Community Service

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Community Service

Post by Vivien on Tue Jun 23, 2009 4:05 pm



Community Service

Cast:
Benny Chan
Bernice Liu
Bosco Wong
Leila Tong
Moses Chan
Myolie Wu
Nancy Wu
Raymond Lam
Ron Ng
Tavia Yeung

-

Heaven. How else could you possibly describe this? A Jacuzzi in every bathroom. What seems to be self restocking food supplies? Hi-fi system in the largest living room imaginable. A beach-like backyard with a swimming pool. Waterbeds and cozy silk blankets for a good night’s rest. Ping-Pong and pool tables for leisure activities. And that is just to name a few. Not to mention, there is hidden treasure. But don’t forget, we are all here to do ... community service?

One large mansion. One particular goal.

Ten poor but determined souls. With only thirty days.

What could possibly happen? Anything.

What could possibly go wrong? Everything.

What more could they ask for? The world.

-

Benny Chan
“You’re lucky you’re a girl! Because if I have to stay here any longer ...”

Bernice Liu
“What? I’m confused ... huh?”

Bosco Wong
“You know you want me.”

Leila Tong
“I can’t stay here any longer. I need to leave, now!”

Moses Chan
“Why on earth am I stuck with these people? I can’t even party properly.”

Myolie Wu
“This is like, totally my style.”

Nancy Wu
“You know what? If you don’t shut up, I’m going to beat the crap out of you.”

Raymond Lam
“This is what you’ve turned me into.”

Ron Ng
“Sorry, but this is best for the both of us.”

Tavia Yeung
“Why? All I want is another chance. Just once.”

-

Warning: This story may contain inappropriate language. So if you can’t tolerate any swearing then, I’d hate to say this, but don’t read. Of course it won’t be intense swearing, just a few swear words here and there to lighten up the mood.

-

Copyright by Vivien. December 21, 2008.


Last edited by Vivien on Tue Jun 23, 2009 4:08 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Chapter 1: Arrested

Post by Vivien on Tue Jun 23, 2009 4:06 pm

Chapter 1: Arrested

“Pst. Pst. Yo,” the voice of his two friends whispered.

Benny turned around and widened his eyes at his two coward friends. “What the hell are you guys doing?” Benny exclaimed, “I thought I told you to act casual, not act like you’ve just stolen something!”

“But we just did!” Bosco yelled but immediately covered his mouth, realizing his volume.

“We are acting casual,” Ron explained as he waved Benny into the alleyway.

Moving towards the two, “You two aren’t acting casual! Peeking out from every turn of a corner is not what we call casual. Now get going!”

“Wait!” Bosco and Ron yelled in unison.

“Now what?” Benny turned around. The three continue to debate over what should be done.

Meanwhile, down the road, Nancy was window shopping. She was looking for a new dress for her new design. She wanted something simple yet had its own uniqueness. She had just come up with the best design but couldn’t find the right dress to fit the main focus, a locket. She reached into her purse to take out the locket. Dangling it in front of her, she admired its beauty. Out of shock, she realized that someone had grabbed it out of her hand and had taken off with it. “Hey! Give that back!” she chased after a manly figure.

Thinking that she had lost the man, Nancy suddenly heard whispering voices. She tilted her head towards the alleyway to see three mischievous men debating with one another. It was them, they had stolen her locket.

“We stole the cash from an old lady! As if she would be able to chase us down,” Benny argued, “Use your heads! Let’s go already!”

“That old lady was hot man!” Ron joked.

“Old lady?” Nancy exclaimed thinking they were referring to her, “Who are you calling an old lady?”

“Definitely not you,” Bosco was attracted by her beauty.

“Hand the locket over or else!” Nancy threatened; she was definitely getting her locket back from these three jerks.

“Locket?” the three questioned at once.

“Don’t play dumb,” she hissed, “Don’t make me come get it.”

“Oh, what? You want to fight now?” Benny was underestimating her, “Go brothers!” Benny waved his two friends to take her down. To his disbelief, Ron and Bosco were on the ground rubbing their bruised faces in a matter of seconds. Benny was about to do this himself until a familiar voice interrupted.

“It’s them! Police officer, it’s those three!” the elderly woman pointed out, “They stole my money!”

“What happened to those two?” the officer questioned, looking down at Ron and Bosco. Benny immediately pointed an accusing finger at Nancy. “All four of you, back to the police station with me,” the officer demanded. Nancy gave Benny a threatening glare, he returned the favour.

-

Tavia and Myolie were shopping together. No, they weren’t shopping for clothes and accessories, they were grocery shopping. This is probably the first time that these two girls walked into a grocery store. They had no idea where things were placed, and they didn’t even know how the shopping carts worked. Carrying a grocery basket per girl, the two looked for the junk food section.

“What should we get?” Tavia looked at Myolie who was examining the price.

“Wow, these are really expensive,” Myolie said, “I wonder how my parents afford them.”

“It’s junk food, Myo,” Tavia whispered so that only Myolie could hear, “And it’s not like we’re buying it.”

Grabbing all the food they wanted and slipping some into their big purses, the two headed to pay for the few items remaining in their baskets. Making sure that nothing was revealing, the two were walking blindly, and thus bumped into another girl.

“Ouch!” Myolie squealed, “You stepped on my toe! And you stepped on it hard! And oh my gosh, these shoes are new!” Myolie didn’t bother to consider nor did she care that it was her who bumped into the innocent girl in front of her. “Watch where you’re going!” she started up.

“Myo ...” Tavia nudged her, “Don’t make a big fuss over this, alright?” Myolie nodded in agreement. “Sorry,” Tavia apologized to the girl.

“It’s alright. I’m Bernice by the way,” she extended her arm out for a handshake.

“Sorry, we have to get going,” Tavia said, dragging Myolie with her.

“Look at that ugly bag she has,” Myolie commented, “It’s so big and ugly, and ... outdated!”

Tavia laughed, “It looks just like yours!”

“Hey!” Myolie glared at her best friend, “You know why I have to carry this thing. How else would I be able to fit so much food in here?”

“Shh!” Tavia warned as they approached the cashier.

Waiting for the cashier to enter their items, Myolie was looking around. “Oh my gosh, she keeps smiling at me,” Myolie said as she forced a smile back at the girl over at the next lane.

“Who?” Tavia questioned as she paid for their food.

“That Bernice girl,” Myolie rolled her eyes, “Ugh, she’s such a creeper.”

“Let’s go,” Tavia said as the two left the lane.

“Hey!” Bernice waved, trying to get the two’s attention.

“Why on earth is she waving at us?” Tavia was annoyed, “We don’t even know her.”

“Let’s get out of here before I blow up at her,” Myolie suggested.

The two quickened their pace towards the exit but Bernice was quickly catching up. The two exited the grocery store while Bernice froze in place. Forgetting about the items in their purses, the two were not aware of the sensors.

“Dang! I totally forgot about these,” Tavia blamed, “Stupid girl!”

The two started to run but immediately stopped when someone stepped in front of them. “Sorry Miss!” the store manager smiled, “Can I check your purses?” Their heads dropped as they handed their purses over.

While examining their purses, “You, Miss! Stop right there as well!” The manager directed towards Bernice. Bernice nodded and waited patiently as she watched the store manager check their purses. “What are these?” he took out the stolen items from both their purses, “I’m sure they are from our store?” The two nodded and admitted to their theft. He waved at Bernice, signalling to her that she could leave.

Moving across the sensor, the alarm went off again. Not knowing what to do, Bernice continued off. “Miss!” the store manager exclaimed.

Bernice opened up her purse and peaked inside. She reached in and took out an item, “This isn’t mine!”

Myolie snickered at the sight before her, “I think I dropped that in there. No wonder there was next to nothing left in my basket.”

-

The disco lights were flashing sharply and in a corner, Moses was talking to a stranger. “So how do you sell these?” he pointed at the pack of substance in the unknown man’s hand.

“250,” the man offered. Moses handed over the money in exchange for the substances, the drugs.

Popping a few into his mouth, Moses danced his way through the dance floor. Before he could reach the door, all the lights shot on. Blinded by the sudden brightness, Moses squinted his eyes to see a group of people barging in.

“Males to the left,” a man’s voice started, “Females to the right.”

“Shit,” Moses muttered to himself. “Hey! Cheung Sir!” Moses greeted as he made his way to the bar.

“Moses!” Julian greeted in return, “How’s it going?” Julian knew that he could probably find something off of Moses.

“Nothing much,” Moses replied while stuffing the pack of drugs into the ledge under the table.

“What’s that behind you? What are you hiding?” Julian interrogated.

Realizing that he’s been caught, Moses dropped the pack of drugs and immediately dashed out of the pub.

“I’m leaving this place to you guys,” Julian shouted as he chased after Moses.

“Yes, Sir!” his crew replied.

-

“Leila, please ...” Raymond begged.

“Look, Ray,” Leila tried to talk some sense into him, “This isn’t working. What is the point of this? Dating is supposed to be something fun, something happy! But look at us? We spend more time arguing than anything else.”

“I can change,” Raymond uttered to himself, staring at the ground.

“I’m sorry,” Leila began again, “Let’s just end things here, on a happy note.”

“Lei ...” Raymond looked up into her eyes. Unwillingly, he nodded as he blinked back his tears.

Leila smiled at him for being so understanding. Raymond reacted quickly and grabbed onto her when Leila fell forward. The two looked over to see a man running for his life.

“Are you alright?” Raymond looked at the Leila in his arms. She backed away and nodded at him.

“Moses Chan!” Julian yelled as he ran pass the two who were staring at him with curiosity.

Leila looked down at her foot and saw a small package, “What is this?”

“Don’t touch it,” Raymond suggested, “You don’t want to get yourself into trouble.”

Leila smiled at him, he had always been so careful with everything. She had always felt safe and protected when she was with Raymond. It was definitely hard for her to break it to him. She really did hope that their relationship would work out better.

Another man walked passed them but stopped and turned around at the sight of the small package. He bent over to pick it up, “What is this?”

“It’s not ours,” the two replied together. The police officer was about to interrogate them when they heard loud screaming.

From the distance, Moses’ voice was heard, “Let me go!”

Dragging Moses by the collar, Julian told him, “I’ll let you go when everything is clarified.”

“You didn’t find anything on me,” Moses said, wondering what had happened to his second pack of drugs. He thought he had dropped one at the pub but another should still be in his pocket. He shrugged it off as this was a good sign for him.

Making their way back, one of Julian’s officers showed him the pack of drugs. Julian glared at Moses as this was definitely his.

“That is not mine!” Moses pointed a finger towards Raymond and Leila. Julian glanced at Moses and then turned over to where Raymond and Leila were standing.

-

Back at the police station, the ten teenagers were gathered together in a large, conference-like room.

“Myo?” Bosco shouted.

“Tav?” Ron exclaimed.

The two girls looked up at their boyfriends and shook their head in disappointment.

“Sit down everyone,” the officer commanded. The ten teenagers grabbed a seat at the table while the officer began his lecture. For some of them, this was definitely not their first time hearing this speech and they knew that they would be let off after it.

Bernice was the only one paying attention although she had no clue what the officer was talking about. Myolie was twirling her hair with her finger while Bosco was leaning on her shoulder. Leila rested her head on her hand and closed her eyes. Raymond was staring intently at her. Ron and Tavia were playing hand games and laughing softly to themselves. Moses had already fallen asleep as this was probably his twentieth time listening to this; he was snoring like a pig. Benny was having a staring contest with Nancy or more like he was glaring at her while she was returning his favour.

“So you guys need to meet at the community centre tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. sharp,” the officer reminded, “Remember, you are doing community service so please don’t be late or we will add on to it. I am hoping that thirty days is enough for you guys to think about what you did wrong.”

“What? This hasn’t happened to me before. I didn’t have to do this last time!” Moses complained.

“That’s because this is a new law,” the officer explained, “So you are all going to do community service!”

“Community service?” they all exclaimed in unison before breaking off into chatters.

“Holy shit man! What the hell? Community ser – no!” Benny started the complaining once again.

“This is your fault,” Nancy hissed at Benny.

“Me? Community service? But look at these beautiful nails!” Myolie stared sadly at her beautifully manicured nails.

“Are there going to be any girls?” Bosco whispered quietly to himself, luckily Myolie was too busy to hear him.

“Shit. Shit. Shit. Shit. Shit!” Ron exclaimed.

“Who came up with this new law anyways?” Tavia asked.

“Why is this happening to me?” Leila joined in.

“This sure is my unlucky day,” Raymond looked at Leila.

“Community service?” Bernice was confused, “This sounds ... fun?”

-

Copyright by Vivien. December 28, 2008.


Last edited by Vivien on Tue Jun 23, 2009 4:18 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Chapter 2: Here Goes Nothing

Post by Vivien on Tue Jun 23, 2009 4:07 pm

Chapter 2: Here Goes Nothing

It is exactly 10:00 a.m. and the ten teenagers have all gathered at the community centre as they were told. None of them were fully awake as they waited impatiently for someone to give them their tasks. At last, what seemed to be the longest wait had ended as a social worker appeared before their eyes. The social worker divided them up into two groups, one consisting of all the girls and the other consisting of all the boys. The girls were sent off to the beach while the boys were sent to an old age home. The teenagers signed in and set off to their destination.

