• Chapter one: The clock tower

    Early morning fell over the little island of Cessal, clouds hung gray in the sky and the ground was still wet from an over night rain. The city of cessal lay quite under a dense layer of sea fog, just then the awakening sound of the clock tower tolling the sound of exactly 8’o clock brought the city of cessal to life. Horse drawn buggies made their way triumphantly up the cobblestone streets, people began emerging from their homes and lights in businesses turned on an almost harmonizing way. On the far side of the island there was a tiny sliver of land held to cessal by two bridges, an above ground bridge and an under water bridge. On the small piece of land were the suburbs of cessal city, a tiny town called Devlin. Because Devlin was so small the houses and convent stores were literally clustered on top of one another.

    The houses were boarding houses meaning they could contain more then one family, like Jenna and her family. But Jenna’s family was small it only consisted of her, her grandmother, and her grandfather. Jenna didn’t really have parents, they left her when she was small and her grandparents have been there for her ever since. She also has an aunt and uncle whom she dislikes and two little twin cousins that she calls “the little monsters!” that come to visit every summer from a far away place called the continent.
    The continent is a place that has very little known about it, but has been said to be where the people of cessal came from along time ago.

    In one of the boarding houses there was a small room, a bed room to be exact and in the bed room there was only a brown wooden bed with white sheets. Next to the bed there was a tiny wooden nightstand with an old fashioned alarm clock gold in color, the face of the little alarm clock was white and had little black markers instead of numbers to tell the time. On top sat two little bells with a hammer like object set between them awaiting its chance to ring the little bells. The room was quite and the sunlight from the early morning sun breaking threw the dense sea fog dipped golden through the window and made a square shape on the floor, which tiny dust particles floated threw and settled down on the floor near by. The tiny clock sat motionless on the nightstand, the early morning sun glinting off its golden exterior.

    Just then an ear splitting ring broke the silence of the room and the little alarm clock jumped around erratically, bouncing about the nightstand. A hand slowly emerged from the jumble of white sheets and comforters and clumsily felt around looking for the little alarm clock, accidentally knocking it off the nightstand on to the floor. At the sound of the alarm clock hitting the floor Jenna sat up rather quickly, she sleepily reached over the side of the bed and snatched up the annoying little thing and turned it off. The room fell silent once more “stupid alarm clock.” Said Jenna as she set the alarm clock back on her night stand “I’d rather be sleeping right now.” she fell back in to her pillow and stared up at the ceiling. “Jenna! It’s time to get up!” a shrill voice called up the stairs, “okay, okay! Grandma” Jenna called back “I’m up!” Jenna then crawled out of bed and over to her closet, she pulled out a plain white t-shirt and a green plaid skirt, white stockings and a pair of red rain boots. After getting changed out of her white night gown, she went to the bathroom and brushed her teeth. She then combed out her long brownish hair; she looked her self over in the mirror her pretty green-blue eyes stared back at her along with every thing else.

    After a whole minuet of staring at her self in the bathroom mirror she headed down stairs, where she met up with her grandma and grandpa. Her grandmother stood in the kitchen as Jenna past by “well good morning sleepy head!” her grandmother said jokingly “good morning” Jenna chuckled. She plopped down in a seat at the table in front of her grandfather who was reading the morning news “good morning grandpa!” Jenna said happily as she plopped in her seat. Her grand father peered over his news paper and smiled “good morning Jenna” he said. “Find anything interesting to read?” she asked her grandfather, he looked over his news paper “well” he said “stock markets are down again.” He sighed and placed his news paper on the kitchen table.

    Jenna looked over at her grandmother who was fussing about the kitchen, whipping pots and pans around like a chief in a fancy restaurant. “What’s for breakfast?” she asked,
    Her grandmother turned around to face her “bacon and eggs!” she said whole heartedly.
    “Sounds good!” Jenna replied, her grandmother placed a plate down in front of her, and then set a plate down for Jenna’s grandfather, then set one down for herself.
    “After your done eating Jenna” her grandmother said “I need you to run to the market and pick me up a few things.” “What for?” Jenna asked with a mouth full of eggs “your aunt, uncle, and cousins are coming for the winter months from the continent and I want to make a big dinner for them.” She told Jenna “ oh alright” Jenna grumbled “I hate those people.”

