Advertise Here
Want to advertise here? Get started for as little as $5
Moonlight Falls

Moonlight Falls

A Story by Bobby Madden

An incomplete story I wrote in 2007.


  When the gargantuan sun begins to set under its far horizon and all light surrenders to the dominant darkness, the majesty of the moon reveals its true face and shadows are cast even at night. This is an inevitable occurrence in the town of Moonlight Falls. The phases of the moon do alternate with time, however, regardless of how much of its pale, bright surface is visible, there is always enough light to bring the most shady, hidden objects and locations of the town into sight, even when New Moon arrives. The lone rats of the alleyways can be seen scurrying to the dumpsters looking for a late meal or back into the sewer grates for shelter, and following a light rainfall or vicious downpour, white reflections are shown in the wet, rugged streets, and mirror images of the small, but large celestial sphere are displayed in the puddles that the precipitation leaves behind. It lives at the very top of the sky, almost like a night-light. Any citizen of the town who tilts their head up towards the black, starlit abyss will see their astronomical friend greet them with all its serenity, never ceasing to illuminate the darkness and wake the dreams of the people below it, whether in deep slumber or awake and watchful.

In the eyes of young people, if there is anything that always exists, it’s the appreciation for the moon and it’s inspiration to the town. If there was anything any school student in elementary, middle, or high school could look up to for hope and guidance in life, emotional or mental support in a difficult situation or struggle, or motivation to follow the deepest dreams and desires of their hearts, it was the moon. It was not so much as something of a religious figure, for nobody in Moonlight Falls follows a religious life, but more of a personal icon, an idol, or a hero, something that allowed them to have faith in themselves and not a god. When a set of eyes gazed at the moon through its placid, pure light, the heart could be be soothed from its beauty and true happiness could be found even in the darkest of times. When children were confused about what direction in which they were going with any aspect of their lives, the moon would light a path for them, and they would finally realize their true purpose. There may have been hundreds of questions children possessed on the meaning of life, death, human behavior, love, hatred, or anything about the world or themselves, but when vision fixated upon the placidity of the moon, they could see deeper inside themselves, and they noticed what answers have always been in front of their faces and gained the courage to find what answers were not.


Such troubling questions lingered mainly in the minds of adolescent teenagers, in other words, high school students. In Prosperity High School of Moonlight Falls, it was perfectly normal for teenagers to start to struggle in the sparks of their lives as they became aware of their surroundings and who they were. Those were the years where young people underwent the changes that would transform them into the people they would be for the rest of their lives. Realization of reality arose from the underground. Each teenager was set to embark on his or her own personal journey to learn responsibility, maturity, wisdom, self-respect, make sense out of their lives and beliefs, find the proper places for their powers and abilities, and understand the meaning of love and what they love the most. As the bright students of Prosperity High School gazed up at the moon at night through their windows, wondering just what awaited them far along the distances of their own respective journeys, they sensed in their consciences that no such journey was ever meant to be an easy road with no obstacles to encounter, but a road of endless obstacles. There was no point in a teenager’s life when he or she knew everything there was to know or stopped traveling down the path, for the path was a symbol for the infinite possibilities of what could be done. Nobody could do everything, but everybody could do something, and that was the question that lit the fuse of a person’s dream. “What can I do with my power? What do I want to do with my power?” Dreams could be pursued by faith in ability. If a young teenager could create a beautiful work of art with his or her right hand, a stream of passion would flow through the fingertips that held the brush, not a desire to be better than whomever else followed the same dream. Life was not a contest. Approval of others was not needed for true happiness to be achieved, because chances were the only expectations possible for anybody to live up to were their own.


“Slade! Wait up, Man!” Vincent Calvenese was running down the hallway of the first floor, avoiding the other students as they patiently walked to their 1st period class. Slade Warrick, a sophomore in Prosperity High School, like Vincent, turned around to greet his good friend. “Hey! Finally you stopped. What’s up? I didn’t see you come off of your bus. How did you get to school?” asked Vincent, catching his breath. “I got here a few minutes ago. I woke up late and missed the bus, so my dad gave me a ride. He wasn’t too happy about it,” explained Slade, with an unpleasant look on his face. Vincent and Slade resumed a walk together to keep hall traffic going.


Regarding their physical appearance, the two boys have long hair, expect Vincent’s was straight and naturally blonde while Slade’s was curly and dyed black, his natural hair color being light brown. Vincent was a few inches taller than Slade and his hair was a lot longer than his, however, he was a few months younger than him. They both had white skin, the same shade of brown in their eyes, and they both wore black shirts every day.  Slade and Vincent were often mistake for brothers in spite of their differences in hair color.


