I could feel the excruciating pain on my arm. I did not have the courage to turn my head to look at it. I knew if I did, I would find a bleeding wound the size of my fist. Scenes of me playing with my dog appeared in my head. My thoughts exploded, my head was being squeezed. “Cannot do that…” I murmured.
It was June, the time of our annual Science Week. The Science project in our class was to grow aloes and observe how the aloe gel cures people. The experiment itself is simple, however a little scary—we need to cut our fingers with a tiny knife then put aloe gel onto it to see how does it help our fingers cure faster.
The experiment went well. Each of us cut our fingers and started to cut the leaves of the aloes and collected the gels. As you know, the leaves of the aloes are big, with some thick gels inside the leaves. When I cut open one of the leaves of my plant, I closed my eyes, put my finger inside and was ready to feel the soft, cool touching of the aloe gel. As my finger sink deeper and deeper into the leaf, I had not touched anything, not even a liquid of any kind. As I opened my eyes, I was stunned. This isn’t what I imagined—instead of clear, beautiful gel, there is nothing inside the leaf—it was hollow. All I noticed was the rough wall of the leaf.
I thought it was only an accident and watched the leaf more carefully as I cut it open – it was in my expectations, but sad—still nothing inside. I decided to ask my science teacher about this.
I checked the plant for the last time. found a list of little black dots on the inside walls. I looked closer, put my hands on the dots and the dots suddenly became some tiny text. It says: “Put bandage around your finger to be less painful.”
“Put bandage around my finger? Is this the way it is trying to help my finger instead of using its aloe gel?” I was curious and decided to keep the plant. I hid it inside my locker and told my science teacher that I lost it. I bought another aloe and keep the strange one home.
My wound cured fast after I followed “the instructions” from the aloe. The aloe at my home performed nothing strange. I had tried to cut open a few leaves. They were all hollow however no text was inside.
A few weeks later, an accident happened—I fell on my knees and was wounded. I hurried to the nurse and put a bandage around my knee. It helped the wound, but not much. I suddenly remembered that tomorrow was the day of sport, and I could not do my best with this wound on my knee. My mum found many ways to cure the wound, but all did little help.
While desperately staring at the wound, the red cuts reminded me of something. Last time when I had the similar wound, I cured really fast with the help of “something”.
What is it? I searched for the thing in my head, until I saw the little figure on the window. I remembered something and ran to that plant, tore and cut open another leaf, then put my finger on the inside wall. A list of little text appeared. I read it curiously to find out how will the aloe help me this time to cure the gigantic wound. The little text reads: “Steal one penny from mum and put it inside my leaf in three hours.”
What is that?! How is it related to my wound? Confusingly, I could not think of any relationship between the wound and stealing money. I decided to ignore the “suggestion” of the plant. When I had this thought, I started walking away from the plant and picked up my bag. At the same time, I felt a sharp pain from my wound. I walked for another step with the bag and was even more painful. “Fine!” I shouted, and walk towards my mum’s bag, took out a small coin, and put it into the hollow leaf. As if sensing and checking the money, the aloe leaf moved left and right, then closed slowly. When it opened again after two minutes, there was nothing inside, and a green gel started to come out from the bottom of the leaf. I gently applied it to my wound, and the wound started to heal. Within half a minute, the skin grows together and the wound disappeared as if nothing was ever there.
I stared at the wound surprisingly. And then I understood something – the plant could help me to cure my wound if I do what it commands. If I do not, my wound will be even more painful, and maybe, more serious than before.
I tested the plant several times, making big and small cuts on my body, and the aloe always gave me instructions. I also found that the bigger the wound, the harder the instructions. Once I cut my finger badly that a piece of fingernails was hanging slackly on a side of my finger. If it was a week ago, I would be worried that I would never be able to play the piano, my favourite instrument again. However now, I walked straight to the plant and cut a leaf down. It says: “Take a small knife from the kitchen and carve the shape of a hand on your arm.”
It sounded so creepy that I rubbed my eyes and read it again. When I confirmed the messaged conveyed in the sentence, I sank to the floor and could not get up. However, I understood that what might happen if I disobey the plant. I crawled to the kitchen. As I finished carving, I ran to the plant and waited. Nothing happened. I looked back on the trail of blood on the floor, and my heart beats faster. In a minute, the pain disappeared. I glanced at my hand with fear and was relieved. The carvings disappeared and my finger was back to normal.
For these five years, a big part of my life was depending on the plant. I stopped being careful – the small cuts and scratches can be cured in seconds, and the bigger ones, are also pieces of cakes. I walked onto the street with my eyes closed. I felt safe with the plant as if it was a part of myself. It was attached to me so I never suffered from my mistakes.
Everything was fine until three days ago, I fell down from a rock at school and my arm was seriously hurt. The wound covered a really large area, larger than any wound before. I was a little bit worried, as the wound was the biggest wound of these five years, therefore the command of the plant should also be the hardest. I cut open a leaf, take a deep breath and looked inside. The words, unusual this time, was golden instead of black. They were shining under the sunlight and it took me a while to finish reading it. “Put all of your pocket money inside.” “No,” I replied firmly. All of my pocket money cannot be compared with a single little wound. I was prepared for the aloe to hurt my wound, however, that did not happen as it usually did. Instead, I saw something in the leaf changed. I took a closer look and found that the words inside had changed: “Eat 50 ants (last chance).” I was disgusted. I was afraid of insects since I was born. It was impossible to eat 50 small ants. And additionally, there were no small ants around my house. All I could find are fat red ants with long tentacles. I said “no” in a small voice, and my stomach started to feel unwell. Just as the thought of not eating the ants appeared in my mind, I saw the wound expanded in a quick speed. The pain reached the upper parts of my arm and started to “grow” around my arm, so my arm looked red as if I put a bloody sleeve on it. When the wound finally stopped expanding, I was already lying on the floor. I struggled to get up and hold the wooden handle on the wall. As I pull the handle, I felt a tearing anguish on my skin. I was too scared to look at my arm so I looked at the leaf again. The words were different again, and they were no longer black. The bloody read words now read: “Kill your dog within 30 minutes.”
Reporter: A ten-year-old girl was murdered at Number x xxx Road xxx city. Her skin was all torn off and no clues had been found.
A lady at Number x xxx Road xxx city crying, tidying the remains of her dead daughter. “I remembered there… there was an aloe here, on the window. But… but where is it now…”