-

“Garbage, garbage, garbage,” Leila complained as she brushed against the sand with the tree branch in her hand. This place was a mess. It’s hard to imagine that this was once a beautiful place to enjoy the ocean view. Leila couldn’t help but to be disgusted by the fact that people are so inconsiderate these days. She looked around and felt sorry for this place, she felt sorry for herself. But who was she to blame? She had probably owned one of those things that are now scattered throughout this place. Leila heaved a heavy sigh and started working on the patch of sand before her.

Nancy smiled and examined the girl to her right. The girl was very pretty and her features were angelic. She dressed casually in shorts and her hair was tied up in a messy bun. However, it was shocking to Nancy to see her tomboyish attitude.

“People these days ...” Leila groaned. She looked around her and felt very unsuccessful at cleaning up the place. “When will we ever finish cleaning up this place?” Leila asked herself, “I wonder where the boys are off to.”

“They’re probably having a much better time than we are,” Nancy’s voice interrupted. Leila was surprised that someone had been listening to her the entire time.

Leila continued to make conversation, “They’re probably more successful at their task than we are. Look at this place!”

“I heard that they’re off to an old age home,” Nancy giggled, “I don’t think they’ll be having much fun either.”

Leila laughed along as she imagined Raymond with the seniors, “It would definitely be a funny sight.”

Nancy felt very comfortable talking to this girl. It wasn’t often that Nancy took initiative to make friends but she was liking Leila a lot. “I’m Nancy, by the way,” Nancy had almost forgotten to introduce herself.

“Leila Tong,” she introduced as the two shook hands.

“How did you end up doing community service?” Nancy asked out of curiosity.

“You wouldn’t believe it, but I’m innocent,” Leila started. Nancy was waiting for her to finish her story. “My boyfriend and I ... well, my ex-boyfriend and I just broke up and happened to be at the wrong place. Some guy, I think he was being chased or something and he dropped a package when he bumped into me. I guess they were drugs or something. And now I’m here,” Leila explained.

“Are you sure they’re his?” Nancy asked again.

“No,” Leila said, “But if I find out they were his, he’s going to be having a hard time.”

Nancy laughed at Leila as she was much like her. “Do you know who he is?” Nancy questioned.

“His name is Moses Chan, I heard the police officer call him that,” Leila replied, “What’s so funny?”

“Nothing,” Nancy stated, “If you ever find out that it’s him, let me know. After all, I do know martial arts.”

“Deal,” Leila smiled at her new friend, “So why are you here?”

“Long story,” Nancy sighed, “That jerk stole my locket and he wouldn’t admit to it. What a wimp!”

“Wait, then why are you here?” Leila was a bit confused, “Shouldn’t they be doing community service instead of you?”

“They are, they’re with the boys,” Nancy clarified, “I was pissed off and well, I let them have a taste of my fist! And the sad thing is, I don’t even know his name! He better give me back my locket ...”

Leila burst out in laughter, “You beat them up! Nice! But not very worth it in my opinion.”

“Yeah, well ...” Nancy ran out of words.

“Wow! You two are so unlucky!” Tavia joined into their conversation. She was nearby picking up garbage when she eavesdropped on their conversation. The two girls jumped at her sudden comment. “Sorry, didn’t mean to scare you,” Tavia apologized.

“Why are you here?” Leila and Nancy asked in unison.

“Ha! Well, I kind of, sort of, stole,” Tavia slightly blushed, “But it wasn’t something big! Just food and stuff.”

“Oh ...” the two girls nodded at her words.

Meanwhile, while the three girls were talking and working, Myolie rested herself on the sand. It’s been a long day and she has had enough cleaning for one day. She wiped the sweat from her forehead with her sleeves. Looking at the sun’s hot beams shining down at her, her head dropped down. But it immediately shot up again when she caught sight of Bernice. “Oh man,” Myolie started talking to herself, “Why am I always stuck with weird people like her?” Myolie was in a state of disbelief when she saw Bernice coming her way. “She can’t see me, she can’t see me, she can’t see me,” Myolie comforted herself, “Does she know it was me who dropped something into her purse? It was an accident!”

“It’s you!” Bernice exclaimed, pointing at Myolie.

“No, it’s not me!” Myolie replied, avoiding eye contact with Bernice.

“Yes, it’s you!” Bernice insisted.

“No, it’s not me,” Myolie insisted as well, “You’ve got the wrong person.”

Noticing the awkward conversation between Myolie and Bernice, Tavia rushed up to her best friend. “What’s wrong, Myolie?” Tavia asked.

“Nothing ...” Myolie quietly answered Tavia while trying to hide herself.

“It’s you two!” Bernice said.

“What?” Tavia questioned. Nancy and Leila looked at each other before proceeding towards the crowd.

“She won’t admit that we’ve met before,” Bernice stated, “Don’t you remember me? I’m Bernice!”

Realizing the tone in Bernice’s voice, Myolie sighed in relief, “Of course I do!”

“See!” Bernice smiled.

“These two are ...?” Myolie looked at Tavia for an answer.

“Nancy and Leila,” Tavia introduced them to each other, “This is my best friend, Myolie.”

While the five girls were introducing themselves to one another, an unfamiliar voice interrupted them. “Hey girls!” she greeted, “My name is Jessica Hsuan. I’m a social worker here and I’m on a mission to find a total of ten volunteers. Would you girls be interested in some treasure hunting?”

-

“Thank you boys for coming today to help with our early Christmas party,” one of the staff welcomed them.

“My pleasure,” Moses made it sound as if he was willing to do this, “What can we help you with?”

“We need someone to host our party while the others can sort the food and plan some games,” she suggested.

“Alright, I’ll go host,” Moses volunteered, “You guys go help with the food and stuff.”

The staff thanked them once again before heading off.

“Hello to all beautiful ladies and handsome gentlemen. My name is Moses!” Moses was good at sweet talking, “I hope everyone here at this old age home will enjoy today’s early Christmas party!”

While Moses continued his speech, Raymond was off in a corner by himself, sorting out the food. He had to make sure that everyone got their share of all the healthy food. He wanted to focus on his task but couldn’t help to think about Leila. She was constantly on his mind, no matter how hard he tried, he couldn’t let go of her. He had already understood that they’ve broken up but he wanted a second chance. Another chance was all he’d ask for and he promised to treasure it and make good use of it. Shaking the matter out of his mind, he continued the sorting.

“What should I help with?” Bosco asked Benny.

“Help Ron with distributing the food,” Benny suggested.

“Hey guys! Look at me!” Ron yelled for his two friend’s attention. He was balancing three plates of food on each arm while trying to make his way through the maze towards them. Benny shook his head at the sight in front of him, something bad was going to happen, he was sure of it.

“Be careful, Ron!” Bosco warned, not wanting to see the scene that was already playing in his head.

“Watch out for the ...” Benny yelled but noticed that it was already too late as he found Ron laying on the floor. “Chair leg,” Benny finished his unfinished sentence. Making his way up to Ron, Benny bent down. “You’re so clumsy!” Benny hit Ron’s head slightly but quickly pulled back when he realized what he had done.

Bosco was cracking up, “Oh Ben! You didn’t? Did you?” Bosco managed to utter out words between his laughter, “Ron, you look hilarious!”

“Sorry, bud,” Benny laughed as he helped Ron up. His face was now covered with the fruit salad and it’s dressing that once looked delicious.

“Go clean yourself up,” Bosco pointed at the washroom. Ron made his way to the washroom while Benny and Bosco cleaned up his mess.

Ron and Bosco continue to distribute the food. Benny made his way to Raymond, “How’s the sorting? You better hurry up, they’re getting hungry.” Benny grabbed a few plates and started towards the seniors but stopped when he noticed the situation Ron and Bosco were in.

“Oh, you two are so kind hearted,” an elderly woman said as she patted Bosco’s head.

“It’s rare to have young people willingly help out here,” an old man added while he pinched Ron’s cheeks.

“Heh, it’s our pleasure ...” Bosco said as he struggled away from the old lady.

Ron was eyeing Benny for help, “Yo, a little help here!”

Benny held his smile in and pretended not to hear their cry for help. Making his way back to Raymond, he decided to help with the food sorting.

“Aren’t you distributing the food?” Raymond asked looking at the plates of food that were still in Benny’s hands.

“I’ll do that later, Ron and Bosco are handing it out anyways,” Benny lied, “Let me help with the sorting.” He noticed that Raymond was awfully quiet and seemed to have something on his mind. “So how’d you end up in here?” Benny randomly asked before telling Raymond his own story, “I’m here because of an old lady, and now I’m here to serve old people! How ironic is that.” Raymond had no idea what this dude was talking about and decided that he didn’t quite care either. “You didn’t answer me,” Benny asked again, “How did you end up doing community service?” Raymond eyed the Moses standing on the stage making his concluding statement. “Him?” Benny shrugged, not expecting an answer from Raymond.

“Thank you for coming today,” Moses concluded, “I certainly hope that you all enjoyed today’s party and I hope to see you all again next year!” Moses watched as the seniors left one by one. He turned around and almost threw up at his own words, next year? Hopefully not.

The room was empty but a big mess was left behind. The five tired souls were about to leave when the staff returned, “Do you mind helping us clean up the mess?” After the simple question, she left the room once again. The five boys turned around and made their way back into the mess.

“Oh. My. Gosh!” Benny didn’t dare to look twice at the mess.

“Well,” Bosco clapped his hands and then made a face at Ron.

“Nuh-uh, no way,” Ron shook his head.

“Better start cleaning,” Raymond smiled at the three lazy souls.

The four were cleaning and about half way through, they realized that Moses was missing. “Where’s Moses?” Raymond asked.

“Good question,” Benny agreed with his curiosity.

“Over there,” Bosco pointed at Moses who was sound asleep on the couch.

“Moses Chan!” Ron shouted but there was no sign of movement.

“Moses Chan!” the four yelled in unison.

At last, Moses woke up. “Hey guys!” he chuckled nervously, “How’s the cleaning? Let me help with this here.” Raymond smiled and shook his head disappointedly.

“Names please!” a male voice stated.

“Ron Ng,” Ron was first to reply.

“Bosco Wong,” Bosco followed.

“Benny Chan,” Benny did the same.

“Moses Chan,” Moses threw out.

“Raymond Lam,” Raymond started, “Wait, who are you?” Raymond turned to look at the fat man in front of him. “Why did you give him your name?” Raymond asked Moses.

Moses pointed a finger at Benny, “I followed him.” Benny in return, pointed a finger at Bosco and Bosco pointed a finger at Ron.

“Why’d you tell him?” Benny asked Ron. Ron shrugged. Benny turned to Raymond and shrugged as well.

“Don’t worry!” the man said as he jotted down their names, “My name is Bobby Au-Yeung. I’m a social worker looking for ten volunteers to do our task. It’ll count for community service. All you have to do is go treasure hunting.”

“Treasure hunting?” the five questioned at once.

-

“Yes, treasure hunting! Meet us at the community centre half an hour earlier tomorrow and we’ll tell you what needs to be done!” Jessica and Bobby said together at their own locations.

-

Copyright by Vivien. January 4, 2009.
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Chapter 3: Up the Mountain We Go

Post by Vivien on Tue Jun 23, 2009 4:10 pm

Chapter 3: Up the Mountain We Go

“Isn’t it time already?” Benny’s droopy eyes tried to find their way to his watch.

“I’m so sleepy,” Ron said.

“Me too,” Bosco added.

“Breakfast is here!” Tavia and Myolie exclaimed in unison.

At the words breakfast, the three boys shot up and ran over to the table where Tavia and Myolie placed their morning meal. “Breakfast?” the three boys smiled.

“Oh, noodle in soup? My favourite!” Benny was already drooling, “And there’s bacon and eggs too? My other favourite!” Benny watched as Tavia and Myolie took out his favourites. Reaching out for them, he finally realized that they had ignored him and made their way to their boyfriends.

“Here’s your noodle in soup,” Tavia handed it over to Ron.

“Bacon and eggs!” Myolie fed it to Bosco, “There’s still congee left in there, help yourself, Benny.”

Congee’s not bad, Benny thought to himself, jealous of his two lucky friends.

“Good morning, guys and girls!” the voice of Jessica and Bobby echoed the room. They had finally arrived though they were late.

“What took you so long?” Nancy asked.

“This one couldn’t wake up,” Jessica and Bobby said while pointing at each other.

“Never mind that,” Leila’s voice began, “Can we get started? We’ve been waiting for quite some time now.”

“Of course,” Bobby smiled at the ten victims in front of him, “Well, you ten have been chosen to help with the treasure hunting task. Don’t worry, while you are off, it still counts as community service hours.”

