It was a wonderful day in Badlands National Park. Two girls, Mellisa and Kristiana were racing to Ben Reifel Visiter Center when Mellisa spotted the eerie peaks of Badlands Mountain! Sliding to a stop Mellisa said “Hey! Kristiana, have you ever seen that big mountain before?” “No!” she exclaimed, “It’s called Badlands Mountain. Have you heard the stories about that place?” asked Mellisa. “No, should I know about them?” responded Kristiana. “Are you kidding me?! I’ve talked about the tales of Badlands Mountain with some of my friends! Ok, I have to explain the rumors of this place.” “How many stories are there?” asked Kristiana. “There are four stories in all but I’ll just tell you the main one for now” Replied Mellisa. “Ok” Kristiana said.
Mellisa started: “So, there are rumored to be 5,000,000 pieces of gold at the top put there by ancient mammoth hunters who mysteriously disappeared on top of Badlands Mountain. Many have attempted to climb to the top in search of this gold but only one is said to have made it – Charles Goff the 3rd.” “You mean Ana’s dad?” Kristiana asked. Ana was one of their friends back in the little town of Wall. Mellisa continued “Yes, that’s the one and he has never returned. Many people believe he found the gold and headed for California. Others believe he was killed by a ghost that watches over this treasure waiting for the mammoth hunters to return. Do you want to know why it’s called Badlands Mountain?” asked Mellisa. “Of Course!” Responded Kristiana with a puzzled look. “Boulders fall suddenly on top of anyone who even tries to climb the mountain. People say the ghost pushes them. If the boulders are not successful in keeping away an intruder, he summons the big dragon to help guard his treasure. Anyone who gets even close to the middle is said to be carried off by the dragon and never seen again.” “Wait, what dragon?” asked Kristiana.
“Have you heard any growling at night or even a flash of golden light?” Mellisa responded. “Yes but I was always told it’s just my imagination?” said Kristiana. “It’s not your imagination!” exclaimed Mellisa. “It’s the dragon warning people during the night.” “Well that dragon did a good job, it sure scared me!” replied Kristiana. Mellisa continued, “Yes, anyway every year at least one person attempts to find that treasure and never returns. It is assumed they die because they are never seen again. There is another person that almost made it to the top but just as he reached the peak the dragon swooped down and knocked him down all the way to the bottom. The poor man lost most of his memory so we still don’t know what it looks like up there! I just wish I could see it. Anyway, besides the boulders and dragon, there are secret traps such as poisonous snake pits, and hidden caves. So it’s impossible to get to the top alive!” announced Mellisa. So, do you get the main point, if you even try to do it, you’ll fail and never be heard from again. So don’t get any ideas!”
“But you’re not a normal person” said Kristiana “you have abilities that I have not seen in anyone else. What if you use your powers to protect us, and to become friends with the dragon and the ghost, you could use the dragon to fly up…” “NO! My powers are limited. We could die trying!” replied Mellisa. “But if anybody has a chance to get to the top you do” said Kristiana. Mellisa responded “You do have a good point… If we spend the rest of this day gather the necessary items we could climb Badlands Mountain tomorrow. Fine we’ll leave in the morning. But if I need help you have to do exactly what I tell you, do you understand?” asked Mellisa “Yes I do! Thank you sooooooooo much! I’ve wanted to go on an adventure my whole life, especially a dangerous one!” Kristiana replied “You want to die!?” Mellisa asked. “No! I just want a really cool adventure!” said Kristiana “Oh, I see. Well we better get started on packing our supplies” Said Mellisa and off they went.