The Unknown

By Melanie Abou Saleh. Melanie, 11, is a student at the American School of Kuwait in Kuwait City. Please read her entry and leave your thoughts and comments below.

The sound made me tremble,  “shoo shoo.” I was rushing up the hill.  I couldn’t tell where the sound was coming from or what it was, all I knew was that I was lost.  With my broken glasses and torn backpack, I went to find shelter.

So many thoughts were scrambling for attention in my head,  but all I  could focus on was my mom. Her lovable, wide open arms, her sweet perfume. I couldn’t help but miss her.  But I had bigger issues.

The whole day was a blur. One second I was in my bright pink room playing with my dolls. The next, I was in the dark, creepy forest, alone.

I pushed the memory out. All I wanted in that moment was a good night’s sleep.


I woke up to the sound of the leaves blowing in the wind and birds chirping. I didn’t know what time it was, or even what day, but I knew I was still by myself, scared, and lost in the unknown.

I thought about giving up.  That’s what my mom did. I thought she  would always be there for me, but she wasn’t. I just knew she had stopped looking for me. She must have.

I was so out of place. I felt like a cat in a dog shelter, nothing or no one around was like me. There were only things I feared or had seen in movies. I never imagined these things happening to me.

I needed to make the best out of this dreadful situation, so I thought I would go exploring. If this was going to be my home for the rest of my life, might as well know it like the back of my hand.  I tried skipping through the long, unkempt grass. It reminded me of when I was little, skipping to my mom.  A tear rolled down my cheek. I sat down and dozed off a little.


‘’Who are you?’’ A man approached me. He was tall, had messy dark brown hair, and he was wearing a long  t-shirt covered in dirt. He also had the most beautiful eyes I had ever seen.

“Huh?” I said.

“Who are you?” the man repeated.

“I am Sophie Chicato, who are you?”

‘’My name? Oh yes, my name is Sami… uh… last name? Um… Beano! Yes there we go!”

He kept going, strange as he was. “New around here, eh?”

‘’Yes, you?,” I said.

“New? Ha! I’ve practically owned this place for about 30 years, kid!”

He took a step closer. ‘’Ok Sophie, come with me! I can show you around.’’

“Sorry,” I backed up, “but my mom said not to go with any strangers.”

‘’If your little mom really cared about you, you wouldn’t be in this situation right now,” he said, turning away. “Come kiddo, want to come or not?’’

“Um, I will just stay here,” I said.

“Good luck Sophia – you’ll need it!”

“Fine wait up I’m coming!” I thought to myself that Sami might be able to help me find home.


“Listen closely, this bush’s berries are poison, and these are the ones made from heaven, got it?”

‘’I guess.” Suddenly, the sound of thunder came. I needed to get back to shelter, but it was so far.

Then my hands began to shake. I collapsed. “Sophie! Hey Soph! Oh god!”  Sami carried me to safety and took care of me for the night. I couldn’t thank him enough. He was like the dad I never had.


“Mom… mommy!” I frantically shouted. ‘’No, kid its me, Sami. You really miss your mommy, do you?”

‘’I guess. How about your mommy?” I changed the subject.

“Not one day did I miss her!” he said. “Not one! If she cared so much about me, I would be home right now reading a book to my kids and having movie nights with my wife, okay.” He trailed off.

Moments passed by with pure silence. I could’ve heard a rat fart.

“That is far from the truth. I miss my mom every second of the day,” he recanted. “I just wish I hadn’t been a stuck-up teenager. My mom warned me not to go, but since my friends were going I had to”.

“Let’s go find home.” I said.

In a heartbeat, he stands up and heads out. I hop on his back.  We walk for hours, desperate with hope. Finally, we see the park where I usually play, and I spot a tall woman with light brown hair. She’s looking down on the ground.

“Mommy!” I yelled joyfully. Sami let me down and I got one of her famous hugs. Sami smiled and ran off, we go home as planned.

30 comments on “The Unknown

  1. Mala malini on

    It makes me feel I’m in an in an interesting movie. Melanie how you thought of this amazing story. Step by step the story brings deep emotions. I hope one day you will be a famous great writer. I can see you have a very bright feature.

  2. Nadia Charlier on

    Wonderful story about a lost girl who with the help of a stranger finds her way back to her mom. The story illustrates how everyone in life can be lost in a point in time and with faith that may come about with a helping hand from a trusting new friend a path back home can be found.

  3. Yasmin on

    I enjoyed reading your story, it’s very creative.
    Never stop writing, you have got the talent of grabbing the reader’s attention.

  4. Laila Al Abdulghafoor on

    An inspiring story about a girl who is lost but in the end of the story finds her way back to the comfort of her beloved mother. Was it a dream? Or an adventure to a strange place.
    A creative story would love to read more.

  5. Lara Jadayel on

    Melanie, this is written beautifully. Your creativity is truly inspiring; you really do have a talent for writing. This intriguing story is surely a work of art!

  6. Henri the adventurer on

    Written like a thriller with accurate description and rich vocabulary, your story Melanie is the first evidence of your promising story-teller talent !

  7. Natacha on

    You have an intensity in your writing that makes the reader wants to keep on reading… impressive for your young age and promising… you already know instinctively how writing works and how to keep the reader alert and interested. Well done! And Good Luck for your writings to come…

  8. Tilly Baker on

    Well written Melanie! I like the suspense in your story, which builds up to the promising end! Very touching story, showing the intense love between mother and daughter. Best of luck and continue writing.

  9. Fouad Abou Saleh on

    Wow this is very breathtakingly beautiful.
    The detail and descriptive language is put in such a way. How can any 11 year old create this? Good luck! Stay true to yourself.

  10. Badstieber Bernd on

    Imagine being drawn into a story in a few sentences and seeing yourself.

    Some cannot achieve this in a book – you Melanie can – in a page.

    This is literature * !

    * – (……allows readers to access intimate emotional aspects of a person’s character that would not be obvious otherwise.
    Hogan, P. Colm (2011). What Literature Teaches Us about Emotion. New York: Cambridge University Press.)

  11. Reem on

    I love the detail, it makes you feel like are truly in the story facing the girl’s problems. so creative. and you should keep the great hard and great work that you put in this.

  12. Ingrid Nyssen on

    Melanie, this is a wonderful story . I enjoyed every sentence and went with you throught all emotional moments. Please, Keep on writing.

  13. Amal charara on

    Mel, you are amazing! I don’t know how else to tell you, you ROCK! Wow! Such a nice story. Job well done dear! Go get ‘em. 😘😘😘

  14. Grit Skillandat on

    It makes me reading more about the story. Great job Mel…you’re such an talented young girl. It didn’t surprised me that your mom take a big part at your story…who knows both of you knows the special banding. Lots of love from Switzerland xo

  15. Dima on

    Beautifully written. Melanie, your imagination and creativity is what many try to aspire these days. Never lose that! Wonderfull job.

  16. Connie on

    Melanie, what an imaginative story! I loved your creative use of language! It increased the imagery of every scene in your lost adventure in the forest! I’m glad your story had a happy ending for both you and Sami! Very clever! You have talent! I look forward to reading you one day on my Kindle! Keep writing!

  17. Susanna Barakat on

    Bravo Melanie beautiful story, very well written, full of details and very enjoyable to read. Keep on writing and good luck!!!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe to our newsletter!