The Finger that Caused Everything
"Waylon Moosberger,"My mom called. "Come down here! It's your first day of middle school! Get ready!"
"I'M IN THE EFFING BATHTUB!" I screamed downstairs. Bathing is a real issue between us. My parents always think I spend too much time in the bathtub. I didn't care, though. They usually call me down so I could get out of the bathtub, for some "Important" stuff. Yeah, right. More like a lame 70's song they wanted to show me.
"Your friends are here, gawd dammit!" She screamed again. I rolled my eyes, got out of the bathtub, put on some clothes, and trudged downstairs.
My friends really were here. All zero of them. I glared at her. "But you spend too much time bathing for an twelve-year old," she complained. I rolled my eyes yet again. She only takes a bath once a month. I have the honorable duty of cleaning the hair out of the bottom of the tub. I grabbed my coat, backpack, and headed to school. My mom walked out with me, hugged me one last time, and drove off to work. My dad, Bob, did the same. He was an awkward hugger.
I grumbled all the way to the bus stop. I don't know why. I guess I just get P.Oed for every little thing. I waited for the bus while the school bully, Johnny Royer, towered below me. He was litterally, a midget to a midget. Not to mention chubby. He had been held back five times in elementary school, and he had barely passed sixth grade. Now here he was, in middle school.
"Gimme all yo monay, runt," he growled at me. More like he was the runt. Seriously, he was so small I could punt him across a football field. I actually did, once, and then I got expelled from one of my elementary schools. But that's beside the point.
"No thanks, little boi," I said cooly. "You wouldn't want to have my dirty, ugly cash, would you?"
Johnny's lower lip trembled.
That's when he started throwing a huge temper tantrum. And by that italizased "huge", I meant really HUGE! He screamed and cried, so hard that I was frantically searching for money in my backpack, just for him to shut up.
"WHAI!!!!!!!!!!! NO NO NO NO!!! I WANT YO MONAY!!!!" He screamed while an ocean was rolling down his cheeks. And I mean that quite litterally.
The neighbors were stepping outside their houses now, to see what the hell was going on.
Meanwhile, Johnny was crying harder than ever. "WHAAAA!! Y U NO GIVE ME MAI MONAY!!!!!! I HATE YOU!!!!!! I REALLY!!! REALLY! HATE! YOU!" His words came up in between loud obnoxious sobs.
Then, a lightbulb flashed on top of my head. I swatted it away, then I dashed toward Mrs. Smith's house. She was the only neighbor I knew, since I tutored her kid once. When I came up to her door and asked her for money, she slapped me in the face. Mrs. Smith was a plump old frail ugly lady, so I didn't know she could slap so hard.
"OW! What was that for?" I screeched in pain.
"That's for letting Larry get a 10% on his math test!" She laughed maniacally. She stepped back into her small blue house.
"I FRICKEN HATE YOU!!! WHAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!! WHAAA!" Johnny was bawling. He was tearing the branches off of nearby trees, and kicking the sidewalk gravel out into the street. He bit into a streetlight, and ran out into the street like the maniac he is. Then the school bus pulled around the corner at the end of my street, and was speeding towards the bus stop. I quickly grabbed my neon blue backpack, and then - SPLAT! The bus had hit Johnny, right over him. Blood spattered over the front of the bus, completely covering the windshield. At first I was paralyzed with shock, but then I was annoyed. Why hadn't someone done this before? I thought. I stuck out my middle finger out to the bus.
Detention was a drag. As it turns out, the bus driver could clearly see me flipping off the bus. He had talked about it to the principal about it forever, and at last he and the principal had come out and told me I'd be serving an all day detention. Since it was the first day of school, I would be serving it in the library, instead of the detention room. I thought I would be the only one there. But Hazel and a couple of other guys I didn't know where there too, sitting at a big round table. Hazel was one of the bad girls at my old school. I regularly tried to avoid her, because she beat up people for no reason. The only chair left was next to her, so I decided to be brave and take it.
"What're you in for, punk?" she mumbled angrily as I sat down next to her.
"Flipping off a bus," I said nonchalantly. "You?"
"Beatin' up some kid. Called me a -"
"Hazel!" some libriarian said sternly. "Don't use that language around lower grades like him! He's the one who follows your footsteps. Set a good example."
I was mildly offended by the way she said I followed in her footsteps. My brand of bullying was different. I used my words and clever lies. It rarely came to physical abuse, unlike Hazel. She beat up other kids just because she could. In fact, I rarely bullied at all. Just people who bullied me. And believe me, there were a lot of bullies around here. Especially in here - Oakville Middle School. Walking through the halls, I could tell who was a bully and who wasn't. It was sort of like a sixth sense. I guess it didn't matter anyway, though. The next ten minutes of detention was silent until some weird kid named Ralph spoke up. I knew him from my old school. Back in elementary, he was that quiet kid who whimpered and cried alot. He still is. He also tends to vomit alot. "Hazel, why do you have a new phone? Didn't you get a new one last week?" Well, to answer your question, Ralph, she did get a new phone last week. In fact, she got a new phone last week, too, not to mention the week before that, I thought sarcastically. It was common knowledge around here that Hazel was the most spoiled kid in the school. She litterally gets something new each week. It turns out that Hazel was thinking along the same thoughts I was thinking, only her words came out really harsh. I guess she gets P.O.ed at every little thing too. At least I control my anger. She stood up from her chair and began cussing out Ralph, calling him - well, stuff you don't want to know. She was whisked away into the office in a blink of an eye. Ralph was so emotional he put his face on the table and began crying. I didn't know what else to do, so I awkwardly rose and patted him on the back across the table. The other detentees looked simply baffled, then went back to playing on their cell phones and iPods or whatever.
The rest of the day was just like a normal school day. Boring, boring, and boring. I wished I had bought in a video game or something to pass the time. After the all-day detention, the principal very kindly told me that he wanted to schedule a meeting with my parents. So I very kindly told him that he was a fricken idiot, and he should go die in a hole. So he very kindly told me that I was going to have dentenion for the rest of the week. I smiled, and I very kindly thanked him for his gift. He very agressively gave me a piece of paper and told me to give it to my mom. I thanked him again, and I tossed the paper in the shredder as I walked out. Then, the principal told me I now had a two weeks' worth of detention. I shrugged it off, like I didn't care. But on the inside, I was actually grining, because I had gained a little respect for Hazel for her outburst with Ralph. And I knew Hazel was gonna be there, too. She probably had at least a month in that library.
