The Plan – Creative Writing Paper
“Forget it Josh”
“What’s so difficult about it? All we have to do is get past them.”
“And you don’t think that’s difficult? Jeez, sometimes I think you’re out of your mind.”
Kevin paced around the room, wondering what to think.
“What’s the problem? Why are you so uptight about this? We have Grant.”
“Are you an idiot, Josh? Do you not remember what happened to my dad when he tried to pull this off?
Josh thought for a moment, the skin on his forehead wrinkling like a pile of disregarded clothes. Then he gave up. “I have no idea what you’re talking about.”
“God, you have the memory of an 80-year-old sewer rat. He was expelled from all public high schools in the area, it went on his criminal record, he lost almost all of his friends and look how it screwed up his life. He serves gas and cigarettes to Ginos on their way to loiter outside strip clubs.”
“Hey, as my uncle Ted always said, ‘Don’t knock it ‘till you’ve tried it.’ Of course, he did die of food poisoning three years ago, but the point is, you never know if something is really that bad if you don’t put yourself in that position,” said Josh, trying to convince his friend. “All the more reason that we should try this.”
“And end up like Uncle Ted? Josh, do you have any idea what the odds of slipping this past them are?” asked Kevin, franticly. “I have done my research and we are skating on thin ice with a skateboard if we go ahead.”
“Dude, you’re over-reacting. It’s not that difficult. Trust me on this one.”
“Josh, you are about as dependable as a bike with no handlebars. I have never trusted you before and I’m not about to start now.”
“You and your metaphors,” muttered Josh
“They’re similes, dumbass,” replied Kevin.
“You see? You’re a brainiac! There is no way this mission could fail, what with your smarts and my looks and clever remarks. And mechanical skills too.”
“Your looks and wit have nothing to do with this situation. It’ll all depend on my brains and, quite frankly, I don’t think there are enough of them. I can’t believe I’m even having this conversation with you!”
“Oh, come on, Kevin. We both know that there is nothing in this town that the two of us can’t handle. I mean, do you really think it will be that hard to…”
“Shhh!” interrupted Kevin. “Someone might be listening to us!”
“In your bedroom?” said Josh. “Paranoid too. That could come in handy. I don’t know how, but it might.”
“I am not paranoid, and if you start to call me Android, I will kick your ass,” Kevin said aggressively.
“Whatever, Android,” mumbled Josh.
“Stop it!” whined Kevin. “There is no way I am going through with this, and that’s all there is to it.”
“Alright, I’ll do it.” After an excruciating three hours of convincing from Josh, Kevin had caved. Josh looked like he had just won the lottery. He let out a cry of victory.
“Yes! I knew you would. It took a little more persuasion than I had anticipated, but I did it.”
“Would you get over yourself?” Kevin said sarcastically. “We might as well start planning it out.”
Josh brought out a pad of paper. The boys started in on their work.
The next morning, Josh awoke to the sound of Nelly Furtado on his radio singing “I’m Like a Bird”, a song he hated almost as much as men’s field hockey.
“No, no!” he shouted in a half-awaken state. “Shut up!” He reached over and slammed his fist on the oversized snooze button. He heard a crack. Oh crap, he thought. I broke my stupid, cheap alarm clock. Mom’s going to kill me. He half opened his eyes and saw that there was not even a scratch on his digital clock radio. He examined it further and saw that there was absolutely nothing wrong with it. He looked a little closer and saw that his clock read 8:30 am.
“Eight-thirty!” he exclaimed. He jumped out of bed and threw on some pants and a tee-shirt reading ‘Chess Club ‘99’. “Why do I have Kevin’s shirt?” he mumbled to himself. He tore it off and grabbed another one. This one said ‘Your Mom Is Hot’ in red letters. “Much better.”
“Josh let’s go! We’re going to be late for school!” shouted Kevin from downstairs. He must have been waiting for fifteen minutes, thought Josh. He didn’t feel badly though. Kevin had stood him up many a time en route to school. Josh grabbed his socks and raced down the stairs.
“Thank God for Nutri-Grain bars” Josh said to Kevin as he grabbed a cereal bar. “I just have to put on my shoes and we can leave. How long have you been waiting here?”
