Excerpt for Mysterious Reflections by , available in its entirety at Smashwords

The adventures of Zack and Luke. Volume 1. “The Mysterious reflections”

The adventures of Zack and Luke. Volume 1. “The Mysterious reflections”

©2018 Michal Claire


“I bet Zack would like this, even if it is trash.” is what 12 year old Luke thought that afternoon as his best friend started a new hobby of photographing strange reflections, but when people realize they can’t just hush his dreams up, how will they respond, and what lies in store for Zack and Luke.

-Table of contents-

Chapter 0; Introduction; W1D1, Tuesday; “The funny beginning.”

Chapter 1; W1D2, Wednesday, “Junipers reflection”

Chapter 2; W1D3, Thursday Morning, “Trash”

Chapter 3; Thursday Afternoon, “After school activities.”

Chapter 4; Thursday Evening, “Sneaking around in fun.”

Preview of Volume 2

The only thing I had kept was a torn image of you.”

W1D1; Tuesday afternoon, “The funny beginning.”

There was a time when the world was normal, common and boring, then after children are born and become potty trained, things became boring, common and unexciting again, but when they're encouraged to interact with their surroundings, sometimes life rapidly becomes “interesting.”

This story is about best friends, BFFs that have been friends since long before I knew them… I suppose isn't that much time since... But you know, friends that last more than a few weeks should be very treasured since so many of us long such loving, trusting, safe, pleasant and peaceful companionship.

Well, this particular story started like this, while we played chess in our bedroom, Noah watched our neighbor Luke bent over to look at something shiny in the backyard, and when he crouched down, she started to become nervous with excitement, but since she always becomes nervous and curiously excited about everything, I brushed it off as I opened the kitchen door for her, walked down the steps and soon understood what she was nervous about… I was too.


As Luke kneeled on the back lawn studying a strange colorful thing laying on the grass, he thought, ‘It looks like an oil puddle but… it's just laying there, should I touch it?’

“Hey,” Snow shouted from the back door, then walking down the stairs, added, "Hmm, Something odd eh?"

“Huh,” Luke looked at Snow, “it nothing really, just an oil stain.” Then he touched the strange and colorful object, and realizing that it felt like glass, quietly added, “Or something…”

‘Maybe it's just stained glass?’ Luke thought, then picked it up and was surprised to see the colors change into cloud shape shadows. ‘Or something… Light just coming through this filthy piece of glass maybe?’

Snow laughed, “And the odd thing about picking up a puddle is that…”

“It doesn't run off?” Snow’s sister Noah cut in as her soft furry skin brushed against Snow’s boots.

Luke stared at the strange object and thought out loud, “Puddle..?” then sighed and told Snow, “Maybe it’s just a candy wrapper... You know, I thought Zack might be interested, but, maybe it’s just stupid.”

Snow pursed his lips as Luke added, “He's been taking pictures of things he sees in the mirrors, “They aren't just reflections” he says, but he actually hears them talk and stuff.”

Luke stood up with a sigh, then told Snow “I know it sounds out of this world, and, he's really childish at times, but,” he started to smile, then held out the color changing object, “but it also sounds really, really cool, and I thought he might really like something like this.”

"So,” Snow started, “what is that?” then looked closely at the colorful glass that Luke held and asked, “It’s like moving right?”

“What do you mean?” Luke asked curiously as he held the object up to see if the clouds had changed shape.

When Noah tugged on Snow’s hand, he looked down at her and asked, “What is it Noah?”

“I think I might have left that down there.” Noah whispered,

Snow made a funny face, sighed and quietly told Noah, “Oh well, we’re both pretty clumsy eh?”

’Noah left it? Is it hers?’ Luke shallowly thought as he stared at the swirling clouds of color, then said “It's not just swirling like oil though… There’s like figures and stuff.”

“They aren't just our figures?” Snow asked sarcastically, then looked at Luke in concern as he picked up Noah.

Luke blinked at Snow and Noah for a moment, then back at the thin, small, colorful object, ‘It’s just a strange candy wrapper...?’ and told Snow, “No, this is like what Zack was telling me... Strange reflections...”

Snow shed a tear, turned toward the house and mumbled a story, “They became entranced by the mysteries that lost their way back home.”

Snow sat down on the stairs and looked at Noah, “They had just found our way home and don’t wish that on anybody.” then smiled at Luke who was walking around with the colorful glass in his hands and whispered, “Especially not you,”

Luke heard a little bit of Snow’s story and smiled as Snow wrapped his arms tightly around Noah.

“You know?” Snow started, “I’m sure Zack will love it, and I should know because you two are like my little brothers.”

Luke laughed, then looked at Noah who was even smaller than Zack’s baby brother, and said, "Yeah?” then smoothing the dirt off the object, noticed it seemed flexible and thought, ‘Plexiglas?’

“You know,” Luke told Snow and Noah as he leaned against the house, “he’s been taking pictures, trying to get me to believe him, but I thought they were just too weird, things he sees in mirrors and, I mean he swears they aren't just funny things to post online.”

Snow stared at Luke who put the strange object to his ear and asked, “You mean Zack’s been showing you those things and you wouldn't believe them?” then grunted and exclaimed, “You didn't make fun of it I hope!”

“No, of course not,” Luke answered “but I only humored him.” then holding the object with both hands he smiled at Snow and Noah, “You know, he actually hears them talk and stuff, like in the movies, with magic!” then sighed, “But, I thought it was at most, you know, like a science experiment or something.”

Luke tried to hand Snow the object and thought. ‘If Noah dropped it…’ Then asked, “So do you hear anything? Or can you tell me what it is?”

“Hmm...” Snow looked unsure what to say, “I figure it’s Mylar or something,” then explained, “you know candy wrappers are sometimes in two parts and they get water trapped in the middle making lots of funny stuff, right?” Snow laughed strangely, then stopped as Noah glared at him.

“Oh, I thought…” ‘You guys left it here… for me?’ Luke started, “Well, anyways. Zack comes home with these wild stories about you, an’ I thought....” he scratched his ear, smiled slightly his thanks, then walking to his back door, sighed and told himself, “It’s just a corroded mirror, but I still think to Zack it’ll be cool.”

“I hope so,” Snow told Luke as Snow and Noah’s mom, Kaitlin opened her inside kitchen door and waved to Luke, “Well… Then I better keep a lookout for any other mysterious things, eh.”

