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20 November 2019

YAFF 2019: 4th Grade – 1st Place – “Gargoyle Greg” by Will Barry


We invite you to read the story by Will Barry, that won 1st place for 4th Grade/ CM1 in the 2019 Young Authors Fiction Festival. We will be posting winning stories from the 2019 YAFF regularly for the next few months. Enjoy the stories!


“Gargoyle Greg” by Will Barry
1st Place – 4th Grade/ CM1

Once upon a time, there was a gargoyle who lived in Paris. The gargoyle was standing above the balcony on the apartment next door to the British family who had just moved in. This family had a boy called Tony. First, he thought the gargoyle was ugly, but then his Mum told him about Gargoyle history, and pointed out all the different details on its face. The gargoyle was not snarling like most gargoyles, but smiling pleasantly. Tony started to talk to it, and call it Greg, because it started with the same letter as “gargoyle” .Tony spoke to it every day, telling it about all his problems.

The gargoyle became his world. His Mum and Dad were getting divorced, so had no time for him. Tony talked to Greg about everything. Tony   leaned over the edge of his balcony every night and talk to him about all his worries in the world. Of course, the Greg never replied, but it was nice to talk to him all the same. 

One night, he was talking to Greg, and tears  rolled down his cheeks. The rain from the storm slid over the angled roof and protected him from the rain

“What would you do if your life sucked and your parents hated each other?” he asked. 

Greg stared blankly.

“Okay, thanks anyway.”

Suddenly, the sky flashed with thunder, and there was a lightning strike nearby.

Tony yelped. He fell over, and skidded on the floor. He wiped his eyes, sending his tears flying through the rain.

“Whoof! That was close!”

“ Yes it was, young man.”

Tony went rigid. He raised his head…

The tears were on Greg’s face. The statue was glowing, and smiling.

“Hi!” he said.

Tony screamed.

He ran inside, terrified.

“Tears! Gargoyle! Alive!” he burbled.

Meanwhile, Greg tried to make friends. He flew over the city, as people shrieked in fear.

“Ooh! What’s that?” he said, landing in the school playground, and seating himself on the bright green “buddy bench”, with his hands folded on his lap and a smile on his face.

Greg waited for thirty minutes, his happy face descended into sadness. By the end, he would have been in tears, if stones could cry. Greg flew away and walked through the bakery door.

“Hi!” said Greg. “Do you sell pain au chocolat?” Greg knew lots about them because Tony and his mum eat them every Sunday.

People ran screaming. The service woman passed out in fear

“No one? Really?” he said, becoming more and more sad.

Greg moved on. He went to the therapist, and knocked. He knew about the therapist because Tony’s grandma had often needed to go, so Tony told him about it.


Greg went in. “Hi, you see I have a problem, about frie-” Greg never finished the sentence. The therapist burst into tears, she was so frightened.

Greg trudged outside, and bowed his head, in the rain.

‘Does nobody want to be friends with me?” he sighed.

‘I DO!” came a yell.

He turned around.

Tony was walking down the street.

“Hey,” said the boy. “You’ve always been there for me, and I can be there for you. So what d’ya say? Friends?”

Greg smiled. “Friends.”




For information about the Library’s Young Authors Fiction Festival please see the Library’s YAFF page or contact yaff@americanlibraryinparis.org

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