    When Jenna finished her breakfast she leaned back in her chair and rested her feet on the table. She looked out the window at the darkening sky “awe” she said “its going to rain isn’t it.” “I am afraid so” her grandma said collecting her dish from the table “and feet of the table!” she said smacking Jenna’s feet on to the floor. “Well” said Jenna “I’m heading down to the market!” “Don’t forget to wear a jacket and a scarf!” Her grandma called out after her. Jenna went to the closet by the front door and pulled out an old tan trench coat and a tattered blue, green, black, and white scarf and wrapped it around her neck.

    It was just starting to rain when Jenna stepped out the door, she headed down the path toward the cobblestone road which leads to the city. She crossed over the big above Ground Bridge and when she got half way into the city she came across a horse drawn buggy, just inside the city limits right off the end of the bridge. The driver was sprawled out over the driver’s seat snoring away. “Mr. Collins ?” she asked “is that you?” Mr. Collins was a good friend of the family, he knew Jenna’s grandfather from back in the times of war when Cessal was just an island of refuges. “Wha-what?” asked Mr. Collins a bit startled. “It’s me” said Jenna “oh! Hello Jenna.” He said “it’s been a while.” “Do you think you can give me a ride to the market?” Jenna asked “of course I can!” said Mr. Collins “hop on” she then jumped in the driver’s seat next to Mr. Collins and they road off into the city of Cessal.

    As the horse galloped down the cobblestone road Jenna watched as big buildings passed her by, but only one caught her eye the clock tower. “Hmm” she thought to her self “that clock tower has always caught my eye ever since I was a little kid.” Mr. Collins looked over at Jenna and saw that she was watching the clock tower as they road by. “Have you ever heard the story about that clock tower?” he asked her “no” said Jenna “but I would like to hear it!” “Alright” said Mr. Collins “this story begins quite a few years ago” he began “it starts right in this very city!” he exclaimed “a little boy named Damien Wellsburg once lived here and he always played by the clock tower. One year for his 10th birthday he got a slingshot and he loved it. He took it every where with him and he even brought it to school to show his friends. One day he went to the market with his mother and brought the slingshot with him, he went to play by the clock tower when he noticed a crow pecking at the ground near by.

    So he pulled out the slingshot and took aim at the crow, he let go of the rubber band and hit the bird right in the head killing it! And when he realized what he had done, he threw down his beloved slingshot and ran away as fast as he could but before he could reach his mother he was stopped by a woman in black wearing a long hooded cloak. “that was my crow” said the hooded woman “I’m sorry” he pleaded “I didn’t mean to kill it, I just wanted to scare it a little that’s all!” he cried “you must pay for what you did” she said “now you must live the life of a crow and feel the pain of being heated by every one you know!”

    “A what!?” Damien exclaimed and before he knew it he was a crow! “When the sun sets” said the hooded woman “you will begin life as a crow, when the sun rises you will become human again. But if you can’t find some one who will you love weather you be a crow or not then you will for ever remain a crow.” As the boy grew older he became a shamed of who he had become, and some say that he now resides in the clock tower in front of which he used to play, and that is the story of the cessal clock tower.” Mr. Collins told Jenna “wow” Jenna said “that was an amazing story!” “Well” said Mr. Collins “we’re at the market!” “Thanks for the ride” Jenna said as she jumped off the driver’s seat. “No problem” Mr. Collins said.

    As Jenna walked toward the little out door market she heard two voices calling out to her, they belonged to her friends Bridget and Ruby. As they shopped she told them the story that Mr. Collins had told her earlier. “wow” thought Bridget and Ruby “a boy living in the clock tower cursed by a witch to live as a crow.”