Vincent spoke again. “It’s alright, man. It happens. If I recall correctly though, it’s happened with you quite a number of times. You should get an alarm clock or something!” “I have one. I just never use it. Don’t worry. It’s no big deal,” Slade said back. “I don’t know, man. Usually, you get here a little after 1st period starts. You’ve had a bunch of tardies so far this quarter. I’m surprised you haven’t gotten in trouble, yet,” said Vincent, shaking his head. “I know. That’s why it’s no big deal. I won’t get in trouble. The school doesn’t have time to analyze every single student’s tardy record. Besides, what’s the worst that could happen? Students are tardy everyday in every period,” said Slade. “Well, I just wouldn’t assume anything. You might be underestimating your carelessness. Try to get here on time a little more, alright?” requested Vincent. As they were both about to open the doors to the stairway, Slade replied, “I guess I’ll try. I’ve got bigger issues on my mind though. I barely did a worksheet of homework last night and I regret it horribly. I can’t afford anymore zeros.” “Ha! So you do care about school after all, don’t you?” said Vincent with a smirk on his face. “Why didn’t you do it?” Slade got a serious look in his eyes as he and his friend walked up the stairs. “I tried to do it, but I just couldn’t control my urge to give Dorothy a call. I know she always expects me to call her after school, but the conversation ended up lasting for nearly four hours. I went downstairs and ate some leftovers from dinner, took a shower, and I finally started doing my homework, but my dad made me go to bed at 8:00, so I didn’t get a chance to do any of it. He says it’s because I stay up so late that I oversleep so much.” “My goodness, four hours on the phone? What could you possibly talk about for that long?” Slade all of a sudden looked clueless. “Vince, I honestly wish I could remember. It’s just the most random of things.” The two boys made it to the third floor doors, opened them, and walked into the hallway. “Man, I know your girlfriend is important to you and all, but give yourself a break and make some time for work,” Vincent suggested. “I know. It’s just so hard. I mean, it’s like when I’m talking to her, nothing else in the world matters. I couldn’t care less if the moon fell from the sky and shattered to a million…” Vincent interrupted his sentence. “Hey man, don’t talk that way about the moon. I get your point, but think of something else to use as an example,” he said with conviction. “What’s so great about that thing anyway? It’s so overrated around here. I can’t stand it. I don’t understand. It’s all hype to me,” confessed Slade. Vincent let out a sigh. “Maybe you should take a deeper look at it and you’ll find out,” said Vincent, raising his eyebrows. “I’m just saying, if you ever have any free time at night, look at ‘that thing’ for a long time and see how it affects you. You’ll find things out about yourself that you never could have imagined. It’s like it has supernatural powers.” “Yeah, haha. Sure thing, pal. I believe you,” said Slade, sarcastically. “Well, I have to go. Have a nice Friday! I’ll see you after school!” “You too, buddy! And remember, I know you’re girlfriend is important, but that doesn’t mean nothing else in the world can’t be important. Open your eyes a bit more, especially to the moon! I promise you that you’ll find something you’ve never seen before!” Slade waved to Vincent as he continued to walk down the hallway before turning into his Geography class.


Slade entered the room and sat down in his seat directly in front of the open door. Slade was new to the area and new to Prosperity High. He had recently moved to Moonlight Falls with his father a month ago from another county on account of his expulsion from his previous school. He believed that he did not deserve it, but the school board believed he did not belong in that school anymore and was not qualified to enroll in any other in the county. Slade was not a violent student. In fact, he was never involved in a fight with anybody in his life, but in this instance, he felt personally obligated to engage in it, for he held nothing but hatred and a deep will for vengeance against the person who lit the fuse for him. His name was Eric Norris, and he was nothing but a common bully. In Slade’s previous school, people were often intimidated by anybody who was different from them. With Slade’s case, his hair stood out as a primary target, for his fellow male peers followed the school’s trend of having very short hairstyles as if it meant their whole lives.


