Champion’s Stand

So, my dream is to kind of become an author, so I’ve been working on this book. I have a lot more done, but I’m just going to upload it in small increments whenever I feel like it (the more feedback this gets the sooner it will be). It’s basically about an underground training facility for kids to fight in wars. Also, it’s got robots and lasers. Although you won’t really see any of that stuff for a while. Enjoy!

Chapter 1

I am awoken by a soft whisper in my gray bedroom.
“Avery,” it whispers. I open my eyes to find Philip at the door. The light blinds my eyes, so I cover them with my blanket.
“What?” I groan.
“I had another dream,” he says.
“Was it about Mom and Dad?” I ask.
“Come here,”
I can barely make out the sound of his footsteps on the carpet. I reach out my hand. He grabs it. I squeeze it and say,
“Don’t be sad. Mom and Dad wouldn’t want you to be.”
“But Mom and Dad aren’t here,” his voice answers.
I look up from the blankets. I don’t pay attention to the grayness of the walls, or the lack of-well-anything except for the bed. Instead I look at the boy. Even though Philip’s thirteen, his face is really young. His pale blue eyes are wide as they stare at me.
“So? They still wouldn’t want you to be sad, would they?” I ask him.
“I guess not,” he answers, looking at the ground.
“It’s just, with Leslie away and all…” he says. I squeeze his hand again.
“Why don’t you get dressed, it’s almost time to get up and get ready,” I tell him. He nods and stomps off. I smile.
Ok, Philip is my brother, in case you couldn’t have told already. Leslie is my other brother. Philip, as you know, is thirteen, I’m also thirteen, but my birthday’s this week, and Leslie just turned nineteen. Philip and I live in a foster home, and Leslie lives by himself, trying to get by.
My parents died only two years ago. We were sent to an adoption center for half a year before Leslie turned eighteen. Philip and I could have gotten to a foster home earlier, but we needed to stay together. Leslie turned eighteen, we got jobs, and we were living happily in a two room apartment. Until Leslie and I lost our jobs. We didn’t have enough money for the apartment anymore, so Leslie had to move us into a one room apartment. The government didn’t think the one room apartment would be enough for us, so they made Philip and I moved out. They moved us to a foster home: the Johnson’s.
The Johnsons had only signed up to be a foster family before they had kids. Then they had a baby girl, and later, a baby boy. They cared for us, enough to send us to school and feed us, but they didn’t really love us. We’ve lived here for over two months now, and we’ve gotten used to not being loved for by our guardians.
I get changed into a summer camp t-■■■■■, jeans, and my old neon green sneakers. I trudge to the kitchen, a bland room full of drawers, cabinets, a fridge, a microwave, and an oven. I pull open a cabinet and grab some cereal. I get my dull, ordinary breakfast ready and scarf it down. Philip comes in. Apparently he’s already ready for school.
“Avery?” he asks as he sits at the oak table.
“Hmm?” I answer.
“What’s it like in eighth grade?” I think about this a minute.
“It’s really not that different from seventh grade. The classes are a bit harder, no one’s picking on you because you’re the oldest, so forth,” I explain.
I head to the bathroom. I brush my teeth, comb my long, bright blonde hair down my back, and brush my bangs so that they cover some of my pimples that have sprouted on my forehead. A cut I have on my eyelid from when one of the babies in the house threw his toy at me looks really cool. I look hardcore, almost.
After I’m all ready, I hear a call from Mrs. Johnson.
“Avery! Philip! Your bus is coming!” We shout a farewell and head outside. The walk to the bus stop is short and sweet, so we’re there in seconds. I notice Philip staring at the ground. I can tell he’s thinking about our parents again.
“It’s Thursday, Philip! Almost the weekend! Cheer up!” I tell him. He smiles, but then looks at the ground again. I hear a honk as a big yellow bus heads our way. We step on, say hi to the bus driver, and take seats next to our friends.
Chatting the whole way to school, the bus swerves to a halt and opens the door. We scramble to get out, and the bus empties. I say bye to Philip and head out. I gather my things and head to my first class: Social Studies.

“-Hannibal led his elephants and mercenaries over the mountain. It was so cold most of them froze to death. They arrived at Rome and fought. The elephants scared the Romans and Hannibal’s forces, after lots of fighting, claimed his victory. But then-” Mr. Grove drones on and on and ON. I start to nod off sleep, but the annoying boy (I think his name is David) next to me pokes me every time I try. “Now pay attention as we watch this video describing the following events: One, how Hannibal was able to lead his army, two, how Hannibal -” Mr. Grove continues.
After class, I walk to second period. David comes by and walks next to me. I pay no attention to him and keep walking. He slams my books onto the ground. I reach down to pick them up, and then he trips me. I look up to see his cackling face. I glare at him.
“See ya, sleepyhead!” he laughs and tries to walk off. I give my books a slight “nudge”, and he trips over them. I get up, laughing, and walk away. A girl’s gotta have revenge, and I just had mine.

