Sunday, July 26, 2009

Chapter 2 "The Rainbow"

Question to Madeleine: Where do Madebonne & Henry go on the other side of the drain?

Answer: Purple pillow, sky, rainbow

Madebonne was stretching with all her might and she was concerned. That morning her mother had turned into a gold fish while she was doing laps in the bath tub and then had slipped down the drain. Now Madebonne was diving down the drain to find her so that her Fairy Godmother could change her back into a mom. But the drain was very dark and even though she was stretching and stretching, the drain was very tight. Where was this drain going anyway? Just as she was about to get scared, Henry gave her foot a furry squeeze. Henry was the best cat in the world and always knew how to make Madebonne feel better. So Madebonne stretched a little harder and slipped further down the drain. Very faintly ahead of her she began to see colors. What in the world could it be? Was it her mom’s glowing fish tail?

As Madebonne slid further and further down the drain the colors grew brighter and brighter until she had to squint to see. Suddenly, Madebonne felt like she was in a giant vacuum cleaner and was being sucked into the colorful lights. Henry held onto her foot for dear life. They flew out of the drain and were suddenly surrounded by thousands of blue birds. Madebonne looked around her. She and Henry were floating along on a gust of air way up in the sky. The blue birds began to twitter and tweet. One of the birds flew up to her ear.

“Excuse me long girl, who are you?’ the blue bird asked.

“I’m Madebonne,” said Madebonne realizing that she could stop stretching. Her body snapped back to normal like a rubber band. The birds tweeted approvingly.

“Nice to meet you Madebonne. And who is that on your foot?” asked the blue bird.

“That’s my cat Henry,” said Madebonne.

“Cat? CAT?” the blue bird practically screeched. All the blue birds began to zigzag back and forth hysterically. The air current threw Madebonne and Henry up and down until they felt dizzy. Henry snapped back to his normal size with a great thwak. He began to meow pathetically. But the meowing only made the birds fly around more hysterically. Madebonne knew that she had to do something, and fast, or they would plummet to the ground. Whenever she got hysterical from eating too much chocolate and flew around the house like a bumblebee on fire, her mom would sing a soothing song that would calm her right down. So Madebonne began to sing. At first the birds were tweeting so loudly that they couldn’t hear Madebonne’s song. But slowly the song began to calm them and they flapped more slowly and tweeted less loudly. Madebonne sang a little more of the song and the air current settled down. The blue birds began to tweet along to the song and soar across the sky on an even current. Poor Henry lay exhausted on Madebonne’s back and put his paws over his eyes. The blue bird flew back up to Madebonne’s ear.

“What are you doing here?” she asked.

“Where am I?” asked Madebonne.

“You’re in Section Blue,” answered the blue bird.

“Section Blue? What’s that?”

“It’s the blue section of the rainbow, of course. Are you from Section Pink?” she asked. Madebonne looked down at her pink pajamas.

“No,” she answered. “I’m from Brooklyn but I am here looking for my mother. She was turned into a gold fish and swam down the drain. So I went down the drain after her and ended up here.”

The blue bird tweeted knowingly. “Gold fish you say. She must have gone to Section Orange.”

“Section Orange? Where’s that?” asked Madebonne.

“It’s that way,” said the blue bird and pointed her beak to the left. “First you have to pass through Section Green and Section Yellow.”

But Madebonne was hardly listening. She was already heading left towards Section Orange. Henry held on tight as Madebonne cut left. In the distance she began to see a hint of green. The blue birds gladly moved out of her way as she passed by. They still weren’t too fond of Henry. Suddenly the sea of blue birds ended and so did the air current from their flapping wings. Madebonne and Henry fell with a thud onto a giant lily pad. They looked around and saw frogs hopping everywhere. This was section green alright. Madebonne stood up and walked around. The lily pad was springy so she took a little hop. The next thing she knew she was soaring through the air past hundreds of hopping frogs and landed on a lily pad a hundred feet away. She looked back towards Henry. He looked around, confused.