“Get to the main idea,” Jessica nudged Bobby in the waist.

“Okay, I own a ...” Bobby began when he felt Jessica nudge him again, “Or the company owns a large mansion on the mountain tops and it is believed that near that mansion is hidden treasure. This treasure will benefit the society as our economy isn’t in great shape. I hope you all are willing to help with this important task?”

There was no response from the ten. Assuming that they wouldn’t object to this idea, Jessica explained the instructions, “Go home and pack up what you need for a thirty day trip away from home. Then meet us a few blocks down from here in about an hour and we’ll take you to our destination.”

“Why can’t we just meet here?” Raymond couldn’t help but to question.

“It’s more convenient for us to pick you up from over there,” Bobby randomly answered though it obviously didn’t make a difference.

-

“Seven, eight, nine ...” Bobby counted, “Where’s the last one? Who’s missing?”

The group of nine teenagers looked amongst themselves to see who was late and missing. “It’s Bernice,” Myolie managed to discover.

“Where is she?” Jessica directed at Myolie, “I’m assuming you two are great friends, you should know where she is. Why don’t you give her a call?”

“I don’t know!” Myolie squealed, “I’m no friends with her!”

Coming from the distance, Bernice finally made her appearance, “Sorry, I’m late!” Bernice was carrying way too much for herself to handle.

“Why on earth are you bringing so much stuff?” Moses spoke for the first time that day.

“Yeah, we’re only off for a month or so,” Nancy added, “You don’t have to bring your whole house.”

“Here, let me grab this for you,” Moses said as he grabbed Bernice’s heavy luggage and loaded it onto the coach bus.

“Is everything loaded?” Bobby asked one last time before closing the storage area under the seats, “Everyone get on!”

Making sure that everyone had gotten on, Jessica asked, “Where’s the driver?”

Bobby walked on to joined the rest of them with a smile, “Me!”

“You?” the ten were surprised.

“You?” Jessica emphasized, feeling a little worried.

Ron, Tavia, Bosco, Myolie, Raymond, and Leila were sleeping peacefully on the bus. Everyone had found a seat except Nancy. Searching around she found no seats left but one beside her worst nightmare. Noticing that Nancy was approaching him, Benny quickly rested his foot on the seat beside his. “Do you mind moving your foot?” Nancy slapped his leg as hard as she could. Yelping and clutching onto his leg, Benny watched as Nancy brushed her seat clean and sat down beside him.

“This is such an unlucky day,” Benny said to himself but loud enough so that Nancy could hear, “It would suck to live under the same roof as her.”

“What did you say?” Nancy glared at him intently.

“I said,” Benny repeated loudly, “It would suck to live under the same roof as you!”

At his words, Nancy was about to smack him across the face when the thought of living under the same roof as him for thirty days struck her. She controlled herself while forcing a smile at him.

“Huh!” Benny thought that Nancy was afraid of him.

“You just watch out!” Nancy whispered loudly, making sure that he could hear. Benny gasped at her and turned around to look out the window, biting his nails.

Meanwhile, Moses was trying to fall asleep but the girl next to him was munching loudly on her potato chips. Unable to stand the noise, “Do you mind?” His voice scared her. Noticing that she had curled herself up and away from him, Moses realized that he had been too loud with her. “Sorry,” Moses apologized, “Did I scare you? I didn’t mean to, but could you not eat so loud?”

Bernice smiled and nodded before grabbing another handful and stuffing it in her mouth. “Do you want some?” she asked while crumbs were flying out of her mouth.

“Uh, no thanks ...” Moses replied, disgusted by this messy eater.

“Are you sure?” more crumbs were flying out of her mouth.

“Yeah, I’m sure!” Moses said as he edged away from her.

“Okay!” Bernice smiled, once again crumbs flew out of her mouth. Bernice turned her attention back to the bag in front of her and enjoyed her food.

After an hour into the ride, everyone had fallen asleep. The bus was peaceful except for the whispering of Bobby and Jessica. “We’re almost there,” Jessica whispered into Bobby’s ears, “Should we ask them now? I don’t want to forget later. You know, it might affect the treasure hunt if we don’t do it or forget to do it.”

“But they’re all sleeping,” Bobby stated the obvious. While listening and talking to Jessica, Bobby did not pay attention to the road ahead and the bus bounced ever so high as it hit a huge log.

“I think that just woke them up ...” Jessica answered while trying to maintain her balance.

“Wh-what just happened?” Bosco found himself suddenly wide awake.

“Did we crash?” Myolie asked.

Bobby laughed nervously and turned around to smile at his ten passengers. “Sorry,” he apologized.

“Watch where you’re going!” the many voices on the bus shouted.

Turning around to face the road in front of him, Bobby laughed nervously again. “Jessica,” he said quietly, “Do it now while they’re all awake.”

Stepping up from her seat, “Girls and boys, I need to ask you for a favour. Please hand me all your cell phones as I need to collect them before you head up the mountain.”

“Why?” Raymond asked.

“Why do you ask so many questions?” Jessica whispered to herself before finally saying, “Because we don’t want it to interrupt with your treasure hunting.”

“What?” Ron asked too, “Why would it interfere with our treasure hunting? It has nothing to do with it.”

“This treasure hunting is very important and there can be no errors made. We need to collect your cell phones so that you do not use it for leisure,” Bobby helped Jessica out.

Once no more questions were asked, Jessica collected their cell phones one by one. Unwillingly, they all handed their cell phones to Jessica. Reaching the back of the bus, Jessica took Moses’ phone. “Take good care of it,” Moses told her before kissing his cell phone goodbye. Jessica looked at Bernice who was still sound asleep. “Uh,” Moses said, “Should I wake her up?”

Jessica shook her head, “I’ll get it from her later.”

-

After a long three hour ride up the mountain, they had finally arrived. The air was very fresh at the mountain top but it was a bit chilly. “Wow, it’s so cold up here,” Leila complained.

“Yeah,” Nancy joined, “I should’ve packed warmer clothes.”

“Don’t worry,” Jessica reassured them, “Everything you need is in the mansion.”

The five boys helped Bobby unload their luggage from the bus while Jessica took the girls up to the mansion. “Why don’t we just drive up to the mansion?” Raymond asked.

“Good question,” Moses agreed, “Why don’t we?”

Bobby didn’t know why either, “Get on and we’ll drive up?” The six males got into the bus and Bobby drove it up to the mansion.

Rubbing his eyes to make sure what he saw was real, Benny’s mouth formed an oval. The mansion was much bigger than he had expected. Never had he thought that doing community service would be so great. Benny was the first one to dash into the mansion, “I get the biggest room!”

“Hey!” Ron yelled, “Wait for me!” The other three ran off after them, hoping to find a nice room for themselves too.

“Wait!” Bobby yelled, “What about the ... luggage?” Bobby sighed as he unloaded the bus alone. Hearing sounds of chattering coming from behind, “Jessica!”

“How did you get up here so fast?” Jessica noticed the bus up by the mansion as well.

“You drove up here?” Myolie exclaimed, “Why did we walk up here then?” Myolie rubbed her tired legs while groaning in annoyance.

“Where are the boys?” Jessica asked.

Pointing towards the mansion, “They’re choosing their rooms.” At the word room, the four girls quickly ran towards the mansion while Bernice still had not registered the meaning but followed slowly behind.

As Benny was the first one in, he claimed the biggest room. Ron, Bosco, and Moses had the second biggest rooms while Raymond claimed a smaller one as her preferred a nice, warm, cozy environment. Nancy’s fast legs allowed her to take the room that was the same size as the other three boys. Tavia and Leila, who rushed in after Nancy managed to steal the smallest, but last two single rooms. Panting heavily, Myolie rushed up the stairs to find all the rooms taken.

“No more room?” Myolie’s voice echoed the mansion.

“There is one more room left,” Tavia pointed to the empty room.

“But it’s a double,” Myolie pouted while Tavia pushed her towards the room. Stepping into the room, Myolie’s jaws dropped. Why was Bernice unpacking her stuff here? “Can we exchange rooms?” Myolie gave Tavia her puppy eyes.

“No can do,” Tavia said while leaving back to her own room. Myolie frowned at her best friends back before turning around to deal with Bernice.

“Are you sharing the room with me?” Bernice asked politely.

“Duh,” Myolie rolled her eyes, “Make sure you keep your things on your side of the room.” Bernice smiled sweetly at her and nodded. “Wonder if she even understands what I’m saying,” Myolie whispered very softly to herself.

“What?” Bernice managed to hear whispering, though not able to pick out what she had said.

“Nothing,” Myolie sighed.

“Come down stairs everyone!” Bobby’s loud voice filled the entire top level of the mansion.

The ten teenagers immediately obeyed as they heard the instructions. Coming down the stairs, Bobby and Jessica were standing in the living room. “The instructions to the treasure hunt or well ... the map and hints are in the kitchen counter. You only have thirty days to complete the task or else your community service hours would not count,” Bobby explained.

“What?” Benny was not happy with what he had just heard, “I thought they would count either way!”

“Just try your best and find the treasure,” Jessica comforted him, “We’ll be leaving now. But don’t worry, we’ll frequently come visit and make sure that everyone is fine and that you ten won’t starve.” With those words, Bobby and Jessica made their way back to the coach bus and drove down the mountain. Shrugging at what had just happened, the teenagers went back to their rooms to unpack their stuff.

-

As they finished unpacking, one by one, the teenagers made their way into the living room. When all of them gathered, Moses took lead of the group, “Should we look at the treasure map first?”

“Why don’t we take a break,” Myolie suggested, “I’m really tired.”

“Yeah!” Bosco immediately agreed.

Moses shrugged his shoulders and sat down with the rest of them. Flipping through the channels, Benny realized something, “What kind of cables is this? There’s only the news channel!” Benny flicked off the television, “Now what do we do?”

“Why don’t we watch a movie?” Nancy suggested as she looked through the rack of movies.

Benny didn’t want to agree with her idea but he really did want to watch a movie as well, “Yeah sure, why not?”

Nancy smirked at him for agreeing with her idea. “Which movie should we watch?” Nancy picked out a few that she was interested in and showed it to the group.

“No horror please,” Bernice pleaded.

After a short debate, they finally agreed on a movie. They were enjoying themselves in this large mansion, already forgetting their task of treasure hunting.

-

Copyright by Vivien. January 11, 2009.
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Chapter 4: Treasure Hunt (Part 1)

Post by Vivien on Tue Jun 23, 2009 4:11 pm

Chapter 4: Treasure Hunt (Part 1)

Myolie stretched her tired body when the sun’s rays woke her up. Dragging her lazy feet, she managed her way to the washroom and opened the door. Realizing, “What are you doing?”

“Good morning,” Bernice mumbled with a toothbrush stuck in her mouth.

“Why don’t you learn to lock the door when you use the washroom,” Myolie said before closing the door for Bernice.

“I’m just brushing my teeth!” Bernice watched as the door shut in front of her.

“Next thing you know,” Myolie spoke to herself, “She’ll be taking a dump with the door open.”

Noticing her grumpy friend, Tavia made her way into Myolie’s room. “Who angered my best friend?” Tavia asked, “It’s too early in the morning for anyone to have angered you already.”

Myolie didn’t have to answer as Tavia figured it out herself when Bernice came out of the washroom. “Good morning, Tavia!” Bernice smiled sweetly. Myolie rolled her eyes before pushing her way into the washroom. “How was your night?” Bernice randomly asked.

“It was alright,” Tavia smiled, “How was yours? Did Myolie treat you well?”

“Can you leave?” Bernice suddenly threw out.

Tavia was a little offended, “What?”

“Sorry, I need to change,” Bernice explained, “Do you mind going out for a second?”

“I’ll be downstairs,” Tavia said before leaving the room. Tavia didn’t understand why Myolie hated this girl so much, other than the fact that she’s a little slow and well, really dumb, this girl was actually quite cute.

Digging through her luggage, Bernice pulled out some new clothes and started to change into them when she suddenly heard a loud scream coming from behind. Tossing herself around, she found Myolie standing there with her hands over her eyes. “Are you alright?” Bernice was concerned.

“No, I’m not alright!” Myolie shouted, “Why are you changing here? Go change in the washroom!”

“But you were inside,” Bernice said, “And we’re both girls anyways. It’s okay, isn’t it?”

“No, it’s not okay,” Myolie answered, “Next time, you go change in the washroom, okay?” Myolie made sure she saw Bernice nod before heading out of the room, and down to the kitchen for breakfast. Bernice quickly pulled on her clothes and chased Myolie down to the kitchen.

-

Hearing the loud chatters before reaching the kitchen, Bernice and Myolie looked at one another but immediately Myolie looked away. “What’s with the chattering?” Myolie decided to ask, “What’s for breakfast?”

Bosco quickly ran up to his girlfriend, “Don’t you think girls should be responsible for the cooking?”

“Why?” Myolie asked. Bosco was not satisfied with her answer and knew that girls were not dependable.

“So who’s going to cook breakfast?” Ron asked, “I’m feeling just a little bit hungry here.”

