A/N: Hi people, wow I know two updates in a week – it must be a record! But I've been pretty bored and I guess it's just something to do so… Anyway, this is a chapter about the time Pete challenged Jake to a race down Box Hill, with disastrous consequences… Anyway, I'll let you read on ;)
Disclaimer: I don't own Outnumbered
Box Hill (Series 3 Episode 7)
"Oh well, we all make mistakes, don't we?" Pete sighed. "Do you remember that time I challenged Jake to a race down box hill? It's a lot steeper than it looks…" He shook his head. "It's amazing how he only broke his collar bone really, when you think about how many cartwheels he did… 'Till hitting that sheep slowed him down…" He broke off.
"Dad, why do we even have to climb this stupid hill?" Jake complained. It was a classic English winter day – rain was pelting down hard on the Brockmans as they trekked up Box Hill miserably.
"Yeah, why Dad?" Jake's little sister Karen added.
"Because it's character-building, and because… Because… Because we can spend family time together, and… Erm… We…" Pete broke off, unable to think of any more reasons.
"Because we've got such good weather conditions?" Jake said sarcastically, looking out from under the hood of his coat, which was failing at keeping him dry.
"How come Mummy didn't come?" Karen asked.
"Well your Mummy is currently in some shopping center somewhere, having the time of her life no doubt." Pete sighed.
"Dad, can I fire a rock at that sheep to see what happens?" Pete's other son Ben came bouncing over.
"No." Pete said flatly.
"Can I fire a rock at Karen to see what happens?"
"Can I fire a rock at Jake to see what happens?"
"Can I fire a rock at you to see what happens?"
"Have a guess, Ben." Pete was losing his patience.
"Ok!" Ben grinned, placing the rock in his makeshift catapult and stretching it backwards before letting go. The rock pinged forwards, soaring through the air and landing directly on target – on Pete's nose.
"Ow!" Pete exclaimed. "Ben what part of no don't you understand?"
"Well you didn't say no – you just said take a guess."
"Well you obviously guessed wrong then, didn't you?" Pete growled.
"I suppose so," Ben chuckled mischievously. "But honestly Dad, you really should be clearer about what you mean."
"Oh, shut up." Pete muttered. "Is my nose bleeding?"
"Your nose is fine, Dad," Jake muttered, "Now can we please keep going and get this over with?"
"You three are in fine moods today." Pete grumbled as they walked.
"You can talk, Daddy." Karen looked up at her father earnestly.
"Yeah well I've got an excuse, haven't I? I've been attacked by some maniac armed with a catapult and a stone." Pete scowled.
"Dad, you know this whole walking thing was your idea, so you can't really take it out on us." Jake pointed out mildly.
"Oh be quiet Mr. Smarty-pants." Pete chuckled.
After about five minutes silence, where the family concentrated mainly on walking and saving their breath, Karen piped up, "I'm hungry."
"Well you shouldn't have eaten your crisps in the car then, should you?" Pete said.
"Well can I have my sandwich then?"
"Yeah ok." Pete gave in. "I suppose we might as well have a lunch break now."
The four of them sat down and took out their packed lunches.
Ben looked at his sandwich and groaned. "Anyone want to swap a ham for salami?"
"Yeah, I will." Jake volunteered. "Wait, have you, like, poisoned it or something?"
"No, it's just normal ham." Ben said innocently, handing his sandwich over.
"If you say so," Jake eyed his new sandwich suspiciously.
"Right, come on then guys – wagons roll! God I sound like your mother." Pete added under his breath.
"Aw do we have to?" Karen moaned. "I've only just sat down!"
"Come on, sweetheart, up you get." Pete offered his hand to his daughter.
"Can I have a piggyback?" Karen asked.
"Definitely not." Pete refused firmly.
"Oh, go on Daddy, please?" Karen gave him her cutest puppy dog eyes.
"Oh fine." Pete knelt down, and Karen whooped in delight, clambering onto his back. "Love you Daddy!" She squealed.
"I know." Pete muttered.
"Jake?" Ben ran to catch up with his brother.
"Who do you reckon would win between an elephant and a polar bear?" Ben looked up eagerly.
"Erm…" Jake paused for a second, the random question catching him off guard, "probably the elephant 'cause it would just stamp on the polar bear's head."
"Okay, what about a robot and an elephant?"
"What type of robot is it?"
