iDean


Klaus Schilling


Rating. PG-13


Disclaimer. iDon't own any of the shows and other works of arts used for this non-profit story.


Abstract

Principal Franklin trades places with his colleague Dean Rivers.

Will he be able to rule over an elitary prep school while maintaining his non-authoritarian style?


Table of Contents


Preface
1. Genres
2. Fandoms
2.1. Primary
2.2. Secondary
2.3. Peripheral
3. Summary
4. Characters and Pairings
5. Timeline
6. Background
1. Pilot
1.1. My Bet With Mr. Rivers
1.2. Arrival At PCA
1.3. A New Office
1.4. Basketball
1.5. Hiring Cheerleaders
2. Quinn Pensky
2.1. A Weird Girl
2.2. Reading The Rules
2.3. Ms. Burvich
2.4. Firewire
2.5. Unmotivated Teachers
2.6. 101 Butler Hall
2.7. Cal
3. Espionage
3.1. Strange Liquids
3.2. Ferocious Plush Bear
3.3. Wireless
3.4. The Henchman
3.5. The Culprit
4. Mathletics
4.1. Dustin the Genius
4.2. Miles Brody
4.3. The Sectionals
4.4. Nicole is upset
5. The Big Boss
5.1. The Founder
5.2. Week Of Pranks
5.3. Dishonoured Monument
5.4. The Culprit
5.5. Vouching
5.6. The Verdict
6. Race For The Scooter
6.1. Campus Traffic
6.2. Commercial Campaign
6.3. The Scooter License
6.3.1. Interviews
6.3.2. Written Tests
6.3.3. Driving Test
6.4. Family-friendly
6.5. The winner
7. Regionals
7.1. Qualified
7.2. New Uniforms
7.3. Textile Club
7.4. New Uniforms
7.5. First Match
8. School Theatre
8.1. Drama Club
8.2. Zorka From Zorkesia
8.3. Logan The Rival
8.4. The Plan
8.5. Her name is Lola
8.6. The Première
8.7. Hiring A Medic
9. Spring Party
9.1. Parties
9.2. Money
9.3. First Attempts
9.4. Interview With Drake
9.5. Drake At PCA
10. Mindy Crenshaw
10.1. Backpack
10.2. Cue Pops
10.3. Zoey's Backpack
10.4. Plagiarism
10.5. The Pretender
10.6. Miranda's Report
10.7. Reconciling
10.8. Backpack Business
11. Dancing To The Moon
11.1. Middle School Dance
11.2. Computer's Choice
11.3. The Vote
11.4. The Girls's Choices
11.5. The Boys's Choices
11.6. The Dancing Floor
11.7. Olivary Biallo
12. Banapple Juice
12.1. California Geek
12.2. Basketball
12.3. Samantha Puckett
12.4. Pep Rally
12.5. Michael's Tongue
12.6. Hunger In The World
13. PCA Needs More Clubs
13.1. Victorious basketball Team
13.2. Green Cloth
13.3. Informal Conference
13.4. Ping Pong
13.5. Construction Works
14. Troublemaker Dana
14.1. Zoey's Complaint
14.2. Bullies At James K. Polk
14.3. Dr. Lowe
14.4. Honour Council
15. Summer Break
15.1. Pickup Day
15.2. Mr. Bitters
15.3. PCA Rocques
15.4. More New Teachers
16. Power Failure
16.1. End Of A Family
16.2. Samantha Comes To PCA
16.3. Summer Constructions
16.4. Student Drop Day
16.5. Assigning Dorms
16.6. Night Shift
16.7. Pictures In The Dark
17. From Past To Future
17.1. Sweat
17.2. Bender's Time Capsule
17.3. Contributions
17.4. Red Handed
18. Stingray Spirit
18.1. Elections
18.2. Presentations
19. Halloween Party
19.1. Homecoming
19.2. Halloween
19.3. In The Mansion
19.4. Out On The Campus
20. The Stench
20.1. Chemistry
20.2. Skunk Alert
20.3. Zoey's Request
20.4. Naked
20.5. The Stench Killer
20.6. Sam's Therapy
20.7. Student Teacher For Science
21. The Chase And Michael Show
21.1. Audible Troubles
21.2. Student Wars
21.3. He says — She says
21.4. Nicole In Trouble
21.5. The Better Teachers
22. The Black Ball
22.1. Joshuah Nichols
22.2. Skunk Hunter
22.3. The Regionals
22.4. Serious conversation
22.5. The Final Match
22.6. Cancelled
23. Rooftop
23.1. Chicken Pox
23.2. Squirrel Tree
23.3. The Challenge
23.4. The Duel
24. Droid Warriors
24.1. Plansd For The Rooftop
24.2. Demonstration
24.3. The Signs
24.4. The Catastrophe
24.5. When the Bradfords come
24.6. The Plan
25. The Birds And The Trees
25.1. Sound Of Trombone
25.2. Scare Squirrel
25.3. Chase tutors Lola
25.4. Mr. Rudolph
25.5. Jerk In The Fountain
25.6. New Movie
26. Into The Spring
26.1. Santa Barbara
26.2. Take a break!
26.3. Wrong Flight
26.4. The G.O.
26.5. Milo Creery
26.6. Gender Defenders
26.7. Cellular Phone In The Fountain
27. Smoked Tuna
27.1. Fiery Surprise
27.2. Ruins Of Sushi Rox
27.3. Credit Conditions
27.4. Insurance Conditions
27.5. The Lunch Lady
27.6. Marissa Benson
28. Woolly Guest
28.1. Office Machine
28.2. Quinn is depressed
28.3. Fay Dunnawaye 's Ranch
28.4. A New Home For Otis
28.5. Otis At PCA
29. Movie Star
29.1. School Play
29.2. The Debate
29.3. The Performance
29.4. Reactions
30. Frozen Tank
30.1. Battle Droid League Finals
30.2. Miniature Golf
30.3. Chase is disappointed
30.4. New Custodian
30.5. Winners' Ceremony
31. Yet another year
31.1. Another Arrival Day
31.2. More Dormitory Disaster
31.3. The Lunch Lady
32. Trina Vega
32.1. Death Threat
32.2. Jealousy Maker
32.3. Basketball Trouble
33. Breaking Glass
33.1. Miniature Plane
33.2. The Tech Producer
33.3. Coco gets dumped.
33.4. In The Infirmary
33.5. New Diet
34. Chemistry
34.1. Sweeny
34.2. Zoey In Troubles
34.3. Zoey's Options
34.4. Caught
35. Touch Down
35.1. Spirit Days
35.2. Cheater
35.3. Suspension
36. Moon Bars
36.1. Unhealthy Snacks
36.2. Japanese Candy
36.3. Stubborn Vendors
36.4. Puke
36.5. Cactus Of Guadalapecho
37. The New Bodyguard
37.1. Ashley's Watchdog
37.2. Vendor Scandal
37.3. Pageat Girl
37.4. Tabkeepers
38. This Ol' Hammer
38.1. Most Illustrous Society
38.2. The Loganites
38.3. The Last Hurdle
38.4. Illegal Activities
39. Open Mike Night
40. Chuck Javers
40.1. Wrestling Fever
40.2. The Regionals
41. Fatal Race
41.1. Arcade Games
41.2. Insane Bet
41.3. Race Simulator
41.4. Simulated Race
42. Dance The Macalana
42.1. The Complaint
42.2. Golf Course
42.3. The Song
42.4. Latino Rock Night
43. Too Many Rain Drops
43.1. Chase's Birthday
43.2. Trina Fesses Up
43.3. The Vendor Machine
43.3.1. Thatcher's Denounce
43.3.2. Trapped
43.3.3. Manipulated
43.4. Sad Songs
44. Chase's New Start
44.1. Weeping
44.2. The Foreign Account
44.3. Zoey Freaks Out
44.4. Chase's Decision
45. Fair Science
45.1. Candy Scandal
45.2. Red Alert
45.3. Mark And Maria
45.4. Deception and Reward
46. Back In Seattle
47. Customer Of The Week
47.1. Back On the Campus
47.2. The Start
47.3. The Gap
47.4. Illegal Contest
48. Dancing Queen
48.1. Organisation Of The New Year
48.2. The Contest
48.3. Principal Meeting
49. Talent Show
49.1. A Pass For Zoey
49.2. Barret's Ravioli
49.3. Who built the pyramids?
49.4. The PCA Ring
49.5. The Recipe
49.6. The Presentation
49.7. Zoey is disappointed.
49.8. Benzene
49.9. The Pyramids
50. Barbecue
50.1. Uncle Morris
50.2. Gary Coleman
50.3. The Barbecue
51. The Legend Of Charles Galloway
51.1. Apples And Kisses
51.2. Evil Teachers
51.3. The Lost Pupil
52. Sibling Love
52.1. Fresh From Japan
52.2. Fire Alert
52.3. Dustin wants to leave.
52.4. More Intimidated Middle School Kids
52.5. Japanese J-Phone
52.6. Logan gets caught.
53. Dustin Needs Zoey
54. Redstone Gulch
54.1. Spy Cake
54.2. Into The Desert
54.3. Hotchins Resigns
55. Record Breaker
55.1. Record Within A Record
55.2. All Night Through
56. The Stench Killer
56.1. The Fattest Priest
56.2. Oral Stench
57. Harry Joiner
57.1. The Blix Van
57.2. Spencer's Idol
57.3. Big Disappointment
57.4. Locked In
57.5. The Winner
57.6. Harry Joiner School
58. Pageant
58.1. Preparations
58.1.1. Strange Request
58.1.2. The Umpires
58.1.3. Grannie Nichols
58.2. The Contest
58.2.1. The Catwalk
58.2.2. Interviews
58.2.3. The Talents
58.2.4. The Decision
59. Doheny At PCA
59.1. The Half A Million Dollar Car
59.2. Megan's Request
59.3. Malcolm comes down.
59.4. Stern Words
59.5. The Next Doheny
60. Visitors' Day
60.1. The Preparations
60.2. The Event
60.2.1. High School Kids
60.2.2. Middle School Kids
60.2.3. The Cafeteria
60.3. The Balance
61. To Good Old England
61.1. Zoey's Parents
61.2. Dustin's Crush
61.3. Zoey's Decision
62. Poor Stacey
62.1. Spring At PCA
62.2. Second Day
62.3. The Third Day
62.4. The Fifth Day
62.5. The Sixth Day
63. New Student James
63.1. A New Term
63.2. Dormitory confusion
63.3. Dustin's Request
63.4. Choconuts
63.5. A New Webcam
64. Mile For Mile
64.1. Charity Walkathon
64.2. Clackers
64.3. Arrested
64.4. The race is on.
65. Dinner Four Too Many
65.1. Noble Restaurant
65.2. Surprise News
65.3. Horrortrip
66. The Mean Cheaters
66.1. A Chance For ICarly?
66.2. Ping Pong
66.3. The Contract
66.4. Investigation
66.5. Snooping
66.6. The Consequences
66.7. Prom Band
67. Y Not Date Me Dot Com
67.1. Looking For A Pass
67.2. Spencer is shocked.
67.3. Date Hunters
68. Up And Down
68.1. Mystic Mountain
68.2. Acrophobia
68.3. Logan's Mean Deed
68.4. Dauntless Millie
68.5. Mirror Cabinet
68.6. Hopelessly Lost
69. Mr. Takato
69.1. Prom Preparation
69.2. Stick Switched
69.3. Maui
69.4. Learned
69.5. The Draft
70. Junior Prom
71. Bristow's Juices
72. Helen Goes Hollywood
72.1. A New Dean Fore Hollywood
72.2. Changes
72.3. Good-Bye Helen
73. New Teachers, New Students
73.1. Start Of The Year
73.2. Takato Is Back
73.3. Cat And Jade
73.4. Roomies
74. Team Trials
74.1. Cheerios
74.2. Hockey
74.3. Skateboard
74.4. Basketball
75. Chain Letter
75.1. Consuela's Revenge
75.2. Illegal Letters
75.3. Zoey's Decision
75.4. Juice
75.5. Meaning Of Consuela
76. Samantha's Debts
76.1. Money For Nothing
76.2. Paying Back
76.3. Kazu gives up.
76.4. The Best Offer Ever
76.5. Drake's Warnings
76.6. These shoes are made for walking.
76.7. Cancelled
76.8. Hockey Success
77. America Sings
77.1. Restart
77.2. The Cast Show
77.3. The State Championships
77.4. Waiting For The Oscar
77.5. Martial Champion
78. Freddie sees black And white.
78.1. Fred Videos
78.2. Fred Killer
78.3. Cookie manages Dana.
78.4. Trip To Idaho
79. Autumn Storms
79.1. How To Plan A Birthday Party
79.2. The Decision
79.3. Sweeny's Decision
79.4. Tori Vega
79.5. The Consequences
80. Big In Japan
80.1. International Web Awards
80.2. Lessons In Japanese
80.3. Vinculated
80.4. Back To The Roots
80.5. The Reese Jet
80.6. Impending Oscar
81. In The Air
81.1. Off To Tokyo
81.2. WiiFi In The Clouds
81.3. Migration From Palmwood
81.4. Stuck In Tokyo
81.5. Coming Home
82. Swinging Fists
82.1. Shelby Marx
82.2. Jam On The Campus
82.3. Shelby Vs. Dana
82.4. Sparring Partner
82.5. Promise Party
83. Frozen Head
83.1. And The Winner Is …
83.2. Plagiarism
83.3. Cryogenics
84. Dingo Channel
84.1. Puzzling News
84.2. Senior Prom Ahead
84.3. Shelby regrets.
84.4. Tori takes a change of mind.
84.5. Dingo shuts down.
85. Lessons In Art
85.1. Draw a bunny!
85.2. Senior Prom Night
86. Independence Parade At PCA
87. Yet Another Year
87.1. New Teachers
87.2. Anger Management
88. Cave Of Vampires
88.1. Star Models
88.2. Star Cook
88.3. Vampire At PCA
89. Thanksgiving Day Parade
89.1. Macy's At PCA?
89.2. Fort Eastridge
89.3. The Party
90. Royal Blood
90.1. The Governmental Spy
90.2. Bad Teeth
90.3. Wheeler's Nephiew
90.4. Merry Christmas At PCA
91. Famous Last Teeth
91.1. Melanie In Love
91.2. Creepy Skull
91.3. Tooth Collection
92. Stuck In The Snow
92.1. Blizzards
92.2. Freddie Is Back
92.3. Maris Bingham
92.4. Chaos At Eastridge
93. Valentine's
93.1. Valentine's Elections
93.2. The Party
93.3. Global Positioning System
94. Algebra Club
94.1. Our Team
94.2. Marissa Benson's Demise
94.3. The Petition
94.4. Triumphal
94.5. Campaign Manager
95. MS Placeholder
95.1. Catania's Boat
95.2. Reactions From Madrid
95.3. Eastridge goes coeducational.
95.4. The Anchorage
96. Crazy Nora
96.1. Invitations
96.2. Warning
96.3. Unhappy Birthday
96.4. The Webicon
96.5. The Speech
97. Dustin And Carly
97.1. Leaving For New York City
97.2. The Elections
97.3. Forevermore The Winner
98. Bigfoot
98.1. Bigfoot — True Or Real?
98.2. Van Gurbin Live
98.3. Ready For The Forests
98.4. Reactions From Lakewood
98.5. No Bigfoot
99. Into The Orbit
99.1. Spacecations
99.2. Tested
99.3. The Evil Cheat
100. Finale

Preface


1. Genres


The story is melodramatic and multiplot, falling into various genres such as Science Fiction, Fluff, Friends, Family, Supernatural, Melodrama, Adventure


2. Fandoms


2.1. Primary


Zoey 101


2.2. Secondary


iCarly, Drake & Josh, Ned's Declassified SSG, Unfabulous


2.3. Peripheral


Just Jordan, True Jackson VP, Victorious, Big Time Rush, Shredderman Rules, Best Player, Spectacular!, Fairly Odd Movie, Shredderman Rules, The Troop, Supah Ninjas


3. Summary


For a bet, Principal Franklin of Ridgeway trades places with Dean Rivers from Pacific Coast Academy. Will he be able to maintain his style of leadership, emphasising friendship over brute authority, even at this renowned elitary prep school?

The hierarchical structure of the board of Pacific Coast Academy is scrutinised.

Also, the relationship of Pacific Coast Academy to the schools in its neighbourhood, especially James K. Polk, Hollywood Art, and Palmwood, are considered.


4. Characters and Pairings


The story is centered around Ted Franklin.

The main cast and supporting cast of Zoey 101 is featured as well.

Many assorted characters form the other shows have got appearances of varying importance.

Pairings include: Principal Franklin – Miss Collins[[1]], QuinnPensky – Cal[[2]], Zoey Brooks – Spencer Shay, Lola Martinez – Spencer Carter[[3]] , Chase Matthews – Addie Singer[[4]], Michael Barret – Wendy Gellar[[5]], Logan Reese – Mercedes Griffin[[6]] , Dustin Brooks – Carly Shay, Stacey Dillsen[[7]] – Eric Blonowitz[[8]], Lisa Perkins – Drake Parker[[9]], Coco Wexler – "Gordy"[[10]], Dean Rivers – Francine Briggs[[11]], Kazu – Rose Pepper[[12]], Samantha Puckett[[13]] – Fredward Benson, Dana Cruz – Chuck Javers[[14]], Nicole Bristow – Nicholas Webber[[15]] et cetera


5. Timeline


The story starts with first season Zoey 101, Ned's Declassified SSG, Unfabulous , second season Drake & Josh, and it is pre-canon for any other used Nickelodeon production.


6. Background


Written for various LiveJournal Communities, videlicet TamingTheMuse, prompt Genuphobia, Crossovers 50, prompt School,, Philosophy 20, prompt Caught in the form of limitation., and Crossovers 100, one prompt per chapter


Chapter 1. Pilot


1.1. My Bet With Mr. Rivers


My name is Theodore Franklin, but you may call me Ted.

I had been the principal of Ridgeway, a disctrict school in the western downtown of Seattle, for several years.

It wasn't an easy district.

For several generations, the Puckett clan had seized control over life in this area, like the Cosa Nostra in the large cities of the northeastern states.

Ma Puckett[[16]] was now the queen of organised crime in the state of Washington.

She had got several daughters.

For decades, most principals had believed in the hard way of running such a district school.

This was also the case for vice principal Howard, the believer in cringing and kneeling.

But I could not subscribe to such a style.

Kids should not grow up with fear of authority.

Even the Puckett brood deserved a treatment based on mutual respect.

A heartless mother was more than enough of a punishment.

Now there was a state program sending kids of endangered families to private schools far away in order to save them from slipping deeper and deeper down their parents' trail.

One of the prep schools participating in this project was the Pacific Coast Academy.

This was a neat boarding school located near Los Angeles.

It had hitherto been reserved for boys only.

But this was now subject to change.

The headmaster of that school was my old university pal Carl Rivers.

For that avail, I contacted Carl.

The renowned dean confirmed the availability of several positions also for girls.

I was very glad for that.

One of the Puckett twins, Melanie[[17]] , was totally keen on making that step. She did not want to end up like her mother.

Alas, her sister Samantha[[18]] was "slightly" different. She almost only cared about her food, at any cost.

Finally I achieved getting Melanie's transfer approved.

I had not yet given up all hopes for Sam, either.

But she was not going to transfer right that year.

Alas, one of Carl's remarks made me puzzled.

The dean of Malibu's elitary noble school claimed,


You have got it so easy at your downtown school. You can afford to treat kids your way.

Thheir parents can't afford a real school for their kids.

At a school like the Pacific Coast Academy, this would be impossible.


I was hardly able to trust my ears. "What?"

Carl claimed plainly,


With your loose methods, you'd get into so much trubles here. You couldn't even stand a year.

Parents here expect you to teach their kids discipline and orderly demeanour. They need to learn who's the boss.


Now he had gone too far.

I claimed to be able to govern even a school like the Pacific Coast Acdemy.

Carl refused to believe me.

Thus it had to be a bet.

So … what were the stakes?

During our high school and college years, we had gathered quite a few trophies.

We did agree on leaving all those to the winner of the bet.

And some of them had been realy hard-earned.

Losing them would have broken my heart right down the middle.

But I could not resist.


1.2. Arrival At PCA


There I was, new at this boarding school down by the southern Californian beach.

Most kids would have mistaken it for a spa.

But it was really a hard schedule awaiting them.

Of course, my schedule wasn't exactly going to be a loose one, either.

For the time being, I had to take care of Melanie.

All girls here were new.

But we found out about her dormitory block.

It was Lincoln Hall 99.

We stumbled right into a blond man around fourty dropping two kids, a teenager girl and a young boy.

He introduced himself as Mr. Brooks[[19]] .

His kids were equaly blond.

Their names were Dustin and Zoey.

Dustin had been here for two years already.

Zoey was new, of course, just like all girls.

I introduced myself as the new principal.

Dustin corrected me. "This is a prep school, hence you're a dean, not a principal."

Mr. Brooks chuckled.

Apparently, I had to get accustomed to so many things.

Zoey goggled.

In this moment, a guy with bushy hair crashed against a flag staff. Fortunately he was wearing a biker's helmet.

I helped him up. "Hi! You could be a bit more careful. What's your name?"

"Chase Mathews," answered he. "Sorry, Mr. …"

"Dean Theodore Franklin," I replied.

Chase startled. "Oh no! Will I now get detention? Suspension? Expulsion? Deportation?"

I shook my head. "As long as you don't hurt others here, I won't make much ado."

Chase sighed for relief.

But his attention was increasingly absorbed by blond Zoey.

I asked, "you aren't new here, are you?"

Chase shook his head. "It's my third year."

I chuckled. "Then you will be able to help that young lady to her dormitory hall?"

Chase blushed and coughed. "Sure! Where is it?"

Mr. Brooks replied, "101 Butler Hall."

Chase grinned. "That's exactly my way. Zoey, would you …"

The girl had to say good-bye to her dad first. But then she followed Chase Matthews to her new residence.

Likewise, Dustin declared himself eager to help Melanie to hers.

Now I had to move on to my new office.

So, the first steps of my new life had been made.

The problems insinuated by Carl Rivers were still not in siggt.

Maybe it wasn't more than the silence before the gale?


1.3. A New Office


The offices here were bright and shining.

It was even posible to see the ocean from mine.

During my first three days, I only had to do with temporary staff members.

We were still awaiting for the return of most of the regulars from their vacations.

Today, a mid-aged Afro-American woman, probably my new secretary, was already awaiting me. "You are Dean Franklin, Sir?"

I nodded solemnly. "But you may call me 'Ted'. I'm not really into 'Sir' stuff."

We shook hands.

My secretary introduced herself as "Beverly"[[20]] .

I relaxed in my armed office chair. "Is there a task of lists?"

Beverly nodded solemnly. "The usual speech at the beginning of the year. Executive Chairman Burman[[21]]"

I shrugged. "We'll see."

Beverly nodded. "There are all those try outs for our school's team. We have won many trophies under Dean Rivers. And you will sure be measured against your precursor's success, by everyone: the alumni, the board, the founder's family, parents of potentially new students, and so on."

I started worrying.

This was probably the first hitch of my new job.

At Ridgeway, it was way less important.

But a renowned private prep school could afford to place the hurdles much higher.

Was my attitude of providing a less authoritaruian atmosphere going to get me far?

Carl Rivers must have anticipated this obstacle.

Beverly continued, "OK, the new cheerleading squad will also need your approval."

I gasped. "Why is it like that?"

Beverly explained, "the school has been boys-only for the longest time. But male cheerleaders are out of fashion. Boys deem it uncool and fear turning into the laughingstock of the school. So we also borrowed some cheerleaders from other schools. This year, there are female students. But we don't know how many of are interested in cheerleading, probably not enough to manage on our own. So we could not yet sign the necessary contracts with our partners, such as Silver Spring[[22]], Hollywood Arts[[23]], James K. Polk[[24]], and Palmwood[[25]]. At least we could secure Coach Dirga from James K. Polk as our cheerleading coach."

I sighed.

Given the significance of all of our teams, it was better for me to inspect them a bit.


1.4. Basketball


One of the most traditional sports at this school was certainly basketball.

There had never been any good basketball team at Ridgeway.

This was thus quite a new experience.

So I was now watching the tryouts for the basketball team.

A few girls, lead by powerfully charismatic Zoey Brooks, appeared to have challenged the boys.

Obviously the male ring leader, Logan Reese, was opposed to girls in the team. "Girls are only good for cheerleading."

I asked, "why is this so?"

Logan explained, "because I say it, and my dad is the biggest sponsor of this school." He was the son of Malcolm Reese[[26]], the biggest of all Hollywood producers ever.

I sighed deeply.

Coach Ferguson[[27]] was not keen on that, either.

The girls were now up to proving their worthiness of the team with a match against the boys.

I had to watch the match.

The only girl able to play basketball was apparently Zoey Brooks.

But this was not enough against five boys.

Finally, Logan Reese pushed Zoey Brooks rudely to the floor.

That cried for a penalty.

But Ferguson, in his rôle as an umpire, did not dare to expel Logan for that evil action.

Later, another girl named Dana Cruz reinforced the girls' team.

Zoey kept on playing, her injury notwithstanding.

Dana was really strong. She almost equalised the score, barring one point.

Ferguson decided to let Zoey and Dana into the team, at the cost of Logan.

The spoiled playboy was consternated. He was sure going to tell his dad.

Alas, Dana was not sure. She would have preferred to be in the cheerleading squad.


1.5. Hiring Cheerleaders


I was back in my office.

Malcolm Reese had decided to accept the decision of Coach Ferguson.

But Dana just joined as a substitute, leaving Logan a place in the first squad. She was one of the few cheerleaders finding the mercy of Coach Dirga.

And I was proud of Melanie Puckett having been chosen, too.

Unfortunately, the first cheerio was Coach Ferguson's arrogant cousin Haley[[28]]

Her dad was another sponsor. He lead one of the most renowned clubs in uptown Los Angeles.

But all the other cheerleaders had to be hired from other schools.

Finding a good solution for this was not going to be easy.

I definitely needed to contact the responsible principals and advisers of nearby coeducational or girl-only schools for negotiations.

But this was probably going to be a tough enterprise.

Especially vice principal Crubbs from James K. Polk in Santa Clarita was known to be one tough bone.

I was better going to be well-prepared.


Chapter 2. Quinn Pensky


2.1. A Weird Girl


My next day was not as tight as the previous ones.

I strolled the campus rather slowly in order to get to the snack cart for a milk coffee.

The guys here call it "javaccino", for whatever reason.

A strange girl with nerdy braids stood in my way. She had already been in aforementioned girls' basketball team, but performed very poorly, just like everyone barring Zoey and Dana.

I greeted the potential geek girl.

"Hi, Sir!" replied the girl.

I coughed. "Please, call me 'Ted'. That sounds much more familiar."

The girl introduced herself, "I'm Quinn Pensky, from Seattle."

I gasped. "Wow! What an accident! I have been the principal of a school in Seattle, until recently."

Quinn snickered, "where in Seattle?"

I mentioned Ridgeway.

Quinn grinned. "I'm from the upper town. I went to Priorwood Prep[[29]]"

I knew something about that academy.

It was about the best in Seattle.

Parents letting their children transfer from there to this southern Californian school must have had very good reasons for that.

Later, during my time here at Pacific Coast Academy, i would learn more about those motivations.

There was a diversity of them.

In the case of Quinn, the motivation had been the vicinity to Californian Institute for Technology, also called "Caltech".

"So you want to be a great scientist or engineer" wondered I.

Quinn nodded vigorously. "May I have one of your nose hairs? It's for my genetic database."

I shrugged. "OK — if you think so."

She pinched some hair off my nose.

It didn't hurt too much.

Then she picked a few test tubes.

I wondered, "isn't there a science club with a laboratory? So you won't really need to experiment out here on the campus?"

Quinn sighed. "There is one. I wanted to sign up. But there's a label reading 'Girl-free zone'."

I choked. "What? Says who?"

Quinn replied, "Some Wayne Gilbert, the captain of the science fair club."

I shrugged. "That doesn't sound fair."

It would have been impossible at a school like Ridgeway, at least.

I had to investigate.


2.2. Reading The Rules


I went through the school's rules, along with Beverly.

There were statements against the exclusion of ethnic minorities and similar stuff, but not against the discrimination of female students.

Hitherto they would not have made a lot of sense because of the absence of girls, simple and plain.

But such a rule should have definitely been added.

Unfortunately, any change of the rule required going through some endless mill.

Ultimately, Mr. Bradford[[30]], needed to agree.

But, according to Beverly, Mr. Bradford had been adamantly opposed to the admission of girls in the first place.

Only economic forces had finally been able to persuade the foundational family.

So, who was responsable for the admission to clubs?

According to the rules, it was the club adviser, or, in the case of the lackof such a person, the respective captain of the club.

And the captain of the science club was no other than Wayne Gilbert.

So I had either to persuade Wayne, or to find an appropriate adviser.


2.3. Ms. Burvich


There was another problem concerning Quinn Pensky.

Usually, three girls shared a dormitory room.

But Quinn was stuck alone in hers.

Granted, this gave Quinn the opportunity to build up her laboratory in her dorm.

But that should not have occurred, either.

There were those safety rules and stuff.

According to Beverly, the person in charge with the room distribution was one Ms. Burvich[[31]] .

I made it into her office.

She was apparently one grumpy old spinster. She collected strange things, probably cologne flasks or something like that.

"Don't waste my time, Sir," grunted the boarding manager.

I started talking about the case of Quinn Pensky.

Ms. Burvich looked through the lists. "Coco must have made a mistake."

I wondered, "who or what is Coco? Your monkey?" I snickered.

Ms. Burvich turned angry. "No way! That's the dorm adviser for the girls, since this fall."

I would learn a lot of nasty things about said Coco Wexler.

She wwas exorbitantly messy and obsessed with fat food, such as ravioli, sauce béarnaise, fatcakes, pork chops, and so on.

In any case, I had to examine the situation in "101 Butler Hall" closely.


2.4. Firewire


I had called Wayne Gilbert, better known as "Firewire", into my office. "So, Quinn Pensky has requested access to the science club."

Wayne cackled foolishly. He used to do so all the time.

Or so it seemed.

I asked, "according to the rules, everyone enrolled at Pacific Coast Academy, regardless of gender, religion, ethnicity, and stuff, is entitled to try out for one of the school teams during the official time frame, which, for this year, has been allocated by the board from the first to the fifteenth of September."

This "life time" had not yet been exceeded.

He cackled. "But, according to the same rule, the captain of a team is entitled to accept or to deny …"

Yeah, I knew that already. "But this only goes for the case of the lack of an official adviser."

Wayne cackled. He could not give any good reason for excluding girls from his club, either.

The school had not had an official adviser in many years.

The leading teachers for science were Mrs. Bromwell[[32]] and Mr. Beringer[[33]]. Naturally, they should have been interested in keeping the science club running.

There was no way to talk any sense into Wayne.

The club members had probably got something to hide.

Whatever it was …

The only way to get at the bottom of that was an official adviser for the club.


2.5. Unmotivated Teachers


According to the fly papers distributed by our school, the teachers here were among the best-paid and most carefully selected ones of the whole nation.

But what were those standards praised in the ads really worth?

I had called afoirementioned science teachers, Mrs. romwell and Mr. Beringer into my office.

The latter had never wanted to become a teacher. He had graduaded from some mid-sized university with majors in biology and physics.

His dream career would have been that of a director of a zoological garden.

So much for the motivations of our well-estimated teacher for physics.

Cynthia Bromwell, on the other hand, was more obsessed with the hair of middle school boy Chase Matthews. "Are his curls natural or the result of cosmetic treatment?" She was also teaching yoga classes. She should teach at a vocational college for beauty and fitness, and not at a prep school with the pretenses of Pacific Coast Academy.

Certainly, their interests were as legitimate as those of a really motivated and competent teacher for science.

But for their responsibility, this was a scandal.

How had it been possible?

Maybe Carl Rivers had messed it up?

I could not help but look for a new and more competent leading teacher for science.

According to principal Pal from James K. Polk's, there was a really hard but fair teacher of science at his school: Mr. Sweeny. He would certainly have fulfilled the expectations of Pacific Coast Academy.

Of course, I could not hire away teahers from other schoool on site.

The board needed to be informed, and so on and so on.

For the time being, I had to stick to the teachers at hand.

But an official adviser just needed to be a responsible adult with sufficiewnt knowledge about science.

In other words, a college student specialising in science would have been OK.

Maybe there was a recent alumnus.

I asked Bromwell and Beringer.

The answer was easy.

They recommended a certain "Cal".

That was a student at Caltech, nearby leading college for future scientists.


2.6. 101 Butler Hall


As promised, I had to circumspect the situation of Butler Hall.

Zoey Brooks, Dana Cruz, and some bimbo wench named Nicole Bristow shared one dorm, and precisely "101".

Apparently, Nicole and Dana did not really get along with each other.

That was terrible.

Blond Mary-Sue Zoey Brooks had to intervene every now and then. But she had got one grave problem of her own. She forgot her dormitory key all the time.

Those girls insulted each other.

I suggested Zoey to wear the key as a locket.

She nodded solemnly.

But Dana and Nicole were impossible.

Zoey had already threatened to move out and be Quinn Pensky's roomie instead.

And this lead us closer to the origin of the problem.

Coco Wexler had erroneously assigned Quinn Pensky a single room.

A some further examination of the list showed us the following:

Quinn's room was occupied by Quinn Pensky and two other students.

But those had never appeared.

Things like this could occur even within a perfect administration.

So I came to a decision. "The '101 girls' will take turns and spend one week with Quinn. Aftyer half a year, the best combination will be permanent for the resty of the time."

At first glance, the girls moned a lot.

But Zoey was the first to agree. "We just need to try and see."

Suddenly, Coco grunted, "what are these hens doing here?"

Quinn apparently kept those dirty birds for the eggs.

Pets were strictly against the rules.

But I did not really care. "Quinn has to clean after her pets all the time, and the roomies have to be free from allergies and immune to the noise."

The girls nodded. They were all healthy.

I told Coco, "aren't you expected to finish your can of ravioli?"

Coco nodded solemnly and continued munching on one of her favourite meals.


2.7. Cal


Executive chairman Burman was totally keen on my plans.

Hiring Cal as an adviser was not much of a problem.

He was very competent.

Quinn was completely happy about working with such a genius.

But "Firewire" and his pals Andrew Wasserstein[[34]] and Neil Woznicky[[35]] were totally consternated. They certainly had got something to hide.

Mr. Sweeny would be able to join Pacific Coast Academy two years later.

Mr. Beringer was going to be responsible for the new zoological garden club to be founded by then.

Mrs. Bromwell would teach wellness and cosmetic arts instead of chemistry and physics.

But there were still almost two years left to endure in the current situation.


Chapter 3. Espionage


3.1. Strange Liquids


Quinn had transferred her chicken soon thereafter to a nearby farm run by some old McDonald.[[36]]. She had figured a narrow cage to be a bad place for a chicken.

This made it a bit easier for her roomies.

But they needed to get accustomed to her experiments with smoky and bubbley liquids.

Most of the experiments got soon thereafter relocated into the official school's laboratories.

Cal had requested Quinn to do so, much to the dismay of Wayne Gilbert and his hardcore gang.

But Quinn was still up to other strange things. She liked to do some early morning gymnastics at the open window.

This was not always easy for Dana.

The curly caramel-haired Latina was probably not going to be Quinn 's roomie after the end of the trial period. She often punched and kicked Quinn on purpose. But she was abrasive and bully to almost everyone, anyways.

Zoey was a bit scared by Quinn's "lullaby stories" about insects and spiders.

But the girls were sooner or later going to learn to get along.


3.2. Ferocious Plush Bear


Unfortunately, things were not that easy between boys and girls.

Aforementioned Logan Reese still deemed himself entitled to treat the girls any way he wanted to.

And the following was so far the top of his perversity.

One day, Zoey Brooks and her sidekick Nicole entered my office.

Nicole complimented Beverly for her new hair style. "It's very important to keep your hair smooth. Lest boys will call you stupid names. Especially the cute ones do. And that would be very annoying."

Zoey grabbed Nicole. "We are here for a serious reason!"

I wondered, "Ms. Brooks? New troubles with your room mates?"

Zoey nodded. "But it's probably because …" She panted. "Well, we often play Confess Or Stress in our lounge."

I grinned. "I know that. My step-niece Miranda[[37]] plays that thing very often on her parties. Now she is in San Diego. Reminds me of visiting my brother and his family over the weekend. I should do that more often, really, now I am here in California."

Zoey smiled. "Good for you! But there are a few problems. During that game, we girls talk about embarrassing things."

Nicole squealed, "do you know that Quinn has got a sixth toe on her right foot?" She beamed,

Zoey poked Nicole.

The sidekick whimpered.

Zoey admonished her, "you don't have to tell about that to everyone!"

I nodded. "The campus has got many ears."

Zoey moaned, "oh, really, and now everyone on the campus knows our secrets. But we girls have sworn to keep it among us."

Nicole continued, "and everything started with that plush bear. And it is so cute!"

I scratched my sparse hair. "Erm … one of those adult-sized plush bears? My daughter has got one. They were 40 per cent off in Grommidge Mall[[38]] ."

Zoey nodded. "He's really big. Logan has donated it for our lounge."

Nicole remarked, "hey! Logan is cute, too! So cute! He's on my liste of the boys with the cutest lips. Do you want to see the list? It's like a honours roll. It should be printed in the yearbook. The whole school is ull of cute boys. There should be an award. Don't you think so? And have I already mentioned all the cute boys?"

Nicole's tongue frenxy was very hard to bear.

I shuddered.

But it was just Nicole's style.

She had got evry right to be bubbly.

Zoey calmed her down. She had got a good influence on Nicole, at least until now.

Nicole sighed. "Sorry!"

The problem was not yet resolved.

Zoey explained, "OK, so Quinn has scrutinised the plush beast."

Nicole continued, "it contains a microchip. It is heated in a microwave stove, right? Ergo it's called a microchip. Are those things like nachos, or are they made of chocolate? I love nachos, but I adore chocoloate chips."

Zoey poked Nicole. "It isn't edible at all."

Nicole glared consternated. "Ouch!" She sighed deeply.

I concluded, "so you thinl Logan Reese behind that?"

Zoey nodded solemnly. "We girls have already started accusing each other."

Nicole grunted, "I'm still not convinced of Dana's innocence."

Zoey remarked, "come on, she would have hurt herself. Boys make fun of her mishaps as well."

Nicole pulled at her freshly styled hair. "Really?"

Now I had got something else to talk about with Zoey. "mrs. Brooks, have you got this weekend free?"

Zoey nodded. "My dad is busy with his company. So Dustin and I will stay here."

I explained, "you are the most responsible member of the basketball team."

Zoey was apparently flattered. "Really?"

I nodded solemnly. "You know, there are still not enough girls to fill our cheerio troop. And the only boy applying had to be sent away by Coach Dirga."

Nicole moaned, "you can't do that! The cheerio team needs a cute boy as a captain. Who was it anyways?" She looked ready to explode for excitement.

I replied, "it was Mark del Figgalo."

Nicole Bristow threw up on site. She stained the floor of my office with a stink.

I sighed. "Beverly, would you please call janitor Herb[[39]] ?"

My secretary nodded solemnly. She took the microphone and started thundering an appropriate message across the campus.

According to most girls, Mark Del Figgalo was the definition of the word dweeb.

As an exception, Quinn Pensky may have seen that differently.

But bear with it!

I still owed an explanation to Zoey. "Those hired cheerio girls have turned out to be a problem. They usually don't have a reason to identify with the teams. And they don't really know each other and just act like mercenaries."

Zoey understood that. "They are not Pacific Coast Academy students."

I sighed. "In order to improve the situation a bit, I thought about a bonding weekend for the cheerio troop, along with the hirelings. The beach here is a good place for that. But our various teams should each send an envoy to that event. I thought about you as speaking on the behalf of the basketball team."

Zoey nodded. "Hey, why not? That sounds cool!" She beamed.

I sighed for relief.

Now I still needed to gather represeantants of the other teams.

This was not necessarily going to be easy.

The football team was known for being a bunch of brute jocks. They would just be interested in seducing and abusing the cheerio girls.

I was particularly suspicious of quarterback Vincent Blake, a bully eighth grader.

He had received a special permit from Garth Burman to participate in the football team, usually restricted to highschool boys.

Our baseball team, coached by some Carl[[40]], the on-and-off boyfriend of aforementioned Coco Wexler, was notoriously weak.

Dean Rivers and Mr. Bradford had threatened multiple times with the team's cancellation.

But Garth Burman had always found some white lies to leave it in peace.

There were still some dozen of other athletic teams.

Dean Rivers had been vouching for the golf team all the time. He had collected many trophies as a high school golf champion.[[41]]

Then there was the hockey team, not more than a better joke.

The teams from the Sierra used to pulverise us.

And we also offered some snobbish european sports, such as soccer, rugby, lawn hockey, cricket, and similar crap like that.

I released the girls, promising to deal duly with the espionage case.

Zoey was keen on her task as a speaker at the weekend event.

And Nicole just talked to much.

Something was wrong with her.

I better got her tested before a further escalation of her situation.


3.3. Wireless


Punishing Logan Reese was not going to be easy.

As aforementioned, his father, Hollywood titan Malcolm Reese, was too influential as one of the school's major sponsors.

This was totally injust.

In addition, there was not yet a proof for his onslaught.

Anyone could have hidden the microchip in the plush pet and try to get Logan framed.

In addition, Logan was way too dumb for coming up with all that wireless technology.

I asked aforementioned "Cal".

The adviser of the science club confirmed my last hunch. "It is a really tricky thing, indeed. It is based on so-called Fire Wire Technology, wireless transmission of data to a computer in some moderate distance."

Was there a connection with Wayne "Firewire" Gilbert?

And, indeed, "Cal" had found a site on the interweb run by Wayne Gilbert.

The freak was selling: Wireless espionage technology!

According to Cal, none of the devices were in any way a danger for secrets of industrial or even governmental and political significance.

They were just suited for annoying fellow pupils and family members.

Some closer scrutiny was true.


3.4. The Henchman


Wayne Gilbert spent over an hour in my office.

I tried to trap him by throwing some bits of pieces concerning a few of the girls' secrets at him, waiting for his reactions.

Zoey, Quinn, Nicole, and Dana had given me a written permission to use them.

"Cal" recorded his answers with a sonograph.

But there was no reaction at all.

He just kept on talking about his sources of inspiration, some action toon series featuring a host of superheroes and villains.[[42]]

In other words, the girls' secrets, as reveiled by the rumours spread all over the campus, did not mean anything to him.

He had not been aware of them, or at least not been caring.

So, "Firewire" may have been responsible for the microchip technology, but he had only been a mercenary hired by the proper culprit.

This narrowed down everything to Logan Reese as the spy.


3.5. The Culprit


Logan Reese arrived in my office. But instead of answering tio my questions, he started yelling at me for having made Zoey Brooks, and not him, the speaker of the basketball team.

I sighed deeply. "You will get to see the cheerio mercenaries soon enough. I have not made the decision on my own. It was met following the advices of Coach Ferguson and the other responsible advisers."

It was impossible to talk any sense into the snobbish playboy.

This was no good for the basketball team.

Logan kept on talking in an excessively angry manner. By the way, he admitted to having been the culprit of the espionage.

I sighed deeply. Not willing to poison the atmosphere between Logan and the girls any longer, especially for the sake of the harmony in the team, I decided, "OK, Mr. Reese, there's that Japanise café on the campus."

Loga nodded. "'Sushi Rox', that's the name!"

I sighed. "The girls hurt by your espionage all like sushi. Buy them free sushi for the whole next week and deliver it to those girls! No entry in your folder, no honour council, and no word to dad!" I sweated.

Was the playboy really going to give in? Hell, he did!

I panted heavily.

This incident was soon to be forgotten.

But he was certainly up to more of it.

A tiger won't change his stripes.


Chapter 4. Mathletics


4.1. Dustin the Genius


Dustin Brtooks was a fourth grader. But he was certainly able to participate in some of the contests for middle school kids, such as the mathletic team.

Mr. Kirby[[43]] , one of our teachers for algebra and geometry, was the responsible adviser of the "mathletes".

We were now sitting in my office.

In order to let a n elementary school kid participate in official middle school competitions, I needed to issue an extra permit.

This had also been similar back at "Ridgeway".

Alas, there had sometimes been a few troubles.

Mr. Kirby suggested, "for a better preparation for the contest, Dustin Brooks should participate in my geometry classes. We are talking about circles and the number 'Pi'."

I choked. "Sorry, I don't think this to ba a good thing."

Mr. Kirby gasped. "Sir? My classes are excellent. I've got three golden stars from the Californian union for math teachers!"

I sighed. "Ted …. please call me 'Ted', and not 'Sir'!" I panted. "It has got nothing to do with your abilities as a teacher."

Mr. Kirby wondered, "so why can't Dustin go to my classes?"

I explained, "some of the middle school kids could be annoyed by elementary school boys in your class, and then they are likely to bully Dustin."

Mr. Kirby gasped. "What? That happens?"

I sighed deeply. "Yeah, that is a big problem. Middle school kids are one difficult pack, at least some of them."

Mr. Kirby still looked puzzled.

I sighed and explained, "at my former school, 'Ridgeway', there is a smart fifthgrader named Charles Gibson, alias 'Gibby'."

Mr. Kirby shrugged.

I continued, "Last year, he was the best in his classes. He could clearly compete with middle school guys and make them look dumb."

Mr. Kirby sighed. "Like Dustin?"

I nodded solemnly. "Just like Dustin Brooks. He was in the speller bee team for middle school kids. Thus we made the same thing and senthim into English classes for eighth graders by Mr. Palladino[[44]] ."

Mr. Kirby asked impatiently, "so … what happened?"

I reported, "some mean eight grader named Jocelyn[[45]] was annoyed by his proud demonstration of his smartness. She bullied him regularly for several weeks without anyone noticing."

Mr. Kirby looked aghast.

I concluded, "until one day, he was found him all bruised and torn. Jocely had tried to strangle hinm with his own shirt."

Mr. Kirby threw up.

I suggested Beverly to bring us a bucket. "I will clean up the mess. Maybe we should choose another band of coffee."

Beverly fetched the things.

I sobbed. "Nowadays, 'Gibby' can't really bear wearing shirts. You should have seen him shirtless." I shuddered for disgust.

Mr. Kirby did not feel any better.

I added, "'Gibby' has become weird in many other senses as well." I started sweating.

Those were not exactly pleasant memories.

Mr. Kirby reasoned, "OK, sending him into middle school classes may not be exactly a good thing."

I nodded solemnly.

Mr. Kirby wondered, "but he needs some preparation for the sectionals."

I sighed. "That he does. But there are many not-so-bad kids, middle or high school, able to help him there."

Mr. Kirby banged his head against the wall. "Miles Brody[[46]] would qualify."

I shrugged. "I don't know Miles. But if you say so, OK …"

Mr. Kirby explained, "He has been the middle school valedictorian of last year. He is usually found somewhere in the library, learning all books by heart."

I shrugged. "Thanks! I will find him."

That was still better than sending beverly over there.


4.2. Miles Brody


I entered "Harry Schneider Library".

It was named for one Harold Schneider, an alumnus of Pacific Coast Academy.

Generally, buildings were named for alumni or big sponsors.

I was going to meet some of the renowned alumni at homecoming.

The libraruy was fukll of books.

Had I really expected anything different?

Hardly!

OK, the shelves were very high.

Some of the books were only reachable by means of rickety ladders.

The books offen barred my sight.

This made it not so easy to look for something.

Lance Whipple[[47]], the currently serving librarian, showed me the way to the secret hideout of Miles Brody. "You need to pull at Melville's Moby Dick, usually in the top row of the thirtheenth shelf on the left-hand side of the first floor."

I coughed.

Lance guided me there. "The secret door will open over there … I had to sleep here for one night in order to find Miles' secret. But OK … there we are!"

A fake wall disappeared.

There he was, the valedictorian of valedictorians.

I shook hands with the genius.

Strangely, Miles grinned. "You are Theodore Franklin from Seattle, formerly principal at 'Ridgeway'." He knew a lot more about my career and my reasons for coming to Pacific Coast Academy.

I choked. "That's correct."

He even seemed to know my reasons for looking him yup in the library. He talked with a strange Victorian accent. "I've just found a typo in book title by author's name , edition, year, page, line. I should mail the editors. Such a typo is a shame for our school."

I coughed. "Oh, it may be. Probably it is." I didn't really care.

Miles explained, "Dustin Brooks is the younger brother odf Zoey Brooks, a girl born in some not so important town in Louisiana."

I choked. "Indeed, he is."

Miles continued reading some book at the speed of five pages per second.

His rote memory was exorbitant.

Miles continued, " … done with the book … OK, Zoey Brooks has got two room comrades. One of them is Nicole Bristow from some small town in Kansas. Her father runs a soft drink factory and frenchising service. Her uncle is a lawyer, but he has recently been released from prison after gettinbg depressed and robbing a bank." He appeared to know a lot about Nicole, more than about most of the other pupils. Was he stalking the girl?

I had got a creepy feeling.

Miles agreed on helping Dustin with the mathletic team. He had been its captain during his elementary- and middle school time.

Who else would have qualified?

But OK, my task was done.

I was going to attend the sectionals, though, in order to see the results of the decision.


4.3. The Sectionals


Our mathletics were represented by Dustin Brooks, Neil Woznicki, and Andrew Wasserstein.

The competition in Los Angeles county was a very tough one.

I would experience this later on during the sectionals of our more important teams: baseball, basketball, football, and so on.

Of course, the mathletics were not really that important, and usually they were hidden from the public.

Only a few headmasters would have accompanied those many unknown clubs to their sectionals.

Nobody would have wept over a defeat of that team, as opposed to one of the really important teams.

These were my first sectionals as a dean of Pacific Coast Academy, though.

Thus I better took it serious.

This year, the sectionals were hosted by aforementioned "James K. Polk".

Their vice Principal, a certain Crubbs, gave a long and boring speech. "And don't try to cheat! I am going to watch you … like this … or like this!"

He gestured like a cop from some bad criminal shows.

Alas, his team was to be taken a lot more serious.

Their adviser was one Dr. Xavier.

Their members included extraordinary smarties such as Albert Wormenheimer, Evelyn Kwong, and Lisa Zemo.

Dustin knew everything about circles and all other sorts of geometric things. He knew especially a lot about the number "Pi".

That was totally impressive.

But the other members of the team were without a trace of a chance against all-dominating Albert Wormenheimer.

Quinn had not wanted to participate. She needed to concentrate of other things.

That was understandable.

But it rhad really stripped us of all our chances to make it there.

Mr. Kirby had to concede the absolute superiority of the team of "James K. Polk" and Dr. Xavier.

I couldn't hear the word "Pi" any longer.

But the apple pies from the cafeteria of "James K. Polk" were delicious. They were made by one lunch lady named Rose Pepper.

The PCA cafeteria could have learned from her.

Whatever the situation, Dustin was now deadly sad.

But the decision to let Miles teach him had not been a failure.

Fortunately, the pressure on our mathletic team was not that great.

Things would be harder for other teams.


4.4. Nicole is upset


The next day, I sat in my office, concerned about the usual business.

Suddenly, Dustin Brooks stormed in. "I need backup!"

I was wondering about the panic.

Dustin Brooks hid below my desk.

There was the answer.

Nicole Bristow was storming in like a frenzied fury. She swang a broom around. "I'm going to kill you, Dustin! I swear that I will!"

I told Ms. Bristow to calm down.

She complained, "Dustin has given Miles Brody my hone number. He's going to pay for that! She stabbed into each and every corner with her broom stick."

I told her to return the item to janitor Herb.

Nicole was hard to calm. "Miles Brody comes right after Mark Del Figgalo. No way am I going to date him."

Finally, Zoey Brooks arrived. "Nicole! Come back! You don't look cute behaving like a fury."

Nicole struggled against Zoey's grip.

Finally, Dustin dared to show up. "Sorry, but Miles expected a date with Nicole i turn for helping me with the mathletic team. He taught me everything about the history of the number 'Pi'."

Fortunately, his sister prevented Nicole Bristow from harming him. "You see the consequences of your cuteness trip?"

Nicole shook her head. She would never learn. "Miles is so totally not cute! Why can't Dustin give me dates with cute boys?" She tried to bite Zoey's hand.

Zoey tried to explain, "'cute boys'" are scared away by your squeals. All you get athese ways are dweebs and other losers.

Nicole groaned, "you're lying! You just want to have all the cute boys for yourself!"

Zoey choked, "no, I …" But she did not get far. Zoey losened her grip on Nicole due to startling upon the accusation.

Nicole could free herself from Zoey's arms. And now she started hunting Zoey across the campus. "Boy thief! It's all your fault!"

Fortunately, Zoey was much faster than Nicole.

Even more, Nicole started puking some porridge and finally gave up on her vengeful quest.

Dustin sighed for relief. "Girls …" He shook his head and walked away.

I was finally left alone in the office.

My allergy to circles and that stupid number increased more and more.


Chapter 5. The Big Boss


5.1. The Founder


The Pacific Coast Academy was already over fiftyc years old.

Its founder was one Mr. Bradford, father of aforementioned Mr. Bradford.

But the campus and its dedication as an educational institution was even much older.

Noone here could tell me exactly.

But the labels on some buildings declared them to be from the beginning of twentieth century.

This was especially valid for the library.

Said old Mr. Bradford had died long since.

His son, alrready in his late sixties, was now in charge.

This had made things worse.

Of course, the memory of the founder was held high here at Pacific Coast Academy.

I had to get accustomed to it first.

One thing reminding us of the great founder was a monumental brass statue standing in front of the middle school boys' dormitory hall.

According to Mr. Bender, one of the most popular teachers at Pacific Coast Academy, the statue was the pride of the current big boss. It had to be polished acribically every now and then.


5.2. Week Of Pranks


As seen, the school was already looking back to quite a few decades of history.

Until this year, it had been a pure boys' prep school.

This was down to prejudices of Mr. Bradford, both father and son.

And during those decades, a lot of traditions had formed and were still maintained.

Carl Rivers should have warned me beforehand. But he had been mean enough to refrain from doing so.

One of the most abominable traditions was the so-called "week of pranks".

For one week each fall, the established students pulled pranks on new ones.

This was terrible.

Butthe tradition was as tough as steel.

Old students justified it with having been tortured, too, when they were still new.

This year, especially girls had been targeted.

But I was new, too.

Having entered my office and sitting down on my desk chair, I heard tooting sounds from underneath my hindside.

Some of the students must have snuck in and placed a whooping cushion onto the chair.

Mrs. Beverly was totally disgusted. She ran away like a freshly greased flash of lightning.

Fortunately, Coco Wexler stopped her escape. She had been victim of another prank as well. As a dorm adviser for the girls, she was new in this job as well.

There had not been any female students at Pacific Coast Academy before this year.

And there had been no need for dorm advisers for girls.

Coco's panties had been lacquered and dyed all black.

Alas, this was nothing compared to the prank wars of the students.

I had lost control over the situation.


5.3. Dishonoured Monument


The next morning, Mr. Bradford came to the campus for his annual visit. He was keen on inspecting his father's statue.

We walked in front of the dormitory hall of the middle school boys.

I had instructed the janitors to take care of the statue just one day before this visit.

But what was that?

The monument in the likeness of Old Mr. Bradford was "ornated" with womens' garments.

Mr. Bradford was of course consternated.

I started talking about the prank week. "It was probably a harmless prank. None of the students knew about your visit."

Alas, the big guy was hardly bound for calming down. He choked. "And that's good so. Now I see how the memory of my blessed father is treated at this school. I request the culprits to be found and punished with all rigour! No exceptions!"

I panted heavily. I was not in the mood of suspending or expelling kids for playful jokes.

"Ridgeway" would have been devoid of students ever since in the case of "rigorous punishment" as requested regularly at "Ridgeway" by Mr. Howard, and now here at Pacific Coast Academy by Mr. Bradford.


5.4. The Culprit


I went through all the classes. I had to find the culprits inspite of not being in favour of suspensions, expulsions, and even deportations, as regularly threatened by Mr. Howard.

But there needed to be some discipline at each and every school.

I started with the middle school classes.

That was most reasonable, given the statue's location in the front yard of the dormitory hall of the middle school boys.

Mr. Bender's classes were turning out as the right guess.

Zoey Brooks fessed up.

I was a bit consternated.

Zoey had always proven as the most reasonable of all students at Pacific Coast Academy, old or new, boy or girl alike. Why would she, of all, have committed such a terrible pollution?

That made not much sense.

Zoey told me the story.

The boys had stained "Brenner Hall" the night before, in the frame of the prank week.

This had cried for revenge.

Zoey had hesitated. She did not want the whole unfortunate to escalate beyond any imaginable measure.

But ongoing torture, incited by Logan Reese, had Zoey made desperatre and call for a counteraction.

The staining of the statue was the answer to the disgusting ornation of theor dormitory block and much more forms of tortureof the day before.

I sighed.

If anyone at all, Logan Reese shpuld have been punished.

But his dad's money provided Logan with a large degree of immunity.

In addition, Mr. Bradford's insane prejudices towards girls made it impossinle for anyone to calm him down.

He would probably have requested the expulsion of all girls, especially that of Zoey Brooks.

This was not going to be an easy task.


5.5. Vouching


Zoey Brooks and Mr. Bradford were now in my office.

The old man was totally infuriated. "I should expel and deport all girls to Siberia."

Zoey sighed. "I better go and knit some warm overalls. It's said to be very cold out there in the snow."

Mr. Bradford continued, "you see what you get when having boys and girls go together to one and the same school and share classes? Tohu Wa Bohu!"

I wanted to calm him down.

Bradford kept on thundering, "I should never have listened to my wife and allow girls to that school."

Actually, it had not been that simple.

Coeducation was introiduced after some long clash with the sponsors, the alumni, and the board.

But Bradford must have needed a simple cukprit, much better a female one. Thus he accused his wife of having talked him into coeducation. "In any case, ythis is the first and last years of girls at this school. I can't afford to pay back all the already paid tuition fees. But enough is enough!"

Zoey stammered, "Sir! You can't do that!"

Mr. Bradford thundered, "I own this school and everything in it. If I wanted to plant mini trees in the toilets, I could definitely do so. Is that clear?"

Zoey nodded sadly. "But I have incited all the other girls. Wouldn't it be enough to expel just me?"

Her voice was low and shameful.

Mr. Bradford panted heavily. "OK. You will excuse yourself publically in front of the school for your exorbitantly abominable misdeeds, and then you may go for good. And don't ever dare to return to this campus even as a visitor or guest, you've got me?"

Zoey nodded sadly. "I think so."

But now I had to intervene. "Sir! I have to talk to you from man to man."

Mr. Bradford thundered, "but don't dare to waste my time!"

Beverly guided Zoey outside for the time being.

I sighed. "You talk about girls bringing chaos to Pacific Coast Academy."

Mr. Bradford grunted, "Oh, yeah, they do! I've always known this."

I objected, "but quite the contrary is the case. Zoey Brooks has done a lot in order to avoid the escalation of chaos at this school. There is much more discipline tahn ever before."

Mr. Bradford refused to believe me. "How would you no? You're an absolute greenhorn, totally new at this school."

I moaned, "I know. Nobody would deny that. But I've got witnesses. Teachers, campus staff, …"

Mr. Bradford requested to talk to one of the "witnesses".

I panted. "Let's take Mr. Bender, the connection teacher of the middle school classes."

Bradford shrugged. "Where is he?"

I tried to use the microphone.

This was usually Beverly's task.

Thus it took me a few minutes to get accustomed to it.

Finally, David Bender showed up. He shook hands with Mr. Bradford.

The big boss urged Mr. Bender to go in medias res.

David breathed heavily. "See, Mrs. Brooks has been busy mediating among litigating boys from the very first day of her presence at Pacific Coast Academy. She is totally respected in all of her classes. There was nothing like that during the last years. Barring a few exceptions like Logan reese, boys are able to show a lot of respect to girls, especially to Ms. Brooks."

Mr. Bradford looked totally surprised. "What? How is that possible?"

I explained, "it has always been this way, such as at my former school at 'Ridgeway', up in Seattle. Without one Carly Shay, elementary school classes would be nothing but chaos and mayhem."

Mr. Bradford had got a hard time believeing that. But he would ask other teachers and then come to a decision.


5.6. The Verdict


Two days later, Mr. Bradford was done collecting the facts. He could no longer deny Zoey's shining influence on her fellow pupils, boys and girls alike. "But we are not a district school like 'Ridgeway', we are one of the nation's most renowned prep schools. We have got higher expectations to come by with."

I replied, "such as success of the athletic teams? Down to Zoey Brooks as the captain, the basketball team has found to a new and strengthened vigour. They have beaten each and every team in the county, including that of 'James K. Polk'. They may even qualify for the state championship. Also, our own cheerleaders already lead to an increase of motivation among the football players. We have only lost one in three matches." I was now titally exhausted.

But Mr. Bradford broke down. "OK… I seem to have misjudged the girls at this school. I'm going to desist from expulsion and deportation." He sighed deeply. "But I expect more success of our teams. I'm talking state-wide championships in football, baseball, and basketball. Or else I'll have to reconsider the whole decision during the upcoming years. My patience is limited. Have a nice day!" He stomped his feet noisily and walked away.

His lack of patience was certainly not all that much of a shocking surprise.

I sighed for excessive relief.

What would have been Pacific Coast Academy without Zoey Brooks?

That was almost impossible to imagine.

Alas, there was one downside.

The expectations for our school's athletic teams were now even harder to accomplish.

And it was still a hard way for our teams to the state wide championships.

I was worried.

Were we really strong enough?


Chapter 6. Race For The Scooter


6.1. Campus Traffic


As already insinuated, the campus of Pacific Coast Academy was really large.

It was hard for some of the students to make it right in time from their dormitory blocks to the cafeteria and from their to their first period's class rooms each and every morning.

Many students used bikes in order to reduce those annoying minutes.

Even others used motorised vehicles.

The usage of cars was restricted to security teams and emergency troops, such as fire brigades, ambulance cars, and the municipal police.

Also, Mr. Bradford's limousine was allowed to pass the campus.

There was no really reasonable need for that exception.

But he was Mr. Bradford and thus endowed to establish and break his own rules at whim.

There was not much to do about that.

Or at least we could not imagine anything to that vail.

Dean Tivers had also been allowed to use his car on the campus.

But I did not approve of that privillege and left mine at the parking site in front of the campus entrance.

Also delivery vans were allowed with an individual permissions.

Those passes had to be requested, forwarded, evaluated, confirmed, stamped, and som on, forth and back.

Beverly moaned all the time when having to prolongate the permit for the truck for the cafeteria.

Especially deep-frozen goods should not have been transported on foot across half of the campus from the lot to the cafeteria.

We could not afford a health scandal.

At Coco Wexler's slum school, there had been rats and roaches in the cafeteria on a regular base.[[48]]

But their run-down district had allowed for that.

There had not been much of an alternatiove, anyways.

I really don't want to talk about it.

And a renowned prep school had to put up with highest expectations.

So, these were our vehiceles on four wheels.

But a growing number of students frequently used motorised vehicles on two wheels.

The most popular means of transports were scooters.

But I was a bit worried about the security of the younger kids.


6.2. Commercial Campaign


I sat in the cafeteria with aforementioned Mr. Bender.

He often talked to me and his fellow teachers about his class projects.

These made him very popular among the students.

This time, he talked about a project involving commercials.

His college friend Jake Savage[[49]] worked for "Qualitech", a firm producing and selling scooters.

"Qualitech" had named those scooters "Jet-X". They insisted in them not just being called "scooters".

"The kids are divided into groups of three, " explained Mr. Bender. "That with the best commercial for the 'Jet-X' will be awarded with one for each member. Those 'Jet-X' machines will be unique until next year, the official release of the sales."

That sounded interesting.

But I had got certain qualms with that. "Those making the best commercial won't necessarily the most responsible drivers. I don't want an elementary school kid to get injured because of some stray racer."

Mr. Bender banged his head against the table. "Dern! I really should have thought of that. Especially now that …"

I wanted him to go into more details.

Mr. Bender panted. "According to the apparent situation, Logan and his room pals will win the 'Jet-X'. Whiule all other teams work with fairly cheap equipment, Logan borrows a whole production team of his dad, including Hollywood star actor Jeff Garrett[[50]]. "

I sighed deeply.

This was very unfair to all the other teams.

Zoey Brooks and her pals Nicole Bristow and Dana Cruz had been most upset about this unfair advantage,

But, even worse, Logan Reese would not give a rodent's hindside about security rules on the campus.

Granted, nobody could prevent Logan from buying a scooter for himself.

He had got the bucks for dozens of them.

But the uniqueness of the "Jet-X" was something for Logan to boast with, rigorously at any cost.

Thus I suggested, "those wishing to ride a scooter on the campus, 'Jet-X' or else, will have to pass a test first."

Mr. Bender shruugged. "That sounds like a good idea!"


6.3. The Scooter License


6.3.1. Interviews


The test consisted in an interview, a written test about the security rules on the campus, and the practical test.

Most eighth graders participated.

Examinator was some Officer David Alejandro Vega[[51]] from the municipal police.

The first canditate was Logan Reese.

Mr. Vega asked, "why do you want to ride a scooter on the campus?"

Logan replied proudly, "scooters impress girls, especially shiny and fleshy ones. They will thence allow me to make out with many more girls each day than now. I may even take girls on the back of my scooter for a field trip down to the beach, so we may make out more intensely."

I shuddered for exorbitant disgust.

Mr. Vega took notes.

The next pupil in the queue was Michael Barret. He answered, "Scooters are cool, man! They are almost like clack clack balls, but they have got wheels instead of balls, and they are fast. They allow me to take a coffee in the lunch break and return to my classes in time. That's cool! Oh, I like scooter jokes. Do you know that with two scooters meeting at a crossing. One of them …"

Mr. Vega shrugged. "The next one, please!"

Chase slouched in. "Well, I dob't really know. Maybe it's just because everyone else wants a scooter? I mean, Logan does, Zoey does, Michael does, …"

Mr. Vega shrugged. "Thanks, bush head! The next one!"

Mark del Figgalo didn't really have a reason, either. He just yawned. "My pants have got brown stains, sorry." He shook his head.

Mr. Vega got slowly annoyed.

Wayne "Firewire" Gilbert, the next in the queue, remarked, "many super heroes ride scooter-like vehicles. They are enhanced with all sorts of gadget. I thought about wireless refuelling. Do you want to see my plans?" He cackled over and over again while talking.

Mr. Vega did not care about those. "The next one!"

Now it was the girls' turn.

Zoey told Mr. Vega, "scooters allow for more independence on the campus and the environment of the school."

Mr. Vega nodded. He called Nicole into the ring.

The bimbo wench explained, "scooters allow me to be noticed by boys, especially cute boys. There are so many of them. But I have to be copol in order to impress them. And the scooter allows me to be cool. Oh, have I already mentioned all the cute boys?"

Poor Mr. Vega had to stuff his ears.

Dana Cruz was the next one in the queue. She stomped in. "Scooters are all about speed. Don't care about what everyone else says! Being the speed king of the campus, and making everying startle in awe and make way for you, is the greatest feeling ever. Nothing can beat that."

I was thoroughly terrorised by Dana's reckless attitude.

Mr. Vega did probably not see it much differently.

The last girl to apply for a scooter license was Quinn Pensky. She explained, "hey, I may repair or build a scooter from scratch. I may even replair a jet plane. I'm the mistress of fine tuunig of motors. O may turn a scooter into a racing machine making it from Malibu to 'Caltech' in less than twenty minutes. Do you want to see? These are my plans. I just need a scooter and a license to realise and test them in practice."

Mr. Vega choked. "Show your plans to a professional racing team. This is not a race track."


6.3.2. Written Tests


Mr. Vega had evaluated the written tests. "Most of you have learned the rules very well. Unfortunately, there are a few shameful exceptions. Mr. Reese?"

Logan stood up. "Hey. I own half of the campus."

Mr. Vega continued, this does not allow you to halt your scooter everywhere, especially not in security zones like the infirmary and near the water taps for the firebrigades.

Zoey laughed mercilessly.

Mr. Vega continued, "Ms. Bristow, contrary to common sense, you need to take care of all pedestrians on the campus, and not just cute boys."

Nicole could not undertsand that rule.

Mr. Vega continued, "Ms. Cruz, the speed limit on the campus is 15 miles per hour, and not 150 miles per hour!"

Dana looked totally dumbfounded.

Mr. Vega went on to the practicl tests. He reminded the pupils of the prescribed outfit for the test.


6.3.3. Driving Test


Mr. Vega had built a course for making the kids demonstrate their concentration and their dexterity in handling a scooter.

Dana was the first to go. She donned her security helmet, kicked the pedals, and raced off at top speed … straight into the hay ball barricades.

Mr. Vega shook his head.

Nicole was the next. She made a few curves.

Some boys were watching.

Nicole greeted them. "Hey, do do you see? I may drive a scooter! Yeah!" She swooned for the boys' presence.

Of course this was not without consequences.

The scooter swas too much for an unconcentrated Nicole to control.

The bimbo wench flew straight into the hay balls.

Logan removed his helmet after a few yards. "The girls need to see the hottest face of my generation. I can't just hide it underneath a helmet!"

Mr. Vega had to disqualify him on site.

Chase had started the engine. But, after a few yards, he saw Zoey next to the course. He lost his self-control and rode the scooter straight into the next lamp post.

Michael screamed for terror when the scooter started actually rolling. He fell off the machine as well.

Mark del Figgalo sat down on the machine, but with the helmet frontside back.

That was no good idea at all.

Quinn Pensky took her tools in order to make some fine tuning to the motor, against the objections of Mr. Vega.

Bang! The whole scooter blew up in her face.

The geek girl sighed deeply.

Finally, Zoey was the last to go through the gauuntlet,. Unlike everyoe else, she made it safely and flawlessly.

Mr. Vega came to the conclusion, "only one of you is able to guide a scooter on the campus in a sane manner: Ms. Zoey Brooks." He shook hands with the blond Mary-Sue and rendered unto her the first official scooter license for the campus of Pacific Coast Academy.

Zoey grinned.


6.4. Family-friendly


Sunrise at Pacific Coast Academy.

For most students, another day of struggling for their presence records had begun.

Zoey Brooks was not one of them, due to being allowed to use a scooter. She took the one frrom "Qualitech", lent unto us for making the commercials.

Zoey donned her hellmet and smiled.

Along came her brother Dustin. "Hi Zoey! I'm too late for gym classes. May you take me there?"

Zoey nodded solemnly. "Of course! But be careful and hold on tuight to me!"

Dustin smiled. He donned a helmet as well. Then he mounted the scooter.

By-passing Quinn took a picture. "Cheese!"


6.5. The winner


Zoey had been arguing with Nicole and Dana all the time over the commercial clip. Thus she finally put in the picture of Dustin and herself on the "Jet-X".

Et voilà! Mr. Savagge deemed this the best. "jet-X — the family-friemdly scooter! That's it! It can't get anty better than that!"

Logan was disappointed.

All his financial efforts had been for naught.

Zoey was now allowed to keep her "Jet-X" and make everyone else go pale.

But the real winner of the whole thing was the security of the younger kids on the campus.


Chapter 7. Regionals


7.1. Qualified


Our basketball team started oput in a really bad shape.

This was essentially down to the ongoing quarrels between Logan Reese and Zoey Brooks.

Properly said, we did not have a team, but a bunch of players.

In any case, the team would have been lost completely without the continual efforts of Zoey Brooks.

The cheerleaders were a problem, though.

Mark del Figgalo, the only guy trying out, was not really suited.

And girls were still a vast minority, as aforementioned.

Borrowed cheerleaders were not available in the sectionals.

That was obvious:

They had to cheerlead for their own school's team.

But Melanie Puckett did a really cool job as the only cheerleader in some of the matches.

Haley Ferguson was often enough sidelined.

There were minimum grades for students in order to be allowed to miss out on curricular activities for the sake of extra curricular ones.

And, quite unlike Melanie, Haley missed the mark every now and then.

We still had got those purple cheerio tops from last year.

But what had our first matches been like?

The toughest opponent was the team of "James K. Polk". They were generally known as the "Wolves".

Just as we were known as the "Stingrays".

Likewise, my former school of "Ridgeway" named its teams "Bulldogs".

The fans often used those terms in an aggressive manner.

Fortunately, we had been able to start with a clear victory against "Palmwood".

This was a school run by the Californian trades union for the entertaining professions.

But they did have a basketball team, nothing withstanding.

Fortunately, they sucked completely.

Their coach, Mr. Bitters, was totally grumpy.

But their principal, Mrs. Collins, complained about our tasteless cheerio uniforms.

I gasped. "That ain't anyone's business!"

Ms. Collins shrugged. "Yeah, if you want to lose out badly in the regionals."

I looked puzzled.

By then, we were not even qualified.

A lot depended on our match against "James K. Polk"'s aka the "Wolves".

And here we were clearly disadvantaged.

They did have the best cheerleaders in thecounty, and the best cheerleaders' uniforms. The school had got its own textile creation club.

Candy Manderson[[52]] , one of their cheerleaders ready to cheer for us during the regionals, in the case of reaching them in the first case, of course, moaned, "your cheerio uniform is lamer than my grandma's bra!"

I shuddered upon the comparison.

But maybe she was right.

Our purple cheerio uniforms must have been totally outfashioned.

We had lost our match against the "Wolves" by a landslide.

They had got really great players, such as tall blond rake Seth Powers, unstoppable jock Mike Grudzellanek, blindly aiming "Coconut Head", and boy-eating Suzannah Crabgrass.

But the cheerio performance was excellent.

We still had got a lot to learn.

Fortunately, the other opponents, such as those total lamers from "Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts", were not better than those from "Palmwood".

The third place in the sectionals would prove enough to pass to the regionals, though.

But we were hardly able to get any further with our lame cheerio troop.

I repeat, "it was not Melanie's fault".


7.2. New Uniforms


So, our cheerio uniforms had been old fashioned?

We needed to create new ones.

But we did not have any experiences.

The old uniforms had been in usage since the seventies, more or less.

Nobody knows the reasons.

OK, so who would be able to design new, fashionable cheerio uniforms?

A few weeks ago, Zoey Brooks had designed some cool outfit for the commercials for "Jet-X".

This made her look like a great fashion designer.

Thus I had ordered her into my office. I explained the situation, especially the criticism from the other schools. "Even Mr. Sikowitz from 'Hollywood School For The Professional performance Arts' deems them lame."

Zoey sighed. "What does Sikowitz know?"

I shrugged. "Probably nothing, really, but all the others … Candy Manderson, one of the potential hired cheerios, is adamantly opposed to cheering in those stupid rags."

Zoey sighed. "That's probably true."

"That's why we need new uniforms," told I, "you seem to be the most reasonable choice as the one to design them."

Zoey felt flattered. "What?"

I mentioned her outfit for the commercials.

Zoey coughed. "They were cool, but cheerio uniforms? I've got zilch experience."

I nodded solemnly. "You need to learn from those with some experience, and everything will be nice!"

Zoey scratched her blond head. "And where would that be?"

I grinned. "The sewing team of James K. Polk in Santa Clarita would be cool!"

Zoey gasped. "I don't know anyone at 'James K. Polk'."

I nodded. "That can be changed."

Zoey looked quizzically.

I panted. "I've talked to Principal Pal from James K. Polk. They have got a club for textile creation. Those make the cheerio uniform. You just need to watch them for a few sessions, and then you will know what to do."

Zoey nodded slowly. "I'll give it a try."


7.3. Textile Club


I had taken Zoey in my car to Santa Clarita.

It was a strange feeling for Zoey.

The locker halls rememberd unto her those from her old school.

Pacific Coast Academy had only got lockers for students living off the campus.

There were locker ghalls at "Ridgeway", too, of course.

Barring the colours, those looked much alike these here at "James K. Polk".

Finally, we reached the room for the textile creation team.

Their adviser was Mr. Monroe, one of the nicer teachers at "James K. Polk", quite unlike their evil vice principal Crubbs.

I explained the situation unto Mr. Monroe.

He nodded solemnly. "Mr. Pal told me about that. OK, kids, all welcome Zoey Brooks from Pacific Coast Academy. She will learn from us how to create decent cheerio uniforms."

The kids chuckled.

The stingray cheerio outfits had become the laughing stock of the schools of the whole county.

Mr. Monroe looked around. "OK, Ms. Brooks, would you please sit there?" He opointed at a place next to the only boy in the sewing club, videlicet Jerome Crony.

Zoey shrugged. "OK?"

Crony hid his head underneath his backpack.

Zoey glared strangely at him. "Hello? My name is Zoey Brooks. What are you doing?"

Crony refused to answer.

Zoey shrugged. "OK?"

Jerry Crony was very unsecure about his "girly" hobby. He was a member of a bully gang in order to hide this.

I would come to know about it much later only, though.

I had to leave the class room and leave the kids unto their adviser, Mr. Monroe.


7.4. New Uniforms


During the next days, Zoey had been able to make the perfect uniforms for perfect cheerios.

Candy Manderson and her pal Mercedes Griffin were now voluntarily ready to cheer for us "Stingrays".

Unfortunately, Mark del Figgalo wanted to knit the new uniforms.

As turning out later, the old uniforms had also been knitted by Mark del Figgalo.

This had contributed to their excessive lame character.

This time, Zoey rather trusted her friends Dana Cruz, Quinn Pensky, and Nicole Bristow.

Even Chase Matthews and Michael Barret helped out.

Logan Reese refused to do so. "Sewing and knitting is girls' works. Real boys stay away from it!"

Why was this not much of a surprise for me?


7.5. First Match


It was now time for the first match of the regionals.

Our team had to face the bunch from "Belleview", a school in San Diego County.

Miranda Franklin[[53]] , a niece of mine by adoption, was the leadiong cheerio of "Belleview".

This meant sort of a conflict for me.

Miranda cheered like a fury.

But she could not hurt Zoey, cheered by Candy Manderson and Melanie Puckett.

Our team won by a landslide.

Miranda now wanted to join Pacific Coast Academy, too, starting with the following year. "Pacific Coast Academy has got the hotter boys." A few weeks ago, she had been into one Drake Parker, sort of a fledgling rock guitarist.

But he was apparently a creepy player trashing girls every other week. Nevertheless, he had played during the match in order to back up their cheerios.

Maybe we needed an own band for our school, too?

But this was a topic for later.

Now we were glad for having won our first match.

The next ones would not be easier.

"Dimsdale"[[54]] was awaiting us. They had got some weird team members talking on and off about fairies.

And then there was a really mean team from Frisco.

Melanie's cousin Christina Saunders[[55]] was a cheerio right there.

Our team had to train hard and play very well in order to pass those towering obstacles.

The new cheerio uniform, as valuable as can be, was not the one and only key to successful regionals. But it certainly helped along a lot.


Chapter 8. School Theatre


8.1. Drama Club


Like many schools, the Pacific Coast Academy was endowed with a drama club.

We lived in the vicinities of Los Angeles and thus not very far from Hollywood, the world's centre of motion picture entertainment.

This added a lot of weight to our drama club.

Admitted, we could impossibly compare to the specialised schools like "Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Art" and "Palmwood".

But we looked back to a long tradition of alumni working or having worked as actors, producers, production assistants, technical producers, stage builders, costume makers, mask artists, … you just name it.

The Pacific Coast Academy had thus acquired the reputation of a good compromise between vicinity to Hollywood practice and general education.

The coeducation was here particularly valuable.

Female rôles had hitherto been played by transvestites or, in rare cases, hired actresses.

Some plays had been chosen precisely for the absence of female stars.

But this had been boring.

The kids wanted to see passion and romance at work on the stage.

You won't get that from plays about monks and sailors only.


8.2. Zorka From Zorkesia


Mr. Fletcher[[56]] was proud to announce the play chosen for this term's school drama performance.

It had been written by one of our pupils, videlicet Chase Bartholomew Matthews.

Of course, being the first play performed here with real female students of Pacific Coast Academy was adding a lot of significance.

The play was named Zorka The Zorkesian.

Zorka is an alien girl stranded with her space shittle on planet earth, in the middle of the pacific.

A courageous beach guard from the closest island spots her and saves her dauntlessly from the waves and the sharks.

The two of them kiss in the end.

OK, there was a bit more to the play.

But that should suffice.

But, hey!

The alien girl was named "Zorka".

To which name of a female student here at Pacific Coast Academy did that sound a hell of close?

Yeah, right!

"Zoey Brooks" resounded from inbetween each and every line of the script.

The play was written exactly for being performed with Zoey Brooks starring as Zorka, the space shipwrecked alien girl.

Chase was up to filling in the male star rôe.

What did de learn from this?

Chase Bartholomew Matthews had got that little crush on Zoey Brooks. And he was too much of a coward to come out with it.

OK, this was not really my business, was it?


8.3. Logan The Rival


The auditions were done.

Zoey was clearly chosen as Zorka.

That was hardly a surprise.

Chase Bartholomew Matthews had written Zorka in a way allowing for no other than Zoey Brooks.

She would not act as Zorka. Zoey was Zorka.

The other "girls" had been terrible.

I have to air quote this?

One of them had been Mark del Figgalo, one of the transvestites.

The others had been even worse.

But they had all got one thing in common: They lacked any substantial experience in acting.

Alas, Chase had completely messed up the rôle of the beach guard. He had not written that part as a mirror of himself. Thus Chase was unable to act well as the beach guard, given his lack of acting experience.

Quite the contrary!

Chase had written the beach guard as the person he would have wished to be.

And that was so horribly different.

The beach guard was brave and dauntless.

Chase Matthews was the coward of the county. He was totally unable to act believably as the male star of Zorka of Zorkesia.

So, who else had tried out?

There was Logan Reese, the dauntless dandy. Usually, this jock deemed acting as uncool and unmanly, inspite of being from a family of Hollywood stars. But he deemed theatre good enough as a tool for seducing certain girls.

And, in this case, said girl was Zoey Brooks.

Mind you, Logan still hated Zoey Brooks. But he liked to make fun of girls' feelings. He just wanted to boast with having kissed her.

This was of course downright deprecable.

But Chase had, probably totally involuntarily, written the rôle of the beach guard according to the counterimage of Logan Reese, the boy he wanted to be like.

Needless to say, this situation could turn out horrible.

Chase would certainly die for jealousy when having to watch Logan adn Zoey on the stage.

But what about Zoey?

She was a toy of the interests of both Chase Matthews and Logan Reese. Granted, she may have enjoyed this. Or maybe she did not.

That was completely up to Zoey, and up to her only.

But girls being toys of the boys could not be accepted in general.

The Pacific Coast Academy was somehow responsible.

I had to do something about it.


8.4. The Plan


I talked to Mr. Fletcher about the problem.

He chuckled. "Chase Matthews has already tried to fake the script, replacing 'kiss' with 'kill'. But that's not acceptable. An artists needs to know when his work is completed. He can't simply make changes afterwards at whim. Sorry!"

I sighed deeply. I tried something else, "the girls have not got any acting experience, including Zoey. She just got the rôle for being almost like Zorka. And you know that."

Mr. Fletcher could not deny that.

I continued, "in order to let them all learn to act properly, Zorka should first be played by some experienced teenage actress from elsewhere."

Fletcher protested, "but this is a theatre club for students of Pacific Coast Academy."

I replied, "a club allowing students of Pacific Coast Academy to learn acting. And watching a perfect actress helps a lot."

Fletcher shrugged. "OK, you're the boss."

I coughed.

But he understood the concerns.

So, where to find a suitable actress ready to perform here in order to teach our students?

Of course, mt thoughts drifted towards aforementioned specialised schools.


8.5. Her name is Lola


I had called Mrs. Collins from "Palmwoods".

She had called me back.

We were now appointed in "Sushi Rox".

Mrs. Collins arrived. She wore a very nice gown.

But that was not our business.

Kazu walked over to us.

I ordered the usual dead fish and other stuff.

Mrs. Collins urged me to get straight to the point.

I panted and explained the situation. "Summing it up, we need an experienced teenage actress with the ability to show our students how to act properly, as opposed to just playing yourself."

Mrs. Collins nodded. "I'm not teaching acting, but of course my classes are chock full of more or less professional actors and actresses."

I had expected that.

Mrs. Collins went through a list in her mind. She concluded, "but most of all, I recommend Lola Martinez."

I shrugged. "Should I know that name?"

Mrs. Collins was not sure. "Maybe not so important yet. You're from outside Californian. So rather not."

I sighed for relief. I had not been here for more than half a year.

This had excused my ignorance.

Lola wanted to win an oscar as a teenager.

But her mom wanted her to become a teacher for English and Spanish.

As a Half-Latina, she was particularly suited for such a career.

And in order to let her daughter make it easier to a college for language teacher, old Mrs. Martinez would send her to Pacific Coast Academy next year.

This was thus a perfect occasion for Lola to get to know her next school and some of her pals.


8.6. The Première


Lola Martinez had finally arrived.

We were all excited.

Zoey had grudgingly accepted the changes. She was even lucky, but for a not so pleasant reason.

Her little brother, videlicet Dustin, had recently caught a bad cold.

Zoey was now glad to have got the time to nurse him.

The infirmary here was disgusting.

The professional nurse was a bully and a loud.

None of the kids went there voluntarily.

Quinn Pensky had tried to treat him. She had got a deputy license from Doc Hollywood[[57]] , a medic operating at "Palmwood".

But her methods were occasionally a bit dubious at least.

For Logan, it did not matter too much. Ultimately, he wanted to abuse all hot girls, no matter in which order.

We had even more visitors.

Mr. Sikowitz from aforementioned "Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts" was about to honour our event with his presence. He would certainly be a competent critique.

Also, Mr. Combover was in the audience. He was responsible for the drama club at "James K. Polk" in Santa Clarita.

The curtain was lifted.

The suspense increased.

Quinn Pensky was responsible for the illumination.

The stage had been built in a terrible manner, though.

The costumes looked partly inappropriate.

Whatever, Lola was unimpressed by the low standards. She was simply a perfect actress.

There was a big difference between Zoey's performance, as demonstrated during the rehearsals, and that of Lola Martinez.

The horny dandy acted as expected.

Finally, we approached the kissing scene.

The beach guard flattered the alien girl. Alas, he wexaggerated boldly.

That was terrible. And it sounded totally hypocritical.

Logan closed his eyes, expecting Lola's kiss.

The graceful Latina bent over.

Snarf!

Logan whimpered for pain.

Lola must have bit him. She giggled. "Alien girls don't kiss jerks." She bowed to the applauding audience.

Mr. Fletcher was puzzled. "That was not from the script. Honestly!"

Mr. Sikowitz nodded cheerfully. "Fantastic! That's what I call 'improvisation'!"

Zoey and Dustin walked in.

The little boy looked healthy again.

Zoey's sisterly love had been the best medicine for him.

Zoey excused herself for being too late.

Lola shook her hand. "Hi! We will sure be class mates, next year that is."

Zoey smiled. "That woukd be cool! So, you're Lola?"

The diva nodded.

Zoey offered Lola a guide across the campus and to the dormitory rooms.

Lola followed voluntarily.

Mr. Fletcher thanked me for my idea.

Logan Reese would never ever dare again to abuse theatre in order to hit on girls.

Chase had learned his lesson, too.

Or that was to be hoped.

Mr. Fletcher invited him to an event at his school.

Mrs. Sofia Michelle, the most active playwright at "Broadway", was soon coming to "Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts" in order to attend the première of one of her plays. She could teach Chase a lot about becoming a good playwright.


8.7. Hiring A Medic


As aforementioned, the nurse was unbearable for the children.

Thus I had decided to fire her and replace her with a competent medic.

Dr. Hollywood was only partly available. He was still at "Palmwood", at least most of the time.

But Quinn Pensky was already fully able to replace him in his absence.

For simple tasks. I would hire a nurse in training named Shannon[[58]] .

Everyone here at Pacific Coast Academy celebrated the dismissal of the evil dragon. And almost everyone was looking forward to the arrival of Lola Martinez.


Chapter 9. Spring Party


9.1. Parties


Given the attitude of excruciatingly grumpy Mr. Bradford, some onlookers would not expect many parties taking place on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy.

But there were indeed quite a few of them.

And some of them had even got quite some tradition.

Spring Fling was one of these.

According to the name, it took place early spring, before spring break.

I had not yet been able to rersearch the exact origins.

Immigrants have brought this celebration with them to southern California during the ninteenth century.

It may have been a celebration of the end of winter and the begin of the work outdoors in the fields.

Those migrants had probably been from regions with fairly harsh winters.

Here in southern California, it did not really matter.

But traditions are often quite hard to get killed.

Thus Spring Fling got dragged through the history of Pacific Coast Academy over dozens of years.

The students should have had some fun.

Unfortunately, that had not been actually the case.

What fun is a party without good music?

Well, for the generation of the students, "good music" was something different than for me and the other seniles.

But it needed to be organised anyways.

Mr. Bradford would hardly have been much of a support.

Organising a good band was surely expensive.

At least the boys had not been able to.

But this year, the girls were in charge with that task.

And this may have turned out as a change for the better.

Indeed, Zoey Brooks was the main responsible.

This was already very promising.

The blond Mary Sue did not go for fishy compromises, but she was looking for supreme quality.

And the girls' choice of the year was aforementioned Drake Parker.

As pointed out, the name was no longer totally unfamiliar even to me.

That was down to my kinsgirl Miranda, a former crush of Drake.

Honestly, I could not approve of Drake's jerkish demeanour.

But there was always some hope for everyone, including permanent trouble girl Samantha Puckett.


9.2. Money


Zoey Brooks and her sidekick Nicole Bristow had already been waiting in my office.

Beverly must have let them in.

I wondered, "what's up, girls?"

Zoey explained the situation. "We want to hire Drake Parker for pur spring fling."

I shrugged. "I've heard about him. He seems to be the girls' man of his generation here in California."

Nicole squealed exstatically, "I love Drake! He's so cute! Dis I already mention how cute he is?"

Zoey poked Nicole. "You did!"

Nicole fell onto her knees and started begging like a puppy.

I wondered, "what does she want?"

Zoey panted, "there's one problem. Drake's manager wants five thousand bucks."

I choked. "That's quite some heap of cash!"

Nicole swooned.

Zoey sighed deeply. "So we need to raise funds for tthat sum. Some actions are in order. But we need your permission."

I wondered, "will Ms. Pensky perform any dangerous experiments with explosives, poisons, or a killer virus in the frame of these actions?"

Zoey shook her head. "No, Quinn Pensky is not involved."

I sighed for relief. "The permission is granted. Maybe I can help a bit with my contacts."

Zoey gasped. "You know his manager?"

I shook my head and laughed. "I know my step niece, Miranda Franklin. She is a cheerleader at Drake's school. She might switch to Pacific Coast Academy next year, though."

Zoey looked puzzled. "Wow!"

I just wondered, "can't Logan Reese loan you some bucks? He sure could afford it."

Zoey replied, "most definitely! But Logan sees Drake as a great competitor."

I wondered, "a competitor for what?"

Zoey replied, "for girls, of course." She shuddered for disgust.

Nicole squealed, "Drake is cute, and Logan is cute. But there may never be too many cute boys in town."

Who would have expected anything else from the bubbly bimbo wench from Kansas?


9.3. First Attempts


The first attempts of fund raising had be miserable.

The girls had tried car wash, melon bashing, and selling shirts with the name of Drake Parker.

Unfortonately, Zoey had forgotten to consider the costs for the materials.

Requesting one buck for bashing a melon worth ninty cent was not really profitable.

Water, soap, and wax for the car wash was not totally cheap, either.

Likewise the cotton and the ink for the production of the shirt did reduce their intake most severely.

Lousy one thousand bucks had finally been in it.

And that was still four thousand bucks short.

The girls were desperate.

But maybe one thousand bucks wee enough for hiring Drake Parker as a solo rock guitarist without his band, thusly bypassing his perverse and decadent manager, that filthy and greedy creep?

I had to ask Miranda.


9.4. Interview With Drake


Indeed, my step niece had been able to arrange a video chat with Drake Parker.

Drake grinned. "OK your girls seem to have gone through quite a few efforts."

I nodded vigorously. "They did."

Drake continued, "but who is responsible for those tops with my name on it? The official outfit of the band is totally lame."

I shrugged. "Probably?"

Drake sighed. "I could use a new outfit for the band."

I explained, "oh, Zoey Brooks is a very gifted fashion designer. She has already designed our new cheerio uniforms."

Drake grinned. "Oh, those? Your niece told me about them. She would not come to Pacific Coast Academy without those. The old ones were totally lame. And so is my band's outfit, designed by my manager's girlfriend."

I had heard Miranda saying something like that.

Drake decided,


Consider my manager fired!

My step brother Josh will certainly be a better one.

A good outfit design is much more worth than five thousand bucks.

Or so says my brother's boss, Helen Baxter.

Plus there are said to be a few really hot babes at Pacific Coast Academy this year.


My eyes bugged out.

I squealed, "you know Helen Baxter?"

Drake explained,


But of course!

Helen runs "Première Theater", the best cinema in San Diego.

You know her, too?


I gasped. "Helen Baxter had been the greatest child actress ever, back in my college time.[[59]]. She had starred in my favourite family soap."

Apparently, kids of today were not aware of that.

Drake smiled. "For a really good outfit design, I will also take Helen to Pacific Coast Academy."

I grinned. "Deal!"


9.5. Drake At PCA


The girls were surprised by the turn things had taken.

Actually, Helen Baxter had agreed on the deal for a more selfish reason.

Our school had got its own campus cinema.

It was basically run by high school kids.

Helen was interested in taking over that business as a branch of her "Première Theater".

This was clear pretty soon upon her arrival.

Helen had started asking the kids mercilessly about the cinema.

But I was also pleased about seeing her at all. I had been a great fan of Helen during my college days.

Drake, on the other hand, donned his new outfit with pride. Unfortunately he was a bit overwhelmed by the girls. Upon arrival, he had been somersaulted by bubbly bimbo wench Nicole Bristow and pinned to the ground with her lips.

Zoey Brooks and Dana Cruz had to pull her off the poor victim.

But Zoey was wondering about her brother Dustin's whereabouts.

I helped her looking for him.

At the same time, Drake had started the performance. He played Highway To Nowhere[[60]], one of his most ear-sticking tunes.

Even Beverly had to dance to the rhythm.

Garth Burman was particularly keen. "I would have paid the girls four thousand bucks for washing my car. But then they said the concert was free." He grabbed Beverly and swept her across the dancing floor.

I shrugged.

We finally found Dustin.

He was totally tired. He had not been sleeping for days, as part of an experiment by Ms. Pensky.

That would have been a pity.

He had been looking totally forward to the concert. But now he was dead on his feet.

Later, Drake would give him a hand-signed DVD of his concert in San Diego City Palace.

This would make up for the trouble.

Helen had decided to take over the cinema. "It's time for better movies here. The program is lame."

I shrugged.

Helen replied, "have you heard of Ashley Blake[[61]] ?"

Ashley was a kid Hollywood star. My children loved her movies.

Now Helen had announced to bring all the movies with Ashley Blake to Pacific Coast Academy.

Many kids cheered fanatically.

By the way, Ashley Blake would come to Pacific Coast Academy the year after. She had hitherto been at "Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts". But she was a totally arrogant diva always causing troubles among her fellow students.

The school administration could thus not keep her.

In any case, our school had got the best spring party ever, and a new rocking cinema.

This was totally cool.


Chapter 10. Mindy Crenshaw[[62]]


10.1. Backpack


The pupils at Pacific Coast Academy needed a lot of equipment during their academic year.

Most of it was carried around on the campus, between the classes, in some sort of container.

The classical choice was a backpack.

I used an office suitcase.

In any case, the backpacks were very important daily companions of their owners.

Our school had got its own "official" backpacks.

Those were sold in "Schneider's Conveniency Store"[[63]] on the campus.

What made them an "official" Pacific Coast Academy backpack?

They displayed the letters "PCA", hardly much more.

In other words, those backpacks were lame.

Fortunately, this was up to be changed.


10.2. Cue Pops


One evening, Nicole Bristow had bought a cue pop in "Schneider's Conveniency Store".

Cue pops were plastic sticks filled with fruit jello.

Distracted as usual, the bimbo wench squirted the comtents across the landscape, hitting one of the backpacks.

Zoey had to buy the thing for her friend out of money.

Nicole deemed the backpack uglky, for good reasons.

But Zoey was a great fashion designer.

This was a perfect task for someone like Zoey Brooks.


10.3. Zoey's Backpack


The next day, the whole school talked about Zoey's beautiful backpack.

Too bad it was not up for purchase.

Zoey had taken the backpack spoiled by Nicole Bristow and ornated it in a wonderful manner.

This should have been the official Pacific Coast Academy backpack.

But maybe its production was too much work.


10.4. Plagiarism


The next day, Zoey Brooks and Nicole Bristow showed up in my office.

Beverly had let them through. She knew very well "Zoey does not bother me without a good reason."

I sighed. "What;s the matter?"

Nicole explained chaotically, "Stasie has stolen Zoey's backpack idea!"

I wondered, "Stasie?"

Zoey grunted, "A new student, probably."

I told Beverly to give me a list of the students transferred to Pacific Coast Academy during the last weeks.

Zoey explained even more, "Stasie sells the copycatted backpacks on the campus. Chase and Michael have told me."