Today, when I got off the "special" bus I'm supposed to ride for the rest of the year, I went right down to Classroom 666, the detention room. As I entered the room, I felt kind of honored. I was the first-ever kid to go into the detention room for the year. The rest of the prisoners haven't arrived yet, so I just sat myself down on the wooden round table, and waited. I took a good look around the room. Awe flowed through me. Generations and generations of seventh and eighth grade kids had wasted their lives in this very room. Way back when the school was built, The custodians always did a througough cleanup of each room every year. The detention room was always the messiest room. After about twenty years, the Oakville custodians just decided to quit on the detention room altogether, and then after that, the place was never touched. Now I know what it's like when you don't do chores around the house. The paint was peeling, some of it even washed off from the walls. Broken pieces of who knows what were scattered across the floor. There was a stain on the carpet that I almost stepped in. But what was most interesting was the walls. Almost every square inch had been covered in pencil lead. It looked as if every kid who had ever been in the detention room had written something on the walls. I read the pencil marks of kids from who knows how long ago.
MR. SAMSON SUCKZ!!!!!!!
JESSE LOVES CHRISTINA!!!!
PENGUINS DESERVE LOVE!!!!
MY PANTS ARE MESSY!!!!
WHY, DETENTION WHY?
And much, much more. I was just examining one that said I think justin bieber is gay when I heard footsteps into the room. I whipped around my head to see Hazel, staring at me in my face.
"You know, I wrote that one," she said as she proudly pointed to the inscription I was reading.
I didn't really know what to say, so I just blurted out, "You're very.... Poetic."
"I don't really consider it poetry," she replied thoughtfully. "It's like your own personal diary, where you can write your feelings, but still stay anonymous."
I smiled for the first time school let in. It was very rare for Hazel to show her passive side.
"Go ahead, write something," she said. "It's not like they screen the handwriting. Write what you truly feel about yourself."
I thought about it for a moment, then I wrote, Everybody's an idiot except me. I turned my back to let Hazel see, and she smiled right at me. Then she kneeled beside me and wrote, Too true. With an arrow pointing to my sentance. Then, I heard a sharp gasp and bout of crying. Ralph and some other guys had come into the room, with a few teachers. Hazel and I got up off the floor and onto the chairs around the round table. Everyone else except the teachers sat down too. The rest of the day was spent trying to stop Ralph from being such a crybaby.
I stepped up on the "special" bus, feeling pretty good about myself. Not only had I made friendly contact with an alien species called Hazel, I had also learned the names of the two guys who had shown up yesterday and today. Their names were Harry Butts and Sean Something. I didn't know his last name. They were eighth graders. They got in trouble for slapping someone with a piece of pizza on the last day of last year, so they had to serve their detentions this year. I smiled a little. Harry and Sean actually weren't that agressive, not at all actually. I was actually liking our little detention group. I'd miss it when it was over. I was starting to think that I actually had friends there. We also had finally gotten Ralph out of his depressed slunch, or whatever he was in, but he still flinches whenever he sees Hazel.
Yeah, we're still working on that.
Today after I got off the bus, I realized that tomorrow would be my last-ever day in detention. I grit my teeth. I would miss the scribbly wall diary, and not to mention the peeling paint and the God-knows-what carpet stain. I'm not usually the kind of guy that mopes around when something bad is happening, so I went straight to brainstorming. I knew Hazel, Harry, and Sean were still gonna be there. I can't explain why, I knew. It was like a law of physics. I wrote down something in my daily journal.
Waylon Moosberger's Laws of School Physics
1. Wherever a weak specimen appears in a hallway, a strong external force will shove said specimen into a locker and ask it for money. Therefore, the teacher will come out of it's lair and walk the external force to the principal's office. Amen.
I closed my journal, and began thinking. What could I possibly do to get myself another two weeks' worth of detention? It's harder than it sounds, because the teachers know it's not a punishent now. And I can't stand regular classes. I just can't. Sitting outside the principals office for 7 hours is like a field day to me. My mind was blank, so I opened my journal, and propped up my pencil and closed my eyes, and let my subconcious do the work. I felt the pencil moving under my hands; it felt a little weird. It seemed like hours before I opened my eyes, and when I did, there were definitely words written there. Well, sort of.
1,000, if you're a superstitious freak. Five words, to be literal.
And do you want to know what they were?
A picture of a toilet.
I had my plan all figured out by the time I went into the detention room that fateful morning. I knew exactly what to do. I was early at the detention room today, so, I just went past the table -stepping carefully over the carpet stain- And right where the wall was. I looked at one of my older diary entries: Everyone's an idiot but me. Next to Hazel's too true, note there was another one. Hah! Yeah right! If you weren't so retarded, why are you in this hell hole in the first place? Ha, ha! My hands clenched at the sight of it. But then, I smiled sweetly to myself, closed my eyes, and let my subconcious do the work, yet again. It felt weird to be feeling the pull of the pencil under my fingers, but Hazel said I could speak my mind on here. And that was exactly what I was doing. When I opened my eyes, I had drawn a picture of a - "Waylon! We need to get out of this place. Let's escape to my Grandma's house in Mexico!" I turned around to see Hazel standing behind me. Ralph and Sean were behind her. I notvived they had no teachers behind her, so I knew this was serious business. Ralph was whimpering. Sean looked dissapointed. Evidently, Hazel hadn't told them what they were agreeing to when she asked them to come with her.
I went straight to the questions. "How do you want to get there?" Of course, I actually knew how to get there, I just wanted to approach the subject carefully.
"I don't know, maybe we could crawl through a drainage pipe?" said Ralph, cowering.
That was so close to my idea that I flinched. The movement caught Hazel's attention.
"Do you have any ideas?" She asked innocently, but she was giving me a look that clearly said, If you don't have an idea, we're stuck here. These morons barely understand that we're trying to escape school.
A moment of earsplitting silence followed this.