"A massive one which has a massive laser with can zap anything into the black hole, and then the evil demon that lives in the black hole eats them up for breakfast!" Ben grinned.
"Well then probably the robot," Jake concluded. "But it would have to be helped by the evil demon."
"Of course," Ben said, like it was the most obvious thing in the world. "Who would win in a fight – Batman or Spiderman?"
"Why do you even want to know all this?" Jake shook his head at his younger brother.
"It's interesting." Ben shrugged. "So who would win?"
"I have no idea." Jake took out his phone and glared at it. "Why is there no stupid signal?"
"Is that a trick question?" Ben looked at Jake confusedly.
"No, I was talking to my phone." Jake sighed.
"Well, why were you talking to your phone?" Karen piped up. "Can it reply?"
"No, I was just… never mind." Jake muttered.
"Oh come on, who would win?" Ben was determined to get an answer. "Batman or Spiderman?"
"Batman." Jake decided.
"Really?" Ben looked surprised. "I thought it was Spiderman… Oh well."
"Who would win in a race, a woodlouse or a spider?" Karen asked.
"A spider definitely," Jake said, "it's got more legs."
"What about a huge gooey nine-legged 5-eyed creature from another galaxy against a hippo?" Ben asked.
"Well, the alien because it has more legs and it's gooey so it can slip and slide all over the place!" Karen shook her head at her brother's stupidity.
"Who would win between Karen and a tiger?"
"Me!" Karen exclaimed.
"The tiger." Jake said bluntly.
"Who would in a race between Daddy and Jake?" Karen asked.
"Well, me obviously," Jake said, "I could beat Dad any day."
"Oh really?" Pete raised an eyebrow at Jake.
"Oh come on, Dad," Jake sniggered, "even Grandad beat you in that race we did last year and he's got arthritis and dementia."
"I don't see what dementia's got to do with a race." Pete defended himself. "And anyway, it was an egg and spoon race."
Jake rolled his eyes, "still…"
"Oh, so you think you can beat me, do you?" Pete grinned.
"I don't think, Dad. I know." Jake said confidently.
"Come on then, prove it. A race down Box Hill, just you and me." Pete goaded.
"I don't need to prove it Dad." Jake shook his head. "Just look at you."
"What do you mean, look at me? I read survey saying that men in the mid-forties are much more actively-able then most teenagers these days." Pete said.
"Well firstly, that's rubbish. And secondly Dad, you're not in your mid-forties – you're forty nine. And I'm not a teenager – I'm twelve. So that's a fail in itself." Jake pointed out.
"Oh come on, Jakester… A race down the hill will prove I'm faster." Pete nudged his son.
"It looks pretty steep, Dad." Jake bit his lip apprehensively.
"Are you being a chicken?" Pete shook his head regretfully. "Oh well, if you really don't want too…"
"Fine, I'll do it!" Jake snapped.
"But what about us Daddy?" Karen asked.
"Well you two can just follow us down and the loser will buy everyone a hot chocolate when we're all at the bottom." Pete decided, with a challenging look at Jake, who shrugged as if to say he didn't care.
Karen and Ben smiled.
"Right troops, on the start line!" Karen yelled.
Pete and Jake lined up next to each other.
"Ready to go down?" Jake smirked.
"On your marks…" Ben said, "Get set… Go!"
Pete set off, sprinting as fast as his legs could carry him. He was going so fast all the scenery was a blur and he felt so sure he was going to win this race. But suddenly he noticed a red and black stripy hoody and the distance that belonged to Jake and he gasped. He couldn't believe how far behind he was! He was never going to live this down, so he urged his legs to go faster and it must have worked a bit because before he knew it he was getting closer to Jake.
Suddenly, Pete's keen eyes spotted something that Jake hadn't – a stone which could easily be tripped over and Jake was heading straight for it.
"Jake!" He cried. "Watch out for the stone!"
Jake, thinking this was some sort of tactic to get him to slow down, just turned his around and stuck his tongue out at his Dad, but as he did so tripped on the stone that sent him flying down the hill at a remarkable speed.
"Jake!" Pete screamed. His son was flipping down the hill, almost doing cartwheels, and every time his head hit the ground again and again Pete flinched at the thought of the pain his son must be going through and how much damage was going on.
Pete ran faster than he ever had in his life, determined to save his son. What he got brain damage, or broke his back and was paralyzed for the rest of his life, or broke his neck and…
No. Jake couldn't die.
