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Mia’s golden ornament shows signs of being magical

Mia sat on her bed, holding the golden ornament. When she’d pulled it out of her backpack, she’d been positive it had flickered for a second, like a broken light bulb. But as she stared at the shiny orb sitting on her pink bedspread, it did nothing but look like a plain old ornament.

Hesitantly, she picked it up and twisted it to open it up. For a moment, it felt like it warmed in her hands, then it was back to normal. She frowned at the two halves.

“What is going on?” she wondered out loud, then shook her head. She was being silly; she was probably just so filled with anticipation that she was making the bulb out to be more than it actually was.

She plucked the folded piece of paper out from inside the ornament and opened it. She frowned, turning it over.

It was blank.

“Are you kidding me?” she asked the paper, disappointment welling in her stomach. All that excitement, just for a dud? That wasn’t how this was supposed to go.

“Everything ok, sweetie?” Her grandma stood in the doorway and nodded at the ornament. “Is the deed not what you expected?

“You could say that.” Mia sighed, holding out the paper. Her grandma took it and frowned.

“Well, I admit the instructions aren’t exactly clear, but sometimes that just makes it more fun,” she said, and now it was Mia’s turn to frown.

“What?” She took the paper back and her mouth dropped open. An address was written in a small, neat script. Mia flipped the paper over and over, not able to understand what had just happened.

“I’ve picked a few interesting ornaments in my day,” her grandma said with a laugh. “A lot of them are straightforward and easy to follow, but sometimes you get a mystery. Are you up for the challenge?”

Mia shrugged, giving her grandma a smile. “I guess so. I mean, yes. Of course.” Her eyes lit up. “Maybe it’s like a scavenger hunt or something, and I’ll find another clue here,” she said, tapping the address on the paper.

“Anything’s possible. Especially this time of year,” her grandma said with a grin. “Although you can’t just be going off to strange addresses alone. Look it up first, so we know where you’re going.”

“Oh, I know. I will. And don’t worry, Brandon will come with me,” Mia said quickly, her excitement growing again. “Thanks, Grandma.”

Once her grandmother had left, Mia looked back down at the paper, tracing the address with her finger. She had no idea how she could have thought the paper was blank. Could her eyes have been deceiving her in her excitement?

She picked up the golden ornament and studied it, turning it around slowly. When she peered closely at it, she could swear she saw thousands of tiny, glittering snowflakes dancing across the surface. But when she blinked, they were gone.

She grabbed the paper again and took it to her desk so she could look up the address at her computer. Her eyes widened and she gasped as she saw that now, the address wasn’t the only thing written on the paper.

“That’s impossible,” she whispered, staring wide-eyed at the newly formed words.

The address was the same — 448 Sandover Lane. But underneath was a new message, a short poem:

“Once you’re at your destination, you will understand

“You got there at the perfect time to lend a helping hand.”

“This is incredible,” she said, looking back and forth from the paper to the ornament. The ornament flickered again, so quickly she wasn’t sure it actually happened.

But she knew it had.

Something was happening, something new and exciting and unexplainable. She picked up the phone to call Brandon, unable to wait to tell him that she’d been right: this was the year for great things to happen.

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