“But your stomach is growling as loud as hell,” Benny pointed out. Ron laughed nervously at his comment.

“Well, I’m not cooking,” Nancy said.

“Alright then,” Moses said, “Let’s all just have instant noodles!”

“But who’s going to cook the instant noodles?” Bernice asked quietly.

“Cook it yourself!” they all exclaimed out of annoyance.

After finishing their breakfast, they all looked at the mess in front of them. “Who’s going to clean up the mess now?” Ron asked, as lazy as he was. They looked at one another, not wanting to clean up. The idea of cleaning up their own mess would be nice if there were ten sinks to share.

“I’ll clean the dishes,” Leila volunteered.

“I’ll throw out the garbage,” Raymond offered.

“Alright!” Ron smiled, leaning back on his comfortable chair.

Gathering around the counter, they examined the map that was sitting there. “I guess we should start the treasure hunt now?” Benny suggested. The rest nodded in agreement. “The first clue is ...” Benny looked closely at the map, “This!” Benny pointed at the pattern that was drawn out on the old piece of paper.

“What is that?” Tavia raised her eyebrows.

“Aha!” Moses had a spark of intelligence, “This must be the map! Look at it. It’s got so many bumps and curves, these must represent the mountains like the one we’re on. I guess this is the map that we have to find.”

Benny was expressionless. “Then what is this in my hand?” Benny asked as he raised the actual treasure map, “This should be a key of some sort, that’s what I think.”

“I agree,” Raymond nodded in agreement, “Old treasure hunting usually uses special items as their keys. Maybe this is a piece of jade or something?”

“What’s the point of standing here and discussing it then?” Bosco stated, “Why don’t we go and look for the actual thing instead?”

“Let us split into three teams,” Benny suggested.

“But we have ten people,” Bernice pointed out, “How can we divide ten people into three teams?”

“Then one team can have an extra person,” Myolie couldn’t believe she would ask such a question.

“Here,” Moses placed a bowl in the middle, “We can pick teams using this bowl.”

Placing their names into the bowl, they drew out names to divide themselves into three teams. Team one consists of Bosco, Moses, Myolie, and Bernice. On the second team, there was Raymond, Ron, and Tavia. The last team, team three, consists of Benny, Leila, and Nancy. Of course, they were not satisfied with the teams or their group members, but no one spoke up as they had all decided on this method of team dividing.

-

Bosco and Myolie were walking ahead while Moses accompanied the slow Bernice. “What did I do wrong?” Myolie complained, “Why am I always stuck with her?”

Bosco laughed, “These things are just meant to be.”

“What did you say?” Myolie glared at him, “Are you saying that this is what I get?”

“Of course not,” Bosco wrapped his hand around her neck, moving closer to her, “Why don’t we find a way to ditch them.” Myolie smiled at his brilliant idea. Looking back at Moses and Bernice, the two smiled awkwardly before turning around and coming up with an idea.

“What did you say?” Bernice asked.

Fearful that she might’ve heard, Myolie lied, “I said I’m really tired!”

“Tired?” Bernice ran up and intertwined her arms with Myolie’s. Noticing the act, Bosco couldn’t help but to snicker. In return, Myolie glared at him so that he would help her out instead of laughing.

“Hey, you!” Bosco pointed at Bernice, “Why are you holding onto my girlfriend? Are you trying to get between us, huh? Are you a ...” Bosco paused, finally coming up with something, “A ... lesbian?” Myolie laughed at his lame joke.

“Lesbian?” tears were forming in her eyes, “I ... I’m not ... I’m not a lesbian.”

Noticing that he has gotten himself into trouble, Bosco nudged Myolie. “This isn’t working,” Myolie’s voice was shaking, “Why don’t we split up?” Before either Moses or Bernice could reply, Bosco had already dragged Myolie off with him to a safer place.

“Are ... are you alright?” Moses handed her a tissue.

“Yeah!” Bernice tried to hide her tears, “Who said I was crying?”

Moses smiled at her innocence, “No one said you’re crying. Maybe dust got into your eyes?”

“Yeah, there’s a lot of dust out here,” Bernice played along, not knowing that Moses was trying to ease the awkwardness, “Can we go back to the mansion?”

“Let’s go,” Moses led the way, “How about I tell you a joke?” Bernice nodded, she loved hearing jokes, even though they could be lame sometimes, she always found them funny.

Laughing at Moses’ jokes, Bernice didn’t watch where she was going. Her trip back to the mansion was almost a safe trip where she tripped on a small pebble. “Ouch!” she squealed. The top of the small waist level, brick fencing looked awfully familiar to her. With fast reaction, Moses managed to catch the vase before it hit the ground. “Wow!” Bernice applauded, “You’re fast!” Moses smiled proudly.

-

Ron was serious for once; he held the copied picture of the pattern in front of him, looking desperately to find it. Tavia, on the other hand, did not pay attention to their task. She was there to keep Ron company and make sure that he was feeling fine. Raymond was trailing behind as he watched Tavia wipe away Ron’s sweat. “Where could it be?” Ron muttered, “Help me look, Tav!”

“Okay,” Tavia handed him a bottle of water, “I’m looking.” Retrieving the bottle from him, she placed it into her bag and took out some food. “Here,” she handed it to him, “You’ll get hungry.”

“Are you listening to me?” Ron suddenly blurted out, “We’re not here to have fun, help me look already!”

Disappointed with his attitude, “Ron Ng!” She was trying her best to be a good girlfriend when all he would do is yell at her. He seems to have changed but nonetheless, she still loved him.

“What now?” Ron scolded her, “Can’t you be serious for once?”

“I’m not serious?” Tavia questioned, “What has gotten into you, Ron? Why are you so grumpy?”

“Grumpy?” Ron shouted, “Tavia Yeung! I think we need a break. I’m off.” With that said, Ron darted off by himself, leaving Tavia and Raymond behind.

Turning around from their mini argument, Tavia finally realized that Raymond was there. “Heh,” she looked at him awkwardly, “Don’t mind him.”

Raymond nodded, “Now what?”

“Continue looking?” Tavia suggested, “But we don’t have a copy of the pattern anymore.”

“I still remember how it looks,” Raymond told her.

“Okay,” Tavia nodded her head as they continued searching.

“So uh ...” Raymond didn’t want to ask but his curiosity was taking over him, “You and Ron always argue?”

Tavia sighed, “Yeah ... but he’s like that. I’ve gotten used to it.”

“You got used to it?” Raymond was surprised, “How do you live together with so many arguments?”

“Sometimes I wonder how I can stand him too,” Tavia started, “But he is my boyfriend. There must be something inside of me that keeps me here with him.”

At this point, Raymond really hoped that Leila would say the same to him. “What about you?” Tavia’s voice startled him, “I can tell that you still love Leila.” Raymond was surprised that Tavia knew about his past. “Oh,” Tavia realized that she shouldn’t have known all this, “I overheard Leila and Nancy talking the other day.”

“Oh,” Raymond smiled but didn’t reply to her question. Tavia knew not to question him any further, seeing that he was trying to avoid her questions. But for some reason, she really wanted to know. This man beside her gave her a very different feeling and she wanted to learn about him more.

-

“Hurry up, you two!” Benny’s voice called out from afar.

“Why don’t you slow down?” Nancy argued with him before running with Leila to catch up.

“Then why did you just catch up to me, huh?” Benny teased. Nancy rolled her eyes and grabbed the piece of paper out of his hand. “Give that back!” Benny exclaimed.

Nancy walked off before him, linking arms with Leila. “What do you think this looks like?” Nancy was having her own little conversation with Leila.

“I guess it’s a jade like Raymond said,” Leila replied, clueless as to what it could be.

“What Raymond said ...” Nancy teased her.

Stepping in front of them, Benny stuck out his hand, “Give it to me.”

Nancy stuck out her hand too, “You hand it over first.”

Benny was confused as to what she was trying to say, “Hand what over?”

“Don’t play dumb,” Nancy hissed, “My locket!”

“Oh!” Leila finally understood, “So you stole her locket!”

“Oh!” Benny finally remembered the incident, “I didn’t steal your ugly, old locket!”

“Ugly?” Nancy shouted at him, “Just hand it over and I won’t hunt you down anymore.”

“Are you stupid?” Benny yelled. Nancy gasped but so did Benny when he realized that he shouldn’t have said that. “I mean uh ...” Benny trailed off.

“Stop pretending,” Nancy continued, “Just give it back ... please?”

Please? Did she just ask him politely with a please? “I seriously didn’t take it!” Benny defended himself, “Why don’t you use your brain if you’ve got one!”

“Excuse me?” Leila barged in to defend her friend.

“Yeah, what?” Benny turned to Leila. Suddenly he realized that the two were ganging up on him. “Oh shit,” he muttered.

“Oh shit is right!” Nancy grabbed onto his collar.

“Let go!” Benny didn’t want to be defeated by her.

Noticing that Benny was struggling to free himself, Leila decided to help him, “Nancy, I think you should let go of him first. Talk things out calmly?” Leila tried to pull Nancy’s hands off of Benny’s shirt but she was too strong for her. Not realizing where they were going, Nancy kept pushing him back until all three of them fell into a small ditch.

“Look what you did!” Benny exclaimed, “We’re stuck in this ugly ditch!”

“Don’t you say the word ugly again,” Nancy glared at him before turning around to look up at the situation.

“Now what?” Leila looked at her friend.

“We’ll have to climb back up,” Nancy spoke the only thought in her head.

“Climb?” Benny and Leila shouted together.

“Don’t worry,” Nancy told Leila, “I’ll get up and throw a rope down or something so you can use it for support.” Leila smiled and watched as Nancy easily made her way up to the top of the ditch. Benny also watched in amazement, not believing that she was not weak at all.

“Can you find anything?” Leila hollered, her hands forming a cup to direct the sound of her speech.

“Here,” Nancy said as she threw down a strong vine. Grabbing onto it, Leila pulled herself to the top as well. At the top, the two girls looked down at Benny and smiled at each other.

“Okay,” Benny shouted, “Hand it down, I’m ready.”

“Ready for what?” Nancy made fun, “Who said I’m helping you up?”

Benny’s jaws dropped, “Fine, I don’t need your help anyway.” Benny sat back down at the bottom, cursing Nancy while thinking of a way up himself. Suddenly, he saw the vine come down again.

“We’re a team,” Leila smiled, “Here!”

Benny smiled at her, “You’re awesome, Leila!” Half way up, Leila was out of energy and Benny fell three quarters down from the top.

“Let me help,” Nancy finally offered, seeing that Leila was struggling to pull this beast up.

Finally at the top, Benny turned to the panting Leila, “Thanks!”

“What about her?” Leila pointed at Nancy.

“Thanks,” Benny muttered ever so softly even he couldn’t hear.

“What did you say?” Nancy rubbed her ears.

“Thank you!” Benny shouted loudly so that even people far away could hear.

-

Gathering back in the living room of the mansion, the ten decided to share their findings. However, they were not surprised to find out that they were in no luck. Sighing dramatically, they decided to try again the next day.

-

Copyright by Vivien. January 16, 2009.
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Chapter 5: Ouiji

Post by Vivien on Tue Jun 23, 2009 4:13 pm

Chapter 5: Ouiji

The failed attempt from the day before did not discourage them from finding the first item. Early in the morning, the group of ten have once again split up into their groups and started out for their goal. Learning from their mistakes yesterday, they were able to communicate with each other better and were able to spend more time treasure hunting than arguing. It is already dusk, and one by one the groups headed back to the mansion for some food and a lot of resting.

Benny, Leila, and Nancy thought they were the first ones to be back and felt shameful that they were unable to find what they’ve been searching for. However, stepping into the house they realized that another group had already came back when they heard strange noises coming from the living room. Moving towards the living room, the three were not happy with what they were seeing. Bosco and Myolie were rolling around on the floor having their sweet moment.

“Bosco,” Benny called.

Bosco’s head shot up at his friend’s voice, “Hey, how’s it going?”

“Why don’t you two go and find a room to do this?” Nancy suggested.

“Well,” Myolie said before kissing Bosco on the face, “I don’t want Bernice to barge in on us.”

“And you want everyone to walk in on you guys here?” Leila weighed out the situation, “Go to Bosco’s room!”

“Right!” Bosco didn’t know why he hadn’t come up with that. The couple got up and made their way upstairs.

Benny shook his head as he watched the couple disappear up the stairs. “Wait, then where are Moses and Bernice? Aren’t they supposed to be a group of four?” Benny looked at the two girls in front of him, receiving their shrugs. Sitting themselves down on the couch, they waited until the others finally showed up.

“We’re back!” Ron’s voice echoed the mansion.

“Did you guys find anything?” Leila asked the three who looked awfully tired.

“No,” Tavia and Raymond replied at once.

“Where did you guys look?” Benny asked.

“Around ...” Tavia and Raymond once again said together.