It was at the very beginning of the school year, the first day of school to be exact, and Eric just so happened to be in Slade’s 7th period class. The bell had just rang in 7th period in Geometry to signify the start of class, the teacher had left the classroom for an errand, and Eric was sitting in a seat directly behind Slade. Slade was trying to study his surroundings and get used to his new environment, while he suddenly heard a slight giggle from the student to his rear. He didn’t turn around. It was not the first time he had heard laughter pertaining to his differences, so he thought he would let it slide and let whoever giggled enjoy the moment. The laughter amplified in seconds, and unless his mind was deceiving him, Slade thought he had heard the sentence “look at this freak....” coming from the mouth behind him. He looked over his shoulder to find a white male student with blonde cornrows, laughing along with the rest of his cornrow clique that surrounded him. Each student in the class had their names posted on their desks to show them where they had to sit, so Slade could identify him from that piece of evidence. He politely said to him, “Eric? Excuse me, but could you please stop laughing?” Eric did not cease his behavior. He talked back to Slade, condescendingly saying, “Dude, you need some serious help! You’re not a chick, okay?”, and continued to make fun. Slade could only turn around and face the chalkboard in the front of the room while the class waited for their teacher to come back from wherever she was.


Slade did not appreciate the mocking. To think of it, he was probably the only guy in the entire school with hair that exceeded his ears. He never understood what could be so funny about long, black hair on a guy, in the first place. Sure, it went all the way down to his upper back, but he and his close friends actually thought it was pretty cool. Some of the world was just too shallow to take a deeper look into him, so the only thing they would ever know would be the waves on the surface of the water, not the life that dwelled beneath it.


Eric and his friends began to whisper to each other at a low volume that Slade could not make out, and the laughter seemed like it would not stop. It was ridiculous to him. Despite the immaturity, he was just thankful that they only produced sound waves and not physical contact. Slade studied Wing Chun, but he never had to fight, because no conflict that arose ever made it necessary. To Slade, this was just another trivial, harmless matter that did not require a demonstration of Wing Chun. Unfortunately, that belief ended quickly. Before Slade could react, Eric took his actions far off the deep end with total disregard for Slade’s personal space and well-being. All of a sudden, Slade heard a silent remark from Eric to his buddies that sounded like “watch this!” following a muted snip sound next to his ears. The laughter abruptly increased to a high volume from everybody behind Slade. Confused, he turned around once more and laid his eyes on a very overwhelming sight: fallen strands of Slade’s hair, lying dead on Eric’s desk. Eric had his eyes squeezed shut and his mouth wide open, letting out a loud manifestation of amusement, dropping a large pair of scissors to the floor. Slade could not believe what his brain was trying to comprehend. In order to assist his mental functions, Slade rapidly stepped out of his desk, stood up, reached behind his neck, and felt a major decrease in the length of his hair. Its extent that once reached to his upper back was now just barely passing his shoulders. Slade’s eyes began to become wet as panic ran through his bones. His head was throbbing, his limbs were shaking, and tears of extreme humiliation and devastation ran down his cheek. In his blurry vision, Eric looked back at Slade and mockingly faked a sad face, saying “Awww, booo hooo!” with cruel, heartless intent. Slade felt a deep fire burn inside his chest from what Eric had done to him. Slade had taken childish laughter and jokes from his peers many times in the past, but this was more inhuman and out of line than anything he had received before. Slade was officially put up with it. He was sick and tired of relying on emotional endurance. These inferior people needed to feel his pain, and Slade intended for Eric to do just that.


He slowly put down his hand from the back of his neck, balled up his fists into hard bricks, clenched his teeth, gazed at his victim with burning malice, and like a pouncing tiger, Slade drove a palm strike from his left hand straight into Eric’s throat. The entire class was startled by what they had begun to witness and began gasping and yelling. Slade had thrown Eric out of the chair, causing Eric to arise to his feet and dart after Slade in blind fury, but Slade responded with an upward palm strike from his left hand and a straight-line punch from his right hand into Eric’s chest, causing him to fly backward to the corner of the room, grunting in agony. The next thing Slade knew was that the teacher had marched in the room with an expression of dismay, demanded to know what happened, heard from numerous eyewitnesses that Eric had been “beaten up” by Slade, and proceeded to call security.


In Slade’s principal’s hearing, he was given an opportunity to explain his actions, and no matter how much he claimed to be the victim in the situation and how much of the blame he tried to put on Eric for provoking him, Slade was regarded as the antagonist and furthermore a threat to the school. There was no question from the administrators that he had to be expelled. The only reasons why he did not end up going to a juvenile detention center were that he had no history of such incidents ever occurring in his life and his record of transcripts since elementary school have always consisted of straight A’s. Slade could only be considered to be emotionally unstable. Therefore he was forced to undergo weekly sessions of anger management therapy and drop his Wing Chun for being said to negatively influence his mental health.


