Silvernail Stories

Collected writings from Ethan, Benji, and Max Silvernail

Max has always loved Comic Books and drawing, so he decided to create his own short comic strip to share here with you all. I got a kick out of it, so I hope you do too.

Finding Hermie By Ethan Silvernail

As I mentioned in my 18th Birthday retrospective I used to be very heavily interested in film. A couple years ago I had a short film idea inspired by true events. We never were able to actually shoot this due to the titular Hermie dying shortly after I finished this script. Mostly everything in this story is true, including the “Deus ex Machina” ending, with only some liberties taken with timing and to make it funnier. I wrote this in screenplay format, which is very different from everything else we've written so far on here. In addition, I cannot simply copy and paste the text into here; I instead need to upload photos of it. I hope you enjoy this.

1st Page: 2nd Page: 3rd Page: 4th Page: 5th Page: 6th Page:

I recently finished “On Writing” by Stephen King, his memoir on how he became a writer and his tips on how to become one yourself. In the book, he gives a prompt to write a short story that takes a traditional idea and flips the genders. I won't write much more about it, because it'll spoil the story you're about to read. I really enjoyed this exercise, and I hope you all find some enjoyment in it as well.

“Shovel” By Ethan Silvernail

James was only four years old when he met Penelope for the first time. He had just finished lunch and went out to the playground for recess. He was sitting in the sandpit when she came up to him. “Can I see your shovel?” James was a polite four year old and was always quick to share, especially on the playground. He handed the shovel over to Penelope. Penelope began to dig the sand with the shovel, moving piles of sand from one side to the other. “Could I borrow your bucket?” James figured there wasn’t any harm in it. He was supposed to share. What good is a bucket if you don’t have a shovel as well? So, he handed it over. “My name is Penelope. What’s yours?” “I’m James.” They continued to play in the sandbox until it was time to go back inside. Recess was over. While they were walking back inside, Penelope asked him how old he was. “I’m four,” James said. “I’m in kindergarten,” Penelope said with a smile.

The next day James went out to recess again. Sitting in the sandbox was Penelope, playing with his shovel. James went to sit beside her, and they played in the sandbox until recess was over again. They played like that every day, and when school was over and it was summertime their moms made playdates for them to continue playing. And when school was back in session they both made sure to meet up during recess and play in their sandpit. However, Penelope was older than James, and when she moved up to second grade, so did her lunchtime. The only time they had to play together was the small overlap between the end of James’s recess and the beginning of hers. But he made sure to wait for her, and if they only played together for a minute, it was the best minute of his day. They grew older and remained friends. When they both hit highschool, they decided to try going out. They had their troubles at first (their awkward first kiss is something James still cringes at to this day), but eventually they found their rhythm. Soon enough, highschool was over and they both went off to college. They decided to split up, as Penelope was going to some small school in the East while James stayed in state. They didn’t stop thinking of each other though. When Penelope graduated and returned home, James proposed, and Penelope was happy to accept. When he had reminisced on Penelope, he remembered the fun times they had in highschool. The late nights driving around, their philosophical conversations, the fun glances they exchanged on their ways to class. . . But now it wasn’t the same. James didn’t have to live with her then. Now he did. What seemed to him normal parts of being a teenager hadn’t left Penelope. “I understand her complaining about her mom having these high expectations for her in highschool, but once you're an adult I’d think you’d have come to terms with it by now,” James said to his friends. “Maybe it's because she’s around her family again for the first time in a while?” one of his friends said. “Maybe her mom really is that bad,” another said. “Eh, I’m sure she’ll get over it,” said another. “I dunno, I’m just glad that I can be there for her,” James said, ending the conversation.