“I’m over here Henry,” called Madebonne. Henry’s ears perked up. He took a giant leap towards Madebonne. But cats are already good jumpers so with the help of the springy lily pad he flew way over Madebonne’s head and landed three hundred feet away. So Madebonne tried to reach Henry and then Henry tried to reach Madebonne. But they couldn’t figure out how to control their jumps and they were still hundreds of hopping frogs away from each other. Finally they collapsed with exhaustion. Madebonne looked around her. She had no idea where she was or which way to head for Section Orange. Suddenly a frog landed on her lily pad.

"You’re not a bad jumper for a tadpole,” he said.

“I’m not a tadpole. I’m a girl,” said Madebonne.

“Whatever you say,” croaked the frog. “But you look like a tadpole to me.”

“Well I’m not,” said Madebonne indignantly.

“Not what?” asked the frog.

“Not a tadpole!”

“Whatever,” said the frog.

“Look,” said Madebonne. “I’m trying to get to my cat Henry and then we need to find Section Orange but I am a bit lost. Can you help?”

“Yeah, sure,” said the frog. “I can take you as far as Section Yellow. I’ve been meaning to visit my cousin anyway. She lives on the border. Hold on to my back and we’ll go get your cat.”

So Madebonne held on to the frog’s back and he gracefully took one hop and landed right next to Henry. Henry held on to Madebonne’s back and the frog hopped them like a triple decker sandwich all the way to the border of Section Yellow.

“Thank you frog,” said Madebonne.

“You’re welcome tadpole,” croaked the frog and hopped away. Madebonne let out a sigh and looked towards Section Yellow. It was beautiful. There were millions of yellow butterflies fluttering everywhere.

“O.K. Henry, let’s go.” Madebonne jumped into Section Yellow. She and Henry walked across a field of soft yellow grass and the butterflies darted happily all around them. There were so many of them that they gently fluttered against Madebonne’s cheeks and gave

her butterfly kisses. It was so soft and tickly that Madebonne smiled. Then they fluttered up and down her arms and across her belly. She giggled and looked over at Henry. The butterflies were dancing on his whiskers and buzzing around his ears. She could hear Henry purring. As Madebonne giggled more, Henry purred louder and the butterflies tickled faster. There were butterflies everywhere, in her hair, under her arms and in her most ticklish spot ever – behind her knees. Before Madebonne knew it, she was laughing so hard that she couldn’t walk. She and Henry laughed themselves into a heap on the ground. Then the butterflies tickled her feet. It was too much. She couldn’t move. They would never make it to Section Orange.

Madebonne looked over at Henry. He rolled over then rolled over again. That was it! They would have to roll their way to Section Orange. So with all her might, Madebonne rolled. The butterflies had to fly up so that they wouldn’t get squished. Madebonne rolled faster and faster. It was working. She rolled and rolled and suddenly – SPLASH! She rolled right into a river. SPLASH! Henry rolled in after her. There were goldfish all around them. They had made it to Section Orange.

"Quick Henry, look for mom,” said Madebonne and she began to swim around the river looking for her mother. Cats don’t like being wet but Henry knew that this was really important to Madebonne so he dove under water and began to search. There were goldfish everywhere. They swam and dove and weaved in and out of all the goldfish. The river started to go downhill and the water flowed faster and faster. They were nearing the end of the rainbow. Madebonne saw a fish that was swimming upstream right towards her. Then is flipped over and swam in the other direction. Then it flipped over and swam back upstream. It was her mom still swimming laps! Madebonne grabbed Henry and they dove towards her mom. Just as Madebonne was about to grab onto her tail, the river emptied out with a whoosh and all the gold fish and Madebonne and Henry landed onto something soft and squishy.

Madebonne opened her eyes and saw fish flopping around her everywhere. Henry was shaking himself off and looking a bit miffed. They were in a huge purple tent with a soft, pillowy floor. Three ballerinas twirled over and started picking up the fish and putting them into a fountain.

“Where are we?” asked Madebonne

“We’re the dream tent on the other side of the drain,” said the pink ballerina.

“What are you doing?” asked Madebonne.

“We’re putting the fish back into the rainbow,” said the purple ballerina.

“Who are you?” asked Madebonne. Things were getting stranger and stranger.

“Boy does she ask a lot of questions,” said the red ballerina.

“Be nice,” said the pink ballerina.

“We’re your dreams,” said the purple ballerina.

“Would you like some chocolate?” asked the red ballerina, trying to be nice. She held out a giant chocolate flower.

