What Happens Next
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A Curious Creature. . .
Normal families were probably at King George Square on Christmas Eve, or strolling beside the river at Southbank, or possibly at home watching The Muppets Christmas Carol, wrapping presents and stuffing their faces with mince pies.
We were hiking in the Himalayas. In the middle of a blizzard. Surrounded by nothing but ice and snow – and looking for a creature that almost certainly didn’t exist.
‘Are we there yet?’ I panted.
‘Nearly!’ Dad boomed. The falling snow had turned his beard white, so he looked like Father Christmas. Next to him, in her green bobble hat, Mum looked a bit like an elf. She glanced over her shoulder at me and said, ‘Not far now, kid!’
She was actually right this time: Dad yelled, ‘There!’ and for a moment I wondered if he might have spotted the Yeti. But of course not. He was pointing at a small wooden building in the distance – the cabin where we’d be spending the night.
When we reached it, stamped the snow off our boots and stepped inside, Mum said, ‘Isn’t this absolutely lovely?’ as if it was a luxury apartment with heating, a massive telly and a Jacuzzi. It really wasn’t. It was tiny, bare and only slightly warmer than a fridge.
I shrugged off my heavy backpack and sagged onto it, shivering and exhausted, but my parents were much too excited to rest – instead, they were bouncing around like a pair of hyperactive puppies.
‘Right,’ said Dad. ‘Straight back outside, I think – to find the big fella!’
Mum nodded eagerly, but I was shaking my head. ‘I’ll stay here, if you don’t mind.’
They didn’t mind. In fact, they’d probably have been happy to leave me at home in Brisbane – but it’s apparently against the law for eleven-year-olds to be home alone while their parents go on international monster-hunting expeditions.
So, with a cheery goodbye (from Dad) and a pat on the head (Mum) they bounded outside into the snow. Then the cabin was calm and quiet.
Until, ten minutes later, there was a knock at the door.
An incredibly loud knock, even by my Dad’s standards – it rattled the entire cabin.
They must have forgotten something. Or got too tired or too cold.
But when I flung open the door, I gasped: it wasn’t Dad. Or Mum. It was something else entirely.
Something huge, white and hairy.
What happens next? That is entirely up to you!