The Heir Of PCA
iDo Not Own Zoey 101 or any other show or works of art used for this noncommercial story.
Genres include fluff, family, adventure, mystery, drama, friendship.
The story occurs in the identified universe of a huge variety of current or past live action shows produced for Nickelodeon channel, including, but not restricted to, Zoey 101, The iCarly Show, Victorious, Drake & Josh, How To Rock, Big Time Rush, Unfabulous, Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide, True Jackson VP, Supah Ninjas, House Of Anubis, and makes heavy use of a variety of members of their casts.
The plot takes off with the canonical start of the plot of Zoey 101, and is thus prior to almost all other canons except Drake & Josh, Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide, and Unfabulous
After an accident of the owner of the elitary boarding school named Pacific Coast Academy, his son Douglas Filmore Badford — a guest character from Supah Ninjas: Mr. Bradford with a first name borrowed from a rôle of the same actor in third-party owned Bones— takes over the rulership. His rule is accompanied by uncanny events, culminating int the termporary transformation of some students into various mutant creatures.
Beverly, the school admin's secretary, tells the story of this mysterious era at Pacific Coast Academy.
Couples include Dustin Brooks – Carly Shay, Chase Matthews – Addie Singer, Logan Reese – Dana Cruz, and many more.
The story is written for the following Livejournal-communities:
One prompt per chapter Prompt for Livejournal community Crossovers 50
Table of Contents
1.1::The Fatal Accident
1.3::Student Drop Day
4.2::The Stained Dormitory Hall
5::The School Play
5.1::Close To Hollywood
5.2::Our Drama Club
7.4::Highway To Nowhere
9::Dance To The Moon
9.1::PCA Middle School Dance
9.4::In The Moonlight
11::New Academic Year
11.1::Coming And Leaving Pupils
11.2::PCA goes dark.
12::Fall At PCA
13.2::The Mean Seductress
13.4::In Sackcloth And Ashes
13.5::Trisha's Weird Interest
14.2::The Adulterous Cop
15.2::The Chase And Michael Show
15.5::PCA Versus Belleview
16::Flowers And Bees
16.1::Zorka goes Hollywood.
16.3::Like A Spider
16.4::Jerk In The Fountain
17.2::Origin Of Life
17.3::A Sponsor For Sushi Rox
18.3::Michael And Vanessa
19::Most Sunny Place
19.2::Top Of The Roof
20.1::May In Malibu
20.4::The Future Of Chase And Michael Show
20.6::Wing And Kazu
20.7::Dana Loves Logan
21.1::Back On The Campus
22::The Deadly Model Plane
22.1::Rivers goes down.
22.3::Coco goes nuts.
22.4::Repairing The Plane
23::A New Bacteria
24::Classes And Project
24.4::The Return Of Dean Rivers
25.1::A Message Like A Cannonball
25.2::Faithful And True
25.3::The Football Match
25.4::The Thanksgiving Party
27.2::Apples And Kisses
27.4::The End Of A Career
28::Happy New Years
28.2::Celebrate The New Year
28.3::Zoey In The Ring
29::Death Of A Grandma
29.1::Dustin In Trouble?
29.2::A Birthday Surprise
29.3::The Doodle Cake
29.5::Rebecca fesses up.
30.2::Looking For The Lift
31.3::Michael's New Crush
31.4::A Zebra For A GO
31.5::Open Mike Night
32.2::Brighter Than One Thousand Suns
33::Dustin needs Zoey.
33.1::Parcel From Japan
33.4::Dustin wants to leave.
34::The Don Juan
34.3::Claire Sawyer, Future Lawyer
34.4::Zoey remains stubborn.
34.7::Chase and Michael strike back.
35::Until The Morning Come!
35.1::The Stench Killer
35.2::The Blix Van
36::Customer Of The Week
36.1::Back At PCA
36.3::Looking For A Dance Partner
36.6::The Perverse Jerk
37.2.3::The Talent Performance
37.2.4::The Winner Reveiled
38.2::The Half a Million Dollar Car
38.3.1::Questions For Zoey
38.3.2::Questions For Dustin
39.3::The Golden Scarab
40.1::Left Alone At PCA
40.3::Engagement And Separation
41::The Windbag From Santa Fé
41.1::James Dennifer Garrett
41.3::A Song For Grandma
42::A Gift For Mom
42.1::Errand Boy Dustin
42.5::New Tech Producer
43::These Boots Are Made For Walking
43.1::A Sponsor For Carly
43.6::One Hundred Miles
44.1::The Sick Rake
44.3::The Flower Of The PCA
45::Candle Light At Vaccaro
45.2::Trouble At Vaccaro
46.2::Carly On TV
46.3::Coffee Shop On The Campus
46.4::Zeeboh The Dino
46.5::The Ping Pong Fraud
47.1::Trip To Mystic Mountain
47.2::The Big Coward
47.3::A Girlfriend For Michael
47.4::Clackers Instead Of Roller Coaster
48.1::The Stick Switch Car
48.3::Wired For Mindy
48.4::The Prom Band
48.5::Food And Drinks
49::The Life And The Times Of Kelly Cooper
49.3::New York, New York!
Chapter 1. Pilot
1.1. The Fatal Accident
Hello, my name is Beverly Brown[]. Years ago, I worked as a secretary in the administration office of Pacific Coast Academy, one of the most expensive and most renowned boarding schools in California. Since its foundation, the school had been in the hands of one family, the Bradfords. I had been employed when Leo Bradford[], number two in this dynasty, was the sovereign ruler of this most noble educational institution. This was not easy due to the heavy prejudices of the old stubborn creep against women. just like his deceased father. Fortunately, Leo was not often on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy, which was a good thing as the few visits, usually in the framework of homecoming events, always used to be terrible. My direct boss was Dean Carl Rivers, a very arrogant and grumpy guy on its own right, and his wife, psychopathic Tipper, was even worse and harder to bear. But nothing could beat the horror of the presence of Leo Bradford.
Due to the prejudices of Leo Bradford and his father, it was not hard to understand that Pacific Coast Academy had been an academy and boarding school just for boys during its more than fifty years of existence. This fact was due for a change only in my first year in that job, and it was definitely not the idea of Leo Bradford, but of his wife, and it was motivated for the lack of money and sponsors. More precisely, the athletic teams of the school had been pathetically week for over a decade, and many critics figured that the lack of cheerleaders was the reason for this inflating disaster. Well, the school had got its own cheerio squad, but this was a really poor excuse, for being a cheerleader was not exactly a dream of most of the boys, it was rather a source for future humiliation and rejection, be it by colleges, employers, or girls. A possible way out was that of hiring cheerleaders from elsewhere, but those girls did understandably not have the same motivation and the same possibilities as homegrown ones, and they were usually only poorly integrable into the spirit of the school. Needless to say, Leo Bradford had not really accepted the decision he had made under the pressure of the sponsors and the alumni, and he was always growing insane.
One morning — that of the last day of the ending academic year — officer David Alejandro Vega[] had called us and requested to let in one of his envoys for a serious talk with Dean Rivers. And the reason for the conversation was serious, indeed. Leo Bradford had been driving his car with top speed into a wall, and the technical experts of Beverly Hills Police Department had not found any reason to believe in a technical failure. The medics of the same police department had not found him drunk or subject to medications with an effect detrimental to responsible driving, either. As a consequence of the accident, the owner of the school had not died, but was now seriously crippled and left in a long-lasting comatose state, definitely unable to accomplish the duties of the monarch of such an institution for quite some time — according to responsible medic Jeff Glazer[] at least several months, if not years, well, survival could not be guaranteed at all under these circumstances. For that reason, his son Filmore was going to take over Pacific Coast Academy for the time of his father's inhibition.
1.2. First Appearance
I had just returned from the summer break, and there were still a few days left until student drop day, but we had to be present for the purpose of planning and preparing the start of the new academic year. Dean Rivers was in a scared mood, because we were also expecting Douglas Filmore Bradford to show up and introduce himself to the administration of his own school. Not much was hitherto known about the heir of Pacific Coast Academy, as his father, during his rare but sharply unpleasant visits, had never mentioned his children — we had not even known about their mere existence — or any other kinsmen besides his father — of whom he spoke with awe — or his wife — of whom he used to speak with excruciating distain.
There was a sound of knocking at the door separating my room, the antechamber of the dean's office room, from the corridor of the adminsitrational building, and I let the uncanny visitor in. He introduced himself on site as the new master of this illustrous educational institution, the very heir of the Bradford clan. I told him semi-politely to go straight through the open door leading to the proper office of Dean Rivers — his awe-inspiring posture did not make it easy to stay as polite as usually expected from an office manager.
Filmore walked directly into the room of our headmaster and shook hands with him, in a very weird manner of which I could not make a lot of sense. He introduced himself by his name, and he also showed him his diploma from Harvard University proving him as a highest raking teacher for science. Indeed, he had been teaching science at some high school in Empire City for several years already, as proven by some other document which declared him as one of the outstanding teachers of science in the state of New Jersey, laureled by the state's union of teachers and by the national union of science teachers. With those considerable merits earned by Filmore, it was so infinitely much more astonishing that Leo Bradford had never even mentioned his son, let alone tried to get him to teach science here at Pacific Coast Academy, a school employing — or so they claimed officially in its prospects and on their web site — the best teachers of all of California, if not the whole country. And Douglas Filmore announced that he would not only come down every now and then in order to check the situation at this school, but that he was also going to actively teach the AP classes for science and to advise the science club, if there was something like that at our illustrous school. Dean Rivers and I were glad that the new boss was actually doing something for his money on a regular base instead of just showing up and wreak havoc every now and then, in the likeness of the manners of his father and his grandfather. But, on the other hand, both of us were also scared by having someone like him around on the campus much more often then we were used to see his ancestry.
1.3. Student Drop Day
The days of the arrival of the students on our campus for a new academic year used to be very chaotic, and this year, the arrival of the girls made things even worse, or so I had expected. The dormitory rooms for the girls had been assigned very hastily, and they were supervised by a dormitory adviser, named Coco Wexler, with little civilised manners — put mildly. I wonder where Dean Rivers had grabbed her from, maybe they were just a special offer in the super market, a dozen for a price of five, or something like that. One concern of Leo Bradford had been that of girls distracting boys, and this prejudice had indeed come true, in the sense that one of our student, Chase Bartholomew Matthews, steered his bike straight into the next flag staff when seeing a blonde that had just arrived on the drop site and was looking for her way across the campus. I was still busy writing the plans for the curricular activities of the first term, a boring regular job at the beginning of the academic year, but, inspite of watching the collision of Chase and the flag staff from my office window, I did not think too much about the troubles the era of coeducation would bring.
Chapter 2. Quinnvention
2.1. First Clashes
The new academic year was now almost a week old, and there had already been quite a few clashes between the boys and the girls. The centre of the inflict were the macho claims issued by on Logan Reese, a middle school boy who happened to be the son of the most important sponsor of our school as well as of several other private schools in the county of Los Angeles, a certain Malcolm Reese[], the big czar of Hollywood. Since sixth grade, Logan had derived from his family's financial impact on this school a whole host of privileges for himself. And he was excruciatingly arrogant and sexist, which meant nothing good for a guy living at a coeducational boarding school.
In this special case, Logan had deemed girls unable of playing basketball and only suited for cheerleading. Honestly said, this was a really annoying point at former boys-only school, as boys were usually not keen on being cheerios, given that nowadays male cheerleaders were considered weak and queer in any sense of the word. As aforementioned, opening for coeducation had also been done with the second thought of being able to build up a homegrown cheerio squad.
But , one of our first girls and , by chance, the niece of aforementioned Doc Glazer, had dared to contradict Logan, and, in order to prove her claims, she had collected a team of girls for a basketball match against the boys. During the match, Logan had pushed Zoey ridely in the dirt without getting punished.
Nevertheless, the boys had only been able to win the match by one point, or goal, or whatever that is in basketball.
I was not pleased by the possibility of Logan Reese pushing a fellow pupil into the dirt and get away with it, and I expressed my opinion about this in the administrational office.
Dean Rivers told me to shut up, as Logan's father was the biggest sponsor, and as the Bradford family was prejudiced against girls anyways and would never do anything about it.
Well, this had certainly been the case under the lead of Leo Bradford, but maybe his son Douglas Filmore was of a different kind and would decide in a more objective manner. Granted, there was a lot of wishful thinking involved, given that it was still the same family. But the new overlord would soon show up in order to give a speech, and I was rigged and ready to mention this utterly injust case.
2.2. Zoey Brooks
Without the knowledge of my bodd, I had arranged a meeting in the administrational office with and .
Rivers had tried — until the very last moment — to prevent me from doing something like that and embarrassing the administration as a whole. This shows how much Leo Bradford had intimidated the staff of the prep school during the last decades. Now he was really flabbergasted when Zoey Brooks showed up in order to talk to the junior lord of Pacific Coast Academy. He expected a stern penal sermon held by Douglas Filmore.
But the latter remained fairly calm when facing Zoey Brooks in front of my desk, and he shook hands with her — something totally unthinkable for old . "So, you are now new at this school?"
Zoey Brooks forced herself into a smile, for, inspite of his formal politeness and friendliness, Douglas Filmore appeared to have triggered an eery feeling in the impressively charming middle school girl. "Oh yeah, indeed, since last week …"
Filmore got straight to the point and started talking about the absolutely inappropriate demeanour of .
Zoey Brooks sighed deeply. "I am now over it, more most of the boys at Pacific Coast Academy are really nice, just as elsewhere, and I have got more troubles bty now with my room mates." There were two more girls accomodated in 101 Butler Hall, the dormitory block hosting Zoey Brooks. Those girls were Dana Cruz — an aggressive Latina tomboy — and Nicole Bristow — a bimbo wench from Kansas. The two of them were permanently at each other's throat, especially because Nicole was very much obsessed with fashion and her hair style, and she was permanently talking about all the cute things she had already encountered on the campus of our school, especially cute boys. In addition, Zoey had got a few problems with her room key, in the sense that she kept on leaving it in her dormitory room when leaving it, and the dormitory doors were such that it was possible to lock yourself out in this way.
I suggested Zoey to wear her key on a chain worn around her throat — like a locket, or around her wrists — like wristbands. So, this problem was not really hard to fix, but the perpetually quarrelling room mates, videlicet Nicole and Dana, were a totally different brand of a problem, one for which I had no suggestion at all to make.
Zoey Brooks had already found a temporary solution, but apparently not a very satisfactory one, and so she kept on complaining, "as a consequence, I moved out for the time being and moved in with from the dormitory room next door, as she was alone in there, and she has been feeling extremely lonely, or so I thought. But this morning, I woke up with electrodes in my head, or whatever those things are called. Quinn is measuring my brain activities for some scientific purposes."
Filmore appeared very interested, apparently because he was a teacher for science. "Wow, that sounds very interesting, but what exactly is your new room mate measuring?"
Zoey's eyes bugged out, because she had just been talking about the nightmares she was going through as the room mate of what appeared to be some sort of a future mad scientist, and all she got to hear was a remark about the interesting aspects of that creepy experiment.
And said Quinn Pensky was not only performing this one experiment, but her whole dormitory room was chock full with scientific instruments, test tubes, and other geek stuff.
I wondered why Quinn's room had not been occupied with a second room mate beforehand, although, according to the report made by Coco Wexler, there had been no rooms in Butler Hall occupied by one student only. I guessed that Quinn's assigned room mates had been fleeing from her already after one or two days, given all the night mares they had most likely gone through in such an environment, nightmares Quinn was monitoring with her machines.
Whatever the situation, Douglas Filmore Bradford was now hell bent on visiting Butler Hall and Quinn Pensky's laboratory room, oops, dormitory room.
2.3. The Laboratory
Instigated by Dean Rivers, I had to follow Douglas Filmore Bradford and Zoey Brooks to Butler Hall and visit Quinn Pensky's multi-purpose room.
And, indeed, I choked when I saw all the stuff standing around in this room, and I figured that there was really not much room left for a second — let alone a third — room mate.
Zoey waved and walked away, remarking, "oh, I better go and look for my little brother, Dustin. The poor guy is completely lost on the campus without me, and he is perpetually out of money."
Quinn suggested, "oh, that is not a problem, he may work for me as a test object, and I will pay him a fe bucks for it."
Zoey Brooks was most definitely not amused when listening to wat Quinn had just been proposing. She was apparently really protective, if not overprotective, given that Dustin had already been a student here at Pacific Coast Academy before girls were admitted, and he knew his way around on the campus very well.
In this moment, I heard a lot of uncouth words spoken, or yelled, by the girls next door, probably aforementioned Nicole Bristow and Dana Cruz.
Here, Quinn explained, "This is the latest quinnventions — I am inventing things, and my name is Quinn, so these things are quinnventions …"
Douglas Filmore nodded solemnly, but he wondered, "so, why don't you use the school's laboratories for your inventions?"
Quinn sighed deeply and moaned, "the captai of the science fair club, Wayne Gilbert alias 'Fire Wire', does not allow girls to the science fair club."
Well, Wayne Gilbert would probably, no, most surely, have been able to get away with such a verdict in the era of Leo Bradford, but Douglas Filmore did not accept such a discrimination and insisted in opening the science fair club, of which he was the adviser, for girls, and especially for Quinn Pensky. This was the start of a long happy collaboration.
Quinn was now able to move all of her scientific equipment, or at least most of it, into the official scientific laboratory of the school and its science fair club. This would, in turn, make her dormitory room accessible for other girls again. But the problem with Dana and Nicole was not going to get by with ease.
Chapter 3. The Spy
Due to Zoey Brooks's forgivenness, Logan Reese had not yet received his well deserved punishment for pushing the blond Mary Sue rudely into the dirt, but the way of Douglas Filmore Bradford showed that he was taking the complaints of girls basically serious, as completely opposed to what almost everone here at Pacific Coast Academy had expected from a Bradford, given Leo Bradford's well-known and universaly feared insane prejudices against girls.
The girls were now more and more encouraged to address the school's administration in the case of any problems with boys instead of having to deal with them on their own in a more or less creepy and dangerous manner.
And the next occasion for doing so had not been very far from the aforementioned day.
Zoey Brooks and her bimbo-style sidekick Nicole Bristow were thundering into the administration office, notwithstanding a label attached to the putside and telling people not to bother Dean Rivers. Bit I let them through anyways, and the headmaster was not exactly pleased by this.
Zoey explained the reason for showing up, and she was permanently in terrupted by Nicole, which was of course more than just a little bit annoying.
According to Zoey's report, the middle school girls had recently played a party game named Confess Or Stress in their lounge. They game went approximately like this: each participant had to roll dice, and, depending on the outcome, was thereupon forced to either confess something embarrassing or to accomplish some no less embarrassing task chosen by the fellow pupils. The girls had agreed on keeping everything secret, but today, most of the boys knew about the confessed secrets or other embarrassing facts of the girls.
Even worse, the girls had already started accusing each other of being a traitor.
Nicole explained, "I am making a list of the boys with the best lips, judging those according to their shapes, their size, their colour, their kissing abilities, and stuff like that, as there are so many cute boys in my classes, this is the best abouyt Pacific Coast Academy, you know, the cute boys, and the pools, and the beach, and — I haven't yet mentioned all the cute boys, have I?"
Dean Rivers started cringing in his office chair, for Nicole Bristow's voice was hard to bear, especially when used to talk for several minutes without any interruption whatsoever about the same topic. He sent the girls straight away, promising hypocritically to take care of this threat. But he was most likely just trying to get rid of them without actually doing anything about it.
I had to think about some movie that I had seen just a few weeks before, in the middle of the summer break, a movie about treason and espionage and stuff like that, what was it … now it was time for a sushi, one for me and one for Dean Rivers. For that reason, I called the number of Sushi Rox, a Japanese bar residing on our campus. Kazu Park[], the owner of the sushi bar, accepted our orders and promised to send us a delivery boy as fast as possible.
Then we had to wait for several minutes, well, at least have an hour, a long time which made Dean Rivers turn more and more nervous.
Finally, Chase Bartholomew Matthews showed up, all exhausted, with a package of dead tuna and other stuff, and he excused himself for being late, but there had been a reason for this.
Since the beginning of the year, Logan and I work here as Kazu's delivery boy. I can't finds another job on the campus.
This means that I have to do most of teh work, and Logan just follows around and starts flirting with the girls of the campus.
The latter hanker madly after him, either for his looks or for his money, you know. Of course he had been rude to the girls, but he has been dforgiven ever since. Last night, he gave the girls a gift for their lounge, a huge stuffed bear, just in order to make up for the rude demeanour during the first days. And I had to carry it.
But today, Logan is sick and does not work as a delivery boy for Kazu, and I have to do all those deliveries all alone, may you imagine? The campus is so hugem, and there are really weird guys out here. Have you ever heard before about a goat liking spicy tuna?
No, I had never heard about such a beast before, and I had got a hard time imagining it. Maybe Chase had been hallucinating after having been forced to do all the deliveries alone, without Logan's help. Was this not against the laws against child work? I also did not understand whu Logan Reese, the son of the richest of all Hollywood producers and most likely the one among the students with most money at his hands, had accepted a job as a delivery boy for Kazu in the first place. There was something smelling exorbitantly fishy, and it was not just the content of the kitchen of Kazu's Japanese bar.
Dean Rivers had already paid Chase and given him some tip and then sent him away. He was usually more of a miser and would have sent the delivery boy away with a loose jacket button, but I had told him to come up with some more appropriate tip. Now Chase was gone, and we could not ask any more questions about it. But Chase had been really in a hurry because there were still quite a few deliveries left to do.
I came to some preliminary conclusion about the whole affair of the girls' lounge: Logan Reese had only started working for Kazu in order to find a way to annoy the girls and probably to spy on them in one way or the he had reached his goal and found a way to make fun of them by spreading their secrets, he was no longer in need of doing his job, so he was now leaving it all to his room mate and pal for over two years. I wanted to talk to Dean Rivers about it, but I still had not got a clue about how Logan Reese had found out about what had been said by the girls playing their game of Confess Or Stress. And it was not a good idea to bother Dean Rivers with unprovable assumptions, especially not in this case, as the father of Logan Reese was malcolm Reese, the most important sponsor of our school. I just sensed that the stuffed plush pet had got something to do with the whole mess, and so I decided to tell the girls about my conclusion.
3.2. The Culprit
I had called Zoey Brooks on site on her cellular phone, and she had deemed my observations absolutely plausible.
The girls, especially , examined the plush bear closely and found it equipped with some espionage technology whose name I could not understand.
Of course, Logan Reese was way too much of a jerk to know how to use that technology, but he had turned out to have paid Wayne Gilbert in order to cooperate and provide the necessary technology. Now Leo Bradford was thinking about some due punishment for the evil boys.
The culprits wanted to clean the girls' dormitory rooms for the next few weeks as a punishment, but this would just have given them the opportunity to commit even more perversities of the kind of snooping the girls. So they were sentenced to cleaning the kitchen of Sushi Rox for the next months, and they would never eat any sushi thereafter, period.
And the girls were now finally able to continue their party games in their lounge without having to fear getting snooped by a certain creepy dandy.
Chapter 4. Family Bonds
4.1. Little Genius
Dustin Brooks was apparently a whole lot smarter than all the other elementary school boys, and thus he was allowed to participate in the academic bowl for the middle school classes. But he still needed some fine hone and polish in order to participate successfully, so Dean Rivers had allowed him to go to some of the higher grades in order to get some practice, especially in mathematics and the natural sciences. The sectionals were standing in front oof our door, and we had got some tough opponents, such as James K. Polk, Silver Spring, and Lakewood.
Zoey Brooks was a little bit worried about her little brother, and she swore to beat up any of the elder kids trying to bully her sweet little brother.
Accidentally, the big boss Douglas Filmore Bradford had heard about Dustin's genius, and he was now interested in taking care of this. "Dustin Brooks does not need any middle school classes, he is better off learning everything necessary from me, a multiply awarded science teacher from New York Ciity!" His voice was both uncanny and determined, making me tremble slightly from the inside. Even Dean Rivers was not left totally cold and he was only able to stammer a silent "Ok," as it was really not easy to contradict the very boss.
Dustin did not care, for he just wanted to have fun in the academic bowl team.
Inspite of not being at ease with Douglas Filmore, I had to sigh for relief because the dumbest middle school bullies, such as one "six foot four and full of muscles" Keith Finch[], would have inevitably felt made fun of by a smart elementary school kid knowing much more than they did, and they would have abused him mentally and physically to no end, unless Zoey had intervened, in which case Dustin would have felt thoroughly embarrassed.
The blond Mary Sue was certainly an exorbitantly loving, caring, and responsible elder sister, but many of the younger brothers I had to do with here at Pacific Coast Academy had got problems with standing in the shadow of their elder brothers, and Zoey being a girl was not really going to make things here a lot easier.
4.2. The Stained Dormitory Hall
This morning, the entrance of the administration office rooms had been covered with glued wallpapers, making it impossible for me and Dean Rivers to get to our office rooms without cutting our way through the wall of cardboard, using a knife borrowed from the kitchen of Kazu Park.
Carl Rivers cursed and moaned a lot about this, and he concluded that this had been the start of this fall's annual prank week, the week preceeding the homecoming ball. I had not been around here during the last year, and thus I was not familiar with that annpying tradition. Generally, new students were the targets of wevil pranks during one whole week, but they did not hesitate doing the same to new staff members.
And of course, I was not the only victim of this evil deed. All female students were new at Pacific Coast Academy, as this was the first year of coeducation, thwence there was much of a reason for the assumption that the established boys here would pull some collective pranks on the girls.
Indeed, a thoroughly upset and ennervated Zoey Brooks stood now in our office, accompanied by her inevitablke sidekick Nicole Bristow. Zoe reported that she had woken up in the morning, just as usual …
No, not quite as usual, for Nicole has been in my bed, too, because she was afraid of the dark.
Whatever, the real shock was still to come, more precisely, when we noticed that the walls of our dormitory room were covered all with toilet paper.
Of course we wondered about the reasons for this, and the eightgrader boys have already admitted collectively to the evil deed. It is a tradition here at Pacific Coast Academy — or so they say — to prank new pupils during this week of the year.
Zoey wanted to put an end to this excruciatingly foul and disgusting tradition, as it would otherwise be the source of an ongoing war between boys and goirls, something this newcoming coeducative school should not go through.
Nicole had intervened a lot during Zoey's report, using her usual hymns about all those cute boys here at Pacific Coast Academy, when compared to all the ugly ones from Kansas.
Dean Rivers was annoyed by the girls' complaints, but he could not deny that Zoey was right. He was, however, more concerned with the equally impending vist of Douglas Filmore Bradford in order to oversee the preparations for the homecoming ball. I had to connect Carl and the big boss of Pacific Coast Academy It was the first time that Douglas Filmore hosted the event, and he would be very careful. He wanted especially to visit the sculpture of his grandfather, the very founder of this school. The monument was standing near the middle school boys' dormitory halls, and our headmaster had ordered to get it cleaned and polished thoroughly.
Douglas Filmore explained that he was not going to practise the exorbitantly oldfashioned family cult of his father, but he was still going to look at the brass monument. As he was now informed about the prank week, he was also going to speak a work of power about those evil deeds. According to the boss, Logan Reese had already gone too far once when using a plush pet in order to spy the girls' lounge. And now he was going too far again. At least Filmore had no doubts that Logan Reese was the very ringleader of the evil deeds.
4.3. The Sectionals
Now it was timwe for the aforementioned sectionals of the academic bowl of the county of Los Angeles.
Our team was correlated by Douglas Filmore Bradford in person, and it consisted of aforementioned Dustin Brooks, along with Quinn Pensky, Wayne Gilbert, and Joey Edelman[].
Leo Bradford had never accompanied any team of Pacific Coast Academy to any sectionals, barring the football team, and they had lost out badly whenever that had happened.
Douglas Filmore stuck in particular both thumbs up for little Dustin, the captain of our team.
He had just made an extremely important decision, one sounding like lots of work for the administration. More precisely, he had deemed the brass monument of his grandfather outfashioned and stupid, and there should be a replacement made following the modern pop art trend.
Now it was our duty to find an appropriate and affordable sculptor in order to produce a new monument during the next few months, and we needed to organise the whole activity very carefully.
The competition here was very hard, and especially Dustin convince everyone with his excellent general knowledge in each and every subject of knowledge. Alas, he was also very nervous in this position, and this made the difference.
Finally, the team from James K. Polk turned out victorious, with an accumulation of genius like Simon Nelson Cook, Evelin Kwong, Lance Widget, and Albert Wormenheimer. This nerdy phalanx was ultimately impenetrable, not for our beloved team, nor for the other combattants from Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts, Palmwood, Silver Springs, and even for Lakewood, last year's victorious team with supersmart Felic Garcia.
Dustin was a bit disappointed, but the presence of his elder sister was now very important for him. The blond Mary Sue took her little brother into her arms in order to soak his tears with her tanktop. This was really one excessively cute picture that made the opponents moan for exorbitant awe.
Chapter 5. The School Play
5.1. Close To Hollywood
Whikle not being a specialised school for future Hollywood nstars and other entertainers of that kind of sort of thing, such as Palmwood and Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts, we, the people of Pacific Coast Academy, were tightly connected to the movie and TV business, not just because of our locations in the outskirts of the world's metropole of modern entertainment, but also because of our sponsors, such as aforementioned Malcolm Reese, the czar of Hollywood.
Little wonder, there had already been many actors, producers, stage workers, directors, costume designers, and stuff like that at our school.
And our teachers had got many connections to the scene as well, especially David Bender, one of the more popular ones.
Recently, the latter had assigned a class project to his eighth grade pupils, something related to making a commercial for a new brand of scooters.[] Bender had got a friend in the publicity business, a certain Jake Savage, working for the producer of the scooters, a company named Qualitech.
Logan Reese had been obnoxiously mean and borrowed the equipment and production staff of his father, worth probably several millions of bucks. His team pals Michael Barret and Chase Bartholomew Matthews had been completely sidelined, something which was definitely not the purpose of a class project.
But in the end, the girls had made it, videlicet Zoey Brooks and her sidekicks Nicole Bristow and Dana Cruz, because their commercial was the most appropriate. And this had gone well although Zoey, Nicole, and Dana had been at each other's throat while making the commercial movie, probably due to Logan's impact.
5.2. Our Drama Club
There was a drama club here at Pacific Coast Academy, advised by former Hollywood co-director Patrick Fletcher[].
This year, the club was , for the first time since the start of Fletcher's work at this school, going to perform a play written by one of our students, and precisely Chase Bartholomew Matthews. It was planned as a fluff comedy about an alien girl stranded on earth and her heroic life saver.
Fletcher had just been done with the auditions and was now tormented by the need of chosing the first matches for the most important rôles.
Chase appeared to have written the play in particular with Zoey Brooks as the alien girl in mind, as already suggested by the name of the infortunate visitor of our planet: Zorka of Zorkesia. The end of the play featured a kiss of Zorka and her life guard, which implied that Chase, who, judging from his demeanour around the blond Mary Sue, was planning on portraying the male hero of the drama. Well, Zoey had actually made it as the female star, but Fletcher had been compelled to choose the dandy Adonis over the bushy dweeb, for reasons only a theatre guy could understand.
And there was yet another novelty concerning this year's school play, as Leo Bradford had never been attending the première performance of it, so his sone Douglas Filmore would be the first member of the owner family willing to go through the trouble and watch it.
This reminded us of the ongoing necessity of finding a suitable artist for the remake of the sculpture of the founder, something that had been turning out even much harder than expected.
And there were also other expected guests, for our big boss had decided to invite responsile people from other schools in the vicinity of Hollywood, in order to boast with our drama stuff. Combover from James K. Polk had already confirmed his attendence, as had Helen Baxter, the president of the Californian Theatre Board, and also Erwin Sikowitz from Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts. But the most important visitor would be one Sofia Michelle[], the leading playwright of the Broadway in New York City. As we see, Douglas Filmore Bradford's connections were both quite powerful and reaching far. This increased, of course, the already immense pressure resting on Fletcher and on the students participating in the play.
5.3. The Performance
And this was finally the big day for our drama club, standing more in the spot lights than ever before.
Dean Rivers and I had come to sit in the front row, next to a host of invited guests.
In the beginning, the play started the way it had been intended, both by Fletcher and by Chase Matthews.
Apropos Chase, he had not even been showing up here at the school theatre, inspite of being the playwright, something which was likely to cause quite some confusion after the end of the play, as the guests were probably going to ask some questions to the playwright and the actors alike.
Fletcher was talking about the cuta anserina, or goose pimples, which grew on him while watching the increasing fluff tension between Logan Reese and Zoey Brooks.
Many of the onlookers wondered whether the scene was just played or for real, and the latter option was definitely not to Chase's liking.
So I concluded that Chase had chosen to stay away from the performance because he was not able to bear watching Zoey and Logan make out in front of his eyes.
But maybe he was already really sick, which was not too unlikely, as there were already a few cases of flu reported among our elementary school kids, and those diseses were certainly likely to spread like wildfire on na campus like ours. Our nurse was a plain censored, so none of our pupils went there voluntarily, anyways.
In any case, when watching Logan and Zoey on the scene, he would have been forced to diuble over and puke over and over again, and thus become really as sick as can be.
But, all of a sudden, the diretion of the plot appeared to take a hitherto unbeknownst turn.
Zoey Brooks had mistakenly dropped an item that belonged to the scene, no matter what, and she excused herself silently for the mistake.
But Logan Reese finally showed his one and only true face, and he behaved like an absolute jerk of the worst sort, as he had always been and would always be, until the end. He yelled silently, but recognisably — at least for us viewers in the front row — at Zoey, accusing her of being an incredible cretin.
Zoey continued the scene, but, instead of kissing the life guard, as prescribed by the side script, she explained that she was not going to kiss or date a jerk of this sort, and that she was now going to return to her home planet, Zorkesia.
Fletcher was deeply embarrassed by this unexpected improvisation, and he insisted in the fact that this had not been planned, and it was definitely not written in the script.
Helen Baxter, the theatre boss, was totally keen on the end of the play, whether intended or not. "I can't wait until this is going to run in my cinema in San Diego, Première Theatre, if you don't mind!"
Erwin Sikowitz emphasised that improvisation was the most valuable talent of an actor, and that scripts were only there as prompting points, they were not to be considered as canon.
Combover was responsible for the drama group at his school, and he reported about a really suitable actor for a movie version of the play. "I use sometimes guest actors from real acting schools such as Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts in order to inspire the kids in my drama group. And I have not found anyone more suited for the rôle of the teenage lover than Spencer Danforth[]."
Sikowitz knew Spencer Danforth, as he was in his classes at Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts, and he could not help but second Combover's proposal.
But now it was time to find Chase and introduce him to the high ranking visitors. Fletcher had been looking around nervously during the whole performance, in an attempt to look for him.
Sofia Michelle was keen on the script, which she had already read on Chase's Splash Face account. "According to the script, the alien girl was going to kill the life guard, not kiss."
Oops, where had that been coming from? Well, Chase must have changed it — wishful thinking, of course.
Sofia explained that she was almost ready to give Chase a chance to co-write a play for the next season at Broadway, as Zorka had been fantastic, but she needed to find him — somehow.
Douglas Filmore Bradford said good-bye to all of the guests, and he promised to take duly care of the case of Chase Matthews, for this was certainly an extremely big chance for such a young man with aspirations in the theatre business, be it at Hollywood or the Broadway.
Chapter 6. Bestialities
Unfortunately, Dustin Brooks was still a bit fearsome, but only in certain aspects, for example he was scared to no end by animals of a certain size, including in particular the squirrels on the campus.[]
There were quite a few of them, and our custodian, Ethan Banville[], had not yet found a way to effectively get rid of them. The most recent beast to scare Dustin was a stupid toad[] residing apparently somewhere in the nearby dunes.
I had heard about similar problems at James K. Polk school in nearby Santa Clarita which was still terrorised by some obnoxious weasel which their custodian, Gordon Robert[], had not yet found a way to get rid of. But at least it was just one weasel, and not a dozen of squirrels. And other beasts would soon follow here on the campus.
Officially, pets were by absolutely no means allowed, but it was always suspected that some of our students were able to hide them well enough to escape from the scrutiny of our staff and especially of Dean Rivers. The no-pets rule had already established by the founder of the school and it had been enforced rigorously under the rulership of Leo Bradford, but we could not know about the policy of Douglas Filmore Bradford.
So, upon a request of Zoey Brooks, who was thoroughly worried about the safety of her brother, the possibilities of getting rid of the beasts. "The main problem," or so claimed the blond Mary Sue, "is not Dustin's fear of toads and squirrels as such, but the fact that mean boys like Michael Barret always make fun of him for that."
Ethan Banville declared to be ready to build all sorts of squirrel traps, as he had learned a lot from Santa Clarita's custodian Gordy, his example to live up to.
But Douglas Filmore Bradford, who had been showing up here, did not want the custodian and his janitors to do anything yet. He insisted in a thorough study of the ecological balance of the beach of Malibu before doing anything, because any disturbance would be of potentially catastrophal consequences on the long run for this biome, no matter what. And, as a renowned biologist, he insisted in being the most competent in conducting and evaluating those necessary studies. The most important specias to be observed were those belonging to the phylum of arthropods, such as spiders and insects, as explained by Douglas Filmore Bradford.
Apparently, noone here else at Pacific Coast Academy was able to doubt Douglas Filmore's qualifications, at least none of us adults … Quinn Pensky was probably of a completely different story, and she was most likely going to be the one to assist the current owner most closely during his studies here on the campus.
Apropos Quinn Pensky — Zoey Brooks did not feel well when the big boss started talking about arthropods, and she explained why.
Quinn Pensky is interested in a guy named Mark del Figgalo, but she is a bit clumsy when it comes to dealing with boys in general, so I tried to help her out with some rules to go by, such as not talking about insect.
And what does my dear girl next door do? Quinn suggests to talk about spiders instead, and she explains that spiders are not insects, weird, isn't it?
Douglas Filmore shook his head and he moaned, "it's definitely not weird, but absolutely correct, as spiders belong to the subphylum of the chelicerata of the phylum of the arthropoda, whereas insects belong to the subphylum of the hexapoda of the same phylum." Then he started lecturing many "commonly known" facts about arthropoda, facts I had never been aware of, and Dean Rivers, Zoey Brooks, or custodian Banville were not exactly feeling different.
I had got a hard time refraining from puking all over the floor when listening to some of the more disgusting secrets about the phylum of the arthropoda. Zoey Brooks, on the on the other hand, was slightly less lucky, and malodorous stream shot forth from her Barbie-doll mouth and started covering the desk of the headmaster with some terrific stench. Carl Rivers cried at the custodian and told him to wipe everything clean.
The embarrassed teenage girl excused herself, and it was almost impossible to calm down the disgusted dean.
A few seconds later, Ethan banville would be back with a bucket, a wiping mop, and a bunch of strong detergents, the strongest ones availale here in the admin building.
Douglas Filmore remarked, "Quinn Pensky can do better than dating whatever boy that is not able to distinguish between insects and spiders, and who runs away when hearing about either of these."
Zoey was still trying hard to recover from her intense puke attack, and she feigned nodding with understanding. Really, she did not know all that much about Mark del Figgalo — including his knowlege about arthropoda — as that guy did not use to be very talkative, and she would have preferred to stay completely out of Quinn's boyfriend stuff. But she was bothered a lot by the girl next door.
Filmore Bradford forgave Zoey her lack of knowledge about insects and other vermin, but he announced that the students needed to learn a lot more about them that had used to be taught at Pacific Coast Academy before his era as the big boss. "Verily, I tell you, nobody unaware of the utterly important difference between spiders and insects shall ever graduate again from my school!"
Fortunately, I was not a student at this school, but I pitied all the others who were thenceforth forced to learn about all the secrets of those creepy bugs of the most disgusting kind.
Concerning Mark del Figgalo, I may tell you that Douglas Filmore Bradford would soon thereupon catch him with another girl, Courtney Simmons[], and thus rule him out for Quinn, anyways.
Chapter 7. Sleep Withdrawal
7.1. Spring Fever
The winters here in coastal southern California were of course nowhere near as hot as our summers, but we did not suffer from lots of snow and ice, well, at least I had never come across any during my life here in the greater Los Angeles area.
But there was still some sort of a spring awakening, and the anticipation of this was celebrated by the students with quite some party.
According to Dean Rivers, the tradition of the spring fling, had been introduced by migrants into southern California from areas with fairly harsh winters with lots of frost and snow.
Whatever, according to the statements of our students, the spring flings used to be totally lame, with luke warm hot dogs and a lame band playing boring music. But maybe that was exclusively due to the fact that boys were poor organisers of parties and stuff like that. So there was some sort of hope for this year due to the arrival of coeducation at Pacific Coast Academy.
Indeed, it was once more the initiative of Zoey Brooks that provided for more pleasant prospects. The living barbie girl had heard of a young rock star from San Diego named Drake Parker[] who had recently started to make it into the business. More precisely, Drake had, by some strange accident, hired in order to sub for Devin Malone[], the lead guitarist of popular poprock group Zero Gravity. This had made him quite a bit renowned here throughout southern California, and especially the teenage girls were hankering insanely after him.
But there was one severe drawback to that option, and Zoey had just come to hear about this one. More precisely, the evil manager of Drake required five thousand bucks from the students for a concert of the teenie star.
Someone like Logan Reese, the son of Hollywood's multibillionary czar, would of course have been able to provide for such a sum with extreme ease, but he saw a hot star like Drake Parker, more than anything else, as a big competitor in the race for impressing girls in his typically jerkish manner. For that reason, the spoiled dandy was by no means willing to help his comrades with hiring Drake and his band for the greatest concert at Pacific Coast Academy since the introduction of sliced bread to this area.
In other words, the girls, especially Zoey Brooks and her bimbo sidekick Nicole Bristow, had to look for other ways to afford the star of stars. Dustin Brooks had already donated twenty bucks to the funds, but this was of course just a little fish compared to the required sum.
As expected, Nicole Bristow was totally stoked by the prospects of meeting her celebrity crush Drake, "one of the cutest boys she had ever heard of in the history of cute boys".
Zoey was more worried about the origin of Dustin's buck, and her brothers explanation had done anything to calm her down, quite the contrary.
The money had been from Quinn Pensky who was using Dustin for yet another scientific experiment, this time it was about sleep withdrawal. Needless to say, she was little pleased by this and was ready to dio a lot in order to raise funds, but she needed the school administration's approval for her planned actions.
Dean Rivers wondered whether clowns were about to participate in the action, as he was panically afraid of them.
Zoey assured that this was definitely not the case, it was ratrher the usual stuff like car wash and the sales of Drake Parker tops which she had designed herself.
Under this circumstance, the headmaster was definitely willing to grant the permission to conduct the above activities in order to afford the concert of their star.
7.2. Car Wash
And there was the action day organised by Zoey Brooks and her friends Dana Cruz, Nicole Bristow, Chase Bartholomew Matthews, and Michael Barret. My car was a bit dirty, so I let it clean there as well, although it was a bit unprofessional. Alas, I wondered how, given the costs for water and for detergents, they would be able to make much money by washing those few cars.
There was also a booth for melon bashing, as, according to Michael Barret, boys loved making fruits splatter and burst into smithereens, using a baseball bat, or, in some cases, their own tough skull.
The mosty popular activity seemed that of throwing balls at a living target of some sort.