Nicole added, "Stasie will soon sell them in 'Schneider's Conveniency Store' for a horror price!"

Zoey sighed deeply.

I scratched my head. "That does not sound nice. Do you know she has copied yours?"

Zoey nodded.


Two days ago, I displayed Nicole's backpack in the louge.

Stasie came along and wanted to take several pictures of it, pretending to work for the school newspaper, Daily Stingray.[[64]]


.

That was overwhelming.

I studied the list brought to me by Beverly. "That could be it. Anastasia Romanow, joined just two weeks ago."

Zoey gasped. "Anastasia, like the lost Russian princess?"

I choked. "Hells Bells!"

Nicole squealed, "hey! I knew it! … what are you talking about?"

Zoey explained,


The Russian monarchy was banned after World War I.

The royal family was deported to Siberia and perished there.

Years later, several people pretended to be Anastasia, daughter of the Russian queen.


Nicole wondered,


Siberia?

What's that?

Are the boys there cute?


Zoey shook her head. "It's too cold there, so the people are always blue in their face and eat reindeer guts and other icky stuff."

Nicole threw up.


10.5. The Pretender


Students coming to Pacific Coast Academy were rare, but not impossible.

It happened a few times only since my arrival at Pacific Coast Academy.

I'm usually not directly concerned with these transfers. I just have to sign it in passing by.

Others at Pacific Coast Academy were directly responsible, such as Mr. Conroy[[65]].

I had called the latter into my office.

Beverly sent him right my way.

I told Conroy about the transfer of Ms. Romanow.

He looked dumbfounded.

Of course, it could be an incident.

But a student enrolling with a fake name and starting to plagiarise other students' works would have been too much of a scandal.

I had to investigate rigorously.

Mr. Conroy wanted to talk to "Anastasia Romanow" about the issue.

I nodded solemnly. "A good idea! Beverly, would you please call Ms. Romanow?"

Beverly sighed. "But of course!" She activated the microphone.

Of course, "Anastasia" may have been just out of reach.

But we had to try.

Mr. Conroy had also got the folder of "Ms. Romanow" in his hands.

I took a look at them.

According to the folder, "Anastasia" had been a top student at some district school in San Diego county, "Belleview" to be precise.

This may have been wrong, of course.

But "Belleview" happened to be the school of my aforementioned step niece Miranda.

So there was an easy way for me to check.

Finally, "Anastasia" arrived.

Mr. Conroy told her to fess up. "We may deal with this in here, or we may take it to the county police office."

"Anastasia" grinned. "You've got no proof! Same goes for that Zoey wench. These are all my own creations." She showed me an identity card, telling her clearly as "Anastasia Romanow".


10.6. Miranda's Report


My step niece called me back the day after.

There had never been a girl at "Belleview" known as Anastasia Romanow.

However, a few weeks ago, the honour council had to expel one Melinda Crenshaw.[[66]]

Mindy had abducted the car of one teacher named Mrs. Hayfer and tried to get Drake Parker framed for it. She hated Mrs. hayfer for having denied her a "straight A" like two years ago.

I gasped.

That did noit sound really nice.

But it fit well into one line with plagiarising Zoey's backpack design and enrolling under a fake name.

But her perfect marks in almost all subjects were genuine.

We would have been proud of Mindy or "Anastasia".

In particular, Mindy Crenshaw appeared to be a great scientist. She was working in the field of genetic engineering.

Our science club was still suffering from the hostility between Wayne Gilbert and Quinn Pensky.

Mindy could have helped overcoming these problems.

Of course, we could not let Mindy get away with it that easily.

Faking identity cards was a serious issue.

And Mrs. Hayfer, according to most students' witness, including Miranda's, was one obnoxious pain in the guts.


10.7. Reconciling


In the afternoon, I called Mindy Crenshaw and Zoey Brooks into my office.

The two teenage girls glared at each other for exorbitant hostility.

I sighed deeply. "OK, this can't go on like this!"

They started arguing, almost eating each other with chairs.

I had to shout them apart. "Ladirs! This is not going on like this. Ms. Crenshaw, you can't simply take Zoey's design without asking her first, and then sell it on your own behalf without royalties."

Zoey growled, "I told you!"

I nodded. "Ms. Brooks! Ms. Crenshaw has indeed added her own additional styles."

Zoey glared aghast. "What?"

The vendor of "Schneider's Conveniebncy Store" had given me a few examples of backpacks.

Those all showed the basics of Zoey's design, but with classy variations.

I panted heavily. "After all, it would be best for our school if the two of you worked together."

Mindy Crenshaw and Zoey Brooks coughed and choked.

I closed my eyes and commanded , "now hug each other!"

The girls coughed. But then they cautiously followed my commands.

I had read it in the national headmasters' journal.

Indeed, there was a lot to do.

I explained, "pupils at other schools should profit from these backpacks, too, noyt just here at Pacific Coast Academy."

Zioey sighed deeply. She had not yet considered expanding her business.

Mindy was more eager in this respect.

I showed them requests form other schools. "Kids at 'Palmwood', 'Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts', and 'Silver Spring' would be totally happy about it."

Mindy and Zoey started discussing.

I continued, "and Principal Pal from 'James K. Polk' has already send an agent over here. Beverly, call Max Wilkes[[67]] into my office!"

Beverly nodded solemnly.

Mindy and Zoey looked aghast.

The door opened.

Afro-American Max Wilkes walked in, followed by his one-sided girlfriend Claire Sawyer.

The latter was also known as a "future lawyer". She declared to represent Max Wilkes's legal interests. "I've prepared this standard contract of 500 pages of small print. Would you please sign at the cross?"

I shrugged. "May I read it first?"

Claire sighed. "OK!"

It sounded like a great business deal for our kids. "OK!"


10.8. Backpack Business


Zoey's backpacks would soon be the top seller at the schools of Los Angeles county, due to the efforts of Max Wilkes.

Miranda also made them quite popular in San Diego.

Especially a certain Megan Parker, sister of Drake, helped popularising them.

A certain "Socko" would make them popular in Seattle, too.

Unfortunately, our production capacities were severely limited.

But some year later, the news about the most fashionable backpacks would reach the haute coûture labels in New York.

Especially "Mad Style" would turn out most interested in Zoey's backpack design.


Chapter 11. Dancing To The Moon


11.1. Middle School Dance


Another traditional event at Pacific Coast Academy was the middle school dance.

In the times of a school reserved for boys, girls from outside had to be invited.

This was about the same as for the cheerio girls.

Even this year, this method for filling the gap was somehwat necessary.

Girls were utterly outnumbered in middle school classes.

Thus I had to send the invitations to the usual schools in Los Angeles county.

In the case of "James K. Polk", aforementioned Mr. Monroe was the person to contact.

I was lucky to be able to bypass vice principal Crubbs, a real pain in the guts.

Mr. Monroe had got quite some experiences with the organisation of middle school balls at "James K. Polk".

Then I also informed Mrs. Collins from "Palmwoods" and Mr. Sikowitz from "Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts".

Various other schools followed.


11.2. Computer's Choice


Debra Pearson[[68]] was responsible for the organisation of the ball. She was the wife of an alumnus of Pacific Coast Academy.

I had to talk abouyt the details for the scheduling. I wondered, "will this be boys' choice or girls' choice?"

Debra cackled evilly. "Neither this nor that. A computer will do the matches."

I choked hard. "What?"

This was a bit stupid.

Or so I thought.

Debra mentioned a personality test or something.

I did not like this.

But was there a way to change it?

I wondered, "are the kids OK with that?"

Debra apparently did not really care.

I shook my head.

Was the middle school ball out there for the middle school students, or were the students here for some computer?

Granted, some kids were too shy for asking out. So they were better off with a computer-based thing.

But it did not really feel right.

Pupils would lie and brag in the usual personality tests.

I finally decided to let the kids vote on this.

There was a proble, for either boys's choice or girls' choice, though, due to the great disparity in numbers..

My concept would thus have been the following:

In a first turn, the Pacific Coast Academy girls may ask out boys.

In a second turn, the boys left out by Pacific Coast Academy girls could ask out the female students from outside Pacific Coast Academy enrolled for the waiting list.

This would give everyone a fair chance.


11.3. The Vote


Most of the kids had objected to the computer crap as well.

Especially Chase Bartholomew Matthews was adamantly opposed to it.

In virtue of his play about Zorka and so on, the girl of his choice was totally obvious.

He was still hamkering crazily after Zoey Brooks.

But of course, the girls were now first to choose.

Nicole had got a big problem. She wanted to invite the cutest boy. "But there are so many of them. have I already mentioned all the cute boys at Pacific Coast Academy? They are so cute!"

I sighed deeply.

There was nothing to do about Nicole.

Dana Cruz was left with another problem. "They are all jerks!"

I could not help there.

Only Quinn Pensky was totally at ease. She had recently started dating aforementioned Mark del Figgalo, under certain dubious circumstances.

Mark was now of course the boy of Quinn's choice.


11.4. The Girls's Choices


Finally, girls' chiice was over.

At the same time, the responsible teachers from the neighbouring schools had submitted a list of the girls applying for the boys' choice part.

I had to display the list in the lounge.

Many of the girls were already known from cheerio practice.

But first there were the results of the girls' choice.

Nicole had decided to ask out Logan Reese, against his will.

But nobody else had asked Logan.

Thus he was forced to come as Nicole's partner.

Quinn Pensky had chosen Mark Del Figgalo, as clearly anticipated.

Dana's boys of choice was Duke Blatzberg, a dumb wrestling ox.

Melanie Puckett had chosen Vince Blake, elder brother of aforementioned Hollywood diva Ashley Blake and one of the most popular athletes here at Pacific Coast Academy, especially during the upcoming year as the football team's quarterback.

Zoey had got the greatest problem of all. She wanted to get to know other pupils. And she knew already many of them. So she had randomly chosen some Glen Davis.

Now it was time for the leftover boys to make their picks.

Those leftovers, id est the vast majority, included, just as expected, Michael Barret and Chase Bartholomew Matthews.


11.5. The Boys's Choices


Chase and Michael studied the list.

Lola Martinez, aforementined Holly wood star, was on the list of postulancies. She must have been very impressive at the school play.

Chase saw this as his chance to make Zoey jealous.

Unfortunately, she was the choice of other boys, too.

These included, for the better of worse, Michael Barret.

Michael and Chase decided simultaneously and unison to ask her out.

But only one of them could be her date for the impending middle school dance.

Who would be the "lucky" one?


11.6. The Dancing Floor


I had been assigned as a superviser for some part of the ball evening.

There was no live music, though.

Everything was taped.

The participants slouched in.

Quinn and Mark were the first to leave again, though. They were probably up to some dirty stuff in some dark corner.

So, what had come out of the duel between Chase and Michael?

Well, they had been literally beating each other, with fists and feet.

This had turned out quite tiresome.

Then they had decided to ask Lola at the same time and let her decide.

But they had been too late,

Lola had already been chosen by some Ethan Malleroy[[69]] . But at least she had pointed Michael and Chase towards her cousin Trina Vega[[70]] .

During the whole evening, Chase and Trina started dancing excessively close, but only when walking in front of Zoey's eyes.

This was so evidently an nattempt of making Zoey Brooks jealous.

Michael had to choose one of the last remaining girls on the list, some Olivary Biallo, an exchange student from some hitherto unbeknowns tropical island.

But, as turning out, she was not really a girl. "She" was no other than aforementioned Jerome Crony from "James K. Polk" in Santa Clarita, the only guy in the sewing club.

Jerry annoyed Michael to the death.

Many participants laughed about Michael's "choice."

Zoey appeared very unhappy with Glen Davis. She would later deem him a treckless jerk, worse than even Logan Reese.

Only Dana Crus appeared fairly happy with her choice, Duke Blatzberg.

Logan's date with Nicole was one exorbitant catastrophe.

The bimbo wench talked his ears off, making him puke thrice in five minutes. She did not understand why.

Likewise, a certain Nicolas Webber had achieved talking his ball date, Mercedes Griffin alias "Missy Meany", totally dizzy.

I intervened and made them trade partners.

This appeared a bit more quiet.

But now Nicole and Nicholas started talking each other's ears off.

This was clearly the minor evil.

Alas, Logan and Mercedes boasted against each other with their credit cards.

There was something going on underneath, though.

But it was hard to tell what, or how it would end up.

Finally, "Olivary" decided to leave the dancing floor and pray to the moon.

This made Michael sigh for excruciating relief.

Zoey was most disappointed. Thence she decided to never ask out unknown guys again and better stick to the known and reliable. But she did not end up turning jealous of the busty Latina dancing with Chase. At least she did not show it in a visible manner.

Chase's trick appeared to have failed, at least for the time being.

But Trina Vega was not to be trusted. She was one female dandy and brat.


11.7. Olivary Biallo


Alas, I could not help investigating the case "Oli Biallo".

Mr. Monroe came to my office. He had submitted the list of students from "James K. Polk". He was deeply disappointed by this mistake and wondered how it could have happened. He must have carelessly let the whole sewing club enroll, including the only male member videlicet Jerome Crony.

A later interview with Jerome Crony resulted in the following revelation:

He was desperately trying to get away from his "best friends" at "James K. Polk", William Loomer and "Buzz" Rodriguez.

Those were bullies making him feel insecure about his "girly" hobby.

So he had decided to slip in as a fake girl in order to make his first contacts.

I sighed deeply. I was pondering about possibilities to let Crony join Pacific Coast Academy.

In any case, the nect middle school dance would need better preparations.


Chapter 12. Banapple Juice


12.1. California Geek


During the last weeks, Mindy Crenshaw had started working withing our science club.

Down to Quinn Pensky's insane efforts, we had already made it to the Caluifornian state science fair.

This had not happened yet too often during the times of Dean Rivers.

Of course, the science fair did not amount to that much concerning the favour of the board and the alumni.

But it should not have been neglected totally.

Much of the sudden upscale was due to our enormously busy adviser, "Cal".

Granted, Wayne "Firewire" Gilbert had still got some really awkard imact.

But "Cal" had been able to show him the limits.

So, was there a chance for our science club to win the Californian Geek award?

"Cal" had won that award thrice in his times as a middle or high school kid.

I would not have understood his inventions, so bear with it.

But for this Californian science fair, they had registered with already mentioned banapple project.

Mindy Crenshaw had quickly recognised the problems of the tree.


12.2. Basketball


Our basketball team was equally quualified for the state championships.

This had been a lot due to the big efforts of Michael Barret.

But, as of recent, there had been a big problem with Michael Barret.

The aspiring jazz flautist had been turning chubby.

This was not that easy for a basketball athlete.

There had to be done something about it.

The cause for Michawel's gain of weight was his addiction to fat and spicy potato chips.

Those could be very dangerous.

The spices lead you to eating more and more and more of them.

Quinn Pensky was alerted and had started to invent articificial potato chips, containing neither potatoes nor fat.

That was very strange.

I did not want to know about the ingredients.

It was stuff only available through "Cal"'s contacts.

Could that mean anything good, though?


12.3. Samantha Puckett


Right before my departure for California, I had still hoped for Samantha Puckett making itto Pacific Coast Academy in order to escape from her mother's degrading influence.

But that hope had been a failure.

So I had to wonder about Sam's life at Pacific Coast Academy under Principal Rivers.

The reports were devastating.

Sam had hidden stink bombs in Carl's office, broken into the office, wedgied the superintendent, and on and on and on it went.

Now Mr. Rivers had got no other choice but beg for the asmission of Samantha Puckett to aforementioned program again. He would have paid us five thousand bucks for accepting Samantha Puckett.

Of course I would not have rejected that deal, even with less bucks.

But Sam's dossier was no good in the eyes of someone like Bradford, still hostile to the concept of girls at Pacific Coast Academy.

I would have to vouch for Sam's behaviour.

And that was not going to be an easy task.

But it was most likely Sam's last chance to get away from her criminal family.

Melanie's shining example should have convinced Bradford of at least the possibility of a chance.

Probably a good place in the Californian play offs would have been a catalysator for influencing the old farter's opinion.

Dean Rivers was by the way in deep trouble because of refusing to give the permission for a pep rally at "Ridgeway", right before the Washington high school softball finals.


12.4. Pep Rally


Pep rallies were very important for the team spirit.

I had often given permission for those, at least thrice year, but especially before big events of our school team.

But there had not been any pep rallies here at Pacific Coast Academy since decades.

There had been especially none in the times of Dean Rivers.

Some of the kids were probably not even aware of the meaning of this.

One of our seniors even said, "Pep rallies have been declared illegal by Dean Rivers!"

Of course, organising a pep rally was not an easy task.

The pupils had not got much of a clue as of how to do it.

I had only given the permission for them. I had never organised any at "Ridgeway" either.

For that avail, we need some tutoring concerning this topic.

The best turtors were of course students and teachers from nearby schools experienced in the organisation of pep rallies.

Zoey Brooks registered voluntarily for the organisation committee.

That was not really much of a surprise.

Zoey was always on the bleeding edge of everything. She had demonstrated this when hiring Drake parker for the spring fling. And now she suggested, "Isn't 'James K. Polk' one of those schools with excellent pep rallies?"

I scratched my head. "Probably!"

Zoey suggested to let Mr. Monroe come for a visit. She remembered him from the sewing club. "Mr. Monroe will most surely be an excellent expert for pep rallies."

That was one great idea.

I grinned. "Oh yeah, he sure will!"


12.5. Michael's Tongue


The play offs for our team came closer and closer.

Zoey was already in top form.

But there was one problem:

Michael Barret had lost his speech.

Quinn was embarrassed. "It must have to do with the fake potato chips."

I choked.

Those fake chips were so deceiving.

Quinn was now in front of a big problem.

There were only a few days left until the state playoffs in middle school basketball.

Michael needed to give understandable instructions during the matches.

This was impossible without a functional tongue.

In addition, Michael would turn the laughing stock of the school at pep rally.

Dana had already tried to beat a few words out of him.

But she had hitherto failed miserably.

It was not exactly my preferred way to get people to talk, anyways.

Mindy Crenshaw would try to work on the problem. But she could not promse anything.


12.6. Hunger In The World


I had not been present at the state science fair in Pasadena.

So I was surprised like everyone else by the victoriour return of our science geek team.

And at their departure, Mindy and Firewire had still been at each other's throat.

Those troubles had characterised the last few days.

"Cal" was not present at the finals. He was equally surprised now.

Quinn explained, "I have explained the important rôle of banaapples for the problem of hunger in the world. Banapple trees may grow under a huge variety of climatic conditions."

Mindy grinned. "Even in Siberia. But only in a greenhouse."

Wayne Gilbert cackled.

I shrugged. "Sounds … interesting?"

Whatever, things had not necessarily been that easy for them at the fair as just stating the benefits for hungry children in the world.

But I would not have understood all the rest.

Mindy distributed banapple smoothies.

I would have expected them to taste like a smoothie of bananas and apples blended together.

But this was not exactly the case.

The banapples had got their own taste component.

I could not really describe it.

Nicole liked it.

Her father was a producer for juices in Kansas. He also sold equipment to juice bars.

My favourite jucie bar was "Groovy Smoothy" in Seattle, not far from "Ridgeway".

Nicole had got an idea. "My dad could sell canned banapple juice!"

Everyone looked puzzled.

Dana glared at Nicole in a disapproving manner.

But maybe this was not a really bad idea?

Zoey needed to talk to me. "The victory of the science geek is a great thing for our pep rally. We want to tuie in all clubs, and the science geeks have been victorious, so they should be up front."

I shrugged. "Why not?"

Unfortunately, Zoey had to report a problem. "The school orchestra is usually performing at pep rallies. I've looked up and down the campus. But there is no school orchestra, or a choir. 'James K. Polk' has got a really cool one. But we don't. There is not even ome mentioned in the last yearbooks."

I gasped.

That sounded like a real stain of shame.

For this year, it was probably too late to establish one.

But I had to change that for the upcoming years.

A school without a school orchestra was crap.

Why had Dean Rivers forgotten about that?

Michael Barret was the last of the eight graders to taste from the banapple smoothie. He had not been able to ask earlier because of his tomgue.

Quinn handed him a small cup of banapple smoothie.

Michael closed his eyes, preparing to down the contents in one shot.

But themn, strange things happened in his mouth.

Michael slurped and gurgled. "What's this? Hey! I can talk again!"

Logan sighed. "So what? I can talk too!"

Michael bounced around. "My tongue is free!"

The banapple smoothie had obviously been a remedy against the disease caused by Quinn's fake chips.

Quinn gasped. "Wow!"

Mindy grinned. She must have seen it coming.

Wayne grunted. "Beginner's luck!"

Mindy glared at him in a disapproving manner.

In any case, the girls had already come a great bit closer to convincing Wayne Gilbert.

Where was that going to?


Chapter 13. PCA Needs More Clubs


13.1. Victorious basketball Team


The first pep raklly had been a plain success, down to the intervention of Mr. Monroe and to Zoey's perfect sense for organising things.

This was the best preparation for our middle school basketball team's state playoffs.

I was not present at the matches.

But Mr. Bradford had been there, along with Mr. Bender. He was impressed by the performance. But, on the other hand, "it is just a middle school basketball team. This is not really much."

This was so unfair and disrespectful towards our students,

They had invested insane amounts of time and efforts into preparing for the championships.

But at least it left Coach Ferguson in his office.

Otherwise, Mr. Bradford would have disposed with thim. He did not want any loser coaches at this school. He had already been looking for some substitue, Coach Keller from some school in Frisco.

It happened to be the school of Christina Saunders, aforementioned cousin of Samantha and Melanie Puckett.

For the next years, Mr. Bradford's expectations were becoming a trifle higher.

As said, middle school basketball was a nice change.

But for an prep school of uttermost renown such as ours, the football team was of highest priority.

I hated this sort of hierarchy.

But that's how things appeared to work in this sphere.

"Ridgeway" had not even got a football team of its own. It shared one with other schools of the district.

During the last years, the stingray football team had been totally suckish.

Was that even a word?

Well, it was hard to describe the lousy performance of the team.

The lack of a home grewn cheerio team must have been one of the reasons.

But we also needed better athletes.

Vincent Blake was of course our greatest hope. As reported, the elder brother of Hollywood children diva Ashley Blake had already been our quarterback with a special permission, thus limited to just a few matches at most. But next year, he was going to be a high school boy and allowed to lead the football squad any time, provided he made the required marks in the other subjects.

The Pacific Coast Academy did not want pupils to neglect their other subjects completely for the sake of training for the football team.

Also, our basketball team would face new challenges.

The eight graders were now bound for high school.

Our middle school team would thus almost have to be rebuilt from scratch.

And high school competitions were a trifle harder.

Would Zoey Brooks be really up to that task? She looked totally promising.

But even at "Ridgeway", I had come to see promising middle school kids failing at high school.

It was such a critical transition time.


13.2. Green Cloth


I strolled the girls' hogh school lounge.

There were several facilities for recreation.

Billiard tables, probably pool, were among them.

I had already heard about some snobbish British cue sports, such as snooker.

The name scared me already.

Was cheating allowed, no, even encouraged, in such a game?

That was no good.

At the pep rally day, Zoey Brooks had tried hard to get all clubs to give a presentation.

Most of them had followed.

But the essence was:

Inspite of having got way over thousand pupils, and growing even bigger for the next academic year, we did not yet offer a real diversity of clubs.

It was an excruciating pity.

Unlike students at many normal schools, most of our kids had not got the opportunity to join community clubs outside the campus.

As a boarding school, we should have been a leading example.

I glared at the green cloth of a pool table.

Coloured balls danced all over it upon a cue strike.

That would have been a cool club.

Certainly, not many schools had yet got one.

There was one in preparation at my step niece's current school, videlicet Belleview.

We could have been a bleeding edge.

Of course, Mr. Bradford was not very likely to allow for such a club.

Or had the lack of a diversity of clubs been the fault of Dean Rivers?

It would then have been my job to change it!

But of course, we needed to gather a few interested members beforehand.

I was now going straight to Beverly and make her publish a poster, informing the kids about my intentions concerning a pool club.

There would be an informal session for the interested kids.


13.3. Informal Conference


Incredibly many boys and girls were gathered in the foyer of "Maxwell Hall", the dormitory block of the high school boys.

Pool was really popular among them.

Even Mark del Figgalo was among them, probably dragged along by his girlfriend Quinn Pensky.

Michael Barret announced some cool tricks. "The white ball witll hit the red ball, making it roll over the seasaw, and then …"

I shook my head. "Michael, you should use a que instead of your flute."

Michael gasped. "What?" He looked at the thing held between his fingers. "Oops!"

Logan and Chase laughed mercilessly.

Unfortunately, there would not be an official club adviser.

For that avail, the captain would have to be very responsible.

Quinn Pensky wanted to be upo to that. She demonstrated this by showing us her self-built high technology cue, with Sniper goggles and sensor tip.

Logan grunted, "what a spaz! I tell you, some of those tunings are not conforming with the rules."

Honestly, I was not really aware of the rules.

But the kids should elect their own captain.

I did not intervene.

And Quinn Pensky was voted captain of the pool team.


13.4. Ping Pong


So, the pool club obtained a lot of support from the kids.

Mr. Bradford did not directly prohibit it. But he did not refrain from issuing a clear warning.

The club was expected to match with highest standards and become really porofitable for Pacific Coast Academy.

Or else, we would have to dig our own tombs.

This was, of course, not exactly encouraging.

It was a strong hypothetical burden.

But I did not recede that easily.

Having started with a new club, many students came up with their own suggestions.

Chase Matthews and Michael Barret wanted to have a golf club.

Unfortunately, the idea of golf balls flying across the whole campus and hitting innocent passer bys was not encouraging.

Miniature golf would have been an option, of course.

But we would have needed someone to build all those stations of a miniature golf course.

This would have taken more than the upcoming summer break.

But I was putting the suggestion into the queue.

A skateboard club, suggested by Danna Cruz, was more in it.

We would come back to this topic later on.

The billiard tables had not been the only green ones in the lounges.

One of them contained a well-frequented ping pong table.

This sounded like another great idea for a club.

Chase Bartholomew Matthews volunteered as a captain for that team.

The tables already existing in the foyers were sufficient for a team.

We just needed a list of interested pupils.

The usual ones signed up, including Nicole Bristow.

The bimbo wench always flang the racket at the balls, trying to hit them.

Zoey Brooks had got a hard time correcting her.

Nicole always looked sheepish after getting taught a lesson.


13.5. Construction Works


During this summer break, the campus would be due to a lot of construction works.

A new hall for elementary school girls was to be added, and many other facilities would need upgrades and repairs.

Our staff could not handle all of it.

For that reason, I had ordered contracts with Joe Braxley[[71]], a greasemonkey running a workshop and a junk yard not far from our campus, and with Robert Gordon, alias Gordy, custodian at "James K. Polk" school.

They would also be in charge with changes for some of the new clubs.

Mr. Bradford had not been approving lightly of all those plans.

Needless to say, I was responsible for all this and would get into trouble in the case of missing the marks staked high by the big boss.

I hoped this to be the only summer break with significant construction activities.

Alas, I was so mistaken.


Chapter 14. Troublemaker Dana


14.1. Zoey's Complaint


My first year atPacific Coast Academy was slowly coming to an end.

The senior prom, my first one here at Pacific Coast Academy, had been pretty boring.

That was probably the fault of Dean Rvers's policy as well.

I was sitting in my office, waiting for the next cup of coffee.

Beverly announced, "Ms. Brooks is waiting outside."

I yawned, "OK, send her in!"

Zoey Brooks hardly bothered us for irrelevant things, unlike many others here.

Beverly called the blond Mary Sue into my office.

Zoey arrived and panted heavily. "Good morning, Ted!"

We shook hands.

I wondered about her concern.

Zoey moaned, "it is about Dana Cruz!"

Dana had been causing dismay and discomfort from the first hour.

I wondered, "is she still at Nicole's throat? Or is there now some problem with her and Quinn?"

The girls were still rotating room mates, as aforementioned.

Zoey replied, "that too. But it's even a lot worse."

I gasped. "Has she stolen your brother's candy?"

Zoey's eyes bugged out.

She grunted, "how do you know?"

In fact, I had not known it.

It was barely anything more than a rough guess, also based on my experiences at "Ridgeway".

I shrugged. "Bad experience with bad girls form my old shool, and bad boys even more."

Zoey moaned, "and it's more than just that. A few months ago, Dustin was sick. He wanted to tell me. I was not in my dormitory room. Dana was there. Dustin asked her niucely about my current whereabouts. She slammed the door shut with an earthquaking noise.[[72]]."

I sighed. "That was a very bad thing to do."

Zoey agreed. "That's why … Dana should be removed from this school!"

I gasped. "That is a bit over the top, I would say?"

Zoey had not stopped there. "I have found out about this nice boarding school in France with a specia anti bully program."

I shrugged. "Which school? Which program?"

She pointed me to some site on the interweb.

I told Beverly to look it up.

A dew seconds later, we were right there.

The school was the "Paris International Academy", and it was located in the outskirts of Paris.

The responsible teachers were André and Monique Chaumont[[73]].

Zoey had already prepared a letter to the parents of Dana Cruz, telling them about that French school. Unlike other students, Zoey used to show up with complete plans and not just with helpless complaints. Zoey had also given me a list of cheap flights from Los Angeles to Paris.

Mr. Rivers would certainly not have hesitated and grabbed gladly each and every straw in order to get rid of problematic pupils at whim. "Pacific Coast Academy is an elitary prep school with highest standards, not a rural district school for hillbilly kids! We need to keep the school clean." He would have taken the letter in person to the parents of Dana Cruz.

But I had to asked myself, "isn't that just running away from our problems?"

Indeed, there will be more students of that sort during the following year.

The programme of giving kids from difficult families in other states a second chance was certainly not exactly going to provide us with hundreds of Zoey Brooks.

Samantha Puckett, for example, was definitely not the nice girl next door.

And her transfer was now already confirmed.

Certainly, it would be for a probatory term.

But, nevertheless, Samantha was not going to be the sunshine of Pacific Coast Academy.

And the board had already approved of the transfer of Jerome Crony, alias Olivary Biallo, to Pacific Coast Academy.

Crony was a member of a bully gang, albeit for curious reasons. He wanted to get away from it.

But this would not be exactly easy, either.

Zoey's suggestion was certainly well meant.

But I could not consider it the ultimate solution. "Sorry, we have not yet tried everything possible to get Dana to desist from bullying younger kids."

Zoey sighed deeply, slightly disappointed.

But I had to promise to do something pretty fast, and this meant: not later than until the impending end of the current academic year.

We shook hands.

Zoey Brooks waved and left the building.

So, what could I do?

Other nearby schools had got similar problems with bullies.

Those troubles at "James K. Polk" school have already been mentioned.

For that reason, I was now considering to talk to Principal Pal from that school in Santa Clarita. I ordered Beverly to call them.


14.2. Bullies At James K. Polk


So, this was the office of Principal Pal, the headmaster of "James K. Polk".

He was about the oldest and most experienced principals at the schools of the whole county of Los Angeles.

And there was such a great number of schools.

The students already feared his impemnding retirement.

Pal wanted to go on an inline skating tour through other continents, especially Africa.

His most likely successor would be their current vice principal, Mr. Harvey Crubbs. He looked more like a cop from Miami Vice[[74]] than a competent headmaster.

Thus the fears were totally in order.

Interestly, Crubbs had decided to become a principal in order to prevent kids from getting to the wrong placces and stuff.

This would have been great. It would have helped Samantha Puckett a lot.

But theory and practice had always been different subjects.

Principal Pal asked, "so you are coming hereto because of our bullies?"

I nodded solemnly. "We have got them too, such as Dana Cruz. We could clearly dismiss them. But I don't think that's the solution."

Principal Pal nodded. "Mr. Monroe, our teacher for textile creation, physical education, life science, and the school journal, is somewhat competent in dealing with them. He also serves our honour council."

I sighed deeply.

We did not even have a honour council at Pacific Coast Academy.

Dean Rivers had always thought of the kids as incapable of ruling these things.

This was oh so totally typical for Carl.

I needed to introduce a lot of new things at my school fo the next year.

This would not be easy.

Executive chairman Garth Burman was not a problem.

But Mr. Bradford was one huge pain in the guts.

Mr. Pal continued, "nu the most important person responsible for nutcases like William Loomer, the head of the worst bully gang ever on the grounds of James K. Polk is Dr. Lowe[[75]] , our school shrink."

I shrugged. "Maybe we just need a school shrink?"

In fact, our school lacked one so far.

This was another excruciating shortcoming.

Suddenly, a little furry animal scurried across the office.

I wondered, "what's that?"

Pal chuckled. "Vanessa the weasel, the unintentional school pet." He shrugged.

OK, that was not so bad, after all.

Quinn Pensky was keeping many pets of that size.

None of the students objected.

Of course, Mr. Bradford was not supposed to hear about this.

But who cared?

The door went open.

Custodian Gordy stumbled in, armed with a giant butterfly net. He was hunting after the weasel. He had not been successful in several years.

Pal chuckled. Finally, he suggested me to go and talk to Dr. Lowe in person.

I gladly accepted that suggestion.


14.3. Dr. Lowe


Mr. Lowe looked really strange.

That was not all that much surprising.

All shrinks were weirdos themselves, often enough worse than their patients.

Dr,Lowe had already been awaiting me. He showed me a rug doll. "This is stan!"

I shrugged. "Hey, Stan?"

Lowe grinned. "Stan is a tool for anger management. Students with anger issues get Stan. They have to beat up the doll instead of other kids."

I coughed. "Cool idea?"

Dr. Lowe grinned. "Unfortunately, some dolls did not like it."

I gasped. "The dolls?"

Dr. Lowe nodded solemnly. "Stan's forerunner, Rex, has run away with a pupil, a certain Robert Shapiro. They are now leading permanent conversations."

I sighed deeply. "A boy is talking with his doll?"

Mr. Lowe confirmed this. "Tell you what? Rex is more sane than its owner. Robert will most likely still do the same as an adult."

I shrugged. "Probably?"

Dr. Lowe complained, "there are so many nutcases. But I also have to work as a bus driver and a vendor for foam fingers in order to get away."

I wondered, "could you handle more than one school?"

Dr. Lowe nodded solemnly. "Sure!"

The decision was now made easy.

A new school psychiatrist was found for Pacific Coast Academy : Dr. Lowe.

He bounced around. "have you heard, Stan? No longer foam fingers!"

Stan replied, "in your dreams!"

I looked aghast.


14.4. Honour Council


Zoey was glad about the negotiations with Dr. Lowe. She also liked the idea of a honour council.

I stated, "we need at least one responsible teacher, and two students as assistants. The latter may rotate, though."

Zoey volunteered gladly for the position of one of the student members of the honour council.

But which teacher would be most qualified?

Zoey suggest, "Mr. Bender sounds like a good choice."

I nodded, "great! I should have thought of him as well."

There was no need to decide on other student members of the homour council right now.

We needed to get it approved by the executive board of Pacific Coast Academy and by the alumni and Mr. Bradford first, anyways.

But it was a great step for fixing the problem of unpleasant pupils like Dana Cruz.


Chapter 15. Summer Break


15.1. Pickup Day


The students' classes were over for the summer.

Pickup day was one of the most chaotic days of the whole year.

Most of the students of Pacific Coast Academy were now only thinking about their plans for the summer break and did not care about any discipline any longer.

Chase Bartholomew Matthews, for example, slammed with his bike against each lamp post and flag staff. He did not even neeed Zoey Brooks to distract him.

It had never be any different during my teenage era.

I hadn't been a good example back then, either.

So what?

Unfortunately, this was not yet time for me to return to Seattle.

The school administration would be busy for a few new days.

Construction works wear on the way.

I was fortunately not needed for supervising the whole of it.

But my presence was needed both at the very beginning and at the end, unless in the case of fiinding a suitable representant.

I had ordered to erect big waypoints showing the way to "Sushi Rox".

This was necessary for accomodating Sam Puckett.

She would be totally hungry upon her arrival.

I wonder why.

But there's no way around it.

So she better find her way to "Sushi Rox" as fast as possible. Otherwise she would most likely wreak some sort of havoc on her very first day.

Melanie Puckett gave more prevcise instructions to Gordy, the responsible superviser for the necessary works. "The letters on the waypoints need to be a lot bigger. Sam is too lazy to read. Or, better, add some pictures of sushi rolls. Sam hates reading. She is able to do it, but she hates it. So …"

Gordy sighed. "OK, but I'm a miserable painter."

Melanie pulled at one of the few loose ends of her hair. She used to wear it all tied up, completelt unlike Samantha.

This was probably the easiest way to tell tem apart.

Gordy suggested, "I may take a picture of one from Kazu's kitchen with Quinn's digital cam. The night shift will then attach it to the waypoint."

I gasped. "Hurry up! 'Sushi Rox' will close down over the summer break! But which night shift are you talking about?"

There was sort of a night shift during the regular academic year, but not during the summer break.

Gordy shrugged and ran away, looking for Kazu.


15.2. Mr. Bitters[[76]]


Coco Wexler would be the girls' dormitory adviser for the next year, too.

But we needed a new adviser for the boys.

The old one had just moved on.

The first day after pick up day was filled with interviews.

Beverly was already on vacations.

The wife of Mr. Beringer subbed for her.

This was a bit awkward.

She could hardly tell the coffee machine from the megaphone. But she finally achieved announcing the first postulant for the job as a boys' dorm advuiser, some Reginald Bitters.

I let him in.

Mr. Bitters was already like fifty years old, much older than any other postulant. He had gathered a lots of experience as a hotel manager. But he appeared very grumpy, as already suggested by his name.

The boys would hardly have a lot of fun with him.

I read through his resume. "You are a champion in throwing hammers?"

Mr. Bitters nodded proudly. "Over twenty yards!"

I moaned, "what? Just twenty yards?"

Mr. Butters grunted, "hey, it's not that sort of throwing hammers. It isn;t about throwingthem as far as possible, but throwing one at a target."

I sighed. "Oh, aimed throwing."

Mr. Bitters wanted to give me a demonstration of his abilities. He picked a carpenter's hammer from his pockets. "Do you see the black spot on that wall over at yonder wall?"

I gasped, "please, no! The walls here are very thin!" I sweated.

Mr. Bitters shrugged and tucked the hammer safely away.

I continued reading. "You are also an international champion in skateboarding?"

Mr. Bitters boomed, "the hell I am!" He unpzipped some medium-sized bag and fetched a skateboard from it,

The pack also contained a helmet and various protectors for the shins and the elbows.

Mr. Bitters stood up. "I have been known as 'The Turk'!" He stepped onto his skateboard.

The name "The Turk" rang a silent bell.

I had heard it like twenty years ago.

He must have been very well known back then.

Dana Cruz had suggested a club for skateboarding.

Mr. Bradforda had given the permission, but only in the case of finding a responsible adult for it.

And that adult should not cost any additional money.

I grinned, "hey! You would be the perfect adviser for our skateboard team, to be founded."

Mr. Bitters complained, "there isn't even half of a half pipe on your campus!"

Wouldn't that have been a "quarter pipe"?

Whatever, I replied, "oh yeah, that will be built over the summer break by Gordy, the responsible man on the campus supervising the construction work."

Mr. Bitters nodded solemnly. "That's OK! I'm so in it!"

We hi-fived.

I picked up my cellular phone in order to call Gordy, telling him to start building the half pipe. "The night shift will not, I repeat, not build a half pipe!"

The contract would be signed just a few hours later.

No other postulant would be able to beat the competence of Mr. Bitters.


15.3. PCA Rocques


A new adviser for the dormitory room was found.

But we also needed to employ other new advisers.

A new reacher for music was necessary for our school band, the school band to be founded, to be precise.

A thuundering voice was heard from beyond the walls.

My desk started shivering and quaking.

Mrs. Beringer sighed. "This must be Mr. Rocque, thepostulant as a teacher for music."

I gasped. "OK, have we already paid our contributions for the earthquake insurance?"

Beverly would have known the answer.

But Mrs. Beringer was not really that much informed. She was only an auxiliary secretary, after all.

I sighed deeply and let Mr. Rocque enter.

His first name was Gustavo.

I wondered about possible ear cuffs in order to moderate the noise to be expected.

Wait, … Rocque?

He must have been big Gustavo from "Rocque Records", producer of the latest record of "Cuttlefish", the most popular band in Seattle.

I shook hands with the monster.

Mr. Rocque started grunting, "OK, so, this is a school?"

I nodded solemnly. "It may look like a spa, but the kids here actually do lear quite a few things.."

Gustavo thundered, "I don't want to teach quite a few things, I want to make the pupils perfect!"

My head started hurting.

Gustavo talked about his career as a record producer.

That was totally impressive.

I sighed deeply. I had to give the job to Mr. Rocque. But I had to hope for a good earthquake insurance.

The walls of my office must have received quite a few cracks from Gustavo's tremendous power voice.

I needed to call Gordy in order to patch the bricks and the mortars.

Likewise, the new buildings would have to be built with super concrete.

I did not want them to get ground to dust within a few years.


15.4. More New Teachers


I also hired Mr. Dren[[77]] for mathemetics.

Unfortunately, Mr. Bradford was very much afraid of the loss of discipline among the elementary school kids since my arrival.

For that avail, there was now a new vice principle for elementary school classes, some Denzel Crocker[[78]] to join our ranks.

That sounded terrible.

Mr. Bradford was such a meanie.

But now I hoped for some restful summer break.

Before leaving my office for the return to Seattle, a last visitor was announced.

It was Kazu. "I have to deposit here the keys for Sushi Rox. Gordy will fetch them from here. Or so he said."

I nodded.

Or did Gordy actually suppose the night shift to do so?

Whatever, I was already on my way out.

Kazu sighed. "Wait! You havegot a ping pongt team, starting with next year?"

I nodded solemnly.

Kazu beamed, "hey! We Asians rock at ping pong! I could be the adviser."

I smiled. "That would be great!"

After a deep sigh, we signed hastily some contract.

The last new club had now found an official adviser.

And now it was time for summer break.

I would need it, thinking of all the upcoming troubles of the next academic year: Samantha Puckett, Jerome Crony, Denzel Crocker, and on and on and on it went.


Chapter 16. Power Failure


16.1. End Of A Family


I had been glad to see Seattle again.

But my joy had only been of exorbitantly slow duration.

Having just made it into my apartment, my wife had shocked me with an announce, "I'm going to get a divorce."

I had been consternated.

During my absence, my wife had started dating Don Flunken[[79]], the richest car vendor of downtown Seattle.

Why did always crap like that happen during my absence?

Of course, the official divorce would take its time.

But my summer break was awfully spoiled by that.

Nevertheless, I needed to plan for the next year in California.


16.2. Samantha Comes To PCA


Summer break was all over.

I had to take Samantha Puckett to PCA.

She begged to not make it there in the company of her goodie two shoes twin sister, Melanie.

The girls' dorms were not yet open.

For that avail, Samantha would have to stay with Coco Wexler for three nights.

Of course, Coco was one poor excuse of a responsible adult. But she was not worse than Samantha's mother, anyways.

Sam thus used to spend as many nights as possible in the apartment of Carly and Spencer Shay, inventing horrible excuses and exaggerations such as that of never getting fed by her mom. Alas, Sam was , as of recent, upset by some new boy in the skyscraper inhabited by the Shays, "Bushwell Plaza".

His named was Fredward Benson.

For some odd reasons, Sam did not get along with him. Thus she was partly glad about a move to California.

As expected, the long car trip made Sam very hungry.

We had to stop each hour at one of the drive-in wayside restaurants.

Nevertheless, Sam was more hungry than a lion upon our arrival.

Too bad "Sushi Rox" was far from open.

Sam wanted to fix that irrelevant problem with a baseball bat and some lockpick wire.

Fortunately, Coco Wexler held an allmost filled can with stuffed Italian pasta in her hand.

Sam did not hesitate slurping the tin's contents in one swipe and start to burp in a very rude manner.

Coco better got accustomed to that. But she was usually not much better.


16.3. Summer Constructions


The campus workers under the direction of custodian Gordy and Joe the greasemonkey had been very busy.

Aforementioned half pipe was already complete.

Samantha's cousin Pinky Turzo[[80]] was said to be an excellent skater and skateboard rider.

Sam said that in a very derogatory manner.

But there was probably more to it.

Now everything was ready for the skateboard club under the direction of Mr. Reginald Bitters alias "The Turk".

But where was the latter? He was needed in order to go through the dormitory assignment list with Ms. Burvich.

Not even Coco had got the list for the new girls here, including Sam.

Ms. Burvich was obviously too grumpy to work efficiently. She was probably rather obsessed with her collection of valuable flasks of fragrance from all over the world.

Gordy was now done here for the summer. "The night shift is going to take care of the rest!"

I sight deeply.

Gordy would hardly ever give up on his obsession with delegating his regular works to the night shift.


16.4. Student Drop Day


Finally, the day of the official arrival of the students had arrived.

My multiply aforementioned step niece Miranda was one of the earliest. She was usually totally lazy..

But my brother was not like that. He had insisted in making it hereto as early as can be.

Mandy kept most likely watching out for the hottest boys on the campus. But she should rather have looked for her dormitory assignment.

There was still quite a bit of chaos.

Neither Coco Wexler nor Mrs. Bitters had been informed about the assignment of the new students.

Dustin Brooks crossed my way, carring a large cardboard box, larger than the little boy himself.

I gasped. I was not willing to hear complaints about child labour on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy.

Zoey Brooks would probably be thefirst to complain.

Dustin grunted, "it isn't that heavy!"

I wondered about the purpose.

Dustin explained, "Logan is establishing a new play station and stereo plant in the lounge of 'Maxwell Hall'. He has gor some spare boom box for you."

I gasped. "Really? Ok, everything is permitted!"

Dustin grinned and trotted away with his huge container.

My cellular phone rang.

I picked it up. "ted Franklin?"

Nicole Bristow was o the other end. "Hey! I have said, before the end of the last academic year, not to share any longer a dormitory room with Dana Cruz. Why am I assigned to her again?"

I sighed deeply. "Sorry, I have not made this stupid arrangements. Isn't Quinn Pensky's dormitory room still a single?"

Zoey Brooks took over for her friend. "Yes, it is!"

I decided to make a room assignment on my own responsibility, just as the year ago. "Nicole Bristow will move in with Quinn Pensky. And no more complaints!" I started sweating heavily.


16.5. Assigning Dorms


According to Beverly, I had got a lot to do during the following days/

But now it was time to look for the unassigned dormitory rooms.

I had grabbed Mr. Bitters and dragged him here to the office of Mrs. Burvich.

Many students awaiting their dormitory assignment werejamming the corridor.

I recognised Samantha and Miranda, but also Lola Martinez, the Hollywood star to come. And there was also Jerome Crony alias Olivary Biallo.

The kids opened some ally for me to pass.

Ms. Burvich was totally grumpy.

Miranda said, "I deserve a nice room!"

Ms. Burvich grunted back at my step niece, "and I deserve a husband. I haven't has a date in a dozen of years."

"Little wonder," I whispered silently.

Mr. Bitter said something to the same avail.

I panted heavily. Then I took a sheet of paper and wrote something on it, declaring it as a coupon over a dinner for two at "Sushi Rocque".

Burvich and Mr. Bitters looked puzzled.

I commanded, "OK, now the two of you have got a date, Friday night at 'Sushi Rox'!" I gave them the coupon. "Go and get ready for it! I will do the dormitory assignments in here!"

The two of them gasped and looked really dumbfounded.

I had just assumed even more duties.

But it had to be.

The students could not spend all their day here.

Lola Martinez was the first in the queue.

That one was easy.

I decided, "you go to '101 Brenner Hall'!"

Lola smiled and walked away.

After sending Nicole over to Quinn, there was now a free spot in this dorm with Zoey Brooks and Dana Cruz.

Olivary Biallo panted. He needed to be save from Billy Loomer and "Buzz" Rodriguez.

I found pretty fast an empty room in some hall for an eight grader. "It's '99 Rivers Hall', so go and see!"

Biallo disappeared.

Samantha Puckett moaned, "I want a bed in the kitchen of 'Sushi Rox'."

I shook my head. "Between sea weed and dead fish?"

Sam growled, "I love tuna!" She would have to ask Kazu about that.

I found her an equally hitherto empty room.

Sam growled, "I will ask Kazu! You can bet your hindside on that!"

Miranda was impatient.

But there was one free spot in a room with Melinda Crenshaw and some Tracy Baldwin[[81]].

The next guy in the queue was a sixth grader named Matthew Palmer Noid[[82]].

I had to send him to some hitherto unoccupied room.

The next guy, Eli Pataki[[83]], would be sent the same way as Olivary Biallo.

This was still going to be a long day.


16.6. Night Shift


Fortunately, Gordy had only been here for the summer break and was now about to return to "James J. Polk".

Otherwise I would have to hear him delegate his tasks unto the night shift.

My unexpected task of assigning dormitory rooms had taken until the evening hours.

Now I had to continue my official tasks.

This was going to require a night shift.

I had to approve of schedules, curricular, and teacher assignments.

That was going to be a long night.

My eyes started to burn from the neon lights.

Suddenly, my world went dark.

Hey! I was not unconscious or something.

All the lights had gone down on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy.

That sounded like a power failure of the worst sort.

The cause for this accident must have been from "Maxwell Hall", the residence of guys like Logan Reese.

I could guuess that from the noise from over there.

This was going to be confirmed a few minutes later …


16.7. Pictures In The Dark[[84]]


I walked the campus, as black as pitch, with an electric torch in my hands.

It was not easy find my way home.

It was even hard to makeoyt anything going on nearby.

I almost stumbled and tripped over a tent.

Who was erecting a tent , here on the campus?

The "noble hotel" turned out to belong to Chase Matthews and Michael Barret.

The freshmen admitted to being refugees from "Maxwell Hall".

Logan Reese had been running his entertainment station at full power.

That explained the horror noise and the power failure.

The boys better returned to their dorm now. They had got an electric torch on their own.

But Quinn Pensky and the rest of the science club was better going to invent something in order to prevent such a failure from happening ever after. They were geniusses and supposed to be able to do that.

I yawned heartily and called it a day.


Chapter 17. From Past To Future


17.1. Sweat


The first days of the new year at Pacific Coast Academy were connected with a lot of work.

I had to instruct and introduce quite a few new teachers and staff members.

Coach Keller was the most horrible one. He pronounced "sushi" in an unusual manner. He was probably going to ruin the good work of coach Ferguson from the last academic year.

And I could not do anything about it.

Keller was protected by Mr. Bradford.

Likewise, Denzel Crocker, the home teacher of the fifth grades, was really unpopular from the first moment.

The pool billiard club wanted me to do the first shot on their official pool table.

It went awfully awry.

The cue slipped out of my hands while trying to hit the cue ball.

That sucked.

The kids laighed about me.

I was not ready to do the first run in the half pipe for the skateboard club, though.


17.2. Bender's Time Capsule


I had sometimes been reading in the old yearbooks of Pacific Coast Academy.

This had turned out somewhat amusing, at least from time to time.

Seeing the pictures of alumni could be so funny.

There was even one of Mr. Bender as a sophomore.

Those spectables had been really fashionable back then.

But now they looked really funny.

And Mr. Bender had been a cheerleader!

Well, that had not been as humiliating back then, as compared to now.

But for the kids it was endlessly funny.

Also, they had started to wonder about the toughts of future generations of pupils here at Pacific Coast Academy concerning life at our school in our times.

Thence Mr. Bender had started a class project.

The kids would contribute to a time capsule to be hidden in the soil of Pacific Coast Academy.

I had to approve of the time capsule first, because of the soil and stuff.

Quinn Pensky checked the ground before digging. She did not want to cause and problems for the water supply and the canalisation.

These were serious issues.

But after a few experiments, the geek girl added her "nihil obstat" to the official decree.

Alas, I wondered, "why is the project only for the class of Mr. Bender"?

The question about our future, or, rather, the thoughts of future generations of pupils and staff members at Pacific Coast Academy about us, was an equaly significant one for all of us, pupils of all grade, teachers, staff, and finally also myself.

Thus I commanded, "the time capsule project is for all classes!"

There were a lot of noises.

This sounded not very popular among the more lazy kids, such as Logan Reese and Dana Cruz.

Lola Martinez complained, "in twenty years, I will be the most renowned Hollywood stars ever. People will just have to watch my movies."

I sighed deeply about that attitude.

In any case, the first contribution would have to be mine.

The headmaster needed to be a shining example.

I told Quinn Pensky to take some pictures of my office and my desk, using her modern digita cam.

This way, kids of the future would have it easier to imagine what the admistration of a school in our times had been like.


17.3. Contributions


Samantha Puckett had to appear in my office.

I sighed. "Sam, I have not expected to see you here that soon." Well, I really had seen it coming. But I just had not wanted that to ghappen … wishful thinking … I shook my head.

Sam moaned, "oh, I know."

I asked, "so, why have you been sent hereto by Mr. Dren?"

Sam replied, "I had been eating during the classes."

Well, who would not have expected something like that?

And it was even more eident.

Sam held an almost emopty ham bone in her right hand. Now she gnawed at the last remaining bits of meat. Then she started belching rudely.

I gasped. "Sam?"

Samantha Puckett was not impressed. "Hey, I was hungry! So … what to do?"

I replied, "eat more for breakfast? Wait for the big recess?"

Sam moaned, "breakfast was already over an hour ago. And it's still over an hour to go until the long recess."

I sighed deeply.

Sam wanted to throw the bone through the open window, hoping to hit some teacher. "Mr. Dren annoys me big time. But also Mr. Crocker."

I shook my head. "Sam! I suppose you want to contrinute the ham bone for the time capsule?"

Samantha choked. "The time capsule? Oh, sure! Of course I want people of the future to know what we ate during these days!" She beamed proudly.

I nodded solemnly. "OK, I'll talk to Mr. Dren. No detention and no entry in the folder." I was wiping my sweating forehead. I would have hated letting Sam start with detention or so, right during her second week. "But you have to go regularly to your sessions with Dr. Lowe."

Sam sighed deeply. She had been at various therapists, including some short-term boyfriend of her mother.

Nothing had hitherto turned out suitable.

I shook hands with Sam and sent her back to her classes. I still had to prepare my talk afor the first teachers' reunion of the academic year.

Mr. Bradford had announced his presence.

Beverly was already afraid of his appearance.

But Mr. Bradford could not shout as loud as Gustavo Rocque, our new teacher for music.

Beverly announced, "Mr. Matthews is here!"

I was dazed. "Chase Bartholomew Matthews? Why?"

Beverly shrugged.

I let her call the bushy head in.

Chase arrived. "Oh, hi Ted."

We shook hands.

Chase blathered, "OK, I am making a song for the time capsule, about our life here at Pacific Coast Academy."

I shrugged. "That's a good idea!"

Chase smiled. "Great! We wanted to ask Mr. Rocque, the new teacher for music, for his help."

I nodded. "Why not?"

Chase panted. "He said someything like … our song sucks. He did not just say so. He thudered it across the hall."

Aw, I had felt some sort of earthquake, earlier this morning.

That must have been the reason.

I'm going to talk to him.

Chase sighed. "Oh, when will the time capsule get dug out again?"

I could not answer this. "Dunno, maybe never?"

Chase sighed. "I have accidentally dropped something wrong into the capsule. May I retrieve it?"

I needed to know what.

Chase stammered "er … I … Michael … not so important."

I shrugged. "If it isn't important to you, it may stay where it is."

Chase sighed, all disappointed.

There was something fishy.

Chase walked sadly away. he was probably trying to spy other kids' contributions.

I called Gustavo Rocque into my office.

He had gone a bit too far when shouting at the boys.

Their song may have lacked professional quality.

But this should have been said in a different manner.

The record csar arrived in my office. He was very upset about getting bothered during the great recess. On the other hand, he had been able to talk Lola Martinez and Ashley Blake into contributing for the time capsule. He talked about the times of the start of his career. "The memories of your beginnings will always be something special."

Neverrtheless, I had to talk about his rude demeanour towards the high school freshmen.

Gustavo explained, "The song was good. But I don't want 'dood', I want 'fantabulous'!"

I sighed deeply.

Was there any way to talk any reason into the rock solid skull of Mr. Rocque?


17.4. Red Handed


Three days later, the capsule was buried and conceiled.

All of the students had contributed.

Dana Cruz had been the toughest nutcase. "In twenty years, I will be a martial artist beating up everyone daring to ask me about my past!"

Strangely, coach Keller had been able to convince here. He had contributed a paiir of chop sticks, by the way.

Now it was already late at night.

The rain was flooding the campus.

The weather had been foretold by some Walter Nichols.

He had promised nice qweather for five days to come.

And what was that?

I would never trust that messy freak again.

His main rival, Bruce Windchill[[85]] , had got better hair, anyways.

I had forgotten the key to my new apartment in my office, and therefore needed to fetch it from there. I crossed thecampus.

There were some movements in the dark.

I activated my electric torch and gasped. "Chase? Michael? What are you doing here?"

The guys looked consternated. Each of them was wielding a shovel.

There was already some heap of mud and morass.

It was the location of the hidden time capsule.

I panted and asked Chase again. "What are you doing here?"

Michael squealed, "CXhase, I told you, it was no good idea!"

I grunted, "what was no good idea?"

Chase broked down. "I wanted to see the contribution of Zoey Brooks."

That was not realy surprising after the play from last year.

Chase was still secretly hankering after her.

Zoey had been contributing a short movie about her life here at Pacific Coast Academy. She had said something about her friends.

Chase was desperate to know about Zoey's words about Chase himself.

I shook my head. "Have you got so little confidence in Zoey?"

Chase looked aghast.

Then I sent the boys bck to their dormitory room.

They would not get punished by the school for it.

But life would certainly punish the bushy guy for making a fool of himself for the blond Mary Sue, sooner or later.

I walked on. "The night shift will take care of that mess."


Chapter 18. Stingray Spirit


18.1. Elections


Two weeks later, the new class presidents had all been elected.

There had been quite a few problems in that process, though.

Once more, Logan Reese had turned out as the supreme trouble maker. He was of the opinion of girls not being allowed to the office of a class president. Thus he tried to boycott the impending election of Zoey Brooks rigorously at any cost by means of bribery.

I had to cancel the elections of the class president of the freshmen for that avail.

What to do in such a situation?

There had been no case of precedence.

Of course there had been no female class president before going educative.

nd during the first year of coeducation, girls were not yet well know enough to even get suggested.

I had to inform Garth Burman.

The board's executive chairman came down and declared Zoey Brooks to the new class president.

Such an intervention was possible according to some less well known paragraph in the book of rules of Pacific Coast Academy.

Burman also remarked, "such a dixtation is only valid for three months, though."

I shrugged.

The first pep rally of the academic year was in front of us.

It included the presentation of the new athletic teams of the year, and also that of the class presidents.

This way, we wanted to raise the team spirit of the school.


18.2. Presentations


I had to give a speech at the opening of the rally day.

This was not really a great task.

Pupils hated listening to long speaches.

Thus I restricted to a really short one, a two liner. "Welcome to the first PCA Pep Rally of this academic year! Let's start!"

The kids applauded.

The presentation of the new class teachers of elementary school classes was up to Denzel Crocker.

He was really crumpy and weird.

I could not really listen.

He started talking about godparent fairies of the elementary school kids and what not.

Dustin Brooks, the little brother of Zoey Brooks, had been elected class president of the fifth classes, by the way.

The elected pupils just stood up and waved around briefly.

This would be different for the middle- and high school classes.

Mr. Bender was responsible for the middle school classes. "OK. This year, three competent students among the high school grades were chosen in order to represent their respactive grade."

The kids grinned.

Mr. Bender continued, "The sixth grade kids are represented by Matthew Palmer Noid!"

This guy of Irish origin stood up and cheered with his fellow middle school kids.

Samantha Puckett was not happy about this. She would have preferred to get selected. Now she grunted viciously. "Lame!"

Mr. Bender continued, "the seventh grades are represented by Melanie Puckett!"

Samantha's mood was now even worse.

She envied her monozygotic twin sister to the death for her greater popularity.

It would be a tough piece of hard work to get the blond demon to calm down.

I was proud of Melanie, though.

The upperclass men and women would finally be represented by aforementioned Eli Pataki.

The latter had already been class president at his former school, "Rocky Road". He had made it to Pacific Coast Academy due to the recommendation of some alumnus. "Dean Rivers sucked. I would not havewanted to made it hereto under his rule. But you are quite different."

I felt flattered.

But now it was my task to pass the word to Mr. Toplin[[86]] in order to present the new class presidents of high school.

This teacher growled, "the new class president for the freshmen is … Ms. Zoey Brooks!"

Zoey stood up.

Many cheered for her.

But Logan had bought many kids to boo against her.

This was by no means fair, of course.

Melinda Crenshaw got voted as the class president of the sophomores.

The juniors would be represented by Miles Brody, aforementioned book monger.

Last but not least, some "Deke"[[87]] was announced class president of the seniors.

We counld move on.

The high school basketball team, coached by aforementioned Mr. Keller, would consist of Zoey Brooks, Logan Reese, Chase Matthews, Dana Cruz, and Michael Barrett.

Aforementioned Vince Blake was confirmed as the new official quarterback of the football team.

Our baseball team would, once more, be trained by Carl Bubba[[88]]. It had always been the laughing stock of the school.

Carl was accidentally the boyfriend of Coco Wexler, multiply mentioned dormitory adviser of the girls.

This was certainly no good omen for our baseball team.

And then there was that uncomely chapter with the cheerleaders.

This year, new girls such as my step niece Miranda had added significantly to the cheerrio squad.

But there was still need for external cheerios from nearby schools..

Our goal was that of becoming independent withing two years.

Thus we had to go through quite some efforts in this field.

Melanie Puckett had been elected captain of our cheerio squad, again much to Samantha's dismay.

Now it was time for the school band.

Gustavo Rocque entered the arena. "I do not want 'good', I want 'fantabulous'!"

The hall started trembling.

But I was not sure.

The current band consisted of flautist Michael Barret, guitarist Chase Matthews, trombone players Quinn Pensky, Samantha Puckett, and Melanie Puckett, some violinist[[89]], and some violoncellist[[90]].

Was Gustavo really able to create a good band with them?

I had really got my doubts.

Helen Baxter had already offered her support. She was the new adviser for the drama club.

This was one great reinforcement.

Helen dreamt of becoming one day a principal of a specialised school for actors and other performance, at whatever level.

"Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts" or "Palmwood" would have been plain great for that very purpose.

Ashley Blake had been the one to suggest Helen for such a responsible position.

Gustavo Rocque was also up to writing a new school anthem.

This was bitterly needed.

Why had I not thought about it earlier?

Well, at least the task was now in the most competent hands ever.

Now it was time for Mr. Bitters to present his skateboard team. "The following pupils will be in our team for the sectionals: Logan Reese, Dana Cruz, Melanie Puckett, and Miranda Franklin."

Melanie had been chosen as the captain of the team.

Samantha was now even more dismayed. Shge hated Mr. Bitters, anyways.

The freshly founded pool club was then introduced by Quinn Pensky.

The geek queen talked a lot about the appropriate choice of cue sticks. "Unfortunately, we have not got our own woodshop."

I sighed deeply.

This sounded like a severe gap.

I had to do something big about this.

"James K. Polk", for example, had got that great woodshop teacher, Mr. Chopsaw.

He was rumoured to consist to at least sixty per cent of solid wood.

Just the kind of wood was disputed among the students at "James K. Polk".

Some thought of oak, others of yew, or maple.

Quinn had already selected her team for the sectionals. "Melanie Puckett, Michael Barret, and Mark del Figgalo." Then she dfemonstrated a new collection of high technology cue sticks, unfortunately not conforming withg the rueles of the national pool association.

The other clubs and teams followed with their presentations.

The whole event had demponstrated a lot of enthusiasm, both of the pupils and of the staff.

Unfortunately, our band could not yet come up with some decent jingle.

Mr. Rocque's job had just started.

But things would become more interesting during the next months.

The atmosphere was great, anyways, inspite of evil spoilers like Logan Reese.

Would thsi stay the same during the following months?

According to Mr. Bradford's recent statement, the pressure burdening our teams would be much harder during this season than during my first academic year.


Chapter 19. Halloween Party


19.1. Homecoming


This year's homecoming has been more important than last years'.

The organisation of homecoming events already start in spring.

Thus I had not been completely responsible for last year's organisation.

For my arrival at Pacific Coast Academy had taken place at the end of the summer break.

And at this point, a lot of the mess was already done.

This year was totally different.

Mr. Bradford had already been suspicious during the very last year. This time around, he would scrutinise my work here in some even more critical manner.

And the list of guests was even more impressive.

Principal Pal from "James K. Polk" was an alumnus of Pacific Coast Academy, and so was Malcolm Reese, the father of Logan Reese.

Interestingly, some of the alumni had made it very far.

One of them lived nowadays in France. It was no other than Mr. Butler. He had once upon a time founded "Butler Hall", last year's residence of girlls like Zoey Brooks, Dana Cruz, Nicole Bristow, and Quinn Pensky. At Paris, he had also been a guest teacher for some boarding school.

And it had been the prep school suggested by Zoey Brooks for Dana Cruz.

Zoey had probably heard about that school by searching for the namegiver of her residence hall.

According to Mr. Butler, the boarding school inParis could learn a lot from us.

Thus he had always been in favour of receiving a few of their teachers for further instruction.

Really, our executive chairman had already arranged such a visit.

The teachers from Paris would be Mr. André Chaumont and his wife Monique[[91]] .

That visit was scheduled for the very end of October, not much after "Homecoming Week".

There was little time left for me to prepare it.

Fortunately, Garth Burman had already arranged most of the thing.

The alumni were overall pleased by the changes. They were especially keen on Vince Blake as the new quarterback of our football team.

The expectations were high.

Everyone deemed it necessary to win the state finals during the next four years.

This was quite some responsibility.

And Carl Rivers had probably been talking about exactly this kind of distress when doubting my abilities of ruling an elitary prep school like Pacific Coast Academy.

But I was not going to give in.


19.2. Halloween


Halloween parties had got a long tradition at Pacific Coast Academy.

The most important part was the so-called "haunted house".

Freshmen of our high school decorated one of the less used buildings on our campus as a spooky mansion for the entertainment of the elementary school kids.

Unfortunately, this year, Logan Reese voted himself the boss of thi mission. He had got thge oney, he paid for the equipment, he was thus the one to command the others around.

Things were always that simple for Logan Reese.

I could not trust the peace. On the other hand, I had to take care of the visitors from France.

This was a problem.

I had not really learned much of France.

But Zoey Brooks was an expert for that language.

Thus I decided to leave her in charge with showing André and Monique Chaumont around. I would check the haunted mansion, instead.

Mr. Bender stumbled across my way. He told me about all the disguised kids on the campus. He had not been disguised.

But the kids had mistaken him for a hillbilly, especially Nicole Bristow.

I cackled.

But there was one problem with Halloween.

The foreign visitors were possibly not really aware of our traditions and not unlikely to feel threatened by tricking and treating kids, or by grisly disguised.

And there had been quite a few of the latter sort.

Nicole Bristow, usually more scaring by means of her bubbly demeanour, was disguised as one Dorothy from Frank Baum's fairy tale Wizzrd Of Oz. Like Dorothy, Nicole was a girl from Kansas. She had got a fake axe stuck in her back.

This may have caused quite some worries to uninformed viewers.

Michael Barret was dressed as a zombie.

That was totally spooky.

Likewise, Mark del Figgalo was disguised as a mummy, bandaged all over his body.

Quinn Pensky was either disguised as Albert Eintein or as a hobo.

I guessed the former, given Quinn's exorbitantly strong association with science.

Chase Bartholomew Matthews was wearing a sorcerer's costume. Alas, he thought himself as a vampire.

But nobody was willing to believe his interpretation of the costume.


19.3. In The Mansion


Logan Reese had really gone out of his way when featuring the house of horror.

Many elementary school boys, including Dustin Brooks, had been screaming their tongue out when walking through the first part, known as the infamous tunnels of horror.

I had tried hard to appeal to Logan Reese to tone it down, a bit here and a bit there. I would not have wanted to but the whole action.

The elementary school boys would not have enjoyed that, either.

Finally, there was the exit door.

But It was blocked by some strange figure.

A red puddle was soaking the floor.

The figure looked like a corpse. But it started moving and roaring.

This time, Logan had clearly walked over the top.

I ordered him to turn the lights on.

Logan was thoroughly disappointed.

But it had to be.

The walking corpse turned out as no other than Lola Martinez. She was disguised with several white sheets, soaked with strawberry syrup. The little drama queen grinned. "Wow! I must have been really good, wasn't I? Logan?"

The little dandy gasped. "Er, yeah!" He had been a bit afraid of Lola's apparition, as well.

Officially, Lola had been away for the day in order to participate in auditions for a movie to be produced by Malcolm Reese.

A had talked about this with him.

It would be a horror movie.

And, indeed, she was trying out for a horror movie.

This performance was her audition.

The technical production team of Malcolm Reese had provided the mansion with hidden night sight cameras in order to record the scene.

The other kids were thus involuntary background actors.

Well, making this sort of hidden movies with children would have required a prior permission.

Logan had not got it. He had even faked my permission.

Now I was left with the obligation of informing the parents of the scared kids. I hated this duty.

But it had to be.


19.4. Out On The Campus


I met Zoey again on the open campus.

The blond Mary Sue had got a lot to report.


We stumbled into Michael Barret.

He had been dressed as a zombie. He had to stay outside the mansion in order to receive another truck with supplies for Logan's halloween party.

But André and Monique mistook him for a victim of an accident with bad injuries. They wanted to take him to the hospital.

I had got a hard time dissuading them from doing so. I taked about masked balls and our Halloween tradition.

Unfortunately, they knew about a great opera by Giuseppe Verdi, Ballo Delle Maschere.

In that play, a noble man was assassined by a masked participant.

Now they were really concerened.

I brought them back to the foyer.

There we met Mark del Figgalo, dressed as a mummy.

They were afraid of him.

But I could convince them of Mark's inoffensive demeanour.

Mark had actually been fleeing from Nicole Bristow.

She must have mistaken him for a cute boy in disguise.

I would have loved seeing her face after the removal of the mask.


I chuckled mercilessly. "Poor Nicole!"

Of course, Quinn Pensky would not have liked this situation at all. She was obnoxiously jealous at times.

Zoey had to report a lot more."André Chaumont has mentioned Simon[[92]] , a boy at his school in France wishing to make it to Pacific Coast Academy as a guest student."

I nodded solemnly.

Already Mr. Butler had suggested some exchange program.

I had to consider that possibility more closely.

Now it was my time to talk about the haunted mansion.

Zoey was consternated. She was not content with Logan's abuse of Dustin as an involuntary background character of a horror movie. She would do everything in order to talk her parents into threatening "Reese Corporatiob" with legal steps.

That was certainly not a nice consequence of this Halloween party.

And Mr. Bradford would not be pleased by things like these going on on his campus.

Where was that leading us?

I had to fear the worst.

That was real Halloween horror!


Chapter 20. The Stench


20.1. Chemistry


As aforementioned, the teachers for science at Pacific Coast Academy were way less competent than desirble.

For that avail, Mr. Sweeny would reinforce us after the following summer.

But for now, I was stuck with the teachers already available at our school.

And this was less than satisfactory.

Mr. Gangrel[[93]] , this time responsible for the lab classes of the fifth and sixth graders, was no exception. He was totally unable to interest his pupils in science.

Dustin Brooks was very busy in those classes and very responsible in general, thus he was used by Mr. Gangrel in order to try to control the marauding class.

Unfortuinately Samantha Puckett was one of the more difficult pupils.

But who would have expected anything different?

Samantha was bored to death by the foolish teacher. She saw thus the only sense in lab classes in the possibility of blowing up things or causes obnoxious stenches.

Her lab partner, Henry Nolston[[94]] , was absolutely overburdened.

Mr. Gangrel had been forced to reassign Dustin Brooks as Samantha's lab partner.

But I deemed this problematic.

Dustin was busy and smart, but impossibly omnipotent.


20.2. Skunk Alert


At the same time, some strange little mammal was haunting the ca,pous.

This time, I am not talking about any of Quinn Pensky's pets.

Those were safely tucked away in a cage in her dormitory room.

Also, I am not talking about Elvis, a puppy kept by Zoey and her friends.

That dog had deisappeared from Pacific Coast Academy a few months ago.

Dana had actually found its real owner.

Encounters with the mammal in questions were usually much less pleasant.

More precisely, the animal alluded to was a skunk.

Several pupils had already reported having crossed its way.

Until some points, the encounters had not been too bad.

None of the students was covered with an excruciatingly penetrant stink.

But today, all this changed.

Logan Reese and Michael Barret had been hearing a litten in the nished, They went to look it up.

But the "kitten" was really … well … a skunk.

Now the chef of the cafeteria has called me.

The boys had just ordered a;ll the available tomato juice.

According to some rumours, this would work well against the stink caused by an encounter with a skunk.

I should have bet on the boys drinking the juice instead of bathing in it.

Drinking was pointless against the smell.

I told the chef, "it is all OK."

The chef of the cafeteria was a bit dim witted, anyways.

I wanted to avoid too much trouble.

But there was one big problem.

In a few weeks, the governor would show up on the campus.

Of course I did not want any scandal.

And an encounter of some highly influential politician with the skunk would have been not just a scandal, but a public affront.

The same was valid for an encounter of the former with a pupil covered with a skunk's smell.

So the skunk had to be found as early as possible. Was it even just one skunk?

Or were there many of them?

Now I remembered a weasel haunting the locker halls of "James K. Polk".

Custodian Gordy had always been eager on catching it. Maaybe he had already been successful?

I decided to call Mr. Wright, the new principal of "James K. Polk".

Aforementioned old principal Pal was now still active as a teacher for social studies.

Beverly arranged the call.

Mr. Wright picked up.

I told my colleague from Santa Clarita about the situation here on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy.

Mr. Wright gasped. He had to think about Gordy and the weasel.

According to students' witness, Gordy had hitherto always failed tragically.

But Mr. Wright was willing to lend us his custodian for the next weekends and the winter break.

I sighted for relief.

The governor was expected in January.

This left us still with some time to get rid of the furry bugger.

I thanked Mr. Wright for his support.

It was important to know to be able to trust your neighbours in certain situations.

And this was also valid for schools in the same county.


20.3. Zoey's Request


The next afternoon, I sat in my office, going through the official papers for the impending winter break.

Alaso, the sectionals in skateboarding were around the corner.

This would be our team's first participation.

Beverly announced the arrival of Mrs. Brooks.

I let her in.

Zoey did not seem to be exactly in a very pleasant mood. "Ted, I'm sorry to butt in, but …"

I asked the blond Mary Sue to sit down first.

Zoey panted and did exactly as told. "OK, Samantha Brooks is a shame and an embarrassment for Pacific Coast Academy. She needs to be sent off the school, as soon as possible."

I gasped. "Dustin?"

Sam was not easy to get along with.

But thta was by no means a reason to get her expelled after a few months only.

I asked Zoey to tell me some reasons.

She moaned, "The blond demon has seduced my little brother."

I choked. "Sam has done what?"

Zoey grunted,


at the end of some chemistry lesson, Sam has hit on my innocent little brother. She has even written her cellular phone number onto his body.

Now they are dating.

Sam has got the worst possible influence on Dustin. She is older by almost two years. And she has already kissed boys … on the mouth.

This can't be tolerated.


I sighed deeply.

These were really heavy accusations.

Alas, it did not sound implausible.

I was compelled at least to admit that.

But even Samantha Puckett deserved a second chance.

I refused to get Samantha expelled before the end of her official probatory time. But I promised Zoey to take care of that.

This was not an easy task.

Dustin did not appear to be singular case.

Vice Principal Denzel Crocker had already reported a few similar cases.

Parents of other elementary school boys would sooner or later feel concerned and intimidated.

The renown of Pacific Coast Academy would suffer severely.

Last but not least, I already heard Mr. Bradford preaching to the choir.


I have already told you.

Boys and girls at the same school means nothing but turmoil and perversity.

The girls are nothing but vile seductresses.

There is only one way to protect the young boys, given into our hands by paying parents, from those detrimental incidents.

Pacific Coast Academy must become once more a school exculsively for boys, just as always planned by my father.


20.4. Naked


One day had passed by.

Coach Keller was in my office, without prior notification. He grunted, "Barret and Reese … they are a shame for our school!"

OK, Logan Reese was a foolish dandy.

Michael Barret was not exactly the brightest bulb in the socket, either.

But this was no reason for getting upset.

I looked puzzled.

The coach grunted, "they have just been crossing the campus … all naked!"

I choked brutally.

That was too much.

I had to order the culprits into my office.


20.5. The Stench Killer


Michael and Logan were now in front of my desk.

I rebuked them severely for their decadent demeanour.

But they seemed to have some sort of an accuse.

Michael explained,


We had been dressed.

But our clothes started dissolving.

All of this had started after getting sprayed and squirted with Quinn's new deodoriser.

We reorted to wearing plastic sacks from the custodian's closet.

But those dissolved as well.


He swore to be innocent.

It sounded like a fairy tale.

But Quinn's inventions had often proved to be stuffed with side effects.

I decided to call Quinn Pensky.

Beverly connected the wires.

Quinn picked up her phone. She could not help but utterly confirm my expectations. She had actually developed such a spray and applied it to Logan and Michael, due to their encounter with the skunk.

But the deployed chemicals also resolved polymers, fibres contained in modern cloth.

At least she was now working on an improvement.

I released Logan and Michael. But I told them to bath in tomato juice instead of drinking it.

They let their heads hang for embarrassment.


20.6. Sam's Therapy


Mr. Lowe had certainly tried hard to put Sam back to the right track.

But this was not easy.

Sam was not really willing to follow his hints.

I shook my head. "Sam, the situation for the school is not an easy one." I explained my aforementioned thoughts about the probable consequences for the school's future.

Mr. Lowe had heard of hypnotherapy as very efficient.

Sam gasped. But now she told something more. "I need to forget Fredward, get him out of my head!"

I wondered, "which Fredward?"

Sam sighed. "Fredward Benson, the new kid in 'Bushwell Plaza'."

I sighed. "Oh, this Fredward?"

Sam had appeared to hate him.


But he is so hot.

And his butt smells like ham.

I could wedgie him all the time.


She swooned.

I gasped.

Sam explained, "but Freddie has only got eyes for Carly." She sobbed sadly. "I can't take him away from my best friend."

This was really a bad situation.

But maybe Mr. Lowe, knowing about those important details, was now able to do something about it.

Sam promised me to get her fingers off Dustin, though.

This would appease Zoey Brooks.

But it was nothing more than a start.


20.7. Student Teacher For Science


Given te lack of good science teachers at Pacific Coast Academy, I was interested in looking for alternatives.

Mr. Sweeny could not replace three inept teachers at the same time. He nwould need some assistants, student teachers, or whatever.

And there was a programme named Teachers Tomorrow Today[[95]] giving acknowledged high school students the opportunity to start student teaching right now.

Today, the central in Sacramento sent me a preliminary confirmation. They recommended me Mr. Joshuah Nichols from San Diego.

Granted, that was really far.

We would have to grant him a full time scholarship in turn.

But it would certainly be worth it.

Joshuah had failed at his own school in San Diego.

But this was partly because of being too familiar with some of the students.

This would be different right here at Pacific Coast Academy.

I ordered Beverly to write a first invitation for Joshuah.


Chapter 21. The Chase And Michael Show


21.1. Audible Troubles


I was sitting in my office going through some excruciatingly lame paperwork requested for the aforementioned exchange program with Paris.

Beverly's phone rang.

She picked it up. "Ted, there are troubles in the class halls of the high school kids."

I sighed deeply. Then I walked to the phone.

Vice Principal Crocker reported some terrible noise from outside the classes of Mr. Bender.

I had not yet got any clue concerning the things going on.

It was necessary to go over there and look it up in person.


21.2. Student Wars


I entered the class of Mr. Bender.

As expected, the the room was choick full of turmoil and mayhem.

I yelled, "what is going on?"

Dana Cruz, one of the students of that class, replied, "the boys here have insulted us."

I gasped.

That was certainly not a nice thing. But what exactly was it?

One of the guys, videlicet Mark del Figgalo, grunted, "I haven't noticed anything."

But in his case, it was credible.

Mr, Bender sighed. "It seemed to be related to that new web shows. Ever since, giorls and boys fight each other here in this hall."

I had heard about some web show going on from the school newspaper, Daily Stingray.

According to chief redactor Jeremiah Trottman, there was a totally lame show.

But the last session had received decent critics.

I wondered about the whole thing. "Who is responsible for the show?"

According to Mr. Bender, the show was the work of Chase Bartholomew Matthews and of Michael Barret. But also Zoey Brooks and Logan Reese appeared to be involved.

I sighed deeply. I had to call those teens into my office for a few serious words.


21.3. He says — She says


Beverly let Zoey Brooks, Logan Rese, Chase Matthews, and Michael Barret into my office.

I sighed. "You have caused quite some troubles."

Chase sighed sadly.

I asked, "what is going on?"

Chase and Michael argued.

Finally, Michael reported,


OK, Chase and I have started a web show.

At first, it was so tiotally not poular.

We showed a few self made toons and fancy postures.


Logan interjected, "it was totally lame and disgusting!"

I looked at Logan. "It's Michael's turn to talk."

Michael nodded. "It is!" He grinned triumphantly at Logan.

The spoiled brat grunted with disgust.

Michael continued,


The Daily Stingray was really mean to us.

But then Logan and Zoey, accidentally present during the recording of one of our sessions, started fighting over some boys vs. girls stuff in the backgground.

That was annoying.

We had to send them away.

But the next day, the Daily Stingray praised our show, precisely for that dispute.

We thenceforth made it a segment of our show, the main segment.

This made us popular, ever since.


OK, that explained it.

The students of this now popular school continue the debates from the show during the classes.

This was of course nowhere near acceptable on the long run.

I had to do something about it.

Prohibiting the show would have been a horrible deed.

I panted heavily.

Would postpoing the show to friday night have been a solution?

The idea was that of moving the debates outside the classes.

I suggested them to do that.

But this was not without problems.

At least it was worth a try.

I wondered about there technical experience.

Neither Michael nor Chase were any good with web cams.

And that totally explained the lameness of their original show.

Quinn Pensky could have served as a tech producer. But she was busy with other things.

One of them involved bimbo wench Nicole Bristow.


21.4. Nicole In Trouble


According to Mr. Kirby, Nicole's teacher for algebra, Ms Bristow was sinking pretty low.

Nicole kept on being poorly concentrated.

Zoey Brooks had suggested to tell her parents to send Nicole to a school just for girls. "She is simply not bearable at a coeducative school like ours."

Quinn Pensky had already suggested hypnotherapy.

This had helped well in the case of Lola Martinez.

Her former teacher for acting, Mr. Sikowitz, had suggested this in order to let Lola concentrate better on her rôle.

This was paramount for any actor.

Dr. Lowe had heard of this. He was now going to take care of Nicole's problem.

Samantha was now in a session. She tiold us to be very happy about the current situation caused by Michael's show. She would have loved to provoke the kids into fighting more. "Yeah! Sock them all! Why sort them out?"

Finally, Quinn Pensky showed up. She dragged Nicole Bristow in.

The bimbo wench from Kansas was not yet convinced.

I wondered about the reason for her distraction.

Nicole moaned, "there are three totally cute boys in my algebra class, just in front of me. Those are Harry Matthay, Lance McCallister, and Daniel James. Sometimes they evel look back at me." She sighed deeply. "I can't help staring at them during classes."

I pondered about simply putting Nicole into the front row.

Nicole sighed. "I would just turn my head around all the time."

I had got another idea. "We can move Nicole into a class with only ugly boys."

Nicole wondered, "such as whom?"

I scratched my head. "Mark del Figgalo?"

Nicole Bristow coughed her lungs empty. "Not cute!"

Quinn's eyes turned glassy.

She protested, "what? You dare to call Mark not cute, you ungrateful bitch?" She stomped her feet and walked away.

I sighed deeply.

That had not been my intention.

On the other hand, putting Nicole consistently into classes with ugly boys would not have solved the problem for good.

Thus Mr. Lowe started hypnotising Nicole Bristow. "The Pacific Coast Academy is chock full with boys … cute boys …"

Nicole swooned. "So … cute …"

Mr. Lowe continued, "but you will no longer see them as such. You will henceforth see them as Mark del Figgalo."

Nicole choked for disgust. "Mark!" She was close to puking.

Dr. Lowe continued, "you will wake up in five … four … three … two"

Nicole woke finally up. "That didn't even hurt."

Mr. Lowe nodded solemnly. "Let me test it." He suspired like nobody's business. "The next one please, Nicholas Webber!"

That bimbo guy was treated by Lowe due to being exorbitantly addicted to cute girls.

Beverly called him in.

Nicholas arrived.

Nichole gasped. "Mark!" She almost puked onto her own shoes.

The hypnosis thing seemed to work.

Nicholas Webber choked. "Coco!" He he was up and away.

Dr. Lowe must have hypnotised him into mistaking cute girls for Coco Wexler.

For the time being, this appeared great.

But would it work out on the long run?

I was not able to tell.


21.5. The Better Teachers


For now, moving Chase's and Michael's show to Friday night seemed to moderate the problems during class times severely.

I have been invited as a special guest for an upcoming show.

It was about the topic "Are men or women the better teachers?"

Alas, I did not yet know the representant of the womens' fraction.

Unfortunately, the lack of a tech producer was going to diminish the quality of their show severely.

Those debate duels would sooner or later lose their novelty.

What would Chase and Michael do thereafter?


Chapter 22. The Black Ball


22.1. Joshuah Nichols


As aforemention, I was up to hiring Joshuah Nichols as a student teacher for science.

Joshuah had had some troubles in the "Teachers Tomorrow Today" programme. HJe had been assigned to a class of elementary school schids. And he had been overburdened by this challenge.

Obviously teaching at elementary schools required totally different qualityies than teaching at high schools.

Dustin Brooks, for example, would probably have become a fantastic teacher at elementary schools.

The same I dared to say about Carly Shay from "Ridgeway".

But Joshuah Nichols was so definitely the high school teacher kind of person. he had brutally overestimated the abilities of his class and tried to make them learn college level stuff.

This, of course, could not have gone well.

Joshuah Nichols was not only a great scientist, but he was also a really advanced pool player, or, talking in the way of the among experts, a pool shark. He was accordingly the captain of his school's pool team.

As aforementioned, our team had recently got its own pool team.

And the regionals for pool billiard were just around the corner.

This way, I could encounter Josh Nichols for the first time upon precisely that event.

Helen Baxter knew Josh fairly well.

He had worked for her cinama in San Diego, videlicet for "Première Theater". More precisely, he was aforementioned kinsman of Drake Parker, now also working as his manager.

But there were now other things for Helen to worry about.

She was the adviser of our drama club. And as such she was responsible for the next school play.

Just as the year before, this had been written by no other than Chase Matthews. It was known as Life And Time Of Kelly Cooper[[96]].

I feared the worst, just as last year.

Chase had written a play in order to make out with Zoey Brooks.

Helen grinned. "The main rôles are Lola Martinez as Kelly Cooper and Ashley Blake as her worst enemy."

Ashley had originally not wanted to perform in a play written by such a dweeb. But then she did not want to leave it all to Lola, either.

I shrugged. "Ashley is such a diva."

Helen shrugged. "That's just life at Hollywood!"

I shuddered.

Helen continued, "the male star will be portrayed by some Spencer Carter from 'Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arta'."

I gasped.

Once more, an extern actor had to be used in order to avoid a bad situation like that of last year.

Said Spencer Carter was by absolutely no means to be confused with Spencer Shay,though. A few weeks earlier, he had also performed in the school play of "James K. Polk" middle school. He was not just a student and actor, but apparently also sort of a student teacher in drama clubs.


22.2. Skunk Hunter


Custodian Gordy was still trying to catch the skunk.

This was not easy.

Unfortunately, skunks, just as weasels, could not read our writing.

Building a skunk trap with an inscription "free skunk food" was thus pretty much pointless.

The governor's visit was already around the corner.

We were really in such a hurry.

Gordy was equipped with a giant weasel net, also suited for skunks. He also used a fake skunk doll and skunk musk. He better succeeded soon enough.

Or else there would be quite some big trouble ahead.


22.3. The Regionals


The location of the pool contest was in Anaheim in Orange county, somewhere between Los Angeles and San Diego.

I always associated orange county with oranges.

There were probably some trees growing hesperidal fruits.

But we had not seen any on our way there.

Our team consisted of four players, videlicet Quinn Pensky, Chase Bartholomew Matthews, Michael Barret, and Mark del Figgalo.

Our opponents were from all over the southern counties of California, including in particular the school of "Belleview" in San Diego county.

The tables looked cooler than those in our lounges.

I did not know why.

They just did.

The judges checked our cue sticks.

There had to be certain limits for the weight and size of those.

And there he was: Joshuah Nichols. He had got a really big head.

I better refrained from mentioning this.

He must have been confronted with this for years.

The first balls were racked.

The game itself was called eight ball pool.

But there were way more than eight balls on the table.

Whjat was that supposed to mean?

According to Quinn, a player had to pot up to eight balls.

OK, that sounded an explanation.

But it was still sounding a bit queer, at least in my ears.

The first balls were about being struck.

This was still practice.

The real matches had not yet started.

Josh Nichols slipped several times.

Drake Parker was in the audience and nodded to his stepo brother, grinning mischievously.

But Josh did not look really convinced.

There was something excruciatingly fishy going on.

Quinn remarked, "with those fools from 'belleview', there will be no troubles for us."

Suddenly, a girl in the age of Dustin Brooks walked up to Quinn. She looked a whole lot like Carly Shay. "Hey, you are that boobette from Pacific Coast Academy, aren't you?"

Quinn gasped. "Boobette? Is that a word? No, it is not a word at all."

The girl went cheeky. "Hey, do you want to get fooled or not?"

Quinn shook her head. "No way! Why would I?"

The strange girl explained, "hey! I am Megan Parker, the step sister of yonder big headed boob." She was talking about Joshuah Nichols.

I asked her, "strange, you look like someone I know from Seattle."

Megan parker replied, "you know my cousin Carlotta Shay?"

I nodded solemnly. "Yes, I do!"

Now I remembered also having heard about Megan Parker.

She had helped promoting the sales of the backpacks designed by Zoey Brooks in San Diego.

Her marketing strategies were rumoured to be very cunning.

I shuddered slightly.

Megan explained,


Drake wants to bet with people about Josh.

Josh has to feihgn playing poorly.

Than people bet against him.

Thus Drake makes a lot of bucks.

I taught Drake this trick.


Now that sounded very fishy.

Quinn was totally self confident. "I will beat anyone, regardless of his trickery."

That may have settled it for Quinn.

But this sort of illegal bets, especially manipulated bets, was not tolerable at school events.

I panted heavily. I had to talk to Joshuah Nichols about that.


22.4. Serious conversation


I talked to Josh in a silent corner


Mr. Nichols!

I am pleased to see you.

However, this betting practice is not legal …

There ares strict rules for official school events.


Josh sighed. "I don't feel good about it. I am forced todo it."

I wondered, "You are forced by whom? And how?"

Josh moaned, "by Drake, my step brother."

I gasped.

Josh explained, "It has to do with some girls' addresses."

I choked. "That's not a reason for illegal bets, let alone manipulated ones."

He sighed deeply. "I'm ashamed for that."

I nodded solemnly. "I will have to talk a serious word to your brother. Sorry, step brother!"

Then we had to start talking about the proper topic of our conversation, Josh's impending job as a student teacher at Pacific Coast Academy.

Josh was alrready looking totally forward to it.


22.5. The Final Match


Many players had already given up.

Chase Matthews, Michael Barret, and Mark del Figgalo were defeated really early.

Mark had been the first to bit the dust.

Michael had been distracted by some girl.

Chase was mentally absent most of the time, anyways.

After several matches, the great final had been determined.

Quinn Pensky was going to face Joshuah Nichols. She growled, "pool is based on geometry and physics."

Of course, Joshuah knew a lot about the physics of the pool balls. He would be a great teacher for those things like spin, collision, momentum, and stuff.

The match appeared pretty much open.

Each of the two of them had pretty fast disposed with his or her own balls.

Finally, the black ball had to decide.

Quinn Pensky suspired. She calculated a lot.

It was Joshuah Nichols's turn.

He took the cue stick and aimed closely.

The white cue ball hit the black ball, but only marginally and could not move it close to the predicted bag.

Now it was Quinn's job.

The white and the black ball were on opposit ends of the table.

This was the result of Josh's careful planning. He did not want to make it easy for Quinn.

Quinn applied a full massé shot, giving the white ball a sternly curved orbit.

The black ball was hit rolled to the predicted bag, shivered for a moment, and it was finally falling.

Quinn pensky was the new champion. She explained, "The area between the white balkl and the black ball was spoiled by many dirty spots." She had triggered a curved shot in order bypass the critical region.

Josh looked consternated. He had exactly failed weith his previous shot because of the unclean spots on the table.

Whatever, Quinn had won the championship.

It was the first serious victory of our freshly created pool team.

Josh sighed deeply.

Quinn comforted him. "Next year, you may watch me and learn."

Josh sighed deeply. "I hope so."


22.6. Cancelled


Upon our return to the campus of Pacific Coast Academy, I received some new message.

According to Beverly, the governor had cancelled his visit.

Mr. Bradford was instead inviting him to his yacht. He did not trust my organisational skills.

This was really rude. But it helped us.

The skunk was still roaming the campus.

Gordy had tried his best.

But this was not enough.

And the skunk would even remain a threat without the governor's visit.

Helen Baxter had heard about Drake's evil deed. She promised to preach him some hard moral lesson.

These were now the coolest days of the year.

Unlike in Seattle, it was still fairly warm out here in Los Angeles.

This was not always an davantage, though.


Chapter 23. Rooftop


23.1. Chicken Pox


Typical kid diseases such as chicken pox spread on a campus of a school such as hours like wildfire.

Of course we tried to do everything to keep it in a limited frame.

Only in very few cases had the Pacific Coast Academy ever been forced to sent children home because of an epidemia of whatever sort.

At least this had not yet been the case during my office.

And the yearbooks mentioned the last case of such a drastic measure from the seventies.

Now a few new cases of chicken pox had struck our school.

Doc Hollywood decided to insulate the sick kids to the infirmary.

OK, the nurse's station would soon be chock full.

But the infected kids would possibly influence those stuck in the infirmary for other reasons, such as injuries of a cold.

Unfortunately, the location was too small for being able to allow for a strict separation.

Doc Hollywood had thus been forced look for a better solution. "I've already looked up nearby kids' hospital 'St. Illness'[[97]]."

In other words, our students hit by chicken pox would be stationed over there.

This concerned in particularly one Dustin Brooks.

The poor little guy was one of the first victims.

Of course, Zoey Brooks was very picky concerning the treatment of her little brother.

Having him out of her reach would make her possibilities of controlling him a bit smaller.

And that hurt Zoey Brooks a lot.

I sighed deeply.

Doc Hollywood promised to take Zoey to the hospital and back for a daily controlling visit.

The blond Mary Sue sighed for excruciating relief.


23.2. Squirrel Tree


Zoey was just back from her daily visit over at "St. Illness". She appeared particularly worried about the presence of other kids. "I don't trust Ashley Blake."

"Oh, you don't?" I shrugged.

Zoey feared, "Ashley could seduce Dustin in my absence."

I sighed deeply.

But even Zoey could not always be around in order to protect Dustin from "mean seductresses", not even on the campus.

And the hospital had got certain rules, and staff to enforce them.

But Zoey was hard to calm down. And now she had got a different issue to talk about. "The boys don't let us use their roof top."

I wondered, "why would anyone want to use a roof top?" Granted, I had never been on any roof of the dormitory halls.

But those locations were actually offering some place for students to relax.

And even now during the winter weeks, the southern Californian sun was still totally inviting.

I asked, "don't you girls have a roof top, too?"

Zoey nodded solemnly. "But our roof top is ugly."

I wondered, "what do wiou mean?"

There was a big tree growing nexr to the girls' dormitory hall.

This had got two consequences.

Firs, the branches, leaves, and twigs blocked out a lot of sun light.

This was in particular the case during the afternoon hours.

And the kids loved to use this time for relaxing.

And now, even worse, the tree hosted wild animals such as squirrels.

The bestial stink of the excrements of those beasts made the time spend on the roof top not exactly an exorbitant pleasure for the girls.

This was even worse than the one skunk still found on the campus.

The boys denied the girls any access to their roof. According to Logan Reese, boys could not be themselves in the presence of girls.

Of course, Logan Reese would have been the last one to know about biology.

I decided to talk to Mr. Bitters about it, the dormitory adviser ofr the boys.


23.3. The Challenge


Unfortunately, Mr. Bitters was one tough nut. He had probably been bribed by Logan Reese.

Zoey wanted to exclude the boys from the girls' lounge, recently built and thus a lot more modern than the old boys' lounge, in turn.

That was so cheap.

And Nicole Bristow was of course rigorously opposed to it. "The boys are so cute." She could not live without them and needed their presence in the girls' lounge.

Zoey looked aghast at Nicole.

Mr. Bitters made an offer. "OK, I will allow the girls to the boys roof, but …"

There was probably some excessively weird condition.

Nicole and Zoey looked with suspense.

Mr. Bitters continued, "but one of the girls has to beat me in hammer throwing."

I remembered that part of his resume.

Alas, this sounded really dangerous.

I needed to insist in stern security measures.