“Okay, thank you, see you later then.” Luke waved to Snow, Noah and Kaitlin as he opened his back door.

“See you later!” Noah shouted as Luke walked inside his house, and listened carefully as she told Snow, “You know, if he's looking into mirrors, it'll be such a waste not to know who I really am.”

Luke opened the window a crack so he could listen closely to Snow and Noah because ‘They obviously know what is going on…’

Snow hopped off the stairs and walking over to the apple tree, mumbled, “How long until...” then glanced at Luke's house and asked Noah, “Did you ever forget what home looked like?”

“What?” Noah asked, then smiled and moved her body in jerks like a puppet for a moment, then laughed and answered, “Don't you worry hunny, they have each other.”

That was how things started that October for Luke, in the month when Halloween is just around the corner, and spooky things are certain to happen.


Water is shiny, water is clear, water is a window whose substance we hold dear, water can’t be still or else it can go bad, so let it flow so that we don't go mad!

Chapter 1: W1D2 “Juniper’s reflection.”

“My, it’s a windy Wednesday, isn't it Pookie?”

“Oh bother~! Always blustery when all I want is chocolaty honey!”


←Previously, in the unwritten portion of our story:

Zack looked around with what seemed to be paranoia as he and his best friend Luke walked down the school hallway.

"They’re watching me" Zack told Luke "I mean, they’re in this school somewhere, I know they are!”

‘What are?’ Luke thought as he glanced at Zack, ‘Bullies? No one’s gonna pick on my friend and get away with it.’ then he asked, “Who's watching you?”

“The people in the pictures!” Zack exclaimed to Luke “It's like a magical school house here, you know, all these pictures, and on all the magic shows people come out of pictures, but here, they don't, I mean, they come out of windows and mirrors!”

And now→

“It started on the first Wednesday in October, Halloween costumes were being planned, fall weather was becoming a reality and a new excitement was being created, and/or realized… and hopefully we’ll find out what Luke meant by his friend's new hobby!”

“They're everywhere you know, watching me, and waiting for me to see them.” Zack looked out a window and told Luke after school ended that Wednesday afternoon.

“And waiting for you to show me!” Luke exclaimed, “Zack, when am I going to meet your new friends, huh?”

Zack stopped with a blank expression, then slowly turned his head to meet Luke’s face for a moment, and said “Haaa, I honestly don't know, but I hope it will be soon.”

“Yeah, real soon…” Luke mumbled sadly, then as they walked past lockers again he called, “Zack..?”

“Yeah?” Zack asked as he turned around in front of Luke and started walking backwards.

Luke watched for a moment, then started to smile right before he said “I found one yesterday.”

Zack opened his eyes wide put on a smile and asked “Really? I thought you didn’t believe me.”

“What kinda friend would I be if I didn’t believe you?” Luke protested with a scrunched nose, then admitted, “But I suppose I am still skeptical, I mean,” with a shrug of his shoulders he asked, “Who wouldn’t be? I’ve never seen them.”

“But you agreed that momma's house is haunted.” Zack asked quickly, “Why won’t you believe that this is real, huh?”

Luke glanced at Zack and answered, “Because mirrors and reflections are just strange, and anyways… Everyone believes in ghosts, whether they admit it or not.”

Zack smiled, frowned, then as he reached in his pocket for his mobile phone he heard Luke sigh and mumble “Maybe it's just fantasy.”

“Is this fantasy?” Zack asked as he held up a picture of a man with a briefcase in the bathroom mirror in front of Luke for a moment. “Who knows, maybe it’s the mirrors are haunted around this place.”

‘The wall is different,’ Luke thought as Zack took back his phone and tried to figure out what he was looking at, ‘but, maybe it’s not the first floor boys bathroom… though everything else is-’

“Well, that's just a photo, things might be photoshopped you know,” Luke told Zack, “or maybe it’s just special effects, like those fairy pictures. Or just a fluke.”

“It’s not a fluke.” Zack said quickly, “And it’s not something I put on the mirror either to show you.” Zack sighed and looked down as they walked quietly for what felt like moments, then mumbled, “But this isn’t one of those, this is real life, and real life is weird…”

“I know....” Luke answered Zack as they walked down the hall for a moment and added, “But I wanna see one, for reals, like those eyes that follow you around in movies.” then he glanced at Zack and added, “Because I only hear about your stories, it’s not proof or anything really.”

“Well this isn't just a story, and this is not just some movie thing either…” Zack started as they got their backpacks.


“And anyway,” Zack added, “it’s not some creepy eyes that follow you around in portraits sorta thing.”

“No?” Luke asked.

“No,” Zack said, “everything is different.”

“Like a carnival mirror?” Luke asked.

“No!” Zack exclaimed, “Not like that!”

“Or is it like in that mirror Zelda gave you?” Luke asked, “It's haunted you know, maybe these mirrors are too.”

“Hmm?” Zack said happily with the thought of Luke starting to show interest, “Haunted windows too? But most people don't notice even them…” then he looked around at the old walls of the school and said, “Maybe they are haunted. This is part of an old church right? Maybe there are ghosts here.”

“Or just some fancy new lighting,” Luke suggested, “It’s Halloween month, and they have good stagecraft technicians around here you know.”

Zack smiled and thought, ‘Like some old tale of trying to make me think I’m crazy by seeing ghosts in October..?’ then told Luke, “Maybe it is, well anyways that would still be cool! Stumbling onto something like that! I wonder how they do it? I gotta ask papa.”

“Yeah,” Luke laughed, thinking about how Zack’s dad always pushes Zack to actually make a working model instead of watching a “How it works” video. “He'll probably make you build one.”

Zack smiled, he liked having to build stuff with his family, “If I give him a reason to.” then stopping in front of a teacher’s office, pointed and said, “Well anyways, this is what I was talking about!”

Zack showed Luke a picture of a black and white calico cat on the teachers desk that resembled Juniper, Luke's neighbors cat, who often wore ribbons and food colored patches all over her fur, then asked Luke “Doesn't that look like Juniper? And he was right there!”

Luke inspected the office door, entrance and room, then looked back at the picture on Zack’s phone and started, “Ahh, hmm…” as he thought, ‘Zack supposedly really took the photo here, but still…’ then asked, “You sure it's not photoshopped?”

