Ever since kindergarten, I have had the Cussies. They were my imaginary friends and there were hundreds of them. It was a whole society where I made different species and they all went on adventures with me. They looked like circles with two arms, two legs, and two antennae. They were as small as a speck of dust and were always laughing and cheering me on. I would come up with stories about the Cussies like this one:

Cussie woke up one day to find that he was being lifted off the ground. He looked up and saw a red balloon that was carrying him high into the air and away from his home in California. “Help! Help!” He screamed but no one heard him. Cussie was carried across fields of daffodils and chamomiles, across oceans and rivers, and across cities.

After many hours of flying, his balloon began to sink into a field. He landed and he heard a voice. “Hello! I am Invisible Cussie. Who might you be?”

“My name is Cussie. Where are you?”

“I am right next to you but you can’t see me because I am invisible. What are we doing here in Montana?”

“I was carried off a red balloon and I need to get home!”

“Well…can I come with you? Montana is a bit boring.”

“Sure! I would love to have some company. I am just trusting the winds to take me home.”

So Cussie and Invisible Cussie boarded the balloon and they floated across a wide sea and landed on a vast savanna.

“Where are we?” asked Invisible Cussie.

“I think we are in Africa!” replied Cussie.

“Hello. I am Spotted Cussie,” said a voice that came from behind them. They turned around to see a Cussie with spots all over it sitting in the grass. They introduced themselves and explained their situation.

“I would love to come along. I am tired of hiding from lions,” said Spotted Cussie.

So they got onto their balloon and drifted across a dry desert and an ocean and landed on a field covered in flowers. There were chimes ringing in the distance.

They explored a bit until they ran into another Cussie with a flower in her hair.

“Hi, I am Flower Cussie. Welcome to Japan!”

They ended up bringing along Flower Cussie and they also went to Russia, France, Antarctica, Brazil, and India, and brought back Cussies from there. When the winds finally brought them back to California. The other Cussies joined the tribe in California. They fit in well and made many new friends.

—By Abby S., 14, California