt to his side and hung on to his pale legs for dear life. She wasn’t strong enough. WHOOSH!!! The two of them went flying into the bin! BUMP!!! They imagined EVERYONE in   Time Village had heard them land. The millisecond they touched the floor, the darkness began to whirr. WHIIIRRRR!!! CA-CHING!! PING! Something was happening!

“Scott, what’s happening?” questioned Evie, her hands trembling.

“I’m not sure,” she answered, sweat launching down her forehead.

Chapter 2

The Cave-Village

Suddenly, with a raucous CRASH, they landed. The lid flung open automatically, and Evie and Scott were spilled out into the welcoming grass of a lawn.

Rocky caves with a gloomy feeling about them were scattered across the valley and a cacophony of grunts were coming from them. The siblings glanced at each other.

“Stone Age!” they chorused.

They started to argue with each other.

“The bin must have been a time machine, like in Doctor Who!”

“No, a portal!”

“Time machine!”

“Let’s stop,” Evie took a deep breath to calm herself down, “I can hear someone coming!”

STOMP! STOMP! STOMP! The sound of heavy footsteps echoed across the lawn. A gargantuan giant of a man sporting a sabre-toothed tiger-skin loincloth and hefty club over one bare shoulder lumbered towards them.

“Ug,” he grunted.

“Err…excuse me?” Evie responded, feeling confused.

“He said: what you doing here?” Scott translated.

“Really?”

“You bet.”

“Scott, tell him we got here accidently and don’t know the way home.”

“Can do.” Scott turned round to the caveman, “Ug, uuug, ug, ug.”

“Ug, ug,” the caveman seemed pleased with their answer, as he nodded understandingly.

Then his voiced changed to a pleading. “Uuuuuuuuuuuuuggggg? Ug, ug, ug?”

“He’s asking whether we can help him with a problem,” Scott interpreted.

“What’s the problem?” Evie queried.

“The sabre-toothed tigers have gone missing, so there’s no prey for them, so the cavemen are dying out,” he told her. “He’d like us to help.”

“Of course we’ll help!” Evie exclaimed.

The caveman, who had been listening to the conversation with interest, now clapped his rough, beefy hands together in joy.

“Ug, ug, ug, UG!!!” he smiled merrily.

“Let’s go!” declared Scott, his hazel eyes glowing vivaciously.

Chapter 3

The Forest

They set off towards a thick, green forest on the far side of the valley. Faint, low growls were heard coming from there.

“Why didn’t you look there?” he hollered over his shoulder.

“Ug, ug, ug.”

“Oooooh. He says there are bad things in that forest.”

“What bad things?” wondered Evie.

“Elephantoms.”

“What are they?!” she wanted to know.

“Well, Evie, they’re basically our modern-day phantoms, except they’re in the shape of mammoths. We learnt about them at school. They like to injure and kill other Stone Age animals, especially sabre-toothed tigers,” Scott reported, matter-of-factly.

“Yikes!” Evie gasped. “We must hurry!”

They sprinted towards the wood, silently, yet swiftly, as the caveman regarded them anxiously. Little did Evie and Scott know of the dangers that lay ahead…………..

“AAAAARRRRRGGGGGHHHHH!!!!!” they shrieked, “Le-“

A gag was plastered on their mouths, and their shoulders grasped securely by slippery fingers.

“Don’t you stress, my pathetic prisoners. You’ll see who you want to in a moment, but first I would like answers to these two questions.” A ghostly creature grinned. “Before that, though, some information. You are to call me Sir at all times.”

He bobbed his head to his phantom servants, who immediately ripped off the gags carelessly and bound some rope around their ankles and wrists so that it cut into their skin.

“First question: who are you?” Sir requested.

Scott was the first to answer.

“I’m Scott Michaels, and this is my sister, Evie Michaels.”

“Right then, where do you come from? Your clothes are extremely strange,” the elephantom demanded.

Again, Scott was the first to respond.

“We’re from 2017.” The animal looked confused, so Scott explained, “The future. Of course, you wouldn’t know.”

“Ah. That must mean you don’t know our ways of life, unless, of course, you had been here before,” Sir added.

“No, we haven’t,” Evie blurted out.

