Alyssa McCarthy's Magical Missions, Book 1
Published: October 2018 Second Edition
Publisher: S.A. Prasad Publishing
A Modern Magical World Awaitsâ¦
Life changes for twelve-year-old Alyssa McCarthy when she discovers magicâsomething nobody has ever believed in. Strange incidents occur, hinting that a sorcerer is out on the loose. That warlock kidnaps Alyssa from her uncleâs home and takes her to an enchanted Fiji Island called Yanowic.
The only way she can overthrow him is to fight perilous creatures as well as track the other wizards using magical technology. But unless she succeeds, Alyssa will remain trapped in the nation.
Originally published in 2013, the book has been updated to its full potential while keeping the same storyline.
Rain banged against the window. Alyssa looked up from washing her lunch dishes and stared at it. At least she could daydream while no one else noticed. After all, how else would she spend life without family funâor even love? Her uncle enforced strict and unfair rules. Alyssa longed for the kind of life sheâd lived before her parents had died in a car crash five years ago. Sheâd only been seven at that time, and now she couldnât experience things like many children her age. Unless . . . she could find her godfatherâs phone number and secretly call him. She hadnât talked to him ever since sheâd also lost her aunt three years ago. But she recalled his kind attitude. Her parents had even designated him as a legal guardian. But something seemed off with the raindrops. They turned grayish blue and darkened into black, looking as if ink fell from the sky. Alyssa leaned closer, squinting to determine the shapes it formed on the window. The rain formedâletters. No. That couldnât happen. But a message formed as the rain plopped on other parts of the window. Nature couldnât change its laws, right? Yet, the message finished putting itself together. Alyssa gasped at what it said.
Your life will never be the same again, Alyssa McCarthy, as magic will interfere.
What? Alyssa had never believed in magic. Sheâd been told at a young age that it hadnât existed. Everyone on Orion Street was ordinaryâat least, Alyssa had thought that ever since sheâd moved here, right after her parentsâ deaths. Turning around, she saw her babysitter, Mrs. Hutchinson, examine the kitchen floor. Alyssaâs eleven-year-old cousin, Hailey, watched the progress. Hailey had mopped the floor. Would she earn a break now? Ever since her uncle, Bruce, had hired Mrs. Hutchinson, Mrs. Hutchinson had admired the way Hailey had done her chores more than Alyssa. âHailey, you can take a break until your next chore,â said Mrs. Hutchinson. âAlyssa, get back to work. Youâve been staring at the rain for too long.â âOkay.â Alyssa turned backâonly to see the message gone and the rain back to its normal transparency. âWhat did I say?â asked Mrs. Hutchinson. Alyssa sighed. âFine, Iâll finish washing the dishes.â She scrubbed her dish and glass with soap under warm running water. Her eyes focused on just those. No way would she want Mrs. Hutchinson to catch her looking out the window again. Mrs. Hutchinson was only in her sixties, but sheâd sometimes seem to forget that was 2010 and not 1960 with her guidelines. Yet, it had taken Alyssa a while to realize that she wouldnât even tolerate the mildest kind of nonsense, such as getting distracted by a windowpane when having to perform chores. Now that she finished washing her dishes, Alyssa put them to the side and grabbed some paper towels to dry them. âWhat do you think youâre doing?â Mrs. Hutchinson asked. Alyssa stopped. âIâm justââ âThe last few times I was here, you left little bits of food on your dishes.â âBut they were stuck.â
âLet me inspect them. Also, if something is rubbery, you have to wash it again.â âWhy?â âBecause clean dishes arenât supposed to be rubbery. And boy, did you do such a sloppy job. Look at that stain on your sweater.â Alyssa looked down. âThat looks like chocolate.â Alyssa blushed and arched her eyebrows. âHeyâitâs just water.â She covered the stain at the bottom of her sweaterâs V-neck. But Mrs. Hutchinson waved her index finger. âDonât you âheyâ me, Alyssa. Thatâs rude. In my days, kids respected their elders. We never would dare talk to them that way unless we didnât mind them smacking our bottoms.â âThings change.â âNot when Iâm here, they donât. Now let me do my inspection.â Greatâan inspection! How long would Mrs. Hutchinson take? She might spend a couple minutes or maybe twenty. Alyssa crossed her arms and tapped her foot. She wanted her break now. She wished to read, rest, do a small craft, like lanyardsâanything but wait for Mrs. Hutchinson to finish her task. âMrs. Hutchinson?â Alyssa asked. âWhatever you need to say, wait till Iâm done,â she said. Alyssa sighed. She continued to watch Mrs. Hutchinson run her finger down the middle of the front of the dish. She then rubbed it back and forth. When she put it down and nodded, Alyssa figured out that the dish had nothing on it. Mrs. Hutchinson spent a few minutes of running her finger down the glass. She put it down and turned to Alyssa. âYouâre good. Now what did you want to tell me?â âUm . . . if I tell you, can you not give me a hard time?â âOkay.â âThere was writing on the window.â Mrs. Hutchinson pursed her lips and tilted her head. âReally?â âYeah.â âNonsense.â âNo, really, it was there.â âThere was nothing there when I came, and thereâs nothing there right now. So donât tell me stories.â âBut itâs not a story.â âI donât want to hear any more. Now itâs time for your next chore.â âAw, but I wanted my break.â âToo bad. You have to go vacuum the living room.â Alyssa dragged her feet toward the living room and took the vacuum from the corner. She cleaned and thought about that writing as well as how Mrs. Hutchinson wouldnât believe her. Would a nicer babysitter have believed her? Mrs. Hutchinson had watched her and Hailey for three years, and not once had she smiled or assisted with anything. After vacuuming the carpet for about five minutes, Alyssa decided that she had tidied the floor enough. So she stopped and put the vacuum away. âHailey, you and Alyssa need to go get the mail now!â Mrs. Hutchinson called, facing the staircase. âComing!â cried Hailey.
