‘The Unexpected’ by Oliwia Blachut, Age 14, Year 9, Soham Village College

Alia was living her normal and peaceful life in a city in Syria with her parents and her younger brother. Until, one bright night when they were all in bed and tried to fall asleep they suddenly heard a big band. Alia didn’t know what it was. But a couple of seconds after the bang, her heart sank like a melting ice cream and she knew something wasn’t right. Unexpectedly, she heard people shouting and screaming. She thought maybe it was just people playing games or messing around, at least that is what she wanted to think. It was her parents and her neighbours. Alia’s mum rushed into her room and threw orders at her to get some clothes or food or whatever she could as quickly as possible. Why? She questioned her but she didn’t reply so she asked again but louder cuz maybe she didn’t hear and again, she didn’t answer. Then she realised; there was no time and had to leave. She could feel water covering her eyes. She didn’t want to, she couldn’t. It is her home. Her place where she lives. Where is she going to go? What about her grandparents? Her friends?

After a few days, exhausted (with hope her mum is out there somewhere) Alia reached a line that she never knew she would cross. Then, with fear in her eyes and pain in her heart, she stepped into a new world. World of unknown. Unknown but real – real but like a dream that she hoped would soon end. But there was only one question: where to go?