I had rehearsed this speech in my head a lot of times, but when the words came out of my mouth, it wasn't exactly what I had in mind. "Um, well, like, I had been, um, like, reading this book about like, um, plumbing. And, my um, grandmother's sister's friend's granddaughter's brother's son friend's mother is REALLY fat, so she has like um, a big toilet that we can um,-"
"Crawl through." Ralph finished off my sentance weakly. His legs were trembling.
Is there any such thing of a phobia of toilets? I asked myself. I'll have to look it up.
But now wasn't the time for self-trivia. Hazel's mouth opened like she was going to say something, but some kid opened the door to the detention room. He was wearing gray shorts, and a black hoodie with tennis shoes.
"I couldn't help hearing your little bathroom escape plan," he said. "Gotta love glass mugs." He held up an empty glass mug of coffee, probably from the teacher's lounge. "Can I come?" He set the mug on the table.
"My name's Connor, by the way," he said. He shook everyone's hand, but Hazel retracted in disgust when Connor reached out for her hand. She motioned the group into a huddle, like a football game.
"Let's take a vote, who want's Connor to escape school with us?" Hazel whispered.
"Me," I whispered
"Me," Sean breathed.
"The more the merrier," said Harry quietly.
Ralph was crying and sobbing silently and didn't say anything, so we counted his vote for both descisions.
"Alright, that's a majority," Hazel retracted from the group, and turned around to face Connor. They shook hands.
"Operation Ever Wonder What's Down the Toilet is so on," said Hazel defiantly.
"See? I told you so! It's that big!" I exclaimed.
No, we weren't talking about body parts, if that was what you were thinking. We were all standing in my grandmother's sister's friend's granddaughter's brother's son's mother's bathroom. I think my explanation of the toilet needed more exaggeration. The room litterally had to be stretched because the toilet was so big. I'm not kidding.
"Whoa!" Connor jabbered annoyingly, leaving echoes around the room. "Are you sure this isn't a swimming pool?"
Harry just stared.
Sean stared at Harry. I made a mental note to myself to watch out for Harry.
Ralph was amazed enough to talk. "Imagine how big the bedroom is!"
Hazel just said, "Wow...."
I was getting bored of all this "Ooooh, Aaaah," talk. I've already seen this before, and besides, we're here to escape school. Not to admire the pretty little toilets. Well, "little" wouldn't be the right word. How about -
Creak - The door was opening. I looked up, and there I was, face to face with my grandmother's sister's friend's granddaughter's brother's son's mother. And my god, was she big.
"WHAT DO YOU WANT?!?!?!!?!?!!" Her Hulk-ish voice rumbled. It shook the whole house. "Whoa! Ahh!" Connor, Hazel, Ralph, Harry and Sean fell into the enourmous toilet. A second later, I heard footsteps, and a little boy in a blue-striped shirt appeared behind his mother.
"Lance, GO AWAY. I GOTTA TAKE A REALLY BIG POOP." Her voice emphasized on the word "Poop."
A small voice cried out. "Wa-a-ait!" It took me a second or two to recongize it as Connor's. He climed up out of the toilet itself, and on to the toilet bowl, dripping wet. How he made it on there, I don't know.
What is he doing? I paJohnnyed. He can't possibly do what I think he' s about to do.
Connor made direct eye contact with the blue-striped shirt boy.
"Yo mama's so fat, when she tripped over on 4th Avenue, she landed on 12th!" Connor called out, lashing out his arms like a gangsta.
Oh, God, no....
"Oh yeah?" Lance retorted. "Yo mama so fat, when she sits around the house, SHE SITS AROUND THE HOUSE!"
In utter horror, I watched as an epic Yo Mama battle unfolded right before my eyes.
On a gigantic toilet, of all places.
The jokes kept flying by.
"Yo mama's so fat, the neighborhood kids use HER as a trampoline!"
"Yo mama's so stupid, she put paper on the television and called it paper view!"
"Yo mama's so ugly, when she entered the ugly contest, they said, "Sorry, no professionals.""
"Yo mama's so ugly, Bob the Builder looked at her and said, "I CAN'T FIX THAT!""
"Yo mama's so old, I told her to act her age, and she died!"
"Yo mama's so dirty, you can't tell where the mud stops and she begins!"
"Yo mama's teeth are so rotten, they look like yellow dice!"
And on, and on and on and on.
And with each joke, Lance's mom's face kept getting redder, and deeper, until finally, purple. Her veins were popping out. I took another look at Connor and punched him in the face. He fell backward into the toilet.
"Lance! Flush the toilet! Quick!" He followed my orders and sprang up, and raced across the toilet boil and lunged himself towards the tiny lever. I dived into the toilet, and a second later, I felt myself spinning. And spinning. And spinning. I heard a splash. More spinning. Then, I felt myself going downwards. I held my breath. Water was all around me. What seemed like hours later, we all washed up in this sewer. The sewer water was deep, with little sidewalks on the edges of the sewer walls, with the occasional torchlight hooked on the walls. I climbed up on the little sidewalk thingy. Hazel did too. Ralph came in, and we lifted him out of the greenish-yellow water. Connor came rushing in, and we all kneeled down to help him up. Harry came next. He was the worst out of all of us. Breathless, shaking, crying, and dead scared. I left Hazel to talk to Harry. I rounded on Connor. Before I could get a word out, Connor spoke.
"Sean's dead," Connor said wearily. His eyes were teary.
I stared Connor straight in the eye. "What happened to Sean?" I asked firmly.
Connor eyes were wide. I asked him again.
"What happened to Sean?"
"He - he was - " We all spun around to face Ralph, who was crying too, now that we noticed it.
"Go on," I said softly this time.
"He - He was laughing at Yo Mama jokes," he blurted out breathlessly. He pointed at Connor. "Laughing real hard. But then his head went underwater and-" Ralph burst out crying again.
"Where's his body?" Asked Hazel softly. I flinched. I haven't seen her so this compassioSean before.
Connor gasped for air. "Dunno. I lost him. I still have his overshirt." He took out a crumpled piece of fabric out of his pants pocket. I got up and placed it around a shivering Ralph.
"I HAVE IT!" Lance came rushing out of the pipe that led to his mom's toilet, with Sean's body floating beside him. I helped him up. Then I heaved up the body. "Why the heck are you here?" I demanded. "Aren't you supposed to be with yo mama?"