When layoffs hit James’s company, and eventually James himself, Penelope began to get worse. The same complaints that she had thrown at her mother began to get thrown at him. James had never heard what Penelope said to her mother, just what she said to him. He always thought he was bearing the brunt of her nearly matricidal fury, but now he realized he was getting the abridged version. James was “just like her mother,” too cold and too delusional to understand what she was going through. He didn’t tell his friends this time. He knew how Penelope really was normally, and he didn’t want his friends getting the wrong idea about her. It was hard times, and that can bring out the worst in people. Penelope wasn’t perfect, so what? And even if she did hit him that one time, it wasn’t that big of a deal. She had been drinking and obviously wasn’t in control of her actions. As long as they could have their family that’s all that mattered. And have a family they did. Penelope got pregnant and nine months later they had a baby boy. He was named Stephen, after Penelope’s grandfather. After Stephen’s birth everything went back to normal. James got an even better job at a new company, and they both were able to focus on their son now. That was until Penelope started drinking again. They both had drunk throughout high school, like most teens do, but James never had as much as she did. He was always the designated driver. He thought it was fun to watch Penelope get drunk; she had seemed so happy. Now she didn’t seem so happy. The insults began again, but this time the insults were matched with hitting. James was nervous to see how his office buddies would react to his new bruises, and he was even more afraid to go back home at the end of the day. James gave Penelope an ultimatum, either go to an AA meeting or he and Stephen were leaving. Penelope pleaded, trying the charm she always had over James, but he wouldn’t budge. Now that he had someone to protect from her, he wasn’t playing games anymore. He filed for divorce, and eventually a restraining order as well. But what good was a piece of paper going to do. Penelope wanted her child back, and wasn’t taking no for an answer. James was always on guard; everywhere he went Penelope could be waiting to take Stephen back.

One night, while he was sleeping, James heard a crash in the bottom story of his house. He knew it was Penelope. He locked the door to his and Stephen’s room, and then pushed his bed up against the door to barricade it shut. He grabbed Stephen from the crib and ran into the inner bathroom, locking the door to it as well. He clutched Stephen tightly to his chest, sweat dripping off his brow. Then he heard the banging. Penelope was going to get through that door and to her baby no matter what. She began to scream. “GIVE HIM TO ME! HE’S MY SON!” James didn’t say anything back. Stephen woke up and began to cry. Thud after thud crashed against the bedroom door, until finally he heard it break. Penelope was a strong woman, and it was only a matter of time before the bathroom door broke next. James heard the bed scrape across the floor as Penelope pushed it aside. Then she began banging on the bathroom door. Now the thuds were much louder, and Stephen was crying much harder. James was shaking with fear, and nearly began to cry himself. He set Stephen down beside the bath to look for something to defend himself with. “It’ll be okay soon Stephen, mommy’s here” said Penelope between the thuds. But soon that sound was overcome with the sound of sirens. The police had been called by a neighbor who saw Penelope break the window. They broke down the door of James’s house, and rushed upstairs. They found Penelope sitting on his bed. “Don’t move! Keep your hands where I can see them.” They arrested Penelope, and she was sentenced to life in prison. They had found a knife sitting near the base of the bathroom door.

