Story Written by Freedom Fighter
Just to let you know, this is the second of two episodes posted this week. And since these are concurrent, please make sure you go back and read the previous episode before tackling this one. Otherwise, certain things won't make sense.
Time to pick up where we left off... sort of.
Disclaimer: The characters of 'Phineas and Ferb' belong to Disney.
Concurrent with (means some events occur at the same time with):
- Entry #206 ("Fireside Diaries," Episode 306)
"Wind's starting to pick up," Milly said, as she stood with Holly and Katie.
"You really think we're gonna get more than a foot of snow tonight?" questioned Holly.
"I know we're getting enough to get at least one snow day out of it! That's all I care about!"
Isabella cut into the conversation.
"Nevertheless, we'd all better get home. The last thing you want to happen is to get stuck in that mess of heavy, fluffy snow and cold, blustery winds."
With that, the girls headed out of the lodge. Isabella, Adyson, and Holly walked one way, while Milly and Katie went the other.
Entry #207 - Written by Isabella Garcia-Shapiro, troop leader
It was an ordinary afternoon in early February. Well, ordinary except for the fact that a blizzard was bearing down on the Tri-State Area, ready to bury it in more than a foot of snow. But I had no worries. I kept this week's mid-week Fireside Girl meeting short. I was aware of the impending storm, and wanted to make sure we were all safe at home before a single snowflake hit the ground.
Isabella, Adyson, and Holly were engaging in some mindless chit-chat as they made their way towards a nearby bus stop.
Well... that was the plan, anyway.
Mrs. Garcia-Shapiro had just picked up the phone. After a few seconds, she turned to her daughter, who was sitting at the counter and working on her homework.
"Have you seen Katie?"
"Last time I saw her was a couple hours ago, when we all left the lodge. She walked home with Milly."
"Isa! Her mom is saying she never made it home."
Isabella gasped in shock.
Entry #207 [FSD307] - Don't Let it Snow (01.14.03)
When I heard that Katie never got home, I immediately began to worry.
Isabella was pacing back and forth in her living room, very concerned that one of her girls was missing.
Snow had already begun to fall, and it was getting heavier by the minute. It wouldn't be long before it started to accumulate. If Katie was still out there, we had to find her fast.
The doorbell rang. Isabella quickly raced to the front door to answer it. She unlocked the door and opened it.
"Addy!" she exclaimed. "Am I glad to see you!"
Adyson quickly stepped in to get out of the cold. She wasted no time in cutting to the chase.
"So, what happened to Katie?"
"I don't know! I texted her and she didn't respond."
Isabella handed Adyson her phone so she could read the text. It read 'Katie, are you alright? Your mom just called my mom asking where you are. Izzy.' Adyson then handed it back on their way to the closet, where Isabella got her winter coat.
"Milly texted me and thinks she might know where she is. She wouldn't give specifics, though. Holly's already on the way there. Just in case, we should go there as well."
"And the others?"
"Gretchen's parents won't let her out. Neither will Ginger's."
Isabella slipped on her coat and then shouted at her mom.
"We'll be right back, Mom!"
"Be careful, Isa!"
"We will, Mom!"
The two left Isabella's house and sprinted for the bus stop. Snow was indeed falling, but the ground was not completely covered as of yet.
"Should we really be doing this? Aren't we putting ourselves in danger by going out in the middle of a snowstorm?"
"You know our motto! 'Fireside Girls stick together!'"
"Funny. I swear it was 'Fireside Girls are always prepared.'"
"This is no time to be snippy, Addy! We've got a friend to rescue!"
The duo reached the stop just in time, for a bus headed downtown arrived at that very moment. They boarded, intending to meet up with their friends.
The storm had intensified greatly by the time the bus had gotten downtown. The driver pulled up to the stop where Isabella and Adyson intended to get off. As they disembarked, a dispatch came up over the driver's radio.
"Attention all Tri-State Area drivers! The mayor has declared that all non-emergency vehicles be off the road by 7 pm tonight and to stay off until further notice. All drivers are to suspend their routes and head for the nearest garage."
The driver turned to the girls, who were now on the snow-covered sidewalk.
"You sure you girls wanna get off here? It's not safe here in this part of the city."
"It's okay," Isabella reassured him. "We're Fireside Girls. We'll be okay."
The driver shrugged. "Meh. Your funeral."
He closed the doors and pulled away from the curb. The two girls headed towards the old abandoned industrial district, which was dark except for a few small blocks because they were unpowered during the current razing and reconstruction of the area.