"Nope," Lance smiled sweetly as he set Sean's body down. "Do you think you guys are the only ones who want to go down a toilet?"
"We don't want to go down a toilet." It was Hazel speaking up this time. "We're escaping school."
I sat down on the edge of the sidewalk thing. This was going to be a long night.
I woke up to the smell of raw sewage.
No, I corrected myself. Fresh sewage. It seems as though Lance's mom had finally taken her dump.
"Eeeeew," complained Harry. "This chocolate doesn't taste good."
"Harry, nothing tastes good in a sewer, I said groggily.
"Not even your mom?" Harry joked.
"Well, it's about time!" Connor was saying.
"About what? About time your mom actually touched the treadmill?" Lance jeered.
"Hey! That was actually kind of mean!" Connor complained.
"Yo Momma Jokes are mean+'t to be mean, dog," Lance countered.
We didn't need these two fighting again. I spoke up.
"Stop fighting, you guys! Even if it is play-fighting. We need to work together here."
"Who uses the word "dog " as an insult anyway?" I went on.
"Your mom," said Harry quietly.
"Hmmm, maybe, I don't know, I think, maybe, William Shakespeare?" Lance said in a mocking tone. "Did you guys know that Shakespeare even origiSeand Yo Mama Jokes? You have to respect the guy."
"Shut up, dog," Connor scorned.
Lance jumped at his chance. "Thy mother's of my generation. What's she, if I be a dog?"
Everyone burst out laughing. I was just simply confused. What did that mean? Connor just stood there and said, "WHAT THE BLEEP?"
"It's a classic," Lance joked.
I went next to Hazel and whispered, "Epic Yo Momma Battle. Shakespearean Style." She giggled.
"Thou art be proud," she whispered back.
I guess Harry must have overheard her, because he said, "Thou art must take a big dump! Thou art poop on floor, master?"
"Better be quick," I whispered sternly.
After Harry had taken his dump on the floor, he kneeled down and split the waste into five seperate parts with his finger. After that, he gave each of us one piece.
"WHAT THE BLEEP ARE WE SUPPOSED TO DO WITH THIS?!" Hazel shrieked.
"It's simple," he said, as he was passing around the poop. "If we're gonna stay in here for long, we're going to need food. Why can't we just throw pieces of poop at sewer rats, and while they're dazed, we pounce on them!"
"I have a better idea," said Connor. He had an amused tone in his voice.
"What?" I asked uneasily. Oh God, is he really going to do what I think he's going to do?
"POOP FIGHT!" He yelled.
Hazel threw the first offical shot of the war. She threw poop at me, but I ducked and it hit Lance straight in the face. I threw some of my poop at Hazel, and it got her belly. Connor got me with a behind attack, though. I threw poop at him, but he dodged it. I threw another piece at him, and it landed a direct hit. I tried to throw at Lance, but I missed. Ralph was even in the fight, too. He was throwing poop rapidly in all directions, not caring where which poop landed.
I bent down to pick up another piece of poop, but someone had hit my butt, making it look like I pooped my pants. I spun around to see Hazel again. I rounded up my arm and threw a shot of poop at her. I bent down agan to pick up some more poop, and when I stood back up with the poop, I found myself looking at Harry, standing precariously over the edge of the sidewalk thingy. Through all the turmoil, a haywire piece of poop hit him square in the chest, and he was waving his arms to keep his balance. But it was too late. Harry fell backwards with a KER-PLUNK into the sewers, and he was washed away. His figure bobbed up and down, but then it was out of sight when it went across a corner.
No one spoke for God knows how long - A second or a century, who knows? The only thing that brought me back to reality was Hazel's gruff voice.
Hazel commanded, "Cmon, everyone, let's just walk around the sewers to see if we can catch any rats." "Lance, bring Sean's body with you. Maybe he can be used as a bait."
Reluctantly, Lance slung the body over his shoulder. His eyes were teary. But in minutes, the old humor got back in his eyes again, and everyone was insulting everyone in Shakespearean.
"Thou mammering bat-fowling fustilarian!" Lance mumbled.
"Tru dat, bro." Connor gave Lance a silent high five.
Ralph just mumbled, "you sir, are a fishmonger!"
The next ten minutes were spent insulting Hazel, Shakespeare style.
Great. And I have to live in the sewers with these mangled boiled-brain wagtails.
But then there was one insult that, I guess, pushed Hazel over the edge.
"Hey, Hazel! Hazel, hey!" Lance was trying to get Hazel attention. "Thou mangled shard-bone ratsbane!" Another burst of laughter.
Hazel spun around, quick as a bunny. She was P.Oed. You don't want to get Hazel P.Oed.
"THOU BOOTLESS HASTY-WITTED PIGNUT! MAY GOD TEAR YE SOUL TO SIXTEENTHS! YE BE SENT TO THE DEEPEST LAYER IN HELLE! GOD COMPELL YOU! THOU PAUNCHY IDLE HEADED COXCOMB! THOU CHURLISH FOOL-BORN MAMMET!
She did say a couple of other Shakespearean stuff on here, too, but I don't think I'm allowed to say them.
Bursts and bursts of laughter. But then something bad happened. But by the time I saw, it was too late. Connor stumbled backward on to edge of the concrete thingy, and then - SPLASH! Connor fell into the waters. The laughter changed into screams. Connor was already down the sewers and around a corner by the time I extended my hand to help him back up.
Everyone was shocked. Well, except Hazel.
She looked down at the waters below pitifully, and she closed her eyes and said solenmly, "And then there were three." And walked off.
We just stood there, transfixed.
"WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!" Ralph fell to the floor, weeping, screaming and crying.
"Well, aren't you guys just coming?" Hazel demanded.
"Hazel, two people just died today," Lance said.
"He's right," I vouched. "Can't we stay here the night?"
"Oh, people die every day. Lance, you don't have to carry that ugly scoundrel any longer. Instead, pick up this pathetic excuse for a person." Hazel gestured toward Ralph. But Lance didn't move a muscle. All he said was, "WAIT!"
"What, do you want to say your final goodbyes?" Her voice sounded a little softer this time.