Zack laughed at the suggestion, “Why do you think I took out my camera?” he asked Luke, “Anyways, when I turned around she wasn’t there, but when I turned and looked back in the window she was!”

“Okay,” Luke said as he thought, ‘And it’s not some SnapFun app?’ “That’s some fancy new toy, anyways, most people are going to think it's some new game, augmented reality hologram stuff right, so how are we going to prove it?”

“What do you mean?” Zack asked, “I only need to prove it to my family, and you almost, already believe me.”

Luke sighed, “Okay, I mean, if we start telling people about the-” he used hand motions “Things that are really there sometimes, then they’re not.” Some people are going to think we’re crazy.”

Zack laughed again and starting to swing his legs high, slowly walked as he exclaimed, “They already think that! You do know Maki is like my babysitter right.”

Luke shrugged his shoulders and as he followed Zack down the hall toward the stairs wondered if other people knew how close Maki was with Zack, ‘If she even lets other people see that side of her or we’re just special.’ in Maki’s voice he heard, “My wonderful adopted family!”

“Well,” Luke told Zack, “if it is stagecraft, it's really good, fools me, so when exactly did you get it?”

“Umm…” Zack started as he looked at his phone and tapped a few buttons, “The timestamp says 9:30 today!” he smiled and stopped in front of a window with a big tree blocking most of the view. “Oh here's another place!” Zack excitingly exclaimed as he tapped on the window, “I saw some cool stuff from here.”

“Like what?” Luke asked Zack as he looked at a window to stare at a tree branch blocking the road, “Other than this big nut tree?”

“Well,” Zack answered, “That same kitty cat to be precise, also the walls were different, but that’s most likely since the windows dirty and the reflection of the tree itself!”


‘I didn't get a picture because the cat ran away but-’ Zack thought as they heard a door creak open.

“Hi.” Misty waved to Zack and Luke from her classroom doorway.

“Hi Misty!” Zack turned around with a wave.

Misty came closer toward the window and asked “Aren't reflections interesting?”

“Hi.” Luke waved, then turned back to the nut tree window.

Misty looked out of the window, then mumbled, “Forgot my bag again…” and headed back into her room.

“See!” Luke told Zack, ”She’s gonna help you.” then whispered, “Remember last summer when she and Mr. Hopscotch helped us build a car out of spare junk in their garage?”

“Yeah…” Zack smiled as he watched Misty close her door with a bag in her hand, then open it up again to shut off the lights. “Hmm,“

Misty came back and asked Zack and Luke, “So what is what this about reflections that you've been finding so interesting lately? Have you two found something new to do?”

“We-ll,” Zack started with a breath, then explained, “Things are just moving around inside mirrors and such, it's like a prism or shadow, but we just can’t find it, so... We’re just trying to figure out where they’re coming from.”

“Hmm…” Misty started with a curious smile, “Where the prisms originate? That very hard to do sometimes i'int it.” then smiled, looked back out the window and added, “But any help that I can give you I'm always here, or just a phone call away you know.”

Luke gave up looking at the window and thought, ‘There’s nothing but that tree branch...’ as he told Misty, “Yup, thank you very much, it's probably nothing though.”

“Oh?” Misty asked surprised, “You don’t want to investigate this mystery? I’ve got quite a collection of odd prismy things hidden away in my closet you know.”

Zack looked at Misty and asked, “...Really?”

Misty pretended to be hurt, “Yes really!..”

“Well,” Zack started to say as he turned on his phone screen, opened the gallery and held it up for Misty to see, “Well, there's odd things though, like this cat, I took this, this morning, it's from the window upstairs.”

“Hmm,” Misty started with a smile, then looked out at the window and started to ask, “is the cat inside or outside?”

“I don't know…” Zack said as he flipped through pictures so that Misty could see. "And these,"

*Flip, flip, flip,* Zack’s phone said and soon Misty’s face lit up with a giggle at a picture of a knight and a fairy princess, “Are those for Halloween?” She continued to smile at the long cone shaped hat and the knight’s mask.

Luke turned to look at the photo, as Misty added, “It seems like you have your costumes all ready.”

“It's not just a princess and knight,” Zack told Misty, then flipped to the next image and added, “it's a dra-gon princess, see.” as he pointed to the photo that showed a close up of green sparkly wings. “But I don't think mom will like that, I don't know what other costume to do though…”

“Well,” Misty smiled as she took a breath and told her students, “I know what I’m going to dress as. At least I think I do… A horse doctor.”

“A horse doctor?” Luke asked, “What, with a plushy pony bike and a lab coat?”

“No…” Misty chuckled again. “A horse doctor! I’ve a horse mask that I’ve been playing with and thought it’d make a good costume like Mr. Ted like TV!”

Zack and Luke thought about Mr. Ted on Campy TV, about, “A human finds a horse mask is stuck on his head and now acts as a superhero for all farm animals.”

He woke up with a mask on his head and now is a superhero!

Mr. Ted! Mr. Ted! Mr. Ted! found a mask on his head and now is a superhero.

Any animal in need he will save he’s a superhero!

Any farmer that’s in need Mr. Ted is a superhero!

He will help them all, “He talks to us you know.” ‘Cluck!

Is it magic?” Quack~~~!

It’s a mask on his head and now he’s our superhero (ALL)

I’m Mr. Ted” *pba-dum.*

Zack and Luke smiled as they tried to imagine this relatively short young teacher in an old fashioned buttoned up dress wearing such a mask and dressing like tall lanky “Mr. Ted” and told Misty, “Cool!”


“I took a video this time!” Zack wrote on the header as the video showed a cat walking above the receptionist’s desk, then the door opening up to a regular tidy desk.

Zack wrote as a comment. “But when I opened the door, the cat was gone, but when I looked back in the window the cat was still there!”

“So how did you do that with Juniper?” Zack’s mom asked Zack as she gave Juniper new water, “Are they doing video editing in the computer lab?”

“No.” Zack started, then looked at her and said, “It was just a funny picture is all.”


While Zack was in bed he read the comments from his video clip and noticed there was no comment from his dad.

“Oooh! A ghost cat!” -Mike Lacure

“What app is that?” -Joan Deseun

“Is there some new augmented game out? whats it called?” Jill Goingupabeanstalk

Zack sent Luke a goodnight message.


