"Gribbs!" yelled Linda, "Give it back!", as she lunged for the Viking Book Love.
"Why should I, Linda? What's in it for me?" James said mockingly, as he held the book high above his head.
"Just give Linda the book, Gribble!" shouted Pete.
"Don't worry, Twist, I'll give it back when I'm done!" laughed James as he ran out of the schoolyard followed closely by Rabbit and Tiger. Linda groaned and threw up her hands.
"Don't worry Linda, we'll get it back." reassured Pete.
"But what if Gribble does something before we can get to it?" asked Linda. Pete looked at his shoes. Linda sighed, re-adjusted her schoolbag on her back, and walked out the school gate.
"Tiger!" shouted James as he watched Tiger walk away. "Hang on a second! I need you to do something for me."
"Yeah...?" asked Tiger cautiously.
"I need you to hang on to the Viking Book of Love for a while. I just know those Twist kids are gonna come after it. Go home and hide it." James left Tiger standing on the street corner, the book in his hands. Tiger ran his finger across the intertwined dragons on its cover. smiling he clutched it to his chest and ran home.
Tiger sat on his bed that night as the clock in the hallway chimed seven. It was more than luck that James had entrusted the book to him - it was fate. Tiger lay back, hands still grasping the book. He thought of how her hair shone in the sun. He thought of how beautifully she played the violin. then he though of how soft her lips looked - he felt himself grow hard.
"No. Not. Now." he grunted in a mixture of frustration and pleasure. "It's. Now. Or. Never." He felt his pants sag and he sighed.
"And then he just ran off with the book! Dad, why does he always so stuff like that?" pleaded Linda.
"Maybe he likes you," Tony replied. Pete began to choke on his dinner.
"It's not funny! He shouldn't be allowed to get away with it!"
"I know, you're right, Linda. I'll talk to Harold about this first thing in the morning."
"Like that'll achieve anything," muttered Pete.
"Did you say something, Pete?" asked Tony.
"No, Dad." A series of knocks sounded at the door.
"Linda, can you answer that?" asked Tony.
Linda went to the front door and groaned as she saw Tiger through the window.
"Just leave me alone!" she shouted as she opened the door. Tiger looked down at the Viking Book of Love, open in his hands, and began to read,
"Looking out to sea, I know what must be must be. I love you with all my heart. I hope you too have been pierced by Cupid's dart."
"I love you, Tiger." Linda whispered, her eyes sparkling in the non-existant moonlight. Tiger leant in to kiss her, he could feel the salty sea breeze on his cheeks as his face became millimetres away from her's.
"What are you doing, Tiger? And Linda?!" Pete asked, shocked.
"I love Tiger." Linda said dreamily.
"That Tiger? Are you insane? He's used the Viking Book of Love on you! Look he's still holding it!" Pete said as he snatched the book out of Tiger's hands. "Goodbye, Tiger." he said as he slammed the door.
"I can't believe you Pete! He was going to kiss me! Tiger wanted to kiss me!" Linda shouted as tears rolled down her cheeks. Before Pete could reply she ran up the stairs to her room, slamming the door behind her. Pete looked at the book in his hands.
Linda sulked as Pete got in the car seat beside her. The Viking Book of Love peeked out of his schoolbag.
"Look, Linda, I'm sorry." said pete. Linda huffed and looked away.
Pete leapt out of the car as Tony pulled up to the school gate. Linda dragged her feet as followed him. Tiger wouldn't love her now. It was all Pete's fault. Sullenly, she sat on a bench in the school yard.
Tiger saw Linda arrive and felt his heart ache. She looked so miserable. He crossed the yard and sat beside her.
"Linda," he said as he reached for her hand, "I love you." She looked up and her eyes grew wide and sparkled with the enchantment. Tiger felt something inside him deflate sadly. the spell loved him, not Linda. Linda kissed his cheek and she smiled at him. He sighed and vowed to enjoy what he had - Linda wouldn't love him without the spell.
Tiger looked around the school yard. his heart beat faster as he saw Pete, book in hand, with Fiona. Tiger bolted towards them, as Linda sat stunned.
"Our love is like the seashore, forever more." finished Pete.
"Oh Pete," Fiona sighed dreamily as Tiger collided with Pete, knocking him to the ground.
"No!" Tiger wailed as he beat his fists on the hard bitumen till they began to bleed. Pete brushed himself off and looked at Fiona. She smiled at him and he kissed her, for what Tiger felt was hours. Hot tears ran down his face as Pete and Fiona left him kneeling on the ground.
"Tiger?" said a voice to his left. He looked up and he saw Linda. His heart sank as he became cruelly aware of what life would now hold for him without the spell. Linda helped him to his feet, but he kept his eyes downcast.
"Look at me, Tiger," pleaded Linda, "Please." He looked up and she kissed him on the mouth. They both felt a tingle rush up their spines as they shared their first kiss.
"I love you." whispered Tiger.
"I love you too." whispered Linda. Tiger searched for a sign of the enchantment but Linda's eyes were so beautifully clear. He hugged her and held her close. He buried his face in her shoulder and surrounded himself with her scent.
They pulled apart as the school bell rang. Hand-in-hand they walked up the front stairs to the heavy school doors. They both felt happy and fully satisfied in every way to their very core. Tiger had been right - it was fate.