But there were also the shirts Zoey had announced, tops displaying a logo for Drake and his band. Zoey was apparently very much gifted as a fashion designer, something which she had already demonstrated a few weeks ago when making that commercial for the scooter. Maybe she was on the direct way of becoming one of the best professional fashion designers of the time, owning a fashion label completely comparable to that of Maximilian Madigan from Mad Style, my favourite brand of fashion?
Douglas Filmore Bradford was now also going to get his car cleaned, a fairly small vehicle compared to his father's. He ordered Zoey to wash it up and down, as it was really dirty, dunno for what reason, maybe for some biological trash.
Suddenly, a scream was heard, and Dustin Brooks was seen run around in panic, so he was probably the one to have screamed. Needless to say, blond Mary Sue Zoey Brooks was thoroughly worried about her little brother, and she asked for an explanation.
Dustin replied, "Quinn is testing my reflexes after two days without sleep, so she stuffed some ice into my pants in order to check my reactions to cold. She also yelled into my ear with a cow's horn." He held one of his ears whch appeard to be hurting somewhat. This was of course not much to Zoey's liking, But Dustin deemed it OK, as Quinn had alrweady paid him for that.
Zoey expected Douglas Filmore bradford to say something about it, but it was not really for much avail, as the creepy boss started talking about the incredible abilities of some invertebrates to resist cold, and that he was dreaming of finding a way of making humans equally resistent to cold, something that required a thorough study of the deoxyribonucleic structure of those beasts, he called them tardigrades, a word that did not tell me anything. Only later would I come to hear that it was a greek term meaning slow walker, but what did that have to do with beasts able to resist cold? Zoey apparently did not really understand what was going on, but she was certainly up to talking a word or two to Quinn about this whole stuff. Ruining Dustin's health — or so the Mary Sue was most likely supposing — was not OK, even for a gazillion of bucks.
Now the girls returned to the car wash, which seemed to be closed for the day, but they were still very far from being able to afford Drake Parker, as this action had only been resulting in one thousand bucks, plus a bus ticket which they had received from David Bender for the car wash.
Garth Burman[], the young executive chairman of the school's board, showed up on the campus, and he was surprised about the presence of the big boss. He had not yet encountered Douglas Filmore Bradford, and thus they still had a lot to talk about the organisation of the school. He also wondered aboiut the girls' success and he was sad because they had not yet achieved their goal. Thus he suggested to pay them the remaining bucks in return for washing his own beloved car, which he loved more than his wife, as well. He would be back in a few hours and fetch it again.
7.3. The Greasemonkey
Unfortunately, the girls' plan had not worked out that well, as they had achieved trashing the noble car of Garth Burman during the attempt of washing it, and so they had to look for someone to repair it pretty fast. Michael Barret and Chase Bartholomew Matthews knew a greasemonkey dwelling nearby, a certain Joseph Braxley[]. But, of course, getting a car repaired would not be really cheap, and the girls around Zoey Brooks were most definitely only able to afford it by touching the funds for the concert of Drake Parker. With some lucj, Joe the mechanic would be done in time, preventing Garth Burman from noticing anything. At least this were the girls' last hopes.
Alas, all these had been in vain, and Garth Burman was just returning to the parking lot, followed by the Douglas Filmore Bradford, in order to fetch his car. He looked really consternated upon looking at his own wrecked vehicle.
Dana Cruz roared angrily at Chase and Michael for having had the stupid idea of hiring a lame greasemonkey in order to get the thing repaired. Burman gasped, "you have gone through the troubles of finding a mechanic?"
Zoey Brooks sighed deeply and expressed how awfully sorry she was for the tragical incident that caused the car to start rolling until crashing against the wall. "It will never happen agan, we swear." Nicole chimed in, giggling like the true bimbo wench she was.
Garth Burman shook his head and grinned. "OK, you may pay for the restauration of the car later on, as it was so nice that you wanted to blow all of your savings in order to get it repaired." He wiped some sweat nof his face and told Filmore to take him back to the hotel with the car.
For Zoey and her friends this meant that the concert was now here, but they would have to pay for the miserable incident in rates. Chase tried to calculate how many nights he would have to deliver sushi for Kazu and his Sushi Rox in order to pay everything back, but he was not really a pocket calculator. Maybe someone would offer some day offer Chase some bucks for getting rid of the shrubbery on his head? That would be really cool, wouldn't it?
7.4. Highway To Nowhere
Finally, the concert was here, and the students were already in perfect mood for it.
But what had happened to little Dustin Brooks? The little bugger had been looking totally forward to the fantastic concert, and now he was probably totally tired for not having slept in three days. And, indeed, he would finally fall asleep and not wake up for quite some time. Fortuunately it was Saturday, and there were no classes until monday.
Drake Parker and his band were now filling the air with the neophyte star's best performance, a song Highway To Nowhere[], making most pupils forget about the trouble that had been there while trying to hire the super star, and about all the disappointing spring flings of the last years..
The tops Zoey had designed for the fund raising actions were very much to the liking of Drake Parker, so he thought about buying the design for the band's future concert, inspite of the verdict of the manager of the band. A little later, Helen Baxter, a big fan and promoter of Drake's career, would urge him to fire the evil excuse of a manager in an ice cold manner and look for a more decent one. Zoey would thenceforth be able to work as a freelance outfit designer for Drake's band, but she definitely deserved a permanent employment at a company such as Mad Style.
Chapter 8. Over Night
Quinn Pensky was not only working on her research project about sleep withdrawal, she was also totally active in the field of botanic science. This time, she appeared to try cultivating a new fruity plant which, according to the ordor that filled the botanic garden of our school, was apparently a mixture between an apple and a banana. Our geek queen called this new species a banapple shrub, and she was soon expecting the fruits, still green and immature, to ripen significantly, to the point of being edible and the most delicious fruit ever.
I hoped this to work out very well, for this sounded like a really useful project, especially when compared to her former attempts of collecting the armpit hair of people in order to created a genetic database, or all the bubbly liquids in her portable laboratory who were strong enough to disole most meats in no time.
Quinn would have to protect those fruits against the attacks of vermin and birds, and for that avauil, she was buidling a scarecrow with laser cannons — now, this even scared me elsewhere, and I was thenceforth trying to avoid the botanic garden until the fruits would have been harvested by Quinn.
A few days after the concert, there had been more troubles ahead.
Everything had started wuith Nicole Bristow and Zoey Brooks shopping in the campus store. Nicole had discovered her favourite snacks, so called cue pops, which were jelly filled flexible plastic bars of some sort. The disadvantage of these things were that it was too easy to squeeze the jelly out of them, and sometimes this happened uncontrollably. And with a hysterical bimbo wench like Nicole, accidents were definitely inevitable, leading to Nicole spoiling one of the backpacks that had been for sale in the shop. The shopkeeper, Rudolph Caldwell[], had tried hard to get the backpack cleaned, but this appeared impossibe, and the bimbo wench had been charged for its destruction.
Zoey Brooks had helped Nicole paying for the whole thing, and, as the backpack was really ugly and unwanted, she had tried to make something of this accident by starting to ornate it, which was of course a perfect occupation for the one and only perfect fashion design freak. And everyone seemed to like the result of Zoey's supreme artistic activities, no, she was probably even envied for it.
Today, there were reports about cheap copies of Zoey's extremely wonderful backpack designe to be sold at a booth on the campus, by some Anastasia[], a new student at Pacific Coast Academy who had arrived here just after spring fling. Maybe this was not her real name, as forgers and fakers are not completely unlikely to run around with some equally forged and faked name.
Zoey and Nicole were now in the admin office in order to complain about this, and even ready to go to Douglas Filmore Bradford if the headmaster was not listening to their complaint. Dean Rivers coughed and moaned, and, by chance, the lord of Pacific Coast Academy was on his way to the admin office, anyways, in order to sign a few contracts for the next academic year.
Zoey requested to invoke the new girl who had ripped off her backpack design into the office, for asome more or less brash words. Upon Dean Rivers;s command, I activated the microphone used for talking into all class rooms, thusly calling Miss Anastasia Romanova — probably a fake name — into the administration building for a stern interrogation.
Douglas Filmore gasped and complained, "Anastasia Romanova, that was the last princess of Russia, wasn't it? There had been many mean cheaters using that name." This confirmed once more my assumption of the name being a fake, and, even worse, it made me and Dean Rivers feel ashamed of not having noticed this when the new student had enrolled here.
ean Rivers promised to expell the fraudulent cheater on site when she turned out as having uswed a fake name for enrolling, no matter what reason.
Zoey Brooks agreed wholeheartedly with my chief, and she wanted a few thousands of bucks for the backpack idea. "According to Drake Parker, my design of his band outfit is worth at least five thousand bucks, so those backpacks are hardly worth any less, aren't they?"
Finally, the plagiariser of Zoey's perfect design of the backpacks came entering this office, right in time for a severe interrogation, with thumb screws and stretching bench. She grinned nervously when walking into the room.
Douglas Filmore Bradfored looked aghast, "hey, I have seen you, lady, aren't you …"
The fraudulent cheater turned even more nervous, but what was the big boss really insinuating to? "I don't know what you are talking about, I have never before been at this school or anywhere else in Los Angeles."
The big boss shook his head, "then it must have been another women on the cover page of the last Young Science, the girl from San Diego who was able to clone a labradoodle lady[] — really impressive indeed." He started swooning for admiration of that great scientific achievement, at least according to his judgment. The thought of cloning pets gave me the creeps.
"Anastasia Romanova" was apparently shocked and flattered because her achievements were already known that much, and she could not help admitting to them and come out with her real name, Melinda Crenshaw.
Dean Rivers was now really infuriated, and he was urging her to come out with the full story, and how she had dared to try to fool him with a fake name when enrolling.
Mindy explained, "I have been expelled from my former school, Belleview in San Diego, for having tried to get another pupil, a perversely dumb jerk named Drake Parker, framed for my great deeds." But what were those great deeds? Mindy admitted to have snuck by night into the parking lot of Belleview and abducted the car of one of the most dangerous teachers, Linda Hayfer. "And the next day, the car has reappeared in Hayfer's class room — cool, ain't it?"
Dean Rivers had heard about that incident that had struck one of his most estimated colleagues from the whole state of California, vice principal Hayfer from Belleview, and he was rigged and ready to get Melinda Crenshaw arrested on site for this repeated crime.
Zoey choked, as she did not approve of her favourite teenage rock star getting called a "perversely dumb jerk", although she was most likely not wrong, but he rocked too much to get insulted by random girls in the public.
Drake had apparently appealed to the honour council of that school, and he had already been almost convicted. But his cunning little sister Megan had intervened in the last moment, showing that Melinda Crenshaw had not only got he necessary knowledge — unlike Drake — to get the car from the parking lot through the window, and all that over night, but she had also got the motivation, for the evil teacher had once upon a time denied Mindy a deserved A.
Dean Rivers ordered me to fetch a form for writing the expulsion paper for Miss Melinda Crenshaw, and to call the police in order to get her arrested for the abuse of a false name i order to get enrolled here at Pacific Coast Academy.
But Douglas Filmore Bradford was opposed to this deed, and he decided, "an elitary prep school like ours is by no means able to bear the loss of an extremely gifted future scientist, so I request that Melinda Crenshaw will stay here at Pacific Coast Academy." This decision made the dean look consternated, and he started stammering viciously all over the place, but he was not the big boss in here. Filmore continued, "with someone like Miss Crenshaw, we may even win the nobel prize, and do you want to justify missing out on this occasion to the board of sponsors?" This appeal rendered Dean Rivers completely speechless.
Zoey Brooks was of course totally disappointed by the — in her eyes absolutely inappropriate — decision of the lord of Pacific Coast Academy.
8.3. Too Sour
Quinn Pensky was totally disappointed by her botanic creation, the banapple plant, as the fruits appeared to be way too sour to be edible, so she saw herself forced to restart the research soon thereafter.
But then something completely unexpected happened, and once more, Melind Crenshaw was behind this. The refugee from San Diego admitted to having manipulated Quinn's research from the very start in order to make fun of her competitor.
A cross of a banana and an apple is a priori doomed to infertility, no atter how Quinn tries to, because the plants are not related, and their fruits are botanically completely different.
If, by means of genetic manipulation, the plants are made to bear fruits, they would definitely not have the shape of bananas and the colour of apples, as thease things "growing" on Quinn's tree.
I had first attached the feigned fruits to the plant, and, night for night, I have snuck to the tree and replaced the fruits, at the cost of these marks caused by the laser zappers of the scare crow — ouch!
They are really painted banana peels filled with aromatic mixtures, the paint and the aromatics chosen in order to simulate the state of maturity of the "fruits".
Quinn was consternated, because she had never been fooled as much as during those days by Melinda Crenshaw, her probably worst competitorever.
But Douglas Filmore Bradford expected them to work thenceforth together, as the futire of Pacific Coast Academy as a centre of modern scientific research, especially in the field of genetic engineering, depended thoroughly on such a cooperation between two of the most intelligent girls of their generation.
Whatever the exact field of their research was, it was absolutely likely to give me the creeps until the age of dystopia.
8.4. Marketing Backpacks
Quinn and Mindy were not hard to make working together, but Zoey Brooks was still in an excruciatingly stinky mood, and Quinn Pensky was up to mediating between the blond Mary Sue and the smart nightly intruder.
According to Mindy Crenshaw, Zoey was most probably a great designer, but a totally inept marketer, thus she did not really deserve to sell her backpacks, no matter where. Miondy had got the contacts for making big bucks with the backpacks.
Quinn decided that Mindy sold them and gave Zoey a fair and square share of fifty per cent, which the other girls accepted after a few more hours more of incessant bickering.
Mindy had contacts to James K. Polk, more precisely, to a guy simply known as the "Backpack Boy", and this would allow Zoey and herself to make gazillions of bucks in just a short time. Thereafter, Zoey would become well beknownst all over the land for her perfect design of backpacks, and, in the end — or so I supposed — Maximiliam Madigan would no longer be able to avoid Zoey Brooks on a firm base.
And the contract between Zoey and Mindy was worked out by Claire Sawyer, a middle school student at James K. Polk who was definitely up to beconing a great lawyer.
Chapter 9. Dance To The Moon
9.1. PCA Middle School Dance
The annual middle school ball at Pacific Coast Academy was just around the corner, and Dean Rivers had just stamped the permission for it.
OK, this was an annual event, but until last year, Pacific Coast Academy had been a boarding school exclusively for boys, so had they been compelled to dance by or among themselves, or where had the girls come from?
The answer was similar to the case of the cheerio squad — we had invited girls from nearby mixed and girl-only schools to events of this sort, such as, but not limited to, James K. Polk middle school in Santa Clarita, Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts, Palmwood, Silver Spring middle school, Lakewood middle schoool, or Eastridge High[]. This year, there were girls at Pacific Coast Academy, but they were clearly outnumbered, and this made us resort to the very same practice once more in order to close the wide gap. During the following years, the numbers of boys and girls would assimiliate and make this obsolete, though.
I was now busily writing the invitations to the neighbouring schools, and, unlike the year ago, we were this time relying on questionaries for a computerised test. I did not really understand anything about programnming and how computers worked, I just had to use one for my daily works as an admin sectretary, and so I did not really understand how a computer could match people. At least this was just a middle school ball and not a wedding proposal thing, so itwas not really important as long as the pupils were happy with it. However, I had got my doubts about the latter point, as would be seen later on upon the completion of the evaluation of the questionaries.
9.2. Olivary Biallo
As anticipated, the computer choice had not been working out as smoothly as expected by Dean Rivers when deciding to make it this way.
The first couple of complainers were inevitable Logan Reese and Dana Cruz, inevitable in the sense that they almost always had found something to complain about, much to the disgust of their respective room mates. After all, they would not have been a really bad couple, but they decided to make a lot of ado about their assignment.
But the next assignment was a really tough nut. Zoey Brooks had been assigned to two boys at the same time, one of them being Chase Bartholomew Matthews, the guy who still kept on hankering after the blond Mary Sue, while the other one was Glen Davis[], most evidently a complete jerk no worse than Logan Reese. How had the computer been dared to assign him to someone like Zoey Brooks? After some violent disputes between Glen and Chase, Zoey would decide in favour of Glen Davis, because she wanted to use the occasion in order to get to know more pupils, and Chase was one whome she already knew very well from the beginning of her time here at Pacific Coast Academy. But I still did not undertsand the computer, and I tried to ask Quinn Pensky, a well renowned expert for programming, about it, and she could not help but concluding that everything had been plainly manipulated, "someone must have stolen the answers from the other, or stuff like that."
And another excessively disappointed pupil appeared to be Michael Barret, who was upset because he had been assigned to another boy, a certain Olivary Biallo.
I was looking through our students' lists, and there was no student with such a name, neither a boy nor a girl, so he must have been one of those guest "girls" from the neighbouring schools invited to this ball for aforementioned reasons.
So I had to look into the heaps of applications sent in by other schools, which was certainly not an easy tak, given that there had been many of them, although only a few used to sent more than one or two girls over to Pacific Coast Academy. But the greatest fraction was from James K. Polk, as their vice principal was a good friend of Leo Bradford.
So, here was the list of girls from that middle school located over in Santa Clarita who had applied, successfully or not, for our middle school dance: Suzanne Crabgrass, Jennifer Mosely, Lisa Zemo … oh, there she was, or he was, Olivary Biallo.
But, as later confirmed by the secretary of James K. Polk, there was no student registered at that middle school from Santa Clarita under this name.
Dean Rivers was not up to showing any mercy, and he declared that Michael had agreed with the conditions for the school dance, so he was now forced to dance with the partner the computer had chosen for him.
9.3. Dancing Floor
There had to bee some adult overseers for the dance evening, and for one our of the night, it was also my turn, as previously determined by Dean Rivers and Douglas Filmore Bradford. He had been able to escape from this duty by insisting in the need to being with his wife Tipper for their son in law's birthday party. I knew that he hated his in-laws more than anything else, so this was certainly nothing good at all.
Nicole Bristow, the resident bimbo wench, was dancing with her assigned partner, Nicholas Webber[], a really cute couple. Unfortunately, they appeared to annoy each other to some degree, which was really a pity, as they were such a totally perfect match. But maybe future would bring them back together again.
Chase was mentally starving when he saw his Zoey Brooks dancing tightly with some other boy, in this cade Glen Davis.
Michael Barret was annoyed to no end when standing next o his assigned partnwer, Olivary Biallo. I had found another student from James K. Polk, a certain Suzanne Crabgrass, about Olivary Viallo, and she knew him, but under a completely different name, videlicet Jerome Crony. She kaughed herself to death due to seeing him with a male partner, although she declared to be little surprised. But she refused to give any further explanations. Honestly, it was not even my business, by any stretch of the word, was it?
And the evening went on, with the biggest surprise being the one that dana Cruz and Logan Reese had not yet killed each other.
Suddenly, Olivary Biallo alias jerome Crony asked Michael to take care of his little sister Farfalla[] because he was now going to pray to the moon. Michael was disgusted by the thought of being used as a baby sitter, but this changed when he came to see that Farfalla, who was impossibly a little sister of the strange guy. Whatever, Michael accepted gladly the suggestion made by Olivary and took care of the strange girl.
9.4. In The Moonlight
Finally, my time as an overseer for the celebrating middle school kids here was over, and I had been successfully looking for the way out. The next turn was that of Douglas Filmore Bradford in person who had inscribed himself into the list of overseers, in the last position.
There was quite some way to walk across the campus, and I saw Olivary Biallo alias Jerome Crony standing calmly next to the fountain.
I wondered where Olivary Biallo was going to stay for the night, as he was a boy, but we had only reserved rooms for girls. The visitor declared that he was simply going to sleep on the rim of the fountain, which was not really conforming with the school's rules. Maybe Chase Bartholomew Matthews was able to let the visitor into his lounge and borrow him a beanbag or so, The bushy head was probably still feeling miserable from having to watch Zoey and Glen.
All of a sudden, Zoey and Douglas Filmore showed up on the campus. The blond Mary Sue had figured that Glen was a real jerk, and that both he and Chase had snuck Zoey's answers in order to manipulate their own questionary in a manner making them get assigned to the charming barbie girl. Chase and Glen were now left on the dancing floor and going to kill each other, or something similarly constructive.
Zoey called Glen terrible, for it was impossible to talk to him about anything whatsoever.
Now I was going to leave to my car and leaving the whole trouble to the big boss in person, so I would only hear about anything going on o the campus a few days later.
After my departure, Filmore Bradford suggested Zoey and Olivary to dance a bit in the moon light. Unlike Zoey and Glen, the two of them were able to talk together about fashion creation, for Crony was an extremely gifted sewer, something he had to hide from his male friends, and this had made his whole masquerade necessary to begin with. This was a night neither of them was wishing to ever come to an end.
Chapter 10. Beach Party
Another long and poutstanding tradition at Pacific Coast Academy was the beach party at the end of each academic year. Granted, our school had got its own beach, but it ws too small and too rocky, at least in some spots, to be able to host all students at the same time. For that avail, we had to rent some beach elsewhere, and our usual choice was Mystic Beach to the south of Malibu. After the official end of the scheduled tests, buses would take the pupils over there.
Douglas Filmore Bradford had announced to visit right after the end of the classes in order to check some things here, and this prevented me from taking the afternoon off. But having to stay in the admistration office also made me miss out on some drama going on during this time, both on the campus and out on the beach. Only in the evening would I come to hear about the events, reported by Melinda Crenshaw.
I was walking across the lounge of Butler Hall in order to ask Quinn Pensky for a conversation about her honest opinion about my latest scientific discovery, so what did I see — Quinn and a bunch of kids, videlicet Logan Reese, Michael Barret;, Chase Matthews. Dana Cruz, Nicole Bristow, Zoey Brooks, and, finally, the latter's little brother Dustin, lying on the floor, unconscious or even dead — no, they were still somewhat breathing — so they were just asleep.
This way, the pupils were most likely going to miss their last bus to the Mystic Beach, but what made them drop asleep in the first place? I woke them up, one by one, and saw a test tube in Quinn's hands, filled with some pink or mauve liquid.
I had no trouble identifying the chemicals, and they were strongly narcotic, indeed, so I better tucked the wholw thing safely away. But it was necessary for me to talk to Quinn about this, as she was certainly up to performing very important experiments. So, waking up the kids on purpose was probably no good idea, and I let them sleep on site in order to let Quinn finish the probably vital experiments.
I decided to desist from participating in the trip to the beach, and I called my homeroom teacher, Mr. Toplin[], in order to inform him about this, so I would be cancelled from the list for the bus.
Kevin Toplin gave me the permission, but, according to the rules, which he quoted back to me, I would have to report to David Bender who had been chosen as the overseer of those pupils not participating in the field trip to the beach.
And this rule was of course also valid for the sleeping kids, once they woke up … which actually happened almost, but not quite in time for the last bus.
Dandy jerk Logan Reese wanted, after missing out on the official transports, call a rentable mini bus and pay with his credit card, but I reminded the other kids of the rules.
Of course Logan Reese did not care about those rules, and he called a cab, anyways. Dana did not want to be with Logan, but she did not want to bow to the rules, either, so she decided to come with Logan and to spoil his beach party rigorously at any cost.
Zoey Brooks was feeling miserable for feeling to have to agree with me. I guess that all this was because of her Dustin, for she did not want to get him into trouble for cioming with the elder kids, but she did not want to leave him behind at school with someone like me.
Chase is hankering after Zoey like an idiot, and he was also too fearsome to follow Logan's trip, so he stayed behind with Zoey. He also urged Michael to refrain from following Logan.
Nicole wanted to join Logan, but she was pushed rudely away by Dana and needed to be comforted by Zoey.
Quinn was eager on telling me about her discovery, so she followed my suggestion to go to the school's laboratory in order to continue her experiments and evaluate the results. However, the incident of the whole group falling asleep — or so she explained — had not been part of her experiments, and she was sorry for that. But maybe she was just not willing to fess up to it while being stuck in the middle of too many kids who were angry about having missed out on the traditional beach party.
Dustin would have loved to come with the Logan, but he was pulled back by Zoey, something he resented harshly — mildly spoken.
Logana and Dana were finally gone, and the rest of us was heading into the office of David Bender where we were interrogated about the incidence, as he will confirm unto you.
But then, something strange was added on top of the already steamimg pile. I repeated the address that Logan had told the cab driver, but Dustin remarked on site that it was definitely the wrong direction, and also the wrong distance, as little later figured by David Bender when studying the map of California. In other words, Dana and Logan had not been bound for Mystic Beach, but for some other place in the nowhere land down by the dunes of Ventura county between Los Angeles and Santa Barbara. And Ventura county is renowned for its low population density, at least when compared to Los Angeles County —
Zoey Brooks rendered the mobile phone numbers of Dana and Logan unto David Bender, and the responsible teacher was trying immediately to contact those kids. But it was apparently already too late, and the two of them were out of the reach of the cellular phones.
Bender figured that Logan and Dana were lost out in the wilderness and needed to ne searched, so he called Officer David Alejandro Vega from Los Angeles county police who redirected him on site to the responsible police headquarters of Ventura County, which was really a mess … trying to get the FBI to intervene would not have been harder — or so I guess.
Bender decided to sghow up at the police office in person in order to do more. Unfortunately, he does not have the authoroity of Dean Rivers, so it will be a mess. He sent me into your office, while the other kids accompanied him to the police headquarters.
I was sad for the kids who had missed out on their party, as well, and I hoped for Logan and Dana to be found as soon as possible. I also contaxcted Dean Rivers who was already at his wife's, causing him quite some inconvenience.
Indeed, Logan and Dana would return two hours later on, dragged in by Ventura county cops. Logan and Dana looked all ragged and hastily dressed, with huge amounts of sand in their hair and stuff, and they blushed over and over again.
Whatever … the first year of coeducation had finally come to an end, and it had caused a lot of confusion. This had also been the first year of Douglas Bradford who was more interested in Quinn's smelly liquid than in the drama abaout Dana and Logan — the crown of the uncanny feeling induced by the new big boss.
Chapter 11. New Academic Year
11.1. Coming And Leaving Pupils
The days here at this dreamy place down by Malibu's sandy beach were becoming shorter, the shadows thrown by the coastal palms wer now longer, and the campus was tuerning darker, just as each year towards the end of the summer break. And a new year here at Pacific Coast Academy the second year of coeducation and the second year of the rule of Douglas Filmore Bradford, was now about starting, which caused a lot of work for the staff here in the administration building.
The departure of former students and the arrival of new pupils, for example, meant a lot of work for those responsible for assigning students to their dormitory rooms. This was complicated by the fact that not all dormitory rooms had got the same layout, and that people passing from grade to grade needed to be moved into other dormitory blocks appropriate for their grades. Also, the share of girls among the total amount of pupils, very low during the first year of coeducation, had been increasing significantly, and a new dormitory room foer girls had been necessary to get added over the summer. The responsible administration employee was Sophie Burvich[] who did not want to consult the dormitory advisers, and even less want to let the kids make any suggestions.
Unfortunately, many new students started showing up here in the office of Dean Rivers before addressing the competent lady down the floor.
One of the new kids was Samantha Puckett from Seattle, or, as she was supposed to be known here, Trisha Kirby[]. She was dfollowing her twin sistyer Melanie to Pacific Coast Academy. Both of them were from a very criminal and immoral family from downtown Seattle, so the state of Washington had chosen to put them into a program in order to help them escape from an obnoxious environment, and thus we were burdened with a huge amount of responsibility. My impression was that this project, while working pretty well in the case of Melanie, would be an epic failure in Sam's case, as the latter was indeed very far from even trying to comply with the task of being a good pupil at our elitary boarding school. She hated everything connected to classes and teachers, no matter what.
Another new pupil was Vincent Blake, a bully jock that had been lured to Pacific Coast Academy by our sponsors because of his abilities as a football player. During the age of Leo Bradford, the team had been pathetically weak, probably also due to the lack of a proper cheerio squad. Vince was supposed to change that fate, and he better did so really well. As a middle school guy at Lincoln High[], he had already been playing in their football team with a special permission from the county department for competitive school sports.
Vince was accompanied by his little sister Ashley[], a Hollywood child star of the outstanding category who had been in a dozen of movies for pre school and for elemnentary school kids and been awarded many a prize for her rôles. She was a total diva and let her brother, who was also her bodyguard, do all the work. The latter was also forced to give her a piggy back ride all over the campus, complete with her luggage.
Ashley was not the only Hollywood starlet among the new students, there was also ethnically Puerto Rican teenage beauty Lola Martinez, whose goal was that of obtining an Oscar before the age of twenty. Basically, she would have preferred a school specialised for young Hollywood stars, such as nearby Palmwood or Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts, but her mother insisted in Lola getting a decent general education, as she deemed her perfectly suited as a teacher for English and Spanish at elementary schools in prevalently Latino districts. Miss Burvich decided to send Lola to 101 Brenner Hall, which was also the new residence for Zoey Brooks and Nicole Bristow.
The two latter girls had been sharing their dormitory room with Dana Cruz during the last academic year, so what had happenbed to the bully Latina? She was now no longer a student here at Pacific Coast Academy, one of many departures, that's true, but by all means the most remarkable one. According to the official explanation believed by Dean Rivers, the versions Dana's parents had told him, she had been accepted by a French foreign student exchange program. This was a bit strange, as Dana had never been shown much interest in learning in the class rooms, especially not foreign languages. "If someone wants to talk to me, he better does so in my language, or else …"
Jerome Crony alias Olivary Biallo was now equally new here at Pacific Coast Academy, much to the dismay of Michael Barret.
11.2. PCA goes dark.
Daylight had alread started withdrawing itself from our campus, but my working day was not complete, as Dean Rivers had underestimated the work necessary for the start of the new academic year, mildly spoken.
Many students were now coming into the administration office in order to complain about this and that, and they prevented my chief from calling it a day. Some had already called for Douglas Filmore Bradford, and the lord of Pacific Coast Academy was expected to show up in a few minutes.
Michael Barret and Chase bartholomew Matthews complained about their room mate Logan Reese who had installed a new high fidelity system, complete with giant boom boxes, fender casters, and a game sphere, in their dormitory room, and many kids were gathered over there in order to enjoy these gifts by the spoiled rich dandy, including Dustin Brooks, whose elder sister was fortunately not aware of that.
Dean Rivers suggested the guys to pick two of the tents lying around in the basement of their lounge — remains from a camping trip of last year's senior classes — and stay over night in them, somewhere on the campus. "There are certainly some silent corners left."
Not much later, Nicole Bristow and Zoey Brooks showed up in our office, and they were apparently not really content with their new room comrade, id est Lola Martinez. The new girl was reported to dress in some dark and sinister outfit, to talk to the dead, and to commit other perversities, probably springing forth from the bimbo wench's exaggerated fantasy. It was impossible for Nicole and Zoey to pass a night with Lola. Dean Rivers grunted and sent them to the boys who had just borrowed the tents. "Get them to give you one of them! You girls are always great in persuading guys into doing the biggest nonsense, so you should not have any problems here!" Lola was probably practising for a rôle in a horror movie or so, and the other girls were too easy to fool.
Nicole asked Zoey, "what is this supposed to mean?" but the blond Mary Sue grabbed her side kick, and they walked away in order to follow Chase and Michael.
In the mean time, Douglas Filmore was arriving in order to take care of the complaints of a few other pupils.
Some of the kids complained about the lack of vendor machines in their lounge, others about the dirty rooms, with too dust remaining from the construction works conducted during the summer break.
Zoey and Nicole returned, the bimbo wench's face still all pale. The boys had left them one tent with a bug inside, making it impossible for the girls to stay.
An infuriated Douglas Filmore gasped and aked the girls, "what sort of bug have you seen? You haven't stomped on it , have you?"
Zoey and Nicole neither knew the species of the insect, nor were they able to remember whether it ghad been still alive.
Douglas Filmore explained, "the common Californian dune bug is a rather endangered species, as the bugs don't settle in the dune grass imported from Europe to the Californian beaches. Woe to those here who dare to … the whole Californian beach biome has been cast into a state of disequilibrium with the arrival of the new plants from Europe, and you don't know what you are doing. This is irresponsible!"
Nicole started trebling all over, and she had to be calmed down by her mate Zoey.
All of a sudden, the electric light in the admin office collapsed, just as everywhere else on the campus. So we were left in the utter dark, probably due to a dpower failure caused by Logan Reese's entertainment station.
Bradford gave a long lecture about the night vision abilities of many species of the phylum of the arthropoda, which of copurse included those bugs Nicole was horribly afraid of. And he announced that he was going to do a lot or reseach with the goal of providing humans with similary visual capacities, by means of serum injections and genetic manipulation.
The new academic year was only one measly day old, but I was already scared for at least twelve more months, and more uncanny sensations were still to come.
Chapter 12. Fall At PCA
Homecoming was of course a very outstanding, old, and venerable traditions at almost all American high schools, including a particularly elitary one such as Pacific Coast Academy.
Last year's programme had been a bit reduced due to the pernicious accident of Leo Bradford, but this was no longer the case during this year.
Douglas Filmore Bradford was for the first time fully responsible for the preparation of a homecoming week at our school, and everyone was curious as of whether he was basically continuing his father's traditions, or whether it was time for the storm wind of change.
The switch of Pacific Coast Academy towards coeducation was of course also not without consequences for this and future homecoming events, as, for the first time in history, there were female alumna. Well, only one girl had been able to graduate from our school during the last academic year, but there were certainly many to come, and it was maybe just a matter in time when there would be a female speaker of the alumni at the opening ceremony of our homecoming event, or in other important rôles.
Talking about speakers … the elections for the class presidents was no longer so far away, and maybe there would also be a few girls among the canditates,. During the last year, only boys had been canditates, as the girls had been all strange and unfamiliar to most of the established pupils. This was now fairly different, certainly due to the great works of someone like .
In order to prepare for this first homecoming event planned under his rule, the current lord of Pacific Coast Academy was working all night through, or maybe this was because he was so impressed by nightly active species of the arthropodes that he was already trying to imitate their life style to some extend. At least this uncanny expression was not going to budge from my mind for quite a few days, or weeks, or months … whatever.
And this was a morning after a very rainy night, a night of the kind that people did not expect frequently here in southern California. Alas, if it does rain, it pours indeed, just like in that evergreen rock song, and this night it had been raining cats and dogs, or even lions and wolves.
The soil of the campus had been turned into one big quagmire, and the construction workers would have a very hard time patching it all in a way allowing for the continuation of scheduled life over here.
Douglas Filmore was still in his office, and he reported some very strange event during the last night, commanding me to call Chase Bartholomew Matthews and Michael Barret into the dean's office.
Carl Rivers was barely surprised, and he moaned, "Matthews … Barret … always the same troublemakers, why does this sound oh so familiar to me?"
Finally, the two culprits arrived, and they were already about confessing to their evil deeds before Douglas Filmore had said anything. Last night, they had been loitering on the campus, out in the rain, and unearthed something from the swampy soil. The corpus delicti was a so-called time capsule, a man-sized metal box into which the students of David Bender's homeroom class had deposited things in order to remind pupils of the future of our present day life on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy.
Dean Rivers wanted to think about some stern verdict, but he understood finally that an impending pneumonia and the taste of fresh mud must have been punishment enough for the evil creeps. They also looked like excessively filthy piglets after their bath in the swampy soil.
Filmore Bradford asked them sternly for the reasons for committing this absolute stupidity.
Chase and Michael had submitted a song about the current life at Pacific Coast Academy, a song with a tune written by Michael and lyrics contributed by Chase. The lyrics was really embarrassing, and Chase did not want it to be read by anyone in the future, or so he said.
Michael poked him, as there had been yet another completely different reason. More precisely, Chased had been up to snooping on the contribution of Zoey Brooks, a DVD containing Zoey's thoughts about the school and her friends, including, of course, Chase Bartholomew Matthews. Ultimately, Chase was wishing to know Zoey's thoughts about him, which was understandable, given his awkward feelings for the blond Mary Sue. Still, those feelings were completely evident for anyone by Zoey, and he lacked the guts to tell Zoey about them.
Chase was begging us on his knees to refrain from telling Zoey about his reasons for undigging the time capsule which was now again safely in the soil. Of course it was his job alone to fess up to the living barbie doll, and none of our businessm but he was inevitably going to ruin himself on the long run by avoiding the topic.
Alas, the message about his nightly digging action would be very useful to him, for a few days later, Zoey Brooks would suggest Chase as a class president —and vice versa. Chase would not want to compete with his crush, and thence this would be a nice reason for him to withdraw from the race for the elections, leaving Zoey as the uncontested class president for this year's freshmen, inspite of Logan Reasons protests. The evil jerk was rigorously opposed to female class presidents, just as old Leo Bradford.
The buggers were sent away, and Douglas Filmore Bradford started explaining the schedule for homegiving, including the important football match, for the first time with Vincent Blake as the quarterback. The chosen opponent was the second squad of a college team of UCLA, as one of our alumni was their captain. According to the lord of Pacific Coast Academy, Vince Blake would have been a lot more powerful with some spider genes, perfect for football players. Needless to say, I felt an ice cold rain shower creeping down my back.
Fortunately, our lord was on his way out, for he had heard about some recent problems of who suffered from some sort of acute insomnia, and he knew a good means against this. Alas, I could not help feeling that he was going to talk to her about how useful the genes of certain creeping bugs were in order to cure insomnia in humans, and that they should start researching this field as soon as only possible. Was I now starting to get paranoid about our big boss, or was there something to it?
Chapter 13. Trisha Kirby
13.1. The Sculptor
The Homecoming week at Pacific Coast Academy had been a plain success, and there had not even been one incident in which the lord of our most illustrous educational institution had scared anyone away with his usually incessant talk about bugs and spiders.
Unfortunately, some of the alumni missed old Leo Bradford badly, and they were also wondering about Douglas Filmore's plans for replacing the old and dust-covered monument of the founder of Pacific Coast Academy. There had not yet been a serious offer of a sculptor, as Harold Joiner[], the most fabulous and popular contemporary American pop artist, was way too expensive. But the homecoming had seemed to change this situations, as one of our alumni, a fairly old shark from Yakima in the state of Washington going by the name of Lattimore Shay[], had got a grand son named Spencer who had just dropped out from law school and was now starting a career as kind of sort of a freelance artist.
This sounded like quite the right person for a task like building a modern and fashionable sculpture of the founder of Pacific Coast Academy, quite unlike the old and rusty monument from the war of Vietnam. Now we had to contact that Spencer Shay and negotiate with him for this purpose, and we were not allowed to waste too much money, were we?
13.2. The Mean Seductress
And now Zoey Brooks was standing right here in the office of Dean Rivers in order to file an official complaint about a fellow pupil, and, more precisely. Trisha Kirby alias Samantha Puckett. She even urged me to inform Douglas Filmore Bradford about the "perverted demeanour of that evil creature from hell".
So, what exactly had been going on beyond our reach on the campus?
Zoey started reporting,
My baby brother Dustin is in the same laboratory classes as Trisha, those taught by Philip Granger.[]. The teacher has got the guts to make Trisha and Dustin laboratory partners, something for which he should be hung, drawn, quartered, and thrown into the living hell fire. Then he left the class alone in order to do some pointless stuff and go early to the cafeteria instead of fulfilling his duties as a teacher. Dustin was made the temporary overseer, but he is still a little baby and by absolutely no means whatsoever suited for such an excessively responsible task.
In his absence, Trisha has started distracting and seducing Dustin into various perverted and disgusting actions he is so much too young for.
And now they are dating, making out all the time and planning pernicious onslaughts on other kids and opn the adults on the campus.
Zoey had probably exaggerated a lot when calling Dustin an all innocent and helpless little baby brother, but leaving the kids alone in laboratory classes was a severe violation of the security rules in vigour here on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy, and this crime was not to be taken lightly, neither by Dean Rivers nor by the supreme lord of our school.
In other words, Douglas Filmore Bradford was going to fire inept teacher Phil Granger and look for a competent successor, although it was impossible to get anything better than student teachers, at least for the time being. He had already been looking at a programme Teachers Tomorrow Today[], especially the segment for future science teachers, and he had someone special in mind, a certain Joshuah Nichols from San Diego. But for the time being, no such guy was available, so our lord decided to take over those classes.
Zoey Brooks was thoroughly disappointed because Samantha Puckett alias Trisha Kirby was not fired on site for seducing and abusing Dustin in an exorbitantly despicable manner.
But Dean Rivers was going to have a closer look at this, whatever it meant.
13.3. The Skunk
Little later, I was bothered by Lola Martinez who reported, full of excitement and intimidation, that a skunk was roaming the campus. "Logan Reese and Michael Barret had heard a kitten squeal in the bushes, and then they went looking, and it was no kitten … now they are sitting in the lounge of Maxwell Hall, and they stink it up worse than a pack of filthy pigs." She was extremely close to throwing up. "Those stupid boys had already requested all the tomato juice from the cafeteria, but they have been stupid enough to drink it,. while,. as everyone knows, it is necessary to bath in it in order to wipe off the perverted odor."
These were, of course, no pleasant news at all, but Douglas Filmore Bradford decided top talk about the olfactory senses of various creepy creatures. "By absolutely no means is the skunk to be removed from the campus, as we still need to study the natural ecological balance of these dunes, of which the skunk may or not be an integral part."
Lola was now worried, because as an aspiring Hollywood star, she was obliged to smell extremely good all the time, and she could not afford getting spoiled by a skunk. She was already investing gazillions of bucks into colognes and similar essences in order to make herself smell better, but all of those were powerless against the stink produced by one of those most perverted black and white fur creatures.
Douglas Filmore, in turn, promised to meet with Quinn Pensky and Melinda Crenshaw on site in order to invent a suitable means against the odor of the skunks' glands.
Lola Martinez sighed deeply, but she appeared to accept this decision, for it was still better than nothing.
13.4. In Sackcloth And Ashes
Quinn Pensky had already started working on a universal stink killer weeks ago, and, hearing about the hilarious mishap of Michael Barret and Logan Reese, she had not hesitated a moment running to their rescue and offering them to squirt their contaminated clothes from head to toe with said chemical compound.
This would have been a really nice action by the geek girl, had there not been one obnoxious side effect she had failed to notice until it was too late.
The chemical compounds were very aggressive to polymers and disassembled those long molecular chains. I did not know what I was talking about, I was just repeating the words of Douglas Filmore Bradford who tried hard to explain it unto me and unto Dean Rivers, but apparently not in a very efficient manner, so bear with it!
For Logan and Michael, however, everything had been too late, and their clothes had dissolved into apparent nothingness — or so had they felt — while they were crossing the campus without any knowledge about what was going on with their garments. Their emergency solurtion was that of stealing plastic sacks from one of the janitor's closets on the campus and use them instead of pants and shirts.
During the following days, they had turned into the laughingstock of the whole Pacific Coast Academy. They had lost their best clothes and needed to wear coarse rugs and other uncomely outfit until Logan's father Malcolm would send them some appropriate replacements.
A total jerk like Logan Reese had by absolutely all means deserved such an embarrassing procedure.
13.5. Trisha's Weird Interest
Douglas Filmore Bradford was now teaching the science classes of Phil Granger, and he had now pardoned Samantha Puckett because she showed occasionally great interest in his science classes, especially when he was talking about venomous bugs and spiders. Her favourite was scolopendra gigantea, a fairly huge centipede with a venomous bite dangerous for people.