"Not that I doubt your judgment," prefaced Adyson, "but I'm not so sure heading into pitch black darkness is the best thing to do with a blizzard about to dump a bajillion feet of snow on top of us!"
"This is where Milly thinks Katie is. Oh, and Addy? Bajillion is not a real number."
Isabella pulled out a pen-sized flashlight out of her coat pocket. She flipped it to Adyson, who caught it and turned it on. She motioned for her friend to lead the way, while she whipped out her phone so she could make a call.
Milly heard her cell phone rang as she stood at a bus stop with Holly. She pulled it out and answered the call.
"Milly! Where are you?"
"We're 20 blocks away, I think."
Holly leaned it to add her cents.
"The bus driver refused to take us any further! Said we're crazy!"
"We pretty much are," shouted Adyson from the other end.
"Addy! Yeesh... Milly, look, we're already here. Does this place you think Katie is in have some kind of identifying mark? A sign, logo, building number..."
"Oh, yes! She told me it once. It's building... 30B."
"30B, got it!"
Isabella hung up and got to work. She instructed Adyson to use the flashlight to look for numbers. The snow intensified as they searched, making it more difficult for them to see.
"Wait, got something!"
Adyson was pointing to a building to their left.
"That's a start. We've gotta find the 3000 block."
The wind picked up. Snow on the ground began to drift, while snow in the air started flying more sideways than straight down. The girls had to bat flakes away from their eyes to keep them out.
"We don't have much time!"
The pair headed east. Adyson quickly shined the light on buildings as they went by. The set they were passing by had 3100 numbers.
"It has to be the next block over," deduced Isabella.
Before they could get there, though, the wind gusted another 20 miles per hour in an instant. Snow went flying everywhere, and the two of them were blinded by all of it.
"EEK! I CAN'T SEE!"
"WHAT? I CAN'T HEAR YOU!"
The wind died down a little bit, but it was still going fast enough to blow through their hair while still sending snow drifting towards them from ahead. They each held up an arm in front of them to shield their eyes as they made their way into the 3000 block. Snow was now falling at an accelerated rate, and any that was making it to the ground was piling up fast.
"Can you still see the numbers on the buildings?" asked Isabella.
"WHAT?" Adyson yelled back, as the wind made it hard to hear.
Isabella gently grabbed Adyson's flashlight-carrying arm and pointed it to a nearby building. They eventually found the number, learning that it was 3010. The two continued on, even as conditions deteriorated even more. They found buildings 3011, 3012, and 3013.
"This is like looking for a needle in a haystack!"
Isabella could not quite understand how she could hear Adyson but, in turn, she could not hear her. Suddenly, her ears perked up upon hearing something, or someone, else in the vicinity. It was faint, but she could just make it out.
"Wait! Is... is that the sound of a dog barking?"
The wind picked up once more, but this time, they were sustained. Isabella came to the realization that it had become too dangerous to continue searching, and that they had to make their own safety their top priority. But the winds were blowing the snow around so much that the two girls could only see each other and nothing more.
"I CAN'T SEE ANYTHING!" Adyson yelled.
Starting to panic, Adyson released her grip on the flashlight. It fell into the snow, which was by now six- or seven-inches deep, and sank out of sight. Meanwhile, Isabella quickly scanned for somewhere to take refuge. Their best chance was to get into one of the warehouses and hope they could find a way in.
But she could not see one. She did, however, catch sight of a large object not too far away from them. It was not ideal, but it would have to do.
"We'll take shelter in there!"
Isabella grabbed Adyson by the hand and pulled her towards the large object she had seen. Their movement was slow, as they were already more than knee-deep in snow, but they knew that they would freeze to death if they stood out there much longer. With the wind blowing snow slowly into their faces, which reduced visibility to no more than an arm's length, it was not until Isabella nearly walked right into the giant object she had been leading them to that she saw it.
She jumped up onto the one-step ladder leading up to the passenger-side door and reached for the handle. Luckily, it was unlocked and had not yet completely frozen shut in the icy temperatures. She opened the door and then climbed into the cabin. Once safely in, Isabella turned and extended an arm out to Adyson to help pull her in.
They then shut the door.
"We should be safe," Isabella said. "For now, anyway."
"But it's still cold!" mumbled Adyson.
Isabella hopped over to the driver's seat and then searched for the ignition. Their good luck ran out there, because although she quickly found it, the key had not been left behind.
"I guess we're going to have to wait it out," Isabella admitted.