"What's that app? is that some new game? that looks cool!" and mom said "oh you got some new Ipad game" and I said “no its real, the people in the mirrors are real!" then she told me. "stop being so childish Zack, you've got to be a good example for your brother."

it wasn't what I was supposed to get at all…


Don't worry, tomorrow I got a gift for you, and we can find lots of stuff too!


Why didn't papa say anything? even if he doesn't like it he says "Awesome, or cool or something" but he didn't say anything, and it was all day.


Maybe he wasn't home.


That was probably it, It doesn't bother me too much, we'll be seeing a lot of each other on the weekend.


Or maybe dad thinks its stupid too...

Luke sighed and as he plugged his phone in the charger, prayed, “Please make tomorrow a great day,”


Thursday morning and all through the house, many creatures were stirring, but not my pet mouse.”

Chapter 2 W1D3 “Trash”

“Will we really grow big and strong?”

“I don't know Pookbear… I don’t know.”

←Previously on Zack, Luke and the Mysterious reflections.

“You should take a video next time.” Luke said at the lunch table.

“and the cat was floating above the desk! in School!”

“Why didn't papa comment, maybe I really do need to grow up…”

And now→

Luke watched Zack walk slowly closer to 34 Gaile St. that Thursday morning and said to Snow, “He looks so glum… Maybe I should give it to him now…”

Luke took the object he found yesterday from his backpack and unwrapping it from a torn strip of cloth, smiled at the brilliant colors and cloudy designs, “Even if it’s nothing,” he told Snow, “Zack’s gonna play with his new toy all day.”

“Morning.” Zack said tiredly as he caught up to Luke on the sidewalk.

Luke turned his head and asked Zack, “Are you ok? You’re usually skipping whenever you go to Zelda's house for the weekend.”

Zack watched where his feet were going as they walked toward the crosswalk and answered, “I’m probably just sick.”

“...I brought the thing I found,” Luke told Zack as they waited to cross onto Gemini St. "Snow didn't think it was trash…” Luke took object from his pocket and added, “So it might really be something.” Then looking at it critically, thought out loud, “Probably it is just litter the wind blew onto the lawn… But I don’t know…”

As they started crossing the street, Luke looked at Zack and thought, ‘His spirits need a lift.’ Then as a feeling quickly came over him, he smiled with the thought, ‘Maybe Snow was trying to hide something…’ then told Zack, “Maybe it is something, she seems to know something.”


When they passed a stone fence on the way to school, Luke handed Zack the small, thin, object and said “It looked interesting anyways.”

Zack glanced at it and told Luke, “Hmm, It probably is trash…”

“Really?” Luke felt embarrassed, “But it was moving!”

“Then it's probably really filthy trash.” Zack said with a smirk then took another glance at it.

‘Not sure if Zack’s playing or just acting mean…’ Luke thought as he told Zack, “But it's not yucky or anything, I washed it really good and it still looks like that.”

Zack took a breath, then looked more closely at the old, marbled, plastic like object in his hand and told Luke “Then it's probably some broken sunglass lens or something.”

“Maybe.” Luke replied, then added, “But it, I just thought it might be like your mirrors.”

“Really?” Zack glanced at Luke, then at his new gift, and started to say, “Bu- but I thought you didn’t believe me... No one else, they think I'm stupid... Childish.”

“Misty doesn’t,” Luke started to answer as he remembered last night and mumbled, “But she doesn’t think anyone is… Whatever, she said she'd help in any way she could.”

“Yeah?” Zack said and started to brighten up.

“Yes!” Luke exclaimed, smiling back at Zack, “And anyways, you don’t want people to think your sick do you? You sure you had breakfast?”

Zack quickly made a half sigh, then looking at his new toy, noticed that the mysterious gifts clouds started changing shape.

“Hey,” Zack started to asked Luke, “why's it moving, is there like, liquid inside?”

“I don’t know…” Luke answered and admitted, “I did wash it, but how could water get inside? It’s flat!” ‘And anyways, it moved before.’

“Yeah, it is flat…” Zack started to think, ‘Maybe it is like my…’ then quietly added, “But... Never mind, it's probably-” ‘Stupid’

“Snow said it was something,” Luke explained to Zack, “and I have to believe her.”

“Snow?” Zack repeated as while he started to wake up with renewed hope, “Maki’s friend with the invisible sister?”

“Yeah,” Luke answered happily, as they tuned into the Noel school driveway, “and guess what, she has a teddy bear now that moves!”

Zack giggled, “Really? You think that... Now it must be! Noah lives inside that teddy bear!” then added, “Haunted dolls are very common you know.”

When they stepped onto the entryway, Beryl smiled and announced, “Good morning, may you have a blessed Thursday indeed!”

Zack smiled at Beryl and said, “You too!”

‘Well,” Luke thought out loud as he watched Zack smiling at Beryl in the reflection of the front doors windows, “I’m certainly glad that you’re feeling better.’’.

Soon after Zack and Luke started to walk down the hallway, Misty stopped them, “Hey Zack, I saw your post last night, and it was very interesting, reminds me of a bit some of that collection I told you guys about,” then asking with a smile, “Do you have any more fun and mysterious strange reflections, to show or tell?”

Zack thought for a second, smiled, then reached in his pocket to take out the gift that Luke gave him minutes ago and handing it to Misty, said, “There's this.”

“Hmm,” Misty looked at Zack’s new treasure for a moment, then giving it back to him said, “Hmm, What is that? It does look a little like some funny piece of stained sea glass, doesn't it,”

“Hmm...” Misty paused a moment thinking then told them, “My collection of odd pieces of things has broken mirrors like your own bit there, mostly just drift glass pieces, I know it's probably not much, but when I look at them, I start to feel like different the various surfaces have different temperatures as well!” Then she put her fingers together and separated both her hands up above her like an explosion.

‘Different temperatures?’ Zack thought.

“Oh well,” Misty smiled, then glancing over at Luke's watch, said, “they are all the same silica material I assume, yet…” Misty glanced at Zack’s new treasure, “Well by any chance, I may show you next class, if you think the class may be interested, and if not,” she shrugged her shoulders, “well then I'll simply show you!”


"Mmhmm." Misty smiled, then they went in separate directions.

“See?” Luke told Zack, “I told you she was interested.”


As they walked to their lockers, Luke looked to his side and told Zack, “You know what? I bet she even knows something and can and will show us!”

“You do?” Zack asked with doubt as he thought about how his parents seem to want him to drop the whole thing.