"Yes, and one other thing," Lance's eyes had an amused gleam in them. "I've always wondered what real human tastes like." He twisted his neck and bit a huge chunk out of Sean's arm. I winced; I could hear the bones crunch.
Blood sputtered everywhere for a second, getting everywhere on Lance. But all of a sudden everything stopped, and Lance was swallowing.
"Mmm," he said. "Finger lickin' good."
A few days later, we found a little clearing in the sewers. Actually, clearing would be an understatement. It's really just a small patch of sewer sidewalk on the corner of the actual sewer. It was uhm.... Perfect.
Too bad there was already someone there.
Another midget, this time even shorter than Lance. He was a haggledy old man with with thread-bare clothes and wild glazed eyes that stared right through you. He was pacing around the clearing, staring at the celiling -Or do I call it ground?- as he went.
"Um, hello. What brings you here?" I called out to him. "Enjoying this, um, lovely place?"
He stopped pacing for a second. "Grandma, is that you? Have you finally descended down from the heavens to collect me?" He said in a croaky voice, as if it hadn't been used for years.
Maybe it hadn't.
He sat down now, and curled himself up in the fetal position. He seemed to be mumuring something. I went ahead of the group to hear a bit better.
"Grandmother, oh Grandmother. It's been such a long time...." his voice trailed off.
"I'm sorry Grandmother, I truly regret what I did. I'm sorry.... So, so, sorry....."
"Um, I'm not your grandmother," I said awkwardly. I looked back at the rest of us. Hazel looked a bit thoughtful, Ralph was laying face-down on the ground, crying, while Lance just looked plain amazed. Curiously, I walked toward him.
"What?" I asked him quietly. "Do you recongize this guy?"
Lance nodded, too excited to speak.
"Why would anyone you recongize be in the toilet sewers?"
Lance's expression of excitement faded quick as a bunny, and what was left there was pure amusement.
"I don't know, why would anyone I recongize be in the toilet sewers?" He said mockingly. "I've been stuck in these God-forsaken sewers for two weeks with you two, and I still don't know any of you. At all. Hmmm, what is your name? He finished off.
"Never mind," I said quickly. "But how do you know him? Is he like, a relative, or something?"
Lance shook his head. "Of course not. Remember that old children's story about Herman Pea-Brain?" I shook my head, so he did the explaining.
"His mom was a mean lady. Herman's mom absolutely HATED Herman when he was born. He was given up to his grandma just seven minutes after his birth. His grandma was the nicest person in town. She always helped the needy, and other stuff like that. But one fateful day, Herman's mom came over to kidnap him. He was only nine. Once Grandma noticed Herman's dissaperance, she came over to her daughter's house. There, Herman's mom was trying to drown him in the toilet."
Just like Sean, I thought ominously. Lance kept on explaining.
"Then, Herman's grandma did the only thing she could do. She flushed the toilet. Herman kept swirling, swirling, and swirling. Then he went down the toilet. After that, police parties were sent in to search for Herman each and every day. But no one looked harder for him than Grandma. She searched every nook and crevice of this place. She would look for him hours on end. Sometimes even days. One day, she got an infectious bite by a sewer rat. It almost killed her. They sent her to a hospital. They had her on life support also. Herman was proclaimed dead. But there was one thing, that really got the worlds attention. She put her own diamond necklace in one of the pillowcases at the mental hospital. It was touching, becuase Grandma's life depended on that thing. It was so she could afford her house, her food, everything. Herman's life would have been nothing without that necklace. Grandma would be out on the streets. Days later, they pulled the plug because she couldn't afford the medical bill. Her ashes were flushed down the toilet."
I craned my neck back around to take a glance at Herman. He was sobbing now, and murmuring some stuff I couldn't hear. Suddenly, Herman stood up. My ears tuned in to Hazel's voice.
"Yes, this is your grandmother. I am here to guide you into the heavens." Hazel said with a high-and-mighty inflection in her voice.
"Now, go left! And you'll be in heaven in no time!"
Herman nonchalantly stepped over the concrete and into the poop-and-pee stained water. His head didn't bob back up.
There wasn't anything I could do to stop it. Hazel turned around and looked at me, a weird expression on her face. Ralph was watching her closely, his eyes wide.
"I didn't lie," Hazel said with a slight tremor in her voice. "I said he'd be going to heaven."
Ralph was the first to speak. Actually, he screamed. "THAT'S IT! I'M SICK AND TIRED OF YOUR MOLDY CRAP!!! YOU THINK YOU'RE THE PRINCESS OF THE WORLD, OH, YOU SHOULD GET EVERYTHING YOU WANT! YOU CAN'T STAND A FULL MINUTE WITHOUT A NEW IPHONE IN YOUR HANDS! OH, SOMEONE YOU DON'T LIKE? SURE, GO AND KILL THEM. YOU HAVE NO EMOTIONS! Sean, Harry, Connor, AND NOW HERMAN HAVE DIED IN THIS SEWER, AND YOU DON'T EVEN CARE!!!" He was flailing his arms now, like a crazy person.
"Stay calm, everyone," Lance said gently. "I think you have Sewer Fever. We need to get back up on land." Lance looked up at the concrete celiling. "We need to find one of those sewer maintenance entrances."
Hazel caught up with the rest of us. "WAIT. THERE'S SOMETHING I NEED TO DO."
"Waylon, I've loved you ever since we were washed down that gigantic toilet. I've loved you ever since the moment we all put our hands together, and started this God-forsaken trip!"
She got down on one knee, and picked up an empty toilet paper roll.
"Waylon Moosberger, will you marry me?"
I was taken aback - getting married in a stinky SEWER in all places. Part of me wasn't surpised, though. I've seen the way she looks at me. My mind is so befuddled I can only come up with this answer.
A few hours later, Ralph was standing below us, while Lance was in front of us. Everyone was either wearing toilet paper dresses or toilet paper togas. I sniffed the air. Does anyone really ever get used to the sewers? I wondered. Ralph was still P.Oed at Hazel, and I can't say I blame him. He was quiet the whole wedding, until Lance started preaching.
"We are gathered here today, on this happy and joyous occasion, to join this man and this woman in holy matrimony.