“About two minutes, and by the way, I think I broke your door when I came in. It made a huge crack when I closed it.”
“That would explain the whole cracking thing,” replied Josh.
“Let’s go,” said an anxious Kevin. Kevin always wanted to get to school on time, if not early. Today, it looked like his Mom forgot to wake him up on time.
The boys grabbed their bags and headed out.
“Ian changed my radio station last night. I woke up to Nelly Furtado.” Ian was Josh’s little brother. He loved to tag along with Kevin and Josh and whenever they were mean to him or shut him down, Ian always found some little way to get back at his older brother. Josh found this extremely annoying. It was a lose-lose situation.
“I don’t mind Nelly Furtado”
“I know you don’t. But I do,” said Josh,
“Anyway, when are we going to do this stupid thing?”
“We can’t talk about it in public, Kevin. I thought you were smarter than that.”
“I didn’t say what it was,” Kevin defended himself.
“Yet,” replied Josh. “To answer your question, I don’t know. We’ll get there.”
“Now can anyone tell me what the difference is between a subordinate clause and a phrase? Anyone?” Mr. Grant’s English class. His voice was like listening to a continuous, low humming sound for an hour and a half. He always talked in the same dull monotonous way. After a while you learned to tune out in his class because all he ever did was talk and ask questions which no one paid any attention to. You just came in, sat down, copied down the homework and semi fell asleep. However, Mr. Grant was Josh and Kevin’s ticket to success. He was one of the nicer teachers at Newton High School. He was also gullible and not the sharpest knife in the drawer. They had tried extra hard to stay awake in his classes. This attempt crashed and burned the moment Mr. Grant started talking.
Finally the bell rang, a wake up call for all students.
“Alright, class, pack up and move on to your next class.” This was the cue for Josh and Kevin. They approached him nervously, hoping that he would not guess what they were up to.
“Mr. Grant?” Kevin asked tentatively. “Could we talk to you for a moment?”
“Certainly boys. But I must ask you, do you think that that shirt is appropriate for school, Mr. Evans?”
Josh didn’t think that there was anything wrong with his shirt and was about to speak his mind when he felt a subtle elbow hit his ribs. He got the message. Any derogatory remark towards a teacher could damage their chances of getting the information they needed.
“No sir,” he replied softly. “I’ll change it as soon as I get home, sir.”
“Good. Now what was it you boys wanted to see me about?”
“We were wondering about access to the boiler room sir,” Kevin proceeded. “Do you know if it is open to students?”
“Maybe you should speak to Mr. Kijifusu about this. It would be more up his alley,” started Mr. Grant as he picked up his telephone.
“No, no!” exclaimed Josh in a sudden panic.
Yosoko Kijifusu was the schools chief caretaker. All the students hated him and the feeling was more than mutual.
“Uh, we’ve already talked to him about it.” Kevin covered for his friend’s unexpected outburst. “He thought we should talk to you about it because, uh…”
“You know more about water than he does,” blurted Josh. At this remark both Kevin and Grant looked confused, although Kevin looked more stunned and had turned a tint of green.
“He said that?” asked a puzzled Mr. Grant. Kevin had lost all use of his tongue.
“Yeah,” managed Josh, thinking that he had ruined the whole operation.
“Well that was kind of him,” Grant continued as if nothing awkward had happened. “No boys, the boiler room is only accessible to caretakers and a selected group of staff. What do you need that room for?” he asked. Now that Kevin had regained his speech, he could respond to the question.
“It’s for a Geography project. We have to find a place in the school and explain its geographical qualities,” said a now confident Kevin.
“Well, you’re in luck. I am one of those selected staff members because my father was a plumber and I grew up around water.” The boys now knew why he had accepted Josh’s lame excuse. “You can borrow my key for this week if you like.”
“That would be great, Mr. Grant,” said a relieved Josh. “Oh and by the way, sir, exciting lesson today.”
“Glad you liked it, Mr. Evans,” said Mr. Grant sounding more dead than ever.
The boys left for their next class with Mr. Grant’s key, talking about their performance.
“I had no idea his dad was a plumber.”
“It was just a wild guess?”
“I was so scared.”
“I know! Dude, you should’ve seen your face! It went green for a second.”