“Yes!” Luke reassured Zack as he himself was starting to become excited about the mystery, “I bet others do too, I'm not sure why they seem to make it out to be such a secret though!”

Zack closed his locker, looked at Luke for a moment and as they walked to class, told him, “I don’t know, I bet they don’t really understand it themselves, you know if people understood things there would be no scientists doing research and stuff.”


“Yeah,” Zack explained as he zipped up his backpack, “they’d all be searching in books and learning those stuffs and passing it on to other people, and then the world would never go round or even grow!”

“Hmm...” Luke smiled as he started to wonder what they stumbled on.

“I don't know…” Zack whispered as they walked down the hall with other kids, “I don't know…”


As Zack and Luke were coming out of Misty's science explorer’s classroom, Misty called to Zack, “Hey, can I see that thing you were showing me this morning again?”

“Ahh.” Zack stared at Misty in a daze, then realizing what she was talking about, said, “Oh, yeah, it's in my pocket.” Zack then took the funny gift Luke gave him from his pocket and handed it to Misty and said, “Here.”

“So, you like that?” Luke asked Misty as she examined the strange, thin, metallic object with clouds that appear to morph into various colors and shapes, “I found it the other day and it’s kinda interesting, but it's probably just some hardened candy wrapper.”

Misty looked curiously at Luke, then asked, “Why do you say that?”

“Because it was on the sidewalk like garbage.” Luke answered simply.

“Well,” Misty started, then starting to smile, said, “maybe it is, But the coolest things can be found in the trashcan, and anyways,” she paused as if something caught her eye, then giving it back to Zack, explained, “I don't think this is painted on at all, I mean some of my collection looks like this, and they’re definitely not just old candy wrappers since they even sparkle in the dark.” with a twinkle of her fingers.


“Yes really,” Misty answered as the last kids to exit the classroom left, then asked “So, have you found any more of those amazing reflections my two wonderful scientists?”

“...Well, I took this,” Zack said as he took his phone out of his pocket, then opening a picture to show Misty, added, “this today, just another cat.” then thought out loud, “Hmm, maybe cats do like mirrors.”

“What?” Misty replied as Zack handed her his phone “I've never had a cat that liked they're reflection, although I don't know that many cats…” Misty examined Zack’s new photo closely and added, “Hmm, but they do look in and out of the windows often enough don't they…”

When the bus schedule bell rang, Misty handed Zack’s phone back with a smile and said “Well, these things are definitely the start of something really fun and interesting aren't they!" Then she put on her backpack and leaving the room waved to Zack and Luke, “See you later!”

“You know this one was very strange,” Zack starts to tell Luke as they walk out of the empty classroom and stop to look out the window down the hallway, “not just what was in the picture, but I heard people’s feet, and them talking loudly like down a busy sidewalk.”

‘This is a school…’ Luke glanced at Zack, ‘But a busy sidewalk, with cars and wind? This is a very quiet road.’ Luke thought as he studied the window for any signs of cats of other odd reflections, then suggested, "Miss Mist said her collection has lots of strange stuff, you think it's anything like these things?"

Zack smiled at Luke as he was trying to remember something... "I don't know, but maybe.”

As they started walking down the steps and Luke murmured, “I guess she had to go somewhere before she could show us huh.”

“Hey, guess what?” Zack turned to tell Luke, “These things are definitely real, because Papa talked about them on the phone, he said, "I don't want Zack to disappear in those mirrors of yours..." and now Misty is talking about them.” with a smile he added, “Hmm… Well maybe it’s nonsense, but either ways there's definitely something going on.”

“Well,” Luke paused, then met Zack’s excited eyes and asked, "So your dad's worried about you?”

“Yeah…” Zack swung around on the banister post to look up to Luke and exclaimed, “But he doesn't want me to stop it or anything, he loves the curiosity!”

“Hphmm, Misty, your dad…” Luke started, then catching up to Zack at the bottom off the stairs asked, "They’re both scientists right?”

"Yeah,” Zack answered Luke as they walked into the side door entryway, “I think so, he makes stuff.”

“Boy it's windy out here,” Zack exclaimed as they saw the wind blowing leaves around the parking lot, then opened the door and asked Luke, “You want a ride?”

"Hey.” Luke started with a thought as a gust blew past them, “You know the open house is tonight, An’ Misty might show us her collection tonight.”

Zack turned around to walk backwards and asked Luke, “You think she’ll have time? Or that she even has it here?”

“She said she might show it to the whole class, so it's probably here.” Luke suggested.

“That would be really cool!” Zack answered Luke, “Then we'd really be,” he banged into Patrick’s headlight, “like, really solve the puzzle!” Then as they walked on opposite sides of Patrick's wagon, added over the roof, “With a little help I suppose, you know you’re not supposed to use the tips in “Prof Puzzle” you know.”

As another gust of wind blew, Luke held the door handle and told Zack over the roof, “No, you’re supposed to actually ask people if they can help you or something.”

“Anyways,” Luke added after he climbed into his seat, “It's mostly so you don't run out when you really need the help, right?”

Zack put his backpack in the boot, looked at Patrick being preoccupied with his cell phone and quietly told Luke, “She might be really busy you know…”

“Maybe,” Luke answered, “Even if she doesn't, it doesn't mean we can't go and take a peak, if she collects those things she must have something in her office.”

Zack smiled a little and whispered to Luke, “Snoop around?”

“Open houses are boring,” Luke answered, “What else would you do?”

“Good afternoon.” Patrick said as he put down his phone, turned around to look at Zack and Luke in their seatbelts and added, “Windy out there eh?”

“Yup, sure is.” Luke answered.

“So how’s everything?"

Zack smiled, waved and summed everything up to Patrick by saying, “Miss Mist seems to be really interested in those mirrors Papa,” then as Patrick pulled down his seatbelt, asked him, “Did you see the pictures I sent? You never commented.”

Patrick started the car and from the rear view mirror, asked Luke, “So how are you Luke? Didn't catch a chill I hope.”

“Nope,” Luke answered as he was caught a little off guard, “Least I hope not.” Then thinking ‘Maybe he’s avoiding it because Zack said he’s worried about this new hobby…?’ added, “So anything new today?”

Patrick looked in the back mirror as he waited to drive onto the main road and said, “Boring mostly, but tonight your school has a open house, so we're going to have fun right.” Then smiled and said, “Gotta get all ready for tonight.”