The situation for the infirmary was bad as it was, even with the migration of the victims of the chicken pox epidemia to "St. Illness".

Nicole squaled, "yeah! I knew it! I love hammers! I would marry one." But then she had to admit, "what is a hammer?"

Mr. Bitters took one of his hammers used for the duel.

Nicole choked. "Ouch! That does not look cute!" She felt thoroughly disgusted.

Her therapy had not made progresses.

Nicole was now more and more afraid of cute boys.

But this did not prevent her from hankering after them.

She was just disgusted upon encountering one and see him transform in her mind into Mark del Figgalo.

Zoey Brooks accepted the challenge. "I will certainly find a girl able to throw a hammer at a target."


23.4. The Duel


The boys from "Maxwell Hall", especially Logan Reese, had laughed their hindsides into oblivion. They did not believe i the possibility of girls being able to use a hammer, at least not a somewhat heavy one.

There was a hammer in Quinn's tool box. But it was very light weight.

And Quinn was a spaz, anyways, at least in the eyes of Logan Reese and his followers.

The day of the duel had come.

Mr. Bitters was heavily armoured.

The same would be valid for any girl challenging him.

This had been my condition for such a duel.

Likewise, the duel took place in an otherwise empty hall, protected with several nets and other means of increasing the security.

Quinn had just positioned a web cam into the back of the hall in order to control the combattants.

The participants had to hit a nail at a distance of up to twenty yards with a thrown hammer.

Zoey Brooks was the first girl to face the challenge.

Quinn, Nicole, and Lola were feeling too feeble.

Lola had absolutely got no clue as of holding a hammer, anyways.

Dana Cruz did not care. She would have preferred to tear out the oak with her own bare hands, thus destroying the obstacle separating her from the evening sun.

My step niece still hoped to be invited by the boys to the roof, especially by Vince Blake.

And not even Logan Reese was able to deny Vince this privillege.

The football team had been improving severely with Vince as a full time quarterback.

Zoey sighed sadly.

Everything was once more up to here.

The blond Mary Sue grabbed the hammer and shrugged. She suspired deeply. Then she took elan and released the tool into the general direction of the nail. But she failed miserably. She was now thoroughly sad about having disappointed her fellow girls.

Mr. Bitters and the onlooking boys cheered fanatically.

Was there no girl left willing to accept the challenge of Mr. Bitters?

It almost looked like this.

But then Sam Puckett showed up. She was only a middle school girl.

But Mr. Bitters had stated : "any girl!".

Thus Sam's challenge had to be accepted.

Of course, the security rules were valid even for Sam.

The security outfit had to be updated for Sam't size.

She was smaller than Zoey Brooks.

But this was not impossible.

Finally, Samantha Puckett entered the duel hall. She took elan and … struck the nail in one blow.

Mr. Bitters looked aghast. "The same thing nopw woth eyes blindfolded and after spinning thrice around your axis!"

I shook my head.

Sam accepted this challenge, too.

Mr. Bitters was spinning himself dizzy. He took elan, and he missed the nail narrowly.

It was now Samantha Puckett's turn.

She took the hammer, covered her eyes, and span around.

But this did not affect Samantha's concentration.

She took elan, and she hit the nail precisely.

Mr. Bitters could no longer find an excuse.

Sam took off her blindfold. "Yeah! Take that!" She bounced around, crying, "Sam is the winner! Sam is the winner!"

The boys' roof top was now open for girls.

Zoey was a bit consternated. She owed it all to "one mean seductress". But she had really wanted the access to the roof top. Thus she walked up to Sam. "Listen, do you still want Dustin?" She panted. "Doc Hollywood will take me to him tomorrow after the classes." She invited Sam to come with her.

Alas, Sam was no longer interested in Zoey's little brother. She just looked at Zoey in a disgusted manner and walked away.

Zoey shrugged sadly. She did not feel comfortable owing anything to Samantha. What could she do about it?


Chapter 24. Droid Warriors


24.1. Plansd For The Rooftop


The girls were now once more allowed to the boys' roof top.

But of course it would soon be overrun.

The situation could hardly stay as it was.

My idea was that of getting the girls' roof top imporoved.

But that was not easy.

As aforementioned, Dana Cruz was up to removing the big and sturdy tree in front of her dormitory hall with her own fists.

But environmentalists would not like that.

And we had heard about some very violent ones, such as a certain Tootie Vega[[98]].

It was not a good idea risking an encounter with them.

The most influential one was certainly Edwin Begly[[99]], a hollywood actor already having performed in the first movie of Malcolm Reese awarded with an Oscar.

Helen knew him very well. She had scheduled a première performance of Edwin's next movie at our campus cinema.

Any plans of hurting the oak or the squirrels would upset him to absiolutely no end and cause some sort of a scandal.

And we could not afford any scandals.

Mr. Bradford was hardly thinking high of the environmentalist freaks, but he definitely hated scandals on the campus, triggering masses of annoying journalists like Jessica Warner[[100]] or Kitty Monroe[[101]]

I heard Cal, still adviser of our science club, for possible ideas.

The freak from Caltech talked about a few possible improvements. "The stench of the squirrel excrements may be covered and neutralised with chemicals."

I sighed.

But the oak could not be made transparent or something like that.

Cal talked about some sort of artificial sun.

That sounded a bit crazy.

Quinn had already started on working on it.

That did not exactly make it sound any less weird.

Unfortunately, the minds of the science club kids were set on something different.

Wayne "Firewire" Gilbert had dragged the whole team into the battle robot league.

This was a contest for teams building and controlling a little battle robot in a lethal fight.

That sounded brute.


24.2. Demonstration


Our battle robot team would come to face very powerful opponents, such as the team of "Belleview" and that of "James K. Polk".

Quinn explained, "with Mindy's help, I have invented the portable hyperbolic photon cannon."

I did not understand it.

But it sure sounded somewhat destructive.

Mindy growled, "look at that brick wall!"

I saw a sturdy construct of tiles and lime mortar. "So your laser beam can scratch it? "

Quinn looked itnsulted. "Scratch it? Just scratch it?"

Mindy pulled a trigger.

The brick wall, hastily erected for this demonstratrion, was turned pretty fast into smoke and dust.

I had been worried about safety issues of hammer throwing.

But, hells bells, Sam's hammer would at best have broken the bricks and the mortar, not incinerated like a flash of lightening, just faster.

Quinn's and Mindy's seemingly cute little robot was a murder machine.

So much was sure.

I better ran in order to take cover.


24.3. The Signs


I had safely made it back to my office.

But Mindy and Quinn were still out on the campus with their hell's machine.

A few seconds later, I had to hear a scream from outside. I looked outside.

A coulsd of smoke was somewhere near the middle school boys' dormitory block.

That did not mean anything good. I needed to check it out.


24.4. The Catastrophe


I rushed to the mentioned building.

Eli Pataki, aforementioned speaker of the eighth grade kids, was already heavily discussing with Olivary Biallo and with

Olivary denied any guild.

The same was done by Matthew Palmer Noid.

The latter had been responsible for many a prank during the last months. He would certainly not have hesitated stripping the real Mr. Bradford of his undergarments.

But what had happened?

This was the place formerly holding a socket with the brass sculpture of Old Mr. Bradford.

The socket was still there.

But instead of the sculpteure there was just a formless lump of glowing or melting metal.

Olivary described it as a sudden flash from nowhere striking the statue. "The next moment … there was … smoke and smoldering iron."

Pataki sighed deeply. "Mr. Bradford will make us responsible."

I could easily imagine the culprit.

Quinn's and Mindy's droid had struck again.

OK, I was not a fan of the old sculpture.

But Mr. Bradford would certainly wreak havoc upon hearing about that incident.

It better stayed a secret.

Was it possible for us to restore the sculpture until his next visit?


24.5. When the Bradfords come


Unfortunatelt, it was already too late.

Mr. Crocker had reported the case unto Mr. Bradford just a few houers after the disastrous incident.

And there he was, the veritable devil. And he did not look exactly pleased.

I expected the end of the world, with a lightening flash splitting all of us right down the middle.

Indeed, Mr. Brandford thundered the worst sermon across the campus. "What have you got to say?"

I had hastily come up with an excuse. "This place here does not do any justice to your venerable father. It is hidden in the shadow of the residence hall."

Mr. Bradford appeared to swallow it. "Oh yes, the monument did deserve a better place."

I sighed for relief.

Beverly had to guide the creep across the campus, looking for a better place.

We started walking.

Mr. Bradford appeared very picky. Then he decided on the most synny place in front of "Maxewell Hall", the recidence block of the high school boys. "Oh, yeah, the new monument has to be thrice as tall as the old one." And he wanted to see it finished until next year's homecoming week.

That meant quite some pressure.

I needed to find a good sculptor.

We did not yet have a good one here at Pacific Coast Academy.

I had to ponder.

But then the choice was clear.

Spencer Shay, the older brother of aforementioned Carly Shay, appeared absolutely perfect for such an excessively demanding job.


24.6. The Plan


I let Beverly contact Spencer, a free lance scuklptor, on site.

At the same time, Quinn was executing a program simulating the status of our campus with the rebuilt sculpture of Mr. Bradford.

Finally, the results were visible.

Quinn explained, "the new sculpture is going to block out the sunlight from the boys' dormitory roof top."

In other words, the boys would have the same problems as the girls.

The re would not be any roof top left to relax on after the classes of the day.

That was nothing good.

Quinn sighed. "So we need to install the artificial suns on both the boys' and the girls' roof tops."

That sounded like a lot of work in addition to the sculpting stuff.

Spencer had replied in the meantime, pretty fast. He was ready to come to Pacific Coast Academy as a sculptor and teacher for modern art. But he requested something:

Carly Shay needed a fiull scholasrship i order to join him.

Spencer was now her legal guardian because of the departure of their father, an army officer, in a submarine across the world.

OK, that did not sound too bad.

Maybe Carly could even talk some sense into Sam Puckett, from time to time at least.

Beverly nodded and prepared the necessary contracts for Spencer Shay.

Of course it was necessary to doa lot of preparatory work on the campus and clean it up during the vacations.

Once more, I thought about hiring custodian Gordy from "James K. Polk" for those vacations.

Vice Principal Crubbs would comment, "five bucks more, and you may have Gordy for good." A few months later, he would even offer to pay us five thousand bucks for taking over their custodian.

But I did not know this in advance. Now I was just glad to have one more suitable campus worker at my disposition.

Gordy would start cleaning up the mess during the spring break, and continue to work for us during the summer break.

The whole summer would be required for executing Quinn's plans, sboth for the new sculpture and the artificial suns.

But it would be worth the trouble.

And there would be more necessary work ahead.

I just did not yet know about it.


Chapter 25. The Birds And The Trees


25.1. Sound Of Trombone


I crossed the campus in order to oversee the works at the designated place or the improved and upgraded monument of the founder of Pacific Coast Academy.

Quinn Pensky sat in the way. She was bust with some brass wind instrument.

I wondered about that piece of music.

Quinn shrugged. "Oh, that does not really matter."

Then I mistook her instrument for a trumpet.

It was more of a trombone.

Well, it had been one.

But Quinn was trying to develop a new kind of brass wind instrument from it.

It was supposed to play on its own when attached to another invention of hers, a so-called silent leaf blower and improve melodies.

I had to ask myself "did making a leaf blower silent really make that much sense when attaching it to such a rumorous instrument." I had to hurry up, anyways.

Gordy and Mr. Banville[[102]] , our regular custodian, needed my instructions for cleaning up the remains of the mess caused by Quinn Pensky's and Mindy Crenshaw's onslaught on the old statue of our venerable founder.

Well, at least he did no longer have to listen to Quinn's brass wind music.

That was one big advantage when compared to certain people living right here and right now.


25.2. Scare Squirrel


Mindy Crenshaw had just attached a little apparatus to the trunk of the anciebt tree next to "Brenner Hall", the host of many giant squirrels.

I wondered about it.

Mindy explained, "The device emits an obnoxious sound audible by squirrels, but nit by humans."

I concluded, "it serves for scarong squirrels away?"

Mindy grinned fanatically.

I shrugged.

This would probaly remove the stink of squirrel excrements from the girls' roof top.

Mindy sighed, "unfortunately, it is audible for some people."

I wondered, "by whom?"

Mindy remarked, "Nevel Papperman, my second cousin from Seattle, may hear ultrasonic signals to some extent."

I had never heard about any Nevel Papperman.

But he was from Seattle.

The west coast was so short.

Anyways, this was not my business.

After all, there were very few people able to hear those sounds.

But maybe some of them lived at Pacific Coast Academy?

One of the worst fears would have been that of Mr. Bradford being one of them.

OK, but he did not really appear like a very sensitive guy.

Mindy reported, "I have already thought about mixing some chemicals producing a stink scaring squirrels away."

This reminded me of the stench of the skunk.

Fortunately, Mindy had not chosen to follow this road.

The sound of the device also seemed to scare a few birds away.

I shrugged.

Wasn't there a song about birds, and bees, and flowers and trees?

Now it was really time to instruct Gordy.


25.3. Chase tutors Lola


A few hours later, I crossed the campus again.

A bicycle almost hit me.

The rider of the bike was not much of a surprise. It was no other than Chase Bartholomew Matthews. And the same bicycle crashed against the next tree, this time a different one, not the one in front of "Brenner Hall".

I greeted Chase. "The bicycle seems to need a repair now, doesn't it?"

Chase sighed deeply. "Dern! Joe the mnechanic will repair it." He suspired heavily. "But I am a bit too late for my encounter with Lola."

I wondered, "you are dating Lola Martinez?"

Chase grinned. "Maybe?" He chuckled. "Officially, I am her tutor for biology." He added, "this was Zoey's idea." Then he blushed. "But it could be a date … maybe?"

That was a bit surprising.

First, Chase Bartholomew Matthews was probably still hankering after Zoey Brooks and had not found a way to tell her.

This was a bit unfortunate.

But, more than everything else, Lola Martinez was not the kind of girl content with the next best dweeb. She always talked about good kissers and hot guys and so.

Chase was definitely nowhere near fitting into the category of boys fulfilling those criteria.

A few weeks ago, we had got a little Valentine's party.

That of next year would be probably a whole lot bigger.

Dean Rivers had never allowed for Valentine's party at Pacific Coast Academy.

This one had been a bit clumsily organised.

But next year, many things would be better.

Anyways, Lola Martinez had been by far the one to collect the hugest amount of Valentine's roses.

Chase had rather been a wall flower.

So that was a bit scary.

Upon the impact, Chase had somewhat lost his backpack's content. He was now trying to gather and reorginise the sheets.

I helped him to picke them up and wondered about the sheets.

Chase explained, "work sheets for Lola, with colours and stuff."

I remarked, "oh, I am sure …" I guessed, "Lola will learn a lot."

Chase nodded. "It is about the flower and bee stuff." He blushed slightly.

The song kept on creeping through my brain.


25.4. Mr. Rudolph


I found Mr. Rudolph, Lola's teacher for biology, at the coffee cart, fixing a hot mocca. "Fortunately Lola Martinez has found a tutor really fast."

Mr. Rudolph gasped. "Lola needs tutoring?" He added, even more aastonished, "you are not talking about biology, are you?"

I gasped. "Chase Matthews is teaching her about the flowers and bees."

Mr. Rudolph had just sipped from his cup of coffee. Now he was spouing it through his nostrils. "what?"

I clarified, "the procreation of plants, poll transfer, and stuff."

Mr. Rudolph shook his head. "That's fifth graders' junk."

I was flabbergasted.

He clarified, "our classes are talking about the scientific classification of the species of animals and plants. This is high school, not elementary school!"

I was now completely dazed.

Mr. Rudolph added, "and Ms. Martinez is certainly not in need of tutoring. Quite the contrary! She should be the one to tutor the other freshmen."

That was really gross.

Lola must have feigned being in need of tutoring for some purpose. As a perfect actress, she was certainly very well able to do so.

But what were the exact reasons?

And what was Lola's goal?

Well, this was probably not my business, anyways.

But Chase Bartholomew Matthews deserved being treated in a honest manner.

Talking about honest treatment …

Quinn Pensky stumbled in, totally upset. "Dustin Brooks is such a rude jerk!"

I shreugged. "Why dod you say this?"

Quinn grunted,


I was playing the trombone over on the campus square.

Dustin walked past me.

I asked him about his opinion about the performance.

And Dustin had got the guts to tell me, "some things are better, others are worse."

What a creep!


She walked away, still filled with disgust.

Dustin had at least not been a dishonest flatterer.

And his judgment could have been a trifle more brash.


25.5. Jerk In The Fountain


I was now out on the campus square, approaching the fountain.

Logan Reese and Dustin Brooks were standing there, next to Tracy Baldwin and her younger sister Sandy[[103]] .

The latter was new at Pacific Coast Academy and had transferred hereto during the winter break, upon the recommendation of one Wendy Gellar, another fifth grader.

Both of these girls had once been students at "Belleview Elementary School", just as Megan paker, aforementioned little sister of Drake Parker.

Logan appeared really rude to the girls and treated them in an excessively arrogant manner.

Dustin was disgusted by this. He was certainly no jerk.

A few seconds later, Logan Reese was pushed into the fountain by Tracy Baldwin. He looked pretty consternated.

I walked up to him in order to pull him out of the campus fountain.

He wondered, "is there really a movie named Jerk In The Fountain?"

I shrugged, concluding


Your dad Malcolm owns Hollywood.

You would know it.

Thus there probably isn't.

But Helen Baxter will know it best.


Logan told me about the background.


I was trying hard to teach Dustin to hit on girls.

We had arranged a double date with those ungrateful Baldwin sisters.

The most important rule is that of the need of treating girls in an arrogant manner.

We wanted to choose a movie to watch.

They wanted to see a chick flick.

I want of course an action thriller.

Giving in was no option.

But then Dustin backstabs me by being nice to Sandy. What a dork!


I saw Dustin and Sandy playing merrily on the campus.

Dustin's method had apparently worked out a trifle better than Logan's.

But I did not coment on this. I guided Logan to Hellen's office.


25.6. New Movie


Helen had listened to Logan's story. She laughed fanatically. "There is no such movie, but there definitely should be!"

Logan looked flabbergasted.

Helen decided, "Chase Matthews has to come up with a script, as soon as can be." She even fancied Malcolm Reese making a real Hollywood movie from it.

But for the time being, it would be intended as a play for the school drama club.

Helen fancied already the actors.

Logan snuck away. He was definitely not up to the title rôle.

And I was not up to judging Helen's project.

She was certainly experienced enough to tell a good script from a bad one.

But Chase was still to wruite the play. And he was still stuck with one of the potential actresses for portraying the female main rôle.

And this was still a riddle for me.

Helen must have caught me thinking too loud about the situation of Chase and Lola. She laughed hysterically. "Lola Martinez is using Chase for acting practice."

I looked puzzled.

But as a former actress and cinema expert, Helen could certainly see behind the scenes and understand Lola's demeanour. She explained, "an actress may not just make out with likable boys. She must also learn to do it with dweebs."

That explained everything.

Chase was just Lola's test dweeb.

That wasn't exacxtly fair, was it?

Well, Chase would hardly be too disappointed. He was probably still looking for a way to tell Zoey Brooks, after all.

But that was definitely not my job, was it?


Chapter 26. Into The Spring


26.1. Santa Barbara


Malcolm Reese had got a summer residence in Santa Barbara county.

Some of the kids were invited to said estate over spring break.

Malcolm had insisted in four boys and four girls. He had not said why. But he was probably making a movoe and needed a few actors.

As for the boys, Logan was of course going there, along with Chase and Michael.

Zoey wanted Dustin to come with her. This way, she was as sure as hell able to control him a lot better.

I had got no proof for it.

But the relationship of Dustin and Sandy seemed so arranged by Zoey and Tracy.

Maybe even the double date had been a trick by them in order to get Logan humiliated and show Dustin the "right" way.

That was not exactly nice.

Logan may have deserved a lesson.

But Zoey was probably going out of her way. She had already suggested alerting Nicole's parents about Nicole's obsession with boys, suggesting "Eastridge", that nearby school for girls only, as more suited for Nicole.

That would have been really unwarranted.

Mr. Lowe was doing a great job with Nicole already.

But Dustin had decided to go to San Diego over the spring break with Sandy Baldwin.

Oh yeah, the girls had selected Zoey Brooks, Lola Martinez, and Quinn Pensky.

Tracy was vouching for his safety.

Nicole and Dana were still at each other's throat.

Thus selecting both of them would have been troublesome.

They had to cast dice.

And Dana was the lucky one. She definitely did not want Dustin to come along with them.

Zoey sighed deeply. But she had suggested cating dice in the first place.

Now Nicole was upset. She was forced to return to Kansas over spring break.

Finally, Mark del Figgalo was chosen as the last boy, as suggested by Quinn Pensky.

The kids would be fetched by a limousine.


26.2. Take a break!


The campus felt a bit empty during the spring vacations.

But some construction workers were already starting to build a socket for the new monumental statue of the one and only Mr. Bradford, founder of Pacific Coast Academy.

The limousine of Malcolm Reese was gone, too. It had been really impressive.

But there were greater ones.

Helen Baxter had not yet decided between closing down the campus cinema over the summer break or just reducing the schedule.

Suddenly, her cellular phone rang.

She picked it up. "Helen Baxyer … Megan?"

It was Megan Parker, the little sister of Drake. She was now at Los Angeles Airport.

I did not yet know why.

But Helen decided to fetch her from there. "It is just for two days."

I nodded solemnly. "Megan may have the dormitory room of Sandy Baldwin."

Megan knew Sandy somewhat, by the way.

But that did not matter at the moment.

But there seemed to be no spring break for Helen.


26.3. Wrong Flight


Helen had called a limousine for Megan, according to the subteen's wishes.

Now they arrived back on the campus.

The limousine had been guided by one Sebastian[[104]] , the absoluetly most eccentric limousine driver in Los Angeles.

He was well known for his hot napkins.

Megan told us the story.


I wanted to fly to Denver in Colorado, in order to visit my friend Jessica[[105]].

Drake and Josh took me to the airport in San Diego. But they put me into the wrong flight, a flight to Los Angeles.

I only noticed it too late and ended up in Los Angeles.

There are no more flights from here to Denver today, due to some violent lightening storms over Colorado.

So I was stuck and called Helen,


Helen was now using her cellular phone in order to inform Drake and Josh about the situation.

Megan was not happy about this turn.

By the way, the gales over Colorado had been there since early morning.

In other words, Megan would not have made it there, even without Drake's mistake.

Her flight had either been cancelled or would have been deviated to some third place.

I took Megan to the dormitory hall hosting her for the next day, until a relaxation of the situation of Colorado.

Helan was donme talking to Drake and Josh.

The "boobs" had taken the very next flight to Los Angeles in order to look for Megan. They would come to Pacific Coast Academy right in tiome.

I decided, "they may stay in '148 Maxwell Hall', the residence of Logan Reese, Michael Barret, and Chase Bartholomew Matthews."


26.4. The G.O.


Finally, Drake Parker and Josh Nichols had arrived on the campus.

Josh was proud of his new portable device for listening to modern music stuff.

The apparatus was called a G.O. According to Josh, it could host some hundred thousand of titles at the same time.

He wanted to demonstrate its built-in search routines.

But there were only pictures for dollar bills. Those pictures were most likely only meant to circulate at the national central bank and their fiduciarians. They were top secret.

Josh was consternated. "I still had got my G.O. during the flight, until …" He remembered of a collision with some fat matron in the plane.

Another passenger had had a similar portable device.

Josh concluded, "our G.O.s must have been exchanged accisentally."

This really meant trouble.

The original owner of thiosndevice was either an agent of the national bank or a criminal, probably a counterfeiter.

I had to inform the police department.

Fortunately, afforementioned officer Vega was at my disposition. He was, by the way, an uncle of Lola Martinez and the father of aforementioned Trina Vega. He talked about a gang of money fakers guided by one Milo Creery[[106]] .

We looked consternated.

In any case, Joshuah Nichols had to be protected, and the portable device needed to be returned to the national bank.


26.5. Milo Creery


The policemen would not arrive that soon, though.

I better prepared for the defense of Pacific Coast Academy against the impending siege by Milo Creery and his gang.

Custodian Gordy volunteered for observing the campus entrance, scanning for unusdual events.

Helen Baxter organised the operation. She distributed other people all over the campus, such as Banville, Jos Braxley, and janitor Herb.

A few minutes later, Gordy reported some suspicious movements.

A car with people clearly different from school kids arrived on the campus.

Helen sent driver Sebastian their way.

A few minutes later, some loud screams were heard.

The suspicious guys criged for pain due to some hot napkins in their faces.

Sebastien had stuck again.

Finally, officer Vega arrived in order to clear up the situation.

The gangsters pertaining to Milo Creery were all arrested and sent back to security prison on some barren island off the coast of Orange county.

Megan would soon continue her way to Colorado.


26.6. Gender Defenders


Josh had tried to organise a concert for Drake at "Sunset Studioes"[[107]] .

But Gustavo Rocque, arriving only after the arrest of Milo, dissuaded Drake in the very last moment. "Those guys from 'Sunset' are charlatans.". He offered Drake a record contract at his own studio, "Rocque Records".

Finally, the kids returned to Pacific Coast Academy from Santa Barbara.

Inded, Malcolm had had certain plans. He was starting a game show, Gender Defenders.

The kids were the canditates for the pilot.

And Helen was now hosting the première party of this show in her cinema.

This looked really great.

The team of the girls won the contest after a tie breaker.

In the latter, Zoey and Chase stood on an island in the pool and had to sweep each other into the water, using some sort of long staff.

In my impression, Chase had lost on purpose. Inspite of Zoey having lost her staff, Chase had not been able to finish. He had slipped without a good reason.

What had been going on?

It must have had to do with his secret crush on Zoey Brooks.

I tried hard to get Chase to talk about it.

The thing with Lola had turned out as a fiasko.

Chase had not really been interested, probably due to his due interest in Zoey Brooks.


26.7. Cellular Phone In The Fountain


After the party, a little earth quake haunted our campus.

I walked past the spring fountain in the centre of our campus square.

There wa some portable electronic device in the water. It was totally wet, like Chase after his aforementioned challenge. The device was a so-called Tek-mate, and it belonged to Zoey Brooks. It looked now pretty much worthless.

Any message on it would have been extinguished by now.

According to Dana Cruz, there had been some troubles with Zoey's cellular phone, caused by Chase.

Dana accused Chase of having stolen Zoey's device. She had almost wanted to kill him for that.

The boys had won one of the games due to this loss.

But why had Chase tried to stealk Zoey's phone? he had got his own, anyways.

I was going to return the phone to Zoey.

Maybe some geek like Quinn was able to repair it.

But the messages were most likely lost.

And Chase would sooner or later have to talk to Zoey in person, anyways, with or without a tek mate.


Chapter 27. Smoked Tuna


27.1. Fiery Surprise


The spring term was not even a week old.

I was already back to my apartment, not far from the campus.

It was dinner time.

Suddenly, I noticed a bright shine on the campus. "Is there anything burning?"

This was really looking troublesome.

I decided to go and look.

Apparently, fire brigades were already on their way.

But what had been happening on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy?

The smoke was blowing in from the direction of "Sushi Rox".

This Japanese bar run by Kazu was the most popular meeting point of the high school kids for dinner.

Chief Becker[[108]], the leader of the fire brigades of Los Angeles county, told me to stay away from the location of the fiery accident. "My men are in command of the situation. The fire is under control."

But that could not really calm me down.

No kids or staff members had been injured, according to the next statement of chief Becker.

I had to sigh for relief. But I could not do anything now. I would have to wait until the next morning.


27.2. Ruins Of Sushi Rox


The night had been without a trace of sleep.

I was finally back to my office, as early as possible, before the end of the night shift of the janitors even.

There was certainly a lot of paper work to do, caused by the horrible accident.

Fortunately, the only thing destroyed was the inside of the building hosting "Sushi Rox".

No other buildings had been touched by the flames.

According to Quinn, the smoke may nhave had some bad influence on the other buildings, especially when containing certain gases. She talked about the details.

I did not understand them.

It didn't really matter now.

Kazu was no longer able to continue his bar, though.

"Sushi Rox" had not been subject to any insurance. It was the most popular dinner place for the kids. Or, rather, it had been. Bow it was a ruin.

The kids were very sad. But some of them felt guilty.

Zoey Brooks explained the circumstances.


It was around nine o' clock.

I had been at "Sushi Rox", along with Logan, Chase, Lola, Michael, and Nicole. I ordered more tempura rolls.

Kazu had to keep the stove fire burning for that avail.

Really, Chase had been there as a delivery boy and a waiter. But he was spending most of the time at our table, anyways.

At the same time, Kazu received some orders for sushi from some other end of the campus.

Quinn has already admitted tp having been that remote customer.

Kazu had to send Chase.

The delivery was large.

Chase could not handle it and fell downstairs.

We were shocked and ran in order to look after him.

kazu came along with us.

In that moment, the stove burst into flames.

In the moment of Kazu's return, things were too late.


This sounded sad.

Of course Zoey wanted to save "Sushi Rox", just like almost every other student.

But it was really expensive.

There was no way to request any money from the school board for the restoration of "Sushi Rox".

Burman was not opposed to it.

But there had been rules.

The kids wanted to contribute on their own.

Logan Reese was certainly able to afford contributing majorly tothe necessary funds. But he would almost certainly abuse this as an excellent occasion in order to hit on girls.

Zoey suggested a people auction in order to raise funds.

But I did not trust some of the teachers here.

They were likely to abuse kids in such a situation.

This was especially the case for Denzel Crocker.

But also coach Keller appeared suspicious. He had always been rude to Chase Bartholomew Matthews and to Michael Barret. And he was addicted to sushi and more than just likely angry at the two of them for the accident. He would most certainly abuse the two of them.

A private credit seemed to be the only viable solution.

The idea of Quinn pensky and Minsdy Crenshaw had been even way less acceptable.

The geek girls would have liked to kidnap babies, clone them, and finally sell the clones.

This was really icky.

I could by no means approve of that.


27.3. Credit Conditions


The bank required a bunch of insurances, including a fire insurance, for building credits.

But according to Garth Burman, only the official school buildings and the dormitory halls were covered by the existing insurance.

The commercial buildings were a gray zone.

So a necessary fire insurance would not have been paid by the school board, either.

I had to look for one on my own. And I could not expect it to be cheap, especially after this accident.

The bank was associated with an insurance company.

I was sent right their way.


27.4. Insurance Conditions


The recent accident was indeed quite some obstacle for decent insurance fees.

The society would receive the reports from the fire brigades and chief Becker.

Kazu was probably very suspicious. He was not a certified cook, trained in measures for avoiding and treating incidents like this one.

A certification was even more expensive and would take its time, especially here in Malibu.

The only back door was that of adding a certified chef to the staff of "Sushi Rox".

Well, the cafeteria team comprised some certified cooks. They just needed to borrow one to Kazu every other day, or something like that.

But they were all underpaid and not willing to work any more than necessary.

We would have needed to employ an additional member for the cafeteria staff.


27.5. The Lunch Lady


Helen suggested her second cousin Rose Pepper as the new additional reinforcement for the cafeteria, allowing us to use the back foor for the health insurance.

Of course she was still working for "James K. Polk" middle school at Santa Clarita.

Was it possible to get her to leave her old working place and come over to Pacific Coast Academy?

It wopuld certainly not be easy.

But the idea was great.

Helen was going to try to do her best in order to get the remote realative to move over.


27.6. Marissa Benson


Helen Baxter had not got much of a problem talking her remote relative into moving over to Pacific Coast Academy.

Indeed. the lunch lady was happily getting rid of the place ruled by corrupt vice principal Crubbs. She could already start this fall.

That sounded optimmal.

A much bigger problem was imposed a certain Marissa Benson.

She was the mother of aforementioned Fredward benson.

Carly Shay had agreed on coming to Pacific Coast Academy along with her elder brother Spencer.

Fredward Benson, the "nice boy next door", was still perversely obsessed with Carly and willing to follow her.

But perversely protective Marissa benson did not let her son Fredward move away that easily, especially not to a school with a recent fire accident.

We needed to think of very good arguments in order to get Marissa to let Fredward join us.

Beverly was already making a list of potential arguments.

For now, I was already forward to enjoying aforementioned special recipes of Rosemary Pepper, the new chef of the kitchens of Pacific Coast Academy.


Chapter 28. Woolly Guest


28.1. Office Machine


Quinn was about selling me her latest invention.

It was something in order to make life in my office more comfortable.

She had just installed it.

It was time for a little demonstration or maybe even for a bigger one.

The offoce machine was voice commanded and had several functions, quite a lot of them.

Quinn could only demonstrate a few of them.

The command coffee! started a coffee machine.

I head to try it because of the break time.

It appeared to work great.

Then there was the fabulous door!.

The door was now open.

Using said command closed it.

Using it again reopened te whole thing.

That was a comfortable thing to do.

Then there was a really important command: dogs!

The usage of it was triggering a the sound of a barking pack of dogs, able to scare all intruders away.

That sounded great.

Quinn was going to send me the bill for the deployment of the whole system via electronic mail, just as usual.

Now I was alone in the office.

Beverly announced the arrival of Sam Puckett.

Her therapy had recently started working to some extend.

But she was still as hungry as usual. "I'm glad the old chef of the cafeteria gets fired."

I had to correct that. "He is not fired. He just gets less competetnces due to the arrival of Rosemary Pepper, starting with this fall."

Sam shrugged.


Same thing!

Can you belkieve it?

The chef has one offered the same thing for three days, old hot dogs.


Suddenly, the office dogs started barking.

Sam had triggered this by inadvertedly using the command dogs. Now she took a chair into her hand in order to use it as a weapon against the ferocious beasts. She beat aimlessly away with it.

That was no good.

Beverly was dropping something, a talon of paperwork.

We had to pick it up again.

Finally, Sam had understood it. "There are no real dogs in here!"

I nodded solemnly.

Sam remarked, "nerds …" Then she walked away. Why had she been here anyways?

It didn't really matter.

I was going to face some chaos due to this new machine.

Mrs. Benson would hardly approve of it.

I hoped to be able to turn it off during her possible visit in order to evaluate Fredward's safety as a potential Pacific Coast Academy student..


28.2. Quinn is depressed


A few days later, Zoey Brooks and Lola Martinez showed up in my office. They knew about the necessity of avoiding to mention certain words. "It's urgent!"

I wondered, "what is?"

Zoey stammered, "Quinn Pensky is …"

I asked, "what is up with her?"

Zoey explained, "well, Quinn has got a pet in Seattle, an alpaca."

I didn't know those/ "What sort of animal is that?"

Lola replied, "some sort of a llama, but smaller."

Well, that was not a sort of dog.

And that was very good so.

Talking about a dog would have been disastrous in this office.

Zoey nodded. "It lives in Seattle. But now it has turned out do be very depressive."

Lola nodded solemnly.

I gasped. "A depressive llama … sorry, alpaca?"

Zoey nodded. "According to Dr. Lang[[109]] , her veterinary surgeon", Otis suffers from depression due to Quinn's absence.

Lola emphasised: "Otis is the name of the apaca."

I sighed. "That doesn't sound good."

Lola squealed, "Quinn is now playing all those blue siongs on her trombone, all time long." She complained, "this is accoustic pollution."

I could not contradict.

Zoey added, "really, Quinn is now depressed too."

I gasped.

The situation was worse.

Lola reveiled, "Quinn wants to leave the campus in order to go home to Otis. She can't live without him any longer."

I sighed deeply.

Of course leaving the campus without prior permission was a severe violation of the rules of this school as stated by Old Mr. Bradford in this booklet Da Rules.

Quin could have been suspended or even expelled for such a crime.

Not even Sam Puckett had achieved that.

Was it possible to get Otis to this campus?

Of course the rules were strictly against any pets on the campus.

We had been hiding smaller ones successfully, at least so far.

But an alpaca, inspite of being smaller than a llama, was still way too big.

I would not have minded.

Alpacas could spit.

Or so I imagined.

But they were no ferocious lions or toxic vipers or so.

Noone had to be afraid of them.

OK, someone needed to clean after those shitters.

They certainly caused a lot of dirt.

But they were otherwise not a problem, at least a few of them from time to time.

Now I remembered an earlier statement by Mr. Beringer.

This teacher for science would have preferred running a zoological garden or teaching at this school.

With the arrival of Mr. Sweeny, this was now my time to make my promise cpome true.

Mr. Beringer would be the first official animal guardian here at Pacific Coast Academy.

We just needed to prepare some porch for Otis.

But that was not totally easy, either.


28.3. Fay Dunnawaye[[110]] 's Ranch


Helen Baxter entered my office.

The door could not stop her, anyways, with or without the new office system.

Helen explained, "a few months ago, Megan parker had ordered a zebra[[111]] from the interweb."

I shrugged. "So what?"

Zebras were probably somewhat comparable to alpacas. In anyt case they were not dogs.

Helen continued, "well, there is a horse ranch not far from here. It hosts Megan's zebra now."

I still did not understand.

But now it became more and more clear.

That horse ranch would alsoi be a good place for Otis.

But what to do with sauid Mr. Beringer?

In any way, I started to contact the owner of the ranch, a certain Faye Dunnaway.


28.4. A New Home For Otis


Faye Dunnaway agreed on hosting Otis for a moderable fee.

And Mr. Beringer could work as a custodian for the animals at her ranch.

This was kind of sort of like working in a zoological garden.

And Quinn would be able to visit Otis a lot more often, like, every other weekend. For this reason, she was now no longer blue.


28.5. Otis At PCA


A few days later, Otis made it to Pacific Coast Academy. He was spending a few hours with Quinn before moving on to the ranch of Faye Dunnaway.

Mr. Beringer would only start his new job during the summer break.

But Otis was already there and going to share a stable with Megan Parker's zebra.

Mr. Beringer wondered, "may alpacas and zebras have stable relationships?"

I shrugged. "It's up to you to figure!"

Mr. Beringer shrugged.

Quinn and Otis did not care. They were happily playing on the campus.

Michael Barret crossed my way. He was dressed in a hula skirt and wearing a warning light on his head. He had lost a pretty silly bet with Chase and Logan due to a girl.

I did not care about that bet.

But Otis was definitely more reasonable than Michael.


Chapter 29. Movie Star


29.1. School Play


Now it was time for the already impatiently awaited performance of our school play, Kelly Cooper by Chase Bartholomew Matthews.

The bushy dweeb had learned a lot from his last mistakes.

But there were still traces of last year's problem.

The play appeared to have been partially written as a play about himself and Zoey.

Fortunately, the name "Kelly Cooper" was not closely derived from "Zoey Brooks".

Spencer Carter, the male star, was, as aforementioned, chosen by Helen Baxter for a variety of reasons. He was not a student at Pacific Coast Academy, but of nearby "Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts". He had been recommended by Mr. Sikowitz, a teacher over there.


29.2. The Debate


Before the official première of Kelly Cooper, the kids had made me appear in the Chase and Michael Show for their unfabulous segment He says … She Says

Now I was there in "104 Maxwell Hall".

Chase announced my presence in this edition of Chase And Michael Show.

The topic was only announced now. It was "Are men or women better principals?"

I gasped.

That was really a stupid question.

According to Logan Reese, of course, a school like Pacific Coast Academy should never be ruled by women.

But whom was I going to face in the debate?

Chase announced, "OK … and in the blue corner, there is …" He was nervously looking at the entrance door.

Michael stood up and walked to the door. He opened it and looked across the corridor. Then he sighed for relief. "They are coming!"

I heard Nicole Bristow's wonderous bimbo voice penetrating the corridor. I already pitied the opponent of my debate.

She was most likely just getting her ears talked into smithereens by Nicole Bristow.

Lola's voice was heard too.

She said, "OK, there we are!"

The door was pushed widely open.

Lola was now dragging the special guest in.

It was Mrs. Collins, aforementioned teacher from "Palmwood". Truth said, she was not properly a principal. She just happened to be the one and only full time teacher at her school.

This left her with a whhole lot of extra work usually left in the habds of a principal.

Nicole and Lola introduced Chase and Michael to Mrs. Collins, in their usually chaotic manner.

Mrs. Collins had had a hard time getting a word in during the long way from "Palmwood to Pacific Coast Academy."

Chase repeated the topic of the day.

Lola explained the rôle of Mrs. Collins, her former teacher, to our viewers.

We agreed on the irrelevance of the topic.

Thus Logan took over with a monologue titled, Why women should never become principals at Pacific Coast Academy. Of course he did so in his typical jerkish manner.

The lack of a technical producer made the whole thing more chaotic.

Fortunately, the possible addition of Fredward Benson to the cops of syudents at Pacific Coast Academy would solve the problem.

Freddie was an expert for web cameras and colourful media technology.

In other words, the whole session was one big turmoil and chaos without any sense.

Unfortunately, a lot of pupils would see us.

Maybe even some other people would watch the whole thing. And with some bad luck, those were the wrong people ….


29.3. The Performance


Helen had invited many guests for the première informance, including Malcolm Reese and some big guns of Hollywood.

Chase Matthews was really nervous.

Aforementioned Sofia Michelle, the most popular playwright of "Broadway" ever, was also present in the lounge. Had she seen the disastrous session of Chase And Michael Show?

Chase feared for his dreams of a career at the "Broadway".

The lights went down.

Spencer Carter entered the stage. He was an afor-american curlhead. A few months ago, he had performed as Romeo in William Shakespeare's Romeo Anbd Juliet.

The performance had turned into a plain catastrophe.

According to rumours, one of the pupils had got a one-sided crush on "Juliet".

His insane jealousy had ruined the performance.

This could have been a problem even here at Pacific Coast Academy.

Certainly Lola had got many more or less secret adorers among our pupils.

Helen had already seen the problem.

Last year, Lola had been still unbeknownst to about any of our teenage boys.

Wendy Gellar sighed bitterly. A year ago, she had got a fatal crush on Drake Parker.

The jerk had rejected her.

This had thrown her into a tough crisis.

That was not pleasant for Wendy.

She believes now being over it. But she understood, "the same thing may happen to about each little fan of any rock- or movie star."

Of course, even Helen had got her adorers back at her active time as an actress, like, thirty years earlier.

But life at schools had changed so much ever since.

Now I better concentrated on watching the scene.

Kelly Cooper seemed to be a normal girl with normal dreams. But she often gets frustrated by her mean rival, portrayed by Ashley Blake.

That was kind of like the situation between Chase Matthews and Logan Reese.

I should have seen that earlier.

It was a cool trick.

There was a lot of applause already during the scenes.

Of course, in the end, Kelly Cooper's dreams were coming true, including the kiss with the male star, portrayed by Spencer Carter.

And in deed, one boy seeme to be bothered by the scene. It was Jack Ross[[112]] , the room mate of Dustin Brooks. He could not stand seeing "his" Lola kissing Spencer Carter.

This was an urgent situation.

We had to call Doc Hollywood and nurse Shannon in order to treat Jack appropriately.

Lola just shrugged. She enjoyed her applause and did not care about any of her fans.

The medical reinforcements arrived.

But the hall was totally jammed.

Many kids wanted an autograph of Lola or Spencer.

I had to use my megaphone in order to shout a gap into the masses.

Even now it was not easy.

With some efforts, Doc Hollywood and Shannon squeezed their way to the victim.

Doc Hollywood used his stethoscope. "Broken heart … red alert!"

Shannon sighed. "We will have to cut him open for that."

In many cases, patients recovered on site after hearing those words.

But Jack could not move.

Finally, the medic achieved carrying Jack away. "Maybe a plaster cast for this broken heart will do."

Nurse Shannon smiled.


29.4. Reactions


The great performance of the acxtors overshadowed the breakdown of Jack.

At least nobody seemed to care about the poor boy.

Chase was praised intensively by Sofia Michelle.

The playwright from New York City wanted to take the bushy head along with herself to the "Broadway".

There was quite some war between those two colosses of show business, videlicet Hollywood and Broadway.

Each of them tried to steal the talents from the other.

Helen Baxter had informed me about this. "Officially there are agreements against these practice. But those are hardly heeded or easy to be enforced."

I sighed.

Would Chase Bartholomew Matthews really prefer to go to "Broadway School for the Advanced Performance Arts", as suggested by Sofia Michelle?

The possibility was certainly there.

But would Chase give up on Zoey Brooks that easily?

I begged to doubt this.

According to Mrs. Michelle, the offer would still stand until his junior year.

We would just have to see.

Lola Martinez and Spencer Carter were particularly praised by Malcolm Reese.

The king of Hollywood decided almost immediately, "I will make this a daily soap, with Lola Martinez and Spencer Carter as the stars, and with Ashley Blake as the antagonist."

Lola was consternated. She had always wished for something like this to happen. But she had not exactly believed it.

Helen grinned. She had seen that coming. "There has never been a character actress more suited for the role of the young adult protagonist than Lola Martinez."

I could not judge that.

But Helen's experience was noteworthy.

And was Lola already able to handle that much fame?


Chapter 30. Frozen Tank


30.1. Battle Droid League Finals


Our war robot war team had been strikingly successful.

There was now but one match left.

The adversary was once more from "James K. Polk".

Fortunately, the final showdown was not going to take place on our campus.

The accident with the statue of Mr. Bradford had been more than enough of a shock.

Even less had the administration of "James K. Polk" been willing to host the final battle.

Thus there had to be found some neutral place

An old factory terrain, nowadays no longer in productive use, appeared to be the right choice.

Our local greasemonkey, Joe Braxley, knew it fairly well.

Fortunatelyu I was needed over there.

But the robot battle match was to be seen live on our school's television network.

Quinn explained the functionality of the whole system. She seems to have added some sort of refrigertor, producing insane amounts of cold withing just a few moments. She had invented that system almost one year ago.

The first usage of it had been made by aforementioned Megan Parker.

That subteen from San Diego had installed the thing in Drake's and Josh's sleeping room in order to punish them for their absolutely ruthless perversity.

The room turned into a giant refrigerator after a few hours.

There had hardly ever been that much cold in mid summer in San Diego.

I did not want all of Los Angeles to freeze over.

According to Quinn Pensky, this was not to be expected.

Or maybe it was?


30.2. Miniature Golf


As aforementioned, Spencer Shay was hired in order to build the new and improved sculpture of Mr. Bradford, founding father of Pacific Coast Academy.

The socket for the monument would be established by others during the summer break.

But Spencer had sent me another message. He had seen a video about the campus, sent to him by Melanie Puckett. And he saw some part of the campus suited in a perfect way for the construction of a miniature golf course.

This reminded me of the wish of pour students to include a miniature golf team in to our programme.

Spencer would of course design and build the course with the pupils and also advise the miniature golf club.


30.3. Chase is disappointed


Chase Bartholomew Matthews had been praised to no end by Sofia Michelle from "Broadway" upon the première of his play Life Of Kelly Cooper. But, probably due to his ongoing attitude of hankering after Zoey Brooks, he was by no means easily willing to follow her to New York City. Chase had thus been hoping on similar reactions from Hollywood.

A career at one of the many studioes, such as nearby "Sunset", would have allowed him to becaome popular really fast and impress Zoey Brooks to absolutely no end.

Pushed by Michael Barret, Chase had finally asked Malcolm Reese in person.

Aforementioned Hollywood csar had decided to make a movie from Chase's play. But he did not really want to base it on Chase's wotds.

Indeed, his message must have hurt Chase a lot.

According to Malcolm Reese, the play would have to be rewritten by real professionals. "Your work is dilettantic and not suited for Hollywood."

Chase was totally consternated by this brash judgment.

How could Malcolm Reese and Sofia Michelle arrive at those radically different conclusions?

There were several possibilities.


The expectations at Hollywood and at Broadway were radically different.


Logan Reese was trying to punish Chase for something and had manipulated his dad.


The second alternative sounded scandalous.

But Logan was always up to things in that range.

Just how was Chase supposed to take it?


30.4. New Custodian


As aforementioned, Mr. Crubbs, the vice principal of "James K. Polk", had never been really content with his custodian, Gordy. He wanted definitely to get rid of him. And this time around, he almost wanteed to pay us for taking over the messy creep for good.

Gordy had done a few good deeds here at Pacific Coast Academy.

Of course. Mr. Crubbs could impossibly justify these payments to his board.

The responsible chairmen were total misers and scrooges.

Alas, there had been a scandal at that school, not too long ago.

One certain Hal E. Burton[[113]] from the school's board had abused a lot of money from the school's funds for private purposes.

Of course such a thing would have been impossible here at Pacific Coast Academy, would it?

I definitely hoped so.

Vice principal Creubs and principal Wright were the first potential clients of our office system, the one invented and installed into my office by Quinn Pensky just a few days ago.

Of course they would not be the only ones.

Crubbs was now going to see another aspect of Quinn's insane creativity:

The battle droids were marching into the arena, aforementioned wasted factory.

The hostile droid had been build by one Simon Nelson Cooke, obviously the main genius at "James K. Polk".

Simon had been assisted by others, such as Albert Wormenheimer, Lance Widget, and Evelyn Kwong.

Those kids were not new to me.

I had to face them in several competitions between our schools.

Some of them have been previously mentioned.

The umpire was Mr. Jamerson[[114]] from New York City. He was at the same time the very boss of the battle robot league. And now he blew the initial whistle.

The droid of the team of "James K. Polk" was named "Worminator", probably for Albert Wormenheimer. It started firing a missile.

Quinn was operating our droid. It was able to evade the impact of the explosive shrapnel.

Wayne Gilbert amd Mindy Crenshaw gave Quinn a signal with their fingers.

Suddenly, some dense and icy mist covered the arena.

And the "Worminator" was caught in its midst.

Simon Nelson Cook looked flabbergasted.

The engine of his droid started becoming sluggish and hard to control.

Quinn appeared to wait for the right moment. The she seemed to drive her droid ride into the fog and fire some beam at the "Worminator".

The hapless droid was audibly crumblin and falling apart.

The mist appeared to dissipate.

Quinn's machine was still standing, badly scratched and bruised, but definitely in one piece and tsill operable, as totally opposed to that of Simon Nelson Cooke.

Cal grinned viciously at Mr. Sweeny.

The teacher for science at "James K. Polk" was disappointed by his team. "But he would switch to Pacific Coast Academy right after the impending summer vacations, along with lunch lady Rosemary Pepper, custodian Gordy, and future lawyer Claire Sawyer."

This sounded like quite some reinforcement for our school.


30.5. Winners' Ceremony


This time around, we had got a real band to perform at the triumphant return to our school.

Gustavo Rocque had composed a tune for this moment, Sweet Victory[[115]].

This improved the mood of our students to some hitherto unbeknownst degree.

It was the perfect conclusion for my second year at Pacific Coast Academy.


Chapter 31. Yet another year


31.1. Another Arrival Day


The sun showed up beyond the hill braes of southern California.

Another academic year was about to start at Pacific Coast Academy.

The campus was going to fill awfully during a few hours.

I was expecting many new people.

And there were the first of them.

A rusti mini van from Seattle was halting at our parking spot. It belonged to no other person than the great Spencer Shay.

Spencer had graduated from "Ridgeway" like seven years ago.

Most of the teachers had been glad due to finally getting rid of him.

By now, he was a law school drop out, a freelance artist, a honorary teacher for creative visual arts, and a guardian for his little sister Carly.

The latter was exiting the van as well. "Ouch! Everything hurts!"

A ride in any vehicle driven by Spencer Shay was absolutely no comfortable pleasure.

Samantha Puckett and her sister Melanie were equally in the van.

Last but not least there was Fredward Benson.

His mother had indeed given the permission for him to move here to Pacific Coast Academy.

That was not my achievement, though.

Denzel Crocker had talked Mrs. Benson into giveng it a try.

Freddie would have to take his daily medication against ticks and other parasites.

This appeased Marissa Benson.

But the stupid wench would come and check in every other month for the purpose of improved control.

Strangely, Fredward Benson had not yet heard about Melanie.


I took this as a joke by Carly and Sam.

The latter is one blond demon. She has always tried to fool and torture me to no end.

I only saw Melanie when entering the van. Then I could not believe ot. I threw my eyes forth and back, looking now at Samantha, then at Melanie. I felt really dizzy and believed in having drunk too much of Spencer's … well, the stuff in his fridge.

My mother was already close to cncelling my whole trip. She accused Spencer of being absolutely irresponsible. But then she saw both Melanie and Samantha. She laughed about me.

Thenceforth I have believed in Samantha and Melanie being different people.

Melanie is a lot nicer, though.

But a Puckett is a Puckett, period.


Freddie was still a bit dizzy.

But this was rather a consequence of being shaken and squeezed all over during the restless van trip.

Spencer would share an apartment with Mr. Lowe, our school shrink./

Carly, Sam, and Melanie were going to share a room in "Butler Hall".

Freddie's way to his hall was a bit complicated.

I advised him to ask Matthew Palmer Noid, his class mate.

Many other things were going on.

For example, I immediately noticed a dispute between Michael Barret and Logan Reese.

This seemed bo good.

I better intervened. "Michael! Logan!" I asked, "what is going on?"

They were arguing about the single bed in their dormitory room, "148 Maxwell Hall".

Michael wanted to have it this year. "Logan has always had it."

I shook my head. "That is not true!"

Actually, Michael Barret had occupied the single bed two years ago.[[116]]. He must have forgotten about it. Now he looked embarrassed.

Logan growled, "see? You have already had your fun."

Michael replied, "That was for one year, as opposed to three years for you."

Logan grinned and told me to confirm his view. "My dad is one of the greatest sponsors here."

I was thusly urged to make a decision. Of course I did not want to prescribe those things to the students. But now I had to. "Chase Bartholomew Matthews gets the single bed."

Both Logan and Michael were consternated.

And now they argued about top bunk versus bottom bunk.

I had to arbiter here as well. After suspiring deeply, I decided to send Logan into the bottom bunk, and Michael into the top bunk.

Unfortunately, this was not my only surprise.

According to some students' report, Mrs. Burvich was still in vacations.

The dormitory advisers had tried to assign the new students on their own.

But this action was about leading to a lot of chaos.

Quinn Pensky, for example had been assigned to not a not existing room in "Brenner Hall".

Coco Wexler had confused dormitory numbers wioth her bra size.

This was no good.

I told Quinn to keep her old room.

She would have to share it with Nicole Bristow.

Then there was a new girl. She introduced hereself.


My name is Stacey Dillsen.

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, sculpting, and woodshop.

During the vacations, I wanted to work in my dad's workshop.

But he deemed it too hard.

Thus I have started sculpting with cotton swabs and white carpenter's glue.

This here is a model of my dream house.


She talked with a very heavy lisp. Then she removed a blanket covering something carried in her hands.

I sighed deeply.

The cotton swab model of a house appeared, in plain white.

Spencer Shay would have watched it in awe.

I feared the work of art being very fragile, though. "Cool! You may store it in my office until later."

This way, the frail construct would not get torn into smithereens.


31.2. More Dormitory Disaster


We had been in my office in order to deposit Stacey Dillsen's cotton swab sculpture safely. Now we had to cross the campus again, looking for a dormitory room for Stacey.

The choice made by Coco Wexler was by absolutely no means acceptable.

According to the girls' dormitory adviser, Stacey Dillsen had to sleep in the laundry room.

I could not tolerate this.

We walked into the lounge of "Brenner Hall".

Coco was disputing with other girls.

Dana Cruz was disappointed by having to live in one dormitory hall with Nicole Bristow.

OK, this was absolutely nothing new.

I took a look at the list. "There is still a free spot in the room with Quinn Pensky."

Coco looked puzzled. At the same time she started slurping a freshly opened can of ravioli.

I decided to accomodate Stacey Dillsen exactly there.

Lola Martinez choked. She could in absolutely no way befriend with the prospects of a chubby lisper living next door.

But it had to be.

Zoey Brooks was not here.

According to Lola, Chase Matthews had called her for a serious conversation. Was he now finally going to admit to her?

Lola praised the new flavours of Blix, the locally ubiquitous soft drink.

Stacey merrily dragged her belongings into her new dormitory room, against the explicit will of Lola Martinez.

That promised nothing good.

I was somewhat worried about Quinn's bee hive.

She was worried about the low quality of honey in our cafeteria.

That was quite some accusation.

This remembered me of having to introduce Rosemary Pepper to her new working place.


31.3. The Lunch Lady


I entered the back room of the cafeteria.

Rose was already busy. She had not wasted any hour.

Well, today was very chaotic here.

Many visitors were on the campus and had to buy guest tickets for the cafeteria.

But Rose was not stopping there. "I have already controlled the supplies of the cafeteria storage."

I twitched. "That was fast!"

Rose nodded. "And over thirty cans of ravioli are missing."

I choked.

During the last two years, nobody had ever noticed anything like that.

And today, Rose came, she saw, and she noticed some deficits.

I stammered, "really?"

She had counted it twice.

Then I remembered Coco's can of ravioli.

This made me horribly suspicious.

Had Coco Wexler stolen the cans from the cafetreria storage?

And maybe it was not the first time.

Rose was just more circumspect than anyone before.

This was hardly a pleasant start into a new term.

Yet there was nothing proven.

I suggested to add a new lock to the cafeteria.

Unfortunately, kida like Samantha Puckett had got no problems cracking most locks.

But the attemopt had to be.

I called custodian Gordy.

Rose sighed. "He will delegate it to the night shift."

I nodded. "Thus I have decided to make Gordy the new night shift."

Rose cackled mischievously.

Gordy answered my call.

I told him about his new schedule, after ordering him to do something, including the new lock for the cafeteria.

He was consternated.

But someone had to do it.

And now I better looked for the new kids from Seattle.

Those were always up to causing some massive amount of troubles.


Chapter 32. Trina Vega


32.1. Death Threat


The next day, I was working in my office.

The academic year was just two neasly days old.

But the trouble was already growing to no end.

Still, there was no proof for Coco having stole the cans of ravioli from the cafeteria storage.

But what was there to do in the case of a proof?

Would it be necessary to fire Coco Wexler?

Doubtlessly, Mr. Bradford would be up to requesting such a drastical measure, if not sending Coco to Siberia.

No punishment whatsoever would ever be hard enough in the eyes of the fascist son of our founder.

He would have loved to reintroduce the Spanish inquisition and witch burning, but of course not next to the monument of his deceased father.

Beverly came into my room. "Ms. Zoey Brooks has just called."

I sighed.

The blond Mary Sue seemed to love complaining about things.

I suspired. "OK … let her come in!" I wiped sweat fropm my head.

Zoey Brooks walked in.

I panted. "OK, Zoey, what is up?" I claimed to be very busy.

Zoey grunted, "I get death threats."

I choked. "Anonymous threats?"

Zoey Brooks shook her head.

And that was good so.

Anonymous threats were the worst.

I needed to know more about it.

Zoey growled, "Trina Vega, the new student …"

Niole Bristow stumbled in, too. She had been feeling too lonely without Zoey.

Thus Beverly had invited her into my office.

The bimbo girl could not refrain from talking.


Hey! Can you believe it?

Trina stormed into our dormitory room. She sent me and Lola away, and wanted to talk alone to Zoey.

Ouch!

And they were not even talking about cute boys.


I preferred Zoey to tell me about the whole thing. "Which Trina?"

Zoey grunted, "It's Trina Vega, the new girlfriend of Chase Bartholomew Matthews."

I was a bit puzzled. "Chase has got a girlfriend?"

Nicole squealed, "it's a busty latina. She could have so many cute boys. But why does she choose Chase"

Trina was maybe a new student here at Pacific Coast Academy.

But I did remember her from the middle school dances of the last two years.

Indeed, she had danced with Chase even back then.

And the bushy teenager had apparently used it in order to make Zoey jealous.

Maybe this was the case even here?

But I needed to hear more of Zoey's report.

She continued,


At first, Trina appeared very nice, at least befor our coversation under four eyes.

Granted, seeing him and Trina making out behind closed doors in his dormitory room had not been pleasant.

Oh, I caught them there right after Lola's report.

Lola had told me to go to Chase for some important conversation.

Well, Chase had true to tell me all the time about his new girlfriend.

But then I had to catch them in flagrante delicto.

Trina still appeared all nice all the morning.

But then the two of us were all alone.

We started talking about Chase.

Trina said something like, "Chase is now my boyfriend, not yours." She started telling me to stay away from Chase and never talk to him again, or else ….


I gasped. "Or else what?"

Zoey shrugged helplessly.


She's gonna kill me?

Who knows?

She did not look like joking.


Nicole looked terrified as well.

That was a serious situation.

Threats like this were no good at schools of whatever sort.

And,of course, Mr. Bradford would use this as a new argument against coeducation.

Still, I could not help thinking about the possibility of it being a fake. But how would I tell Zoey about this?

There needed to be done something against it.

I decided to talke to Chase Bartholomew Matthews about the situation.


32.2. Jealousy Maker


I had not yet told Zoey about my suspicion.

It was better tio talk to the bushy dork first.

Chase Bartholomew Matthews entered my office.

We shook hands.

Chase started talking about something completely different. He had submitted a few probatory cartoon videos to Toon Juice.

And now that comic site had accepted his submissions.

Chase and Michael would thenceforth be paid for thge whole thing.

That was better so.

The quality of the toons in their web show was sinking more and more due to Chase's and Michael's utter lack of competence concerning web technology.

But now it was time to talk about Trina vega and her threads.

Chase could not really answer. He was just stammering wildly. He had proibably not counted with the possibility of Zoey Brooks going straight to the school administration with that message.

Certainly, Dean Rivers would by no means have encouraged the kids to get him dragged into stuff like that.

But I could not let this pass unnoticed.

And there were even more strange things.

Beverly had checked the list of new kids for this year.

And there was definitely no Trina Vega, a student of "Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts".

Wait, Beverly detected a Trina Vega on the waiting list of probatory students, kind of sort of as a second choice.

So this was not completely wrong.

And Chase's story was like that:


Trina's mom and mine are working together in one office.

My mom has wanted me to me to help Trina to get started.

And then we have started sendiing us cellular phone calls and messages …

So it began.


Alas, Chase's mother lived at the east coast.

The Vega family lived in uptown Los Angeles.

It was not easy for them to work in the same office.

In other words:

Everything about Chase's story was fishy.

I would not have cared.

But the death threat was going way too far.

I had to tell Chase about the perversity of his deed.

Chase finally admitted to the whole game.

But the death threat had not been part of Chase's original plan.

Trina had seen it in some cheap Hollywood movie and wanted to convince this way.

Basically, Chase had promised to write a musical all for Trina Vega as the one and only star in the case of successfully getting Zoey Brooks jealous.

Apparently, Zoey was not really jealous of Trina, she was intimidated.

And these are completely different things.

I had to tell Chase some brash words about the whole situation. I was sorry for that.

But it definitely had to be.

I did not want to tell Zoey the truth.

It might have destroyed every chance for Chase.

I expected him to admit to his deed and his motivations in some personal conversation with Zoey Brooks.


32.3. Basketball Trouble


AS aforementioned, our basketball team had been performing greatly during my first year here at Pacific Coast Academy

But the second year, especially the arrival of coach Keller, had ruined that perfect base.

And this year, they seemed to drop even more.

Logan Reese was completely off his feet. He seemed to fail with free throws more than ever before.

Unfortunately, even Logan Reese was hard to replace.

Quinn Pensky had tried to teach him about biodynamics in order to improve his throwing technique. She had also invented a few devices in order to increase the efficience of the training of our athletic teams. But she was not an athlete.

Her experience was thus of limited value.

And now Joshuah Nichols had got an idea.

I had to inform him about his responsibilituies here as a student teacher and tutor.

This was a very serious conversation.

During this introduction, Beverly had phone with coach Keller.

Joshuah had heard too much of the dispute between the coach and Logan Reese. He remarked, "my grandma[[117]] would be a better basketball coach."

That was hard to believe.

But Josh told me, "she has even beaten Drake single handed in a match of basketball."

I sighed. "OK, that should be worth a try."

Of course, barely anyone else would have even dared to employe an old grandmother as a coach for a basketball team.

Mr. Bradford would certainly not cheer for this action.

This would increase the pressure on our team and on me.

But it was better than watching passively the destruction of a great team.


Chapter 33. Breaking Glass


33.1. Miniature Plane


I was crossing the campus with Beverly in order to explain this year's expenses to the speaker of the sponsor team.

There were a lot of them.

As usual, they were still waiting for the big success of our athletic teams, especially the football squad.

A lot had been done.

Especially the cheerleading squad had been improved.

This was the first year without the need of hiring extern cheerios.

The number of girls had been increasing again. It was now getting close to fifty of hundred.

Zoey Brooks had been upgrading the new cheerio uniforms.

So, I was standing here in order to explain things.

Suddenly, I noticed a certain miniature plain flying exactly into my direction. I could not sidestep without stepping into the board members. Thus I tried to duck. I yelled at the sponsors and at Beverly to do the same. I even pushed them out of the way, making them staumble and fall.

The old wankers looked aghast.

The shattering impact of the plane was hurt.

A window was broken, just behind us.

That had been really close.

It could have been worse.

So, where had that thing been coming from?

Anyways, the glass was broken.

I had to call custodian Gordy.

Repairing windows was a traditional task for the night shift.

Or so I told him.

Unfortunately, it was not the only thing broken.

The confidence of the board members had been a bit damaged, too.


33.2. The Tech Producer


As aforementioned, the quality of the web show of Chase Bartholomew Matthews and of Michael barret suffered largely from their lack of technical competence.

But I remembered Fredward Benson's dream of becoming a technical producer at Hollywood.

So he was probably able to fill in that gap in the team of the Chase and Michael Show.

It was definitely worth a try.

Chase and Michael were horribly under pressure due to the deadlines of Toon Juice.

Some responsibility taken off their shoulders would not have hurt them like the shards of a broken window.

Fredward Benson had to scrutinise the situation.

By the way, it was better to not let Marissa Benson know about the broken window.

The creepy woman was allergic to messages about Freddie being anywhere near pointy and edgy objects such as glass shards.

Fredward Benson was not yet familiar with Quinndoze QP[[118]] , the computer system recently invented by Quinn Pensky.

It would take him a bit of time to break his way through to the endless amount of complicated secrets of this fascinating result of modern information technology.

Freddie talked a lot of incomprehensible nonsense.

At least Chase and Michael did not understand it any better, either.


33.3. Coco gets dumped.


After Fredward's introduction into the world of media technology, I had to return to my own office. I crossed the campus.

Suddenly, my cellular phone started ringing.

I picked it up. "Ted Franklin …"

Custodian Gordy was at the other end. "I have just started repairing the trashed window."

I praised him for having started doing that necessary work.

But Gordy continued, "I have found some obese corpse in the shrubbery, female, white, round thirty …"

I was shocked. "A corpse?"

The description, however, fit most naturaly to Coco Wexler, the dormitory adviser of the girls.

Gordy continued, "but she is still twitching and stammering."

I sighed deeply.

Twitchen corpses were hear of.

But talking ones were a different category.

I better went looking.

Fortunately it was not all that much of a detour.

I sighed deeply.

And there was the aforementioned shrubbery.

My guess had been correct.

Coco Wexler, one lump of misery, was chock full with cheap brandy and wallowing helplessly on the floor. She squealed repeatedly something like "let me die here!"

Gordy remarked, "We can't let her die here." He looked around. "The weasel and the skunk could gang up and devour the corpse." He sighed deeply. "Maybe a cemetary would be a better place."

I shook my head. "We can't let her die anyway."

That would have been quite some scandal.

But indeed we should not have let her lie around here in the shrubbery.

Someone elsewould better have taken care of her.

Rosemary Pepper was not on the campus at this time. She would have been the most competent person to help here, for some reason.

So we decided to drag Coco's inert and wretched body to the nurses' station.

Too bad we were no professional weight lifters.

Some third party help was now thoroughly in order.

Coco Wexler kept on stammering about Carl[[119]] .

This was her on and off boyfriend, the rude coach of the softball team of Pacific Coast Academy. He kept on treating Coco like dirt. Apparently he had just trashed her again via cellular phone.

She should really have left him ages ago.

But it wasn't my business.

Some drunk staff member rotting out on the campus, however, was a serious business to take care off.

Coco Wexler was not exactly a good example for the girls on the campus.

So, which way was the best to get her to the infirmary?

Some of the football jocks were certainly strong enough to carry a disgustingly twitching chubby Coco.

But I did not have the number of any of them.

But Zoey Brooks may have known one.

So I decided to call her number.

Zoey would forward the request to Logan Reese.

Gordy's attempts of lifting Coco were absolutely futile. He was now tiotally squished by the chubby dorm adviser.

Logan Reese and Michael barret came along.

Vince Blake would have been better. But he was now bodyguarding his sister Ashley at some première party in downtown Los Angeles.

The two guys had still got problems with the fat bundle of misery.

Logan moaned not just because of Coco's weight, but also because of the training sessions. "Old Mrs. Nichols is really tough as a basketball coach."


33.4. In The Infirmary


Nurse Shannon had already been awaiting us.

Custodian Gordy had phoned her beforehand via cellular phone.

Doc Hollywood would examine the hapless chunk of fat the day after.

Shannon apparently had to give Coco some injection with a totally long syringe. "That will calm her down."

The twitching lump of misery was still talking about wanting to die on site. She deemed herself in need of a new diet in order to lose some weight.

Gordy suggested a weasel diet.

Strangely, Coco always seemed to tur particularly hungry after getting dumped.

Rose Pepper should take care of that.


33.5. New Diet


It was lunch time.

Coco had stayed all night long in the infirmary. After some thorough examination by Doc Hollywood, she got just released.

As expected, she waked straight into the cafeteria in order to beg for more ravioli in order to forget about Carl.

Rose shook her head. "You should change your clothes first."

Coco was still wearing the clothes from last evening.

The rags were now thoroughly stained by wallowing in the shrubbery, And they smelled like brandy.

Rose would let her borrow some of her own for a while.

That was good.

Alas, the clothes were not necessarily big enough for Coco.

But those of the school girls were definitely much too small.

Rose also started thinking about a suitable diet for Coco. "Squished beans and lemon juice may be used for a start."

Coco sighed deeply.

Gordy walked in, yawning. "Chubby women are more to cuddle."

Coco wondered, "really?"

Gordy nodded.

Coco commanded, "prove it!"

Gordy sighed and started snuggling the hell out of Coco.

Rose asked, "what would Carl say?"

Coco mutetred, "carl? Who the heck is Carl?" She seemed to be over everything.

Suddenly, Gordy's cellular phone started ringing.

The custodian picked it up.

There was some horror news.

The very same window had just gone again into pieces.

Logan Reese had been practising lay ups with grandma Nichols.

Unfortunately, his progresses were apparently minimal.

The ball had gone astray and hit the window glass, making it burst into smithereens.

Gordy would need to spend another night on the same window.

The miniature plane, culprit of the first accident, had belonged to Dustin Brooks, by the way.

Quinn Pensky had tuned it and sacrificed the steering for more propulasion.

Now the broken navigation was repaired and soaring up into the sky.

Dustin was apparently trying to write some letters into the blue.

But this did not yet work out very well.

Yet Dustin would eep on trying.


Chapter 34. Chemistry


34.1. Sweeny


Science classes had never been my favourites back at high school.

And that's putting it really mildly.

Foe quite some time, science had been fairly neglected at Pacific Coast Academy.

Dean Rivers had never noticed that.

There had always been brilliant students.

Quinn Pensky was the best currently living example, but also Mindy Crenshaw was not to forget.

But the classes had sucked like junk.

This had been due to overpaid lame teachers such as Mr. beringer and Mrs. Bromwell.

New teachers were changing this situation.

On the one hand, Mr. Sweeny appeared very promising. According to the reports from James K. Polk he was hard, but fair.

Mrs. Bromwell had never earned such a qualification.

I was also curious concerning the student teachers, especially Joshuah Nichols.

The whole programme of "Teachers Tomorrow Today" sounded cool.

Other subjects but the scientific ones were also up for some student teaching.

The responsible coordinator for this project in Los Angeles county for this academic year was one Mr. Stockeley from Lakewood High.

But this was an issue for later on.


34.2. Zoey In Troubles


The chemistry class of Mr. Sweeny had just been returned their first popup test of the rear.

Some kids were disappointed.

And this was especially the case for Zoey Brooks.

The blond Mary Sue had never been give any worse than a B.

And now this had changed.

In Mr. Sweeny's test, she had scraped through on the skin of her teeth with a "C".

This was definitely not like Zoey Brooks.

Of course one "C" among many an "A" and "B" was certainly not an apocalyptic harbinger.

I would not have bothered thinking about it.

But Zoey Brooks stood now in my office and was close to weeping. She considered seriously giving up on all of her extracurricular activities.

As insinuated in my reports about the first two years, such an action would have got earth shaking consequences for public life at our school.

The Mary Sue was the safe column of about two thirds of about two thirds of our clubs and social events.

The basketball team was basically kept together by Zoey.

Grandma Nichols had confirmed that about on arrival.

Of course there was a rule excluding pupils in danger of failing in some ciurricular activities from extracurricular ones.

Even Ridgeway had got such a rule.

But Zoey Brooks was still really far from there.

Samantha Puckett's problems with food were real.

Nicole Bristow's problems with boys were totally objective.

I tried to fancy a few days without Zoey's activities.

The basketball team would be a mere boasting fest of Logan Reese.

Pep rallies would not exist t all.

And the next one was due in less than two weeks, right before the homecoming.

The latter would be a mere banquet for alumni in some external restaurant such as Vaccaro[[120]] without any active participation of the current pupils.

That sounded like plain horror.

But only Zoey Brooks was able to organise extraordinarily cool activities involving as many kids as only possible.

After all, life at Pacific Coast Academy without an active participation of Zoey Brooks in the exctracurricular activities would have been tantamount to a return to the autocratic regime of Dean Rivers at pre coeducational Pacific Coast Academy.

I had to talk to Sweeny about this.


34.3. Zoey's Options


After yet another cup of coffee, Beverly called Zoey Brooks and Mr. Sweeny into my office.

I started sweating.

Getting Zoey to continue her extracurricular activities was excessively vital.

Mr. Sweeny appeared to be aware of the situation. "But I don't give marks for popularity or for organising charity events. I am teaching chemistry."

That was of course correct.

I asked, "Doesn't Zoey Brooks deserve an occasion or extra credits?" I panted. "Each student has got the right to …"

Zoey nodded. "I am not lazy."

Certainly, nobody would expect that from the blond Mary Sue.

Mr. Sweeny suspired.

Zoey was left with the choice between a tutor or a project for extra points. "I could make a volcano or so."

Mr. Sweeny shook his head.


In my career as a teacher at Californian schools, I have evaluated some hundred of model volcanoes.

Most of them are enough to get puopils form an "F" to an "E".

But for a "B" or an "A", I do expect better.


Zoey choked.

Better projects sounded like the inventions of Quinn Pensky, Melinda Crenshaw, Wayne Gilbert, and so on.

Zoey did definitely not feel up to that.

Usually, teachers asked the best students of their class to help the others.

So I wondered, "who is the best in your chemistry classes?"

Mr. Sweeny sighed. "'That won't be of any use for you.'" "I insisted in knowing."

Sweeny moaned, "OK, it's Mr. Logan Reese."

Both I and Zoey Brooks were extremely close to keeling over for laughing.

Logan Reese was way too dumb for that.

grunted, "I have warned you!"

So laughing ourselves to death would have been exclusively our very own comeuppance.

Zoey grinned. "Logan Reese is a jock and a jerk."

Sweeny knew that. "But his grandfather is a scientist."

I looked puzzled.

Zoey Brooks did not do any better.

Mr. Sweeny opened his briefcase. "OK, look at this book." He produced some work about advance chemistry.

The author, according to the cover, was one Prof. Reese.

Mr. Sweeny knew him from his times as a student for sigle subject teaching at Caltech. "He was my teacher for advanced molecular chemistry." He pointed at the book. "This is based on his lectures back then."

I shrugged helplessly.

So Logan must have learned from his grandfather. But he was definitely not keen on it.

Logan would have killed everyone spreading the news about the existence of the black sheep in his family.

Well, Zoey would in no case try to get Logan as a tutor.

Mr. Sweeny had got some other book in his case. "Unfortunately, most students here seem to neglect their note booklets."

Zoey gasped. "Erm …"

Mr. Sweeny opened a perfect looking booklet. "This, on the other hand, is perfect. It's the diamond booklet!"

I did not discover any jewels on the cover or elsewhere in the booklet. "Diamond?"

Mr. Sweeney explained, "it has been written by 'A plus' student Mr. Diamond, many years ago."

Zoey shrugged.

But was that really helpful?

The book disappeared again int Sweeny's briefcase.

I did have my doubts abiut that.


34.4. Caught


A week later, stomped into my office without warning.

I was going to get accustomed to that.

Many teachers and students appeared not to think highly of prior appointments.

Bear with it!

He growled, "last night, Ms. Brooks spied my apartment with goggles."

More precisely, those goggles were quinnoculars, an invention made by inevitable Quinn Pensky. They were able to ignore most obstacles to sight.

Zoey had apparently used them in order to copy the notebook.

I was a bit disappointed.

Zoey had always looked so hypercorrect.

Mr. Sweeny must have expected this and was able to detect this sort of intrusion.

I did not know the technological possibilities for doing so.

That would have hurt my head even more.

But what was Mr. Sweeny going to do?

It was just an old notebook, not the upcoming second test.

Mr. Sweeny grinned.


I could have given her the book directly.

But then she would not have read it. And she would not have received an "A plus" in today's oral pop up.


[[121]]

Wow!

That was one mean trick.

But it had helped.

Zoey was now steering towards a plain "B" and no longer considering to abandon her extracurricular activities, one by one, thusly ruining social life at Pacific Coast Academy.

Now it was not too late for the upocoming homecoming week and the pep rally.

Zoey's aid was desperately neededin there.

Aforementioned Mr. Diamond did not exist, by the way.

The notebook was the work of nobody other than the very Mr. Sweeny himself.

It had already worked for much dumber students, such as Edmond Bigby at James K. Polk middle school.

That Bigby guy would still cost me quite a few nerves, by the way.

But that's a totally different issue.


Chapter 35. Touch Down


35.1. Spirit Days


As aforementioned, there had never been any spirit days before my arrival, at least not under Dean Rivers.

This year, the upcoming Californian championships in high school football were the dominant topic.

Our cheerleaders, guided by my aforementioned step niece Mandy, were performing a new dance to a new tune, Forever Stingray! written by no other than Gustavo Rocque, the greatest rock composer ever.

Trina Vega was equally a member of the cheerio squad. She had actually switched to Pacific Coast Academy because of the cheerleader squad.

The chances for winning the cup were greater than ever before in the history of Pacific Coast Academy.

This alone would have justified the movement of Pacific Coast Academy from a boys only to a coeducting school even to the nuttiest of all sponsors and alumni, let alone Mr. Bradford in person.

Most of us were now united in the greater gym hall.

Beverly called in the members of the football team, one by one.

The cheerio girls would wave hand stitched banners with their names.

The most important moment was of course the arrival of the quarterback, videlicet Vincent Blake.

Unlike all the other banners, Vince's was stitched with golden yarn.

Jeremiah Trottman was now going to revive the most important moments of this season. "Vince's great pass over sixty yards to Logan Reese … touch down!"

There had been great victories against the team of James K. Polk and that of Silver Spring.

The cheerio girls went wild over and over again after each line of the report of the heroic deeds of Vincent Blake.

Many students deemed Jeremiah's detailed repetition totally lame and boring.

That was not quite unjustified.

Vince totally enjoyed the attention of cheerleaders like Trina and Mandy, and even of Melanie Puckett, one of the best cheerio girls ever.

But there were also a whole lot of other girls rooting for the quarterback.

This was probably the same at every school.

Art Ridgeway, there was a table in the cafeteria reserved for the quarterback and the girls of his choice.

Others were regularly disappointed.

This was now especially the case for no other than aforementioned Stacey Dillsen.

She was hankering insanely after Vince Blake.

But that was absolutely no good for her.

Shallow jocks like Vincent Blake were not exactly interested in cotton swab sculpting and astronomy.

Rather, Vince was to the uttermost degree likely to get annoyed by the lisping girl and destroy her sculptures on purpose, hurting Stacey's feelings badly beyond any imaginable measure.

Teenage bimbo Nicole Bristow was of course totally taken by Vince Blake's cuteness. She squealed all over the place.

The hypnotherapy had stopped working.

Its success had apparently been bound for wearing out after getting accustomed to.

Nicole was no longer fooling herself into thinking of all cute boys as Mark del Figgalo.

Vince Blake was of course as much annoyed by Nicole's bobo squeals as by Stacey's lisp.

Nicole was also into a few other cute boys in the football team.

Dana Cruz was in the football team, too. She was the only girl in there right now.

Others had not even dared to try out.

In other words, Dana Cruz was the first female football player in the history of Pacific Coast Academy.

This was a bit troublesome for Nicole.

She could not approach the squad as a whole without stumbling into her very archenemy.

That must have hurt badly.

The most annoying and embarrassing incident during the pep rally was the intervention of Spencer Shay.

He falsely pretended to be a good football player, and thus he challenged the guys for a little duel.

But Dana Cruz had no qualms firing the leathern egg right into Spencer's most vulnerable spot, making him squeal for excruciating agony.

Spencer needed to be dragged into the infirmary.

Doc Hollywood and Quinn Pensky would have to remove the ball stuck between his legs with surgical means.

This would serve him as a lesson.

Or so it was to be hoped.

Nicole was now mad at Dana for having hurt such a cutie like Spencer.


35.2. Cheater


I was a bit late. And I had forgotten a parcel for Mr. Toplin, aforementioned teacher for history and other social studies, from the educational department in Sacramento. Thus I decided to leave it in the mail box of the teachers for social studies.

The lights were not totally off.

in addition, there was some noise from within.

The door was not locked, either.

I panted.

Was there a burglar of some sorts?

Well, there was someone, but definitely not an ordinary burglar. It was no other than quarterback Vince Blake. He was looking through the drawers of Mr. Toplin, using a lirttle digital camera in order to copy the contents.

That could not be anything good.

I closed my eyes and intervened. "Mr. Blake! What are you doing here?"

The drawers had contained the upcoming exams in history, probably about American history until independence.

Was Vince trying to cheat in the test?

It certainly looked like that.

I could of course not let this pass by without any consequences.

The prohibition to cheat was valid for all students, including quarterbacks.


35.3. Suspension


According to Da Rules, cheaters were to be punished by a suspension of at least ten days.

This was particulaly hard in the case of Vincent Blake.

The next weeks were vital for the destiny of our football team.

And, as explained before, the mood of the sponsors and of Mr. Bradford depended extremely strongly on the success of the football team.

This situation was really painful.

I had to talk to Vince about it.

The motivations for cheating were plainly obvious.

Da Rules required a "C" or better in all subjects in order to be allowed to skip curricular classes in favour of extracurricular activities, especially extra training units necessary for the upconming football championships.

Jocks like Vince Blake were apparently not able to make it there as easily as normnal students.

In other words, it was not possible for Vince and many other football players to reach the minimum marks required for getting freed from regular classes.

Vince was barely the only one in such a bad situation.

But this did not make cheating legal.

And I had to come up fast with a decision.

Was there a possible compromise in sight?

I could only think of tutoring.

Of course this was also taking some time off Vince.

But this was better than being off the field for ten days straight.

Also, Vince would have to give up on some other activities, such as bodyguarding his little sister.

Ashley had not chosen Vince as her bodyguard.

Their mother just trusted him more than hired bodyguards from outside the family, especialy male ones.

But it was certainly possible to find some substitute for some limited time.

I decided to tell Doc Hollywood to give Vince a pass off school next tuesday, the day of the history tests, for health reasons.

This way, he would not take part in the test and cheat.

With a good tutor, Vince would still be able to go for the necessary extra points for getting the privilleges of skipping one or the other class during the next term in order to participate in extra training sessions.

Of course Vince had to promise to refain thenceforth from cheating.

He was not opposed to that, provided a decent tutor, probably meaning some hot girl.

That was of course horrible.

Vince would still have to miss out on some of the playoffs.

Dana Cruz was going to sub for him. She had scored more touch downs in training sessions than most of the guys.

But the squad did not yet have enough confidence in a female quarterback.

It was thus a bit scay.

The next matches were against the team of Golden Bay Bridge in San Francisco, the school of Samantha's cousin Chris Saunders.

Further possible opponents included Cedarwood and Belleview.

In any case, the football fever was circulating here at Pacific Coast Academy.

Everyone was waiting for the golden touchdown.


Chapter 36. Moon Bars


36.1. Unhealthy Snacks


Students got easily hungry on our large campus, even outside the official opening times of the cafeteria and Sushi Rox.

It wa possible for them to fix snacks at vendor machines.

But according to Zoey Brooks, those were unhealthy. Many off them contained way too much fat and sugar.

The blond Mary Sue was particularly worried about her little brother.

The little bugger appeared to have been addicted fatally to so gummy worms and to some coloured sugar balls.

And those were bad for both his teeth and his metabolism.

We did not yet have a dentist on our campus to check out.

Maybe that was a serious gap.

My dentist from back in Seattle, Doc Wheeler[[122]], had got relatives in southern California, especially nephiews named Thornton[[123]] and Toplin[[124]]. Maybe he could be talked into moving down here?

OK, that was a different issues.

In any case, I had not signed the contracts with the franchise providers of the vendor machines.

These were still left over from the times of Carl Rivers.

We had to check the contracts and possibly make new ones, allowing for offering healthier snacks.


36.2. Japanese Candy


Kazu and Rose offered sometimes Japanese candy in Sushi Rox.

Those were said to be particularly delicious.

Rose Pepper had got mixed feelings. "Those almost qualify as drugs."

Kazu feared there to be some black market.

And some Japanese candy were indeed known as easy to be spiked.

Kazu had to be very careful in order to avoid selling spiked candy.

But he was of course in no way in a position the prevent his customers from spiking the candy after having purchased them and from reselling them.


36.3. Stubborn Vendors


Along with Zoey and Beverly, I had just gone through a catalogue of the candy franchise corporation.

There seemed to be no healthy snacks available, at least not according to Zoey's definition.

This was really annoying.

We had to look for other sources.

The girls had already got some sort of an idea.

At the eastern coast, so called "moon bars" appeared to be very popular.

They contained no fat and hardly any carbon hydrates.

But could we simply take our vendor machines and just exchange the current content partially with moon bars?

It was better to look up the contracts.

I did not necessarily underrstand the legalese.

Spencer Shay seemed to apply for proof reading them. He had been at law school for three long days.

That was impressive.

OK, it wasn't really.

Claire Sawyer also wanted to step in. She was of course still very far from law school. But she knew many law books by heart.

Claire and Spencer needed half a day and endless disputes in order to sort it out.

But finally, it was clear:

The upstream provider had got a monopoly and did not allow us to sell other candy and snacks in their machines besides their own.

In addition, the contracts were still running for about five more years.

Zoey looked consternated. "Dustin is supposed to feed on junk all the way through middle school and half the way through high school?"

I sighed deeply.

We could not opt out of the contract.

According to Spencer, most contracts were not water tight, though.

But this did not help in this special situations.

Claire assumed, "we need to prove the contracts to be based on blackmailing, bribery, or similar stuff."

That sounded like being in need of a scandal in order to get out of the groove. Was that any good?


36.4. Puke


I was also curious about the moon bars.

They better tasted very good.

Otherwise the students would not buy them.

This would make the whole enterprise of replacing unhealthy snacks with them pointless.

And we would spent lots of bucks for nothing.

Being worried, I decided to do some research.

The moon bars were froim the east coast.

Thus some schools over there had probably already made their experiences with them.

I just had to ask and to find out. Remembering Mr. Jamerson, the umpire of last year's war robot league final, I decided to start with his school in New York City.

Mr. Jamerson had received my request and was now answering it. He advised me to ask the pupils, especially True Jackson, the vice class president of the seventh grades.

I decided to do so right away.

There was of course that time shift between New York City and Los Angeles.

True Jackson was probably already at home.

I was lucky.

There was an immediate chance for a web chat on site.

True wondered about my new office suit.

I replied, "some of our students here are great fashion designers, such as Ms. Zoey Brooks."

True admitted to being sort of a fashion designer as well.

But now it was necessary to talk about the moon bars.

True had tried to sell a few of them at a charity event at their school "My class pal Mikey Jay had suggested that.".

Her friend Ryan Laserbeam had thereupon started puking, covering the whole school yard with some disgusting stink, worse than that of a skunk.

I was flabbergasted as to that.

How could something as healthy as moon bars taste that badly?

But those were the facts.

I was also directed to a forum of students at middle and high schools in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut.

This needed to be checked out.

Having thanked Ms. Jackson for her information, I went straight to the forum.

A certain Adelaide Singer from Rocky Road reported her experiences.


I have been introduced to moon bars by my formerly good friend Zachariah Carter Schwartz, an ecopacifist.

Geena Fabiano, my best friend forever, was hitherto his girlfriend.

But she puked her guts out upon taking a bite off one of the moon bars. She lost her consciousness and fell into a comotose state for almost three days.

Needless to say, Zachariah Carter Schwartz is now no longer her boyfriend.

Friends don't let friends eat moon bars!

That goes even much more for boyfriends and girlfriends.


This report was totally alerting, wasn't it?

It was just the top of the iceberg,though.

About each school over there seemed to have cases of moon bar induced puke storms.

Owen Reynolds from Empire City Middle School was the most recent kids to pass out from puking upon an attempt of enjooying moon bars.

Unfortunately, Zoey Brooks had already ordered a whole cardboard box of them.

That was absolutely no good sign.


36.5. Cactus Of Guadalapecho


Quinn Pensky and Mark del Figgalo had recently been working for a school project about cactus plants.

In the framework of this project, Quinn had deiscovered a very interesting species from Guadalapecho in the Mexican wastelands.

The cactus plant contained some particularly tasty juice without fat and almost without carbon hydrates.

The essential liquid was perfectly suited for rendering many edibles a lot more tasty.

Quinn deemed that as the very best possible fix for the moon bars.

The girls had now been convinced of the poor taste of the moon bars.

Samantha Puckett usually eats everything without serious complaints. Thus she had offered herself for a test bite.

Gordy was now still moaning about his efforts of cleaning up after Sam's puke storm of no less than Beaufort Nine.

And Carly Shay had to clean poor Fredward Benson.

The latter happened to have stood in Sam's way.

That was never a good idea. for no person in the world.

But was the cactus of Guadalapecho really the solution?

It sounded a lot like spiking candy.

Quinn had been given that example of a desert dwelling plant from Cal.

I decided to talk to him about the problem.

He was no longer working here as an adviser for the science club.

mr. Sweeny had taken over that office.

But Cal was still Quinn's upstream provider with strange ingredients for experiments. He explained,


The cactus is from Guadalapecho, a lone place in the Mexican wastelands.

Already Cortés, the Spanish conquistador, had encountered this palnt ans its essential oil.

His soildiers and native servants turned very unreliable and weird upon continued consumption of the liquid.


I choked., "This sounds like a drug!"

Cal nodded solemnly. "The Spanish inquisition has outlawed it as the work of Satan."

OK, this was not necessarily an objective judgment.

But, according to Cal, the cactus drug had caused a fatal civil war during the eighteenth century, destroying the poor civilisatio of Guadalapetcho.

That was too much.

I could clearly not allow for the distribution of such a drug like thing on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy.

We had to find a different solution.

And there was still the problem with the contracts with the franchising corp.


Chapter 37. The New Bodyguard


37.1. Ashley's Watchdog


As aforementioned, Vincent Blake was now forced to go through extra tutoring.

And this made it impossible for him to keep on babysitting, oops, bodyguarding his little sister Ashley, the famous baby Hollywood diva.

As a tutor for Vince's worst classes, videlicet those in Geography, History, English, and Spanish, I had chosen Lola Martinez.

The Latina drama queen was a bit less of a diva than Ashley, but she had still a lot in common with the latter.

This should make it easy for Vince to get along with her.

Lola was able to tell a tutoring session apart from a date, wasn't she?

So, who was going to be Ashley's new body guard?

The Blake family did not trust any of the other jock boys at Pacific Coast Academy. So they had bee looking outside.

And the solution was not hard to find.

Sarah Kyla[[125]] was eighteen years old. She was still able to feign to go to high school in order to protect young prominents even at school without unveiling her proper task.

And Ashley was only her second client.

But Sarah had already trained very hard. She was working out each day with heavy waights.

Her hands could easily break tile stones in one swipe.

Of course Kyla needed to get assigned to some classes and need someone to get started. She had once been in the state of Washington.

Thus I decided to assign Quinn Pensky to help her finding her way around. I let Beverly call the geek girl into our office.

Sarah was of course not going to give away herreal reason to be at Pacific Coast Academy.

Her made up story was that of a family moving to Los Angeles becauuse of her father's new job for the quality control of a pasta factory.

Pasta are similar to noodles, but more of the Italian sort.

Ten minutes later, Quinn arrived in my office.

I told her about her task.

At first she looked friendly.

But upon spotting Sarah, something seemed to ring a bell in her.

I did not yet dare to ask.

Quinn tried to invent an excuse for not having to guide Sarah to her dormitory rooms. She definitely seemed not to be at ease with the new student.

I sighed deeply and decided to switch to another student. "Beverly, please call Ms. Tracy Baldwin into my office!" I wiped some sweat off my temples.

Sarah remarked, "I have seen that girl… somewhere … but I can't remember." She shrugged helplessly.


37.2. Vendor Scandal


Halfd a day later, Claire Sawyer entered my office withoutw warning.

I sighed. "What is up?"

Claire remarked, "I have probably found a gap in the cointract between Pacific Coast Academy and the vendor corp."

I gasped. "OK?"

Claire stated, "the contract lists the shares of the profit."

I moaned, "oh, it's about money."

Claire nodded. "These are the shares according to the contract."

I overread the text. "It sounds a bit much for a school."

We were an institution of education and preparation, not a candy shop.

Claire continued, "now I have read Da Rules …"

Indeed, she had readthat book in two days and learned it all by heart.

Was that impressive? Horrifying

Da Rules clarified and limited the school's profit made from franchising to third party vendors.

And the sums mentioned in the contract were definitely above the limit.

The signers of the contract had thus violated Da Rules, and probably also local trades laws responsible for the existence of such a passage in the book of rules.

Did this render the contract invalid?

There were many things to consider.

The contracts could be invalid ex nunc, or invalid ex tunc.

Carl Rivers should certainly have known Da Rules when signing this. Had he even cared?

OK, the revenues from the vendor machines required some thorough scrutiny.

Claire Sawyer, inspite of awfully competent, was still far from being a real lawyer.

But this problem could be patched by means of a junior license, as was the case for Quinn Pensky as a deputy of Doc Hollywood.

Grandpa Shay was certainly able and willing to license Claire Sawyer.

This way, the future lawyer could request access to the official reports of the school's finances.

But Claire also wanted us to hire additionally a good independent accountant. "The best of all is Rosemary Pinchbinder[[126]] from New YorkCity."

I had never heard about her.

But the suggestion sounded good, anyways.

Someone had to pinch bind the creeps signing those contracts.


37.3. Pageat Girl


Complaints about Quinn pensky being mean to new student Sarah Kyla continued.

The geek girl was even reported to throw eggs and fire laser beams at Ashley's body guard.

That was of course totally inappropriate.

I definitely needed to investigate.

The first step was that of interrogating Quinn Pensky severely here in my office.

And this would happen today.

Finally, Beverly called Quinn in.

The geek queen stumbled into the office, probably totally insecure and upset.

I started asking directly away.


How do you know the new student, Sarah?

And what are your problems with her?


Quinn Pensky choked like in lime.

I was waiting patiently for an answer.

The geek lady broke finally down and admitted, "I know her from some pageant of the past."

I asked, "you have watched a sister or so participating?"

Quinn suspired. "No, I haven't. Really, I have got an alike looking younger cousin named Camille, a multiply awarded pageant girl. But I have been a pageant girl as well before going to elementary school." She started weeping onto her feet. "Don't tell anyone." She feared for her career.

Would her life be ruined in the case of anyone getting to know about it?

Hey, it had been ten years ago or so, after all.

I shrugged helplessly.

Were former pageant girls not allowed to become scientist?

I did not think so.

Quinn appeared also to fear for her boyfriend, Mark del Figgalo.

Would he really trash her just for that? According to my experience, someone like del Figgalo would just yawn and shrug, but never lose a word about it.

Maybe Josh Nichols could help Quinn here. He was still on and off participating in comedy dance contests.

That was certainly no less embarrassing than having been a pageant girl.

I called Josh Nichols immediately for a talk about that problem.


37.4. Tabkeepers


Rosemary Pinchbinder was now on her way to Los Angeles.

Garth Burman had agreed on looking a closer look at the whole thing.

The passage in Da Rules was indeed based on local trades laws.

Claire had found out about that.

The school would get into serious troubles.

But where had the money actually gone to?

Only Ms. Pinchbinder would be able to figure.

I had to find a temporary office for the tab keeper.

According to Beverly, there was no free office room in the administration building.

I had to look somewhere else.

Helen Baxter was often on the road for negotiations about movies and other theatre events.

Thus I was up to letting Ms. Pinchbinder use the office of the campus cinema.

Of course the duration of Ms. Pinchbinder's presence was not yet known.

This could last for some while.

I hoped it to be over as soon as only possible.

Otherwise, the red alert bell would ring out for Pacific Coast Academy.


Chapter 38. This Ol' Hammer


38.1. Most Illustrous Society


Rhe Society Of The Silver Hammer was an "elitary" club, or a "Brotherhood" exclusively active at high schools and colleges of coastal southern California, from Santa Barbara all the way down to San Diego. It was very often and not without any sufficient reason compared to networks like the Lions or the Rotarians.