An evil glint shone in the elephantom’s eyes and the duo felt quite afraid.

“OK, you’ve answered my questions successfully, so I’ll take you to your animal friends.”

Chapter 4

The First Part of the Perilous Journey

The phantom was always true to his word, so he led them, security following closely behind, to a heavy, locked door.

“These are my dungeons,” he announced proudly.

“Are the sabre-toothed tigers in there?” Evie enquired.

“Yes, yes, yes,” Sir smirked wickedly, and Evie began to feel queasy. Was he telling the truth? He unlocked and shoved open the door easily. He roughly pushed them in, slammed the door shut, and bolted it. Sir then opened the miniscule window and cackled…

“You can join your friends in the cells! BUT…what was it again? Oh yeah! But only if you can find your way through the Maze…of…DOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMM!!!!!!!!”His laughter echoed through the empty walls as he floated inaudibly away.

“I guess we’d better try to find our way through,” Evie sighed.

She started to stroll meaninglessly in a direction, but Scott wrenched her back.

“There’s something the caveman told me, in case we were captured. ‘When in doubt, always go forward and to the left.’”

Why didn’t you tell me this earlier?” snapped Evie.

She was exhausted with the day’s happenings, and even more annoyed with her parents for letting them go off by themselves.

Scott cautiously took his sister’s hands.

“You see, Evie, I didn’t understand it at the time, so I decided to hang onto it until I thought I-sorry, we-needed it. Don’t worry, we’ll get out of this mess, I promise,” Scott said comfortingly.

Evie’s face brightened up a little. She started to stomp off, Scott rushing ahead.

They encountered lots of obstacles. Once, they spotted an immense slab of cheese and lumbered towards it, stomachs rumbling so loud one could have heard it from Australia. Fortunately, Scott observed a spring that was attached to the wooden board the cheese was on. A few moments later, he realised it looked exactly like the mouse traps their dad had put around the cottage when they first arrived on the Isle of Time. He pulled Evie back just before the trap was sprung.  Another time, Scott almost dropped straight into a pit, but Evie shrieked at him to stop. She picked up a stone from the ground and threw it into the hole. They didn’t hear it hit the ground, water or anything.

“It’s a bottomless pit,” Scott realised.

They found screeching bats that tried to pull their clothes to shreds, and springs that tried to catapult them out the maze.

“Wow. Sir may be a phantom, but he sure builds a lot of cool stuff. If he were good, I’d have liked to build this sort of stuff with him. Well, unless it ruined my nails, of course.” Evie started to slow down to admire the handiwork.

“Hey, Evie. Snap out of it.” Scott shook his sister and managed to keep them going with only the occasional nudge.

Chapter 5

The Second Part of the Perilous Journey

They soon reached a path that split into two. Evie started to head off towards the right, forgetting the vital information that their friend had given them. Luckily, Scott remembered it, and quickly steered his younger sister to the left. It was fortunate he did, for, sensing their presence, a harmless-looking mammoth-skin rug miraculously came to life and bounded towards them, looking angry. Evie noticed it gaining speed and almost jumped out of her skin.

“RUN!!” she screamed and grabbed Scott’s arm as she raced past.

Poor Scott was dragged along (he was light), wondering if the world was coming to an end. A few minutes later, Evie stopped, gasping for breath. Scott pushed himself into a sitting position and looked around him. He had landed in a heap of…paper? No, it felt like the material you used to wrap presents with. At least Evie hadn’t dropped him onto the uneven, stone floor where she was doubled over.

“In fact, no landing could be better than this one,” he thought. Suddenly he gasped. “Paw prints!”

“What?” Evie looked up from checking her sunshine-yellow nails hadn’t got grime under them (thankfully there wasn’t any, otherwise I would have had to tell you about the tantrum that would have followed).

“Paw prints! The tigers’ paw prints! Right there!” Scott pointed to some peculiar shapes marked in the gargantuan slabs of stone. (I, myself, have never actually seen tiger prints, so I will leave you to use your imagination.) “But where in the world did they go?”