“So you guys doing anything special?” Luke asked Zack and Patrick.

After Patrick merged into traffic he said, “Maybe.”


Roses come in many colors, this I know is true. But many people like to dye their hair all different shades of blue.

Chapter 3 “After school activities”

“I don't know Pookbear, what’s that person doing?”

“Don't worry, it's a double sided mirror!”

←Previously on Zack and Luke

“What’s this?” Zack asked

“Trash…” Luke mumbled “But Snow implied it was more than that.”

“Snow?” Zack asked “Isn't that your neighbor with an invisible sister?”

“Yeah, but now I guess she’s a teddy bear or something.”

“Really!” Zack exclaimed “You know, there’s lots of haunted teddy bears.”

Misty looked at what Zack held and said “Hey you two, I have a collection of weird objects like that.”


“I’ll show you guys soon!” Misty told them.

“So, you doing anything special tonight?” Luke asked

“...Maybe.” Patrick said mysteriously.

And now→

Thursday afternoon, and there’s going to be a monthly open house in a few hours!

"See you later" Luke waved to Zack and Patrick as they drove away from 34 Gaile St. Then as they headed down the road toward route 9, Patrick informed Zack, “So Angel’s making dinner for us tonight, and Zelda's feeling lonely again so please try to give her a lot of your love when you get in okay,”

“Okidoky...” Zack answered, then asked Patrick, “So what you guys doing today?”

“She’s just helping me install some things,” Patrick answered, then gave Zack a smile in the rearview mirror and added, “and is helping Zelda make dinner.”


“Yeah, why?” Patrick asked

“Don't their tastes clash?” Zack answered, explaining, “I mean Zelda likes microwave frozen and Angel makes everything from scratch.”

“That’s why Angel gets to be there,” Patrick stopped for a red light, “Zelda doesn't bake anymore since she forgot to turn off the stove once.” then looked at Zack, “Anyways, it's really good for Angel to get out a little more, you know she doesn't get out of the house much.”

“... Going from one house to another is getting out much?” Zack murmured.

“You know how Chelsea is.”

Zack thought about the times he’s dropped something and Chelsea gets right up and says, “Don't worry dear, I’ll get it.”

“She's just really trying to learn some things.” Patrick told Zack as they drove up a hill “She didn't do too well in school and I'm trying to help her.”


“As soon as you turn off the car,” Zack started to tell Patrick who was stopped at the end of Maple St to cross Brook and drive into Zelda’s driveway, “I’m going to run around to the front and through the tall grass so I can rush right into Momma’s living room and give her a big hug.” ‘As soon as possible.’

Patrick glanced at Zack and asked, “Why?”

“It’s quicker this way.” Zack answered as the car slowed down to a stop, then took off his seatbelt and did just as he said.

“Momma!” Zack called as he rushed inside the living room to see Zelda and Maki playing a game.

Zelda rushed over to the open doorway to give Zack a hug, then exclaimed as she met his eyes, ”I love you and I missed you SO- MUCH!”

“Here now,” Zelda told Zack as she helped to take off his backpack, Maki paused the game and then walked toward the bathroom as Zelda took Zack's coat with a smile and added, “Now you should be better.”

Soon after they sat down on the couch together, Zack took the interesting object from his pocket to show Zelda, “Look at what Luke gave me this morning!” After he handed it to Zelda, she stared at it while Zack explained, “The colors morph into different shapes like the clouds in the sky were bubbles and all the bubbles merged together.”

Zelda continued to stare at Zack’s glassy object with colorful, shifting, spotted clouds until Maki came back, then with a jerk met Zack’s smiling face, gave him a kiss on the forehead and said, “You’re cousins in the kitchen, see you in a bit.”

Zack watched the game of “Dragon star spirits” unpause as he picked up his backpack to take into the kitchen to see what Angel cooking, then walking down the hallway, remembered what Luke asked and thought, ‘What was that “Maybe”?’

When Zack stepped off of the rug that mostly covered an old cellar vent, Angel waved from the kitchen, then with a smile said, “Hello.”

“Hi.” Zack responded, then pushing the corner of a rug back over the vent, asked Angel, “So what are you making today?”

“Oh, just pie, it’s probably done now, Pat wanted me to help Zelda make something homemade but she doesn’t like to watch the oven or anything’s so…” Then pointed to the rice cooker and a bowl of stir-fry, “Got her to pick out the vegetables and spices though!”

Zack glanced at the things on the counter as he walked by to sit at the kitchen table, put Luke’s gift down and started staring at the colored paper ornaments sandwiched between the window glass that looked like stained glass when the morning sun came through, when Angel told him, “Now just gotta wait till this pie is done, wash these dishes and all ready to go.”

Zack glanced at Angel as she bent over to touch noses with a black and grey cat, then as she opened the door for the stranger, wondered, ‘Who’s that?’

“I don’t know her name,” Angel said as she held the door open for the cat to go outside, “but when Zelda saw this big girl in the window she asked me to see if she’s hungry.” Then smiled at Zack and added, “Then microwaved some frozen fish and settled on opening a can of tuna for her neighbor’s kitty I couldn’t get her to do anything.”

“Hmm?” Zack started as he noticed that the colorful, cloudy and glassy object Luke gave him on the table was reflecting some of the decorations that were in the window, then held it up and as he watched, thought, ‘The colors are almost making solid pictures now...'

“Hmm.” Zack started to voice loudly as he was going to tell and show Angel when he remembered Patrick’s voice, “I’m worried if he finds anymore of these,,,” She might tell Papa… then he’ll be even more worries.’

Zack walked toward the sink where Angel was washing dishes, when he smiled and said, “Hmm.” Then smiled, pointed to the window and asked Angel, “Do you know anything about this window.”

Angel looked up at Zack for a moment, then said simply, “Ask your momma, it's hers.”

“Okay.” Zack answered, then he poured some apple juice into glass and wondered, ‘If she’ll give me the good answer or just the fairytale.’

‘Maybe that is the real answer,’ Zack thought as he opened the door to Patrick’s workshop, then hearing the old floorboards creak, Zack turned on the lights and imagined Zelda looking out the window with a smile and say, “A fairy put it there one day, Isabel, I hope you can meet her sometime.”

“Hmm,” Zack murmured when he noticed a flat large door shaped object covered with a blanket that leaned against something, then asking himself as he walked to look at it, “Uncle Jack need this shipped, framed, or did Papa pick up a giant mirror?”