James moved far away from Penelope, and life went almost back to normal for him. He worked hard at a new job, and was able to spend plenty of time with Stephen, who still exclusively slept in Daddy’s room to “save him from the monsters.” Penelope was safely behind bars, where she could never hurt either of them again. At least, that's what James told himself when he was offered to speak at a conference held in his hometown. He hadn’t been back since the trial, and was absolutely terrified to go. But she was in prison; she couldn’t hurt him anymore. The company rented him a nice house to stay in, and offered a full week’s worth of daycare for Stephen while James was at the conference. Normally the talks went until five, but today they ended at three to allow some of the attendees to socialize. James wasn’t feeling it, and decided to head back to the house. It was his first time going home without Stephen in quite a while, and he was looking forward to some alone time. While he was unlocking the door to the house, he suddenly got a strange feeling on the back of his neck. He hadn’t felt this in a long time. He felt Penelope. He didn’t know what it was, more of an intuition than a sense, but he was almost certain of it. But he couldn’t really be certain. She was in prison, and she couldn’t hurt him from there. He went inside the house and put on a tea kettle. While it was boiling, he sat down in the living room and turned on the TV. A middle-aged woman wearing a white dress was on the screen. She was some sort of reporter for a local news station. A giant red banner filled the bottom quarter of the screen with the words “BREAKING NEWS!” The woman began to speak. “Early this morning three inmates from Mabel Bassett Women’s Correctional Center escaped, killing a guard in the process. Two of the convicts were quickly apprehended and reincarcerated, but one inmate still remains at large.” James knew it was her. He knew it as soon as he had gotten that feeling, but now it had to be true. James got up to lock the door to the house. Then he realized what he had sensed earlier, or, rather, what he had smelled. It was her perfume. Penelope had always insisted on wearing the same perfume every day, even if they weren’t even leaving the house. James grabbed a knife from the kitchen and went into the bedroom, the most central room in the house. Maybe his brain was playing tricks on him, but these were too many coincidences for it to be anything but her. He kept on thinking. What should I do about Stephen? He couldn’t just leave him at the daycare, but he was in no position to leave the house now. Suddenly James heard a knock at the door. He didn’t move, staying still and quiet, pretending he wasn’t home. “Hello? Is anyone home?” James barely heard the voice, but he recognized it. She was just outside the door, and she was waiting for him to answer it. How did she find me? The conference speakers had been public knowledge, but the house he was staying in wasn’t. If I wait long enough she’ll think I’m not home. The kettle began to whistle. James had forgotten about the tea, and Penelope now knew James was inside. There were many windows in this house, but none in the bedroom. James had a pretty good layout of the house from his time there, so if he heard any crashes he should be able to guess where she was entering from. But he didn’t hear any crashes. It was very quiet for a few minutes as James waited. Maybe she left anyways? It wasn’t that unreasonable of a thought. Maybe she figured he had left the tea on by mistake, or she didn’t hear it in the first place. Then the knocking began. She was at the bedroom door. It wasn’t like it was on that night. She wasn’t trying to bust it down, she was just knocking. “Please let me in, it's been so long since I’ve been able to see you.” James was silent, but clutched the knife tightly. How had she been able to get inside? He was certain he had locked the door. He began to hear a sound at the bedroom door. Penelope was fumbling with something metallic, but James wasn’t sure what. Then he heard the sound of the lock unlatching. James rushed for the door, using the weight of his body to force it shut. Penelope was pushing hard the other way, and James soon began to lose ground. I can’t let her get in. But she was getting in, inch by inch. James knew his only chance was to take a stand, so he jumped away from the door. Since James was no longer there, Penelope was easily able to get in. Too easily, as she fell down with her weight as soon as the door gave way. James stared at Penelope laying on the floor. A darkness was pooling around her body. Is that blood? James was right, she had stabbed herself in the fall, but that didn’t stop her from standing up just the same. Penelope wouldn’t stop. James saw her take the bloody shiv from her stomach and ready it to stab him. James had never been in a knife fight before and had no idea where to begin. She stepped closer to him. His knife was longer, but he wouldn’t be able to get at her without getting stabbed himself. James skirted along the side of the bed, angling it between Penelope and himself. There was enough room around the bed for James to always be on the other side of her. If she went right, he could go left. If she went left, he could go right. Hopefully that could buy him enough time for the blood loss to overtake her. What James didn’t expect was for Penelope to go over the bed. She jumped on top of it and rushed towards him. In a flash she was almost on top of him. James thrust his knife up into her, closing his eyes while he did so. It went in, and Penelope fell backwards on the bed, dropping her shiv off the side. James followed, leaning over her while thrusting the knife deeper into her stomach, worsening her already bloodied wound. She flailed at him, but the worst she could now do was scratch. In a few moments she was dead. James laid beside her bloodied corpse in the bed. He was exhausted. After nearly falling asleep, he got up to call 911 and tell them what had happened. Then he went to the bathroom to clean the blood off of himself. The police arrived to question him and take away Penelope’s body. They identified her as the final escaped inmate, and no charges were brought against James. After what seemed like hours, the police finally left. James felt a relief he hadn’t felt in a long time, he no longer had to worry about Penelope being out there somewhere, wanting to harm him and Stephen. He was free. He almost began to smile, but then was hit with terrible grief. When they were both kids back at that playground, they really liked each other. James still remembers the first time he said he loved her, back in highschool. He meant it too. They had been married, they’d had a life together, they’d even made a life together. And now he’d just killed her. James left the house to go get Stephen. He missed him so much. When he finally arrived at the daycare, he hugged Stephen so tightly he heard the little boy’s back pop, but Stephen was excited to see his dad too. “How was your day, daddy?” James sat and stared at his son for a moment. “It wasn’t anything special. How was yours?”

This is an assignment Max did for his fourth grade class. He had to choose a picture out of “The Mysteries of Harris Burdick” by Chris Van Allsburg to write a story about. Max has an interesting vision with everything he does, and this shines through in this story. I hope you all enjoy:

Venice Files By Max Silvernail

Chapter 1 February 12 1:05pm:

Echo, Shen, and Noah were walking down the street laughing about a joke. These kids were Brilliant. Echo was a brown skinned 10 year old with black hair and bangs. Shen and Noah were twins so they both looked the same with white skin and blonde hair except Shen’s hair was like Echo’s and Noah had a buzzcut. They were friends. But something that stopped their laughter was a boat coming into the canal in Venice. When it exploded, everyone ran.

