Fiction

Eureka!

Simon Stoica-Bodor


It was a rainy time of the season in California. Jacob couldn’t afford a lift by taxi, so he had to go home alone in the rain with wet socks on his feet. 

Two hours previously, when the principal of his school asked him to write an essay about how he feels about being the best and most successful student of the facility, he didn’t mean to say yes, but for an unknown reason he accepted the assignment. He wrote a very long text (since the principal said it must be four or more pages) about his further goals and about how he got here. He mentioned how hard it was to prioritize between his hobbies, and how he wanted to live his life and attempt not to have any regrets when throwing back to his past in the future. 

Jacob finished it even though it took away ten hours of his life (as though being the smartest kid in the school hadn’t already required enough time). 

The final stage was to read it out loud in front of the whole school the next day. He took it seriously, but he was very tired after the working hours. Without packing the composition, he fell asleep behind his desk and left the papers there.

The day when he had to read his story, he was looking for his writing, but he couldn’t find it. He looked around the table three times, and around his bed. – It just can’t be possible! – he said. – I left it over here!! After a quarter-hour treasure hunt, he stopped and began to worry. His mother saw her son in trouble, so she went straight upstairs for him. She said they should look for the papers behind the desk, maybe they could have slid between the desk and the wall. She was right. The composition was there.

Jacob shouted out: – Eureka!!! This means “I have found it” in Greek. Jacob was very thankful for his mother, so he hugged her and ran down the stairs to get ready for his speech. Funny that the smartest person (among teenagers) forgot to think for fifteen minutes. I guess even the smartest kid can make mistakes.

The Hawaiian Love Story

Viktória Kamarás


There was a girl with wavy black hair and brown skin. She was very pretty and had the perfect life, and also a pig. This pig was two months old, with brown spots on its body and a curly tail.

One day she went to school and saw a very sympathetic boy there. They had the same instrument class together, and he played guitar while she played ukulele.On the next day she was practicing ukulele along the river when the boy appeared and sat next to her. She was embarrassed and shy; the boy fell in love with her and talked about his life and what was happening around him. The girl listened to him actively and was a part of the conversation. She found out that he also had a pig, similar to the girl’s. At the end of the school year they went to each other’s house to celebrate the year with some brown-sugar-grilled pineapple. They had a great time together chatting, eating and laughing. Together they played with their pigs and also became friends.

One day the boy went to the girl’s hut and spilled his feelings and told her that he loved her more than a friend. And the girl felt the same way, so they told their parents and they agreed too. They got married on a pineapple field because when they were children they used to eat pineapple together. The wedding cake was pineapple flavored. Later they had two children and a pig.

They have been in a healthy marriage ever since then, and they are very happy.

Missouri

Petra Bardócz


I was sitting in my living room, laptop in my lap as I was looking through America’s cheapest states to live in. You see, me and my mother were about to move back to America, having left the country when I was five. Sadly, along the way my parents got a divorce, so we had to move out from my father’s place, and that is why we need to find a new place. Right now we are crashing at my mom’s sister’s place. It’s kind of nice if I’m being honest. I like how quiet it is and at the same time, I really like ‘Aunty O’ too. She’s one of the coolest people I’ve ever met.

Why am I looking for not-so-expensive houses and affordable states, you may ask? The particular reason for that circumstance is that my family from my mother’s side is not exactly the kind of family you would call rich. Let’s just say we are in the lower middle class, a family with average people.

So as I was looking for the perfect state, an idea popped into my head. Science I am a big Marvel fan I decided to check out Missouri. In the Marvel Cinematic Universe Missouri is where Star Lord, also known as Peter Quill, was born in 1962, on February 4. To my surprise, Missouri seemed like an affordable state, so I dug deeper in information.

To begin with, I found out that many well-known musicians were born or have lived in Missouri. These include guitarist and rock pioneer Chuck Berry, singer and actress Josephine Baker and even the “Queen of Rock,” Tina Turner. My eyes brightened as I read all of this.

Furthermore, Missouri is the native state of Mark Twain. His novels The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn are both set in his boyhood hometown of Hannibal. Moreover, I found out that the filmmaker, animator and businessman Walt Disney spent part of his childhood in the Linn County town of Marceline before settling in Kansas City. Disney began his artistic career in Kansas City, where he founded the Laugh-O-Gram Studio.

These were also very promising news; I love Disney and his work. I think I am able to say that he is one of my role models. I cannot really explain why, it’s just what it is.