“Wow,” Nancy laughed, “You two are so compatible.” Tavia and Raymond looked at one another and smiled at how compatible they were. Ron glared at Raymond before dragging Tavia over to sit down on the couch with him.

Raymond took a seat beside Leila, “Where are the others?”

“Bosco and Myolie are in Bosco’s room,” Leila told him.

“Then where are Moses and Bernice?” Raymond continued to question. Leila shrugged as she too wondered where they were.

Finally coming down the stairs, Bosco and Myolie caught sight of Moses and Bernice coming from the front yard. “They’re finally back,” Bosco told the others as he walked into the living room with Myolie.

“Finally done with your business?” Benny teased.

“What business?” Raymond asked while Tavia and Ron looked at each other, confused.

Before anyone had the chance to answer Raymond’s question, they heard Moses’ voice calling for help. Raymond went to check out the matter but froze in place when he saw Moses covered in dirt with Bernice on his back. “What happened to you two?” Raymond finally spoke up.

Moses shook his head, “Don’t ask.” Finally making his way to the living room, Moses was about to let Bernice down on the couch when he tripped over Ron’s leg. “Ron Ng!” Moses looked up at Ron who was smirking at him.

“Ouch!” Bernice was rubbing her nose.

“I’m going to take a shower,” Moses said before he headed to the bathroom.

“What happened, Bernice?” Tavia looked at the dirt covered Bernice.

“Well, I uh ...” Bernice stuttered, “I uh ...”

“Say it already!” Ron did not like her slowness. Tavia nudged him hard on the side in order for him to shut up.

“You guys should’ve seen it. We were in the forest and suddenly a black figure flashed by,” Bernice explained, “So then we ran for our lives and well, I tripped and we rolled down the hill.” The guys laughed out loud while the rest of the girls were nice enough to at least hide their laughs. “I’m going to go take a shower too,” Bernice quickly said in one breath before dashing off.

-

The sky has darkened and the moon shone brightly outside the large mansion. It was still early but it got dark very quickly as they were on the mountain tops. Bernice and Moses were in their rooms sleeping, making up for their tiresome journey. Nancy and Leila were in the kitchen together, flipping through magazines. The mansion was quiet everywhere except for the living room where Benny, Bosco, Ron, Myolie, and Tavia were playing cards.

“Two sevens,” Benny said as he placed two cards faced down on the table.

“Two kings,” Bosco then said as he placed two cards faced down on the table as well.

Benny looked at him and was hesitant to say, “Cheat? I don’t even know if this counts.”

“How do you go from two sevens to two kings?” Ron asked.

“That’s what I mean,” Benny looked at Bosco, “Do you even know how to play?”

“Oh shit,” Bosco laughed at his mistake as he flipped over his two cards, “I said two kings because I was looking at the two kings.”

Myolie gathered up all the cards on the table and gave it to Bosco as they continued their game of cheat.

Tavia watched as her four friends played their game, she had already gotten rid of all her cards and won the game. “I’m going to go grab a drink,” Tavia said as she saw Ron wave her off. In the kitchen, Tavia poured herself a hot glass of water and went over to Leila and Nancy to check on them.

“Hey,” Leila smiled at Tavia. Tavia took a seat beside her and joined in on looking at the magazine.

“Wow,” Nancy showed the picture to Leila, “Doesn’t this look cute?”

Leila nodded, “Too bad there are no shopping malls here.”

“When we get back, we should definitely go shopping together,” Nancy suggested.

“Great idea! Want to come, Tav?” Leila turned to see that Tavia had already left.

Tavia had wondered off to where Raymond was. She slid the door open and joined Raymond outside on the porch. “You like looking at stars?” Tavia randomly asked.

“Mhmm,” Raymond nodded, not taking his eyes off the starry sky. Then he realized that Tavia stood there quietly next to him, “Why are you out here? Aren’t you playing cards with Ron and them?”

“Yeah, but it got a little boring so I decided to get some fresh air,” she explained. The two stayed silent as they admired the beauty of the sky. Suddenly turning to the side, Raymond was attracted by Tavia’s beauty. Her features became very angelic under the moonlight and her soft hair blew gently with the wind. Feeling his glare upon her, Tavia looked at him, “Is something wrong?”

“Oh uh, no uh ...” Raymond stuttered, “Let’s go back inside.” Tavia nodded and followed him back into the mansion.

-

After an hour of fun, they all got tired of what they were doing and eventually gathered up in the living room. All of them sat there in boredom, staring at the ceiling above their heads.

“I can’t stand this anymore!” somehow everyone knew Myolie would be the first one to speak up, “I’m bored out of my mind!”

“Me too ...” Tavia yawned.

“Do you think there’s something interesting around in this mansion for us to do?” Moses asked.

“Hey,” Raymond had an idea, “Why don’t we explore the mansion? We’ve been here for a few days and we haven’t had the chance to look around yet.”

“Let’s do this,” Bosco agreed to the idea.

The ten of them scattered off to find something interesting to do. Benny went upstairs and caught Nancy staring at the ceiling in her room, “Look who’s taking a break!”

“No!” Nancy waved him in, “Look at this!”

Benny looked at her, unsatisfied with her discovery, “Oh yeah ... good job! You found the attic. Congratulations.”

“You think there’s something up there?” Nancy was curious. She looked at Benny to find him coming back with a chair. “What are you doing with a chair?” she almost knew what he wanted to do.

“Climb up there to see what’s inside, duh!” he shoved her aside and placed the chair under the opening of the attic. He stepped onto the chair and pushed up on the board covering the opening to move it aside. Benny then looked down at Nancy who was watching him intently.

“What?” she looked away, “I’m not going up there with you. It’s so dirty.”

“Scared?” he simply replied.

“I’ll go grab a flashlight,” she gave in.

Benny pulled himself up into the attic and extended his arm out to help Nancy up. However, she brushed his hand aside and got up herself.

“Turn on the flashlight,” he suggested.

Nancy placed the flashlight under her chin and shot it on. Benny flinched at her sudden appearance and turned around embarrassed. Nancy laughed out loud. “What’s so funny?” Benny shamefully said.

“You,” Nancy gave him a one word, but straightforward response.

The two searched around the attic to find nothing but old boxes. Due to the fact that the flashlight was not bright enough, they were roaming around blindly. “You find anything?” Nancy asked, waving her light source around. When she turned around, she bumped right into him and startled herself as her flashlight lit up his face. She started laughing, realizing that he was covered in spider webs.

“What now?” Benny hated how she was always laughing at him.

“You have spider web all over your hair,” Nancy pointed out.

“Really?” Benny brushed his hand around his hair.

“Let me get it,” Nancy picked off the spider web on his hair. Benny looked down at her, this girl was quite fun when she’s not pissed off at you.

Suddenly, they heard Ron’s voice coming from below, “Ben? Nancy? Where are you guys?”

“We’re in the attic in Nancy’s room!” Benny shouted as loud as he could.

Covering her ears, “Why do you have to yell so loud?” Before Benny said anything, Nancy had pointed her flashlight at a small box. He followed her light source and discovered what she had also discovered.

“A ouiji board?” Benny was excited, “This looks fun.”

-

Back down in the living room, the other eight were waiting for Benny and Nancy to make their appearance. At last, they heard the bickering pair approaching them.

“Did you find anything?” Ron asked.

Benny revealed their discovery, “We found this in the attic.”

The eight pair of eyes widened. “What’s that?” Bernice asked, “O ... ou ... oui ...”

“It’s called a ouiji board,” Benny explained, “You can call up spirits with this.”

“I seriously don’t think that works,” Nancy stated.

“Let’s try it anyways,” Moses suggested.

They all agreed. Turning off all the lights and lighting up a candle, the ten gathered around the small table.

“Place one hand on the arrow,” Moses told everyone. They followed the instructions and spelt out words after words, hoping to call up a spirit from the dead.

“This isn’t even working!” Benny finally realized, “What a waste of time.”

“Oh wait ...” Moses watched as the arrow moved again, “Are one of you moving it?”

“No,” they all replied.

“Neither am I,” Moses spoke softly.

Watching the arrow move on its own, it spelt out the words: I want to talk to you. Leading them, Moses spelt out the word: who? Once again, the arrow started to move by itself.

“B ...” they all said together, everyone was relieved except for Benny, Bosco, and Bernice.

“E ...” Bosco was relieved as well.

“R ...” Benny wiped the sweat from his forehead.

“N ...” they all looked at Bernice.

“Ahh!” Bernice screamed as she let go of the arrow. Moses was the first to burst out into laughter. Everyone knew what had been going on; Moses was playing a prank on Bernice. Ron laughed at Bernice’s scared face and randomly waved a piece of paper in front of her face, thinking that anything would scare her right about now. “Ahh!” Bernice pointed at the pattern, this time her scream wasn’t as intense.

“Stop it,” Tavia scolded Ron, “Don’t worry Bernice, Moses was only pulling a prank on you.”

Realizing how scared she was, Moses admitted to his guilt, “Yeah, don’t be so scared man.”

“No ...” Bernice pointed at the pattern on Ron’s piece of paper.

“No?” voices questioned.

Raymond flicked on the lights and Bernice grabbed the piece of paper from Ron. “I’ve seen this somewhere!” Bernice pointed out.

“Where?” Benny asked, “That’s what we were looking for all this time and you tell me you’ve seen it before now?”

“I saw it outside the front yard ...” Bernice told him.

“Come show me,” Benny dragged her up but she refused.

“N-no ...” Bernice pulled back, “I don’t want to go out in the dark.”

“We’ll go check it out tomorrow,” Tavia suggested to Benny.

“Fine,” Benny said, letting go of Bernice.

-

In their room, Bernice was shivering and making small sounds. She was still scared from Moses’ trick even though she knew that he was playing around with her.

“Could you quiet down?” Myolie asked politely for once, knowing that she was scared to death.

“Myo ...” Bernice’s voice shook.

“What?” Myolie couldn’t take it anymore and spoke to her rudely, “Why can’t you just get over it? It was a darn joke. Go to sleep already!”

Myolie pulled a pillow over her head to cover up Bernice’s noise. Bernice looked at Myolie and quickly hid herself under her blanket, afraid to come out until the sun rises.

-

Copyright by Vivien. January 23, 2009.
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Chapter 6: A Little Evidence

Post by Vivien on Tue Jun 23, 2009 4:14 pm

Chapter 6: A Little Evidence

Bernice groaned when she heard the loud banging outside her room door. She stuck her head out of her blanket to see Myolie still snoring like a pig. Bernice stretched her arms and legs before moving towards the door at a snail’s pace.

Outside the room, Benny was knocking uncontrollably at her door, “Bernice! Get up! It’s morning! Come show me where you found the pattern!” Immediately when Bernice opened the door, Benny’s face lightened up. “Finally!” Benny exclaimed, “Go wash up, I’ll wait for you downstairs.” Bernice nodded but found her lazy self back on the bed.

Down in the kitchen, Benny caught sight of Raymond and Tavia cooking breakfast together. “Hey, what’s for breakfast?” Benny asked as he slumped himself down on a chair.

“Wow,” Tavia commented, “I’ve never seen you up this early before.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?” Benny frowned, “I’m waiting for Bernice to come down so we can check out the thing she found. But meanwhile, some breakfast would be nice.”

During their breakfast meal, Benny took frequent glances at his watch. “What are you in a hurry about?” Tavia noticed his watch glancing.

“I’m not in a hurry,” Benny replied.

“Then why do you keep looking at your watch?” Raymond asked as he collected their finished plates.

“Why does Bernice take half an hour to wash up?” Benny sighed, “Girls ...”

“I don’t think she’s getting up anytime soon,” Raymond suggested.

“Why? I woke her up already,” Benny told him.

“Are you sure?” Raymond stated, “I don’t hear the sound of water rushing down these plumbs.” Benny frowned, Raymond was right; Bernice had not gotten up yet.

Back outside Bernice’s door, Benny began to knock at it again. “Bernice!” he exclaimed.

“Who’s knocking on the door at this time of the day?” Myolie managed to mumble through her sleep, “Go open the door, Bernice.”

Bernice got up and opened the door for the second time that day to see Benny there once again. Her eyes widened at his angered expression. “I’ll go wash up right now,” Bernice yawned and went to the washroom for real this time.

“Geez,” Benny said to himself in a monotone.

“Yo, why are you standing in front of Bernice and Myolie’s room?” Ron’s voice interrupted Benny from cursing Bernice.

“You came just on time,” Benny smiled, “Make sure Bernice comes down in ten minutes.” Before Ron could reject, Benny had already dashed downstairs.

“Finally,” Benny said when he saw Bernice and Ron approaching them, “Let’s go!”

“I’m hungry,” Bernice complained.

“Yeah, me too,” Ron added, “Can we eat breakfast first?”

Benny was about to say something when Tavia interrupted, “Breakfast is on the table, go help yourselves.” Not able to stop them, Benny could only sigh dramatically.

-

At last, they were done and Bernice led them outside to the front yard where she had found the pattern. “I remember it was here somewhere ...” Bernice drifted off.