Marriage is a solemn institution to be held in honor by all, it is the cornerstone of the family and of the community. It requires of those who undertake it a complete and unreserved giving of one's self. It is not to be entered into lightly, as marriage is a sincere and mutual commitment to love one another. This commitment symbolizes the intimate sharing of two lives and still enhances the individuality of each of you. If you think there is a reason why these two shouldn't be married, speak now, or forever hold your piece." That's when Ralph raised his hand.
Lance stared at Ralph quizzically. "Alright, why do you think Waylon and Hazel shouldn't be married?!" He said angrily.
"Oh, no. I definitely think they should be married. It's just.... Hazel's dress." Ralph giggled.
My heart sank. Oh, god....
"Just WHAT?" Hazel retorted. She'd had enough of Ralph's crap.
"Well, it's just..." Ralph seemed to be a bit more shy, but suddenly he brightened up.
"It's just.... I didn't know Charmin made brown toilet paper." Ralph said innocently.
Anger surged through me. At the beginning of the wedding, you see, Hazel had obviously picked toilet paper that was covered in, um... Let's say, chocolate. Anyway, I had a talk with Lance and Ralph not to mention the "chocolate" on Hazel's dress. Ralph wasn't a very good listener.
Now I wanted to strangle Ralph.
Hazel looked down her dress. She SCREAMED! She raced down the sewers, and I was pelting after her. She had the head start, so I had a hard time catching up to her. She screamed again, this time in pain. I raced toward her, and what I saw was awful.
Hazel was on the ground, and sewer gators were mauling her. There was only a little bit of blood, thank God.
On animal instinct, I picked up a piece of poop on the floor and howled like a coyote. I threw pieces of poop at the alligators. Evidently, they didn't like poop very much, either. Lance and Ralph came rushing a few seconds later.
"THROW POOP AT THEM!" They immeaditely complied, and soon enough, poop was everywhere.
Minutes went by.
That's when something weird happened.
Connor - Connor's ghost? Came flying out of nowhere and landed right next to me.
"WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE?!" I screeched as I kept hurling poop at the sewer gators.
"I'm here for ammuntion," he said simply. He pointed to the ground. There was only a few pieces of poop left, and what was left was very small.
I stopped throwing for a moment. "You mean you're gonna...." I trailed off.
I looked away, and started to throw poop again. Even over the chaotic din I heard, Connor, um, do his business.
"THE FIRST BATCH IS READY!" He called after a few minutes. I reached down without looking and picked up his poop. It was surprisingly solid. And it was glowing.
"GLOWING POOP?!" I yelled in disbelief.
"It's special angel poop," he said quickly. "Now throw, baby, throw!"
I threw as fast and as hard as I could.
It had an effect almost immeadietley. The gators backed off, and they were heading back towards the water.
Whoa, this angel poop stuff really works.
"SCREW THE POOP! We need to teach these - these - things a lesson," Now I saw Harry swimming down the sewers. He was making considerable progress, especially since the current was going against him.
Harry looked right at me.
"Keep throwing the poop! Drive them over here!"
My hands were a windmill as I kept throwing, throwing, and throwing. I didn't stop.
The gators backed off in a few minutes. They swam back into the currents, where Harry challenged them on, wrestling them. He grabbed hold of one of the gator's heads, and they both went underwater, and they didn't come back underwater. Connor randomly jumped into the water and swam after Harry. I turned to Hazel.
Now that I really got a sight of her, the scene was horrifying.
Blood was everywhere. There were scratch marks all over Hazel's back, thank goodness she was wearing her regular clothes underneath. I hoisted her up by her armpits. I couldn't help but sniff. I retracted my head back in disgust. I didn't know girls could smell bad, too. I decided to be a man and carry her anyway. I saw Lance sitting down on the ground, clearly exhausted. I didn't care, though. I was so tired.
"Um, hey, can you carry Hazel?"
"I'M SO TIRED. CAN'T WE FIND AN EXIT?!" Lance was staring at me, a bit creepily.
In answer, I looked up at the ceiling. There's gotta be one of those sewer thingies, right?
I could see one of those sewer things up above me. It was loose, so it could be opened. BUT, there was one difficulty.
How are we supposed to get up there?
As if in answer, a ray of light shined down on the massive pile of poop Connor had left. And in that moment, I could've sworn I heard a silent choir of angels singing softly.
At first I was confused. Angel poop was dead useful in fighting off alligators, and I admit it: It smelled good. But what use would it be to get us out of here?
And that's when it hit me. I knew exactly what to do.
It took all day to do. Only two of us were doing it in fact.
God, this is a lot of work, why can't have Connor and Harry have stayed to help us?
I bet you want to know what were doing now. Hehe.
Let me explain. You see, when that shed of light hit Connor's gigantic - And I mean gigantic - poop pile, I knew what to do.
We had to move the poop pile, piece by piece, so we could all reach the sewer thing. The reason only two of us were doing it was because Hazel was still knocked out cold. Believe me, I am NOT going into detail about this.
At last, we had rebuilt the poop pile.
And we were ready to escape the toilet.
This was it. The final countdown. I let Lance do the honors. He climbed up the poop pile, and easily twisted the sewer thingy open. Thank GOD it was loose! I dragged Hazel, and helped Ralph climb the poop. I got up last, because Hazel kept wanting to slide down the poop. If I had been in a different mood, the pile of poop would've made a great slide at a playground.
But that's beside the point. When I finally got Hazel and I out of the sewers, guess where we were?
A public bathroom. Great.
Lance and Ralph were having the same reaction.
"Jeez, a bathroom, you'd think we'd have enough of those?" Lance complained.
Ralph was laying on the ground in the fetal position and crying.
I looked toward Hazel. Her breathing was slow, and she was trembling.
"Lance," I addressed him. "Look outside the bathroom and check where we are. Ask someone for help, but only ask police officers in fancy suits, and only ask people with children."
"On it," said Lance faithfully, but before he could get out the door, Hazel stood up off the floor.
"Wa-ait," she said croakily as she stood up and blocked the door with her arms. I looked at her straight in the eye. She had a wild light in her eyes, and her fists were clenched like there were was an enemy right in front of her.
"I know where we are," said Hazel, an amused tone creeping into her voice.