As I was scrolling deeper in Missouri’s history, my eye got caught on a year: 1904. This was the year when Missouri hosted the Summer Olympics at St. Louis. It was also the first time the games were hosted in the United States. I had mixed feelings after reading it, because watching the Olympics was mine and my father’s thing. One interest that we shared, and now he had left us, me with this unfilled empty hole in me that I feel like no one can ever fill or replace.

Anyways, I quickly shook off the feeling, got up from the couch, and ran off toward my mother to show her my research. Finally I found her in the bedroom, folding our laundry. I told her excitedly what I had found and deeply expressed my opinion on every pro and con. After a lot of talking and planning, calls and more searching, we decided that Missouri would be the state that we would move to. The only thing left for us was to find a suitable high school for me and a nearby house for sale.

At last I came upon the the pictures of Brentwood High School; it seemed very sympathetic for me even after I read through negative as well as positive comments. And for our luck, we also found a house just some blocks away from the school. I feel like this was meant to be, and let’s hope so that it is.

Missouri, here we come!

In God We Trust

Koppány Munkácsi


This story takes place in the USA’s state of Florida. Jimmy was spending his summer vacation at his grandparents’ house. Sometimes he felt alone, he needed a friend. He loved animals, especially reptiles, not just because they are cold-blooded, but in his childish mind, they are very cool. After some serious days of begging, his ancestors finally took him to the local ZOO. He felt joy inside his chest. This was the time for him to shine and show off the knowledge he had from years of watching National Geographic. They did not even reach the Reptile Section before the grandparents were already amazed by the amount of new information they had heard, not just from the guide, but from one of their loved ones. Finally, the moment we all have been waiting for, and the reason why Jimmy prayed every night…

His true friends. The alligators were his favourites, he kept dreaming about petting one. He even drew drawings about their friendship, with the title “In God We Trust.” Overall this was an unforgettable memory for the family. They decided it was time to go home. On the way, they stopped at a beautiful park, where they spent some time. Jimmy had his luck with him; he saw an alligator. While the old people were busy chatting, he snuck away and tried to interact with the animal. Which luckily took it easy and did not hurt our main character. The relatives discovered what was happening and took the child to a safe place, where they all said the same thing, “In God We Trust.”

Jimmy said this because his dream and prayer became reality. The grandparents said it with a sigh because nothing cruel happened that day.

Happy End!

I Couldn’t Believe My Eyes

Szonja Lengyel


I turned fifteen today and decided to hold a party. I got lots of gifts from my friends and, to my surprise. I got sunglasses, a suitcase, a camera that’s often used by tourists and a set with a travel blanket and pillow. I was confused and didn’t understand why I got any of these items. I loved to travel but my family wasn’t planning on going anywhere right now. Or so I thought. It turned out that the biggest gift that my parents gave me was a plane ticket to New York.

The Big Apple had been on my bucket list since I was a small child. After the party my mother told me to start packing, as the plane would be leaving the next morning at 9 a.m. I couldn’t sleep all night because I was extremely excited. My alarm clock went off at 5 a.m., I got ready and stormed down to the kitchen to eat something before we left. I prepared everything the night before, so my only job was to check everything before we went out the door. Even though I didn’t feel tired, I slept through the long flight. After we arrived at the hotel and checked into our room, we decided to relax a little and plan what we were going to do the next day. A few days passed by and we visited lots of places, for example Times Square, some fascinating museums such as The Metropolitan Museum of Art and and American Museum of Natural History, as well as other exciting places, like the Empire State Building and Madame Tussauds. On day three we decided to stop by the Statue of Liberty. I walked around to take some pictures of the statue and the city view from the island, while my parents climbed to the café at the top of the statue. When I finished taking pictures I decided to head inside and use the lift so I would save some time, but as the lift started moving it went down instead of up. I got confused and scared, not knowing what was going on. A few minutes later the lift stopped and the door opened. I carefully stepped out and saw a huge room. The air was damp and cold, I could barely see anything.I got my phone out of my pocket and turned on the flashlight. I was shocked to see lots of tables with things on them. I couldn’t see the things because every single one of them was covered with a huge white textile. I was curious so I walked over to the closest one and took the blanket off. It was a small replica of an island with a building on it. I read the note attached to the mock-up: “Ellis Island, New York State.” I looked closer and saw tiny little people dressed up in 1920s-style clothing. They were moving….. They were living. I couldn’t believe my eyes.The building on Ellis Island Served as the main immigration processing center and hospital from 1892 to 1954. I walked to a different table and pulled the textile down. This one said “George Eastman House and the International Museum of Photography and Film, Rochester, New York State.”  I saw tiny people taking photographs of the newly built wonderful building. I walked to another table and saw Niagara Falls. Tiny people were present in this replica as well. I had so many questions at that point. “Why are all of these mock-ups here?” “Who are these tiny people?” “What are they using these small structures for?” But I knew one thing, which is that I was not supposed to see this. I quickly took some pictures with my camera and put everything back the way I found it.