Chapter 2 February 12 5:47 pm:

“Earlier today a ship exploded killing nobody, and the real mystery is nobody was in the ship so how did it explode?” said the TV news man. Echo turned off the TV. “We are not doing this.” he said. “Yes we are,” Shen said nodding his head. “Fine,” Echo said. “Yes!” yelled Shen. “What am I doing?” said Echo.

Chapter 3 February 12 9:15 pm:

“Come on!”Shen whispered. They entered the crime scene. “Hmm?” muttered Noah. “What is it?” asked Echo. “Over there a guy is looking around. He saw me, he’s making a run for it!” replied Noah. “Get him!” yelled Echo. They chased him into an alleyway but when they turned he was gone but what wasn’t was his phone. Echo picked it up and figured out the password. “Looks like we’re going to 59th on Waliester Street,” Echo said smurkly.

Chapter 4 February 12 10:45 pm:

Echo knocked on the door, then all of them hid. A woman opened the door, then they all snuck in and hid under the couch. Then the woman said, “Someone ding dong ditched us.” They snuck into someone’s room where a middle aged man was asleep. Then Echo searched the phone and found selfies of the man. Then Echo whispered, “close the door.”
Noah closed it. Then they woke him up. He was about to scream when Shen covered his mouth. Echo said, “Where were you last night Gilbert Winston?” “On a date with a great woman.”
“Lie!” yelled Echo. “You were at a crime scene sneaking around and so were we. You can’t deny that now give us a name of someone more guilty than you or we might report you to the police! Understand?” “Fine, Mrs. Licorice.” “Where does she live?” asked Echo. “Northport Fifty Ninth Avenue.” “Let’s go.”

Chapter 5 February 12 11:30 pm:

The kids went to Northport Fifty Ninth Avenue, and picked the lock. They opened the door and snuck in. They went to the room where Mrs. Licorice slept next to her husband. “How do we interrogate a person without a chance of waking someone else up?” Noah asked. “We don't, we get her out of here and then interrogate her.” Then they picked her up and carried her to another room. “Wake up dreamy,” mocked Noah. “Ugh-aaaa-.” yelled Mrs. Licorice when Shen covered her mouth.
“Now where were you the night after last?” asked Echo. “I was at a movie alone, here are the tickets.”
“This is dated yesterday, that doesn’t check out. Tell us why you gave us the wrong tickets?” “I was confused,”Mrs. Licorice yelled. “What is your connection with Gilbert Winston?” “Oh I remember now. He’s an old friend I went out for dinner with.” “Did he drive you home?” “No.” she said. Then the boys left.

Chapter 6 February 13 9:35 am:

“Here’s what I think happened. So Gilbert invited Mrs. Licorice to dinner planning to turn it into a date, but when they were done he left to go to the crime scene. He met us and you know the rest. But the question is why did he go to the crime scene. Ideas why?” “Maybe he was trying to see if someone was hurt,” said Shen. “Or he was chasing someone who did it, another interrogation?” said Noah. “No, a talk.” said Echo. When they got to Gilbert they explained their theory. “So you think I did that cause if so you're right. And I was there because I was meeting my brother, Conder. He lives at Fineterst 58th Street. You should meet him.” “We’re done here, but thanks.’ said Echo

Chapter 7 February 13 5:35 pm:

The boys came in the door. “So why are you here?” Said Conder. “To ask some questions like why did you bring your brother to a crime scene?” “Wait, I didn’t bring him there, he brought me there. He has a criminal record and he even told me he blew up that boat,” said Conder. “We’ve heard enough.” Said Echo leaving. Chapter 8 February 14 11:25 am: The boys were stopping at the Ice Cream Truck and all ordered the same thing: seasalt and caramel ice cream. “Yum,” said Noah, taking a big bite of the frozen treat. “Hmm?” said Echo, eating his ice cream. “What, do you think something’s wrong with the ice cream?” laughed Shen. “No,just thinking about what they said. I mean should we believe it?” “Yes, because why would they lie to us?” said Noah. “You're right, in that case let’s find Gilbert.” “First we need to track him,” said Shen. “One step ahead of you, he’s at 34th Wienster Street,” Echo said, checking the tracking device on Gilbert’s phone he installed on their last visit.