"Hazel, no you don't. You're insane. Delusional. Let me through that door." Lance said bluntly.
"Stay....where....you....are," Hazel said through clenched teeth.
"I know where we are."
Lance seemed unimpressed. "Then where?"
"The girl's bathroom." Hazel deadpanned.
Ralph stood up. "OH, so that's why there aren't any urinals." He sounded genuinely amazed.
"Well, duh." Lance retorted, ignoring Ralph. "But we don't know exactly where we are."
"Ah! You didn't let me finish. We're not in a girl's bathroom, we're in the girl's bathroom."
Lance's eyes widened. "You don't mean...."
Now I was confused. I piped up. "What? Am I missing something?"
Hazel walked toward me, giving me the death stare.
"Dear Waylon. THINK." She stared at me, hard.
And all of a sudden, I got it. I knew exactly where we were.
Hazel was right. We weren't in just any old girl's bathroom. We were in the girls bathroom, at Oakville Middle School!
But there was no time to celebrate now. From the stall, all of our ears sharpened, as we listening to some grunting sounds, a lot of wet farts, and a huge ker-plunk into the toilet. The person zipped up her pants and went out of the stall.
It was Casey. I knew her from 1st and 2nd period lst year
"Oh, did you guys just hear me?" She giggled. She was a little insane like Ralph, but a different kind of insane. She barks at telephone poles and pieces of poop turn her on.
"Yes," Hazel said awkwardly.
"Good." Casey said emotionlessley. Now she was starting to show a little enthusiasm. She whispered loudly, "Hey! Between me and you guys, I take even BIGGER dumps than that! Once, I even -"
"Psh, oh please," Ralph jested. "There are way bigger poops down there." He pointed down to the sewers, where the pile of poop was built up.
Casey didn't move. "Oh really?" She said after a long time.
Her gaze suddenly averted up, and now she was looking at all of us.
"Sayorana, bitches," she said awesomely. She jumped into the sewers.
For a while, no one said anything. But then Ralph said something.
"She'll have fun with the sewer gators."
No, He Can't Read my Poopie Face.
It's been 2 months. Hazel is still in the hospital and Ralph got admitted to a mental hospital so the whole Ever Wonder What's down the Toilet thing wouldn't traumatize him. Lance won't even look at me in the eyes now. Casey hasn't shown up ever since she dived into the sewers. The police are still looking for her, and everyone is secretly glad that she is gone. The winter dance is coming up, but I couldn't care less. Everyone else at school thinks of me as a monster. They ignore me like I'm a bug on the ground. It doesn't bother me, though. THEY didn't go down the toilet and watch, like four other people die. There's some nasty rumors going around too, but NONE of them are even CLOSE to the real thing. I've heard before that truth is stranger than fiction, so I'm just gonna go with that.
On the upside, though, I don't have to worry about me and my parent's disputes about baths. I will NEVER go near a drain EVER again.
On the downside, though, I smell like crap.
Yeah, it's pretty bad.
Only on some days I'm allowed to visit Hazel and Ralph. It's pretty hard to make time for both of them, since they were admitted to different hospitals. Now both Hazel and Ralph were both on the verge of death, since Ralph tried to commit suicide with pills. I decided to check up on Ralph today, since his mind is pretty fragile. My parents waited in the car, while I registrated at the front desk. I've been to the mental hospital often, too. So all they need from me is to say my name and my parent's, and they'll give me my visitor's tag. It's almost kind of scary how I've memorized Ralph's medical room. Floor 7, Room 4. The room's walls and floors were both completely white. with a medical desk near the shelves where the TV is, and then there is Ralph's bed, next to the window. He's been unconcious lately, so I didn't expect him to be awake when I walked through the door. He was sitting upright in his hospital bed thingy with some complicated machines attached to him. His arms were strapped in white mental hospital tape. He was focused on the TV on the shelf, but it was off. I looked at him a little suspisiously as I went to my seat next to him, by the window. His eyes were glazed. The blinds were slightly shut, casting an eerie light on Ralph while the rest of the room was dim.
"Ralph? Umm, you there?" I asked. I waved my hands in front of his face. Nothing. Just a blank, glazed stare. You couldn't see any emotion in his eyes. I was suddenly paranoid with worry that he was dead. I turned the chair toward him and I decided to give him a little playful push.
"Ralph! You alive?!" I said as pushed him. I immeadietly felt guilty. This wasn't what a real medical doctor would do, right? Did I just damage something vital? Did I accidentally pull out of one of the cords? Is he gonna die because of me?
But it didn't hurt him. Ralph jerked out of his trance and the intelligent light flooded back into his eyes. Except there was something different. A sort of lonely, meloncholy emotion. Ralph rocked back and forth in his hospital bed, saying nothing for a long time. He started singing softly. I leaned in closer. "London bridge is falling down, falling down, London bridge is falling down, my fair lady...." Those words sent a chill up my spine. I straightened up.
"You don't know." Ralph whispered suddenly.
I didn't know what? A sudden thought hit me. Has Ralph finally gone off the brink into insanity? I didn't know what a real psychologist would do, so I just played along.
"I don't know what, Ralph?" I tried my best to keep a calm demeanor, but my voice trembled and cracked.
"You don't know...." Ralph whispered again, with a slight smile.
"What, Ralph?" I asked anxiously. Mentally, I was crossing my fingers, hoping this "secret" he'd been hiding from me was totally pointless.
Now Ralph was full-on grinning now. Devilishly.
"You don't know that I was responsible." His voice had a new tone of confidence in it
I was still confused. " Don't play these games with me Ralph. Responsible for what?"
Ralph turned his head around and stared at me. "Dear Waylon. THINK." Quoting Hazel exactly. Ralph went back to singing.
I was never really good at riddles like these. I just sat there, mentally crossing my fingers and hoping his secret was a totally pointless one, and not what I thought it was.
Ralph sighed in exasperasion. "Let me explain. I am a murderer. I held Sean's head underwater. I threw that piece of poop at Harry. I gave Connor that one little push that ended his life. I held Hazel at gunpoint and forced those words out of her. And at the wedding, I knew there was a pack of gators around the corner, and I led her right to it. Shame they didn't kill her." Ralph finished with no emotion.
