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Daniella Horna-Baxter, 13
Oak Park, IL

Something Smells Fishy

Daniella Horna-Baxter, 13

I was tired of being stuck inside with only my parents. I was itching for sunlight, and barely any clouds littered the sky. So, I decided to go to the backyard to do my e-learning.

I was doing my math when I noticed how pretty the pond water was as it reflected the clear blue sky. I decided it was time for a break. I got my camera and started taking pictures. I was marveling at the pictures when I took a closer look and noticed that there were only 10 of my 30 or so fish there.

Interesting . . . I got some fish food and flew outside. I counted again. 11. Hmmmm. I threw the specks of food all across the pond hoping some would come out. Nothing. If the food was in the pond, why weren't fish coming out?

I called my best friend that I had lived next to for over 8 years. Joel answered right away. “Hey Hannah what’s up?”

“I think a raccoon is eating my fish.”

“Really? Try setting up a camera.”

I did, but I forgot to get a light and all the footage was pitch black.

9 fish.

So, the next night I got my flashlight and aimed it at the pond. I was sure to catch the animal. The next morning I woke up and immediately checked the footage, the video had gone dark at 10 o’clock. I checked the flashlight, dead.

6 fish.

I called Joel, yet again he answered immediately “Have you caught it?”

“No, I don’t know what to do.”

“Why don’t you stay up tonight? I’ll check on you each hour.”

I woke up at 7.

4 fish.

I called up Joel. “Joel! Why didn’t you wake me up last night?!”

“I was trying to! But you sleep like a baby! I tried waking you up with a megaphone, but Old Greta across the street yelled at me for being too loud. So I tried to go wake you up but then I remembered the 6 foot rule.”

“Well what am I going to do now?”

“I have some motion activated lasers that send a notification to your phone when something moves.”

“How do you have that?

“My dad worked night security at the Art Museum”

There was no movement, and now I had no fish.

I Face Timed Joel. “Joel! There’s no more fish left!”

“Oh no!”

Then I noticed something behind him. A fish tank.

With my fish.

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