For the lord of Pacific Coast Academy,this had probably been cool, as he had already almost given up on getting Sam interested in anything scientific, but for me, this was totally creepy.
Chapter 14. Haunted Mansion
14.1. French Visitors
October was coming to an end, and this meant just one word: Halloween!
There were several traditions for tricking and treating day at Pacific Coast Academy, some of them extinct, but quite a few of them were still in existence, especialy the haunted house party where the high school freshmen outfitted a mansion as a spook house for the younger pupils.
Logan Reese had declared himself as the head of this year's haunted house squad, as he had got a lot of experience as the son of Hollywood's emperor Malcolm, and he imagined that this way, the haunted house would be truly a horror show of the same dimensions as Hollywood's most awarded horror movies.
The true horror for me was, on the other hand, the impending visit of Monique Chaumont, the dean of a French baording school who wanted to learn more about the administration and organisation of institutions of that kind. She was accompanied by her husband André, or so it was said.
At the arrival of the guests, there had been some troubles, as the kids, videlicet Zoey Brooks and her friends, did not appear to undrstand them, which was very peculiar as Zoey Brooks was one of the best students of our French classes ever.[] But at the arrival of André and Monique,she looked particularly dumb, no better than her pals.
David Bender was in our office in order to get some permissions signed, and he was consternated because he was not dressed for Halloween, but some of the kids had told him that he was dressed as a fool.
Neither Bender nor I nor Rivers were most competent in French, so, fortunately, Douglas Filmore Bradford knew French a lot better than most of us, and he had promised to show up in the evening in order to take care of the foreign intruders.
Lola Martinez was not on the campus, she had got the whole day of for the purpose of trying out in shootings for a new horror movie by Malcolm Reese where she wanted to be a young vampire or something similarly grisly.
My Halloween day here at Pacific Coast Academy was now over with the arrival of our lord, but I was going to hear a lort about strange thing going on tonight during the very next day.
14.2. The Adulterous Cop
The next morning was very confusing for me, from the early get on. There had been a lot of cleaning up going on, already indicating that the Halloween party must have been thoroughly entertaining or scary, probably both of those.
Douglas Filmore Bradford was already in the admin office in order to talk about strange things to me and Carl Rivers, more precisely, he had come to the following shocking conclusion: "André Chaumont is not really the husband of Monique, he is … no other than officer David Alejandro Vega from the headquarters of Los Angeles police."
This was a shocking revelation, indeed. Neither I nor the dean had hitherto been facing that master cop, unlike our lord who had come to meet him right after the accident of his father. The officer was hard to recognise when talking exclusively French and refusing to speak English, but Douglas Filmore had been able to recognise his accent.
Consternated Dean Rivers wondered whether officer David Alejandro Vega was actually cheating on his wife with Monique Chaumont and thus leading this double life, or whether he was investigating a criminal case here under cover, without the school's knowledge. We would check out with executive chairman Burman, but he was neither aware of any criminal investigation going on here at Pacific Coast Academy.
So officer Vega was most likely cheating on his wife with Monique Chaumont, but the latter was usually found living somewhere in France, wasn't she? After all, it was a French boarding school.
Douglas Filmore had git an idea, and he explained, "there are private schools in other countruies of the world where French is the porimary class language, so why not something like this in America?" And this, indeed, made a whole lot of sense, and it should have been possible to check all of this, as there was certainly something about Monique Chaumont's school on the interweb. But before searching for the school of the visitors, there were other events from last night to talk about.
Michael Barret had been dressing as a zombie, but the — French or not — visitors had believed him injured and wanted to take him into the next hospital. Fortunately, Douglas Filmore had been intervening and suggested the visitors to take Michael into the school's infirmary instead. The evil nurse had turned out completely incompetent, so the overlord of Pacific Coast Academy was ultimately compelled to fire her, but he still needed the papers and the signature of Dean Rivers for this action, just as for employing a real medic, Jeff Glazer, in her place. The latter, who, as aforementuoned, happened to be an uncle of Zoey Brooks, had treated Michel afterwards, when the infirmary had turned out insufficient, over in St. Illness[], and the dean's signarture was also needed in order to complete the papers for his medical treatment, although it had been obsolete, as the boy's injuries were just cheap masquerade. Zoey had been accompanying Michael to the hospital and to her uncle, as he was too afraid of syringes and stuff like that — especially after all the things Zoey had told him about her uncle — in order to make it there alone, and now the blond barbie girl was complaining about having missed out on most of the Halloween fun, and, even worse, for having been forced to leave her little baby brother Dustin behind all alone on the campus, in Logan Reese's house of horror.
Dean Rivers was exhausted due to all these thoroughly shocking and confusing news.
And then there were the reports about Logan Reese's haunted house, where the spoiled dandy had gone definitely out of his way.
There were the usual fake spiders and bats in its tunnels of horror, which had better not been there, as Douglas Filmore Bradford was now keeping on talking about amazing abilities of those exorbitantly creepy beasts and creatures of the darkness which scared the living hell out of halloween kids, even more than skeletons and so on.
But the finale of Logan's exhibition of unfathomable horror and cruelty was the last hall, when the kids had already thought to have made it out alive, crawling on all of their limbs. A walking corpse had been scurried among the kids and scaring their guts into the next millennium. The mummy reveiled itself, in the pale fake moonlight, as no other than Lola Martinez who had been reported absent for shootings for a horror movie. Hells bells, the movie had been shot here on the campus,and the kids here had been used without their own and their parents' knowledge as background actors to be credited as "little kids scared to death"!
This was of course by no means a legal action, and there was certainly going to be some trouble. Officer Vega was now probably going to investigate this illegal abuse of kids, which would have very bitter consequences for the renown of Pacific Coast Academy.
I had finally found the school of Monique Chaumont, the mistress of officer Vega, and it was not all that far from here, just across the metropolitan area of Los Angeles, an excruciatingly prestigeous French-speaking prep school. This was really not a long way to go for André Chaumont alias adulterous officer David Alejandro Vega. What would his wife and his daughters say about the secret second relationship of their father, usually renowned as a caring and loyal father and husband?
Chaumont's school was run by some French organisation from Paris, and Douglas Filmore Bradford khad made another weird discovery, more precisely, the address of the board of said school was the same to which we had sent the transscript documents for Dana Cruz who had left us at the end of the last academic year. Well, maybe there were branch schools of the same organisation in France, but there was now also the possibility that Dana Cruz was not living and studying across the ocean, but just across Los Angeles at a French speaking school on Californian ground. These were certainly very surprising news, and maybe some of our pupils would be more or less pleased or dismayed, depending on the respective person, when hearing about Dana's vicinity.
Last but not least — or so concluded our overlord — it was now no longer excessively implausible that Zoey Brooks had already met either David Alejandro Vega or Monique Chaumont here in the greater Los Angeles area, and this explained her reaction to the visit of the two of the here on our campus. But what exactly had been the relationship between Zoey Brooks and the French visitors? Had Zoey Brook known about Dana Cruz's real location and deliberately retained this information from her pals and the whole school?
For the time being, we would remain silent about the whole dirty affair, but maybe times were going to change significantly at some given moment.
Chapter 15. Frozen Robots
15.1. Battle Droids
Due to the great efforst of Douglas Filmore Bradford as the new advier and due to the addition of Melinda Crenshaw, one of the most gifted scientists of her generation besides Quinn Pensky, our science club had been able to add many more or less useful projects to their programme.
For example, the stench killer that would not have killed Logan's and Michael's outfit as well had just been invented, it looked like plain snowflakes, but it was very efficient and even biodegradable. The geeks did not tell us, however, what it was madeof, and this was probably for the better of us.
And now there was an even more important project, one involving combat droids like those from Malcolm Reese's evil show Galaxy Wars.
Quinn Pensky had in the beginning been opposed to this dangerous project, but she had finally been talked into it by Douglas Filmore, and she was already working on big laser cannons, able to zap holes through thick concrete walls.
Their next important opponent was the team from Belleview in San Diego, the squad of aforementioned Joshuah Nichols whom Douglas Filmore wanted to evaluate as a successor to Phil Granger. It was this also the former school of , and she was looking like crazy for the encounter with Joshuah Nichols.
But the currently leading team in the Californian league was that from aforementioned James K. Polk in Santa Clarita, centred around aforementioned Simon Nelson Cook.
15.2. The Chase And Michael Show
Web shows seemed to be some sort of a fashion these days. Several kids had tried to do one, but all had hitherto failed.
The latest attempt had just been started by Chase Bartholomew Matthews and his pal Michael Barret, but it was apparently not a really cool attempt.
The Daily Stingray, our school's newspaper edited by redactor Jeremiah Trottman, was ranting about this poor attempt of a show in any possible manner.
Where had the boys got the necessary knowledge about interweb technology from? Right, they lacked it utterly and completely, and they had tried to bother Quinn Pensky with it, but this was for hardly any avail, as Quinn was very busy with a variety of more interesting scientific projects, including, but not restricted to, their combat droids.
But Chase and Michael were way too stupid and too obnoxious to give up on a project doomed for failure.
15.3. Nicole's Obsession
Uttermost bimbo wench Nicole Bristow was totally well known for her inappropriate and insane obsession with cute boys.
Over Halloween, she had been perversely hitting on Timothy Jensen[] all over the campus. Nicole had been dressed as Dorothy from Wizard Of Oz[], but with an axe in stuck in her back. Tim had been wrapped into a walking mummy. Nicole had tracked him down and rubbed her body firmly against his , wallowing wildly on the ground, while unable to remove his wrapping cloth. Only Zoey had been able to stop her in time, otherwise the toy axe in Nicole's back would have hurt and damaged the bimbo wench as badly as can be..
Her current main distraction were three incredibly cute boys in her math classes, boys named Daniel James, Harold Matthau, and Lance McCallistair.[]
Her parents were already worried, and they were rigged and ready to send Nicole to some catholic school for girls only,[] videlicet St. Agnes in the state of New Jersey[]. Of course, those prospects were downright horrible for the professional boy sucker.
Douglas Filmore Bradford had already started contacting a shrink for Nicole, a certain Doc Marty Klemish[], recommended also by Doc Glazer.
Lola Martinez had got a different idea, as she had once been hypnotised by her former acting teacher, aforementioned Sikowitz, when she had been unable to concentrate on one of her rôles. According to that psycho creep, the absolute concentration on his rôle was the butter and bread ability of an actor.
i_qp;Quinn Pensky was basically ready to hypnotise Nicole, but she was now also willing to listen to the professional advice of Marty Klemish first.
Following the suggestions of Marty Klemish, Nicole would thenceforth think about snow flakes when seeing a cute boy, and the girl from Kansas hated snow flakes.
Today, David Bender was unable to control his classes, and the level of noise had exceeded any hitherto beknownst level on the campus, including the hell of a noise that had occurred during this academic year's first day when Logan Reese had got his full hifi station up and running.
The reason had been a recent episode of the web show run by Chase Matthews and Logan Reese who, for the first time in the history, had reached much more than just half a dizen of viewers.
The reaso of this upgrade had been the more or less incidental intervention of Zoey Brooks and of Logan Reese who started bickering in the background during one of the previous lame sessions, and their dispute was apparently about some girl versus boy stuff.
Thus Chase and Michael had learned that disputes between boy and girl were very popular among the general audience of talk shows, and they were now concentrating on only one segment of their show, He says — She says, in which Logan and Zoey were disputing currently interesting questions.
And exactly those disputes had infected the brains of the viewers of the show who were now taking them everywhere, including during the classes.
Dean Rivers could not tolerate this form of freedom of speech, and he issued a stern prohibition against the web show. I had to follow his orders and publish the sentence all over the campus.
Needless to say, the kids very absolutely not plesed by the dean's brash decision, and especially Chase and Michael would be very sad.
Douglas Filmore Bradford would soon hear about the incident, but he would have another idea and try to use the web show in order to spread the knowledge of the pupils about bugs and other creeping creatures.
15.5. PCA Versus Belleview
This was the time for the first big showdown of the robot battle team.
The Quinnterruptor was a construct in the likeness of a mixture of various spiders and bugs, ready to assault the hostile poor excuse of a battle droid.
The machine of the adversaries was called Blonowitzer, due to its constructor, Eric Blonowitz who was very keen on giving a demionstratio of his skills. It looked like an average tank bot from Galaxy Wars, just smaller in order to fit into the prescribed size limits.
Joshuah Nichols, the captain of the hostile squad, looked at Mindy Crenshaw in a very consternated manner. He sure remembered her from her times at Belleview. In any case, the atmosphere between the two of them was colder than a Manitoban winter night during a snow storm.
The umpire was Mr. Sweeny from James K. Polk who did not hesitate blowing the whistlke signaling the very start of the lethal combat.
All of a sudden, the temperature on the campus started decreasing rapidly and steadily, without anyone knowing what was going on. Nodbody? No, there was Wayne Gilbert, one member of the science club of our school, who kept on whistling innocently. Thus the instantly dropping temperature was most likely his work.
Quinn cheered fanatically, as she knew probably that the adversary battle drouid was not well protected to the cold which had just made snow flakes dropping fron the blue sky, straight on the Blonowitzer.
Josh and Eric glared at each other with dismay, but neither of them was understanding what was going on. But Josh yelled, "this reminds me of one of Megan's pranks,[] Megan? Megan?" He was looking around like nobody's business, but he could not find his mischievous and impish step sister.
The Blonowitzer tried to fire explosive missiles at the Quinnterruptor, but it was way too slow, probably due to the low temperatures and the flakes of snow. Later it would turn out that Megan Parker had bought the technology enabling a snow storm in a closed room from Wayne Gilbert, its inventor. No matter what Eric tried, the Blonowitzer was now frozen to a block of ice.
Eric Blonowitz admitted his defeat, and he was now going to congratulate Quinn, the captain of the winner's team. Too bad he was so clumsy due to the cold, he accidentally hit Quinn's shoulders, making her drop her nerdy glasses. Quinn also stumbled into Eric and made him lose his own pair of spectacles, no less nerdy than Quinn's. He explained, "sorry, Quinn, wherever you are, I can't see you without my glasses."
Quinn was equally clueless, as she also needed the spectacles badly. Both of them were now carefully touching the ground, looking for the glasses. "Brrr … it is getting really cold, ain't it?"
Eric shivered and nodded, and then he cuddled Quinn in an attempt to share his remaining warmth with his fellow nerd.
Quinn moaned for exorbitantrelief.
"Traitor!" muttered Josh underneath his breath, but he was now ready to get interviewd for a possible future position as a student teacher at Pacific Coast Academy.
Chapter 16. Flowers And Bees
16.1. Zorka goes Hollywood.
Logan Reese's attempt of using the elementary school kids as cheap involuntary background actors for a Hollywood movie on our campus at Halloween night, using hidden cameras in the haunted house and his father Malcolm's production set workers, had caused quite some problems. Some of the parents had intervened, such as those of Dustin's room pal Jack Ross[].
For this reason, any further implicit participation of our pupils in movie activities, on and off the campus, were from now on prohibited.
This was especially valid for some impending game show by Malcolm Reese going by the name of Gender Defenders[]. In this show, a team of four boys was supposed to be facing a team of four girls in several competitive games. Malcolm wanted to choose the pilot canditates from our pupils, and make the pilot episode with hidden cams. But this was against our new rules, and thus an absolute no-go, in the eyes of Douglas Filmore Bradford.
As a substitute, Malcolm had decided to produce Chase's play about the alien girl lost on planet earth and saved by the valiant bay watch, but this time with decent actors. He followed the advice of Sikowitz from Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts and featured Spencer Danforth — by no means to be confused with freelance artist Spencer Shay — as the male star which was the bay watch.
But the interesting question still left was concerning the rôle of the female star alias alien girl Zorka, and Malcolm insisted in the best available teenage actress for this rôle.
Of course, both Lola Martinez and Ashley Blake, each of them very enthusiastic and ambitious Hollywood starlets, were up to fighting hard in order to land the rôle of Zorka. But this was definitely not much good for the peace here on the campus, it would rather trigger some sort of a fan war.
Also, Chase was bitterly disappointed because he would not be the script writer for the screen version of the play, especially after he had been praised a lot by Sofia Michelle for his stage script. The official responsible would be one Dale Squires[].
Logan was disappointed as well, because he had wanted to be the one to be responsible for the choice of the female star, and we all knew what such a responsibility would have entailed as an inevitable consequence, given his misdeeds during the preparation and the premiè of the stage version of the same play. Logan had always insisted in being the greatest expert ever for womanising, with more experience than most of the adult Hollywood stars taken together. Unfortunately, he was also one of the worst examples for the even younger boys here at Pacific Coast Academy, as best seen in the case of Dustin Brooks who, against his sister's will, was pressing hard towards learning as much as possible from the biggest jerk residing at our illustrous school.
16.2. School Orchestra
Quinn Pensky was not only an exorbitantly gifted scientist, she was also a mediocre brasswind performer, more precisely, she kept on annoying bypassing kids with her performance of the trombone.
And now she was in my office in order to complain unto Dean Rivers about pupils passing by and telling her their opinion about her performance, especially when asked. "Dustin Brooks has said that there are worse things and better things than my performance, how does he dare to? I have practised this tune for more than a week already."
So, Dustin had probably been impolite, but he had not been wrong. Alas, we all remembered Dustin a lot more poliute, especially when under the influence of his elder sister Zoey. Alas, he had been recently hanging out with Logan Reese in order to learn from him about the art of hitting on girls. So, Logan's secret was that of being impolite to them and treating them like dirt? Oh my goodness, these were really terrifying prospects, and Logan was probably going to spoil a whole generation of boys wqith this.
In the case of Dustin, it was to be hoped that Zoey was going to do something about it before it was too late. Under Logan's influence, Dustin was going to lose his contact with planet earth and float somewhere in Logan's clouds of mind. Of course it was not easy for him to get over having been disappointed thoroughly by Samantha Puckett alias Trisha Kirby. And we would later hear that he had already made very bad experiences with some Wendy Gellar[] who had just laughed about him. Fortunately, Zoey was already doing something about it, it was just a secret hitherto unbeknownst unto us.
Douglas Filmore Bradford was worried about something completely different, and more precisely the fact that Pacific Coast Academy, as the most illustrous Californian boarding school ever, had still not been equipped with a decent classic school orchestra. He was now hell bent on doing something about it and looking for truly gifted musicians and a thoroughly competent adviser. He thought about hiring Jared Combover off James K. Polk at whatever price, as this one seemed to be a really competent conductor for classical concerts. But all of this would be in vain without pupils willing to practise hard.
Now I was already commanded to write the prospects for uring many i nterested students to this school. So far, we had only got a few stringers[] and totally embarrassed and unwilling flautist Michael Barret.
Douglas Filmore was also upset about another inept science teacher at Pacific Coast Academy, a certain Mr. Rudolph, teacher of biology for the freshmen, especially of Lola Martinez. The creep was apparently teaching the kids about birds and bees and flowers and trees, but without lots of success, forcing Lola to get tutoring. And there was a rule at our school according to which students with too bad marks were not given allowances for extracurricular activities, in Lola's case she would not get a permit to participate in Malcolm Reese's movie Zorka. And this would be a plain catastrophe for our school, especially as Malcolm Reese was one of our greatest sponsors since quite a few years already.
16.3. Like A Spider
Dean Rivers and Douglas Filmore Bradford had ordered Lola Martinez into the admin office in order to talk about her situation, and she admitted to having found a tutoe pretty fast, so everything is going better now, and this tutor was nobody other than Chase Matthews, which was a bit strange because the bushy dork had just scraped through in middle school biology. Even more, the two of them appeared to spend a lot of time hanging out int the school garden, The fertile earth over their produced many flowers, but some of them were already hosting spiders, and Lola was arachnophobe, much to the dismay of the lord of Pacific Coast Academy. "There's a lot to learn from spiders and other arthropoda! Did you know that most female spiders devour their male …"
But Lola was thoroughly disgusted by them, although she found the last remark very interesting, and she was somehow not at ease, as in suffering from bad remorses, and finally, she admitted:
OK, I do not really like Chase, and I don't really need tutoring.
I needed to find a way to get Chase to date me, because I need to practise making out with dweebs like that bushy head … Chase.
Tutoring seemed to be the most innocent-sounding reason for starting to hit him.
And I chose biology, especially the procreation of plants, with the flower and bee stuff, because it would bring him into the right mood for all the dating, making out, and whatever comes afterwards, while sitting on the earthy ground in the school garden.
But I am still disgusted by the dweeb, mind you.
And I knew that Zoey felt bothered too much by Chase who is hardly ever budging from her side, so it was predictably easy to get her to send him my way, for whatever reason, just in order to have an opportunity to get rid of him for some time. But now she misses him.
Why am I such a bad girl?
She sobbed bitterly because she was regretting to have already started abusing Chase Matthews.
Douglas Filmore sent Lola away and told her to go to Zoey and Chase, and to fess up to her deeds.
16.4. Jerk In The Fountain
And a few minutes later, Logan Reese showed up in the admin office, all wet for whatever reason. He told us that he had been pushed into the fountain by a mean girl, Tracy Baldwin[].
I anticipated that Tracy had most likely had very good reasons for doing so, and that Logan had thoroughly deserved it.
Logan and Dustin had got a double date with Tracy and her sister Sandy[], both of them new at Pacific Coast Academy since the start of the term. The double date was intended in order to teach Dustin the art of womanising.
The rest was obvious for anyone: Logan treated Tracy like dirt in order to talk Dustin into treating Sandy like junk, and Tracy was not content about it. The self conscious ypoung lady defended herself correctly by sending the jerk into the fountain.
What I did not know back them — this was also a trap set up by Zoey Brooks in cooperation with her new friend Tracy in order to teach the jerk a lesson and in order to set up Dustin and Sandy as a down-to-earth couple. Would this go well on the long run?
Chapter 17. Smoked Salmon
17.1. Morning Shock
Early one morning, I was about to return to our campus, and what did I have to see? There was one giant heap of ashes and smoke where there used to be Sushi Rox, the Japanese bar of Kazu Park.
David Bender had been here before me, and he had already found out about the reasons and was able to tell us bypassing staff members about it.
Last night, a few pupils had been visiting Sushi Rox until curfew. Especially Zoey Brooks had been ordering something hot in the last minute, forcing Kazu Park to refuel his stove.
In addition, Chase Bartholomew Matthews was working here as a delivery boy and a waiter, and he still had to deliver quite a few orders. In order to impress Zoey, he did everything at once, and, as you know him, he was not exactly the most careful and attentive when moving around the campus.
As an inevitable consequence, the dork stumbled downstairs and lost everything again, but this also forced Kazu to look after him, at the cost of leaving the kitchen.
Everything was too late when Kazu returned to his stove, as the whole kitchen was already ablaze. Not even Coach Keller was able to stop the fire, but he was still able to call the brigades.
And now the former building hosting the best sushi bar of Malibu was nothing but a ruin of smoke and ashes. The walls and the roof were still standing, but not inhabitable or otherwise useful.
Kazu had not got a decent insurance police, and there was no way for him to afford rebuilding the restaurant. This was most likely the definite end of Sushi Rox and of Kazu's life at Pacific Coast Academy. The asiatic guy would turn to the rest of his family which was residing in the state of Alabama, though.
The kids were now very sad, and they certainly showed remorses. Coach Keller was downright upset and ready to take it all out on Chase and his friend Michael whom he accused to be the major culprits of the fiery accident.
17.2. Origin Of Life
Had I originally supposed that the burning Japanese bar would keep Douglas Filmore Bradford from talking incessantly about life forms, I did now have to see that these hopes had been utterly in vain.
More precisely, the overlord of Pacific Coast Academy had now started talking permanently about the origin of life on our planet, which he saw ultimately connected with submarine volcanic activities which allowed for the conditions in which the vital substances for the most primitive forms of life on earth must have formed..
For most other people at Pacific Coast Academy, life was terminated by the fire that had just incinerated Sushi Rox.
Nevertheless, our overlord was also concerened with the county rules about security on the campus, and he was dismayed by the fact that theere had been no fire insureance for Kazu's building. Such a situation was thenceforth oputruled, and all buildings on the campus, even those owned by third parties, needed a fire insurance, including Sushi Rox.
The kids were at the same time trying to collect bugs in order to rebuild the Japanese bar, but the costs for doing so were now much larger than expected. According to preliminary estimnates by the fire security office in Los Angeles, the fees for a due insurance were very high, exceeding those for the mere reconstruction of Sushi Rox. Activitues like people auctions, car wash, and similar jokes were thus definitely outruled.
Quinn Pensky and Mindy Crenshaw even wanted to abduct and clone babies in order to sell them, and Douglas Filmore had even offered to manipulate the babies genetically, giving them the some of the more interesting abilities of selected bugs. But the majority of the students appeared to be disgusted by this proposal and was willing to cooperate.
Even more so, after a fire case, insurances tended to become even more expensive, and it was inevitabkle to hide the report about the fire from any insurance company.
17.3. A Sponsor For Sushi Rox
Douglas Filmore Bradford had been looking for a sponsor for the reconstruction of Sushi Rox, but only one person in Los Angeles had replied, given that nobody else was able ot willing to pay for the insurance fees.
One of Kazu Park's problems was that he had not got an official license as a cook, which included training in kitchen security. This had got a very adversary effect on the judgment of the experts from the insurance companies.
The interested sponsor, in turn, was an officially licensed cook of partly Chinese origin, the lord over a chain of Chinese restaurants all over the United States of America, from Maine to California, including the Honkong Palace empire[]. It was nobody other than mighty Wing Lee[], whose headquarters was a restaurant named Wok Star in Hollywood, a place where many stars were gathering for dinner. She was mainting a wall of fame with pictures of Hollywood celebrities dining in her restaurant, and she had heard about Malcolm's plans of making a movie with students of this school, so potential future stars that should be on that wall.
Honestly, I did not really trust Wing Lee who had just divorced from her third husband Maurice[] … whatever had happened to the others. But the situation of many sushi-addicted students students was so desperate that they were grabbing any straw in sight, no matter the consequences. Seeing Sushi Rox in competent hands was also helping their remorses a lot, at least for the time being, although they did not really know what they were doing, did they?
In addition, Wing Lee's daughter Daisy was to be enrolled at Pacific Coast Academy for the coming academic year, and she was somewhat bratty, but that wqs not much of our concern.
Kazu was surprised when he returned from Birmingham in Alabama in order to gfetch his last remaining possessions and saw the restaurant under a new management. He was offered some place in Wing Lee's imperium, but due to outstanding family traditions, only family members were allowed in leading positions.
The students would talk him into accepting anyways, for there would be no sushi at the reopened restaurant without him.
Douglas Filmore suggested that some serum derived from lytta vesicatoria would be enough to fix the "not a family member" problkem by kindlingthe inner fire of Kazu and Wing … whatever he was trying to say.
Chapter 18. Quinn's Runaway
18.1. Office Machine
Even work here in the the administration office was very exhausting, for me and especially for Carl Rivers who was by absolutely no means willing to perform any additional manual activity.
Fortunately, there were so many brilliant geniuses among our students, such as Quinn Pensky, Wayne Gilbert, and Melinda Crenshaw. Those teenagers had finally achieved constructing a machine able to exonerate the headmaster of a huge amount of annoying work, such as standing up in order to open and close doors, or to go to the coffee machine and fix a cup of coffee.
This new apparatus appeared cool. Quinn was now here in order to demonstrate it. Carl just had to say the magical word "door" in order to make the door open itself if it was closed. If it was already open, the very same word was making it close itself on site. The only problems, as later explained by Mindy, were locked doors, as the machine did not yet know how to unlock themselves, and they would be caught in something those robot frwaks called an infinite loop possibly leading to a power failure after several hours. Of course it was possible to unplug the machine before something like that would happen, but Rivers was most likely too lazy for this. In any way, Mindy and Wayne were now working towards a solution of that problem.
Another interesting function of the system was the coffee machine, triggered by the magical word "coffee". Coffee beans were ground, water was extracted from the water tap and boiled, thereupon poured all over the powdered coffee, and, a few minutes later, filtered and poured into a cup which was transported by a mechanical arm right into the hands of the commander, videlicet Dean Rivers.
Besides some minor stuff, there was finally the watchdog function, more precisely, upon the word "dogs", the sound of barking dogs was triggered, loud enough to scare away any unpleasant intruder, such as Carl's wife Tipper Rivers who sometimes came along in order to complain.
And there was so infinitely much for the dean's wife to be upset about, for used to forget the birthdays of her relatives and their wedding day, he left his socks in the wrong basket, he was hardly ever in time for lunch, and, worse than anything else, he spent way too much money for video games.
And we would soon see how well the command dogs worked when Tipper would be sent flying by a pack of invisible dogs barking at the very top of their lungs.
Unfortunately, I would also come to feel the problems of the door command and get the heavy oak thing slammed against my nose, bruising it badly.
Quinn was going to send us the invoice for the construction and the installation of the office servant by means of electronic mail, just as usual, and she was also ready to come back in order to repair the device if needed, of course only in turn for additional fees..
Unfortunately, there had been a problem with the office machine after Dean Carl Rivers had poured unintentionally some drops of coffee onto some sensitive spot of the device. Now the commands got all messed up almost randomly, and we had to call for the maintenance service, videlicet for Quinn Pensky, Mindy Crenshaw, or Wayne Gilbert. Alas, according to their statements, only Quinn was able to repair damages of the kind described by us, and Mindy was rather interested in selling us additional features for the device, an automated pencil pointer. Until recently, the apparatus had tried to sharpen biro pens instead, which was definitely not so desirable.
But there was a problem with Quinn, and this was now explaoined by Zoey Brooks:
Quinn has got a pet at home in Seattle, an alpaca named Otis. This is like a llama, just a bit — different.
Otis is now very much depressed due to missing Quinn, or so says its veterinary surgeon, Doc Kim Lang[] And this makjes Quinn infinitely depressed as well. She is now hell bent on seeing the wooly pet.
Anyways, pets are not allowed here at Pacific Coast Academy because of the rules established by Old Bradford, it is impossible to take the alpaca to our campus. Quinn is now severely pondering to run away from here, and to leave Pacific Coast Academy in the middle of the running term, just in order to be with Otis.
Yeas, there was such a rule, and leaving the campus was subject to suspension and even expulsion in the case of repetition. Of course someone as clever as Quinn Pensky knew about this rule, so she must have been really desperate when considering to run away from the campus.
Dean Rivers did not know what to do, and he was really pondering hard about finding a way to break this rule without causing too much chaos.
In this moment, Douglas Filmore Bradford stumbkled in and muttered, "have you been talking about alpacas?"
I nodded solemnly, not looking forward to a zoological lesson taught by the lord of Pacific Coast Academy. But my hopes were in vain.
Bradford started talking about a rare Peruvian puff flea, only found in the fur of Peruvian alpacas, the only mammals able to digest Peruvian puff pepper without running the danger of kindney malfunctions.[] He would give a lot in order to be able to study those rare insects. "I know a horse ranch nearby, run by some Faye Dunnaway who could host the alpaca for a decent fee."
We looked all puzzled, because this sounded like the perfect solution for Quinn and Otis, at least for the time being.
But I was still worried about those fleas, for, all of a sudden, my skin started itching everywhere, and neither Carl Rivers nor Zoey Brooks were feeling any different.
18.3. Michael And Vanessa
Finally, Otis arrivved here in malibu, and he was also allowed to stay on the campus for two days with Quinn. I had to check the hay and the straw for the wooly guest, and Lola Martinez dragged me across the campus.
Alas, we were almost run over by Michael Barret who was not only really rude, but also wearing some tropic girl's skirt and some alert lamp on his head. Most likely he would turn into the campus clown in this way, it was so totally crazy.
These were the stakes for a bet between Michael Barret, Chase Matthews, and .
They had to avoid using the letter "S" for as long as only possible.
The loser, that is the one to give up first, was then forced to run across the campus in this impossible outfit.
And, as we all see, Michael Barret has been the one to bite the dust.
And the reaso for his defeat is his creush on a girl, her name is Vanessa Tayler[], and she's the captain of the girls' volleyball team, or, as I call them, the volleybabes. It's a good choice for Michael, I think, but was it really worth making a monkey of himself?
Lola shrugged and moaned desperately. "Well … boys are just like that, always making a monkey of themselves for a girl."
Last year, Michael had started dating Farfalla, the girl pretending to be a sister of Jerome Crony who had by now integrated himself well into the life at Pacific Coast Academy, by the way. Had he already riun away from thieir relationship, or was he up to dating two girls at the same time?
I nodded solemnly while we reached the preliminary manger for Otis, where Quinn was already waiting by the side of her woolly friend. The two of them were playing chess and reading books, which was really impressive.
Lola and I decided to stay a few steps away, as we did not really want to ge bitten by a Peruvian puff flea who was even able to resist Peruvian puff pepper, or something like that. Lola was appointed for audituions, and she could not afford appearing there when covered from head to toe with bug bites.
Also, Quinn would repair the office machine as soon as possible during the next week. It would then be up and running again, thence allowing Dean Rivers to enjoy it to the fullest. Mindy was now already bound for marketing it to the headmasters of other nearby schools, but, as I remember her from the backpack business, she would not even stop there and aim for nation-wide market domination, fast!
Chapter 19. Most Sunny Place
19.1. Chicken Pox
With some thousand kids living together in a place like the campus of Pacific Coast Academy, it was not all that much of a wonder that kid diseases used to spread like wildfire, causing quite a few problems. And during those days, the was some wave of chicken pox assaulting and flooding our sacred grounds. Our infirmary was already filling rapidly, and some kids had to be moved into public hospitals already. Doc Jeff Glazer and Shannon Holman[], our new nurse, were taking thoroughly care of those stationed in the infirmary. In those cases where all room mates had already survived this disease, the kids were left in their dormitory rooms, but those were marked and made unaccessible to anyone but the roomies. As a next step, unexposed kids would be gathered in quarantined dormitory rooms, as the capacities of the infirmary and the nearby hospital were by absolutely no means endless.
Douglas Filmore Bradford had promised that he would be able to overcome all human diseases by means of genetical manipulations, borrowing from the other phylums of the kingdom of the animals. Did that mean that he was going to provide a cure against chicken pox using those creeping things? This sounded absolutely scary, did it — or I had gone totally paranoid due to this excessively stressful job as a administration secretary at this most illustrous boarding school.
In any case, Dustin Brooks was one of the victims of the disease, and, although both of his room mates, videlicet Jack Ross and Maximilian Tebbe[] had already successfully survived their own bout of chicken pox some years ago, he preferred to stay in the infirmary, which was probably due to the charming nurse, videlicet Shannon. As anticipated, his relationship with Sandy baldwin had been short lived because Dustin was keen on growing independent from his elder sister, and a relationship with a girl arranged by Zoey was absolutely nothing to be proud of. But his crush on an adult woman who was probably just doing her job when being nice to the sick kids by smiling at them like an overdose of sunshine, was definitely not a step into the right direction. On the other hand, Zoey was now visiting him as often as possible, and he seemed to enjoy her attention a lot, as well. He made Zoey take a photograph of himself and Shannon and told her to send it to all of his friends.
19.2. Top Of The Roof
The roof top of Maxwell Hall, the dormitory room of the high school boys, was totally flat, and it was a perfectly sunny place, as none of the surrounding buildings or anything were able to throw any shadow at it. It was thus a great place to relax on weekends, even in the transition time between winter and spring when the shadows of the trees and buildings were still fairly long.
While this was valid for the boys' roof, the situation for the girls was totally different. The roof of Brenner Hall was partly in the shadow of an old Californian oak, whoch was particularly naughty around the afternoon hours when the girls wanted to relax after classes. And the tree was the source of still another trouble, for it hosted nursing giant squirrels, the sort that scared the living hell out of Dustin Brooks. Those beasts were able to bite badly, and their excrements, while not the same as skunk essence, were able to accumulate and stink up the whole roof, making it a completely unpleasant experience. Unfortunately, not even Douglas Filmore allowed for simply cutting off that tree, part of the history of Malibu.
Unable to enjoy a possibility of relaxing on their own roof top, the girls had on and off tried to use the space on top of Maxwell Hall, But, inspite of having usually got enough space for both boys and girls, the inhabitants of that dormitory block were rigorously opposed to allowing the girls to their roof tops. They had got a very stupid and perversely foul excuse for their absolutely inappropriate misdemeanour. According to Logan Reese, the absolutely dumbest guy in the biology classes, boys were unable to be themselves in the vicinity of girls, for biological reasons. And with his misguided opinion he had infected his dormitory pals, like a furiously spreading epidemia, one which — instead of infecting the skin like Dusti's chicken pox — poisoned the mind of the kids.
But everyone knowing Zoey Brooks was secure in the knowledge that she would not allow Logan Reese to get away with his perversity in such an easy and simple manner, but she would fight for the roof top.
The dormitory adviser of Maxwell Hall, Casey Hunt[] claimed that the boys had got the rights to deny girls the access to their roof top. In turn, girls had the right to disallow boys to their lounge. The latter was more modern than the boys', as it had been built only recently. But nymphomaniac wenches like Nicole Bristow would never allow for the expulsion of boys from the girls' lounge, they would slowly starve to death in their absence.
19.3. Heart-Broken Dustin
One evening later, there was a lot of terror in the girls' lounge, and this was definitely not due to the fight over the roof top.
Zoey had probably already got some mischievous plan for that problem, but she was brashly interrupted by some much bigger one.
Her brother Dustin, still not recovered from chicken pox, stormed Zoey's lounge in his pyjamas and cried "I can;t stay any longer in the infirmary, take me somewhere else!" Of course his mere appearance had scared many people out on the campus and in the girls' lounge, making the kids scream and whimper in agony.
Zoey walked up to her little brother and grabbed him, moaning, "what are you doing here? You are still sick and belong into the infirmary."
Dustin moaned and swore to never go back there.
Zoey dragged her brother into a silent corner in order to get him to talk about the reasons for his absurd and irresponsible demeanour.
Dustin admitted that he had had a xcrush on Shannon who was his nurse, and now he had seen her make out with uncle Glazer.
Zoey did neither approve of Dustin's obviously exaggerated crush on the nurse nor his exaggerated reactions, and she could not object to feelings between her uncle and nurse Shannon, but she had no understanding for Glazer's even more irresponsibble demeanour of making out with the young woman in front of the sick kids, including Dustin.
Zoey took Dustin into her arms and carried him back to the infirmary, promising to ask dad and mom to preach some stern sermon unto uncle Glazer, as soon as possible. As long as things were not clear, Zoey would take care in person of sick Dustin, no rules withstanding.
19.4. The Cure
Zoey Brooks had now made it into our office in order to talk about the miserable conditions in the infirmary. Duston's refuge from there had already upset Dean Rivers, and I was not quite at ease, either.
But Douglas Filmore Bradford announced triumphantly that he had found the cure for the chicken pox, and there was no longer any reason left for making any ado whatsoever about this disease.
These sounded superficially like good news for everyone, but somethow it was also totally scary, given that the weird scientist had often talked about injecting the genetics of bugs into humans in order to overcome diseases.
And was there also a cure against the problem with the boys' roof top? Bradford had got ideas about transplanting the oak to some different place on the campus or to scare away the squirrels with the serum of certain arthropoda, whatever. Again, this sounded at the same time very cool and very scary, and was it really going to make Pacific Coast Academy a brighter and more sunny place?
Chapter 20. Spring Wake-Up
20.1. May In Malibu
May has arrived at Pacific Coast Academy, and it was time for a few days off school for most of the pupils.
Some kids were now absent, but this did by no means imply that there was much less work left for us staff members, including me, as a lot of preparations for the rest of the running academic year as well as for the next one had to be conducted here on the campus during this short break.
The absence of a few pupils was also opening up some occasions for accomodating important visitors which would usually not have a chanvce to stay here during the days with normally scheduled classes.
And of course, May was the time of the year chock full of people with awakening spring feelings, and on this campus, this was almost the same sort of theatre, year after year.
20.2. Spencer Shay
During the fall, we had tried hard to contact Seattle's aspiring free lance sculptor Spencer Shay in order to get him to sculpt the new monument of the founder of Pacific Coast Academy, as the old grey brass statue was really a poor excuse, especially when compared with the colourful appearance of the rest of our campus.
The artist was now ready to give it a try, but he insisted in a trial week in order to check the circumstances here at Pacific Coast Academy and in order to be able to estimate the necessary efforts and duration of the work.
In addition, the necessary reconstruction of Sushi Rox under the guidance of Wing Lee would also require the work of an expert for artist creation. The old appearance had been created hastily by unexperienced students, but Wing Lee insisted in professional guidance. She would have preferre Harry Joiner, but, given the impending contract with Spencer, she had accepted his epertise as well.
Also, Spencer's little sister Carly was accompanying him here to the campus. Spencer was now responsible for her as their father was crossing the seven seas in a little sibmarine, or maybe a bigger one — I did not really know, neither did I care.
And there they were, Spencer and Carly, and it was my task to take Carly to her dormitory room for the few days in front of them. It happened to be the same room as that of Samantha Puckett, something Carly had been insisting in, as the two of them had already been friends back in Seattle, a fact not hitherto beknownst. It was to be hoped that Carly had got some sort of a good influence on Samantha, or otherwise the latter would — sooner or later — turn life on this campus into hell.
20.3. Hungry Eyes
Lola Martinez had been successfully chosen as alien girl Zorka, and she was now absent during this break in order to partcipate in the first shootings. More than anything else she was looking forward to working together with Spencer Danforth, one of the hottest — or so Lola declared — teenage actors — ever.
For this reason, Quinn pensky had moved into the dormitory room of Zoey Brooks and Nicole Bristow.
The boy group of Chase Bartholomew Matthews, Logan Reese, and Michael Barret, on the other hand, remained on the campus.
Volleybabe Vanessa Tayler had pushed Michael hard into spending a lot of time woth her during this May break, or else …. And now they were playing beach volleyball all day, much to the dismay of Michael's best pals.
Zoey was busy comforting Dustin, as he was still heart broken by his own uncle. Their dad had already promised to talk some serious word to his twin brother, but this was not yet useful for Dustin. And Zoey had to see that she had done everything wrong by her overprotectivity. Now she could only nurse his feelings by spoonfeeding him his favourite ice cream.
Doc Glazer and Shannon were now officially a couple and ready to marry during the summer break, which did not make Dustin feel any better.
In this moment, Samantha Puckett alias Trisha Kirby and Carly Shay crossed the campus and passed closely in front of Zoey's and Dustin's faces.
All of a sudden, there was a strange flash in Dustin's eyes, and he directed his nose into Carly's direction.
Zoey shook her head, and she moaned, "Dustin, you have promised to never hanker again after bad girls like Trisha."
Dustin, with an exorbitantly excited voice, stammered, "it's not Trisha, it's the other girl …" He was now unable to disguise that he had got hungry eyes.
Zoey had heard about Carly from rumours spread by the teachers ghere on the campus, and according to those, Carly was definitely not a bad girl, quite the contrary. She was convinced that Carly Shay would by no means affect Dustin in a really bad way. But even less was she able to understand why Carly was hanging out with an evil creep like Samantha, as this was definitely not the ideal best friend for Zoey's potential future sister in law. OK, there were still lots of years to come, but Zoey needed to paln in advance, she just could not help it. She would basically be willing to tolerate a girl like Carly as Dustin's girlfriend, but not with such an absolutely unfit best friend like Trisha. Zoey observed Dustin's mental change and his motions, and she knew that he was totally taken by that portential future student at Pacific Coast Academy.