Their area of activity included in particular the metropolitan complex of larger Los Angeles and Hollywood.

Members recruited as high school kids could look forward to a more or less established continuity into college, university, and the corporal world of that region, and that could as well mean: around the whole world, given the global significance of Hollywood and other economic heavy weights based in Los Angeles.

Many politicians, scientists, artists, bankers, industrial CEOs, and on and on and on it goes, got their career accelerated and streamlined through their former membership in the Society Of The Silver Hammer.

Being a hammer was thus a pwerful protection for the fledgling career of a high school student from that region.

Needless to say, the snobbish and exclusive club of the Silver Hammer was also heavily represented at California's most exclusive boarding school, videlicet Pacific Coast Academy.

Consequently, a huge amount of the students of this prep school aimed for membership in the Society Of The Silver Hammer.

There had not yet been recruited any girls for the local branch during the last two years.

The reason for this had been the lack of known girls among the high school kids at Pacific Coast Academy.

But this reason was no longer a valid one.

Girls were no longer a stunning minority. And, even more, they had already made it into many leading positions and were involved in the school's activities of the uttermost importance.

There was now no reason left for excluding girls from the ranks of this outstanding society.

These days, the elders of the society stalked the campus. They were wielding silver hammers, well, just wooden hammers covered with a thin silver layer, for the purpose of knocking lightly any potential new member, such as Zoey Brooks, Lola Martinez, Dana Cruz, Michael Barret, Chase Matthews, Vincent Blake, and many other sophomores.

However, Chase had decided to reject the membership. "Elitary clubs are downright stupid."

Maybe he was not really far off.

Nicole Bristow must have scared away the "cute guys" from the illustrous club with her bimbo talk.

OK, that was just way too understandable.

Likewise, Stacey Dillsen had been rejected inspite of having built a giant silver hammer for the elders, made of cotton swabs and white glue.

Claire Sawyer was already offering her help to the girls in the case of going to sue against the elders of the Society Of The Silver Hammer. She had learned the rules of the society by heart. "Discriminating against lisp and bimbo talk are not allowed according to their own statutes."

Logan Reese had apparently tried to bribe his way into the club in a very clumsy manner.

The elders of the club appeared to have rejected him for that reason.

Freshly knocked postulkants were given a sticker.

But the process of acceptance into the society was not yet complete.

There seemed to be a secret meeting in order to introduce them.

I had to sign the approval of that event.

Mr. Bender had to tell me a lot about them.

I was not very keen on those illustrous societies.

They just used to spread social disquiet among the pupils.

And that was absolutely no good.

Mr. Pal had already told me a few stories from his experience as a principal at James K. Polk.


38.2. The Loganites


Logan had tried to snek into the postulants' reunion with a bushy wig and with Chase's sticker. But he had been discovered and removed on site.

Stacey had tried to sneak in, too, pretending to be Zoey Brooks. But inspite of a blond wig, she got discovered upon opening her mouth.

Her lispy voice was not mistakable.

Likewise, Nicole had tried to sneak in with a wig. But she was talking too much to get past the "so cute" bouncer.

Logan would now start founding his own illustrous club, the Loganites, in order to show his teeth toi the Silver Hammers.

This of course sounded even more worrying.

But who wanted to become a Loganite?

Of course not everyone would be admitted to that club.

Logan appeared to have posulants cross the campus in nothing but underpants.

The Silver Hammers had got their rules, too.

The postulants were forced to perform assigned slave jobs for the elders, and for one whole week.

Zoey was assigned to feed the elders.

Michael would have to brush their teeth.

Lola Martinez was called to shave them all.

Dana Cruz was forced to massage their backs.

Good luck for them!

But the most annoying part of their ceremonies appeared definitely to be the annoying sound of a triangle played by one of the elders.

Would anyone go through the utter embarrassment of passing Logan's test for admission?


38.3. The Last Hurdle


Usually, there was one last step before the ultimate admission to the society for those having served successfully as a slave for the elders for a whole week.

One postulant was always rejected.

But the postulants had to elect that unfortunate one among themselves.

This year, it was different.

Not all of the postulants had gone through the excessive humiliation.

Zoey had put up for a whole week with the disgusting eating habits of the elders.

Michael had been able to survive their parodontitis.

Lola had shaved their whole bodies. "But they are not good kissers!" She was so thoroughly disgusted.

But Dana Cruz had almost broken their backs when "massaging"the creeps. Thus she got sent away early.

All of the postulants got thence accepted.

But what had happened to the potential Loganites?

Well, all the boys invited by Lagan Reese had run away, including Mark del Figgalo.

And then two female postulants had appeared on the scene, videlicet Stacey Dillsen and Nicole Bristow. They pounced mercilessly upon Logan Reese and tortured him with their lips and cotton swabs.

The combination of Stacey's lisp and Nicole's bimbo voice caused Logan's nervous system to shortcircuit, preventing him from running away.

For the very first time the reckless dandy deserved some kind of sort of pity.

But he had it somewhat coming, nevertheless.


38.4. Illegal Activities


Nicole and Stacey had refrained from suing the Society Of The Silver Hammers.

But Claire Sawyer had discovered some irregularities, with some help of Ms. Pinchbinder.

The division of The Society Of The Silver Hammer here at Pacific Coast Academy was registered as a club.

And according to Da Rules, all clubs were required to report their finances.

Yet there had not been such a report during the last three years.

Claire could just not trace it back any further.

This was indeed scary.

The club was somewhat fishy.

I decided to command Ms. Pinchbinder to take a closer look at the situation.

The most problematic part was of course that of the region wide character of The Society Of The Silver Hamer.

In order to perform a real investigation, it was absolutely necessary to cooperate with the other schools in the counties of Santa Barbara, Ventura, Los Angeles, Orange County, and San Diego.

Many of the pincipals and counsellours at those schools were former members of the "hammers".

This was also the case for Carl Rivers.

They would certainly not react with excessive pleasure to my potential accusations.

I let Beverly write a letter to the more trustworthy of the principals in the area covered by The Society Of The Silver Hammer, inclusding Ms. Collins from Palmwood.

According to Claire Sawyer, Vice Principal Crubbs of Jamnes K. Polk was most suspicious. He had not been a "hammer", but often invited lame former "hammers" as important guests for school events, against the will of the pupils.

She was also suspicious towards Dr. Sheila Voss, the president of the union of Californian principals since a few months.

I had never heard that name before and could not say anything.

Unfortunately, the name was a fake …


Chapter 39. Open Mike Night


This was the evenuing of the annual Open Mike Night at Pacific Coast Academy.

It had got a fairly long tradition, even under the rule of Dean Rivers.

But it had been going through some severe changes ever since.

This was essentially due to the two people nowadays in charge with this event, videlicet Helen Baxter and Gustavo Rocque.

Helen was rigged and ready for moderating the whole event.

Gustavo had not only been one of the main sponsors, he was also rumoured to think about using this event as a sort of hidden audition for a new project in his mind.

This was some additional spice for the evening.

Helen started her moderation. She thanked many people for this event, including me.

I was sitting somewhere in the middle of the audience.

Last year's event had ended in some sort of chaos.

Michael Barret had entertained many with his song parodies. Honestly said, he was a dogawfully bad singer.

Most of the students had loved his style, though.

But Gustavo Rocque had been of some absolutely different opinion. He had yelled all over the place, denouncing Michael's song as crap.

Fortunately, Gustavo's mulata secretary, a certain Kelly Waynright, was with him tonight. She was one of the few people able to moderate his occasionally ill growing temper, or at least to try to.

Michael was going to try it again tonight.

But there was another reason hor him than that of looking for rehabilitation for the humiliation of the last year.

Michael Barret had got some terrinbly insane crush on some Lisa Perkins, a new student for this year.

Lisa was a very good singer. She had even applied for America Sings[[127]], Malcolm Reese's casting show — of uttermost popularity — for future rock and pop stars.

Michael Barret was a bit creepy. The spring before, he had got a very stupid crush on a certain Vanessa Tayler[[128]], the captain of our girls' volleyball team and sometimes also cheerleading for the football squad. He had even gone as far as deliberately losing a bet with Chase and Logan in order to date her.

The stakes had been embarrassing.

Michael had been forced to dress as a girl and cross the campus this way, with some sort of alert lamp on his head.

That had been totally ridiculous.

Why had the two of them broken apart?

Maybe I just had not yet noticed.

But usually breakups of the cheerios spread like wildfire.

So Michael and Vanessa had probably not yet broken up officially.

Michael was thus leading a double life.

But this was fortunately not my concern.

The show had to begin.

Anyways, Zoey Brooks had placed Lisa Perkins into the front row, in order to make it easier for Michael Barret to impress her.

Helen Baxter yelled into the microphone, "OK, our first number tonight is Michael Barret!"

The audience applauded, barring Gustavo Rocque.

Helen was not done. "And don't forget our backup guitarist for the evening, live from San Diego, the one and only Drake Parker!"

The applause increased.

Stacey Dillsen and Nicole Bristow started squealing for excitement.

Nicole jumped up, ripped her bras off, and threw it onto the syage. "Drake!"

Stacey was a bit disadvantaged. She had recently hurt one butt muscle durin g yoga lessons and could not walk freely, let alone jump. But she was apparently obsessed with Drake, too.

Nicole helped Stacey and threw the cotton swab queen's chestwear onto the open stage.

Drake was utterly disgusted by this action.

Helen had to call for the security team in order to get rid of the annoying fangirls.

Drake showed up with his guitar. He grinned and asked Michael, "what are you going to sing?"

Michael whispered something into Drake's ears.

Drake nodded solemnly.

Michale had written the tune for the song himself.

But Drake awas already familiar with it.

The show was finally ready to take off.

The guitar's music filled the air.

Michael started opening his mouth. But then he spotted Lisa Perkins in the front row.

His stomach could not bear the suspense.

A smelly fountain shot forth from his gaping jaw.

That was already terrible enough.

But the stinking torrent had to hit Lisa Perkins the straight way.

That was absolutely humiliating.

Michael was bitterly upset by his own incompetence. He ran away to some hideout.

Drake sighed and started wiping Lisa's stained jeans clean. He had not yet seen her sing. But he had got some forboding feeling.

Helen sighed deeply. "This was nothing." She looked at her cheat sheet. "Let's continue directly with the next number, videlicet Trina Vega!"

Trina grinned. "Hi fans!" She was definitely not popular enough to have many fans in the audience. Then she announced her number. New York, New York by Frank Sinistra.

Drake had to correct her. "Sorry, baby! But it is really 'Sinatra'." And usually he was the dumb one.

Trina shrugged. "I am the hottest and the most gifted, anyways!" She exposed her curves seductively to Drake.

But Helen interrupted this attempt. "Get on with your number!"

Trina started singing to Drake's guitar performance.

Her claims concerning her talent had been vastly exaggerated to say the least.

Well, she was certainly not a bad dancer at all.

But keeping her mouth shut would have been benificial for about everybody in the audience.

Gustavo Rocque was of course absolutely not pleased. "what a waste of time!"

Jeremiah Trottman was commenting for the school news, "what a comedy!"

Helen looked puzzled, too.

But the show had to go on.

A few numbers later, Helen concluded, "OK, so our last number for the evening is Lisa Perkins."

Appolause filled the hall.

Drake suspired. "OK, you will sing?"

Lisa specified, "I will sing a medly of some calypso tune from my Caribbean ancestry.!"

Drake nodded solemnly. "OK, calypso medley." He blushed when standing next to Lisa. Then he let his fingers dance across the guitar chords.

Music filled the air.

Lisa started singing.

The hall was about vibrating.

The audience clapped along.

The amount odf applause was growing more and more towards the end of the performance.

Many members of the audience were now sad. "It is already over?" They wanted more from Lisa and Drake.

But it was already late.

I had already extended the curfew for the kids for over an hour. I refused to say some closing words for that reason.

Helen Baxter had not got any difficulties determining the winner. "Lisa Perkins!"

Lisa cheered. She started bouncing around and finally hugged Drake Parker vigorously. "Oops!"

Drake blushed again.

Only Gustavo's face remained as cols as stone.

Kelly asked him, "but this was good, wasn't it?"

Gustavo growled, "good? No, this was not good, it was … fantabulous!" He bellowed the last word at the top of his lungs, making the campus shake like an earthquake. "This cries for a record contract!"

Lisa could hardly believed it. She had hoped for a contract after some long and painful trip through casting shows and many events like these, on and off the campus.

But this jump start was totally sirprisong.

Gustavo Rocque was by absolutely no means easy to satisfy.

But she had really made it.

But what was going on between Drake and Lisa?

Their hug had superficially looked harmless to many viewers..

Trina Vega must have seen a hell of a lot more in it.

Her eyes started glowing for jealousy.

She clenched her fists and was certainly not up to doing much good to Lisa.

Michael would not return again during the same evening. He was probably hiding in his wardrobe and playing his flute, as usual after disappointments.

Zoey Brooks was now looking after him. But she would not be able to effect miracles.

And the scenes between Drake and Lisa were hardly going to make him feel any better.

On the way out, I had to congratulate Lisa Perkins for her success.

Gustavo Rocque made it clear, "Lisa is a dog, I am the dog trainer!"

Lisa Perkins shuddered thoroughly. She had already heard similar stuff about Gustavo, though, and had thus got no real reason for a surprise.

Fame means pain, especially for fledgling rock stars.


Chapter 40. Chuck Javers


40.1. Wrestling Fever


The football ream of Pacific Coast Academy had actually been able to win the Californian championships against the team of Golden Bay Bridge.

This was essentially due to the efforts of Dana Cruz.

The power tomboy was more than just a substitute for Vincent Blake.

Dana Cruz really mowed them down, leaving nobody alive to tell. She had got no heart at all, just like grandpa Puckett in the worst times of downtown Seattle.

In the beginning, many guiys had troubles with a girl in their team.

This had already been the case with basketball.

And football was deemed even an trifle more "manly".

Thus their reluctance had been to some degree understandabe, well, at least predictable.

Due to Vince Blake's needs of cuttingdown with the training, the team was forced to integrate Dana Cruz more and more into their actions and moves than thitherto usual.

This was apparently quite successful.

Now the team was preparing for the impending nationals.

Alas, I had got some doubts concerning Dana's performance.

Maybe she was just slipping through the lines of the adversaries like a heated knife through a lump of butter becaise of being female.

Many perversely creepy jerks in the likeness of Logan Reese still refused to go into infights with female opponents. They just could not win it.

Beating a girl was deemed uncool.

Getting pushed aside by a girl was considered a weakness.

For that avail, excessively evil boys avoided any face to face confrontation with girls.

Of course not everyone knew about Dana being a girl.

It was really hard to see, give the heavy armour of football players.

But rumours spread very fast.

Anyways, our football team was not the only bunch of jocks.

We had got a wrestling team as well.

They were now standing in front of their regionals.

The coach of the wrestlers was even a trifle more perverse than aforementioned coach Keller.

I would never have employed such a decadent creep.

But Mr. Bradford had insisted in that stain of embarrassment. And he was still the boss.


40.2. The Regionals


This year, our school had got the excessively dubious honour of hosting the regional championships for wrestling.

I had not applied for that.

But Mr. Bradford was keen on it. He was not coming to our campus in order to watch the muscle mountains move around the arena. He was watching it in TV, though.

Jeremiah Trottman and his gang were responsible for the broadcast stuff.

Lola Martinez had tried hard to make it as a co moderator. But, unlike her father, Juan Martinez[[129]] , she was no athlete. She would not know zilch. But she loved to be seen on TV.

This was good for her career as a movie star.

Or so she thought.

Her movie Kelly Cooper was not far from geting completed, by the way.

The most creepy jocks were in our team.

One of them was of course Logan Reese.

Unfortunately Vince Blake had not been able to train for the event due to all those tutoring lessons.

Surprisingly, Zoey Brooks was in the wrestling team. And she was not much of a jock. According to rumours, she had just been able to separate two fighting middle school kids in a sovereign manner.

And her category was definitely a tough one.

The absolute top favourite was one Chuck Javers. That was not really a human wrestler, but a wild beast. He had got even less of a heart than Dana Cruz.

The first Stingray in the ring was one Duke Blatzberg[[130]], a really tough wrestling bully. He had got absolutely no brain at all. Little wonder he got along very well with Logan Reese, as opposed to Zoey Brooks.

The opponent of Blatzberg was Jennifer Mosely from James K. Polk.

But what was that?

Blatzberg withdrew on site, even before the first call of the umpire to the ring.

Apparently, he was one of the vulgar jerks and kocks, like Logan Reese, unable to fight against girls.

Jennifer sighed. "Hey! What are you doing? Come back!"

But Blatzberg refused to listen.

Jennifer was totally upset and angry. "I have trained hard for these regionals! Now I want to give you a proof of my wrestling skills!"

But her objections were all in vain.

This totally reminded me of Dana Cruz's way of being treated permanently down on the football pitch.

Many perverted boys refused to fight against girls.

And Blatzberg was about the most stupid jerks.

We definitely owed an excuse to Ms. Mosely.

At the same time, Chuck Javers was mowing down his first opponents in some manner of uttermost brutality.

This was not so nice to watch.

It was time for Zoey's first opponent, some guy from somewhere.

Wait!

He did about the same as Duke Blatzberg.

That was really mean.

Zoey had worked definitely very hard. Of course she had reched the second turn. But she wpuld have preferref to earn it.

At the same time, Chuck's behaviour off the arena was no better. He stole Quinn Pensky's nerdy glasses and Chase Bartholomew Matthews's smoothie.

That was impossible.

I was responsible for my campus. I was close to calling security.

But no security guard in the world was able to put up with a really furious Chuck Javers.

In other words, I would have been forced to call the national guard or even the air force.

This sounded ugly.

And it would have caused a scandal in the local press and the broadcast corporations.

The prestige of Pacific Coast Academy would have suffered severely.

I tried to talk to Javers.

This was porbably just pointless. But it had to be tried.

As expected, the wrestling tank was not replying in a friendly manner. "You are a school for weaklings! You can't tell me anything!" But he promised to keep his aggressivity to the arena.

The following opponents of Zoey Brooks withdrew as well.

Thus Zoey was now finally supposed to fight Chuck Javers.

At least he was not a perverted jerk treating girls like second class people. "I hurt all opponents the same way, no matter who or what!"

Suddenly, the megaphone announced, "Zoey Brooks is injured and has to be replaced."

But, hey! That was impossible.

Zoey had not even had an occasion for getting injured, given the cancellation of her previous fights.

Claire Sawyer showed up with the book of the rules of the high school wrestling association.

There was that rule.

Claire concluded, "and this must have been the strategy of our coach from the get on!"

Chuck Javers was now tired.

Or so had our coach hoped. Now he wanted to sent our regular light weight fighter, Scott Ridgemond[[131]], into the ring.

I gasped.

The wrestling coach was really one filthy creep.

Claire Sawyer started quoting Da Rules.

An adviser caught cheating in the frame of an official contest would have to be suspended on site.

Claire had just written a letter of excuse to Jennifer Mosely due to Blatzberg's impossible demeanour.

Jennifer and Claire had been friends since nursery school.

And now it was time to think about writing the suspension of the wrestling coach.

Zoey Brooks denied truthfully to be injured. She was by no means pleased.

Suddenly, Dustin Brooks squirted some red ketchup from a plastic can at Zoey's leg, making her look like bleeding. he was apparently worried, seeing Zoey get hurt badly by the unstoppable jock.

Zoey was consternated.

But the ring medic, Dr. Nussbaum[[132]] , got fooled and let the coach have it his way.

Zoey was now grumpy.

But Scott Ridgemond was no longer there. He had fled the arena howling and weeping in anticipation of getting maimed by Chuck Javers.

The wrestling machine claimed, "I will put up with any of you pothetical Pacific Coast Academy weaklings, no matter what weight class!"

The spectators moaned for anger.

But would anyone still dare to try the impossible?

Oh yeah!

Dana Cruz showed up. She had initially been the substitute for Logan Reese, but she had not been comfortable in this rôle and almost retired completely. She removed her vest and exposed some perfectly styled outfit. She acted like a domina.

Wasn't that scary?

Chuck Javers was not yet impressed.

The fight started.

Dana was totally like of another star.

Chcuk Javers was no weaker or more tiured than before. But he could not really get a grip of the reckless tomboy.

Now Dana started fighting back.

The fight was very close.

But after the end of the match, Chuck Javers had won with one point ahead.

Dana was probably the first person in a long time able to contain Chuck for the full length of a wrestling match.

Chuck Javers lacked the words. He yelled incomprehemsibly at the umpires, anyways.

Dana grunted,


That was close.

I have not been prepared and have not worked out as of recent.

This has made me a bit stiff.

Otherwise you would have lost … possibly.

Maybe another time I will prove it.


Chuck just roared back.

Dana shrugged."OK! You have had a response to all of my wrestling moves in the ring. But have you got a response for this?" She grabbed Chuck and pulled him firmly into a kiss.

Chuck Javers blushed deeply. But then he wrapped his strong arms around the tomboy and kissed her back.

The breath of the onlookers froze.

Dana had finally found a peer worthy of her.

That was not my problem anymore.

At least no pupil of the Pacific Coast Academy had been injured today.

Oops, almost no pupil, that is.

Nicole Bristow and Stacey Dillsen had dared to bother asking Chuck for an autograph.

According to Nicole, Chuck Javers was incredibly cute.

According to Stacey, his arms were so adorable.

Well, apparently Chuck had not been in the mood of getting bothered by those annoying girls.

Stacey Dillsena and Nicole Bristow have now learned to stick to boys in their league instead of bothering the wrong ones.

Or so it was to be hoped.


Chapter 41. Fatal Race


41.1. Arcade Games


Many kids liked to play video games, or even arcades.

There was not yet an official arcade centre on our campus.

But the kids played on their own dormitory rooms and their own laptops.

There was hardly anything to say against that.

Of course the exaggerated usage of these facility had caused a dangerous power failure at the begin of my second year here at Pacific Coast Academy.

Quinn Pensky and Melinda Crenshaw had ever since been working excruciatingkly hard on this problem and come up with several solutions, some of them worthy of getting submitted to the national science fair. As a team, the two of them were totally unbeatable.

Well, currently a new race cart game appeared to be very popular.

Just a few weeks ago, Chase Bartholomew Matthews and Logan Reese had been duelling endlessly over it.

Their battle seems to have ended for some reason.

This had happened just before aforementioned Open Mike Night.

Then things had continued in silence.


41.2. Insane Bet


But now, things appeared to have turned more tricky.

Samantha Puckett stormed into my office.

I sighed. "What have you committed these days?"

Sam shrugged. "The usual?"

I did not dare to query any further.

Sam was really testing our nerves.

But there must have been a reason for her visit.

Sam explained, "I bwwd to borrow some bucks for a race cart?"

Freddie and Carly had already lent too much money unto her.

I choked. "What do you need a race cart for?"

Sam replied, "I want to participate in the school championships in cart racing."

I chuckled.


It's a video game.

You don't need a race cart for that.


Samantha was most obviously of a different opinion.

But maybe she had known about something hitherto unbeknownst to me?

Sam was in a stinky mood and wanted to go.

But I had to interrogate her. "Ehat about a real cart race on the campus?"

Sam moaned,


It has all started with Chase Matthews and Logan Reese.

Chase was the best here in the video game.

But Logan has decided to challenge him in a real race. He does not deem the bushy dweeb able to steer a cart straight, let alone win a race.

Now they make a real race, next Saturday all over the campus.

Logan has bought an expensive race cart from Japan.

Chase, on the other hand, is building his own cart from bits and pieces found on the nearby trash yard.

Spencer Shay is going to help him with the selection of the junk.

Quinn will help him tune the cart.


I coughed. "On the campus?"

Sam nodded solemnly. "They have not got the driving licenses needed in order to make a race off the campus."

I was consternated. "Are they crazy?" I had not introduced local passes for using a scooter on the campus for no reason.

Chase Bartolomew Matthews and Logan Reese were about endangering the health and life of many other pupils, teachers, and staff members.

Of course I was by absolutely mo means willing to let them pass with that.

This had to be against Da Rules.

And Claire Sawyer would soon thereupon confirm that.


41.3. Race Simulator


The book of our rules were even threatening Logan Reese and Chase Bartholomew Matthews with lots of detention and suspension, if not expulsion in the case of anyone getting actually damaged during the race.

Even their plans could have been a reason for severe punishment.

of course I did not want to letr it get that far.

Well, Logan Reese had most definitely deserved a hard lesson.

But Chase was definitely too much of a harmless fool to justify any sort of drastic measures on site.

Quinn Pensky would have had to be severely punished as well for tuning a vehicle to be used on the campus.

And talking about Spencer Shay's absolutely irresponsible demeanour was really the top of the iceberg.

As an adviser and poart time teacher, he should have done everything to dissuade the guys. But he had even encouraged Samantha to sign up for the race as well. Had he not even thought about the possibility of his own beloved little sister Carly getting hurt, mutilated, or killed in the sequel?

I also hated being a spoiler of the kids' fun.

Was there no such thing as a compromise, something moree fun than just the video game, but not as dangerous as the real race?

I had seen a movie about the training of astronauts and drivers of special vehicles on planet earth.

They used to earn their first experience with the feeling of driving a real shuttle by using a simulation device.

This was certainly a big step up from sitting comfortably in your bean bag with a wireless game controller in your hands.

Maybe something similar was available for race carts?

Of course I totally lacked the technological competence needed for talking about it, let alone for inventing such a device.

But there were a few students at Pacific Coast Academy able to do so.

Or so I guessed.

Quinn Pensky and Melinda Crenshaw appeared definitely competent.

And now I was asking them about the possibilities.

Quinn grinned, "oh yeah, I could get a real space flight simulater from the NASA and adapt it for our purposes."

Melinda nodded solemnly. "Cal has actuyally started developing one."

Quinn added, "of course those space shuttle simulators are not used and not built for contests."

Mindy added, "but with Cal's instructions, we could work on it in with uttermost determination."

Quinn nodded vigorously.


41.4. Simulated Race


And there were the devices ordered from the headquarters of the NASA and rebuilt for the purpose of a competitive simulation of a cart race.

Logan claimed, "the most important ability for winning a cart race is your sixth sence."

Quinn replied, "you can't even count until six!"

Logan growled, "oh, says who?"

I had to use the megaphone in order to stop the bickering.

Mindy explained now some details about the virtual racing course. "I have programmed it in the likeness of the race track of Monza in Italy."

The geek girls had been paying a lot of attention to many details, such as curves and profile.

The holes in the asphalted layer had probably been measured as well.

Sam was now participating, too. She started singing "me gusta la gasolina …[[133]]"

It was one of Drake Parker's favourite songs.

The participants were given some hour of practising.

But then Mindy Crenshaw told them to get ready.

They cast dice over the order of using the simulator device.

Logan Reese was the first.

He had giot many fan girls.

Stacey Dillsen was still hankering after him. Maybe she needed some more painful lessons.

I am sorry for having to say that.

But the conclusion was inevitable.

Quinn counted down. "Start in five … four … three … two …"

The green light went on.

Logan had been waiting for the "one".

But the latter never came.

Quinn still deemed it uncool.

Logan moaned. But then he started to race the track, all virtually, of course.

Quinn looked at the chronometre.

Stacey and Nicole squealed.

Finally, the clock was locked after nine minutes and twenty-five seconds.

This was the mark for Chase and Sam to beat.

Chase Bartholomew Mathews was the next to try.

Quinn told him to hide his excessively bushy hair better underneath the helm.

This was because of the better aerodynamic conditions.

Chase used the turbo button.

Logan had not even known of its existence.

But now it was too late.

Chase was pretty fast, and he broke Logan's time easily, like by almost half a minute. Alas, he was unable to brake the cart at the end of the race.

Quinn's eyes bugged out.

Mindy explained, "OK, in reality, Chase would have crashed against the concrete wall and set his car ablaze, and most likely died in the flames."

Finally, it was the turn of Samantha Puckett.

Sam accomodated herself on the hot chair.

Quinn counted down.

Sam's virtual race engine howled aloud.

The sounds were totally real.

Her driving stile was the most reckless of all.

Dust was whirled left and right.

We could not see anything from the track.

But the chronometre stopped after excatly eight minutes, the best time of all.

Samantha had thus won the race. She stood up from her seat. She was totally dizzy, but she did not refrain from yelling "Sam is the winner! Sam is the winner!"

Quinn talked about other damages. "The dust would have polluted the region for five miles, making everyone choke his lungs out."

Well, it was just some simulation.

And after all, we should have been totally happy for that fact.


Chapter 42. Dance The Macalana


42.1. The Complaint


A few days later, Zoey Brookss walked straight into my office.

Beverly had not even tried to stop her.

She looked so totally desperate.

I wondered, "what is going on, Zoey?"

She sighed deeply.

This did not tell me much.

But I had never come close to see her that much upset.

Zoey reported, "I get blackmailed. I have to leave Pacific Coast Academy."

My eyes bucked out. "What?"

Zoey made it more precise. "The creep knows my childhood secret. He keeps on blackmailing me." She did apparently not deem it even possible to stay at Pacific Coast Academy with every student knowing about it.

I wondered, "so, who is backmailing you?"

Zoey shrugged cluelessly. "It's anonymous."

Typically, those anonymous threats were the most creepy ones.

Of course I did not know the content of the embarrassing secret.

But it had to be something very bad.

I asked, "Who, besides you, knows about this shameful fact?"

Zoey explained, "until recently, not even Dustin did."

Dustin Brooks was like four years younger than his sister. He had not been born back then.

This made sense.

I asked, "OK, so this has changed, as of recent?"

Zoey nodded solemnly. "It's due to some project in psychology."

Those psychology classes were taught by Ms. Dangle, a teacher employed back then by Dean Rivers.

The project made the students to tie a sheet with their dark sectrets to some helium filled balloon and then let it soar away.

Someone may have interceived the balloon.

That was particularly mean.

Zoey also reported a few more details about the blackmailing.

A golf ball had come flying through their open window, with a note ted to ot.

According to said note, Zoey was required to dress as a plush banana.

She had now done so, already ewmbarrassing herself.

But the blackmail did not stop.

According to another note via golf mail, Zoey was now requested to dance to a song named Macalana[[134]].

I did not know that song.

It was better to ask some experts, such as Gustavo Rocque.

The golf balls were also strange.

As aforementioned, Spencer Shay had started building a miniature giolf course on the campus.

Students would have played golf, anyways.

But the golf course at least made them stick to some particular area instead of being a peril for the whole campus, like aforementioned miniature plane or a real cart race track on the whole campus.


42.2. Golf Course


I met Spencer Shay out on the miniature golf course.

He introduced me to various stations. "This here is the black greatest of all." He performed some back swing. "Fore!"

The golf ball hit some lever opening a trapdoor leading to a chute for the ball to continue.

Unfortunately, Spencer's timing had been far from perfect.

In addition, the chute was set randomly on fire.

This happened on and off during his moniature golf classes.

He sobbed.

Apparently, it needed a really great golf player to do that successfully, someone way better than Spencer Shay.

There were quite a few kids in his club able to do so, though.

It also needed big skills for doing those things by the blackmailer, or his henchman, with the golf ball.

The window had only been narrowly open.

And the ball hit perfectly a certain spot in front of Zoey's feet.

This certainly excluded Nicole Bristow, for example.

The bimbo girl often enough hit anything but the ball with the club.


42.3. The Song


I was now talking with Gustavo Rocque and Helen Baxter about the song.

Helen remarked, "the song is really embarrassing."

It told the story of some obnoxiously lose girl, named for some region in Spain.

Wasn't that racist?

Girls from Macala or whatever were certainly not less virtuous than anywhere else in the world.

Gustavo explained:


There had been a wandering singer, dancer and … apparently … prostitute in seventeenth century Spain, her name unknown, but commonly referred to as "La Macalana" because of her supposed rative region.

It may also be deribved from Mary the Magdalene of the New Testament, often conflated with some anonymous prostitute from the same book.

The association with that particular Sopanish region is then indeed accidental and totally unfortunate.


I nodded sadly.

Gustavo explained, "the whole thing cries for a Latino rock evening."

I looked puzzled.

But the idea was cool.

Many students singing those songs together would take most of the embarrassment off Zoey.


42.4. Latino Rock Night


A few days later, most students of Pacific Coast Academy were gathered around the big campus square.

Fredward Benson was giving a microphone unto Helen. He was explaining the buttons.

The whole event would be broadcast live withing the web show of Chase and Michael.

Helen Baxter announced, "welcome to the great Latin Rock evening at Pacific Coast Academy, with many of the most popular hits from the nineties, plus some recent compositions by Gustavo Rocque."

Gustavo stood up and yelled into the camera, "that's me, you dogs!"

Freddie asked Gustavo to moderate his voice. "My microphone is a bit sensitive."

Helen pulled Gustavo away from the phone. "OK, let's get the party started! Yeah!"

The live audience cheered fanatically.

Helen continued, "our first star is Ms. Samantha Puckett from downtown Seattle. She will sing for us …. Me gusta la gasoina!"

Samantha grinned. She grabbed the microphone.

But Helen was not yet done. "Oh yeah, nothing goes without some live guitar backup, without the one and only … Drake Parker!"

Sam boomed, "yeah, Drake! The hottest ever!"

Drake stumbled in, with his readied guitar in his arms.

The atmosphere heated up.

Drake was totally popular.

Once more, insane fangirls like Nicole Bristow abnd Stacey Dillsen tried to grasp him. But they did not get past the masses jamming their way.

Drake started playing the guitar.

Samanta sang at the top of her lungs.

Drake grinned. "Oh yeah!"

After Sam's number, Helen announced Lisa Perkins. "This fledgling super star will sing Gustavo's recent rock pop version of Mexican folk song La Cucaracha."

Drake was of course backing her up.

Lisa's voice filled the air.


La cucaracha, a cucaracha ya no puede caminar
Porque no tiene, porque la falta
Blix para beber.[[135]]


Applause accompanied them all the way.

Gustavo grinned. "This is my dog!"

Now it was the big moment for Zoey to sing her number.

She panted heavily.

Drake walked up to her and instilled her some courage. "You won't be alone."

Zoey closed her eyes.

Lisa Perkins was standing by her side. "I will sing along with you. I am ready any time."

Drake nodded.

Fredward gave his microphone to Zoey. "In a few minutes, it will be all over."

Drak's fingers petted the guitar chords.

Zoey started singing.

Lisa joined immediately.

Many other girls could not hesitate for long.

"Aw Macalana" was now sung by dozens of girls at the same time.

But Zoey was clearly the loudest. She danced like a real star.

The amount of applause increased from second to second.

The song was now over.

Zoey kept the microphone. And then she admitted. "OK, have you already seen my baby butt on the ads for sun blockers?"

The students gasped.

Zoey told Dustin to distribute a few DVDs.

Dustin nodded. "The first twenty copies are hand signed!"

The masses applauded.

But the Latino Rock evening was not over.

Helen announced, "watch out for Spencer Shay, the master of Latino dances!"

Spencer yelled, "yeah baby! That's me!"

Gustavo Rocque explained, "Spencer will dance his fire cracker dance[[136]] to the song Ajaresé[[137]] by Las Tapenades"

The kids on the campus cheered insanely.

Now Spencer wanted me to dance along with him.

That would cvertainly be embarrassing.

But that was apparently the topic of the evening.

Many other students had admitted to their secrets previously tied to their respective balloons.

Chase had served as a flower girl at one of his uncle's weddings.

Michael had cried for over an hour when first coming to Pacific Coast Academy.

Wayne had always wanted to be a a martial action artist.

Lola had not been able to don her first bra without mom's help.

And on and on and on it went.

The tune was of course played by indispensable Drake Parker and his trusty rock guitar.

And off we took.

That was really embarrassing.

Each of my bones started hurting.

Maybe I should have do some more sports with grandma Nichols.

Ouch!

Finally the song was all over.

This was the last number of the evening.

The culprit had not yet fessed up.

But Kelly Waynright, aforementioned secretary of Gustavo Rocque, had made an important observation. "The busty Latina, …"

Gustavo interrupted, "Trina Vega!" He sighed. "Unfortunately, I am compelled by Da Rules to accept her in the school dance group."

But she had always been a pain in the rear to work with.

Helen could understand that.

Kelly continued, "she went totally pale when hearing Zoey sing and dance the Macalana, and talking abiut her secret."

I accepted that reason.

Trina Vega was apparently totally suspicious.

But I had to interrogate her before coming to a conclusion.

Hey, Trina Vega was a Latina.

That may have been an accident.

But there was not unlikely more behind it.


Chapter 43. Too Many Rain Drops


43.1. Chase's Birthday


Chase Bartholomew Mattews was about turning seventeen. He was older than most of his class mates by one year.

That was of copurse not much of a problem.

He would have liked a cool birthday party, like most other kids. But he was stuck in some large assignment.

Sadly, his favourite grandma was born the same day of the year, of course with many years inbetween.

But his assignments even prevented him from thinking about that.

I promised to talk to his teachers to postpone the deadlines.

It wasn't fair to him.

Alas, I had to talk to Chase about my previously mentioned suspicious moments against Trina Vega.

Chase finally admitted to having hired Trina in order to make Zoey Brooks jealous. "But it was Lola's idea!"

The shallow diva had been tired by Chase's futile attempts of getting Zoey's attention to some further point. She had suggested him to let her coisin trina feign to be his girlfriend.

Trina had agreed, but she had wanted to get paid for it.

This had been the start of the whole turmoil at the beginning of the academic year.

Chase was really consternated.

We could just hope for some nice birthday party.

The weather reporter from San Diego, aforementioned Walter Nichols, had just published the five day forecast, or, according to his own opinion, fivecast. "Sunshine on Monday, sunshine on Tuesday …" He was, by chance, the father of Joshuah Nichols, out student teacher for science.

Chase and his grandma could not wish for any better weather for their common birthday.


43.2. Trina Fesses Up


But now it was time for interrogating Trina Vega.

This was hardly going to be easy.

Trina was very talkative, but also evasive.

I told her precisely about the incident and the reasons for our conclusions and accusations.

At first glance, Trina deemed that totally absurd. "Kelly Waynright is just envious for being lesss hot and less gifted."

That was of course really stupid.

Because of the potentially gross consequences of the interrogations, I had asked Claire Sawyer to help with her perfect knowledge if Da Rules.

Claire would be necessary in the case of a honour council, anyways.

Trina admitted, "Yes, it was me. I have threatened Zoey because …"

I was listening carefully.

Trina continued, "Chase still owes me five hundred bucks for playing his girlfriend, and a place as a star in one of his musicals to be written."

I gasped. "Five hundred bucks?" I had known about the second part of Chase's deal, more of a promise for the future.

But the money part had hitherto been unbeknownst to me.

Trina growled, "hey! It's for kissing that disgusting dweeb." She yelled hysterically, "that's impossible otherwise." She shuddered for excruciating disgust.

OK, in the case of Chase Bartholomew Matthews, this was totally understandable.

But this did not justify threatening Zoey Brooks and blackmailing her.

I asked, "why did you aim for hurting Zoey, and not directly Chase?"

Trina replied,


Chase has always been so obsessed with Zoey.

Nothing could hurt him more than seeing her suffer and cringe.


That was still horribly mean.

Troina added, "and because Zoey is a blonde."

I coughed. "So what? It happens to be her given hair colour."

At Trina's elementary school, the kids of white anglosaxon protestant origin were somewhat prejudiced against Latinas in general.

Trina had been very early pubescent.

And the wasp kids, instigated by a blond ring leader, had used to slander her as the "Macalana", for them tantamount to being a slut.

This was of course based on aforementioned song.

I sighed deeply.

Her elementary school should definitely have done something about ethnical discrimination as described here.

Trina growled, "OK, am I now fired?"

I could certainly not let her get away with threatening and blackmailing fellow pupils.

But an expulsion would just have made her even more mad, and caused her to wreak havoc somewhere else.

I panted heavily.

Claire Sawyer plead for making Trina apologise to Zoey and to Chase for all the misbehaviour.

In addition, Dr. Lowe should be used inorder to take care of Trina for the next time.

That was probably the most merciful to do in her situation.

I decided to follow Claire's suggestion. "Chase's impending birthday is a great occasion for an apology."

Trina gasped. Was she going to make it there?

I gave her two weeks for that avail.


43.3. The Vendor Machine


43.3.1. Thatcher's Denounce


Lunch break was gone.

I returned to my office.

Beverly had been back before me. She remarked, "Mr. Thatcher[[138]] is on his way with some culprit."

I wiped some sweat off my hand.

A few min iutes later, Mr. Thatcher, the vice priincipal of the middle school classes, showed up. "I request the expulsion of Dustin Brooks."

I gasped. "What? Dustin? That's a nice guy!"

Mr. Thatcher listed his crimes.

Dustin had pulled a few pranks in order to appear cool.

But that was perfectly normal for middle school kids and not a reason for expulsion.

And now Mr. Thacher named the bugger's most recent evil deed. "I've caught him looting one of the vendor machines!"

That did not sound like a nice boy.

But I needed the details. "Where is Dustin Brooks?"

Mr. Thatcher replied, "still stuck with his arm in the vendor machine."

There had already been several reports about kids trying to steal stuff from the vendor machine by sticking their arms up into the machine through the ejection slot.

This was certainly notpossible for the bully jocks.

The slots were not that huge.

In any case, I had to inspect the situation in person. I also called Claire Sawyer.

Dustin would definitely need a very good lawyer.


43.3.2. Trapped


That vendor machine was still standing in the campus square.

Dustin was all alone there. He could not movve his right arm.

It must have hurt.

Dustin declared, "I won't say anything without my advocate."

Claire Sawyer was finally arriving. "Claire Sawyer, future lawyer! I am your assigned mandatory defendant."

Dustin begged, "don't tell Zoey!" He had previously promised unto his sister to refrain from making further troubles.

Claire shook her head. "OK, if you wish so."

Dustin reported,


Lola wanted to fix a raspberry doodle cake from the machine. She inserted a buck and typed in the code.

But the machine did not return anything, neither a doodle cake nor money.

Lola punched the machine.

Quinn joined in and kicked it.

Mr. Thatcher told them to get away.

Complaints againts the machine have to be made at the administration office, in three examples.

The vendor corp would examine the situation and return the money in the case of approval.

I showed up little later and offered to get the piece of candu for Lola.

They accepted gladly.

But then it did not work exactly as in the movies.

And here I am.

Quinn wanted to break me free with machine oil and heavy tools.

Lola wanted to flirt with some jocks in order to get them to drag the whole machine into their dormitory room.

But then Mr. Thatcher came back, surprisingly.

Lola and Quinn were gone withthe wind.


That was certainly not a reason for suspension, expulsion or deportation.

The vendor machines kept on making troubles.

The corp running them has already been described as some creeps.

We had now found another corporation selling fruit cereal bars, certainly more healthy than the crap sold by the present company and more tasty thanmoon bars.

In any case, I called custodian Gordy in order to release Dustin from his situation. I did not really trust him there.

The alternative woud have been Joe Braxley[[139]], the local greasemonkey.

So I informed that one, too.

But maybe there was something wrong with the machines.

They were definitely not supposed to swallow bucks and return nothing.

Someone had to examine them technically.

I decided to let Quinn and Mindy do this.


43.3.3. Manipulated


After Braxley's operation and the Quinn's investigation, the result was shocking.

The machines had been programmed to deliberately bucks and return nothing.

Was the vendor corp responsible for that?

Rose Pinchbinder had recently given me her report concerning the revenues from the machines.

The shares for the Pacific Coast Academy had never arrived fully on our school's account.

More precisely, only as much as allowed by Da Rules had showed up.

The rest of the shares granted by the contract must have gone some other way.

But what way was that?

Claire and Rose had found some obscure numbers of accounts residing abroad.

It was impossible for them to identify the owners of the accounts.

But Claire came up with some shocking accusations.

Former dean Carl Rivers and Vice Principal Thatcher, responsible for the contracts, were the only ones deciding on the destination of the shares of the school.

And now Claire accused them of having deliberately manipulated the machines and diverted the missing part of the revenues from the sales.

In that moment, as if a sign of the gods, a lightning flashed, and a thunder rolled.

Thick rain drops started plummeting down from darkest clouds.

Walter Nichols had been so wrong with his forecast, sorry, fivecast.

Life out on the campus cam to some halt pretty fast.

Security guards used their megaphones in order to command everyone into the buildings.

Was an apocalyptic skyburst the proof for our daring hypothesis?

This was so bad for Chase and his birthday …


43.4. Sad Songs


Not much later, I appeared stuck in the administration office.

Beverly was already gone and would hardly be able to return during the rain storm.

I watched the weather reporter.

Walter Nichols owed everyone some public apology for the worst of all weather forecasts, or even fivecasts.

This reminded me of thedue apology of Trina Vega unto Zoey Brooks for all of her mean threats.

We should have listened to Brice Windchill instead.

But his forecasts were not seen here on the campus.

The phone lines were still working at least.

Suddenly, the office phone rang.

I picked it up. "Dean Franklin, Pacific Coast Academy …"

The voice on the other end sounded sad.

I panted.

The message was now clear. It was from an uncle of Chase.

The grandmother of Chase Bartholomew Matthews had just died.

And now I was supposed to inform Chase Bartholomew Matthews about it.

Was that even possible?

I kind of had to.

It was possible to delay this until next morning, the official restart of the admimistration serviceat Pacific Coast Academy.

But after that, there would ber no way back.


Chapter 44. Chase's New Start


44.1. Weeping


Chase Bartholomew Matthews was in my office. He started weeping terribly upon hearing the news.

I had certainly not expected the contrary.

But this was hard to bear.

Beverly had already borrowed him all of her paper handkerchieves.

We better ordered new ones.

From the poutside, the rain kept on whipping against our windows.

And inside, the tears of Chase Matthews threatened to drown everything.

Some of the teachers had not been able to show up.

This lead to the cancellation of classes, including one of Chase.

But this news was of course by absolutely no means comparable to Chase's inner pains.

According to Claire Sawyer, the death of a grandmother did not warrant several days off classes, not according to Da Rules.

But this would have been totally not fair.

I needed to trick somewhat in order to give him a pass for the funeral, and a few days after in order to recover from the horrible shock.

It was impossible for Chase to make the whole flight to the northeastern states and back alone.

His parents were not able to come over and fetch him.

So I better had to choose some responsible adult from here.

Unfortunately, the rain storm was also wreaking havoc on the airport of Los Angeles.

Many flights had to be cancelled during the last night.

And there were more to come until the following dawn.

As a consequence, the airways corporations did not accept new requests for tickets until the relaxation.

This was also valid for flights to New York, the closes big airport to Chase's homelands.

Likewise, I could not send any teacher away witch Chase, given the current lack of that breed.

So would Chase have to miss out on his favourite grandma's funeral due to those miserable circumstances?

This, of course, did not seem quite fair, either.


44.2. The Foreign Account


Claire Sawyer and Rose Pinchbinder had now found out something more about the foreign accounts.

They belonged to one of the leading and internationally renowned Bank Of Bermudas.

Many stories had been circulating about planes disappearing in the so called triangle of the Bermudas.

This time, we had heard about other strange disappearances in that region, and more precisely those of many thousands of bucks, shares of revenues from the vendor machines on our campus.

Of course there was something like a bank's secret.

There needed to be a lot more at stake in order to break into it.

The request of a deputy lawyer and an accountant did not count all that much.

Claire Sawyer and Rosemary Pinchbinder were thus required to show even more efforts.


44.3. Zoey Freaks Out


Before the birthday party, I had told Trina Vega to apologise unto Zoey Brooks.

Alas, this had been partly a big mistake.

At the beginning of the academic year, I had hoped and supposed Chase Matthews to tell Zoey Brooks as soon as possible about the true purpose of his "relationship" with Zoey Brooks.

Unfortunately, this had never happened in all the months until his seventeenth birthday.

I should have checked that before telling Trina to fess up to Zoey. But, too bad, I had missed out badly on doing so.

And then the inevitable had happened.

At Chase's birthday party, Trina had not only admitted her bad deeds to both Chase and Zoey. But she had also mentioned her sort of contract with Chase Matthews.

Totally surprised Zoey Brooks had been consternated.

Until then, Chase had kept on telling her one big lie.

According to the latter, Chase had trashed Trina Vega as his girlfriend because of her threats against Trina Vega.

Zoey had deemed this a very sweet action. But she had not offered to be anything than a very good friend for Chase.

Thus the bushy scalp's plan had not worked out.

But this friendship was now at a stake, exactly in this moment.

Chase Bartholomew Matthews needed the support of any good or best friend available in this moment.

Under normal circumstances, Zoey Brooks would have been the first to comfort Chase over the loss of his grandmother. She had even tried to surprise Chase on his birthday by getting his grandma to appear right here at Pacific Coast Academy for their common birthday.

But less than a day after hearing about his perfidious ploy involving another girl in order to provoke her jealousy, the situation was completely different.

Zoey Brooks was now in some excessively stinky mood. She did certainly not do anything in order to make Chase feel better after his painful loss. Quite the contrary, she was even rubbing salt into his fresh wounds by critisising his absolutely impossible demeanour.

As aforementioned, Lola Martinez had been by no means uninvolved in Chase's weird gambit.

And Trina Vega had also mentioned this casually after admitting to her fake relationship with Chase.

Needless to say, Zoey Brooks was not exactly pleased about Lola's rôle in the whole pernicious game.

The friendship between those two girls was now temporarily broken.

This was putting it mildly.

Zoey Brooks was thoroughly mad at Lola Martinez. "You are no better than Trina!"

Nicole Bristow appeared to stick up for Zoey. But she was way too hysterical in order to be much of a help for the blond Mary Sue. She had even got a hard time proving her innocence.

Zoey had accused her of having worked together with the drama queen and the bushy dork.

This was not going anywhere.

In other words, the exact timing of the events had been as harmful and disastrous as only imaginable,


44.4. Chase's Decision


I had talked on the phone to the relatives of Chase bartholomew Matthews.

They were trying to postpone the funeral for a few days, making it possible for Chase to attend.

The weather had now started to clear up.

After three days, the airport of Los Angeles should be back to its normal activities, allowing for Chase to do that trip.

Gustavo Rocque would then accompany him oin his way. He was expected in New York City for the purpose of negotiations with some artists from the northeastern states.

Of course Chase was suffering a lot from the loss of the confidence of Zoey Brooks.

Under these circunstances, Zoey was by absolutely no means forgiving him his misguided demeanour.

Chase was thus better ready to forget a dream dreamed since the begin of the era of coeducation at Pacific Coast Academy, the dream having the shape of a blond mary Sue named Zoey Brooks.

And this was actually the case.

But Chase went even further.


Zoey Brooks has been the sunshine of my life here in california, for one year and a half already.

Life down here had not made all that much sense over here before her arrival.

Just for Zoey I have been able to stand through all the hardships of life in this world.

And this is now historuy.

Without Zoey, I don't see any reason for staying here.

Last year, Sofia Michelle tried to talk me into joining their special school at Broadway.

The offer was promising.

I had to think thrice. But because of my feelings for Zoey, and for no other reason, I had to decline.

Sofia Michelle had been able to postpone her offer for yet another year.

And today, after having messed up with Zoey for good, I don't see absolutely any reason for not following the call of The Broadway in New York City.


He sighed deeply and banged his head against the wall. He was aware of having had it coming.

About everyone had given him enough time to tell Zoey about his feelings and to tell her about the proper purpose of his "relationship" with Trina Vega.

But Chase had never done anything like that.

And now it was too late.

Of coure, Chase would have to leave quite a few friends behind, especially Michael Barret.

By no way was this going to be easy for the bushy dweeb.

Some of his friends would try to dissuade him from actually leaving, or they had already tried to.

But Chase, usually a more or less undecided person, was not to stop. Now he begged me to sign the necessary transcripts for his move to his new academy, videlicet Broadway School For The Advanced Performance Arts. Beginning with the next fall, he would be a proud student of playwriting at the city of the Empire.

I was going to follow his will.

It woukld not be easy for many here.

Nicole Bristow, for example, could not imagine Zoey Brooks without Chase Bartholomew Matthews. But she was now forced to learn tginking in a new manner.

For Michael Barret, a life at Pacific Coast Academy without Chase would be hard to imagine, period. But he was now forced to get accustomed to a new room mate.

The Chase And Michael Show would no longer be the same without half of its name.

Carly Shay was now more or less the real start of the web cats, though.

But the show was going to change its face.

Was Zoey Brooks aware of all the changes? Maybe she did not care. Maybe she was even glad about that.

But this was just an assumption.

Nobody was able to tell.


Chapter 45. Fair Science


45.1. Candy Scandal


A few days later I was sitting in my office.

There were only a few weeks left in this running academic year.

Claire Sawyer and Rose Pinchbinder had done a great job researching the affair of the illegal shares of the revenues of the vendor machines.

It allowed me to cancel the contract with the franchise corporations.

Even Mr. Bradford had been consternated by these circumstances.

Mr. Thatcher was now suspended until further notice, at least until summer break.

Mr. Bender was about taking over his business, probably even through the next year.

And the vendor machine scandal was by no means limited to Pacific Coast Academy.

The same vendor corporation held contracts with many schools here in California.

Those were now finally going to get rid of them.

The culprits had to be found, though, in some of the cases.

But some of the abusers were already identified.

In San Diego Belleview, aforementioned Mrs. Hayfer had been responsible for the usage of corrupted and manipulated vendor machines.

Drake Parker had always suspected that and told Claire Sawyer about his guess. Granted, he had always hated the mean teacher for other reasons and was ready to accuse her of just about anything, no matter what, even the most ridiculous stuff.

But his younger sister Megan, usually excessively critical of her brother, had backed him up this time. She had been a victim of aforementioned fraud with Japanese candy.

This had made her more careful.

By the way, Megan Parker would join Pacific Coast Academy next fall.

Claire Sawyer had talked her into that.

Megan was an extremely gifted player of the oboe. She would reinforce our school's choir to some substantial degree.

I only hoped her pranks to stay in a tolerable frame.

James K. Polk had equally been involved in the scandal.

Being a former student over there, Claire Sawyer had suspected that from the beginning.

The culprit had not been hard to find.

It was no other than obnoxious vice principal Crubbs.

But the true puller of the strings was one Hal E. Burton[[140]] , the school coordinator for the county of Los Angeles.

Already the year before, money from the school's founds had been abused by the creep.

Mr. Monroe had discovered the fraud and denounced Burton.

The scandal had apparently been running deeper than discovered.

At Cedar Valley, Principal Voss had recently been convicted of having promoted some environmental scandal.

The dauntless discoverer of the scandal had been one anonymous student known as "Shredderman".

The latter was now working on seeing a connection between Voss and the vendor machine scandal.

Later on, Shredderman would turn out as Nolan Byrd, a cousin of Claire Sawyer's aforementioned remote friend Edmond Bigby.

Finally, also Principal Nuss[[141]] from Lakewood got arrested as well.

Alas, many other culprits were still to be expected.

Unfortunately neither Claire Sawyer nor Rose Pinchbinder were competent tracking those down, at least not right now.

had to return to New York City.


45.2. Red Alert


Quinn Pensky and Mindy Crenshaw were working on many scientific projects for the purpose of the national science fair.

One of them was an anti gravity chamber, neutralising the natural attraction of planet earth in some limited region.

This would have been quite hard for either of them on their own, and been prone to a whole bunch of undesirable side effects.

But by working together, they were able to manage the project all smoothly.

And it was by far not their only high aiming project.

They were also experimenting with some new bacteria intended to improve the fertility of the hitherto barren wastelands of Los Angeles county and bordering Ventura.

There was some sort of a canyon, known as Redstone Gulch, not far from the campus of Pacific Coast Academy.

Quinn hoped to be able to cultivate some cactus able to produce some tasty juice without the addictive side effects of the rare cactus of Guadalapecho.

Two thumbs up for that enterprise!

Their ultimate power project, however, was one of transforming the seismic power of the earth into useful energy for our networks.

This had always been Mindy's dream.

But only the collaboration with Quinn Pensky allowed for a fairly safe realisation of those plans.

Fortunately Quinn and Mindy did use the school's laboratory, under the auspieces of Mr. Sweeny, instead of working on their own in their dormitory room and annoying their room mates.

But was that the ultimate advantage?

One sunny day, I got stirred up from my office sleep, oops, idle time, by some alert bell.

Beverly was still on lunch break.

I was trying to get some information about the reason for the alert.

The source was precisely our scientific laboratory.

Quinn Pensky had acidentally dropped some test tube with aforementioned bacteria.

Now the scientific laboratory was shhut down and quarantined until further notice.

The quarantine was only effective for Quinn Pensky, Mindy Creanshaw, and Mr. Sweeny.

According to the latter's report, Quinn Pensky was jealous of some girl hanging out a lot with Mark del Figgalo, at least as of recent.

This was Maria Misa[[142]], a new student arriving after spring break here at Pacific Coast Academy. She was a very gifted paintress.

In any case, the quartine would not be lifted before the official permission of the national department for biological hazards.

Those guys had sent over some troops in order to examine the situation and determine the peril imposed by Quinn's bacteria.

Now Quinn was stuck in the laboratory hall and unable to look after her boyfriend and his adulterous demeanour.

But this was all but Quinn Pensky's own comeuppance.

She would probably be able to find someone else to spy on the situation.

Her cellular phone was still up and running.

Many students were now glad, though.

Manu science classes had to be cancelled until further notice.


45.3. Mark And Maria


I was now back on the campus square.

Dustin Brooks was found with a cellular phone in his hand and a very suspicious look on his face. He was Quinn's spy, responsible for watching Mark and Maria.

That was plain paranoia, of course.

But Dustin did not trust the creep.

Along came Mark and Maria.

She was staring dreamily deep into his eyes.

Quinn was probably right.

I should not have been rushing my conclusions about Quinn's paranoia.

Mark was no longer hers, wasn't he?.


45.4. Deception and Reward


Alas, the very next day, everything turned out as a misunderstanding.

Mark had hired Maria in order to paint a picrure of him in classical oil colours as a surprise gift for Quinn.

For most people, this sounded very sweet.

But the whole episode underscored the total lack of Quinn Pensky's confidence in Mark del Figgalo.

It was just the logical continuation of her fear of Sarah Kyla upsetting everyone against her and turning especially Mark away from her by telling the truth about Quinn Pensky's early childhood.

The relationship between Mark del Figgalo was evidently built on sand, to be blown away with the wind, and not on solid ground, anchored in the earth.

Zooey Brooks was now about preaching Quinn some severe lections about this.

Quinn's bacteria was by the way harmless.

Thus the quarantine could be lifted not much later.

Unlike Quinn's relationship with Mark del Figgalo, her scientific projects would turn out rock solid.

The day after the quarantine, Quinn's and Mindy's anti gravity chamber got awarded with the first prize of the national science fair, under the presidency of Mr. Jamerson.

This was a reason for our school to celebrate.

But, of course, Quinn and Mindy had started the project almost without the help of the school.

It would unfair for us to harvest the praise for their victory.

Mr. Sweeny was the first fully ordained decent teacher for science at Pacific Coast Academy. And he had not been doing anything but nod to the geek girls' inventions.

Oh, wait, I had indeed done something for them.

They would never have become a team without my mediation after Mindy's misbehaviour on this ccampus, like two years ago.

And they would have annoyed their room mates without having access to the science club instead of using their dormitory rooms.

Wayne Gillbert had, by the way, cut down severely on his scientific activities. He was still a good third man, well first man backing two power girls. But his main interest had always been science fiction and fantasy. He had abused the science club for rôle play activities.

This problem would soon be solved by a club for RP, advised by our freshly contracted adviser Mr. Kwest, erstwhile teacher for office technology at James K. Polk.

A national science award was of course by far not as interesting as the nationals, or even the Californian championships in football.

But it was at least something to be proud for.

I had come to the school after a bet with Carl Rivers.

Unfortunately, he had turned out as a corrupt abuser of his office.

My bet with him was now plainly obsolete.

But I still felt an obligation to continue with my work here at Pacific Coast Academy in order to convince even Mr. Bradford of the feasibility of my way of administrating a renowned prep school.

Three years had gone by since my start here in Malibu.

Other years were still to come, the time to prove my audacious claims.


Chapter 46. Back In Seattle


The last year had been very chaotic at Pacific Coast Academy.

The thorough research of Rose Pinchbinder and of Claire Sawyer had proven the guilt of Carl Rivers.

He had made illegal business with the vendor machines on the campus at Pacific Coast Academy.

Unfortunately, the fraud had only been discovered after more than two years.

Carl Rivers had still profited from the contracts inspite of having left Pacific Coast Academy.

Maybe his switch to Seattle, under the covers of a bet, had been really an attempt to escape from unpleasant questions.

The prestige of Pacific Coast Academy had suffered severely by the scandal.

I was now in the miserable position of having to work hard on making the Pacific Coast Academy recover from this excruciating debauchery.

During the current summer break, a lot of work was now necessary on the campus.

The corrupted and manipulated vendor machines were to be removed by Custodian Gordy and his team of busy helpers.

That done, new vendor machines were to be installed by the campus workers, selling fruit cereal bars instead of the way less healthy sugar balls and sugar coated doughnuts.

Other works on the campus were equally due.

The board was going out of its way with its decision of removing any visual trace of the former deanship of Mr. Rivers.

I did not deem this necessary, but rather a waste of money.

But the board and Mr. Bradford had decided to do so.

I could not supervise everything in person, though.

Most of the summer time, I was now spending in Seattle.

My wife and my kids had moved away from there.

But there were still a few friends left to visit.

During these days, I tried to figure about things going on at Ridgeway in my absence.

Three years under the regime of Carl Rivers, the school had probably changed a lot.

I knew one place to meet many a current student of Ridgeway.

And this site was exactly Groovy Smoothy, by far the most popular hangout among the kids in downtown Seattle.

Smoothies were very expensive on our campus, by the way.

This was another consequence of the long term contracts signed by Rivers and Thatcher.

The only softdrink provider with a permanent franchise contract was Blix.

Of course, the drinks by that company were excessively popular and fairly cheap, due to the long term contract.

But they were chock full with artificial aromatisers and colours, absolutely nowhere near as healthy as natural smoothies.

Nicole Bristow's father ran a juice factory in Kansas, the biggest one over there, and one of the ten greatest in the United states.

But Blix had been holding a de facto monopoly for soft drinks at Californian schools for over five years already.

Breaking these privileges was not easy for anyone.

Even Groovy Smoothie appeared to sell soft drinks from Blix.

But now I chose a proper smoothie.

A few kids entered the pub.

I recognised vaguely some of the faces.

And one of them was unforgettable, even after one hindred years and more.

I am talking about the face of the one and only Charles Cornelius Gibson, commonly referred to as "Gibby". I had not seen them since my departure from Ridgeway.

Gibby recognised me on site and sat down by my table. "Hi Ted!"

I grinned. "Hi Gibby!"

He smiled."Are you now coming back to Ridgeway?"

I shook my head. "Sorry, my life is now in Los Angeles." I shrugged.

Gibby sobbed bitterly.

I sighed. "Is it that bad?"

Gibby nodded sadly. "Principal Rivers does not allow me any longer to go shirtless."

I choked. "Hey! How does he dare that?"

Going shirtless on two many occasions was certainly a quite weird habitude of Gibby;s.

But Gibby was Gibby.

Nothing could be done about that.

Then there were even more news.

Francine Briggs was coming back to Ridgeway.

This was one mean English teacher, totally annoying her classes.

And Gibby had always been her best pupil, but even he was hardly able to bear her.

Three years ago, she had left Ridgeway in order to take some vacation trip to the northeastern states.

Or that was the official version, spread by nobody less than superintendent Gorman[[143]], the responsible official of the district of downtown.

Strangely enough, she weas now returning from Cedar Valley in Oakhurst, California, near the infamous region of Fresno.

This must have been quite some round trip.

But Cedar Valley totally rang a bell with me.

Oh yeah!

It was the school of legendary "Shredderman", the dauntless reveiler of corruption and decadence all over the place.

Said anonymous hero had freed the community over there from some big environnmental criminal. And he had also reveiled the involvement of principal Sheil Voss.

The latter had dissappeared after having been sentenced to community work.

Nobody knew the destination.

But, hey, maybe Dr. Voss and Ms. Briggs were the same person?

It would not surprise me.

Ms. Briggs was one pain in the tail and a shame for every school. She was certainly up to ruining a whole community for egoistical purposes.

I pitied Gibby and the other students.

But Gorman would hardly care about Francine Briggs misdemeanour in other places of the whole country. Otherwise he would have rebuked Carl Rivers for his severe misconduct as a dean of Pacific Coast Academy.

Too bad could not spend too much time talking to the dhirtless freak.

Doc Wheeler was awaiting me. He would not only check my slightly hollowed teeth, but he also appeared quite interested in a switch to Los Angeles as the campus dentist of Pacific Coast Academy.

But this was not yet set in stone.

Some tough negotiations were awaiting us.

Mr. Bradford and the board had only granted me a very limited sum for hiring a dentist.

Suddenly, a weird yet determined looking tween boy stumbled in. He ordered brashly some blueberry smoothie.

I had never seen that guy before.

But heseemed to know me, for some odd reason. He walked up to me. "Is this possible …"

I shrugged.

The boy growled, "you must be Dean Franklin from Pacific Coast Academy." He fumbled with his briewfcase, producing som fly paper advertising the Pacific Coast Academy.

I nodded solemnly. "Ted Franklin."

The weird guy grunted, "I am Papperman … Nevel Papperman, just enrolled for middle school at Pacific Coast Academy."

I shrugged. "Good choice!" But I would have preferred some more normal new student.

Nevel had enrolled because of the new programme for classical music at Pacific Coast Academy.

Aforementioned Megan Parker was in the same league.

And they were in the same legion for yet some other reasons, not so pleasant ones for that matter.

But that was not my concern.

We had hired a new teacher for music, and more precisely Gregory Badilow[[144]], a master flautist.

Greg was a remote relative of Sam Puckett and just released from prison. But he was a cool beatbox flautist.

Nevel kept on talking some weird stuff.

His instruments were the piano and the recorder.

Nevel was gifted with absolute audition. He was also able to smell very well.

That was totally scary.

Fortunately it was now absolutely the right moment in order to leave for a meeting with Doc Wheeler.


Chapter 47. Customer Of The Week


47.1. Back On the Campus


In order to inspect the campus works, I had to return to Malibu over two weeks before the begin of the academic year for the students.

Doc Wheeler had by the way agreed with the proposals of my board. He would start here as a dentist after spring break.

So there were still many weeks left.

The vendor machines could not be removed and replaced all at once.

The new machines would arrive one by one during the following weeks.

This would not exactly please the students.

But there was no way around this sticky point.

As a consequence, the coffee cart would be about the only way to fix snacks for many kids.

And this was no good.

The queues would be endless.

At least the new monument of Old Mr. Bradford was now finished.

Spencer Shay had put a lot of efforts into it.

Stacey Dillsen had helped him a lot by making cotton swab models of various alternatives before setting everything in stone.

Oops!

The monument was definitely not made all of stone.

But at least the socket was pure Italian marble, hand incised by Spencer Shay.

And it was not hidden in anything's shadow.

Mr. Bradford should be proud of it.


47.2. The Start


During my second year, I had agreed with André and Monique Chaumont from Paris on some exchange programme.

The first French kids had now arrived.

One of them was Simon Lawson[[145]], His father was an American, but he was born and raised so far in France by a French mother.

The girls flocked around him.

Even Lola appeared very interested. And she was very picky.

But he was somewhat reluctant.

That was understandable.

The exchange students are here to learn something about our culture, and not to make out all day long.

Then I spotted Nevel Papperman again.

He was very demanding. "This is my residence hall."

I toiok a look at his sheet. "This sounds like the same dormitory room as Dustin Brooks."

Nevel looked aghast at me.

I explained, "Dustin is the best middle school student."

Nevel sighed. "Oh, there's competition."

I shrugged wheile explaining the way to said dormitory room.

But Nevel already wanted to know the way to the piano. "I have to fine tune it. I hate mistuned instruments." Anbd he was very sensitive there. "So, where are the keys?"

I sighed deeply. "The keys are all in the hands of custodian Gordon from the night shift."

Nevel demanded, "He better render them unto me, or he will rue the week! He will rue it! Untill the age of dystopia will he rue it!"

I shuddered.

This sounded terribly creepy.

In addition, Greg Badilow had not yet arrived.

Sam would have informed m with her cellular ohone. But she was not yet here , either.

Her aunt Maggie[[146]] was getting breast implants.

Doc Hollywood was going to perform that surgery.

And Sam wan ted to watch. "It will be a lot of fun!"

Then I ran into Mr. Bitters. I told him to show Nevel to his dormitory block.

Mr. Bitters was repsonsible for that one.

Nevel shrugged. He seemed to deem Mr. Bitters a bit crazy. But then he followed him readily.

Unfortunately, Mr. Bitters had already got a problem to report. "It is about '148 Maxwell'."

Oh well.

I sighed deeply.

This was the dormitory hall of Logan Reese and Michael Barret. It had also used to host Chase Bartholomew Matthews.

But, as known by everyone, Chase was no longer among us. He had made it to New York City, the city of freedom.

Thus Mr. Bitters and Ms. Burvich had assigned a new room mate for them.

But, apparently, the creeps were not willing to let anyone in.

I was better going to look that up.

But before having to argue with Logan and Michael, a cup of coffee and a bagel would not have been too bad.

I was going to look for the coffee cart.

It was no longer in the same positionm as during the last year. But it was totally easy to find.

A long queue had already accumulated in front of it.

It would have taken me more than twenty minutes to get to the coffee.

In part, that circumstance was of course due to the lack of vendor machines.

Also, the cafeteria was not yet open.

There were also many vistors on the campus.

I sighed deeply and walked towards the dormitory hall.

But something needed to be done against the endless queue.


47.3. The Gap


This was "148 Maxwell", the robbers' den of Logan Reese and Michael Barret.

Mr. Bitters had always been protesting a lot. "According to the rules, the pupils are not allowed to make any modifications to their dormitory room and the installatioins." He pointed at some inflatable pool, complete with whirlpool implant, adorning the centre of the dormitory room.

I shrugged.

Claire Sawyer was unfortunately not around in order to clarify this.

Logan Reese was apparently not sticking to such a rule.

Bear with it!

Logan Reese would of course pay for any necessary restauration after graduating from Pacific Coast Academy.

Mrs. Burvich grunted, "after the departure of Chase Bartholomew Matthews, this dormitory room is only occupied by two pupils, videlicet Logan Reese and Michael Barret."

The rooms here were designed for three boys.

Thus Mrs. Burvich had assigned a new guy, Tadeus Cameron[[147]], to the same room.

Logan grunted, "but we are already three."

Michael growled, "there's me, Logan, and Chase."

We coughed.

Logan Reese explained, "Chase is stil here. But he is now in the long queue in front of the coffee cart."

Michael nodded vigorously. "Logan gave him twenty bucks extra in order to fetch us our coffee."

Logan nodded. "Yes, I did!"

The queue was so long.

Was it really necessary to check the whole of it?

Maybe Chase Matthews had really changed his mind in last minute. Then he would of course get his old room back.

But Logan and Michael were equally likely to lie about it.

I told Ms. Burvich to let it be for the moment.

The lists of students are often a bit in disorder during the first week of an academic year.

We would fix it afterwards.

Now some coffee was due.

Logan remarked, "Chase is stil not back, so …"

Michael moaned, "Being customer of the week would be great."

Logan nodded. "Indeed."

What was that?

According to Michael, Calvin Jones[[148]] , the guy from the coffee cart, was now selecting each week a so-called customer of the week.

The lucky one was simply allowed to skip the queue and get some gratis coffee.

That sounded great for the rewspective winner.

But what were the conditions in order to get selected?

Logan and Michael had got no clue.

That was a bit scary.

The criteria were probably exclusively Calvin's secret.

I definitely had to investigate.


47.4. Illegal Contest


Out on the campus, Claire Sawyer crossed my way.

I greeted the future lawyer.

She remarked, "Calvin does not have a permission for the 'Customer Of The Week' stuff, does he?"

I shrugged. "Does he need one?"

Claire showed me a passage of Da Rules.

Indeed, contests on the open campus had to get announced and approved in advance by the school administration, complete with the criteria.

In the case of Calvin's "customer of the week", this was clearly not the case.

Thus it the competition was illegal.

I had to intervene.

In this moment, Calvin started talking. "Attention! I am comin g to announce this week's winner of the title 'customer of the week', the first of its kind!" He explained, "this customer may skip the queue any time and is not expected to pay for the coffee."

The pupils cheered in anticipation.

Calvin pulled at some blanket, uncovering some picture. "And the winner is … Carly Shay!"

Carly looked consternated, "sorry, what have I been voted for?" she scratche her head.

Logan was consternated. "Hey! I've bought you a new cart!"

Calvin explained,


The customer is always a cute girl.

Thus we make out in at the coffee booth, with all the other customers waiting in the queue.


Carly was consternated.

Freddie growled, "no one will make out with my girl, oops … no one will make out with Carly!"

Carly told Freddie to shut up. But she angrilt reclined the title.

Claire asked Carly, "do you want to sue him for sexual harassment?"

Sam growled, "definitely!"

Freddie nodded solemnly.

Carly sighed. "Maybe I should?"

But this perversity was enough to shut the whole coffee cart business down.

Mr. Bitters had already informed the officer Vega from the countu police.

This would have properly been my business.

But I did not resent it.

Lunch lady Rose would look for a solution in order to lengthen the opening times of the cafeteria in order to make the coffee cart obsolet.

Calvin fled screaming from the campus.

Vince Blake stormed the cart. "Free coffee for all!"

The mass of pupils cheered aloud.


Chapter 48. Dancing Queen


48.1. Organisation Of The New Year


From the very start, my schedule for the new academic year at Pacific Coast Academy was chock full with organisational tasks.

THe most important even was the high school dance contest at Pacific Coast Academy.

This was an event taking place each fourth year.

The last dance contest had been organised under the regime of Carl Rivers.

I was somewhat excited now.

They actually expected me to be among the umpires.

That was taking it a bit too far.

I did not understand zilch about dancing.

Maybe just sitting at the table of the judges and saying nothing would be enough.

Another much less pleasant event was approaching as well.

The school districts of Los Angeles had been sent into a deep crisis by the scandals involving the candy vendor machine.

A bunch of schools had lost their headmasters.

And the whole extent of the catastrophe was not yet reached.

Well, the superintendent of the school districts of the county of Los Angeles was not really responsible for affairs of private schools like Pacific Coast Academy.

But I was deemed an important witness.

fortunately Claire Sawyer had already prepared my official statements for a reunion of the representants of the schools of the region.

Dr. Lara Wahl[[149]], the responsible superintendant, had already forwarded a list of important topics.

And then there was still that excessively ugly thing going on in "148 Maxwell Hall".

I had checked thrice with the famly of Chase Bartholomew Matthews.

There was no doubt about his departure.

Likewise, Sofia Michelle confirmed his presence and participation in the classes at Broadway School ForThe Advanced Berformance Arts.

Thus Logan and Michael had lied.

This cried for some punishment.

The creeps were now assigned a new roomie, and precisely aforementioned Tadeus Cameron.

Tad had actually been at Ridgeway during my absence. He was a big fan of Carly's excessively charming presence in the Chase And Michael Show.

This had made him interested in Pacific Coast Academy.

Carly would indeed get quite a few more students attracted to our school.

But that's a different issue.

Oops!

Chase was gone.

What would that make of The Chase And Michael Show?

According to Fredward Benson, the show would be renamed to iCarly.

The horny little bugger was always hitting on Carly.

That was often enough completely disgusting.

It could certainly led to some troubles.


48.2. The Contest


This was the big evening of the dance contest.

Zoey Brooks had been particularly ambitious.

Several decades ao, her grandma had won a dance contest in the New York City Hall.

Zoey's grandparents, residing at the east coast, had come to Los Angeles just in order to see their grandaughter win.

That must have been quite some pressure.

Zoey Brooks, however, was totally cool and self confident, ready to demonstrate her inherited skills. Being a particularly gifted fashion designer, she had of course decigned and taylored her own ball gown. As usual, she was envied by most of the other girls for her outfit. As a dance partner, she had chosen Tad Cameron.

The latter was a fairly good dancer, or so it was said.

But of course there were quite a few other participants.

Trina Vega had been showing up, too.

Zoey was consternated. She had had a hard time forgiving trin's evil deeds of the last year. And thence she deemed Trina's mere presence at this event a horrible provocation.

Trina had even persuaded Spencer Shay into being her dance partner. She had been horribly impressed by his fire cracker dance at the Latino rock night. She grinned triumphantly.

Carly Shay had tried hard to dissuade her elder brother from being the partner of Trina. But she had been too feeble to get through.

Another couple of participants were Maria Misa and Joshuah Nichols.

Joshuah had admitted to having been a gifted painter, like, four years ago.[[150]].

Maria had encouraged him to take up this hobby again.

And now they had been agrred on going together to this dance contest.

Josh had invented a variety of non standard dances.[[151]] He deemed himself as the coolest of all dancers.

Fortunately, I was not really an umpire, but just the speaker of the judges and responsible for handing over the prize.

The real judges were Earnie Lane[[152]] fron Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts and aforementioned Coach Dirga from James K. Polk.

I had to open the contest with a usual speech.

That was a bit annoying.

But now the whole thing started.

Fredward Benson was responsible for the taped music used by the dances.

And now it was the right time for the first couple down on the dancing floor.

Zoey and Tad appeared in their most shining and stunning outfit.

Were the judges going to consider that?

Or was it all about the moves and the rhythm?

Freddie pushed the buttons.

Zoey's favourite music was hip hop.

Little wonder she had chosen a dance based on this kind of music.

Tad was really great.

Gregory Badilow was also at the judges' table. He would have been among the umpires. But for some strange reason, he was forced to leave early, before the decision. Now he told me and others a lot about the history of hip hop.

In the beginning, this was interesting. But it turned boring.

Anyways, the performance of Tad and Zoey did not last forever.

It was time to call Maria and Josh to the dancing floor.

Freddie had to change tapes, or probably DVDs.

I still get confused a lot by the change of technology. I was lucky to be able to handle my pear phone.

But Freddie had to be on the bleeding edge all the time.

Trina and Spencer were going to dance to Frank Sinatra's evergreen title My Way.

Given the randomness of their cooperation, their performance was really not too bad.

Unfortunately, the smoking situation between Trina Vega and Zoey Brooks would not cool down, no matter what.

Geeg Badilow could also tell us an insane lot about Frank Sinatra.

Finally, Josh and Maria would dance some original moves to Drake Parker's recent song Up Periscope![[153]].

Unfortunately, Josh's experimental moves were not really welcome by the judges, especially not by Dirga.

The decision was made in the absence of the public.

Jeremiah Trottman had been kicked out by security guards, anyways due to asking too many corrupt questions.

Now I had to announce the winners. I sighed deeply. "And the winner is … Trina Vega and Spencer Shay!"

Trina cheere fanatically. "Yeah! I am the most gifted!"

Spencer smiled. But he was a bit disappointed. He would have preferred hard rock to Frank Sinatra.

I gave Trina and Spencer the hard earned winner's award.

Trina cuddled the trophy.

I shrugged and walked away.

Zoey was not willing to shake hands with the Latina. She just glared at her with disgust. Even worse, Zoey seemed to resent Spencer's decision to dance with Trina Vega at any cost. At the Latin rock party, Zoey had cheered fanatically for Spencer and his fire cracker dance. And now she was totally dismayed.

Where was that going to?


48.3. Principal Meeting


At aforementioned reunion, Ms. Wahl had decided to inaugurate a certain vice principal Stockley as the new principal of Lakewood.

Stockley was nice and responsible, unlkike the creep of an erstwhile principal, Mr. Nuss.

But many other schools were still left in a chaos.

The situation had not been easy for other Californian schools.

Cedar Valley was crying for help.

Mr. Green[[154]] , freshly inaugurated principal replacing Ms. Briggs alias Ms. Voss, had lost several teachers.

Belleview and Dimsdale were left headless.

But the worst swamp was supposed to be located in Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts.

That school had not even dared to submit a report about the situation after the revelation of the vendor machine scandal.

Principal Eichman had been delaying and prorogued any statements.

As a private school, Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts was not under the custody of the superintendents of the county.

Ms. Wahl could not enforce anything.

But a lot of it smelled fishy.

At Palmwood, Ms. Collins was still the only regular teacher. She was totally overburdened by this job.

Fortunately, the school was not responsible for the hotel as such.

But the hotel administration was certainly not a bunch of angels, either.


Chapter 49. Talent Show


49.1. A Pass For Zoey


Zowy Brooks was now in my office. She showed me a telefacsimile message from her father.

I took a look at it.

Mr. Brooks allowed his daughter to leave the campus on Saturday night, in the company of a responsible adult, in order to go to some even downtown.

This was necessary for a pass.

But what event was it

The blond Mary Sue explained, "oh, it is a book presentation by my favourite chick flick author, Jatie Hawthorne[[155]]."

I had not yet hurt of that author.

But this was not a reason for denying the pass.

Beverly seems to know her very well. "Malcolm Reese is considering making a movie about Jatie's last top seller, ain't he?"

Zoey nodded vigorously.

The library hostin the event was located like half an hour in car from our campus.

She needed someone to give her a lift.

Unfortunately Beverly was going to visit her brother during that whole weekend for his fortieth birthday.

I was not able to get her downtown, either.

It was the evening of the triannual talent show of Pacific Coast Academy middle school.

I had to be present, at the event, exactly like Mr. Bender.

Zoey would thus have to look on her own for a suitable lift.

This would by definitely no means be an easy task on a weekend like this one.

Zoey's brother Dustin would participate in the talent show.

Stangely, Zoey did not even care about this.

During her first year at Pacific Coast Academy, controlling Dustin would have been absolutely paramount.


49.2. Barret's Ravioli


The great Saturday was here.

Many opeople were at lunch.

Zoey Brooks appeared to get Coco Wexler to drive her downtown and back again.

Wait!

Wasn't Zoey Brooks looking for a responsible adult?

Coco was reluctant in giving Zoey a lift. She made a condition. She was addicted to ravioli. "Michael Barret knows the best recipe for ravioli around."

Zoey had to get her pal to cook some ravioli for Coco, using his grandma's fiercely guarded recipe.


49.3. Who built the pyramids?


Zoey was now trying to talk Michael into cooking the ravioli.

But the latter did not seem to have the time.

His teacher for history had forced him into a project building the pyramids of Gizeh for an exposition about ancient Egypt.

Of course the material would not be stone and sand.

Pyramids had got a very interesting shape, propably one of the most popular shapes at all, especialy among cheerio squads.

His partner would be Stacey Dillsen.

And the sculpture would be made of cotton swabs and white glue.

Of course Michael was disgusted by these. But he could not afford failing in history.

His grandma would have killed him for that, as much as for reveiling the absolutely secret family recipe. She was creepily weird in many a respect.

Stacey Dillsen was ready for negotiating, though. She wanted a date with Logan Reese in turn for releasing Michael.

Of course, Logan Reese was by no means whatsoever any good for Stacey.

Unfortunately, she had not yet understood that. One day, she would have to learn it the hard way.

Or so I feared.


49.4. The PCA Ring


Of course, Logan had not been willing to date someone like Stacey Dillsen. But he negotiated as well. In some stupid bet, Logan had lost a PCA ring to Dustin Brooks.

Logan would have dated Stacey in turn to that ring.

What was so special about that piece of metal anywys?

It was certainly a relic from the times before my principacy over Pacific Coast Academy.

I had never heard of a "PCA Ring".

So, was Dustin willing to part with this ring? Now he was practising for his talent presentation.

Fredward Benson was there with his video cam.

iCarly was going to broadcast most of the talent show.

Now I saw the ring. It had got some particular shape, a stingray biting its own sting.

The ancient Greek had called a similar figure an ouroboros, videlicet tail eater.

But Logan Reese had probably not cared a lot about it. He hated foreign words.

Nevel Papperman knew a lot about the ouroboros and its history, though. He was familiar with secret ancient cults using the symbol of the ragon devouring itself by the tail.

I did not really understand Nevel's excessively detailed talk.

Zoey tried hard to persuade Dustin to give away the ring. She offered to clean up after him and stuff.

But Dustin was not as allergic to disorder as his elder sister. And he could not think of any reason for parting with the ring.

My guess was the following:

Dustin was in a stinky mood because of Zoey's absence from his talent presentation.

And now it was time to practise the number.

It seemed to be some kind of sort of a magical trick.

Dustin was going to make Nevel disappear, or something like that.

Originally, their room mate Robert "Scooter" Carmichael[[156]] had been chosen as Dustin's assistant. But he was much too nervous for that task.

Megan had thereupon talked Nevel into assisting Dustin. And she insisted in a significant extension of Dustin's original idea of locking the assistant into a box and sawing it into half.

That was a bit scary.

But Dustin must have deemed it supercool.

Probably Megan was going to pull the strings in that trick.

Zoey could not really care. She was just a living hell of desperate. She was now forced to miss out on Jatie Hawthorne and be sad forever.

Dustin thought about exchanging the ring for Candy.

But Nevel was violently opposed to it. "The Ouroboros is a holy symbol. In the hands of vulgar fools like Logan Reese it will lead to curse and misfortune." He summarised the Egyptian Book Of The Dead. "The souls of the deceased take the shapes of mythic animals, including that of the ouroboros."

Fredward Benson protested stubbornly, "there is no such thing as curses and bad omens and life after death."

Nevel glared at hopelessly materialistic Freddie with deadly disgust. "You will rue this lie! Until the era of dystopia will you rue it!"

But Dustin shuddered. He promised not to give the ring to Logan Reese.

But Zoey was more consternated than ever before.


49.5. The Recipe


Alas, Coco Wexler stood all of a sudden at the campus square, rigged and ready for going downtown.

What had happened?

Beverly had toid Lunch Lady Rose about the problem of Michael and his grandma.

Rose had phoned Michael's old lady and talked her into leaving her the recipe for ravioli.

This dish would thenceforth be available each other week in our cafeteria.

Michael was thus no longer needed. And he was doomed to assist Stacey in building the pyramids, chock full with animal shaped souls of the death, maybe like snakes biting their own tail.

Zoey Brooks cheered fanatically.

Nothing was now standing between herself and Jatie Hawthorne.


49.6. The Presentation


Helen Baxter was moderating the talent show. She appeared naturally gifted for that kind of tasks, for whatever reason. And now she announced the first number.

Ashley Blake was going to perform some pantomimic play.

I thought it lame and was probably going to fall asleep.

But Ashley was still very popular amiong the kids of her generation.

This resulted to quite some applause keeping me from falling asleep.

Oh well!

The next number were Carly Shay and Sam Puckett.

Carly was already popular for her web show, thence triggering quite some applause before even starting to do something. "First, we wanted to make Sam disappear a whole barrow of chicken wings in front oh your eyes!"

Sam rubbed her belly.

Carly shrugged. "Well, that would have been too common for her."

Sam continued, "then Carly wanted to trade shapes with her cousin Megan."

The two cousins looked fairly alike and were hardly to distinguish.

Of course it would have been totally easy to cheat here.

The same would have been valid for Sam and Melanie.

But then Carly and Sam had decided to play a few skits.

The kids laughed mercilessly.

Ashley was disappointed. She had hoped to be the superstar.

OK, there were still many numbers left.

The very next number was now that of Dustin, Robbie, Megan, and Nevel.

Dustin locked Nevel into a contaner shaped like an octogonal coffin. Then he opened the coffin several times and closed it afterwards, accompanied by the sound of Megan's oboe.

Each turn, Nevel appeared in a different shape, as a unicorn, a griffin, or a dragon, for example.

I had definitely got no explanation.

But the audience thought this unbeatable.

Dustin was deemed the winner of the show.

Megan looked sternly.


49.7. Zoey is disappointed.


But how had Zoey's excursion to the library been?

She did not look happy.

There had been too many fans of Jatie Hawthorne.

Zoey did not get to ask Jatie a few well prepared questions about her work and her career. And she did not get a hand signed copy of Jatie Hawthorne's yet unpublished novel.

Needless to say, the whole evening had appeared as one big disappointment.

Zoey sobbed bitterly. She did not even ask Dustin about his success at the talent show. And she found her belongings all rummaged and scrambled.

Lola had been the baby sitter of the toddler of Mr. Bender, and she must have screwed this job in an awful manner.

Zoey had to weep for the rest of the weekend and was now mightily angry at Lola.


49.8. Benzene


Only later would I get to know about the reasons for Logan's interest in the ring.

Mr. Sweeny knew a legend about a certain scholar of chemistry, Auguste Keacute;kulé.


The researcher was riddling about the structure of the benzene molecule.

According to rumours, a dream of a tail biting beast finally inspired him to find the solution.

Old Mr. Reese was a professor for chemistry. He had written a text book about organic chemistry, with a cover depicting benzene ring.


Now this appeared to make sense.

The ring was basically a reminiscence for Logan's grandpa.

Even later would I get to know some even more straight connection.

Logan's grandfather had sponsored that PCA ring, thinking about Kekulé's dream.

Logan Reese did not really understand the connection.

But this did not matter.

He wanted it badly at any cost, even the capital punishment of having to date Stacey Dillsen.


49.9. The Pyramids


By the way, Michael Barret had not been forced to assist Stacey Dillsen all weekend through with the construction of the cotton swab model of the pyramids of Gizeh, or was it Kheops, or something like that.

A certain Eric Blonowitz, fan of iCarly and friend of the Parkers and Nichols clan, had shown up on the campus in order to watch the talent show and ask some question about Freddie and Carly.

Fortunately, both Stacey and Eric were particularly interested in astronomy.

This way, it was easy for them to get along.

Maybe Stacey would now find boys in her league and refrain from hankering after all the creepy jocks.


Chapter 50. Barbecue


50.1. Uncle Morris


Zoey appeared to have recovered fairly fast from the disappointment. And now she was in my office for another request.

According to her father's statement, her uncle Morris had just died.

Zoey was not even sad about it. She had most definitely not even heard about him before that message.

This Morris must have been a big player in the meat industry. He had left Zoey a huge truck load of pork middles.

So, what to do with them?

Of course meat used to rot fast unless cooled.

Certainly, we our cafeterria had got that huge fridge.

But it could not be used during seversal weeks or months exclusively for the delivery of pork.

Zoey Brooks and her friends had got the idea of a barbecue fest on the campus.

This way, the pork would be used up during the weekend.

There was not much to be said against that.

But there were of course those security rules.

We definitely needed a responsible adult.

Yes, I had said "responsible!"

And this excluded most definitely Coco Wexler.

The latter had unfortunately been suggested by Zoey Brooks.

But I had to remember the fiery catastrophe of Sushi Rox.

Blazing charcoal was a very dangerous thing.

I could not trust Coco so far. And I did definitely not want to get the whole campus set on fire.

We had hired Rose Pepper due to her competence with kitchen security.

And this suggested the right choice of a responsible adult.

Lunchlady Rose would be responsipble for the barbecue.


50.2. Gary Coleman


One day later, I was planning the trip of our football team to the nationals playoffs.

Beverly was told to send people away instead of bothering me.

The expenses for the trip to New York City were fairly high.

Fortunately, our contacts with Mr. Jamerson were going to lead to some severe reduction of the costs.

We found guest families to host our players.

Suddenly, Beverly's breath froze. "yes, it is him!"

I gasped. "Who is who?"

Beverly stammered, "Ga … ga … Gary … Gary Coleman![[157]]"

Mr. Coleman was the inventor of the most popular portable barbecue set of America.

Was therea connection between him and our barbecue fest?

Coleman reported,


Megan Parker, one of your students, had once saved my business and destroyed a gang of thieves and revendors.

I've heard about a barbecue fest here at Pacific Coast Academy. So I had got the idea:

Go to PCA and assist with the organisation of the contest!.

Of course it works both ways, it is sort of an advertisement campaign.


Oh yeah!

Events at schools are always a great form of publicity.

Gary Coleman would borrow us one grill for each team.

And the winning team was to be awarded. They could keep their grill and get one dinner for up to four in an official Gary Coleman restaurant.

There was at least one in the region of Los Angeles.

That was quite some award.

Rose Pepper and Gary Coleman would have to work togerther as the judges of the contest.

That was certainly going to be a lot of fun.

And poor Beverly was still fainting.

But that was just inevitable.


50.3. The Barbecue


And this was the great day of the barbecue.

For security reasons, only the high school kids were allowed to operate the grills.

They were divided in several teams.

Originally, Zoey had wanted to be in a team with Michael Barret and with Logan Reese.

But thenn Logan and Michael jumped at each other's throat.

The cause of the conflict was an argument over barbecue styles.

Michael Barret's family knew a recipe for some barbecue marinade.

The Reese family, in turn, used traditionally a mix of the most expensive spices of the world known as excessively famous "Reese Rib Rub".

Zoey saw no way to continued such a horrible team. Thus she persuaded Nicole Bristow and Dana Cruz to join her team.

Of course Dana and Nicole in the same team were not exactly a pleasure, either.

According to Nicole, the grills by Gary Coleman were incredibly cute, exactly like the very Gary Coleman himself.

Zoey better watched Nicole's steps.

The bimbo wench was very likely to set things carelessly on fire.

Gary Coleman's grills were certainly a whole lot more secure than classical charcoal grills.

Not all of them were based on charcoal. There were also gas grills.

THe teams here used a mix of all those.

Nicole looked atthe dips.

Zoey explained, "this recipe is from Nevel."

Nicole remarked with disgust. "Nevel is not cute!"

Dana nodded vigorously.

And the ywo girls had hardly ever agreed on a lot.

By the way, Nevel ate no pork, and thus he was not present at the barbecue fest. But he had helped with the dips, just like a few other middle school kids, such as Dustin, Ashley, Wendy, Robbie, Megan, Fredward, Carly, and so on.

His dip was so called tapenade, a mixture of squished garlic, capers, and olives.

Nicole sniffled at the tapenade. "But his salsa tastes yummy."

Zoey nodded solemnly.

Nicole remarked, "I want definitely some my ribs with some. Please! Please! Please!" She begged like a puppy.

Zoey sighed. "We have just started heating the grill, You can't yet have any."

Nicole pouted.

Dana grunted, "oh yes! She can!"

Nicole grinned, "oh, please!" She squealed like a bimbo.

Dana took a large cooking spoon, stuck it into the bowl with tapenade, and poured the green stuff into Nicole's cleavage. Then she started rubbing her shirt, distibuting the goo all over screaming Nicole's chest. "OK, see, your ribs are now full of tapenade!"

Zoey was consternated and yelled at the brash tomboy. Now she had to follow Nicole to the toilets i order to clean her and allow her to change outfits.

Dana Cruz was left alone at her grill.

Rose Pepper did not exactly comment Dana's impossible demeanour in a "two thumbs up" manner.

Logan Reese was cooperating now with Tad Cameron.

Michael Barret had been forced to helpl Stacey Dillsen alias team "Ribs And Swabs".

This was nowhere near fun for him.

Stacey killed his last nerves.

The first pork chops were now ready.

Samantha Puckett had snuck around and incorporated some of them. She rubbed her tummy in a gleeful manner and belched like a wild beast into Fredward Benson's face. She would probably swallow half of the truck's load of barbecue pork.

Her stomach was huger on the inside than the whole girl was on the outside.

How was that possible?

I had definitely not got a glue.

Freddie was taking pictures of the event for iCarly.

carly interviewed the participants, and especially Gary Coleman.

The latter had got an excruciatingly hard time telling her apart from Megan Parker.

The contest went on for over an hour like this.

But finally, Gary Coleman and Rose Pepper had to come to a conclusion, videlicet to announce the winner of a genuine hand stamped Gary Coleman grill and a dinner at a certified Gary Coleman restaurant.

The suspense increased significantly.

Gary Coleman started talking about a few teams to be disqualified.

There had been cotton swabs found in the dip of Michael and Stacey.

This got them excluded from the contest.

Now Michael was really stinky at Stacey.

Her swabs had ruined his grandma's perfect marinade.

Zoey had noyt been able to show up again.

Nicole had been too picky when choosing some substitute outfit. She wanted to impress Tad Cameron, the new "incredibly cute" guy.

And Dana had just treated Gary Coleman with no respect.

This got her sent off as well.

Rose and Gary had to choose Logan Reese and Tad Cameron as the winners.

The guys were already talking about two potential girls for a double dinner date.

But, all of a sudden, Gary Coleman's cellular phone rang.

It was Megan Parker.

Gary Coleman whispered something into Rose Pepper's ears.

Then they had to withdraw for a few serious words.

Minutes later, they returned.

Gary Coleman announced,


OK, unfortunately, I have just received some very strong accusation.

Some of you are supposed to have used an illegal spice.


The kids looked xonsternated.

Rosemary pepper explained, "We are talking about Peruvian puff pepper[[158]] ."

The kids looked puzzled.

That southern american spice caused chapped lips and kidney failure. Thus it was illegal in the American kitchen.

Garyy announced, "Nevel papperman can smell puff pepper apart from other scents. He will check ypur marinides and spice mixes with his sensitive nose."

Many kids looked above.

Nevel could hardly bear the stench of pork. But he forced himself to do his job as a sniffer.

A quarter of an hour later, the cheater had been found.

Logan Reese's world renowned rib rub contained significant amounts of Peruvian puff pepper.

