A Race Through The Woods: By Mike and Scott
The day was bright and sunny. The kids were sitting on the Vandenack's porch. It was a hot, humid Saturday during Spring Break, and the beaches, Madtown, and most every place they liked to go was packed with shoobies. Otto, Twister, Reggie and Sam were therem, playing with model cars, listening to the radio, and showing all signs of boredom you can imagine.
"This stinks on ice!" - Said Otto - "I'm bored!!! I wish there was something we could do!!!"
"I'm with you, Ottoman" - added Twister, who was lying on his back on the boards, his arms behind his head, and a stalk of grass in his mouth, a-la- Tom Sawyer.
"There's something we can do, if you're up to pedal uphill for a while" - said Roderick, coming from the house with a large tray with several glasses of iced lemonade on it.
"Ah, cool! Let's hear it, Rod! I'm up for anything, as long as it is extreme and fast!!" - said Otto.
"Well... there's a BMX track in the forest uphill, near Dead Man's curve. I go there from time to time, you know, to train and such. Since it is relatively far from the beach and most tourist facilities, hardly any shoobie comes here. In fact, the track is rather lonely - but there's nothing to worry about; it has all the facilities needed for a safe, cool ride. And the scenery is really worth it!!"
"Sounds like a plan," Sammy replied, strapping on his helmet.
"I've heard of that track" - said Reggie - "They have those BMX races there, right? Sonja Jackson narrated one last month or so..."
"Yeah!! And you were in that race, Rod! Now I remember!!!" - said Sammy.
"Heh, heh. Yeah. Not one of my very best races, though; got a punctured tube and couldn't finish the race. But I'm always up for a good biking, as long as you guys are in the mood to pedal uphill for a mile or so."
"Hey," observed Sammy as they pedaled. "This territory looks kind of familiar. Like where we had that encounter with the uniformed chicken..."
"I didn't know this was in your backyard," continued Reg. "Even this close we can't hear the work that's going on at your compound."
"Ah, the piney woods," mused Twister. "So quied, so natural, so... Hey! What's that?"
"Something Lou and his dad built a while back, using a couple of machines called Bobcats," explained Rod.
"Its... awesome!" Otto awed. "Even better than when we went down to that mysto place in Costa Mesa!"
"Heh. Sheep Hills was a bit of an inspiration, as he tells me, but they wanted to go one better."
Before the crew laid a veritable moonscape of bumps and ridges, begging to be ridden, explored, and jumped.
"Ok, guys!" -Said Rod, adjusting the straps of his helmet and putting on his gloves - "Let's get the show on the road!!"
"Yeah!!" - Said Otto, putting on his trademark competitive face - "Last one to the track is a shoobie!!!" XD
Otto and Rod started almost at the same time. "Hey, guys! Wait for us!!!" - cried Twister, as he, Sammy, and Reggie, taken by surprise by the two boys' energetic response, were literally in their dust.
For the next forty minutes or so the five kids staged a very close race. All of them were very competitive, and were excellent bikers, though Otto, as usual, was extra-competitive. "I'm not letting you win so easily, Rod!" - said Otto, good naturedly. "I'm right behind you!!!"
They jumped, skidded, pedaled at warp speed, and soon got used to the track. Even though Rod knew the course, Lou and his dad had made changes to it recently and it had a couple of good surprises in store for the kids.
The kids were having a lot of fun; but, unknown to them, there was someone else there, watching them in awe... though he wouldn't admit it. :-P Lars and his goon squad had planned to go to Bruised Man's curve, and hiked through the forest to save some time. They heard the kids' laughs and the sounds of their bikes jumping, and stopped there to watch the show.
"There's a fun spot in these woods I don't know about?... I don't know about this?" Lars thundered repeatedly, asking the sky.
"Bleeble bleeble calm down bleeble Ritalin this morning? Bleeble bleeble" counseled Sputs.
"For this kind of aggravation I know only one therapy," grumbled Lars as he adjusted his helmet and cinched up his gloves. "Adrenalin. CHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARGE!" he bellowed, leading his entourage towards the trail.
Sam looked back, and saw Lars and the goons chasing them!! For a moment, he was... scared, and nervous, but also felt a very exhilarating sensation. I haven't met a kid who doesn't like the adrenalin rush caused by being chased. And the fact that their chasers were none others than their "nemesis" did a lot to increase that feeling.
"Hey, guys!!" - Cried Sam at the top of his lungs - "Bandits, Six o'clock!!!!"
"Huh?? What???" - Asked Twister, but then he looked back and saw Lars and his goons, with a big grin on their faces, biking at top speed behind them... and closing in!!
"AAAHHH!!!! GIANT MONKEYS!!!!" - he chuckled - "RUN!!!" XD
Otto, Reggie and Rod looked back and saw the Lasers chasing them. They looked at each other and grinned; this was soo cool!
"Quick! Follow me!!!" - said Rod, taking the lead.
Otto, Reggie, Sam and Twister (yes! Sam was faster than Twister this time!) followed the energetic Dutchman. Rod guided them expertly through the track; he pedaled at full speed, and it was difficult for the rest of the kids to follow him; but they somehow managed to make some distance from their pursuers.
