Created By: Paige Harrington & Rebecca Roger
On Twitter @Katy_Durant
"My Crazy Aunt Mari"
It was no surprise that my aunt was weird. If the way she talked and dressed didn't give it away, then her house sure did. Aunt Marianne was the talk of the town, and when you lived in a small town like I did, there wasn't much else to talk about. So, you can only imagine my excitement when my parents told me I would be staying with her while they vacationed in Jamaica.
"I just don't get why I have to stay with her, she's so weird," I grumbled in the car on the way to her house.
"Katy, it's only for a week. It'll be good for you to get to know her better," my mother replied in a very exasperated tone.
"Hmmph, that's not fair," I complained, and continued to stare angrily out the window at the passing fields and scarce mountains.
After about half an hour of driving and complaining, we arrived at the ten storey building in which my Aunt resides. I guess you could say she’s kind of rich. Her place looks like an apartment building, except each floor looks like it’s made of a bunch of scrap metal boxes; each one placed more and more crooked then the last, and she owns it all. I guess my brother was a little more excited than me to be here because he jumped out of the car and ran straight into my Aunt's bear hug.
“Joshy, how’s my favourite nephew?!” Aunt Mari exclaimed.
I followed slowly behind them, hauling my huge bag up the steps as my Aunt let go of my brother and turned her attention to me.
“Oh Katy, how you’ve grown! Do you need help with your bag?” Aunt Mari says, giving me a kiss on the cheek.
“Hi Auntie Mari, I’m fine thanks.”
Once we were finished our greetings and my parents said their goodbyes, Josh and I were told to pick our own room, because after all there were about a million of them. I picked the purple one on the sixth floor. Far enough from everything but not too far away that I would be isolated from everything. Josh picked a room just down the hall from me. It had green walls with these weird dinosaur stamps all over the ceiling. It was kind of childish but it had a huge bed and a TV in it, so I understand why he chose it.
Once I was settled and had explored the sixth floor, I decided to see what the rest of the building was like. I walked out of my room, but before entering the elevator I called out to Josh.
“Hey Josh, wanna go exploring?” I yelled down the hall.
“Yeah!” he said, poking his head out the door and running to catch up with me.
We got into the elevator and stood there for a minute, debating which of the nine other floors to check out first.
“Up or down?” I asked Josh.
“Let’s go….down,” he said and hit the button to the second floor.
I don’t think either of us expected what we saw; the entire floor was designed like a green house. The walls were all made of glass and the room was lit entirely by sunlight. There were plants and trees everywhere, flowers of all colours. I couldn’t identify any of them, but they all looked tropical. It was gorgeous! Right in the center of the room there was a table. It was white but the paint was chipping to reveal the wood underneath it. It had four matching chairs around it, all with the same white paint. If it wasn’t in a house it might have been a normal sight. We looked around for a bit before proceeding to the next floor, three.
We stepped onto the floor and were faced with a hallway. It was long and narrow, with doors on both sides and a huge set of double doors at the end. I started opening a few but the rooms looked pretty average, some designed like bedrooms and some like bathrooms. I hadn’t noticed that Josh had skipped all the side doors and went straight to the end door. He swung open the huge doors and you could see what looked like a zoo. There were wild animals everywhere; it was equally thrilling and terrifying. They weren’t normal house pets either, from where I stood I could see a lion, tiger and zebra and by the noise level I could tell there were more we couldn’t see. It smelled absolutely horrible, you could definitely tell there was more than one type of exotic animal living here. Josh got a little ahead of me and turned a corner out of sight while I walked slowly up to the lion’s cage. He was huge, but he seemed tame behind the vintage, gold bars of the cage. Just as I turned around to look at the tiger behind me, I heard Josh yell.
“Oh my god, what the heck is this?!” he let out. He didn’t sound scared, just shocked.
I jogged around the corner and stopped dead in my tracks when I saw what he was talking about. It was in a glass cage and wasn’t much bigger than a dog, but it definitely wasn’t a dog.
“Is that a dragon?” Josh asked stepping towards the cage.
“It can’t be a dragon,” I replied, following him. Although I was doubting myself, it did sort of look like a dragon. It had green and blue scales that covered his entire body, and sharp yellow horns coming out of its head.
“It doesn’t have wings,” I said to Josh. “It can’t be a dragon. Dragons have wings.”
“Yeah, but look at his claw feet, and weird horns,” he answered, pointing his finger at them.
“It must be some weird lizard,” I concluded, starting to back away.
“Not like any lizard I’ve ever seen,” Josh replied as he turned and walked to the door.
I was still looking at the animal when Josh asked if I was ready to move on. I ran down the hall to the elevator and pressed the button to the fourth floor. When we got to the floor, we were welcomed with the warm smell of freshly cooked food. I recognized the smell of fresh baked bread, and followed it into a dining room. To my surprise it looked very normal. A large table took up almost the entire room and my aunt sat at the head of it.
“Oh kids! It’s like you read my mind, I was just about to call you down for dinner,” Aunt Mari said, spreading her hands to the empty seats around her. Both Josh and I took a seat on either side of her.
“What were you guys doing?” she asked.
“Just…exploring,” Josh answered, looking at her and then smiling at me.
“Yeah, but we only got to see two floors,” I chimed in.
“You have much more to go then. But that’s okay, you have all week!” she replied, smiling at both of us.
'Hmm,' I thought to myself. 'Maybe this week won’t be as bad as I thought.'