The school bell rang. It was the weekend. I was walking home, not a care in the world, when something jumped out of an alley… it was a book. It started to shimmy down the sidewalk. “Like a crab,” I thought to myself. I followed it. It started to dig in trash bags, left out for the cleaners to pick up. They would not pick the bags up if they were nearly ripped in half. The book looked like it was scavenging for food. I walked over to it, it didn't notice me, as I attempted to pick it up, and then slammed down on my fingers, I yelped. I shook it around, it stayed attached to my hand, and then it fell off and scuttled into the next ally. I peeked around the corner and five other smaller books were hopping towards the big one, cooing as they went. It was probably the cutest thing I have ever seen. They started to cuddle. “Aw,” I said and zoomed into a hole on the side of the building.
I walked home; when I got there my mom gave me a protein bar as a snack.
“Here you go forest,” she said. I didn't eat it. As I slipped my gas mask on and pressed the button to open the airlock
“I’m going for a walk,” I said
“That’s fine,” she said with a confused expression up on her face. It only took me fifteen minutes to get back to the side street where the books live. I squatted down by the hole and opened the bar. I broke a part off and tossed onto the very outside of the hole and took a couple steps back. Then the small green book hopped out and grabbed the peace of candy and swallowed it. The book looked up and with a squawk it jumped back into the hole. I went back to the hole and held the rest of the protein bar in front of it. The book came out and nibbled the bar and chomped down on it. I held out my hand it questioned it for a second then chomped down on my hand to.
“Ow!” I shouted. I put down the bar as the book gnawed on my fingers then with my other hand I stroked it spine. The Book relaxed and started cooing then it jumped into my arms and let go of my hand. It cooed as I fed it the rest of the protein bar.
When it was done I placed it back in its hole and walked home. When I got there my mom my dad and my little sister Ruby were there. As I washed my hands for dinner the delicious smell of my Mom's epic spaghetti wafted from the kitchen. As I sat down at the table I thanked my Mom for dinner. I started to eat while Ruby splattered the walls with the delicious food I thought about the books and how curious and awesome they are.
The next day, I got out of my bed, and looked out my window the sun had risen about two inches above the horizon. I went down the stairs I grabbed a box of K cereal got some milk from the fridge and ate. It was cinnamon pecan the only one I liked. When I was done I grabbed some leftover spaghetti and a Tupperware to put the spaghetti in it as I walked to the airlock my mom walked in front of me and said, “Where are you going?”
“I am going for a walk,” I said.
“You are taking a lot of walks lately.”
“It was only one,” I said.
“But don't you want to play video games, I got that Oculus Rift for you so you could have fun with it,” she said.
“Okay,” I said.
I put the spaghetti back and walked over to my computer. I played Terratech for about an hour. “The game was not that different from the real world now,” I thought to myself.
When I was done I walked out the airlock and went back to the hole in the brick wall down the side street. “Darn” I said. I forgot the spaghetti I peered in the hole I didn't see anything I stuck my hand in then I pulled out my light turned it on the flashed it around in the hole. The books were gone.
I looked around. In my haste to get back to the books, I had not seen the pages scattered down the alley and out to where the cleaners picked up the trash. The cleaners had taken the books away!
Thankfully my family's recycling bin was full and my dad was going to take it to the cleaners center so we can get a little bit of money for the old scraps of plastic with his hover truck today. I ran home slammed the outer door and waited impatiently for airlock to say, “Oxygen level is stable,” in a smooth voice then I slipped my oxygen tank off and opened the inner door. “Hey Dad! Can I come to the cleaners with you?” I shouted.
“Yes. I was just about to go there now,” he said as he came down the stairs
“Thanks,” I said.
“We can have some father and son time,” said dad.
“Yeah sure,” I said “but I have to do something.”
“That's fine,” said my dad. “You do that, when I have to go to the general store. I need to get your sister some more diapers.”
“Cool,” I said.
The door slammed on my dad's hover truck and I felt it rise off the ground and we started to float down the street. The cleaner’s headquarters was about seven blocks down the main road. It was pretty far considering that my school was two blocks away. When we got there I heard the smashing of glass and plastic and other non-important materials to go to the smelters to melt then made into other things. My dad backed up to a loading dock and we got out and he started to throw the bags of stuff in, and I walked over the office part where they controlled the cleaner robots.
