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Learning my ABC's

By , Parsippany, NJ
SCREECH! A loud noise interrupted my peaceful nap. “What happened did we get in an accident?!” I asked my surprised mother.

“You stole my parking space!” an angry woman yelled.
My mom mumbled something back, but I couldn’t make out the words, and I didn’t think I wanted to. “Those people will have to park on the grass, because we got the last parking space!” Mom said smiling. She looked out the rearview mirror and saw that the car still hadn’t moved. “I’m going to go see if they ae ok,” she said.

I walked out to the car with mom. Before we could even open our mouths the car sped away. My mom started to complain about them, but I zoned out. As the mysterious car drove to the grassy parking spaces, I read their license plate, “JJJ”. “How peculiar,” I said as I walked back to our car.

“You’re peculiar,” my little seven year old brother, Jason said.

I gritted my teeth to keep from saying something mean back. I didn’t want to be mean to someone who was half my age, especially because, I knew I was on thin ice with Mom. By her face I could see that she was seconds away from driving away and leaving me here. My dad gave me a warning look as he handed me two beach chairs. “Go find a spot for us close to the water,” he said. “I’ll be right behind you.”

All I could hear while walking down the boardwalk was my flip-flops clunking on the wood panels. I didn’t hear my father. I didn’t hear any other people at the beach. When I reached the sand, there was no one there. I turned around in hopes of running back to my car and being safe with family, but all I saw was vast, never-ending, sand-covered ground.

The sand blew around me as if I was in a tornado. I closed my eyes when sand got in them, and immediately the wind stopped.

“Hello,” a fancy, deep voice said. I opened my eyes to see superman in front of me. “Wonder Woman has retired, so you have been recruited as our new female superhero!” he announced. Before I had a chance to reply, he started talking, again. “Let’s think of a name for you. How about Triple J? J³? J3!”

“My name is Amber Bella Carlson. Why are you suggesting names with J?” I inquired. I thought back to the strange license plate.

“You’re not,” he paused and looked at his hand. He read, “Jessica Jane Jordan? Well it’s too late to go back now. Oh well. Let’s head to the Superhero headquarters to start your training. You have to learn your superhero ABC’s,” he said. We flashed away.

We were transported into a huge room with ceilings so high I though they never ended. The wall I faced was taken up by a scoreboard. Instead of home and visitor it said hero and villain, and instead of innings or quarters there were challenges, 3 of them.

“I want you to do everything I do,” he said. I nodded my head.

He jumped off a trampoline and flew into the air. He soared around the room. Twisting and turning, and then he looked at me motioning me towards the trampoline. “Your turn,” he said. I jumped off the trampoline and fell right on my face. He gave me a thin wristband, and said it would help. On my second try I stayed afloat for a couple seconds, but I fell again. Next, he lifted up a car. I did not even try, I just shook my head and he sighed.

He paced the room trying to think of anything I might be able to do, when we heard a loud crash. A wall collapsed, and a girl my age walked out of the cloud of dust. She looked superior to me in her black and purple striped cape over her black leotard with J3 written on it, and purple tights, with me still being in my beach clothes. Superman gestured me to a small room, where a colorful costume was waiting for me. On the back of my cape in big print was “ABC girl”. It kind of sounded like the name of a character in a children’s book, but it would work.

I reentered the large room, and it had been transformed into a battlefield, complete with artificial turf, bright lights, and even some paparazzi. Superman wouldn’t let them talk to me, but J3 was happily answering questions.

“Why did you become a villain? Why do you hate ABC girl?” one woman yelled.

“Well, first she stole my parking space, and then she stole my chance of becoming a hero, so I needed revenge!” J3 exclaimed.

“Let’s get this competition started,” a deep voice blasted through speakers that were implanted into the walls. “Since ABC girl and J3 are kids,” the voice hollered.

“We are not kids!” we yelled in unison.

“They will have three challenges instead of fighting to the death like adults do,” the voice continued.

“We are kids!” we yelled nervously.

“For the first challenge they will be tested on their strength,” the voice explained. J3 strode over to a huge truck and lifted it up with just her pinkies. Three judges put up signs that said, 10, 10, and 10. How could I beat a perfect score? I walked over to the tiny smart car, and I couldn’t even get one side off the ground. The judges scored me 0, 0, and -2. A 1 flashed onto the scoreboard under villain, and the 2 lit up under challenges.

“For the second challenge J3 and ABC girl will get to show off their special talent,” the voice hollered. J3 flew into the air without even jumping off the trampoline. She did amazing tricks in the air, including loop-de-loops. When I jumped off the trampoline I stayed afloat for about two minutes, but I fell to the floor. My scores were 3, 4, and 3, and J3 scored perfectly, again. She got another point.

“The last challenge will be worth 3 points. It is a head-to-head fight with no tools or weapons allowed. The winner of this challenge will have power over this town, but the loser must retire and be sent to The Superhero and Villain House of Losers,” the voice announced. I was behind, but I could still win.

The few seconds before the fight started felt like an eternity. Good and bad thoughts flooded my mind. Will I be allowed phone calls and visits in jail? If I become a superhero will I have to hide my identity? Will I ever see my family again? Will Winston Waddle, the cutest guy in school, like me if I’m a superhero? Can Jason be my sidekick?

DING! The final challenge started. J3 strode towards me looking confident. I backed up, but as I did she started to run. BOOM! She punched me in the face and I blacked out. The room was silent.
BEEP! White light flooded my eyes. I saw a doctor standing over me. “What happened?” I asked.

“She’s awake send her to jail,” he said to someone who I guessed was a nurse, but my vision was blurry. “You lost the competition.”

The next thing I remember is J3 slamming my prison door shut. “Bye, bye,” she said to me giggling. “Keep an eye on her,” she said to the officers.

From then on, the name of my town has been JJJville, and J3 has been thought of as the most powerful person in the world. I have been looked at as the worst failure in history. All because I didn’t try hard enough when learning my superhero ABC’s.




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