20.4. The Future Of Chase And Michael Show
Even wiith Douglas Filmore Bradfords stories about weird bugs, the general interest in the web show of Michael Barret and Chase Matthews had been waning significantly, as of recent.
And now Michael was spending toomuch time with his new girlfriend, which made it impossible to prepare the next episodes of the same show. But now Trisha alias Samantha and Carly stumbled into Chase's way. Samantha laughed about the bush headed dork, snuck past him, and started pulling his panties, then she giggled merrily.
Carly gasped, "Sam? What are you doing?"
Sam grunted, "that's just a dork, so it just has to be."
Carly shook her head, and she commanded Sam to introduce her to the bush head.
Apparently, they came to talk about Chase's lame web show and Michael's absence.
All of a sudden, Carly had got an idea, as she was keen on the concept of web shows in general and deemed it really cool. She wanted turn Chase's poor excuse of a web show into something really cool, and she would just need a decent tech producer. More precisely, her neighbourhood boy Fredward Benson, who was perversely hankering after her, was also willing to come to Pacific Coast Academy, and he was really proficient with web technology.
Chase deemed this a great plot for the next year, so he high fived with Carly Shay.
20.5. Wrong Flight
I was done with getting Carly Shay accustomed when I was called again by Dean Rivers and commanded to fetch a girl from the campus entrance.
This girl was called Megan Parker, and she was the aforementioned little sister of teenage rock idol Drake Parker. I had never met her vefore, though, nor did I exactly know what she was doing here. My eyes bugged out when I spotted Carly again at the entrance of the campus.
Alas, this was not Carly, it was Megan, and the do of them looked very similar. Megan was a few months younger, though, but this did not help me a lot to get over my confusion in this very moment. Drake's little sister laughed mercilessly and made fun of our confusion. Then she explained the reason of her presence.
I have been up to visiting a friend in Colorado, and Drake was supposed to take me to the airport in San Diego, but the boob stuffed me into the wrong plane which was bound for Los Angeles, and not for Denver.[]
Now I have been informed about heavy gales haunting Colorado, and for this reasons, all flights from Los Angeles to Denver have been detoured or cancelled.
Your boss, Douglas Bradford, has recently invited for an orchestra group here at Pacific Coast Academy, as I am the best solo oboe of California of my age. He has told me to show up any time here on the campus in order to have a look at the situation. Stuck in Los Angeles, I have decided thjat this is the right moment for taking your lord and master by the word, and thence to have a look at this school. And I like it a lot so far.
She also mentioned Drake's concert here on the campus and Josh's possible occupation as a student teacher, although he sucked so much in such a position.
20.6. Wing And Kazu
Spencer Shay had just sketched a plan for the reornation of what used to be called Sushi Rox, and Wing Lee was ready to visit this. I espected her t the entrance of the bar. But Wing Lee was not alone, she was closely followed by Kazu. They were walking hand in hand and all that stuff. So, had Douglas Filmore Bradford fulfilled his promise and put something bug based into the snacks of Kazu and Wing in order to chain them together, or was it just the awakening spring feelings? This was totally scary, indeed.
Soon, Kazu would be a member of the mighty Lee clan and co-chef of the Hongkong Palace empire, as the first Japanese to make it into this Chinese dynasty.
In any case, both Wing Lee and Kazu Park were glad about Spencer Shay's redesign of the Asian bar on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy, which would make many a thing a lot easier.
With all that, many new changes would await Pacific Coast Academy at the very start of the next academic year.
20.7. Dana Loves Logan
Last Year's middle school dance had got quite a few troubles, but I had noticed, during my hour as an overseer, two potentially great couples. One of them had been Nicole Bristow and , while the other had been Logan Reese and Dana Cruz.
Nicole and Nicholas had almost been avoiding each other for most of this academic year, until a few weeks after the begin of the therapy conducted by Marty Klemish because they had been unable to concentrate on anything else. Only recently had they come to see what good they had in each other, and how much it was worth having such a good understanding of each other. And during this spring break, the whole thing started to blossom.
For Logan and Dana, there was no chance for such a second chance as Dana was from Pacific Coast Academy, or maybe … if Dana was indeed at that French speaking school across the metropolitan area, there was still a chhance left.
Bang! I could not trust my eyes when I spotted Dana again. She was using the May break for a visit here on the campus, trying to see and everyone but Nicole. She blushed completely when she found Logan again, and this time, she could no longer hide her feelings for the dandy jock …
Chapter 21. Rebecca
21.1. Back On The Campus
Summer time was coming to an end, and it was now the right hour for the start of a new academic year here at California's most prestigious boarding school.
Zoey Brooks was, as usual, very busy right from the start. During the summer break, she had worked as a beach lifeguard due to her great swimming abilities, and her best companian was a plush kraken. Dustin Brooks was also with her, but he was more interestied in checking out on girls, especially on new student Carly Shay.
Chase Bartholomew Matthews would usually have loved to help Zoey with her belongings, and beaten others out of his way for this privilege, but this time, he just hurried up and excused himself. In addition, he was talking closely to some busty Latina girl. The interesting question was now whether this criolla was Chase's new girlfriend or not. It was hard to imagine that Chase gace up that easily on Zoey, after two years of insane hankering after the blond Mary Sue. Still during the spring he had often enough suffered from lacking the ultimate guts necessary in order to fess up to her. And it was even more surprising and dismaying that such a supermodel type was interested in a disgusting dweeb with some virgin forest like shrub on his head.
21.2. Dormitory Assignment
Unfortunately, Miss Burvich was still on vacations, and the dormitory advisers, such as Coco Wexler, were totally overburdened, which made the unwelcome task of assigning rooms to the new pupils yet another pain in the tail. I was now swimming in a huge sea of unassigned and incorrectly assigned new kids, and there were more and more complaints.
Quinn Pensky had just been complaining about having been assigned a non-existing dormitory by Cocoi Wexler, a number which had now turned out as the excruciatingly messy and chubby dormitory creep's bra size.
And now I was facing a new girl without an assigned dormitory room, because all the dorms — or so she had probably been made believe by enviars — were already chock full. The girl introduced herself with a penetrant lisp: "My name is Stacey Dillsen, and I come from Swampscott in Massachusetts. My sister Suzanne works as a nurse at St. Steve's Hospital in Mississippi. My hobbies are acrobatics, astronomy, and sculpting — during the summer break, I wanted to work in my dad's woodshop, but he thinks that girls should not do that, so I built a model of the house of my dreams here with cotton swabs and white glue." She lifted a veil hotherto covering somethig held in her hands, and this turned out as a beautiful cotton swab sculpture.
But this did not exactly help me finding a dormitory place for Stacey. Then I remembered that Quinn's old dormitory room was not yet reassigned, and I decided for the time being to send both Quinn and Stacey over there. Someone more competent than myself would have to correct this if necessary.
Next, I had to assign Carly Shay to her new dormitory room, which hapopened to be the same as Samantha Puckett's. I had got Dean Rivers's permission for doing so, because he hoped for a good influence of Carly on Sam as well, and this was the only reason for him to refrain from expelling Sam alias Trisha.
Fredward Benson, the neighbourhood boy, was also new, and he was apparently covetting Carly in the most perverse manner, as immediately evident from his excruciatingly corrupt demeanour in her vicinity. His mother was very much worried, and he had to receck ghis belongings thrice, and we had to countersign his list. The strangest possession of Fredward was tick shampoo with which he had to bath thrice a week.
I sent Fredward Benson into a room with some other guy of his grade, Matthew Palmer Noid[].
21.3. Death Threat
The next morning, the ocean of work in which I was stuck, long with other employeex working in the administration building, was even more and more increasing.
The first person to complain about somethiing was Spencer Shay.
This morning, I was up earlu in order to gather some trash for a sculpture which I will call "sculpture made of trash". I saw some of it near the swimming ppols.
Custodian Banville came along, asked me whether I was the new one … which I could not help confirming — and ordered me to clean the pools. Did I already mention that I am a good swimmer, and an even better diver?
Bear with it!
But Banville ordered me to fish the dead rats that must have drowned in the pools during the last week.
I sighed and moaned, but no excuse was accepted. So I jumped into the pool, like the brave diver that I was, and fished a dead rat fom the bottom, with my own teeth and claws. I returned to the surface, and my little sister Carly was standing there, wondering what I was about to do.
I tried hard to explain, and I asked Carly to hold the dead read for a while, as I needed to dive back in order to fish the next one off the bottom. And it was another lame rat, not a beavcoon … you know what a beavcoon is? It has got the head of a beaver, and the hindside of a racoon. It comes forth from situation in which beavers and racoons are socialising.
Anyways, my little sister refused to help me, and she ran away screaming like a fury.
Ethan Banville had apparently confused Spence with a new janitor, which, of course, he was not. I promised to take care of this totally absurd misunderstanding.
Spencer walked away, shaking his head due to not understanding the chaos on our campus during his first three days.
Dean Rivers just shook his head, wondering how Douglas Filmore Bradford had ever been able to consider employing such a creep like Spencer Shay.
The next intruders in the admin office were the inevitable Zoey Brooks and her sidekick Nicole Bristow. Zoey looked really dismayed,a nd Nicole urged her to tell us the full story.
Yesterday, Lola Martinez and Quinn Pensky urged me to go to Chase and listen to him. They expected him to say how much he loved me.
OK, Chase is usually a totally nice guy, and he had always been strange around me, but I knew they were exaggerating. Anyways, I followed their advice just to shut them up. And when I found Chase, he was not alone, but with one new student, a girl named Rebecca, she's an incredibly busty Latina. Chase told me that she is from his hometown, and their mothers had suggested them to date, as Rebecca was now new here at Pacific Coast Academy.
In the beginning, I deemed Rebecca totally nice, at least as long as I was together with my friends. But when I was alone in my room …
Zoey was pushed by her sidekick who wanted her to tell everything, but she had to pant thoroughly before continuing. "OK, Rebeccas declared that Chase is now hers, and that is, only hers, and that I am now forced to stay away from Chase and refrain from even talking to him, or else …"
Making things short, said Rebecca had pronounced a death threat against Zoey in the case of not staying away from Chase. That, of course, went too far.
Dean Rivers told me to look up the folder of new girl Rebecca, but there was no such thing. Maybe it had just not arrived, but we went through the list of newly enrolled students, and only one girl fit into the description, and her name was Trinidad Vega, the daughter of officer David Alejandro Vega.
Next, Stacey Dillsen walked in, and she showed us a damaged cotton swab model of a house, probably the same as the day before. "Some bushy dweeb crossed my way thrice, and each time he trashed my cotton swab model of the house of my dreams. I don't know why I am still dreaming."
Dean Rivers wanted to send Stacey away, but I asked him to wait a bit. Of course Stacey was talking about Chase, and we needed to find him in order to confirm Rebecca's — or Trinidad's — identity.
Interrogating Stacey was not even necessary, as Chase was stumbling in the very next moment in order to tell Stacey how sorry he was.
I toild him to help Stacey repairing the stuff afterwards, and he was OK with it.
Douglas Filmore Bradford had just come along, and he wondered about Trinidad Vega as well. He promnised to talk a serious word about all that to officer Vega.
Chase told Zoey how sorry he was for Rebecca's demeanour, and that he had now trashed her already, but this did not answer the more important question why Chase was still swimming in lies about Rebecca's identity.
Apropos swimming, Zoey was now up to doing a few aquarobic exercises, but the pools had apparently not yet been cleaned, so she had to wait.
Chase just kept on stammering as their was probably something fishy going on. For the time being, there was nothing to expect from him, so the dean sent him away.
Chapter 22. The Deadly Model Plane
22.1. Rivers goes down.
I was was standing peacefully in the centre of the campus square, along with Dean Rivers and some other chair poopers, when a strange buzzing sound was heard from the distance. And that sound turned louder and louder and louder and … ouch! The headmaster started screaming when he was hit by some hitherto unbeknownst flying object, right in the face. I was consternated when I saw him cringe on the floor, in the very next moment.
The flying object that had injured Carl Rivers and his nose was a model plane, one of the sort usually deemed illegal on a campus, and for good reasons.
I did not hesitate a moment and grab my cellular phone in order to call Doc Glazer and his freshly wed wife Shannon in order to take care of the unfortunate dean.
The medic was already on his way, and I thought already aloud about the impending necessity of finding a replacement for the dean. Of course I was not the one to decide about it, and I did not know whose competence it was exactly. In any case, it was better to inform both Douglas Filmore Bradford and executive chairman Garth Burman.
Finally, Doc Glazer was arriving here at the place of the accident, and he had to push his way through a bunch of sadistic onlookers who were jamming the pavement of the campus. The most annoying of all the annoyances was Jeremiah Trottman, the speaker of PCA News Channel, and he was already asking questions about the successor of Rivers. But of course Doc Glazer had to declare him first unable to contuinue working, which was impossible as long as his way to the victim of the misguided model plane was blocked by those utterly perverted sadists.
Trottman wanted to know where the plane had been coming from. "Could it be that the dean's psychopathic wife Tipper has sent it in orer to kill him?"
That was of course a possibility, but I refrained from saying so, as it would have been really embarrassing if inaccurate.
Finally, Doc Glazer had made his way to the badly mutilated dean and started his first aid treatment, adding a diagnosis which implied that he would not be able to work in his office for at least two weeks.
In the meantime, Douglas Filmore Bradford had been informed about the crash, and he had already chosen a substitute for Dean Rivers, and who was the lucky winner?
22.2. Kazu's Cousin
I was back in my office where Douglas Filmore Bradford was already waiting in order to introduce the new preliminary headmaster.
As sure as hell was not nice, the paparazzi, lead by Jeremiah Trottman, were supposed to arrive within just a few minutes, or even seconds.
There was also a woman in her thirties of Eastern Asian ethnicity who looked very stern. Douglas Filmore introduced her as Jinnie Park[], and he explained that she was a cousin of Kazu and here at the campus in order to prepare his impending wedding with Wing Lee. And she had got a lot of experience as a vice principal at her school in New York City, so it had been straightforward for the overlord of Pacific Coast Academy to employ her in this responsible position where she would be able to prove her full competence.
That was a really weird story, but OK, we were not able to deny that a teacher with as much wxperiece as Filmore Bradford was able to know what he was doing when chosing a competent dean for two weeks or so, depending on the accuracy of Glazer's rough estimate.
22.3. Coco goes nuts.
Jeremiah Trottman had finally left the building, as he was required in order to conduct the live broadcast oif the presentation of the new cheerio squad and their uniforms.
This was of course a really important topic, as this year, it was the first time that Pacific Coast Academy was able to maintain a complete cheerio squad, made possible by the achieved degree of a numerical balance between boys and girls at the school. Aforementioned was one of the cheerio girls, but that was another story. Other cherrio girls included Melanie Puckett and a certain Miranda Franklin[], due to her promiscuous life style better known as "Makeout Mandy".
The uniforms had been designed and sewed by Jerome Crony alias Olivary Biallo, as Zoey Brooks, who was sure more competent in girls' fashion, had refused to do those. She had always deemed cheerios sexist and was not willing to promote the cheerio cult.
But somehow cheerios helped the football squad and other athletes a lot, so they were deemed necesary by our sponsors, and maybe they were right.
The football team under the guidance of Vincent Blake was very self confident, and their motivation was certainly down to the cheerleaders' activity.
But there were now more serious problems awaiting us. As I had come to experience as thoroughly as can be, Coco Wexler was a poor excuse of a dormitory adviser. And now the chubby mess had apparently been at odds with her boyfriend Carl Bubba[], the coach of our criminally weak softball and baseball team. The creep had trashed her by means of a cellular phone message. Zoey Brooks and her inevitable sidekick Nicole were now waiting in my office in order to ask for a few days of vacations for Coco.
Miss Park grunted that someone like Coco, if Kazu's description was accurate, was just a shame and a pain for life at Pacific Coast Academy. And it was probably true that Leo Bradford had only chosen Coco for that posiution because she was dirt cheap, and he had by absolutely no means willing to spend too many bucks into the girls' facilities. He had always bee against coeducation, so he deriuved the right to make it as cheap as only possible.
Zoey was dismayed, for, although she knew very well what a poor excuse of a dormitory advisor Coco Wexker was, had always been, and would always be, she saw no reason for not defending her, and she just dared to yell at the auxiliary dean, "how dare you to make such claims! You have just been here on this camus and in the dean's office for a few hours and don't even know Coco!"" Where, pary tell, did Zoey have those guts from? Maybe it must haveto do with the fact that Barbie-like Mary Sues were used to get away with everything.
Alas, this time, the living doll had gone too far, and Miss Park sentenced her to an evening of detention, together with all the bad boys and bad girls at Pacific Coast Academy.
Zoey was of course totally consternated, as she had never been convicted of anything, let alone sentenced for it, during her life here at Pacific Coast Academy. Yet there had to be a firs time for everything, and Zoey was better off swallowing it as soon as possible before risking yet another evening of detention.
As expected , Nicole was unable to keep her mouth shut, and Miss Park did not hesitate sending her the same way as her best friend forever. So, at least Zoey would not be all alone in that thitherto darkest hour of her life at Pacific Coast Academy.
22.4. Repairing The Plane
As reported, many rumours had it that Tipper, the wife of the regular dean of Pacific Coast Academy, had sent the plane, or probably paid someone to steer it straight into the face of her husband, in an attempted onslaught upon his very life. But those rumours had been wrong, as was made beknownst by a report made by custodian Ethan Banville and published by Jeremiah Trottman.
Dustin Brooks and greasemonkey Joe Braxley had been seen on the campus, with the same plane that had already almost killed our regular headmaster. The mechanic had been paid by Dustin for repairing the apparatus which belonged to him and a few of his friends.
The kids were now convoked to the admin office and interrogated sternly. At first glance, Dean Park wanted to expell all of the kids, but she screwed it down to three days of detention because it had been their first evil deed at Pacific Coast Academy, and the accident had been random. But the parents of the boys had top be informed and made pay for thee medical treatment of Carl Rivers as well, something which was more unpleasant for them than the days of detention.
Quinn Pensky would be fined as well, as she had tried to repair the plane before it crashed into Carl Rivers's face. More precisely, she had sacrificed the servo navogation in order to boost propulsion, and this way she had prevented Dustin and his friends from steering the plane controllably into any direction, making it fly uncontrollably in a straight line across the campus, a line in which Dean Rivers had happened to stand, with the jbnown disastrous outcome.
Zoey would now be even less alone, as Dustin was going to share the detention room with his elder sister.
Coming to think of it, Coco Wexler and Joe Braxley would have been a really cute couple, but Coco was now hiding somewhere in the basement and unlikely to ever get out from there.
Of course, Jinni Park did not want the chubby mess of a dormitory adviser, sorry, former dormitory adviser, to show up and spoil her cousin's wedding, as this would have stained the family's honour with a very nasty stain.
Chapter 23. A New Bacteria
23.1. Red Alert
Working under Jinnie Park was really cumbersome, as she was excessively stern and had already fired Coco Wexler for not coming to work without a medical pass. Doc Glazer had finally written one, although he had not come to see Coco ever since, but it was too late. Objectively, it was of course better to look for a decent and responsible dormitory adviser, anyways.
Life on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy was made even harder by the fact that both Lola Martinez and Ashley Blake were preparing for yet another audition for a movie by Malcolm Reese known as The Squeal, and for that avail thye had to practise squealing like a fury.
Nicole Bristow was certainly a good example to learn from, as the wench was an expert in squealing, especially when she saw something related to boys. Forttunately, the bimbo had toned down, since she was now regularly dating Nicholas Webber, and the two of them mirrored each other, so they understiood what they were doing wrong in public.
Alas, the biggest stress was started this afternoon when, all of a sudden, alert clocks rang out all over the campus.
I had not yet been accustomed to that sound, but I should have been. According to Miss Park, this was a biohazard alert, something she knew very well from the science classes at her school in New York City. A certain teacher named Jamerson[] often made extravagant experiments in the school's laboratory, with the result of things blowing up and getting the whole school quarantined.
These prospects were indeed little encouraging for anyone here in the administration, especially as there were now no reliable news about what had exactly happened, and where on the campus this had been. We still hoped that everything was restricted to the science laboratories. We were in the admin building, and it was really annoying that we did not get informed first, for now everyone else was expecting us to make a megaphone announce abouyt the current situation on the campus. Judging the sounds drifting in from the outside, there was quite some bout of panic out there on the campus.
23.2. The Information
Only an hour later did the staff of the administration get informed about the circumstances, and this from PCA news channel, the one run by
The incidence leading to the alert had indeed occurred in the scientific laboratory, and it was fortunately outside class times, so only one person was still in the building, videlicet Quinn Pensky. The little geek queen had apparently screwed one of her experiments and made something happen. She probably knew the number of the biohazard authority. or whatever that was by heart and had thence been very fast in informing them.
Quinn had been experimenting with some sort of bacteria, which was of course really creepy. Jinni Park and I wondered immediately whether the bacteria was dangerous, which would of course have been a plain catastrophe. Miss Park was somewhat accustomed to it, but I had never had experienced anything like that on our campus, maaybe because before the fire case at Sushi Rox and even until the bad mutilation of Carl Rivers's face, Quinn had rather tried to downplay any accident.
The consequences for our campus, as explained by some official interviewed by Trottman, were the following: The building hosting the sciencelaboratory was quarantined until the experts in Los Angeles had identified and examined the bacteria. Already thoroughly contaminated Quinn Pensky was until then forced to stay alone in the laboratory, anything beyond that would depend on the determination of the nature of the bacteria. Those little dangers used to spread in dense multicoloured clouds, and thus it was absolutely necessary to close any security gaps in the building. Granted, the buildings had been constructed with all the rules in viogour back then, but they had not been updated since quite a few years, and already Douglas Filmore Bradfored had been complaining about this and thence been looking for improvements, but competent workers in that field were hard to find.
Of course, this implied that classes regularly scheduled for the rooms in this quarantined building would have to be either cancelled, postponed, or relocated. The lord of Pacific Coast Academy had already announced to give a few extra lessons in bacteriology in order to make everyone understand what was going on. He knew even something about Quinn's ongoing experiments, because he had suggested some modifications to her original plans. The bacteria served a certain purpose for making humans resistant to certain poisons. Too bad I did not understand mosrt of his talk, but it totally gave me the creeps, as their were probably also some toxic clouds drifting across the campus, weren't there?
Even worse, according to Douglas Filmore, people exposed to Quinn's bacteria were supposed to shapeshift temporarily inrto some monstrous being with clouds of brinstone and acid emanating from various orifices.
This reminded me of a story spread by Megan Parker, the new solo obo of our school's orchestra. I had not wanted to believe the story in the fiorst place, but now it was more and more sounding likely.
During the spring, Drake Parker and Josh Nichols had followed Drake and Josh when trying to find her after they had put her into the wrong plane. Unfortunately, they had stumbled into troubles with some criminals and been locked somewhere into some workshop. But they had been freed by some anonymous monster with green eyes, a breath of smelly clouds, and slimy saliva. Even Megan had not fully believed Drake and Josh, but the boobs, as she called them, insisted in having told her the truth. The newspapers only mentioned a bunch of criminals belonging to one Milo Creery[]found later by Officer Vega, knocked out and covered with some weird toxic ooze, but there had been no other traces of what had been going on. At least that is what had been read in the newspapers.
But now I had to wonder seriously whether there was a connection between the research activities of Douglas Filmore Bradford — and also Quinn Pensky and other members of the science club — and the mystery monster reported to have been seen by Drake and Josh.
Jinny Park was nervous because she was not unlikely to be compelled to postpone the wedding of her cousin Kazu and his beloved Wing Lee, as this one was not supposed to take place on a thoroughly contaminated campus, with possible clouds of bacteria and poison showing up every now and then..
23.3. The Decision
Fortunately, the examoinations conducted by the institute for biohazards of Caltech were completed within less than a whole day, making it not necessary to reorganise the whole academic year for much longer. But what was the exact wverdict?
The good news for Quinn Pensky was the one that the bacteria was not causing contagious ailments, and so she was freed from her quarantine. But the bad newws was that the micrioscopic guests were altyering Quinn's genetic structure and not exactly unlikely to cause mutant babies, in the case that the geek lady should ever have any kids on her own. Strangely, Quinn did not appear really unhappy about those prospects, but this was not my business, anyways.
The wedding of Kazu Park and Wing lee was only going to be postponed by three days, and the campus was now ready to be prepared for it.
Chapter 24. Classes And Project
Ckasses went on as planned, and the preparations for the fist wedding on our campus were in their full course.
In addition, Jeff Glazer had determined that Dean Rivers was only going to be absent for the next week, but there was now a problem because Miss Park was not exactly willing to let the real dean mess with the preparations of the celebrations of the event.
Of course it was just a guess, but I sensed some clash between the two stern pedagogues in the air as soon as Carl was released from the hospital and showing up on the campus again. He was not going to stay at home as he feared that his wife was going to use this occasion in order to torture him even more. He was really disappointed, according to messages by Jeremiah Trottman, because the kids have already fessed up and proven the capital onslaught to be really just an accident. Otherwise he would have had a reason for a faster and cheaper divorce.
Miss Park was hell bent on preparing all pupils and all teachers for the wedding, so she was dragging me and other employees of the administration through the classes in order to inspect everything.
I did not understand zilch about science, as already evident during the many time Douglas Filmore Bradford was talking about it. And this time, it was even worse. The classes of Cynthiia Bromwell[] who taught chemistry to the sophomores were horrible, not only for the pupils, but also for me and Miss Park. She was just correcting and returning the last popup quiz, and some pupils seemed not really content with their marks, especially Zoey Brooks who was stuck with a "C".
During the last two years, Zoey had never had to do with anything worse than a "B", and this she had even considered as a bad mark. Zoey wanted to go for extra points and asked for a project, but Bromwell was utterly opposed to this idea and suggested tutoring instead.
Extra point projects had got a long and outstanding tradition here at Pacific Coast Academy, and it was one of the tradition praised in particular by the young overlord. How could Miss Bromwell deny Zoey one without the slightest attempt of an explanation?
But now we had to announce the details of the students' rôle in the upcoming wedding celebrations. Zoey Brooks was originally chosen for the honourable task of designing the wedding outfit for the female attendents and for bride Wing Lee, whereas Jerome Crony alias Olivary Biallo was in charge with the outfit for the boys and the male attendents and groom Kazu. But with only a C, she would not indulge any longer in extracurricular activities. She was very strict with this rule, and this made even Jinnie Park sad, although she had been the first one here to send Zoey into detention.
24.2. Bradford's Reaction
Lord Filmore was little pleased when hearing about the decision of Cynthia Bromwell, as he had been diusappointed by many other science teachers here at Pacific Coast Academy, such as aforementioned Phil Granger. Thus he decided on site to take care of everything and to assign a project for extra points for Zoey Brooks, with or without the agreement of Bromwell. "Zoey is a smart student able to learn some hundred times more from a cool project than from lame tutoring, period!"
Zoey had recently cried across the campous that she hated chemistry, but that was certainly nothing but her disappointment with the inept teaching methods of Miss Bromwell.
There had been inded a rule in order to protect students with too bad marks from failing the curricular goals for wasting too much time for extracurricular activities, but Zoey Brooks was still very far from that critical point, as opposed to many other kids on the campus.
Things were compoletely different in the case of many of the jocks being members of the football squads and similar dummy sports, and also for some of the cheerleaders, as those had often been excluded from extracurricular programmes because of failing tests. The most recent case had been aforementioned Mandy Franklin alias "Makeout Mandy" who failed every other test in the academic subjects.
In the case of some of the jocks I really wondered how they were able to learn for the written tests, given that they hated books more than pestillence and poison … opps, maybe it was not a good idea to think about these while Douglas Filmore was pondering about a project for Zoey, given that he was an expert for bacteria and toxic substances.
24.3. Zoey's Project
Douglas Filmore Bradford had finally decided on a suitable project for , and it had to do with Zoey's frequent complaints about unhealthy snacks sold here at Pacific Coast Academy in the vendor machines.
The blond Mary Sue was particularly concerned because her brother Dustin was addicted to unhealthy candy, such as sugar balls and gummi worms. She had also heard about Japanese candy which was very addictive but totally hazardous for a tween's health, and that crap was sold by dubious dealers who even abused their girlfriends' addiction in order to pervert and seduce them in a manner worthy of a creep like Trisha Kirby.[] On the other hand, healthy snacks used to taste horribly, as best seen in the case of moon bars who were nowadays imported from the East coast. They regularly caused puke storms in New York Cities worse than a hurricane. Zoey's task was now that of turning moon bars into something healthy yet delicious, and Douglas Filmore had already got a formula for that which Zoey just had to confirm in an experiment and then present to her fellow pupils of her science class.
24.4. The Return Of Dean Rivers
Finally, Carl Rivers was back from the infirmary after having been checked obnce more by Doc jeff Glazer and Nirse Shannon, his faithful wife. Now he wanted to be ack right in time for not missing out on the finals of the state championship in football, as our team was on a winning streak under captain Vince latter was, by chance, one of those jocks who had never been caught with a book in their hands, and who would not have wanted to be cauht dead with one, but who had hitherto not failed in any of his academic classes, for whatever reason.
As anticipated, Miss Park was not willing to give up on her position of control, and she tried to dissuade the real dean from returning into his office. "The classes are now in a chaotic state due to the impending football crap and the wedding of my cousin, and you would be too much stressed by all this." Was she really worried about his health or just trying to keep the command?
Dean Rivers had, by the way. always been opposed to selling less unhealthy snacks on the campus, due to economic reasons. And now he did not want to hear anything about the moon bar project, either.
Doc Glazer had really told him to avoid stress, so it would really not have been for the worse of the regular dean.
Alas, Rivers insisted in going to the classe and thelling the pupils that he was back, as the kids and the teachers needed to know whom they had to obey to.
Miss Park sighed and suggested at least a traditional soothing shiatsu massage in order to make him feel more relaxed.
Rivers was usually very suspicious of exotic stuff, and it was the same in this special situation, but if it helped him to talk to the classes much better, he gave her the permission.
Miss Park ordered the headmaster to movw his upper prty into a suitable position, while she readied her finger tips in a typical ceremony. Then she made her fingures dance over the surface of the boss. In teh first seconds, Carl Rivers kept on being sceptical, but he son appeared to change his mind, and he started moaning in awe and asked for more and more of it. It was apparently more addictive than the Japanese candy sold in California to many tweens. Miss park was done for today, but Ribvers was sure that he was in need of more of that stuff during the following days to come, and only then would he be able to return fully into his office.
Concerning Vince Blake, as we would come to know little later, he was indeed cheating and copying tests from the teachers, especiall from the history class of Kevin Toplin, and he was doing so in this very moment, a crime that would under normal circumstances get him suspended and thus excluded from the football team which was so close to its biggest victory — ever!.
Chapter 25. The Hobknockers
25.1. A Message Like A Cannonball
The weekend before thanksgiving was the great moment for the PCA football team, the one in which it was up to conquering the great trophy of the Californian league for high school football. They had been training hard for over a year, at least that's when Vincent Blake had taken over the hitherto wretched squad. Coach Keller had never been much of a help for the team, as had been clear in many an occasion.
It was also the weekend of the wedding between Kazu Park and Wing Lee, the cutest dream couple of all Asian food lovers.
Samantha Puckett had worked hard in order to make the wedding a big wevent, and Carly Shay wanted to make a special segment in the web show dedicated to that great event, but she had also been looking forward to the football finals, as she also wanted to interview no other than Vince Blake as the big winner.
But, all of a sudden, Fredward Benson, who had always envied Vince Blake because the latter had been rhapsodised by so many girls including Carly — usually not interested in football — too much during the last days, inserted a banner with some interesting message from his friend Chase Bartholomew Meatthews.
The bushy head had caught Vince Blake in flagrante delicto while the football star was copying the results of Toplin's history test, and now Vince had scored the best score of the class. Toplin had been consternated and was forced to denounce the quarterback to Dean Rivers, who was officially back in his office, and co-dean Jinnie Park, who was still in charge with some of the routine tasks until the end of the impending Thanksgiving break. Vince had also hit a lot on Zoey, and Chase had been taking that very ill, but he had been pretending to denounce him because it was not fair that a successful quarterback was able to scrape through with things that would not have been be possible for most of the other students.
But his jealousy had been shining through and through, exactly like a few weeks before when Zoey was dating some other guy named Daniel Barrington[] from that nearby community college.
The rules were there in order to be heeded, and thus the dean had to suspend Vince on site, preventing him from participating in the football match. But without Vince, the team would be at a complete loss. Many students now hated Freddie and Chase for their backstabbing treason. Vince and his pals were up to terrible revenge, and his loyal sister Ashley had sworn to never play in any of those crappy and low level plays written by Chase. She was obviously convinced of ruining Chase's career this way.
25.2. Faithful And True
And now it was time for the first wedding on the campus, the wedding of Wing lee and Kazu Park, the dream team of the Asiatic cuisine in the greater Los Angeles area.
Douglas Filmore Bradford gave a long speech in which he expressed his wishes for the couple, but he also declared that he would also like to see a wedding between two studets at Pacific Coast Academy, as this was now a coeducative school and thus it was just a matter of time.
This caused a lot of rumouers among the audience, be it pupils, teachers, staff, or guests.
The ceremony was conducted by extraordinarily chubby father MacCurdy, a big worshipper of all kitchens of the world.
The wedding cake was made by one of the greatest pie makers of the world, a certain Gallini[] from Seattle.
The bridal chorus was conducted by Jared Combover, with Megan Parker playing the solo oboe. Combover had invited one Nevel Papperman, a very gifted pianist, among many other things.
Kazu and Wing were ready for the great macrh up front.
A choir, inclusing Dustin Brooks and Carly Shay, started singing:
Faithful and true
We lead ye forth
Where love's trimphant shall crown ye with joy
Star of renown
Flow'r of the earth
Blest be ye both far from all life's annoy
Go thou before!
Wing, bright and glorious,
Go thou before!
Flower girl Daisy Lee was totally annoying, and she seemed to be hankering after Dustin Brooks in a way as foolish as Fredward Benson had had the hots for Carly Shay.
The lucky couple had finally reached the altar and Father Maccurdy in order to receive their official heavenly blessings. They had to repeat the usual words which nobody understood, but had to be said anyways.
Finally, the two of them were allowed to kiss and all that stuff and so on, making the onlookers melt away in awe.
Then there was the thing with the garter and the bouquet in which nobody believed any longer, anyways, or maybe …
Jinnie Park caught the bouquet with her left hand and waved it all around, but who was the lucky one to grab the garter?
Oops! The artifact appeared all of a sudden in the hands of Dean Rivers, who was totally astonished, wondering, "where does this come from? I am a married man!" That he was, alas, anything but happily married to his Tipper.
Now it was time for the wedding dance for which the dean was not really prepared, so he really needed a shiatsu massage in order to overcome his anxiety.
Jinnie nodded and started preparing her fingers for some exorbitantly tender and soothing shiatsu treatment, making Rivers swoon and purr ecstatically all over the place. Then she turned him around, wrapped her arms around him, and the two of them started smooching passionately for several minutes.
Most of the onlookers were flabbergasted by this scene, but someone was reacting in a way brasher than any other, and this was Tipper Rivers, who suddenly showed up and pointed a gun at her adulterous husband and his mistress from New York City. Nobody had expected such a scenario, and it was now too later for security to do anything anbout it. Tipper first launched a series of flaming insults at Jinnie, and then she pulled the trigger thrice, but … like from nowhere, Vince Blake stood in her way. He got hit by several bulltes, but he just staggered a bit forth and back until he finally punched Tipper to the ground.
Only then was it possible for the security guards to arrest the psychopathical woman of the worst kind.
Doc Glazer showed up just a bit later in order to examine Vince who declared, "it is nothing, just a few scratches here and there … I could even play football if I werent't suspended." The last words were really sarcastic.
Douglas Filmore suggested to pardon the hero of the day, and Dean Rivers agreed wholeheartedly, just as Jinnie Park.
As a consequence, Vincent Blake was no longer mad at Chase or Freddie for having denounced his deeds, and thence he was now no longer threatening to get those vile traitors beaten up. This was a good thing, as marauding football jocks were certainly one of the worst broods of hobknockers imaginable on our campus.
Chase was thus able to relax and throw a few basketballs at some barren hoops. "If I hit, I will keep a zebra … and its name will be Zebooh."
25.3. The Football Match
After the interesting wedding, there was now the even more fascinating match between our team and that of Golden Bay Bridge in San Francisco, the school of Samantha Puckett's alike looking cousin Christine Saunders.[]. Their captain Ash Donovan[] was a pain in the tail, but with a highly motivated Vince this was not much of a problem. Alas, the jock was not getting away completely without punishment, he was supposed to go through more tutoring after the final matches.
25.4. The Thanksgiving Party
This year's Thanksgiving party was the first bigger event in reopened Sushi Rox, co-managed by Wing Lee and Kazu Park.
We were now able to celebrate several things at the same time, videlicet the reopening of the bar, the engagement of Dean Carl Rivers and co-dean Jinnie Park, and of course the victorious football match.
While football players would have been real hobknockers in the case of losing the match, there were even worse ones, the members of a highly respected society named Silver Hammers, a very elitary club like the Rotarians. This year, they were looking again for new members, and this had been regularly causing troubles here at Pacific Coast Academy.
The most impressive event at the Thanksgiving party, however, was Zoey Brooks's presentation of the first healthy and tasty snack at Pacific Coast Academy, the moon bars treated with Douglas Filmore Bradford's hitherto secret formula.
Even Dean Rivers was unable to resist, and he admitted to having committed a grave mistake by signing the frenchise contracts with all the producers of all the unhealthy snacks.
Nicole Bristow squealed, "I usually hate healthy snacks, and moon bars make me puke, but these moon bars are crazy. Aren't these bars crazy? Tell me how cool they are!"
Chapter 26. Quinn's Childhood
26.1. Elitary Society
The society of the Silver Hammers, sort of the children's version of Lions or Rotarians, had probably got a long and outstanding tradition in the greater Los Angeles area and elsewhere in southern California, from Santa Barabara to San Diego. It had got branches at almost each and every high school in that region.
Their segment at Pacific Coast Academy had hitherto ignored girls, but this was the third year of coeducation, and both the celebrity and the quantity of the girls had increased significantly, now almost peer to peer with that of the boys. It was thus inevitable for them to accept some of them, or, as they said it, "knock" them into their ranks.
Neophytes were selected by the elders during the fall and then hit lightly with a plastic hammer that looked like silver. Then they were given a sticker, equally silverish. But this was only the begin of the procedure of acceptance into the club. Membership was very popular and coveted, as it almost surely guaranteed a great career in all segments of public life, such as politics, big business, movie … so, little wonder, most sophomores, the typical targets for recruiting, were really trying hard to impress the elders in charge with the selection of polstulants.
Usually, one should have expected that Logan Rrese was like perfectly made for a club as snobbish as the Society Of The Silver Hammer. But he went out of his way and tried to bribe the elders, which was not really welcome. Perversely sexist creep Logan was also of the opinion that girls should never get knocked into such a premium society, as they were not worthy.
26.2. Sarah Kyla
There were also a few new pupils enrolling at Pacific Coast Academy after Thanksgiving break, for various reasons.
Sarah Kyla[] was one of those new students, and there was a very good reason which she wanted to keep secret.
Aforementioned Ashley Blake was a very renowned and popular children's celebrity, and she needed a bodyguard for that avail. The first person to perform this job had been a gorilla type named Hector[], but he had screwed it all up and once stuffed Ashley into a trash bin. Her parents had thence fired him and insisted in Vince taking over, for he was very strong and swift, and more to be trusted than anyone outside the family. Unfortunately, Vince was now too much restricted as he had promised to go to the regular tutoring lessons, which was easy for him as some of his tutors were also his fangirls.
Thus the Blake family had to hire another body guard for the child diva, and Sarah Kyla, still a teenager, appeared perfect in this rôle, as she was a specialist for bodyguarding celebrity children of all sorts. Of course she could not really replace Vince to whom Ashley seemed to have a very emotional bond, something she used to try to deny in her ice cold manner.
Now it was my task to show Sarah Kyla to her dormitory room, as determined by Douglas Filmore Bradford who needed Bryan Conroy[], the person usually doing this, for another purpose.
On our way across the campus, we met Quinn Pensky, and I tried to get the geek lady to guide Sarah Kyla to their dormitory block, but the latter was not keen on that task.
Sarah believed to have seen Quinn already, and she wondered where.
Quinn, on the other hand, denied everything, but the way she did it showed that she remembered Sarah indeed, and it was not a pleasant memory.
In any case, Quinn was going to be very weird and confused during the following days, confirming the guess that Quinn and Sarah had been old acquaintances.
26.3. Pageant Girl
During the following week, the situation between Quinn and Sarah kept on escalating.
Quinn was not only trying her best to hide from Sarah, but she was also trying to force her pals to avoid her, rigorously at any cost.
According to the testimony made by Chase bartholomew Matthews, Quinn had already tried to hurt Sarah physically. And this went too far.
Dean Rivers and his fiancé Jinnien Park determined that Quinn owed Sarah an apology for that, else she would have to face stern consequences.
Quinn was by absolutely no means pleased by this decision, but she said that she would do that as soon as possible.
I knew very well that Quinn was just looking for other ways to escape from her task, and so did the dean couple. For that avail, Dean Rivers decided to call Sarah Kyla into the office, so that Quinn would have to do that on site, and in front of witnesses. Miss Park even insisted in the presence of Douglas Filmore Bradford who happened to be on the campus today.
These prospects made Quinn shiver more than ever before, and she was looking helplessly for excuses. But Miss Park showed no mercy, and I had already called both Sarah and Dougas Filmore into the admin office. She tried to hide in every corner, and even to jump through the window, but security guards kept on keeping her from doing so.
Finally, the overlord of Pacific Coast Academy and the new student had arrived, wondering why they had been called.
Dean Rivers explained the situation and required once more an apology from Quinn.
The geek queen just screamed in agony, and this was even worse when Sarah Kyla showed an old video clip from the last millenium. The short excerpt featured nursery school girl Quinn Pensky at a pageant taking place eleven years ago. Quinn had been sort of a majorette, as it seemed.
Quinn squealed in agony at the very top of her lungs, obviously too embarrassed to continue living. She already moaned about her ruined life, for nobody was going to take a former pageant girl serious. "Mr. Bradford, I understand that you don't want me any longer in the science club as I am nithing but a shame for it." She had been slumping on the floor and was cringing in pmental pain. "Only as an elementary school girl had I started to see it differentlky and make world-domination with superior intelligence my goal."
Douglas Filmore Bradford shook his head, as he must have thought that Quinn had now really been going out of her way. "Why should I care anyways about that? Now you are one of the greatest of all future scientists"
Quinn sighed for relief, and she stood up again in order to apologise unto Sarah for having been so mean.
Sarah announced, "do tyou know who won this year;s pageant in Seattle? Leanne Carter[], the saxophone freak girl who spends lots of time with homeless animals — and that already thrice in a row."
Quinn 's eyes bugged out, and she declared, "wow, that was great, and I still remembered when Samantha Puckett had been the runner up. Do you remember her, she's now also at Pacific Coast Academy. Sam and I had been to the same trombone classes, four years ago, a really cool girl."
That was even more surprising, I would rather have guessed Melanie Puckett as a former pageant girl, or maybe they had traded places and fooled the judges?