“Or maybe it's the surprise.” Zack started smiling and started to play a game of “Guess what’s underneath.” “But what surprise would that be?” Then chuckled as he thought, “A clown mirror!”

Looking closely at the blanket, Zack noticed that its dotted design seemed to brighten. “Is there a TV on under here?” Zack asked as he watched the bottom of the blanket seem to move and listening closely, thought, ‘And I hear something too,’ Then Zack quoted the beginning of a game show, by announcing, “So are you ready for the Guess What’s ON!”

“And the first clue is…” Zack said as he put his ear up close to the blanket to listen, “Cars?”

“And the second clue is…” Zack studied the bits of blue light coming from under the blanket, then focusing on the bottom that had the most lights, asked, “Blue? Is the TV upside down?” Then righting his head explained, “No, but it's obviously on its side… Maybe it's a video game?” As Zack was trying to think what it could be without cheating, he thought, 'What could be moving blue light on only the side of the screen?’

“Or maybe it’s some advertisement,” Zack mumbled as he looked over at Patrick’s signs, some of them bought and some of them he painted to sell.

“Yeah, it's probably just some neon sign that needs new bulbs or something,” Zack told himself as he reached out and hesitated cheating. “because it's-” he grabbed hold of the side of the blanket and thought ‘Flickering’

Zack pulled the blanket off. “A picture?” Zack said as he watched a photo of a river moving at the bottom and animals scurrying around a meadow like some people have in their backyards, in fact it looks like a security feed from someone’s back porch. Then said, “But it’s moving, so it must be a TV with a security feed.”

“Hmm,” Zack felt around the edges of the back and didn’t feel any heat radiating, but didn’t think much about it when he said, “I wonder where Papa’s gonna install it?”

Then, Zack accidentally pressed his finger into the screen and exclaimed, “Ooh, that’s c-”

Zack looked in awe at where his thumb was and as he saw it covering the frame as if it was inside the TV, with a smile he exclaimed, “Ahhh! That is so cool, a 3d screen sign with temperature and sound?!”

“I Guess papa got a really custom order,” Zack said as he took his hand away while watching, listening and studying the 3d TV screen and said, “or it’s one of those things that he really wants to make,” and looking around at the various parts, boxes and bins around the large workshop, thought, ‘and doesn’t have enough money or too busy or something…’

‘What’s it made out of?’ Zack thought ‘Not LCD, LED or’ looking around for some type of projector, and tried to imagine what the inside of a CRT tube could be like as he said, “I wonder what it’s called, it’s something new whatever it is.”

Zack felt a tap on his shoulder, gasped, then looked over to see Maki who said, “Hi, so you found it huh?"

Zack laughed and asked Maki, “What is it?” then pointed his fingers into the screen and asked, “What are these?”

Maki picked up the blanket, shook it into shape and told Zack, “Let’s cover those back up right now,” then as she covered up the large framed picture, said, “I’ll tell you about it in a moment.”

Maki looked at the covered picture with Zack for a moment, then told him, “Well, okay, don't tell your dad just yet okay,” then, trying to glare at Zack, added, “that you found them.”

‘She knows what it is!’ Zack thought as he whispered to Maki, “What are they?”

“Well,” Maki started to tell Zack, “you know that Patrick is already worried sick about you as it is right?” then glancing toward the slightly open door into the kitchen, added, “Well,” she started to explain as she ushered Zack away, “he asked me to study these things and make sure that they're relativity safe, see he doesn't want what happened to his brother and her” she pointed toward Angel though the open doorway, “mother to happen to you.”

Maki leaned against the counter and turned on the faucet in the workshop for Zack to wash his hands, then over the sound of the water, explained, “I convinced him that maybe it was, because, well, they were older then you and had less to lose by disappearing, and also didn't have a helper or guide,” Maki smiled at Zack and added, “so anyways, I'm trying to study and make sure that nothing bad will happen alright.”

Zack looked at Maki and glanced back at the covered “picture” as he mumbled, “Alright.”

As Maki washed her hands, she became serious and told Zack, ”But don't you dare let him worry about any of this stuff tonight okay, because he has enough troubles as it is, especially tonight what with your mom and everything, okay.”

Zack opened his mouth in a smile as he became aware that the mystery was beginning to be solved and listened closely as Maki dried her hands and said, “Tomorrow okay, tomorrow I'll let you in on a secret, and your boyfriend too.” then opened the kitchen door and with a reassuring smile, “Mmhmm.”


Is it dark like this everywhere” I asked the outside air and when the wind blew it told me true, “Don't worry Luna will tell when the day becomes brightly blue.”

Chapter 4 “Sneaking around is fun!”

“Pookbear, what are those?”

“...there just things that people left behind for anyone to find.”

←Previously on Zack and Luke

“Why’s Angel always here?”

“She’s trying to be a better person, she didn't do too well in school”

“What is that? A new 3d sign with atmosphere generators?!”

And now→

‘So, how are we going to get to sneak away?’ Luke thought as he and his parents arrived at school’s open house that Thursday evening, then keeping an eye out for Zack, told himself, ‘Yeah, that’ll be easy, but will it be for Zack?’

*Tap-tap* Luke's hand says as he taps Zack's shoulder, “Hey”

“Ahh!” Zack looks at Luke with a smile, “Guess what I found.”

“What?” Luke asks while glancing at his parents to see if they’re looking for him.

“Another window!” Zack exclaimed, “It was in papa’s workshop, and it was a painting and Maki said she’d show us Friday!”

“That’s tomorrow,” Luke said as they started to walk through the crowd in the great hall.

“Yeah,” Zack started, “and Maki came behind me and said it was our little secret.”


“Yeah, well,” Zack said as he bobbed back and forth a bit, waiting to get through to the crowd, “I put my thumb in it, and Maki said that that’s how my uncle and aunt got lost and hurt and stuff, and well, basically she and Papa doesn't want us to get hurt I guess, so they set up an appointment to guide us.“ then looking up at Luke, asked, “You know?”

“No.” Luke started as they walked, then taken a little back, asked Zack, “You mean those mirrors are really real and dangerous?”

“Yeah, I guess it’s like Alice’s looking glass if she never-had-got out-at all.”

Luke stared at Zack for a moment, then ushered him out of the great hall and sighed.