I heard footsteps and talking echoing from the other side of the room, so I quickly got into the lift and went up to the Crown Café. I ordered a sandwich and a hot tea and sat down with my parents. I kept thinking about the things I had seen under the statue. But I knew one thing; I am definitely going back there to investigate.

Coming Back

Dorka Kovács


Besides the whistling of the wind and the screeching noise of the engine, the only thing that could be heard was the music humming softly from the radio. Through the windscreen you could see the beautiful landscape: the towering mountain peaks, the pine trees heavy with snow, and the sky bright with stars. Fresh air flowed in through the downrolled window, which came straight from the mountains and brought with it the typical chilly weather of December. The heart of the man driving the car became filled with warmth, pride, and childlike joy, as he recognized the characteristics of the state where he had spent most of his childhood. Growing up here, he had got used to the very long winters, extreme temperature swings, deep valleys, green forests and rolling hills. He still remembers all the art classes where they had to draw the bighorn sheep and the state animal, the grizzly bear. Or the jersey he would wear when the Montana Grizzlies basketball team was playing. The taste of the delicious fruitcake and the creamy, luscious eggnog made by his mother could never be replaced by any other. Being a senior at the University of California, he hadn’t exactly had the time to travel home to Montana lately. However, with the arrival of December and the mistletoe hanging in the doorways, the winter break had also begun.

That is how he ended up driving on the highway in Montana, heading to his parents’ house. He has been to many places in the world; however, as the old tag has it, “east west home’s best.” It doesn’t matter how exhilarating the travels are; he is always thrilled to come home.

The Story of the Potatoes and Fries

Lili Barta


In the past, potatoes used to be very different than they are now. These little creatures lived in Idaho, which is still famous for its potatoes. I’m saying “little creatures” because they were freely moving around in the wild with their little arms and legs. Eating potatoes was the habit of wealthy people, as it was hard to hunt them.

A very wealthy woman who lived in Idaho liked eating potatoes even more than others did. She could eat potatoes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. When she was thirsty she drank potato juice, and when she was craving something sweet she had some potato cake. One day she woke up and told her chef to make her some potatoes for breakfast. The chef told her that hunters couldn’t hunt any potatoes that morning because they ran away too fast. The woman got really mad and told her hunters to find every potato in the state and cut off its legs and arms. It took the hunters five days, but they came back with all the legs and arms of the potatoes. The woman asked her chef to fry the limbs. This new type of potato became her new favourite dish, and she called them fries. From that day all potatoes lived without limbs, so it was easy to get them, and the cut-off limbs became everyone’s favourite snack.

And this is why potatoes are just irregularly shaped roots now, and that is how fries were made.

Surprise Destination

Odett Tajti


The ship just arrived at the port of New York. Anna got off board and then had to walk to the parking area where her uncle was waiting for her. She felt so tired because she had never traveled by cruise ship before and the journey had lasted for two days and she couldn’t sleep well.

As she got closer to the parked cars she saw a middle-aged man waving at her. It was her uncle. He was standing next to his old-fashioned blue vehicle, and he had a big lovely smile on his face. After packing the suitcase in the back, they hit the road.

On the way to the home of her uncle, Anna shared her experiences of the cruise. She told everything. How she travelled by train to France with her mother and how she met those interesting strangers on the ship. The people who were full of stories and energy. The French model, the Russian engineer, and the good-mannered British singer. The meeting seemed unbelievable for her, because in her country she had never met so many different people her age.

After three hours of driving they finally got to the house. They spent the rest of the day talking. Anna was promised that tomorrow they would go back to New York.

When the girl got to bed she was exhausted, but she couldn’t fall asleep. She was thinking about the next day and hoping that she would meet somebody from the ship someday.