Dougles Filmore Bradford was enthusiastic when hearing Sarah talk about sx player Leanne. He had initiated the classic orchestral club at Pacific Coast Academy, and this had been a tough enterprise so far, thus a Leanne would have been a welcome addition, especially after Nevel Papperman had rejected the offer because he hated bugs and other creeping things. Nevel was uncanny in some other senses, but in this respect, quite a few people were with him. Bradford was going to make me send an invitation with an offer of a full scholarship.
Sarah and Quinn had now to talk about the times when they had been little children.
Zoey Brooks, Lola Martinez, Nicole Bristow, and Michael Barret had been knocked into the Society Of The Silver Hammer, but this had only been the first step. During a trial week, they had been forced to do slave jobs for the elders, and Nicole was most disgusted by those and retured prematurely. Finally, Zoey was so annoyed that she gave up, because the elders had insulted Nicole, and then also Lola and Michael had no longer been willing to join for good.
Finally, the elders even reconsidered Logan Reese, inspite of the aforementioned bribery, and accepted him as their one and only new recruit of the year.
Chapter 27. Charles Galloway
27.1. Cliff Hodges
Usually, teachers at Pacific Coast Academytended to retire in their sixties, according to our pensionate schemes established already decades ago, and thus always made place for younger teachers which was necessary in order to update and maintain our high pedagogical standards.
But there was at least one infamous exception to this rule, a certain Cliff Hodges[] who was now about turning seventy-five years old and still not willing to call it a life. He had been hired still by the school's founder, about fifty years ago, and never since been anywhere near popular with the pupils and also a pain in the guts for the staff and his fellow teachers. Several parents had already filed complaintes againts him. Alumni had refused to participate in homecoming events because Hodges was still in service. But Leo Bradford had always been sticking up for him like an iron wall.
Since Douglas Filmore had taken over from his father, hopes for a change of this hitherto untouchable relic had been rekindled.
During the last two years, Hodges had not been teaching and just been responsible for coordinating the curricula and overseeing the library for social studies and economics.
But this academic year, Cliff Hodges was teaching economy for the sophomores, and the students were writhing in agony from this burden.
Douglas Filmore Bradford had already admonished the mean teacher twice, and there would be "three strikes out".
27.2. Apples And Kisses
Quinn Pensky and Lola Martinez had just entered the admin office without having been convoked by Dean Rivers or his fiancé. Quinn held some sort of a plastic cake in her hand, and she asked me to place it onto the desk of Dean Rivers.
I shrugged and wondered about the purpose of such an action.
Quinn explained that this plastic cake was equipped with a built-in micro cam, perfect for espionage.[] It was one of her latest inventions, and a very usfule one. There was also a plastic fork coming with it in order to feign eating the cake.
I gasped and growled, "you want to spy on the dean and his fiancé?"
Quinn nodded and explained, "sure, it is for a scientific purpose, a relly important experiment for the history of mankind." Lola nodded vigorously and declared its absolute necessity. She had got a theory relating a man's kissing abilities with his manners of eating an apple. "It is already in the Bible, you know, Adam, and Eve, and the paradise tree[] — she was definitely checking out on his kissing abilities using the apple."And Quinn was now going to prove this in a scientific manner. She was already doing the same thing in the boys' lounge, but it was necessary to use also older men for the experiment, such as Dean Rivers.
I gasped and wondered whether at least the apples would be real, or whether they expected the dean to bite into a plastic apple.
Lola giggled merrily, as she imagined the headmaster biting his own teeth into pieces.
I could not allow the girls to do such a thing with the headmaster, as he would not react pleasantly when hearing about it. And the plastic pie was not as convincing as Quinn Pensky had probably planned it to be, after all.
The geek princess insisted in demonstrating the little plastic fork, and she started feigning to "eat" the "delicious cake".
And all of a sudden, a buzzing insect came flying in through the window, and it was very interested in the fake honeycake, so maybe it was not such a bad fake, after all.
Douglas Filmore stumbled in and wondered about the plastic cake and the buzzing sound. He was really amazed by the little bug that was apparently mistaking the fake pie for a real one, and he praised Quinn strongly for her invention. Against all odds, he gave Lola and Quinn the permission to use the device in order to spy on the dean and his mistress, and, even more, to put the pictures onto the interweb, including the web show of Chase Matthews, Michael Barret, Carly Shay, Samantha Puckett, and Fredward Benson.
After this, Douglas Filmore gave a long talk about this particular species of insect, and he explained why it was attracted by the fake cake, and it had nothing to do with its similarity to a real cake, which it would not even have noticed. Rather, the buzzer was looking for a hive or breeding place of some sorts, and the not so authentic pie looked very inviting for that reason.
27.3. Lost Pupil
As aforementioned, Old Hodges had already been hated by the pupils during his early career here at Pacific Coast Academy, and there had been some grisly legends about him.
The oldest one dated from the year 1956, his first appearance at our school, where he had scared one of the kids off the campus.
This pupil had been known as Charles R. Galloway, and he had never been seen after running away from the classes of Hodges where he must have been treated exorbitantly badly.
And although nobody had seen him ever again, according to the legend, the death place of said pupil was rumoured to be Redstone Gulch in the wastelands not too far from Malibu, really a barren region, which was hard to believe, given that the Pacific coast was so close. The tomb of said Galloway had never been found or even searched, which made things even more weird.
Anyways, weren't places holding tombs of mysteruiously lost people not supposed to be haunted? And was disturbing the rest of unblessed tombs not supposed to trigger exorbitantly uncanny consequences, such as the legendary wild hunt?
Logan Reese had now flaired the smell of more fame and money which he wanted to earn by making a movie about this legend, and he was up to making it to Redstone Gulch in order to find the tomb, as a proof, for only an authentic legend was expected to sell when turned into a movie. He also expected his friends to come with him, especially his roomies Michael Barret and Chase Matthews, but also some of the girls.
Lola Martinez hated being lost in the desert, but she supposed that she would be the female star of Logan's movie, and thus she volunteered gladly. "The movie will be suggested for an Oscar, won't it?"
Chase and Zoey Brooks considered a trip into the canyon not only harmful for their health, but also a waste of time. They would have preferred to learn for the next popup quiz of Hodges's classes.
But Nicole Bristow was totally keen on the prospects of the trip, because a cute senior nicknamed "Lafe"[] had offered to guide them. She was now engaged to Nicholas Webber, but she did not mind hanging out with other cute boys, as well, and her instincts were still strong enough to ignore Zoey's warnings.
Finally, Quinn Pensky was rigged and ready to use the trip in order test some of her latest inventions, such as a so-called quinnocular which was a set of five telescopes bound together in order to provide additional visual abilities. According to Douglas Filmore, shewas also supposed to improve it further by emulating the vision of most insects with their facet-style eyes. Even now it was able to turn things transparent, such as the pants of Dean Rivers. Another of her latest invention was a multi-purpose detector, useful in order to find things dug in the soil, such as metal pieces and reptile dung. Once more, Douglas Filmore Bradford had insisted in improving the device using the amazing abilities of some bugs able to detect earth-covered treasures of whatever sort. She also gave me a demonstration and found some embarrassing things in the waste paper of Dean Rivers.
Inspite of not being convinced of the possibility of haunted places, Douglas Filmore Bradford could not allow for a group of kids to travel into the canyon without a competent responsible adult of some sort, and Lafe was definitely not competent. It was a matter of the confidence of the parents and the rules imposed by the insurance company that was in charge with accidents of the boarding school kids. And excursions into the land of nowhere without a responsible adult were definitely not covered by it.
Logan Reese did not care about those rules and he announced to make it there anyways, one more or less fine day, but the other kids were more reasonable and heeded the due warnings.
27.4. The End Of A Career
Stacey Dillsen came screaming into my office, as she had just been expelled from the class of Mr. Hodges for wearing what he called an ugly top. How could that perverted creep of a teacher be so infinitely mean? Douglas Filmore Bradford panted heavily and concluded, "Hodges has been warned, this is strike number three — and thus out! Hodges is dismissed from now on."
Fortunately, most of the students were now more happy about the end of the career of the evil teacher than disappointed about not being allowed to go for a supposed haunted tomb in the deserted canyon. But Logan Reese would not give up on his project so soon — or so he declared solemnly.
Chapter 28. Happy New Years
28.1. Wrestling Fever
The exorbitantly successful football team was not the only stronghold of jocks at Pacific Coast Academy, but there were also the wrestlers. Actually, many football jocks were also in the wrestling team, but not the very captain Vince Blake who had to refrain from doing so because of the bad marks in history and other subjects and the aforementioned need of tutoring.
This year, the regionals were taking place on our campus, and this was the first real event of the new year according to the calendar. But our pupils had already been practising for quite a few months.
The coach of the wrestling team, Bruno Peters[] was even more of a dumb jock than Logan Reese or Vincent Blake.
Logan was by the way the co-captain of the wrestling team, along with one Duke Blatzberg[], the most uncomely of all jocks at Pacific Coast Academy.
Stangely, also Zoey Brooks had been called into the wrestling team although she was definitely not a bully jock like the unholy rest of the team, and she had not even applied for this squad. She had achieved a lot in the basketball team of Pacific Coast Academy, but that was somewhat different.
The motto of coach Peters was totally insane, something like "beyond the mountains, to the moon." Was it even possible to get any worse?
28.2. Celebrate The New Year
Most of the pupils of Pacific Coast Academy were still in their Christmas break, so the celebrations were only to be held in a small circle.
Once more, the location of the party was Sushi Rox, or, as Wing Lee had renamed it, Nozu because she wanted part of the name of husband Kazu in it.
Our American New Year — or so she declared — was nothing compared to the Chinese New Year celebrations which took place at some other point in our calendar, not the same date each year, but more or less always in spring time. This had to do with the moon which was much more important in China than in Europe and its colonies. Chinese new year celebrations, also known as spring festival, usually lasted for two weeks, and they involved those popular spring rolls.
Now that Wing had taken over this place, she was also requesting the introduction of official celebrations of the Chinese New Year at Pacific Coast Academy.
Of course, Dean Rivers and his Jinnie could not simply add additional vacations of two weeks, but there was certainly the opportunity to introduce one day of official celebrations, and to allow for the traditional ornations at some of the buildings on the campus, not just Nozu.
For the time being, we had to do with the celebrations that we had got, and this year's western style New Year celebrations were still a lot of fun.
28.3. Zoey In The Ring
And this was the day of the wrestling regionals, leaving the campus of Pacific Coast Academy in an exceptional state.
Our main gym, inspite of being the biggest of all high schools in the county of Los Angeles, was way too small to comprise all the people interested in watching the screaming, sweating, and bleeding meatloaves wallowing down in the ring.
But our own campus tv broadcasting group, under the direction of inevitable Jeremiah Trottman, was going to transmit comments and pictures of many of the fights all over the campus. The lounges, often equipped with flatscreen tv sets, would really be chock full with even more squealing sadomasochist fans.
I was not willing to watch the whole crap, but Dean Rivers and his mistress were watching the whole thing on a screen they had imported from somewhere else.
Zoey Brooks was in the light weight class, and this was the one with Chuck Javers, the invincible champion of all times. According to many more or less reliable witnesses, Javers was really insane and was going to mow down everyone and everything in sight, with his bare handas and legs — no prisoners! Everyone had to pity Zoey for having to fight against him in the case of not failing earlier on.
And she did not fail ealier, as all of her scheduled opponents, until the final fight, had been boys who were too much of a chicken to fight against girls. Those perversely sexist creeps were afraid of both winning and losing against a girl, which was of course absurd and unprofessional.
And then there was a message about an injury of Zoey Brooks and her substitution. A certain Scott Ridgmond[] was now supposed to replace her, although it was hard to imagine how Zoey had got herself injured without even having been in the ring and fighting.
Later, it would turn out as a mean lie by coach Peters in order to let a fresh Scott Ridgmond take on Javers instead of an exhausted one, what he would have been after having to fight the first matches.
Zoey protested vigorously and convinced the ring medics to be healthy, and thus she was allowed to fight her fight, anyways, against killer machine Chuck Javers.
At first glance, nobody would have considered Zoey to hold a candle to Chuck, but after one second, she seemed to change physically in some hard to describe manner, and all of a suudden, she did not notice Chucks' grips and her own contortions which would otherwise have caused her insane amounts of pain and probably make her pass out. Zoey was even deemed much stronger now, and she was cheered by every student at Pacific Coast Academy. Everyone? No, not quite. Trinidad Vega alias Rebecca, inspite of being one of our cheerleaders and as such obliged to cheer for our athletes, started shouting vehemently in favour of Chuck Javers who regained his virtues and scored a victory after the full duration of the match due to some minor advantages, whatever these were.
Rebbecca still cheered for and rhapsodised Chuck, and she jumped swiftly into the ring in order to be closer to him, but the grizzly bear growled at her, "go away, I would have won without your cheers as well!" He tried to push her away, but the busty Latina showed that she was not that easy to fight. Now, Trina did not really seem to care about Chuck as she looked at Zoey in a disgusted manner, shouting "loser" right into her face.
She disposed with her cheerio outfit and started wrestling Chuck, making him gasp for dismay. "Sure you would have won, anyways?"
The onlookers were now totally consternated by the busty Latina amazon. Of course Chuck was still tired and surprised, but Trinidad Vega appeared to be a good wrestler, after all. Indeed, she had already won some female bodybuilding contest and was always the bottom of the cheerio pyramid, so it was not that much of a wonder, as opposed to Zoey's current condition.
The blond Mary Sue had withstood Javers for the full time and demonstrated unhuman skills, even to the degree of looking a bit like a monster. And now she was totally exhausted and even unable to say anything.
In any case, Trina was now considered by almost everyone as a traitor and a backstabber, for never ever in the history had a Pacific Coast Academy cheerleader shouted against the own athlete, not even a girlfriend of an adversary athlete, something occurring once in a blue moon. And her action after the fight made it clear that she had not shouted to Chuck because of any feelings for him, but just in order to hurt Zoey Brooks as much as possible, something she had now achieved to the fullest. So, the question was now whether Rebecca alias Trina, had honestly had feelings for Chase Matthews at the beginning of the new academic year, or whether there was a different reason. After all, Chase and Zoey had never been even close to dating ever since, and that was clearly Zoey's merit. So either Trina was trying to punish Chase by hurting his friend Zoey, or she had got a different reason for hating Zoey altogether.
28.4. Zoey Retires
Zoey Brooks was now recovering in the infirmary, and she would not miss out on more than one day of classes, the first of the new year.
I was there in order to fill in some papers for the pupils' accident insurance which was covering her costs because it had been an accident in an official school team.
Doc Jeff Glazer was overly careful with his niece, and his wife Shannon supported him, although she had been called some bad words after having made out with Glazer in front of Dustin Brooks, breaking his heart.
Unfortunately, Jeremiah Trottman was also here in order to interview the blond Mary Sue and big hero for having been close to defeating Jeff, if there had not been that pernicious traitor.
Zoey sighed deeply and admitted, "sorry, I have not even deserved the second prize … if there is one."
Basically, there was such a thing, and Dean Rivers wanted to render it unto Zoey in person right after her dismissal from the nurse's station.
Zoey explained, "the real reason for my strength during those few minutes were … the moon bars — they somewhat promoted the beast inside me, I don't really understand that …"
Jeremiah Trottman was shocked, but he liked news of that sort as they were guaranteeing increased quota for the PCA sports channel and the school newspaper.
Who or what was the beast inside Zoey Brooks, and what did the moon bars who had been altered after by Zoey according to the instructions of overlord Douglas Filmore Bradford inside that school project?
Trina Vega's behaviour at the showdown would get her expelled from the cheerleading squad, but it was not against the rules of the school, and there was no reason for a detention, suspension, or even expulsion from Pacific Coast Academy, as everyone was allowed to root for whatever athlete he wanted to.
So, the new year according to the western calendar had started with some grisly questions, and the new year according to the Chinese calendar was still to come.
Chapter 29. Death Of A Grandma
29.1. Dustin In Trouble?
Usually, Dustin Brooks, the little brother of barbie girl Zoey, used to be such a nice and handsome guy, but sometimes he got into troouble due to listening to the false friends, those of the sort he had been warned about by his sister.
One of those false friends had apparently been Samantha Puckett alias Trisha Kirby, but she was now harmless dur to the strern control of carly Shay.
Unfortunately, there were a few others who always talked Dustin into bets with stakes as terrible as swimming in the campus fountain and so on.
The only really serious thing had been the usage of aforementioned model plane that had crashed into the face of Dean Rivers.
Russel Thatcher[], one of our vice principals, had already requested some stern punishment for him, but Zoey had been able to talk him out of trouble. Unfortunately she would not always be there in time, so Dustin better refrained from doing too many of those things.
Currently, the lovebirds Carl Rivers and Jinnie Park were hardly going to punish Dustin or any other pupil for anything, but this phase was not necessarily lasting forever.
29.2. A Birthday Surprise
Chase Bartholomew Matthews was about turning seventeen years old, and Zoey Brooks wanted to prepare a birthday gift of a particular kind for him.
His grandma's birthday was the same day of the year, albeit with several decades inbetween, as was to be expected, and the two of them were very close.
Zoey had thus got the idea to call the old lady and let her come to Pacific Coast Academy for the birthday of Chase, and probably allow for her to stay here for a night until her flight back to the northeastern states.
I had still got almost enough space in my apartment, so Dean Rivers talked me into stuffing Chase's grandma into it.
Douglas Filmore Bradford wondered whether the old lady was a good canditate for a new dormitory adviser for the girls' residence blocks.
Chase would hardly have denied that, but he was not all that objective here.
Nicole Bristow was still Zoey's indispensable sidekick, and she squealed for joyce when she heard that there was the chance for a cool dormitory adviser.
In any case, there was a spot for the old lady, and this was by all means a great thing for Chase. Maybe there was still a spark of a hope for Chase and Zoey, although Chase had gone out of his way during the past two years, and Zoey had not even reacted with jealousy to the temporary dates of Chase and Rebecca alias Trinidad?
Other than the surprise visit, Zoey had also chosen to organise a surprise pyjama party in their lounge instead of a bikini party at the beach, as requested by perverted jerk Logan Reese who wanted to see lots of loosely clad girls.
The predicted weather would have favoured the beach party, but only when following the weather forecast of Walter Nichols, the father of our resident Joshuah Nichols. It amounted to five days straight of sunshine and warm weather, perfect for parties in the open air. But his competitor Bruce Windchill[] was not so optimistic, but he considered, quite the contrary, the possibility of heavy rain storms along the southern Californian coast, from Santa Barbara to San Diego.
29.3. The Doodle Cake
Many snacks were still sold only at vendor machines, sucj as Lola Martinez's beloved fruit doodle cakes.
The improved moon bars invented by Zoey Brooks under the guidance of Dougas Fimore Bradford did not belong into this category, as there had not yet been a commercial producer willing to sell them.
But our vendor machines were all old and rusty, and certainly no longer reliable. The contract with the vendor company dated from the times of Leo Bradford, and Douglas Filmore was already thinking about cancelling it at the next legally possible occasion.
Anyways, Lola had tried to purchase one of her beloved snacks, but, even after inserting a sufficient amount of money and pushing the proper buttons, nothing good happened, neither the doodle cake bar nor any money were returned.
Lola and Quinn pensky tried to kick and punch the evil machine, nbut without any avail.
And , adding to all the bad luck, Thatcher showed up and threatened the girls with draconic disciplinary actions, just as in the case of Dustin Brooks.
Whgen they were really desperate, Dustin Brooks showed up and offered to help the girls by sticking his arm into the ejection slot and grabbing the stuck doodle cake from there.
At first glance, the girls did not believe it, but then they were too desperate to reject the offer as the only legal way would have been that of filing a complaint at the administreation office which, if successful, would get them refunded at the beginning of the next academic year, if they were really lucky.
Dustin inserted his brittle arm into the announced spot, but, instead of returning with the loot, his limb was stuck, and this hurt a lot.
Of course Thatcher would not have been very kind in the case of finding Dustin in such a situation, so the girls had to hide Dustin, complete with the vendor machine, somewhere in the boys' dormitory room, in order to avoid bothering Zoeym and then to use heavy machine grease and suitable tools, either from the custodian, or, better, from Joe the mechanic
. They were already looking for a bunch of powerful jocks in order to move the heavy machine and the little boy, but, all of a sudden, some strange miracle occurred, and Dustin felt his arm changing physically. He was not able to describe what had really happened, but the part stuk in the apparatus felt drying up and wither away, without causing any pain, until it was possible to withdraw it cpmfortably from the ejection hole. Only a withered stump was left of his arm, making any onlooker, in particular Lola Martinez, gasp and even squeal insanely.
Dustin was first consternated, but then he felt life return to his withered and scrambled limb.
I had not been there when that happened, but Lola Martinez would soon tell Jeremiah Trottman about it who would spread the news by means of Daily Stingray and PCA News.
Was there a connection between this strange anatomic ability he had never experienced before and all the experiments he had been submitted to by Quinn Pensky and Douglas Filmore Bradford?
29.4. Sad Songs
This morning,I had been supposed to fetch grannie Matthews from Los Angeles National Airport, but I got a news that the old lady had not been coming to California because of feeling too sick.
Chase Matthews had most likely been thoroughly disappointed when hearing about the failed best birthday gift in the history of birthday gifts at Pacific Coast Academy.
Maybe at least the pyjama party had got the power to make him get over it.
The choice of a party in the lounge had been worth gold and diamonds, as it was raining cats and dogs from the skies above California, just as almost expected by Bruce Windchill, unlike Walter Nichols's disastrous forecast.
And all of a sudden, I got a phone call from somewhere in the northeastern states, and those were really bad news. The grandmother of Chase had not just been sick, she was dead by now, a messgae that would probably hit Chase harder than a meteorite strike. I figured that Michael Barret would be most suitable to tell Chase about it, and so I sent a messenger his way.
29.5. Rebecca fesses up.
The rain kept on whipping mercilessly against the windows of the administration office. Along with Miss Park and Dean Rivers, I had been forced to stay in the building all night long. The streets leading away from the campus were flooded and all stuff like that. Officer Vega had told us to wait here until an official helicopter of the county police would pass by and declare the situation for under control, or, failing that, to organise the evacuation of the campus. The students had to stay in their lounges or their dormitory blocks instead of running into further trouble in the open air.
This night had most likely been particularly hard for Chase Matthews, but he had got a few friends by his side in order to help him over everything. Maybe he wanted to make it, as soon as the meteorological conditions allowed for it, to his hometown and attend his deceased grandmother's funeral. Dean Rivers did not hesitate allowing for a week off classes for that purpose.
Apropos officer Vega … his daughter was here in our office, notwithstanding the proscription of not leaving the buildings, in order to say that she was sorry for the troubles she had caused unto Zoey and Chase. "A few weeks earlier, I would have been glad about such an accident, but …" she stammered helplessly. Of course she would still have to tell Chase and Zoey in person, but she had not found a way to the room where they were now caught in, and this was all too understandable. She reported:
At the wrestling finals, I had been touched by this Chuck Javers, I know, it was an angry touch, but when I defended my self, I had goit for the first time in my life feelings for a boy, and these have been growing since then.
Until last year, I had only seen boys as a tool, a means to be used for the purpose of acquiring fame and wealth and public attention …
Chase, for example, I only saw as an excessively ugly dweeb, and I wanted to play his girlfriend. My cousin Lola Martimnez suggested this, because she was tired of the situation between Chase and Zoey, so making the blond barbie jalous appeared the right thing to do. In turn, I wanted Chase to become my personal playwright. I still wany to make a career as a musical star, here in Los Angeles or over at the Broadway in New York. And Chase has already written several cool plays, so this sounded like a win win, although I have been disgusted by Chase. And I played a really jealous girlfriend, not exactly what Chase had intended, it seemes. So, I have done my job, but Chase refused to pay, and I got even more angry, thence the scene at the regionals of the wrestlers. Also, Zoey reminds me too much of a blond anglosaxon girl from my elementary school class.
I was already well developed at the age of eleven, and the blondes used to call me a Latin censored. They compared me to the Macalana from that Latin rock song.[] So I took it all out on Zoey. Sorry!
These confessions had been really hard for Trinidad Vega to make, and they would be no less hard for Zoey to swallow, especially as also her best friend Lola was involved. Was there ever a way for Zoey to forgive that humiliating scene unto Trinidad Vega?
Chapter 30. Talent Show
30.1. Zoey's Problem
Zoey Brooks was now in a miserable and thorougly unforgiving mood, hating and avoiding many kids on the campus. She was not pleased by Trinidad Vega's confessions, ut at least she had not expected anything better from the busty criolla.
Chase Bartholomew Matthews had really hurt Zoey's feelings by hiring another girl in order to make her jealous, and, what made it really bad was the fact that it was not Chase who admitted to his deeds as soon as possible, but she had come to learn about it from Trinidad instead, and that after half a year.
During the night of the death of Chase's grandmother, Zoey had still been trying hard to comfort her friend and make him get over everything, and this had done a lot of good to the bushy head. But then, just twenty-four little hours later, the Latina's confession stabbed through Zoey';s mind like a glowing dagger. She had started cursing Chase for being such an incredible fake friend and stalker. As a consequence, she did not accompany him home to his grandma's funeral and forced him to do all this trip on his own which was close to impossible in his current mental state.
Dean Rivers had given Michael Barret the permission to accompany Chase to the Atlantic coast in order to prevent bad things.
There was only one thing back in those days that was able to cheer up Zoey's excruciatingly stinky mood.
The blond Mary Sue was an avid fan of Jadie Hawthorne[], one of the most prolific writers of chick flick novels, some of them having already been turned into movies by Malcolm Reese.
And now said Jadie was supposed to come to a book shop less than fifteen miles from our campus in order to read excerpts from her latest publication which was about to make it into production, and she would also distribute some hand signed copies of it and answer to questions of the audience. Needless to say, Zoey was hell bent on making it there in order to grab her own copy, and there were sure many questions to ask the star writer on her mind.
This presentation was going to take place this Saturday's evening hours, and Zoey had already been looking for a lift there, but she had committed some excessively grave mistake, as she had relied on a pregnant teacher to drive her downtown to the book shop. And, unfortunately, sometimes babies come a few weeks trooearly, and this was the problem even now.
Within a few hours, Zoey Brooks was forced to look for another responsible adult to take her downtown to the book shop, and the tide was high ….
I was not eligible because I had to make it to a family meeting in the afternoon, and those meetings were always terible and abominable, but they had to be.
30.2. Looking For The Lift
I would only come to know about things going on on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy after the weekend, but that's about what I would get to here.
Zoey's Brooks first idea had been that of getting Logan Reese to call her a limousine downtown, as he was certainly able to afford that, and his family had got several limousines usually distributed all over the vicinities of Hollywood. Of course, asking a jerk and dandy like Logam was nothing without a severe risk, so Zoey had to press herself hard to do so, but she was not willing to kiss the filthy creep.
Fortunately, Logan was choosing some completely different price for the favour, nothing to do with Zoey's female qualities. More precisely, Logan had recently lost a really stupid bet against Dustin Brooks, where he claimed that rabbits would eat salsa, just because it was the most popular dip throughout America. The stakes had been a beautifully crafted PCA ring worn by Dustin Reese, a ring in the likeness of a stingray — the crest animal of Pacific Coast Academy — trying to bite its own tail.
Douglas Filmore Bradford was aware of the story of the ring. Logan's grandfather had been a teacher for chemistry at nearby Californian Institute For Technology[], known i person to Douglas Filmoree, and he had got the idea for this ring, inspired by some anecdote about the discovery of the benzene molecule with a weird annular structure. August Kekulé, the discoverer of this structure, had claimed that this result had been reveiled unto him in a day dream where he saw atoms grouping in a long snake-like queue which started to chase after its own tail.
This history had probably been the very reason for Logan Reese to try to get the ring back from Zoey's little brother.
The latter was preparing his performance in this year's talent show which was going to occur at the same time as Jadie Hawthorne's presentation of the latest chick flick which Zoey Brooks was so looking forward.
This must have touched some spot of Dustin, for he had certainly wished to perform his brilliant tricks in front of the eyes of his elder sister, and her intentions of staying away from it, for whatever reason, must have hurt him badly.
Dustin's plan for the talent show had been that of sawing a virgin into half, but as there were hardly any real virgins at Pacific Coast Academy, he had chosen his room mate Robert "Scooter" Carmichael[], wearing a girl's wig. But that choice had turned out really lame because of Robbie's multiple phobias, maybe even worse than Michael Barret's.
And Dustin wanted tomperform particularly well in order to impress Carly Shay who had made this talent show the topic of the next edition of the web show of which she was now the uncontested main moderator, making almost everyone forget about Chase and Michael. Carly had helped Chase a lot to get over the death of his grandma,, though, and she had not tried deliberately try to take over the command.
Now Dustin wanted a better assistant for his trick, and he was almost willing to sacrifice thr ring for that purpose.
But Megan Parker, the cousin of Carly, intervened with another plan for Dustin, and she volunteered as Dustin's assistant.
This had destroyed Zoey's hopes altogether, as now Logan would not call her a limousine in order to take her downtown to the lecture of Jadie Hawthorne.
Alas, Megan had got a suggestion, she asked Zoey to try to get her step boob Josh Nichols to take her downtown. "This way, I get rid of the most annoying onlooker. Josh is a wannabe magic trick performer, his idol is the great Henry Doheny[]."
Dustin's eyes flickered when hearing about Doheny, but Megan shook her head. "Doheny's tricks need a bit of a spice up, and I will show you how …"
Zoey was not sure what to think about Megan's plans whiuch she did not even know, but she hurried up in order to fetch Josh Nichols in time and ask him for a lift downtown, which was not easy, as Josh was spending a lot of time with Stacey Dillsen, his new girlfriend. They were working together on cotton swab models of various things.
30.3. The Mantis[]
Weekend was over, and I was back in my admin office, before Dean Rivers and Miss Park.
But Douglas Filmore Bradford was already here in order to report some marvellous story about the talent show from Saturday night, marvellous also in the sense of involving some figure from some fantasy cartoons by some company named Marvel.
More precisely, Megan Parker was locked into a black box by Dustin Brooks, and, a few minutes later, after the box had been sundered by Dustin's saw, she emerged from the rotten box like a bug from its cocoon
She was almost shaped like a mantis, and Wayne Fire Wire Gilbert, a total sucker for DC and Marvel cartoons, recognised her immediately as one of his favourite toon heroes. He started talking for over half an hour about the story of Mantis in his beloved toons.
He swooned to no end and rhapsodised over Dustin's trick, whatever it had been.
Almost needless to say, Dustin and Megan had been voted winners of the talent evening by a landslide. Megan was now back to normal, and nobody would discover her trick that soon, not even Dustin.
Zoey's evening had been less pleasant, for she had made it in time to the library with Josh's help, but there had not been enough signed copies of Jatie Hawthorne's chick flick, and she had not been able to ask a question because Josh had been twitching all time long, something really embarrassing.
Chapter 31. Lisa Perkins
31.1. Strained Butt
Stacey Dillsen loved acrobatics, and for that avail she had been enrolled into the hatha yoga classes of Cynthia Bromwell. But she was a bit clumsy like Josh, and thus had strained her butt muscles and needed to be transported into the infirmary.
Doc Glazer diagnosed insufficient blood circulation in Stacey's hindside, which made accidents like this one more likely.
A similar diagnosis that had already been made for Joshuah Nichols.[].
As a cure, they were now prescribed to massage each other's butt on a regular base for several minutes, and they would thenceforth smile brightly while doing so, as this usually disgusting procedure felt infinitely soothing and relaxing for them.
31.2. Race Game
Video games were very popular on this campus, both among the students, the teachers, and the staff.
Especially Dean Rivers was a hell of addicted to certain games, and for this avail, he did never do anything in order to obstruct video-playing kids at Pacific Coast Academy. Of course, as we have seen, his wife, almost ex-wife, Tipper had been less keen on that, Fortunately, Jinnie was more tolerant here, as she had once confiscated a video game played illegally during one of her classes by one of her students, a certain Ryan Leslie Laserbeam, but thereupon turned herself addicted to that action game and kept on playing it during her visits to the toilets.
It has already been mentioned that Dustin Brooks had once even caused a power failure due to exaggerated video gaming, along with other factors, of course, but he had not been punished for that.
The most addicted of all video gamers was, nothing of all that withstanding, Joshuah Nichols who was also called the "king of the game sphere".
But there was now one new racing game that was most popular. It had been bought and introduced by Logan Reese, who had also been the only one to afford the new luxury mega play station. In his dormitory room, he kept on playing it against Chase Bartholomew Matthews who, in the beginning, had not even wanted to play it, and Logan had thought himself the sure winner.
Alas, Logan had been completely wrong, and Chase was beating all the high scores with ease, which was incredible for such a bushy dweeb. So Logan had to aim for the higher goal and offered a bet against Chase involving yet another race, but not on the play station, rather, one involving real carts which they had to get from somewhere.
Of course such a race on the campus, chock full of dangers for everyone, would not have been approved by the school administration.
In addition, it was horribly unfair, as Logan was certainly able to afford buying an expensive professional race cart, while Chase was probbably goping to have to patch something like a self-going lawnmower from the trash yard of greasemonkey Joe Braxley.
The stakes were similar to those of last year's bet by means of which Michael Barret had made a complete fool of himself.
But for Chase, there was no reason for fearing the stakes, as his life made no such thing as a sense to him anymore since Zoey Brooks had rebuked him inappropriately hard for having tried to make her jealous by hiring a fake girlfriend, videlicet Trinidad Vega. Thus he did not even mind dying a cruel death in a burning cart, or something like that.
In the case of winning the bet, however, Chase's award would have been that of a new G,O., a very popular player for modern music media. Chase had hitherto been working hard for it. He had even begged his evil grandfather for a donation, but in vain.[]
31.3. Michael's New Crush
As well-known by everyone, Michael Barret had already once got a hard time with girls.
His first girlfriend here on the campus had been a certain Farfalla who had claimed to be the sister of Jerome Crony alias Olivary Biallo. Indeed, they two of them were not related, Farfalla had just been one to teach Olivary to behave like a guy from her exotic homelands — part of his cover.
As a matter of fact, Farfalla had left the greater area of Los Angeles ever since, and Michael had already forgotten about her smile.
And then there was Vanessa Tayler, the volleyball captain who had equally bewitched Michael with her smile. Michael had even lost a bet in order to be able to call her name, with totally embarrassing stakes, involving crossdressing.
Vanessa was still on the campus, but this fact did not prevent Michael Barret from falling for yet another smile by yet another girl.
His new crush was one Lisa Perkins, an afro-american calypso rock singer of the supremne category.
More precisely, Lisa was a participant in a popular casting show known as America Sings[]. She was now waiting for yet another recall, and she had already sung a song written by record czar Gustavo Rocque.
So, inspoite of still being dating Vanessa Tayler, Michael Barret was now hankering in the most perverted manner after Lisa Perkins, and stalking her across the campus in a really clumsy way.
31.4. A Zebra For A GO
Not everyone was pleased by the prospects of Chase Matthews going through the impending humiliation because he had no chance to afford a better race cart than Logan Reese.
Quinn Pensky had got the idea of tuning a former — and nowadays dysfunctional — lawnmower bought from Joe Braxley, the nearby greasemonkey, into a highspeed turbo racecart.
Chase liked that idea, and even Lola Martinez would cheer for Quinn's construction.
Logan would not like this interpretation of the rules, as he knew that he would not stand a dime against Quinn's art.
Even worse, Samantha Puckett was willing to participate in the race as well, as one of her favourite dreams was that of beoming a professional car racer.
It was still incredible that Dean Rivers did not deny the kids the permission to organise the dangerous race on the campus.
Megan Parker tried once more to dissuade Chase by offering him a zebra[] in the case of withdrawing from the insanity, as she knew that had had once wished for such a striped horse, and she had still got a zebra that was nowadays standing on the horse ranch of Faye Dunaway, a smiling zebra, as she called it, smiling better than Lisa Perkins. She had bought the zebra about one year and a half ago friom the interweb and made Drake and Josh Nichols believe that it was used for raising zebra stripes for pedestrian crossings.
Unfortunately, Chase was not yet convinced that he was able to care for a zebra, now that all hopes of getting Zoey were gone.
At least the race on the campus was postponed, and Megan had already got another plan for Chase.
31.5. Open Mike Night
Following a suggestion made by Zoey Brooks and Lola Martinez, Michael Barret was now ready to take on Lisa, and they had organised a place for Michael in the looming Open Mike Night. Lisa was supposed to sit in the first row of the audience, alloweing Michael to impress her most with his parody songs.
Alas, Vanessa had been informed by Megan Parker and then told Lisa Perkins about the relationship between herself and Michael. The latter was now upset, and she was not willing to tolerate the bigamist.
While Michael was entering the stage, Lisa kept on smiling into his direction. Vanessa was hiding behind her.
But as soon as Michael Barret started singing, which was not easy for him and almost made him vomit, as he was afraid alone in the spotlights, Vanessa merged from her hideout and smiled equally at Michael. The mean cheater looked consternated, and he started screaming and running away from the stage, and he was finally unable to avoid losing his supper all over the hall.
The audience booed mercilessly, as Vanessa and Lisa ganged up and denounced the reckless Don Juan.
Michael was now completely ashamed and likely to hide in his wardrobe playing his flute until the end of the academic year.
Megan Parker, inspite of having discovered Michael's fraud first, was now willing to do something about it, maybe by preparing a woodwind concert with him, but this would only be a temporary solution, and something better was still to be sought.
Chapter 32. Barbecue Party
32.1. Uncle Morris
Only a few weeks had gone past since the death of Grandma Matthews when the message of a death of another pupil's relative reached the campus.
This time, it was a granduncle of Zoey Brooks named Morris,[] but, unlike in the previous case of Chase, it was not a hard loss for the blond Mary Sue who had hardly ever heard about this particular relative.
Acquainted or not, Morris, the czar of the Californian meat industry, had left a whole truck's load of pork middlings for Zoey Brooks, and the truck was too big for staying much longer on our campus. It had to be unloaded really fast and disappear again, otherwise there would have been troubles with the local police and Officer Vega.
Wing Lee allowed Zoey to store the pork ribs in her cold storage, but this was nothing more than a temporary solution, as she was expecteing a delivery of frozen tuna for Nozu. The maximum was until next weekend, otherwise there would be some possible turmoil.
As the looming weekend was guaranteed to be all bright and sunny, Zoey Brooks suggested to make a barbecue contest for the high school kids.
32.2. Brighter Than One Thousand Suns
Quinn Pensky and her lover Eric Blonowitz were working on some new discovery, a slowly burning liquid candle.
They had already made many tests, and yet nothing bad had happened, but nothing good either, and so Quinn decided to upgrade the amount of whatever.
All of a sudden, a huge flame shot forth from the liquid stuff and seared both of the lovebirds badly.
This would be seen on the automatic video they had made of it.
The flame extinguished itself, whatever that meant, due to the explosive effects.
But Quinn and Eric were left again without glasses, and this time also without any hair left on their head.
Lola Martinez gathered their spectacles, and she suggested to get wigs from the costume storage of her theatre club in order to cover the embarrassing bald spots, but Quinn and Eric deemed those ugly.
The next idea would be some sort of hair transplant, using some of the excess shrub from the head of Chase Bartholomew Matthews, but he was unlikely to part willingly with the wild growth on his scalp.
Their problem was now that of getting their hair to regrow, and, fortunately, they had already worked somewhat towards that goal, and with the help of a suggestion made by Douglas Filmore Bradford, some hairy spider serum added a lot more power to the whole extract applied to the spots on the skins of Quinn and Eric
32.3. Gary Coleman
For security reasons, younger kids were not allowed to operate barbecue sets with open flames, such as charcoal grills.
Wing Lee declared herself ready to be the judge of the barbecue event, and she also had a great co-judge in mind who was nobody other than infamous Gary Coleman,[] the inventer of a very compact traveller's barbecue set.
Megan Parker helped Wing organising the great event, as she was a personal friend of the grandmaster of barbecues. She had once helped the police of San Diego to catch a gang of thieves and smugglers who were active near the Mexican boarder. And Gary Coleman had gotten all his money back, thus he owed Megan some huge favour, or even more than just some.
Gary even donated a few grills for the barbecue festival, turning the grill fest into a huge publicity action promoting his latest production series.
Gary's grills had got a built-in radio set which was similar to the technology used by those modern GO devices, this made the whole thing desirable for Chase. The winner of the contest was going to keep his Gary grill, which made Chase much more motivated, ever.
32.4. The Contest
Samantha Puckett was not yet old enough for operating a grill without a responsible adult, but she was looking forward to the festival because she was hungry enough to devour all of the pork chops without a trace of a remorse.
The first of the teams to be evaluated were Ribs And Swabs, the squad of Stacey Dillsen and Joshuah Nichols.
Megan was very suspicious of their barbecue dips, for she had once caught Josh using illegal spices. Truth said, she had tricked Josh and Drake into using Peruvian puff pepper, but that didn't matter. But this time, she could not prove anything wrong, except the fact that there were a few cotton swabs swimming in the barbecue marinade, which was not illegal.
Another dangerous team was that of Logan Reese and Chase Bartholomew Matthews which used a traditional recipe of the Reese family, a spice mix made of the most delicious herbs of the world, also known as "Reese Rib Rub".
Michael Barret, on the other hand, was working together with Zoey Brooks, and he used his grandma's — probably some sort of a cook — traditional barbecue marinade. The same woman had also invented a popular sauce for spicy ravioli.[]
Logan and Michael had already been at each other;s throat dduring the last few days leading up to the barbecus festival, just because of their different concepts of spicing up the barbecue ribs.
The red hot sun was still burning up the hill, and the charcoals made the same.
But their hotness, taken together, was nothing compared to that of Spencer Shay's barbecue sauce. Fortunately, the latter was not a part of the competition.
Alas, when Gary Coleman tried to get the next example of a rib to enjoy, he was shocked to death as there were most definitely no barbecue middlings left, for wahatever reason.
Actaully, the reason was not hard to spot, as nearby Samantha Puckett was already rubbing her belly and belching like a lion, indicating in a manner evident for anyone which way the barbecue meat had gone.
Still, Sam was feeling very well, as she could apparently never get too much of that stuff, but this ould soon change.
As their were no ribs left to be tested by Coleman, the contest would have been declared a draw, or so agreed Wing Lee and Gary Coleman, but then Megan Parker complained, "the barbecue sauces are still left, and they need to be checked for illegal ingredients."
Wing and Gary kept on discussing, and they decided to take Megan's suggestion completely serious, although they were still clueless with respect to the kind of illegal ingredients to be checked, and the way of doing so.
Megan had thought about it beforehand and bought some test tubes from Quinn Pensky. The latter and Eric were not present, as Eric was a vegetarian. But Megan had got some essences allowing them to check for the presence of Peruvian puff pepper in the dips and marinades. The essence had been taken from peruvian puff fleas who only fed on the blood of the only mammals resistent to puff peppers, as already remarked by Fouglas Filmore Bradford.
Wing Lee agreed, and she started applying the tests to the marinades provided by the participants, one by one.
Josh Nichols was upset because he believed that Megan had tricked him once more into using illegal spices, and he was infinitely much more surprised about the outcome, videlicet the fact that his and Stacey's dips were the only ones free from Peruvian puff pepper. The world-renowned Reese Rib Rub, as well as the Barret marinade, were chock full of the dangerous ingredient.