“But it's nonsense,” Zack started as he and Luke walked, “they didn't really get hurt because uncle and auntie are still back.”


“So I don't know what Papa meant.”

“Yeah, but...” Luke started to say, then as they walked toward the stairs, asked Zack, “You put your thumb through it?” then smiling, exclaimed, “That is so… cool!”

As Zack and Luke slowly walked upstairs, Zack answered, “Yeah, I thought it was a videogame at first, then Maki said that, but, I, I still think it's just some video game, that’s probably what papa was talking about, some violent video game, although I don't see how such a serene forest scene could be violent.”

‘The thing Zack’s dad had…’ Luke thought, then said, “It's probably VR or something then... But if it was a mirror…” Luke started and thought about, ‘All those mirrors Zack found, he was worried too...’, “It couldn’t be like, just VR because that would mean,” Luke sighed and concluded “Well anyways I guess online games have been around for awhile.”

“Yeah, and “Varimon” basically used that “real world into internet thing as a plot in ‘94!” at least that’s what Zelda told me last night when I was telling her about it she said, “like Varimon? ‘And I said I don't know...’ and she told me all about it, and we watched the movie, then Papa told me to go to bed and I said like after? And he said, “Of course!”

“Well that’s really nice.” Luke said as he took his penlight out of the little pocket watch pocket that’s hooked to his belt-loop and creeped down the hallway toward Misty’s classroom through the dim emergency light lit hallway.

Luke looked around, down at the empty hallway and into the dark classrooms, then asked Zack, “I wonder why they didn't go upstairs?”

Zack pulled out his pocket flashlight and as he looked through the dark classroom windows and thought about parents and grandparents who have a hard time walking upstairs and answered Luke, “Probably didn't want to make people walk around too much, I don't know.” then asked him, “You think she locks her door?”

Luke took a moment to imagine going back down the stairs and into the great hall to see the crowd of people, then looked at his watch and wondered how long they've been gone and told Zack, “I hope not.” as he turned the knob to Misty’s, “Science Explorers” classroom.

“It's not like they’ll think we’re gone or something,” Zack explained to Luke, “we just “went to the bathroom” or “met up with friends somewhere.”

“Yeah, but we still got to hurry.” Luke said as the door creaked open.

As Zack followed Luke into the dark room, he said, “We’re just immature kids if we’re late you know.”

“Misty said her collection was here in school right?” Luke asked Zack, then looking around the dark room, mumbled to himself, “Now where could it be,”

“Well, her desk or closet I guess,” Zack suggested as they walked cautiously toward the closet by her desk, “hopefully not desk though because those are a pain to sort through, at least mine is.”

Luke laughed and said, “And then in the morning, she’ll be like “Where’s my papers?!” and that wouldn’t be nice.”


“Well,” Zack suggested as he looked at the window decorations behind Misty’s desk, “if she dumped them at school they’re probably in the closet anyways.”

Luke pointed his flashlight at the closet door, then said, “Oh dear, I hope we don't have to pick a lock!”

“I know...” Zack said as he came closer toward the closet, “I'm not good at picking locks… Maki tried teaching me, but... We only had that one lesson…” then watching Luke hesitate to open the door, added, “I hope to have more, changing locks is a pain, especially when the key can be remade!”

When Zack stood in front closet with Luke, he thought about why they only had one lesson, when Zack brought home the little transparent lock that taught how the things worked, his mom was furious at Patrick, ”Your turning him into a criminal now!?!”

Luke turned the closet door knob which creaked so loudly that he wished he had closed the classroom door, then said, “Well, anyways, don't need to, door works.”

“Did you pick it?” Zack asked.

“Sure,” Luke humored Zack, then shining his flashlight around suggested, “Let's look, see if we can find it.”

“Collection, collection, Oh where, Oh where is my teachers special mirror collection?” Zack tried to sing as they tried to find something that might be what Misty was telling them about, “Oh where, oh where did you…”

“Oh whatever,” Zack stopped singing as he shined his flashlight on a pile of posters leaning against the back of the wall and said, “what’s behind those?”

”Hmm,” Luke moved some posters around from inside of the closet as it wasn't big enough for the two of them, then grabbing a clear storage box, told Zack, “Looks like it might be in here.”

“Yeah something is definitely glowing inside there,” Zack said as Luke was brought a clear box with various glowing things inside, out of the closet by the handle.

“Glow in the dark paint of what?” Luke asked as he pulled off the cover to see a pile of paper with lots of little glowing shiny pieces of glass and bits of paper glued on them, to make a collage.

“I don't know, some rocks are phosphorous, right?” Zack asked, then looking at the rocks at the bottom of the box, added, “I probably should know better, since the headmistress is like a really big rock collector”

“Well,” Luke mumbled as he took out some art. “With a name like “Stone” you kinda have to be right?”

Luke held his penlight in his mouth and studied the art before laying them down, then stopped when he saw something move and thought, ‘Misty said some make patterns like the thing I gave Zack, so... Maybe this really is whatever we’re looking for.’ Then told Zack, “Hey, I think I found it, or something, this is moving.”

“It’s probably just the lights or something…” Zack said, then looked at what Luke laid on top of the pile and added, “Maybe not… Kinda like what I found in papa's workshop.”

Luke glanced at Zack and told him, “Well, it's a collection, like Misty said, a collage, with a bunch of flat glass glued on.”

“Most of them are broken.” Zack said as he tried to watch the whole picture, but soon realized that, none of them seem to show the same thing.

“So...” Luke started as he was in awe by the moving, lit up tiny pictures in front of his eyes, like little TV screens. Luke tried not to become excited as he processed Misty’s strange collage, then slowly suggested, “Those stained glass windows are cut, maybe it's like that.”

“There all forming a picture,” Zack announced when he realized that even the blackest piece of glass that was glued on this board was moving, then becoming excited, told Luke, “maybe these really are moving, just like Papa’s!” then whispered, “And it’s like “Varimon” too.”

‘I don't think it's like anime...’ Luke thought as he watched some of the different images. ‘Some of them have people moving…’

Zack started to record video on his phone and soon a sound was heard.

“Do you hear that?” Luke asked, “There all moving separately too!”

“Yeah, papa’s made noise too, maybe it's like a security screen…” Zack said as he remembered the security cameras with lots of little pictures, then with a panicked thought, asked Luke, “You think they see us too?”

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