Sam Puckett choked. "I have eaten several chops of Logan's!"

I was worried and called Doc Hollywood.

Samantha was told to submit samples of her next excrements to his laboratory.

This was not exactly a nice thing to say during a barbecure fest.

Oh well!

Almost everyone had been disqualified.

So, who was left to win the award?

Gary Coleman suspired. "The last remaining team is thus the winner, videlicet Team Trina Vega and Olivary Biallo!"

Trina protested, "hey! We are not a team!"

Indeed, they had just happened to have been forced to share the last free Gary grill. And they had bickered all the time.

As a result, their pork had been almost raw.

But that did not matter anymore.

Sam Puckett was disappointed. "Not enough pork left!" Then she started talking to Coleman.

I wondered what.

Zoey Brooks and Nicole Bristow were now back.

Dana was very angry at them, and vice versa.

That was absolutely no good.


Chapter 51. The Legend Of Charles Galloway


51.1. Apples And Kisses


I stumbled into the lounge of Maxwell Hall.

There was a bowl with a few apples in it.

That was a bit unusual.

There must have been something fishy.

And there was the hidden cam!

I was reminded of Logan Reese's espionage on the girls, using a micro cam hidden in a plush bear.

Some giggle was heard.

That noise belonged doubtlessly to Lola Martinez.

She was very hard to imitate. Of course she was not able to handle web cams well.

So Quinn was possibly helping her.

But I did not have to looke very far.

Quinn and Lola were actually sitting a few yards outside the lounge, complete with a laptop.

I grunted, "what sort of espionage is this?"

Quinn explained,


We are testing Lola's theory about good kissers.

She thinks to be able to determine a boy'skissing abilities from his way of eating an apple.


That sounded horribly far fetched.

I wondered, "are the apples real, and not plastic or wax apples?"

Quinn chuckled.

Lola nodded solemnly. "They aren't poisoned, either. But theyare not really juicy, rather, bone dry."

Quinn nodded solemnly. "It is necessary to test various sorts of apples."

Lola shrugged."I still don't understand this."

Quinn growled, "different sorts of apples have got different biting abilities."

Lola still looked a bit puzzled. "Why does Quinn have to be such a nerd?"

I shrugged and moved on.


51.2. Evil Teachers


I have hired quite a few teachers during my three years as a headmaster hear at Pacific Coast Academy.

But there were still many teachers left from the times of Carl Rivers.

Of course I could not choose teachers at whim.

There I was definitely caught in the form of limitation.

Mr. Bradford was still the big boss and the owner of the whole institution.

And there was the board of sponsors and the alumni and stuff.

In the case of most teacher, this was certainly not all that much of a problem.

But there were some exceptions, videlicet teachers imposed upon the school from above.

This had already been the case at Ridgeway.

Mrs. Briggs, , and Mr. Devlin[[159]] , for example, had been employed against my will by superintendent Gorman.

I had been unable to remove them from their office due to their connections.

One of the most annoying cases here at Pacific Coast Academy was one . He was already very old, like eighty years.

Usually, teachers retired in their sixties.

Only a few teachers made it beyond that mark.

Of course, this was not always a bad thing.

I just have to remind you about Mr. Pal. erstwhile principal and now still teacher for social science at James K. Polk.

Mr. Pal was still able to teach in a very convincing manner, his fairly high age notwithstanding.

But in the very case of Mr. Hotchins, this was a pain in the tail.

His lessons were even a trifle more dry than the apples used by Quinn ad Lola in order to prove Lola's hypothesis about a connetion between a boy's kissing abilities and his way of eating an apple.

Students were bored to death.

In addition, Mr. Hotchins used to yell at them for no reason, and he kept on randomly insulting them.

Many students and parents appear to have complained about him.

But he had always been able to get away with it.

Not even Claire Sawyer whad been hitherto able to find a way to stop him.

I had now consulted Garth Burman about the case.

And our executive chairman knew the situation too well. He was able to tell me endless stories about his time as a student at Pacific Coast Academy, tormented by Mr. Hotchins.

I was advised to look it up in the yearbooks.

Mr. Hotchins had started teaching here at Pacific Coast Academy in the times of the cold war, about fifty years ago.

I was born around that turn and had gone to school during the times of the war of Vietnam.

That was not a pleasant time.


51.3. The Lost Pupil


Some students appeared to know about a rumour concerning the earliest times of Mre. Hotchins as a teacher for economics at Pacific Coast Academy.

In his very first year, Hotchins had scared the living hell out of some student named Charles R. Galloway.

The poor guy had thereupon disappeared from the campus and never been seen again. According to the rumours, Charles Galloway had died and was now buried at some dry and barren place named Redstone Gulch, noy far from Pacific Coast Academy.

But how was it possible to know for anyone?

Charles Galloway had never been seen after his flight from the campus, but was known to have died and been buried in some specified location in the barren wastelands.

That was so weird.

Some pupils took the speculation even further.

Today, Samantha Puckett was in my office. She had been accepted by JONAS Book Of Records[[160]] for an official attempt in eating ham.

This was due to her connections with Gary Coleman established after aforementioned barbecue fest.

Samantha insisted in some good sauce for the pork. "I hate dry meat!"

That was of course not my concern.

But the attempt of a record would either take place here on the campus or in some officially licensed Gary Colemlan restaurant.

In the case of the first of the two alternatives, I had to approve or disprove of the event.

Now we came to talk about the legend concerning the dlost guy, Charles R. Galloway.

Sam reveiled, "Logan Reese and Michael Barret want to go on a field trip to the tomb of unlucky Charles."

I choked.

Of course they could not leave trhe campus arbitrarily without a responsible adult and without

It would have been totally irresponsible.

Logan Reese and Michael Barret had been the ringleaders. They needed to get some severe admonition for their impossible misdemeanour.

Sam chuckled.


Nevel believes in a curse attached to unblessed tombs.

Even Carly is scared.

But of course there is no such thing as curses, maledictions, and bad omens.

A trio out there woukldbe cool.

Please!


I shook my head. I did not care anbout any curse whatsoever.

But a trip into the canyon withouta competent guild was absolutely suicidal, especially under certain meterological conditions.

And weather forecasts were unreliable, especially those by Walter Nichols, as seen before.

Logan Reese was probably interested in making a movie about the legend of Charles Galloway.

Nicole Bristow, when asked about the plans of the group, even admitted to thinking of Charles as a very cute boy.

But, honestly, he would have been like sixty five years by now, and hardly that cute in the eyes of a teenage girl anymore.

Lola was certainly interested in being seen on the screen in Logan's movie.

Quinn Pensky was eager on testing some of her inventions, such as a detector for things hidden in the soil.

The worst of all was the following:

Middle school kids, such as Fredward Benson, wanted to come along with Logan.

Freddie was needed in order to make a short movie of the expedition and the tomb.

Logan had promised him a paid internship and a long term contract as a technical producer for Reese Movies in the case of a a successful completio of a shocking movie about Charles Galloway.

That was irresponsible.

I could only permit such an expedition for high school kids, and only in the company of some responsible and competent adult.

By now, this was definitely not the case.

But the kids would certainly go and look for one.


Chapter 52. Sibling Love


52.1. Fresh From Japan


Three days later, I walked into our post office in order to fetch a letter from the administration of aforementioned French boarding school.

Dustin was there as well, with some big parcel.

This was not mt first time of encountering Dustin with a fairly huge parcel.

Logan Reese used to pay him for certain errants.

Zoey Brooks was not really keen on that.

But Dustin always used to ignore her. He wasnted to appear cool and independent.

There were some strange eastern characters on the parcel, something like Chinese of Japanese.

I could not read them.

Just in case, it would have certainly possible to ask Kazu about them.

For the time being, on the other hand, I saw no reason for being worried.

Logan was much too dumb for being a foreign spy.

And only certain bad espionage movies suggested to be overly paranoidal because of spies from abroad and unreadable addresses on mail.

I better walked bad to my office in order to deal with the exchange student program.

Our French exchangers were certainly no spies, albeit a bit weird from time to time.

Simon for example had been falling for Lola's acting tricks.

She had pretended to need to learn to speak witha French accent for the school play in order to fool him into dating her. But she was perfect talking in some thirty accents already.

Simon found out, but refused to trash Lola. But by now he had to see this as a mistake.

Lola Martinez was but a colourful butterfly fluttering from blossom to blossom, all over the summer meadow.


52.2. Fire Alert


Over a year ago, I had to see Sushi Rox in flames.

Ever since, our security measures here on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy had been increased quite drastically.

Fortunately the Coleman grills had been portable and thus fairly small.

According to Melinda Crenshaw, a bigger one would have triggered the sprinkler systems.

Quinn and Mindy had been the ones to reconstruct the fire alerts.

But they were still fully standard compliant.

Tonight, our alert bells were howling, for the first time since the accident over at Sushi Rox.

I had been informed by Chief Becker.

That was terrible.

I walked to the campus as fast as possible, even in my pyjamas.

The alert had been triggered in "148 Maxwell".

But also students of other dormitory blocks were on their feet.

Nevel Papperman remarked, "there is absolutely no smoke."

His nose was sensitive enough to detect smoke across the campus.

Was it possible to have fire without smoke?

Too bad Quinn Pensky was not on her feet.

She knew certainly everything about the physics of fire and smoke.

Chief Becker signed deeply. "My first idea was Spencer Shay."

The creep used to set things randomly ablaze.

Becker's men, however, had searched through everything, but without detecting any source of fire.

That was really weird.

Had the fire detectors been misfiring?

Oops!

The system had to be reexamined, though.

At Ridgeway, Samantha Puckett had once deliberately triggered the fire alerts in order to skip classes.

On the other hand, this had happened at plain day time. It would not have made much sense in the middle of the night.

There were most definitely no classes whatsoever to skip at three o' clock in the morning.

In any case, I was now up to get Mr. Sweeny, Melinda Crenshaw, and Quinn Pensky to recheck and readjust the fire alert systems.


52.3. Dustin wants to leave.


The next morning was absolutely chaotic.

Nbeverly was still shocked by the rumours about the fire.

It had taken me more than half an hour in order to explain "there was no fire, just a fake alert."

My secretary was finally calming down.

But then Dustin Brooks stumbled in, without knocking and so on. He sounded totally excited. "I want to leave Pacific Coast Academy." He ordered me to call his parents, and also Zoey.

I gasped.

Dustin had always appeared to be very happy here.

What had happened?

Dustin explained,


You have seen the Japanese parcel.

It was from Malcolm Reese.

He is now making a movie in Tokyo, Godzilla — The Third Generation[[161]].

The parcel contained a DVD of some cool Japanese horror action movie, Shinusha[[162]] .

It is about masked ninjas killing people with their chop sticks.

I have watched it with Logan and Michael. I had to scream all night through.


I choked.

Logan Reese must have been insane for doing so.

And why had Malcolm Reese sent his son such a horror movie, probably rated at least as "mature content"?

This is a school for kids.

No material above "PG-13" was allowed here, according to Da Rules.

Dustin knew that, too.

His sister would not be happy about ot.

Dustin knew that very well. So, why was Dustin insisting in calling Zoey?

There was something smelling horribly fishy.

And finding out was once more up to me.

I sent Dustin back to his classes. "I will take care of this after classes. I will inform mom, dad, and Zoey as said."

Dustin moaned and left my office.

Now it was time to write a message for Quinn, Mindy, and Mr. Sweeny.

Chief Becker was rushing towards an explanation of the events.

His men had better things to do after midnight than that.

This was of course understandable.

Becker believed strongly in a practical joke by one of the students.


52.4. More Intimidated Middle School Kids


After lunch break, I returned to my office.

Beverly was early. And she was very much stressed.

I wondered why.

Beverly explained:


Ashley Blake was here. She had watched a movie with Logan Reese, Shinusha.

This must have scared the hell out of her.

You need to inform her parents and especially Vince Blake.

A little later, Sandy Baldwin bumped in. She is totally intimidatated by some frenzied ninjas with chop sticks.

We have to tell her parents, and her elder sister Tracy.

Noy much later, Carly Shay showed up.


I interrupted, guessing, "she has watched Shinyusha, is intimidated, and we need to inform some people for her?"

Beverly nodded most solemnly. "Her dad is in a submarine, though."

I knew about that.

But Carly had requested us to call her grandfather in Yakima, and of course her elder brother, videlicet Spencer Shay.

Beverly was not even done. "Finally, Megan Parker snuck in."

Obviously we needed to inform Josh Nichols and Drake Parker as well.

Hey, this was impossibly an incident.

Logan Reese watches some horror movie, along with a bunch of middle school kids.

And now those kids were all intimidated and wanted to leave Pacific Coast Academy. All of them had got an elder sibling either studying or working at Pacific Coast Academy.

And we were told to inform especially those siblings.

At lunch, I had talked to Kazu about the movie.

He had already heard about it, and he translated the description from the Japanese interweb movie dara storage for me.

It was indeed illegal in the USA for children.

None of the elder siblings would have liked hearing about it.

This was suspicious.

Had those middle school kids planned the whole thing in order to get their elder siblings involved?

This cried for some stern investigation.


52.5. Japanese J-Phone


Before taking care of the middle school family dramas, I had to check the fake fire alert.

Mr. Sweeny was now here in order to talk about the situation.

It was very tricky.

Mr. Sweeny explained stupid proverb "no smoke without fire" was thus a plain lie.

Our fire alert system reacted to both the heat and the smoke, depending on the particular component.

Quinn had improved it significantly since the accident at Sushi Rox.

Alas, there were also other means for triggering a fire alert, and not just that little lever.

Certain radiations were definitely able to do so.

Mr. Sweeny was working hard on this problem, along with Mindy and Quinn.

Lats year, Sweeny's friend and colleague, Mr. Jamerson, had already believed in having tracked down the problem.

But his corrections had demonstrated some unpleasant side effects.

Mr. Sweeny gave me now a long list of possible triggers for a fire alert.

It was mnot easy to study it.

I had never heard of most of the things listed.

Mr. Sweeny had got a hard time trying to explain them. But he had not come very far.

My head was just spinning around like an old broken record.

But one item in the long table caught my eyes.

There was a Japanese J-Phone.

Sccording to Mr. Sweeny, those devices were illegal in most states of America, especially here in California. Thus they were certainly not legally available in our phone shops.

Most of ours students had hardly been able to get at one of them.

But there was at least one exception.

Logan Reese had received that parcel from Tokyo.

It had probably not just contained the DVD of Shinusha. Maybe it had also contained one of those illegal phone devices.

Mr. Sweeny gasped. "Brilliant!"


52.6. Logan gets caught.


It was already past midnight.

I was staying awake on the campus.

There were ways to detect the radiation caused by Japanes J Phones other than letting them trigger some fire alert.

Mr. Sweeny had hastily constructed a suitable detector, with the heklp of Quinn Pensky and Melinda Crenshaw.

The girls were now asleep, just like all good teenagers.

But I stayed awake.

According to the informations found on the interweb and translated by Kazu, Japanese J phones were able to download video clips and sound tracks over night.

Logan was probably using it in order to get more japanese horror movies like Shinusha.

Kazu had told me about The Liver Eater[[163]] .

The night after its première in Japanese video shops, it had caused some thousands of teenagers to screw up completely and get delivered to mental health institutions all over Japan.

Of course I was not willing to let anything like that occur here at Pacific Coast Academy.

We must have been on the right track.

A new fire alert was triggered, the same time of the day as during the night before.

Certainly the phone had been on some automated mode.

This was not a problem for modern electronic devices, no matter at which time of the day.

But it was a problem for the fire brigades.

Mr. Sweeny was already on the way with his detector.

And there we were.

This was the source of the fake alert.

We were standing in front of "148 Maxwell Hall".

Sweeny pointed at Logan's device.

The display showed maximum intensity.

Logan was no so in trouble.

But his father should have known better than sending him the parcel.

This was definitely no good.


Chapter 53. Dustin Needs Zoey


The next day, I had to take care of the "intimidated" middle school kids.

I had commanded them into my office at the same time, along with their respective elder siblings.

The kids had not known in advance about this fact.

Now they were apparently a bit consternated.

I started talking, "I am consternated!" I panted. "There are five middle school kids staying after curfew in the room of Logan Reese in order to watch some lame horror movie with him."

The leder siblings had already been aware of that fact.

Megan Parker whistled innocently.

Dustin appeared to be some sort of a ring leader. He talked for the others, "Shinusha is not lame. It is a cool movie!"

I continued,


and how is that?

The next morning, you show up in here, one by one, and pretend to be scared to death. And you insist in me informing your respective elder siblings.


This fact was totally shocking for Vince Blake, Tracy Baldwin, Zoey Brooks, Drake Parker, Josh Nichols, and Spencer Shay.

They started disputing wildly.

Drake Parker started yelling at Zoey Brooks, "you have neglected your Dustin." He stomped his feet. "And now he has instigated my Megan into watching that horror stuff."

Zoey was by absolutely no means pleased by those exceedingly brash accusations. "As a matter of fact, elder sisters are more responsible than elder brothers."

Tracy Baldwin nodded vehemently.

Of course this would not lead anywhere.

As a matter of fact, all of them must have failed as elder siblings.

I had to keep on inquiring. "OK, Dustin Brooks, what happened after the movie?"

Dustin stammered, "we walked back … to bed."

I had already asked Rbert Carmichael about it. "And you did so unnoticed by Robert Carmichael, your room mate … like an invisible ninja?"

According to Carly Shay, Samantha Puckett's main dream was that of becoming an invisible ninja[[164]] .

Dustin boomed, "aw that toad …" He wanted to run away and probably do something very bad to his room pal.

I stopped him.

Suddenly, Zoey Brooks suspired. "OK, I admit it, I have let him sleep in my dormitory room." She sobbed. "Dustin was overly terrified."

Had Dustin really been that terrified?

I growled, "so, what about Ashley, Sandy, Megan, and Carly?"

Vince admitted to having let Ashley stayed in his dormitory room as well.

Of course neither of them was OK, according to Da Rules.

Vince Blake's room mate had by absolutely no means been content with their little forth roomie.

The same was valid for Zoey's and Tracy's respective roomies.

The elder siblings finally started in some sort of conspiration of their respective little siblings.

"OK, you middle school kids were not really afraid of the ninjas." I suspired. "You have come up with all that just in order to have a good faske reason in order to get your elder siblings to allow you to sleep over in their dormitory rooms."

Megan jumped up. She yelled at me, "That … that is so … true!"She choked at her own words.

Carly Shay sighed deeply.

Ashley Blake did not budge from her poker face.

Dustin Brooks went totally pale.

Sandy Baldwin started shivering.

Zoey Brooks glared at her little brother. "Dustin, is Ted Franklin right?"

Dustiin was like a block of stone.

Zoey grabbed and shook her little brother.

Dustin nodded totally sadly.

Analogous scenes were now about going on between the other sibling teams.

Zoey cried, "why, Dustin, why?"

Dustin sobbed. "I have missed you."

Zoey looked consternated. "You have missed me?"

Why was that not really surprising?

Dustin had apparently not been glad at all about Zoey's absence at his great moment at the Pacific Coast Academy middle school talent show.

And all of those middle school kids had pathetically insisted in their respective elder siblings to get informed about their wish to leave Pacific Coast Academy.

Zoey, on the other hand, was not able to believe that. "But we see and greet us each day on the campus."

Tracy Baldwin nodded solemnly, "we do, don't we, Sandy?"

Sandy nodded, but she was most definitely not content with that. "I want to hang out with Tracy, and not be her little embarrassing shadow anymore."

Dustin must have felt fairly similarly.

Zoey had often been painfully embarrassed when bothered by Dustin in the presence of her friends.

Ashley told Vince, "things were so much better back when …" She sobbed. "It was so cool having you with me as my body guard, until the problems with school."

Vince Blake went pale. "Ashley?" He gasped. "Is that true?" He could hardly believe it. "But you get along very well with Sarah Kyla."

Ashley was almost weeping. "But that's not the same as being guided by my cool big brother." Shre looked at Vince with puppy eyes.

Drake Parker seemed to be the most consternated. He was not really accustomed to getting missed by Megan. Quite to the contrary, he must have assumed, "Megan had always been glad about getting rid of me and Josh, and she had done everything in order to prank me out of her way."

Megan howled, "that was before Pacific Coast Academy!"

Things must have gone a long way for the two Parker siblings.

Drake was now the official adviser for the school band, replacing Gustavo Rocque during the tour of one of his contracted super stars. He was living in an apartment off the campus, but used to stay occasionally at some friend's dormitory on the campus.

Megan had made it to that place after the end of Shinusha.

Last but not least, Carly howled at Spencer's shoulders. "You hang out more with the adults on the campus than with me."

Spencer protested, "That is not true … no … it is true." He was apparently feeling excessively miserable miserable for this. "I suggest one little sibling day per week."

Beverly choked. "Claire Sawyer is here!"

I wondered why. "Let her in, Bev!"

The future lawyer walked in with a huge standard contract formular. She had worked out some sort of written agreement between older and younger siblings.

The kids had to read it and sign it until tomorrow.

Now it was time for a hug storm of no less than eight units of Beaufort scale.

I better looked away.

That was too much to bear.

Unfortunately, some side effects of the action of the middle school kids were not made disappear that easily.

The pal ship between Lola and Zoey was now torn even more. Would it ever recover?

This was hardly evitable.

The loss of confidence due to Lola's audacious action of telling Chase to hire a fake girlfriend was still a pain in the tail.

Malcolm Reese claimed to not have known about the content of the parcel received by Logan.

This was really strange.

Had the parcel packaged itself automatically?

I could not believe it.

Malcolm Reese must have at least been totally careless at the very least. Maybe he had not understood Japanese and stuff. But he had got many advisers to do the translations for him.

The DVD got confiscated by Mr. Bradford.

The Japanese cellular phone had also been removed from the possessions of the jerk.

Mr. Sweeny was now working on removing the onoxious feature of the foreign device and make it useful here in California.

Quinn and Mindy would assist him.

This was not an easy task.

Unfortunately, chief Becker was still going to fine us for the fake alerts.

Mr. Bradford was not likely to be pleased by it.

Was there a way to appease him?


Chapter 54. Redstone Gulch


54.1. Spy Cake


Wayne Gilbert had already invented many items for the "noble" purpose of espionage, of course following the examples from his fantasy science fiction toons.

This time, a new device had made it. It was a plastic cake with a built in micro camera transmitting pictures to the fire wire port of a laptop.

A plastic cake fork completed the whole set.

Samantha Puckett was apparently not exactly convinced by it, comparing it for that matter to the slightly more convincing silicon breast implants of her aunt Maggie[[165]], the one just out for parole.

By the way, Samanth called many people her "uncles" and "aunts", even without being blood related.

This was essentially the case for all the henchmen of her father.

Honestly, she did not even know their names and assigned them randomly names once heard in her ma's stories.

This way, Sam could have five aunts named "Maggie" and six uncles named "Carmine".

But Fredward Benson did not get by any means whatsoever distracted by Samantha Puckett's brash criticism. "She can't even tell desserts apart from a desert." He wexplained, "This fake cake feigns to be a dessert. Redstone Gulch, however, is almost a desert landscape."

After all, the fake cake was not totally unconvincing.

Coco Wexler had tried to take some rather big bite off it. She used the plastic fork in order to stab into sweet cake, breaking it in the process.

Fredward Benson was thereupon in some no less stinky mood.

Fortunately it was possible to solder the broken fork. It was a whole lot easier than even thinking about trying to weld and mend the torn and sundered confidence between Lola Martinez and Zoey Brooks.

This was of course hard to compare, anyways.

Of course, the fake cake was not just there to make Coco look dumber than usual.

Its main purpose was that of spying.

The pictures would then be shown in iCarly.

The recent attempts of getting more viewers had been a bit lame, barring some live music with Lisa Perkins.

So spying on unpopular teachers was apparently deemed to be the way to go.

And their preferred victim was Mr. Hotchins, the meanest of all mean teachers at Pacific Coast Academy since fifty years.


54.2. Into The Desert


As aforementioned, I had not given the permission for a field trip into the desert of desolation alias the Redstone Gulch without a competent aduly.

My choice was Kenneth Billiam[[166]], one of our middle school teachers for geography.

Mr. Billiam was not only a teacher, but also a ranger scout, experienced in many a difficult terrain. He had served in the air force as a pioneer officer in the desert storm.

His main speciality was that of tying all sorts of difficult knots and loops.

Was that really useful at Redstone Gulch?

There were sop many things to be considered for a trip into the barren wastelands.

One difficulty was that of communication.

This was especially necessary in the case of the group getting split temporarily.

Normal cellular phones could not be used.

There was no relay station out in the semi desert.

Quinn Pensky knew a possibility of extending, at least tripling, the reach of a standard US American cellular phone for a very limited time.[[167]].

Of course, this was not without a hitch.

The batteries of a cellular phone got drained really fast in the process.

Quinn was already working on aforementuioned improvement of the Japanese J Phone. She deemed the Japanese more advanced in this type of technology. But she was on the way of developing a cellular phone legally usable and functional both in Japan and in America.

After all, "walk and talk" operator devices appeared to be a better choice.

Of course this solution only provided a possibility for a communication within the group, and not one in order to ask us for help, in the case of an emergency.

Quinn Pensky suggested the usage of a GPS chip for that purpose.

Of course the kids also need enough water for a walk into the desert, or almost desert.

Mr. Sweeny and Quinn Pensky had already invented some improved sort of water bottle.

But Nicole insisted in her dad's soft drinks. "I like apple and mango most."

Before asking Mr. Billiam, Lola wanted to get a very hot, in her terms, senior, "Lafe" Berkowitz[[168]] to guide the expedition.

Also Nicole deemed "Lafe" "incredibly cute".

But the guy actually deemed mustard the most important part of his equipment.

That was incredible.

But of course some food was needed.

Mr. Billiam showed the kids to make their lunch boxes bear proof.

Wild animals such as bears used to smell the contents of the lunch boxes and become aggressive.

Michael Barret was pathetically afraid of bears. "There are bears at Redstone Gulch?"

This would have been a reason for him to stay at home.

Samantha Puckett, on the other hand, would have loved to meat a bear out in the open wilderness and turn it into a fur coat and bear chops with her own hands. But she was not allowed to come with the high school kids.

There probably werent any bears, but possibly mountain lions and coyotes.

And even these prospects were definitely too much for Michael Barret to bear. He ran away screaming, giving up on the dangerous field trip.

And this reduced the group of kids ready to make it up to Redstone Gulch to four, videlicet Logan Reese. Lola Martinez, Quinn Pensky, and Nicole Bristow.

Unfortunately, those lunch boxes were now very hard to open.

Nicole wasn't sure how to handle them. She tried hard.

But Logan Reese just made fun of her attempts, pushing her finally over the edge.

Thus the kids were down to three.

Now Lola, Quinn, and Logan started bickering constantly.

I did not see any reason.

That must have been a desert psychosis or something like that, as =suggested by Fredward Benson.

Last but not least, Kenneth Billiam decided to call the whole field trip cancelled.

Logan was most disappointed. He still hoped for the unique filming rihts for the discovery of the tomb of Charles Galloway. Was he up to sneaking away and make it all on his own?


54.3. Hotchins Resigns


Mr. Hotchins had been very upset by a video shown in iCarly. He requested the expulsion and deportation of the kids behind the web show.

Samantha Puckett had displayed his talking head on the body of a hippopotamus and a rhinoceros.

It was based on pictures taken with the fake cake.

But, according to Claire Sawyer, there was no rule against that.

Mr. Hotchins was now so scared, he ran away into the desert, to be never seen again at Pacific Coast Academy, just like erstwhile Charles Galloway.

For the kids, this was a whole load of fun.

But would Mr. Bradford see it exactly the same way?

I did have my doubts.

But the kids celebrated the departure of the most evil teacher ever and the end of an era of fifty years of horror.


Chapter 55. Record Breaker


55.1. Record Within A Record


As aforementioned, Samantha Puckett had talked to Gary Coleman about her wish to break the record of eating pork chops.

It was indeed a top mark listed in world renowned JONAS Book Of Records.

Samantha was told to contact the national editorial board of that book.

The responsible judge was one Marlyn Raymour[[169]]

Originally, Sam wpuld have preferred to break the record for eating ham, pork chops, or chicken wings.

But, according to one poll by Fredward Benson, there were quite a few vegetarians among the viewers of iCarly.

Carly had thus urged her best friend forever to switching to some record without involving meat in order to avoid scaring them away..

Fortunately, there were still a few possibilities left for the girl with a titan's stomach.

One of Sam's favourite snacks were doubtlessly so called fat cakes.

Thus Sam Puckett switched more or less voluntarily to fat cakes.

The judges of the book of records used to be very strict.

Carly told them in advance about the existence of Melanie Puckett. "They could accuse us of cheating, otherwise."

It would have been possible for Melanie and Sam to trade places, like, during a trip to the toilets.

The editorial board thanked Carly and Sam for the message.

There had indeed been quite a few cheaters in the history of the book, using the existence of lookalikes.

But of course just admitting to the existence of lookalikes did not make Sam automatically honest.

The editorial board was now insisting in conrolling Sam all the time with a hidden cam, even when walking out to the toilets.

Sam was not exactly pleased by that.

But it was part and parcel of an official attempt for one of the records.

Thus she had to accept it. "But I won't say anywthing without Claire Sawyer, my lawyer!"

Claire gasped. She had not known about being Samantha's shark for the event. But she had already learned the statutes of JONAS by heart, just in case.

While holding the official edition of the book in their hands, the kids did not refrain from looking through it.

Some record stabbed their eyes like a black death ninja with a diamond sharpened double edged wakizashi.

They were running a web show.

Of course the attempted assault on the existing record in fat cake eating would be shown in the frame of an episode of iCarly.

But there was even a record about web shows.

The hitherto longest officially registered web show had lasted for a bit over a whole day straight.

Thus Carly Shay came up with one brilliant idea.

Samantha Puckett should break the record about eating fat cakes withing the attempt of breaking the record for the world's longest web show session.

Marlyn Raymour did not object to the double record.

I suspired a bbit.

Both attempts would take place on our campus, from Saturday noon to Sunday noon.

I had to give the kids a pass in order to lift the curfews.

But the pass needed to be valid for all kids.

Of course a whole bunch of students here at Pacific Coast Academy was hell bent on watching the whole attempt, all night through.

Fredward Benson would sent it in recorded bits and pieces, anyways, during the following sessions, serving the kids preferring to sleep at night.

Sam's attempt of the record concerning the fat cakes would take place at dawn, right for breakfast.


55.2. All Night Through


And this was the fiercely anticipated day of the record.

The web session took place in the dormitory room of Carly and Sam.

But it was broadcast live into almost all of the lounges, and into the campus cinema.

Helen Baxter had suggested the latter.

Fredward Benson started finally counting down the seconds. "Online in five … four … three … two …"

The "one" was skipped as usual.

Michael, Carly, and Sam started introducing this session.

Carly emophasised, "Marlyn Raymour, the official judge from JONAS Book Of Records, is watching us from the lounge in eq Maxwell Hall", together with Dean Ted Franklin.

I had to wave into a web cam placed in front of me by Quinn Pensky. "Hoohooh!"

Marlyn grinned. "Hi!"

Sam also greeted her shark, Claire Sawyer.

The rules stated the following, among others:


The show must be without any interruption.


At any given moment, someone had to be in front of the camera and do something.


Carly Shay had introduced the random break dance in order to keep the session going, even in the case of everyone getting tired.

Finally, Carly announced Sam's attempt. "Those of you sleeping at night should wake up at dawn, right in time for Sam's fat cake fest."

Sam grinned.

carly announced, "but where do the little fat cakes come from?"

Sam stammered, "they grow in Freddie's face?"

Carly shook her head. "Welcome Rosemary Pepper, our lunch lady."

Sam triggered some artificial applause.

Freddie swuitched to a camera in the cafeteria.

Rose appeared at some table.

The ingredients for the fat cakes wer spread out in front of the camera.

Some assistant of the JONAS Book Of Records checked the ingredients.

Fat free fat cakes would definitely not count for the record.

Sam commented, "fat free fatcakes are bad, bad, bad!"

Rose would bake the necessary fat cakes this evening, along with a few helping students.

They would then cool down over night, ready to be served unto Samantha Puckett right for breakfast.

Of course, Carly had planned quite some programme for a complete day in front of the camera.

Quite a few hours were passing by.

I needed quite some cups of coffee in order to stay awake.

Fortunately Calvin had disappeared weeks ago.

The new coffee tasted a whole lot better.

Spencer Shay had already considered building a sculpture of a room sized coffee cup, filled with his favourite brand of coffee.

But this project had to be postponed until further notice.

Also, Stacey Dillsen kept me awake by means of tickling my nose holes with cotton swabs.

Only a few kids had actually been able to stay awake all night long.

Most of them hit the hay just a bit after midnight.

Carly and Sam tried to stay awake by diving their heads into a fish tank filled with ice water.

Michael needed to be shouted awake by Sam, over and over again.

Dawn was near.

Many students wanted to get awakened for Sam's big hour.

Some of the toughest students assigned themselves in order to spread the very word.

I told them to be careful to not wake up those willing to stay asleep.

Alas, the inevitable cheering noises during Sam's attempt and after its completion, either for joy or for disappointment, would potentially get the whole campus to shake and shiver like after a shout by Gustavo Rocque at the top of his lungs, or any other eartquake like event.

Some voluntary students were about to carry the first load of fresh fat cakes into Carly's and Sam's dormitory room.

Rosemary Pepper had fallen asleep after having made all those cakes.

It was now time for the night shift, under the lead of custodian Robert Gordon, to clean up after the mess.

There was some limited time for eating the fat cakes.

Marlyn Raymour readied the chronometre. She was also about counting the fat cakes.

They had to be weighed and measured as well in order to prove their compliance with the rules for the attempted record.

Mr. Sweeny was a bit worried. "Cakes may assume or lose moisture over night. They were measured after baking. But now they may have a different mass."

Fortunately, the control team did not see a reason for objecting.

The hour of truth was now here for Sam.

Marlyn Raymour started the clock.

sam started stuffing the cakes down her throat.

Carly told her to be more careful and refrain from started too fast.

We had our breakfast as well.

But it did not consist exactly of fat cakes.

Fredward Benson inserted the number of fat cakes left to eat into the right corner of the screen.

The same was valid for the time left for Sam.

The suspense increased.

Sam did not show any signs of decreasing hunger.

The last ten fat cakes appeared on the counter.

Many kids on the campus squealed insanely.

This was especially the case for Nicole Bristow and Stacey Dillsen.

The level of noise was high.

Dustin Brooks jumped up and down. "Go, Sam!"

Finally, the counter dropped to zero.

Rosemary Pepper had made a few cakes more than needed, just in case.

But those disappeared in Sam's gaping maw, anyways.

She wanted more.

The time had been absolutely no problem.

Finally, Sam cheered. "Sam is the winner! Sam is the winner! Mom knows her fat cakes!"

Carly Shaay bounced arpund squealing insanely.

Even Fredward showed a lot of enthusiasm. But he needed to be careful.

The other attempted record was not over.

There were still over four hours left to stand through in order to make the new record for the longest session of a web show.

And Freddie was already staggering and yawning.

The last number of the session was the presentation of a new sculpture by Spencer Shaw.

Carly called her brother into the dormitory room.

Spencer grinned. "OK! Listen!"

Dustin Brooks was pushing a sculpture into the dormitory room. He panted.

After staying awake for a whole night, he could hardly breathe anymore.

Zoey had tried to dissuade him from this last power effort. ""

Quinn Pensky had once used Dustin as a test object for studies about sleep withdrawal[[170]] .

It had not been nice.

But Dustin claimed to have grown up a lot ever since.

But was that enough?

Spencer introduced his sculpture. "It isds made of movable trash. It contains all sorts of movemeny: up and down, forth and back, inside out, outside in, left and right, rotating cloackwise, rotating counterclockwise, …"

Marilyn Raymour appeared counting the parts of the sculpture.

Then Spencer plugged his master piece into the socket and flipped the switch.

Way over one hundred movable pieces of trash required a lot of current.

Fortunately, Quinn Pensky and Melinda Crenshaw had added their universal power generator to our power supply.

Otherwise, Spencer's sculpture would have caused yet another epic power failure, just as the one at the beginning of my second year at Pacific Coast Academy.

And this would have been absolutely detrimental to the attempted record.

The rules did not allow for any break whatsoever.

Dustin could no longer resist his natural urge to fall asleep. He slipped and stumbled, right into the arms of Carly Shay.

Carly blushed. "Oops!" She decided to place Dustin carefully onto a bean bag.

In this moment, the time scheduled for the record was up.

Michael Barret had had a hard time keeping hismself awake by playing with his pair of clackers, vuz. two plastic balls tied together with some string.

Marlyn Raymour congratulated the kids for their successful attempt. And she had to announce yet another record.

Spencer's sculpture was the one with the greatest amount of movable pieces.

He would thus also appear in the book. Spencer mentioned, "Don't forget my assistant Stacey Dillsen."

A totally tired Stacey waved into the web cam, yawning like a lion.


I am Stacey Dillsen from Swampscott, Massachusetts.

My sister Suzanne works as a nurse at St. Steve's hospital in Mississippi.


Marlyn was most thoroughly annoyed by Stacey's lispand urged her to keep her mouth shut. But she was forced to put Stacey into the book as well.

Those twenty-four hours had been a lot of fun for the kids here at Pacific Coast Academy.

Unfortunately, it had not been all that much fun for Mr. Bradford …


Chapter 56. The Stench Killer


56.1. The Fattest Priest


Samantha Puckett was now some dort of a superstar at Pacific Coast Academy.

Her pictures were taken not only for the JONAS Book Of Records, but also for many journals such as Buzz[[171]] .

The latter happened to be the only thing to be read regularly and voluntarily by Lola Martinez.

But that was now some totally different issue.

The picture for JONAS was definitely the best, after all.

Sam would be shown on a picture with her idol Father Mac Curdy[[172]], the world's fattest priest.

And the topics of iCarly were more and more centred around Samantha Puckett and her endless stomach.

Inofficially, there had even been abnother record beaten by Sam.

After the record episode of the web show, some freak had remarked, "Sam had released the loudest belch, ever."

It had indeed sounded … impressive.

Alas, a shout by Gustavo Rocque was still able to top it.

Fortunately, the latter was still on tour.

Both Samantha's belch and Gustavo's shout at the same time were absolutely not bearable.

But the sound of Sam's belch did by no means hold the dimmest candle to one of its more distinguished properties, videlicet its incredible stench, well depending on her food.


56.2. Oral Stench


Fredward Benson had already counted down the seconds.

iCarly was once again online.

Carly announced today's topic. "An applause for our special guest, our favourite geek girl ever, Quinn Pensky!"

Sam triggered the fake applause.

Quinn marched in. "Hi!"

Carly grinned. "OK, Quinn, you are here in order to demonstrate yet another 'Quinnvention', ain't you?"

Quinn smiled. "oh, indeed!"

Carly nodded, "so, what is it?"

Quinn fumbed with her pockets and stsrted explaining,


OK, you know this on already.

It is a fetormetre, a device used in order to measure the intensity of malodourous stenches.

I have first used it in order to develop the neutraliser for the skunk scent.


Sam remarked, "doesn't it go over the edge in Frednub's vicinity?" She always used to drop random insults at Fredward Benson. But she did not really mean it.

Quinn shook her head. "The highest attitude, eleven on a scale from one to twelve, had not been reached by the skunk, but by oral malodour!"

Carly gasped. "Oh goodness. Really?"

Quinn nodded vigorously. "OK, I have invented some neutraliser for the skunk's stink on your clothers." She looked nervously around and started whispering, "but it can't be incorporated without causing severe liver failure."

Michael gasped even more than Carly.

Quinn nodded. "So, this should be the solution." She produced a little squirting flasj from her pockets. "The most relaiable killer of oral stench, ever, is this here. And it will be tested on Samantha Puckett."

Sam grinned. "Yeah, baby! Take that! Sam is the winner!"

Quinn explained, "Sam will eat as much rotten food as possible, eggs, fish, cheese, onions, the collected kitchen trash from Sushi Rox our cafeteria." " She thanked Kazu and Rose over the cable."

Sam smiled.

Carly continued, "Quinn has ordered some gas masks for us."

Quinn nodded. "They are from Cal, used for special jobs in chemical laboratories."

Carly explained, "we will need them in order to survive this experiment." She panted. "One mask for Freddie, one for me, one for MIchael, one for Quinn."

Sam did not need a mask in order to bear her own stink.

Kazu walked in with a container with rotting kitchen rubbish. Then he disappeared as soon as possible.

Carly lifted the cover of the briefly placed the stench detector over the giant pot. "eleven and a half of twelve points!"

Fortunately the gas masks worked very well.

And now Sam started emptying the container into her stomach.

That looked really disgusting.

The container was closed again, totally tight.

Carly decided to open the windows.

Quinn squirted Sam's open mouth with the stench defeating essence. Then she inserted the fetormetre.

The value indicated by the instrument started dropping really fast.

Quinn asked Sam to belch a bit.

Sam grinned and followed the suggestion.

Upon each violent gust from Sam's stomach, the amplitude indicated by the instrument increased a bit, but it relaxed pretty soon.

Quinn squirted Sam's mouth again.

having repeated the same procedure a few times, the magnitude dropped finally below one.

After all, Sam's mouth could be declared stench free.

Carly congratulated.

But, all of a sudden, Sam started giggling, first at a very low intensity, but then in a more and more penetrant manner.

Carly wondered, "what is so funny?"

Sam was just not able to stop it.

Quinn sighed. "It must be a side effect of my stench slayer."

And now I started talking funny stuff.

Or so it must have seemed to the onlookers.

Sam talked about her hands. "Where have my thumbs gone?"

Those were really hidden behind her other fingers.

Sam continued giggling. "I love Freddie and his ham-like butt and his square skull." She swooned deliriously.

Fredward Benson went pale. "What?" He did not want to believe it.

Carly urged Quinn to do something about Sam's state.

But Quinn was clueless.

Carly sighed, "Sam is only talking nonsense!"

Fredward nodded. "Definitely!" He stuffed his own ears. "Sam is so confused by the stench killer stuff."

Quinn sighed deeply. But she had got an idea. She feigned eating the rest of Sam's sushi.

Sam was upset. "Nobody eats my sushi! Mine!"

The insane giggling had stopped.

Most onlookers did not believe in Sam's strange confessions.

But Sam had admitted to the same thing in my office like two years ago. According to , she was really suffering from the fear of Carly getting to know about it.

Well, Carly was not really believing in Sam's words.

Fredward wasn't either.

Sam appeared to hove escaped with a black eye from the whole dramatic showdown.

Freddie was still hitting in a disgusting manner on carly. And he was not inclined to give up on her, not for Sam, and mot for any other girl.

Just a few days ago, a student named Valerie[[173]] had wanted to date Freddie.

The tech producer of the web show had agreed only quite reluctantly.

Stacey Dillsen had reacted almost violently and called Valerie a "Creddie Killer"[[174]] . She was really infuriated. And she had incited a little group of other kids to join her campaign against Valerie.

"Creddie" was a term coined by fans of the web show for a potential relationship between Carly and Freddie.

Fans succumbing to this camp — such as Stacey Dillsen — were known as "Creddiers".

Kids standing in the way of such a ship were termed "Creddie Killers" by fanatics like Stacey Dillsen.

This trench war between several camps among the fans of the show, right here on our campus, was a rising danger for the peace at Pacific Coast Academy.

I would have to be very careful.

At a boarding school like Pacific Coast Academy it could easily get out of hand. much easier than at a normnal school.

Valerie had now given up on Fredward. She had never been really honest to him, anyways, and basically just envied Carly for being a good show host amnd so popular. She had often manipulated people in a similar way.

Freddie would be pretty fast over her.

But for "Creddiers", the war had just begun.

Worse was to come.

We should have prepared this a trifle better.


Chapter 57. Harry Joiner


57.1. The Blix Van


Aforementioned software vendor Blix used to organise some promotion tour each year.

This year, our school had been chosen as one of the locations for a contest.

They had just come out with a new flavour of their soft drink, videlicet zingleberry.

Was there really such a fruit?

In any case, there was something to win.

The kids were supposed to touch the Blix van with at least one hand as long as only possible.

The last one to stand would be awarded with a trip with the Blix jet to a location of their choice.

That sounded a lot of fun.

But I did not trust this promotional practice.

The scandal involving the vendor machines had made me extremely cautious.

For me, zingleberry Blix just looked like some orange coloured slime and smelled like some sugar goo.

But it would be by no means very popular.


57.2. Spencer's Idol


Spencer Shay had got one great example to live up to.

And this was Harry Joiner[[175]], one of the most famous American pop artists ever, and the greatest to have had an exposition in Seattle.

In a few weeks, there would be a new exposition by him in Seattle.

Spencer Shay had been informed about this event by one of his invisible friends. Whatever, he was now very sad.

The event was scheduled during the regular term.

Spencer could not miss out on his classes at whim.

That was very sad.

But, according to Carly, Harry Joiner weas very often in Hollywood, like so many other artists of whatever kind. He was probably involved in the stage building business.

It just went without saying.

Thus I have decided to invite Joiner to Pacific Coast Academy for a short presentation.

Helen Baxter's contacts helped as well.

Otherwise it would have been impossible to sneak some time slice of his busy schedule.

And there we were.

Harry Joiner agreed on jumping in for a few hours.

This would make Spencer happy.

Or so it was supposed to be.


57.3. Big Disappointment


This day was supposed to become a great one for Spencer.

Of course Harry Joiner was not supposed to step in just in order to make Spencer happy. He was also up to admiring some of our art.

Not only Spencer's sculpting classes were showing up with their products.

Helen Baxter guided Harry Joiner across the campus square.

Harry wondered about the construction of the campus fountain.

Honestly, nobody here knew a thing about it.

But that did not matter all that much.

Spencer crossed their way. He stammered, "Jo … Jo … Jo …"

Harry Joiner shook hands with Spencer. "Joiner! But you may call me 'Harry'!"

Spencer sighed and explained his admiration for Joiner's works. Then he went on to presenting his own sculptures, including some orange coloured construction of yet undefined significance.

Harry walked up and down, muttering incomprehensible stuff.

Spencer was totally exciting awauting the grand master's judgement.

Finally, Joiner sighed. "OK, those works seem like a lot of diligence and efforts, but they are not really … good … or original.."

Spencer was dismayed and upset.

Then Joiner said the same words about Stacey Dillsen's cotton swab works.

Stacey started immediately weeping a rain storm worse than the one on Chase's seventeenth birthday.

Thereupon, Joiner had to leave again.

Spencer stood like petrified.

It was my worst afternoon ever on the campus.

Spencer Shay decided to give up on his career as a sculptor and to work as a janitor at Pacific Coast Academy instead.

I tried to dissuade him.

But the feeble attempt was in vain.

Stacey Dillsen had at least got her telescope and Eric Blonowitz. But she was about giving up on her cotton swabs. She kicked her own models out through her window and scattered the cotton swabs onto the pavement off the campus square.

Spencer's first task as a janitor would thus be that of cleaning the campus after Stacey.

Carly was not pleased by her brother's decision. "There must be others, people able to appreciate Spencer's works." She was probably up to using her web show in order to spread the message about Spencer's works of art.

I shrugged,

The time tables had to be rewritten after Spencer's decision.


57.4. Locked In


This was the day of the Blix van.

I preferred sitting in my office.

There were many other things to be organised.

Among many other things, I needed to find some good excuses for the whole record web show on iCarly.

Mr. Bradford was already in some excessively stinky mood of the worst possible sort.

I had definitely feared that coming.

It was already past noon.

The poor kids did not really have a lunch break.

There were some short toilet breaks, though.

The noise outside was huge.

I did not really care.

But how could Mr. Bradford tolerate this, yet get upset about Carly Shay's record web show?

Suddenly, Spencer Shay stumbled in, wearing his orange janitor's outfit, previously redesigned by Zoey Brooks. He was terribly excited.

Zoey Brooks followed him, bickering like crazy.

What had happened?

Zoey Brooks explained, "I was locked in one of the auxiliary toilets." She had apparently participated in the Blix van contest. Of course now she was excluded from the rest due to having failed to return to the van in time at the end if the toilet break.

Spenceradmitted to having freed her. He was forced to empty the tooilets after the noon break. "Gordy told me to do so."

The combination of Spencer and Gordy was for sure deadly chaotic and not to be trusted.

So, at least Zoey was now free. She sensed Logan Reese behind the perverse action. She had got son=me dispute with him over at the Bliz van. At least she had heard his grin and believed in being able to tell.

Logan was such a perverted jerk. He had probably even got a jet on his own. Why did he need to win the blix race, even at the cost of being unfair to other contestants?

Zoey had wanted too use the jet for a trip to Milan in Italy for the next fall fashion fair.

But this was now impossible.

Spencer was apparently upset. "Ms. Brooks dares to call my sculptures good."

I shuddered. "And that hurts you?"

Spencer nodded, "It does!" He explained, "She is not Harry Joiner. She does not have the competence to judge my works of art."

Zoey choked and grunted, "hey!"

I objected, "According to the judgment of Maximilian Madigan from Mad Style!, Zoey Brooks is one of the most gifted fashion designers, another form of visual arts." I reminded him of the backpacks. "And who has designed your flashy orange striped socks?"

Spencer scratched his hand. "Socko?"

His invisible friend was more of an obsession than Nicole's addiction to cute boys.

Spencer gave it up. "Really? Madigan said do? Wow!"

Zoey nodded.

Spencer sighed. "OK, your opinion does matter." But he was still sad for having been rejected by Joiner.

Zoey told him, "Joiner is probably just jealous."

Spencer looked puzzled and petrified.

Zoey explained, "Mr. Madigan had got his problems, too." She sobbed. "And their vice president for female fashion, Anmanda Cantwell, is still upset."

Spencer's jaw dropped to the floor like a concrete block.

I decided to tal some serious word to Harry Joiner.

Spencer as a janitor was tantamount to plain chaos.

Stacey was still weeping some sort of deluge. She had not been eating and sleeping in two days.

Beverly had been phoning during all that concersation. "Claire Sawyer has called me. She suggests Zoey to sue Logan Reese for locking her into the toilet. She has found seven witnesses already."

Zoey shook her head. "I'd better go with a prank."

Spencer squealed, "I was the king of pranks … as a freshman at high school."

Zoey gasped. "Wow!"

I did remember.

Spencer had gone out of his way and hurt people with his pranks.

Logan might have deserved it, after all.

But Megan Palmer or Matthew Palmer Noid were a lot better at that.

And their pranks were not harmful, just embarrrassing.


57.5. The Winner


A few hours later, the Blix war was over.

Logan Reese had actually won.

The last but one to stand had been Trina Vega.

But Logan had promised her a rôle in one of his father's next shows.

Then Trina retired, leaving victory to Logan Reese.

Now Mr. Sweeny came along. "I have analysed Zingleberry Blix, along with Ms. Crenshaw and Ms. Pensky."

I shrugged. "So what?"

Mr. Sweeny explained, "it only contains tape water from downtown Los Angeles, industrial sugar, and artificial aromatisers and pigments, definitely no fruit whatsoever."

I gasped.

Was blix harmful?

Mr. Sweeny could not tell.

But it was definitely a rip off.


57.6. Harry Joiner School


It had not taken much to talk some sense into Harry Joiner.

He finally broke down and admitted to his envy. "I did noty have that much talent until the age of thirty." He was sorry for having downed Spencer and Stacey.

Stacey would be granted a scholarship at Harry Joiner School For Professional Visual Arts, the leading academy and college for aspiring future sculptors and painters.

Harry Joiner would help Spencer completing the monument of Mr. Bradford.

And of course the times of Spencer as a janitor were over.

This was one big relief for about everyone here at Pacific Coast Academy.

Only Gordy was sad. He was noe forced to do some work.


Chapter 58. Pageant


58.1. Preparations


58.1.1. Strange Request


Logan had just served one hour of detention for the evil deed of locking Zoey Brooks into the toilets. Now he was loitering in my office with some very annoying request. "I want to organise an official beautty pageant adt Pacific Coast Academy."

I choked. "What?"

Logan repeated himself. "It is for my college folder." According to my knowledge, Logan wanted to become either a super model or just live off the inherited wealth of the Reese family. He was certainly not someone to go to any sort of school for longer than necessary.

There was possibly some reason to imagine.

His father may have announced to pay for his daily expenses after his eighteenth birthday only in the case of going to college.

This made sense.

I had not been able to talk to Malcolm Reese since his departure to Japan.

It would have been totally necessary after the incidents with Shinusha and that cell phone.

Logan explained the rules for his pageant.


I will be the only umpire.

The presentation in a bikini would be the most essential part of the contest.

The first prize is a picture on the cover of Buzz.


Of course he wanted to get noticed by the "hot girls" at Pacific Coast Academy and get "bribed" by them in one way or the other.

Malcolm Reese held some significant part of the actions of the editorial house behind that lame journal for semi-dyslexic teenagers.

This allowed Logan to promise such an award, a very attractive prize for many teenage girls, especially the more stupid ones actually reading that junk.

But the first two rules sounded sexist and selfish.

I could not let him get away with that. "You may organise ypur official Pacific Coast Academy pageanrt. But …"

Logan cheered before even listening to the concessions, anticipating the droves of girls around him.

I copntinued, "the rules will be made by Claire Sawyer, future lawyer."

Logan looked petrified.

Also, I would choose the umpires.

Inspite of being disappointed, Logan appeared to accept the restriction. He just insited in the contest bearing his name, Logan Reese PCA Pageant.

It had alsways been oour habitude to credit the main sponsors.

This was thus OK.

Logan Reese disappeared again.


58.1.2. The Umpires


Claire Sawyer had been quickly working out some rules for the pageant, conforming with the international pageant rules, or whatever.

As usual, it was a really thick rule book, nothing compared to Logan's simple rules.

Now the judges had to be chosen.

Claire suggested a board of three judges.

I wondered, "why three of them?"

Claire shrugged. "That seems a popular numbers of judges."

I sighed.

It had certainly been the case in quite a few currently popular cast shows, such as America Sings.

OK, so that was settled.

Claire also suggested to take adult women in order to make the pageant less sexist.

I could not contradict.

Helen Baxter was the absolute top choice as a judge. She had already been a perfect host for last year's Open Mike Night and the talent show.

I also thought of Rosemary Pepper.

As to the third judge, things were more difficult.

Coco would have volunteered. But she would have been an uttermost embarrassment.

I asked Beverly.

But she shook her head at the speed of light. "No way!"

Claire Sawyer also thought of Shannon the nurse.

So we decided to announce interviews for a third judge.


58.1.3. Grannie Nichols


We were now about selecting the judges.

First, Mrs. Bromwell tried out. She had been a teacher for science for quite some time. But after being replaced by Mr. Sweeny, she started teaching family science and yoga classes. Even after the departure of Chase Bartholomew Matthews to New York City, she was still permanently talking about his hair. "Chase really doesn't use any chemistry in order to curl his hair permanently?" She was way too stubborn to believe it.

This was so totally annoying.

We better moved on to the next woman.

Mrs. Burvich stood in the door. She was really auditioning for the third place in the judges' board.

That was totally creepy.

Were there no more competent women left at Pacific Coast Academy?

The last canditate was Mrs. Nichols, the grandmother of Joshuah. She had taken our basketball team to the Californian state championship.

This fact had unfortunately been totally overshadowed by the achievements of the football team.

After some long discussion, Grandma Nichols appeared to be the best choice for the third position in the group of judges.


58.2. The Contest


58.2.1. The Catwalk


Logan was definitely not pleased by the choice of umpires. But he had to accept it.

The first part of the contest was the parade of the girls along some catwalk, past the umpires.

Zoey Brooks appeared in her self designed pageant gown.

I had not expected her participation.

Initially, she had not been interested. She had designed the gowns for various participants, though.

But the prize had changed her mind.

At elementary school, a certain Katie Peckerman[[176]] had deemed her ugly.

Zoey's picture on the cover of the Buzz would certainly have sent a message home to Katie Peckerman.

Helen Baxter was the head of the committee of judges. She took notes for the sake of judging the girls.

Fredward Benson was standing near the catwalk with a cat cam, ready to zoom in on the girls. He would show the best clips in the next session of iCarly. Unfortunately, the perversely horny creep zoomed in a bit too deep into the cleavage of the passing girls. He had to get rebuked severely by Mr. Bender for doing so.

Lola was of course hell bent on making it to the cover of her one and only voluntary read. She was still upset by Zoey and had preferred to get her gown taylored by Olivary Biallo, inspite of being disgusted to the death by that "incredible dweeb".

Nicole Bristow was equally found on the catwalk. She dreamed of being seen by all the cute boys reading the Buzz.

Dana Cruz was in the race as well. She could not just leave the prize to Nicole.

Finally, even Quinn Pensky was participating. She had been provoked badly by Sarah Kyla, being called an eternal loser.

Mark del Figgalo had knitted a pageant gown for her.

It was a Hawaiian gown known as a sarong.


58.2.2. Interviews


Logan Reese had submitted many questrions to be asked to the girls.

But helen, Rose, and old Mrs. Nichols had to rule them out, all of them, for being sexist.

Why was that not really surprising?

Lola failed miserably in answering the questions.

Helen asked her about hungry children in the world.

Lola did not quite understand. "They can't buy bread? Why don't they eat cream pies, then?"

Helen choked upon hearing answers like that.

Nicole and Dana were no better.

Just their styles were completely different.

Nicole squealed in a horrible manner.

Dan grunted and roared like a lion.

Trina's answers were totally arrogant.

Quinn Pensky was now giving a scientific explanation of the causes and the consequences of tso called global warming.

Needless to say, I did not understand a word of it.

Rose, Helen, and Josh's grandma were apparently not the greatest science freaks, either.

The only one giving reasonable answers was Zoey Brooks.

That was definitely not a surprise.


58.2.3. The Talents


The last part of the pageant was a demonstration of talents.

Trina Vega was the first number. She wanted to perform some solo number of some popular musical.

As usual, her dancing style was excellent.

But her voice was definitely one of uttermost cruelty and could not even convince grandma Nichols.

Dana was the next in the queue. She had chosen to chop concrete tile blocks with her blank hands.

Even Wayne Gilbert cheered for her.

Dana's martial moves reminded him of his dream of becoming a martial artist from one of his cartoons.

But were Helen, Rose, and old Mrs. Nichols equally convinced?

Sarah Kyla was skilled in martial arts, too.

Nicole Bristow was following right after Dana.

Her greatest talent was hair cutting.

She needed a voluntary object for her demonstration. She chose Mark del Figgalo, against Quinn's will.

But finally Mark did no longer look like a dork.

Quinn had got a hard time recognising her "boyfriend". She was also the next one in the queue. She was gyrating twenty-five hoops with her hips.

That appeared very cool.

Many onlookers were totally surprised.

Zoey had gone pale. She had got so many talents, but no talent comparable to the hoop dance. She tried to sing a song written for her by Chase and Michael during their first common year at Pacific Coast Academy, videlicet Another Kind Of Girl[[177]], but her voice was even worse than that of Trina Vega.

This was one bitter disappointment.

Lola was the last girl in the queue. She performed a solo rôle from her latest movie, Kelly Cooper.

That demo of her supreme acting skills was great, justas usual.

But was that enough in order to make up for her disastrous answers in the interview section?

That was hard to tell.


58.2.4. The Decision


The judges were now returning from a break.

Helen Baxter was finally up to announcing the winner.

The other judges stood behind her.

Helen thundered, "and the winner is … Quinn Pensky!"

Quinn was totally surprised, but also ashamed. She had abandoned pageants as an elementary school girl. She panted heavily. Now she was expected to reveive the diploma from the hands of Helen Baxter. She panted heavily and walked ahead.

Helen shook her hands.

Quinn sighed. "Sorry, I can't accept the award."

Being on the cover of Buzz would have been too much of an embarrassment.

Helen looked at Rose and old Mrs. Nichols.

Quinn shrugged helplessly.

Helen nodded solemnly, "OK, the first prize goes to the second in the ranking, videlicet Stacey Dillsen!"

Stacey, the labsolutely least hot girl in Logan's view of things, squealed and cheered at the top of her lungs.

Nobody had seen that coming.


Chapter 59. Doheny At PCA


59.1. The Half A Million Dollar Car


I was strolling across the campus.

Mr. Bradford had recently expressed once more his deep disgust about the record session of iCarly.

All of a sudden, a probably quite expensive sport car jumped into my eyes like a steel spring. It was standing in front of "Brenner Hall".

Usually, cars of whatever price were not allowed to make it that far into the campus.

And I had definitely not given an exceptional pass for that car.

It wasn't exactly an emergency vehicle of the police, of the fire brigade, or of the hospital station, either.

A few steps later, the situation became more evident.

Logan Reese was sitting in the car. He was definitely someone able to afford such a car. But he did not even have a license to drive one. He pushed it on being only fifteen.

But that was a plain lie.

Logan was already sixteen. He had just failed in the written test for the drivers' license.

According to Logan Reese, the priority at street crossings depended exclusively on the price of the car and the hotness of the driver.

In addition, the purpose of the mirrors in cars, both on the inside and the outside, was, in Logan Reese's book, that of letting you amire your own perfect beauty.

It would certainly not have been a good idea in any sense of the word to grant him a driver's license.

Girls flocked around the car and its owner just like flies around bovine excrements.

Mr. Bitters was already enraged. He urged me to call Officer Vega and let him tow the car off the campus. Maybe he had just been envious.

He could definitely not afford suchg a car with the wages earned as a dormitory adviser at Pacific Coast Academy.

Of course, Logan had bought the car with his father's credit card.

The latter was apparently unlimited, or at least close to.

But was Malcolm Reese going to tolerate his son's inappropriately wasteful demeanour forever and one day?


59.2. Megan's Request


I was now back in my office.

All of a sudden, Megan Parker stood in the doorway.

I had not heard her coming.

Beverly had been totally surprised, too.

Megan giggled. "OK, ted, I have got something to get approved …"

I shrugged. I had heard the most absurd requests to get approved.

Megan asked, "I want Henry Doheny[[178]] to come to Pacific Coast Academy, with an official invitation."

Henry Doheny was an already grey haired master of the variety stage. He had already been a very big number during my young years. He had made elephants disappear from the open stage, and he had got locked and then freed himself from a spiked wine barrel rolling down a chute.

Gazillions of viewers had been amazed to no end.

But then his carrer had been at stake.

But a year ago, sort of a miracle occured.

Henry Doheny had been found dead after some performance in some small private club in downtown San Diego, perforated by several heavy spades.

This was impossible to survive.

But at his funeral, Doheny appeared again, alive and well.

Nobody had yet come to understand it.

But now Doheny had got a new multi million dollar show over in Las Vegas, the eldorado of variety show artists.

I was not opposed to inviting him to a career week or something like that.

But he was certainly too expensive.

Mr. Bradford was by no means willing to sppend an insane amount of bucks for some variety artist.

Megan Parker sighed. "That should not be much of a problem, with appropriate contacts at least." She whistled innocently. Did she know him in person? Had she been at his funeral, not unlikely for a person from San Diego?

But there was probably even more to it.

Megan gave a reason for her request.

After a broadcast from Las Vegas, Michael Barret deemed himself a great escapist, able to compete with the very Doheny.


59.3. Malcolm comes down.


As expected, Malcolm Reese had not been exactly pleased by Logan's way of abusing his credit card. He hadjust halted his limousine at the entranceof the camous of Pacific Coast Academy and was now about crossing the pavement on foot.

His face was stone cold.

His faithful butler Chauncy[[179]] followed him closely.

Was "butler" even the correct word, or was its usage restricted to certain servants of British aristicrats?

Maybe it did not even matter to Chauncy.

But their destination was definitely "148 Butler Hall", the very residence block of Malcolm's devious son Logan.

This smelled like some trouble.

I better followed them. Now I was outside Logan's dormitory room.

Malcolm and Chauncy insisted in talking to Logan in the absence of anyone else.

The door was shut.

I shrugged and walked back to the lounge.

Five minutes later, Malcolm and Chauncy were leaving again.

Logan appeared to be utterly consternated. He screamed, "Dad! Chauncy! You can't do that!" He sobbed. "I can't live without a credit card, and my boom box, and the video console, and my mirror, and …"

That was totally true.

And I knew it.

Logan had done many bad things. He had certainly deserved a few brash words.

But Malcolm Reese had gone too far.

Logan would now go totally insane.

In addition, it was to a big deal Malcolm's own fault.

I had to intervene … somehow.


59.4. Stern Words


Logan Reese was not the only spoiled rich teenager of Logan's sort.

Something similar was valid for aforementioned Mercedes Griffin, the daughter of multi billionary Art Griffin, one of the biggest business men of Los Angeles.

Ms. Collins had been teaching Mercedes alias Missy Meany for quite some time, well, over a year by now, and she had not made any good experiences.

Her stories about Mercedes rang such a bell.

Today, I had calleed Malcolm Reese and his son Logan into my office.

But Ms. Collins was about showing up as well, along with Mr. Griffin and his horribly spoiled daughter.

Chauncy just dropped his master at the door step and was about waiting outside.

Logan still made no sense of it. He was no less upset than the day before.

Malcolm Reese did not want me to waste his time. "I have got to negotiate with the guys from Russia in about …"

I panted heavily.

Typically, Malcolm Reese had never taken much time for his son. He had sent him to a boarding school, and during the vacations to his grandpa and to various other old creeps, just to get rid of him.

Beverly let now Mr. Griffin and his daughter into the office.

The situation was exactly the same here.

Mercedes had recently bought some half a million dollar jewels for her golden bracelet.

Logan gasped when noticing Mercedes. "What is the spoiled wench doing here?"

Mercedes grunted back at Logan.

The fathers, both of them multiply marries and divorced, were consternated and started bickering as well, caling each other a bad father.

This would have gotten out of control.

Beverly now called the only person able to clear such a situation, videlicet Helen Baxter.

The following fve minutes were horrible.

Then Helen broke through the door and started preaching a thunderous sermon unto the richest fathers of Hollywood.

Finally, Mr. Reese and Mr. Griffin felt abominably bad for having neglected Mercedes and Logan, respectively.

Helen growled, "in order to learn responsible management of money, the kids need to be given some proper responsibilities, first." She glared sternly at the fathers. "Let them earn their credit cards in your enterprise!"

Just leaving the kids behind with a credit card had apparently not been the way to teach them anything.

Mr. Griffin sighed deeply. "Maybe Mercedes should start managing a small part of my enterprise."

Mr. Reese replied, "no,Logan should start controlling a little sector of mine."

I panted. "They both should do so!"

Mr. Reese and Mr. Griffin could finally agree on this.

Logan shrugged. "Maybe I can invite Mercedes for some 'business talk'."

Mercedes grunted at Logan, "I don't date boys hotter than me!"

Logan growled, "Good! I don't date girls hotter than me!"

Now they started bickering about that.

I called the session over.

Malcolm and Art needed to go, anyways.

Logan and Mercedes should have left, too. But they had to cool down first.

Mercedes sighed. "OK, maybe it is more fun starting some responsible business when having someone to share your business with?"

Logan continued, "especially someone hotter than yourself, and vice versa?"

Mercedes nodded. "we should definitely give it a try."

"Absolutely!" Logan wrapped his arms tenderly around Mercedes, and they started making out.

Beverly growled, "get a room!"

I nodded solemnly.

It was so much better staying outside of a room with some young love birds in it.


59.5. The Next Doheny


Michael had challeneged Henry Doheny.

And the grand master of escapism actually showed up.

That was certainly Megan's work.

I still had not iunderstood that.

Kenneth Billiam was now tying Henry Doheny and Michael Barret with his most selected knots. "The pretzel knot … the ninja knot … French knot …"

Michael was hell bent on being faster than Doheny.

Heleln Baxter was moderating the event also broadcast in iCarly.

Then Barret and Doheny got locked into black boxes, sealed with locks.

Helen nodded. "and it goes!"

After ten minutes, Henry Doheny had freed himself.

Michael was still stuck after half an hour.

The show was now over.

But Michael was still stuck. Michael begged Jenny Billiam to untie him. He had to sing a praise for him.

Billiam just walked away without doing anything.

Even outsiode the box, we could still here Michael's desparate movement and squeals.

Finally, Samantha Puckett freed Michael from his box, blindfolded and with her toes. She was the one to deserve the title "The Next Doheny".


Chapter 60. Visitors' Day


60.1. The Preparations


The vendor machine scandal had cost Pacific Coast Academy a lot of public sympathy.

We had to try hard to make up for it.

The annual, visitors' day was one of the last occasions for fixing that.

At the same time, it was a test for me.

Mr. Bradford was finally waiting for some improvements.

But what was that event really?

Basically, potential new students and their responsible adults were given an occasion to get to know Pacific Coast Academy from the insdide. Some of them were even allowed to stay over night in one of our dormitory rooms.

Many of our current students deemed this a lot of fun.

But it was also an insane amoount of work to prepare.

I had to give a speech.

This was a rule invented by old Mr. Bradford.

But students hated endlessly long sermons by teachers and principals.

A guided tour across the campus and the most important facilities on it, such as the lounges, the dormitory halls, the gym and the sport fields, the libraries, the cafeteria and the pubs, the shops, et cetra, was of course absolutely indispensable.

Then the vistors were given the opportunity to interview some selected students.

There were three interview sessions.

One of them was for elementary school kids and their parents.

This one was going to take place in the biggest class hall of the school.

The second and the thirsd one were for middle and high school students, respectively.

Usually, the parents did not come along to these with their kids.

Csrly Shay, Fredward Benson, and Samantha Puckett were chosen in order to answer the questions of the aspiring future middle school students at Pacific Coast Academy.

Likewise, Zoey Brooks, Nicole Bristow, and Lola Martinez were chosen for the high school segment.

Actually, it was rather three days than just one, videlicet Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

On Friday, the visitors were even allowed to watch the classes.

This could be a bit annoyig.

But we better did it well.

Freddie Benson was going to take picrtures for the web show and for the new promotional DVD of Pacific Coast Academy.


60.2. The Event


60.2.1. High School Kids


I had given some boring speech for the high school kids, almost talking myself asleep.

There were not less interested kids than during the last years.

The scandal may have costed a lot of confidence.

But iCarly had apparently made up for it. It was mentioned by many kids as the reason for their wish to switch to Pacific Coast Academy.

This was essentialy the case for the elementary and middle school kids, not as much here for the high school.

I could not attend the whole interview session here, as I had to move on to the other segments.

The kids started asking questions.

One of them was worried about the relationship between boys and girls. Others wanted to know about the extracurricular activities, such as sports and the science fair. Others wondered about strange things goingon on the campus.

Ryan Laserbeam, aforementioned guy from from Mr. Jamerson's school in New Yoprk City, wanted to come precisely because of our contacts with Henry Doheny. He was an amateur illusion artist and great admirer of the


60.2.2. Middle School Kids


Fredward benson, Carly Shay, and Samantha Puckett were rigged and ready, bracing for a verbal assault by our future middle school kids.

As anticipated, most of them were fans of iCarly.

And this was not easy.

Amanda Valdez[[180]] was the first kid to ask a question. She seemed to know everything about the show and about Carly. "I am your biggest fan! I am so looking forward to hanging out with you on the campus." She growled, "we will be like the three musketeers!"

Carly, Freddie, and Sam were visibly annoyed.

Mandy kept on talking for half an hour. But she did not ask any question.

And the latter would have been the very purpose of the interview sessions.

Finally, Samantha shouted her into shutting up.

The next question was by Tyler Pearson[[181]] from San Diego, a former friend of Megan Parker. "Are pranks allowed on the campus?"

Carly remembered some pranks executed by her cousin Megan. "No way!" Then she whispered, "as long as you don't get caught ^hellip;"

Tyler smirked.

The next girl was Emilia Brandon[[182]] . She wondered about bugs and spiders at Pacific Coast Academy.

Fredward Benson squealed pathetically.

Samantha made funny remarks about Fredwards's demeanour.

The next in the queue was Morgan Eichman[[183]], the daughter of the principal of Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts. She wasnted iCarly to come to TV. "My dad makes only lame shows. He shouldl do something like iCarly instead!"

Carly felt flattered.

Maybe this sounded like a great chance.

The next kid to ask was some Sharla Hammer[[184]]. She looked really intimidating. "I am going to get you all!"

Even Sam looked intimidated.

Sharla also promised to take her class mate Stevie[[185]] along with her.

Unfortunately, I had to leave this event in oreder to prepare other parts of the visitors's day.

But one thing was sure.

The "Creddiers" were not only here at Pacific Coast Academy, but they had already infiltrated the whole country.

Some middle and elementarty school kids asked about details of the relationship between Carly Shay and Fredward Benson.

I was already totally close to calling security and get the creeps removed.

Mr. Bradford would not enjoy this, either, He was not present at visitors's day barring a few minutes on Saturday. But he would certainly here about the turmoil.


60.2.3. The Cafeteria


The interviews were finally over.

The strangest one was obviously Timothy Turner[[186]], an adult elementary school kid.

Some kids were just never growing up.

I had got no clue as for the reasons.

Lunch Lady Rose was responsible for the introduction of the kids to the cafeteria of Pacific Coast Academy.

Today, it was open for much longer than usual.

This was of course totally necessary in order to accomodate the endlessly long stream of visitors.

Rose talked a bout background informations concerning the cafeteria and Sushi Rox.

This was necessary.

Many parents were worried about the possibility of bad food.

The scandals had suggested something like that.

But Rise was totally convincing.

Her arrival at Pacific Coast Academy had increased the measures of quality control drastically.

After all, the parents appeared really convinced.

Many of the kids were impressed by the campus cinema.

Helen Baxter had improved the cinema insanely since taking over the theatre.

In the evening, some of the school's clubs were opened for visitors.

Only one club had been adamantly opposed to showing up at this event: The Illustrous Society Of The Silver Hammer.

They had got something to hide.

Or so did I take it.

Rose Pepper was finally done. She needed a break now. She had hired some more kids than usual in order to help with the extra work.

I started taking the kids over to the main library.

It was already older than Pacific Coast Academy. What purpoose had it served before that?

The school had once been a college of some sort, run by some consortium of protestant churches and reserved for white anglosaxon protestant men, before becoming a prep school for boys and stuff under the rule of Old Mr. Bradford.

I had not occupied myself too much with the history of the school. Maybe I should have done more like that. In that case,I would have been able to tell more boring stories to the potential students.

OK … somethings silence and ignorance was a bliss.


60.3. The Balance


The visitors' day appeared to have been totally successful.

During the following weeks, the school was bombarded with new requests for admission.

During the last years, girls got automatically admitted because of the hitherto underused capacities.

But this time around, there was a chance of exhausting the full frame.

Mr. Bradford might even be urged to extend the school during the next years.

In any case, this years visitor's day had contributed a lot for Mr. Bradford to calm down.

But the dragon was just asleep, and not gone.

I would still have to work hard on convincing the grumpy gravewalker.


Chapter 61. To Good Old England


61.1. Zoey's Parents


The visitors' weekend was over.

Now I was sitting alone in my office.

Beverly was in the cafeteria in order to go through the expenses and revenues of that day.

It was a bit complicated.

I should have kept Ms. Pinchbinder for that purpose.

Bear with it!

Suddenly, two people of around fourty years stood in the door. "Dean Franklin?"

I nodded. "But call me Ted, please!"

The visitors introduced themselves and Mr. and Mrs. Brooks. id est the parents of Zoey and Dustin.

I had never come to see them before.

We shook hands.

I suspired. "OK, Zoey has not yet given any reason for complaints."

For that reason, their visit surprised me a lot.

Usually, only the parents of troublemakers showed up.

The most recent example had been Malcolm Reese after Logan's continued abuse of the credit card.

smiled. "Nothing is wrong with Zoey, ain't it?"

His wife nodded solemnly. "Certainly not!" She sighed. "And likewise with Dustin."

Mr. Brooks explained, "Well, I have just been promoted to a new position in my company."

That was good.

He continued, "but my new task will be in London."

I wondered, "in England?"

Mrs. Brooks nodded solemnly. "Of course!"

There were also a city namesd London near Toronto, Canada.

Mrs. Brooks swooned in anticipation of seeing the Queen.

Of course, our school hosted quite a few children of parents living abroad.

This was no problem.

The fees for students from abroad were significantly higher.

But particularly giftwed students like Zoey and Dustin could get a partial scholarship if needed.

With the raised salary, this was obviously not much of a problem.

The problem was the following:

Dustin and Zoey often missed out on their parents.

And this would turn even worse with an ocean and a time shift of eight hours inbetween.

For that avail, Mr. and Mrs. Brooks had already been looking for a suitable prep school in Great Britain.

The school of their choice was Covington Prep, a boarding school not far form the gates of the royal metropole.

I had already heard about that schools.

Already varoious members of the royal family had been educated over there.

Zoey and Dustin would be for sure in some great company. But they would miss many friends from here.

And we would totally miss them, too.

Zoey had started studying over here since the first year of my presidency.

The school would have sunk in the swamp of mediocricity withgout her insane efforts.

I just had to remember her charismatic work in the student's parliament and the baskeball team.

Without Zoey Brooks, there would not have been pep rallies or spirit weeks.

Recently finished visitors' day would have been plain impossible without her contributions, and not just the interview session for the high school kids.

Most of the informational booths on the campus established for the sake of the visitors had been designed and organised by Zoey Brooks.

Even Mr. Bradford had been forced to acknowledge more and more the significance of Zoey Brooks. He was by now totally embarrassed by the fact of having triwed to get her expelled after the problem with his sculpture.

Granted, the blond Mary Sue would graduate in a bit more than a year anyways.

Until then, other students would be able to carry the burdens hitherto resting on Zoey's shoulders.

But as of now, I was not able to see any trace of an alternative for Zoey.

In other words, her impending departure would lead to a substantial decay of cultural life at Pacific Coast Academy.

Fortunately, Mrs. and Mr. Brooks left the decision in favour or against switching schools up to Zoey and Dustin.

But maybe Zoey definitely wanted to switch.

In that case, it would have been impossible for me to try to hold her back.

Covington's was beyond any doubt a great opportunity for each and every potential student, including Dustin and Zoey.

The decision however would have to be made very fast.

For that reason, it was necessary for Mr. and Mrs. Brooks to see Zoey and Dustin as soon as possible.

I told Beverly, now back from the cafeteria, to tell Dustin and Zoey to come into the administration office as soon as only possible.

Beverly nodded. "OK!" Then she activated the microphone in order to call Zoey and Dustin.

It would now take the kids a few minutes in order to arrive.

I started shivering.

The destiny of Pacific Coast Academy was now thoroughly at stake.

Finally, Zowey arrived.

Dustin would be a bot late.

That was not muxh of a problem.

The kids would have to decide each for themselves, anyways.

Alkas, I sensed some problem.

On the one hand, Dustin wanted to appear totally independent from his elder sister. On the other hand, he would miss her as badly as can be.

This had been the reason for the whole trouble caused by Shinusha.

Zoey hugged her parents insensate. She was as much surprised by the situation as me.

Finally, also Dustin showed up and was no less puzzled.

They wanted to know about the reason.

Zoey guessed, "a baby?"

Mr. Brooks shook his head. "No baby, right?" He looked at his wife.

She shook her head.

Then Mr. Brooks started talking about the promotion, and about Covington. "You may come with us and go to that prep school, but you don't have to. You just have to decide quickly."

The kids were a bit puzzled. They would have to think about it.


61.2. Dustin's Crush


The parents had rented a room in Hotel Chambrolay[[187]], the best hotel of Santa Monica. They were now back in there room. They had left us their number in order to communicate the kids' decision.

I had to countercheck the report of Rose and Beverly.

Dustin Brooks stood all of a sudden in the door frame.

Beverly let him in.

He appeared very excited.

I asked him, "have you come to a decision?"

Dustin nodded sadly. "I will go to England. I hate the English weatherm, the endless gales, the wallowing mist, and the annoying rain."

That was just too understandable.

I continued, "so, what do you like about England?"

Dustin stammered, "I hate the English kitchen."

That was not exactly some rare attitude, either. But it did not answer my question, quite the contrary.

Why did Dustin want to leave us?

I suspired. "What do you not like abiout Pacific Coast Academy?"

Dustin look puzzled.

I explained, "You are supposed to talk about your reason to go to London. But you only mention bad things about England."

Dustin trembled. "The girls there are maybe better except …" He almost started weeping.

I shrugged. But then I had got an idea. "Have you got an unrequuited crush at Pacific Coast Academy?"

Dustin blushed and broke into tears.

I panted heavily. "What is going on?"

Dustin stammered, "Carly Shay … she's so cool and so smart." He sobbed. "But the 'Creddiers' would kill me."

I sighed deeply. I should have seen that coming. I had already seen Dustin Brooks all fkuffy around Carly Shay.

Were the "Creddiers" such a source of violent trouble?

This would have been terrible.

Of course it was up to Carly to decide for and against Freddie.

The "Creddiers" had already been very mean to some others, such as Valerie.

But making Dustin weep and scream for excruciating, and even consider leaving this country in favour of a thoroughly deprecated one, went way too far.

I was thoroughly confused.


61.3. Zoey's Decision


I called Zoey Brooks into my office.

She had got a hard time deciding., She had talked to her friends.

All of them had apparently got quite mixed feelings.

Nicole would feel totally lost without Zoey.

But Quinn emphasised those beyond any doubt great opportunities offered by having "studied Covington" in your resume.

This was of course also great for an aspiring fashion designer.

London was one of the European centres of fashion arts.

Zoey's still increasing hostility towards Lola Martinez was most likely pushing her towards leaving for good old England with her parents.

And that meants: "The nightmare of Pacific Coast Academy wasa aboit to start."

I sobbed bitterly. "Pacific Coast Academy will miss you."

At least some departure party was no absolutely in order.

It was not some arbitrary pupil leaving us.

It was the very essence of our life being flushed down the drain.

"Zoey" was derived from some Greek word for "life", wasn't it?

I started sobbing. "OK, I will prepare the transcripts." I gasped. "Do you want them by means of telefacsimile?"

Sometimes, the schools wanted them in some particular form, especially abroad.

Zoey shrugged. She had not thought about that. She had not thought about so many things.

This was totally understandable.

Everything had to be rushed.

The same was valid for the impending good bye party.

Drake Parker playing a few woeful tunes, such as Last Farewell[[188]].

Zoey smiled sadly. Then she wondered about Dustin's decision.

I told her about his fear of "Creddiers" as his reason for giving up on Carly and leaving for good.

Zoey Brooks choked. "What? They don't dare to!" She hammered her fists onto my desk.

"I still need my table!" I shrugged.

Zoey stood up. "A real Brooks does never budge." She panted heavily.


Call Dustin!

Weare going to fight.

Those "Creddiers" may dig their own tombs.

Noone may threaten Dustin and get away with it. Noone!


Those were the words to remember.

Dustin and Zoey would stay with us.

Their parents would be slightly disappointed. But they should have admired their kids for that spirit.

And I sighed for relief, wiping quit some sweat off my face.

The life force of Pacific Coast Academy was not yet going to wither away.


Chapter 62. Poor Stacey


62.1. Spring At PCA


Coastal southern California did not really have distinguished winters.

But spring time was fairly sensible, anyways.

And now it was time for a spring break.

I still remembered the appearance of the gangsters of Milo Creery at Pacific Coast Academy during the spring break of my second year at Pacific Coast Academy.

This sprinng break would be a peaceful one.

Or so I hoped.

Coco Wexler and Gordy R. were about getting their belongings together.

It was time for a camping trip with some of the kids.

More precisely, the goal of the trip was Yosemite National Park.

Michael Barret, Logan Reese, Zoey Brooks, Quinn Pensky, Lola Martinez, Nicole Bristow, and Dana Cruz were destrined that way.

Michael Barret was no longer sure, though. He was afraid of bears.

And according to Stacey Dillsen, there were wild bears in Yosemite.

But Logan did not let Michael escape. "You bit it! You bought it! And you won't let a creepy wench like Stacey Dillsen spoil your fun, now, will you?"

Michael Barret shivered. "No, certainly not!" He claimed, "we are men!"

Gordy nodded. "Manly men!"

Logan and Gordy hi-fived merrily.

The custodian explained, "OK, let us check our eequipment." He opened a big bag. "water … dry biscuits … bear stun gun … weasel stun gun …"

Michael sighed for relief.

Dustin Brooks would not come along with Zoey. He was going to visit their uncle in Louisiana.

Stacey Dillsen would be one of the last kids on the campus. She expected her parents.

They were up for a skiing trip to Aspen, Colorado.

Stacey had been totally looking forward to that occasion. She had been practising many ski moves on our campus. And of course she had made a sculpture of some downhill champion with cotton swabs and white glue.

According to the last news, Mr. and Mrs. Dillsen were expected during the evening hours.

But the camping party was now about leaving the campus with a miniature truck.

Gordy checked everything thrice, especially the absolutely weasel proof lunch boxes.


62.2. Second Day


The morning had come.

I went to the cafeteria.

There was no warm food during most days of the spring break.

I wondered, "your parents are not here?"

Stacey sighed. "Apparently not!" Alas, she had not been informed about any delay, either.

Her cellular phone was definitely OK.

Stacey sighed deeply. "I will just build another cotton swab sculpture." She was accustomed to broken appointments.

But her parents had never let her down, as of yet.

OK …one day of a delay across the whole continent was not too much.

Alas, I wondered about their travelling route.

Was it from Massachusetts to Los Angeles and then to Colorado?

A car trip from coast to cost took like two days.

This was a very rough estimate.

Certainly, many things could have happened.

But maybe it was better to fly and rent a car at Los Angeles National Airport in order to fetch Stacey and then return to the airport for a flight to Aspen, or any airport not too far away from there.

Flights to Colorado at this time of the year were a bit a flaky thing.

Two years ago, Megan Parker had almost come to experience this.

But a car trip across the rocky mountains was not necessarily a safe thing, either.

Stacey had got absolutely no clue.

Her parents had just promised to opick her up here at Pacific Coast Academy the first evening of spring break, go with her to Aspen, and return from there towards the end of the break, dropping her again at Pacific Coast Academy and then tor return to Massachusetts.

This did not make it easy to check.

It was too early to inform any of the authorities.

I aslked Stacey, "does your sister … Suzanne, I think … know anything?"

Stacey beamed. "You remember Suzanne?"

I shrugged. "Who doesn't?"

Stacey sighed deeply. "We don't really talk anymore."

Suzanne was thoroughly ashamed of Stacey's penetrant lisp.

OK, this was very sad.

But it was better to try to ask her than to stay completely in the uttermost dark.

Stacey gave me the number of Suzanne's hospital in Mississippi. She did not dare to bother her elder sister.

Thus I had to do it. I panted heavily.

It was not easy to get through to Suzanne Dillsen.

I did understand that.

Reaching a particular person at Pacific Coast Academy could sometimes be troublesome.

And a hospital's employee was easily stuck between two battles for life or death.

Only after half an hour did we reach Stacey's sister.

Suzanne was apparently not pleased by hearing from Stacey.

But was it really helpful?

Suzanne stated to know nothing about her parents' current whereabouts. She had not been at home for two years.

OK, there went another hope.

But it had to be attempted, anyways.

Stacey did not trust Suzanne there.

But there was not much to do about it.

I was also up to bothering the neighbours of the Dillsens at Swampscott, Massachusetts.

This would turn out in vain.

The Dillsens were not at home.

But that was the only sure thing by now.


62.3. The Third Day


Another night had gone by.

But no Mr. and Mrs. Dillsen had been in sight, at least not here at Pacific Coast Academy.

I dared to inform officer Vega of Los Angeles county police.

Of course they were not competent for the whole USA.

But Mr. Vega promised to check the lists of the passengers of the last flights to Los Angeles.

This would take a few hours.

And it was only a vague hope.

The Dillsens may have come by car and still be stuck out in the wilderness, somewhere between the coasts.

We just had to wait.

In the case of a recorded accident with identifiable victims, of course, we would have been informed already.

Stacey was more and more desperate by now.

Finally, officer Vega reported about the research.

There had been no Mr. Dillsen or Mrs. Dillsen in any flight to Los Angeles during the last five days, not in any officially registered airline corporation.

Officer Vega was now officially starting to file a request to the FBI in order to start a country wide search for Stacey's parents.


62.4. The Fifth Day


Two days later, there was still no trace of Stacey's parents.

There head been reports about some violent storms out in the middle west.

This would have been a trouble for both flights and car trips, of course more for the former than for the latter.

The storms were also supposed to reach the Californian sierra, including Yosemite Park.

In other words, our camping tripper were potentially in trouble.

According to Walter Nichols, the weather would be nice and calm.

But that creep was not to be trusted.

Bruce Winchill was less optimistic.

I decided to ask Mr. Greene, the new principal at Cedarwood Valley, aforementioned middle and high school between Fresno and Yosemite Park.

His reply was very doubtful.

The weather up there was not to be trusted.

Mr. Green was going to talk to the local ranger group in order to ask them to spot the camping party.


62.5. The Sixth Day


Finally, at least one of Stacey's parents was found.

They had not gone to a vacation trip with Stacey at all.

Rather, they had split up and were now with various respective friends.

Stacey was of course consternated to hear about the whole thing. And she deemed herself the cause of everything.

Her parents had often been arguing because of Stacey and her weird pronunciation. They had sent Stacey to some boarding school as far as possible in order to try to reconcile, something deemed easier in Stacey's absence than in Stacey's presence.

But the attempt had not really helped.

The whole promise with vacations in Aspen, Colorado had been nothing but a lie in order to keep Stacey from coming to Massachusetts.

This was so mean.

Stacey's father had was now hiding at Suzanne's.

And she had been denying his presence.

So, what was there left to do?

Stacey would turn eighteen at the end of the summer break.

Eric Blonowitz was at least there for her.

Thus there was no further problem.

But Stacey's current depression was too understandable.

At the same time, Gordy, Coco, and the bunch of kids were returning to Pacific Coast Academy.

They had not come very far and preferred to camp at the local lake of Cedarwood valley instead of the park.

This had to do with Michael's fear of bears.

Mr. Green found them over there and told them to return in time.

Logan appeared to be most disappoiunted and accused Michael of being a wimp.

But better safe than sorry!


Chapter 63. New Student James


63.1. A New Term


Spring break also meant the end of a term and the begin of a new one.

A few students were about leaving us.

This was for example the case for Tad Cameron.

But others were to come.

Some of them had already been spotted upon some previous visitors' days.

This was especially the case for many middle school kids.

Another new student was James Garrett. He had already been on the campus duringthe last year.[[189]]. He was a tall blond rake, now a junior here at Pacific Coast Academy, and going to fill in the gap left by Tad Cameron.

I even remembered having seen him, or a boy in his likeness, back at Ridgeway before my departure.

Was that an accident?

I tried to refrain from even thinking about that.

Many girls flocked around him like flies around bovine excrements.

That was definitely weird.

Of course Nicole Bristow squealed her lungs into oblivion upon spotting that "incredibly cute boy".

Hardly any girl refrained from swooning in the most reckless and perverted manner.

That would not turn out well.

So much was I able to tell.

Strangely, James Garrett was from Santa Fé in New Mexico. But he definitely did noy look like a guy from New Mexico, but like a plain norrthern Eyropean.

OK, things got mixed up after decades of migration.

I had to take care of other new students as well instead of just wasting my brain on that one of them.


63.2. Dormitory confusion


Coco Wexler had been a teensy bit messy from time to time.

Scratch that!

She was quite messy all the time.

The middle and elementary school girls school girls suffered most from that, especially the new ones not accustomed to her perversities.

Stevie Baskara was totally dismayed by finding stains of ravioli sauce in her room.

I sighed deeply. I had told Coco over and over to refrain from eating in the girls' dormitory rooms.

My only thing left to do was telling Gordy to clean up after his fiancé.

But this was equally hopeless.

In addition, Coco had messed up some of the assignments.

Millie Brandon had been falsely accomodated in some dormitory room for boys.

Coco had mistyped her mame as "Emilio".

The worst upset of all of the girls appeared to be Mandy Valdez. But she had kind of had it coming. She had wanted top share a dormitory room with Carly Shay and Samantha Puckett. She was an excessively stalking sort of a fan, kind of like Wendy Gellar during the worsrt time of her crush on Drake Parker.

I assumed this to go away with the increase of age.

But there was no way to be sure about it.


63.3. Dustin's Request


The next day, Dustin Brooks stood in the door frame.

I sighed deeply. "OK, Dustin, what's going on?" I panted. "Millie has now moved into the girls; dormitory room and won't show up under your covers any longer."

having to come up with excuses for Coco's perverted mistake was totally embarrassing.

Mr. Bitters had already threatened to inform Mr. Bradford and the alumni.

Dustin sighed. "OK. At least Millie made me feel safe from bugs and spiders. She is the best bug killer, ever!"

I shrugged helplessly. "So, where's the problem?"

Dustin sighed deeply. "I need a pass for working in the cafeteria."

Rose was very strict there.

Middle school kids could do so with a written permission of their parents.

Yet this was of course not easy for Dustin.

His parents were eight timezones away, and an ocean inbetween.

But there was another, more difficult proiblem.

Dustin explained,


I need to buy a webcam for my mom.

But it has to be a very simple one, not the really complicated designer edition used by Fredward Benson for the production of the iCarly web show.

This will allow me to web chat with her.

I want it as a surprise gift for her next birthday.

But by begging mom and dad for the money or the pass to work, the surprise would be spoiled terribly.

I wanted to work for Logan.

But he can't pay as much anymore since his dad's recent intervention.


Logan was now learning to earn his money and tobe more responsible with it.

The same was valid for his beloved Mercedes.

As a consequence, they could no longer hire younger kids at whim in order to do their dirt work.

Honestly said, I was glad about the latter.

Logan Reese had definitely not had any good influence of Dustin.

Zoey had complained about it over and over again.

This had been particularly evident in the case of the Japanese horror movie named Shinusha.

Unfortunately, I could not give Dustin a pass without his parents' prior written permission. "Does Zoey know about it?"

She certainly was interested in web chatting weith her mom, too. She should definitely have cared about Dustin's attempts of making money.

Dustin nodded sadle. "But She will most likely not think about web chatting with mom."

That was a bit surprising.

Thence I wondered, "why do you think so?"

Dustin answered, "she has got a new boyfriend and is only thinking about him and sending him short messages by means of her cellular phone."

I shrugged.


She does?

Ain't that cool for her?

Maybe she gets finally over the stupid dirty thing involving Chase, Lola, and Trina.


Dustin saw it a bit differently. "She will certainly forget about me and the agreed on little sibling days."

I sighed deeply.

That was of course always a looming possibility.

But Zoey would always be back on her guard in order to protect Dustin. She would not be able to act diufferently.

It was certainly not my business.

But I dared to ask Dustin, "who is Zoey's new boyfriend?"

Dustin moaned, "James Garrett."

I choked. "That was fast!"

Zoey Brooks used to be more picky and cautious.

James had just been here for a week and already been able to claim her, inspite of hundreds of girls hankering after him.

That was definitely not right.

Zoey was just disappointing me badly.

Something made me ponder:

Dustin could not get an offoicial worjk permit, He was thus urged to take up some inofficial and possibly obnoxious or illegal job.

Was that a consequence of Da Rules?

But those were maybe not just laws of Pacific Coast Academy, but local laws against child labour. They did serve apurpose. But they just tended to backfire badly.

I had to think of a way to allow Dustin to take up a job in alegal way without spoiling the surprise for his parents.


63.4. Choconuts


The day after, Lola Martinez stumbled into my office.

I coughed. "Lola?" And the I wondered, " What's up?"

Lola was sttill a bit pale in her face. "Quinn Pemnsky has tried to poison me." She deemed it a conspiracy. Lola was still in a stinky mood because of having been defeated by Quinn Pensky during the last official PCA pageant. She explained, "I saw some nuts lying in a bowl in our dormitory room. I love nuts. Thus I ate them."

I wondered, "did they taste poorly?"

Lola shook her head badly. "But after that, Quinn admitted to having licked the brown chocolate hull of the nuts. She had seen me eating them. She could have stopped me any time. But she did not. I had to vomit on site." She grunted, "and now Coco wants to force me to clean it up the brownish filth on our corridors. "

Of course this was Gordy's job.

I had to fix that.

In any case, Lola could not believe in an accident. "Quinn has definitely tried to poison me with all the germs in her saliva."

I was puzzled. I had not deemed Quinn able to do so.

She had probably not expected anyone to eat the licked nuts and was consternated when seeing Lola doing so.

But a brainless drama queen like Lola Martinez would never believe anything like that.

All of a sudden, Zoey brooks stumbkled in. She saw Lola and jumped at her throat. Fortunately, the blond Mary Sue lagged razor sharp fingernails and stiletto fangs.

But what was going on?

Zoey explained, "Lola was mean to Dustin. She told him something like 'your mom does not like to see you. And for that reason she sent you away to a boardibng school.'" She thundered, "how do you dare to say something like that against my mom!"

Lola had already been a bit pale before due to having licked Quinn's nuts.

Now the blood left her face completely.

Zoey brooks was definitely no less protective than ever before.

And poor Lola had to pay for it. She had got it somewhat coming for saying things like that to Dustin.

What to do?

I did not know.

Fortunately, Nicole Bristow stumbled in. She needed Zoey's help. But she was also angry at her former best friend forever. She would have liked to claim James Garrett for herself. But she had been too late. "OK, I need to write a cellular message to some other cute boy. But how do I do that?"