Chapter 9 February 14 1:00 pm:

Echo knocked on the door and it was almost immediately opened. He walked in and they went to Gilbert, he looked at them. “Why did you blow up the boat and what's on your criminal record?” yelled Echo. “First, I didn’t blow up the boat and second, I got caught speeding. I saw my brother planting bombs on the boat and then he set a course to an old enemy's store?” “ I understand, so he said you did it so he could get away with it and you would be punished for something you didn’t do.” said Echo. “Then let’s get him and bring him to justice,” yelled Gilbert. “He’s at the Science Museum let’s go and I call shotgun,” said Echo. They then left, got in Gilbert’s car and sped to the museum where they found Conder. “Stop right there!” yelled Gilbert. “Oh really,” said Conder slyly. Then Echo called the police and told them to come quickly. The police came and arrested Conder. “You guys, can I also be a detective?”asked Gilbert. “Sure!” said all of the boys in a trio. “Well let’s go.”


18th Birthday

I've got this Amazon Photos app on my phone because that's where my dad uploads the pictures he takes. It has this cool feature that shows the pictures taken on this day in the past. Today is my 18th birthday, and the app shows me all of the photos that have been taken on my birthday throughout the years. I'm going to write a short reflection on each of these days, reflecting on the birthdays of my childhood. I can't share the photos themselves, but they shouldn't be necessary. They're more of a jumping off point than anything else.

2019 doesn't have any pictures. Neither does 2011 or 2003. I understand 2011, as I was turning 9, not a very eventful age, but 2019 was after my dad started taking pictures of everything, and 2003 was my first birthday ever. This isn't a complaint, I have pictures of my birthday parties for those years, but they were just held on others days. This is more of an observation.

2018 was my 16th birthday, a pretty big year. I don't remember if my birthday party was before or after my actual birthday, but I remember enjoying it very much. We had a cowboy themed poker tournament. I think I got either 2nd or 3rd, but the winner, my grandmother, gave me the prize money anyways. My actual birthday wasn't as eventful, although the pictures showed me wearing a cowboy hat, so there was still something of a cowboy theme going on. I opened some presents from my immediate family, including an art-book for Solo: A Star Wars Story, which I remember looking through with great excitement before seeing the movie. This party served as my saying goodbye to cowboy parties, which my brother and I have had a lot of in our childhood. This year I'm having a Star Wars themed birthday party for the second year in a row. I don't think I'll ever say goodbye to that.

2017 doesn't have any pictures of me on my birthday, but there are pictures of other members of my family getting ready to go swimming. May 28th has pictures of my actual birthday party. The gift I got that is most prominently featured is my director's chair. That year was probably the peak of my filmmaking aspirations, and my directors chair embodied that. Now my directors chair is a place for me to put stuff I don't have room in my closet for.

2016 was a birthday I had in Disney World. It's a pretty awesome place to have a birthday. We went to Hollywood Studios that day, since I was really passionate about movies then. I got to ride a lot of fun rides that day. I also got to see my brothers in the Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple, my second favorite show at Disney after the original Jedi Training. They don't like it as much as me, but they did it to make me happy. To finish the day off we ate at 50's Prime Time Cafe, one of my top three restaurants in Disney. We sat next to a guy who told his girlfriend his favorite word was “bivouac,” which he defined as hitting something away in a different direction. That's not what that word means. Recently I was reading Prince Caspian, the 4th book in the Chronicles of Narnia, and that word was used quite frequently to describe where the main characters were sheltering. A bivouac is a temporary camp that doesn't have cover. He had no idea what he was talking about.

2015 marked the beginning of my teenage years. My birthday party was on my actual birthday this year, so that's pretty cool. I also got a kilt as a present. I've worn that kilt a lot now, mostly when my family has been going to the Medieval Fair. It's a silly thing, but I enjoy it.

2014 was possibly my last really kids party. It was medieval themed, and everyone got to make their own wooden sword. We also had sword fights, jousting, and other activities. I wore my cheap fabric faux chain mail armor and coif carrying a wooden sword and shield with me nearly the whole day. Nowadays my birthday parties aren't nearly that fun.

2013 was a birthday I had at Johnnies. That's was a pretty common place of celebration for my family due to the party room they had in the back, but more recently its fallen out of favor. Better burger places have sprung up, and different Johnnies locations are closing all around us. Personally, up until recently I haven't enjoyed their burgers very much, but I'm still sad to see them go. A very large part of my childhood took place there, as stupid as it sounds. But everything gets older as time goes on, and we have to let memories be just that.