“Somewhere?” Benny asked, “What do you mean somewhere? Don’t you know where you saw it exactly?”

“I remember Moses was giving me a piggy back ride,” Bernice was wondering if he really had or not.

“Okay,” Benny said, “Ron, go give her a piggy back so she can recall the events.”

“A lady?” Ron squealed, “No way.”

“Or maybe he wasn’t giving me a piggy back,” Bernice contradicted herself, starting to believe that she was only dreaming it.

“Oh my gosh!” Benny yelled with his hands in the air while he walked in circles. Suddenly, he found himself tripping over a pebble.

“Wow, are you okay, buddy?” Ron laughed as Benny tried to regain his balance.

Suddenly, it all came back to her. “Oh ...” Bernice remembered, “I saw it on this brick fencing. Look here.” Bernice pointed at the vase that was sitting on top of the waist level fencing. Benny examined the vase through its 360 degrees but didn’t find anything that was similar to the pattern they were looking for. Bernice tapped him on the shoulder, “It’s below the vase.”

Ron picked up the vase to see what was hidden under it, “This is one heavy vase.”

“Then put it down,” Benny suggested. Ron placed the vase back on top of the wall to receive a disappointed glare from Benny. Ron laughed nervously before picking up the vase and putting it onto the ground. “Look what we have here,” Benny smiled, “This little baby is what we’ve been looking for.”

“It doesn’t look like that key you were talking about,” Tavia teased, “And you thought you had it in you.”

“Hey,” Benny defended himself, “Raymond thought it was a key too.” Tavia smiled at Raymond which caused him to blush slightly.

-

Back inside the mansion, the other five were plumped on the couch fanning themselves from the hot weather. It seemed that the weather on the mountains was unstable and because they were so high up, they would be the first ones to experience the little shifts on the weather.

“I’m so hot,” Myolie complained.

“Agreed,” Moses said.

“You think I’m hot?” Myolie randomly said, making Moses feel a little awkward.

“Can we play some games?” Bosco asked, “It’s not only hot in here, it’s really boring too.”

“Well, there’s the wii,” Nancy suggested.

“Oh, that sounds like a good idea,” Leila said.

Taking turns, they each got the chance to play the games they liked. They were having so much fun that they didn’t realize that the others have been gone for a long time. Having taking turns, they went through everyone and now they couldn’t decide which game to play. After arguing, they finally decided but now there was another problem. Who gets to play first?

“Give me the controller,” Bosco tried to grab it from Nancy.

“What are you doing? It’s our turn!” Nancy threw back.

Noticing this, Moses made his way to grab the controller out of Leila’s hands. Unlike Bosco however, Moses successfully took the controller into possession. “You weakling,” Moses pointed at Bosco.

Bosco glared at Moses for a second before turning his attention back to Nancy or rather, the controller in her hand. “Give it to me! I’m playing against Moses, so you have to give me the controller.”

“Why don’t you hand the controller back to Leila so we can play instead,” Nancy suggested.

“Why should I?” Moses waved the controller out front.

“Because if you don’t then I’m going to come get it from you,” Nancy told him.

“Then come get it,” Moses jumped onto the couch before Nancy could chase after him. Bosco looked at the messed up two and sat down beside Myolie.

“Be careful,” Leila said as she watched Nancy chase Moses around.

“I will,” Moses told her.

“She’s talking to me,” Nancy told him in return.

Running around and fighting over the controllers, the two eventually lost control. Both of them having their hands on the controller, they pulled back and forth between one another. In the midst of the fighting, Nancy pushed Moses so hard that he found himself right against the wall and the painting that was originally hanging from it, came dashing down.

Nancy’s eyes widened, “Look what you did!” She accused him for all his wrong doings.

“You pushed me,” Moses reminded her.

“Guys, stop arguing,” Leila said as she picked up the painting, “Do we have to pay for this?”

“Well, I’m not rich enough to pay for it so Nancy’s paying,” Moses forced the responsibility on her.

“What do you mean you have no money? You drug dealer,” Nancy accidently blurted out.

“What did you just say?” Myolie and Bosco said at once, they were confused as to what was going on.

Leila tried to hang the painting back up on the wall when she noticed its heaviness. She turned it over to the back and realized that there it was! The item that they’ve been looking for all this time was hidden behind this painting. “Hey look!” she was excited about her discovery.

“What?” the four said together before crowding around Leila’s big discovery.

“How sexy is that!” Bosco described his feelings towards the discovery.

Taking the item out of the painting and hanging the painting back up, they sat around a small table. Placing the newly found item in the middle of the table, the five pairs of eyes didn’t move an inch away from it.

-

It’s been hours and the five outside were still sitting around, trying to understand the hidden message behind this engraved pattern. Sitting under the sun for hours, Bernice was all sweaty and tired. Before she knew it, she was already laying on the soft grass, asleep. Benny and Ron were busying themselves with questions as to what this clue would lead to.

Tavia used her hand to shield her eyes as she looked up at the boiling sun, “It’s too hot, I’m going to go take a stroll in the forest to get some shade.”

“It’s too dangerous to go into the forest alone,” Ron started.

“Are you planning to come with me?” Tavia thought out loud.

“No,” Ron replied bluntly, “Just go rest inside.”

“But I don’t want to go inside, it’s stuffy in there too!” Tavia was very disappointed with his answer.

“Then just sit here,” Ron said, “Stop complaining about the sun.”

Tavia crossed her arms and rolled her eyes at his stubbornness, she knew that Ron cared about her but this wasn’t the type of care that she wanted. Noticing Tavia’s upset expression, “How about I come with you?” Raymond got up and stood beside Tavia.

Tavia looked at Ron for permission. Seeing that he was waving her off, “Okay, let’s go.” Immediately, Tavia stomped off into the forest with Raymond trailing behind.

-

“I see that you’ve forgotten about me,” Raymond said, walking metres behind her.

Tavia turned around at the sudden sound of his voice, she indeed forgot. “Of course I didn’t,” Tavia lied, “Why don’t you walk faster?”

Catching up to her, Raymond walked silently beside Tavia until he heard her voice, “Wow! Wow! Look, Raymond!”

“Not only is there a lake here, there’s also a spring,” Raymond pointed at the rainbow that showered over the spring.

Tavia spread out her arms and inhaled the fresh air. She immediately cooled down from the hot weather and also from Ron’s carelessness. Stepping up beside the lake, Tavia sat down and watched as if her troubles were washed away by the water flow. Raymond sat down beside her, “What’s on your mind?”

“Huh?” Tavia didn’t think she was giving herself away. Moreover, she didn’t think that Raymond could see her troubles. To her, Raymond seemed like a very cold person, but it turns out that he was very observant. How could Leila have given up on such a wonderful guy?

“Oh nothing,” Raymond casually said, “I just thought something was bothering you. You seem ... well, never mind.”

Tavia understood that he was only concerned and she appreciated it. Smiling mischievously, “You know what would make me happy right now?”

“What?” Raymond asked, trying to make it seem like he didn’t care, “I’m no good at guessing things, tell me.”

Tavia got up and walked over to the lake, she took of her shoes and dipped her foot in. “The water is so cool,” Tavia waved at Raymond, “Come!”

As Raymond approached her, she immediately turned around and pushed Raymond into the lake. She laughed as the big splash of water came rushing up. Hearing her loud laughter, Raymond smiled and dove under water. He remained silent and motionless underneath. Tavia waited, but Raymond did not surface. What was going on? “Raymond?” Tavia started to panic, “Stop playing around.” Tavia was worried, she didn’t know why but she’s never felt so worried before. Usually in this type of situation, she would stay calm and think but for some reason or another she couldn’t. Unable to hold his breath any longer, Raymond finally popped his head out of the water. “Raymond! You scared me,” Tavia scolded him.

“Your fault for pushing me in,” he smiled sweetly at her. Tavia helped him out of the lake and the two returned back to the mansion.

-

Raymond and Tavia made their way into the mansion and realized the quietness inside. “Where did everyone go?” Tavia wondered. Raymond shrugged his shoulders but then pointed at the five crowded around the table. “Wonder what they’re up to, you don’t usually get the quietness in here,” Tavia approached them.

“Hey Raymond,” Leila called him. Raymond immediately made his way towards Leila and sat down beside her. Tavia watched as she felt uneasy of it. “Look, I found the pattern,” Leila showed him the object sitting on the table.

“What?” Tavia was a bit confused, “Benny found the same pattern outside though.”

“I get it!” Raymond explained, “The item Leila found is the key that we suspected the pattern to be and the one Bernice came across must be some kind of keyhole?”

Bosco pointed at him as a sign of agreement. Together, they took the item outside to where Benny and the others were. Benny and Ron were still sitting in front of the brick wall without any ideas as to what it could possibly do. “Any ideas yet?” Raymond asked. The two shook their heads in disappointment. “Will this help?” Raymond looked at Leila. Leila handed the item over to Benny.

“Yes!” Benny’s face was plastered with a smile, “So this is the keyhole or something? I thought it was just some engraving.” With the exception of Bernice, the rest watched in awe as Benny successfully placed the key into the keyhole.

-

Copyright by Vivien. February 5, 2009.
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Chapter 7: Treasure Hunt (Part 2)

Post by Vivien on Tue Jun 23, 2009 4:15 pm

Chapter 7: Treasure Hunt (Part 2)

The atmosphere was rather bitter as the teenagers were concentrated at the so called key and keyhole. It felt as if everything had frozen in time as they anticipated something big to happen. After minutes, there was still nothing. Nothing but the whistling noises the tree branches made when they brushed against each other.

Myolie sighed dramatically, “That’s it? Nothing? Nada?” Waving her hand up and down, she attempted to create a breeze for herself.

Benny shrugged his shoulders, “Something should’ve happened ...” He crossed his arms to examine the item another time but nothing seemed to have happened.

“But nothing did,” Nancy glared at him with a displeased expression, “I can’t believe I got myself into this. What was I thinking when I agreed to this treasure hunt. Hopeless.” Nancy rolled her eyes before making her way back into the mansion, away from the boiling sun. The rest followed.

-

The sound of the rotating fan dominated the room. Once again, they were all slopped on the couches feeling that this treasure hunt was hopeless. The feeling of guilt surrounded them as they felt horrible for not trying harder. Yet at the same time, they pitied themselves for getting into such a mess.

Bernice sat amongst the crowd, afraid to make a sound for the room was near silent. Accidently inhaling some dust, she sniffled a few times before letting out a loud sneeze. The crowd turned to look at her, glaring for her to be quiet. A frown made its way across her face and slowly her head dropped down. Immediately, she felt a pair of comforting arms pat her on the shoulders. It was Moses.

“So guys, uh ...” Moses attempted to rid to the room of the awkward silence, “Anyone up for some treasure hunting?” He had no idea what he was talking about but at least the room wasn’t freakishly silent.

“Shut up, Moses,” Nancy managed to utter out under her boiling skin, “Just get over the fact that we’re not treasure hunting material.” After making a quick statement, she placed a hand over her forehead to feel it burning even more than before.

“Well uh ...” Moses chuckled to himself, trying to come up with something quickly. Pacing around the room, he managed to annoy the others. Feeling a light tug on his pants, he looked down to see Bernice motioning him to sit down and probably to be quiet as well.

Bored out of her mind, Tavia fiddled with the buttons on the fan; changing it from level one to two to three and then back to one again.

“Tavia, stop playing with the fan,” Ron scolded her, “Just leave it on at level three, it’s boiling in here.” Tavia looked at him irritated, before turning around to roll her eyes. Without her noticing, Raymond had been observing her.

“So uh ...” Moses shot up again, “How about some treasure hunt?”

“Listen to the girl for once,” Benny was rather annoyed by his constant suggestions, “Didn’t Nancy explain to you why we’re not treasuring hunting at the moment?”

“How about our own game of treasure hunting?” Moses attempted to suggest once again, “We can split up into teams and each team can make their own little hunt. Then we can see which team finds all the items first. And ... the team that loses will be punished!” At the word punish, they suddenly felt interested in how this game would turn out. “Oh, so now you guys are interested,” Moses bragged.

“At least we’ll succeed in this treasure hunt,” Leila sighed, “Better than sitting here and sulking.”

“Okay, let’s get started then!” Moses felt proud for his idea was accepted by all of them. “Let’s have five items to find so we’ll split up into teams of two, so five teams,” he announced the rules, “We can use the name drawing again like the last time. Go get a bowl and put ten pieces of paper in it, Bernice.”

Coming back with the bowl, Bernice handed it to Moses. “Okay, time to draw!” Bosco smiled excitedly, hoping that he would be on the same team as Myolie.

Moses drew out the first piece of paper, “And the first person on team one is ...” His face turned emotionless when he unfolded the piece of paper, “Why is it blank?” They all turned to Bernice to understand the situation. “Okay, let’s try again,” Moses repeated once he made sure the pieces of paper had names on them.

