A Surprise at the Funfair by Isla Pim

On the edge of a deserted fairground by a mountain lived two intrepid children called Max and Honey. Nobody had thought of reopening the fair for years. But that didn’t stop the children from exploring.

One Sunday Max and Honey were playing hide and seek around the dodgems, when a severe looking gentleman with a smart, navy uniform and a cobalt peaked cap marched up towards them. “Sorry,” he declared importantly. “Unfortunately, this area is out of bounds.”

Both kids looked flabbergasted. “What”, cried Honey. “But we have been coming here for years, and there is no sign!”

The man sighed. “I suppose it’s short notice, but we’re reopening the funfair,” he said hastily.

Their eyes widened with joy, and the wrath that had filled them was gone. “When does it open sir?” asked Max.

The man answered stiffly, “Next weekend mister, next weekend.”

Seven long days later, the pair arrived at the fair full of tingling excitement. Grabbing Honey by the arm, Max bolted into the massive crowd surrounding a ride. Slightly hesitantly, Honey followed. Her legs spun like a bicycle wheel as she dashed behind her brother. The group was gawping at a shiny red rollercoaster which about 300 people were queueing up for. “Come on Honey,” bellowed Max bouncing up and down, because he had just seen a merry go round on which you rode rockets instead of horses. Both skipped to the ride before they realised something terrible…

It hadn’t occurred to either that they had little money until they reached the kiosk, and saw the man with the peaked cap. “Well, well, well it’s you again,” he barked. “Hand over the money.” That was when it dawned on Honey. “Um,” mumbled the timid lass, “is this enough?”

“Don’t you tykes know it’s £2 for kids over 5 years?”

Honey’s rosy cheeks became pale with fear. She turned to see her brother looking shocked. Tears dripped down both faces and they hurriedly wiped them away.

They trudged glumly out of the queue and sat on a bench. Full of despair, Max murmured “Now what are we going to do? We haven’t enough money for the rides! I can’t believe we’ve been so foolish.”

An elderly man with a beard and glasses shuffled over to them, leaning on his stick. “’Ello”, he croaked and beamed toothlessly. The man seated himself on their bench. Honey weakly smiled back, but tears were leaking from her eyes. She had a flashback as she remembered her dead grandfather. “Ah”, said the kindly man. “I’ll leave you now, shall I?” “Don’t go”, Max hollered, but he limped into the bustling crowd.

Max saw something sticking out of Honey’s pocket which he realised was a £10 note. He nudged her and showed his sister the money. Relief spread across her face and they dashed to the merry go round. From the ride the pair saw a familiar face take off a beard and glasses and put on a blue peaked cap.