2012 I went to Ted's Cafe Escondido for my birthday. This is a restaurant that serves a similar position to Johnnies but is still doing pretty good. The reason we went on my birthday though was because they sing a song and give you a sombrero if its your birthday. One time we went on my dad's birthday and they sang to him, and he absolutely hated it. Since then every time we went I made a joke about it being his birthday to the waiter. When they did it to me on my birthday I really enjoyed it. I'd hate it now though.

2010 was when I had a military birthday I had outside in the Oklahoma sun. I only remember how hot it was.

2009 was the year I went to Great Wolf Lodge for my birthday. I've always loved going to Great Wolf Lodge, both for the swimming areas and the Magi Quest. This year was probably the peak of my love for it, but last year that love was rekindled when we went for Benji's birthday. That was really fun, and I got super into Magi Quest again, doing the entire thing in a single day and even beating Charlock the Red Dragon. It's not the same as it was. Nothing is as you get older.

2008 saw me at a birthday party with my school friends. I've stopped doing this as time has gone by. I feel embarrassed to make my birthday a big deal for my friends, so I don't really do anything. Birthdays have always been more of a familial thing to me, but as I get older I wish I hadn't been that way.

2007 only has pictures of my playing with my brother Benji. He would have only been one at the time. The day before I had my Legend of Zelda birthday party. Unlike many of the other themes for my parties, I haven't enjoyed the Legend of Zelda as much throughout my life. But when I was five it was my favorite thing ever.

2006 I went to the pool with my family for my birthday. A few days before I had my pirate birthday. I had a pirate ship bouncy thing for my birthday, and that was awesome. Whenever you're little its so much easier for things to be impressive. Everything is just bigger.

2005 was when I had a Thomas and Friends Birthday party. That was probably one of the first things I loved to watch that I had to say goodbye to. Unlike Westerns and Star Wars there aren't any adults who still watch Thomas. But when I was three I had the best Thomas birthday of all time.

2004 has lots of pictures of me playing with all sorts of new toys. The ones I remember liking the most were the trains that I got. I could play with my trains for hours. But since I was only two, I don't remember much else from that day.

May 29th 2002 was the day I was born. This event kinda marked the beginning of my dad's photography hobby as he had gotten his new camera the night before. It's weird going through family pictures as a result, because there are no pictures from before I was born (excluding the six or so pictures my dad took the night before). Every time my family sits down to go through pictures, I get to see all of these different things I've done in my life. My siblings haven't been able to do that, as there are plenty of pictures from before they were born. My parents haven't been able to do that either, since they don't have nearly as many pictures from their childhood. I'm glad I have all these pictures to remember my childhood, my life wouldn't be the same without them.

  • Ethan Silvernail

This was a Thanksgiving creative writing assignment for my 6th grade English Class. We had to write a story about turkeys during Thanksgiving. I wrote it about 2 years ago so some of the writing is a little childish, but I recently went back to edit some of the worst parts. Ethan thought this story was funny, so I hope you do to. -Benji Silvernail