The brother and sister scanned the area from the highest point of the ceiling, to the lowest point of the ground, Evie reluctantly, Scott willingly. Only seconds later, Evie spied a thick, wooden trapdoor towards the dead end of the passage. She cautiously hauled it open and gave Scott a leg up. He scrambled onto his stomach and then leisurely lifted up his sister and they both stood up to take in their surroundings. They were on a huge, metal platform, which, they noted, led to a thin corridor

“The tigers must have headed that way. Evie, are you okay?” Scott glanced at his shivering sister.

“Just cold…And a little terrified,” she admitted. “Can’t we just go home now?”

“Well, there’s a different tone of voice. You do know we promised to free the tigers? We can’t break that promise, do you hear me?” Scott’s temper rose steadily.

“Just this once? Please?” she pleaded.

“No.” Scott was insistent. “We’re going to keep our eyes on the path, NO MATTER WHAT.” He glared meaningfully at Evie.

She had to give in. Nobody could withstand that glare, not even her parents. “Yes, brother.”

They continued along the platform, then stepped over a stile. In order to get to the end of the narrow, low corridor, Scott and Evie had to crouch and, in some places, Scott even had to wriggle like a worm. At last, they reached a stone, barred door.

Chapter 6

The Ambush of Tigers…and the Dungeons

“This must be the dungeons,” Scott said cheerfully, trying to lighten the mood.

He noticed a bolt in the door. Evie quickly and soundlessly slid the bolt back, then pushed the bars, which creaked eerily. They tiptoed through then whispered,

“Heloooooo, anybody home?”

A ferocious growl answered, then…

RRRRROOOOOAAAAAARRRRRR!” and out came a pack of snarling sabre-toothed tigers!!!

AAAARRRRGGGGHHHH!” Evie screeched, trying with all her might to pull away from Scott and scamper away to hide. “HELP!

“Don’t worry, Evie! I’ll calm them down! Hey, hey. We’re here to save you. Don’t worry. We’re not enemies,” Scott soothed.

After a couple of minutes of pleading to go, snarling, and comforting, the tigers retreated and sat tensely in a corner, waiting to pounce any minute.

“Hello,” Scott tried to convince the tigers they were friends by acting friendly (some people never seem to know that using the same trick never works, but I’m just here to tell all you lovely readers the story, so I’ll get on). “So, we’re here to rescue you, so if you’ll just follow us out h-“

“Well, sorry to interrupt,” the chief tiger interrupted, “But I really think you could tell us who exactly you are, and why and who sent you here, if you please?”

“Right.” Scott answered, looking slightly flushed. “Well, I’m Scott and this is my younger sister Evie (he gestured to the round bump of Evie in the corner) and our friend the caveman sent us to help you escape so the cavemen can survive, meaning, they’ll kill you…” He trailed off when the chief glared daggers at him. “I mean, they will care for you and your ambush, right, Evie?”

“Don’t try and persuade me,” the chief snarled, baring his teeth. “We won’t come, no matter what you say or what the horrible phantoms do to us. Well, we might come…on one condition.”

“What?” Scott solicited eagerly.

“Well….if you promised to make the cavemen sign a contract saying they’ll only kill one of us each week and not to injure or kill the injured or pregnant.”

“Promise.”

“Very well. Tigers, let’s follow this young gentleman out of this disgusting place.”

And so there they were, Scott willingly leading the tigers, Evie bringing up the rear somewhat reluctantly.

Chapter 7

The Escape

Scott hurried through the open barred door and across the narrow hallway. Whilst escaping, the tigers were encouraging each other and grumbling about how many pedicures they would have to do on their poor claws.

Then they raced through the thinner corridor, leapt over the metal platform and Evie reminded Scott about the trapdoor just before they reached the edge of a chasm. He forced it open and dropped down. The tigers and his sister followed. A few moments later, they were loping across the gargantuan slabs of stone where (if you recall) Scott had found the paw prints.

Along the seemingly never-ending corridor, past the hazardous mammoth rug, past the fork (they went the opposite way) and finally past all the endless obstacles.

By this time, the tigers and Evie were panting from exhaustion and about to drop.

But they were in for a nasty surprise…For little did they know just who they were going to meet…

They all dashed round a corner…and stopped abruptly. For none other than Sir was standing an inch away from them.

