The World Traveler

Chapter 1: Keys of Change

Lexi Black stared out the rain spattered window in thought, her face void of emotion. Her eyes had been puffy and red from crying, and all Lexi could think about was how her grandmother was now dead. It was still unbelievable to her that she was even gone. Lexi's grandmother, Ramona Black, had been her last known living relative, and now that she was dead nobody would be able to take care of her. Lexi's parents had died when she was three, and all her other relatives had passed away by the time she was born; her grandmother had been her last chance at normality.

Clearly Lexi remembered when all her problems began, that sealed her dear grandmother's fate. Lexi had come home from school like it was any other day, dropping her backpack in the hallway of their mansion, and kicking off her shoes, dispensing them next to her backpack and trudging into the kitchen. Their kitchen had been big, an island in the middle of it, old fashioned tile on the countertops, an old white refrigerator, and wooden cupboards. Even the stove was older looking, but Lexi liked the authentic kitchen, and every day she came home from school she expected her grandmother to be there to greet her. This time though, it was different.

The scene displayed in front of Lexi made her scream in terror. Her grandmother's finger had been cut open, the bloodied knife lying on the ground, along with the pieces of fruit she had tried to cut. Blood poured out from the finger as Lexi's grandmother scrambled for a towel. Applying it to the finger, she quickly covered it up, but blood was slowly seeping through the towel.

"Hurry Lexi, this won't stop bleeding. We have to get this stitched up," cried Ramona, running out of the kitchen. Lexi quickly followed her as they exited the house and ran to her grandmother's minivan. After fishing out the keys from her pocket, her grandmother started the car, and soon the two were on their way to the hospital. When they arrived, the two were immediately whisked into the emergency room by a nurse who had seen Lexi's grandmother's now blood-drenched towel. The nurse forced Lexi to wait in the waiting room when a doctor came, and so began the most stressful hour of Lexi's life.

She sat there for what felt like centuries, staring at the white hospital walls or reading the outdated magazines that were in the waiting room. Lexi had read all the magazines in the room and was trying to take a nap when the doctor shook her awake. Fluttering her eyes open, Lexi stared up at the doctor. He was tall, with graying hair and pale brown eyes. His skin was on the whiter side, and he had an incredibly huge nose.

If Lexi had been in a better mood she would have commented on it, but kept her mouth shut; instead, asking "yes?"

"We have managed to stitch your grandmother's finger, but we had to give her a blood transfusion because she had lost an incredible amount of blood," said the doctor. Lexi frowned.

"Is she okay though?" the doctor looked uneasy when she said that.

"Not quite. We had to do a blood test to figure out what blood to give her, and found something very unfortunate."

"What was it? What did you find?" Lexi asked slowly, trying to mentally prepare herself for the news.

"Your grandmother has Leukemia." So much for preparing herself.

The next couple of months were very melancholy for Lexi. As the days passed by, her grandmother was slowly dying away, and it was killing Lexi to watch. When Lexi's grandmother had found out that her strain of the disease had already affected her too much, she had refused treatment, saying "if it's already too late, then I was meant to die, let me go." Lexi had wanted to scream, yell, stomp, just break something; why was her grandmother so stubborn? Didn't she love Lexi? Didn't she want to live to see her only grandchild reach high school, go to college, and one day have her own family?

It infuriated Lexi that her grandmother didn't even want to fight for her own life. So slowly her energy faded away, and after a month Ramona could barely get out of her bed. Lexi now had to do all the chores, and cook all the meals for her grandmother and herself. After a while it became a routine Lexi didn't mind, but always in the back of her mind was the fact that her grandmother wasn't going to be around much longer. This was all too tortuous for Lexi to endure.

Then, that fateful day came; the hour of Ramona's death was upon the Black Mansion. Lexi had entered her grandmother's room, where Ramona lay waiting for her. She had gulped, shutting the door behind her. Ramona's room was small, only a bed and a dresser with a mirror were in it, and as Lexi looked at the room she couldn't help but feel sadness well up inside of her. This was the last time she would see this room when her grandmother occupied it.

"Lexi dear, would you come sit next to me?" Ramona croaked. Lexi could only nod, perching at the edge of the bed, gazing at her grandmother. Everything about Ramona's appearance was paled in contrast to what she used to look like, from her eyes, to her skin, and her hair, all different.

"I fear my time is almost up, and so I need to tell you all the things I was waiting until you were older to tell you now," said Ramona, fiddling with her shirt pocket.

"Okay, I'm listening," whispered Lexi. Ramona sighed.

"The first thing I have to tell you is something you're not going to believe at first, but you must. Have you ever wondered about the third floor of this mansion?" When did Lexi not? Ever since she was little her grandmother had forbidden her from even climbing the staircase, and it didn't help that sometimes Lexi heard swooshing noises from above when she tried to sleep at night.

"Well anyways, there's a reason you were never allowed to go up there. On the third floor is a door, and that door leads to a place anybody can get lost in."

"Get lost in? Where does the door lead to?" asked Lexi.

"The past." Lexi furrowed her eyebrows.


"The door is a gateway to the past. It can take you to any place in history by using these keys," said Ramona, finally pulling out two silver keys that were attached to a chain from her shirt pocket. Handing them to Lexi, she said "they are yours now."

"Mine? Do they open the door?"

"Yes, they do. You see, ever since this house was built back in the eighteen hundreds, our family has traveled back in time and fixed the past. The portal had one day appeared, along with those enchanted keys, and it has been the family business ever since then to be World Travelers."

"World Traveler? Don't you mean Time Traveler?" said Lexi bemused.

"No, World Traveler. Time Travelers can travel anywhere through time, including the past, present, and future. We though, can only go to one place: the past, and only when we're done with our mission can we come back to the present. Plus, we're traveling the world when we do so…so, World Traveler." Lexi frowned.

"None of this makes any sense!"

"It's the truth though, you can even find out for yourself. That's not all I had to tell you though. You have an uncle, he's your father's brother, and he's coming from England to take care of you," said Ramona, coughing into her hand.

"I have an uncle? Are you serious? I have an uncle and nobody ever told me!" cried Lexi.

"He's always traveling and never has time to visit, so he was never mentioned." Lexi's jaw dropped.

"Look the important thing is that's he's going to be here now, since I'm soon going to be gone," whispered Ramona.

"You could have fought, but you didn't, why?" sobbed Lexi. Tears spilled down her cheeks. Ramona regarded Lexi sympathetically.

"I have to let nature take its course, and accept whatever is in store for me."

"Ha that's ironic considering you supposedly 'fix' the past. I'm only twelve years old, how can you do this to me!" yelled Lexi.

"I'm sorry Lexi. Know though that I love you, and always will. Become the best World Traveler you can be," murmured Ramona, leaning back in her bed.

"What should I do next?" Lexi managed to splutter out.

"Curiosity will eventually get the better of you, and then you'll know," were Ramona's last words before she closed her eyes, and was still forevermore. Now Lexi just sat, clutching the keys in her fist and staring out the second story window. Curiosity will eventually get the better of me, thought Lexi, glancing up at the staircase to the third floor. The question is, will I let it?

Yes, this is yet another story from me. This one though, I'm already liking alot to write, so please read and review, I do so in return!