The chase lasted several minutes. Rod guided the kids over bumps and ramps, trying to keep the Lasers from catching up. But they couldn't last forever. Soon Sam was getting tired, and he began feeling the need to use his inhaler.
"I... can't.... go anymore, guys!! Continue... without me!!!!" - he said, as he puffed and gasped.
Sammy didn't wait for confirmation; he slowed down, and soon was "captured" by Lars and the others. "You're down, Squid!" - said Lars, patting him on the shoulder. "You're out of the race!"
Sam nodded, stopped his bike, pulled it out of the track, and threw it away to the ground. He sat under a large tree, got a dose of his medicine, and saw the race. "Don't worry, Sammy!" - said Rod as he passed at full speed in front of him - "I'll come back to rescue you!!!"
Sam nodded and grinned. This boy had a really active imagination. Sam leaned his back against the trunk and rested, watching the race.
"Give up, Roderick!!" - said Lars - "I'll capture you all!!"
"Never!!!" - answered Rod - "You'll have to down us all!!"
"Well said, Rod! Let's teach him what we've got!!!" - said Otto, grinning.
"Sure! And I know exactly what to do. Why didn't I think of it before?" observed Rod. "There's a phi up ahead. Count of three, you peel left, I peel right, then we come up behind 'em." Otto nodded grinningly.
The three goons only looked confused as the two boys ahead of them diverged. They stopped, then pedaled on. "RAT TAT TAAT TAT TAT!" bellowed Otto, as he snuck up from behind and tapped Animal on the shoulder.
"Aargh!!! You'll pay dearly for this, dorks!!!" - said Lars, as he nodded to Animal. The teen left the track and sat by Sam.
"This is it! No more Mr. Nice Guy! Get them!!!!!" - bellowed Lars, as the remaining goons pedaled faster. They inched near the kids! But the kids were keeping the distance, until Twister made a mistake: he looked back and didn't see a bump right ahead of him.
"You'll never catch us, Lars!!!" -he said, sticking out his tongue
"Look up, DORK!!!" - yelled Lars.
"Wha?!?!? ---- AAAAH!!!"
Twister lost control of his bike as it hit the bump!! The bike jumped, landed heavily on its rear wheel, and then skidded sideways. Twister fell on the grass. He was OK; this was a very well-designed track and he was wearing all his safety equipment. All the damage he sustained were a couple of bruises on his arms and legs... and got out of the race, because Lars touched him as he passed by him. "Touche!!" - he said - "you're out, Twister!!!"
Twister pouted, rubbed his arm, and limped out of the track, sitting by Sam.
Pi and Sputs meanwhile pedaled somewhat warily along a portion of the track. But from out of nowhere behind them, a streak of yellow, purple, pink, and green warped by between them, slapping their shoulders as she let out a "Yee haw!"
“Yay!” – cried the two Squids from outside the track - “Go, Reggie!!”
Otto and Rod approached the phi again. Both went in the same direction. Lars came a few seconds later, unable to see where they went. He smelled a trap, and stopped.
"No, you won't!!" - He said, ducking as the kids passed by and narrowly escaping them! As a result, the two boys lost their balance... and slapped each other!!! XD
"Aaah!!! I'm going down! I'm going down!!!" - said Rod, pretending to be "falling in an unrecoverable dive", as he said over the "radio".
"Bail out, bro!!!" - said Otto...
... then the two boys let themselves fall on the dust (Rod even made the noise of an "explosion"). They laughed at the top of their lungs!! XD
"Ooookey.... " - said Lars - "... Guess it's just you and me now, Reggie! Why don't you surrender?"
"In your dreams, Lars! Let's go!!!"
Lars started on, pedaling as fast as he could, towards Reggie; and the purple-haired girl did the same, pedaling right towards Lars!!!
For a moment, the kids and the other teens saw in disbelief the strange duel!! They got closer and closer!!
"Watch out, Reggie!!!" - Cried Otto, Twister, Sam and Rod.
"Blah blab blab cuidado!!!" - added Sputz.
The two "enemies" were only inches away!!!
"I can't see this!!!" - said Sam, covering his eyes in fear with his hands... and peeking through his fingers with curiosity!!!
Reggie at the last millisecond laid it down and skidded---good thing she wore long pants as usual--and tapped Lars on the knee as he looked on incredulously, landing in a berry bush.
She dusted herself off as her brother and friends applauded.
"WOOOOOT!! GO, Reggie!!!" - cheered the kids... and some of the teens, too. :-P
"You're the only kids we bug, because there are none tougher," said Lars as he offered a hand in conciliation.
"Thanks! It's always fun playing with you!" - said Reggie, giving her hand to Lars and helping him up. The rest of the players approached.
"Great race, dorks! You won, fair and square!" - Lars complimented as he dusted himself.
"Yeah! We should do this again sometime, huh?" - said Rod. Lars chuckled and ruffled the little boy's hair. "Sure! It's both exciting and fun, with all the sound effects!!!" XD
"Boy, all this exercise made me hungry! Let's go down to the gas station for some burritos, huh?" - said Twister.
"Yeah, why not? It's on me! Let's go!" - said Lars.