“I would love some chocolate,” said Madebonne and she reached for the chocolate flower. Suddenly she heard chirping and her butterfly phone flew out of her pajama pants pocket right up to her ear. Madebonne opened the phone.


“Hello Madebonne. No chocolate before lunch,” said her Fairy Godmother and the chocolate flower magically disappeared. The red ballerina went back to putting fish into the fountain along with the pink ballerina and the purple ballerina.

“ I have to go get my mom,” said Madebonne. “The ballerinas are trying to put her back into the rainbow.”

“Oh dear, those pesky ballerinas. I used to dream about them too” said the Fairy Godmother. “I’ll see you soon. I am cooking up a good spell for your mom.” The butterfly phone chirped good-bye and flew back into Madebonne’s pajama pants pocket.

Madebonne walked over to the fountain. “I need to take my mom back to Brooklyn with me,” she told the ballerinas.

“O.K.” said all three ballerinas at once. “Here’s your mom” and all three held out a goldfish for Madebonne.

“Those gold fish aren’t my mom!” said Madebonne indignantly.

“Yes they are,” said the ballerinas.

“First of all I know my own mom,” said Madebonne. “And second of all, she is only one gold fish, not three.”

“Oh,” said the ballerinas and they dropped the three gold fish into the fountain.

Madebonne walked over to the fountain and looked in. Sure enough, there was her mom still doing laps. She reached in and plucked her out, filled her pajama pocket with water and tucked her mom in.

“O.K. ready” she said to Henry. “Now how do we get back to Brooklyn?”

“You are going to have to take the train,” said a funny voice.

Question to Madeleine: Who is the funny voice?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Chapter 1 "Down The Drain"

Once upon a time there was a girl named Maddy who lived in Brooklyn with her mom, her dad and her cat Henry. Their apartment was on the twelfth floor of a tall, skinny building and when Maddy went to bed she felt like she was sleeping in the clouds.

Maddy’s mom was an Olympic swimmer. She loved the water and could swim faster than a cat chasing his tail. Their apartment had a giant tub so that her mom could practice swimming every day. When she wasn’t swimming, Maddy’s mom was drinking water or juggling ice cubes or doing a rain dance or playing in puddles.

Maddy’s dad was a circus acrobat. He could bend himself into a pretzel, stretch from the couch all the way to the television to change the channel without having to use the remote. One time when the building elevator was broken, he dove out the living room window and swung from branch to branch until he landed on Cortelyou street and hopped on the bus to work.

One day after her dad left for work, Maddy’s mom put on her bathing suit and her cap and her goggles and hopped in the tub. Maddy was feeling particularly fast that day, so she decided to race her mom as she did her laps. She and Henry went to her room to get ready. She put on her red sneakers, the fastest shoes she owned, and her favorite racing dress and Henry put on his green racing collar and they headed back to the bathroom. Maddy and Henry crouched by the edge of the tub and looked down into the water. As her mom pushed off under water, Maddy sprinted as fast as her red shoes could carry her to the other side of the giant tub and Henry started chasing his tail. When she looked up, panting, her mom was already back at the other side. Maddy took a deep breath and tried again. But try as she might, Maddy just couldn’t run as fast as her mom could swim. She and Henry decided to take a break. Maddy curled up on the bath mat and using Henry as a pillow they fell fast asleep.

As she drifted off to sleep, Maddy dreamt that she was at the beach with Henry. They were nice and warm in the sun and were making doughnuts out of sand and water. They let the doughnuts bake in the sun in their sand oven and as they browned they would turn into real doughnuts. Maddy and Henry kept eating and eating the doughnuts but they never got full. They just kept getting hungrier. Finally Maddy’s stomach growled so noisily that she woke up with a start and realized that she needed her morning snack. She sat up and looked into the tub but her mom wasn’t there. Maddy looked all over the apartment, in the kitchen, her parents’ bedroom, the closets, under the couch, even in the refrigerator but couldn’t find her mom. She sat down in a heap in the middle of the living room, frustrated, starving and on the verge of tears. Where was her mom?