“That was unbelievable. Nice job, Evans.”
“You too, Young.”
They shook hands and headed down the stairs.
The halls of Newton High at lunch were as crammed as the 404 on a Friday at rush hour with a fire-truck blocking off all four lanes. It was hard to move at all, much less walk, which meant that no matter where you turned, you always slammed into someone trying to get somewhere. Groups of friends bunched up by their lockers, clogging the way for everyone. Teachers would try to go to their classes to prepare for their next lesson. The football team would barge through, making their way to practice. The science and environment clubs would be trying to get to the lab, or the outside garden. Then there were the innocent bystanders who were just trying to get to their lockers to get their books or lunches. Everyone thought that what they were doing was more important and that the other people should be the ones to move which, of course, kept people pretty well stationary until the bell rang and everyone went their separate ways. It was hectic. Everyone pretty well hated lunch break because of it, and if you were smart, you would get out of the building and go out or home for lunch as soon as possible.
There was only one student in the whole school who didn’t have to worry about this mess. It was Trent O’Leary. He was the tallest, biggest, most muscular, best looking, most popular and quite possibly the meanest kid the school had ever seen. He was in his senior year and stood at 6’5, weighing 227 pounds, pure muscle. It was no surprise that he was captain of every sports team. He had thick, red hair, deep blue eyes and a faint Irish accent. Every girl in the high school swooned as he passed and when he spoke, even more so. He was the sweetest guy you could ask for around the ladies, with his smooth talking and his charming smile. However, around males it was a completely different story. He loved to show that he was dominant in every sense of the word. If you bumped into him in the halls, it was bad news for you. This is why people went out of their way to make a path for Trent O’Leary when he walked by.
But if there was one aspect of life that Trent was lacking in it was brains. Sure, he was charming, funny and even a little sarcastic at times, but academically, he was horrible. Maybe it was because he didn’t try, maybe because he was just flat out stupid, but for whatever reason, he stank in school. He had no reason to fear for his athletic position though. It was common knowledge that he was once brought into the principal’s office to be told he couldn’t play sports anymore until he lifted his grades. When the news was broken to him, O’Leary decided to take matters into his own hands (and by matters I mean, of course, Principal Gordon’s neck) and tell the principal how strongly he felt about the subject. He did a fantastic job of convincing Principal Gordon to let him play on his numerous teams, for Gordon never mentioned the matter again. This was just one of many incidents that had proved O’Leary’s toughness. Sometimes he liked to bump into people on purpose just so that he could have an excuse to beat them up. Kevin Young seemed to be a magnet to O’Leary. As a result, Kevin got much tougher himself. He had always accepted this as part of everyday life. But when it started to happen more frequently, Kevin got bitter. There was no way of avoiding O’Leary and there was certainly no way of stopping these daily beatings with Kevin’s strength nor with the strength of Kevin and ten other averagely built guys combined. The only level at which O’Leary could be challenged was at that of the intellectual. So, with some excessive persuasion from his friend Josh Evans, Kevin had agreed to seize his revenge with a plot so original, crafty and, above all, daring that it had only ever been tried by one man before. This man was Kevin’s father who came out worse in the scheme. He was expelled from not only Newton High, but all schools in the residential area. He lost all respect from former friends and comrades and he developed a small criminal record, which made it difficult for him to get a decent job. All of these facts made it even more daring than it was the first time around. The plan had to do with tampering with the water system and making O’Leary look like the biggest goof in the world, which was not against the law. At least, it wasn’t written in the school rules. The boys hoped and prayed that they could pull this off, because if they failed they would be doomed to a life of loneliness, guilt and solitude.
“Can I come too?” asked a whiny little voice.
“No, Ian! Leave us alone!” replied a harsh one.
“I never get to do anything exciting,” said Ian
“Ian, there are always people in life that aren’t going to want you to come with them. You should thank us for preparing you for that,” said a condescending Kevin.
“Shut up Kevin. Nobody asked you.”
“Ian,” Josh said. “Shut your ugly face and leave us alone.”
“You’ll regret this, Josh. You’re going to pay big time for this one.”
“What are you going to do, you little shrimp. You got nothing on me.” With that, Kevin and Josh hopped on their bikes and rode off into the darkness.