Another rule Uncle Bruce had placed on Alyssa and Hailey was they could only go outside together. He worried about people taking them or something, even though Alyssa would turn thirteen next month. But that rule had been placed because a few months ago, Uncle Bruce had heard about a seventeen-year-old boy who had been shot while skateboarding in his neighborhood. Violence could even happen here in Bursnell, New Jersey. Hailey and Alyssa headed to the closet and put their raincoats on until Mrs. Hutchinson said, âIt stopped raining outside.â âAlready?â asked Alyssa. âYes.â Mrs. Hutchinson went to the bathroom. The girls walked outside toward the mailbox. Alyssa pulled the mail and headed back toward the door. But mud bubbled from the ground near the house. It piled up, looking like horse manure, and grew as more soil emerged. Alyssa dropped her jaw and stared at it. âAlyssa, whatâs going on?â Hailey asked. âNo idea,â said Alyssa. The dirt stopped piling up, but it continued to bubble, and the effects spread throughout the whole pile. The bubbles stopped popping up and down. Alyssa and Hailey gasped as they expanded. They kept their mouths open as the bubbles merged together, each one attached to another, forming a single bigger shape. Alyssa and Hailey stepped back as the now giant bubble swelled. And it . . . popped! Particles of exploding mud landed on the girls. They shrieked. The front door opened to reveal a glowering Mrs. Hutchinson. âWhat the heck have you two been doing?â âT-the mud . . . it e-exploded,â said Hailey. âNonsense!â growled Mrs. Hutchinson. âGet inside!â The girls returned inside, pulling and wiping the mud out of their hair. Alyssa could spot the mud in her straight pale-blonde tresses, unlike Hailey, who likely needed more patience to search for globs in her elbow-length red locks. But Alyssaâs hair fell a few inches past her hips, so cleaning out the mud would take longer, even with the shorter layers in the front. âHow could dirt explode?â Mrs. Hutchinson stomped. âI-I think it was magic!â exclaimed Alyssa. âThereâs no such thing as magic!â screamed Mrs. Hutchinson. âAlyssa, youâre twelve years old. Youâre too old to say things like that!â âBut nothing else can make mud explode!â Alyssa said. âMrs. Hutchinson, we swear it did!â whined Hailey. âEnough!â snapped Mrs. Hutchinson. âYou and Haileyâgo upstairs and take showers!â Alyssa followed Hailey up the stairs and heaved a sigh. How else would the mud have splattered all over them? Mrs. Hutchinson couldnât have thought theyâd play in the mud like small children. âAlyssa, can I shower first?â asked Hailey. âSure,â said Alyssa. As Hailey strode into the bathroom, Alyssa walked into her room. She scratched more mud off her skinny jeans (the only jeans sheâd worn ever since theyâd come into style) and the back of her hand. She stood by her bed since she wanted to keep it clean. She considered the writing on the window and the exploding mud. Someone wanted magic to interfere with her life, but who, and how come?