Well, I guess I was right. This WASN'T what I thought it was. It was actually much, much worse. Never in a month of Wednesdays....
Ralph began laughing like a maniac. Awkardly, I left the room. In a daze, I decided to head to the regular hospital, to visit Hazel. I had used up all of my time with Ralph, so there was only a one - hour window left with Hazel. I forced my parents to speed over to the hospital. I checked in by myself, and I hurried to the elevator and pressed the 15 button. Justin Bieber music was playing in the elevator, so I threw up. When the doors opened, I used my wet shoes as an advantage and I slid across the hall to Room 47. Lance was already leaning over the hospital bed. What? I thought. Lance never visits. Something must be up. Everything slowed down when I sped over beside Lance, and I caught my breath.
"Oh, hey Waylon." Lance mumbled. It's the first time I've heard him talk to me since the toilet incident.
I didn't bother with greetings. "Lance! Ralph's a -"
"Psychopath? Yeah, Hazel just told me. She's going to die."
"Say WHAAAAAAT?!" I said in disbelief. Wait a minute - Hazel was going to DIE? And I thought I'd seen it all.
"Yep," croaked Hazel. She hadn't talked when she was in the hospital - she'd been in a short coma.
"Well this is just great," I said in exasperation. Then I came up with an idea.
"Lance? Remember when we were in the sewers and Hazel and I were getting married? You were the preacher!"
"Yeeaah, soooo?" Lance said.
"Lance you idiot! You could say the final preacher stuff. 'You may now kiss the bride.' Say that! Say that!" I said impatiently. I didn't want Hazel to die before we got married, and I definitely didn't want to kiss a dead body.
"Um, okey dokey," Lance said very unprofessionally. I rolled my eyes. "You may now kiss the bride."
I leaned down to give Hazel a sexy, slimy, sweaty, slobbery, awesome, gooey, hot, sticky, smelly, yummy, inapropriate kiss. We kissed for a good twenty minutes. And believe me, those twenty minutes were good.
"Well, I didn't expect it to go down that way, but okay," Lance said. "You two are now offically married."
"Wait!" craked Hazel. She sat up, reached into her pillowcase, and pulled out - guess what? a beautiful diamond engraved necklace. She reached for me and placed it gracefully around my neck.
"Whoa," Lance marveled, his face and his voice filled with wonderment. "Do you know how much of a chance that you got Grandma Pea-brain's necklace? Grandma Peabrain's necklace!"
I was amazed beyond words. "Th-Thanks, Hazel."
Suddenly Lance squealed like a baby monkey. "Oh my God!" He said quietly. "Look at the engraving!" I looked down at the necklace. Guess what? Another surpise. It read: Ever Wonder What's Down the Toilet.
"Whoa, you got this engraved?" I said in amazement. "How much did it cost you?"
"My college fund," Hazel replies. She smiles at the shocked look on all our faces.
"It's Grandma Pea-Brain all over again," Lance observed briskly. "Except it's a love story."
"Waylon," Hazel addressed me. "I don't want to go through with this pain. Pull out the life support."
I obeyed her dying wish. Slowly, I kneeled down on the wall to the outlet. Then I pulled out the outlet that ended her life. The sirens immeadietly went off. Nurses came bursting in moments after. They all stared at me.
"Umm, I - I tripped," I stuttered. The nurses didn't look like they believed me.
Tonight was the night of the dance. I didn't want to go, but of course my parents forced me to. Ralph had died a few days ago, too. I was still mourning over him. He was a pretty cool guy except for his psycho insanity part. I thought about wearing my old Halloween costume to scare the crap out of other people, but it didn't fit, so I just put on a casual sweater and jeans. I wanted to walk there, but my parents wanted to give me a ride cause it would be quicker. It sort of stinks because even though I survived in a stinky sewer for a few weeks, I still have to rely on my parents for some things. Oh well. At 7:30 sharp, we hopped in the car and drove off. I fought back tears, because I missed Hazel, and Connor and everyone else. To be honest with myself, I thought it was pretty pathetic that I was 12 and I was already a widower. The only thing I could be excited for is that Lance called me this morning. He said he had a "surpise" for me at the dance. But I weighed the chances, and about nine times out of ten, it was something stupid. And besides, nothing ever surpises me anymore. Once we got to the school entrance, I stepped out of the car and waved my parents goodbye. Once they'd driven off, I wiped away my tears, I put on my awesome strong face and pulled out some dark sunglasses, even though it was night and I would look like a total idiot inside the auditorium. Whatever, though. Lance told me there was going to be a lot of people, so he wanted me to stand out so he could find me and share his stupid surpise. But Lance was right about the people part. It was almost like a real Hollywood-type party if you didn't see stern-faced adults everywhere, chewing out the troublemakers and the fat disgusting ugly mean teachers dancing badly.
I decided I wanted to have at least some fun at this party. I tried looking for Lance for a few minutes, but to no avail. I settled down with this weird girl who seemed nice. She had different opinions about almost everything, and she laughs at the dumbest jokes. I really couldn't see her face because I was wearing sunglasses, and her face was covered up by some stupid burglar ski mask. (She thought it was a costume party.)
A few minutes later Lance game. He came right over to me and plucked the sunglasses right off my face. Everything was bright for a second. I covered my face with the V-neck of my sweater, and then everything was okay again.
"Hey there little girl! Nice party, right?" Lance said enthusiastically over the loud music, gesturing his arms all over the auditoruim.
"I guess," I replied awkwardly. "I'm not in the mood for greetings right now. What's this secret thingy you were talking about earlier?"
Lance shrugged. "Looks like she found you first." He gestured once again tward the burglar monster girl, who was giggling.
She took her mask off and there she was, her face covered in dried poop - Casey!
"What?" I screamed in disbelief. "I thought the alligators had teared her up!"
"Oh no, they did," said Lance. "Show em' your stitches." He said to Casey.
She lifted up her sweatshirt to reveal some stitches shaped together like a penis.
"Isn't it great?" Exclaimed Casey, letting her shirt fall down. "That'll be there forever. Hey Waylon, do you think, when we have kids, my skin cells will somehow get into one of our babies, and the baby will have a penis on it's back! Wouldn't that be great?"