“That’s what you think, Josh. Keep dreaming,” whispered Ian to himself.
Josh looked around. There was no one in sight. He looked back to Kevin and nodded. Kevin opened the school door cautiously so that it didn’t make a sound. He crept inside as Josh caught up to him. The boys had a flashlight and a headlamp each and they were completely dressed in black. Making their way through the halls as silently as they could, they jumped at every noise they heard. These noises, however, were usually them scuffing their shoes on the ground. They found the staircase that led to the basement and made their way down.
“I can’t believe I’m doing this,” mumbled Kevin.
“Shhh!” They couldn’t afford to make any noise at all.
Shining their lights on the doors of the basement, looking at the names of the rooms, they came across their headquarters: the boiler room. There must’ve been a million pipes in the tiny room, only one of which needed to be cut.
“Which one is the one under his desk?” asked Josh.
“I don’t know,” whispered a suddenly panicked Kevin.
“You have the plans in your left jacket pocket, Kevin.”
“Oh yeah,” replied Kevin. He pulled out the pad of paper that he and Josh had written the complicated procedure on. “It’s the one that’s seven pipes in from the window wall and nineteen in from the wall to the left of that. It’s the really thick one with the one-inch bolts.”
“Found it,” whispered Josh.
“Where is the wrench? We forgot the wrench! We’re screwed!” panicked Kevin.
“Dude, calm down. I have the wrench in my hand. God, sometimes I wonder about your stability,” whispered Josh calmly. He then proceeded to loosen the bolts on the tube. It felt hot, meaning that there was hot water pumping through it at that very moment. This was good news for the mission. He got the nut just to the edge of the bolt so that any movement from above would take it right off and water would spurt up through the hardwood floor when he nearly fell off his feet.
“Don’t take it all the way off!” Kevin had nearly screamed this last remark.
“I know, doofus! Would you shut up? Someone’s going to hear us,” said Josh angrily. “Alright, I’m done. Let’s get out of here.”
“I wholeheartedly agree,” said a relieved Kevin.
They left exactly the way they had come, back up the stairs, out the side door to their bikes where they got on and rode off. Suddenly they heard someone shout, “There they are!” Thoughts raced through the heads of the boys as their legs raced around the pedals of their eighteen speeds. Voices behind them called out, telling them to stop. They didn’t stop. They didn’t even turn around to see who it was. Their legs flew like frightened birds as they steered in and out of corners as fast as they could, trying to outpace their enemies. Kevin’s wheel hit a twig in the road and he went flying. Josh turned around instantly to go back for his friend who waved his hand signalling for him to leave.
“No way man. I got you into this, now I’m going to get you out.”
“Just go!” shouted Josh. Now they could hear their pursuers in the background. Josh was getting frantic, wondering what to do. He picked up Kevin and put him on the handlebars or his bike.
“What the hell are you doing?” asked Kevin as they rode off.
“Trying not to get us caught.” The followers were within a block now. They were going slower and slower. Josh put all of his strength into every pedal. They were still catching up. Josh had no plan of defeat, though, and he turned a very sharp corner, which threw off the enemy completely.
They finally arrived at Josh’s house, exhausted and nervous but nonetheless triumphant.
“Did you get a glimpse of who they were?” asked Josh in between breathes.
“Yeah,” replied an incredulous Kevin. “They were the cops!”
Josh looked completely flabbergasted. All that time he had been running from the cops? Why wouldn’t they have taken a car? Probably because they didn’t want to let the intruders know that they were there. But how did they know they were there? That was the biggest question there was. How did they know? No one knew. Not parents, not siblings…wait a minute…Ian! But Ian didn’t know where they were going, did he? How would he know? Anyway, he wouldn’t have the guts to tell the cops. Maybe parents, but certainly not cops. Kevin was sitting on the couch, nursing a badly cut left leg. If the cops knew who they were, this would be bad news for their mission and, more importantly, horrible news for their future.
“Do you think Ian tipped them off?” whispered Josh.
“No. He wouldn’t know what was going on,” replied Kevin. He was dabbing a wet sponge on his leg. “Even if he did, he wouldn’t tip off the cops.” Kevin seemed pretty confident about this, which was not normal for him. It was probably because he was injured and in a sort of shock, but Josh let the subject rest for a while.
