Genre: MG Fantasy
LOGLINE: Ten kids in Johnson Bays have disappeared. One eight-year-old boy, Theo Stevens knows what’s happened to them. Theo also knows no one will believe him unless he can get the town to see it for themselves.
The heat of summer rolled into the small community of Johnson Bays. Children roamed free and barefoot. The days ahead filled with games of tag until well after sunset, catching bugs during dinner hours, crickets, and warm breezes off the bay.
“Theo, what are you doing?” Kali loomed over her little brother. “You aren’t pulling the wings off that dragonfly? Are you?”
Theo wouldn’t actually be hurting the insects, but sometimes his experiments didn’t appear cruelty-free.
“Um, ah.” Theo dropped the jar, splattering iridescent bugs over the ground, making it look like a carpet of blinking lights.
“Why’d you drop them?” Kalliope’s voice had its way of startling Theodore, making him nervous, made him think he was doing something wrong. Did she always have to be so bossy?
“I’m telling Mom! And Dad. And Grandpa—can’t tell Grandma--but she already saw you, ‘cause she can see ALL now.” Kali imitated an evil eye.
Theo scrambled to collect the items out on display: saucers, cups, and water bottles with mosquito larva, Lego links. Kali continued her inspection up close, zeroing in on what lay out on the asphalt. “Um, what’s in there?” She pointed.
Theo looked around, not knowing what she was talking about.
“You aren’t doing science experiments, again, are you?”
Dusk hung over the bays, just enough to see the glow bugs light up from inside the wide-mouth jar. “You gotta set those fireflies free. You can’t keep ‘em.”
At eight years of age, Theo was the resident entomologist of Johnson Bays Elementary.