Lilo and Stitch
Empire of the Pacific
The apex of the super-cell was passing over Kauai that very night. It stormed so hard you couldn't see ten feet in front of you, except when a flash of lightning illuminated the scenery for only a split second.
A winding road built into its winding cliff face was at the center of the storm's pounding. And out of either desperation, or sheer idiocy, someone was driving down that very road.
A beat up old wooden station wagon turned the bend and came into view. Its high beams on and its wipers at full blast.
Inside the car one could barely hear Elvis' All Shook Up playing over the sound of the storm outside.
In the driver's seat was a skinny middle-aged man pretending to be in his twenties. His hair was clearly dyed and spiked up, you could tell just from the bit that stuck out of his sideways black baseball cap with the phrase 'Vietnam Vet' sowed into the front in bright yellow. His typical goldenrod Hawaiian shirt was halfway unbuttoned and a pair of expensive shades hung loosely from the first joined button at the bottom of his chest. Looking further down would reveal he wore frayed jean shorts with an empty buck knife holster strapped to his belt.
The man leaned toward the windshield intently with both hands gripping the steering wheel tightly. This was Eric Pelekai.
In the front passenger's seat sat a middle aged woman who was clearly much more modest. She wore a sleeveless, blue button up shirt and jeans, and had her hair back in a ponytail. More than that there was really not much to say about her.
She stared intently at a book of roadmaps she was pressing against the dashboard. She turned the book on its side and brought her face in for a closer look. This was Keala Pelekai.
In the back seat, with her nose in a gameboy, was a very familiar little girl in a red mumu dotted with yellow flowers.
"I can't see anything in this storm.!" Eric finally spoke up.
Eric lifted one hand off the steering wheel to rub a small gold statue of a fat Elvis sitting in the lotus position as if her were the Buddha.
"Please be watchin' ova' us now." Eric said as he took his hand off the Elvis Buddha and back to the steering wheel.
Eric continued, "How far away's Kokaua again?"
Keala looked up from her book toward Eric. "We should be thea' any minute now." She told him. "We might've already passed it without knowing."
"Damn…" Eric whispered to himself.
He then turned his head back toward the little girl in the back seat.
"Hey Lilo? When we get to Nani's I want you to put away that game and spend as much time as ya' can wit'er. We're not gonna' see her for four yea's when she's in college at Honolulu."
Lilo paused the game and looked up. "But you said we'd spend every summer there so we could."
In reaction to Keala's scream, Eric whipped his head around just soon enough to see a downed palm tree a few feet away from the windshield. It was too late to react.
The wagon smashed into the tree just above the level of the windshield. The hood had been scraped right off the car and now lay in pieces on the road. Everything in the front half of the cab from just above the windshield was scrunched up like an accordion. Amazingly, there was almost no damage to the back half.
Lilo slowly came to. Surrounded by blurry double images of people she'd never seen before. She was laying down. She tried to get up but couldn't move. There were canvas straps holding her down and a brace around her neck.
The storm had calmed and the downpour had turned into a light sprinkle.
The minutes passed as Lilo's vision slowly got better. She could now make out the people around her. They were all paramedics. Why was she surrounded by paramedics? Out of the corner of her eye Lilo could make out what looked to be emergency beds covered by bulging sheets. The front half of the sheets were covered in blood, and blood driped down from the beds onto the road. Those weren't just sheets, there were people under them, dead people.
Lilo could finally hear straight, and listened to what two paramedics near the beds ere saying.
"Eric and Keala Pelekai, according to thea' wallets"
"Who's the girl?"
"Thea' daughter I'm guessin'. We still dunno' her name."
"So… gimme' da gory details."
"Well, they crashed into da tree you know already. Just above da windshield. Front half of da cab was totaled. Thea' faces were bashed right in ya know. They both died in less then half a second."
"Mom? … Dad…?" Lilo whispered to herself.
The paramedics continued their conversation. "This really freaks me out I'm gonna go off for a smoke."
Lilo followed as best she could as the paramedic walked by her, over to the edge of the road.
She watched as the paramedic lit up a cigarette and began smoking it. And then a flash of lightning caused him to pause and stare off in the distance.
The flash had illuminated the silhouette of a person on a not too distant ledge overlooking the gruesome scene.
The paramedic dropped the cigarette from his lips and stared at ledge for several more minutes until he felt a hand on his shoulder.
He jumped and turned around to find another paramedic looking back at him.
"You okay?" The second paramedic asked.
The first paramedic turned back toward the ledge. "There was someone there. There on that ledge. He was lookin' at us."
Both paramedics turned toward the ledge and looked out for another minute. A flash of lightning once again illuminated the ledge, but this time there was no silhouette.
"There ain't nothin' thea' man." The second paramedic said. "I think this scene's gettin' to ya head."
The paramedics turned around and began to walk back toward the accident when they heard a cry.
"Who was he? What did he do to mom and dad?"
They both turned around and saw Lilo staring up at them with her face bright red.
"Ah crap! She's awake!" Was all Lilo heard as she felt a hot sting on the back of her hand, and the lights went out.
Lilo woke up to the sound of a buzzing to her left. She lifted herself off of her back and looked to see what could be making it.
A clock shown the numbers 8:03. She reached her hand over to shut it off, and then turned her head to see where she was.
Lilo was lying on a bed contoured to fit the round walls of the metal dome she made into her room. It had been four years since the accident that killed her parents, and every so often she still had that same dream.
Lilo looked across the room to see Stitch in his own hanging rectangular bed, snoring away and sometimes twitching his leg.
Lilo whispered under her breath, "I bet you could sleep through a lava flow."
All was motionless for just a few seconds until Nani's voice rang out from below.
"Lilo! Stitch! Breakfast!"
Stitch's ear twitched, then Stitch flung up from his sleep and shouted out, "Breakfast?"
In a few minutes, Lilo was dressed, and she and Stitch were riding the dome's elevator downstairs.