“Ssh, sh!” Scott hissed.

It was too late. Sir whirled around, eyes narrowing at the sight of his grimy ‘enemies’.

“Just what are you doing here? You were supposed to lose your way in the maze, or even better, rot in the dungeon!”

He genuinely seemed surprised. Not that he should be. Anyone who knew the siblings knew they were capable of most things.

“We found our way out,” Evie answered confidently from the back of the group where she’d been hiding. “By memorising where we had gone and following instructions. You really need to get some better security.” She glanced at her brother as if to say “Tell the tigers to run. You and I need to cooperate for us to escape.” Somehow Scott understood. He was amazed at how his sister was suddenly as grown-up as he was, even though he was older by two years.

He secretly motioned for the tigers to go and began trash-talking the elephantom as well.

“Evie’s right. You know what, I don’t see how anyone could be nervous of you. Sure, you look intimidating, but really, you’re just some sort of hologram. I can go right through you. See.”

Scott passed through the phantom’s body calmly and Sir looked down in astonishment. Nobody had ever dared to shoot insults at him before, especially not before going through him. Why, he didn’t even think people could do that!

While Sir was busy figuring out what had just happened, Scott and Evie slipped through the weeds and to the tigers.

“Come on, come on, let’s go, let’s go!”

They all darted away and out of the woodland and zoomed as quick as lightning to the cave village to where the caveman was snoring and drooling on a fallen log.

“Yuck.” Evie backed away rapidly.

Scott gently shook their friend awake and told him of their adventure as he listened, spellbound. Lastly, Evie told of the promise that the cave-people had to make. The villagers gathered round the heroes and immediately agreed to the deal.

Suddenly, the bin that Evie and Scott had used to arrive started jittering and shaking.

“What the…?” everyone murmured.

Evie (the smartest in her class at school) remembered that that was what happened in time-travelling when it’s time to go back to the present.

She started explaining that they had to go when the bin miraculously scooped the two up.

The cave-people somehow knew that it was time for the siblings to go and started wiping away tears and waving.

“Uuuug!” they called.

“Goodbye! We’ll visit again soon!” came the muffled reply.

The bin dematerialized with a flash and a bang and all that was left were the marks in the grass where they had first landed.

Chapter 8

Back at Home

The bin crashed to the ground with, surprisingly, barely a sound.

“Well. That was a surprising turn of events.” Scott brushed himself down. “C’mon Evie, we’d better get back. Mum and Dad will be expecting us.”

The duo strolled back through the Victorian gate, making sure to close and bolt it, over the River of the Unknown, stopping for a minute to look at Sunset Beach and stroll partway across the glowing sand, and finally through the door of their new home.

“Hello, dears. Been out gallivanting?” their mother questioned, setting out plates of scones and mugs of hot chocolate with marshmallows bobbing on the top.

They both nodded vigorously, helping themselves with massive amounts of scones.

“Where did you go?”

The twosome glanced at each other and smiled.

“Oh, just over Sunset Beach and in a forest. Nothing much, really.”

After all, surely it wouldn’t hurt to keep their secret private for a while, would it? Well, I’ll let you decide.

Thank you for reading! I really hope you enjoyed. Please leave a comment below for what you enjoyed and what I could improve.

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4 Comments

  • Reply April 10, 2017

    Lola Skuse

    Hi Ella, this is a fantastic story. I thought your vocabulary was excellent, particularly your knack of choosing unusual adjectives. What’s your next project? Do you prefer writing for your own age group, older or younger children?

    • Reply April 11, 2017

      Ella Ridgway

      Hi Lola. I’m glad you liked my story 🙂 My next project is the second story of the Isle of Time series. I’m not entirely sure which age group I write for. I guess it would be my own age group, because of my vocabulary.

  • Reply April 10, 2017

    Lesley McCall

    Beautiful descriptive language and what a wonderful imagination ! Not everyone has the talent to write or the determination to actually get down to it and do it ! Keep going and keep reading so that you can get experience of other styles and methods which will ensure your writing keeps growing as you do . Well done x

    • Reply April 11, 2017

      Ella Ridgway

      Thanks so much Lesley! I definitely will keep reading and I’m so happy you enjoyed 🙂

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