Jay loved to read science fiction. He dreamed of exploring space. One afternoon while climbing the tree in his backyard, he slipped and fell, breaking his arm and hitting his head. He had been imagining he was on a space station with no gravity and forgot that he was still under its full force. After the hospital, he was confined to bed.

Jay was bored. The doctor had given him medicine to keep him awake because he hit his head but he couldn’t read the way he was positioned and with only one hand. So he lay there staring at the ceiling.

The red hues of the afternoon sun flowed across the pop corned ceiling giving it an alien appearance. The ceiling began to fade as the reds deepened. The small bumps began to grow and spread as a breeze blew on Jay’s face. Before he knew it, the ceiling was gone and he found himself standing on the surface of the red planet, Mars.

Mars was Jay’s favorite planet. The dust was flying across the rocky surface as Jay began walking toward a break in the cliff. He couldn’t see the top of the shear rock wall as he moved easily over the surface.

The opening in the wall led somewhere and Jay wanted to explore. The wind dropped off as he stepped into the tight passage. He moved slowly, sometimes having to turn sideways to squeeze through the bulging rocks. It felt like he walked for hours. At times he had to crawl and other times he had to climb over fallen rocks but eventually he saw light ahead of him.

As he got closer to the opening, he could hear birds chirping and see green trees surrounded by tall grass. As he emerged, he saw a long valley full of life. The sky shimmered creating tiny rainbows across the landscape. From where he stood there was so much to take in that it overwhelmed him, so he started walking.

The was a well-defined path as the grass and trees grew thicker but he had no more than gotten into the thick then the path forked. Jay stopped and looked carefully down both paths. They looked the same and although he wasn’t afraid the thought of getting lost did worry him.

He had decided to go on the right path but just then he saw something moving in the grass in that direction. Not knowing what kind of animals where living in this strange valley on Mars Jay immediately switched and headed down the left path.

As he moved through the growth he encountered two more forks and to help him remember where he was on both he went left. By this time the sun was dipping over the tall rock wall dropping the valley into twilight and Jay knew he should turn around. Just then he heard drums. Soft at first but steady and getting louder.

Jay decided it was time to go. He quickly turned to head back up the path when a large blood red man popped out of the grass and Jay slammed into his solid mass.

Jay jerked and gasped for air as pain shot up his arm. He screamed. As the haze cleared and he realized he was in his bedroom once again, his mom came in to see what was wrong. He couldn’t explain but was glad to be home.


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