Stories from students at Jakarta International School
You Win Some, You Lose Some
by Miguel Cabalag
In a world not so far away, where magic existed, there was a lonely crippled boy
named Prometheus. However, he didn't stay like this forever, because he soon
learned and gained massive amounts of wisdom. Although his wish was fulfilled,
his own magic took out the better of him.
It all started when his mother gave birth. He was so ugly and crippled, his mother
rejected him and left him to die in a mysterious forest. The mother didn't know at
that time, strange creatures called Sarnas inhabited the forest. They were known
as mystical and legendary creatures. They were also known for giving magic to
men for a price. So, one hot gleaming day, Prometheus, who was still a baby,
started crawling in hunger to search for some food or milk. He trespassed the
Sarna border and was immediately caught by the Sarnas to be eaten. However,
they took a long look at this child.
"Humans, sheesh, trespassing our borders again. He must be eaten," the Sarna
Then suddenly the baby cried, "Waaaa!" This surprised the Sarnas for the phrases
the baby just said meant no. They realized that this was a special baby and
decided to train it to become one of them. And so that was what they did. Years
passed by and the baby reached the age of when he could start magic training.
That afternoon he was told to go to the elder's chamber to have his first training
lessons. The Sarna was a lush green and full of exotic creatures. It consisted of
many huts and underground caves. Bridges made out of vines were used to
connect the huge kingdom together. In the center of the kingdom, was a large old
Magicet Tree. It was the source of all magic, and when you were allowed to use
magic, you had to be brought there to receive your price of using magic. He
limped down into the elder's chamber annoyed in having to do it. There, he
received his first training.
Years passed by and he was finally ready to use his magic on his own. However,
before he could use his magic, he had to go to the Magicet tree and ask his price to
use magic. He is a very unlucky guy so his price of magic was to lose a body part.
"This is really unfair! I demand a change!" shouted Prometheus stamping his foot.
There was a lot of conversation going on between the elders. However they
finally concluded, "Very well, your lost body part shall be replaced by the animals
you have seen so far in your life by chronological order."
"That is still unfair though!"
"Take it or leave it boy!" the elders exclaimed.
"I'll take it," Prometheus answered gloomily. He figured out it was better than
nothing but one thing worried him. Which animal will he turn to? He decided it
was too early to think about it. After graduation day, he was sent back to the
In the human world women disliked him because he was so ugly and was also
crippled. One day he strolled along in the park when a woman glared at him in
"That's it, I will use my magic to turn me into a handsome normal human!"
Prometheus cried. And so that's what he did. He sat down in the park and started
to lose all ideas and including his conscience and began to think only about his
wish. Timeless hours passed by and finally a flash filled the air and when
Prometheus woke up, he turned into a normal handsome human. He looked at his
body parts one by one.
"Head, fine. Body, yes! It's fine. Arms, please be there! Yes it is!" He started to
do a little dance but he noticed that one of his legs was unbalanced. He looked at
it and screamed in horror. It was a Crane's leg. He was so panicked he started
running. However, he suddenly tripped. He ran for cover but then tripped again.
He stayed still and the leg moved by itself. He realized that the Crane was
catching fish. It was trying to stand in one foot to fool the fish. Prometheus soon
figured out that his new Crane leg would do whatever the original owner is doing.
He had to get his rightful human leg back.
First of all, he was going back to the Sarna kingdom to complain and protest.
After three days he finally reached there to receive no action from the others. He
decided to find the animal himself and try to get his arm back someway. In a
minute, he rushed to the nearest zoo looking for Cranes. It must have been his
lucky day because there was a whole section in the zoo just for Cranes. He looked
and stared for hours but never found one Crane that had a human leg. He wasn't
going to give up though. He went to every zoo in the city but never found
anything. He decided there was only one thing to do left was to do was to reverse
the magic. That's what he did for hours and hours but nothing happened. He was
so desperate that he used his magic to change his Crane leg and make into a
normal human leg. Hours passed by and ZAAP! It changed back to a normal
"Head? Check. Body? Check. Arms? Arms? NO! Where are my arms?"
Prometheus cried out loud. He glanced to where his arm was to see a bird's head
there. He was totally freaked out. Then he wished that his arms were normal
again. But now, his head became a gorilla's head. He figured out it wasn't so bad
and tried walking outside. No one really cared because they thought it was a
costume. He tried asking a girl out for a date.
After minutes of conversation, he finally got one. He started a new relationship
and he never wanted it to end. However, his girlfriend was using him for her own
benefits and asked him to use his magic to get her thousands of diamond rings.
That's what he did and soon, after his four times of using his magic, his body was
morphed and he became a gorilla. His girlfriend, shocked, sent him to live in the
zoo. That was the end for his human life. He was still wondering though, which
gorilla wore all his flesh? It must have been lucky.