Wing Lee and Gary Coleman declared the two of them the winners of the barbecue contest and of a brand new Gary Grill.
The only one at the contest who had eaten a lot of the infested meat was Samantha Puckett, and this made many people, especially Carly Shay, worried. The latter started calling for Doc Glazer in order to get Samn examined thoroughly.
The medic did not diagnose any health problems for the blond devil, but she needed to submit blood samples during the next days in order to perform some more refined tests.
Eric and Quinn were now all over the place covered with some dense shrubbery, and this was not going to change during the following weeks, Nicole Bristow, an aspiring beautician with hairstyling as her specialisation, decided to help them by at least styling them in a fashionable manner, although she was thoroughly disgusted by exorbitant dweebs like Eric Blonowitz.
Quinn decided to give up for the time being on the attempts of buildiing an everlasting liquid candle, and instead she picked up a suggestion by Douglas Filmore Bradford involving the usage of glowworm genes in the human body. But was such a project doomed for failure, or was it going to succeed?
Chapter 33. Dustin needs Zoey.
33.1. Parcel From Japan
I was standing and qwaiting in the queue in the post office of Pacific Coast Academy in order to check the incoming mail o the day for the administration centre when I was almost pushed out of the way by some messenger carrying a parcel apparently destined for Logan Reese, a parcel chock full with Chinese or Japanese letters, whatever they meant. If necessary, I would have asked Miss Park who made sense of them, as she was also firmly knowledgeable in the language of her ancestry from across the endless deep and silent waters.
I still had to wait for a few minutes,, for Logan was known for generous tips and thus treated with preference.
But the dandy did not show up in person, he had got an errand boy for those cases, videlicet gummi worm addict Dustin Brooks. The middle school kid declared that his job was really stressy, buit he was paid well, so there was no reason for him to complain.
Malcolm Reese, the czar of Hollywood, was about preparing a movie over in Tokyo, so he had sent Logan a parcel from there, with lots of japanese stuff.
I had told Dean Rivers and Miss Park about the delivery from Japan, and, as Logan Reese was definitely most well known as one of the most striking trouble raisers on the campus, Jinnie had insisted in inspecting the parcel as sternly as can be.
The boys in the lounge looked a bit consternated, especially Logan, but Jinnie showed absolutely no such thing as mercy when she commanded Logan to unwarp the parcel in front of her eyyes. It had already been opened, but hastily hidden again.
The main contents of the package from across the mighty Pacific were a Japanese cellular phone known as a J-phone, and also a movie named Shinnusha. According to Jinnie, this was not a nice title, and the movie was hardly suitable for children. She commanded Logan Reese to send it back across the endless waters to the Pacific Ocean to the island of the rising sun.
The dandy was too upset and threatened to tell his dad, the most powerful sponsor of Pacific Coast Academy, about this miserable treatment, but this was in vain.
Dustin Brooks was disappointed because Shinnusha had to be sent back, but had he been interested in watching it, a movie declared illegal in more than half of the states of America, including Puerto Rico? It was deemed for mature adults only in those states where it was legal, and definitely not PG.
The very next morning, I returned to the campus of Pacific Coast Academy, and I was immediately flabbergasted because the whole pavement was extremely wet, just like after the rain storm that had desolated our campus, along with most of the southern Californian coastal regions, just a few weeks ago, starting with the night in which Grandma Matthews had died.
According to the witness of Kazu, there had been no fire, but the sprinkling systems had been set off anyways by some fire alert, apparently a blind one.
Dean Rivers and his mistress had been disturbed and woken up in the middle of the night and showed up on the campus, just in order to here that the alert had been faked.
The sprinkler systems were now more sensitive than before because of some new rules imposed by the fire insurance.
According to Douglas Filmore Bradford, it was possible that little bugs trigger this alert, but he was sure that there were none during the last night, as he had checked the insect stocks recently.
In any case, the dean and his wife declared that the culprit, if found, would be suspended from Pacific Coast Academy. Until then the whole dormitory block where the fire alert was triggered would be grounded, and this was Maxwell Hall, the block of Logan Reese and his comrades.
Strangely, the sensitive smoke detectors had not triggered any alert during the recent barbecue contest, inspite of the smoke of several charcoal grills, and inspite of the explosion of Quinn Pensky's and Eric Blonowitz's liquid candle. But now they had gone off for no reason, and that was supposed to make any sense? Sorry, but I did not get that — did anyone?
33.4. Dustin wants to leave.
A few hours later, Dustin Brooks was in our office, and he had announced that he wanted to leave our school because he did not feel safe here. We were asked to call his dad, but also to tell his sister about this decision.
Miss Park commanded me to call for Zoey while she interrogated the little bugger.
Little later, Ashley Blake, Sandy Baldwin, Megan Parker, and Carly Shay followed and started issuing the same requests.
Now this sounded really fishy, and they all complained about having been forced to watched some Japanese horror movie, which of course had been no other but Shinnusha.
Jinnie Park was upset and angry about herself as she had allowed Logan to send the movie back today, while she should obviously have conficated the evil, crap on site.
I moaned aloud, but I had to call Vince, Tracy, Drake, and Spencer into the office as well, which was really amazing, as all the middle school kids requesting to be sent home appeared to have elder siblings at Pacific Coast Academy, either as students or as advisers. Drake Parker was the new adviser of the school band, by the way.
Dean Rivers declared the need to talk to Malcolm Reese in a serious manner, for sending illegal movies to a school was irresponsioble, whether here or in Japan.
The climax of the movie had been when a gang of frenzied ninjas in the likeness of Samantha Puckett had stabbed everything to death that dared to stand in its way, using chop sticks.
Jinnie Park was sad that this would hurt her cousin Kazu, but she had to consider banning chop sticks from the campus for a while, as this was a very bad example for kids to live up to.
What we did not get to know at that point was the fact that those younger siblings had all spent the night in the room of their elder siblings, event against the resistence of the latters' respective room mates. This was of course markedly against the rules, especially in the case of brothers staying in their elder sisters' rooms, or vice versa. This, of course, would cause a lot of potential troubles, but for Dean Rivers and for Miss Park, the problems with the fake fire alert and the horror movie were of higher priority.
The elder siblings promised to take care to the situation and talk to the little trouble risers once again.
Only a later would Dustin Brooks admit to some other strange fact, more precisely the one that when watching the horror ninjas, he had got a very strange sensation, a tingling feeling of a physical change of his limbs and a pressure to his guts and bones and nerves, similar to the one he had got in the minute in which his arm was stuck in the vendor machine.
33.5. The Culprit
Douglas Filmore Bradford had once more controlled our fire alert systems, and he had discovered that they had been triggered by electromagnetic waves which were not used in Americaan electronic devices such as the G.O., as he had first supposed. The G,O. was able to download in a wireless manner music from afar, as explained by Wayne Gilbert alias Fire Wire. So, foreign devices may have triggered the fire alert, and what was more likely than those Japanese J-phone now owned by ?
Fire Wire and Melinda Crenshaw controlled all electronic devices on the campus, and , indeed, the J Phone was able to download whole movies over night, which was of course horribly expensive, insuring that only someone like Logan Reese was able to afford it, but it was also illegal because of its ability of confusing fire alerts.
The school was fined for the fake fire alerts, but the fine would be passed on to Malcolm Reese because of his bad deed.
33.6. Sibling Love
The little sibling gang kept on staying in their elder siblings' dormitory rooms, as they feigned that they felt safe only their.
But finally they broke down and admitted to just missing them, and that the whole stuff with the horror movie was just a distraction sin order to do the trick. Vinve, Tracy, Zoey, Drake, and Spencer would thenceforth be forced to sopend more daytime with their younger siblings, but no longer let them stay in their dormiutory rooms.
Yet this was not everything. Dustin was not the only one experiencing those tingling feelings described above — Ashley and Carly did too. Was there a connection to the long series of Quinn Pensky's and Douglas Filmore Bradford's experiements? He did not admit to that, but it was impossible to avoid seeing a connection.
In this situation, their elder siblings' love was more important for them than ever before.
Chapter 34. The Don Juan
34.1. Toon Juice
Before leaving the web show up to Carly Shay, Chase Matthews and Michael Barret had used it somewhat for speading their home-made toons. They were still making toons, but those had already been accepted by toon juice at the beginning of the academic year[] and ever since been a regular source of income as long as they were able to deliver enough of them.
Alas, this was not yet enough for Chase to make suffiecient bucks needed for a new GO. And their ideas had already run dry, so they had even accepted a suggestion by Logan Reese, although they knew that those had probably been contaminated. Logan was no original head, and he was certainly not able to come up with cool ideas for toons, so they had been plagiarised.
One fine afternoon, an agent of Toon Juice named Claire Jeffries[]
And now there was little surprise that they were sued for plagiarism by Topher Lane[], the producer of a professional toon show on Dingo Channel[] that had been watched by Logan Reese, as they had been making a cartoon about two bowling pins afraid of an approaching bowling stone.
Logan feigned innocence, and he was busy with making a dance movie for all the lonesome girls at Pacific Coast Academy, a clip named Dance with Logan! He was particularly proud of the Texan lasso dance, as cowboys had always made the girls phapsodise to no end whatsoever./
Chase and Michael were consternated, as they did not know what to do. The fine was astronomical, as usual, so the G.O. was now not in sight for the next gazillion of years.
34.2. Lance Rivers
Zoey Brooks was still trying out various guys, even more since her ultimate rejection of . Currently, she was ddating nobody less than Lance Rivers[], the son of the dean. She was probably really power hungry and wanted to marry into a family very influential in the politics of Los Angeles, well, this had been the case until the divorce of the dean and Tipper.
Likewise, Quinn Pensky was not really content with Zoey's choice, as she sensed Lance only abusing her for some perverse stuff, words which Zoey did not want to hear.
Lola Martinez was equally suspicious, but Zoey did no longer consider her as a friend after the diva had incited Chase to hiring a fake girlfriend, and she was thence not taking her advice any longer serious.
Lance tried to bribe Lola and Zoey into silence by upgrading their furniture, but there were still voices warning Zoey even louder.
Megan Parker was sure that Lance was much like Cory[], the cousin of Chase Matthews, whom she had dated a few weeks ago, because she was addicted to Japanese candy. It had turned out that the filthy creep had already got other girlfriends, equally addicted to Japanese candy, and he abused that mercilessly. Now she had told Dustin about the problem, and he was consternated and ready to snoop Lance in order to save his elder sister from a mean cheater.
34.3. Claire Sawyer, Future Lawyer
Megan Parker had done a bit more for Chase Bartholomew Matthews and for Michael Barret, more precisely, she had organised some kind of sort of a lawyer for them, a high school kid from James K. PolkJames K. Polk in Santa Clarita named Claire Sawyer, but usually nicknamed as "future lawyer" due to her perfect knowledge of all laws in vigour and the history of their coments.
Claire had to talk to Michael and Chase, but Megan declared to have run out of time, because she needed to help Dustin to spy on Lance Ribers.
The future lawyer gasped violently, "Lance Rivers? The son of your headmaster?"
Megan, Chase, and Michael were flabbergasted, wondering why Claire knew about that jerk.
The girl from Santa Clarita explained that her best friend Jennifer Mosely was also dating Lance Rivers, and she had always assumed that there was something excessively fishy.
34.4. Zoey remains stubborn.
Dustin Brooks tried hard to dissuade his sister from keeping up her dates with Lance Rivers, but all this appeared to be totally in vain, because Zoey just wanted to see the advantages of her connection with the family of the Rivers. Sooner or later, the scandal about the nowadays broken marriage of Carl Rivers would be forgotten, at last after his wedding with Jinnie Park. And she did not believe in the story about a second girlfriend of Lance, rather, she made Megan parker's uncontrolled phantasy responsible for this hallucination, and she believed that Megan just envied her for going to marry into one of the most established clans of southern Californian politics and high society.
Dustin was said because his sister had so little confidence in him who wante her best, and that was not a recklessly promiscuous fiancé thinking about nothing but his own physical pleasure. He walked away, crying like a baby. Fortunately, Carly Shay would would be there for him, not because she was his committed girlfriend, but because she hated most the fact of not being taken serious by Spencer and thus sympathised fully with him in such a situation. Zoey had thus even broken her promise of taking better care of Dustin.
Alaso, Megan would have to find a better proof for Lance's insane habitude of cheating on Zoey with Jennifer or vice versa.
34.5. Downtown Trip
This afternoon, Zoey Brooks and Lance Rivers had been very lucky and won the first prize in some tombola that allowed them to take a downtown trip to Holliwood in order to attend the première party of some Hollywood movie. Wasn't this a great accident? Well, it wasn't, but Zoey would not know that Lance had manipulated everything so he could abuse and seduce Zoey mercilessly during their impending limousine trip.
However, the two love birds did not know that Megan Parker had somewhat manipulated the back room of said limousine as well …
After a somewhat entertaining trip, Zoey exited teh car and was confronted with another girl whom she vaguely 4remembered, and whom Lance remembered more than just vaguely …
The dean's son cried, "Moze … what are you doing here?"
Jennifer Mosely had hitherto not really been sure as of whether to believe her friend Claire's objections, and it had not been easy for Claire to get her to show up right here right now, but now there was not a single doubt left that the future lawyer was right on spot.
Zoey was also a bit surprised. "Lance? Who is that girl?"
The dean's offspring stamered, "oh, just a random girl that I have never seen before."
Zoey grunted, "oh really … and exactly why do you know her name?"
Jennifer Mozely introduced herself to Zoey Brooks. They would return home with anopther transport.
Megan was taking pictures of the whole thing with a remote controlled micro camera hidden in the back of the limousine, and that's how I would come to know about these events.
34.6. Girls' Revenge
Dean Rivers was at first glance not pleased by Megan parker's onslaught upon his useless son's privacy, but he had changed his mind, partly due to the impact of his Jinnie. And he thought that Lance deserved a lesson, the hard tour, but he was not able to do anything befoire the legally completed divorce from his psychopathic wife, which was scheduled for the impending summer break.
The plan of Zoey Brooks and Jennifer Mozely was straightforward and simple, they would borrow Quinn's pet skunk and hide it under the blanket of Lance's bed. They had learned a lot about skunks from Douglas Filmore Bradford's library.
34.7. Chase and Michael strike back.
Claire Sawyer had figired that Dingo Channel had even more plagiarised from Michael and Chase than vice versa.
More precisely, Michael had recently invented two new slang expressions[] and used them in the cartoons, and those brand new terms got used in the recent works of the channel.
Soon, Claire would represent Chase and Michael in their lawsuit against that cheating company and force them to drop their claim in turn.
In addition, the future lawyer from Santa Clarita recognised the texan lasso dance on Logan Reese's DVD Dance With Logan as a pernicious plagiarism from her friend Simon Nelson Cook's amateur video Cowboy Cookie and this meant quyite some trouble for the excessively spooiled and evil dandy.
Chapter 35. Until The Morning Come!
35.1. The Stench Killer
A year before, Logan Reese and Michael Barret had accidentally run into a skunk and been covered with some incredible stink. Quinn Pensky had provided some means for removing the obnoxious smell from those boys, but that means had had the side effect of also stripping them of their garments which was not really desirable. In the mean time, Douglas Filmore Bradford had ghelped the science geek girl to improve this, eliminating the side effect, but it was still not recommendable to incorporate the chemicals.
Recently, Quinn had been working on that significant problem, and she was now up to presenting the result in a new episode ofCarly Shay's web show. It was now finally possible to remove any stench from excessive eating from your jaw and your stomach, which was especially usefull for hangover mornings.
The sun was rising once more over the beautiful coast of Los Angeles', and Samantha Puckett had eaten some smelly and rotten fish from Wing Lee's and Kazu Park's restaurant, well, not just some of it, but she had eaten all night through, complete with cheese and onions, from dusk to early morn'.
It was no longer possible for anyone to enter their dormitory room and to make it out alive unless protected by some army gas masks, and Carly's dad was a marine officer and thus able to deliver the necessary equipment for the web cast.
It was necessary to start this experiment early today, as Chase Matthews and Michael Barret were still up to some other deeds after breakfast, and they would better not be too late.
Quinn Pensky grabbed some strange device, looking like a big squirting gun, and she held the muzzle next to Sam's open mouth. Then she started pulling the trigger and let some miraculous gas shoot forth into the jaw of Samantha, hoping it to do the trick and strip her of the incredible stink.
Now it was necessary to wait for a few minutes in order to let the effect of the breathclearer to kick in.
But what was that … all of a sudden, Sam started giggling more or less uncontrollably.
Fredward Benson, the tech producer of the web show, was totally consternated, as he falsely believed that Sam was laughing about him, something not completely unusual in their web show.
Carly did not understand either what Sam was laughing about, and she told her that nothing was really funny, but her words fell like silent snowflakes.
Suddenly, Samantha Puckett started talking strange stuff, like missing some of her fingers — they were hidden behind her fists. And finally, she burst out with the words. "I love Fredward!"
Carly grabbed Sam and shook her, geowling, "you can't be real! Sam, what are you doing?"
Freddie concluded that Quinn's spray had made Samantha go crazy and insane — wait, he had never thought anything else about Sam, so what had been going on for real, and was it possiuble to stop the insane giggle of the blond demon? She was not to be taken serious, anyways, as she had continued to treat him like her personal punching ball for almost a year by now.
35.2. The Blix Van
Once per year, the softdrink vendor Blix was organising a promotional tour in their Blix vans to selected schools in the greater Los Angeles area, and this year, Pacific Coast Academy had been chosen as one of their targets.
The kids were asked to touch the van as long as only possible, as the last one to stand would win a flight for two with the Blix jet to a destination of the winner's choice.
Chase and Michael wanted to participate in the contest, while Fredward wanted to take pics, and Carly and Sam had been up to interviewing the participants and inform the viewers of the next episode about the outcome of this intriguing event.
Alas, Samantha was still laughing insanely and talking stuff, and was thus unable to interview anyone. Carly would better take care of her during this episode, and Fredward Benson was pondering the questionwhether Sam had been telling the truth. Or maybe she was Melanie, but, no, the latter would not have been able to devour all that much crap. Wait, they may have traded places during a toilet break. In this mental twilight, Fredward was unable to concentrate on the tasks of a technical producer, and he had already interrupted the ongoing episode, even less would he have been able to take pictures of the Blix van contest.
35.3. Adelaide Singer
During the ending academic year, Chase Bartholomew Matthews had lost about everything that mattered to him: His chances of purchasing the heart of Zoey Brooks, the life of his grandmother, and the prospects of buying a new G.O. before it was turning into the next old G.0.
But Megan Parker had had plans in order to provide him with new prospects, and for this avail, she had contacted one of her former best friends, Adelaide Singer[]
More precisely, Addie lived in New Jersey, but she had got relatives near San Diego which she had visited more often like three or four years ago. Addie and Megan had become friends back then during one of those visits.
Addie was now a freshman at Broadway School For The Advanced Performance Arts as a student of song lyrics for musicals, and Megan wanted her to talk Chase into joining the same school, as it was suited straightforward for his incredible talents as a playwright. As Addie's school had got different breaks than Pacific Coast Academy, she was available now for a visit here in California in order to surprise Chase. And she was even coming with the offer for a scholarship, as Megan had submitted several plays written by Chase after his play about Zorka, which Sofia Michelle had praised back then.
The grand dame of the Broadway was even more enthusiastic about Chase's skills and had decided to do everything to get him to join their ranks, for she wanted him to make a career in the world of the grand theatre of New York City, not behind the screens of Hollywood.
Unfortunately, time was now running out, and Chase had to decide as fast as only possible, even at the cost of giving up on the Blix van, his last chance to win a brand new G.O. by trading it for a trip with the Blix jet.
35.4. Chase's Decision
There were still a few pupils left with a hand on the Blix van, but many other had already given up.
Zoey Brooks, for example, had been locked by perverted jerk Logan Reese into one of the ambulant toilet cases on the campus during the pee break. The last ones to stand were Stacey Dillsen, Logan Reese, and Chase Bartholomew Matthews.
Megan Parker tried hard to reach Chase in order to talk him into giving Addie's suggestion a chance, but he would have needed to follow Addie to some silent place which was not the campus square.
Chase was too stubborn to see this great chance, and he deemed it as a trick by Logan or Stacey in order to get rid of his competition.
In the meanwhile, Logan tried to get rid of Stacey by offering her to be his date for a week. Drana Cruz would not mind, although Logan and Dana were still a couple.
But Stacey, inspite of having been hankering after Logan during her first weeks at Pacific Coast Academy, was now firmly committed to her Josh Nichols and would thence not fall for Logan's excessively foul attempts.
Addie showed up, with Chase's guitar in her hands. Shge had got a similar instrument at home which she used in order to make lyrics for her cantions. She was also a fan of poetry from the nineteenth century. She was a miserable composer, though, but that did not prevent her from performing her songs.
Chase wondered, "what are you doing with my guitar?"
megan giggled and aofdfered, "come and get it if you want it!"
Chase was still not willing to budge from the Blix van, so he had to listen to Adelaide's master work Better Unfabulous[], and he was totally taken by jer lyrics and her mediocre guitar performance, about as moderate as his own. He asked her to sing some country, which was not much of a problem for Addie. Then he finally let loose and left the van, as he was unable to resiste the temptation of going to Addie and prepare some song together with her.
Megan grinned with mischief, as her plan had most likely worked better than expected.
35.5. Another Dawn
During the night, Logan Reese had been convicted of having cheated multiple times in the Blix van contest and he was finally disqualified and removed around midnight.
For that reason, Stacey Dillsen had been the last one to stand, and she was not going to budge ere the rise of sun.
At the same time, Chase Bartholomew Matthews and Addie Singer reentered the campus square, cuddling closely and walking hand in hand. For Chase there was now no doubt left where his heart belonged to, and where he would be bound for the next academic year.
I had to prepare the necessary transscripts for the bushy head, and Douglas Filmore Bradford wished him all the necessary luck.
One of Addie's middle school friends had now been interested in Pacific Coast Academy and our overlord's programme for the study of the local variety of insects: Zachariah Carter Schwartz.
This academic year was now virtually over, but the coming one did not look any less uncanny, due to all those insect lovers.
Chapter 36. Customer Of The Week
36.1. Back At PCA
Yet another year had begun, the fourth under the rule of Douglas Filmore Bradford.
Chase Bartholomew Matthews was no longer among us, for he had followed Adelaide Singer to Broadway School For Advanced Performance Arts in order to become a great playwright in New York City and start a new life with a girl he could love without fears of inferiority, as had been the eternal stumbling block between himself and Zoey Brooks.
I had to take care of accomodating some of the new pupils, as Miss Burvich was still on vacations.
Indeed we had also been able to hire a new dormitory adviser, Deanna Vega who happened to be the wife of officer David Alejandro Vega. Of course she needed to be introduced into her office and her responsibilities, which was my task as well/
As we had seen, the latter had been cheating on her with Monique Chaumomt, a responsible person at aforementioned French boarding school. The question was now whether Deanna was aware of that or not.
We had to be very careful, as every mistake would lead to an exorbitant chaos.
Deanna's younger daughter Victoria was now also a student here at Pacific Coast Academy, and she looked almost like Lola.
New students included aforememntioned Leann Carter and Zachariah Carter Schwartz. Was it an accident that both of them had some common part of theior name? Zach was an afro american, Leann was a white anglosaxon, thus a blood relationship was unlikely.
Alas, there was still some hearty greeting scene between Zach and Leann, which hinted towards the possibility of both of them being already fairly familiar.
I accomodated Zacharia Carter Schwartz in a room with Jerry Crony alias Olivary Biallo.
Leann Carter was to be stuffed into a dormitory room with Melanie Puckett in Brenner Hall.
What was going to happen to the free spot left by Chase in 148 Maxwell Hall? Really, it was going to be left open for the time being, but Burvich would refill it sooner or later, as she used to very grumpy when seeing gaps like this one.
One of the first events at Pacific Coast Academy to be planned for the freshly started academic year was a dance contest, and I better prepared everything as soon as possiblke in order to give the students the occasion to find appropriate partners.
36.2. Endless Queue
As the cafeteria of Pacific Coast Academy was not open outside a few hours of the day and the vendor machines were no longer trusted by the broad mass of the pupils due to the aforementioned incident with Lola and her doodle cakes, the most popular way for the pupils to get at coffee and similar stuff during the big recess and after classes was xcertainly the coffee cart run by Calvin Wang[].
Unfortunatelly, there were so many pupils interested in coffee, and there was only one cart available, so the students had to wait in a very long queue in order to get their daily dose of the hot and brown stuff, especially javaccino, the preferred flavour of most of the kids.
Some kids were just collecting the cups or the straws, which was not much better.
Apparently, noone was happy about having to wait for so long, and Calvin had just introduced the concept of the customer of the week: Each Sunday or sometimes Saturday, a new preferred customer would be chosen, entitked to skip the everlasting queue in friont of the cart and even to get one cup of coffee for free each time.
Calvin was the only judge to select said customer, and nobody buy himself knew the criteria for the selection, which made things very annoying. Kids started trying to get the attention of the cartkeeper or even to become friends with him for the sole reason of getting chosen.
The first chosen client was Darla Roberts[], a freshman girl. And of course nobody jnew why she had vbeen chosen, for if they ghad nown, everyone would have started trying to do the same thing during the whole next week.
36.3. Looking For A Dance Partner
Zoey Brooks was particularly keen on participating in the looming dance contest, as her grannie had won something even more renowned back in her young years in New York City and in Boston. And this time, the grandparents were potentially coming to Los Angeles just in order to see their Mary Sue grandaughter win the great contest. But she had hitherto not been able to find a dance partner.
Upon a note attached to the cafeteria's bulletin board by Zoey Brooks, a certain Gene Conroy[], the nephiew of staff member Bryan Conroy, was ready to dance for the much coveted dancer's crown with Zoey.
Of course, others had got different plans and would not want to leave Zoey the award that easily.
The blond Mary Sue would have preferred to win the contest with a good friend as a dance partner, but Michael and Logan were grounded for two weekends because of some impossible demeanour right at the start of the new academic year. But maybe it was possible that Gene would become Zoey's new best friend, after all?
Zachariah Carter Schwartz signed up with Leann Carter as his dance partner. When asked about the common part in their names, they admitted to being step siblings, but not having seen each other a lot until coming here to Pacific Coast Academy. Now they had to make up for a lot, and this explained why they had started out in friendly terms and made a lot together.
The race for the title of the customer of the week was about as heated as the one for the dancing contest, and especially Michael Barret and Logan Rerese were doing everything possible in order to become Calvin's best friends.
Logan was not interested in gratis coffee, just in being able to skip the queue for a whole week, so he decided to simply bribe the keeper of the coffee cart by buying lots of cups and distributing them to the bypassing students. He was convinced that this would outdo anyone else's attempts of becoming Calvin's new best friend and thence regular customer of the week.
Michael's attempt was different, he tried to pull off some "I saved your life" stunt, as he would have to admit later on when interrogated by Jinnie Park. More precisely, he hired some insaner to feign a brute attack on Calvin, then he intervened and "saved" the can't keeper. Unfortunately, the action backfired miserably, and someone ese got injured badly in the process, and this someone happened to be Gene Conroy, the contracted dance partner of Zoey Brooks.
Jeff Glazer was called on site, and he diagnosed several fractures making it impossible for Gene to participate in the rapidly approaching dance contest, which was of course a shock for Zoey. If she had been a friend of Gene, she would have cared more than just asking whether he would be OK for next Sarturday's night's dance contest.
Michael Barret would be sentenced to several weeks of detention and a huge fine for the excessively despicable deed causing Gene's bad injury.
As remarked by Samantha Puckett, saving someone's life is a really poor excuse for friendship, anyways. Two years ago, she had been dating a certain Nosy Mosby who had impressed her by sending her regularly hams from all over the world, such as the popular Bolivian ham which was now illegal in Amnerica due to being spiced with Peruvian puff pepper. But Sam had understood pretty fast that she would have liked Mosby for what he had done for her, and not for what she was, and this was really foul and disgusting to the core.
By the way, Sam had been trying hard to deny her feelings for Fredward Benson since she had recovered from the side effects of Quinn's stench killer, and Freddie was still not taking her serious.
36.5. Dancing Queen
Zoey Brooks had been consternated, but in last minute, Jerry Crony alias Olivary Biallo had offered to sub for Gene. He was certainly not the best dancer on the campus, but in the few moments that Zoey and Crony met on the campus, he had always been a reliable friend to talk to, and thus they gave the whole thing a try for this evening.
The grandparents had preferred to go to Las Vegas, instead, after they had heard of the fatal accident of Gene's, and thus it did not really matter any longer for Zoey whether to win or not.
Also, Stacey Dillsen and Joshuah Nichols had erolled in the very last minute. Stacey was disappointed because she had been rejected by Gloris Callahan[] when trying out for the school play, so the dance wouldhelp her to get over it. Josh had invented some crazy dances which he could show off this way.
Megan Parker was going to perform the backup music on her oboe, and she asked now Zoey and Crony about the tune to play, as they had registered in last minute only.
Olivary Biallo alias Crony wanted to dance to the moon, and Zoey just shrugged, as it did not matter a lot.
Megan scratched her head and replied, "you mean the moon shine serenade?"
Crony and Zoey nodded apathetically as they did not really care, but it sounded cool.
The sound of the oboe filled the air when Zoey and Crony swang their legs in a way they had never been able to practice.
The audience applauded anyways.
The next couple down on the dancing floor were Zachariah Carter Schwartz and his step sister Leann, and they had asked Megan to perform some slow waltz.
It was evident that those two had practised for many hours more than Zoey and Crony, and the applause showed that.
Finally, Stacey and Josh entered the dancing floor. At first glance, Megan felt embarrassed by having to play the oboe for her step boob and his equally weird dance partner. Josh declared that it did not really matter what Megan played, as he would just perform his crazy dances with Stacey, anyways.
Megan Parker shrugged helplessly, and she started playing The Boléro by Maurice Ravel, the dance of hot passions.
Josh seemed to have planned it differently, but now he and Stacey were totally overcome by the rhythm dictated by Megan's oboe, and they could not help dancing like an exploding volcano.
Dean Rivers, the main judge, was unable to avoid crowning Stacey as the new dacing queen, inspite of being annoyed by cotton swabs and white glue.
Megan grinned merrily as her job was done and she saw Josh blush a shade of deepest crimson.
Leann congratulated Josh and Stacey, as for Leann, the most important thing had been to be in the great contest.
Zoey was not too disappointed, because she had at least been able to show off her gown which she had just designed for the evening.
36.6. The Perverse Jerk
Now it was time for the revelation of the nextcustomer of the week. Calvin had covered a big picture of the winner with a blanket which he was now ready to remove in order to make the winner beknownst to the public. He shouted, "and the winner is … Leann Carter!"
The girl from Seattle gasped and choked, stammering what … I haven't done anything in order to make this title, unlike so many others here.
Calvin explained,"the customer of the week will always be a cute girl, so she may skip right ahead and we can make out while letting everyone else wait in the endless queue …"
Leann declared, "no, I will not make out with any recklessly perverse jerk, and I already love Zach …" She blushed deeply because of having reveiled her feelings for Zachariah Carter Schwartz that exceeded those of friendly step siblings. This was certainly not an easy step.
Calvimn appeared to have a plan B, and he reveiled the next picture, declaring "OK, the winner is now … Melanie Puckett!" Samantha's twin sister had got no qualms accepting the award for which she had not done anything at all.
But the queue was already growing longer and longer …
Chapter 37. Beauty Pageant
37.1. The Request
One morning later, Logan Reese dared again to butt through my office door in order to bother Dean Rivers with a request about something he wanted to organise, more precisely, a beauty pageant. He was going to provide the first prize, a shooting for a very popular magazine for teens named The Buzz[]. Malcolm Reese was a business partner of the editors of that journal. A major point of the pageant was of course the selection of the judges, or, more precisely, the one and only judge, Logan Reese. He was known to be very sexist, thus Miss Park refused to approve of Logan's suggestion, and the dean, inspite of having been willing to approve it in the first place, joined his mistress — now officially engaged and bound for legal marriage — and withdrew his permission on site.
But I suggested to alter it in a way that did not leave Logan as the main judge. Instead, at least two adult women were going to be respoinsible for the outcome as well.
After osme discussions, Jinnie insisted in being one of the judges, and Wing Lee would also be inaugurated into this office.
For Logan, this was certainly not what he had hopped for, but he had to live with it. He had claimed that the organisation of the contest would be for his college folder, but this was a bit strange, as Logan had never been interested in that, rather, he had always boasted with not needing an education in order to become either of his dream jobs, a male supermodel or a star athlete.
Maybe his father was pushing him because he was up to paying for his largely exaggerated weekly expenses only as long as he was still at school of college, and would disown him otherwise. Maybe it had already got to do with grandpa's past as a teacher at Caltech?
Anyways, no decent college would accept a guy for having organised a beauty pageant at high school times.
A ruthless jerk like Logan was hardly up to anthing else than hitting on even more hot girls.
Dana did not mind that as long as he did not make out permanently with the same girl that was different from herself.
Of course Logan had been in many athletic teams of the school, but he had never been a decent team player, not just in more individual sports such as wrestling, and that had not made him very suited for a recommendation for a college team. He had been expelled from the basketball team for several reasons. Of course Coach keller had been a pain in the tail, but, technically, Logan had improved a lot after Quinn Pensky had designed some devices helping his practice.[]
Currently, Zachariah Carter Schwartz appeared to be the new star of the basketball team, and he made Logan completely obsolete, especially because the fan of Bob Marley was a great team player.
LoGan's renown as a football player had been waning as soon as Ashley Blake had discovered that Logan had been conspiring for getting her brother Vince suspended, allowing Logan to take over the position of a quarterback. Thereupon, the dandy had no longer been a regular player at all.
37.2. The Contest
37.2.1. The Catwalk
The contest was now about to start. Alas, Wing Lee had withdrawn from the job as a judge, as her daughter Daisy had not been allowed to the contest. This was due to the fact that Dean Rivers had restricted the contest for high school girls, as otherwise there would have been too much turmoil, and he could not make an exception. Instead, Cynthia Bromwell was subbing for the wife of Kazu.
The girls were ready for the catwalk, and some of them had designed their outfit or got it designed just for the contest.
Stacey Dillsen, for example, had made something not exclusively, vbut supported by cotton swabs, her main passion.
The most popular fashion designer at Pacific Coast Academy was of course still Zoey Brooks, and she had designed and taylored her outfit for herself, and also that of a few others. Originally, the blond Mary Sue had not wanted to sign up for the pageant, but she had changed her opinion pretty soon thereafter, as she loved being on the cover of the Buzz because she would send a message home to her archenemy from elementary school times, a certain Katie Packerman[]. That girl had once upon a time dared to call Zoey an ugly wench and was now supposed to pay dearly for that lie.
Alas, this fact had caused more troubles between Zoey and Lola, for the latter had still not been forgiven for inciting Chase to hire Lola's cousin Trinidad. And these days, Lola was permanently trying to abuse the fact that her aunt was the dormitory adviser. But now Lola had gone too far and accused Zoey to have deliberately designed and taylored some ugly cloth for the Hollywood starlet in order to increase her own chances of winning the pageant. The atmosphere between Zoey and Lola was terrible, and the two of them would almost certainly have started a mud battle, had not Douglas Filmore Bradford changed the location of the catwalk right in time.
Trinidad Vega was also participating, and she was presenting herself proudly in a fishnet swimsuit, making Logan go all horny when she was passing by him and waggling her crumple zones. But fortunately, he was not the only judge of the pageant, otherwise the winner would have already been chosen.
37.2.2. The Interviews
Adfter the catwalk, the girls were submitted to interviews by the judges.
Of course Jinnie Park, Cynthia Bromwell, and Logan Reese had got different ideas of questions to ask, and they had also got completely imcompatible ideads of what constituted a good answer to a given question, which made the interview section really unpredictable.
Fredward Benson was taking pictures of the interviews for the web show. Carly Shay had not allowed him to send any pictures of the too loosely clad girls on the catwalk. But he had to cry when hearing some of the awkward answers, such as Lola's. On the other hand, Fredward had got the hots for the Hollywood diva, as much as for her equally hot relatives Trinidad and Victoria, so he was very forgiving about the impossible answers.
Lola Martinez was asked by Miss Park about what she thought about the global warming, and she answered that it would be cool, as it would allow her to run around in a bikini every time a year and twenty-four hours a day.
Other girls gave more serious and reasonable answers, especially Zoey Brooks, Stacey Dillsen, and Leann carter.
Logan's questions were more horrible than those of the adult female judges, as he asked the girls, barring Stacey, whether they would go on a date with him after the contest.
Zoey would usually have denied this without a trace of hestiation, maybe even by spitting into his mouth[] or at least by making some sarcastical counter remark, but given the prospects of being able to socking it both to Katie Packerman and Lola Martinez, she had changed her mind and preferred to remain silent, as a honest answer would have got her probably disqualified and let Lola win the whole messy contest.
37.2.3. The Talent Performance
Last but not least, it was time for the girls to give a demonstratio of their talents, which was certainly the highlight of a pageant and mde the girls more nervous than the previous parts. Of course Logan Reese was not really interested in that stuff, but Cynthia Bromwell considered it the most important.
For Zoey Brooks, this was a bit cumbersome, as she had got so many talents, but hardly anything thta was demonstrable in a short time frame. And now she was mightily embarrassed and wondered, "do you want me to design some outfit for you … or to talk in Klingon to myself …" She decided to play a scene from her favourite barbie girl movie, although she had not prepared anything.
Lola Martinez was performing a scene from a classical play by William Shakespeare she had been working on for a few weeks, impressing Jinnie and Cynthia a lot.
But Zoey accused Lola perniciously of not being herself, because she lacked each and every talent for real acting, but to have sent her alike looking cousin Victoria Vega, the most gifted of her bunch of relatives, up front.
The next in the queue was leann Carter, multiiple winner of similar pageants in Seattle, and she was going to perform something on her saxophone. Douglas Filmore Bradford had called her to Pacific Coast Academy precisely for that reason, as she was an optimal reinforcement for the school orchestra. She decided to perform the triumphal ode from Giuseppe Verdi's great opera Aida.
Douglas Filmore was even singing along in the background.
Trinidad Vega was now going to present her talent as a female body builder, which was a combination of dance and martial arts.
Logan Reese's hungry eyes bugged out when he watched Trinidad's excessively seductive performance.
The last in the long list was now Stacey Dillsen, and also the least popular of all participants. Logan had apparently not wanted want to have her in the contest in the first place. But now Stacey was performing some hatha yoga exercise, only half a year after having strained her but muscle with something similar. This time, Josh had massaged her butt duly before the performance, allowing her to give a perfect demonstration of her skills, astonishing everyone.
37.2.4. The Winner Reveiled
The judges had been disputing heavily, as was to be expected, and only after over an hour was it time for coming to a decision.
Douglas Filmore Bradford was rendered an envelope with the judges' verdict, and he was now going to announce it to the suspensefully waiting participants and onlookers. He suspired deeply for half a minute before opening the sealed letterm and then he started talking, "and the winner is … Leann Carter, the only girl to convince in all the three parts of the contests."
Many students applauded, except Samantha Puckets who booed in a perverse manner and threw all sorts of foul and disgusting insults t the wionner.
Leann was now supposed to talk a few words, and she surprised everyone by saying, "I am honoured by winning, but I can't accept the prize … sorry …" She sighed for half a minute while the audience was shocked and awaiting a good explanation.
Especially Logan Reese was arrabbiated and boomed, "what … my perfectly chosen award is not good enough for that censored?"
Leann moaned, "sorry, Logan, but I do not want to appear on the cover of a journal and adorn the wall of thousands of horny teenage boys and some girls, for most of them only care about my looks and don't have an understanding of what I am really … only one by does …" She blushed furiously when her eyes hit briefly Zachariah Carter Schwartz, confirming her recently hinted feelings for her step brother.
Douglas Filmore sighed deeply and he was very sad, because he was very keen of the new student, but he also had to accept her decision and walked on to the next girl in the list, announcing, "OK, so we have to move on to the second best choice, just as often enough in our real life, and this number two , and thus the winner of the spoit on the cover of the Buzz is … Stacey Dillsen from Swampscott in Massachusetts, due to her perfect hatha yoga performance!" He insisted in the additional "hatha", as he knew that yoga was really much more than knotting your limbs, which was just a possible preparation for yoga proper.
Stacey beamed brighter than the hottest light bulb in the universe when she walked up to the pedestal in order to receive the diploama from the hands of Douglas Filmore, and she lisped a few words which nobody in the audience really cared about, because the shock was still holding them ball and chain.
Chapter 38. Visitors' Day
38.1. Testing PCA
Pacific Coast Academy organised about twice an acadademic year an open day for potential new pupils, and this year's occasion was very close.
The pupils were to be guided through the dormitory blocks, the class rooms, the gyms and sport fields, the libraries, and other important buildings on our campus.
The climax of this event used to be interviews with established students of our school, There were three groups of interviews, one for elementary school kids, one for middle school kids, and one for high school kids.
Dean Rivers had already selected the students ready to answer the questions. For the high school section, those were Zoey Brooks and Stacey Dillsen. The middle school visitors were supposed to ask Dustin Brooks and Melanie Puckett.
38.2. The Half a Million Dollar Car
One morning, Logan Reese appeared in te middle of the campus with a car worth several hundred thousdands of bucks, and he had admitted to not holding a driver's license for being only fifteen years old, as he claimed.
Of course that was a lie, the real reason for his lack of a permit was that he insisted in answering questions about the priority at traffic crossing using the following two criteria only: The hotness of the drivers and the value of the cars. But the officials in charge with granting the permits did see that a lot differently and thus regularly deny him the license to roadkill, as he called the drivers' permit.
Really, the students were not upposed to ride their cars, whether dirt cheap of a hell of expensive, across the campus pavement, with or without a drivers' permit, and Logan had just doine so in order to hit on even more girls.
I had always wondered why Malcolm Reese had tolerated Logan's waste of bucks all the time, as this was certainly irresponsible, and a bad example for the fellow pupils as well.
I was now going into well-deserved vacations before visitors' day, but I would get something to hear about that topic later on.
38.3. The Interviews
38.3.1. Questions For Zoey
I was not present at the reunion of the potential future Pacific Coast Academy students during which the visiting kids interrogated the selected established pupils, but I had to typeset the protiocols written by my substitue, as those would be published on our web site which was maintained by Fire Wire.
Stangely, nobody wanted to ask Stacey any question, but everyone was poiuncing mercilessly on Zoey Brooks.
This was very unfair and injust, but there was no quota rule in vigour forcing the kids to ask the two teenage girls equally much.
One of the questions referred to troubles between the girls and the boys at this school as it had not been coeducational until a few years ago.
Zoey admitted to quite a few conflicts every now and then, such as Logan's utterly perverted sexism and the evils committed by Lance Rivers and Glen Davis, and she sighed deeply because she hoped that stuff like that would not occur too often in the future of our school. The girl who had asked the question was thoroughly impressed by Zoey's outstanding wit when dealing with absolutely inappropriate actions of the foul and decadent boys, espoecially the action involving the skunk in Lance's air of pyjamas and her utterly brilliant reaction to Logan's arrogance at the end of the play about the alien girl.
