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Standing on a Corner

This piece is from a kids’ writer’s workshop. It’s intended for children of all ages. The prompt is:

“Standing on a Corner”. Write what this means to you.

Standing on a corner of the chessboard was a castle. In order for him to move, the pawns had to move first, or the horse, or the knight. And though it was of no doing of his own, it was the castle who was often captured, through some trickery of the enemy.

It got lonely in his corner, and there was nothing the castle could do about it. He had no control over his own life. He couldn’t eat, drink, or see his family and friends. But he learned patience. He knew that one day things would get better. When he grew old enough, he would get to leave that lonely place and never come back.

And one day, it happened. The pawn in front of him moved forward two spaces, and with that, the castle zoomed ahead with as much force as the wind, and with as much excitement as a newborn puppy. He darted right, and then left – he couldn’t move diagonally, he learned – avoiding a collision with his own queen. He took one long deep breath as he slid to the center of the board, with seemingly no one around him. He felt free.

But the castle wanted more than freedom. He wasn’t sure what he wanted exactly, but he knew it was something more. As his teammates disappeared around him, and his enemy became less and less, the castle felt bewildered, uncertain. But then he understood. He zipped forward all the way to where the enemy was, and only then was the game over.

Finally, the castle felt like a king.

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