Happy Friday! Welcome to the second half of stories by 7th grade students at Basis Middle School in Scottsdale. Remember, these are 500 word stories inspired by images from Issue #47 of
HFR. Today's story - sweet, with a very sad twist and great character relationships - is inspired by Debbie Fleming Caffery's "Sleeping Lizards" and is written by Abijith K.



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I stepped out of the rain into the old uninhabited mansion, its furniture covered with a blanket of soot, its walls echoing with cries of help. Nearby, I saw a chair rocking back and forth, creaking like a poor child in distress. I averted my attention to the window; two lizards were pelted with raindrops and tried to come inside for shelter. I opened the window and the two lizards leapt on my arm. Water covered the lizards like a jacket and I could hear them gasping for breath. I wrapped them in my handkerchief and carried them home in a way that not even a single drop would even skim the scales on their body.
Once I reached the shelter of my house, I placed the shivering lizards in an open shoe box and emptied some crickets I caught into the box. I glanced away for a second, and by the time I looked back, the lizards had already devoured the crickets. I placed my handkerchief inside and the lizards snuggled under it. After making sure that the pair was comfortable, I slid the box into the cage so Ergo our cat would not eat them.
The next day, I checked on the two lizards. They were still snoozing, but once I placed their breakfast inside the cage, they woke up and gobbled it in one bite. I decided to leave them in the house when I went to school, but I kept them far from the cat.
When I came back from school, I quickly fed the lizards lunch and opened the cage, so they could crawl on my arm. However, they were still exhausted after trying to escape from the rain. I left them alone and completed my homework. When I fed them dinner, they started to walk in their cage; nonetheless, they could not crawl onto my arm.
A couple of days passed. Once, I decided to visit the creek with the lizards. They began to swim swiftly in the flowing water, and could even swim against the current; not many people could do that. After playing in the water for some time, the lizards swam to the bank where I tucked them in my pocket.
One day, after I fed the lizards their dinner, I left, forgetting to close the cage. The lizards crawled out, restless and excited. They wandered around for a while on the floor, but they came too close to Ergo the cat. Ergo, hungry as usual, pounced on the lizards. I entered the room to see the wicked cat dangling the lizards above his mouth. I quickly seized the lizards from the cat’s claws, but it was too late, the lizards had been killed because of my forgetfulness. For days I wept; I sat in solitude, not with my friends, mourning the loss of my companions. And to this date, I remember my two innocent pals, who I rescued from the cold, who died at the hands of my own cat.