The Vulture



The mountain peaks rose above the ivory clouds, sprinkled with a dusting of snow. The Vulture glided across the sky, a twisted ribbon of smoke billowing from the engine. “Want to play ping-pong? Kasma asked, a shimmer of excitement in her eyes. “I promise I won’t beat you twenty eight-four again.”

Donovan shook his head. “No, not now. Who will steer the skyship?” Kasma nodded and rushed to the deck, waiting patiently. The boy steered onward, calculating the perfect landing in his mind. As he dipped the nose of the skyship, he glanced up in the air. It was dark and the clouds were grey. A crackle of lightning forked the sky. If his readings were accurate something dangerous was ahead. Donovan knew his readings were accurate-they always were. However, it wasn’t just that. All around him he felt the atmosphere changing, changing for the worse.

A storm was brewing. The howling winds battered the ship from the side. The large balloon, shaped like a cement mixer, slowly deflated. The strings holding it in place were loosening. The wings folded in.

As the hesitant captain gripped the wheel of the skyship, the storm grew stronger and stronger. “Prepare to land!” Donovan called through the loud airhorn, his voice quivering. How would he land the airship in a ferocious storm like this?”

The ship was hurling towards the ground at a terrifying speed. Donovan held his breath. He was doubtful that The Vulture would be able to survive from the impact it would soon encounter. SPLASH! The Vulture gently drifted across Moose Lake.


The skyship rattled. Donovan’s stomach was still lurching as the skyship landed with a thud in a vast, blue lake. The two crewmates were thrown of their feet, sliding across the floorboards. Exhausted and surprised, Donovan clambered onto his feet, gripping onto the railings. He was mesmerized by his surroundings.

Glittering water stretched out all around him, bringing gentle waves lapping onto the sides of the wooden aircraft. The lake carried on for a great distance, disappearing at the horizon. A slimy green frog leapt from its lilypad, vanishing beneath the surface and leaving a small ripple getting bigger every second. Swarms of fish sprang to life as the bulrushes waved their long, thick arms. Rooted into the riverbank were many trees and a stump with a swirly pattern in the center.

Thirty minutes later, all the repairing items were ready and in place. The correct thread to fix the gap in the balloon, and glue to mend the sides of the battered ship. Once everything had been arranged, the ship was ready to take off. The wings of The Vulture unfolded. Donovan reclaimed his seat as the captain. The engine burst to life.

But just then, Donovan heard the sound that he dreaded hearing the most.

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