The teams consisted of Ron and Leila, Moses and Bernice, Benny and Nancy, Raymond and Tavia, as well as Bosco and Myolie. They separated off into their own teams to come up with a small treasure hunt task before coming together as a whole again. Each team gave their clues to the other teams and now it was time to set off on their treasure hunting mission.

-

It’s been two hours since the group has set off but none were back in the mansion yet. It seems that this fake treasure hunt was taking them longer than anyone had expected but none wanted to head back to the mansion unfinished as they remembered that there would be a big punishment for the pair of losers.

“Hurry up, idiot!” Nancy called for the nth time. Stopping to wait for her slow partner was taking more out of her than the treasure hunt itself, “Do you mind? I don’t want to lose, okay?”

Benny’s legs were not listening to him anymore. “I can’t!” he tried to scream but only a whisper came out. He waved her back before sitting down on a log and wiping the sweat on his forehead.

“Here,” she forced herself to go back for him. Nancy handed him a bottle of water before sitting down beside him. Rummaging through her backpack, she pulled out a pack of Kleenex and handed it to him.

“Why are you so nice to me suddenly?” Benny asked, having in mind that she could leave him any minute.

Packing everything nicely again, “I don’t want you to faint here and I don’t want to carry you back.”

“As if you’re strong enough to carry me back,” Benny laughed, once again underestimating her.

“Try me,” she simply replied. Bending down, she waited for Benny to hop onto her back. Seeing that she was determined, Benny decided to hop on since his legs weren’t going to bring him anywhere anyways. “I told you I can carry you,” Nancy said, “I’m not those weaklings you see around so don’t mess with me.” Benny was enjoying the ride, eventually he found himself putting all his weight on her.

“I think we should head north,” Benny suggested as he turned the map around, “Hurry it up before it gets dark.”

Suddenly it struck her, why was she giving him a piggy back ride? “Wait a minute,” she paused, no longer listening to his instructions, “Why am I carrying you? I’m tired too!”

“Fine,” Benny sighed, feeling a little generous right now, “My turn to give you a piggy back.”

“Seriously?” Nancy was surprised, all she really wanted was for him to get off. “Are you sure you’re strong enough to carry me?” she mocked him.

“Try me,” he mocked too. Smiling, Nancy jumped onto his back. “Hey, you could’ve got on nicely,” he complained, “I’m not made of gold.”

“You wish you were,” Nancy teased. “Hey look! It’s Leila and them!” Nancy pointed, hitting him ever so hard to make him move towards them.

“It’s only Leila and Ron,” he corrected her, “Not Leila and them.” Dragging his legs along, Benny had finally made it towards the other two.

Nancy jumped off and went over to sit down beside Leila. “How is it going for you guys?” she asked, curious as to who was winning.

“We haven’t found much yet,” Leila frowned, “This is harder than I thought. It’s been so long already, I wonder if the other’s are back yet. I don’t want to lose. Do you know what the punishment will be?”

“So how does it feel to be ordered around by a girl?” Ron laughed, pulling Benny aside.

“What are you talking about?” Benny sighed, “I was returning the favour. I got her to give me a piggy back too.”

“Wow, you two have suddenly got close,” Ron had never seen Benny willing to give a girl a piggy back before.

“Never mind that,” Benny changed the subject, “How’s it going with Leila? Aren’t you afraid Tavia would get jealous?”

“Nah, I’m sure she won’t. We all agreed to this,” Ron was confident, “And you have no idea, that Leila ... she’s such a boy!”

“Who are you guys calling a boy?” Leila questioned though she didn’t hear her name.

The two chuckled to themselves before eyeing each other to explain. “Oh uh ...” Ron chuckled some more. “Boys ... boy talk!” Ron flashed his whites.

“What losers,” Nancy whispered in an undertone. “Benny Chan, let’s get going!” she raised her voice to order him around.

“Yes Madame,” Benny obeyed, “See you back at the mansion.” Benny waved goodbye to Ron, making it seem like they’re departing forever.

“Gross,” Nancy murmured before heading off.

-

“Do you think we’ll lose?” Leila was worried, she didn’t want to be punished. Who knows what they would come up with as a punishment.

Ron shrugged, “I hope not, I bet the punishment is going to be cruel. You know them ... they like to see others in misery.” Not realizing it, he was causing Leila more worries, “Are you alright? You seem a little ... quiet.” He couldn’t think of other words to describe her.

Leila nodded, “Let’s hurry up and try to finish this as soon as pos ... ah!” Leila had stepped onto something and it was dragging her down. From natural reflexes, she had grabbed tightly onto Ron’s arms and the two of them slid down to what seemed to be a deep pit.

-

“Bosco!” Myolie called out his name again, “I’m tired. Can we just go back? Let’s just forfeit, I don’t want to play anymore.”

“But Myo,” Bosco tried to please his annoying girlfriend, “We can’t quit now. We already made a deal that whoever doesn’t come back with or is last to come back with all the items will get a punishment.”

“I don’t care!” Myolie complained some more, “There’s no way we’re going to finish this before the rest of them. We might as well give up and not overwork ourselves.”

“Why do you like to give up so fast?” Bosco got a little irritated, “You never finish anything at hand. You always give up and end up making other’s clean up your mess for you. That’s very irresponsible! You really need to change that. I’ve had enough of picking up after you. It’s not easy being your boyfriend, you know?” Suddenly noticing the pale expression on Myolie’s face, Bosco began to panic. What had he just done? He had a lot of making up to do. He was sure of it.

“Bosco Wong!” Myolie’s voice screeched, “How dare you say that to me! You don’t love me anymore! I hate you! Don’t ever let me see you again!” With that said, Myolie stomped off, leaving her helpless boyfriend behind.

“Hey wait,” Bosco wanted a chance to explain himself, “Wait for me Myolie, it’s dangerous for a girl to wander around the forest alone.” Speed walking to catch up to his girlfriend, Bosco was disappointed to see Myolie pick up pace and run away as fast as she could. There was no way for him to catch up to her, she was one of the fastest runners he’s ever known. “Damn it,” Bosco whispered to himself. As much as he wanted to give up, he knew that he had to win her back and he also knew that he had to set a good model for her. With all his breath, he called out as loud as he could, “Myolie Wu!”

-

“Is your ankle okay?” Ron sat back down after minutes of getting up and down.

“What do we do now?” Leila asked, worried that they’d be stuck here for some time, “Do you think you can climb back up? Last time when Nancy, Benny, and I got stuck in a pit, Nancy managed to climb up and pull us up too.”

“Wait, what?” Ron questioned, “You three got stuck in a pit before?”

Leila nodded, “So? You think you can climb it?” Rubbing her swollen ankle, she looked at Ron for an answer. Ron swallowed hard before attempting to climb up this dirty mess. “Be careful!” Leila warned. Before she knew it, Ron was yelping for help as he grabbed tightly to the side of the pit while falling gracefully back down. “I guess it’s too high eh?” Leila frowned, losing hope that they would ever get back up.

“Don’t worry,” Ron tried to relieve her anxiety, “I’m sure they’ll come look for us when they find out we’re missing. I just hope they finish the treasure hunt soon and check back on us.”

“S ... Sn ... Snake!” Leila shrieked, pointing to the slithery creature approaching them.

Ron turned around to the area where her finger was directed towards, “Snake!” Ron was jumping around like a maniac as he was just as scared or even more scared than she was.

“G ... g ... go kill it,” Leila pushed Ron towards the snake. Realizing that he wasn’t going to move, Leila turned around to see him hiding behind her. She knew it was her turn to be brave. Picking up a tree branch she ran it through the dirt before approaching the snake with it. Jerking back every time it moved, she finally had the chance to stab at it. Feeling a pair of sharp fangs dig into her skin, “Ah!”

-

Copyright by Vivien. June 23, 2009.
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Re: Community Service

Post by nghi92 on Wed Jun 24, 2009 11:06 am

umm, you didn't post part 1 for chapter 7
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Re: Community Service

Post by Vivien on Wed Jun 24, 2009 4:55 pm

Part 1 is part of Chapter 4 lols .. sorry about that. I have weird ways of organizing the story.
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Re: Community Service

Post by nghi92 on Thu Jun 25, 2009 1:46 am

Vivien wrote:Part 1 is part of Chapter 4 lols .. sorry about that. I have weird ways of organizing the story.

thanks!
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Re: Community Service

Post by hazrayz on Sun Jun 28, 2009 11:02 am

nice story!
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Chapter 8: The Real Thing

Post by Vivien on Sat Jul 25, 2009 3:12 pm

Chapter 8: The Real Thing

The sun’s rays slowly crept through the window’s curtains, blinding the eight pairs of sleepy eyes. Bernice was a light sleeper so she was the first one to wake up. Rubbing her eyes twice like a child, she scanned the room to notice that there were only eight of them. Bernice was paired with Moses in the treasure hunt game so with his somewhat intelligent mind, they were the first ones back and she was the first one to fall fast asleep. It wasn’t until now that she noticed one pair still hasn’t made it back yet.

Standing up in the middle of the living room, she watched as seven other pairs of eyes opened up to stare at her. Bernice opened her mouth to speak but was interrupted. “I’m going to go brush my teeth,” Nancy yawned, dragging herself up towards the washroom. The rest followed. Bernice nodded to herself, and thought that that would’ve been a better idea so she too headed to wash herself up.

When they were all back in the living room, Bernice finally got the chance to speak. “Hey guys, I’ve got something to say,” she started. The rest nodded at her to signal her to continue. “I uh ... uh ...” she stuttered, trying to make out what was at the tip of her tongue, “I forget.”

Myolie sighed, already knowing that something like this would’ve happened, she wasn’t surprised. “Anyone interested in making us some breakfast?” she randomly asked, hoping someone would offer to do the job.

“I’ll make breakfast,” Tavia and Raymond answered in unison. Smiling at their compatibility, the two went into the kitchen in search for some food. The fridge was emptying out pretty fast and it didn’t seem like anyone was going to come back to refill it.

“Sausage and eggs?” Tavia asked, grabbing a couple of eggs from the carton. She couldn’t think of anything else to cook since she wasn’t the best cook nor did she want to cook anything big.

“I’ve got the bread,” Raymond turned around and tossed it over to Tavia, not noticing the eggs that were in her hands. Tavia’s eyes followed as the package of bread came flying at her. Without thinking, she dropped the eggs to catch the bread. “I’m so sorry!” Raymond laughed when he realized the eggshells scattered on the floor, “I didn’t know you had eggs in your hands. But why did you choose to drop the eggs? You could’ve let the bread fall. I bet the mess wouldn’t be this big if that was the case.”

“I’ll dampen the cloth so we can clean up the mess,” Tavia said embarrassed. She could feel her face heat up, she must’ve been blushing real bad. Forming a cup with her hands, she splashed water on her face to cool herself down. Why was she so embarrassed? She used to get embarrassed in front of Ron easily, but not anymore.

“Are you alright?” Raymond’s voice startled her, “Why did you just splash water all over yourself? You feeling sick?” He placed a hand over her forehead to check her temperature.

“No, I’m okay,” Tavia replied, quickly pushing his hand away, “It’s uh ... really hot in here. I need a cup of ice water.” She made her way over to the counter to calm herself down.

“Could you pass me the salt?” Raymond ordered, he had given up on waiting for her and thus, started with the eggs. Gulping down the last bit of water, Tavia handed him the salt as she was told. She watched him by the counter and smiled to herself every now and then. “Do you have tissue handy?” Raymond asked again, cutting her off from her daydream. Tavia handed him a napkin. “Uh ... my hands are busy, do you mind?” he asked her a favour. Tavia wiped the sweat off his forehead but suddenly Ron’s angry face popped into her head. It was then that she realized she hasn’t seen Ron all morning.

“Is breakfast ready yet?” Bernice’s voice came barging in, “I’m hungry.”

“Bernice, have you seen Ron?” Tavia managed to ask.

“Oh yeah!” Bernice’s high pitched voice filled the air. The rest of them rushed in, thinking that breakfast was already prepared. “I think Ron and Leila haven’t come back yet,” she could finally recall what she had forgotten earlier this morning.

“Why didn’t you say so earlier?” Raymond’s voice was harsh but with it, you could hear his concern. Tavia glanced at Raymond to see his worried face. She knew that Raymond still cared a lot about Leila. How come she didn’t worry about Ron as much? Was she sick of Ron’s attitude? She didn’t know, she just wanted the two of them to be safe.

“Um ... let’s eat breakfast?” Bernice asked, she didn’t know what to say to ease the concern everyone was feeling.

“Leila is missing! And Ron too ... and all you think about is eating?” Raymond said. He didn’t want to yell at poor Bernice, but he couldn’t help it. How could she not worry about their safety?

“Calm down. You don’t have to yell,” Moses put his arm around Bernice’s shoulder, “She’s just trying to ease the environment. So uh ... I guess Ron and Leila are the losers. Let’s go find them and then come up with a punishment for them. What do you all say?”

They decided to split themselves into two groups each consisting of four people. Agreeing to meet back in the mansion in one hour, they went off in search for the duo.