One visitor appeared to be a science geek boy, just like Quinn Pensky or Melinda Crenshaw who had won last year's national science fair with a universal power conversion machine. Those two were of course the great idol of the young guy who had asked Zoey the question, it it was a really easy and straightforward to answer. It also helped a lot to tell that Douglas Filmore Bradford, as the very lord of Pacific Coast Academy, was also a teacher for science, albeit more concentrating on biology rather than physics. But this was not much of an obstacle for the interrogator's enthusiasm who appeared most fascinated by Quinn's anti-gravity machine. Also Fire Wire appeared an interesting example to live up to with all his wireless communication devices.
Another question was referring to the dormitory advisers, and this was clearly hitting a critical spot, as Coco Wexler who had been in this position for the girls' dormitory halls for over two years had been nothing but an extremely poor excuse of a responsible adult. Zoey Brooks was strugglin hard in order to be able to find something positive to say about Coco, but she failed oh so miserably in doing Vega was only in her office since the beginbning of the academic year, and neither Zoey nor Stacey were able to say a lot. Of course Zoey was upset about Deanna's daughter Trinidad, but Tori, the other daughter, had already become a friend to Zoey.
The next question was about possible strange and uncanny things going on at this school, and Zoey Brooks would have loved to deny this completely, but there was absolutely no way for her to do so in a honest manner. She was especially forced to remember Dustin's physical changes when his arm was stuck in the vendor machine or when he was watching the horror movie about the Japanese ninja gang. She also complained about Quinn's recent appearances in the middle of the night. Due to the experiments with the genetic extracts from glowworms, Quinn had achieved glowing dimmly in the darkness, which was truly an uncanny experience when Zoey had encountered it for the first time and without warning. The transformation of Megan Parker into a mantis girl had also been on the list of things giving Zoey a rather creepy feeling.
There was also a question about tany dress code at Pacific Coast Academy, which there wasn't, as confirmed gladly by Zoey Brooks. Of course, as apassionate fashion designer, Zoey was not able to help talking andlessly about the variety of fashionable trends she had set during her three years as a student at Pacific Coast Academy, especially the gowns for the pageant and uniforms for the athletic teams she had designed, and so much other stuff in the same vein. In turn, she was also complaining about the utterly tasteless outfit of some of her felow pupils, especially of the boys.
Another potential new student was curious about anything lovey dovey and flirtish going on between the boys and the girls at Pacific Coast Academy, and there was no doubt that Zoey had to report a lot about the topic. There was of course Nicole Bristow's obsession with cute boys, something she had already mentioned when asked about troubles between boys and girls, but now she also mentioned the conclusion involving her boyfried Nicholas Webber. Zoey also talked about Logan and Dana, a relationship that only started blossoming for real after Dana's departure from Pacific Coast Academy, a totally cute story which made the audience sigh for extreme awe. Then there was the particular cute connection between Stacey DDillsen and Josh Nichols, as the asking kids were not accustomed to so much dork cuteness. The same was also valid for Eric Blonowitz and Quinn Pensky. Zoey also was not able to mentiuon the adult ships, for example those of Kazu and Wing.
A particularly cowardly pupil was worried about his safety, as it would be his first year away from home.
Unfortunately, Zoey's answers did little in order to diminish anyone's fears, as she had to report Quinn pensky's somewhat dangerous experiments often ending up in explosions, and Chase Bartholomew Matthew's crash into the flag staff because he had been distracted by Zoey's presence when he was riding his bike, or skateboard standing around on the campus, ready to trip up careless bypassers, let alone beasts like skunks and killer squirrels. The top of the iceberg was the incident in which Dean Rivers got knocked down by some randomly bypassing miniature airplane. She also did not avoid mentioned the death threats that had been launched against herself by Trididad Vega, although they had just been inappropriately exaggerated acting. But the fire that had destroyed Sushi Rox had been a real threat, and Zoey was unable to refrain from mentioning that dangerous accident.
The last of the questions was totally embarrassing for Zoey, as one of the kids was wondering about Zoey's recent relationship with Chase. She answered that there had never been anything like that, but he kids, not just the one asking originally, were by no means content with that question.
Where had those kids heard about Chase and Zoey anyways, anyways? The most likely solution was probably that Logan Reese, who had always made fun of Chase;'s little crush, had put pictures about it o the interweb.
Zoey was apparently not willing to answer the details of Chase's inappropriate jealousy trip, but she pointed the kids rapidly to Adelaide Singer, the new and best suited girlfriend of Chase. For the time being, the kids appeared content — as if that had been any business of theirs in the first place.
38.3.2. Questions For Dustin
The questions of the reunion for future middle school kids, to be answered by Dustin Brooks, were rather lame in comparison tpo those directed at his elder sister.
Dustin was asked about the food at Pacific Coast Academy, and Dustin reported about the cafeteria, the vendor machines, the coffee cart, and Sushi Rox, mentioning alsosome problems like the fire at the sushi bar and the greedy vendor machines. But the asker just had to rub his dummy, as this sounded to be a rather delicious school.
There were also questions about the sports teams, and Dustin had to talk a lot about Viince Blake and the football squad, about the basketball team in which Zoey had been very active, and many other teams, including his attempts to make it into the soccer squad, but was beaten by Megan Parker, which he did not resent, though, as he was still a great tracker and most likely to participate in the next Los Angeles city marathon..
Fortunately he had not been asked about any of his experiences of physical alterations.
Chapter 39. London Calling
39.1. European Expansion
Fall was now established at Pacific Coast Academy, and the classes were running very well, as we had got a few new teachers integrated.
Also, Deanna Vega had stabilised the hitherto chaotic circumstances flooding the girls' dormitory halls every now and then — no longer empty yet unclean cans of ravioli littering the floors every other hour.
But one day, rare visitors stumbled into our office, more precisley Stephanie Brooks and her husband Robert, the parents of Dustin and Zoey.
Jinnie Park had not know them yet, so I had to tell them, but Jinnie assured that there were no complaints about the Btooks kids, at least none in a long time, and so there was no reason for a serious talk between parents and the school admin, something that had been due every other week in the case of Logan Reese and other perverted creeps studying here at Pacific Coast Academy.
Stephanie grinned and she assured that the reason for their sudden visit had been nothing like that, but, rather, they needed to talk to their kids in order to talk about some impending changes.
The corporation of Robert Brooks was going to expand its European business and was about to establish its headquarters for foreign business in London, the capital of Great Britain. There were probably other cities with the same name somewhere in the world, so I better checked it.
The critical question was now whether Dustin and Zoey wanted to join their parents across the ocean or not. Pacific Coast Academy would lose a lot, as Dustin and Zoey were the main motors of life at our school since Zoey's arrival like three years and a half ago.
OK … the Brooks wanted to ask their children, so Dean Rivers decided to ask them here on site, and for that avail, I had to use the loudspeaker system in order to call them out of their classes ind into the administration office.
Zoey and Dustin Brooks were now in the administration office, and they had been informed by their parents. Also, Rob Brooks explained the school thatt hey had chosen for their children, should they have decided in favour of following them to Great Britain, it was Covington, a very noble prep school a bit outside London.
Neither Dustin nor Zoey were willing to decide on site, but they were certainly in a hurry, as the deadline for Covington was already close, and as Rob and Steph were going to fly there very soon. They would return to California over the Christmas break in order to fetch a few more things and doing some other stuff, bit, other than that, the move would have been a final one for the next few years.
A noble prep school in London was of course a very big chance for Dustin and Zoey, but they would have to give up on an insane lot, tehir friends, the sunny Californian weather, and the Californian kitchen.
Everyone knew that London was the capital of fog and gales, and that the English kitchen was worse than a century in hell, especially for Dustin.
For that avail, Dustin would return very soon and declare to stay here at Pacific Coast Academy, inspite of knowing how much he would suffer from the separation from his parents and from Zoey.
But Zoey brooks was a really different subject, and she was still pondering hard whether she wanted to stay here, as she had recently lost a lot of faith especially in the friendship of Lola Martinez, but also of Nicole Bristow. The former was still not forgiven because she had incited Chase, the latter was trying at each and every occasion get match Zoey with the next sufficiently cute boy in sight, something which strained her nerves to absolutely no end whatsoever.
39.3. The Golden Scarab
Zoey Brooks had asked her friends, or falsely so-called friends, and come to the conclusion that starting anew in London would be the best for herself, especially as London was not only a centre of business and finances — a career Rob and Steph had got in mind for their daughter – but also one of the international centres of fashion design — her own dream.
I was already told to prepare the necessary transscripts, otherwise they would not be ready in time for their departure for the international airport.
Douglas Filmore Bradford wanted to talk to Zoey for one last time and wish her good luck in London, and he started explaining:
I know Covington Prep, it seems to be a very nice establishment.
And while you are over there, you should also see one of its oldest and most established dormitory houses, not a hall just made for the purpooses of accomodating as many students as needed, but a really traditional British cottage, known as the House Of Annubis.
More precisely, it belonged once upon a time, like one hundred and fifty years ago, to the family of a smart but outruled Egyptologian who had travelled a lot and accumulated some treasures from the land of the banks of the Nile.
Many people have ecver since tried to find the treasures, but few have been able to get anywhere, as the family of the scholar had hidden the treasures with riddles.
Zoey's eyes bugged out, as she was not really into old treasures and legends. The stuff about Charles Galloway had already given her the creeps, and the guy had only been dead for half a century. But the House Of Anubis was like thrice as old than that, and it hosted treasures from millennia ago.
Douglas Filmore continued talking,
The most valuable treasure to be found is probably the golden scarab, cetonia aurata, this is a very special beetle.
The ancient Egyptians saw in it the symbol of immortality, and I know that they are right.
The genes of that beetle have got the ability, if applied appropriately to the human metabolistic system, to overcome all critical diseases found on planet earth.
So, once you are at Covington, you shopuld by all means seek out for this scarab and report back.
But you have to be exorbitantly careful, as others over there will hunt for the same treasures, and you will immediately encounter a lot of suspicion and envy.
Especially do not trust Victor Rodenmaar, the bald custodian and dormitory adviser of the House Of Anubis, as he is certainly one of the treasure hunters, and he is not unlikely to committ any crime in order to get rid of one competitor or the other.
Instead of making Zoey curious and interested in the mysteries of that one dormitory hall over at Covington, Bradford appeared to have scared the hell out of the living barbie doll. The latter was now no longer willing to go to Covington Prep as long as Victor Rodenmaar, if he was as described, was alive and working over there, even if she should get assigned a different dormitory college.
Rob and Steph sighed deeply, as they were not able to trust Rodenmaar any longer, either. They did not necessarily believe in Douglas Filmore's story, but they were careful and would only let Zoey join that noble school after that problem had been solved and all of Zoey's fears were gone.
In other words, Zoey Brooks would remain among us at least until the end of the academic year, which meant a lot of relief for us.
Chapter 40. Merry Christmas
40.1. Left Alone At PCA
While most of our students were returning home over the Christmas holidays, this was by no means possible for all of them. And thence there was also a Christmas party here on our campus, and I was in charge with organising this year's edition.
More precisely, Logan Reese, Lola Martinez, Quinn Pensky, Stacey Dillsen, and Michael Barret were the only high school kids left at Pacific Coast Academy over Christmas.
For Logan and Michael these would be the last days they did not have to share their dormitory room with a third boy, as Miss Burvich had already marked the free spot in their room as to be occupied by the next arriving new male high school student. For several week had the too creeps tried to fool Miss Burvich into believing that Chase Bartholomew Matthews had not really left Pacific Coast Academy, and that it was all a mistake in the computer of the administration. In order to upkeep their fraud, they had even used several cardbord figures and dolls in the likeness of Chase Matthews, and the old spinster had even fallen for some of them for some time.
One of the deceits involved a bust of a figure from Malcolm Reese's overly dramatic space opera Galaxy Wars, a certain Tancredo, or somethinbg like that, a bust worth a dozen of thousands of bucks, some fact that did not please Malcolm at all. He had already complained on and off about Logan's wasteful demeanour and already cuut him off, but he had always withdrawn his veto after a few days.
Stacey Dillsen was still here, but, according to her plans, her parents should have already fetched her in order to take her into the mountains for a skiing vacation of some sorts. Nobody had got a clue why the old Dillsens were late, and Stacey had apparently not yet been able to reach them with their cellular phones. Stacey had been let down and left in the trash bin by already too many people in her life, but not yet by her parents, and so this was a bit scaring for all of us. The only hope left for her was calling her beloved Joshuah Nichols and hope that he had not yet abandoned her as well, just like everyone else in her life.
Michael Barret had sometimes watched old videos about the performances of Henry Doheny, the classic master of illusionism and escapism who had already made elephants disappear from the open stage and reappear from a sorcerer's hat, and who had equally escaped from heavily barred gun powder barrels.
Unfortunately the career of Doheny had slowly come to a natural end, as the master was no longer as nimble as he had used to be like thirty years ago when the girls were squealing when hankering after him.
Now Michael was a bit overconfident and believed in being able to perform the old escapist tricks of Doheny, at least freeing himself from all sorts of knotted ropes.
There had been a problem on the campus due to the absence of custodian Ethan Banville, but Jinnie Park had employed a more competent one for the holidays, videlicet Gordon Robert alias Gordy from Santa Clarita instead of Seamas Finnegan[] who had been suggested by the local "rent a custodian" agency.
Concerning the absence of the parents of Stacey Dillsen, the police of Los Angeles had already been informed, but according to officer David Alejandro Vega, the police, let alone the FBI, would not be active that soon.
Fortunately, Stacey had reached Joshuah Nichols on his cellular phone, and he had promised to come over in order to take care of that. Of course he would not be able to do much in order to find Stacey's parents, but he would be useful for cheering her up.
40.3. Engagement And Separation
It was now the famous first day of Christmas, but we did not believe in anyone to show up, even less Santa Claus.
But all of a sudden, the door bell rang, and there he was, the white bearded guy with a reindeer sledge and stuff … of course it was a fake, nothing was real, and Santa Claus was no other than Joshuah Nichols from San Diego.
The fake Santa had got some gifts for us. First, he and Eric Blonowitz, the fiancé of Quinn Pensky, had repaired a model helicopter that had been accidentally shred itself into pieces during the last term. Then there was a new laser module, allowing Quinn to laser the eyes of her victims more efficiently. She had recently corrected some eye problems of Mark del Figgalo.[], and, as she was not a med school graduate, she had been working with a deputy license from Jeff Glazer which was now renewd for two more years. For Lola Martinez, there was a bunch of backstage tickets for the concerts of Drake Parker whom she adored a lot. For Michael Barret, there was a coupon for the participation of the one and only real Henry Doheny in some upcoming episode of the web show which was now just run by Carly, Samantha, Fredward, and Michael.
Of course, Josh had not forgotten about Stacey, either, which was particularly important now that she had known about the reason for her parents' delay, the fact that her parents wer up for a divorce and could not agree any longer on anythinbg especially not on how to care for Stacey.
Officer David Alejandro Vega, who had been the one to bring Stacey the message, was now stuck in his own divorce, or at least it looked a lot like that. His wife had heard from her elder daughter about the officer's adulterous relationshio with Monique Chaumont , and Trinidad had in turn heard about it from Lance Rivers.
Dean Rivers, on the other hand, had now received the official confirmation of the divorce and was now able to schedule his wedding with Jinnie Park for the next possible date.
And now there was Josh's gift for Stacey, which she opened carefully, it was a couple of not really expensive but beautifully crafted engagement rings. Josh would later admit that Megan had helped him choosing the rings, especially some nice looking affordable ones that went well with Stacey's cotton swabs — truly not an easy task.
Stacey sighed deeply when she fell into Josh's warm arms, as she knew for sure that he would never let her down, no matter what.
The rest of the Christmas celebration was thus turned into an engagement celebration between Josh and Stacey.
Chapter 41. The Windbag From Santa Fé
41.1. James Dennifer Garrett
This new term at Pacific Coast Academy meant a few new pupils, and one of them was James Garrett[], who, according to the folder in our large cupboard, was from Santa Fé in New Mexico, a really dry area. I used to imagine people from New Mexico to look basically like Mexicans, just a little bit more modern, whatever that was supposed to mean. But James Garrett was hardly anything like that, he was a totally tall blond rake, rather like someone from northern Europe, such as Sweden or Iceland. He would probably be rhapsodised all over the place to no end by droves of exorbitantly swooning girls living on our campus.
However, on some old picture, he looked more like a typical middle school dork than a girl eater, in particular, he was wielding some butterfly catcher which attracted the attention of entomologist Douglas Filmore Bradford.
James had been selected by Miss Burvich in order to fill the gap in 148 Maxwell Hall, the dormitory room of Logan Reese and Michael Barret that had been left upon the departure of Chase Bartholomew Matthews. Of course those creeps, especially Logan, was not pleased by the prospects iof sharing a room with that freak, and even less was he pleased when figuring that James was actually a very popular rake, popular among the girls, that is. Of course, Logan had already got Dana Cruz, but he still was not able to tol;erate in any wy the fact that other guysm especially pupils at Pacific Coast Academy, were more lionised by the girls than he was. It definitely killed him slowly being forced to bear this burning shame.
By the way, James Garrett was also the nephiew of Hollywood star actor Jeff Garrett[], a fact that he did not seem too proud of, as he preferred talking about his uncle Hank[], a solid craftsman and construction entrepreneur for whom James had worked during the summer break in order to save some bucks for college. Logan Reese knew Jeff Garrett very well from his jobs for Malcolm Reese, but he did not get the connection, which just betrayed his absolutely inept memory.
41.2. Brooke Margolyn
Another new student for this new term was Brooke Margolyn[], a daughter of an American dad and a mom from Brazil. She was spoiling many boys' heads, but, more than anyone else, that of Mark del Figgalo, a former crush of Quinn Pensky as reported.
Usually you would expect that Quinn had long since forgotten about the fact that she had been denied by Mark because of his girlfriend Courtney Simmons, but these days, Mark seemed to have no qualms making out with Brooke innspite of being still engaged with Courtney, at least according to popular rumours. And her current boyfriend Eric Blonowitz was a whole lot more suited for Quinn, anyways, as he helped her actively with her scientific research.
But Quinn was apparently still by absolutely no means pleased by this fact, and she was now up to causing some troubles.
41.3. A Song For Grandma
James Garrett had borrowed a guitar from his uncle, and today, he was supposed to sing something on Michael Barret's, Carly Shay's, Fredward Benson's, and Samantha Puckett's web show.
This was somewhat the culpa of Sam who had tried to help Carly Shay dating the tall blond rake.
Interestingly, James was not completely unknown to the middle school kids from downtown Seattle. He was also known to other syudents under different names. Stacey Dillsen, for example, reported that she had been dating him last year when he was called Dennifer, but he had been gone with the wind pretty fast.
But he was reported to have had a girlfriend, a busty blonde named Stephanie Javers[], a half-sister of aforementioned wrestling jock Chuck Javers. Alas, according to Trinidad Vega, who had stalked Chuck to some degree, this relationship was now over, and this had incited some hopes in Carly Shay. Sam had thrown Freddie's new USB stick at James and forced Carly to pretend that she had done so accidentally and beg for her forgivenness. In order to make up for the "incidental mistake" James was invited into the live web show of Carly and her gang.
The song to be performed was dedicated to James's grannie Josephine Garrett[] who had only got one leg, because the other one had been bitten useless by her poorly fed cat. Jake was now hoping for donations. The old lady had already saved a few bucks for a prothesis, but she had now blown everything in order to by a laptop allowing her to watch the web show live at home.
The performance did not sound too bad, but it was obvious that it was by absolutely no means the one and only natural voice of James Garrett.
Capable tech producers like Fredward Benson were able to squeeze the best sound out of everything with the means of electronic devices, allowing even my cat to sing like a superstar.
Apparently, Fredward did not really happy when he saw James performing, ahe had probably been forced by Carly into patching his voice just for this one episode.
Samantha sighed deeply as well while Michael thankewd James for one last time for having been here in the web show with his great live performance.
James had probably not even bee aware of this and thought of himself as a great singer, although he wpuld have turned into the laughingstock of the school ad the whole audience of the web show without the technical patch.
Douglas Filmore Bradford, on the other hand, was totally convinced that it was perfectly possible to improve your voice with some extract from the desoxyribonucleic acid of crickets, the master musicians in the kingdom of the animals.
I was scared to no end by this thought and tried to think about everything else.
A few hours later, there was an anonymous message on the mail box of the administration office in which a cowardly witness or a spaz with two much fantasy claimed to have heard that Fredward Benson and Samantha Puckett were up to an assault upon the life of James Garrett, priobably by pushing him down the great staircase on the campus.
I was not sure as of what to make of this call with an excited voice, as those were really brash accusations.
Dean Rivers could not risk any bad publicity, so he was going to get James controlled all time long by the campus security team, ad he ordered especially Sarah Kyla to be his body guard.
For this avail, Vince Blake was exonerated from the need of suffering from additional tutoring lessons, allowing him to take up bodyguarding his little sister Ashley.
But who was the anonymous caller … my instincts told me that Michael Barret was behind it.
Freddie and Sam were certainly motivated to do something bad to windbag James, given that they had been forced against their will to let him sing in the web show. But would they go that far?
Chapter 42. A Gift For Mom
42.1. Errand Boy Dustin
The next birthday of Stephanie Brooks, the mother of Dustin and Zoey, was approaching rapidly, and Dustin needed a suitable gift for her. As he was still too young for working in Wing Lee's restaurant or one of teh shops on the campus, he was taking the hard road and had hired again as an errand boy for no other than ultrajerk Logan Reese. Dustin wanted to be able to afford a web cam which would have allowed his mom to chat with him over the interweb.
There should have been absolutely no need for sayinmg that Zoey Brooks was by no means happy about Dustin's way of making some bucks, but she had got no better idea.
Unfortunately, the relationship between Zoey and Lola Martinez was now suffering even more as Lola had remarked that their mom would not have sent Dustin to a boarding school if she had wanted to see and talk to him more often. This was of course a very mean thing to say to Dustion, and it was not a smart thing to say in front of the blond Mary Sue, as the latter was now dismayed for two reason. First, as an overprotective elder sister, she sensed how much Dustin was hurt and was not willing to tolerate such a mean remark, second, she knew that Lola was so wrong about their mother, and that it was not her business anyways. The living barbie doll was not able to swallow this family insult and was up to getting back at Lola in a suitable moment, sooner or later, when the spoiled diva was expecting it least …
But Dustin had got another problem, much different from Lola's perversely evil remark, more precisely, he was always sent all over the place by Logan, and the creep used to turn really unpleasant whenever he did not get what he wanted exactly in the moment when he wanted it most.
Oe nice afternoon, he found a real jerk style message from of course nobody but Logan Reese in his mail box, in a really intimidating voice.
42.2. Zoey's Accusations
And now Zoey Brooks was complaining in the admin office about it. This was already her second time in this week. Two days ago, she had already requested the expulsion of Fredward Benson and of Samantha Puckett, as they planned an onslaught on the life of James Garrett.
Dean Rivers was consternated because he needed certainly some good proof for Zoey's accusations against Samantha and Fredward.
Zoey continued by presenting the headmaster and his fiancé some old article from the Seattle Tribune, an article mentioning an onslaught by Samantha Puckett on the life of Leann Carter during some beauty pageant in the biggest city of the starte of Washington.
Jinnie Park looked really upset, for this was of course not to be tolerated at Pacific Coast Academy.
But how had Zoey Brooks been getting hold of this flabbergsting information, given that she had never been in the state of Seattle?
Zoey did not want to mention the source of her information, but, sooner or later, she would have to.
Leann Carter herself was not going to accuse Sam of anything, as she was a firm believer in the principole of turning the other cheek, and stuff like that.
Alas, everyone had noticed Samantha Puckett's foul and perverted hostilities against Leann Carter during the last weeks, since the start of the academic year, to be precise, a and this means that Samantha was by no means glad about leann's survival of her former onslaught and her presence at Pacific Coast Academy.
But now it was more important to talk about the case of Logan Reese, whose head Zoey Brooks also wanted to get removed from the torso.
Unfortunately, Malcolm Reese was still one of the greatest sponsors of Pacific Coast Academy, and this made it almost impossible to expel the evil jerk.
Nuts covered with a hull of chocolate were currently one of the most popular snacks on our campus. Unfortunately, some students here at Pacific Coast Academy were suffering from allergical reactions to nuts, such as Quinn Pensky, while others loved nuts but deemed chocolate too fat and not suited for their ideal shape, such as Lola Martinez.
So, what do you get when do girls of that sort are forced to live next door in a boarding school like ours?
That was as straifghtforwarsd as it was disgusting. Last night, Quinn had licked the chocolate off a bowl full of chocolate nuts and left the nuts back in the cole. Naïve and unwary Lola Martinez had walked past them and started eating the nuts who had of course been chock full of Quinn's saliva. Only too late had Quinn admitted to having freed the nuts from their cover, and, as a consequence, Lola had been forced to vomit, but she had been too slow to reach the toilets and thence puked all over Stacey Dillsen who had been standing in her way.
And now Stacey stood in my office door in order to complain about Lola's impossible demeanour.
Dean Rivers tried to ignore her as much as possible because he had to concentrate on the cases Fredward Benson and Samantha Puckett. He had decided to ground them for the rest of the academic year, making it impossible for them to continue the web show. Likewise, both of them got moved into different dormitory rooms, or, rather, so-called dormitory rooms, really just better closets.
Concerning Stacey's problem, Jinnie suggested, "Mark del Fioggalo and his fiancé Brooke Margolyn are excellent knitters, they are certainly able to make you a new pullover really fast."
Stacey squeakled joyfully, as those were really good news. And there would be even better ones in a few days when Josh would admit to being an equally good knitter[], which he had leard from his grannie. He would also teach Stacey knitting, allowing her to make herself a better top.
Dean Rivers was now talking to school shrink Marty Klemish who had already successfully cured Nicole Bristow from her neurotical obsession with cute boys. Maybe he would also be able to deal with Logan Reese and his inappropriate fits of anger.
42.4. Hypnotising Logan
Marty Klemish had treated Nicole Bristow with the help of hypnosis, so he would now also do the same to Logan Reese.
The spoiled dandy was lying on the couch when Klemish was still explaining stuff, and his assistant Quinn Pensky approached with a silver pendulum in her hands. She started swinging the little device in front of the ultrajerk;s face while the shrink started muttering stuff like "your eyelids turn heavy … your mind goes empty … whenever tou feel fits of anger, you will now think about … butterflies, yeah, little colourful butterflies dancing in the air over a flourishing spring meadow."
Quinn nodded solemnly and sighed, "if only I could get Lola to refrain from being still angry at me for not having told her about what she was really eating." She feared Lola's wrath more than anything else. but maybe she would be able to hypnotise her even without the help of Klemish.
Alas, would the hypnosis realy work in the case of Logan Reese, or was all hope lost, anyways?
Zoey Brooks still thought that Logan Reese had bee getting away too well for having insulted Dustin, and she would not give up that easily.
42.5. New Tech Producer
Carly Shay was consternated when hearing the sentence of Samantha Puckett and Fredward Benson, which meant the end of her wb show as she knew it, for it was impossible to continue the show without it. Of she knew very well that Fredward Benson and Samantha Puckett had deserved even worse of a punishment for threatening the life and health of James Garrett, but she had no clue as of how to continue the web show without her friends.
But some pupils were trying out for filling in the position, alas, the only one competent enough was Wayne "Fire Wire" Gilbert, the nerdiest of the nerds.
This was absolutely not what she had expected to happen, but the alternative was that of giving up on the whole web show thing altogether, so it was the infamous choice between Skylla and Charybdis which already Ulysses had to face during his fatal trips across the Mediterranean sea. But she refused being Wayne's girlfriend as much as she had always turned down even more perverted Fredward Benson.
Zoey Brooks was glad that Fredward and Samantha were out of the race, but she was not really pleased by the presence of her archenemy Wayne Gilbert in the web show, rather, it had been like a jump from the frying pan into the open flames. She was even less happy about the fact that Wayne was building a web cam for Dustin to send to their mom as a birthday gift, this really hurt her feelings.
Chapter 43. These Boots Are Made For Walking
43.1. A Sponsor For Carly
The popularity of web shows such as the one run by Michael Barret and Carly Shay was of course not totally devoid of the potential for commercials and publicity. And thus it was little wonder that these days, America's freatest vendor for footwear, Daka Shoes[], was interested in hiring the web show in order to spread the message about one of their latest products, whatever that was.
Joshuah Nichols, upon having heard that Dean Rivers was about to decide about giving Carly the permission to send commercials for Daka Shoes was in the admin office in order to complain about the company. "Drake had once sung the promotional song for their last marketing campaign, a really cool song, Makes Me Happy[], which had been mutilated and spoiled to no recognition by the creeps from Daka. They are incredible creeps."
Dean Rivers was now no longer sure what to do, but he knew that he had to warn Carly and Michael.
Mysteriously, he was also preparing the organisation of a charity walkathon to be started on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy for the upcoming weekend, and an additional sponsor, even one as dubious as Daka, was always welcome. Pupils participating in the walkathon were probably going to wear boots, for "these boots were made for walking"[], and boots were sold by Daka.
43.2. Clacker Balls
Two plastic bals connected with a string … this sounded like a really simple concept for toy, but apparently one that could be very addictive, The toy had been invented two years ago in the Netherlands[] and had now also conquered California.
Michael Barret was apparently one of the most addicted guys when it came down to clackers, and he could make the two balls collide over and over again, causing some downright horrible sound that was hardly to bear for his room mates, videlicet Logan Reese and James Garrett.
In order to obtain the privilege of playing with his clacker all day and all night, Michael propsed James a bet. Michael would be allowed to do continue his oisy hobby if he succeeded in a very tricky shot on the pool table, an enterprise that James was only able to make fun of. Then they asked Megan Parker to be the witness of the bet, something Drake Parker and Josh Nichols had already come to rue, and just a few years ago. They were betting about their ability to give up on their respective obsessions[], and one of them turned out able to do so, and in Megan's terms that meant that both of them had lost the bet and were thus forced to dye their hair all pink, the stakes for the bet.
At least the hypnosis for Logan Reese, as prescribed by Marty Klemish, had hitherto worked out fairly well, and thus Logan had not yet taken out his otherwise absolutely inevitable anger about the permanently annoying noise caused by Michael's clacker balls.
So, what were the mysterious shoes to be praised on Carly's and Michael's web show?
The agent from Daka called them techfoots, and they were chock full with latest technology. They even allowed you to connect to the interweb by means of some wireless network access.
Caerly and Michael were going to participate in the charity walkathon wearing those tech foots.
This event would be broadcast not only on PCA news channel by Jeremiah Trottman, but also, even more, by Carly's web show, for the large salary of hundred thousand bucks a year.
And Wayne "Fire Wire" Gilbert would take pictures for the show. Even more, the wireless net access allowed Carly and Michael tio send pictures from the race even outside the reach of Wayne's stationary camera.
Carly Shay had hitherto ignored each and every warning issued dutifully by Joshuah Nichols, and she was already planning on spending the bucks. Sghe was particularly addicted to new sun glasses by Mercedes Lense[].
By the way, Joe Braxley, former greasemonkey dwelling near Pacific Coast Academy, was now working as a greasemonkey for Daka, and he was responsible for repairing techfoots. His fiancé Coco Wexler also dared to show up for the commercials, although that was definitely not desired by Dean Rivers and his Jinnie.
The pupils not participating actively in the walkathon were encouraged to sponsor the participants by donating a chosen amount of bucks per mile.
The words "per mile" were written in small print, so it was to be expected that kids would not really read them and thus offer too much.
Carly and Michael used the web show in order to ask the viewers to join the sponsoring and donate as well.
Dean Rivers liked this activity, as it would improve the publicity of Pacific Coast Academy, but maybe it was not really legal.
Alas, I received a call from aforementioned Claire Sawyer, future lawyer from Santa Clarita, and she had got doubts about the legality of the whole sponsoring action.
The dean decided to ignore the objections for the time being, but Claire would call back when she had got more precise informations.
The race had just started, and things seeme to go well barring for Mark del Figgalo who appeared to break down after one mile only.
Wayne Gilbert sat at his laptop and managed the pictures sent by Carly's and Michael's shoe cams during their walk through the hot sierra. Alas, there appeared to be problems. Wayne was riddling what was going on, and Carly had also to complain about other troubles, such as her shoe tips which had just gone off. This way, her feet were allowed to breathe better, but all the dust and sands was going to accumulate underneath ger souls which made walking a lot harder.
Things were even worse for michael whose techfoots were suuddenly setting themselves ablaze for no apparent reason, and he had to dispose with them in order to get away alive.
Fire Wire heard some traces of an explosion from Michael's shoes, but the built-in cam was of course lost as well. He cried for Quinn pensky in order to beg for her help.
The geek girl sighed deeply, because something very bad had happened. "I helped Dean Rivers testing his techfoots in his office, and tnow the electromagnetic waved from the boots have wiped out the programme controlling the office machine, making it wreak severe havoc. And he is lost without it."
So much to Dean Rivers's resounding praise for Daka and its works, along with their good impact on the renown of Pacific Coast Academy.
For a little later, Wayne Gilbert would also diagnose that the tech foots had wiped out most of the hard drive of the school computer.
If Wayne ever got the web show up and running again, a few unpleasant words about the techfoots would be in order.
43.6. One Hundred Miles
Many kids would have expected that someone like Vince Blake would be the one to make most miles in the walkathon, but they had been wrong. No other than Dustin Brooks was able to make one hundred miles, more than three times the amount of Vince.
Those who had offered bucks per mile made by Dustin Brooks were now deep in the debts, and especially those who had offered some high amount of bucks due to having not read the words "per mile".Dustin was interviewed by , and he admitted to having felt changing physically during the walkathon out in the sierra.
Douglas Filmore Bradford grinned triumphantly while he explained how the genes of certain insects allow humans to become a lot more enduring than usual. Was he admitting to having manioulated Dustin Brooks genetically, turning him into half of a desert bug in order to allow him to make so many miles? These were very scary prospects, and, unfortunately, they were totally plausible, and it was to wonder how many other pupils the overlord had already manipulated.
Fortunately, future lawyer Claire Sawyer had got some good news for those kids having been broken by their offers for the charity action, as she had figured that getting minors to donate without their legal guardians' agreement was illegal, even more doing so over the interweb or other mass media. The whole action was thus for naught, and no pupil owed anything to the evil charity organisation who turned out as the money washing label of an organisation of criminals lead by Carmine Puckett[], an uncle of Samantha Puckett which was already suspicious enough.
Likewise, Claire would represent Carly Shay, Michael Barrett, and Wayne Gilbert in a lawsuit filed by Daka and scare away the reckless business makers, forcing them into bankruptcy.
Chapter 44. Valentine's Party
44.1. The Sick Rake
Due to the boy-only character of Pacific Coast Academy until a few years ago, Valentine's parties had never got a really great tradition here at our school, but there had been attempts for changing this since the arrival of coeducation, exspecially in the third year when there was at least some kind of a numerical balance between boys and girls.
Especially Logan Reese had promised to throw a really big party for this day of the hearts, but his father Malcolm had come down and protested once more vigorously against Logan's excessively wasteful demeanour.
The guy with most invitations for the Valentine's party had apparently been James Garrett, although there had been various rumours of dating, but those had been all denied by the respective girls.
Comfortably, James Garrett appeared sick during the week of Valentine's party, for whatever reason, he probably just needed to recover from the girls' hankering frenzy.
44.2. Valentine's Queen
At many schools, the girl who accumulated most flowers during Valentine's day would be honoured in some way, let's say, the Valentine's queen.
Carly Shay had been suggesting during the last episode of her web show to introduce the same tradition also at Pacific Coast Academy, and she wanted apparently as many people as possible send her flowers.
Her alike-looking relative Megan Parker, on the other hand, was distributing flyers appealling the kids to refrain from buying and giving away flowers on Valentine's day, as flowers were just toilets for bugs and insects.
Unfortunately, Douglas Filmore Bradford did not exactly approve of Megan's negative remarks about bugs and insects.
But Megan also ran a poll about the Valentine's queen, something evolved pretty fast into a bet. The most betted canditate was no other than Lola Martinez, which was not much of a surprise. The bets were one to one, whereas there were those one to one billion odds for Stacey Dillsen, inspite of Josh Nichols's firm statement that Stacey would be he is only Valentine's queen for good.
Anyways, there were not enough flowers left in the school garden, so people had to buy them, which was probaly leading to the possibility that spomeone like Logan would by some hundreds of flowers in order to let someone win, or stuff like that.
44.3. The Flower Of The PCA
The party had been a great success, but now it came down to counting the Valentine's flowers.
Lola Martinez had indeed earned herself a huge amount of roses, alas, this turned out as not enough flowers.
Indeed, Carly Shay got a few flowers more, mostly red roses, but one of the flowers was very different from all those roses, and it was provided with a label saying "The Flower Of PCA For The Flower Of PCA".
Well, there was of coure a simple explanation for Carly's huge amount, videlicet viewers of her show from outside Pacific Coast Academy had donated or sent those by remote order from the local flower shop which had established a booth on our camous precisely for this day.
This of course would have been considered unfair, and Lola protested vigorously, indeed, because the Valentine's party and the choice of the queen had indeed been intended as something restricted to students of Pacific Coast Academy.
Douglas Filmore Bradford took a closer look at the unique flower among the many roses received by Carly Shay, and by using his expertise in biology he came to the conclusion that it was not from the school garden, and even less was it one commercially cultivated and sold in flower shops. Rather, this "Flower Of PCA" must have been hand grown and hand cultivated in some flower pot, probably by one student in his dormitory room as there were no traces of transport.
Carly Shay almost swooned, and then she decided to give up on all the long-stemmed deeply red roses ad to just keep the unique flower which meant more for her than all the other flowers taken together. This way, she abandoned her claims to the crown of this year's PCA Valentine Queen, leving it gladly to Lola Martinez who beat Zoey Brooks only by five flowers.
But who had given Carly this one unique flower? It was anonymous, like about each other flower, but Carly was hell bent on finding out.
Lola grinned perniciously at the blond Mary Sue when she received her own Valentine's grown, and Zoey went pale in extreme envy.
Chapter 45. Candle Light At Vaccaro
45.1. Nearby Restaurants
Of course it was not legal for students of Pacific Coast Academy to leave the campus in order to go dining somewhere outside, because out health and accident insurances would not cover any damage suffered or caused by our students off teh campus.
Exceptions were only possible upon prior formal request in our administration office, and in the presence of a responsible adult, unless of course the student was already old enough, in which case he assumed full responsibility for his own deeds but was still subject to campus and to dormitory curfews in vigour. Only very few students were old enough for that sort of exception, anyways.
After all, there were enough possibilities for the students to escape starving even when staying on the campus, as there was the cafeteria and also restaurnats such as Nozu for exactly that purpose.
But there were a few inviting restaurants not far from our campus, such as Pete And Sam[]
But the king of all restaurants in the vicinity of the campus of Pacific Coast Academy was beyond any doubt a noble six star shed named Vaccaro[], even in foot distance, but also comfortably reachable by car because of its own noble parking site.
Needless to say, as a six star restaurant this place was far too expensive for the students of our school, well, at least for most of them, with the exception of the ilk of Logan Rese who was probably able to buy the whole restaurant, provided that his dad Malcolm was not on one of his few Ebenezer Scroodge trips which occurred every now and then.
Not even our teachers were apparently able to afford eating there, and this inspite of the fact that, according to our home page, the teachers were the best in the state of California, and thus one should even assume that they were paid better significantly better than the average teacher at the district schools. And as this assumption was apparently not so true, Logan Reese was even able to bribe teachers into granting him allowances such as prolongation of deadlines for his class works with coupons for a dinner at Vaccaro's.[]
Yet another even more expensive possibility was the public restaurant associated with the nearby Santa Monica branch of world renowned luxury hotel chain Chambrolay[] which was spread all over the United States of America.
Or of course it was possible to go even further into Los Angeles which was chock full of more or less expensive restaurants. But this was certainly usually considered as a waste of time by our students.
45.2. Trouble At Vaccaro
The next morning, David Alejandro Vega stood in our office even before my arrival. This spelled quite some trouble, but what sort of trouble exactly was there ahead?
I was forced to call three girls from Pacific Coast Academy into the office, videlicet Zoey Brooks, Carly Shay, and Victoria Vega, his own daughter. He also required his soon to be ex wife, Deanna, to show up. This sounded like some family meeting, but why would Carly and Zoey be necessary?
Dean Rivers arrived soon thereafter and required an explanation as well.
The officer told us that there had been troubles over at Vaccaro's during the last night, troubles involving those three teenage girls and also James Garrett who had been there.
Dean Rivers was consternated, as the teenagers had clearly violated the rules that did not allow them to leave the campus just for a random dinner.
But there was more to this, and the girls would have to be interrogated.
And there they were, wight in time before Dean Rivers's patience was totally exhausted, something happening too often.
yes, I violated the rules by leaving the campus, because I had been invited by James Garrett to a dinner for two the very same evening, right over at Vaccaro's.
James and I have been dating already for several weeks, but we had never had the occasion to be alone.
This is apparently impossible on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy.
And the reason for this is obviously the fact that James Garrett has been dating,several other girls at the same time, well, at least two of them … Carly Shay and Tori Vega.
Needless to say, each of us girls believed to be the only one for the time being, but there have possibly been many more at the same time, and there still are.
And James had been appointed with all the three of us girls at the same evening at Vaccaro's, as he had failed talking them into dates at different evenings.
Of course this must have been a problem for the creep who had probably not wanted us girls to run into each otehr, but Vaccaro's guest rooms were big enough.
I guess that James, whenever he told me to have to use th toilets, something that happened unusually often, he was actually gone to either Carly or Tori.
Also, James was once gone complaining in the kitchen — or so he had told me.
But finally, James disappeared without a warning underneath my table, and just a few seconds later Carly Shay showed up by my side, wondering whether I had seen James. This way, Carly and I have come to see that we are by no means unique. Then I pulled James from underneath the table, and we started interrogating him severely, until he squealed in a way that alerted Tori Vega.
So there were three girls that had fallen for the same windy old rake, just as many others before them or at the same time as them.
The following scenes had probably been really ugly, and the other guests of the noble restaurant had been upset by the scene.
Officer David Alejandro Vega continued,
Maître D' Maurice Lee[], who happened to be also one ex husband of Wing Lee, had already turned fairly suspicious was intervening and called at the police headquarters, where I was in office, in order to get all the kids removed from the restaurant.
This got me finally involved, but I did not yet know that my own daughter was there in trouble, too.
When I arrived at Vaccaro, the blond rake had escaped … somehow.
I was angryy at my daughter, but she told me that I don't have to tell her anything since I have cheated on her mother.
So I decided to return the girls to Pacific Coast Academy, as they wre all students over here and thus hold some responsibility.
Needles sto say, it was already past curfew, and the girls' dormitory adviser was not really pleased about getting bothered, and things were worse because she happened to be my soon to be ex-wife.
Deanna Vega threw some heavy and unpleasant accusations at her soon to be ex husband, comparing him to windy guy James Garrett.
Officer Vega was of course not really pleased by Deanna's choice of words, and, in addition, he presented us the bill issued by Maître D' Maurice, not only for the food and stuff ordered by James and his girlfriends, but also for the damage caused by the following fights between the guests who had been taking sides for the girls or for James, and for the lost conficence of the hotel, as Jeremiah Trottman had already spread the news about the scandalous evening.