"Are you crazy? The weatherman said the blizzard's not supposed to let up 'til morning! I don't know about you, Izzy, but I'm too young to become a human popsicle!"
"Calm down! Holly and Milly are still out there."
Isabella pulled out her cell phone. She was about to speed-dial Holly when she realized that the storm was making it impossible to get a signal.
"If only we could contact them."
Isabella pocketed her phone once more and then hopped back over to Adyson. The two girls huddled together, trying to keep themselves warm and awake.
Things were looking pretty bleak. We hadn't found Katie yet, Adyson and I were pinned down inside a cold bulldozer, and who knows what terrible fate has befallen Holly and Milly? They could be out there in the middle of this, too, with nowhere to go!
Milly breathed a sigh of relief after taking a sip from a freshly-prepared cup of hot cocoa. She was sitting in a chair in the lobby of a hotel, along with a number of others who were stuck there after having ventured out and not getting back home in time.
Holly was not happy to see Milly relaxing even though their friends were supposedly out in the storm and in danger.
"I've been trying to call and text Isabella and the others to see where they are for the last ten minutes, and you've been here drinking hot cocoa?"
"But," Milly meekly responded, "it's really GOOD hot cocoa!"
She offered Holly to take a sip from her cup. She accepted it.
"That IS good hot cocoa! Where'd you get it from?"
Milly pointed to a self-serve hot beverage station near the front desk.
"Well, the others ARE resourceful enough to survive a little longer out there than most people, right?"
Milly nodded as she led Holly over.
Isabella and Adyson were hugging each other for warmth as they sat in the bulldozer, while the blizzard raged around them, threatening to either freeze them to death or eventually bury them in two feet of snow.
"Izzy..." Adyson said, solemnly. "If we don't live to see tomorrow, I just wanted to say..."
Isabella mustered what was left of her strength just to lift her head to look at her friend. Adyson waited, then continued.
"...I think I love Jerry."
Her friend looked dumbfounded. Adyson explained her reasoning.
"Sure, it's kinda weird that he tries to sniff my hair. But I think it's cute that he adores me. That, and for once, he's not one of your hand-me downs."
Isabella put a hand on Adyson's shoulder.
"Seriously, Addy... if we survive this, you're SO getting a relationship intervention."
Suddenly, without warning, the wind began dying down greatly. The girls took a peek out the front windshield and saw that snow was not drifting around them as much as it had been.
"Boy am I glad the weatherman was wrong for once!" boasted Adyson.
"Not so fast. Just because the storm's died down a little doesn't mean it's over with. Still, this gives us a chance to resume searching for Katie. Or, at the very least, find better shelter."
"Woof? Adyson, you don't have to bark at me."
"Uh, Izzy? That wasn't me."
The two looked out the passenger-side window and they could just make out a large dog barking at them.
"I'm pretty sure that's a golden labrador retriever," identified Isabella. "But what's it doing out here?"
"WOOF!" he barked, even louder this time.
The two stepped out of the cabin of the bulldozer. Snow was still falling, but at a much slower rate than just minutes ago. They hopped down, landing in snow that went past their knees and almost to the top of the dog's legs.
"WOOF WOOF! WOOF!"
He started walking away. After a few steps, though, he stopped, turned, and barked at the girls again.
"WOOF! WOOF WOOF, WOOF!"
Isabella figured it out. "Ooh! I think he wants us to follow us!"
"Okay," Adyson agreed, "but how are we supposed to see where we're going?"
The two glanced to their left, and found a large flashlight sticking up out of a mound of snow.
"How convenient!" shouted Isabella.
While following the dog, Isabella's phone picked up a signal. She knew it when she felt it vibrate in her pocket.
"It's from Katie!" Isabella exclaimed, reading her text message. "She says she's in Danville Park!"
"I could've told you that," Adyson said, pointing out the Danville Park sign that they were passing under at that exact moment.
The dog led them to an unusually large pile of snow not too far from the park entrance. Even more odd was that there was a wall of wood sticking out of it. The girls watched as the dog stopped in front of it and started barking furiously.
"WOOF WOOF! WOOF WOOF WOOF!"
Isabella and Adyson looked at each other, and immediately thought the same thing.
They moved in for a closer look, and upon doing so, saw part of a roof was sticking out of the snow as well. Before they could examine the scene even further, they heard something motorized heading their way. They turned to their right and were shocked to see Holly and Milly riding it. Holly steered it to a stop, and the two girls hopped off.
"Where'd you get a snowmobile?" queried Isabella.
