Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Chimp Heist

Another short story beginning from Lissa's class.  This one's about a kid who really wants a chimp.  I can't remember what the writing prompts were, except I believe they involved: every day, one day, and a detailed description of a veggie burger.



More than anything in the world, Melvin wanted a chimpanzee.  Every day, he asked his parents for one.  And every day, their answer was the same:
"No."
Well, sometimes it was a variation on that response:
"Are you crazy?"
"How would you feed it?" and:
"Do I look like I'm made of money?"
But basically, no.

So every day Melvin rocked on his rocking chair and schemed of ways to get his hands on a bona-fide chimp.  He couldn't go to the pet store, even in disguise.  For one thing, he was too young.  Also, he only had $37.23 to his name - stashed in his porky porcelain piggy bank.  He couldn't fly to Africa for the same reason.  He even tried some occult magic as a last resort, but he didn't really believe it would work and sadly was proven right.

Then one day as he was rocking his rocking chair, building a chimp out of Legos, he dropped a Lego onto the floor under his Dad's easy chair.  He reached his hand under the chair (very carefully, in case his occult magic had accidentally summoned some child-snatching demon.)  Mostly he came back with lint.  But he felt something else under the chair - some paper.  Pulling out the paper he saw the usual boring headlines about stock prices and pictures of grown-ups covering up their faces.  He was about to toss it when an ad caught his eye:

"Chimpanzees coming to the Grand Forks Zoo."  Chimpanzees.  They never came to North Dakota because it was too cold.
"This is a once in a lifetime chance," thought Melvin.  He immediately called his best friend, Sanders. "Hey, it's me.  We're gonna break into the zoo.  You in?"

Melvin and Sanders locked the door to Melvin's room.  They spread out maps on the floor, schematics, biology books on the feeding habits of chimpanzees.  They were prepared.
"Nothing can stop us," said Melvin.
"Boys, lunchtime!" yelled Melvin's Mom.
"We're busy!" said Melvin.
"Too bad, you need to eat."

They kicked the papers under Melvin's bed as his Mom wriggled the door handle.
"Why is this locked?" she said.
"Uh, we were eating Play-Doh," blurted Sanders.  He was a terrible liar.  Melvin opened the door.
"We were reading comics, Mom.  What's for lunch?"
"A veggie burger with avocado, bacon, lettuce, and tomato."
"Yuck," thought Melvin.  But he didn't say anything.  He was going to be the perfect child until he could get his hands on that chimp.  Oh, how he longed to play catch with it, to teach it how to breakdance, and use it to play pranks on his enemies, like Suzy Wormser.  That pickle-faced tattletale Suzy Wormser.  He'd dress the chimp up like a little boy, get Suzy to fall in love with it, then pull the rug out from under her feet.  That would teach her not to spread rumors about people's tendency to wet the bed.  Lily-livered Suzy Wormser.

"Mom, Sanders and I need to be dropped off at the zoo for a field trip."  Melvin munched from his sandwich and tried to act casual.  His eyes met Sanders', who looked like he was about to explode.  Melvin casually stomped on his foot.
"Where's the permission slip?"
Sanders' eyes bulged.
Melvin slid a poorly-spelled permission slip to his Mom.
"These are the people who teach our children," she sighed.  Then signed the slip.  Melvin took another bite of his veggie burger.  He was darned if it didn't taste delicious.


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