Just as he thought his son would never slow down, and that he was going to keep on rolling until the hill ended and the main road began, Jake smashed into a sheep (of all things) which seemed to slow him down a bit, before slamming into a fence and crunching to a halt.
The whole world slowed down as Pete raced towards his son who was lying still at the bottom of the hill. Pete bent down to his son who was curled up on his side, and prised him onto his back so he could check for injuries.
"Jake?" Pete whispered. "Jake, speak to me."
It was torture for him to have to watch his son curled on the ground whimpering, his face twisted in agony.
"It's alright, Jakey." Pete soothed. "I'm here. Now tell me where it hurts."
"Neck." Jake moaned.
"Right," Pete was so relieved to hear his son speak, that he didn't properly comprehend what Jake had said and it was a few moments before the severity of those words hit him. "Wait, your neck?" He gulped. "Are you sure?"
"Daddy!" Karen cried, running towards her father at top speed. "What's happened to Jake?"
"Karen don't run!" Pete yelled, an image appearing in his head of his daughter falling like Jake had. "Jake's just had a bit of an accident so I'm checking if he's ok."
"Is Jake gonna die, Dad?" Ben, who had somehow appeared at Pete's side without him noticing, asked an uncharacteristically serious look on his face.
"No, he's not." Pete said firmly, trying to erase all doubt from his mind. "Now, Ben, I need you to be very grown up for me and I need you to ring Mummy on my phone." Pete handed his youngest son his mobile.
"Alright," Ben nodded.
"Now, Jake, are you sure it's your neck that hurts?" Pete checked.
Jake was very pale and sweating, despite the freezing temperature and it seemed to take a lot of effort for him to open his mouth and reply, "a bit below my neck…"
"Okay, now I want you tell me if this hurts." Pete brushed his finger lightly over Jake's collar bone. Jake yelped and flinched away.
"It's ok…" Pete stroked Jake's hand comfortingly. "Ben, are you speaking to Mummy?"
"Yep," Ben said, "I just told her Jake fell down the hill and he's probably broken his neck." He paused. "And I think she's crying."
"Oh God," Pete sighed. "Give the phone here. Sue?"
"Oh, Pete," His wife sobbed down the phone.
"Don't worry, Sue, his neck's not broken I don't think – that's just Ben… Being Ben… No I think it's his collar bone… Yes it is that bad… Well I didn't think the hill would be that steep… I know it's my fault… Alright I'll ring the ambulance now… See you soon, bye."
"Are we getting an ambulance?" Karen looked up interestedly.
"Yes, and Mummy's coming to pick you two up as well because we can't all ride in the ambulance." Pete replied.
"Aww…" Ben moaned. "I wanted to go in the ambulance.
Pete rolled his eyes. "Well, you can't."
"If Jake dies can I get his laptop?"
About fifteen minutes later (although it felt like a lifetime to Pete) the ambulance turned up. A paramedic questioned Pete, while others loaded Jake into the ambulance.
"Well, yes I did challenge him to a race, but I didn't know how steep it was." Pete protested.
"This isn't the first time your kids have ended up in casualty, is it Mr Brockman?" The man surveyed him with suspicion.
"If you're saying that I harm my kids on purpose…" Pete began angrily.
"I'm not saying that at all, Mr Brockman, I am merely concerned about your… Ah… Responsibility when it comes to your children."
"And what's that supposed to mean?" Pete fumed.
The man looked at him calmly. "Will you be riding with your son in the ambulance?"
"Yes, yes of course, Pete said distractedly. "My wife will be coming to pick up my other children now… Ben, get off the ambulance!"
"Hmm…" The man said.
"Oh look, she's here now." Pete waved to a car that was just pulling up. "Over here, Sue!"
Sue, who looked incredibly harassed and worried, stumbled out of the car and ran straight to Pete. "Pete… Is he ok?" She mumbled into his sweater as she hugged him.
"He's got a broken collar bone, Mrs Brockman," The paramedic informed Sue, "but he should survive."
"Thank God," she breathed with relief. "Pete, I'll take the kids home and then arrange for a babysitter and come to the hospital."
"Good," Pete said quickly. "Right, well I guess I'll be getting in the ambulance now."
"Oh, and don't think you've got off lightly," Sue added with venom in her voice, "challenging your twelve year old son to a race down Box Hill? We're going to be having serious words when we get home. Karen, stop harassing the driver – let's go!"