"The hotel surprisingly had one," replied Holly, "so we told them about Katie, and they let us borrow it."
"Speaking of which," wondered Milly, "where is Katie?"
The dog barked again, getting the girls' attention. In the brief amount of time they had looked away, he had dug a tunnel. And he had done it without any tools, which was clearly evident that the tunnel was way too small for him to fit through.
"How'd he do that?" asked Adyson.
Isabella had a simple answer. "He's amazing. That's how!"
She walked over to take a look into the tunnel. But it was too dark to see anything. Isabella motioned for Holly to bring the snowmobile over and point one of the headlights into the hole in the snow. She peeked in to see if her hunch was right. Adyson did the same.
They could see there was definitely someone down there. But it was not until said person's head started to move.
"It has to be her, Addy! Katie! KATIE!"
Adyson started yelling too. "KATIE!"
"KATIE! IF YOU CAN HEAR ME, COME TOWARDS THE LIGHT!"
They saw Katie slowly turn to look up towards them. Seeing her face confirmed that it was indeed her in the hole.
"Okay, girls! We need to get her out of there! Who knows how long she's been buried or what her current condition is!"
Isabella, Adyson, and Milly got to digging. The dog that had led them there helped as well. Holly stayed on the snowmobile, keeping the headlight focused on the hole. Eventually, they reached her head.
"KATIE!" all the girls exclaimed.
Katie smiled upon seeing the others. She then felt something slobbery licking her left cheek. She turned to see who was responsible.
She gave him a hug.
"That's the stray dog?" Milly guessed, in shock.
Katie nodded in confirmation.
After getting Katie out of the snow, minus her boots, they took her to the nearest open building, which was the hotel Holly and Milly had found earlier.
"Mmmm," Adyson said as she sipped from a cup of cocoa. "This IS good!"
"Told ya so," Holly and Milly said in unison.
Meanwhile, Isabella was watching as an out-of-town pediatrician, who happened to be staying at the hotel and was in the lobby at the time, examined Katie. The blonde girl let the doctor do his thing as she sat there, draped in a number of blankets. Finally, he had a diagnosis.
"You're very lucky, young lady. You just have a mild case of hypothermia in the feet, but otherwise, you're A-OK!"
With that, the doctor left to head back to his room. Isabella immediately hugged Katie, relieved to see that she was alright.
"Oh, Katie! What were you thinking?"
"I didn't mean to stay out so late, Chief. You see, I was taking care of Trooper here, who's a stray, and fell asleep while I was watching him eat."
The other girls gathered around, wondering what Isabella was going to do with Katie, as well as Trooper.
"You selfishly put yourself in danger, as well as the rest of us since we had to come out and rescue you! There's only one course of action for this!"
Katie gulped, believing that she was about to receive a serious demerit. But, to her surprise, Isabella's harsh tone ceased when she instead bent down to rub Trooper on the head.
"We need to find Trooper here a good home! Isn't that right, boy?"
Trooper licked Isabella's face in appreciation, and she giggled in response.
The blizzard picked up again shortly after we got to the hotel, forcing us to spend the night there. Thankfully, they made a special accommodation for us so we had some nice beds to sleep in.
The storm was gone by sunrise the next morning, having dumped 12 to 15 inches of snow on the Tri-State Area. Us girls were stuck at the hotel since most of the roads to our homes wouldn't be plowed for at least one more day. But the main thoroughfares downtown were clear enough for someone from the animal shelter to drop by that afternoon to pick up Trooper.
Katie was sad to part ways with him, but the guy who came to get him ensured he already had a client looking for an older, more mature golden labrador retriever to adopt. Two days later, Trooper had a new, permanent home. And his new owner was kind enough to let Katie drop in for a visit whenever she wanted.
I was okay with that. As long as Katie promised never to foolishly wander out into a snowstorm ever again. She's learned her lesson. And she's alive, most importantly. So, yeah, pretty much ignore the fact she said her goodbyes in the last entry.
Oh, and for the record? I'm too young to be 'getting all over him.'
Though maybe in a few years...
And with that, this thrilling two-parter comes to an end! The Fireside Girls survived the Great Tri-State Area Blizzard, and got a new friend!
Next week, it's back to the main season arc! The entire troop chips in for a 'Day in the Life of...' entry. Will Isabella's part have to deal with her trying to get some alone time with Phineas? What does Milly have planned for lunch? And will Ginger find out that her crush is sweet on Adyson? These questions and more might possibly be answered in the (hopefully on-time) next episode of "Fireside Diaries!"