Chapter 2

The “Accident”
The clock reads 2:38. Almost… Almost… I’ve already finished my homework, so I’m waiting on the bell to dismiss me. My brain still hurts from the geometric problems in Math. I turn to my desk to start putting things away, but I notice a small piece of paper on my desk. I look at it, and it says:
Meet me at the park at 3:30
I glance around to see my friend Megan nodding at me. I show her the note, and pack up. The bell rings, and everyone’s a massive stampede trying to get out the door. I make it out with no broken bones and go to my locker. I open it up, and put my stuff in my backpack. All of a sudden, a shove pushes me into my locker. Luckily, the only thing that’s sore is my leg, and though I have a slight limp when I walk, I’m ok.
What you may or may not understand about me, is that I’m a girl. I’ve been one my whole life, and have no intention of changing that. The only thing I don’t like is that I’m usually called “girly” and “weak”, just because of it.
After the bus ride, I grab a quick snack, and work on some of my homework. Soon, the clock says 3:25, so I shout, “I’m going outside!” and, after hearing the “Okay”, I head outside. I ride my bike to the park, and already I find Megan with a group of friends hanging out by a lopsided oak tree. She waves me over. I limp towards them.
“Everyone, this is Avery,” Megan introduces. “And this is JK, Ace, Danielle, Harold, and Amber,” she continues, pointing to the other boys and girls. They wave. I notice they all have hooded sweatshirts and sacks full of anonymous objects.
The group somewhat sticks out from everyone else, as they are all relatively older, and are practically wearing the same gray ■■■■■■■■■■.
“Ya’ sure ‘bout dis, Meg?” the one called JK questions. He’s got a New Joisey accent or something. Megan rolls her eyes, annoyed.
“We already went over this, she’s essential to the plan.”
“Excuse me, what plan?” I ask. I don’t like being kept in the dark.
“We’re planning a prank on a neighbor,” Megan answers. Megan’s that kind of person, the mysterious mischievous kind. But, she’s almost the only one who likes me for who I am, so I just became her friend like that.
As if to show me, the group reaches into their bags and pulls out cans of spray paint.
“Here, you’ll need one,” Danielle says as she throws me an extra can. I shrug, and place the can into my pocket. Then we grab our bikes and head out. I follow them as best as I can, but with my hurt leg, I don’t make much progress. Eventually, we make it. The small, desolate, white house peers at me from behind a bunch of trees. We are in a wood. The house is the only building other than a larger pale blue house nearby. It is now that I realize we’re in a dead end. Only a road coming in, not out.
“Um… This isn’t like a bad prank, is it?” I ask.
“Well, yeah, just stay here,” Megan says. I raise my eyebrows, but don’t any closer to the house.
“We got the inside,” Danielle, Ace, and JK all say. They run in, and Amber, Harold, and Megan stay out, moving from side to side, to behind. Soon, I saw the spray paint flying. Ok, this is not cool. I dash up to the house, find Megan, though she was harder to find, as they put their hoods up.
I try to wrestle the can out of Megan’s hands, but she, accidentally or purposely, spray a bit of blue spray paint on my ■■■■■. Then, I get mad and start jumping on to her, pulling her down with my weight.
“Alrigh’, let’s get outta here!” JK yells as he leaps out of the house. Then all of the kids pack their things and start running. I dash as fast as I can with my broken leg after JK, but he’s too fast for me. I take out my spray can and try to spray at him, to get him messy, when a rock hits my head.
I fall down, and then jump up as quick as possible. I’m dizzy, I can’t run, so I chuck my spray can as well as I can toward a runner. Then I fall, and everything goes black.

I wake up in a dark room. I notice the empty beds next to me, the commotion coming from behind a door. I look around. I see curtains and- no windows. But everything looks white. Then it dawns on me. I’m in a hospital. The door opens a crack, and someone peeks in. I hear it whisper,
“She’s awake,” and then the door widens. The lights flicker on, and I sit up in my bed. I have a white plain hospital gown, and I feel a bandage on my head.
“Hey, Ave,” a voice says. Only one person calls me that.
“Hi, Les,” I moan. I’m kind of sleepy still, and it hurts to move a lot. Leslie pulls up a chair and sits in it. Philip comes out from behind him and stands next to him. “You have a concussion, but you’ll be fine,” Leslie assures me. I nod.
“They had to postpone it, but-”
“Postpone what?” I interrupt. Leslie stares at me with his cold, blue eyes.
“Your trial.”

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