Soon after the confirmation of Slade’s expulsion, he and his father moved to a new county so he could enroll in school once more. Slade’s parents have been divorced since the start of his freshman year in high school, and he had not seen his mother since then. He had been able to adjust to living with just his father with no trouble at all. In Slade’s opinion, it was actually more peaceful to live in his house, seeing how his mother would always be the one to start the fights (according to his anger management therapist, Slade’s emotional instability was suggested to have been inherited from his mother.) Moonlight Falls was a fresh, new start at life for Slade and his father. It was a much happier town with more opportunities for them. As for Slade’s social life, the students at Prosperity High School were kinder to him. They were also smarter, more independent, and they did not follow trends. They accepted Slade and every other student for who they were. Slade even made a girlfriend not even a week after they moved, and her name was Dorothy Ramon. They had an outstanding relationship, and it seemed to be going at a smoothe, progressive pace. He still kept in touch with his good friends from his previous school. They even claimed that the cliques had stopped acting the way they usually did; Slade’s incident was apparently revealed to the whole school, influencing those who criticized and prejudged the students they thought were unusual at the time. The members of the cornrow clique aside from Eric Norris described the incident as something that “opened their eyes” to the feelings of other people, the damage they caused from their hurtful behavior, and the importance for one to be true to one’s self. When Slade heard about all of this, it just made him think to himself that regardless of his punishment, one person can always make a difference in the long run.


Vincent’s words spun around in Slade’s head as he looked around the filled up classroom. Vincent was really being serious in his opinion about the moon. He stuck up for it like it was his best friend or something. Slade was puzzled on what could be so special about it. It had been up in the sky his whole life and there was nothing that significant about it. Slade decided to take a look another look at it when nighttime came. After all, it was unreasonable to say the entire town was crazy for their beliefs. Slade agreed with him when he was talking about his life’s importance though. It was not until recently that his work habits had started to get off balance. He waited until the last minute to do his homework, which caused him to stay up very late and then oversleep the next day. Slade couldn’t stand going to school with less than eight hours of sleep. He would rather oversleep and be tardy than to be on time with less sleep. It was not just the long phone conversations that killed his time during the day. He procrastinated by playing video games and watching TV. His anger management therapist told him that such activities can be bad for his blood pressure, but he believed that he didn’t have an anger problem in the first place, so he did them anyway. So far, Slade had been tardy to class (sometimes not coming in until half the day had gone) nine times since he had enrolled in Prosperity High, and he had not been punished for them, the reason being that the administrators wished to cut him some slack for what he had been through before coming to he school. They were starting to believe that it was not benefiting anything and they would take proper precautions when ten tardies were reached. Slade did wish to change his habits, but his intentions were unable to be backed up with actions. Slade was beginning to realize that his actions were what defined him, not his intentions.


Slade didn’t have any friends in his Geography class expect Frederick Asher, or Asher as everybody called him, who sat right next to him. He had walked in just a few seconds before the bell rang. “Asher! Good to see you!” said Slade with a smile. “Hey, hey! What’s going on?” he asked. “Not much. I didn’t do the homework. Did you do it?” “Yeah, man. You need it? Here,” said Asher, opening his binder and pulling it out for him. Asher seemed like a regular guy. He had short, dark brown hair, green eyes, and he wore blue jeans and long sleeve shirts with button-up shirts over them everyday. He always gave straight eye contact and spoke without ever mumbling or spitting. He had a 4.0 grade point average, and it wasn’t from being the smartest kid in school, but from doing homework everyday. He said that intelligence was nothing compared to doing homework. Overall, Asher had every ounce of Slade’s respect. “Thanks, buddy. I appreciate it!” said Slade, gladly. He took his backpack off his shoulders and set it on top of his desk, unzipped it, grabbed his zip-up binder, unzipped it, took out his unfinished Geography homework from a folder and attempted to copy the answers from Asher’s completed paper. Unfortunately, their teacher, Mr. McGavin, had his eyes set on what he was doing. “Planning to cheat are we, Mr. Warrick?”  he asked. Slade jumped slightly at the question of suspicion. “No, sir. Not at all,” lied Slade. “I hope not. I do hope you can afford a zero for not completing that homework.” “Couldn’t I bring it in next class for a late grade?” asked Slade with sincerity. “I’m sorry, Slade. You know that rules. You’ve been here long enough to know my policy for unfinished homework is not like the other teachers. There are no late grades. The night when it’s assigned is when you’re supposed to do it. Understand?” lectured Mr. McGavin. “Yes, sir. Thank you,” said Slade with a hidden irritation.” “Good. Thank you.” He walked away and went back to his desk. Everyone in the school said Mr. McGavin looked like a clone of Einstein because of the old age, crazy gray hair, and grey mustache. Slade was always annoyed by his lectures and strict rules. He didn’t think he gave his students fair treatment. Slade just put his head down and tried to think that it wouldn’t be a big deal, before falling asleep.