-

“We’ll go this way,” Benny said, pointing his finger towards the back of the mansion, “You four go look in the forest.” He started off in that direction while Nancy, Bosco, and Myolie followed.

“Luckily we didn’t lose,” Nancy found herself trying to make conversation with Benny. “I wonder what kind of horrible punishment they’re going to come up with.”

“Are you afraid of the punishment? I thought you’re not afraid of anything.” Benny teased, he found this girl quite amusing and he couldn’t help but to pick a fight with her.

Nancy frowned but hid it immediately, “You’re right! I’m not afraid of anything. I grew up in a tough environment so I’m trained to face the worst.”

Benny suddenly regrets what he had just said, her voice sounded more serious than usual. With his fast turning brain, he managed to change the subject and put a smile back on her face. “I bet you’d be afraid of me if I told you that I liked you!” he accidently blurted out, now he was regretting more than ever.

Nancy giggled lightly, “Are you trying to prove that I’m dumb? I’m not going to believe you on that one. I’d be happy if you didn’t pick up fights with me all the time. What did I ever do to you anyways?”

“Don’t tell me you forgot!” Benny crossed his arms. “Are you serious?” he paused, “Remember ... by an alleyway? You randomly came up to me and ... don’t you remember?”

“And what did I do?” Nancy was playing with him, of course she remembered. It was this guy that stole her locket, how could she ever forget? When she has the chance, she would definitely take it back, it was her favourite design.

“You ... you ...” Benny didn’t know how to word it. He didn’t want to make himself sound like a loser in front of her. He looked into her large black eyes that were staring at him for an answer. The delicacy of her soft eyes had him lost all over. Words could not describe the feeling he had. The feeling was too strange for him to handle.

“And I beat up your two friends?” Nancy finally broke the silence. She laughed at his shocked and embarrassed expression before walking off.

“Myolie, listen to me please. Just let me explain!” Bosco grabbed her arm every time she tried to flee is explanations.

“What is there for you to explain?” Myolie raised an arm, she was about to slap him. Bosco winced but her palm turned into a fist and a finger stuck out. “Why is there a random opening?” she shoved Bosco aside to peak into the opening that seemed to lead down into an underground pathway.

Benny and Nancy rushed up to her to see for themselves. “Oh!” Benny exclaimed. The three asked him why he was so excited but he couldn’t remove the smile that was plastered on his face. When he was able to speak, “This must be the pathway that the treasure hunt key led to. No wonder we couldn’t find it.”

-

Leila bent down with both hands over her wound. Ron felt ashamed for being a coward. He picked up the tree branch and stabbed it right through the snake’s head. He watched it slither back and forth for a minute before laying there, lifeless. Ron turned his attention back to Leila whose face was scrunched up into a mess. “Are you alright?” was all Ron could ask.

Leila didn’t give him an answer. She rolled up her pants to look at the bite marks. Ron watched her, helpless of the situation. He had never experienced something like this before. He didn’t know how to help her. Was the snake poisonous? Should he suck out the blood for her? He didn’t even know.

Leila’s face was turning paler by the second. Her eyes were reddening and Ron could tell she wanted to cry. Ron believed that he should do what a man should do. Without further thinking, he neglected the consequences and placed his mouth over her wound to suck out the venom. He spat out the last bit of blood, “You should be okay now, don’t worry.”

“Ron! Leila!” the two could tell it was Raymond, Tavia, Moses, and Bernice who was calling for them. Ron and Leila looked at each other and smiled as rescue was on their way.

“We’re ov ...” Ron chocked, he was still trying to recover from all the blood sucking.

“We’re over here!” Leila called for him. She got up and jumped as high as she could but still, she couldn’t see far enough.

“There they are!” Bernice exclaimed, “Thank goodness you guys are okay!”

“Look at her leg,” Raymond pointed out at her wound, “You call that okay?” He grabbed a tree vine and threw it down so that the two could climb up with it. Tavia watched intently, her heart was thumping heavily. Was she worried about Ron? Or was she angry? Angry at what she was witnessing. Why was Raymond so observant? So observant about Leila.

“Look how worried you are,” Ron caressed Tavia immediately as he got up. “I’m alright,” although he was with Tavia, his eyes were watching as Raymond hugged Leila tightly.

“Can we go back now?” Bernice asked. No one answered her. Instead, they just headed back to the mansion. Bernice frowned. Why was everyone so against her? Did she do something to Raymond? He was yelling at her more than ever today.

Moses sighed seeing them all in pairs. He looped his arm around Bernice, “Look at them, all in pairs.” He waited for Bernice to answer but she was too into her own thoughts, “You alright? You’re too quiet today.”

“Why does Raymond always yell at me? Do you hate me?” she couldn’t help but to ask.

Moses laughed out loud, “Why would you ask that? Even if I did, I wouldn’t tell you that I do.”

“So you do!” Bernice frowned. She began walking back to the mansion.

“Hey! That’s not what I meant!” Moses waved at her, “I don’t hate you and as for Raymond ... he’s only yelling at you because he likes Leila so he was really worried about her.” Bernice didn’t answer him. “Let’s put it this way. If I was missing, would you yell at people who didn’t care about my safety? Since you don’t like me, you probably wouldn’t.”

“I would too!” Bernice blurted out, not thinking before speaking as usual. Moses smiled suspiciously at her. “Wh-what? I would be worried about everyone!”

Moses walked circles around her, “Then why weren’t you worried about Ron? Do you like me?” Bernice felt her face burn. Sticking out a finger, Moses touched her face slightly, “You’re blushing!”

Bernice buried her face in her hands. She didn’t know what to do. Should she tell him? Spreading her fingers apart she saw Moses running off. Smiling sweetly to herself, she ran after him. “Hey, wait for me!” she called to Moses who was in the distant.

“Hurry up, slowpoke!” he called out without turning around.

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Chapter 8: The Real Thing

Post by Vivien on Sat Jul 25, 2009 3:13 pm

Chapter 8: The Real Thing (Continued)

Raymond and Leila were the first ones back while the other four trailed behind one by one. Near the entrance of the mansion, they could hear loud arguing. “What’s going on?” Raymond asked when he saw Benny and Nancy yelling at one another.

“Raymond!” Benny dragged him in to say a fair word, “We finally found the entrance to that treasure but Nancy insists that if we go, all ten of us have to go. She thinks four people will be too dangerous.”

“She’s right,” Raymond spoke for Nancy instead.

“You don’t count,” Benny said and dragged the other five into the argument as well. Nancy continued to argue for their safety while Benny insisted that they should go in no matter what.

“How about the eight of us will go while Ron and Leila go get some rest,” Tavia suggested. No one objected to her suggestion so it was settled.

-

Ron supported Leila into the living room of the mansion. “Let me get the first aid and help you bandage up,” Ron rushed off to get the kit. Coming back within seconds, he sat down next to Leila and placed her foot on his lap. “Does it hurt? I’ve learned first aid before, it’ll look all pretty when I’m done with you,” Ron was talking to himself.

Leila felt warm. If it was Raymond helping her bandage up, he wouldn’t be making these cute comments. He would be yelling at her to be more careful next time. She was really tired from Raymond’s manly personality. Sometimes it made her question her capabilities. She was clumsy, weak, and useless in his eyes. She felt worthless when she was with him. It was true, Raymond was very caring, but it wasn’t the kind that she needed.

“Wah! Why is your face all red?” Ron asked.

Leila didn’t feel anything wrong so she placed her hands on her face. It felt a little warm, “It must be a small fever. Nothing to be concerned about.”

“Nothing to be concerned about?” Ron exclaimed, “You get to bed right now! Let me get you a wet cloth and I’ll cook some congee for you.” Leila nodded and went to get a good sleep.

Ron was clumsy with his cooking, he had never cooked before. Tavia would always take care of these things. When he finally prepared a somewhat edible bowl of congee, he brought it up to Leila’s room.

He didn’t knock on the door as he was afraid to wake her up. He walked in a sat down beside her bed. He was about to wake her up but pulled himself away from doing so. She was so peaceful, laying there like a little angel. He brushed her hair away from her face to feel her forehead. Her fever was dying down. He decided to give her the congee once she wakes up so he just sat there to watch over her.

-

Bosco and Myolie watched as the other pairs each took a path in the underground pathway. “Let’s go,” Bosco suggested, “Wait, which pathway should we take? There are so many other ones left.”

“That one,” Myolie pointed to the one that looked the darkest and most dangerous.

“Th-that one?” Bosco didn’t want to be weak in front of his girlfriend.

“Yes,” Myolie replied coldly, “And you’re going by yourself because I can’t stand seeing you for another second!”

“Can you not be so stubborn?” Bosco said, “Why can’t you prioritize things? We always fight over things like these. Be more considerate ...”

“Just leave okay?” Myolie scolded, “Every time we’re left alone, we start up an argument. I’m tired of arguing with you all the time.”

“I’m not going to leave,” he said firmly.

-

Benny noticed that Nancy was quiet through the whole search. “Are you mad at me?” he really wanted to hear no as an answer.

Nancy didn’t answer but questioned him instead, “Why does it matter to you? You enjoy arguing with me anyways. It’s not like we’re in good terms.”

“Yeah, well I don’t want to be hated on,” he tried his best to sound as if he didn’t care all too much, “So are you? I know you’re very generous and wouldn’t mind right? I know safety comes first. That’s why amazing people like you are here to stop me from going wrong.”

Nancy hid her smile, “I’m not mad at you, geez. Do I seem that nosy to you?” Benny didn’t answer her. “What is that suppose to imply? Why won’t you answer me? You’re always afraid.”

He didn’t know where she came up with that, she seemed to always bring up the topic of fright with him. Was she really not afraid of anything? How could one have no fears? It was impossible and he was determined to find out what would frighten her. “Remember this!” Nancy shined her flashlight under her chin. He suddenly remembered the time in the attic.

“Remember what? Uh let’s look over there,” he changed the topic.

-

“Wow! This room is so big!” Bernice spread her arms out to run around like a child, “What do you think they put in here?”

“The treasure must be in here somewhere!” Moses stated excitedly, he wanted to be the first one to find the treasure. He needed something to brag about right about now.

“What’s this?” Bernice picked up a piece of paper with Chinese written on it, “Something something sorry something too something ... I can’t read this.” Moses took the piece of paper from her. Bernice waited patiently for him to tell her what it said but he didn’t. She watched as his face darkened and he sulked. She spoke again, “What does it say?”

-

Tavia took frequent glances at Raymond now and then. The two didn’t speak to one another, not even one word was exchanged. They were perfectly fine this morning but now, there seems to be something stuck between them. She couldn’t figure out what it was, she was lost in her own feelings. She took another glance at him to see him return the favour. The two quickly looked away from each other.

“What does it say?” Bernice’s voice was loud enough for Tavia and Raymond to follow.

“What did you find?” Tavia ran up to Bernice. She wasn’t interested in the treasure at all, she just wanted to avoid Raymond. “Is he okay?” she looked at Moses who was frozen in place.

“Why are you guys all here?” Benny’s voice echoed from the backside of the large hollow room.

“I found this piece of paper,” Bernice pointed to the one in Moses’ hand, “And this is what happened to Moses.”

Benny raised his eyebrow, “That paper has a curse?”

“Are you dumb?” Nancy said to him before grabbing the piece of paper out of Moses’ hand and read it out loud, “You have found the treasure room. Sorry, but it is too late. The treasure has already been ... taken.” After reading the piece of paper she felt the mood in the atmosphere sink.

The six found their way back to the main entrance of the underground pathway. Bosco and Myolie saw the dull mood and had an idea of what was happening. Nancy handed them the slip of paper and they all headed back to the mansion, disappointed.

-

Dinner that night was dead silent as no one was in the mood to chat. Night came along and everyone tried to sleep their disappointment away. Benny was twisting and turning in bed all night, he was the most disappointed out of the ten. He wanted to know who beat them to the treasure and what the treasure was. How were they going to tell Bobby and Jessica? Would these hours of community service still count? They did find the treasure, it was just taken.

After a few hours of reflection, he finally fell asleep. In the deepest and most enjoyable part of his sleep, he felt a pair of strong arms shake him awake. Opening his eyes, he saw Ron smiling at him. Benny shot up. “What are you doing here?” he checked the time on his clock, “It’s two o’clock!”

“Listen Benny,” Ron didn’t sound like himself, he sounded serious, “I uh ... well you know, I think I like ... the ... uh ... boy!”

“You like guys?” Benny grabbed his blanket and wrapped it around himself, backing off from Ron.

“No!” Ron said trying to dig Benny out of his blanket while Benny refused, “I don’t like guys! I like ... remember how I said she was just like a boy? Yeah, I like her ... I think.”

“You mean Leila?” Benny asked, “What about Tavia?”

“That’s why I need your help!” Ron said.

Benny pulled his blanket over and before going back to sleep, “No!” He didn’t want to get involved and busy himself with Ron’s love problems as he was too busy thinking for himself.

-

Copyright by Vivien. July 9, 2009.

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