Suddenly she heard Henry meowing wildly from the bathroom. She got up and ran to find out what was wrong. Henry was pacing back and forth along the edge of the tub. Maddy peered into the tub to see what he was looking at. Finally, at the very bottom of the tub she spotted a beautiful golden fish swimming back and forth, back and forth. Maddy couldn’t believe her eyes. Her mom had turned into a fish! What was she to do? She was so hungry that she couldn’t think. Suddenly she remembered that she still had some peanuts in her coat pocket from the last time she visited her dad at the circus. She went to the front hall closet and found the half empty bag of peanuts and sat down on the floor of the closet to think. It was a good thinking spot, dark and quiet.

As she ate, she suddenly remembered her butterfly phone. On her last birthday, her fairy godmother had given her a phone in the shape of a butterfly. It was to be used for emergencies and boy was this an emergency! What had she done with that phone? Maddy ran to her room and dumped everything out of her toy chest. No phone. She looked in her closet and in all her shoes but no phone. Just as she was about to give up she suddenly remembered. The phone was under her pillow in her bed. She pulled the phone out and opened it up. The wings began to flutter, the antennae lit up and it began to hum. Maddy dialed F-G-M (for Fairy Godmother) and waited while the butterfly phone connected her to her Fairy Godmother.

“Hello, Operator,” Maddy heard.

“I need to speak with my Fairy Godmother right away. It’s an emergency,” said Maddy.

“What is the state of your emergency?” asked the operator.

“My mother has turned into a fish,” said Maddy and her eyes began to fill with tears.

“Please hold while I connect you,” said the operator and Maddy waited for her Fairy Godmother to pick up.

“Hello Maddy,” she finally heard. Maddy let out a huge sigh of relief.

“Fairy Godmother,” Maddy gasped. “My mom has turned into a fish and I don’t know what to do.”

“Not a problem Maddy, I’ll be right over,” said her Fairy Godmother and as Maddy hung up her butterfly phone she heard a knock on the door. She ran to the dining room, dragged a chair to the door, climbed up on it and looked through the peep hole. There was her Fairy Godmother wearing her magic purple dress and waving a wand. Maddy opened the door.

“That was fast,” said Maddy.

“I don’t mess around in emergencies,” replied her Fairy Godmother. “Let’s get to work. I know just the spell to change your mom back into a mom” and she strode off towards the bathroom. As they walked through the bathroom door they saw Henry swatting at the chain attached to the plug. And before their very eyes, Henry gave one wild swat and the plug plopped out of the drain with a huge sucking sound. Maddy and The Fairy Godmother screamed and rushed towards the tub. But they were too late. As they reached the edge of the tub they saw the tip of the goldfish tail swishing down the drain.

“Quick, change her back into my mom!” screamed Maddy.

“I can’t. If I change her back now she will get stuck in the drain,” explained The Fairy Godmother.

“Well what do we do then?” asked Maddy. She was beginning to get very worried.

“I am not really sure,” admitted The Fairy Godmother. Maddy started to get mad. Who had changed her mom into a fish? Why couldn’t she be changed back? And where had she gone? Maddy decided to take charge.

“I am going in after her,” Maddy proclaimed.

“You are a very small girl, but you will never fit in that drain,” said The Fairy Godmother.

“Yes I will,” said Maddy. “My dad taught me how to stretch and I am going to go down that drain.” Maddy went to her room and put on her silk pajamas and her swimming cap and came back into the bathroom.

“I’m ready,” said Maddy.

“If you are going to go on an adventure you need an adventuring name,” said The Fairy Godmother.

“Fine,” said Maddy. “My adventuring name is Madebonne.”

“That works,” said The Fairy Godmother. “Now, get back as quickly as you can. The longer your mom is a goldfish, the harder it will be for me to change her back into your mom.”

“Why?” asked Maddy.

“Your mom will become more and more like a fish the longer she is one. She’ll start to forget what it’s like to be your mom and after a while it will be impossible to turn her back,” explained The Fairy Godmother.

““I better get going,” said Maddy feeling a bit worried. And with that she stretched with all her might and when she was two inches thin she dove into the drain and slipped right down in her silky pajamas. Just as her last toe was going to slip out of sight, Henry dove in after her. He had learned to stretch too.

“I’ll be waiting for you,” said The Fairy Godmother. “Hurry back, I’ll have a spell waiting.”

Question to Madeleine: Where do Madebonne & Henry go on the other side of the drain?