Slade woke up from his sleep a few minutes before the bell was going to ring, realizing what happened. He spoke with tiredness in his voice. “Asher, why didn’t you wake me up?” “Oh, well I didn’t know you wanted to be woken up. Sorry, Slade,” said Asher, feeling a bit guilty. “It’s okay, man. What did we do?” asked Slade. “We’ve been working on page 33. It’s ten questions. You won’t have enough time to do it.” With the end of the sentence, the bell rang and all the students prepared to leave for their next class. “I don’t know what to tell you, man. I feel so bad for not waking you up. You just looked like you needed sleep, I guess,” said Asher, shrugging his shoulders. “I’ll see you later, alright? Happy Friday.” Asher packed up his things and left the room. Slade was just sitting, thinking about what he could do to improve his situation. He unzipped his backpack again and began to put away his binder, when he noticed that Mr. McGavin exited the room as well. Slade guessed that he was going to use the restroom. When he watched him out, Slade got an idea. If he wasn’t there to keep an eye on the textbooks, he could borrow one and take it home so he could finish the class work. It sounded like a good idea. It wasn’t not like he would find out about it. Slade waited until the remaining students exited the class to take a textbook and slip it in his backpack. With it secure and in place, Slade zipped up the pouch, put his shoulders through the straps, and went out into the hallway feeling he made a cunning move. He was finally able to outsmart the strict Mr. McGavin. He felt like playing against the rules felt rather good. He could do it more often in desperate situations. He headed to his next class, passing Mr. McGavin who was leaving the bathroom.


Slade and his girlfriend Dorothy planned on meeting before 3rd period on Friday by the water fountains on the third floor, so he was heading there. He would be glad to see her. He was anxious to see her ever since he got off the phone with her last night. He saw the two water fountains by the stairwell doors. Slade stood in sight but out of the way so students could still have room to get their drinks. He looked down each part of the L-shaped hall, waiting for her to show. After about 30 seconds or so, she appeared from the hallway he had come from, waving and smiling nervously like she always did. Slade was absolutely crazy about this girl. He had never seen a more beautiful female in his entire life. All the swimsuit models, female vocalists, and overrated celebrities of the world were dogs compared to her. She had hypnotic brown eyes. Her naturally black hair was like the grass of a meadow, so smooth when he ran his fingers through it. Her white smile was like the sun, so bold, bright, and prone to fill him with warmth. She was the sweetest, most caring person Slade had ever met, not to mention the coolest and the funniest. Dorothy was just perfect for him, and he would never want any other girlfriend in his entire life.


Dorothy walked up and wrapped her arms around her boyfriend. “Hi, sweetie!” she said, kissing him on the cheek. “Hey! I’ve missed you!” replied Slade, sending another kiss right back at her. “Awww, I’ve missed you too. How are you?” “I’m alright, thank you. My day could have been better, but I think it’s getting better now that I finally get to talk to you!” confessed Slide with a big smile on his face. “Hehe, Slade, you are such a charmer,” she replied, blushing slightly. “Well it’s the truth! What can you do? Hehe, what about you? How was your morning?” asked Slade, with his hands on her shoulders. “My morning was fine. I was bored last class so I tried writing a poem for you. Tell me what you think!” Dorothy reached into her pocket and pulled out a folded sheet of paper. Slade smiled, took the paper, and unfolded it.

© 2015 Bobby Madden

My Review

Would you like to review this Story?
Login | Register

Share This
Request Read Request
Add to Library My Library
Subscribe Subscribe


Added on April 8, 2015
Last Updated on April 8, 2015
Tags: moonlight, high school, moon, fighting, Wing Chun


Bobby Madden
Bobby Madden

Manassas, VA

I play retro games on N64, SNES, and PSone. I drink coffee more than vampires drink blood. Let's be friends! more..

Smoke Smoke

A Poem by Bobby Madden