Zoey Brooks sighed deeply. She had to explain everything multiplew times unto her bimbo pal.

Lola used this break in order to sneak away. She could not deny having nailed her eyes to James Garrett.

The new rake meant nothing good at all for oour school.

Or so it seemed.

According to rumours, Quinn Pensky would soon prove her innocence to Lola and relax the situation.

But the problems between Lola and Zoey were of a totally different league by now.


63.5. A New Webcam


Wayne Gilbert was able to assemble a suitable web cam from trash and sell it to Dustin for some low prize.

Also Zoey promised to pay half of it, inspite of being totally disgusted by Wayne Gilbert.

This way, Dustin did no longer need to request a work permit.

But the dilemma was still there for future reference.


Chapter 64. Mile For Mile


64.1. Charity Walkathon


This year, our school had been chosen for the annual charity walkathon.

The charity org had been run by one Carmine.

Strangely, "Uncle Carmine" was Samantha Puckett's generic name for former henchmen of her father.

This was an accident, wasn't it?

But what exactly was a charity walkathon?

It was similar to a marathon.

Pupils had to walk or run as far as only possible possible.

I had n ot chosen to host that event.

Once more, it was one down to one of Mr. Bradford's old contacts.

My experience told me not to trust them.

OK, that was a different topic altogether.

The particular feature of the charity walkathon was that of donations.

Pupils could choose a particiant and fix a certain amount of money to donate per accomplished mile of that athlete.

And the athletes were pupils of Pacific Coast Academy.

Those were organised in teams of two.

Zoey Brooks and her brother Dustin formed one team for the walkathon.

That was part and parcel of aforementioned "little sibling day".

For the very same reason, Vince and Ashley Blake, Drake and Megan Parker, Tracey and Sandy Baldwin, and finally also Spencer and Carly Shay formed teams.

Of course they had to practice a lot.

Spencer Shay, formerly a great swimmer and diver, had tirned a little bit lazy. He tyried to find some poor excuses for not havin g to participate with Carly.

But everything was in vain.

Carly Shay kept on pouring ice cold water into her brother's face in order to keep him on the road.

Spencer coughed and moaned a lot.

Megan Parker was in our soccer team, and certainly suited for a walkathon.

Drake was sometimes suffering from his laziness, too.

Megan had to whip him hard in order to make him keep his promises.

Tracy and Sandy appeared to operate fairly smoothly.

In the case of Ashley and vince, this was not exactly the case.

In the beginning, Ashley had probablyt supposed to get carried all the way by Vince.

But a charity walkathon was something completely different from a charity piggy back ride.

Ashley had grown significantly. She was no longer the lightweight child star of her past.

Fortunately, Vince Blake was fairly patient with his little sister.

This was not the case for all pupils on the campus.

Samantha puckett was certainly one of the least patient kids at Pacific Coast Academy. She did not want to participate in the walkathon. Thus she opened a kissing booth instead.

Was that legal?


64.2. Clackers


Michael Barret had started playing with his pair of clacker balls , just a few weeks ago.

This had already turned into some insane attitude.

His room pals, videlicet Logan Reese and James Garrett, were suffering more and more from that tootally inconsiderate demeanour.

Michael was apparently practising his destructive hobby all day and all night, for many an hour straight. He refused to name them "clackers", unlike anyone else at Pacific Coast Academy, and named them "clack clacks" instead.

His flute had already been absolutely annoying from time to time. He should have learned from supreme oboe fairy Megan Parker to learn a woodwind instrument in order to make music and not noise..

But the clackers were even an insane lot worse. They made bone and marrow vibrate like crazy.

Quinn pensky had tried five times to explain this unto Michael.

But the creep could not understand and definitely not scratch it.

Michael also still deemed himself a great pool player. Of course he could not hold the dimmest candle to Quinn Pensky. But he was at least as self confident.

That was terrible.

Now Michael sghowed up in my office. He had dragged astonished Claire Sawyer behind. "I need to challenge James Garrett in a bet."

Claire shook her head. "He's insane!" She was not far off.

Michael explained, "I will prove my pool skills in a bet with James Garrett. In the case of winning, I will claim the right to play clack clacks in my dormitory eroom at whim, all day, and all night" He commanded Claire to work on a bet contract.

I gasped.

Claire gestured wildly.

I had to agree with her judgment. "Michael Barret, this goes too far."

Michael refused to understand.

I sighed deeply. "OK, Mr. Barret, this is a permission …"

Michael did not wait for me ending the sentence and started cheering. He swang his clackers widely, almost hitting Claire's nose. Then he started kissing them over and over and talking to them.

I grunted, "a permission for Mr. Lowe tro treat you for your insane obsession with clack clack balls, at least fifty hours for the reat of the academic year."

Claire Sawyer sighed for relief.

Maybe even Dr. lowe was unable to treat him.

But this had to be tried.

Michael was dismayed. "You can't do that!" He explained, "my granbdma will freak out when hearing about me and psychotherapy. She will come and choke me to death with her mighty arms." He fell on his knees, crying, "mercy! Have you seen her arms?"

I had not seen them. But I was not up to exactly up to telling his crazy grandma.

Michael started weeping and ran away, screaming.

Claire Sawyer just shrugged.

I wiped some sweat off my head.

Claire remarked, "OK, now I am here. So I may tell you something else …"

I sighed. "Bring it on!"

Claire Sawyer explained, "the charity walkathon is illegal!"

My eyes bugged out.

Claire panted,


It is not the walkathon as such.

But you can't tell minors to donate without getting their parents' or guardians' prior written permission.

There would have to be a fair recompensation.

And this case is even worse.

The children can't know in advance about the number of miles.


I nodded solemnly.

This appeared to make sense to me.

Claire showed me the relevant passages in the books of law and in Da Rules.

I panted heavvily.

This was really a big pain in the tail.

All of a sudden, Carmine and his organisation looked fairly dangerous to me. They would most likely come and blackmail us.

But Claire Sawyer had already informed officer Vega.


64.3. Arrested


The next day, officer Vega stormed the headquarters of Carmine's organisation in order to arrest the creep.

The whole charity enterprise was indeed nothing but a really big money washer.

And my idea of associating Carmine with Samantha's generic henchman was not quite off, either.

sam had never net him before.

But this Carmine was indeed one of many old pals of her father.


64.4. The race is on.


The kids had trained so hard for the walkathon.

Now we could not just cancel it.

Fredward Benson had activated his web camera. He was up to taking pictures of the walkathon and send them within the next episodes of iCarly.

Kazu and Rose had thus decided to promise an award for the winning teams, coupons for free desserts and soft drinks in the cafeteria and at Sushi Rox.

Helen chimed in and promised cinema tickets for the top walkers.

Today, the kids were on the road.

The race had just started. It would still last for several hours.

Mark del Figgalo and his new girlfriend, Brooke Margolyn, had to give up after half a mile.

Quinn and Mark had recently been living apart, by the way.

At first glance, Quinn had thought about changing her looks, making herself look like her cousin Camille and becoming a total koke figure. But this had not worked.

But Mark del Figgalo loved Brooke Margolyn for her hobbies, videlicet knitting and collection strange stones,and not for her looks.

OK, that was one totally different topic.

Spencer was still reluctant.

Carly had to pinch his smelly butt over and over again in order to keep him moving.

The mark of twelve miles meant the end for them.

The race went on and on.

Dustin and Zoey stopped after twenty miles.

Afdter several hours, the last team had to give up.

Vince Blake hit the mark of twenty-five miles.

Ashley had worked hard with him. But she had finally been out of power.

Vince had picked her up and was now carrying his peacefully sleeping little sister firmly in his strong arms.

Kazu and Rose applauded.

This meant a lot of free desserts and smoothies for Ashley and Vince.

I called Ashley's room mates in order to take care of her.

The walkathon event was thus finally over.

Mr. Bradford was still consternated and totally ashamed. He had not been aware of the illegal character of the charity walkathon. Now he refused to talk and answer Jeremiah Trottman's annoying questions.

Was that good or bad?


Chapter 65. Dinner Four Too Many


65.1. Noble Restaurant


Our students were not exactly supposed to leave the campus for dinner.

We did not have sevral pubs and a ghreat cafeteria on the campus for no good reason.

But it apparently happened and was hard to control, especially for the high school seniors and juniors.

For the insurance agreements, this was a big problems.

Students leaving the campus without prior permission and without a responsible adult were not subject to our accident insurance.

Obviously, there had to be limits to it.

Usually, our students could not afford to go out to off campus restaurants, anyways.

But there were a few exceptions.

Logan Reese had been one of them. But since his father's stern intervention, he had to justify all expenses and started learning to avoid most unnecessary expenses. Thus he preferred to go to cheaper places with his fiancé Mercedes.

But some students seem to have saved money during the summer break in order to be able to afford that.

One of those was James Garrett, or maybe Jake Crendle?

The latter was the name of a tall blond rake formerly studying at Ridgeway.

But I may have been confused.

It was now already my fourth year away from Seattle.

My memories of Ridgeway had already started fading away like ice in the tropic sunshine.

James Garrett claimed to have earned money by working for his uncle Hank[[190]] , an artisan of some sorts. Of course he had not told me at all about his intentions of using his bucks in order to invite Zoey to a dinner for two at Vaccaro's.

The latter was the most expensive restaurant of Malibu.

I did not like those horribly puffed up shops.

People probably only went there in order to boast.


65.2. Surprise News


Dusk had now fallen onto the campus of Pacific Coast Academy.

My day's work was of course officially over.

But I had to prepare the organisation of this year's prom nights.

We had got two of them, one for the seniors, and one for the juniors.

And I better started early.

But suddenly, the office phone rang.

Who had expected me to be still here at that time?

I walked over in order to pick up the phone. "ted Franklin, headmaster of Pacific Coast Academy …"

It was no other than officer Vega. He was talking very fast.

At first glance, I was only able to understand something about some of my students having raised some trouble in town. I panted heavily. Of course I had to check that. I promised to arrive as soon as possible at a place named by the officer.

And this place happened to be precisely Vaccaro's.

Officer Vega had repeated that thrice.

So I better started to believe it. I gasped for excruciating dismay.

Students causing trouble at some noble restaurants was never meaning good publicity.

Even worse, in the case of the presence of some very prominent people, this would have been totally embarrassing.

And noble restaurants used to attract very important people and representants of the high society.

The president of Mexico and the Governor of California had been dining there, just two weeks ago.

Mr. Bradford would inevitable kill everyone at Pacific Coast Academy for a mishap like causing trouble during such a dinner.

I already feared to have to pay some probation fee for the students.


65.3. Horrortrip


I halted my craft a few yards away from the entrance of Vaccaro's. I did not want to stain their noble parking site with my middle class car.

There seemed to be quite some business.

I did not have a tuxedo on me. I was thus probably denied at the front door. But I did not have to get very far.

Officer Vega was standing in front of the entrance with some very angry employee, later turning out as Maître D' Maurice;[[191]]. He kept on trying very hard to calm down that creep.

But now I wanted to know about the reason for having been called hereto.

Officer Vega recognised me.

We shook hands.

Maurice was totally impolite.

Three girls left the building.

I did recognise them.

Two of them were students at Pacific Coast Academy, videlicet Zoey Brooks and Carly Shay. They kept on discussing wildly.

The third girl was aforementioned Jennifer Mosely from James K. Polk in Santa Clarita.

They were covered and stained with remains of food, probably the result of some sort of a food battle.

What had happened?

Zoey started explaining. She stammered in an unusually timid manner.


James and I have already been dating for half a month. But we have never been alone.

So James decided to invite me to a dinner for two, here at Vaccaro's.

The evening here has started out nicely.

But all of a sudden, Carly and that girl … showed up.


Jennifer Mosely grunted, "Jennifer … I am Jennifer Mosely!"

Zoey coughed rudely.


In any case, our evening was ruined.

Both Carly and Jenifeer claimed James as his girlfriend.


Carly growled, "ex girlfriend. I don't want to see that filthy quack any longer!"

Jennifer added, "neither do I!"

I wondered, "OK, so where is James?"

Officer Vega sighed deeply. "The guy escaped without paying, probably through the window of the toilets."

Maître d' Maurice confirmed that in a very brash manner. "You owe us three hundred dollars!"

I coughed. I was not supposed to pay for the turmoil caused by our students outside the campus.

Mr. Bradford would not like to hear about that evening, though.

Jennifer's mother had already been informed by Officer Vega. She was now supposed to show up and pick up her daughter.

I still wondered, "Carly, how did you come to show up here, anyways?"

Carly explained,


Jake and I, we know us already back from Seattle. But we have become closer only during the last weeks.

Jake had already promised me to come to my web show and make some life music. And he had kept on talking about my perfect lips and my crystal like eyeballs. He had promised to take me to some special place, just not tonight.

Sam had sensed something wrong.

And according to Dustin Brooks, his sister was dating some tall blond rake named James Garrett and looking exactly like my Jake.

Sam started snooping Jake and figured his destination., videlicet Vaccaro's.

I did not want to believe it. Thus I decided to check it out and come hereto. I should have believed Sam and Freddie from the very beginning.


She sighed deeply and sobbed bitterly.

Jenifer Mosely stated, "I won't say anything without my lawyer, Claire Sawyer."

Claire and Jennifer had been friends since nursery school.

Unfortunately, Claire's competences were quite limited.

She was able to give advices, issue contracts, and forward pleas, but she did not count as a lawyer in many situations officially requiring a real lawyer.

James had apparently been somtimes at James K. Polk, too, using yet another name.

That was totally confusing.

Jennifer and James had been kind of dating, too, on and off.

Jennifer had heard about James and Zoey from Claire Sawyer. She had decided to check it out as well.

And there they were.

The encounter of James and his three girlfriends had apparently not been very pleasant, resulting in some sort of a food battle.

I decided to pay temporarily for the girls.

This would keep Vaccaro's from informing the paparazzi on top of the police.

Jeremiah Trottman was a creep.

But adult paparazzi were worse.

We disappeared as soon as possible.

There needed to be some sort of a punishment for the girls.

But James Garrett deserved something worse.

I could not decide on site.

Zoey Brooks sighed deeply.

Junior prom was no longer far away.

And Zoey needed to look for a new prom date. At least she was now no longer angry at Carly and at Moze.

The girls decided to think together about a suitable punishment for perversely reckless womaniser James.

We were now on our way back to Pacific Coast Academy.

Night had fallen …


Chapter 66. The Mean Cheaters


66.1. A Chance For ICarly?


At the visitors' day, Morgan Eichman, daughter of TV Producer Brad Eichman, also dean of Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts, had talked about the terribly colourless character of her father's TV shows and contrasted them diametrically to Carly's excessively cool web show. She had wished her father to produce iCarly as a web show.

Apparently, she had been able to talk some sense into the boneheaded principal of said school for futire Hollywood stars.

Today, we had received an ivitation for Carly, Sam, Michael, and Freddie.

I had to decide about giving them a pass for the event. In any case, I also informed Mrs. Benson and Mrs. Puckett.

The latter did not even care.

But, as expected, Marissa Benson was totally worried about the possible dangers for Fredward in those terrible TV studios.

I needed to calm her down.

That was not very funny.

Alas, I could not trust Eichman anyways.

There was something fishy.


66.2. Ping Pong


Two years ago, Kazu had started out as the adviser of our ping pong team.

Unfortunately, there were not many of them in this county.

Just as of recent, there had been a new one, though.

It was precisely that of Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts.

Kazu filed an official challenge.

Inspite of being registered, was was no such thing as a reply from over there.

Was this OK?

There were no officially scheduled league matches in ping pong, due to the low amount of participants.

Claire Sawyer showed up with the complete rules book for the Californian table tennis high school league.

According to the book, an officially registered team was obliged to accept a challenge of another team of the same section at least once a year and withing two month from the date of the official filing of the challenge.

Kazu was not happy about the lack of even a reply.

The team of Pacific Coast Academy had trained hard and was not willing to have done so for nothing.

Granted, they would be qualified automatically for the regionals, but they would lack any competition practice.

And that was absolutely no good.

It was like Zoey's destiny in last year's wrestling championships.

The boys had refused to wrestle with her.

Thus the battle against Chuck Javers would have been her first one ever, a total cold starter.

This had gone awfully awry during the last few years.


66.3. The Contract


The team of iCarly had been very excited concerning Eichman's offer.

Spencer Shay was the most interested. "I have been in the Malibu Mall and encountered a few man from TVS."

TVS was the broadcasting corporation of Brad Eichman,

Spencer reported, "I was invited into a limousine. I got served some very exotic fruits and juices." He picked a cut fruit from his pockets. "Look!"

I shrugged.

Spencer squealed, "this is a guava!"

I had never heard of that.

But Spencer had certainly not made it up.

Of course contracts could be very insane at times.

For that avail, I better checked it.

Once more, Claire Sawyer, future lawyer, was downright useful. She was going to look at the contract. She shook her had. "So many ankle traps."

I sighed deeply.

The offer had sounded so cool.

And now everything was for naught?

Carly, Freddy, Michael, and Sam would be most bitterly disappointed.

Fredward Benson had been promised to become an executive producer. He was totally happy about this and hell bent on signing the contract as fast as only possible.

But, according to the contract, he would be forced to work his way up there by performing all sorts of slave services for Brad Eichman.

Hello?

What was that supposed to mean?

Someone had to open Fredward's eyes.

Claire Sawyer was not exactly great at this.

I probably had to do that on my own.

But kids did not like to listen to adults, either.

I was so fatally reminded to the initiation week of the Society Of The Silver Hammer.

Oh, indeed, Brad Eichman had once been a member of that "illustrous" society.

As aforementioned, I had never trusted them in the first place.

So, there appeared to be a close connection.

But the real gut twister was something else.

Carly Shay was absolutely proud of her own ideas for the contents of her show.

But, according to the contract, this was not desired.

Brad Eichman was about hiring some professionals for that ourpose.

And Carly was forced to moderate each and every nonsense imposed on her by third party authors selected by Eichman.

Was this still iCarly?

I definitely did not think so.

Eichman apparently was just interested in using the name of the show and the popularity of Carly Shay in order to sneak the same old lame content across the ether.

This was definitely not the intention of his daughter Morgan, the most sincere fan of iCarly ever.

Summing it up: Carly Shay, Fredward Benson, Michael Barret, and Samantha Puckett were infinitely much better off not accepting the fraudulent offer.

This may have been abslutely shocking for the kids.

But the alternative appeared to be endless torture.


66.4. Investigation


Needless to say, the hilarious conditions of the contract offered unto Carly Shay and her gang for the production of their popular web show as a TV show had not exactly been a turbo booster for my confidence in Brad Eichman and his administration of Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts.

And this also stoked my distrust in the lame excuses of his ping pong team.

Kazu had asked me to investigate even further.

I gladly granted his request.

Rose Pinchbinder should have pinch bound the administration of said school. But she was now stuck in New York City.

According to the official registry of the Californian league for high school table tennis, the responsible adviser of their ping pong club was a certain Mr. Sikowitz.

That name definitely rang a bell with me.

Mr. Sikowitz had been occasionally visiting our school plays.

This was not very surprising.

After all, he was regularly a teacher for acting.

Now it seemed necessary to contact him.

Beverly had already initiated a phone call with Sikowitz.

His secretary requested our named.

Beverly stated, "I am calling from the ofice of Theodore Franklin, dean of the Pacific Coast Academy."

All of a sudden, the other side claimed Mr. Sikowitz absent.

But Beverly had clearly heard his voice in the background.

It was hard to confuse.

What did this tell me?

Mr. Sikowitz had most definitely avoided on purpose any contact with the representants of Pacific Coast Academy.

And this confirmed my vague assumptions.

There was something rotten in the state of Denmark, as already said by one of the greatest playwrights ever, William Shakespeare, in his fabulous Hamlet.

OK, I would have had any reason to inform the administration of the ping pong league.

They would possibly have disqualified the team of Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts.

But this would not have helped our team.


66.5. Snooping


Two days later, Megan Parker stood in my office. She always made it there without warning, inspite of locked doors and closed windows.

I had never understood that.

But this was a completely unrelated issue.

Now she started talking, "I have snuck into Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts and spied successfully on their ping pong team."

My eyes bugged out.

This had not exactly been the nicest thing to do.

But the manners of Sikowitz and his team were no better.

megan reported,


Basically, the team is just a scam.

The school grants flat compensation for the expenses of the oing pong team.

Their team just uses the money and uses it for other, completely unrelated purposes.

I have not exactly figured those, at least not by now.

As a matter of fact, they don't even know how to handle a ping pong bat.

It's ridiculous.

Strangely, they have even got a cup for the ping pong regionals in their show case.

But the award is probably a fake.


I was consternated.

Megan could not proof the fakeness of the cup.

But it sounded reasonable.

I had to talk to some of their board members.

But this was probably better a task left for Helen Baxter.


66.6. The Consequences


Helen had been talking to Edwin Begley, aforementioned Hollywood star actor.

Edwin had talked about the pressure of Mr. Eichman and his debts.

The sponsors required better publicity for the school, for example some cups in the showcase.

So, the kids of the ping pong club had basically used this situation in order to cheat on the sponsors by establishing a fake ping pong team and coming up with fake cups.

This was of course one of the worst frauds committed by students, ever.

Brad Eichman had not been really aware of this fraud.

Hollywood School Of Arts was now forced by its board to fire the culprits.

Those included Mr. Sikowitz and the student member sof the team, videlicet Robert Shapiro, Jade West, Beck Oliver, André Harris, and Caitlyn Valentine.

I would have pitied them in the case of a good reason for abusing the bucks, such as saving a sick grandma.

But nothing like that was the case.

The money had been spent in a very expensive restaurant in Hollywood, the same league as aforementioned Vaccaro.

This perverse abuse definitely deserved no sort of mercy whatsoever.

The cup was a different thing, It had not yet been examined.

I deemed it a cheap imitation.

This assumption was also shred by the board of Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts.

Nevel Papperman and Megan Parker, on the other hand, sensed some deeper mystery.


66.7. Prom Band


Harper Harris[[192]] had been scheduled as a backup gutarist for the the TV show scheduled by Eichman. He was also an alike looking cousin of aforementioned André Harris.

The cancellation of the TV show had strip[ped him of a big chance.

In order to make up for it, Harper Harris was now invited to the web show as a live music guest.

Upon his great success, Lola Martinez would also hire him and his little for the live music at our senior and junior prom.

The alternative would have been some totally creepy and perverted band su[pposed to have stolen its instruments from careless amateur musicians.


Chapter 67. Y Not Date Me Dot Com


67.1. Looking For A Pass


Zoey Brooks had been bitterly disappointed by James Garrett. And she wassensing the uttermost horror upon the thought of having to appear alone at upcoming junior prom.

This had never happened to any of her direct ancestors, as far as known.

By the way, James Garrett had not been seen on the campus since aforementioned embarrassing showdown at Vaccaro's.

Zoey deemed it an excessively bad omen. She was now desperately trying to change this in last minute. Now she stood in my office and begged for a pass in order to leave the campus right after classes.

I shuddered for disgust.

Zoey had recently caused a lot of trouble due to leaving the campus for Vaccaro's in the company of James Garrett, but without a pass.

This would usually have excluded a pass for leaving the campus for quite a few months, if not the rest of her life at Pacific Coast Academy.

Da Rules were very strict about this sort of crime.

What was the reason for her wish to leave the campus, anyways?

Zoey sighed, "I have submitted my profile to Y Not Date Me Dot Com." She panted. "You should do the same."

Nicole had followed Zoey. "Definitely! There are so many cute boys!"

I shuddered.

Since the start of the diffusion of the news about my divorce, students here had tried to get me matched.

There had also been rumours and polls.

Popular matches included Helen Baxter, Rose Pepper, Audrey Parker, Rose Pinchbinder, Opera Winfree, and on and on and on it went.

This started to get very annoying.

I did not want to know about the odds and the stakes attached to all those bets.

They were most definitely creepy and distasteful.

Jeremaiah Trottman had once made the speculations a popular segment of his PCA News.

But had declared it illegal.

This was one of the few cool things ever accomplished by the old pain in the tail.

I shook my head. "I don't think so."

Zoey sighed deeply.


OK, i have got one cool reply.

Some guy from Malibu seems very intrested.

And we agreed on a date in some coffee pub in the city.


I sighed deeply. "But you know …" I started sweating. "many internet acquaintances lead to deadly enconters."

Zoey nodded sadly.

Nicole shook her head. "Cute boys don't do anything bad." She was apparently awfully naïve.

But that was nothing new.

Zoey growled, "should I get a body gurd?"

I shrugged. "Why not?" I thought about Sarah Kyla.

But Zoey had got a different idea. "Dana Cruz may stop Chuck Javers. She may most certainly stop any other creep as well."

This assumption did apparently not lack a certain amount of plausibility.

Nicole was consternated. She still hated Dana Cruz. "What? Are you sure, Zoey? You seriously consider Dana to join you o a blind date?"

Zoey nodded solemnly.

Nicole was apparently thoroughly upset. "You can't do that!"

Zoey argued, "why not?"

Zoey growled, "Dana is a monster. She will steal your prom date!"

Zoey Brooks coughed. "Dern straight!" She panted heavily.

The I suggested Sarah Kyla.

Zoey had seen Sarah's excessively impressive performance at the pageant. But she had not known about her bodyguard license.

Nicole nodded solemnly. "But if your date is cute, you will leave him to me, won't ypou?"

Zoey glared at Nicole with disgust. "What?"

Nicole Bristow's blood left her face faster than some fleshly greased flesh of lightning. "Or maybe not …"

Finally, Zoey obtained her pass.

I would have to find a way in order to sneak this event past Mr. Bradford.

She needed to prepare for her blind date. "Our prompt for the blind date is a bouquet of yellow flowers."

I shrugged carelessly.


67.2. Spencer is shocked.


The next morning, Spencer Shay stumbled into my office, randomly setting kis own pants on fire.

Beverly extinguished the flames pretty fast, even before triggering the fire sensors improved an dupgraded by Quinn Pensky.

Spencer coughed.

I wondered, "Spencer? What are ypu doing here?"

He stammered, "am I allowed as a prom date for a student?" He was apparently pretty much confused. He sat down with his back to me, and he even fell off his chair.

I shrugged. "There are of course things illegal for you to do with minors and students." I panted. " But a prom date is not illegal. It is just weird." But I wondered, "has anyone asked you?"

Spencer sobbed. "last night, I had got a blind date, with … Zoey Brooks!"

That blind date had most probably been probably the reason for Zoey's need of a pass.

Why could they not have dated on the campus?

Oh yeah, it was a blind date.

Both Zoey and Spencer had known about each other's residence somewhere in malibu.

But they had not got any clue about the precise location.

It was really crazy, anyways.

I guessed, "you haveused Y Not Date Me Dot Com?"

Spencer sighed deeply. "Who told you?"

I grinned. "Zoey Brooks had asked me for a pass in order to go to the blind date."

Spencer sighed. "Maybe I should nopt have cheated with my age?"

I looked aghast. "You made yourselef seventeen again?"

Spencer nodded solemnly. "That's my felt age." He moaned, "hanging oout with Carly and her friends makes me feel like ten years younger, so what?"

I sighed deeply. "OK, then you have it coming."

Spencer continued, "but Zoey Brooks is really cool. She has got a perfect sense for arts, makes those extremely fanciful socks, those backpacks, those ties, et cetera. And she loves being there for her little brother." He sighed deeply. "Have you already seen her yellow socks with illumination?" He places his showelss feet onto my desk, exposing his new socks.

Why did it have to be so complicated?

Other pupils appeared to use other methods in order to get a prom date.


67.3. Date Hunters


Nicole Bristow was very busy. She kept on stalking "cite boys" all over the campus in order to ask them for a prom date. Unfortunately she had not yet been excessively successful.

Quite the contrary, most of the giorls were awfully afraid of her.

Fortunately Stacey Dillsen had already found Eric Blonowitz. She would have been a really annoying prom date hunter.

Claire Sawyer had worked on a standard prom date contract of only five hundred pages.

Zoey and Spencer appeared to be the first to sign such a thing. But did they even read it?

My step niece Miranda had actually achieved getting asked out by quarterback Vincent Blake.

Lisa Perkins was already appointed with Drake Parker.

This had made it impossible for him to perform as a band leader at the prom ball.

But aforementioned Harper Harris was probably going to replace him nicely.

Logan Reese was already steadily dating mercedes Griffin.

The latter was thus clearly his prom date of choice.

Michael would come to the prom with Wendy.

They were curious about the love between Drake Parker and Lisa Perkins.

But others did not have that much luch.

Lola Martinez had still been unable to choose the hottest boy, even after hundreds of apple bites.

According to rumours, her fellow star of Kelly Cooper videlicet Spencer Carter, nowadays a junior at Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts, was her absolutre top choice.

Lola was denying this, though.

Well, those kinds of rumours were typical in their business, and usually but unbased speculations.

But in Lola's case, there was possibly something to it.

Quinn's case appeared to be the most desperate one.


Chapter 68. Up And Down


68.1. Mystic Mountain


Three days later, Mr. Sweeny stumbled into my office. He was requesting the approval of a field trip.

I asked, "OK, whereto?"

Mr. Sweeny replied, "to Mystic Mountain[[193]] ."

I looked puzzled.

Mystic Mountain was basically one of the biggest Californian amusement parks. It hosted two giant rollercoasters, videlicet the "Demonator"[[194]] and the "Spine Twister[[195]]".

That sounded like an overkill.

But there was sort of a reason for it.

Mystic Mountain was keen on holding the record for the largest rollercoaster of the world.

With two rollercoaster, it was always possible to shut one of them down for maintenance and enlargenment in order to establish a new record while letting the other one run regularly and make the big bugs.

This strategy had already ruined several competitors.

Mr. Sweeny explained, "in my classes, I am teaching about kinetic and potential energy."

I had got a hard time remembering high school science classes.

Potential energy was not really the energy gained by eating potatoes, was it?

I scratched my head, stammering: "yeah, that sounds … interesting."

Mr. Sweeny continued, "in order todemonstrate the theory, I will let the students take a ride on a roller coaster."

I sighed. "Good for the students?"

Mr. Sweeny eplained, "the roller coaster cart has got its maximum potential energy in the highest point of the orbit. It is likewise slower up there than anywhere else."

I stammered, "makes sense … doesn't it?" So I approved of the field trip.


68.2. Acrophobia


A few hours later, Michael Barret showed up in my office. He was apparently confused and intimidated.

I wondered why.

Michael stammered, "I am afraid of roller coasters." He was one of the students in the physics classes of Mr. Sweeny. Apparently, he was by no means keen on the prospects of having to participate in the impending field trip to Mystic Mountain. "I need a pass in order to skip the field trip."

That was easy.

Dr. Lowe was already treating Michael Barret for an increasing host of obsessions and phobias.

Was there a phobia competent for roller coasters?

Maybe it was "acrophobia"?

Whatever …

It was possible to make Michael Barret miss out on the field trip because of any disease.

And Dr. Lowe would most certainly be able to find some appropriate label to stick onto Michael's attire.


68.3. Logan's Mean Deed


Unfortunately, Logan Reese had pretty soon found out about his room neighbour's bad fear. And he was recklessly perverse enough to spread the news.

Now most pupils appeared to be taunting Michael mercilessly for his evident fear.

The worst of all fun makers was Dana Cruz.

That obviously went too far.

Logan Reese most definitely deserved some appropriate punishment for his excruciating evilness.

But what to do?

A year ago, Quinn pensky had demonstrated an apparatus used in order to determine the fears of astronauts in the orbit.

Last time, the device served for emulating a cart race.

Something able to simulate both a cart race and a shuttle trip in the orbit was most likely also able to simulate a ride in a roller coaster, right?

But Quinn's innventions often backfired.

The simulator was a lot of fun as a game.

But Michael's fears were absolutely no fun.


68.4. Dauntless Millie


One day later, I was expecting Michael Barret again in my office. But this time, I was better prepared. I had talked to Mr. Lowe about Michael's huge fear of rollercoasters.

The shrink had mentioned two most important phobias.

Acrophobia was the fear of heights.

Illygnophobia was the fear of feeling dizzy.

Michael was not afraid of trains on a plain railway course.

Otherwise, siderodromophobia would have been another option.

Michael walked in.

We shook hands.

I panted. "OK, Michael this is Emilia Brandon, a sixth grader …"

Millie grinned. "Make that fifth grader!"

Michael had already seen her on the campus. "Oh, hi Millie!"

The tween waved back at him. "Hi!"

Michael had been particularly embarrassed by the existece of much younger people without fear of roller coasters.

And Emilia Brandon was one of them. She was thence generally known as "Dauntless Millie".

I explained, "Emilia will teach you in not being afraid of rollercoasters."

Michael growled,"but she does not respect me."

I looked puzzled.

Michael squealed, "nobod respects a big coward."

Millie objected, "little cowards might do so."

Michael looked aghast.

Millie continued, "OK, I am your assigned tutor for rollercoasters."

Michael gasped.

Millie continued, "don't worry about Logan, he will get his punishment."


68.5. Mirror Cabinet


Logan Reese was most addicted to his own beauty. For that avail, he was always dragging a little mirror around in order to look at himself over and over again.

Of course not only mirrors reflected people's faces.

Sometimes normal windows did do it.

And of course the surface of calm waters, such as the pools on the campus or the mighty Pacific, did help, worked almost like mirrors, at l;east to some extend.

And Logan had to pass those reflecting surfaces on and off.

This was usually connected with quite some ritual.

Logan had to admire his own reflections and swoon on and off.

Well, the roller coasters were not the only amusement facility hosted over at Mystic Mountain.

Another huge attraction was a mirror cabinet, a veritable maze.

It was already difficult to pass for normal people.

But Logan Reese would certainly be trapped in there more than anyone else for that matter.

Michael was now up to a bet. He told Logan,


I will make the rollercoaster.

But you have to make it first through the mirror cabinet.


Logan laugheed hysterically. "Hah! That is easy!" He growled perniciously, "I love mirrors!"

There was barely any doubt about that.


68.6. Hopelessly Lost


Logan Reese had entered the cabinet like six hours ago.

But there was still no sign of him.

As expected, he had totally lost himself in a relentless flood of his own mirror images.

The employees of Mystic Mountain were forced to take down the mirrors in order to free Logan from the maze. They even had to tie him and carry him away on a pillow.

His uncontrollable twitches were now worse than those of Joshuah Nichols in his best times.

pa And he kept on stammering some confused stuff.

The poor sheik would be more or less dizzy for at least one week straight. He would not be able to eat and drink without help. Otherwise, he would have inevitably felt compelled to vomit all over. But he had it coming.

Due to Logan Reese's epical inability of making it through the mirror cabinet, Michael Barret was now in turn no longer obliged to take the ride on the "Spine Twister". But he had to laugh mercilessly about Logan.

The dandy boy of Beverly Hills was now the new laughing stock of Pacific Coast Academy.

Custodian Gordy was forced to remove all reflecting surfaces from "Maxwell Hall".

The window glass on some part of the campus had to be manipulated in a way reducing the amount and the quality of reflections severely.

Only Quinn understood the principles behind it.

Something similar was valid for the pools.

That had been a lot of work.

But it was finally worth the trouble.

Alas, Logan would not change at all.

Two weeks later, Michael Barret would dare his own first ride on a roller coaster.

Next to dauntless Millie, his fears were close to zilch.

Sooner or later, Michael would also dare to take a ride on his own.

But already at this point, nobody was daring any longer to make fun of him for his fears.


Chapter 69. Mr. Takato


69.1. Prom Preparation


The seniors were now finally out of the house.

But the preparations for junior prom were keeping me definitely busy.

It was traditionally the last big event on the campus of the academic year.

Fortunately, the students were able to organise most of it themselves.

But a lot of things required still required at least my approval.

The drop site was such an examples.

There neeeded to be enough spots for visitors' cars and deliveries.

Of course, the problen was even worse of drop and pick up days, especially at the beginning and the end of the academic years.

But at junior prom nights, many kids appeared with their first own cars, often enough their biggest pride.

And their seemed to be some boasting hierarchy.

Kids were hell bent on presenting their vehicle in the best possible manner and kept fighting over the coolest spot on the parking lot.

Sometimes, we principals had to intervene here.

nother important problem was the buffet.

Rose Pepper and Kazu were essentially responsible for this.

But the stuff had to be transported from the kitchen of the cafeteria over to the prom hall, and not just once, but several times during the whole evening.

Usually, a few middle school kids were hired as helpers.

This year, a whole bunch had volunteered: Dustin Brooks, Ashley Blake, Carly Shay, Fredward Benson, Samantha Puckett, Nevel Papperman, Megan Parker, Matthew Palmer Noid, Sandy Baldwin, Robert Carmichael, and on and on and on it went.


69.2. Stick Switched


Michael Barret was still a client of Dr. Lowe.

Unfortunately, the latter was totally busy. He had tried for over two years in vain to treat Coco Wexcler for her obsessive ravioli disorder. But he hadhitherto failed as miserably as can be.

Quinn Pensky had suggested hypnotherapy.

Dr. Lowe was now trying to do that.

Unfortunately, this had absolutely no chance of passing by without obnoxious side effects of the "quinntentional" sort.

Dr. Lowe was suggesting Coco Wexler hypnotically to see every can of ravioli as an old shoe.

What was the result?

Coco Wexler was now viewing cans of ravioli as old shoes. But, in turn, she considered old shoes as cans of ravioli.

In other words, Coco Wexler was now also addicted to chewing on old shoes. She kept on creeping on the floor, trying over and over again to snarf at the feet of the unfortunate passengers and slurp its contents, videlicet the feet of the respective wayfarer.

Even her soon to be husband Gordon deemed this slightly weird.

And his absolutely pernicious obsession with the weasel was definitely not normal.

Niicole Bristow, on the other hand, was impossible to get deterred from her obsession with cute boys.

Likewise, Nicholas Webber, her dance partner at middle school dance, had never given up on his maniac obsession with cute girls.

Finally they decided to keep it among themselves.

For that reason, Nicholas Webber was now selected as Nicole's prom date.

Sam was still a big problem. But down to Dr. Lowe's perfect efforts, she was no longer perpetually aggressive. Alas, she was not unaffected by the kind of fame of being shown in The JONAS Book Of Records. She was not just prous of it, but she boasted with it mercilessly at each and ewvery imaginable occasion.

Those were just a few examples of the succerss or failure of the career of Dr, Lowe at Pacific Coast Academy.

Now we have to come back to the nutcase Michael Barret.

His first reason to get treated by Lowe was still the obsession with clackers, or, in his very own terminology, clack clack balls.

Needless to say, hypnosis had been suggested in this case as well.

But it was an epical failure.

I don't even want to talk about it.

Fortunately, James Garrett was no longer around to take offence because of the noise of the clackers.

And Logan was still annoyed by mirrors and did not even notice the sound of the periodically colliding plastic balls..

Michael's problem with the roller coaster had made it even worse.

And now some more trouble threatened to pile itself on top of the whole blatantly uncanny mess known as Michael Barret.

Like many juniors, Michael Barret was now a proud owner of a car on his own.

But his car was not really new. It was a model from my college time. More precisely, it had been used by Michael's father for over two decades, and now passed on to the son.

Its main disadvantage was the lack of an automated switching mechanism.

It was still stick switched, in the old fashioned manner of our forefathers.

Like many other kids of today, Michael had learned driving on a modern autmatically switched car.

But not all of those kids were afraid of operating a stick switch.

Alas, Michael was, and very much so. But he wanted definitely to show off his shiny antiquity upon the junior prom.

I was able to drive a stick car.

In my youth, automatical switching mechanisms had still been in development and been deemed totally uncool and unreliable, something for babies.

I definitely had not got the time to teach the whole messy thing to Michael.

Preparations of the prom were still keeping me ball and chain.

Michael had to look for another solution.


69.3. Maui


Zoey Brooks had got another problem. She wanted to go to Maui — one of the islands of Hawaii — over summer break.

Her father was a friend of one of the leading members of the management of the international Hotel chain of Chambrolay. He had organised a summer job for Zoey over there as a bay watch.

Zoey was allowed to take someone along with her.

But the choice was not easy.

Lola would have loved to spend two weeks of the summer in Hawaii, due to the many important people to be seen with.

But Zoey would have rejected her.

Lola's authorship of Chase's plot of using Trina Vega in order to make her jealous was still paramount.

In addition, Lola had to tutor her even dumber cousins Tamara Deison[[196]] and Shelby Marx[[197]] over the summer break.


69.4. Learned


A few hours later, Michael was safely riding his old car up and down the campus entrance.

What had happened?

According to Michael Barret, an elderly Japanese teacher named Mr. Takato[[198]] had instructed him within a few hours. He was said to yeach mathematics here for middle school classes.

I could not remember any such teacher.

OK, not all names of all teachers here at Pacific Coast Academy were familiar to me at any moment.

Thus I decided to look it up.

But our recent yearbooks did not mention him, neither as a teacher of mathematics nor any other subject for that matter, and neither as a teacher for middle school classes nor any other grades for that matter.

Was there something fishy?

Dr. Lowe thought of Michael Barret as hallucinationg.

But some hallucination had impossibly been able to teach Michael Barret to drive a car with a manually operated switch mechanism within just two hours.

There must have been more to it.

Kids already started making fun of Michael.

Only Wendy Gellar, his fixed prom date, was sticking unconditionally up for him.

Dr. Lowe supposed, "Mr. Barret had probably been able to operate a manual switch all the time, he had just tried to provokeour pity."

Shrinks were sometimes — or even more often — really perverted.

It was most definitely a necessary condition for their profession.

So, who or what was Mr. Takato really?


69.5. The Draft


Zoey had nopt got a clue as of whom to take along to Hawaii for her summer job.

As a last resort, some kind of lottery was deployed.

Carly Shay was going tp show pics of the event in her web show.

Zoey stood in the campus square with a medium sized cardboard box in her hands.

Onterested pupils had thrown a card with their name into a slit cut into the cover of the box.

Zoey Brooks was now rigged and ready to draw the lucky one.

Dustin was now covering her eyes with a blindfold. He was not participating due to being afraid of the hawaiian killer jellyfish. "Don't look!"

Zoey grinned.

Her eyes were now covered.

Then she fumbled with her fingers, bathing them in the lake of cards in her box.

Fredward Benson counted, "the winner will be known in five … four … three … teo …".

Zoey Brooks picked a card and held it aloft.

Dustin removed the blindfold.

Zoey Brooks panted heavily before looking at the card and announcing the name written on it to the public. "And the winner is … Trina Vega!" She wanted to congratulate the winner. Bitthen she realised, "Trina Vega? What the …" She was definitely not pleased.

But there had been no rule excluding Trina from participating.

Dustin sighed deeply. "Sorry!"

Zoey ruffled his hair playfully. "It isn't your fault!"

Dustin shrugged.

Zoey shuddered for disgust when walking up to Trina in order to render unto her the coupon necessary for the trip to Hawaii and the lodging in Hotel Chambrolay.

Trina jumped up and town, totally excited.

But of course this smelled like a bunch of troubles and turmoil on Maui.

Was there a snowball's chance in hell of a peaceful summer break for the two of them?

many of us doubted it severely.


Chapter 70. Junior Prom


This was my fourth year as the dean of Pacific Coast Academy.

Accordingly, I jhad been presiding over three junior proms already.

And the fourth of them was about to start.

Each year, I gave the same boring speach.

There was o use in going through the trouble of planning any really sophisticated and elaborate speech.

The students were definitely not willing to listen to something as boring as a principal's speech, anyways.

After slurring away my sermon, I decided to declare this year's junior prom as open. I shrugged and walked away. But I would still stay around on the campus in order to intervene when required.

And the brooding atmosphere among this year's juniors — especially when compared to previous years — made such a necessary intervention not exactly unlikely.

What was so special about this years' juniors?

The reasons were probably rooted in the switch to coeducation.

As well known, this important leap had occurred four years ago.

There had been a few girls graduating from Pacific Coast Academy already during those first two years of coeducation.

But none of them had been spending her whole high school life here at Pacific Coast Academy.

And this exactly was now about to change.

Tracy Baldwin, best female graduate of this year, had just been honoured for being the first "home grown" female Pacific Coast Academy graduate.

Mr. Bradford had been horribly reluctant in acknowledging this.

But Garth Burman had to jump in. He had never got any problems with coeducation.

OK, enough about that.

Before the time of coeducation, boys had been allowed to invite girls from outside.

This was still the case, as best seen in the case of Logan Reese and his beloved Mercedes Griffin.

But there were more and more home grown prom couples.

Likewise, some girls had invited boys from outside Pacific Coast Academy.

This had never happened before at Pacific Coast Academy.

The fairly blatant majority of boys had almost inevitably implied an almost free choice for the female students at Pacific Coast Academy.

All this was on the verge of getting buried in the past.

The rivalries between the girls had grown immensely, not just when arguing over boys.

They were no longer sticking together as during the first two years.

This was maybe a good, but also a potentially dangerous development.

In any case, a few conflicts were inevitable.

And events like a prom had got the potential of magnifying any conflicts accumulating during the preceding months.

The prom hall was now filling.

Many students had skipped my introduction on pupose. And a great deal was not up to celebrating in the prom hall, but out on the campus square.

The weather was very inviting.

Even Walter Nichols had predicted that correctly.

I was most defininitely not going to resent them in any way for that.

Logan Reese and Mercedes Griffin arrived.

Usually, Logan would have chosen a limousine.

But thye arrived in a normal car.

Logan and Mercedes wanted to become super models, and even maintain their own agency.

Their fathers were ready to loan them some funds for that avail.

But the kids would have to pay them back, dollar after dollar.

Zoey had been preasent during my speech.

But her prom date Spencer was late.

Oh well.

I would not exactly have expected him in time.

By the way, Zoey Brooks had designed the prom outfit for many of the participants, including of course her own gown and Spencer's perfectly fashionable tuxedo suit.

This was not exactly all that much of a surprise.

Spencer liked this tuxedo suit. He decided to wear it thenceforth underneath his street wear. "It's a lucky tuxedo!"

Zoey scratched her long blond hair. "Really? OK! I love your way of putting it!"

Spencer smiled and kept on dancing with Zoey.

Mark del Figgalo and Brooke Margolyn showed up with self knit clothes instead..

The middle school kids in charge with the campus were just carrying in some load of snacks and drinks.

Dustin Brooks and Ashley Blake talked a lot about their respective elder siblings. They seemed to be up to controlling them somewhat.

Nevel Papperman made a bunch of gloomful apocalyptic remarks. "They will rue it, until the impending era of dystopia!"

The band was finally also making it up to the stage.

Harper was holding tight to his guitar.

His band members followed closely.

Lola Martinez introduced them briefly to the audience.

Suddenly, Trina Vega stormed to the stage.

Lola was already sensing a whole bunch of trouble rising.

Trina Vega insisted in being the absolutely greatest talent whatsoever and thus naturally predestined for entertaining the juniors at their prom party. She was a great dancer. In restrictiung to dancing, she would not have been a disturbance, but even a good complement to the band's performance, if not a veritable reinforcement. But she also insisted in singing. "I am the hottest and most gifted future Latino rock star." She even tried to "bribe" Harper with her curves.

But singing was definitely not Trina's speciality.

Zoey sighed deeply. "And I have to share a room with her for almost two weeks … on Maui."

Spencer gasped. "No good!"

Zoey nodded sadly.

Drake Parker suffered a bit from not having to perform tonight.

Lisa Perkins did the same.

But they were also fans of Harper's music and enjoyed endlessly dancing to them. And they balked at the prospects of having to listen to Trina and her voice.

Finally, the busty Latina decided to sing and dance on the campus square instead on the stage.

For the kids in the prom hall, this appeared to be quite some sort of a relief.

But for the kids preferring to celebrate and dance out on the campus square, this was of course plain horror.

Dustin and Megan were walking across the campus square, carrying some snacks for the celebrating juniors.

Trina grabbed one corn dog off Dustin's platter, probably up to using it as a sort of a microphone.

Dustin gasped. "It's for the juniors only!"

Trina shrugged. "Hey! You're just envious for not having a girlfriend as hot as me!"

Dustin choked and finally started growling, expressing his deepest disgust.

But the party had to go on.

Michael and Wendy were busy with a slow dance.

Logan and Mercedes preferred making out in a dark corner.

But Quinn was sitting alone on the rim of the fountain, wondering why. But she was probably already thinking about her next experiments. She was now probably calling Cal on her cellular phone for the purpose of ordering new ingredients for the school's scientific laboratory.

Nicole Bristow and her beloved Nicholas Webber discussed in a bimbo like manner about Harper's cool music.

Dana and Chuck Javers stomped mercilessly on each other's foot, but these extreme sadomasochists rejoiced merrily in those kicks and always wanted more of them.

But where was Lola Martinez?

I had not spotted her in over an hour.

Lola was such a fun and thrill seeking girl. Whether alone or not, she would never have skipped a party of whatever sort.

There had to be something excruciatingly fishy.

I walked past Miranda and Vincent.

They seemed to have a lot of fun, apparently too much for the taste of sceptical Ashley Blake.

The diva would have preferred Sarah Kyla as his date.

But this was not her business.

Vince did not need his sister's approval for a date.

Suddenly, Lola Martinez stormed omto the campus square, squealing at thge top of her lungs. She was followed by aforementioned Spencer Carter.

What had heppened?

Lola held her cellular phone aloft. She must have received an obviously not so unpleasant message.

I wondered what.

Lola seemed to print out the message.

Quinn had invented a portable message printer for Lola.

z

The drama queen handed me the printed message. "Use the megaphone."

I looked puzzled. But then I saw the news. I panted. "Attentions! Attention! Your poal Lola Martinez and her … something … Spencer Carter have just been suggested for an Oscar for the male and female main rôle in Kelly Cooper, respectively!" I sighed deeply.

That was quite some news, definitely the highlight of the prom night.

The party was now about to start for real.

Only Trina Vega looked aghast. She had deemed herself more gifted than her cousin and definitely more worthy of an Oscar.

Lola's possible Oscar was like a bomb blowing away anything else currently on the mind of the students.

Harper Harris increased the volume of his band. He was now even up to letting Trina Vega sing along with him.

Trina cheered. "Yeah! I am the most irresistible."

But this did not imply perfect conditions for the next academic year.

Quite the contrary, the signs indicated some lightning storm of the kind haunting us back at the death of Chase's grandma.

And one did nort need to be Bruce Windchill in order to see this.

Even an absolute goofball in the likeness of Walter Nichols would have been able to predict the troublesome nature of the events awaiting us.


Chapter 71. Bristow's Juices


Summer break had started less than a week after junior prom.

As aforementioned, Nicole Bristow's family was a big player in the soft drink business, but not in California.

Blix was dominating the market left and right.

But Mr. Sweeny had analysed the mixtuire found in their soft drinks.

Inspite of their names, the fruit drinks sold by Blix were made of pure chemistry.

This was especially the case for the latest flavour in the long list of Blix products, videlicet appleberry blix.

But apples were no berries, were they?

I didn't really care about the latter, though.

Incidentally, the Californian department for education had recently decided to support the distribution of more healthy drinks.

This definitely excluded the products of Blix.

In other word, billions of subventions hitherto paid by the Californian tax payers for the distribution of Blix drinks were now aout being cancelled.

And this cried for a new chance for Bristow Juices.

Nicole was now not around to help with the business.

The reason was simple.

It was summer break.

Nicole was in Kansas.

I was in Seattle, but onlly for a very short time.

Last year, I had hired Doc Wheeler as a dentist for Pacific Coast Academy.

The teeth driller had arrived during the spring break, as expected.

That was nothing special.

But I had also visited Groovysmoothie.

And there I was again.

Many things had changed here.

There was especially a new waiter, or whatever, videlicet a certain Tee Bo.

I had to talk about him.

Tee Bo was just cleaning the smoothie blender.

I panted before starting to talk. But I was notreally able to open my mouth.

On the one hand, a gust of water and dirt hit my face. It came from the blender.

In order to clean it, Tee Bo had just filled some detergent into it, turned the blender on, and made it run on a low level, but without closing the cover.

The result, well, was some mess in my face.

But it had to be.

On the other hand, Tee Bo started talking, "Sir, do you want to buy a corn dog with chili?"

I gasped. "Erm, corn dogs in a smoothie pub?"

Tee Bo explained, "According to my judgment, food and drink go well together all the time, no matter what!"

I shrugged. "They do?"

Tee Bo replied, "most definitely!"

I sighed.

Tee Bo continued, "So, either buy a corn dog, or go away! Just don't waste my time!"

I moaned, "OK!" and biought some corn dog.

Tee Bo explained, "the corn dog will be ready in half an hour."

My eyes bugged out.

Then I spotted a picture of a girl nside of the blender machine.

The face appeared most definitely familiar to me. It belonged to no other than Nicole Bristow!

My conclusion was simple.

The blender machines were from Bristow Juices.

Tee Bo remarked, "some hot babe!"

I coughed. "Not my business!"

Tee Bo shrugged.

I continued, "but I do know her."

Tee Bo wondered, "you do?"

I nodded solemnly. "I am the dean of her boarding school, in California."

Tee Bo grinned. "Cool!" He appeared to be hell bent on getting to know Nicole closer. "Don't you need a smoothie bar at your capus?"

I choked.

Actually, Calvin had never been satisfactorily replaced since his demise due to his perverse action involving all the "Customer Of The Week" crap.

Rosemary Pepper had tried to employ various pupils.

But this had never worked oput very well.

A permanent coffee cart vendor, icluding smoothies, would not have hurt.

But Tee Bo gave me absolutely the creeps.

Which sane smoothioe vendor tried to force his customers into buying salty food to go with smoothies?

I stammered, "maybe? But you are sure needed here."

Tee Bo sighed. "I am not so sure." He explained, "The management of Groovy Smoothie has recently emplyed me. But it seems to be in troubles."

I coughed. "Groovy Snoothie?"

Tee Bo nodded solemnly. "The sales numbers have dropped like crazy."

I could not understand this.

The shop appeared to be chock full at certain times of the day.

But this was really just athe consequence of the summer break.

Tee Bo explained, "the pupils of Ridgeway are the backbome of our body of customers."

This had always been my impression during my times as a principal at Ridgeway.

Thus I could definitely not contradict here. Indeed, I recognised quite a few pupils again.

Tee Bo added, "but they don't seem tocome any longer after classes."

I needed to check the reason.

Fortunately, Charles Cornelius Gibson was around. He wore no shirt.

But this was his usual habit, as already mentioned before.

I decided to ask him.

Unfortunately, he was very sad and annoyed for some reason.

It was better to postpone this.

But I spotted just another student from Ridgeway, videlicet Tareen Vences[[199]] .

Tareen was totally bubbly, even more than Nicole, at least from time to time.

I greeted the teenage girl. "Hi Tareen!"

Her eyes bugged out.

We had neot encounteredduring the last four years.

She was astonished for some reason. "Mr. Franklin? You remember me?"

I had got a good memory for pupils.

A good headmaster probably needed something like that.

I nodded solemnly. "Are you still here at Ridgeway?"

Tareen sighed. "Yeah!" She sounded tortured.

I asked, "what is wrong?"

Tareen moaned, "Principal Rivers, Mr. Howard, and Ms. Briggs are just …"

I should have seen that coming.

But they had not been that evil like four years ago.

Their accumulation at the same school, however, must have implied some inferno for the students.

And I was not able to change this.

That was a bit sad.

Tareen explained, "since last winter break, we a re nolonger allowed to come here to groovysmoothie, at least not during the academic year."

I choked hard. "What?"

Was Principal Rivers really able to enforce a prohibition against visiting certainb places in the city?

Tareen moaned, "Groovy Smoothie has always been our most popular hangout."

The students often met here in order to talk about their teachers and their school, possibly plotting against them.

Mr. Rivers, Ms. Briggs, and Mr. Howard were apparently not exactly pleased by students' reunions not praising their school policy, put mildly.

And Groovie Snoothie was not the one and only blacklisted place here in downtown Seattle.

But this did not excuse in any way whatsoever the policy of the currently leading teachers of Ridgeway.

Tareen had ordered a triple strawberry smoothie with frozen custard and was ready to slurp it.

I was now up to asking Gibby about his troubles.

Gibby sighed deeply. "Shannon hates me."

I remembered vaguely one Shannon of his age. "Do you mean Shannon Mitchell?"

Gibby moaned sadly. "Yeah …"

I wondered, "why would anyone hate you?"

Gibby was close to weeping.

I ordered some extra creamy smoothie for Gibby.

Gibby tried to smile. But he failed. He tortured himself into stammering. "I am totally in love with her."

I guessed, "and she doesn't approve of it?"

Gibby grunted, "she ignores me on purpose!" He kept on weeping.

I shrugged.

Of course, nobody could force Shannon to like Gibby, or even refrain from ignoring him.

Tee Bo called me. "The corn dogs are ready!"

I better left Gibby in peace.

He must have sufffered insanely.

I stood up in order to receive the corn dogs.

Tee Bo was most obviously still interested in Nicole. "Where do I have to apply for a position as a smoothie vendor at your boarding school?"

That was an interesting question.

But Rosemary Pepper was most likely the most competent person to ask.

I gave Tee Bo her official number. "But it is summer break."

And Mrs. Pepper was only responsible during the academic year.

In other words, Tee Bo would have to wait until fall … at least. No he took the smoothie bender in order to try it. He rubbed his mouth against the picture of Nicole Bristow.

I should better not have told him at all about her.

Now chaos and turmoil were right on their way.

Of course I had not just come to Seattle in order to hang out here in Groovy Smoothie.

There were still a few other things to do and people to visit.

But those were hardly related to my job as a dean of Pacific Coast Academy.

And Seattle was not the only place for me to visit during the summer break.

I had to think about a way to cancel the contracts with Blix as fast as only possible.

Mr. Bradford had once upon a time, long before the start of my office as a dean of Pacific Coast Academy, welcomed Blix. But now — since the revelation of the contents of their drinks and the new policy of the department of education in Sacramento — he was embarrassed and feared a severe loss of confidence.

And I had to fix it once more for him.


Chapter 72. Helen Goes Hollywood


72.1. A New Dean Fore Hollywood


Weeks of the summer break went passing by.

During the last term, a big scandal at Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts had been reveiled.

More precisely, drama teacher Mr. Sikowitz and some of his pupils had been convicted of having abused the school's funds for excessively evil purposes such as dining in some snobbish restaurant.

Mr. Sikowitz and the kids had now been removed from their school.

The teacher neededto be replaced.

But also Mr. Eichman's position had been severely weakened in that process.

The board of Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts had thus decided to suspend Mr. Eichman for the time being. They were now looking for a replacement for both Sikowitz and Eichman.

And their first top canditate had not been hard to find.

It was nobody else than our Helen Baxter.

Of course she had definitely deserved to make it up to there. And she did not hesitate any moment in accepting the big chance of poassing onward to a position infinitely much more suited for a person with the unlimited capabilities in the sector of organisation and presentation of modern entertainment.

But it would be an infinitely big loss for Pacific Coast Academy, the campus cinema, and the theatre club.

But that was not everything.

Helen was only involved in inoffocial activities at Pacific Coast Academy.

The board was thus in no way urged to even try to keep her.

That was all too much understandable.

But Helen would inevitably be missed badly.

For the same reason, the board was not looking for a repolacement of any sort.

There were still two weeks left of summer break.

Thus the students of my school were not yet aware of the impending loss.


72.2. Changes


Other replacements, both of staff and of material, were definitely more urgent, and a real concern for our board.

Executive Chairman Gathe Burman was examining the necessity of an extension of the student drop site.

iCarly had raised the number of interested students.

But our drop site had not been increased since the start of coeducation.

And there was that one narrow bottle neck.

We were now to fear substantial traffic jams on student drop day.

Providing a facility for passing by that sticky spot was now paramount.

Mr. Bradford had already suggested a splitting of student drop day.

In other words, half of the students were made to arrive one day earlier, or later, than the other half.

Basically, this did not sound too bad an idea.

But how to split?

The first idea was a split according to grades.

We were not going to tell Mrs. Blake, "Ashley has to arrive one day before Vince". Or were we?

The Blakes would have to come twice.

This would be really annoying for many families with several kids at Pacific Coast Academy. And it would of course not really reduce the traffic as much as excepcted.

A split according to family names was the next solutions.

But this was excruciatingly troublesome as well.

There were a few step sibling couples with different family names, such as Parker and Nichols during the second to last year.

Also, neeighbours often dropped their kids together.

This would certainly be the case for Fredward Benson and carly Shay … just to name one example.

So, was a split according to geographical criteria the best solution?

Even here, many pitfalls were to be expected.

Some kids were in summper camps or with friends or some arbitrary other plcases far from their officially registered residence.

We kept on moving it forth and back.

There was no satisfactory way to split the day right now.

For future reference, a split was not a bad idea. But it would have to be announced before the start of summer break, giving enough room for processing requests for exceptions.

So, for this time, we would have to expect quite some serious troubles at drop day.

Now it was necessary to pass on to some impending problems with our staff.

Mr. Bitters and Ms, Burvich were on a honeymoon trip to the Bahamas.

Afterwards, they would take over some job at a different boarding school, and precisely pur partner school in France.

This implied the need for a new boarding manager and a new dormitory adviser for boys.


72.3. Good-Bye Helen


The board of Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts had just confirmed Helen Baxter as the new dean of the school.

A formal good-bye ceremony was the least thing to do in this case.

Helen Baxter stood on the edge of the campus, ready to enter her car.

The staff currently present on the campus had decided to share the costs for a little gift for the parting adviser of the drama club and director of the campus cinema.

Another car showed up.

A guy around forty exited. He was introduced by Helen as Gavin Mitchell. Accidentally, he happened to be an uncle of aforementioned Shannon. He was a bit dim witted and seamed to wear a mullet.

Helen announced, "Gavin will be responsible for the cinema in my absence."

We shook hands.

Gavin grunted, "hi!" He had been an employee of Première Theater in San Diego for quite a few years.

So, at least the ciema appeared to be in good hands.

Helen suggested, "Gavin would also be great as a dormitory adviser for the boys."

Gavin grinned.

I shrugged. "That sounds cool."

So, a replacement for Mr. Bitters had been found fairly fast.

Mrs. Burvich had got an official substitute, videlicet Mr. Conroy.

The latter was now just to be promoted intoMs. Burvich's office.

That was definitely no problem.

Of course Gavin would need some instruction inrto the office of a dormitory adviser.

But that should not have been all that much of a problem.

But was it possible to take care of the boys' dormitories and of the cinema at the same time?

Helen suggested Gavin to take turns with another former employee of Première Theater, a certain Steve Johnson[[200]] . "He is a cousin of Spencer Shay and looks very similar to the same."

I shrugged. "OK?"

She did not mention some severe disadvantage.

Steve Johnson was somewhat insane.

Custodian Gordy handed Helen the common gift from the staff members.

Helen thanked him.

Suddenly, a car raced up the coastal road leading from Malibu's centre to the entrance of our campus.

Inspite of the speed, I easily identified the approaching car as belonging to Gustavo Rocque.

The tyres were squeaking.

My ears started to burn.

The stench of hot rubber filled the air.

The car's dorrs went open.

Gustavo cried, "stop!"

This voice made the pavement tremble.

We looked consternated.

Gustavo stormed out of his car. But he was too fast for his own good. He floundered, keeled over, and slumped flat onto his belly.

Gavin and Gordy giggled.

Kelly Waynright exited the same car. She sighed deeply. "Gustavo! I told you to be more careful!"

Gustavo floundered wildly on the pavement. "Get me up!"

Kelly shrugged.

Gavin decided to help Gistavo's assistant.

It was not easy for both of them even when joining forces.

I asked, "Gustavo! What a surprise!" I had not expected him top show up before the begin of the new academic year.

Gustavo growled, "it is urgent!"

Kelly undusted her boss's pants.

Gavin introduced himself to Gustavo and Kelly.

Helen shrugged. "What is so urgent?"

Kelly sighed. She walked back to the car and picked a parce from its back seat.

The object measured like two foot.

Gustavo grabbed it rudely from his secretary's hands. Then he handed it to Helen. "For you!"

Helen shrugged. "I will put it into my car."

Gustavo wanted her to open it on site.

Helen sighed deeply. "OK!" She opened the bounding cardboard box.

Like a russian doll, there ws a smaller box inside the outer box.

And tere was yet another box inside.

And then there was yet another one.

Finally, there was a white cedarwood box with a bow on it.

I hoped it to be the innermost one, containing the real gift.

But what could it be?

The bow on the box should have suggested the answer.

Helen Baxter opened the cedarwood box.

And there they were, twobeautifully crafted rings … engagement rings!

I gasped and moaned.

Helen looked petrified. She had apparently not exactly expected this.

Gustavo fell on his knees and started begging. "Marry me, Helen!"

Helen stamered, "Gustavo? Er …"

I had not seen that coming.

Granted, the two of them had been working often enough closely together on occasions during the last three years, including in particular our Open Mike Nights.

But they had never given the expression of love birds, more of an old couple.

Gustavo was still down on his knees.

Kelly remarked, "his good pants!"

After ten minutes of silence, Helen panted heavily. Then she grunted, "I will!"


Chapter 73. New Teachers, New Students


73.1. Start Of The Year


The sun was still burning up the hills.

The jam along the streets was as terrible as expected.

We had indeed split the drop day, but on an informal base.

And most of them had decided to arrive as early as possible.

Oh well …

Mr. Conroy and the dormitory advisers had got a hard time assigning many new students.

Aforementioned Timothy Turner, a cousin of Drake Parker, was the biggest problem. He was twenty-two years old, but an eternal fifth grader. He had been from the same school as Denzel Crocker.

The latter had left us by now, though. He was the best friend of Mr. Hotchins and had left the campus screaming just a few days after the same.

Timmy Turner's situation looked like some excruciatingly tough job for Mr. Lowe.

Gavin Mitchel had decided to let Timmy live with his cousin Drake.

This sounded like the best solution.

There were also a few troubles with the accomodation of other students.

This was due to the difficulties of instructing the new dormitory advisers within just a few days.

My first encounter with Steve Johnson was little encouraging.

He shouted insanely with or without any reason.

Oh well!

There were also a few new teachers.


73.2. Takato Is Back


I was sitting in my office.

The life on the campus was already very chaotic during the very first day of the new academic year.

Suddenly, an elderly man of Japanese ethnicity slouched in. He fit perfectly Michael Barret's description of Mr. Takato.

Dr. Lowe had deemed Michael hallucinating.

OK, it may have been an accident.

The intruder introduced himself, "my name is Mr. Takato."

Was I hallucinating as well?

This was not exactly unreasonable.

I was certainly somewhat overworked. Or so I kept on feeling.

Mr. Takato introduced himself as a new teacher for mathematics, especially for the middle school classes. He was not yet listed in our official registry for teachers.

Michael had thus probably got it right.

Mr. Takato looked very exoperienced. He had probably already taught at other schools for many a year.

Beverly showed up. She had been caught in other places, such as the boarding management. But now she was here in order to sort out the new tasks.

Mr. Takato needed to be registered in the teachers' base. He rendered his vitæ unto Beverly.

The latter started typing.

For a man with such a lot of experience, this was supposed to take quite some time.

But Beverly was done very fast.

Inspite of his high age, Mr. Takato had never ever worked as a teacher before.

Hey! Was there something fishy?

I certainly assumed so.

Did Mr. Takato even have any references?

This was apparently not the case.

How had employed him anyways?

Mr. Bradford had neverchosen any one without references and diplomas.

But what was wrong?

or was it all just in my head?

I told Beverly to pinch me.

She looked aghast. "Ted? Are you …"

I sighed deeply. "Takato gives me the creeps."

Beverly nodded solemnly. "But According to Mr. Bradford, Mr. Takato is the new replacement for some of the departed teachers."

I shuddered.

There had definitely been a need for some replacement teachers.

It was so infinitely weird.


73.3. Cat And Jade


And then there were a few other new poupils.

As aforementioned, a few students had been kicked off Hoillywood School For The Professional Performance Arts due to their perversely inappropriate demeanour and abuse of the school's finances.

And precisely two of them were now new pupils at Pacific Coast Academy. Those were Caitlyn Valentine and Jadelyn West.

I gasped.

This was not a school officially reserved for perverts and abusers.

Did we have to accept them, of all the new postulants?

I sighed deeply.

Beverly had just announced their arrival.

I let them step in.

Fortunately, they were not boarding students, but living of the campus with their family.

Coco was too easy to bribe.

Well, like Samantha Puckett, even Caitlyn and Jadelyn deserved some kind of a second chance.

But this was of course not possible without further conditions.

Just as in the very case of Samantha Puckett, the new girls would be submitted to Dr. Lowe's therapy sessions.

Jade appeared to be an apparently aggressive goth girl of the most scary sort.

To the contrary, Cat was one of those annoying bimbo wenches. But she was not really attached to cute boys.

Her interests appeared a lot broader, extending to about everything cute.

In any case, they were freshmen and had to take the classes with some free place left.

Jade complained a lot. She hated almost all the classes offered here at Pacific Coast Academy.

For Cat, all classes were cute. But she preferred to stay with Jade. She also told a few even much more strange stories about her brother, luckily not a student at Pacific Coast Academy.

Fortunately, not all students expelled from Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts were now accepted at Pacific Coast Academy.

Beck Oliver, for example, was now studying at Palmwood.

The school over there was only open for young people registered at the Hollywood trades union for performance artists.

Beck Oliver was a very professional actor, with a lot of experience comparable to that of Ashley Blake.

Robert Shapiro was moved to Lakewood, the school run by aforementioned Principal Stockley.

André Harris was now learning at James K. Polk.

So, maybe those bad kids were only a danger when lumped together into the same school.

Then again, especially Jade and Cat in the same tub were most likely quite some explosive blend.


73.4. Roomies


Towards the end of last year, James Garrett had disappeared over night from Pacific Coast Academy.

This was both a good and a bad thing.

At least he was now no longer a moral danger for the female students here at Pacific Coast Academy.

On the other hand, many girls regretted his absence. They were now totally on the search for some substitute.

In other words, another rake would almost inevitably take over the rôle of James Garrett.

They were like the lernean hydra.

Two new heads would appear for each one severed.

For Logan Reese and Michael Barret, however, this implied a new room mate.

They would have loved to keep the room strictly for themselves.

But this was not always possible.

Yet they would keep on looking for excuses in order to get any new roomie outside.

On the other hand, Gavin Mitchell had just arrived with a request for a forth bed for one of the rooms of the high schoool freshmen.

His nephew Logan Mitchell had come from Minnesota upon hearing about his uncle's job at this school. Logan had heard good things about us. He was the winner of the last Minnesota State Science Fair, thus one of the greatest science geeks up there.

The good news about the life and work of Mindy Crenshaw and Quinn Pensky had totally convinced him to make it down here.

He would have stayed in his uncle's apartment.

But there was a problem.

Logan was unable to leave Minnesota without three of his best pals, videlicet Kendall Knight, Carlos Garcia, and James Diamond.

Those guys had now got a room together.

But Logan wanted to live with them.

This implied the necessity of a fourth bed.

I forwarded the funny request directly unto Custodian Gordy.

Officially, Logan was still residing at his uncle's apartment.

There had already been cases of four students having to share a dormitory room standardwise planned for three of them.

But this time, it was due to the boys' wishes, not the lack of dormitory rooms.

Kendall's little sister, elementary school kids Katie, was following him here to Pacific Coast Academy. She was said to be extremely cunning.

By the way, aforementioned Shannon Mitchell, aforementioned cousin of Logan Mitchell, had made it to Pacific Coast Academy as well. She was one of the biggest fans of iCarly, ever. She was now accomodated in the same dormitory room as Carly Shay and Samantha Puckett. She was most likely very happy about this.

Oops!

Carly Shay and Fredward Benson have asked me to speak some official words for the first episode of the new academic year.

Students hated long speeches by teachers and principals.

Thus I restricted it to a few words. "Welcome to the new academic year at Pacific Coast Academy!"


Chapter 74. Team Trials


74.1. Cheerios


Some of our teams had been really successful during the last seasons.

Unfortunately, Mr. Bradford and quite a few members of our board of sponsors always wanted more.

The middle schoo basketball team had performed very well during my fist year at Pacific Coast Academy, especially due to the spirit of Zoey Broooks.

But as a high school team, they had never been able to live up to the expectations.

Grandma Nichols had been an excellent coach.

The main problem had been the struggles between the team members.

Now it was once more the right time for trying out for the teams.

And this was not only valid for the basketball team.

The cheerleaders were the first to try out.

For two years, our cxheerio squad had only consisted of girls.

But now there was one boy willing to challenge this. That was Ryan Leslie Laserbeam, our freshman from New York City.

Sarah Kyla was now our responsible adviser for the cheerio team. She was no longer needed as Ashley's body guard.

Vince Blake had successfully gone through extra tutoring and was now rigged and ready to take better care of his little sister.

Her next job as a body guard was scheduled for next spring.

This made her available for us for the following months.

Sarah was supposed to be very stern. And she was a biyt puzzled by seeing a boy try out.

And Ryan did not even look like a typical male cheerio.

They were rare, anywways.

So, was there really such a thing as a typical male cheerio?

I doubted it in a serious manner.

In any ways, the cheerio girls, plus one boy, were now on the race track in order to try out.

Ryan Leslie Laserbeam was not only an aspiring male cheerio, he was also a great illusion artist, following the footsteps of immortal Henry Doheny. He was also a great skater and as such trying out for our skateboard team.

Indeed, Henry Doheny's visit at Pacific Coast Academy had been his greatest motivation for doing the right thing.

Kylas called the potential cheerios to the ptractice floor, one by one.

Dana Cruz was the first of them. She grinned satanically.

Cheerleading was just one of her many options.

She was still a gifted basket ball player, and a most excellent skater.

Her qualities as a wrestler were beyond any doubt among the best of the country.

But, for the first time in the history of Pacific Coast Academy, Dana Cruz was able to be both a cheerio chieftain and a football quarterback.

Of course this was not possible during the same match.

But Dana had already switched several times between cheerleading and playing in the football team during the last two seasons. She had just been second to my step niece, videlicet "Makeout Mandy", as a cheerio.

Miranda had now dropped out and wanted to start to work as a stage background dancer and Hollywood and TV commercials.

This left the leading cheerio position widely open.

Dana wanted a particular tune in order to back her olo presentation.

Drake Parker was the one to perform it : Highway To Nowhere.

This was Dana's absolute famous song.

Sarah nodded.

The music was playing.

The ribbions keptr on whirling through the air.

Sarah Kyla nodded briefly. She appeared pondering. "That's just OK."

Her voice sounded as cold as ice.

Her stern judgment made the following kids in the crew tremble.

They were accustomed getting treated like that from Gustavo Rocque.

But the latter showed his appreciation or disappreciation pretty fast.

Sarah Kyla let you wait until the very end.

The next potential cheerrio girl was Trina Vega.

Sarah Kyla had always had a hard time getting along with the self obsessed busty Latina.

This reminded me of Trina's summer break.

She had spent some time with Zoey Brooks down by the beach of Hawaii.

Zoey was still alive and pretty well, at least according to the recent reports of Coco Wexler.

In other words, the girls had not killed each other on Maui.

That was very good news.

Maybe the details did not matter and were better left unreveiled.

I preferred to refrain from torturing my head about them.

Trina was totally inspired by her week on Maui, though. She was now up to performing to Wendy's and Michael's composition Agadoo[[201]]. She stripped herself of most of her clothes, reveiling some typical hula dance outfit.

Music was now filling the aire.

Trina used hula hoops as well.

Her performance was apparently breath taking.

The chances for the following teenagers kept on sinking.

And those included Ryan Leslie Laserbeam.

The confident teenager entered the stage.

Sarah Kyla was not impressed. She treated male and female postulants alike.

Ryan preferred to impress people with his acrobatics. "I will jump backward through a burning hoop, blindfolded!"

Stacey Dillsen cheered fanatically. She had once tried out for cheerleading, but failed miserably.

Many onlookers laughed about Ryan.

But nothing could break his self conficence.

Nevel Papperman was supposed to back him up with his piano.

Well, it was the school's piano.

But Nevel was the only one playing it well. He panted heavily.

Music filled the air, nore precisely, Funiculì Funiculà by some Luigi Denza.


Addò
Lo fuoco coce
Ma se fuie
Te lassa stà
Te lassa stà

E nun
Te corre appriesso
Nun te struie
Sulo a guardà
Sulo a guardà[[202]]


Ryan flew backward through the flames, totally unscathed, and landed safely on his feet.

Applause thundered all over the campus.

Nevel completed the performance on his piano.


Iamma
Iamma
'N Coppa iamma ià
Iamma
Iamma
'N Coppa iamma ià
Funiculì
Funiculà
Funiculì
Funiculà
'N Coppa iamma ià
Funiculì
Funiculà[[203]]


Nobody, neither boy nor girl, had ever been as convincing during the solo phase of the cheerio tryouts as today Ryan Laserbeam.

Sarah Kyla commented, "we have just seen the new cheerio chieftain!"

Ryan bowed deeply to the audience.

Trina and Dana would make it into the cheerleader team as well. They took Ryan into their middle for a picture to be broadcast during the next episode of iCarly.

Freddie had taken pics of Ryan's deadly salto as well.


74.2. Hockey


Our ice hockey team had been hitherto totally lame.

The area of Los Angeles, inspite of hosting occasionally a good professional hockey team, was not traditionally associated with snow and ice.

But this was now going to change.

Our four guys from Minnesota were up to winning the regionals.

Well, this was not overly ambitious.

The rest of the schools in coastal Southern Californbioa was even worse.

But our guys from Minnesota, videlicet Kendall Knight, Logan Mitchell, Carlos Garcia, and James Diamond, had been growing up on the ice, more or less, just like all boys from that region.

Of course a team consisted of more than four players.

Thus the boys were looking for quite some reinforcements.

Inspite of not having played hockey before, Timothy Turner seemed excruciatingly confident. "I wish to be in the team!"

His wish sounded like a command of some sort.

But whom was he talking to?

I did not notice anyone next to him able to listen to his wishes, or commands for that matter..

But Coach Keller put him into the team. He did not seem to know why.

It had just happened.

That was really strange.

Melanie Puckett joined the team as the only girl. She was also a cheerio girl. But she enjoyed skating more than anything else.

Many other teams would be formed during the following days.

And Mr. Bradford expected them all to be extremely successful. Otherwise he would turn excruciatingly upset.

This was now more vallid than ever before.

Especially the basketball team would suffer from the pressure.


74.3. Skateboard


The departure of Mr. Bitters alias "The Turk" struck our skating teram very hard.

But there was already some substitute in sight.

Sarah Kyla was ready to coach the skateboarders as well.

Ryan laserbeam was now up to repeating his trick on a skateboard.

Others were more careful.

But the team would certainly be a great one even without "The Turk".


74.4. Basketball


Grandma Nichols was once more responsible for the basketball team, consisting of Logan Reese, Michael Barret, Zoey Brooks, Gene Conroy[[204]], and Simon Lawson.

They definitely wanted to win the nationals.

But already the county championships would be very hard.


Chapter 75. Chain Letter


75.1. Consuela's Revenge


Several strange things had been going on during the first time of the academic year.

Sometimes, classes had to be cancelled for hitherto unknown reasons.

Strangely, Timothy Turner was in all those classes.

According to Megan Parker, her adult little cousin was somewhat crazy.

But this did not explain zilch.

A few weeks later appeared to be some fairly calm time at Pacific Coast Academy, before homecoming and

Carly complained in my office, "Freddie refuses to forward Gibby's chain letter!"

I gasped. "We are talking about shirtless Charles Cornelius Gibson?" I needed to go sure.

Carly nodded solemnly.

I sighed deeply. "Gibby is thoroughly messed up, so …"

Carly stammered, "maybe he is …"

Gibby was quite sure messed up.

Carly kept on talking, "but this letter is subject to Consuela's pernicious revenge!"

I looked puzzled. "Consuela's pernicious revenge?"

Carly explained nervously, "the ghost of a girl haunting a bowling centre in Cleveland, or whatever."

I gaspe. "What does a bowling centre in Cleveland have to do with Gibby's letter?"

Carly squealed, "those interrupting the chain are said to suffer from some bad lack, caused by Consuela's ghost!"

I shook my head. "That makes no sense."

Carly shivered.

I glared. "What's going on?"

Carly squealed, "the hamster of a girl exploded in its wheel due to breaking the letter chain."

I shook my head.

Carly was not convinced.

Which sick brain had started such a chain letter, anyways?

Little wonder kids like Gibby got messed up more and more.


75.2. Illegal Letters


I had decided to inform our resident furture lawyer.

Claire Sawyer was consternated. "Chain letters to minors involving threats or requesting money are illegal."

I gasped.

Claire continued, "our school has to report them."

I nodded solemnly. "Are the kids here in trouble, or their upstream sources?"

Claire shook her head. "only adults forwarding chain letters to minors are on the bad side."

I better started collecting some witnesses and tell Garth Burman about it.

This executive chairman was now in my office in order to control the reports about the first weeks of the acdemic year.

I told him about the chain letter.

Burman asked, "And it has started on our campus?" He looked consternated.

Endless troubles would have been the consequence.

Mr. Bradford would have walked straight through the roof.

Fredward benson was not going to forward them.

But Gibby had already got several friends here at Pacific Coast Academy.

The chain letter was not unlikely to spread.

And we had to stop it.

Where had Gibby got the letter from, anyways?

Too bad he could not get asked straight away.

But Freddie had got a list of recipients for his chain letters.

Maybe they were familiar with some obscure starter.

The letter may have claimed to be very old.

But charlatans had probably made up the story, and possibly not that long ago.


75.3. Zoey's Decision


Zoey Brooks walked into my office.

Many seniors did soduring these days in order to get the references for the college applications stamped and sealed..

Zoey sighed deeply. She was certainly one of the best students of the year.

Mr. Sweeny had removed with plain success her last problems with science.

But she did not look very confident.

What was going on?

Zoey sighed deeply. "I have just got a letter from Mr. Maximilian Madigan from New York City."

I rememberd that fashion czar.

Zoey panted heavily. She did not dare to talk about it, and she showed me the letter.

At least it was by no means a chain letter, unlike the one bothering Fredward Benson. But it was kind of sort of about some chain, videlicet Mad Style as a chain of fashion shops and booths.

More precisely, Zoey Brooks was offered in this letter a permanent job as a designer for Mad Style, responsible in particular for the customers in Hollywood.

Needless to say, fashion labels were particularly hell bent on cooperating with the Hollywood scene.

Even according to the very Malcolm Reese, a well designed outfit for the main actors can save or doom an episode of his major shows.

Likewise, outfitting the most popular movies was tantamount to perfect publicity among the viewers of the movie.

Zoey's position would have been for those reasons one of uttermost responsibility.

Maximilian Madigan must think extremely highly of a teenager in order to offer him or her such an extraordinary position.

And Zoey Brooks was certainly not the wrong one for such a task.

Maximiliamn Madigan was apparently working towards quite some degree of rejuvenation of his enterprise.

According to Ryan Laserbeam, his friend True Jackson, a teenager as well, was now their new vice president for young fashion.

But there was one hitch.

Zoey moaned, "my parents have done everything during the last years for a potential career as a lawyer or business manager." She simply could not decide. "I would disappoint them badly." She shed a few tears and wiped them slowly off her cheeks, using Beverly's handkerchief.

during the summer break, even Trina Vega had acknowledged Zoey's absolute superiority as a fashion designer. She would have loved to present Zoey's creatoons on the professional catwalk.

Her cousin Viviana[[205]] was currently working as a model for New York's fashion scene and as a backup dancer at the Broadway.

Zoey would certainly have fit into any pre law school or business school programme.

So this was a totally tough decision.

The blond Mary Sue was simply too perfect for so many things.

And I could not simply talk to her parents, given their residence in London, with eight hours of a time shift inbetween.

Things were so much easier for the imperfect kids here.

Nicole Bristow was going to apply for a vocational college for the beauty professions. She wanted to become a mask builder at Hollywood. "I want to fix the looks of all the cute actors."

This was definitely understandable.

Quinn Pensky was going to stuudy at Caltech, just like her idol Cal during his undergraduate times.

Lola martinez was of course going to become a full time actress. She wpuld have to disappoint her parents.

Thew latter had hoped for Lola to become a teacher for Spanish and English.

But Lola's decision was by no means surprising.

So what?

Dana Cruz wanted to become a professional wrestler, like her boyfriend Chuck Javers.

There was hardly anything to stop her decision.

Michael Barret hoped for an internship at Rocque Records.

But Gustavo's criteria were stern.

This reminded me of the impending wedding of Helen and Gustavo.

They would soon be chained together for the rest of their life.

Logan Reese, on the other hand, was up to being a supermodel. He was not really a great business management guy.

Mercedes Griffin was not much different.

Counting bucks was their most demanding intellectual occupation.

But it was not hard to find a totally gifted agent for his business.

To everyone's surprise, this was an elementary school girl, videlicet Katie Knight, the little sister of agorementioned hockey creep Kendall Knight.


75.4. Juice


Claire Sawyer had not just found the illegal character of the chain letters received by Fredward Benson, but also a gap in the contracts with Blix in order to get away from their unhealthy drinks.

Now we just needed to negotiate with Bristow Juices.

Bimbo girl Nicole was of course not exactly the best person to negotiate with.

Thus we had to go a longer way.

Rose Pepper was going to lead the negotiations from our side.

But Claire Sawyer was working on a decent contract, not one of the sort signed by Dea Rivers before my deanhood at Pacific Coast Academy.

Pacific Coast Academy would be one in a long chain of Californian retailers of Bristow Juices.

Alas, there were some coinsternating news from Rose. "A certain Tee Bo from Seattle is about coming over here for a trial period, starting with next month."

This smelled like infinite chaos and turmoil.


75.5. Meaning Of Consuela


Nevel Papperman was terribly infuriated by the chain letter. He forced me to listen to some explanation.

First, "Consuela" was not a given name for Latina girls.

It was really "Consuelo". This was gramatically a male term. It was just a sloppy perversion and corruption of "Santa Maria Del Consuelo", one of many epithets for the holy virgin so close to the heart of the Latino population.

Abusing it for a fraudulent chain letter was thus decadent and uttermost blasphemy.

Nevel showed me a spot in the New Testament, more precisely a Gospel According To Matthew.

In this text, the messiah condemned a Galilean village named Caphernaum for its failure of recognising him properly.

Literally, "caphernaum" meant something like "home of the consolator".

This very curse by the Lord was the evil revenge of Consuela, the righteously earned punishment for people ignoring a divine messenger and prophet in front of their face.

And it was not related to that secular chain letter.

Was I going to believe Nevel's theory? I could not understand it. But I couldnot prove Nevel wrong, either.


Chapter 76. Samantha's Debts


76.1. Money For Nothing


Less than two weeks later, the culprit responsible for the chain letters had still not been found.

I was already sitting in my office.

Beverly walked in with the mail of the day.

It was unreasonably much.

I could never remember having received such a load of stuff on one single day. I shrugged when starting to open them.

Some of the letters appeared to contain miney.

That was a bit strange.

Since when did people send two bucks in a letter requiring stamps for one buck?

That was one of the most wasteful manners of sending money.

But we never expected cash here in the administration office, anyways.

What was I supposed top do with that? I asked Beverly to call Claire Sawyer, just for the records.

Then my secretary noticed a writing scribbled inside one of the envelopes.

The bucks were addressed to Samantha Puckett.

Now that was really crazy.

I definitely had to talk to that creep.


76.2. Paying Back


Claire Sawyer was very fast. She had immediately following:

Begging children for money over the internet without an appropriate recompensation was illegal.

And now Sam was in my office.

Sarah Kyla had been necessary to drag her in.

Samantha Puckett had tried to run away in order to escape from some thoroughly due punishment.

Sarah even had to headlock the thoroughly evil culprit.

But what were Sam's excuses?

Shhe grunted, "I won't say anything without Carly."

I sighed deeply.

This was definitely Sam's usual way to try to get away from anything.

I let Beverly call for Carly Shay as well.

We needed to weait for several minutes.

But Carly was finally showing up. "Aw Sam, I so knew it." She was thoroughly accustomed to getting called out of her classes in order to say a good word for Samantha Puckett's sake.

And Sam started slurring, "this is Carly, my best friend forever."

Of course I already knew that.

Carlypanted heavily.

I just needed to know, "what has been going on in that episode?" I had missed out on it.

And Mr. Bradford had better missed out, too. He would have been most terribly infuriated.

Carly explained, "Samantha Puckett owes me and Fredward already some thousand bucks."

Sam growled, "so what?"

I shuddered.

So, Samantha had abused the web show in an utterly shameless manner in order to gather money from the viewers.

Claire cited the law prohibiting such an outrageously inconsiderate and evil action.

Samantha and Carly were now forced to pay the bucks back to the viewers, complete with the money spent for the stamps.

After that, Sam's debts would be at least twice as much as before the inappropriate action.

And Carly would have to share the costs and be on the bad side of the balance, too.

In other words, Samantha kept on abusing her falsely so called best friend in the most shameless manner.

This had probably been like this for many a year.

But Carly was too weak tosee through Sam's hypocritical demeanour.

Sam was most definitely not worth of a friend like Carly. She just kept on exploiting her without any trace of a mercy.

I needed to decide on the size of the punishment.

Two detentions per week for the next five weeks appeared not too much for Sam's ruthless misdeed.

Sarah Kyla was now permitted to kick out Sam again.

Samantha squealed and whimpered in agony.

But everything happening now unto her was now absolutely nothing but hervery own comeuppance.


76.3. Kazu gives up.


Samantha Puckett wanted to work in order to pay her now dramatically increased debts back. Of course she was too lazy for most sorts of work.

Kazu decided to give her a chance as a helper in Sushi Rox.

This way, Sam would at least be in the company of her only true friends, id est food.

But this was doomed for failure, anyways.

Sam was always tempted to eat up the food before serving it to Kazu's customers.

And the kitchen junk was perfect for stuffing into the clothes of her fellow pupils.

Sam was alro required to clean the toilets.

This was absolutely nothing like paradise.

After too many complaints by Kazu's customers accumulating during too few days, Samantha Puckett hadto be dismissed again.


76.4. The Best Offer Ever


Quinn Pensky appeared to have the solution for the troubles of Samantha Puckett. She suggested her to use iCarly in order to advertise for the products of a sponsor. She would have done that alreadya year ago.

But back then, Samantha had just been on the way to win an entry into the JONAS Book Of Records and assumed to be not needy any longer.

Unfortunately, the reward for making a record was not as much as expected.

And Sam had just turned more careless.

So, what exactly were those products?

Quinn pensky and Mindy Crenshaws had invented some new sort of footwear for DAKA[[206]], the most popular shoe house of the whole western coast.

And a show like iCarly was absolutely perfect for spreading the news about this miraculous work.

Sam accepted the offer gladly.

But was it really a good idea?

Quinn's inventions were often thoroughly half baked and prone to undesirable side effects.


76.5. Drake's Warnings


Drake Parker was by no means happy about his cousin's decision of getting her web show sponsored by DAKA. Two years ago, he had sold one of his songs to DAKA for their ads.

And those filthy creeps had mutilated his work in the most disgusting manner.

Wendy Gellar had written that tune. And she was even more appalled.

Michael Barret, nowadays steady boyfriend of Wendy, was by no means whatsoever with Sam's choice. But he was unable to dissuade her.

Sam had insisted in getting paid cash. She totaly ignored each and every warning.


76.6. These shoes are made for walking.[[207]]


I've bought one pair of DAKA's new high technology footwera, known as "Tech Toot", just in order to support Sam.

Many kids did the same.

Due to the popularity of Carly's web show, DAKA must have made millions of bucks.

But what was this?

All of a sudden, one of the shoes started to feel dern hot.

I removed it.

A flame shot forth from the tip of the boot.

Beverly screamed in agony.

I picked the fire extinguisher. I had bought an extra bunch of them.

They were regularly needed because of Spencer Shay.

But this time, it was definitely not Spencer's fault.

The office phone rang.

Beverly picked it up.

And what was that?

There were other complaints about the "Tech Foot".

According to Fredward Benson, his lap top was now gone.

In other words, the web show would be down for quite a few weeks.

This was the fault of the built in telecommunication device, known as a "Shoe LAN".

Many other students were victims at well.

Beverly just noticed, "where are all our students' data?"

I gasped.

This hell blasted "Shoe LAN" had ruined our school's intranet.

Mr. Bradford was not exactly going to be pleased by all this.

And Carly's web show was now most likely ruined.

Sam would have to pay back everything. She would by no means get rid of her debts,quite the contrary.

DAKA would make them pay for not making any more publicity for the shoes.

And Mindy and Quinn had caused all the crap.

It would probably take them quite some time in order to fix ecverything.


76.7. Cancelled


Claire Sawyer had found a way for the kids to get out of the contract.

Fredward Benson's mother had not agreed on the deal.

But her signature would have been necessary as well.

Wayne "Firewire" Gilbert was now in my office in order to repair the school's intranet.

For quite a few weeks, the school would be stuck in chaos and confusion.

Mindy Crenshaw and Quinn Pensky felt deeply ashamed for their mistakes. Of course they would work on both the reparation of all the damaged computers on the campus and on fixing the corrupted footwear.

Mr. Bradford had already been informed.

For the time being, we tried to declare the chaos as the planned result of a project week.

The goal of the whole thing was the simulation of a national catastrophe.

It was our goal to prepare the students for all hardships of life, wasn't it?

Would Mr. Bradford fall for this?

I could not tell.

Nevel Papperman ran his own web site, known as Nevelocity. He allowed us to migrate some data temporarily to there.

His laptop was a rare Chinese product, not accessible by "shoe lan".

In turn, I was supposed to conduct a promise ring ceremony for him and his girlfriend Megan Parker.


76.8. Hockey Success


The hockey team of Pacific Coast Academy had just been successful for the first time in ten years.

And this was definitely not the merit of Coach Keller.

Many saw the four friends from Minnesota at the corer of the whole victory.

But they had just been up to nonsense during the whole thing.

Most strangely, luck appeared to change in the moment of Tiimothy Turner expressing the wish to win.

Once more, it sounded like a command rather than a wish.

So, what had been going on?

It must have been something excruciatingly scary, to say the least.


Chapter 77. America Sings


77.1. Restart


Fortunately, Quinn Pensky was pretty fast in her attempts of restoring the computers at Pacific Coast Academy.

Wayne Gilbert had also fixed our intranet, in whatever way.

I did not understand zilch.

Wayne had discovered a lot of security gaps in our old system.

This cried for a thorough renewal intead of just some restoration of the status before the fatal consequences of the "shoe lan".

At least the web show of Carly Shay and her friends was now no longer far from starting again.

Samantha's debts, of course, were still growing.

But she was now under permanent control.


77.2. The Cast Show


Casting Shows were extremely popular.

This was especially the case for America Sings, a show casting some of the most promising futire pop stars of the whole country.

This Year, Gustavo Rocque had been voted into thye board of judges.

The other judges were Ron Dee Jackson[[208]] and Alan Crimp[[209]].

The whole event was spread over the course of several months.

During the first stages, the official judges had to decide about success and failure.

But the final stages were all left to the viewers on the TV.

Our students often gathered in the lounge in order to watch the casting event.

Lisa Perkins had already participated in this show since turning sixteen. Now she was eighteen years old and trying out for the tird time. In her first year, Lisa Perkins had made it into the first live recall.

Ron Dee Jackson had always criticised her sternly.

Yet it was impossible to scare Lisa Perkins off the stage.

But for the first time, she was not the only student at Pacific Coast Academy to participate.

Encouraged by Lisa, Trina Vega was following her footsteps.

Was that going anywhere near well?

This was the first stage.

There were no live pics.

But we were able to watch the best excerpts of the event.

Lisa Perkins made irt safely into the next callback event.

This was not really much of a surprise.

But now time was right for Trina Vega.

The latina staggered into the room of the judges.

Ron Dee Jackson asked, "you are?"

Trina waggled with her curves. "I am the hottest and most gifted super talent of the nation!"

Gustavo thundered, "your name!"

Trina grunted, "oh, I am Trina vega from Malibu near Los Angeles. But I am still the born idol." She growled, "don't confuse me with my loser sister Tori."

Jackson coughed, "what are you going to sing?"

Trina replied, "I am going to sing a song by Drake Parker, Highway To Nowhere."

Jackson coughed. "About half of the girls here seem to sing that song." He deemed that crazy.

Trina's voice was as mediocre as usual.

But her dance fooled Ron Dee Jackson.

The latter smiled smiled. "Perfect!"

Alan Crimp shrugged. He seemed to trust it all to Jackson.

Gustavo Rock was not convinced. "That was good."

Trina smiled.

Gustavo grunted, "but an idol does not have to be good, it needs to be fantabulous!"

The other judges panted.

Gustavo concluded, "and this was not fantabulous!"

Timothy Turner growled, "I wish Trina to make the callback. I wish it! I really do!"

Suddenly, the TV display started to flicker like a flame in the autumn wind..

What was going on?

Finally, the TV display revovered and turned steady again.

Gustavo Rocque explained, "oh yeah, that's the way to go!" He gasped, "welcome to the recall, Ms. Vega!"

Then it was time for the next wannabes.

The hearththrob of the girls here appeared to be a certain David R. Couleda[[210]]. He convinced about everyone with his miraculous voice.


77.3. The State Championships


The basketball team was now preparing for the state championships.

Many months of training and matches were still separating them from the success expected by our merciless sponsors.