Turkey Day Afternoon It all began when I was strolling to the boring, deserted bathing pool on a perfectly interesting evening. All of a sudden, I thought I heard something behind me. I flipped around. “Thomas, are you stupid. Did you not hear what mom said?” It was my sister, Sally. “Yes I did, ok. I thought this was ok. It is real close to the hideout.” “Well it is not. Mom is going to be so mad.” said Sally. “Ha ha the joke is on you. Mom sent me here. I don’t even want to be here. I had a place to go. Jerry and I were gonna hold up a place.” I replied. Sally’s face sunk. She always wanted me to get in trouble.
Now you may be wondering, what is my family like. It sounds pretty crazy. I was born into a group of crazy turkeys. We are hated by almost everyone. The humans hate us, but hopefully not you, the other animals hate us, and even some turkeys hate us. Jerry is my best friend. Me and him grew up together. He is not as attractive as me. He hangs out with me, and so girls like him as well. I like to tell myself that is not the only reason he is friends with me.
Anyway we needed money. It was around Thanksgiving so we had to stay around the hideout. Jerry and I were going to do this low key, cause Mom and Dad would not like us doing this. Anyway, Sally looked real sad. She started walking away. “Be back soon,” she said, trying to sound nice. I started walking to the bathing pool. When I got there, Jimmy was waiting near the pond inside a treehouse that we set up when we were young. The only reason I saw him was cause I knew he would be there. He had two masks clamped in between his feathers. “What’s up, where have you been. We hardly have enough time,” he said. He was not mad. I could tell by the way he looked. He thought I might be late.
We started walking. While I was walking a thing popped in my head. Why had Sally not yelled at me for holding up a place. She definitely would have taken the chance to yell at me. Then it hit me. I bet she was also worried about the money. She probably wanted me to do it. That’s what it was. I felt better about it.
We came up to the shop. We were about 50 feet from the store. Jimmy climbed up into a nearby tree. He held up a pair of binoculars. “I think there are about 15 turkeys in there,” he said. “Ok, I’ll be crowd control.” We both put on our masks. “So here is the plan,” said Jimmy, “you will run in and yell, ‘This is a hold up,’ then I will run in and start emptying the cashier. See you will scare them with your claws, ok.” “Yea I got it.” We ran in. “Reach for the sky!” I yelled, then realized I was supposed to say ‘this is a hold up’. “This is a hold up,” I corrected myself. Jimmy ran in behind me. He ran right over to the cashier. He was good at this. I stood there awkwardly. This was taking too long. Suddenly, I heard the noise of shattering glass. I saw Jimmy duck. He was just in time. A bullet hole was right were his head had been. “What was that,” I heard a bystander yell. I looked through the gap the glass used to fill. I saw two hunters. What, I thought. Hunters never came this far into our territory. Jimmy and I both looked at each other. I yelled, “Ok now everybody run into the back room!” Everyone stood up. They seemed pleased at the idea of running from the gunshots. Once we all got back behind the wall, Jimmy and I had a second to talk. “What do we do now?” I said“I don’t know.” “We could leave these people and try to escape by ourselves.” Jimmy said, “No, we got to help these people.” He was right. It would be mean and awful to leave these people. “You are right,” I said. With this new responsibility, we started to form a plan. We would start a fire by lighting a piece of wood, and then we would throw it out of the store. We hoped that this would scare all the hunters away. There was one more part of our plan. We would charge out of the store after we threw the log that was on fire. He and I both knew how this would probably end, in our deaths. So out of the store we ran. The last things our eyes saw before this, were the faces of 15 shocked people. As we ran out the door, two bullets flew at us. Jimmy’s bullet flew right through him. Mine missed, but we both kept on. As we came up to the hunters they were in shock. How was Jimmy, or that turkey to them, still running. As we came upon them we started scratching them. We did not want to kill them; we just wanted to scare them off. It worked. They ran off, scared to death. And right there, in my arms, Jimmy went to sleep, and never woke up. About a year after this there was a knock on our door. As I opened the door, I was shocked to see all the animals from the store we robbed outside my door. I thought it was the end. They had decided to finally kill us. But what I heard was quite the opposite. A man walked up from the crowd. He said, “My daughter was at the store you robbed.” I was ready for the end. “She came home without a scratch. I thought nothing was wrong. But when she walked in, she told me what happened. The heroic acts of you and your friends made us all think twice about you guys. If you guys don’t rob anyone or do anything bad, then you can come back to the town.” The only reason we ever started robbing was because they kicked us out of the city. Now they were taking that back.

This is a story I wrote my freshman year for English class. We were assigned to write about an event that happened before 1980. Jon Bois, one of my favorite writers and video-makers, had done a video about the 1904 Olympic marathon that I had recently watched, and I became really interested in the event. This story is inspired from his video, but I attempted to go deeper into the emotions of Thomas Hicks, a runner in the race. It's not my best work, although I've tried to refine it over the years, but here it is:

The Trial and Tribulation of Thomas Hicks Thomas Hicks stood at the starting line in Francis Field, waiting for a pistol shot and the race to begin. He had already begun sweating, the sweat beading like the perspiration on the can of a soda on a warm day. He could sense the weather not being right for this event, but he was in no position to stop it. He was here at the 1904 Olympic Marathon, the third of its kind. The first Olympics had been a huge success, bringing together many different athletes from all over the world. This Olympics was different. It was a backdrop for the 1904 St. Lewis World’s Fair, and a display of American superiority. Hicks was but a runner, a mouse in a maze. He was not an official that had any say on the outcome or planning of this race, just a pawn in an experiment. The pistol shot rang out, and Thomas Hicks began his starting lap around the stadium, which would soon lead him out into the countryside. He looked around at the people beside him, wondering what they were thinking about, whether they were as concerned about the heat as he was. Hicks felt silly, even almost crazy, about how much he was worrying about the heat. He had no choice but to dismiss it as his body warming up for the upcoming run. Hicks believed it was going to be a regular marathon, but he had no idea what he was in for. He was about to run more than twenty-four miles in over ninety degree weather on a series of steep hills and roads inches deep in dust. And to top that off, he would do it with only one water stop ten miles into the marathon. Hicks was about to embark upon the hardest course ever invented. He was running a good race, and thought he might even win. He was well over a quarter of the way through and he was feeling fine. His coaches were riding in their cars cheering him on, leaving a cloud of dust in Hicks’s wake. He was approaching the water stop when he began to feel it. It was a feeling deep inside, and all that he could do was dread. Hicks brushed it aside and began to drink from the well. He hadn’t felt thirsty before, but drinking from the well he began to realize how thirsty he actually was. He gulped down as much water as he could before being ushered back onto the track by his coaches. As he approached the fifteen mile mark he still had a very clear lead in the race. Hicks had done this by simply ignoring the heat and focusing on one step at a time in his run. This ignorance would now begin his undoing. Hicks was dehydrated, tired, and ready to collapse. “Water,” Hicks croaked. “I need water.” Hicks’s trainer was incredulous, “Water? You don’t need any water, all it will do is slow you down.” Hicks begged again, “Please, all I need is some water.” His trainer again responded. “Alright. Just keep running, I’ll get you something.” Hicks felt relief. He was ready to take a drink and rest. But when the bottle got to his lips, Hicks nearly spit it out. This wasn’t water. It tasted more like brandy, but was undercut with a bitter taste. Hicks begged his trainers for water, but they denied him. His trainers believed water would hinder performance. Using this twisted logic they began to pour water heated on the car radiator over his head. To an outsider it would appear as if they were taunting him, but ignorance can be crueler than evil. At the twenty mile mark Thomas Hicks was falling apart. He had a gray and soulless face, and his skin looked ashen. It seemed as if Thomas Hicks was at the lowest point any human could be, yet it could get worse. At this time another runner began to jog straight past him, looking bright, cheerful, and as if this marathon was but a Sunday walk. This runner brought Hicks to his knees. Thomas Hicks, who had suffered so much, would not be repaid for his effort. His trainers were as confused as he was. They began to talk amongst themselves whenever another person, perhaps the passer’s trainer, came up to the car and told them the situation. Thomas Hicks could not hear what was going on. However, he could see a surprised yet relieved look on his trainer’s faces. One jumped down from the car and approached him. “Don’t give up just yet, he’s already out of the race,” said the trainer. “He’s been riding on the cars.” “So does that mean I still have a chance?”, asked Hicks, still unsure of the situation. “It means you're still in the lead, come on and let’s get going,” answered one of his trainers. Hicks shook his head knowing this was a bad decision. He could not protest however. He looked back at his coaches and said, “Okay, let’s get going.” Hicks stood up and began to run yet again. Mustering all the strength he could gather, he began to find his stride. Hicks was only a few miles from the finish line, but the running, the dehydration, and the brandy had taken its toll. Hicks was losing his mind. He began to hallucinate. Hicks asked his trainers “How far am I? I can’t go much longer.” The trainer responded with “You’re only two miles out now, you should be there in almost no time at all.” This is not what Hicks heard. Hicks was in a crazed state; he believed he was still twenty miles from the finish. Hicks had entered the unknown. He was alone. Despite all that was against him, Hicks kept going. He kept pushing himself farther and farther on his marathon, and farther into the unknown. Arriving in Francis Field, ready to end the race, one laust taunt was delivered to Thomas Hicks. His medal was adorning the cheater who passed him. The trainers, even angrier than Hicks, began to scream to the officials. The trainers explained the situation, stating how the runner who passed Hicks was out of the race. Instead of denying this, the passer simply accepted this and claimed his acceptance of the medal was just a joke. Thomas Hicks had fought past all the obstacles placed before him and had won. He could not celebrate this victory, as he had to be escorted off the field and to a hospital to be treated for the injuries he had received running the marathon. Over the course of the past three and a half hours, Hicks had lost over eight pounds. Thomas Hicks gave this event his all, and it couldn't care less about him. He had nearly died so he could get a medal and be printed in a book of names rarely opened.

I like writing because I get to show other people what I think. It's nice.

I'm Max Silvernail, and these are my Silvernail Stories.

I write for fun because my brother makes me. I get to pretend I'm my characters. I get to go somewhere else.

I am Benji Silvernail, and I have some Silvernail Stories.

I like to write about things sometimes. It makes me happy. But other times, I use it to deal with the sad things I feel.

Welcome to my website. My name is Ethan Silvernail, and here are some Silvernail Stories.

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