Fortunately, Wing Lee had still got something to say, something suitable for blackmailing her ex husband into shutting up. But we still had to pay for the orders.
Of course this would have been James's tasks, but we wondered how someone like James was able to afford that, given that our teachers weren't. He would have blown more than his college savings at once, for his uncle Hank did certainly not make eough money with his workshop to allow him to pay James the salary of a Wallstreet banker.
For the girls, this must have been a really hard disappointment, especially for Zoey who had already planned on going to the junior prom with the tal blond rake. Now she was again standing at point zero, which must have been very hard for the living barbie doll.
Douglas Filmore Bradford and Dea Rivers would still have to think about some appropriate punishment for the girls for having broken the rules, but the overlord suggested that the dumb lasses were punished enough by their broken hearts.
Chapter 46. Lola's Mistake
46.1. Happy Hour
Calvin Wang was still running the coffee cart on oour campus, even though he had been convicted of being a totally unfair and abusive vendor. At least he had dropped the customer of the week crap after a serious complaint issued by executive chairman Garth Burman. As a new promotion action he had introduced the concept of the "happy hour". This meant that every now and then, prices got reduced for a few minutes, maybe sometimes up to a whole hour, but not always that much.
Needless to say, many students were particularly keen on that, and they were really hell bent on using this rule for their advantage.
This morning. Lola Martinez had been participating in the rush for the happy hour and assured a cheap cup of javaccino for herself, but, due to being way too much excited about it, she had forgotten to pick a straw in order to be able to sip the hot drink, and so she paniced and stormed back to the cart, upsetting about all those waiting in the queue, in order to fetch the needed item. This was really an assault ion the van, as Lola, inspite of being a light weight, achieved slamming the vehicle in a way that made it trigger the stopper of the cart's wheels, in other words — the cart started rolling down the campus pavement.
This went by essentially unnoticed by any human eye, and only later would a few random pictures made by Wayne Gilbert, who was making a report of the happy hour for the next episode of the web show, be able to reveil the hasty culprit of the things that were about to come.
The cart did not desist voluntarily from rolling its way prescribed by the laws of gravitation, and there was no remote control able to do so — an idea for a future quinnvention? As a consequence, the next object in its way was going to perceive quite some impact, and this happened to be the sports car of Garth Burman, causing a damage much superior to that suffered by the same cart during the fund raising activities for the spring fling of the first coeducative year at Pacific Coast Academy.
Dean Rivers happened to be on the campus, and he noticed the catastrophe. Then he screamed at the top of his lungs, almost causing an earthquake of no less than magnitude four. But nobody admitted to being the culprit, and thus the headmaster picked the megaphone and declared that the coffee cart was banned from the campus, and, beyond that, coffee was declared illegal as well, on the campus, in the hall, everywhere. And that prohibition was in vigour for the pupils, the staff, the teachers … for everyone, including the headmaster himself. Otherwise it was impossible to beg for the mercy of the executive chairman of the board of Pacific Coast Academy.
And, of course, should the culprit ever be found, he or she was not just going to pay for the damage, but also face immediate suspension, expulsion, or, better, deportation to Siberia.
46.2. Carly On TV
Many TV shows of the day were lame and just scared away the kids who fled to web shows like that of Carly and Michael.
Recently, Morgan Eichman, the subteen daughter of Brad Eichman who happened to be both TV producer for a braodcasting corp named TVS and the principal of Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts, had complained about these issues and actually persuaded her father into making a show like Carly's and Michael's web show.
And now there was a big chance for the kids, but it would not be an easy one.
Having had troubles with Daka, Carly was now interested in making everything better from the start, and she consulted future lawyer Claire Sawyer from Santa Clarita in order to check the offered contract from the very start.
Carly was supposed to be the main moderator of Eichman's TV show, Michael the co-moderator, and Wayne the executive producer.
But the latter declined on sitem, as he, the creative head, wanted to be an inventor of electronic technology, not a stupid producer of anything. Well, he was not really needed, anyways. Carly and Michael had only taken him into their web cast because of Fredward's suspension.
Douglas Filmore Bradford could not stand Eichman, as his school, Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts, had already thrice rejected to accept their challenge for a match of the respective ping pong teams.
46.3. Coffee Shop On The Campus
Inspite of the firm verdict of Dean Rivers, students sold coffee secretly on the campus, of course in their own dormitory rooms.
We would not have come to hear about this crime without mutual treason.
Logan Reese appeared to have been the first to commit that evil deed, and he required astronomical prices for the goods sold in his dormitory room, with the help of Michael Barret who, fortunately, had was not always available due to his collaboration with the web show and now TV show.
Thereupon, a bunch of girls, guided by Quinn Pensky and joined by Lola Martinez, opened their own coffee shop in Quinn's apartment.
The two of them had finally spied on each other and denounced each other and finally got busted by our security teams.
Jinnie Park decided to suspend the kids involved in the illegal coffee business from the junior prom which was quite some tough punishment for the young people.
Also, Zoey had helped finding the culprits, especially Lola who had caused the accident in the first place, as she had been informed by Wayne Gilbert.
Lola accused Wayne of having just tried to get back at her because she had refused to kiss him and to be his prom date, and that he had told — still outrageously vengeful and envious for the Valentine's crown — Zoey about that whole thing in order to get her to be his prom date. But this true stuff did not reduce her due punishment. "But I have just started to learn knitting. Don't I get the time to knit for myself enough warm pullovers for Siberia?"
Fortunately, Douglas Filmore Bradford was going to revise part of Miss Park's stern verdicts. Executive chairmanGarth Burman had laughed about the coffee ban, and he only insisted in the abolition of the cart, using a table with stable feet instead, no longer rolls. "I have got an autograph of Lola Martinez which, in a few years, after her first Oscar, will be much more worth than any trashed car."
46.4. Zeeboh The Dino
Carly Shay and Michael Barret were bitterly disappointed by the TV show. First, they had got their own band run by Harper Harris[], but then Eichman had decided to trash the band in order to stuff Harper into a dino costume, According to faked polls, kids loved dinosaurs.
And this was the beginning of the end of an exorbitantly lame TV show.
Fortunately, Claire Sawyer had added a clause into Carly's contract allowing her to leave the crappy show in site.
46.5. The Ping Pong Fraud
Carly Shay was in a stinky mood for having wasted two weeks worth of efforts into a failed TV show, and Michael was even more upset.
Michael took it all out on the next episode on the web show, looking for plans to get back at Eichman. And there he got a reply from some Sinjin van Cleef from Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts who told our kids that the ping pong team at Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts was just a fake, abusing money from the sponsors of the school.
Douglas Filmore Bradford used that information in order to get Eichman suspended from his position as a headmaster, and the responsible pupils Jade West, Caitlyn Valentine, Robert Shapiro, Beck Oliver, and AndréHarris — twin brother of Harper Harris — expelled from Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts.
Carly was a bit sad for the expelled kids, at least for some of them, so she was not able to celebrate it, even less as she was still heart broken by James Garrett. The latter had not yet been found and made pay for his evil deeds, unlike the expelled criminals from Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts.
Chapter 47. Vertigo
47.1. Trip To Mystic Mountain
As already remarked, inspite of its high standards for teachers, the quality of science teachers at Pacific Coast Academy was very low, at least in the eyes of Douglas Filmore Bradford. This was not only valid for Cynthia Bromwell or Philip Granger, but also for Bert Beringer[], teacher for physics of our juniors of this year. He was just one big mess and always relied on Quinn Pensky to correct his reckless mistakes, something of which there had been already way too many.
In addition, Beringer was by absolutely no means able to motivate the kids, which was hardly any surprise because he would have preferred working for a zoological garden instead of teaching at some snobbish high school.
This had struck a nerve in Douglas Filmore who was now going to take over for Beringer and teach his classes for physics, while Bert was left in charge with the overlord's private collection of arthropodes from all over the world.
In order to spice up the lessons about the current topic of Beringer's classes, kinetic and potential engergy and gravitation and so on, Quinn Pensky had suggested the topic of the rollercoaster. And instead of just talking about those beasts, she suggested a trip to Mystic Mountain not far from Los Angeles, the location of two of California's hugest rollercoasters: The Demonator[] and the Spine Twister[]. Currently, the Demonator was out of service, as it needed to be enlargened in order to beat the new record size. Therefore, only the Spine Twister was in service.
Megan Parker had already been at the former of the two rollercoasters, together with her boobs alias Drake and Josh.
47.2. The Big Coward
Unfortunately, not all pupils of the classes of Bert Beringer, now taken over by Douglas Filmore Bradford, were looking forward with glee to the looming excursion to Mystic Mountain and the Spine Twister.
Michael Barret was horribly afraid of rollercoasters, as the vertigo and the fear of big heights was not unlikely to kill him. He had sensed this fear already as a little boy when climbing a tree and never been over it.
Douglas Filmore was already talking about the possibility of injectin some deoxyribonucleic serum of certain bugs into the coward in order to purge the potential for vertigo from him, remarking that bugs do not suffer from it.
The real horror for Michael Barret was the reactiobn of his pals, most especially room mate Logan Reese, and thus he had tried to keep it a secret and look for some other excuse in order to not have to ride the Spine Twister. But he was a bad liar and finally this tongue lapsed and make it all beknownst unto the whole gang.
Logan Reese's reezction was as foul and abominable as it should have been expected from the reckless jerk.
Lola Martinez even bit his ear as she saw his evil reaction, and he complained about it, but he really had it coming, period.
Michael Barret saw his life ruined for good, for almost every pupil on the campus made incessant fun of him.
Logan had not only been bit by Lola, he had also been tied up by Michael and tirtured incessantly with clacker balls and with cotton swabs he had borrowed from Stacey Dillsen for that purpose, upon instigation by Megan Parker. Only the intervention of Zoey Brooks had saved the life of Logan Reese, other wise … well, it's not that the evil jerk had not deserved any better.
Quinn Pensky was trying to cure his fears by employing a device she had invented in order to train hobby astronauts, more precisele space tourists who want to book a travel into the orbit organised by []Richard Blandon who had sponsored Quinn's and Mindy's space research. But for Michael, this project did not really turn out well, as he was unable to survive even the second of five test levels, making him too dizzy to control any of his motions, such that he finally ran into the nect dsoor and hurt his head badly.
47.3. A Girlfriend For Michael
Michael had been most afraid of never being respected again by any girl, thus having to live lonesome forever and to die lonely. But fortunately, Megan had found ssomeone suitable for Michael, and this was precisely her long-term friend and room mate Wendy Gellar. She had once suffered equally much humiliation when she had been rejected by Drake Parker on whom she had had a crush comparable to that of Michael Barret on Lisa Perkins.
An Megan's plan had worked out perfectly. Michael Barret would no longer care about what the vulgar mass of students had to say, he was now merrily together with Wendy who also agreed to join him to the very prom night.
47.4. Clackers Instead Of Roller Coaster
Douglas Filmore Bradford would ultimately take the class to Mystic Mountain without the participation of Michael Barret who would instead prepare an experiment with clacker balls for the next physics classes.
Clackers were perfect for demonstrating the principles of the pendulum and those of the laws of collision.
Spencer Shay would help him by building a mobile of connected pairs of clacker balls.
Logan Reese, on the other hand, was made to climb the mystic mountain on foot in order to demonstrate his lack of fears, and he would fail miserably, demonstrating what a big coward he was really. He would have to be rescued and transported back to Pacific Coast Academy in the family helicopter.
Bert Beringer on the other hand figured that he was no good for a zoological garden either, especially one with arthropodes, and he would retire entirely from Pacific Coast Academy.
Chapter 48. Mr. Takato
Junior prom was around the corner, but many students had not yet found a partner. Others were looking for a suitable outfit and other things necessary in order to make their junior prom night the perfect junior prom night. Some stories about things going on on the campus during that time would only be reveiled after this event, but here they are …
48.1. The Stick Switch Car
Michael Barret was rushing from one fear into the other. After having been thoroughly embarrassed by the rollercoaster at Mystic Mountain, he was now about to face his inability of riding a stick-switched car from the good old times. The problem was that he had been given one by his dad, and he wanted to show it off at Junior prom,especially as Logan Reese was still not granted a driver's permit.
On the other hand, he had known that his girlfriend and prom date Wendy Gellar loved him for all his strengths and also all his weaknesses and did not wish him to change. But he wanted to humiliate Logan Reese rigorously at any cost for his reckless perversity. And next year, the place of Chase Matthews and James Garrett would be filled by some other student, so Michael wanted to be done with Logan before having to put up with the next mate.
48.2. Zoey's Despair
Zoey Brooks was very sad because she was designing most of the outfits for the juniors, but she would not be able to make it to the junior prom because of the lack of a partner. Yet she had designed the most beautiful gown ever, just in case.
And her father had got good connections to the manager of the aforementioned hotel chain Chambrolay, for which reason, she had been chosen for a job asa bay watch at the chain's branch on Maui, one of the islands belonging to the archipel of Hawaii. She was allowed to bring someone along with her, but she would have preferred to come with her boyfriend and prom date.
Yet the only ones who had hitherto asked her to the prom were Wayne Gilbert and Jeremiah Trottman, but Zoey Brooks was by asolutely no means willing to be caught even dead with either of them.
In order to release her stress, Zoey wanted to let sew some of the gowns and tuxedo suits she had designed, as she was sure that he was a very reliable friend, after all, inspite of having remained an almost complete stranger for her during the last three years, since they had met first on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy after the middle school dance.
48.3. Wired For Mindy
For too many times, Wayne Gilbert alias Fire Wire had been trying to hit on the false girls, such as Lola Martinez, Trinidad Vega, and Zoey Brooks.
Only now, right before junior prom, would this change to the better.
Melinda Crenshaw, nowadays a student at Caltech, had accidentally appeared on the campus in order to ash Douglas Filmore Bradford for a job as a student teacher, replacing bert Beringer. And she stumbled right into Wayne who was still lionising the blond Mary Sue. She suspired deeply, and then she grabbed Wayne and asked him, "stop hankering after girls that can't appreaciate the real Fire Wire, go for the one who really does."
Wayne did not get it, and he cackled stupidly.
Mindy shook him and grunted, "for over two years, I have been the only one to admire your full personaality, and that means your addiction to science and technological progress, but also to fantasy games and books and zines."
Fire Wire looked surprised, because he had not noticed that, but Mindy also had to admit to not having shown him directly.
Mindy explained, "you like fantasty heroes, like that Spidergirl from Marvel's toons, or wonder girl from DC. So I injected myself some essence Bradford had extracted in our science club, and I turned into something like that fantisy hero. I had evenused my abilities in order to stop a bunch of criminals, although their victims, Drake Parker and Josh Nichols, aren't really worth it, well, Drake definitely ain't, Josh lost his coolness by hanging out too much with Drake."
When Wayne Gilbert was unable to reply by talking, Mindy just pulled him into a particularly tight kiss, sending a tingling feeling down his spine. Was Wauyne now infected by the miraculous bug as well?
So Melinda Crenshaw had been the miraculous stranger freeing Drake and Josh from the grips of Milo Creery, and she had been able to do so by using genetic manipulation in the spirit of the research of Douglas Filmore.
48.4. The Prom Band
Originally, Dean Rivers had wanted to hire a band of dubious criminals named Dirk, Blake, and Suzée[], but his fiancé Jinnie suggested to take the school band of Drake Parker. "Hiring strangers for our prom is absolutely unnnecessary and poison for the school spirit."
There was one problem, though, as one of the band's members, lead singer Lisa Perkins, was also one of the prom participants, but she had chosen Drake Parker as her prom partner, which would make things a lot easier.
48.5. Food And Drinks
The teenagers tended to turn hungry and thirsty at prom parties, and so it was necessary to provide for that.
The natural choice here at Pacific Coast Academy was of course the on campus restaurant of Wing lee and Kazu Park. Thos would even provide a booth in the central hall of the party building. Middle school students were hired in order to serve the stuff and to carry tablets and carts with more supplies and with trash, whenever required, to and from the hall.
Dustin Brooks, Carly Shay, and Ashley Blake had been chosen for this extremely demanding task.
Douglas Filmore Bradford had just given some sport of speech in order to open the junior prom, but then he disappeared on site.
Lola Martinez should have performed the opening speech for the students, but she was fashionable late, as she had still got a dinner date with Spencer Danforth, her favourite male colleague since their common days for Malcolm Reese's movie Zorka.
Now Michael Barret had taken over this task, accompanied by his Wendy Gellar, and he admitted proudly tio have made it to the party hall in his good old stick switched car, after having been instructed by some elderly Japanese guy named Mr. Takato[] who was a middle school teacher at Pacific Coast Academy. In order to lear driving the car, Michael had to stir tuna with egg vinaigrette and chopped onions and to stomp the juice from graves.
Alas, our books did not know anything about such a teacher.
Many students were now going to make fun of Michael for that, but he did not care, as at least Wendy believed him all the way.
Douglas Filmoree however guessed that Takato was some sort of a hologram used by teachers of the zen art of ninjas in order to instruct new aspiring ninjas,
Nicole Bristow and Nicholas Webber showed up on the dancing floor as well, followed by Zoey Brooks and Jerry Crony. The latter would also follow the blond Mary Sue to Maui.
Quinn Pensky and Eric Blonowitz looked a bit stiff, but at least they were dressed in the latest high technology gown and tuxedo suit, something everyone was supposed to envy them for.
Vince Blake had been talked by his sister Ashley into choosing Sarah Kyla as his prom date. Now the two of them were standing at the nacho booth.
Ashley described the dips, such as hummous, baba ghenoush, red salsa, tapenade, guacamole, …
Vince shrugged and fed his Kyla with one nacho dipped into various bowls.
Ashley grinned and growled in an ice cold manner, "maybe I should grow sesame on my window sills, just as others grow some rare flowers …" She glared into Dustin Brooks's direction.
Carly Shay was prepareing some smoothies for the juniors, and she gasped when she noticed Ashley's gaze from the corner of her eyes. Then she stepped up to Zoey's little brothers and sked right away, albeit slightly stammering, "have you raised that flower just for giving it me for Valentine's day?"
Dustin blushed deeply, and he stammered "I did …" while hot and could showers took turns in rushing down his spine.
Carly sighed and sobbed. "Sorry for not noticing it earlier, but James Garrett had spoiled my mind back then, I hoped the flower to be from him, but then he broke my heart into smithereens." She moaned all over the place, but then she wrapped her arms around Dustin sand smooched him in front of some hundred watching juniors who sighed for exorbitant awe.
Chapter 49. The Life And The Times Of Kelly Cooper
49.1. The Invitation
It was now already quite a few months since Chase Bartholomew Matthews had left the building and was now studying at the Broadway School For Advanced Performance Arts. Most students here on the campus had already forgotten about him, this included even Zoey Brooks whom he had once upon a time believed to love and whom he had scared away, it inclkuded Trinidd Vega who, inspite of her cool attitude, suffered a lot from the impending divorce of her parents and for that avail was even seeking Zoey's advice. And, most unexpected by everyone and his dog, this was especially the case for Michael Barret, the former best friend for ever of Chase Matthews.
Chase appeared to have been very productive already during his first few months in New York City, and he had written the libretto of a new musical which was going to be known as The Life And The Times Of Kelly Cooper[].
And Chase, inspite of having been forgotten by almost all of our pupils, had not really forgotten about us and asked his mentor Sofia Michelle to put us onto the list of the guests for the première performance of Kelly Cooper. Of course there was not enough place for the whole of Pacific Coast Academy, including pupils, teachers, and staff, but the organisatorial board of Broadway had granted us fifty spots in the audience and backstage.
Douglas Filmore Bradford did of course by no means want that the vacancies went to pupils who were just curious about New York City, a kind of which there were certainly more than just fifty, but who did not really care about the musical as such. Therefore he wanted to insure that only those somewhat familiar with the musical would be allowed to participate in the field trip to the Broadway. He distributed copies of the libretto to the students, and those applying for the excursion would have to audition in order to be admitted to the big journey.
49.2. The Audition
Gloria Callahan, still the official advicer of our drama club, was in charge with the selection for the trip.
Of course it was not an audition for a rôle in a play or even a big movie, but it was no less understood by some of our students as a chance of launching a career at Broadway.
One of them was Trinidad Vega who, if her mother had not found a job at Pacific Coast Academy, would have gone to Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts instead. She was a great bodybuilder and dancer, but she had got that fixed idea of also being a great actress and singer and thus perfect for musicals, be it at Hollywood or at Broadway. She had practised a passage she liked most from the script and she was now performing it in front of the judges.
Gloria Callahan coughed, as she did not really like Trinidiad's performance, but it was not possible to deny that the criolla had really been dealing with the libretto. Strangely, there were some physical changes in Trina, changes that escaped from the eyes of Callahan, but they were there, it was like … a few days before, Douglas Filmore Bradford had talked about a possible serum extracted from crickets and its impact on musical talent … and Trina appeared to look somewhat like one of those insects. Was that an accident, or maybe just my hallucination, or was there a connection between those two events? I truly did not hope for the latter, for I did not want to imagine where this would have turned into.
And now Trinidad Vega insisted letting everyone spread the news about her impending departure to the city of freedom, and she told everyone that she would return as a big star. Once making it up to that pkace, Trinidad would be able — or so she believed — to make it everywhere in the world.[]
49.3. New York, New York!
I was not present in New York City, and for that reason I would only come to know abbout everything going on in the Imperial city fro the protocols I had to write for the school's archive and the yearbook after the return of our delegation from Broadway.
As Douglas Filmore Bradford, apparently the leader of our travellers' group, had veen working in New York City for over ten years, he knew his way around there very well.
Zoey Brooks's father was a friend of the manager of Chambrolay Hotels, but even with these connection, the hotel would have been way too expensive for our delegation.
Fortunately, kids from Douglas Filmore's former school, and also some of Miss Park's former school, were able to organise cheaper accomodations for us. Some of the kids had got relatives in the queen of cities.
Trina Vega and her sister Victoria were, for examople, accomodated in the appartment of their cousin Viviana Marx[] who worked as a teenage supermodel for Mad Style, aforementioned top fashion label in New York City.
Michael Barret, on the other hand, was forced to live with his second cousin Owen Reynolds, one of Douglas Filmore's former students. Zachariah Carter Schwartz and Leann Carter would be accomodated by Addie Singer, the fiancé of Chase Bartholomew Matthews.
49.4. The Première
The curtains opened up, the spot lights were directed towards the looming action …
Kelly Cooper was a comedy musical featuring high school girl Kelly Cooper who was not as popular as she wished to be, partly due to the impact of a gang of popular yet rude kids lead by one Nathalie. But at the end of the play, Kelly gets to kiss the boy of her dreams, a certain Chad, and she becomes more popular than her eternal rival, now renamed to "Nathalooser".
The performance wqent smoothly during the whole first act of the play, but then the main actress appeared to have problems with her speech.
The actors were able to make it into the break, but there it was evident that the star was unable to continue.
Trinidad saw this as her big chance, and she yelled at Chase Bartholomew Matthews, urging him to let her play, as she had practised that piece. According to the busty criolla, Chase really owed her a chance, as he had still not been paid for playing his girlfriend unto Zoey.
Sofia Michelle heard this scene, ans she was consternated, for she had seen videos of Trin idad Vega's performance in some amateur musical, and those were … mediocre, to say the best, in no case suitable for the main rôle. "You may be an additional background dancer, but you can't sing on a professional level, sorry!" She was willing to add one more dancer because one of the professional dancers was the best friend of the main actress and would better take care of her.
Trina was more and more angry, but she forced herself into accepting the little chance she had been offered, at least for the time being.
Then Michael barret intervened and suggested, "Victoria has been practising with Trina all night long, and she hads got the rôle of Kelly Cooper stamped into her veins and into her nerves."
Tori was not sure and squealed, "what, me? No, Trina is the gifted one, I am just …"
But Chase trusted Michael's judgment and sent Tori up front. And, after the end of the performance, it was clear that his confidence had not been disappointed. And Sofia Michelle was too desperate to object to Chase's decision.
This night had seen the birth of a new star and a new career, Victoria Vega, the greatest musical singstar … ever!
Trinidad had been performing well in her rôle, but the envy was visible across the whole stage hall, and increasing steadily from minute to minute.
The pundits of Broadway were really surprised and they would cover hundreds of pages with the sensational story about the middle school girl from Los Angeles that rocked the stage out of nothing.
Chapter 50. Finale
Melinda Crenshaw alias Creature — so called by Drake Parker — and Wayne Gilbert alias Fire Wire had not been seen much at the prom party or during the following days, but a few weeks after that event … …
All of a sudden, Wayne and Mindy appeared in the centre of the campus, but they were not easily recognisable, as they looked strange, like a mixture of bugs mounted on a human body, something owed beyond any doubt to the experiments of genetical manipulation of the sort introduced to Pacific Coast Academy by Douglas Filmore Bradford.
Certainly the presence of those two bugmen would have scared the living hell out of many kids and adults here at Pacific Coast Academy just a few years ago, boys and girls alike.
But now the kids were almost accustomed to it, many of them had already experienced temporary feelings of physical transformations, so many things appeared more normal for them, well, they even gazed in awe at the perfectly immortal beastmen.
Mindy Crenshaw explained that by balancing human physical weaknesses with the strengths of invertebrates, she was able to provide for the perfect body of the immortal superhero.
Many of the onlookers were looking forward to becoming exactly like that, and the yelled for the syringe inserted by Douglas Filmore Bradford.
Of course, Douglas Filmore Bradford did not have enough of the genetic extract on storage, he would need a lot more of it, but many kids signed up for a waiting list.
But then Megan Parker showed up on the campus square, and she held her oboe tightly, probably up to playing something, but before dooing so, she started talking to the masses, "you boobish fools, do youreally think you make yourself immortal by assuming parts and pieces of bugs and vermin? No, you won't make it there, quite the contrary, by becoming like the beasts, you are going to submit yourself to a painful death, no, a misery worse than any death. You will destroy what you are and whatever you have ever dreamt to be, shame on you!" She started playing a few lines of a tune while the masses started disputing aloud.
Douglas Filmore Bradford was apparently not much pleased by Megan's words, and he thundered across the campus, "how dare you, you little creep?"
Megan Parker explained that Nevel Papperman had shown her the way of truth, and made her clear that bestiality is worse than any other human weakness that Douglas Philmore had tried to overcome. "True immortality is in your mind and in your spirit, not in genes and other crap!" She explained that she had on purpose transformed into the Mantis monster during last year's talent show in order to test the reaction of the students and see how far they had already been assmimiliated. Apparently, they had already been influenced a lot, but it had not yet been too late.
Douglas Filmore tried to call on the bug powers of all those he had already treated by means of genetical manipulation.
But Megan Parker stood tall, and the sounds of her oboe neutralised the bug power of the infected students. Yet this battle went on for several hours, and to some of the students it seemed like days, weeks, or months.
The monument of the founder of the school, recently completed by Megan Parker, was scattered and disassembled by Megan's oboe.
Jeff Glazer had recently declared Leo Bradford permanently unable to take care of anything like Pacific Coast Academy or any other business, but now the last Bradford, Douglas Filmore, had given up on it as well after having been defeated by Megan Parker with the sound of her oboe, so the boarding school was going to be sold.
Record producer Gustavo Rocque would be the new owner of this most elitary boarding school of California, as he needed one for his teenage rock stars to come, and he would thence rename Pacific Coast Academy fittingly into School Of Rocque. Rocque would also make himself the new dean of the educational institution.
Douglas Filmore Bradford would thence never been seen again, but Megan would not really trust the situation, and nobody else should either. The possibility would always be out there for such a danger to show up again, under whatever name … prepare and beware!
[ ]Beverly has got cameos in Zoey 101: Broadcast Views et alibi.
The surname is taken from a rôle of the same actress in third-party owned Passions
[ ]Bradford appears in Zoey 101: Prank Week.
The first name is taken from a rôle of the same actor in third-party owned That's Life.
[ ]Officer Vega is from Victorious, the father of star Tori Vega.
He is here identified with André Chaumont from Zoey 101: Haunted House.
[ ]Jeff Glazer has cameos in Drake & Josh: Little Diva et alibi.
[ ]Malcolm Reese appears in Zoey 101: Spring Breakup.
[ ]This is Kazu from Zoey 101 with a surname borrowed from third-party owned Wanted.
[ ]Keith Finch is a guest character from Zoey 101:Defending Dustin, identified with cameo character Cleeshay from The iCarly Show: iFence.
[ ]This is an anonymous cameo character from Zoey 101: Backpack with a name borrowed from the same actor's cameo in third-party owned Diagnosis Murder.
[ ]Cf. Zoey 101: Jet-X!
[ ]Fletcher is a guest rôle in Zoey 101: The Play with a first name borrowed from the same actor's recurring rôle in third-party owned The Suite Life Of Zack And Cody.
[ ]Sofia Michaelle is a cameo from Victorious: Tori The Zombie.
[ ]This is Spencer from Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide: School Plays with a surname borrowed from the same actor's rôle in third-party owned High School Musical
[ ]Cf. Zoey 101: Pilot
[ ]Custodian Banville is a cameo character from Zoey 101: Silver Hammers et alibi.
The firstname is taken from a member of Schneider's Bakery with the same surname who had probably inspired Dan Schneider into making this choice, as seen in the case of a few other cameo characters.
[ ]Cf. Zoey 101: Quinn's Date
[ ]This is both Gordy from Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide and Buddha Bob from Big Time Rush.
[ ]This is cameo Courtney with a surname borrowed from same actress's rôle in third party owned Hollywood, It's A Dog's Life
[ ]This identifies Drake Bell from Zoey 101: Spring Fling with Drake Parker from Drake & Josh.
[ ]Devin Malone is from Drake & Josh: The Guitar
[ ]Garth Burman is a guest character from Zoey 101: Spring Fling
[ ]This is Joe the mechanic from Zoey 101: Spring Fling, identified with the same actor's cameo Braxley from The iCarly Show: iPromote Techfoots
[ ]This is a third-party owned song by Drake Bell.
[ ]This is the anonymous shopkeeper from Zoey 101: Backpack, with a name borrowed from the same actor's guest rôle in third-party owned CSI:Miami.
[ ]This is guest character Stasie from Zoey 101: Backpack, identified with recurring Mindy Crenshaw from Drake & Josh.
[ ]This cloning is mentioned in Drake & Josh: Honor Council
[ ]This school is mentioned in Big Time Rush: Big Time Break.
[ ]Glen Davis is a guest character from Zoey 101: School Dance.
[ ]Nicholas Webber is a guest character from Zoey 101: School Dance.
[ ]Farfalla is a cameo character from Zoey 101: School Dance
[ ]Mr. Toplin is a guest character from Zoey 101: The Great Vince Blake with a first name borrowed from the same actor's cameo rôle in third-party owned Hang Time.
[ ]This is Miss Burvich from Zoey 101: Back At PCA et alibi, with a first name borrowed from the same actress's guest rôle in third-party owned Despearte Housewives.
[ ]Trisha Kirby, here identified with Sam Puckett, is from Zoey 101: Bad Girl
[ ]This school has been mentioned in Drake & Josh: Football.
[ ]Ashley Blake is from Drake & Josh: Little Diva.
[ ]This is Harry Joiner from The iCarly Show: iHeart Art.
[ ]This is a guest character from The iCarly Show: iWant To Stay With Spencer, more precisely Carly's anonymous grandfather with a first name borrowed from same actor's guest rôle in third party owned Profiler.
[ ]This is cameo character Mr. Granger from Zoey 101: Bad Girl with a surname borrowed from same actor's rôle in third-party owned Callback
[ ]Cf. Drake & Josh: Megan's New Teacher!
[ ]Cf. Zoey 101: Little Beach Party where Zoey tutors others in French!
[ ]St. Illness has been mentioned in Drake & Josh: The Treehouse.
[ ]This is cameo character Tim from Zoey 101: Haunted House, with a surname borrowed from the same actor's guest rôle in third-party owned Still Standing.
[ ]This is a third-party owned fairy tale by Frank Baum.
[ ]All those boys are from Zoey 101: Broadcast Views.
Daniel James is here identified wit Doug Toder from The iCarly Show: iFence.
[ ]Cf. Zoey''s explanation for Nicole's absence in Zoey 101: Surprise!
[ ]This girl school appears in Unfabulous: Cute.
[ ]This identifies the anonymous shrink from Zoey 101: Anger Management with Marty Klemish from The iCarly Show: iBeat The Heat.
[ ]Cf. Drake & Josh: Paging Dr. Drake!
[ ]Jack is a guest character from Zoey 101: Haunted House et alibi, with a surname borrowed from the same actor's character in third-party owned Desperate.
[ ]Cf. Zoey 101: Spring Break-Up!
[ ]This is the guest character from Victorious: A Film By Dale Squires
[ ]Wendy is mentioned in Zoey 101: Lola likes Chase and identified with guest rôle Wendy from Drake & Josh: Number One Fan with a surname from the same actress's rôle in third-party owned High School Musical.
[ ]There's an anonymous violoncellist i Zoey 101: Hot Dean and an anonymous violinist in Zoey 101: Radio.
[ ]Tracy Baldwin is a guest character from Zoey 101: Lola likes Chase.
[ ]Sandy Baldwin is a guest character from Zoey 101: Lola likes Chase and identified with same actress's guest character Katie from Drake & Josh: Megan's New Teacher.
[ ]Restaurants of this name appear in Unfabulous.
[ ]Wing Lee is a guest character from Victorious: Wok Star
[ ]This is guest character Maître D' Maurice from Zoey 101: Dinner For Two Many with a surname taken from the same actor's recurring rôle in third-party owned Entourage
[ ]This is Dr. Lang from Zoey 101 Quinn's Alpaca with a first name borrowed from the actress's rôle in third-party owned The Pretender.
[ ]According to Drake & Josh: Peruvian Puff Pepper, this spice has adversary effects on human kidneys.
[ ]Vanessa is a cameo from Zoey 101: Quinn's Alpaca, identified with Tayler, a cameo figure from Unfabulous: The Picture.
[ ]Nurse Shannon is from Zoey 101: Girls will be boys, with a surname borrowed from third-party owned Still Standing.
[ ]This is Max from Zoey 101: Bad Girl with a surname borrowed from the same actor's guest rôle in third-party owned American Dreams.
[ ]This is the anonymous boys' dormitory adviser from Zoey 101: Girls will be boys. with a name borrowed from the same actor's cameo in third-party owned Pensacola: Wings Of Gold.
[ ]Cf, Drake & Josh: Drake and Josh go Hollywood!
[ ]Matthew Palmer Noid is a guest character from Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide: Upperclassmen.
[ ]This is Miss Park, a rare recurring rôle from True Jackson VP, with a first name borrowed from a cameo of the same actress in third-party owned Wedding Palace.
[ ]Mandy Franklin is mentioned in Zoey 101: Chasing Zoey, and she is here identifiwed with a cameo Mandy from Drake & Josh: Football.
[ ]This is Carl, a cameo from Zoey 101: Hot Dean, with a surname taken from same actor's cameo in third season Unfabulous.
[ ]Mr. Jamerson is a guest character from True Jackson VP: True's New Assistant.
[ ]Milo Creery is mentioned in Drake & Josh: Drake and Josh go Hollywood.
[ ]Cynthia Bromwell is a guest character from Zoey 101: Zoey's Tutor
[ ]This addiction is seen in Drake & Josh: Megan's First Kiss.
[ ]This is Danny from Zoey 101: Quarantine with a family name borrowed from the same actor's cameo in third-party owned The Painting.
[ ]This Gallini is mentioned in The iCarly Show: iPie.
[ ]Christina Saunders is a star from Best Player.
[ ]Ash is from Best Player, with a surname taken from the same actor's guest rôle in The Troop: Tentacle Face.
[ ]This identifies Sarah from Zoey 101: Silver Hammers with Kyla from True Jackson VP: Flirting With Fame.
[ ]Hector is a cameo from Drake & Josh: Little Diva
[ ]Mr. Conroy is a cameo figure in Zoey 101: Silver Hammers with a surname taken from same actor's rôle in third-party owned Gay Baby.
[ ]Leanne Carter is a guest character from The iCarly Show: iWas A Pageant Girl
[ ]This is guest character Mr. Hodges from Zoey 101: The Curse Of PCA with a surname borrowed from the rôle of the same actor in third-party owned The Bloody brood.
[ ]Such a device appears in The iCarly Show: iSpy A Mean Teacher.
[ ]Cf. Book Of Genesis 1!
[ ]Lafe is a guest character from Zoey 101: The Curse Of PCA, identified with an anoymous cameo of the same actor in The iCarly Show: iDont Want To Fight.
[ ]This is coach Peters from Zoey 101: Wrestling with a firstname borrowed from the cameo of the same actor in third-party owned Las Vegas.
[ ]This identifies Blatzberg from Zoey 101: Wrestling with Duke from The iCarly Show: iHatch Chicks et alibi.
[ ]Scott Ridgmond is a guest character from Zoey 101: Wrestling.
[ ]This is cameo Mr. Thatcher from Zoey 101: Chase's Birthday with a firstname borrowed from same actor's cameo in third-party owned Sister,Sister
[ ]Bruce Windchill is mentioned occasionally throughout Drake & Josh.
[ ]The Macalana alludes to The Macarena, a third-party owned song by De LKos Rios, and it occurs in Zoey 101: Zoey's Balloon.
[ ]Jadie Hawthorne is mentioned in Zoey 101: Favor Chain.
[ ]Cf. Zoey 101: Zoey's Tutor
[ ]This identifies Robbie Carmichael from Drake & Josh: The Treehouse with Scooter from Zoey 101: Favor Chain
[ ]Henry Doheny is a guest rôle of Drake & Josh: The Great Doheny and mentioned in Zoey 101: Logan Gets Cut Off.
[ ]This section alludes to characters from third-party owned cartoon series DC and Marvel.
[ ]Cf. Drake & Josh: Dinner With Bobo!
[ ]Cf. Zoey 101: The Radio
[ ]This show parodises American Idol and is mentioned in The iCarly Show: iRock The Votes
[ ]The zebra has a cameo in Drake & Josh: Sheep Thrills
[ ]Morris is mentioned in Zoey 101: Zoey's Ribs.
[ ]Gary Coleman is a guest character from Drake & Josh: The Gary Grill
[ ]Cf. Zoey 101: Favor Chain!
[ ]Cf. Zoey 101: Chase's Girlfriend
[ ]Claire Jeffries isa cameo from Zoey 101: Son Of A Dean
[ ]Topher Lane is a guest character from Zoey 101: Son Of A Dean.
[ ]Dingo Channel appears in The iCarly Show: iTake On Dingo
[ ]Lance Rivers is from Zoey 101: Son Of A Dean
[ ]Cory is from Drake & Josh: Megan's First Kiss and identified with an anonymous karate-skilled cousin of Chase mentioned in Zoey 101: The great Vince Blake.
[ ]Cf. Zoey 101: Drippin'
[ ]This identifies the star from Unfabulous with the same actress's cameo, equally named Addie, in Drake & Josh: Honor Council.
[ ]This is a third-party owned song by Emma Roberts.
[ ]Calvin is a rare character from Zoey 101: PCA Dance et alibi with a surname borrowed from the same actor's rôle in third-party owned Corrina, Corrina.
[ ]Darla Roberts is a cameo from Zoey 101: PCA Dance.
[ ]Gene is a guest character from Zoey 101: Dance Contest with a surname borrowed from the same actor's guest rôle in third-party owned Sonny With A Chance: Sonny With A Chance Of Dating.
[ ]This a cameo character from Zoey 101: Dance Contest with a firstname borrowed from the same actress's rôle in third party owned Stingers.
[ ]This journal appears in Zoey 101: Miss PCA et alibi.
[ ]Cf. Zoey 101: Chase's Girlfriend.
[ ]Katie Packerman is mentioned in Zoey 101: Miss PCA.
[ ]Cf. Zoey 101: Broadcast View!
[ ]Seamas Finnegan is a guest character from Zoey 101: Alone At PCA.
[ ]This surgery appeas in Zoey 101: Trading Places.
[ ]This regular of the last season of Zoey 101 is identified with minor rôles, partly anonymous, of the same actor in other Nickelodeon productions, such as Jake Crendle in The iCarly Show: iLike Jake and Dennifer in Zoey 101: Quarantine.
[ ]Jeff Garrett is a cameo in Zoey 101: Jet-X. Any sort of kinship between Jeff and James is by absolutely no means canonical.
[ ]Uncle Hank is mentioned in Zoey 101: Chasing Zoey
[ ]Brooke Margolyn is a cameo character from Zoey 101: Quinn misses the Mark.
[ ]Stephanie Javers is a cameo figure from The iCarly Show: iLike Jake
[ ]The anonymous grandma of Jake Crendle is shown in The iCarly Show: iLike Jake.
The first name is borrowed from the same actress's rôle in third-party owned The King Of Queens.
[ ]Cf. Drake & Josh: First Crush
[ ]Dake Shoes appear in Drake & Josh: Really Big Shrimp and in The iCarly Show: iPromote Techfoots.
[ ]This is a third-party owned song by Drake Bell.
[ ]This quote alludes to a third-party owned song by Nancy Sinatra.
[ ]Cf. Drake & Josh: Megan's First Kiss!
[ ]Cf. Drake & Josh: The Bet!
[ ]These spectacles are featured in The iCarly Show: iPromote Techfoots.
[ ]This is Carmine from Zoey 101: Walkathon, identified with uncle Carmine mentioned in The iCarly Show: iLook Alike. There is an uncle Carmine portrayed by a different actor in The iCarly Show: iLove You, but this episode, poorly integrated into the course of The iCarly Show, is here interpreted as a mere nightmare of Fredward Benson.
[ ]This restaurant is mentioned in Zoey 101: Chasing Zoey.
There is also a movie with the same name announced in the back ground of one older episode of Drake & Josh, and Sam Puckett has a canonical date with ssome Pete in later The iCarly Show: iMake Sam Girlier. It is not clear whether Dan Schneider made this on purpose or whether it just slipped him.
[ ]This restaurant appears in Zoey 101: Dinner For Two Many.
[ ]This bribery is shown in Zoey 101: Anger Management.
[ ]This branch of Chambrolay is seen in Drake & Josh: Drake and Josh Go Hollywood, but other branches are mentioned in various works of Dan Schneider's.
[ ]Maurice is from Zoey 101: Dinner For Two Many.
[ ]Harper is a guest rôle from The iCarly Show: iCarly Saves TV with a family name borrowed from same character's rôle in Victorious.
[ ]Bert Beringer is a cameo in Zoey 101: Paige At PCA and Rollercoaster
[ ]The Demonator appears in Drake & Josh: The Demonator.
[ ]The Spine Twister is featured in Zoey 101: Rollercoaster.
[ ]Richard Blandon is a guest character in The iCarly Show: iSpace Out.
[ ]This band appears in Zoey 101: Chasing Zoey and is identified with the one in The iCarly Show: iAm Your Biggest Fan.
[ ]Takato is a guest rôle in Zoey 101: Chasing Zoey.
[ ]This is basically the short movie within The iCarly Show: iKiss.
[ ]This alludes to third-party owned song New York, New York by Frank Sinatra.
[ ]This is guest character Vivian from True Jackson VP: True Crush with a family name borrowed from the same actress's guest character in The iCarly Show: iFight Shelby Marx.