Archived: The Key by Ava Dudzak

It is the middle of fall and I am watching my younger brother play with his toy trucks in the backyard of my uncle’s house. Our parents always brought us here if they had a very important meeting to attend. Today was as slow as any other day at our uncle’s house. I could have invited my friends over to make today more interesting, but they broke my uncle’s vase the last time they visited. I was laying down on the living room couch looking at my phone. I was close to falling asleep until I heard a door open and close. I looked at the hall as stepping noises came down it. My brother was what appeared at the end of the doorway. 

“What?” I asked in an annoyed voice as he stood in the living room. 

“Could you play with me?” he asked, holding his toy truck in both his hands.

”No.” I responded. I love my little brother but I am not into playing with toys anymore.

“Please!?” He had said in a more desperate voice. I was beginning to feel annoyed.

”No!” I yelled at him. I was hoping he would get the hint and leave but he threw his toy truck on the ground and began crying. 

I was looking at my brother with a hint of panic in me as I heard my uncle stepping loudly down the stairs. He soon entered the room and instantly walked towards my little brother crying on the ground. 

“What happened?” he asked my brother in a sympathetic voice.

 “She said she didn’t want to play with me!” He said as he began crying again.

 My uncle looked back at me and gave me a glare.

”Just play with your brother.” He said to me. 

I rolled my eyes at him. 

“Fine,” I responded.

 My uncle gave me a smile. I waited as my brother collected himself; he then picked up the toy truck he threw and signaled me to follow him. We walked through the hallway and made it to the front of the backyard door. I open the door and let my little brother step down into the backyard. I then walked outside and shut the door behind me. I felt a cold breeze on my skin. It is almost close to sunset which is making the breeze ten times colder than it would have been before. “What do you want to do?” I asked my little brother. 

“I want to dig.” He said not being specific.

 He ran to a big thick tree in the corner of my uncle’s backyard, which had wet soil surrounding it. He put the toy truck on the soil and sat down. I did the same. As I sat my brother pulled out a tiny shovel that he was using and handed it to me. I grabbed it and started to dig a tiny hole. My brother however was using his hands and putting soil on the back of the toy truck while pretending he was working at a construction site. I continued digging until I dug out something that looked shiny. My brother was too invested in his roleplay to pay attention to me finding something in the dirt. I thought I dug up trash, but after rubbing the soil that was sticking to it, it happened to be a key. It was a silver key that seemed to be very old. The crevices however were covered in dirt so I couldn’t see anything else. I looked up and realized my brother was watching me.

”That’s so cool!” He said. 

Shockingly I was very excited I had found something that was buried here for who knows how long. 

“We should show our uncle!” My brother said in excitement.

 It wasn’t a bad idea anyway; maybe he knew what it was. We ran back into the house to tell our uncle about the discovery. My brother was running faster while I was slowing down to not slip on the hardwood floor. We climbed up the stairs and went to our uncle’s bedroom. He looked at us as we entered his room.

 “Are you two having fun?” He asked. 

“We found something uncle!” My brother was excited for him to see what I had found. 

I hand the silver key to my uncle, he examines it. While he examined it we told him the whole story.

“So you found this in my backyard?” He asked, giving the key back to me.

 I was confused.

”So you don’t recognize this key at all?” I asked.

”Nope. I have never seen it in my entire life,”

 I was disappointed with the response.

“But you can keep it if you want.” He continued. 

We left my uncle’s room and walked downstairs to the living room. When we entered the living room I looked at the window. It was dark outside. My brother also was looking through the window. 

“We need to go get them.” My brother said pointing at the window.

 We both head outside into the backyard again.  I walked out in the darkness shining my phone over the whole backyard to help my brother find his toy trucks. I shined my phone light directly on the tree we were at. My brother ran quickly to the tree to grab and empty his truck. We both walked back inside and I locked the back door. Afterward, we watched cartoons together in the living room. One more hour passes by and I can see headlights shining in the front driveway. A few seconds and I can hear knocks. My uncle comes downstairs to answer the door. 

“Hi, Uncle Smith!” my mom had said in her usual greeting voice. They hug each other.

“Are the kids ready?” she asked. 

I was helping my little brother put on his shoes and jacket.

 “Almost!” I yelled.

 After I was done helping my brother, I put on my jacket and shoes in a hurry. We both walked out through the front door. My mom of course was starting a long conversation with my uncle as we walked by. We walk down to our parent’s car which is still on. I see my dad on the passenger’s side smiling at both of us. I help my brother into his seat and then go to my side. I shut the door and then my dad spoke.

“How was your day at Uncle Smiths?” He asked, not looking at us. 

“We found something cool in the backyard!” my brother said very fast before I could answer. 

“Yes, I found this.” I handed him the key. 

He looked at it with a proud face.

 “Wow it is beautiful,” he said as he handed it back to me. 

I saw my mom walking out of the house after having a long conversation with our uncle. I see her walk to the door and then sit in the driver’s seat. 

“Ready to go everyone?” my mom had asked us.

 We all replied yes and then we were driving home. When I walked into the house I took my coat off. 

“It’s time for you two to go to bed.” my mom said carrying my little brother.

 “Okay, mom,” I said, not pleased.

 I walk up to the bathroom to brush my teeth and change into my pajamas. As I was in the bathroom I washed the key off. It revealed a circle of sapphire in the center. Looking at the key I wondered what it was used for and why it was buried in the backyard of my uncle’s house. It didn’t matter much to me at that moment. I walked to my room, lay on my bed, and instantly fell asleep.


Biography: My name is Ava Dudzak. I am a Junior in my High school, and I have always been into writing. It first started when I was given the creative freedom to write a story back in third grade. This inspired me to start writing. Another thing that gave me the drive to write was how important it was for me to be able to read and write. Me being able to read books was a way to inspire my stories along with cartoons I watched. Mainly, I have never truly thought about writing on a deep level; I always went with what interested me or what I was aiming to achieve making my writing mainly more as a hobby than as a career that I want. I, however, feel that I have the capability to create a story even though I don’t see my writing as a career. A lot of stories that I have read that influence my writing are movies, fiction books and fantasy genres. These have always been my leading inspiration throughout writing stories. I have always cherished the stories I wrote when I was younger, because when I look back at them, I see how I have improved with writing and how my art has changed.,