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Children's Stories
by Margo Fallis
The Lost Sahara

Three metallic, emerald green scarab beetles live inside one of the ancient pyramids that stood majestically in the arid desert. Most of the time the narrow passageways were dark, but every morning a man dressed in a long white robe came around with a torch and lit the torches in the passageways and chambers, so the tourists and archeologists could see.

One morning, Rashid, the torchbearer, came walking down the narrow stone passageway, lighting the torches on the wall with the one in his hand, which illuminated the darkness of the musty pyramid. The light woke the three scarab beetles up. "It must be morning," Caliana said. She rubbed her wings together, making a soft raspy sound. Eager to start the day off with fun she suggested, "Letís play a game of hide and seek before the tourists come." The other two agreed. "Sahara, you and Ramy go and hide first. Iíll come and find you."

Ramy flew off and hid behind a large stone sarcophagus. Sahara found a statue of one of the ancient pharaohs that had been tipped over onto the floor. Both beetles hid quietly while Caliana searched for them. She found Ramy first, then shortly after that she found Sahara. "Itís your turn to find Sahara and I," she said to Ramy.

He went off to count. Caliana hid in a hole in the wall. Sahara couldnít decide where to hide. She didnít want to get caught. She flew up and down the passageways, searching desperately, until she came to a long one that had colorful hieroglyphics painted on it. She clung to the wall and didnít move.

Ramy started looking for his friends. After a few minutes he found Caliana. They flew into every chamber and passageway but couldnít find Sahara. They searched the entire pyramid. "Sahara," Ramy called. "Where are you?" Sahara giggled as she saw Caliana and Ramy fly back and forth, looking for her and calling her name. She wasnít about to answer them and give her secret hiding place away.

As she clung to the wall she watched as some people came down the passageway towards her. They were tourists, she thought, or maybe they were archeologists, or both. She couldnít tell because she was right up against the wall. The group stopped at the wall with the hieroglyphics on it. A man explained to the rest of the group about what the drawings meant. One of the women asked, "Oh look, thereís a scarab beetle. What is the significance of the scarab beetle in the hieroglyphic?"

The man stopped and looked. "Oh my, I donít know. It doesnít fit in with the rest of the message."

One of the tourists heard a giggle coming from the wall. "What was that?" she asked the guide. Sahara giggled again. "There it is again. Itís as though the hieroglyphic is laughing at us." The woman became frightened. "Iím getting out of here. This pyramid is haunted!" She ran down the passageway and out into the fresh air, followed by the rest of the group. Nobody wanted to be in a haunted pyramid.

The other two beetles went flying by. They heard Sahara giggling. They stopped and looked for her. They could hear her but couldnít see her. Finally Caliana spotted the scarab beetle clinging to the wall. "There she is," he said, flying up to her friend. "What a good hiding place," she congratulated.

"I scared the tourists. One thing for sure they will never be able to look at that hieroglyphic the same again.!" Sahara said, and the three scarab beetles burst out laughing.

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