A Long Way From Home

Willow, a ten year old girl has to team up with some unlikely friends to bring colour back to the world.

Willow Chapman sat in the back seat of the car in silence, as her family burst into another rousing chorus of ‘she’ll be coming around the mountain’, in perfect harmony. Mr. and Mrs. Chapman were both semi-successful actors and were possibly the nicest people you could ever hope to meet. Unfortunately, ‘nice’ wasn’t necessarily interesting.

The Chapman family lived in an old detached cottage on Norma Lane just on the outskirts of West Lovell Lea, an old port village situated on the south coast. Their home was stereotypically nice but uninteresting; a white picket fence, crawling ivy and an abundance of carefully selected pastel coloured flowers that burst from every available flowerbed. It matched virtually every other home on the street. The most interesting thing about the boring little cottage was its name; The Star Garden.

The Star Garden had been home to Willow and her siblings all their lives. Mr. and Mrs. Chapman weren’t fond of moving, far too much stress. Besides, according to Mrs. Chapman, it was 'nice enough' where they were.

Right now, however, the family were on the long journey up to Norfolk to visit their great Aunt Dorothy. Every year the whole Chapman family would gather in the little village of Old Dwimoor and, as far as Willow could tell, tell each other really boring stories. Willow didn’t like her great Aunt Dorothy’s house. She thought it smelt funny, and there was nothing to do. The one thing she was looking forward to was seeing her cousins Ross and Kinney who came all the way from Scotland. Mr. Chapman described their family as the ‘naughty Chapmans’, and they certainly lived up to this nickname.

Last summer Kinney had been playing with Ross and Willow in the dining room and had accidentally set one of great Aunt Dorothy’s doilies on fire. He left that incident with one less eyebrow. Willow loved her cousins from Scotland – they were always talking about going on adventures and it sounded even better in their funny accents. 

'Why don't you join in honey?' Mr. Chapman called back, ensuring he never took his eyes off the road, 'we're nearly there! You don't want to miss out do you?'

Willow knew she wouldn't miss out. She knew that she'd get to sing every night for the next month and a half as the family gathered around the bonfire to sing camp songs and eat a maximum of two marshmallows each.

The End

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