In the morning around ten o’clock she was looking out of the window of the blue car, which was heading towards the big city on a highway. Her aunt was talking to her about what Anna should definitely visit and see. Luckily Sára, Anna’s oldest cousin, came with them to accompany Anna in the city.

New York was the soul of the American Dream in the eye of every foreigner. The city had an extremly gripping athmosphere and energy, which charmed everyone who visited the megapolis. In the streets the people felt like they were part of something, something big and special.

Anna felt the same. She was amazed by the  noisy streets, the crowded roads, and the high, bright and  strange buildings, of which she had never even dreamed. The girls started their sightseeing on Times Square. Anna couldn’t even close her eyes because she wanted to see everything, every single detail. The big screens, the flashing signs on the buildings, and the people around her.

They spent some hours in the shops and department stores and then decided to see Central Park. The girls took a bus and went there.

The park was the complete opposite of the beating city. It meant calmness, safety, and silence for the people living in the center of New York. Anna saw playgrounds, where children were playing, big old trees, which gave a home to sweet squirrels and various kind of birds, and grassy fields covered with picnicking people.

The girls were standing on the walking path when Anna saw a familiar figure among the strangers. She couldn’t  believe her eyes, because the young man, who was sitting in front of them on a bench, seemed to be the English boy from the ship. Anna told her cousin to go up to him.

– Hi – said Anna nervously and waited until the man looked up at her.

At that moment she saw the familiar green eyes and the square face shape with the strong cheekbones.

He also recognised the girl and hugged her.

– Hi, I’m Matthew. Nice to meet you! – he introduced himself to Sára and shook her hand kindly.

The three started talking, and then Matthew said that he had to go, because he was going to perform with his band in a club nearby and they had to practice before. He invited the girls to the concert, and they accepted it.

Hours passed and it was time for the party at a jazz club, thirty minutes far from the Park. Anna and Sára waited excitedly in the back of the bar.

The club had a gracious interior, the walls were decorated with photos and posters, and place was lit with different coloured lamps, which gave it a futuristic but familiar vibe.

The concert started.

The musicians came up to the  stage. The drummer, the guitarist and Matthew , who was carrying a bass guitar with him. As they reached their places they immediately started playing. The audience got energized, they started jumping on the beat and screaming the songs at the top of their lungs.

The band played skillfully, all of them were talented and had great musical sense. The guitarist played quikckly and he made incredible jazzy (and rocky) inprovisations, which at some times sounded harsh and at other times soft. The drummer used varied beats and gave so much power to the band and his presence made the show and the music uncommon. And then there was the singer, Matthew. He didn’t have a flawless voice, but it was raspy and filled with power, sometines  even clean and soft, he kept it in balance.

While the band was playing, the people in front of the stage went through all kinds of emotions. The whole show felt like a dream, after which you only remember small things and the feeling that filled you up.

Too Many Days in France

Emese Kassai


I planned every single detail of the trip. Obviously, it still didn’t go the way I wanted.

I couldn’t sleep the night before the flight, I was extremely excited. Probably that was one of the reasons that I had to run as fast as I could, so I was able to catch my flight to Paris. The plane took off, and I, being relieved after my rush, could finally rest. I watched the clouds beside us turning from white and fluffy to the most gorgeous shades of orange, red and purple. I could see lights from the cities below us.

After the landing, I grabbed my bags and caught a bus that would take me to my hotel. I was basically stuck up against the window. Looking at the old, lighted up streets of Paris felt like I was dropped into another century. I got so caught up in the view that I almost missed my stop. My hotel was only a few blocks away from the bus stop, so after fifteen minutes, I was already in my room, checking if I had everything. I had only booked my room for two nights, which doesn’t seem like much, but it would have been just enough for me. Anyway, I ate my last sandwich for a very late dinner, then literally fell in the bed and didn’t get up, until my alarm went off.

The first day was the most exciting. In the morning I went to a little, old-fashioned bakery, where I had to try some traditional croissants and some other pastries, next to my usual morning coffee. After breakfast I went sightseeing. I strolled across old and new streets bathing in the sun, rambled in a park filled with the smell of roses and freshly cut grass, and took at least a hundred pictures just of the Eiffel tower. I felt like all my stress had disappeared. Then I got back to the hotel. They refused to give me food. That only gave me back all of my stress. I missed lunch and there was still one hour until dinner. Have I mentioned that I was starving at that point? Finally, after I begged for something to eat, one of the cooks offered me a cheese plate. I happily accepted.