Grandma Nichols was especially convinced of the qualities of Zoey Brooks.

This was not necessarily due to Zoey's athletic qualities.

Logan and Chase were in no way worse.

But Zoey's charisma was definitely perfect for a leader of a squad to be found on the campus.

For Zoey, this was now even more of a burden.

With her qualities as a captain, she would have been accepoted by any college for their basketball team.

But she wanted to concentrate on one thing instead of splitting her life into most tiny slices. "Why am I permanently punished for being perfect?" She deemed it totally unfair.

And there were only so few months left for the blond Mary Sue to decide.

Whatever the decision, Zoey Broooks would have to disappoint many people.

Logan Reese was particularly interested in using the nationals in order to boost his fledgling career as a model.

Katie Knight had already contacted the outfitters of the most important professional basketball teams.

Logan would be the perfect model for them.

There seemed to be two major utfitters involved.

One of them was Simon Christini[[211]].

The other was inevitable Mad Style.

This made Logan choke. He knew about the possibility of Zoey working for Maximilian Madigan. And he deemed Zoey's designs lame and unsuited for emphasising his perfect beauty.

In other words, there were still loads of troubles ahead.

Logan thus preferred Simon Christini.

Katie had got her problems with that creep.


77.4. Waiting For The Oscar


The desision about the Oscars had still not been made.

Lola Martinez was of course hell bent on getting one. And she made a lot of fun of her cousin's stupid attitude.

Nicole was now hell bent on fixing Lola's appearance for the Oscar award ceremony.

Of course, this would be the task of professionals.

Thus Nicole would have to find a way to sneak in, anyways. In a few months, she woulkd be allowed to beauty school. But she wanted to get there with the best reference ever, videlicet that of having prepared the makeup for an Oscar winner.

This was totally exciting.

Nicole added, "and there are all those cute boys at the award ceremony, the pictures, the buffet, the cute boys, the champaign, and the cute boys, and …" he panted, "Oh, have I already meantioned the cute boys? So cute!" She was right about swooning into oblivion.


77.5. Martial Champion


Dana Ctruz needed a decent agent, too, for her career as a future pro wrestler.

Katie Knight was not really interested in managing the careers of athletes.

There were only few months left until the selections for the next season's pro wrestling tour.

For a newbie, it was not an easy task.

Fortunately, Claire Sawyer knew a possibility. She remembered her middle school time at James K. Polk's. "Simon Nelson Coooke is interested in a career as an agent for super athletes![[212]]"

Dana gasped. "The Cookie dweeb? But he is such a plain nerd."

Claire shrugged. "He has tried to become Jennifer Mosely's manager."

Dana gasped. "Jennifer Mosely? That toad?"

Claire looked aghast.

Dana panted. "OK, I can't leave anything to that creep of Moze."

At that point, Jenifer was not really interested in a career as a martial artist.

But Dana did not care. "Simon Nelson Cooke must be a great agent."

But was Cookie really able to prepare Dana for the selections for the Pro Wrestling tour? After all, he appeared to be more of a scientist.

At first glance, this was going to be outrageously difficult. But was it more unlikely than for Lola to win the Oscar for her rôle as Kelly Cooper, or for Trina to win America Sings, or for Quinn Pensky to win the Nobel Prize, sooner or later, or for Zoey Brooks to avoid disappointing many people?

Time was going to tell.


Chapter 78. Freddie sees black And white.


78.1. Fred Videos


Fredrick Ficklehorn[[213]] was a teenager from Idaho producing many funny amateur movies.

Carly Shay had decided to incorporate some of them into the web show. "This will be a lot of fun!"

Nicole and Cat agreed on one thing. "Fred is incredibly cute!"

Some people were of course annoyed by these statements.

Fredrick Ficklehorn owned a tree house at home in Idaho.

Robert Carmichael had got one at home in San Diego. He was really hell bent on seeing Fred's tree house. He envisioned it hidden deep within the endless white landscape of Idaho's harsh winters. Maybe he exaggerated the winters of that region.

For the most part, Idaho was not quite like Wisconsin.

But Robbie's envisioned scenario was of course not impossible.

In any case, Robbie was a dedicated fan of Fredrick Ficklehorn precisely because of his tree house. He would have loved to have his own tree house even here on the campus.

Stacey Dillsen and Spencer Shay had already promised building one for him. But they were stuick in other stuff.

Robbie sighed deeply.

At least, Stacey Dillsen had already come up with a model made of white cottoin swabs and white carpenter's glue.

The cotton swab model was certainly a veritable work of arts on its own right.

But there was also another reaison d'être for the same.

The model served in order to determine the statics of the tree house.

On a much bigger scale, this approach had been taken already by Antoni Gaudí, a famous Spanish — or, more precisely: Catalan — architect.

Gaudî had used something comparable in order to plan one of his hugest works, the church of Colònia Güell. Gaudí was one of Stacey's examples to live uo to.

In any way, Carly was showing the first videos made by Fredrick Ficklehorn in tonight's edition of her perfect web show.

Many of the students here could not desist from laughing.

But towards the end of the show, Fredward benson stated, "Fred's videos are definitely not that good, or funny, or even original."

Many kids dared to contradict Fredward.

But the latter was excessively stubborn, at least obstinate enough to refuse to budge from his dedicated stance.


78.2. Fred Killer


Things turned worse the very day after.

Stacey Dillsen was most rigorous with her statement: "Freddie killed Fred!" Had she exaggerated?

This was not the case.

Just a few hours later, Fredrick Ficklehorn announced his withdrawal from his video business.

The masses of students started turning totally upset at Freddie.

Stacey had built — and established in the middle of the campus square — some white panel with letters made from black cotton swabs, reading "Fred Killer!" She incited many fangirls of Fredrick Ficklehorn to shout these words all over the campus, making each of Fredward Benson's movements out there across the campus a merciless gauntlet of horror and humiliation.

And Freddie was not only punished by Stacey Dillsen.

Almost all clubs had expelled him.

In some cases, his expulsion was against Da Rules, as explained in detail by Claire Sawyer.

But in many other cases, there was nothing to do about it.

I ordered Stacey's panel to get taken dowm on site.

Campaigns of hatred against fellow pupils were not a nice things and should not get supported by the administration of Pacific Coast Academy.

And Mr. Bradford would be definitely on Fredward Benson's side. He was apparently not exactly a fan of the one and only Fredrick Ficklehorn. He deemed his videos "decadent dirt, crap, and junk." Fortunately, he did not yet know about the existence of a multitude of Fred video fans on our campus. Otherwise he would have issued excruciatingly harsh verdicts already, banning Fred videos for good and punishing all those daring to view or distribute them with exceedingly painful measures, including, but not restricted to, suspension, expulsion, and deportation to Siberia.


78.3. Cookie manages Dana.


As suggested by Claire Sawyer, Dana allowed for Simon Nelson Cooke to show up here at Pacific Coast Academy for a talk about managing her very career.

Dana and Cookie were now waiting in my office.

Claire had already prepared a standard agency contract of no less than five hundred pages.

Dana was hardly going to read through that, She hated reading in general and was terribly abhorred by long texts.

But, of course, in order to make it anywhere in any business, including that of professional martial arts, long contracts were necessary.

I took a look at the elaborate scribbles of Claire Sawyer.

My head started turning around and getting hammered from the inside.

Claire Sawyer remarked, "according to the latest statutes of the Association For The Professional Martial Arts, a professional contract for wrestlers must be of a readability of no less than forty on the Flesch Kincaid scale." She panted heavily. "And this contract is rating as forty-six on the Flesch Kincaid scale."

This readability test appeared to count the length of words and sentences.

My head was hardly ever coming to any rest whatsoever, tortured even by fairly short sentences and some short words.

Dana shrugge briefly, and she decided thereupon to sign the lengthy document. "In case of any problem, I may still beat up my agent." She grunted, "So, what does it matter, anyways?"

Claire Sawyer shrugged cluelessly and started walking away in her typically graceful manner.

Simon Nelson Cooke was now in a position enabling him to start managing the fledgling professional career of Dana Cruz. He started explaining, "This is Jackson Colt, the uncontested champion of the intercontinental professional mixed martial arts tour." He listed many details about this definitely awe-striking colossus. "He has never been defeated by any white opponent."

Dana's eyes drilled themselves firecely into some holographic image depicting the very Mount Everest among the muscle mountains.

Being an iceberg, Jackson Colt would have been the one to sink the fabulous Titanic on its trip across the mighty Atlantic.

For that very reason, Simon Nelson Cooke appeared to nickname Jackson Colt as "The Black Iceberg".

Cookie explained, "by beating Jackson Colt into a bloody pulp, you would get immediately accepted into any professional mixed martial arts event around the world."

Dana shrubbed in some very provocating manner. "I will do that some day."

Unfortunately, Dana Cruz and Jackson Colt appeared to be of very different weight categories.

As a consequence, the International Association Of Professional Martial Arts would not allow for an official martial showdown between Jackson Colt and the very Dana Cruz, at least at the beginning oif Dana's career.

In other words, Simon Nelson Cooke had been forced to look for something more realistic. He promised to come up with a solution within the following two weeks.

Dana grunted, "I definitely do hopese, or otherwise I would have to smash you into the next millennium and beyond."

Having apparently understood Dana's insinuations, he sighed deeply. "OK, I will find someone suited!"


78.4. Trip To Idaho


Fredrick Ficklehorn was still not really willing to forgive Fredward Benson.

The "Fred War", inspite of being banned on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy, was still going on, albeit in some slightly more subtle manner.

Fortunately, Mr. Bradford was snot yet aware of it.

But maybe things were about to change.

Fredrick Ficklehorn had sent Carly a short message via cellular phone, suggesting them to show up at his tree house up in Idaho in order to talk about the situation.

This required of course my written consent.

So, what to do?

I could certainly not send them to some white hollow in the wastelands of Idaho without a responsible adult.

And "responsible" — the attribute of uttermost significance — definitely excluded so called adults like Michael Barret and Spencer Shay.

The latter had been the very first choice of Carly, Freddie, and Sam.

Stacey Dillsen wanted to come along with the kids in order to impress Fredrick Ficklehorn with the cotton swab model of Robbie's soon to be built dream treehouse.

But I had still got a fairly different concept of "responsible adult".

Alas, regardless of the chosen lucky one, I had to justify an absence of several pupils for several days during the running term to Mr. Bradford.

Making up with Fredrick Ficklehorn was by no means something constituting a valid and compulsory reason in the eyes of the stern owner of Pacific Coast Academy.

Postponing the trip into the winter break was the only way for me to let it slip past the paranoid control exercised by the oldfashioned big tyrant.

But Carly Shay was very sad. She could not live in that suspense. She wanted to get it done by the weekend following the Thanksgiving celebrations, and no day later.

Finally, I decided to send Gavin Mitchell along with them.

This appeared to be the best possible compromise.

Crazy Steve was thus all alone responsible for the campus cinema.

But too many kids were off the campus during that short break.

The cinema would stay closed, anyways, leaving Steve's schedule all white for a few days and preventing him from wreaking havoc.

This year's thanksgiving break would be a very important markin our history.

By that point, the unhealthy softdrinks by Blix would be replaced all over the campous with healthy smoothies made with equipoment from Bristow Juices.

And Tee Bo would sell them in a booth on the campus. He had recently created some white smoothie to be thenceforth marketed by Bristow.

The Pacific Coast Academy would be the first school to sell it!


Chapter 79. Autumn Storms


79.1. How To Plan A Birthday Party


It was the most stormy time of the year over here at the Pacific coast.

The upcoming trip to Idaho would not be exactly one of the cheapest sort.

In other words, Samantha Puckett's debts would even grow more and more since the disastrous act of begging over the interweb, and the failed sponsors.

By the way, Quinn Pensky and Mindy Crenshaw had now been able to find the obnoxious bug residing in the high technology footwear produced and sold by DAKA Shoes.

In addition, Zoey Brooks had improved the fashionable design of those boots.

The shoes were now ready to storm the top of the popularity list for American footwear.

But now Samantha's sixteenth birthday was around the corner.

Her sister Melanie was definitely not invited.

But of course it was impossible to keep her off the campus during that day.


79.2. The Decision


This was the final night of America Sings.

Dramatic things had been going on as of recently.

Trina Vega had made it from turn to turn, always after some wish expressed by Timothy Turner.

That was awfully scary.

The adult fifth grader did appear to get away with any wish.

And the big finale left the choice between two participants.

Those potential new American idols were Trina Vega and some Wade Collins, a brother of Ms. Collins from Palmwood.

Wade was already above twenty-five years old.

This was one of his last chances.

According to Ms. Collins, Wade was more of a never do well, only dreaming of money and girls, but too lazy to practice anything.

There was something going thoroughly amiss.

Decent pop singers like Lisa Perkins and David R. Couleda were awfully punished by the viewers.

Gustavo Rocque had been unable to explain that. "This will be a catastrophe for the world of pop stars."

Already before the final decision, one fact was immediately evident.

The winner would be some terrible voice plastered on top of some excessively self obsessed character.

Trina had got some good quallities.

Wade did certainly have some of them as well.

But for the career of a pop star, both of them lacked a good voice and the will to practise over and over again.

Carly Shay was thus ready to some harsh step, telling the viewers to boycott the final choice of America Sings.

This was a really brash measure, totally comparable with the excruciatingly severe criticism of Fredrick Ficklehorn's videos by the hands of Fredward Benson.

The team of iCarly was now better bracing for an impending storm of woes and more or less violent actions of protests.

Amnerican Idol was one huge step upward from "Fred videos" with respect to publicity.


79.3. Sweeny's Decision


The same day, another storm was about assaulting Pacific Coast Academy.

Mr. Sweeny stood in my office, and just as usual without prior notification. He looked very upset.

Beverly had not achieved toning him down.

What had happened?

I asked Mr. Sweeny straight away.

He panted, "the chaos and corruption at James K. Polk is much worse than hitherto expected."

I gasped. "Yeah, the scandals were not pleasant, especially the one started by Jal E. Burton."

Mr. Sweeny nodded vigorously. He continued, "I can't leave them alone. I have to return to 'James K. Polk' in order to help them cleaning up after the ugly mess."

I looked consternated.

Mr. Sweeny was our best teacher for science.

I did not want to remember the years of desolation preceding his arrival. But I could not honestly try to dissuade him from returning to his former school.

Mr. Sweeny made it more precise, "I want to return to 'James K. Polk' at the start of the next academic year."

This appeared all too fair and square.

This way, we were still left with over half of a year for looking for a new teacher for science here at Pacific Coast Academy.

My first idea was Mr. Jamerson from New York City.

He was a bit crazy. But he was definitely one to fascinate the pupils and get them interested in the wonders of science.

Of course, in order to seperate correctly from Mr. Sweeny, the board needed to be informed.

I told Beverly to contact Garth Burman right away and to let him know about these utterly important news.


79.4. Tori Vega


Just an hour later, I was anxiouly waiting for a reply from executive chairman Burman.

But he appeared to be excessively busy and unable to answer.

Thus this important topic had to be postponed to some later moment in time.

Instead, some girl in the likeness of Lola Martinez stood in the door frame. She was talking to Beverly in some exceedingly brash manner.

Poor Beverly was totally helpless in that situation.

I panted heavily, "m'lady, who are ypu? You remind me of Lola Martinez."

The teenage girl introduced herself, "I am Tori Vega, a cousin of Lola." She was possibly also related to Trina Vega, given the kinship between Trina Vega and Lola Martinez.

And this was the point.

The young lady grabbed my collar. "Your Trina Vega gets only treated like dirt here byher fellow students." She coughed. "And I won't tolerate that any longer."

I shrugged. "Are you talking about something special?"

Victoria thundered, "your student Carly Shay has dared to tell kids to boycott the finals of America Sings".

I saw something like that coming.

Torin boomed into my face.


Trina has been working so hard on her success in the first turns, and she has been looking so absolutely forward to the upcomning season final.

How may Carly Shay tell people to refrain from watching my sisterin the greatest hour of her life?

I request an official apology by Carly Shay and her henchmen.


I gasped.

Carly had really taken it much too far.

But it was probably the fault of Samantha Puckett.

But the latter was about celebrating her sixteenth birthday.

And forcing her to apologise to anyone, with or without reason, at or around her birthday celebrations would have been a total party spoiler.

All of a sudden, Gustavo Vega stood in the door frame.

Victoria Vega gasped and snarled. She recognised Gustavo from the show. She was now most likely about sensing some utterly perverted conspiracy of some excessively mean sort. "You Stingray creeps have destroyed my sister's life. Are you now happy? Are you? You random insult!" She thundered some wild insults into my face, almost in a rhythmical manner.

Gustavo grunted, "wow!"

Tori looked at him with a deadly grimace in her face.

Gustavo continued,


What a voice! It is not good, it is … fantabulous!

I haven't come across anything like that since Kendall Knight.

This is the voice of a super pop star!

I envisiuon a duet with you and Kendall.

Come to my studio tomorrow at …


Tori appeared to refuse to share the opinion of the czar of the records. "Trina is the gifted one in my family!"

Gustavo laughed heartily.

Victoria Vega did not give in.


My father is a police officer.

Either you get Carly Shay to apologise publically unto Trina …

Or my dad will come and lock you all into some place darker than inside your butthole.

Have a nice one!


She span around and disappeared on site.

Of course officer Vega would not come and arrest us or Carly for that.

But Gustavo was apparently totally copnvinced of Tori's voice.

Kendall Knight was his new male superstar.

James Diamond had tried out for the school's band at the beginning of the year.

But Gustavo had rejected him.

Kendall had then intervened in a manner as vigorous as Tori just a few minutes ago. He had been forced into the school's band as the new lead singer.


79.5. The Consequences


Samantha Puckett refused rigorously to come up with any apology whatsoever.

But Carly's call for boycotting the finals of America Sings was completely unsuccessful.

The viewers did not let anyone tell them what to do, not even their favourite web show.

This would nor be a serious problem for iCarly, an even bigger one than the clash with Fred.

Their visit at Fred's treehouse was now postponed even until Christmas, by the way.

Oh, so … what was outcome of the finals?

Trina Veca actually won the contest, being the new American idol and offered a record contract at Ron Dee Jackson's studio.

And Timmy Turner had wished it, or maybe commanded it in his way.

That was of course nothing strange anymore.

But it was still weird and beyond any trace of an explication.

Wade started talking about his sick mother.

This was just a mean trick in order to make the viewers feel bad.

According to his sister's statement, their mother was feeling pretty well.

Whatever the result, none of the two of them had deserved it, anyways.

The best ones had failed earlier on.

This was just like in real life, wasn't it?


Chapter 80. Big In Japan


80.1. International Web Awards


As of recent, Carly's formerly fantastic web show had been drifting away into quite some troublesome waters.

But this was certainly not yet the end of it all.

A few days later, Carly Shay showed up with yet another request.

Some guy from some international web award committee had invited the crew of iCarly to the annual finals.

I hoped those to take place somewhere near Los Angeles. But I was most thoroughly mistaken. "Tokyo? That's in Japan?"

Carly smiled and nodded solemnly. She asked Freddie, "how would I look in a kimono?"

Fredward Benson started started swooning.

I sighed deeply.

A trip across the mighty Pacific was thus necessary for them.

A whole week off school was also yet another consequence to justify unto stern Mr. Bradford.

There were three tickets for a first class flight from Los Angeles to Tokyo coming with the notification.

But that was of course quite some problem.

There were four members of the crew, videlicet Michael Barret, Samantha Puckett, Carly Shay, and Fredward Benson.

But there were only three tickets.

And the kids needed at least one responsible adults.

As usual, "responsible" exluded Michael Barret.

Michael was still absolutely obsessed with nothing but his clacker balls.

Dr. Lowe had not made that much of a progress.

Or so it seemed.


80.2. Lessons In Japanese


Spencer Shay wanted to try out as a responsible adult, once more.

Carly had of course suggested him.

But things were not that easy.

I just could not trust him several kids so far away.

Spencer Shay had made some suggestions. "My pal Socko is certainly able to exchange three first class tickets for six or so economy class tickets."

This would indeed have allowed for all four members of the web crew plus one or two responsible adults.

But Socko was not to be trusted. He was a really windy creep, after all. Maybe he did not even exist.

Spencer was not unlikely to have made him up for some reason.

In addition, it was possible to vinculate plane tickets.

This would have prevented anyone from exchanging or selling them.

I better investigated this possinility beforehand.

Spencer had still got another argument. "Last year, I have bought a cardboard teacher for Japanese at the big shopping mall in Seattle."

That was of course a very important point.

I was not willing to send the kids across the mighty sea to a foreign land and let them get lost due to the lack of understanding of the host language.

Spencer had wanted to buy the swedish teacher, a tall blonde.

But there had been that offer of buying two for one.

Thus he had chosen the Japanese guy.

Those cardboard teachers were brute. They submitted you to electric shocks in the case of committing any mistake.

You were supposed to learn from pains.


80.3. Vinculated


Half a day later, Spencer demonstrated the cardboard techers.

I was keen on watching his progress.

But it was terrible.

Spencer had to scream all the time.

Unfortunately, the shock collar could not be removed before having mastered the first level.

I had to call Quinn Pensky in order to figure a way to get rid of the obnoxious thing.

It took the geek princess quite a few attempts.

But, finally, Spencer was safe. He had most likely not learned a whole lot of the Japanese language, after all.

On the other hand,. I had lerned a lot. More precisely, I was now aware of the following fact:

Spencer Shay was by absolutely no means reliable as an "expert" for the Japanese language.

But there were quite a few people at Pacific Coast Academy with ethnical roots in the land in the middle of the Pacific sea.

The office phone started ringing.

Beverly picked it up. "Administration of Pacific Coast Academy …" She was talking to the American representants of the responsible airways corporation, Toky Airlines.

My guess had been correct.

The committee for international web awards had indeed vinculated the tickets.

Bear with it!

The only possibility to let the kids go to the country of sushi and kimono was thus that of looking for a cheap flight for them and for at least one responsible adult with knowledge of the Japanese language.

For the latter, I was tempted to ask Kazu.

Another alternative was Mr. Takato.

A few months ago, the latter had been as unlikely as socko.

But now I had seen him teaching mathematics to the class of Dustin Brooks and Ashley Blake.

Still his past was a big mystery.

And his demeanour was most definitely weird.

So Kazu was certainly my first guess.


80.4. Back To The Roots


I had just been talking to Kazu.

The owner of the resident sushi bar was totally keen on the prospects of getting to see his ancestry once again. He had indeed never been to Japan in his life. He was already a third generation immigrant. But he had still learned Japanese from his mother.

There were many places for him to visit.

He was expecially hoping for meeting some remote relatives still living in the traditional insular state. But he had not got any concrete hints for that avail.

Of course it was impossible for Kazu to take care of Sushi Rox and to accompany at the same time the crew of iCarly to the interweb award session in Tokyo.

But Rosemary Pepper had not got much of a problem with doing the former all on her own for that time..

The only proble to remain was that of finding a cheap flight.

Well, that was not quite correct.

Of course Mr. Bradford would not be happy about sending several kids to Japan for a whole week, especially when having to take the bucks for their flights from the school's founds.

The web show had always been deemed a decadent annoyance by the owner of Pacific Coast Academy.

Thus there had to be another label for the trip.

My idea was that of declaring the visit to Tokyo as a field trip of Kazu's Japanese classes.

Well, kazu was not officially a teacher for the Japanese language here at Pacific Coast Academy.

Thus it had to be declared as a sort of a club.

OK, it was still necessary to work on that.

But, at least basically, it appeared to be one of the best excuses in order to justify the necessary expenses.


80.5. The Reese Jet


But there was a yet cheaper possibility for organising the flight.

As aforementioned, Malcolm Reese had been making a movie over in Japan.

His production team had got a jet plane in order to transport material and staff forth and back across the waters of the endless Pacific ocean.

And, fortunately for the crew of iCarlt, Malcolm was on the way to visiting Tokyo yet another time.

There was enough space left in the whole plane to get the kids to and from the Japanese capital for the awards.


80.6. Impending Oscar


Fortunately,the Oscar awards were regularly dished out in America, and not somewhere across the seven seas.

Lola Martinez was still eagerly waiting for the decision of the Oscar committee.

This year, the final election and the crowning ceremony was definitely to be held here in Los Angeles.

Of course, many people would come from across the sea in order to attend the ceremony.

Malcolm Reese was one of the biggest sponsors of the Oscar committee. He had also requested us to host some of the foreign guests.

Others would be accomodated in Palmwood's.

Ms. Collins was already moaning because of that.

The students would hardly concentrate on their classes during that time.

But it had to be.

The ceremony would take place during the spring break.

And maybe Lola Martinez was going to be among those to be honoured.

This had never happened at Pacific Coast Academy.

There are Oscar winners among our alumni. But they had been awarded after graduating, and not while still studying at Pacific Coast Academy.

Even Mr. Bradford would have been forced to deem this a great achievement.

Palmwood's school, for example, had not had a oscar winning student in fifteen years. And they were specialised for that.

Alas, there was some bad news from that hotel.

The very existence of Palmwood's school was at stake.

The hotel itself was going well. But they needed the bucks for better qualified hotel staff.

Not everyone was as cheap as Gordon Robert alias Gordy alias "Buddha Bob" or Reginald Bitters.

Our school appeared to have had a golden hand with respect to its chopice of competent management staff members.

The current management was a catastrophe and hardly able to keep the adult guests content for much longer.

Thus the board was urged to perform a radical change of the hotel's structure.


Chapter 81. In The Air


81.1. Off To Tokyo


I had made it to Los Angeles International Airport in order to wave at the departing cast of the web show, complete with Kazu.

Chauncy, the faithful butler of Malcolm Reese, expected the kids aboard the plane.

Quinn Pensky was here witj us. She distributed modules for their cellular phones allowing to operate them even in Japan.

This was not possible with the average American cellular phone.

Fortunately, Quinn had thouht of precisely that circumstance.

Otherwise the kids would have potentially been stuck somewhere in the Japanese metropole, unable to contact anyone whosoever for help due to the dysfunctional cellular phones.

Captain Steubing[[214]] , the pilot of the plane, ordered everone to get ready.

I waved at the kids and at Kazu for one last time.

The plane was now taking off into the deep blue Californian sky, bound for the land of the ever lasting sushi rolls.


81.2. WiiFi In The Clouds


We were now back to the campus of Pacific Coast Academy.

Quinn Pensky had not just equipped the crew of the web show with addirtions for their cellular phone in order to enable them to work in Japan. She had also installed an imporoved and upgraded wireless internett access.

According to Michael Barret, it was illegal to open the windows during a fight. And he was adamantly opposed to doing so for some other reason. "My clackers could be blown away."

Thus they could not just us a very long wire and let it hang from the opened window.

The wire would have had to be really long, anyways, many thousands of yards.

The wireless network access allowed them even to communicate with us during the flight.

According to Quinn Pensky, the telecommunication via radio waves and satellites was thoroughly dependent on the meteorological circumstances, though.

Accordin to Walter Nichols, the weather would stay nice all the way from Japan to California.

But his weather forecasts were not even a dime's worth, as well known among all Californians, at least since the catastrophic rain storm of my third year at Pacific Coast Academy.

But even Bruce Windchill was not aware of any meteorological complications to be expected out on the open Pacific during the following days.

We just wanted to test the connection.

Fredward Benson was operating the other end of the connection. He had been instructed in a very fast manner by Quinn Pensky.

Kazu waved into the cam.

Quinn talked a lot to Freddie about some huge variety of technological details.

For everyone else on either side of the end of the connection this was totally boring.

The connection was quite expensive.

Thus we were told to restrict it to ten minutes.

But after the tech talk of Fredward and Quinn, there was no time left for anyone else.

So bear with it!


81.3. Migration From Palmwood


The problems caused by the impending shutdown of the school at Palmwood's were occupying us here at Pacific Coast Academy.

After vanishing into thin air, the school would leave a few people without a school or without a job.

Was there a possibility of accomodating some of the students and teachers here at Pacific Coast Academy?

Ms. Collins definitely deserved a chance. She had been the only regular teacher over there for several years.

There was one problem.

The teachers here at Pacific Coast Academy tended to be highly specified.

"palmwood" was a one teacher school for most of the time.

Ms. Collins was thus a decent teacher for many subjects, but she did not have the specialised experience expected by our board.

In other words, a few very good arguments were needed in her case.

Taking over the pupils was a different subject.

The studnts of Palmwood would be allowed to continue to live in their hoteland not burden our boarding capacity. They would come each morning to Pacific Coast Academy and return home after classes.

Granted, this was not a comfortable schedule.

But it was certainly feasible.

We had got students here at Pacific Coast Academy residing almost at the opposite end of Los Angeles.

Another potential school for the kids from Palmwood to go was certainly Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts.

As Palmwood's was for Hollywood stars and wannabes only, this seemed to be an optimal option.

Ms. Collins was now about negotiating with Helen Baxter.

The latter could be very stubborn.

The kids would have to give a thorough proof of their supreme abi;ities as future Hollywood stars before anything else in order to be allowed to beg for Helen's mercy..


81.4. Stuck In Tokyo


A few hours latyer, my phone started ringing like hell.

This was Kazu from Tokyo.

I was already worried.

They were not supposed to call me expect in urgent cases.

Kazu sounded very excited.

But this was absolutely normal for a call across the endless Pacific ocean.

Kazu reported,


In our hotel, we have encountered our closest opponents.

Those are the twin couple from Tokyo, Yuki and Kyoko.

We have been surprised.

They appear to be nice and invite us to a shopping trip.

The kids like that.

But they are whispering some uncanny stuff. Apparently, they had not expected me right there.


There were still a few hours left until the big showdown in Tokyo's media centre.

The Japanese guys were most likely up to sabotaging the performance of Carly and her crew.

There was something smelling excessively fishy, worse than any of the foul and rotting rubbish from the kitchen of Sushi Rox.

I told them to stay in the hotel for as long as possible. I would inform Malcolm Reese.

The father of Logan had got very good connections to the management of the Tokyo Centre For Entertainment Technology.

Those Japanese twins had already scared Carly before her departure to Japan, essentially because of the funny clips. But why did they have to locj Carly's crew out? They were apparently good enough to beat them in a fair manner.

That was so smelly.


81.5. Coming Home


One day later, Carly's crew was once again aboard Malcolm's corporational jet machine, bound for Los Angeles. And they were proudly holding the trophy for the best web comedy in their arms.

Maybe we would get to know more about it after their arrival in Los Angeles.

For the time being, we had to hurry up when using the wireless network access.

Malcolm's Japanese partner had indeed been aware of Kyoko and Yuki, albeit under a different name.

The "twins" — falsly so-called! — had been plagiarising a formerly popular but now extinct Japanese comedy show.

This fraud had just been leading to their disqualification, after theintervention of Malcolm'spartners.

The crew of Carly Shay had thus been left with one competitor, a French ventriloquist named Henry and his sock puppet Oumpé.

The latter creep was fairly lame.

Even aforementioned Robert Shapiro, albeit a charlatan and deceiver, was no less fun.

Thus Carly and her crew could not lose.

And the money for the first prize would finally allow Samantha Puckett to pay back all of her debts.

Now we had still got a few hours left in order to prepare a due party for the crew of the most popular web comedy around the whole world.

Logan Reese was responsible for that. He had already bought quite a few supplies for a party.

Dustin Brooks appeared to nbe feeling the uttermost excitement. He blushed upon each time hearing anyone saying "Carly".

Now we got ready in order to go to the airport and wait for the Reese jet to come down from the endless clear and blue sky and touch our good old Californian ground.


Chapter 82. Swinging Fists


82.1. Shelby Marx


A few weeks ago, Simon Nelson Cooke had started looking for suitable opponents for his client Dana Cruz.

It would not have been my business.

But I had to decide on whether giving Dana a permission to leave the campus for a martial combat.

Dana was already close to nineteen years old and did not need her parents's permission.

But the problem with the accident insurance still existed.

Clearly, the compulasory insurance for all boarding students did not cover wrestling and mixed martial arts outside the framework of official contests of the League For Martial Arts At Californian Schools .

In other words, Dana would have to show up with an insurance police of her own.

Claire Sawyer had counterchecked this.

Now we were gathered in my office: I, Dana Cruz, Dimon Nelson Cooke, and Claire Sawyer.

Beverly was still around, somewhere in the background.

Dana was exceedingly curious.

Simon grinned. "OK, I am pleased to announce the availability of the current world champpion in lightweight mixed martial arts for women."

Dana almost had to break into some incessant and excessively hysterical laughter. "Maya Feckner[[215]] ? Really? That wimp?"

Alas, Simon had to correct her. "Sorry, Dana! But you are a bit behind …"

Dana grabbed Simon. "I am what?" She shook her agent in a forceful manner. "You don't dare to say that anymore!"

Simon Nelson Cooke choked like stuck in lime. He finally achieved to stammer helplessly, "Maya Feckner is no longer the world champion."

Dana looked utterly puzzled. She grunted, "what?"

Simon continued, "she has been defeated last night."

Dana banged her head against the wall. She had missed out on quite some big big fight.

Or so did I interprete her gestures and postures.

Simon continued, "the new world champion is Shelby Marx."

Dana coughed. "Lola's annoying little aslike looking cousin?"

Simon sighed. "You are completely right."

Lola had probably talked to Dana about her cousin's more or less superb martial prowess.

But Dana had hitherto refused to take Lola's words anywhere near serious.

Simon Nelson Cooke continued, "qand you better get a dern good coach!"

Dana sighed.


Chuck Javers coaches me.

I coach him in turn.

There is no need for an external coach.


Simon shook his head. "Chuck Javers is on tour, and he won't be back until the end of the academic year. He will certainly not, under no circumstances whatsoever, be able to coach you during the next weeks."

Dana had to give in with respect to this point. She needed to come up with some official fights in order to qualify herself for the professional league of martial artists, and she needed to do so during the next weeks.

Simon sexplained, "last night, I have talked to Rodrick Karnofsky[[216]]. " He suspired. "You and Shelby marx may exchange kicks and punches this Saturday night!"

Dana sighed. "OK! I have to hurry up!"

Simon Nelson Cooke continued, "and I have already found a suitable coach for you."

Dana was utterly impatient and grunted viciously at her agent. "whom?"

Simon concluded, "and your coach is … Jackson Colt, the one and only!"

Dana gasped.

That was quyite some surprise.

The real Jackson Colt was going to coach Dana.

Claire Sawyer had already elaborated some coachingcontract between Dana cruz and Jackson Colt.

Dana was curious. "How did you get at Jackson?"

Simon explained, "I know his son, Kevin Colt[[217]]."

Kevin was one big fan of the web show of iCarly, especially since the successful appearance in Tokyo.

Simon continued, "Jackson will come onto our campus tonight for a first training session."

I gasped.

This sounded dangerous.

Jackson's fists were most likely able to make a brick wall crumble.

I had to insist, "the coaching will tajke place in the gym hall, and no public, right?"

Simon stammered, "erm … maybe?"

I glared sternly at Simon Nelson Cooke.

He growled, "oh, sure, there and only there!"

I nodded totally solemnly.


82.2. Jam On The Campus


Alas, Jackson Colt had not made it onto the campus in an anonymous way.

And there were so many fans of him right here at Pacific Coast Academy.

That was terrible.

The fans started crowding around him and blocking the whole campus access.

The worst of all of them were the crew of iCarly.

Samantha Puckett was absolutely hell bent on watching a martial arts fest and interview Jackson Colt.

Of course I could not allow for the kids to leave the campus in order to visit some martial fest downtown.

This was much too dangerous.

Even Spencer Shay understood that.


82.3. Shelby Vs. Dana


This was the day of the essential fight for Shelby Marx and Dana Cruz.

Damna had been submitted to some excruciatingly hard and painful practice by her new coach, Jackson Colt.

Shelby was the younger of them by three years. But she was already the world's champion.

Her coach was her uncle Juan Martinez, father of Lola Martinez.

Shelby was really Salvia Maria. But she tried to hide her Latina roots. Indeed, she was embarrassed by being related to Lola.

On the other hand, there was a slim chance on two alike looking cousins strinking a great title during the same year.

Lola was close to making the first Oscar.

Shelby had already won the woreld championship as a mixed martial artist.

The polls were not that bad for Lola, either.

Nevel Papperman was running one of them on Nevelocity.

According to his viewers, the chances for Lola Martinez were no smaller than sixty per centum.

Needless to say, bets were also made for the imminent mixed martial fight betwee Dana Cruz and Shelby Marx.

Most kids saw Shelby Marx as the winner.

Fredward Benson was running a poll concerning the outcome of the martial showdown of the day. He had interviewd Shelby Marx one day before the start of the fight.

Unfortunately, Fredward's interview had been as far from objectice as only possible.

The perversely horny creep was utterly distracted by Shelby's femaleness.

And Shelby was apparently annoyed by that.

Fredward had already hit in the same filthy manner on Lola Martinez and probably also on Tori Vega.

This would at least have explained her increasing anger with respect to iCarly even after the victory of her elder sister.

The combat of the day took place in downtown Los Angeles.

The kids of Palmwood made a live report about it.

And my students were about watching from the lounges.

Shelby Marx and Dana Cruz were already in the ring.

Nevel Papperman and Megan Parker were performing Toréador en guarde! from Georges Bizet's great opera Carmen.

Talking about the ring reminded me of something.

The promise ring ceremony for Nevel Papperman and Megan Parker was now just around the corner.

And unfortunately, inspite of having already confirmed my rôle as the conductor of said solemn ceremonial event, I had still not really prepared an appropriate speech for it.

The fight had just started.

I was not really going to watch the whole bloody mess.

And for the better of all of us, Mr. Bradford was not watching it, either.

Or so we had to hope.

But the noise of the cheering fights was very strong.

Both girls had got a lot of supporters here on the campus.

By the way, I had come to neet Shelby's manager, Rodrick Karnofsky, one day ago.

The former elder of the Society Of The Silver Hammer and nowadays agent of the current world champion in mixed martial did not make anything like a trustworthy impression.

Simon Nelson Cooke may have been an utter beginner. But he had certainly been demonstrating a significant amount of more human traits when managing Dana Cruz than the agent of her current opponent, videlicet Shelby.

In any case, the noise penetrating the campus was pentrating both bones and marrow in an exorbitantly painful manner.

It was impossible to concentrate on any work.

Finally, Dana Cruz was about to win the combat.

This was a definite surprise.

The official umpires of the league were now going to determine Dana's fitness for the professional martial arts business.

According to Doc Hollywood, there were absolutely no medical objections of any sort whatoever to me made.

Shelby was said to be in some excruciatingly stinky mood.


82.4. Sparring Partner


A few hours later, I reentered my office.

Now a certain Alexander Darren[[218]] had already been waiting. Alex had been a student at Pacific Coast Academy until last year, but he was now studying at Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts. He wanted to become a professional stunt artist.

I wondered about his presence.

Alex explained, "in order to prepare for my career as a stunt artist, I have been a sparring partnet for Shelby Marx."

That made sense.

But Shelby was now terribly disappointed by the performance of Alex Darren during the last days leading up to the excessively embarrassing defeat against Dana Cruz. For that very avail, she had fired her sparring partner.

Alex was now looking for Simon Nelson Cooke. "I want to spar with Dana Cruz, or find someone else to do so."

I nodded solemnly and told Beverly, now back from a break, to call for Simon.

Alex admitted, "I had failed concentrating enough during the last days because …" He choked and blushed furiously.

That thoroughly incomplete sentece was — with uttermost certainty — expressing a lot.

Alex had been in love with Shelby and thus a bit distracted.

That must have hurt him badly, much more than any excessively hard punch suffered from the adamantine fists of the world champion.


82.5. Promise Party


After all, it was now the right moment for conductinging the already anticipated ceremony of Megan and Nevel exchanging rings.

I refrained from talking a lot, respecting the usual reluctance of students.

Gregory Badilow, aforementioned cousin of Samantha Puckett and renowned beat box flautist, started blowing the bridal chorus from Richard wagner's Lohengrien.

Then Nevel Papperman and Megan Parker started exchanging and donning brass rings. They did not believe in the material value of any jewelry whatsoever for that matter and thus considered brass as good as gold.

I had never before conducted such a ceremony for pupils at Pacific Coast Academy, or at ant other school for that matter.

Like at wedding ceremonies, they said a few very crypotic words, but in Latin, for whatever reason.


Chapter 83. Frozen Head


83.1. And The Winner Is …


Spring break has arrived here on the thoroughly illustrous campus of Pacific Coast Academy.

Many students were away.

Some of them rejoiced in the snows of Squaw Valley or other centres of skiing and similar winter sports.

But the remaining kids were already swooning and suffering in anticipation of the most exciting event of these days:

We had indeed been selected for hostiong some international stars, such as Jean Claude Van Daarn[[219]]

The Oscar award for the best female star was to be assigned.

As opposed to the cold of Nevada, this imminent event was thus warranting a rather heated atmosphere down on the campus.

And one student of Pacific Coast Academy was a member of the selected circle of canditates.

Her main opponent was supposed to be one Melinda Murray[[220]], a very snobbish actress for the taste of most pupils on our campus, with or without her competition with our resident favourite, Lola Martinez.

Another competitor was the very Jenna Lotrell[[221]], an actress hitherto more popularover at Broadway. She had been the star of Sofia Michelle's recent musical, Uptow Downtown[[222]]. She had recently been insulted very badly by Kitty Monroe, one of the most abrasive journalists of the entire nation, second only to aforementioned junior paparazzo Robert Shapiro.

Caterina Vega remarked,


Tori is possibly good.

But I would trump the choice of the judges, left and right, no matter where and when in the world.


Some students started giggling diabolically behind haughty Trina's back.

The Award show was finally about to start. This year, it was presented by two commentator, videlicet Ryan Seecrest[[223]] — one of the world's extremely popular moderators of the millennium — and Helen Baxter.

And the suspense here in the lounge of "Buttler Hall" was about increasing beyond any hitherto beknownst measure.

Excruciatingly loquacious Helen Ophelia Baxter had already been talking way too much.

It was now the right moment for announcing the winner.

Helen fumbled with an ewnverlope previously rendered unto her by the president of some excessively illustrous body of supreme judges. She closed her eyes and panted heavily. Then she opened the envelope, picking a sheet. She was still hesitating for yet another moment. But now she went finally in media res. "And the winner is … Lola Martinez!"

A murderous torrent of deadly thunderous applause filled the chock full award hall.

And the reactions here in the lounge was not exactly that of a sloth stuck in a Candian blizzard after the consumption of various somniferous drugs.

Really, the whole campus started trembling like shaken by some tropical typhoon.

The students kept on cheering at the very top of their lungs and bouncing around like a stampeding pack of wild mustangs.

Was Mr. Bradford even watching this?

It would beyond any discernable trace of a doubt have been his most euphorical moment ever encountered here at Pacific Coast Academy.

Our basketball team, still coached by grandma Nichols, had unfortunately messed up the national finals, due to some unhappily close defeat in last second suffered from the hands of the unstoppable and unfabulous squad of Rocky Road, lead by supreme super star Zachariah Carter-Schwartz.

For me, a second or a third prize was a great thing.

But the sponsors frequently happened to disagree on this.

Likewise, the football team of Pacific Coast Academy had ultimately failed in the Californian finals against Golden Bay Bridge High after some dubious decision made by referee Dirga allowing for a last minute toucjdown by hostile quarterback Ash Donovan[[224]] .

But Lola Martinez was the one to make up for each and every close disappointment suffered during the last years.

The sponsors would go and drown themselves in an ocean of uttermost ecstasy.

All this cried for a celebration of the glorious and hitherto unique victory of Gloria Maria de la Gracia Martinez.


83.2. Plagiarism


Of course, the success of Carly Shay and her crew over in Tokyo for the best web comedy ever was also an important one.

Mr. Bradford's mouth was still jammed, unable to object to the unworthy content of the show

The old creep was also definitely unable to say anything against Trina's great success in the finals of America Sings.

But success tended regularly to triggering both envy and imitation.

This was particularly the case for the best web comedy on the whole planet, ever.

According to the reports of some of our pupils, such as Dustin Brooks and Megan Parker, a not so famous TV producer known gernaerally as the Dingo Channel[[225]] was plagiarising the content of Carly's web show.

And Carly was now asking me for support in that case.

I was utterly consternated, but equally clueless.

All left for me to do in the moment was referring Carly to Claire Sawyer.

Carly Shay started sobbing bitterly. She had not worked hard on her show just in order to get everything stolen by some hitherto underachieving TV corporation.

Spencer Shay had got some idea for a revenge. "I will break into the guts of the headquarters of Dingo and steel the frozen head of the founder of the corporation, Charles Dingo."

I panted violently. "Spencer!"

He beamed. "Yesa, I am brilliant."

Carlyy felt thorougly disgusted and was excessively close to puking. "I hate the word 'guts'!" She had to torture herself into being able to stammer these few words.

I glared at Mr. Shay. "You are not going to break into any place whatsoever, period!"

Spencer looked excruciatingly disappointed and strarted pouting in a horrifiying manner.

Finally, Claire Sawyer showed up.

I announced, "Claire will go through the legal options and possibilities with you."

Upset Spencer protested vehemently. "But my plan would be much more fun!". Fortunately Spencer had dropped out of law schoool after only three days.

With Spencer as a lawyer, the world would have been an infinitely worse place, beyond any imaginable doubt whatsoever.


83.3. Cryogenics


I had refrained from talking aboutit in the presence of more sensitive Carly Shay.

But the aforementioned frozen head of no other than Charles Dingo was indeed scaring me to quite some degree.

Why would anyone want to keep a iced skull in some chamber for several years?

This was one question to wonder about.

I called Mr. Sweeny immediately into my office.

We had to talk about his impending transfer to James K. Polk anyways.

I panted heavily before getting straight to the important question about the deep frozen cranium of Charles Dingo.

tried to explain, "'cryogenics' is what you are looking for."

At first glance, I did not make too much sense of this outrageously complicated word.

Mr. Sweeny explained its etymology.

It was apparently some word of Greek origin.

Yet this was in no way explaining the motivation for keeping such a head frozen.

According to Mr. Sweeny, the degeneration of cells of a dead body slows down considerably beyong the condensation point of nitrogen.

Some scientists were dreaming of the possibility of reviving or reusing cells for people living much later.

In extreme cases, mad science geeks like Melinda Crenshaw or Quinndelyn Pensky were even considering the very probability of reviving deep frozen whole corpses after many years.

According to Mr. Sweeny, this was more speciafically known as "cryonics".

I was somewhat scared by this possibility.

It sounded like artificial zombies.

Some days, a whole army consisting entirely of frozen zombies would roam this planet and …

Thinking any further was totally beyond me.

But mr. Sweeny kept on talking.


Many significant progresses had been made during the last years.

I mustn't avoid mentioning the partly published results of my colleague Mr. Bradford[[226]] , a science teacher at Empire City High in New Jersey.

He has been especially experimenting with insects.

Ideally, he is aiming for the possibility of using cryogenically preserved parts of insects in order to manipulate the deoxyribonucleic acid of humans and improve a variety of abilities of the thusly modified human race considerably.


I gasped. "Bradford?"

We were looking for a substitute for Mr. Sweeny, a teacher for science.

Mr. Bradford was such a teacher.

The name made me wonder:

Was that Mr. Bradford related to our Mr. Bradford, the owner of Pacific Coast Academy?

Mr. Sweeny could not really answer the question. "But Mr. Bradford hads certainly got the most excellent qualification for teaching at a school such as Pacific Coast Academy."

Of course, in the case of a close kinship of the founder of Pacific Coast Academy and the teacher for science at Empire City High, there was one interesting question left to be answered:

Why was the latter not working here at Pacific Coast Academy, one of the most elitary academies throughout the United States, instead of at some district school in the heart of New York City?

This was most remarkable due to the apparent dearth of good teachers for science until the arrival of Mr. Sweeny, an event having occurred less than three years ago.

Maybe it was an accident.

But I could not free my mind of this uncanny coincidence.

And now I had to think about other new teachers.

Ms. Collins had recently been talking to Garth Burman.

The latter judged, " would fit fairly smoothly into the structure of the body of teachers over here at Pacific Coast Academy."

This was certainly some great news.

But Mr. Bradford, the current big guy in command of Pacific Coast Academy, was much harder to convince of a new teacher, especially female ones, than the board and its executive chairman.


Chapter 84. Dingo Channel


84.1. Puzzling News


A few days later, Claire Sawyer stomed my office with some flabbergasting news. "According to the statements of the executive officer of Dingo Channel, a cryogenic chamber holds the skull of ceceased Charles Dingo, the very founder of the corporation."

I nodded solemnly.

Ms. Sawyer continued, "however, according to the official registry of enterprises in the county of Los Angeles, there had never been such a thing as a founder of Dingo Channel named Charles Dingo."

I looked consternated.

Who or what was buried in the antarctic cold of said chamber located deep withing the headquarters of Dingo?

Was there really anything like a cryogenic chamber?

This was definitely not my business.

But the knowledge about a fraud did nothing in order to make me think more favourable about that profoundly uncanny bunch of plagiarisers.

I supposed some promotional campaign behind the rumours about the skull of "deceased" Charles Dingo.

Spencer Shay would of course have suggested once more to break into the heavily guarded headquarters of Dingo and steal the skull in order to let it examone by Mr. Sweeny, Quinndelyn Pensky, and Melinds Crenshaw.

But this was still definitely no such thing as an option.

This was Pacific Coast Academy, and definitely not Pacific Coast School Of Professional Burglary.

So, Claire Sawyer had apparently researched the history of the corporation behind Dingo Channel in some outrageously acribic manner, probably back to its roots and beyond.


The birth of Dingo in Los Angeles dates to the year of 1975.

But they did exist as a radio broadcast corporation already in 1936 in Oklahoma.

There was no Mr. Dingo at the cradle of this broadcasting corporation, neither in Oklahoma nor in California.

Rather, the name had been chosen due to the similarity of the barren wastelands of Oklahoma with conditions similar to those found in Australia..


This appeared to make a lot of sense.

Claire had also achieved figuring some facts about the current structure and situation of Dingo.

The company was owned eseentially by one Mr. Hawke[[227]] , also owner of Hawke Records.

Gustavo Rocque appeared to know him fairly well.

The two of them had been archenemies for over a dozen of years already.

Hawke had always tried to punch Gustavo Rocque and a few other record studio owners out of the business with a fist mor adamantinje than that of Shelby Marx.

And Wendy Gellar had found out something even potentially more interesting.

Mr. Hawke was also the record producer of Wade Collins.

Later, I would come to hear details about their deal from Ms. Collins, id est the sister of Wade.

Claire Sawyer was now most definitely in a position to help Carly SDhay to sue Dingo Channel.


84.2. Senior Prom Ahead


But now it was time for preparing the upcoming senior prom.

Quinn Pensky had to hurry up. "I still have to perform some laser surgery on the eys of Mrs. Puckett." After all, Quinn was responsible for a huge variety of surgeries concerning Sam's mom.

Zoey Brooks was just done designing the prom outfits for most of the participants.

She was now presenting those clothes.

Trina Vega demonstrated the gown for the girls on a hastiky established catwalk across the campus.

The new and excruciatingly fashionable tuxedo suit for the boys was exhibited on James Diamond, a future male supermodel.

Nicole Bristow had also invented the perfect haircut for the prom party. Now she just needed someone to perform it on. "Come on, Lola!"

But the freshly crowned Oscar winner had got a bunch of other things on her mind. She was going to the prom night with Spencer Carter, and this time, it was rather official.


84.3. Shelby regrets.


What was Lola'scousin Shelby doing after her equalluy superb victory?

Dana Cruz did not want to employ recently fired Darren Alex as a sparring partner. "I have already goit Chuck Javers, and vice versa."

Simon Nelson Cooke nodded solemnly.

There was really no place for some other athlete.

But Simon understood Dareren's concern. "It is better to get Shelby to take Darren back!"

On the other hand, there was still the problem of Darren's crush.

Dana growled,


Chuck loves me, too.

But does that prevent him in any matter from beating the living contents of my bowels out of me?

I don't think so!


Simon shrugs. "You know about his love for you."

Dana gazed wildly around. "That must be the difference!"

Simon nodded vigorously. "You must tell Shelby about this."

Dana looked at Cookie in a disturbed fashion. "What?"

There was nothing about this in the endlessly long contract elaborated by Claire Sawyer, future lawyer, for Fana Cruz and Simon Nelson Cooke.

Simon insisted, "Girls are a lot better at this."

Dana sighed deeply. "But Shelby is too upset after having lost to a mere postulant for the martial association instead of some accomplished master. She would rather have lost to Maya Feckner than to hitherto unbeknownst me!"

Simon shrugged helplessly,. But he did not really want to get punched and kicked into the second to next millennium by the hitherto unstoppable killer machine.

Dana Cruz sighed deeply. "OK, I will definitely do it." She sighed deeply, aware of the very possibility of triggering Shelby's fiery hostility even more than ever before.

And, indeed, the actions of Dana Cruz in these matters would turn out fairly fruitful, to say the very least.

Shelby would bang her utterly adamantine head over and over again against the concrete wall of her battle dome for having utterly failed to see the very simople and straightforward reason for Darren's exorbitantly annoying problems.

Darren Alexander would thereupon get reemployed on site as one of the sparring partners.

Shelby Marx would even perform this action against the opinion of her agent Rodrick Karnofsky.


84.4. Tori takes a change of mind.


After combat machine Shelby Marx, also her cousin Victoria Vega was now due for a certain change of mind. She showed up in my office in oder to request an appointment with Gustavo Rocque. "I am sorry for my inappropriate fits of anger."

I nodded solemnly. "Mr. Rocque is now away for a few days, though."

Victoria Vega sighed and shuddered for some disappointment. She explained the reasons for her metanoia. "Trina has never thanked me for my efforts to get her rehabilitated."

That was certainly a reason.

Victoria contined, "Last year, I sang a song by Drake Bell on the birthday party of our grandma." She panted heavily. "And what has Trina done? She has recorded my performance and sent it to a record studio, pretending it to be her very own voice."

I felt forced to cough amd choke upon hearing those exorbitantly flabbergasting words of Victoria.

But, whatever the reason, Victoria Vega would now be forced to wait for the return of Gustavo Rocque from his appointment across the country.


84.5. Dingo shuts down.


The informations gathered by future lawyer Claire Sawyer were clearly enough to sue Hawke and his excessively vile henchmen.

But, virtually over night, both Dingo Channel and Hawke Records had evidently disappeared from the very face of this planet.

The headquarters of Dingo were now all deserted.

But the cooling chamber rumoured to contain the skull of not existing Mr. Charles Dingo was still there, functional or not.

Whatever its contents, science teacher Mr. Bradford would soon arrive here at Pacific Coast Academy in order to examine those.

Mr. Sweeny was going to perform the preliminary jobs, but not by breaking into the sealed roomsas suggested by a certain law school dropout. He had got the permission of officer Vega.

By the way, the relationship between the founder family of Pacific Coast Academy and Filmore Bradford[[228]] , teacher for science at Empire City High, had been confirmed by now.

The latter was the black sheep of the family and had been duly disowned by the founder of Pacific Coast Academy, and he was for that reason by absolutely no means welcome as a new teacher at this school.

Thus we either needed to fight for his rehabilitation, or to fins another teacher.

But according to Mr. Sweeny, Mr. Bradford was the best teacher for science across the whole country, at most second to Mr. Jamerson.

And the latter had already denied his availability for the next two years at least.

This academic year was now awaiting its impending finale.

For that siomple reason, not too much time would be left for us in order to find an alternative.


Chapter 85. Lessons In Art


85.1. Draw a bunny!


During one of the most recent episodes of Carly Shay's superb web show, a viewer from Wiusconsin named Chad[[229]] had requested the members of the web cast to draw a picture of a cute little bunny.

The members of the crew had been following those orders.

But the various outcomes were differing largely from each other.

More precisely, the pictures of Fredward Benson, of Samantha Puckett, and of Michael Barret appeared fairly OK, at least after neglecting Michael's bunny with a pair of clackers in its paws.

This was especially the case for Samantha Puckett's impressive case study of a rabbit in birstal for having robbed the bank of Fort Knox.

But the picture produced by Carlotta Shay appeared — if put fairly mildly — much more horrible, apparently showing a bunny working by day for the fire brigades.

For Carly Shay, little sister of one of the greatest pop artists of his generation, this more or less embarrassing weakness appeared to be a full-blown catastrophe.

Her first idea in an attempt of lifting that excruciating shame was naturally that of asking her elder brother, the master of sculpting, Spencer Shay, to teach her drawing a bunny.

Alas. this most straightforward "solution" had actually been developing most rapidly into a miraculous box of Pandora.

So, what had happened between Carly and Spencer?

The law school droput had indeed on teaching his little sister the most important skills of modern arts, but in a way appearing most apopropriate in his own eyes, and thus not necessary in the way properly expected by Carly. He insisted in letting his little sister complete some of his most obscure sculptures without a definite meaning for outstanders, in lecturing unto her about the history of the meanings of the most important colours, such as yellow, red, and bue, and in letting her draw pictures of his thoroughly disgusting bodily impurifications.

Carly Shay was absolutely disappointed by her elder brother's absolutely inappropriate demeanour, including particularly his insistence in an understanding of three dimensional art as a completely indespensable prerequisite for learning two dimensional arts. And for precisely that avail, she was now looking for a much more suitable teacher of arts, but not without hurting the occasionally quite delicate feelings of her elder brother..

And Spencer Shay, deeply upset by his little sister's brash reception of his teaching style, was now loitering right here and right now in my office, weeping himself almost to death. "So, I am a bad person, right, a very bad one, ain't I?" He stomped his feet in an extremely noisy manner and started crying like a little boy after having gotten his favourite toy taken away by his parents for excessively naughty demeanour.

Disgusted by Spencer's lengthy and outrageously tortured report of the obviously quite dessperate situation, I replied briefly in an objecting manner, "Has Carly Shay really said so? I mean … Carly is a nice girl, she would never …"

Spencer Shay refused to let me complate my sentence and decided to grunt into my face, "hell, it was by no means whatsoever necessary for her to say that." He was now totally insecure as of his abilities as a teacher for sculpting here at Pacific Coast Academy, and thus he considered seriously withdrawing from his job.

The best thing about Spencer's situation: he was not even alone in it.

Upon watching the episode displaying the pictures of a bunny produced by Carly, Fredward, Michael, and Samanatha, Dustin Brooks had decided to draw a picture of a cute little furry bunny, and he had been ridiculed for it by Robert Carmichael and by some of the girls of his classes.

Zoey Brooks, now confirmed as a future employee of Mad Style responsible in particular for the Hollywood market, was of course the most obvious choice as Dustin's tutor with respect to drawing fluffy rabbits.

But, just like in the case of Spencer's efforts of teaching Carly, this venture had been doomed for failure and hardly ever been able to take off the ground.

Zoey Brooks was no less dismayed by Dustin's objection to her exorbitantly boring style of teaching arts, such as, but nor restricted to, letting him draw a bunch of monochromatic straight lines first.

And now Carly Shay and Dustin Brooks had started simply trading teachers, probably either an idea worthy of a genius — or a looming catastrophe.


85.2. Senior Prom Night


Five years ago, I had been new at this thoroughly illustrous academy, along with a bunch of girls such as Quinndelyn Pensky, Zoey Brooks, Dana Cruz, and Nicole Bristow.

And now it was time for me to say good by to above persons, as well as to all of their grade mates.

Just as all the years agoi, I was a whole lot better off preparing just a short sermon for the graduating bunch instead of some real hobknocker of an endlessly boring time waster.

This year, Victoria Vega and Kendall Knight — as a duet freshly composed by Gustavo Roque — were about to perform as our prom band.

And this was their first common public performance, public in the sense of facing an audience of much more than just a selected few people.

Needless to say, the two of them were now going to be excited beyond any measure for feeling the breath of some huundred people in their faces.

Logan Reese and his fiancé Mercedes Griffin were the first to sneak into the party hall.

Quinn Pensky had made it back from Seattle, just in time for the prom, right after having performed aforementioned eye surgery on the mpother of Samantha Puckett. But due to being just on her way to a scientific talk with Cal she would not really have the time to celebrate her graduation.

Dana Cruz was coming with Chuck Javers, but, more than anything else, she was here inorder to celebrate her recently confirmed admission to the Californian wrestling league.

Lola Martinez, followed by her fiancé and fellow Oscar winner Spencer Carter, was wearing a gown designed by Zoey Brooks, inspite of having been at her throat for almost three hyears now.

The two of them appeared to have made up just in the aftermaths of Lola's acquisition of the Oscar as the best female star for her rôle in Kelly Cooper.

Apropos Zoey Brooks: The Blond Mary Sue had not been able to find a prom partner, probably because of having been too busy for all that, not at least — in top of having been urged to fix this and that problem for the class mates — due to having been disappointed by Dustin's objections to her teaching style. And now she was about making it all alone to this most exciting event.

Michael Barret was the next among this year's seniors to arrive at the prom hall, with Wendy Gellar in one of his arms, and an obviously inevitable pair of clackers in the other.

Vince Bake was once more showing up at this event in the company of my step niece Miranda.

Mark del Figgalo was now taking his Brooke Margolyn down to senior prom.

Just as the year before, they were wearing their own hand knit outfit, distinguishing themselves neatly from most of the other couples.

Only Stacey and Eric, completely clad in a tunic made about entirely of star-sprangled cotton swabs, were another significant exception.

My speech was now over, allowing me to introduce the valedictorian, Ms. Zoey Brooks.

But the latter was still in a bad mood. A few minutes ago, she had given Carly Shay another lesson in arts, and she had been interrupted by an envious Spencer Shay complaining unreasonably about her lack of passion and creativity.

The encounter had been a really ugly one, put mildly.

Zoey and Spencer had started throwing pots of paint at each other, using a huge variety of different colours.

Unfortunately, the blond Mary Sue had by no means been able to make it to the impending valedictorian's speech in a fresh outfit and was thus more or less forced to appear chock full of paint stains. She was really angry and had got quite a few problems concentrating on her very disciplined speech in front of her fellow graduates, thusly triggering their foolish laughter.

Now the younger kids — including Dustin Brooks — responsible for the prom buffet arrived, ready to arrange and serve both drinks and sancks prepared carefully by Rose Pepper and by Kazu.

Dustin was flabbergasted when seeing his elder sister in her absolutely unusual "outfit". "Zoey?"

Victoria Vega and Kendall Knight started now singing along some old dance songs.

Zoey sighed deeply and decided to disappear as fast as possible in order to fix her outfit and take a shower after this evening spoiled beyond any reason.

Suddenly, Carly Shay showed up at the entrance, dragging her thoroughly reluctant elder brother — covered with a variety of stains of various colours — along into the prom party room. "Spencer, you are still owing Zoey Brooks an apology." She grunted, "or else Iwon't hug you anymore."

Spencer Shay growled silently, but he ultimately decided to follow his little sister's stern commands by walking up to the blond Mary Sue.

The broad mass of prom guests was looking — all aghast — at the law school drop out and his colour stained outfit.

Spencer Shay apperoached Zoey Brooks. "I am sorry for having painted your mouth all in white!"

Zoey was still angry, but she felt her little brother pinch her elbow, telling her to refrain from causing more trouble. "OK, so … I am sorry for having dyed your faceall in crimson red."

Spencer sighed deeply, suggesting finally: "Maybe we should go and clean our faces, in order to be a better example for your Dustin and my Carly?" He sobbed deeply. "I should really learn about more patience and stuff like that."

Zoey Brooks coughed, and she finally answered, "That sounds mice, but I have got a better idea." She panted heavily. "let us mix red and white into some fluffy light pink?"

Spencer Shay coughed, but he replied, while plastering a very light smile: "Oh,that sounds like some totally excellent idea!"

Thereupon, Zoey pulled Spencer Shay slowly into some excruciatingly lingering sort of kiss.

Their little siblings were now flabbergasted, and they had to notice the masses of onlookers applauding for Zoey and Spencer.

Confused Carly wounderd, "I still don't understand anytghing about arts, do I?" She looked at Dustin. "How about you?"

Zoey's little brother blushed almost to death."Certainly not," stammered he in some excessively timid manner. "How do Zoey and Sencer want to be a good example for us?"

Carly blushed deeply while gazing in some confused manner into Dustin's crystal beg like eyes, to the degree of almost melting away.

The two of them would be standing right there in this same posture for several hours, at least until the end of the buffet, not daring to make the same move as their elder siblings.

This was the weirdest senior prom night ever at Pacific Coast Academy, at least during my principacy at this school.

Was this rather a good sign or a bad one?


Chapter 86. Independence Parade At PCA


This year, the mayor of Malibu had chosen the campus of Pacific Coast Academy as the starting point of the annual independence parade of the community.

This selection, of course, albeit not for the first time in the history of Malibu's independence parades and of Pacific Coast Academy, was quite some honour for our school.

There was, alas, also a huge downside of this illustrous rôle: The necessity of some thorough planning of the event, implying a lot of additional work for the administration and the staff involved, such as poor me.

The vast majority of the pupils were usually already away for the summer break, barring those participating in one of the summer camps taking place on our campus during the vacations.

I had often — especially back at Ridgeway — moaned about the fact of the independence day celebrations happening during the summer break instead of being an integral part of the academic year.

Summer camps of various sort — athletic, academic, or preparation for life in general — had always been a very important part of life at Pacific Coast Academy.

The looming independence day right on our campus had triggered in particular the organisation of some camp dedicated to the preparation and participation of the parade itself, including the production of historical looking costumes and the performance of marching music, especially Sousa's inevitable Stars and Stripes Forever!.

Freshly graduated Zoey Brooks, now a voce president of Mad Style, was the official adviser responsible for a group of kids designing and tayloring the costumes. She was assisted by other gifted fashion designers such as aforementioned True Jackson — one of the first teenager vice presidents of Mad Style — and Olivary Biallo.

Gregory Badilow had volunteered for advising the quite illustrous group composing, practising, and performing the marching music, including Nevel Papperman, Megan Parker, Mikey Jay, Coconut Head, and many more.

Due to the whole mass of extra work, I had to stay here at Pacific Coast Academy for most of the summer break in order to supervise the preparations.

But there were also a few other things for me to do right here during the current summer break.

One of those tasks to be accomplished involved the visit of Filmore Bradford, the black sheep of the school's foundation company.

Mr. Bradford, the owner of Pacific Coast Academy, would attend this important parade as well and thus encounter his long since unwanted relative, probably not going out without a rather thunderous bang.

But the weird scientist — what a tautology! — had been confirmed by officer Vega as the official pandit responsible for the destiny of the cryogenic chamber discovered in the subterranean zone of the abandoned headquarters of Dingo.

Indeed, officer Vega — inspide of not being from Malibu's police district — was also responsible for the execution of the inevitably strict security measures imposed for the occasion of this independence parade.

The skull under scrutiny, however, if a human skull at all, was currently not located on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy, but safely tucked away in the "Los Angeles Forensic Institute".

During the winter, Carly Shaye and her crew had had an excruciatingly hard time with Fredrick Ficklehorn, author of numerous funny videos, because of Fredward Benson's inappropriate statement about them.

Up in Idaho, Fredrick had not only admired the cotton swab model of a treehouse made by Stacey Dillsen, he had also heard about the polls concerning the chances of Lola Martinez with respect to the impending decision about the next Oscar for the best female star. For the better or worse, Fredrick Ficklehorn was a blazing fan boy of Lola Martinez and her movies.

This fact had caused Fredrick Ficklehorn to urge Carly Shay to arrange a video with Lola and Fredrick, sitting in a tree house and stuffs.

Following her perfecrt cotton swab model, Stacey Dillsen had also completed a new and rock solid tree house for Robert Carmichael on our campus, perfectly suited for shooting a little fun movie with Fredrick and Lola.

The illustrous Hollywood diva, gloriously crowned by her first Oscar at the age of eighteen, was, however, not easy to persuade to participate in the deal, and she wanted to establish a series of conditions in turn, one of them being the choice of the time frame of the shootings, id est during the independence day parade.

Fredward Benson had now readied his modern web cam for this very purpose, using his latest available upgrade invented by Quinn Pensky.

The play to be performed by Lola and Fredrick was one of those many parodies on the term "Boston Tea Party", complete with sugar, milk, and cakes, a both funny and angsty play written by Chase Bartholomew Matthews before his departure to New York City.

There was a surprising end of the play not written into the script, specifically that of Fredrick trying to kiss Lola, but getting pushed down the latter by the little drama queen.

This was a painful but necessary lesson for the horny creep.

In total, Fredrick Ficklehorn and Fredward Benson did not really differ a lot from each other, as learned from this quite dramatical scene.

Whatever the means, the long cold war between the web show of Carly Shay and Fredrick Ficklehorn's movies was now finally settled.

The mayor of Malibu gave now a speech for this day, muxch longer than my average speech and thus much more boring and annoying for most of the studentrs and citizens of Malibu attending more or less patiently this unusual independence ceremony.

Gregory Badilow had finally gathered the choir and orchestral camp, finally rigged and ready for a totally impressive performance of the selected parade music.

Megan Parker had even gone through the troublesome efforts of locating and borrowing an oboe from the very days of John Philip Sousa, a venture requiring contacts with the custodian of Los Angeles Museum of Musical Instruments and the payment of a due caution.

Mikey Jay, master of the triangle, was now absolutely jealous due to using an fairly new triangle, unworthy of the noble historical reason for the parade.

Nevel Papperman, the guy gifted with absoluet audition, had not only fine-tunes each and every instrument used by today's march orchestra; he was also going to blow a hand crafted wooden recorder, unlike his usual run out of the mill plastic instrument.

After having met all of the necessary preparations, the choir and the orchestra was finally starting its performance, filling the air with the most lovely music of the American history.

The mayor gave the signal for the march from the campus towards the centre of Malibu to begin.

Many hundreds of legs started walking to the rhythmical and harmonic sound of the wonderful parade music.


"Hooray" for the flag of the free,
May it wave as our standard forever
The gem of the land and the sea,
The banner of the right!

Let despots remember the day
When our fathers with mighty endeavor
Proclaimed as they marched to the fray,
That by their might and by their right
It waves forever!


Leo Bradford[[230]] , proud owner of PCA, stood in awe when watching the banners fligh high and listening to the rhythmic sound of Sousa's march, now no longer able to refrain from forgiving the long time renegate of the Bradford family.

Finally Pacific Coast Academy had found a new and doubtlessly excellent teacher for science in Filmore Bradford.

The campus was now more and more turning empty, but hardly going to calm down.

The students had also prepared the burning of a doll representing Benedict Arnold, the doubtlessly biggest traitor in the history of our nation.

Quinn Pensky's systems of fire detection were still in usage, though, and they registered the smoke and the warmth of the smouldering straw and coarse rugs, causing the sprinkling engine to activate itself and extinguish the fledgling flames.

Oh well, all this was better than seeing a building like Kazu's Sushi Rox burning down for a second time, wasn't it?

So, this year's independence parade was now finally history, but it was after all just one of the highlights of a very stressful summer break.


Chapter 87. Yet Another Year


87.1. New Teachers


The sun was coming up slowly from the southern Californian hill braes and illuminating the still rather peaceful campus of our school.

This was the first of two drop days of the starting academic year, necessary — as aforementioned — in order to reduce the otherwise increased chaos.

By now, Pacific Coast Academy was finally twice as large as at the start of the last year of the principacy of Dean Carl Rivers, id est before going coeducative.

This drastical expansion had of course come along with a quit considerate increase of administrational efforts, especially at the begin of each year, including, but ot restricted to, making the time tables and the boarding assignments.

Fortunately, Ms. Burvich, oops. Mrs. Bitters was now back from her honeymoon trip to the land of nowhere and therefore once again able to take care of the dormitory room assignments instead of leaving them in the utterly incompetent hands of dormitory advisers such as Coco Wexler and Crazy Steve.

But the task was not an easy one, no matter for whom.

The departure of Zoey Brooks and her crew had left legendary "101 Brenner Hall" orphaned and unoccupied, desperately looking for new boarding students to fill a yawning gap not only existing in the boarding plans, but also in the very heart of Pacific Coast Academy.

Without any exaggeration it was absolutely licit to say: "Zoey Brooks, during her five years of life and studies here at Pacific Coast Academy, had influenced the culture over here much more than any other student ever before in the long history of this most elitary and noble school."

So, this was a very special year, a "Year One after Zoey Brooks", a new milestone in the history of Pacific Coast Academy, a year filled with looming apocalyptic expectations, a year of bold and blinking question marks.

Of course, many new students were now rushing towards the sacred halls of Pacific Coast Academy, including certainly quite a few interesting personalities, but also including some distinguished charismatic icon worthy of being mentioned in the same breath as Zoey Brooks?

Properly said, Zoey Brooks was not really going to disappear from the face of Pacific Coast Academy: she was still the loving, caring, and responsible elder sister of Dustin Brooks, and as such most likely to come down every now and then in order to protect her — no longer really — little brother.

And, as already insinuated in a variety of spots, there were not only a few departures and fresh arrivals of students, but also a few teachers coning and going.

Ms. Collins was one of the new teachers and obviously overwhelmed by the striking differences between the school of Palmwoods — a school with just one regular teacher — and this titanic boarding school with an overwhelmingly large variety of more or less specialised teachers, such as Pacific Coast Academy. Yet she needed to have a niche, a task hardly to be accomplished by most of the already existing teachers here, instead of just filling each and every temporarily emerging gap.

For the time being, just as an example, the fifth graders needed a new homeroom teacher because of the pregnancy break of one of the regular teachers.

But the most spectacular — and most likely also the most scary besides that of Mr. Takato — acquisition was still that of Filmore Bradford.

Now I am returning to the topic of the termination of service of Palmwood's school, an event not only giving us a new teacher, but also quite a few new pupils.

One of them was Beck Oliver, formerly a student at Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts before getting rightfully expelled for having collaborated with other troublemakers, videlicet Caitlyn Valentine and Jade West, in their project of abusing the school's cash for private purposes in absolutely no way related to their proper purpose.

This barely tolerable crime would have been a capital reason for rejecting Beck Oliver's application right here at Pacific Coast Academy as well.

I had decided to demonstrate some amount of mercy, but, in virtue of strong objections issued reasonably by some of our alumni and board members, and — last, but not least — by the owner of the school, I deemed it necessary to pronounce a fairly long period of probation, no less than one whole academic year.

The same thing had been already the case for Jade West and Caitlyn Valentine, just a year ago, and hitherto worked out fairly well, alas, not without leaving me with some decidedly uneasy feeling.

Jade West and Beck Oliver were rumoured to have been — and probably still to be — boyfriend and girlfriend, a very explosive and dangerous constellation increasing the intensity of my uncanny expectations.

Another group of new students at Pacific Coast Academy coming over from Palmwood's was a trio of girls commonly referred to as "the Jennifers": a blond one, a dark-haired one, and a mulata.

I doubted "Jennifer" to be the given name of all of them, and I deemed it as just one of many other fakes, including maybe their voice, their face, whatever.

Ms. Tamara Collins[[231]] had never trusted them for real, but, fortunately, she was accustomed to much worse rubbish, incarnated in the shape of her younger brother Wade.

And, indeed, Claire Sawyer knew the blond "Jennifer" very well, but not under this first name: rather, she knew her under the name of a certain Bitsy Johnson, an obnoxiously dumb and arrogant blonde having cheated over and over again during her few months spent as a student at James K. Polk, a period ending with an inevitable expulsion for cheating and bullying.

These news were by no means whatsoever encouraging, quite the contrary, and they made me totally despair.

Lola Martinez had just graduated from Pacific Coast Academy, but, in last minute, she had decided to apply for a position as a contracted adviser for our drama club, effectively replacing Helen Baxter after one year of vacancy. She had been talked into doing so by Ashley Blake, usually more of a rival than a friend.

But, after the assignment of the Oscar of the best female star unto Lola Martinez, Ashley had admitted to having always looked up to her colleague, no matter what, and then she had expressed her wish to learn more from her than possible during the last four years.


87.2. Anger Management


My worst fears about the destructive potential of having both Beck Oliver and Jade West among the students of Pacific Coast Academy had all of a sudden come true, only five hours after the beginning of the new academic year.

Beck Oliver had been nice to his equally gifted colleague Ashley Blake and expressed his joy about being at the same school as her.

This had been enough of a reason for Jade West to intervene and to pour a cup of hot coffee down Ashely's cleavage, making her squeal for several minutes in excruciating agony.

Of course, such an inappropriately aggressive demeanour, in particular for reasons as perversely lowly as jealousy, was by absolutely no means tolerable here at Pacific Coast Academy and cried like a storm wind for severe punishment.

Yet I could not force myself to expell Jade West after this first serious crime here on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy.

Maybe some temporary suspension, but at least some intensive anger therapy was thoroughly appropriate for the case of Jade West, as it had been appropriate for severe nutcases such as Samantha Puckett.

Once more, the psychotherapeutical experience and skills of Doc Lowe were now once again highly demanded, probably more than ever ago since the start of his office here at Pacific Coast Academy.

Well, the shrink had failed completely in the case of some harmless insaners such as Nicole Bristow and her obsession with cute boys, but he had at least achieved keeping her somewhat under control.

In the case of Jade West, this was not going to be easy, but it was definitely necessary, exactly like another of my decision, more precisely, that of putting Jade West and Beck Oliver into different classes.

Talking about Samantha Pucket: She had just bit a tooth loose and was therefore sent straight to the office of Doc Wheeler, our resident dentist, in order to get her foul tooth fixed and possinly even replaced.

This was most likely going to cause quite soome troubles, such as Samantha trying to bite the dentist's fingers bleeding, or maybe belching and spitting into his face; but she definitely needed to go through that.

After all, the new year at Pacific Coast Academy was about to start as troublesome as about any of the previous years.


Chapter 88. Cave Of Vampires


88.1. Star Models


Our alumna Zoey Brooks was now responsible for designing new costumes for major Hollywood productions, supposedly a very demanding task for a starter in the fashion branch; she was of course particularly predestrined for such a job due to her connections to the team of Malcolm Reese and other big players, including in particular Helen Baxter from Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts.

Of course the representation of her products to all those illustrous customers required the usage of many models, both male and female, preferrably more or less experienced ones with good references and recommendations from earlier jobs for Mad Style.

Zoey had ordered a bunch of European guys from her boss Amanda Cantwell, such as Romanian supermodel Bradley D'Impala[[232]] and guys with sometimes excessively strange — and, in many cases, at least according to my own judgment, deliberately forged — names such as Olaf Federman, Claus Nicholai, Yussle Francis , Yurgin Chrisman, Vooshnod, and Shamus Buckminster[[233]] in order to present the outfits for Malcolm's new adult shows, but she was also in need to teenager models, such as Lola's alike looking cousin Viviana and one Dakota North[[234]]

All those people from far away had to be accomodated somewhere in Los Angeles, and Pacific Coast Academy was still one of the possibilities, along with hotels like Palmwood and Chambrolay.

But only Dakota North and Viviana Martinez would be allowed to stary for two days at Pacific Coast Academy during the upcoming spring break.

Nevertheless, some of the supermodels would show up during this academic year in order to participate as guests in various school projects, such as our career week, or in the frame of some students' assignments.

Zoey Brooks — in her eagerness to break into the dimension of the unusual and hitherto unbeknownst in the world of fashion design — was even giving a bunch of newcomers a real chance, such as Trina Vega, Logan Reese, James Diamond, and Mercedes Griffin.


88.2. Star Cook


Spencer Shay was not just an excruciatingly gifted sculptor and master of otherwise labelled visual arts of the more or less weird persuasion, and much more than just some random law school dropout after only three days, he was also a more than just mediocre cook of some sorts, "inventing" a variety of new creative recipes, including a baked mash of yams roots with almond butter[[235]] .

But his master creation, nowadays also available in our cafeteria due to having been adopted skillfully by Rosemary Pepper, was doubtlessly a dish simply known as "spaghetti tacos": well, as the name suggested, these were taco shells filled with spaghetti and whatever currently available sauce.

Having achieved some sort of world wide renowne by means of continued skillful propaganda in his sister's web show, even the infamous Cooking Channel became aware of that fairly simple yet definitely impressive culinary composition.

Richard Flame[[236]], next to Pierre Le Mange[[237]] the leading star cook of the channel, at least according to the opinions of most of the fans and viewers, took this as a serious challenge and was now hell bent on convincing the professional judges of the absolute superiority of his own creations over the excruciatingly pretentious works of some run out of the mill amateur cook like Spencer Shay.

And this cried for a showdown between two cooks in front of the running cams, a board of three judges, and of course some gazillion of totally hungry viewers.

Rosemary Pepper, thoroughly familiarised with Spencer's excruciatingly eccentric recipes, declared herself rigged and ready, absolutely up to the challenge of the popular rival, taking over for overburdened Spencer Shay.

And today was the glorious day of the big challenge, right here on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy, or, more precisely, in the kitchen, generally referred to as of our cafeteria, generally referred to as "food cave" by our students.

Carly Shay insisted in adding a lot of garlic to today's recipe, in addition to the usual spices appearing in Spencer's spaghetti tacos. She explained, "Halloween is near, the day of vampires, werwolves, zombies, ghouls, gargoyles, demons, and especially vampires, creatures vulnerable only to sun light, to garlic, and to sacred crosses, if at all … "

While filming the contest, tech producer Fredward Benson, still lusting for Carly Shay in a manner truly worthy of some undead creep, tried hard to shut her up, insisting stubbornly in the non-existence of vampires and other undead or mythical creatures, no matter what name.

Carly Shay was slowly but surely turning deadly tired of not being taken serious by some guy claiming consistendly not only to be her best friend, but also her future second husband.[[238]], and she was definitely looking for a boyfriend thoroughly able to understand her very rather existential fears and troubles.

Samantha Puckett did not believe in vampires and other creatures of the darkness, either, but she loved garlic just like most other spices and wished some more of those, barring pernicious Peruvian puff pepper, in her dishes.

Rose Pepper did not get irritated by the arguments between the teenagers, and she kept on deciding on the ingredients by means of more or less objective criteria.

Richard Flame, usually boasting during his TV shows with exact quantities and qualities of his ingredients, preferred to remain completely silent about them for the puropose of this demonstration of his skill in the framework of the competition and duel with Rosemary Pepper.

The "food cave" kept on filling with exotoc scents of various kinds, making some bystanders feel dizzy in anticipation of the final outcome.

The judges were now going to decide, one by one, on the critial question: Richard Flame's six star recipe or Spencer's hitheto uncrowned spaghetti tacos?

The suspense kept on increasing during the judges' consultation about both of the delicious-looking dishes.

All of a sudden, Nevel Papperman stormed violently into the kitchen of the cafeteria, complaining, "stop!", thusly upsetting the judges and pretty much everyone else; he continued, with a deadly cold face, to claim, "the dish prepared by Richard Flame contains Peruvian puff pepper, a spice declared illegal in California due to being a potential cause for chapped lips and chronical kidney malfunctions."; he had once again demonstrated the functionality of his nose.

The judges were absolutely consternated, wondering about the consequences triggered by Nevel's accurate observation.

Filmore Bradford had been called in order to prove or disprove the seemingly brash and audacious statements made by Nevel Papperman.

Tests performed in his laboratory would confirm the and justify the intervention of the teenager with the perfrect nose.

Spencer's spaghetti tacos would have to be declared by deafult as the winner of the contest, winner due to retirement.

Richard Flame, now turning out as a mean cheater and a danger for public health, would not be found on the campus anymore: he would have disappeared from the face of the country and probably have gone to Mexico, changed his name, his face, his haircut, his ….


88.3. Vampire At PCA


Now Rose Pepper, still excessively sad because of having won the contest just due to disqualificcation of the competition, decided on free spaghetto tacos, complete with some extra garlic vinaigrette due to Halloween, to be served for everyone on the campus square.

Coco Wexler was a particular fan of Spencer's superb spaghetti tacos, only second to Michael Barret's family's recipe for exorbitantly fat and spicy ravioli with equally fat and spicy stuffings and sauce, but she also knew someone able to challenge them in front of the running cams: "My sister Evelyn[[239]]"

This was a plain surprise, a fact hitherto unknown by anyone here at Pacific Coast Academy, but it sounded like the perfect challenge for Rose Pepper and it was accepted wholeheartedly.

Suddenly, a strange message was coursing the campus.

Zoey Brooks was here together with Bradley D'Impala, aforementioned super star model from Transylvania.

But all of a sudden, the decided heartthrob of many among our female students and example to live up to for many among our male students, had disappeared in panic, leaving a whole campus of flabbergasted teenagers behind, possibly, as reported by some student having stood next to him, due to the smell of garlic..

Nevel Papperman declared immediately, and with a grim determination in his face, "Bradley D'Impala is a dangerous vampire from Transsylvania, the country of endless horror and nightmares; he needs to be destroyed with fire and sword!"; he petted his recorder and announced to seek out the secret cave of the vile creature and destroy it for good, using the power of special purifying prayers and with the sounds of the music of the death, the requiems …

I did not have any definite opinion about vampires and all that stuff, at least no more, but I could not allow for panic to seize the mass of kids at Pacific Coast Academy, and thence — still hoping for a more peaceful afternoon — I sent them back to their dormitory rooms.

But was Nevel Papperman, no longer visible on the campus square, really up to leaving the campus, against the official book of rules, in order to seek out for a secret cave and try to "destroy" the suspected "vampire"?

Zoey Brooks did not share Nevel Papperman's guesses about the nature of Bradley D'Impala, and she tried to calm down the kids around her, saying "Bradley is just a man like everyone else, more pretty and gorgeous than most of them, but most definitely no less human, regardless of the statements of certain propagandists."

Alas, her words fell just like silent a million of silent raindrops, quite to the contray, they even turned a few kids more upset, such as especially Jade West.

The Goth girl, natural enemy of the undead, used to look rather pale; but now she started heating up; she was certainly up to something, but what?

Along came Gavin Mitchel, complete with a few movies in his hands, low budget short movies by fledgling teenage low budget movie maker Stephenie King[[240]], movies about ghosts and stuff like that, perfectly suited for Halloween.

For the time being, the whole troublesome excitement about Bradley D'Impala was apparently about to be forgotten, but for how long?


Chapter 89. Thanksgiving Day Parade


89.1. Macy's At PCA?


Thanksgiving day was certainly celebrated proudly everywhere in the whole country, including our beloved California, but it was rooted most firmly in the tradition of the northeastern states, in solemn commemoration of the early generations of the anglosaxon colonialisation of the new world, a process starting up there an having its fiercest obstacles in the harsh and barren winters of states like Massachusetts, Connecticut, Newhamptonshire, and Maine.

Maybe for this reason, the greatest and most traditional thanksgiving day parades were rather held in the states with rather awkward winters, including in particulr world renowned Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in new York City.

Our public celebrations were fairly lame in comparison, and certainly not satisfying many students, especially those from above areas and thoroughly accustomed to Macy's and comparable events, but stuck here at Pacific Coast Academy during the Thanksgiving break for some reason.

Ryan Laserbeam, as a New York City native, was certainly one of those rather disappointed guys wishing for a real parade even here on our campus: He had suggested preparing a really exciting Thanksgiving parade in the likeness of Macy's, a parade making even his friends True Jackson and some Lulu go pale like nobody's business; he was — surprisingly — even ready to do something for it, such as help Gordy decorating the campus.


89.2. Fort Eastridge


During several years, the school of Eastridge, among some others, located — as suggested by the name — at the eastern ridge of Los Angeles had provided us with mercenary cheerleaders, making up for our lack of those.

Only the third year of coeducativity had brought us to the point of being no longer in need of hiring external cheerios from any school, due to an improved ratio of male and female students.

For that avail, I had somewhat forgotten about that school only accessible for girls, until this special moment on some lonely fall afternoon …

Officer Vega stood all of a sudden in the frame of the entrance to my office, dragging some "unruly kid" along with himself: Logan Mitchell!

Having always imagined Logan as some nice sort of guy, I was thoroughly shocked and required an explanation for this embarrassing situation, either from officer Vega or from Logan Mitchell.

The officer explained hastily, "I could not believe it when being called by the security team of Eastridge in order to arrest some illegal intruder."

Indeed, Logan Mitchell had snuck into girls only school Eastridge, wearing a girls' wig and faking his voice with the help of some chemicals, but for which purpose? Compoletely out of breath, he tortured himself into explaining,


There is that new student teacher working at Eastridge: Phoebe Nachee: Phoebe Nachee[[241]]and she is incredibly hot, and she has won last year's Fields medal, and …

I could not miss out on this, and thus I snuck into Eastridge, crossdressed as a girl due to the school's strict exclusion of boys, making it thusly into Phoebe Nachee's classes.


Now, this was a really stupid situation, and probably not the first occurence of something like that over at Eastridge, but rather a typical scenario at such a girls-only school.

Tamara Collins had once upon a time been a student teacher at Ridgeway, and she was for that reason still able to tell us many a story about boys trying to sneak in, the usage of a girls' wig being one of the less creative tricks.

Logan Mitchell, still intimidated by the gaze of Officer Vega, refused to continue talking about the whole thing except in the presence of his "layer", id est Claire Sawyer.

I told Beverly to call Claire right here into the administration office, leading to a silent break lasting for several minutes, until the arrival of the future lawyer.

Then the future lawyer stumbled into my office and expected to listen to an explanation, of the long sort, for a reason for having been called out of a tea party with her friends Jennifer Mosely and Lisa Zemo.

And in deed, Logan Mitchell's reason had not been that of fearing even more penalty, but even more embarrassment, as seen from his continued report


Phoebe Nachee started holding up her new book about advanced differenetial geometry, and she was claiming "No boy will ever be able to ever understand that book,", but she was wrong.

In fact, I have already read the book, and I did not encounter any real difficulties, and thus I had to object to her bold statement, unfortunately without being able to avoid blowing my own cover.

Phoebe and the other students, all of them girls, of course, called for security, got me thrown out again, and rendered unto the police.


That must have hurt the lovesick freak badly, and in more than just one respect: not getting his intellect duly acknowledged, getting turned down by his crush, not being able to stick to his cover, and then getting dragged into my office for some appropriate punishment for leaving our campus without a sufficient permission, on top of the third-party imposed punishment for breaking, as a boy, into a school reserved completely for girls.

I suspired deeply, waited for Claire Sawyer's plea, and decided to let him get away with it, deeming his already received multiple embarrassment and the possible fine isdsued by Eastridge enough of a retribution for his inconsiderate misdeeds, although I was aware of now more or less inevitably looming protests to be made by the admonistration of Eastridge.

Well, Quinn Pensky had once encountered severe resistence from the parts of the boys of the science club under the leadershjip of Wayne "Firewire" Gilbert, but, uin the end, she had been able to convince the guys into being — said mildly — at least as great a scientist as them, no, indeed, being a genius worthy of the national science fair award.

So, maybe there was a possibility, with the help of the one and only true Quinn Pensky, to get Phoebe Nachee at least to reconsider her flat statement and giving Logan Mitchell the chance of demonstrating his intellectual prowess.

Logan Mitchell's other goal, his very crush on Phoebe Nachee, was of course of a different category, and definitely not my business to mess with.

Now I sent Logan Mitchell back to his dormitory room in order to get his wig, his gown, and his mask, everything perfectly arranged by Caitlyn Valentine, apparently a future mask builder of some sort, neatly removed and replaced with Logan's normal outfit.


89.3. The Party


Indeed, Ryan Laserbeam, Carlos Garcia, and Custodian Gordy had been able to arrange the biggest Thanksgiving day part ever in the history of Pacific Coast Academy, an event inviting many guests from other parts of Los Angeles, making up for the absence of many students due to Thanksgiving break.

Much to my suprise, Quinn Pensky and Phoebe Nachee were right among them and fighting their way vigorously across the campus.

Quinn had actually been able to talk Phoebe Nachee into looking for Logan Mitchell and apologising for her brash and stubborn demeanour.

I sent them the way of Carlos Garcia, one of Logan's best friends already back at Minnesota, in order to figure the whereabouts of the embarrassed boy.

But Phoebe Nachee announced to be very stern when judging the intellectual abilities of Logan Mitchell, no matter what.

Suddenly, an infuriated Zoey Brooks crossed my way, looking for Dustin Brooks, but also with some bold complaint on her lips: "Bradley D'Impala has cancelled all of a sudden all of his appointments in California and is about to ruin most of the Hollywood business of Mad Ttyle." Apparently, she made Nevel Papperman or other students of Pacific Coast Academy responsible for the unfortunate change of D'Impala's professional plans, maybe even of having scared him away from California for good.

The little bugger, or even Jade West, for that matter, had not really done something inappropriate after the dramatic incident during our Halloween party, right, well, Nevel had kept on playing Verdi's Requiem on his recorder, accompanied by Megan Parker and her oboe.

But a romantic remake of medieval penitential music, while definitely not fitting with everyone's taste on this planet, was certainly by no means a reason to keep anyone, Bradley D'Impala included, forever away from California, was it?

I had got a hard time calming down Zoey Brooks, but I better understood her concerns, given her big responsibility for "Mad Style".

In any other respect, the Thanksgiving day parade on our campus appeared to have been a great success, but it did by no means look like vouching for the absence of severe troubles during our next celebrations on the campus, such as the upcoming Christmas celebrations.


Chapter 90. Royal Blood


90.1. The Governmental Spy


It was now early December, or, in other words, the really stressy time of the year cornered between the finished Thanksgiving break and the looming Christmas break.

The aftermaths of the former and the preparations of the latter kept my head spinning like a broken record, a feeling even intensified by the unannounced vistit of a sinister white-skinned yet dark-haired man of my age.

The intruder introduced himself as one Royce Bingham[[242]] , governmental agent, and he proved this not only by giving me a business card with these same facts and a contact number, but also by showing me an official document issued by the very president's secretary; beyond any doubt, he meant serious business.

But I was still totally surprise by his appearance, pondering something like "As a governmental spy he would rather have to deny and hide his identity instead of boasting with it in the public."

But Royce Bingham — in the doubtful case of being his real name — started explaining the reason for his unannounced visit.


The royal family of Spain[[243]] is now on a tour visiting the United States, and, upon an invitation by Leo Bradford, the venerable owner of your school, has chosen to come over here in order to attend the Christmas celebrations here at Pacific Coast Academy.

And the official chairman of the "Department Of Foreign Affairs" has, for that avail, decided to put me in charge with seccurity of the noble family.


Now, that was a hammer of a message, and certainly involving quite some honour for our school, but also an unspeakable heap of responsibility, nothing at all like our usual Christmas celebrations.

As reveiled unto me only later, the King of Spain was an alumnus of Pacific Coast Academy, but had never come here for a visit during the last fifteen years, and wanted to present this place proudly to his wife and to his teenage son, Prince Gabriel.

Royce Bingham was now about to show me a picture of the royal family of Spain taken upon their passage through New York City, a picture holding yet another bomb of a surprise for me.

Prince Gabriel, the son of the king and heir to the Spanish throne, looked exactly like Fredward Benson, son of Marissa Benson, an average and absolutely nowhere near noble woman from downtown Seattle.

I had to look thrice at the picture in order to be able to believe it, and I had to decide whether to keep this information to myself or whether to talk about it. I had to think about the story of some medieval English king by the name of Edward, and his supposed lookalike, a story pushing me finally into fessing up and talk to Royce Bingham about Fredward Benson.

Surprisingly, the governmental spy was not really surprised by this coincidence, but he refrained from explaining this, and thereupon just insisted in extra precautions to be taken.

So, what exactly had been going on behind the world's back?


90.2. Bad Teeth


Fredward Benson would return to Seattle during the Christmas break, but the exact time point of his departure was possiblbly later than the moment of arrival of the royal Spanish family, including Prince Gabriel, on our campus.

Of course, there was the vague possibility of getting the two guys accedidentally — and in some more or less fantastic scenarioes even deliberately — mixed up, leading potentially to some catastrophe of international dimensions.

A blood test would have allowed us to identify the prince after the mess, but it would also have required some indiscrete intervention, and, in addition, have failed miserably in the particularly intriguing and flabbergasting case of both of them being monozygotic twins.

In many cases, a simple comparison of medical history, such as the current state of the teeth, would have sufficed in order to distinguish two alike looking cases.

For that avail, I had asked Doc Wheeler, our resident dentist for almost two years, to disclose his reports about the current state of the teeth of Fredward Benson.

The white-coated tooth miner was still complaining about the injuries received from the impressively pointy fangs of Samantha Puckett. When hearing about the very reason of the need to disclose the state of Fredward's teeth in particular, Doc Wheeler reacted like after suffering from an electric shock, but, evemn when asked, he refused to tell me the reasons for being surprised.

What pray tell, had been going on there?

Things would turn out even worse the very next day.

Virtually over night, Doc Wheeler had disappeared from the face of Pacific Coast Academy into the land of nowhere, without leaving a trace or a message or an address, even without having been paid for the last month, making a connection with Fredward Benson and Prince Gabriel plausible.


90.3. Wheeler's Nephiew


I would have preferred to avoid letting Fredward Benson know about his similarity with the heir to the foreign throne, but I had not been able to keep my mouth shut.

Megan Parker had heard implicitely about Doc Wheeler's reaction, and now she stood in my office in order to tell me something with the potential of striking me just like yet another bomb, more precisely, she told me something about Doc Wheeler's nephiew Toplin, or, rather, Toplin's close similarity with Fredward Benson. "That creep hit on me, back in San Diego, like three years ago, and got me invited to his brother's — Thornton's — fifteenth birthday party."

