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The Golden Stone
It wasn't the first time that Alfie had a sick, creepy feeling in the middle of the night. It was as if a venomous snake had curled up in his stomach. He opened his bedroom door and stuck his head out into the unlit hallway. The house was silent. He crept out, stepping over the floorboard that always creaked. On the landing he stopped dead, listening again to see if he could hear anybody.
Not a sound.
A shaft of moonlight fell onto the stairs making the crimson carpet appear silvery and grey. There was a hum coming from the kitchen; it grew louder as he approached. He knew what the sound was; it was like a beacon guiding him in the darkness. He found his way across the kitchen floor and reached out and felt a cold flat surface. There was a handle; he put his fingers on it and pulled. As he did so, a brilliant light flooded the kitchen and made Alfie wince.
The hum stopped as the fridge opened.
Now he could see what to take upstairs for his midnight snack. He knew he had to be quick and quiet. He had to choose something that didn’t require opening of packets or crunching or crumbs. The fridge was his mum’s territory and she would be super cross if she knew what he was up to. He really didn’t want to be found out.
The fridge was loaded with fruit and vegetables; there was broccoli, carrots, lettuces and half a cucumber, red apples, green apples and some blueberries. Behind the sweet potato was half a tin of apricots, but Alfie didn’t want any of those. He knew exactly what he wanted and where it was.
Alfie weaved his hand through the assault course of vegetables and managed to move the jar of what looked like white worms; Sauerkraut. Totally revolting! Some kind of vinegary nastiness that Dad had once made him eat in a blind taste test. As his hand navigated around the container he was being as quiet as a mouse on a mission. At last his hand touched the very thing he was after.
He pushed some of the other items away so that he could remove the Cheddar without too much difficulty. But then something caught his eye. It was a colour that he didn’t associate with the fridge. Something gold was shining right at the back of the fridge.
“Odd,” he muttered. He took the broccoli out and laid it on the kitchen table and did the same with the bag of carrots and the cucumber. At the very back of the fridge was a strange golden oval shape, about the size of a chocolate Easter egg. Alfie reached out his fingers to touch it. It was cold like a copper pipe in winter and just as solid. He tried to roll it toward him, but it wouldn’t budge.
“I wonder what on earth this is?” he said to himself.