Chapter One :: Welcome to Dogtown

"Dogtown", California. 5:00 A.M.

"Oh, shit!" Tony screeched as he toppled over onto the ground. The street lights barely lit up the street, and Tony had totally wiped out, his skateboard flying. I laughed and picked it up as I rode by him, then swerved around and helped him up, handing him back his skateboard. "Thanks, R.J." Tony smiled, using my nickname (my real, full name is River-Jill Whitlock). I smirked at him, pushing a piece of blonde hair out of my face. "No problem. We better get down to the beach. Jay and Stacey are waiting for us under the pier." Tony arched an eyebrow. "What about Sid and Avery?" He asked. "They couldn't come today. Their mom won't let them out this early." Tony shrugged. "Let's go!" And we set off, fast, on our boards down to Venice Beach.

Later, at Venice Beach...

"Judgement day, boys!" Jay practically screamed as Tony and I arrived. I shot him a glare. "And girl." Jay rolled his eyes, but smiled. Stacey's long, blonde-and-brown hair was all over his face. I giggled at him. "Nice, Stacey. You know Skip will make fun of you, right?" Stacey grinned, was about to say something, when Jay said excitedly, "Holy crap! Skip is charging." We all looked out towards the ocean to see Skip Engblom, they boys' idol and my basically enemy, perfectly master a gigantic wave, without wiping out or having his surf board crushed to bits.

"He's amazing. How the hell does he do it?" Tony said in awe, and Jay and Stacey nodded in agreement, "totally." I glared at them, and rolled my eyes. What was so special about Skip? He was a blonde drunk, who slurred his words and mixed his whiskey with orange juice and lemonade. Sure, Skip was an awesome skater and surfer, a legend in Venice Beach, and he owned the hardest skate team and best surf and skate shop around, but so what?

Chino, Skip's right-hand man, came up from the water and grabbed Tony by the arm. "Alva, you're on patrol, got it?" Tony nodded, annoyed. "Jay and Riv, you're on parking lot duty--keep it local. And Stacey, you're assigned to the boneyard." We all nodded and ran in different directions. Stacey had to grab boards that went astray in the water, Tony had to throw things in the water in case outsiders (non-locals) came into the water, and Jay and I had the best job of all -- messing up the outsider's cars.

Skip and his crew must've only been surfing for a few minutes when a bright blue '67 Chevy Camero pulled into the parking lot. Jay and I michiviously grinned at each other. "Tony! Outsiders!" I yelled to him. Tony grinned too, and leaned over the edge of the pier, yelling down to Skip, "Valles!"

"Jay, keep look-out, got it?" I commanded. Jay nodded innocently. I jumped down from the pier swiftly, running at all my speed towards the Chevy. I opened up the hood and started taking out the engine, which was simple. I also spray-painted locals only, assholes! along their windshield neatly. I laughed to myself as I ran back to the beach, the huge engine dangling from a wire in my hand. Jay laughed hysterically and clapped, as did Tony, as I started to paddle out towards Skip, who was confronting the valles.

"Locals only!" Skip slurred, but he sounded completely serious. "Says who?" The two valles snarled. I rolled my eyes as I paddled over. Skip eyed me expectantly. I swerved so I was in front of Skip. I innocently looked at the two young men, the valles. I kept the engine in the water. "Do you guys happen to have an old '67 Chevy Camero, a blue one?" I smiled flirtatiously. "Yeah, why?" The second one snapped. I lifted up the engine, then dropped in right in front of them. The engine made a huge splash. The guys laughed, Skip putting an arm around my shoulders, and the valles went biserk. The first valle lunged at me, but Skip came in front of me. "Don't even try touching her! Leave, now." He shouted, pointing towards the parking lot, and he didn't slur his words. "Stupid whore!" The second one snorted at me. The valles muttered profanities as they left, paddling back towards the beach. Skip turned to me, putting a hand on my shoulder, guiding me back underneath the pier.

Under the Pier...

I suited up in my wetsuit, as did Stacey, Jay and Tony. "This is judged, so do your best, you little grommets." Skip slurred, but smirked and winked when he looked at me. I smirked at him too, but Chino gave me my board. Skip patted Tony on the back and then took a long drag from his cigarette.

In the water...

As I paddled, I saw a perfect wave coming. I looked back at the guys. "I'm going for it." I stated, gesturing towards the monster of a wave coming toward us. "Go, it's coming!" Jay yelled.

I bit my lip as I stood up on my board. The wave was exactly the way I wanted it. I swiftly shifted my weight on the board. The run was perfect. Skip and his boys yelled and hollered, satisfied. I grinned - I'd impressed Skip. After me, Tony and Jay did pretty good, but not as good as I had done. Jay, Tony and I all watched Stacey--it was a total mess. He barely stood up on the board before he wiped out, the waves crashing, demolishing his board. Skip and his boys were laughing and hollering, disapprovingly. As Stacey finally came to his senses, Skip whistled to get his attention. "Back to the boneyard for you, pal!" Skip shouted. Stacey looked at the three of us and sighed.