I walked in and asked the guy there where they put the things that they picked up from the street, alleys and sidewalks. “We run them the normal cycle, with all the other trash,” he said. I thanked him and walked outside. My dad was getting in his truck and he said, “I am going to the store. I will come back for you in about fifteen minutes.
“Okay” I shouted above the calmer. Then I walked into the main building.
I looked around a conveyor belt came out where the loading dock that my dad had dropped the trash. I saw are trash going up into the maze of separators and conveyors above. There was a man standing next to a table with a lot of buttons and switches on it. He had earplugs. “I wish I had some of those,” I thought to myself.
“Hey, how long does it take the trash to get through this thing” I shouted.
“What” he said. I repeated myself. “Oh about sixteen hours” he said
“Cool, that's better than I thought” I thought to myself. “Thank you- Wait do you know where the end is.”
“Um, yha. It’s over there where the metal and the paper gets separated, but wait where are you going,” said the man. I ran. “Hay where you going?” he screamed
I looked around the guy faltered for a moment wary for abandoning his job then he ran after me. I jumped into a conveyor belt and buried myself in plastic bottles. The man looked around once then ran in the opposite direction. I nimbly jumped out and ran to the conveyer that led to the metal and paper separator and jumped in. I smashed my head on a rusty metal pot and stars flash before my eyes then my vision cleared and I looked around there was a tunnel up ahead. As I slid into the darkness I spotted the man that was at the control center and are eyes met I could see the horror in his face and I wondered what was the matter. I looked around and a bolt of fear shot through me. There were two spinning blades in the middle of the tunnel and nothing could get past it.
Then I saw it a ladder that led up to a path was above the blades. As I climbed I noticed that there was paper everywhere and a little green book was clinging to a ridge in the side of the conveyer. I paused. Then realized that it was shivering. “Oh my god!” I screamed out loud. It was the book form the alleyway and I found it. “Hold on little buddy!” I shouted. Then I ran down the walkway back up the tunnel and sped back to the control table.
I looked at it and saw a big red button the said emergency stop on it and I slammed the palm of my hand down on it, and everything stopped, from the glass smashing area I heard a small tinkle.
“Hey!!” shouted the control guy. ”What are you doing, get away from those buttons!” I ran. “Get over here!” he screamed. I jumped over conveyers and hurtled across the floor. When I got there the book was still clinging on I grabbed it as it made a feeble hoot. I went up the ladder and found my way blocked by the controller guy and the office guy and some other employees that I had never seen before. “Oh crap,” I said then I ran in the opposite direction. “Get him!” said the office guy.
I ran passed the blades and down the passageway. Then I saw the walkway end and I tried to stop but it was no good and I fell into a pile of shredded paper and pots and pans.
A flare of light caught my attention. A huge flame towered above me and adrenaline shot through my body as I beheld the intimidating sight. Slipped and fell as I tried to go back up the river of trash. I realized that the book was not in his hands and it was sliding towards the scorching flames. I ran down the pile of trash, and then it picked the book up as the heat burned my face. I tried to get up to the top but with no success. “What are we going to do?” I said. The book let out a feeble peep, and then it started to glow. I realized that it wasn't that heavy anymore,
“What the!” I exclaimed as the book floated upward. It let out a little hoot, it sounded like it wanted me to grab hold. I jumped and just reached the edges of the book. As we floated up I saw a smoke vent. Relief spread throughout my body as I saw the hole in the roof. I looked around, the men were standing on the platform from where I was I could see the awe on their faces. I laughed as we slipped in the exhaust port, I could see light ahead.
As we came out of the top of the landfill I saw my dads truck pulling into the parking lot. The book dropped back into my arms. I ran down the hill. As I got into the hover truck my dad said “Why were you up there?”
“I will explain later, “I said as I tucked the book into my shirt.
When we got home, I went up to my room put the book on my bed where it let out a small coo, and washed my hands for lunch I Could smell grilled cheese sandwiches sizzling on one of my mom's pans. I sat down at the table, “How was it?” said my mom.
“It was fine,” I said.
“Why were you up on the land hill?” said my dad as Ruby let out a small burp.
“So...” I said, and I told them the story.