“Sammy, I missed you. Did you take a decision yet?”, asked Prim. The big day was finally here; Sammy Daley had turned 14 and got to choose his ‘happy place.’ At Burtan, it was a tradition established hundreds of years ago in 4050 to find the one thing or person or even place that gave the individual most happiness and be transported there for half an hour each week. How was Sammy to tell his beloved friends that he had not found the place yet? He was suffering and struggling to find his happiness, and this entire process left him feeling drained.
Sammy had taken a week-long vacation to clear his head and make his decision but after travelling to Swaytown he realized that he may need more time. It was not all rosy and pink in Burtan though. Their 130-year old king still seemed thirty and there was no foreseeable end to his ‘terror reign.’ Sybil, his cousin, gave him a reality check and reminded him that taking more time to decide his ‘escape’ from everyday life meant that His Highness Lord Prat would start taking away his youth for himself in his evil Yungkave. This was the king’s happy place and he used it to give himself endless power. All he had to do was drain his subjects’ youth for being indecisive at a particular age and exercise in the cave for some time every week to transfer the cave’s youth into his body.
Prim and Sybil reiterated what had happened to Hummer, who became a 60-year old trapped in the body of a 20-year old all because he was suffering from depression and could not decide his ‘happy place’ and was unwell. Sammy thought to himself, ‘Oh dear, what will I do now? The King’s men will be here in a couple of hours. How can I save myself?’
Dejected and afraid, he started walking towards Mrs. Patio’s house. She was his aunt and also his most beloved person in the world. She knew what Sammy was going through and had baked him his favourite chocolate domes and strawberry strings. He forgot his worries for a minute and started gorging on those beautifully-made domes. But when he took the first bite of the string, it was as though lightning had struck him. He immediately knew what his very own happy place should be and was ready with his answer.
Not long after that, the officials knocked on their door and were ready for him to announce his ‘happy place’ to all of Burtan. King Prat and the entire town would be left in utter shock because of what was to come next. Sammy got up on the makeshift podium and announced, “I, Sammy Daley, have finalised that my happy place is bound to be the Yungkave, only I do not have to exercise but eat strawberries dipped in chocolates with Aunt Patio to remain young and achieve contentment.” He had outsmarted them and was going to be ‘young forever.’
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