18:05. That was the time, I had to leave to arrive at the concert on time. I decided to walk instead of taking the bus again. Thankfully, I didn’t get lost, and I got to the concert just in time.

I had the time of my life at the concert. I was screaming, singing and jumping. I took so many photos and videos that my phone storage has filled up. I laughed, and I felt like Paris was the best place ever. I was dog-tired by the time I got back to the hotel, and I still couldn’t sleep. I just kept grinning like some teenager who just got a message from their crush. For an hour. Then I fell asleep. Next day I felt like all the muscles in my body had been torn apart. And that was just the beginning.

I packed my bags and went to catch a bus to the airport. As I was about to check in, the loudspeaker spoke.

“Attention! Attention! We would like to inform our passengers that due to a technical problem all the flights from Paris to Budapest have been canceled for two days. For further information please go to the information counter. “

For a few minutes I didn’t understand. Then it hit me. That was my flight.

After my great discovery I was practically broken. I had no place to sleep and almost no more money to spend. I just wanted to lie down on the ground and cry. Sadly, that wouldn’t have helped, so I pulled myself together and went to find an information counter. A lady stood there with a big, fake smile. Great. According to her badge her name was Marie. With high hopes, I told her my problem and politely asked for advice. She told me that I could go back home on the next flight. Obviously, Marie couldn’t help me find a place to sleep. I wanted to cry again. I took a deep breath, grunted out a “Thank you” and walked away. I kept thinking about a solution. I could have slept at the airport of course, but for two days? They would have probably tossed me out. I didn’t have enough money to book a room for another two nights. I definitely didn’t want to sleep on the street and I didn’t know anyone who lived in Paris. I searched for a motel, or a youth hostel near the airport on my phone, but all of them were above my budget. I felt hopeless, so I started crying. Of course that did not help with my situation or with anything else at all. A few people stared at me. I really wanted to go home. After three minutes I decided to stop crying. After another three minutes I actually did stop crying. I was in Paris. I spoke French. Somehow I had to find a solution. I looked at my phone again. I searched: universities in Paris. I thought that there must be a uni nearby with dorms and maybe some of the college students could help me stay alive for two days. And I was right. I found a uni near the airport. It was time to socialize.

I still do not understand how, but my plan worked. It was late at night and I was sitting in a bed, chatting with a bunch of college students. We all were almost the same age, so we could easily find a common subject. I already told my mom about the plane, and how I solved the problem. She said she was proud of me, and I was pretty satisfied with myself too.

I spent the next day with my new roommates. It was Saturday, so they didn’t have to go to school and they insisted on showing me the city. I accepted my fate and let them take me from one place to another. I was laughing and walking all day long. At night I went to a party with my new friends, and it was almost as awesome as the concert.

They even came with me to the airport. We hugged goodbye, and they made me promise that I would tell them when I got home safe and sound, and that I would visit them someday.

The airplane landed. I was still smiling like a dumb teenager.

Running Late

Bernadett Sági


Rose started her day just as always. It was a Thursday morning, which meant she had to go to work. She was a financial manager for a quite large company, and she lived for her job, trying to do her best every day throughout the year. On that Thursday morning, looking at the clock, she realized  she was late. Getting ready in a hurry, Rose left her apartment with less than fifteen minutes to get to the building of her company. She rushed along the way between her flat and workplace while giving finishing touches to her hair. Stopping at the crosswalk in front of the company, she started panicking. She had already imagined her boss firing her, making all of her hard work meaningless. Staring at the red lights across the street she became more and more worried. Then she suddenly heard a loud crashing noise from behind and instantly turned her head towards the sound. Not very far from her Rose saw two  cars clearly bump into each other. Everything around them turned silent; people who were also in a hurry  stopped, and everybody was looking at the scene in front of them. They just stood there not knowing what to do with the situation. After a few seconds of shock, people slowly went about their business one by one, leaving the street. Rose looked around and saw that nobody seemed to help. She made a small step towards the cars because she really wanted to do something. But then she took a look at her watch and realized that she had nearly five minutes to get to work. The lights at her crosswalk turned green and she hesitated. She made a rapid decision and walked through the crossing all the way to her workplace, then stopped at the entrance. She took a glance back at the crashed cars and felt relieved as a man hurried to the vehicles, checking if anybody was hurt. He was holding a phone to his ears, probably calling the ambulance. Rose slowly turned again and opened the door. She stepped in, ready to start her day.

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