Over the course of the next few weeks, I'll be posting my Fluberbia Novel with lessons, activities and full text! I hope you and your students enjoy them. The entire unit can be purchased in workbook form, inclusive of novel -- on Amazon by clicking the cover at left -- or you can wait and get each chapter here. Chapter 2 below and the lessons are at the end of the post! This is a great classroom read for both girls and boys.
Chapter 4: The Violet Path
The Grand Palace of Fluberbia was spectacular beyond any fairytale castle Janie had ever seen or read about. Its golden guild gleamed in the Fluberbian sunshine.
The Palace was nestled high upon a hill and it took much longer to climb the winding road leading to the massive drawbridge than Janie thought it would by just looking.
The palace was so large it just looked closer. Objects in the mirror are farther than they appear, Janie thought to herself, only she was sure it read closer on her dad’s car mirror back home.
Janie stopped when they reached what she hopefully assumed was the halfway point and looked back down the path they’d traveled, but it was gone.
She looked ahead and could only see the flowered carpeting on which they were walking about a half a mile ahead of her.
“What’s with the path?” she asked Julia.
The beautiful path of violets came and went. It was there and then it wasn’t. The flowers seemed to bloom just for them to walk upon and then disappear.
“Security. It only opens for people who are light of heart. It knows who is good and who is evil. It helps to keep bad people out of the castle. In theory anyway.”
“You sure do like that word,” Janie smiled for the first time since she arrived. “Good and bad. Almost like Santa’s naughty and nice list.”
“Who?” Julia asked.
“Wow, this is so a different world!” Janie said. “Never mind. Are we getting closer?”
“A few more miles.”
The castle was triangular and perfectly symmetrical, with a layout ideal for warding off invaders. Unless the invaders come in the form of a magical and angry empress who steals your parents because they try to treat you fairly, Janie thought.
The curtain walls, or outside walls, were two thick, doubling back on themselves and forming not one but two shiny golden layers of protection.
“But gold’s soft,” said Janie in more of a question than a statement. “How does it stop bullets and cannons and things like that?”
“The gold is on the outside, the inside is made of a special metal, invented by my father, out of fiber and light. Nothing can get through it.”
“It’s absolutely beautiful,” Janie said, truly in awe.
At each of the triangular points was a tower and the front point had two towers. Each tower had a lovely porch with jewel-encrusted awnings.
The fortress literally glistened. Its pink and purple walls, with gold gilding, shined up into the sky, causing the illusion of a halo hovering over the entire structure.
“Those porches don’t look so very secure,” Janie pointed out matter-of-factly.
“We don’t really have any invaders. Not since Empress Ephora kidnapped my parents. There used to be great armies that came to challenge our family’s right to rule the kingdom. Now, everyone is so afraid of the Empress, and the spell she’s cast upon us, they don’t come near. Did I mention the Empress is my great aunt and she sort of divided the kingdom?” Julia leaned in and whispered to Janie. “Besides, I think they like the way my sister rules. She is nice and treats everyone the same – fairly you know? She may have stumbled on to the secret of good government.”
“We’re just now studying government at my school. I don’t know much about it.”
“Near as we can tell, it is all about being respectful and nice even when you do not feel like it.”
Janie shrugged. “Probably especially when you don’t feel like it.”
“We learned that you have to take people’s money to give them the things they need: police, hospitals, roads, but my sister is really good at not taking too much and letting people figure things out on their own. If you give people the chance they usually try to do the right thing. Well, mostly anyway. She also worked with the people and passed a Fluberbian Declaration of Citizen Rights.”
“We have a Bill of Rights – protects our freedoms and stuff,” Janie added.
“Yep, that’s what ours does. I hope my father listens to her when we free him.”
The bats took a lap around Janie’s stomach. We have to free him, she thought, because I need to get home!
“We live mostly in the front two towers,” Julia pointed up the hill. “See, the bridge between the two?”
“It’s a heated pool with a slide and a diving board.”
“Cool,” Janie said, noticing how hot it was here in Fluberbia and how a good swim would make her feel better.
“We are pretty modern here, television, the Extranet…”
“Extranet?” Janie asked. “What is the Extranet?”
“Well, it is really what you call your Internet,” Julia said. “See, my father is a brilliant engineer and he figured out a way to harness the signals of other worlds. We can watch earth’s television, tap into the Internet and even download movies. We call it the Extranet – because it really is just full of extra things to do. You know when the important things like reading and playing and going to school, are done. We also get signals from Globia, Miopa and Flannet, but they do not have reality TV like you all do. I love my reality TV.”
“Whoa,” Janie was surprised.
Janie watched the road before her unfold in a symphony of flowers.
The smell of violets was intoxicating and made her almost forget where she was and that there was a good possibility she would never ever actually see home ever again.
She looked behind her, and just as quickly as they appeared, they were gone. The flowers that made the path faded into the dirt as if they never existed.
It made Janie sad. What if that was going to happen to her? What if, by falling into the flower, she just faded off into the dirt and was gone and nobody on earth would ever remember she existed?
“Janie? Janie? We’re here,” Julia nudged her back to present.
Chapter 4 Lessons Link