Doc Wheeler had also been Fredward's dentist for over ten years, and he had thus known about Toplin's similarity with Fredward, but he had never mentioned this to me or to Fredward.

Summing it up, with some bad luck, we were talking about a triplet consisting of Fredward Benson, Toplin Wheeler, and Prince Gabriel, a triplet of boys separated at birth.

Granted, Megan Parker had tried to talk to Fredward Benson about it since her arrival here at Pacific Coast Academy, but she had not succeeded due to the awhwardd circumstances: According to Fredward's stubborn assumptions, Megan had just been keeping on making fun of him, back then thoroughly puzzled and confused by both the striking similarity of Melanie Puckett and Samantha Puckett, and, of course, the one between Carly Shay and Megan Parker in person.

Fredward Benson did not know much about his father, but he had always assumed Marissa Benson to be his mother, and thence guessed his father to have been one of his mom's former guys, whether within or without wedlock.

But the current mess of circumstances had shaken these hitherto firmly accepted a-priori-assumptions, sending him into a state of both exorbitant confusion and blazing curiosity.

In order to get his mind cleared and his inner chaois sorted out, Fredward Benson decided to leave California one day before the official start of the summer break in order to avoid any an even more upsetting encounter with the royal heir.

Nobody here at Pacific Coast Academy did, or was going to, resent his spontaneous decision, granting him the necessary pass allowing him to leave as early as possible.

Royce Bingham at least reveiled the reasons for his previously obscure reactions: he had heard about rumours of troubles during the birth of Prince Gabriel, making the story about a triplet of princes believable, but without confirming them.

The current situation required a lot of discretion, but it made it impossible to inhibit the curiosity of anyone involved in one way or the other..


90.4. Merry Christmas At PCA


Officer Vega, chosen by the county administration as the man in charge with the security, was in full control of life at Pacific Coast Academy over the Christmas day.

Of course, the pupils staying at Pacific Coast Academy over the Christmas break were feeling honoured, and they had planned a very elaborate programme for the Spanish monarchs, especially the teenage prince.

But everything had to be controlled and counterchecked over and over again by officer Vega.

After all those troubles, the visitors and our residents still had a nice Christmas party here at Pacific Coast Academy, but nothing exceptional.

Strangely, Prince Gabriel's wishes all got fulfilled, especially when standing next to Timothy Turner, except one, his greatest but hitherto undisclosed wish.

What was that wish, and would it ever come true, with or without the help of more and more obscure and creepy Timothy Turner?

At the moment, I did not care, and I was just hoping for the wehole sojourn of the royal family here in Los Angeles to get along smoothly without a coincidence, and I was already looking forward to the days after their successful departure.


Chapter 91. Famous Last Teeth


91.1. Melanie In Love


A new year according to the calendar was taking over for a passing year of chaos and confusion.

The time between the departure of the Spanish royal family, complete with Prince Gabriel, and the return of Fredward Benson, was supposed to give me some rest before the looming tempest, at least in theory, and only in theory.

The danger of a deliberate of accidental mixing up of Fredward and the heir to the throne of Madrid was for the moment not extant.

But now there was a different problem involving one of our pupuils, and not just anarbitrary one, but Melanie Puckett, the monozygotic sister of Sam.

The blonde was, according to rumours brought forth by various other students, head over heals in love with Prince Gabriel and now probably going to suffer endlessly due to the separation. She was no longer really able to eat and sleep and drink, and she was now hiding all day under her bed or i some dormitory room without talking to anyone, including her own roomies.

Samantha Puckett would not take her sister in any way serious, either, she had never done so, and she would never do, no matter what.

Talking to Melanie's mother would have been utterly useless, give the old fury's attitude of not really caring about her daughters, no matter what.

At least Nicole Bristow, currently studying at Los Angeles School For The Professional Beautician Vocations had got some news for us. The bimbo girl from Kansas City would soon come and run her own smoothie cart on our campus, assisted by her husband Nichola Webber, oops, Nicholas Bristow, not as a full time job, but still.

Last Year, Tee Boh had been thoroughly disappointed after getting rejected by Nicole, or, rather, by getting his ears talked bleeding by the mercilessly bombarding bimbo voice. Now he was close totally close to returning to Seattle and his beloved Groovy Smoothie in order to sell his vinegar cucumbers or his fish pies on a stick to unwary downtown kids.


91.2. Creepy Skull


The year before, Dingo had plagiarised Carly Shay's web show in the most perverted manner, but apparently not been able to take the legal genius of Claire Sawyer into account, and was thius utterly doomed for failure.

The police of Los Angeles was still looking for the culprits and had now got some hot trace, a couple of hints leading all to Mexico.

This meant new hope hore the kids, and a chance to get paid for the stolen show.

At the same time, Vega's team was still looking through the leftovers found in the abandoned headquarters, including the freezing chamber.

Filmore Bradford was now done with a huge variety of genetic tests invoilving the frozen skull or something found in the cryogenic chamber.

The skull had been genuinely human and been missing all of its teeth — maybe, but not necessarily, a coincidence in virtue of equally vanished dentist Doc Wheeler — and definitely belonged to some mysteriously disappeared grand nephiew of former president Howard Taft, the one with the huge pants.

But the missing teeth reminded me of another creepy thing, based on a statement made a few months ago by excessively arrogant goth girl Jade West.

Sinjin van Cleef — a student at Hollywood School For The Professional Performance Arts — had not only hit obnoxiously on Jade West during her sojourn at that school, but also collected — and probably still was collecting — the teeth of deceased relatives of former presidents of the United States of America.

I felt my very own teeth crumble and fall apart in my mouth, making me squeal for painful disgust.

Where did Sinjin van Cleef got his teeth from, and did he even have the missing teeth of aforementioned great Nephiew of Howard Taft, and how had he come to purchase them?

There was of course a huge variety of possibilities, ranging from deliberate theft to being a victim of sinister intermediate dealers.

Officer Vega did not hesitate yet another minute and ordered immediately a thorough rummage of the residence of Sinjin van Cleef and his collection of teeth of relatives of former presidents of our nation in order to allow Filore Bradford to test the desoxyribonucleic acid of the finds and compare them to the skull found in the cryogenic chambers of the abandoned headquarders of Dingo Channel.


91.3. Tooth Collection


Just as expected, the family of Sinjin van Cleef had by absolutely no means been pleased by the thoroughly shocking new year's gift, videlicet the visit of officer Vega in order to rummage the teeth collection.

Fortunately, I did not have to be present during that ugly action taking place at the residence of that family.

Sinjin had even proudly admitted to owning the teeth of said relative of Howard Taft in his treasure chest, complete with a certificate of authenticity, a diploma issued by no other than our friend and dentist Doc Wheeler, along with many other teeth intented for becoming components of excessively fantastic sculptures worthy of the company of Harry Joiner's or Stacey Dillsen's, let alone Spencer Shay's.

The certificate dated from the year of 1994, in other words, was about as old as Sinjin van Cleef himself.

According to Claire Sawyer, it was necessary to find and inform the living heirs and relatives of the great nephiew of Howard Taft and to render the grisly objects unto them.

Sinjin van Cleef did even hold a secret contact address of Doc Joe Wheeler in his dear belongings, an address potentially useful for locating the dubious refugee. He admitted to have purchased more teeth from the creep of a dentist, such as the teeth of a great great grandson of Abraham Lincoln and those of a sister of John Kennedy.

The police, guided by officer Vega, had to confiscate the whole illegally purchased collection and look for the lawful owners of the creepy goods.

Of course, Sinjin van Cleef was now bitterly disappointed, given the large amount of money and time invested into his collection, but he should have been lucky to escape from significantly more severe punishment, probably due to Claire Sawyer's vouching intervention. But from where had Sinjin van Cleef got all the money spent into authenticated reeth from all those people without his parents' knowledge?

This was not my concern, anyways, unless all informations available and useful for locating Doc Wheeler and allowing for a thorough interrogation of the creepy dentist.

Doc Hollywood did not yet have any sample of the desoxyribonucleic acid of the royal family at hand, but he had been able to analyse that of Fredward Benson and could already find traces of Iberian descent, an ethnicity not found in the the hitherto known ancestry of Marissa Benson. And he had discovered something else and even more strange.

There was most probably some sort of an electronic device of hitherto unknown functionality hidden within the skull of Fredward Benson, an apparatus causing him on and off to go crazy and talk unrelated Spanish words[[244]] .

So, after all, we were left with more weird skulls and more mysterious devices and more unknown ancestries than before the start of the new year, and what not.

Was there any somewhat reasonable explanation for all these seemingly unreasonable circumstances, an explanation not requiring some exorbitantly flabbergasting and uncanny conspiracy of hitherto unencountered dimensions?

For the time being, a choir of students started chanting Should Auld Acquaintance Be Forgot? by immortal Roert Burns, accompanied by the lovely sound of a perfectly tuned piano played by Nevel papperman.


Should auld acquaintance be forgot
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot
And auld long syne.

For auld lang syne, my jo,
For auld lang syne,
Let's tak a cup o' kindness yet
For auld lang syne!


I sat back in the lounge, waiting for the celebrations to pass by and the mass of students — including especially Fredward Benson — return for the first classes of the new year according to the calendar.


Chapter 92. Stuck In The Snow


92.1. Blizzards


Unfortunately, the expected return of the kids was by no means going on as smoothly as expected.

The weather in southern coastal California was nice and calm, both according to the forecasts of Walter Nichols and to that made by his archrival Bruce Windchill.

But other regions of the country were not in the most fortunate situation of Los Angeles and San Diego, but they had to suffer from heavy gales, sometimes even blizzard like snow storms inhibiting many cross continental flights and even more the passage through the Rocky mountains and other hill chains.

Some students, especially those from the central and eastern states, including Minnesota, were thus temporarily stripped of all occasions for a travel here to Los Angeles in time.

Logan Mitchell, James Diamond, Kendall Knight, Katie Knight, and Carlos Garcia were still stuck at the totally snow covered airport of Minneapolis and had to dig their way to the surface in one way or the other.

Students from New York City, such as Ryan Leslie Laserbeam, were forced to take a detour over safe airports such as Miami and even Nassau on the islands of the Bahamas and Kingston on Jamaica, routes now overburdened and high on demand, and thus they would not be able to arrive without a significant delay, either.


92.2. Freddie Is Back


Seattle was not really struck by a blizzard, at least not to the extent of disabling its airport for days and preventing all of our students from the state of Washington from returning in time from their Christmas vacations.

Fredward Benson, Carly Shay, Spencer Shay, Samantha Puckett, Mandy Valdez, and quite a few other kids from that region had thus not had major problems for their trip to Los Angeles.

Christmas break had most likely been uttermost terrifying for Freddie, given his confusion about his possible origins.

And the first thing he got to hear right after his return to the campus were the news about the radio device, or whatever, stuck in his head. He appeared terribly confused by these weird news, yet he was unable to deny having been notified by various people about his random, sometimes more or less inappropriate, remarks made in Spanish, a language, and so he confirmed again, not really familiar to him. He had already asked shrink Lowe about this stupid attitiude of his, but without getting a really satisfactory reply.

Doc Hollywood had offered to examine — with the help of his deputy Quinndelyn Pensky — the necessary spot inside the skull of Fredward Benson, but he was not allowed to perform such a surgical operation without the prior written permission of Marissa Benson.

And telling Fredward's mother would have certainly triggered a completely different and more delicate can of worms.

Logan Mitchell, now the successor of Quinndelyn Pensky as the deputy of Doc Hollywood, had got a vague idea of a possibility of examining Fredward's skull without having to cut anything open.

This looked certainly a whole lot more promising than anything sounding like a horror show of blood and brain.

Back at Seattle, Fredward Benson had not found the guts to ask his mother about all the dubious stuff torturing his brain since quite some time.

The pressure on him was now increasing more and more, without a hope for an impending relaxation.

And during the winter break, Fredward had also been bothered by shirtless creep Charles Cornelius Gibson alias Gibby with his problems at Ridgeway.

Gibby was now officially prohibited, by the unholy trinity ruling over Ridgeway, to date his girlfriend Tasha[[245]] named Tasha from a different school.

This went far beyond the competences of any public school administration.

The school had been really run down under the principacy of Dean Rivers and his two merciless henchmen Briggs and Howard.

The authorities of the state of Washington were much slower than here in California, for whatever reason.

I was not really willing to watch silently forever.

But was there really a possibility for someone like me to do anything about the corrupt and fouled up situation at Ridgeway from here in California?

Not even legalist genius Claire Sawyer, usually an infallible source for useful advice, was able to come up with a viable solution to that rampant problem from the top of her head.

Without people like Mr. Monroe at James K. Polk and Mr. Greene at Cedarwood Valley, the disctrict schools of California would have sunk into a sticky morass of corruption and decadence.

But where were the Greenes and the Monroes of the state of Washington?


92.3. Maris Bingham


Doc Hollywood was busy with checking the desoxyribononucleic acid of various teeth found in the illegal collection of Sinjin van Cleef, but now he was in charge with a similar check for someone else.

Royce Bingham's blond "daughter" Maris was studying at nearby Eastridge, aforementioned prep school for girls only, in her senior year already.

Actually, Royce was not convinced of being the father of Maris, not in a strictly biological way sense at least, basically because of the completely incompatible hair colours.

Maris had been over the holidays with her mother in New Jersey and thereafter been prevented from returning in time to California by the blizzard over the northern states.

But Royce had still got a hair of Maris's somewhere lying around.

Doc Hollywood shrugged. "Maybe that's enough for an analysis, but it does not necessarily have to suffice."

At the same time, Royce Bingham had found out more about the birth of Prince Gabriel in Madrid, more precisely, he had found some witness.

Given the looming scandal, the witness, a former emplyee of the royal palace of Madrid, was quite weak.

I started to shiver and to quiver upon hearing the words "looming scandal", given its potentially international consequences.

Fortunately, as a renowned and experienced governmental spy, Royce Bingham was the one most qualified to intervene, to investigate, and to act correctly in that excessively delicate situation

According to the facts extracted by Royce Bingham from rumours and from aforementioned volatile witness, the king of Spain had been blackmailed over the last fifteen years, and both Marissa Benson and Doc Wheeler are among a group of Americans behind the blackmailing.

Judging along these lines, Fredward Benson and Toplin Wheeler had been more or less held hostage by their fake parents since their youth.

This was indeed absolutely no accusation and no statement to be made in the greater public without severe preceding considerations.

And finally, Doc Hollywood was done with the examination of the sample desoxyribonucleic acid, ready to annopunce the resulting verdict: "Maris Bingham and Royce Bingham are not related."

And now his wife would inevitable have to listen to quite some accusations and be challenged to answer to them.

During the last five years, I had come to see my own marriage getting flushed down the drain, then I had witnessed the separation of the parents of Stacey Dillsen, and a few more.

The possible divorce of the Binghams would not only not be my business in any stretch of the word, but it would hardly even hurt Maris, given her Logan Reese like character and the infinite amount of Malcolm Reese's divorces and remarriages during the last decades.


92.4. Chaos At Eastridge


Finally, the last students formerly stuck in the blizzard arrived safely here at Pacific Coast Academy.

And, as seen in the case of Maris Bingham, also Eastridge High School For Girls had been suffering in some sense from the problems caused by the weather.

But there were other troublesome events taking currently place at that outfashioned school for girls only, events caused not unlikely by one or more of my students.

Phoebe Nachee had apparently changed her mind completely after the stern examination of the logical and intellectual qualities of Logan Mitchell, and int he aftermaths kind of started inciting a revolt against the stern administration of the school.

The two of them were now some sort of a couple, apparently an open provocation for the established life at Eastridge.

Phoebe considered all of a sudden gender specific schools as outdated and slowly decaying fossiles, the very platypus of the modern American society, stuck in the past like a plane in a snow storm.

Many of the students had started joining the protests and wanted the more or less immediate end of the insane security measures, if not the end of the girl-only character of Eastridge as a whole.

Maybe the situation was similar to the last years of boys-only Pacific Coast Academy.

I had never heard much about the process leading up to coeducation, barring the insensate resistance of Leo Bradford, the very owner of Pacific Coast Academy, and the double-faced attitude of Carl Rivers, and the pressure by executive chairman .

Now a lot of drama was to be expected to seize the life at Eastridge as well.


Chapter 93. Valentine's


93.1. Valentine's Elections


January was now gone in order to let February in, but it had left us behind with quite a few troubles of the aforementioned sort.

For the moment being, I was busy with the preparations of this year's Valentine's party at Pacific Coast Academy, one of the most popular events among the students here since its aforementioned introduction.

Caitlyn Valentine was particularly proud of the name and claimed her own great grandmother as the very inventor of Valentine's day parties.

Some of the pupils here were even willing to believe Caitlyn's absurd story, exactly like those about the evil deeds already committed by her little brother, such as using the garden in front of their residence as a toilet.[[246]]

At our Valentine's parties, we had introduced the concept of a Valentine's queen and a Valentine's king, completely in analogy to the outstanding tradition of the homecoming and prom court couple.

Originally, their had just been a Valentine's queen, to be determined , plain and simple, by stubborn counting of the girls' received Valentine's flowers.

This way, Lola Martinez had won the first Valentine's crown.

But then Zoey Brooks had protested against this one sided practice, maybe because of resenting Lola's idea of getting Chase to hire Trina in order to maker her jealous, but not completely without reason.

Logan Reese could have easily bought gazillions of flowers in order to make the girl of his choice win the Valentine's crown.

But was his opinion really worth more than that of a student scraping through with a only a few bucks to spare for flowers?

Likewise, an excessibely rich girl or one with appropriately powerful connections would have been able to buy herself enough flowers to get anywhere in the race for the Valentine's crown.

So, I had decided to make a regular voting, one voice each kid, no more and no less, just as for the homecoming and the prom elections.


93.2. The Party


Of course a Valentine's day party — here at Pacific Coast Academy as much as anywhere else — was nothing without party music, and that did not mean music made, or songs sung, by Caitlyn Valentine.

The bimbo girl was terribly enthusiastic, but she lacked the fine voice of really good singers like Victoria Vega or Lisa Perkins and was only able to sing with the help of Fredward Benson's manipulations.

By the way … Lisa Perkins was now a confirmed professional member of the band of Drake Parker, and much more than that, she was now rumoured to be pregnant with his baby and going to marry him during the spring break.

Victoria Vega, on the other hand, was definitely willing to perform here at the party, along with our resident Kendall Knight.

Fredward Benson, still hoping for Carly Shay and still shaken by doubts about his very identity, had just been fixed technical problemsd with the room' accoustic.

This was definitely going top result in a great background atmosphere, beating even that of last year's senior prom.

I had just finished the schedule for the teachers in charge with overseeing the whole party, of course a necessary evil for all sorts of bigger events at Pacific Coast Academy.

The first shift was the turn of Tamara Collins, former teacher of Palmwoods, with a still unsure future here at Pacific Coast Academy.

Logan Mitchell had actually arrived in the company of Phoebe Nachee, his aforementioned crush and idol, an achievement to be proud of, as much as of another achievement of his:.

The students had finally cast their votes, using an electronic ballot invented by Quinn Pensky for last year's elections for class presidencies and adapted for this year's Valentine's day party by Logan Mitchell in person.

Claire Sawyer, this year's class president of the seniors, stumbled in with a heart-shaped cardboard box in her hands and walked into my direction, saying, "this has been left anonymously in the student parliament office , for you."

My eyes bugged out due to this utterly unexpected and anonymous gift.

As expected by the onlooking pupils, I started opening the cardiomorph cardboard container, believing it to contain a smaller one, with an even more tiny one inside, and so forth, but I actually found almond fudge balls filled with cream nougat, one of my favourite candies.

The creator of the gift — no matter who — had probably gone through quite a wave of efforts, including the fudges and the decoration of the cardboard cover.

Kendall Knight and Victoria Vega were now about to sing their favourite cuddle song, Drake Parker's unforgettable Makes Me Happy[[247]], in their incredibly fascinating way.

Even some random couples started dancing in a swoon while listening to the perfect performance of Drake's song by Tori and Kendall.

The song being over, Claire Sawyer announced the presentation of the winners of the Valentine's day elections for the high school classes.

The kis of middle and elementary school each had got seperate parties and were electing seperate kings and queens, for that matter.

One big Valentine's party for the students of all grades, complete with their guests, would have exceeded the capacities of any party hall available here on the campus of Pacific Coast Academy

Miss Collins was the one to pronunce the names of the winners, and for that purpose, she was given an envelope with the name of the lucky students by Claire Sawyer. Strangely, she was holding another cardboard box, with the shape of a heart, in her other hand, and she had to dispose with it temporarily in order to open the envelope and to hold the microphone. She panted heavily when announcing, "and this year's Pacific Coast Academy High School Valentine's Day King and Queen are, respectively … Fredward Benson … and …"

Formerly tortured by suspense, Fredward Benson, still not sure of whether even being a king in real life, started bouncing around like an inasane creep, shouting, "I knew it!" Then he plastered a satanic grin of the uttermost horny sort, probably expecting Carly as the very Valentine's Day Queen.

But then Tamara Collins completed her words, saying "… Samatha Puckett!"

Sam jumped up and down, crying "Take that! Sam is the winner! Princess Puckett is the winner!"

Freddie, not willing to do the expected Valentine's dance with Queen Sam, was now totally consternated beyond any trace of a reason, and he started turning crazy, banging his head noisily against the wall and crying "I had prepared everything for me and Carly to get elected. Why, oh why?" Had he actually tried to manipulate the electronic ballot in an attempt to be Carly Shay's Valentine's Day party king and do that dance?

Cardboard boxes shaped like a heart were of course absolutely nothing uncommon for Valentine's day parties, neither here at Pacific Coast Academy nor anywhere else, but these two particular boxes, mine and that of Miss Collins, were more or less of identical feature, and with the same content.

Was there something fishy behind it?

Sam whispered something into the direction of Voctoria Vegan and Kendall Knight, ordering some song for the looming Valentine's day court dance with Freddie.

Still in a frenzy, Fredward Benson started floundering and stumbling all over the dancing floor, unable to walk straight, let alone dance, and finally he could not keep himself any longer on his feet and he had to slump mercilessly onto the floor.

We had to inform Doc Hollywood in order to get him carried away and examined skillfully without any further delay over in our infirmary.


93.3. Global Positioning System


This was a case of extreme emergency, forcing Doc Hollywood and his deputy Logan Mitchell to perform some immediate capital surgery on Fredward Benson, even without the consent of Marissa Benson, still arguably his mother.

Of course the latter woman, still de jure responsible for Freddie, needed to be informed about the incident without a further delay by our school administration, or, rather, by Beverly.

I was rather waiting outside the treatment room, along with Samantha Puckett and Carly.

At the same time, Logan Mitchell and Doc Hollywood kept on cutting Fredward Benson's skull open and examine the electronic device stuck in his head, a gadget most likely responsible for some of his insanities.

According to Logan Mitchell, the electromagnetic waves sent and reeceived by a huge variety of modern electronic systems were potentially able to interact with the currents in living nervous cells, especially the central nervous system, and mess them up in some barely controllable manner.

Fortunately, the device, according to Logan's analysis a geographical position system module, was not too hard to remove, and it had most definitely influenced Fredward Benson's rhetorical capacities and let him repeat, like a broken record, memeories of the past … early childhood memories from his time spent in Spain?

Marissa Benson's reaction to this creepy and disgusting discovery made by Doc Hollywood and his deputy would be of uttermost significance. Maybe she was even the despicable culprit to have ordered the implantation of the device in order to control Fredward better?

This would not have been all that much of a surprise, considering Marissa Benson's standard demeanour towards her so called son.


Chapter 94. Algebra Club


94.1. Our Team


During my first year at Pacific Coast Academy, I had to help fourth grader Dustin Brooks to make it into the algebra team of Pacific Coast Academy by getting Miles Brody to help him with middle and high school stuff.

Needless to say, Dustin Brooks had ever since a valuable column for that team, from my first year here at Pacific Coast Academy until the current day, in orther words, during a time span of six year, like no other kid in the past or the present..

Unfortunately that team had traditionally not got anything but a shadow existence at Pacific Coast Academy,

Many great members of said cub had come and gone, such as Wayne Gilbert, Miles Brody, Mindy Crenshaw, and on and on and on it went.

But the mathletics team had often failed in the Californian state finals due to the huge competition over here in the outskirts of Stanford, Caltech, Berkeley, and so on.

The biggest opponent, hitherto unbeaten in California, was the team of James K. Polk, last year even close runner up of the nationals due to the genius of Albert Wormenheimer, Evelyn Kwong, Simon Nelson Cooke, and many others.

All those students were now about to graduate from that school and would not have another chance to beat the nationals after this one, and thus they were more motivated than anyone else in the history of mathletics nationals.

Our team, consisting of Dustin Brooks, Logan Mitchell, Stevie Baskara, and Katie Knight was thus going to face some excessively harsh opposition.


94.2. Marissa Benson's Demise


Fredward Benson had sometimes been on our mathletics team due to being a good long divider[[248]]

Interrogated brutally by officer Stu "Spanker" Staimbler[[249]] , his hitherto official mother had plainly admitted to having let Doc Wheeler implant a global positioning transponder device in Freddie's head in order to be able to control him better at any given point of time and anywhere in the world, without caring about any potential health risks for the boy. Thereupon she got arrested by Officer Carl Trussman[[250]] , the chief of the police of Seattle, stuck into Seattle city dungeon, and stripped of her custody over Fredward Benson.

Until further notice, probably until the end of the running academic year, I had been made partial guardian over underaged Fredward Benson.

Doc Wheeler was now wanted for more illegal operations than ever before, but he had still not been found anywhere in this world.

Fredward Benson had been informad about this preliminary decisions made by the authorities of Seattle by officer Vega right after being deemed stable again by Doc Hollywood, and he had admitted to believing firmly in being related,in what way ever, to Prince Gabriel of Spain.

I had to sign an official request for getting the whole dirty affair surrounding Fredward Benson's birth and his possible abduction and hostage examined officially.

The almost inevitable looming international scandal was not something to be risked lightly, but now it appeared almost inevitable in order to help Fredward to get out of his excessively sticky situation.

Governmental agent Royce Bingham was thenceforth officially in charge with the examination of the whole dirty mess.


94.3. The Petition


The arrest of thoroughly despicable matron Marissa Benson was now not the only important event from Seattle to be reported.

Rather, I received rather a long mail from Charlotte Gibson, the mother of Charles Cornelius Gibson alias Gibby, a fairly long list of people from Seattle having signed something.

A closer look at the electronic epistle reveiled it as a petition issued by a group of parents from downtown Seattle wanting me to run for the office of a superintendent for the district schools of King County, id est the region of Seattle.

The elections were due during the looming spring time, requiring me to make a decision as fast as only possible.

Of course, this message hit me like a flash of lightning straight from midheaven.

I had never intended a career as a superintendend of any school district, probably due to the extremely bad experiences with superintendent Gorman. And I had worked hard hear at Pacific Coast Academy in order to improve the school and clean it from the stains of doubt inherited from the times of Dean Rivers.

But letting down Ridgeway had never been my intention, not in the moment of trading my place with Dean Rivers, nor at any other point ever since.

Mr. Sweeny had already given up on his supreme position here at Pacific Coast Academy in order to help saving his former school in Santa Clarita, showing me a possible way to go, inspite of making me go crazy about it.

I decided to go and talk to Sweeny in order to understand his decision made the year before a lot better, given the similarity between our situations. I would also go and talk to Lara Wahl, the superintendent of Los Angeles county, in order to get a better understanding for the tasks of a superintendent of a district school board. Would I be welcomed in the illustrous "club" of superintendents?


94.4. Triumphal


In the midst of my thoughts about a possible change of position, a move back to Seattle in order to fight corruption at the district schools of King County, i was hit by a more pleasant message.

Our mathletics club had really been able to make the Californian state championships, defeating even the power team of James K. Polk from Santa Clarita.

This of course cried for another party here on our campus, and possibly the last celebration of this kind during my principacy here at Pacific Coast Academy.

I was gathering all pupils, teachers, and, members of our staff in order to get the party started.

Nevel Papperman decided to play the triumphal ode from Giuseppe Verdi's great opera Aida on the school piano, backing up his fiancé Megan Parker.

Some kids were singing along.


S'intrecci il loto al lauro
Sul crin de' vincitori,
Nembo gentil de' fiori,
Stenda dalle arme un vel;!

Danziam' fanciulle della PCA
Le mistiche carole
Come d'intorno al sole
Danzano glia astri in ciel.[[251]]


Our heroes were now marching in, one by one, lead by their oldest member, Logan Mitchell.

The celebration were already starting.

But Dustin Brooks announced to want more, videlicet the nationals, taking place in just a few weeks from them, with opponents as strong as the school of Mr. Jamerson from New York City.


94.5. Campaign Manager


I had really tried to keep my thoughts about the most desperate plea from Seattle as secret as only possible, at least until having talked about all that tp Sweeny and Wahl, but I had apparently not been very successful.

Just an hour after the celebrations, Katie Knight, one of the glorious mathletes, stumbled into my office, with a long contract of the sort elaborated by Claire Sawyer.

I wondered, "what sort of contract is this meant to be?"

Katie grinned diabolically and replied, "a standard campaign management contract, almost identical to the one signed by the current president of the United States for the campaign for his successful presidential elections." In other words, she knew about the request from Seattle and was rigged and ready to manage my respecive electoral campaign.

And Katie's exorbitantly cunning puppy eyes made it absolutely impossible to reject the gracious offer.

Was I now supposed to read the endless contract "just like everyone else"?

Of course, what would Pacific Coast Academy turn into after my potential departure?

Leo Bradford was definitely not unlikely to hire someone like Denzel Crocker, a guy of the tough authoritorian sort, as a new principal.

But, according to Katie Knight, the kids here at Pacific Coast Academy wanted vice principal David Bender as my successor, and they had already got the backup of Garth Burman.

This was the result of regular "just in case" polls made on this camous since the invention of Quinn Pensky's poll software.

And Katie was going to deploy a few tricks in order to get her will, just as usual.

I would still have time to ask Sweeny and Wahl before applying officially for the office of a superintendent in King county.


Chapter 95. MS Placeholder


95.1. Catania's Boat


These days, there were so many increasingly popular quiz shows on TV expecting the viewers to participate, usually by means of phone calles, cellular messages, their web site, or telefacsimile.

This time, Spencer Shay had participated in such a quiz broadcast by some hitherto unbeknownst Boat Channel, and he had actually won — surprisem surprise — a boat, more precisely, a little yacht designed by Giuseppe Catania[[252]], the world's greatest yacht designer ever.

His grandson[[253]] had recently graduated from Pacific Coast Academy and instigated the quiz in memory of his grandfather.

And Spencer was now interested in using the beach of Pacific Coast Academy as an anchor site for his boat of yet unbeknownst name.

A label was attached to the swimming vehicle, reading "MS Placeholder" due to the lack of a real given name of the boat.

I did not mind a boat like the "MS Placeholder" to be anchored down by our beach, butwas I really the one in a position to deny or to approve of such a request?

Once more, Claire Sawyer, future lawyer, had to come to our rescue, since she was the only one at Pacific Coast Academy able to read official legal texts within one swipe and even to understand them.

The situation was probably a very tricky one, such as an endless string of exceptions and exceptions from exceptions.

And, indeed, the beach was officially part of Pacific Coast Academy, until a certain boundary emphasised as a red string of perls on a map presented by Claire Sawyer.

But we did not have any rights with respect to ships, due to the local laws of Los Angeles county, and we did not have any fishing rights, either.

Thus I was neither competent for granting Spencer an anchorage down by our sea shore, nor for prohobiting him from doing so.

Spencer Shay would have to consult the county administration.

Claire Sawyer was going to help him filing the necessary request in three copies for the coastal guard and the other involved authorities, announcing, "approvibng or disapproving may take several weeks, or month, or even years …"

Spencer Shay, when hearing Claire's remarks, went totally pale due to having hoped for a fast decision, given the impending arrinal of he boat, so he wondered, "but what to do with the yacht until then?"

I could not help but suggest him to use his box of tools and to depompose the vehicle into its pieces and stiore them in one of the unusued janitor's huts.

Letting the complete boat stand right on the campus square — inevitably blocking the passages in the case of emergencies — was not a good idea due to all those prescriptions made by the catalogue of security rules.

Bitterly disappointed Spencer Shay sighed for utter despair and withdrew into his apartment.

I was now appointed with aforementioned Lara Wahl, superintendent of the district school of the county of Los Angeles, anyways.


95.2. Reactions From Madrid


Royce Bingham had been working thoroughly during the last works and finally informed the Spanish court about the excessively plausible possibility of Fredwrad Benson and Toplin Wheeler being lost brothers of Prince Gabriel.

Of course, the King of Spain had been utterly consternated and little pleased about these issues, and started being mad not only at his wife, but also the servants of the court, whether plausibly involved in the whole business or not. Until this point, he had not even been aware of the existence of a triplet of babies, a fact obscured by the queen and her servants for fear of the wrath of the king.

But the international press, inspite of officially barred out by the royal family and the FBI, had abused any possible information leak and started spreading half baked informations across the waters of the mighty Atlantic.

Doc Wheeler, one of the leading culprits of the whole fraud, had still not been found, but he had at least been identified and confirmed as the assistant of the court dentist of the royal Spanish family from the time around the birth of the royal princes.

And Marissa Benson had been a hired court servant of the Spanish queen during their first trip to the United States of America, and a contracted court nanny for the time afterwards.

Both of them had feekled underpaid and participated in an evilplot in order to take two of the three monozygotic triplet babies hostages until their eighteenth birthday, in order to blackmail the royal family once again.

Gabriel was the youngest of the triplet, about eight minutes younger than Toplin, and fifteen minutes younger than Fredrick Edward, and thus not the first choice as the heir to the throne.

The number one canditate as the future monarch of the Spanish empire was no other than our Fredward Benson, fraudulently mistaken as the son of excruciatingly despicable blackmailer and vulgar charlatan Marissa Benson.

But what exactly would be the consequences of all this for the life of Fredward Benson alias Prince Fredrick Edward of Spain?


95.3. Eastridge goes coeducational.


Phoebe Nachee had actually achieved a lot in the heads of the controlling board of Eastridge, the most traditional girl school of California, more precisely, she had achieved making them put an end to it being a school for girls only.

With the beginning of the following year, Eastridge would also be open for boys, for the time being only boys living in Los Angeles, though, id est without any boarding facilities for boys from far away.

But this was probably only a temporary restriction, due to the lack of boarding facilities in the hitherto used dormitory halls.

Making boys and girls share the same dormitory room was of course not an option, not at Ridgeway, not at Pacific Coast Academy, and not at any other mixed boarding school of the country.

The current dean of Eastridge was by no means willing or able to rule over a coeducational school, and she would thus have to be replaced by the end of the academic year.

And the mangaing board of the school had decided on a new headmaster, on a first choice to be contacted.

And this expected dean was — surprise, surprise — our Tamara Collins, suggested by Phoebe Nachee after our Valentine's day party.

Now she was flabbergsasted and forced to make an important decision, very fast, and make it dern well for that matter.


95.4. The Anchorage


Another surprise was that of finding a place for anchoring the little yacht of Spencer Shay, completely unexpected when considering the usual delays in the county offices.

The anchor site was a few miles away from our beach, though, and happened to have belonged to the father of aforementioned teenage actor and mean cheater Beck Oliver.

Unfortunately, such an anchorage was not really going to be excruciatingly cheap, and definitely not affordable for a hungry artist like Spencer Shay, with or without a part time job here at Pacific Coast Academy.

The only solution to make it affordable was that of renting the MS Placeholder to a sponsor for the purposes of publicity, of course an opportunity not without a big hitch, as seen from the problems of Carly's web show with its former sponsors, Daka Shoes.

Until now, only one potential sponsor had applied for the whole thing, and he was now expected in my office in order to negotiate the details with Spencer Shay.

Spencer was already excited, and he shivered and trembled, but he also confirmed, "I will not sign a sponsoring contract without the approval of my future lawyer, Claire Sawyer!"

Finally, Beverly announced, "the potential sponsor of the 'MS Placeholder' is here!"

The door went open, letting the sponsor step in, the sponsor formerly known as … Zoey Brooks.

Spencer's jaw dropped. "Zoey? What are you doing here?"

The blond Mary Sue, representing the Los Angeles branch of Mad Style, grinned sadistically and explained, "I am evaluating you yacht as a possible means of publicity for Mad Style."

Totally stoked Spencer Shay grinned sarcastically and then wondered, "and that means many parties with swim suit models from everywhere around the world?"

Zoey nodded solemnly and explained, "of course! And here are the European swim suit models for your first party on your yacht … Yurgin, Olaf, Clasu, Yussle, Buckminsta, and Vooshnod!"

Spencer had expected a bunch of female models, and he was now thoroughly disappointed when having to watch all the guys march in, but he deemed it still better than a party with some senior club.

Zoey continued, "and of course I won't accept a name as totally lame as 'MS Placeholder', a name making all the swim suit models puke on site." She wanted another name and suggested, "how about 'MS Zoey'?" The Mary Sue grabbed a little box with a bow on it and rendered it solemnly unto Spencer Shay, begging him to open it.

Spencer's eyes were shaken like by an earthquake when seeing two beautifully crafted rings contained in the little box.

Since the kiss at the senior prom, he had had some qualms because of the age difference of ten years, but now he forgot about all those absurd objections and pulled Zoey into a lingering kiss.

I told them to get a room, or go to their boat and sail to some lonely island in the Pacific.


Chapter 96. Crazy Nora


96.1. Invitations


One year after the glorious victory over in Japan, the crew of iCarly was once more invited to a big event, the Olympia Webicon, an exposition of entertaining web shows located in Olympia, the capital of the state of Washington.

By the way, not many kids here in the greater Los Angeles area,including students at Pacific Coast Academy, were aware of the latter fact.

Most kids deemed Seattle, accidentally the biggest city of that state, as its capital, a popular mistake also happening with respect to many other states, such as Florida or even California.

Some others were still unable to tell Washingtong DC, the capital of our whole country, apart from the state of Washington, two locations separated by some thousand miles.

The team of the web show would even be able to combine a trip to Olympia with another event.

One of their most eager viewers, Nora Dershlitt[[254]] was celebrating her sixteenth birthday at the same weekend as the webicon, and only a few miles away from the location of this event. Apparently, she had not get friends to celebrate with — little wonder, in virtue of her weird demeanour — and needed the team of iCarly in order to look a lot cooler.

Even her own parents had abandoned her on her own birthday, pretending to have purchased reduced tickets for a flight to some important location.

Of course I could not send Carly Shay, Fredward Benson, and Samantha Puckett all the way to Olympia and back without a responsible adult.

According to my electoral campaign manager Katie Knight it was time for my big speech in front of the public of Seattle, right before the elections.

This coincidence made the choice of a responsible company for Carly, Freddie, and Sam on their way to the webicon and the birthday of Nora Dershlitt very easy.

Of course I was going to make the trip to the state of Washington along with the kids.

Katie Knight had already prepared my speech for that self presentation, much longer than my usual sermons in front of the pupils of Pacific Coast Academy.

As aforementioned, pupils did not like long speeches and were bored easily.

But adults, especially parents, as a rather different and completely incompatible race, rather appreciated long and complicated speeches, especially before elections.

Katie had already informed shirtless Gibby about my impending trip to Seattle. "The shirtless freak is awesome, ain't he?"

Charles Cornelius Gibson was going to introduce me to the greater public of Seattle and give a speech, too, and he would better do so with a shirt covering his usually bare chest, lest he wanted to scare all my potential voters into the next millennium and beyond.

According to the reports of Katie Knight, I was going to run against nobody less than my former university pal Carl Rivers, still principal of Ridgeway Middle and High School.

This incident was most likely going to be a magnet for the paparazzi of the Robert Shapiro kind of sort of.


96.2. Warning


Dustin Brooks was apparently fairly worried because of the impending trip of Carly Shay to Olympia and the webicon, inspite of looking forward to watching Carly at that event, and for that avail, he had been going through the troubles and look up some informations about Nora Dershlitt.

According to Dustin's research, Nora Dershlitt was one dangerous psychopath of twenty years, pretending to be a teenager, and not unlikely to abduct the kids and drag them to some unbeknownst location.

I could have cancelled the whole trip, making Carly, Freddie, and Sam inevitably very sad.

Given the circumstances, this was not unlikely going to be their last big event as the cast of the web show as hitherto known and loved by their viewers.

After the end of the academic year, Fredward Benson would leave the United States Of America and move to Madrid in Spain in order to continue his life as the lawful heir of the Spanish throne, thusly busting the web cast.

But I had got one great idea and told Dustin, "we will fight fire with fire …"


96.3. Unhappy Birthday


Just a few days later, and right in time, we showed up at the home of Nora Dershlitt in the outskirts of Olympia near Seattle — I, Fredward Benson, Samantha Puckett, Carly Shay, and , last but not least, "Crazy" Steve, the even more insane cousin of Spencer Shay.

The latter was coming with us as the psychopathic counterweight to Nora Dershlitt.

Carly, Freddie, and Sam made a special from Nora's birthday party, and, apparently, persuaded many viewers into coming to the event.

Even Trina Vega arrived at the party, much to our surprise, because of having just been at the boring birthday party of one of her great uncles living nearby.

The party went on and on for hours, unfortunately not without a tragic event, the death of some clown hired by Nora for the party, an exorbitantly old neighbour, due to a heart attack after dancing with a teenage girl.

Inspite of being informed in time, the emergency lads in white were once more too late, in other words, business as usual.

I had to sign a few papers as the only reliable adult witness, definitely not a pleasant duty and reminding me strongly of the death of the grandmother of Chase Bartholomew Matthews.

Crazy Steve had most fun, especially due to dressing in a medieval horror henchman's costume found in Nora's personal wardrobe.

At the end of the party, Nora kissed Trina a good bye kiss, telling her to show up again to her next birthday party in about five weeks.

After that, Crazy Steve and Nora Dershlitt eloped all of a sudden to — as known to only a few months later — Canada, thence leavinge the whole rest of us behind with her creepy apartment.


96.4. The Webicon


So, this was finally the Washington State Webicon, a really impressive high technology event taking place here in Olympia.

Carly, Freddy, and Sam were already occuping their spots in their cell, or panel, a place for some hundred visitors, including to my surprise not only Trina Vega, but also Stacey Dillsen-Blonowitz, Eric Blonowitz, his best friend Craig Ramirez, and Gavin Mitchell.

Unfortunately, the whole acribically arranged presentation was overshadowed by the perversely insane hype of a bunch of "Creddiers", including Eric, Stacey, and Craig.

Those unruly creeps were still obsessed with the idea of Carly Shay and Fredward Benson, now Prince Fredrick Edward of Spain, as a couple, and they wanted to know the details about the impending wedding of the two of them and taking over of the Spanish throne.

The security guards, guided by Stu Staimbler, had to ban some of the "Creddiers" from the event, including especially Craig, Eric, and Stacey.

I was most certainly better off pretending not to know them in person.


96.5. The Speech


Fredward Benson had just established a video chat connection to the campus of Pacific Coast Academy, especially to Katie Knight, my responsible campaign manager, apparently hell bent on seeing my perfect speech.

At the beginning of the sermon in the market place of Seattle, I was still utterly nervous, especially due to a bunch of cheering kids and teenager familiar to me from my times as a principal of Ridgeway and from my visits here at Groovy Smoothie such as Wendy[[255]] — not Gellar, a the chitchat machine of Ridgeway, Wesley[[256]], Tareen Vences, Taryn Davies[[257]], Rodney Goldberg[[258]], Jeremy Abel[[259]] et alii.

Gibby showed up shirtless, but he got his chest forcefully covered by his girlfriend Tasha — brutally and against his expressed will.

Finally, I kept on talking to the citizens of Seattles, supported by a tsunami wave of appluding pupils.

Carl Rivers, on the other hand, had been targeted by snipers firing rotten vegetables during his speech in the market place of Seattle and some other spots in King county, exactly like his third wife, id est Francine Briggs-Rivers.

The speech had thus been a clear case in my favour, as underlined by the polls to be presented during the next days by Nevelocity.

According to those provisional results, I was ahead with eighty percent, leaving thus only twenty percent of a chance to my former pal and no harsh opponent, Carl Rivers.

But now Charles Cornelius Gibson asked me,


Your campaign manager, Katie Knight, has said that I am awesome especially without a shirt.

Is that correct?


Sam, Carly, or Freddie must have told him somehow.

And I could not deny that statement made by Katie Knight.

Gibby grabbed his sweaty shirt, ripped it into half, and flang the rugs hastily into the cheering masses, crying, "Yeah, I am awesome!" Then he looked at Tasha. "You never called me awesome without my shirt!" He panted heavily before continuing with his last judgement, videlicet "Tasha, it is over between us!" He exposed his bare chest proudly into the web cam and addressed katie, "here, everything on my chest is pure nature, even my first hair on my chest not yet ripped out by Samantha Puckett!"

I shrugged and prepared for my impending return to California in order to await the elections over there.


Chapter 97. Dustin And Carly


97.1. Leaving For New York City


Our mathletics team had made it up to there and was now close to facing their very last challenge, the nationals in New York City[[260]] .

Dustin Brooks was already beginning to diffuse the striking message about their impending departure to the forever restless city of the empire of eternal freedom, in order to be part of the hitherto biggest event in his life.

Mr. Dren was going to be the responsible adult for this most adventurous enterprise for Dustin Brooks, Logan Mitchell, Stevie Baskara, and, last but not least, the one and only Katie Knight, the youngest and in any imaginable sense most ambitious among our mathletics.

But, hey, the junior member of the squad was just in my office i order to make an important and shocking announce, saying with her terrifying voice, "I am going to renounce on my spot in the mathletic squad and leave it to Carly Shay, so I may be here for your electoral campaign for the position of a superintendent in King County."

This sounded very flattering, but, due to the strong emphasis of "Carly Shay", left me with the impression of another reason behind her change of mind instead of my electoral campaign.

I had arranged a place to stay for the kids during their days in the city of the endless lights, videlicet the current home of Chase Bartholomew Matthews and his fiancé Adelaide Singer.

A few weeks ago, Chase had been here in Los Angeles in order to watch a musical named Uptown Downtown[[261]] written by his very boss, Sophie Michelle, as performed at Helen Baxter's Hollywood School for the Professional Performance Arts. Upon that very occasion, he had not been able to refrain from stumbling in and watching the situation of our little drama club, and he had heard about a planned play written by Jade West and going by the name Wishing Well[[262]].He was totally enthusiastic down to the work of Jade and was up to recommending it straight to the responsible producers of his Broadway.

Jade West was now up to accompanying the mathletics team to the city of the everlasting freedom in order to be able to negotiate right away with the big bosses of the Broadway instead of relying on the words of Chase Bartholomew Matthews, "the bushy creep".

Ryan Laserbeam had also informed his pals from his former hometown, videlicet True Jackson and Lulu, and told them to help out students findingtheir way around the city of cities.

Only later, Katie Knight would admit to having retired from the team in order to give Carly Shay and Dustin Brooks the occasion of winning the nationals together, she deemed Carly and Dustin — due to their common wish for a career as a math teacher at elementary and middle schools — as a couple of soul mates, as much, if not even more than their elder siblings, and she deemed a victorious trip to the nationals the optimal occasion for them to find out.

Of course I could dissuade Katie from her decision and I was better going to prepare the remaining things to do for their big trip from coast to coast.


97.2. The Elections


The King County elections for the position of the new superintendent for their district schools were taking place at the same time as the mathletics nationals.

I was now neither here nore there, but had to watch everything from the lounge of "Maxwell Hall" here at Pacific Coast Academy.

Originally, Carly Shay had planned an additional episode of her web show with the sole purpose of "rocking the votes" in Seattle for my sake, but she was now prevented from doing so by getting selected for the mathletics team and sent to New York City.

According to the polls made by Nevel Papperman and Megan Parker, there was absolutely no need whatsoever for influencing the elections in last minute, as intended by Carly, Freddie, and Sam.

The event at New York City had just started, and it was presenting us with the participating teams.

Our mathletics would most likely encounter some severe opponents, especially the very team of the hosting school coached by inevitable Mr. Jamerson, a team featuring one of Ryan Laserbeam's long term pals, aforementioned "Lulu", an excruciatingly smart but sometimes completely distracted teenage girl with roots in the Philippine islands, just like Wayne Gilbert.

Zoey had insisted in Dustin being escorted by some responsible adults from Mad Style.

Insane "Creddiers" were always and everywhere, at Pacific Coast Academy, in the state of Washington, and over in New York City, and they were perversely mad at anyone with a crush on Carly except Fredward Benson alias Prince Fredrick Edward Of Spain.

The math talk at the finals was too much to bear for most of us, making us switch to watching the elections in King County.

Jeremy Abel, the president of the AV club of Ridgeway, was taking pictures of the event, a task hindered severely by his allergy, a condition commonly mistaken for an infection, as demonstrated by his completely inappropriate nick name "Germy".

The shirtless freak known as Charles Cornelius Gibson was responsible for the interviews in Seattle and the surrounding hamlets, but he was unfortunately not very efficient and kept on scaring quite a few citizens the wrong way.

But Katie Knight kept on applauding Gibby in a vigorous manner for his courage and uncompromising efforts.

The elections were now closed and awaiting their appropriate evaluation by the official committee.


97.3. Forevermore The Winner


Today, not only the winners of the elections were to be announced, but also the winners of the nationals of the mathletic teams.

The suspense was of course huge.

The members of te mathletic team were still in the air on their way from Kennedy Airport to Los Angeles International Airport.

Custodian Gordy, nowadays responsible for the day shift, was already on his way to the airport in order to pick them all up and return them safely to the campus, aware of incredible dangers on their way, such as weasels, beavcoons, and killer squirrels.

Unfortunately, those creepy paparazzi, including Robert Shapiro, Jeremiah Trottman, and his fiancé Angela Crabtree[[263]], and many other insaners, were faster than the official messengers.

And, indeed, it was Angela and Jeremiah to thrust a microphone right into my jaw, urging me to comment on the result of the elections, even without letting me know about the result first.

Finally, Trottman was ready to pronounce the outcome, a landslide victory just as predicted by Nevel Papperman and Megan Parker in their polls.

Kids started celebrating this result, not only here on our campus, but even more, as demonstrated by pictures transmitted by Jeremy Abel, on the streets of Seattle.

Our security guards had already removed Angela and Jeremiah from our campus and sent them into the county dungeon ghaving broken the speed limits on the road from downtown Malibu to the campus of Pacific Coast Academy

After half an hour, the situation on the campus here had calmed down.

The machine from New York City had been scheduled top touch down in this moment.

But of course delays were always possible.

We had already received a message from New York City, but one about the deeds of jade West at the headquarters of Broadway.

The goth queen had actually convinced the managers of one of the houses of the queen of theatres to perform her play during the next two years once per month, with the best actors available at the given dates. Now she could gladly dump Beck Oliver, only a tool of hers, anyways, and leave him gladly to Ashley Blake, the actress portraying the main character of Wishing Well.

For Ashley, going to Broadway was not an option, she was a staunch supporter of "Hollywood and only Hollywood for acting".

The first professional performance of Wishing Well would thence see Oscar awarded Lola Martinez in the star rôle.

Finally, Custodian Gordy's bus was sneaking along the serpentine coastal road uo to the campus entrance, increasing the suspense here on the campus once again.

Security had to call the kids away from the road in order to allow the bus to pass freely.

The vehicle was finally halted, allowing for the mathletic heroes to exit and to return to the campus.

Kendall Knight, Carlos Garcia, and James Diamond almost assaulted their pal Logan Mitchell, asking him about the result, but making him choke badly in the process.

Logan Mitchell needed the help of the security guards in order to get freed from his best friends' assault, and with his last breath before collapsing, he held the trophy for the victory aloft.

Katie Knight was here as well, and very high in demand after her successfull efforts for my electoral campaign, but she was also interested in the outcome of her other plan, the one involving Dustin and Carly.

Indeed, the two of them had not yet exited the minibus, unlike about everyone else from the victorious team and their companions.

Being chock full of confidence in the plans of Katie Knight, our woodwind masters Megan Parker and Nevel Papperman did not even wait for Dustin and Carly to show up, but they readied their reeds and started playing the Bridal Chorus.

Other kids sang along to the inviting tune.


Faithful and true
We lead ye forth
Where love triumphant
Shall crown ye with joy.

Star of renown,
Flower of the earth,
Blest be ye borth
Far from all life's annoy!

Champion victorious,
Go thou before!

Maid, bright and glorious,
Go thou before!


Carly and Dustin exited the hot vehicle and were totally flabbergasted, but they kept on blushing like no business and had got no reason to object to the whole scenario.

I sighed deeply, sobbing "how sweet!" I touched accidentally one of the hands of nearby Tamara Collins.

The former teacher of Palmwood, and future principal of Eastridge, grabbed my hand impulsively.

But then we had to blush deeply, for … what the heck were we doing?

Evelyn Wexler, aforementioned star cook from New York City, was now also ready to challenge Rosemary Pepper, taking over for villain and coward Richard Flame.

This was going to be a heated contest.


Chapter 98. Bigfoot


98.1. Bigfoot — True Or Real?


Recently, a certain Sidney van Gurbin had published a book named Bigfoot — True Or Real?[[264]] , a book containing the result of his years of research as a cryptozoologian in the Pacific coast mountains and forests, especially in the state of Washington, id est my homelands and those of Carly Shay, Fredward Benson, and the Pucketts.

As completely opposed to her stubborn friends Fredward Benson and Samantha Puckett, Carly Shay was a firm believer in the existence of bigfoot, or, better , sasquatch, and she suggested a field trip of her biology classes into the forests mentioned in van Gurbin's book.

Of course I could not allow them to make it over there without a responsible adult, "responsible" excluding once more Spencer Shay, the pyromaniac creep.

So it was definitely better to send Filmore Bradford along with them on an official field trip in a bus from a reliable travel vendor than making them implicitely go there with Spencer in a camping mobile assembled from random trash.

By the way, Spencer Shay refused stubbornly to consider the possibility of the existence of bigfoot, but he was hell bent on finding an even more wird creature also rumoured To live in the Pacific forests, videlicet the beavcoon, a blend of a beaver and a racoon.


98.2. Van Gurbin Live


Carly Shay had decided to invite the great Sidney van Gurbin into her web show, against the protests of Samantha Puckett and Fredward Benson.

The two of them were still adamantly opposed to the possible of anything like bigfoot.

Carly talked a lot to him about the utterly intriguing possiblilities of bigfoot.

Dustin Brooks, watching from the same lounge as tortured me, appeared to be quite interested in the stories about bigfoot, too, but he was also afraid of carly getting eaten by one of those undefined beast.

And now Filmore Bradford stumbled in and started expressing his thoughts about the whole bigfoot business by saying, in a somewhat boring manner, "it may be the leftover of a scientific experiment for genetic engineering, escaped from some leaking laboratory somewhere in the northwestern states."

Of course, the possibility of leaking aboratories had always been the reason for sensational news, and sometimes not without reson, but these verified cases were rather small animals, not human sized or even taller than that.

On the other hand, such an accident, or even a purposeful crime, was not totally unthinkable, either, and a very scary possibility on top of all of that.

Without any thorough analysis of samples of the desoxynucleic acid of the beast, Filmore Bradford was not going to be ready to make a definite statement, be it in favour of or against the case of "bigfoot". He was certainly aware of the extreme powers and possibiliities of the genetic manipulation of the living beings, as underlined by his own research concerning the genetic reengineering of the desoxyribonucleic acid of insects and other low life forms.

Carly Shay was now even more than ever before hell bent on fetching some sample desoxyribonucleic acid from the unidentified creature suighted as of recently in the forests of Washington, Idaho, Orgeon, and British Columbia.

But not everyone was content with the possibility of a genertically mutated beast escaped from some laborartory, especially van Gurbin.

The stories about a creature now known as bigfoot were much older than the arrival of the modern white man with his scientific laboratories here at the Pacific coast, thus ruling out a modern creation.


98.3. Ready For The Forests


Samantha Puckett was the first of the tenth graders ready for the huge camping trip to the forests of Seattle, and she had not only got her sleeping back and her tent, but was fully equipped with ropes, traps, nets, flensing spades, bow, arrows, and other tools.

I wondered, "have ypu changed your mind and are now up to catching bigfoot?"

Sam grunted, "hey, I doo not care about stupid bigfoot, but I will be hungry during the camping trip, very hungry, so I have to hunt some kind of delicious food, such as deer, wild boars, mountain goats, squirrels, beavers, racoons, …"

Spencer choked hard and growled at Sam, "you say beavers and racoons … you are not going to kill the last beavcoons of the forests of Seattle, are you?"

Sam replied, "all you need is their furs in order to prove their existence, and you can have them, all of them, and get your Socko to sew a beaver's fur and a racioon's fur together and stuff it as an evidence for a beavcoon." Sam suspired and continued, "I just need the meat, very delicious meat, and momma loves meat!"

Spencer shuddered over and over upon hearing Sam's rude sugfgestions..

Samantha's hunting tools, just like al the other equioment of the students, was now loaded into the pullman bus taking them from here to the forests described by Sidney van Gurbin.

The all excited kids entered the modern vehicle, one by one, ready for the big field trip through the mountains and the woods along the long Pacific coast.

Of course "bigfoot" was not the official reason for the trip, but the exploration of the nature and the landscape along the Pacific coast in general.

The pullman coach let its engines roar and blew a cloud of smoke and dust across the parking site of the campus before leaving us with smelly rubber tyres.


98.4. Reactions From Lakewood


The web show of Carly Shay, Fredward Benson, and Samantha Puckett had also been fairly popular at Lakewood high school.

This was especially due to to of their pupils, videlicet to Carlos Garcia, a cousin of our resident Carlos Garcia, and to Jake Collis, a nephiew of Tamara Collins.

And those two boys had seen the episode with Sidney van Gurbin and reported about it back to principal Stockley.

The latter had now requested a secret audience here in my office without letting us know about the proper reasons for that plea, and now he was already standing in my office, and apparently little amused.

So, what were the concerns of this flabbergasted and upset principal of a school described by Lara Wahl as the most creepy of the whole county?

According to Stocxkley's followingg account, there was a secret worldwide society dealing with monsters of all sorts, a society with him as a local chieftain.

Two decades ago, Sidney van Gurbin had been a memeber of the society, but he had come in conflict with the elders and been banned for good, and ever since he had done everything in order to produce fake evidence for popular monsters in order to make life for the hard working members of our society for monster control as miserable as only possible, distracting them from their real tasks.

According to Stockley, keeping the existence of monsters as secret as possible was definitely for the better of the public security.

I should not really have known about the existence of such an organisation, let alone messed with their difficult work, and in absolutely no case supported vulgar charlatans like Sidney van Gurbin and let him abuse innocent kids like Carly Shay for his purposes.

Maybe Superintendent Lara Wahl had been right on spot with her description of Stockley and Lakewood High.

But the security of the kids was in any case paramount.

So I decided to stop the ongoing field trip and make it return as soon as possible, or at least change its schedule and let them sojourn a bit longer in different and fairly safe areas of the rocky mountains instead.


98.5. No Bigfoot


It was not too easy to reach the participants of the field trip, often enough out of the reach of checkpoints for cellular phones.

But fortunately, Filmore Bradford had ordered a stop on some highway checkpoint not too far from Dan Francisco, clearly accessible by our mobile phones.

The road triop was thus redirected to the central Californian Rockies and the Sierra Nevada instead of continuing towards the forests of Orgeon and Washington..

Carly Shay was definitely disappointed by my audacious action.

And I was not allowed to talk directly about the society for monster control alias The Troop.

But the year after, Carly Shay and Dustin Brooks would be hired by said organisation, anyways, with or without my intervention, for whatever reason.

Sidney van Gurbin would later be caught over in India for faking traces of some mythical creature known as "the yeti", wearing some hairy costume . He had been scared by Filmore Bradford's announce to submit any find to a rigorous genetical scanning analysis, thus reveiling his despicabvle fraud rigorously at any cost and thought the people in Asia to be more naïve than us Americans, but he had most evidently been so terribly wrong.


Chapter 99. Into The Orbit


99.1. Spacecations


In the good old times, people were rather content with a vacation trip to the relatives somewhere at the other end of your country.

But with the arrival of modern technology, this had no longer been deemed cool or funny, but rather a reason for shame or an embarrassment.

People had to spend vacations in distant countries, following the current fashionable trends, using cars, fast trains, and finally planes, the fastest way to get from one big city on the face of this planet to another, and specialised means of transportation in order to make it into other places such as the mountain tops for skiing.

But nowadays even the surface of the earth was considered too small for vacations, as already anticipated in various movies of past decades, such as Malcolm Reese's unforgettable Galaxy Wars.

A cartoon series about some dim witted yellow sponge and his equally useless sidekick, a completely brainless and perverted starfish,[[265]] had triggered the desire for vacations on the bottom of the mighty Pacific.

Even aforementioned Principal Stockley from nearby Lakewood was one of the biggest fans of that submarine creep for little kids, for whatever reason.

The last step was that of expanding the vacation hype was that of leaving the earth behind altogether and taking a trip through outer space.

And not too long ago, some Richard Blandon[[266]] , a weird gazillionary, had invented space vacations, often curtailed as "spacecations", really just trips into the orbit, and offered them for lots of bucks to those able to pay for them.

And now Carly Shay stopod in my office with some weird news: "Richard Blandon wants my web show to space out, a trip into the orbit for me, Freddie, and Sam." Of course she needed my approval for leaving the campus for the purpose of a trip to anywhere off the campus of Pacific Coast Academy, including outer space or the orbit, and she really begged for it. "I so want to see the sun from the window of a space shuttle." She did not want to believe Mr. Sweeny's stories about the connection of sun light, the earth's atmosphere, and the apparent blue clour of the sky.

This sounded like totally exciting news.

But not even Carly Shay, let alone her friends Fredward Benson and Samantha Puckett, had got a million of dollars to part with easily.

The ride in the orbit would thus be gratis for the kids, but it would inevitably come with a bug hitch, such as commercials and publicity.

Unfortunately, teenagers of the day were a bit naïve and refused to see the obvious connections, as already obvious in the case of the exorbitantly seductive yet detrimental offer by Daka Shoes and their "tech foot".

These considerations, on top of the possible dangers of a space trip in general, made me inclined to deny the permission to leave the campus, even at the cost of being deemed a spoiler.

It was probably the last special of the web show of Carly and her crew, at least the last one with Fredward Benson as the technical director, due to his looming departure from the United States of America in order to fulfill his duties as the first born Spanish prince.

And now Carly Shay started begging with her pure puppy eyes.

I decided to read the offer made by Richard Blandon in a more thorough way, figuring the following interesting details:

This invitation was just for a dry run, in other words, for a competitive trial.

The casts of several web shows had been invited to the event in order to select the cast most fit for a trip in the orbit.

The tests would be both of physiological and of psychological nature and had been invented by Quinndelyn Pensky and her fiancé Cal at Caltech for the NASA.

Summing it up, the invitation was not yet for a real ride in the orbit, but just for some preparations.

For this reason, I gave Carly Shay, Samantha Puckett, and Fredward Benson the permission to leave the campus of Pacific Coast Academy in order to follow the invitation to the impending tests, but I hoped them to give up after having thought a bit more about it.

After all, the kids had not yet signed a contract, and neither would they go and sign one without the prior thorough consultation of future lawyer Claire Sawyer.

Filmore Bradford would accompany them as a responsible adult. He was interested in the possibility of making other planets of the solar systems inhabitable by means of genetic manipulation.

According to this distinguished scientist, so called tardigrades, little non-vertebrate animals, were able to survive in outer space for quite some time, including the infamous sun winds.

He was planning to manipulate human desoxyribnucleic acid in a way allowing human life forms to do the same, or at least come closer to it.

In my ears, this idea sounded exorbitantly creepy, making me think of an invasion of alien mutant monsters looking like big-footed beavcoons.

But, after all, I was definitely no scientist, unlike Quinn Pensky, Melinda Crenshaw, or Filmore Bradford, and thus probably not really able to appreciate the mile stones of scientific progress as much as those outstanding geniuses.


99.2. Tested


A week later, the kids and Filmore were back from the testing centre of Richard Blanton's, apparently a bit disappointed for not having made the cut and thus be sent hiome instead of into the orbit.

First, the competition had been very strong, including not only a team of a fitness show known as "Sport Rox Dot Com", rthree arrogant jocks.

And then there was also a team from Nevelocity, the web show of Nevel Papperman, but excluding Nevel himself due to his admitted fear of aliens.

Other web show casts had not yet been tested and would have to show up at the centre during the upcoming weeks until the final decision about the trip into the orbit.

The tests were very brutal, using some machines like those used by Quinn Pensky in order to simulate a speedcart race on the campus for Logan Reese and Chase Bartholomew Matthews.

But Filmore Bradford had discovered quite some strange things, prompting him into asking Quinn Pensky about some of the details of the test machines.

And Quinn, along with her husband Cal, had replied pretty fast, delivering a very shocking answer concerning the state of the test machines.

Those devices had not yet been officially approved by the NASA for being used as a criterion for tests, but only as toys for arcades and other simulations.

Yet Blandon had used them in order to test the fitness for a trip in the orbit of several rich customers during the last three years, and without any problem, thus he must either have been excessively lucky or have cheated on a much bigger scale by selling illusions of a space trip to completely unwary customers.

This sounded like one of the biggest scandals in the history of space trips, or fake space trips for that matter, a scandal requiring some severe counter measures.


99.3. The Evil Cheat


Quinn Pensky had alerted the officials of the NASA on site and caused a severe examination of the facilities belonging to the space vacations programme by Richard Blandon.

And, in deed, just as expected, the whole space programme turned out just like one of the simulations used in all those popular space opera movies such as Galaxy Wars.

The special effect engineers of the studio of Malcolm Reese, producer of some of the most awarded movies of that kind, had got absolutely no problems identifying the technology as one of theirs.

As a future lawyer, Claire Sawyer was up to representing the pervously cheated customers of Blandon and his fraudulous space vacation programme in their efforts to get their money back, probably amounting to quite some gazillions of dollars.

The list of shamelessly abused customers of Blandon's perverted and corrupt enterprise included Maximilian Madigan from Mad Style, Fujisaki[[267]] from the Bank Of Hollywood, Michaela Bamoa[[268]] , wife of the current president, Gill Bates[[269]] , the most established and only serious competitor to Quinn Pensky as a designer of computer systems, Baron Schwartzschild[[270]], owner of the world's hugest and most traditional wine vendor and banker, and Mark Zeckburger[[271]], the founder of Splash Face, the world's hugest and most successful social networking site.

Many others were on a waiting list and had already paid part of the price for a space trip, including the very Malcolm Reese and Arthur Griffin, momey blown into the solar wind.

And then there were the many sponsors, especially those having already paid for commercials to be broadcast from the envisioned web show in the outer space.

Only Maximilian Madigan, probably instigated by our honourable alumna Zoey Brooks, had got the time to show up here at Pacific Coast Academy in order to thank us for having helped to reveil the exorbitantly despicable fraud. He admitted to having taken a photograph of the sun during his faked trip into the orbit and used the picture as the base of a new design line, the " sun connection", a line now thoroughly discredited by the revelation of the fraud and turned into an embarrassment and a joke, a very expensive joke for Mad Style.

Like for Maximilian Madigan, other unfortunate victims of the reckless fraud committec by Richard Blanton had to face losses bigger than just the price paid for the trip, and they were now going to request the losses back from the meanest cheater in the history of mean cheaters, of course with the support of Claire Sawyer and of Gradpa Shay.

Fredward Benson, usually the technological professional of the team of the web show, was now once more banging his head against the walls of my office because of having missed out on recognising the technical fraud.

Fortunately, his time as a tech producer was about coming to an end pretty soon due to his impending move to Madrid as the new official heir of the Spanish throne.

Filmore Bradford was now disappointed as well due to not being able to use the trip of the crew of the web show into the outer space for some experiments with the desoxyribonucleic acid of tardigrades implanted into other non-vertebrates. But with the help of Quinn and Cal he would soon be able to convince the NASA of including this part of his research into an official programme, with the intention of beating the Russians to it.

At least Zeckburger had got some ift for the kids of the web show, videlicet a life long honour account on Splash Face, allowing iCarly to get continued even without a proper technical producer after the departure of the heir of the Spanish throne.

Fredward Benson alias Prince — or, later on, King — Fredrick Edward of Spain would at least be forever a honour tech employee of Zeckburger's web empire, not only including Splash Face, but also a variety of other web services.

Alas, Nevel Papperman was now more and more hostile to Splash Face and to the systems made by Gill Bates and to the even more to all those "evil" pear products so popular hear at Pacific Coast Academy, because of the excruciating general dangers of so-called cloud computing, the impendig dystopia of the age of the interweb, and he threwatened Carly's gang to die in their stupidity.

The words of the prophets of doom were already written up in the sky, according to Nevel Papperman, but ignored by the vulgar masses because of their minds being inebriated by sinister clouds blocking out almost all of the sun light of superior truth.


Chapter 100. Finale


A few minutes ago, Rosemary Pepper had lost the cooking contest to Evelyn Wexler, but she was now going to challenge her even more with the beginning of the next year, in the sense of trading places — Evelyn coming to our cafeteria and to Sushi Rox, and Rosemary going to New York City's finest restaurants — just in the likeness of the bet between Carl River and me, but without the nasty side effects and the exorbitantly naughty surprises of my deal with my forerunner here at Pacific Coast Academy.

This academic year, the very last and at the same time most chaotic one during my whole life here in California, was now all but over.

I had spent six years of my life as the headmaster of Pacific Coast Academy, the most elitary school of the United States Of America, and would certainly leave my traces all over there.

My decision to return to Seattle as a new superintendent for the district of downtown Seattle had not been a totally easy one.

Leaving my new home, southern California, would inevitably hurt me a lot.

But it just had to be, give the lack of another possibility for saving Ridgeway from even more ongoing decadence and corruption.

Mr. Sweeny had already done a lot at James K. Polk in order to clean up the mess caused by perverted school coordinator Hal E. Burton and by downright abusive Vice Principal Crubbs.

And the morass was much deeper and more sticky at Ridgeway.

But the kids here at Pacific Coast Academy had at least prepared a little departure party for me.

On the other hand, Gibby, Wendy, and the other kids in Seattle were now most likely already preparing a welcome party for me, as some sort of a surprise, but they had not been really able to hide this well from my eyes.

And Katie Knight had — most likely without properly wanting to do so — already scattered a whole flock of subtle remarks hinting vigorously towards this possibility.

Superintended Wahl had purified the district schools of Los Angeles county with her iron fist, oops, not like Shelby Marx or Colt Jackson as a exorbitantly powerful martial artist, but with her uncompromising and authoritarian style.

The remains of the scandal caused by the Rivers clan, were buried in the past forever.

Now my former college pal had ruined half of Seattle county during the last five, almost six years, with the help of his pernicious henchmen Briggs and Howard.

And once more it was my task to clean after him, just like here at Pacific Coast Academy, and using my own style, not the one of Lara Wahl.

I had not demonstrated the possibility of ruling over an elitary prep school with highest pretenses in a way less fascist style than anyone before in the history of elitary prep schools just in order to regress to tyrannic means for righting the extreme wrongs in my former homeland school district.

The departure party was not only meant for me, but also for a bunch of other people about to leave Pacific Coast Academy behind and to move on, such as Tamara Colins — new principal at Eastridge — and especially Prince Fredrick Edward of Spain, formerly known as Fredward Benson.

A limousine from the Spanish diplomatic corps was going to fetch him and take him to a private jet of the Royal Spanish Airlines, reserved of course for official flights of members of the royal family.

Freshly divorced Royce Bingham and Officer Vega were responsible for the security of the future king of Spain until boarding the plane to Madrid..

Maris Bingham had, right after graduating from Eastridge, eloped with Yurgin, one of the aforementioned European swim suit models, anyways, and would no longer bother her foster father.

But all of this mess was definitely none of my business at all, period.

Prince Gabriel would arrive in the very same limousine in order to get enrolled here at Pacific Coast Academy for the next academic year, allowing him to spend a whole year together with his beloved Melanie Puckett.

And that very moment was now here.

The limousine had halted, letting the third born son of the current king of Spain enter the campus and walk up to his beloved one.

This way, Melanie's wish of last Christmas had finally come true.

Timothy Turner, on the otherhand, appeared to have lost his wishing fever after starting to date Caitlyn Valentine, for the better or worse.

Maybe it was time for him to grow up, but this was hardly possible with a girlfriend like Cat Valkentine, was it?

It was now time for Fredward Benson alias Prince Fredrick Edward to say good bye to Pacific Coast Academy.

He shook hands with so many people, including Sam Puckett, but the latter was a rather sarcastic handshake, for Fredward Bemnson, and even less Fredrick Edward of Spain, had never come to know about her feelings except during her uncontrollable laughter caused by Quinn Pensky's mouth deodoriser, and that one he had never wanted to take in any way serious due to his only rather slowly dying hopes of Carly Shay.

But Samantha Puckett was finally know longer able to keep it to herself, and,in the moment of seeing Freddie enter the limousine, she broke down, in a way never seen from endlessly tough "momma", started weeping a whole deluge.

Freddie was now totally consternated and could not walk any longer, but he was stuck in the door frame of the limousine, unable to say a single word or to make a single move, for now he better had to believe Sam's words, unlike years ago. He stammered piteously, promising solemnly yet in a poorly understandable way to make "Princess Puckett" the queen of Spain, one day in not all too far future, but now he got stuffed by his servants into the luxury vehicle an had got no time to care about Sam.

Carly, Dustin, Melanie, and Gabriel grabbed Samantha Puckett alias Trisha Kirby in order to guide her, unable to watch the very departure of her beloved one any longer, back to her already abandoned dormitory room in order to give her some desperately needed rest.

I also had to look at Tamara Collins, sighing deeply due to a lack of understanding of the things having gone one between us during the last two or three years.

Maybe future would have to tell us, as present was but leaving us behind in the dark and the mist with a lot of confusion and half-baked clues.

But, whatever the situation between me and Tamara, my main concern for the next time would have to be that of seizing control over the situation at the district schools in king county, just as it would be Tamara's main concern to master the situation as the first dean of a coeducational Eastridge, a task similar to mine from six years ago.

As my last official action here at Pacific Coast Academy, I was now going to render unto Garth Burman what was his, and all the keys, both physical and symbolical, to the powers of my office, allowing the executive chairman to inaugurate Dean David Bender — without a trace of a delay — officially into his new office and my old office.

And then, finally, a last look back to the campus of Pacific Coast Academy, my empire of the times now officially gone by, and an era of six years was now officially over.

The kids of Seattle and the rest of king county were soon going to face their new superintendent.

The End



[[1] ]various cameos in Big Time Rush, e.g. School Of Rocque


[[2] ]from iCarly : iGo Nuclear


[[3] ]Spencer is from Ned's Declassified SSG : School Plays.

The surname is from same actor's cameo in one episode of Amanda Show.

Do not confuse him with aforementioned Spencer Shay!


[[4] ]star of Unfabulous

identified with same actress's cameo as Addie in Drake & Josh : Honour Council


[[5] ]Drake's stalking fan from Drake & Josh : Number One Fan

The surname and later character traits are taken from same actress's rôle in Camp Rock

She is also identified with an unportrayed Wendy mentioned in Zoey 101 : Lola Likes Chase.


[[6] ]from Big Time Rush : Big Time Party.

She's identified with "Missy Meany" from Ned's Declassified SSG.


[[7] ]This recurring from Zoey 101 is identified with same actress's cameo in iCarly : iStart A Fanwar


[[8] ]This recurring from Drake & Josh is identified with same actor's cameo in iCarly : iStart A Fanwar


[[9] ]identified with same actor's cameo in Zoey 101 : Spring Fling


[[10] ]This is the recurring custodian from Ned's Declassified SSG. He's identified with "Buddha Bob" from Big Time Rush.


[[11] ]This occasional iCarly character is identified with same actress's cameo as Superintendent Jacqueline Bell in Unfabulous : The Gray Zone and as Dr. Sheila Voss in Shredderman Rules.


[[12] ]Rose appears in many cameos in Ned's Declassified SSG

The surname is from another character by same actress in a third-party owned movie.


[[13] ]identified with same actress's guest character from Zoey 101 : Bad Girl, videlicet Trisha Kirby.


[[14] ]from Zoey 101 : Wrestling


[[15] ]from Zoey 101 : School Dance


[[16] ]from iCarly : iSams Mom

slightly modelled after Ma Barker, a gang leader from early 20th century


[[17] ]from iCarly : iTwins


[[18] ]iCarly star Samantha Puckett is here identified with obnoxious lass Trisha Kirby from Zoey 101 : Bad Girl


[[19] ]cameos in Zoey 101 : Pilot and Good-Bye, Zoey!


[[20] ]Beverly appears in various various cameos as the secretary of Dean Rivers throughout Zoey 101


[[21] ]from Zoey 101 : Spring Fling might come over. It isn't yet sure, though.


[[22] ]from Just Jordan


[[23] ]from Victorious


[[24] ]from Ned's Declassified SSG


[[25] ]from Big Time Rush


[[26] ]appears in Zoey 101 : Spring Break-Up and Logan gets cut off, but is mentioned throughout the show


[[27] ]the basketball coach in Zoey 101 : Pilot


[[28] ]from Victorious : Freak The Freak Out


[[29] ]This school is mentioned in iCarly : iMight Switch Schools.


[[30] ]Bradford is the son of the founder of Pacific Coast Academy, only present in Zoey 101 : Prank Week.


[[31] ]cf. Zoey 101 : Back at PCA, Fake Roommate, Rumours of love


[[32] ]from Zoey 101 : Zoey's Tutor


[[33] ]from Zoey 101 : Rollercoaster


[[34] ]from Zoey 101 : Robot Wars

The surname is taken from same actor's character in a third-party owned movie.


[[35] ]from Zoey 101 : Robot Wars

The surname is a corruption of the actor's surname.


[[36] ]allusion to a popular kid song


[[37] ]This is 'Makeout Mandy' Franklin, mentioned in Zoey 101 : Chasing Zoey


[[38] ]a mall mentioned in iCarly : iStage An Intervention


[[39] ]from Zoey 101 : Defending Dustin


[[40] ]from Zoey 101 : Hot Dean


[[41] ]mentioned in iCarly : Alone At PCA


[[42] ]This refers to third-party owned DC-series.

Wayne Gilbert's addiction to them is evidenced in Zoey 101 : Favor Chain


[[43] ]cameos in Zoey 101 : Defending Dustin and Broadcast Views

There is no canonical connection between Mr. Kirby and Trisha Kirby.


[[44] ]cameo in iCarly : iGot Detention


[[45] ]from iCarly : iMake Sam Girlier


[[46] ]from Zoey 101 : Robot Wars


[[47] ]cameo in True Jackson VP : The Hunky Librarian


[[48] ]cf. Zoey 101 : Hot Dean


[[49] ]from Zoey 101 : Jet-X


[[50] ]cameo in Zoey 101 : Jet-X


[[51] ]father of Tori, star of Victorious


[[52] ]from Ned's Declassified SSG : Pep Rallies


[[53] ]She's both cameo cheerio Mandy from Drake & Josh : Football and unportrayed "Makeout" Mandy Franklin mentioned in Zoey 101 : Chasing Zoey


[[54] ]from Fairly Odd Movie


[[55] ]from Best Player


[[56] ]from Zoey 101 : The Play


[[57] ]various cameos in Big Time Rush


[[58] ]from iCarly : Girls Will Be Boys


[[59] ]cf. Drake & Josh : Helen's Surgery


[[60] ]third-party owned song by Drake Bell


[[61] ]from Drake & Josh : Little Diva


[[62] ]This recurring from Drake & Josh is here identified with same actress's guest rôle in Zoey 101 : Backpack


[[63] ]a shop of this name is featured in iCarly : iStake Out


[[64] ]mentioned in Zoey 101 : Broadcast Views


[[65] ]cameo in Zoey 101 : Silver Hammers


[[66] ]cf. Drake & Josh : Honor Council


[[67] ]Max is a cameo from Shredderman Rules.

He is identified with same actor's occasional rôle in Ned's Declassified SSG, known as 'Backpack Boy'.

The surname is from same actor's rôle in some third-party owned show.


[[68] ]Debra is a cameo in Zoey 101 : School Dance.

The surname is chosen from same actress's rôle in some third-party owned movie.


[[69] ]mentioned in Zoey 101 ; The Radio


[[70] ]This recurring of Victorious is here identified with same actress's cameo in iCarly : iPsycho and with Rebecca from Zoey 101 : Chase's Girlfriend et al.


[[71] ]This identifies Joe the Mechanic from Zoey 101 : Spring Fling with Braxley from iCarly : iPromote Techfoots


[[72] ]cf. Zoey 101 : The Play


[[73] ]from Zoey 101 : Haunted House


[[74] ]some third-party owned crime shoe.


[[75] ]various cameos in Ned's Declassified SSG

He is also identified with same actor's cameo as 'LennySpodnik' in Drake & Josh : Foam Finger


[[76] ]this regular from Big Time Rush is identified with cameo character "The turk" from True Jackson VP : Ryan On Rolls


[[77] ]from Ned's Declassified SSG : Teachers


[[78] ]from Fairly Odd Movie.


[[79] ]from iCarly : iGive Away A Car


[[80] ]from True Jackson VP : Amanda Hires A Pink


[[81] ]from Zoey 101 : Lola Likes Chase


[[82] ]from Ned's Declassified SSG : Upperclass Men


[[83] ]from Unfabulous : List Of Kissed


[[84] ]allusion to some third-party owned song by Mike Oldfield


[[85] ]mentioned several tims in Drake & Josh


[[86] ]from Zoey 101 : The Great Vince Blake


[[87] ]from Big Time Rush : Big Time Bloggers


[[88] ]Carl is a cameo from Zoey 101 : Hot Dean.

The surname isd from same actor's rare rôle in Unfabulous.


[[89] ]cameo in Zoey 101 : The Radio


[[90] ]cameo in Zoey 101 : Hot Dean


[[91] ]from Zoey 101 : Haunted House


[[92] ]from Zoey 101 : Dance Contest


[[93] ]cameo from Zoey 101 : Bad Girl


[[94] ]cameo in Zoey 101 : Bad Girl


[[95] ]cf. Drake & Josh : Megan's New Teacher


[[96] ]cf. iCarly : iKiss


[[97] ]mentioned in Drake & Josh : Treehouse


[[98] ]Tootie is from Fairly Odd Movie.

The family name is from the rôle of the same actress in Victorious.


[[99] ]from Big Time Rush : Big Time Life


[[100] ]various cameos in iCarly


[[101] ]from True Jackson VP : The Green Carpet


[[102] ]from Zoey 101 : Silver Hammers


[[103] ]from Zoey 101 : Lola Likes Chase, identified with some Katie from Drake & Josh : Megan's New Teacher


[[104] ]from Big Time Rush : Big Time Concert


[[105] ]mentioned in Drake & Josh : Drake and Josh go Hollywood


[[106] ]from Drake & Josh : Drake and Josh Go Hollywood


[[107] ]appears in Drake & Josh : Drake and Josh go Hollywood and in Victorious : A Film By Dale Squires


[[108] ]from Zoey 101 : Drippin


[[109] ]cameo in Zoey 101 : Quinn's Alapaca


[[110] ]


[[111] ]cf. Drake & Josh : Sheep Thrills


[[112] ]cameos in Zoey 101 : Pilot et alibi

The surname is from some cameo rôle of the same character in some third party owned movie.


[[113] ]from Ned's Declassified SSG : School Newspaper


[[114] ]from True Jackson VP : True's New Assistant


[[115] ]Really a tune from one eoisode of Spongebob Squarepants, a third-party owned cartoon series.


[[116] ]cf. Zoey 101 : The Play


[[117] ]cf. Drake & Josh : The Grannie


[[118] ]mentioned in Zoey 101 : Favor Chain


[[119] ]from Zoey 101 : Hot Dean


[[120] ]cf. Zoey 101 : Dinner For Two Many


[[121] ]cf. Ned's Declassified SSG : Notebooks for a similar trick by Sweeny!


[[122] ]cameo in iCarly : iThink They Kissed


[[123] ]from Drake & Josh : The Batthe Of Panthatar


[[124] ]Toplin is an anonymous cameo from Drake & Josh : The Battle Of Panthatar, credited by IMDB as Toplin


[[125] ]This identifies Sarah from Zoey 101 : Silver Hammers with Kyla from True Jackson VP : Flirting With Fame.


[[126] ]from True Jackson VP : Keeping tabs


[[127] ]cf. iCarly : iRock The Votes


[[128] ]This Vanessa is a cameo figure in Zoey 101 : Quinn's Alpaca

She is identified with cameos of the same actress in Unfabulous :The Pal et alibi.

She is by absolutely no means to be confused with any other of the Vanessas in this story!


[[129] ]This is coach Juan from iCarly : iFight Shelby Marx.


[[130] ]identifies Duke from iCarly : iHatch Chicks with Blatzberg from Zoey 101 : Wrestling


[[131] ]from Zoey 101 : The Wrestler


[[132] ]cf. Drake & Josh : Paging Dr. Drake


[[133] ]adapted from a third party owned song by Daddy Yankee.

The line means literally something like 'I like fuel.'


[[134] ]from Zoey 101 : Zoey's Balloon.

It is a spoof off third party owned song The Macarena by De Los Rios.

A macarena is properly a woman from some particular Spanish region.

This is here also assumed to be the case for "macalana".

But there is no real Spanish region associated with it.


[[135] ]The cockroach can't walk due to the lack of Blix to drink.


[[136] ]cf. iCarly : iDream Of Dance.


[[137] ]spoof of third-party owned song Aserejé by Los Ketchups


[[138] ]from Zoey 101 : Chase's Grandmother


[[139] ]This identifies Joe the Mechanic from Zoey 101 : Spring Fling with Braxley from iCarly : iPromote Techfoots.


[[140] ]from Ned's Declassified SSG : School Newspaper.


[[141] ]occasionally mentioned in Troop


[[142] ]Maria is from Zoey 101, : Quarantine.

The surname is taken from the recurring rôle of the same actress in third party owned show JONAS.


[[143] ]from iCarly : iHave My Principals


[[144] ]from iCarly : iHeart Art


[[145] ]This is Simon from Zoey 101 : Dance Contest.

The surname is taken from the same actor's rôle in some third-party owned movie.


[[146] ]mentioned in iCarly : iSpy A Mean Teacher


[[147] ]This is Tad from Big Time Rush : Big Time Beach Party, identified with Cameron from iCarly : iSpace Out and also with Jack from True Jackson VP : True Mall.


[[148] ]Calvin is from Zoey 101 : Dance Contest and Coffee Cart Ban.

The surname is from some rôle of the same actor in some third party owned movie.


[[149] ]This is Ms. Wahl from The Troop : Batteries Not Included.

The first name is taken from another rôle by the same actress in some third party owned show.


[[150] ]cf. Drake & Josh : First Crush


[[151] ]cf. Drake & Josh : Dance Contest


[[152] ]This identifies Earnie from iCarly : iWas A Pageant Girl with Lane from Victorious.


[[153] ]Third party owned sing by Drake Bell


[[154] ]from Shredderman Rules


[[155] ]mentioned in Zoey 101 : Favor Chain


[[156] ]This identifies Scooter from Zoey 101 : Favor Chain with Robbie Carmichaelfrom Drake & Josh : Treehouse.


[[157] ]from Drake & Josh : The Gary Grill


[[158] ]cf. Drake & Josh : Peruvian Puff Pepper


[[159] ]from iCarly : iPromise Not To Tell


[[160] ]cf. iCarly : iWant A Record


[[161] ]Allusion to third party owned movie Godzilla.


[[162] ]cf. Zoey 101 : Drippin


[[163] ]cf. Unfabulous : The Dark Side


[[164] ]cf. iCarly : iChristmas


[[165] ]cf. iCarly : iSpy A Mean Teacher


[[166] ]from Zoey 101 : Logan Gets Cut Off


[[167] ]cf. Zoey 101 : Little Beach Party


[[168] ]This is Lafe from Zoey 101 : The Cirse Of PCA.

The family name is taken from a rôle of the same actor in some third party owned movie.


[[169] ]from iCarly : JONAS Book Of Records


[[170] ]cf. Zoey 101 : Spring Fling


[[171] ]cf. Zoey 101 : Miss PCA


[[172] ]mentioned in iCarly : iWant A Record


[[173] ]This is Valerie from iCarly : iWill Date Freddie, identified with some unportrayed Valerie mentioned casually in Zoey 101 : Drippin'.


[[174] ]cf. iCarly : iStart A Fanwar


[[175] ]from iCarly : iHeart Art


[[176] ]mentioned in Zoey 101 : Miss PCA


[[177] ]Third-party owned song by Jamie Lynn Speares, title song of Zoey 101.


[[178] ]from Drake & Josh : Great Doheny


[[179] ]from Zoey 101 : Logan gets cut off. and Zoey 101 : Spring Break Up


[[180] ]from iCarly : iAm Your Biggest Fan!


[[181] ]This is Tyler from Drake & Josh : I Love Sushi.

The surname is taken from same actor's rôle in some third party owned show.


[[182] ]This is Milly from Zoey 101 : Roller Coaster.

The surname is taken from some rôle of the same actress in some third party owned show.


[[183] ]This is Morgan from iCarly : iCarly Saves TV.

The firstname is taken from the rôle of her father's actor sin Victorious : Pilot.


[[184] ]A guest character in one episode of second season The Troop.


[[185] ]This identifies Stevie from How To Rock with the same actress's cameo in Zoey 101 : Anger Management.


[[186] ]star of Fairly Odd Movie


[[187] ]Hotels of this name appear in various works of Dan Schneider, such as Drake & Josh : Drake and Josh go Hollywood. et alibi.


[[188] ]third party owned song by Roger Whitacker


[[189] ]This character from Zoey 101, fourth season, is identified with various other rôles of the same actor in various Nickelodeon shows, such as Jake Crendel from iCarly : iLike Jake and Dennifer from Zoey 101 : Quarantine.


[[190] ]mentioned in Zoey 101 : Chasing Zoey.


[[191] ]from Zoey 101 : Dinner For Two Many


[[192] ]Harper is from iCarly : iCarly Saves TV.

The surname is taken from same actor's rôle in Victorious.


[[193] ]mentioned in Zoey 101 : Rollercoaster and Drake & Josh : Demonator.


[[194] ]cf. Drake & Josh : The Demonator


[[195] ]cf. Zoey 101 : Rollercoaster


[[196] ]from Spectacular!


[[197] ]from iCarly :iFight Shelby Marx


[[198] ]from Zoey 101 : Chasing Zoey


[[199] ]Tareen is a cameo from iCarly : iSpy A mean Teacher.

The family name is taken from a character of the same actress in some third party owned movie.


[[200] ]The surname is taken from same actor's rôle in Best Player


[[201] ]really a third party owned song by Zaragoza Band.


[[202] ]where the fire is boiling, but if you run a way, it will let you be. You won't get closed in, or even destroyed, by just watching.


[[203] ]Let's go to the top, using the funicular!


[[204] ]Gene is from Zoey 101 : Dance Contest.

The surname is taken from some other rôleof the same actor in some third party owned show.


[[205] ]from True Jackson VP : True Crush


[[206] ]cf. iCarly : iPromote Techfoots and Drake & Josh : Really Big Shrimps.


[[207] ]allusion to These Boots Are Made For Walking, a third party owned song by Nancy Sinatra.


[[208] ]cf. iCarly : iSpy A Mean Teacher as a cardboard figure.

It's a spoof off Randy Jackson.


[[209] ]from Drake & Josh : Really Big Shrimp.


[[210] ]from iCarly : iRock The Votes


[[211] ]from True Jackson VP : The Rival


[[212] ]cf. Ned's Declassified SSG : Career Week.


[[213] ]from iCarly : iMeet Fred


[[214] ]mentioned in Victorious : WiiFi In The Sky


[[215] ]cameo in iCarly : iFight Shelby Marx


[[216] ]This is Rod from iCarly : iFight Shelby Marx.

The surname is taken from another rôle of the same actor in some third party owned movie.


[[217] ]from iCarly : iLook Alike


[[218] ]This identifies Alex from iCarly : iParty With Victorious and from Victorious : Roborazzi with Darren from iCarly : iFight Shelby Marx and an anonymous rôle of the same actor in Zoey 101 : Zoey's Ribs.


[[219] ]from Big Time Rush : Big Time Bloggers from Belgium in Europe.


[[220] ]from Victorious : Beck's Break


[[221] ]from True Jackson VP : Red Carpet


[[222] ]cf. Victorious : Tori The Zombie.


[[223] ]mentioned in iCarly : iDream Of Dance


[[224] ]Ash in from Best Player.

The surname is taken from one guest rôle of the same actor in one episode ofThe Troop.


[[225] ]cf, iCarly : iTake On Dingo


[[226] ]This Mr. Bradford is taken from Supah Ninjas : Mr. Bradford.


[[227] ]from Big Time Rush : Big Time Sparks


[[228] ]The first name is taken from a different rôle of the same acrtor in some third party owned movie.


[[229] ]mentioned in iCarly : iMust Have Locker 239


[[230] ]The first name is taken from a rôle of the same character in some different movie.


[[231] ]There seems to be no official canonical first name for Ms. Collins.

"Tamara" is chosen for a cameo of the same actress in some third-party owned movie.


[[232] ]Brad D'Impala is from True Jackson VP : True Fear.


[[233] ]All those people are from iCarly : iCarly Awards.

Parts of their names are constructed using rôles of their respective actors in third party owned shows.


[[234] ]Dakota North is from True Jackson VP : Babysitting Dakota.


[[235] ]This dish is presented in iCarly : iWont Cancel The Show.


[[236] ]Richard Flame is from iCarly : iCook.


[[237] ]Pierre Le Mange is mentioned and counterfeited in Zoey 101 : Zoey's Ribs.


[[238] ]Fredward Benson makes this statement in iCarly : iSpy A Mean Teacher.


[[239] ]Evvy Wexler appearsin True Jackson VP : True Fear is an excellent cook in the northeastern states with experience in for several six star restaurants from Boston to Washington.


[[240] ]Stephenie King appears in Big Time Rush: Big Time Terror et alibi.

The name is a spoof off "Stephen King".

With this spelling, it is also intended as a spoof off "Stephenie Meyer".


[[241] ]Phoebe Nachee is a cameo character in Big Time Rush : Big Time Break,


[[242] ]Royce Bingham is from True Jackson VP: True Fear.


[[243] ]Everything said about the Spanish monarchy here is purely fictive, barring some of the more general geographical and remote historical statements.


[[244] ]Fredward Benson does so in various episodes of season three.


[[245] ]Tasha appears in iCarly: iEnrage Gibby et alibi.


[[246] ]cf. Victorious: Tori The Zombie!


[[247] ]a third party owned song by Drake Bell


[[248] ]cf. iCarly: iMeet Fred, but he had now given up on this, probably due to hating real mathematics beyond stubborn arithmetics with numbers. And, for the time being, he was still in a miserable shape due to the consequences of his confusion caused by thew rumours about his royal ancestry, due to his disappointment about not getting to the Valentine's day court dance with Carly, and due to the cerebral surgery and its consequences.


[[249] ]Stu Staimbler is from iCarly : iStakeout


[[250] ]Officer Carl is from iCarly: iWant More Viewers et alibi.

The family name is taken from a rôle of the same actor in some third party owned show.


[[251] ]Let lotus and laurel be spliced into a winner's crown, let a gentle cloud of flowers veil the weapons! Let's dance mystic carols, oh maidens of the PCA, in the manner of the stars in the sky dancing around the sun.


[[252] ]Joe Catania is mentioned in iCarly : iQuit iCarly.

But there is really a Joe Catania working for Nickelodeon.


[[253] ]This is cameo rôle Joe Catania from Zoey 101: Silver Hammers.


[[254] ]Norah Dershlit is from iCarly : iPsycho.


[[255] ]This Wendy has got a bunch of cameos in iCarly : iDate A Bad Boy et alibi, and she is by absolutely no means to be confused with Wendy from Drake & Josh: Number One Fan.


[[256] ]Wesley has got cameos in iCarly : iPilot et alibi.


[[257] ]Taryn Davis has got a cameo in iCarly : iPilot.


[[258] ]This is "Ripoff" Rodney from iCarly: iGot Detention et alibi.

The surname is from a rôle of the same character in 5third-party owned Head Cases.


[[259] ]Jeremy is from iCarly :iWill Date Freddie et alibi.

The surname is taken from some rôle of the same actor in some third party owned movie.


[[260] ]This section alludes eventually to third-party owned song New York, New York by Frank Sinatra.


[[261] ]This musical appears in Victorious: Tori The Zombie


[[262] ]This play is featured in Victorious: Wok Star.


[[263] ]Angela Crabtree is a cameo figire in a few episodes of The Troop.


[[264] ]Van Gurbin and his book appear in iCarly: iBelieve in Bigfoot.


[[265] ]alludes to Songebob Squarepants, a Nickelodeon cartoon show


[[266] ]from iCarly : iSpace Out


[[267] ]Fujisaki appears in Big Time Rush: Big Time Party


[[268] ]From iCarly: iMeet The First Lady, a spoof off "Michelle Obama"


[[269] ]spoof off "Bill Gates"


[[270] ]spoof off "Rothschild"


[[271] ]spoof off "Mark Zuckerberg"