Also, why hadnât she ever seen wizardry before? Why would her parents and others tell her that it hadnât existed? Did sorcery just start on earth? Had it hidden somewhere? There had to be some reason why no one had ever believed in it. Alyssa thought about the possibility that maybe magic might only interfere if she stayed here in her uncleâs house. Maybe if her godfather could arrange with his lawyer to let her move in with him, sorcery would hopefully leave her alone. However, unlike science, anything could occur with magic, which meant that it could follow her wherever she went. The sound produced by the bathroomâs running water ended, which let Alyssa know that Hailey had finished. Now she could have a turn. After about five minutes showering, Alyssa stepped out and headed back to her room. She put on leggings and a long shirt. But she gasped at something appearing out of nowhere on her bed. Now that had to have come from . . . magic. Approaching it, she saw that it was a folded piece of paper. She opened it and read it. Hello Alyssa McCarthy, You must be wondering about the writing on your window, the exploding mud, and the note that appeared here. Who was responsible for them? Youâll find out at some point. Anonymous
Anonymous? How dare someone create incidents and not say his or her name! Alyssa needed to know his or her identity in order to report him or her. She didnât want strange, magical occurrences to keep happening. Regardless of that, now she had proof to Mrs. Hutchinson that the writing and exploding mud had occurred. Mrs. Hutchinson had seen her write before, and this looked nothing like hers. She handwrote in a half-print and half-script style. This, however, was pure print. Alyssa jogged down the stairs and carried the note. âMrs. Hutchinson, I have something to show you.â âNot right now, Alyssa.â Mrs. Hutchinson left the kitchen. âYou and Hailey have to go wash my car.â âBut itâs quick.â âYou can show me after youâre done with my car.â Mrs. Hutchinson turned to Hailey, who emptied the dishwasher and put dishes away. âAre you almost done?â âI think so,â said Hailey. âHow many dishes do you have left?â asked Mrs. Hutchinson. âUh . . .â Hailey looked at the top rack. âFour.â âOkay, hurry up.â Mrs. Hutchinson turned to Alyssa. âWhy donât you go put that piece of paper away?â âBut this is what I need to show you.â âDo I have to repeat what I said before?â âButââ âAlyssa, do as youâre told.â Mrs. Hutchinson pointed to the staircase. Alyssa sighed. This note contained so much crucial information. Only that paper itself had evidence to show that those incidents had occurred.
After putting the note back in her room, Alyssa headed down the stairs and walked with Hailey toward the garage. The two grabbed sponges, buckets, and soap for washing cars. They filled the buckets with water and scrubbed Mrs. Hutchinsonâs car. âI wish we had another babysitter,â muttered Alyssa. âWhat was on the piece of paper?â asked Hailey. Alyssa told her. âWho wrote it?â âThere was no name on it. Just âanonymous.ââ A girl whistling turned Alyssaâs attention away from the car. She leaned her head toward the sidewalk and saw her friend from grade school, Madison Jennings, riding her scooter. âHi, Alyssa,â said Madison. The wind blew her long dark-brown waves across her face. She stopped at Alyssaâs driveway, and her hair went limp. Hailey and Alyssa ran up to greet her and ask how sheâd been. âI just moved onto Draco Drive a few days ago,â Madison referred to a road off Orion Street. âSo how do you like the middle school?â asked Alyssa. âOh, I go to Catholic school now,â said Madison. âWhat about you?â âHailey and I are homeschooled now,â said Alyssa. âI never got to tell you.â âThatâs okay,â said Madison. âSo you guys want to come over to my house on Saturday?â âWhat time?â asked Alyssa. âIâll ask my mom and let you know,â said Madison. âOkay, bye, guys. Nice seeing you again.â She rode back in the direction sheâd come from as Hailey and Alyssa waved goodbye to her. After washing the car for another ten minutes, Alyssa and Hailey cleaned up and walked back inside. A snore suggested to Alyssa that Mrs. Hutchinson slept. Huh? She never napped while babysitting. Alyssa strode toward the living room and saw Mrs. Hutchinson asleep on one of the couches. Hailey followed her. âWhy is Mrs. Hutchinson sleeping?â âI donât know,â said Alyssa. âCan you show me the note?â Alyssa nodded and led her up the stairs. She opened her door but gasped at what she saw. The note that sheâd left on her bed was gone. âWhereâs the note?â asked Hailey. âIt was right there,â Alyssa pointed to the bed. But another piece of paper appeared onto the mattress. Alyssa picked it up and read it.
Hello again, Alyssa,
I have put your babysitter to sleep to reveal magic to you. Youâll find out why she is sleeping later. Anonymous
âNot again,â mumbled Alyssa. âWhy wonât they say their name?â She showed the note to Hailey. âLetâs go call my dad before anything happens,â said Hailey.
How much worse could this get? Alyssa thought as she follows.
About the Author
Sunayna Prasad has published a few books between her late teens and her mid-twenties. She has won a Pacific Book Review Award for her novel, Wizardry Goes Wild, which will return as a new edition, like From Frights to Flaws. Sunayna also has a blog on different creative and entertaining topics, including writing and fiction. It is called âSunayna Prasadâs Blogâ.
Aside from writing, Sunayna also likes to cook, do art, and watch videos online. She has graduated from college in May 2017 and is looking to continue more writing as well as hold a job soon. Sunayna lives on Long Island, NY.