“Whoever it was obviously didn’t know how serious this was,” he whispered after a minute or two.
“Or they did know how serious it was and they wanted to completely ruin us.”
“Well, the cops have your bike now and let’s hope they can’t trace it back to you,” said a worried Josh. Usually it was the other way around; Kevin was the worried one and Josh was the relaxed one. Josh couldn’t understand why Kevin was this laid back after this sort of incident. “Why are you so calm, man?” he asked.
“I’m completely in shock. I tore up my leg, I lost my bike, I created a major scandal, I broke a bunch of laws, and there are going to be plenty of questions. It would be a miracle if I didn’t get caught and yet I don’t feel much like anything. I’m not by any means relaxed, but I’m more so than I would regularly be in this sort of situation.”
“They’ve probably figured out what we did in there by now and tightened the nut again,” Josh said. It sounded like he was disappointed that he had run all that risk for nothing, and rightly so. “It’ll probably be better this way, though.”
“How is it better?” asked Kevin.
“Well, this way…” Josh started. Then he stopped and said, “I don’t know. All I’m saying is that things happen for a reason, and no matter what you do, Nature either agrees with you or disagrees and you better hope it agrees, because if it doesn’t, you’re pretty well screwed. Sooner or later, Nature will prevail.”
“Those are some pretty wise words for a guy whose tee-shirts say ‘Your Mom Is Hot’.”
“Yeah, well that’s better than ‘Chess Club ‘99’, pal,” laughed Josh. They may have been in an awkward situation, but they had been friends for a long time and whatever happened to them, they could always be themselves and have fun.
The house was practically empty. Only Ian was home playing his PlayStation when the doorbell rang. He ignored it, thinking it was Josh just being too lazy to get out his key. Then it rang again and it was once again ignored. It rang again, and finally Ian got the message. It was not Josh at all, he discovered. It was a police detective.
“Can I help you?” asked the nervous little kid.
“Yes. We received a tip from this address with regards to two teenagers breaking into a school late last night. Are your parents home?” said the officer.
“No, actually, it’s just me here and, uh, I really don’t know what you’re talking about, so maybe you could come back later and talk to my…” Ian was speaking in rapid fire. It was so obvious that he knew something about this that the officer stepped inside and sat down on the couch in the living room.
“Son, I know that you know something,” said the cool detective. “And the quicker you tell us what it is, the quicker we can both relax. Now why don’t you tell me what’s going on.”
When Ian had told the police about this, he had no idea what kind of offence he was laying on his brother and his friend. He had just overheard them talking in Josh’s bedroom. He never meant any harm to anyone. He just wanted to show Josh that he could do whatever he felt like doing, thus proving to be tough. Now, he felt like he had to get his brother out of whatever trouble he had gotten him into. As for Kevin, he could fend for himself.
“Sir, it’s my brother’s friend. He came over one day and told Josh, that’s my brother, that he was going to get revenge on this bully at school and asked him to help out. Josh said that he would have nothing to do with Kevin’s plan and so Kevin called up someone else. That’s all I know, sir,” lied Ian. He felt like he had done a good thing for his brother. “And I have Kevin’s address too.” Ian went and got the address book for the detective and gave him that of Kevin Young. Ian had no idea what he was setting up for Kevin nor did he know that his brother would have been happy to take all of the blame for his friend. All he knew was that he and his brother were off the hook.
“It was beautiful! I don’t think Trent O’Leary will ever move his desk again,” laughed Josh.
“I never dreamed that I would ever, ever beat that oversized goon. Now I know that we can do anything.” Josh and Kevin had never looked so jolly in their whole lives. The look on their faces was one of pure mirth. The moment that the floor under the jock’s desk had erupted with water, they couldn’t help but burst with laughter. Fortunately, neither could anyone else in the class, which covered for them. Trent O’Leary finally knew what it was like to be the one everyone laughed at, not with, but at. His desk lifted a foot off the ground and he flew up into the air before landing right back down on the gaping hole in the floor, gushing with water. The water was warm, which made it a little more tolerable for O’Leary. Their plan had worked perfectly.
“They didn’t even notice. I bet they looked for hours and couldn’t find anything wrong,” commented Kevin. “That was so sweet.”
“I will never lose the image of the look on his face when he was three feet in the air!” beamed Josh.
“Who was right about this whole thing, Kevin?” asked a proud Josh.
“I have to give credit where credit’s due,” said Kevin. “It was all you, my friend. Nature likes us, Josh. Nature agreed.”
“You said it, man. Well put.”
“You did WHAT?”
When Josh walked in the door to his house, Ian greeted him with the news that he had laid all the blame on Kevin.
“First of all, how could you tell the cops about what we were doing? Do you know how stupid that was? I ought to beat the crap out of you! And secondly, why did you peg Kevin with all the responsibility? Do you know what’s going to happen to him now? He’s going to end up just like his father! You don’t know his father, do you? You don’t understand what he’s up against! He doesn’t have a chance! You are going to pay for this one, you little bastard! You are going to pay big time!” Josh yelled. Ian started to whimper a little. His whimpers then turned into sobs and tears streamed down his face. “Don’t cry to me. You’re not getting any sympathy from me so don’t waste your time.” Josh walked off in a mood so furious that it could only be described as indescribable.
“I’m sorry, Josh!” sobbed Ian. “I just wanted to help! I’m sorry!”
Josh reluctantly walked back into the room to comfort his desolate brother. “Hey, look buddy. We all make mistakes. We can’t help it. But you have to be careful what you say. It could end up destroying someone’s whole life, and that’s something you can’t get back. Sure, you screwed up. You’re only human.” Josh was now speaking in a soft, understanding voice. Then he snapped out of it a bit. “This whole speech doesn’t mean that I’m not mad at you, don’t kid yourself.” He walked off, still angry but a little more subdued.
Kevin got home and saw a police car outside his house. He immediately dropped his books and ran in a blind panic. He didn’t get far, though, because there was another cruiser just down the street. They put him in the back seat and told him to wait there. He looked out the window and saw his mother in tears at the doorway of his house as a police officer explained what had happened. The officer came back to the car and they drove to the police station, which was a concrete box that had been hollowed out and put windows into the walls. They took him inside and put him in an isolated room, the kind with the fake mirror in it. They then came in and asked him questions like who was with him that night. He was loyal, of course, and said that he was with his cousin who lived in Idaho. He went on to say how he thought up the whole thing because O’Leary had bullied him.
“It’s not like I pulled a Columbine on him. I never would. I never even had a toy gun as a kid,” said Kevin when he was asked if he realised how serious his actions were. “He wasn’t even hurt at all. He was just a little soggy.”
They told him that he would have to stay there overnight in one of the cells. He was allowed one phone call and one visit. He called Josh and told him to come and see him.
“Hey,” he said when he arrived.
“Hey.” There was an awkward pause in which not a word was said.
“Ian ratted us out, eh?” asked Kevin.
“Yeah. Then he tried to get me out of it by saying that you asked me to do it and I said no,” said Josh. “I yelled at him for it and he cracked. He feels pretty terrible about it.”
“He should,” Kevin said bitterly.
“Once he starts feeling better I’ll kick the stuffing out of him for you,” promised Josh. Kevin nodded. A tear dribbled down his face. “Hey, man, you’re going to be fine. You can do this. We can do this. I can help, you know.”
“But my Dad…”
“You are not your Dad, Kevin. You are a completely different person. A stronger one. You know how to stand up for yourself, otherwise you wouldn’t have gone along with the plan. Even if you do get in trouble for it, we’ll always have the joy of looking back on O’Leary’s misfortune. That’s something no one can take away from us, alright?”
“Yeah, I guess,” said Kevin as he wiped the tears from his eyes. “That was pretty cool, eh?”
“Sure as hell was, man,” replied Josh.
The guard came in and told them to wrap it up.
“Say hey to my parents for me, will you?” asked Kevin. He was starting to break up again. Josh nodded that he would. Then he turned around and walked towards the door. “Hey Josh.” Josh stopped and turned back around. “Seems like Nature has mixed feelings about us,” said Kevin as he tried to smile.
“No way, man,” Josh replied. “Nature loves us. You’ll see.” He grinned knowingly and walked out the door.