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The Mosquito War
The Mosquito War
On that conflict-ridden day, I was returning home after a long seven hour struggle at the high school. I was triumphant at surviving yet another day in that soul-stealing structure. I looked forward to spending the rest of my break at home.
I turned on my phone when I pulled into the driveway. Almost instantly, I received a cryptic message. “Simon, call me. –Dad.” I immediately followed my instructions and was briefed on the situation.
“Hello? Hello? Simon, are you there?” My father’s voice came out from the phone. “Your mother and I have gone to Tulsa to get some supplies.”
“Okay,” I said. “How am I going to get back inside home? I don’t have a key.”
My mother’s voice answered this time. “We forgot to leave a key for you. You’ll have to wait until we return. You can get food at McDonald’s then finish whatever homework you have and wait.”
I returned to home base and began solving the math code while sitting on the steps. At first there was just one pesky distraction. Then a second one arrived and they started to overwhelm me. While I fought one away, its partner would slip in from behind and assail me. I desperately tried to fend both of them off while still unraveling strings of numbers in a timely manner. Of course, as soon as I turned my attention back to the numbers, the attack would recommence.
I took cover in the truck. But the heat inside the vehicle was unbearable, even with the air conditioning turned onto the highest setting it felt like Death Valley during the summer. I then received another call from the higher ups. “Simon, are you all right?” It was my mother who spoke. “The car needed to be taken to a workshop to be repaired. We haven’t even started buying the supplies yet and the people at the shop haven’t called us back yet.”
I did some quick calculations and said, “So it’s going to be at least another five hours before you can get here?”
“Yeah, something like that,” was Mom’s response. “Just hang on until we get back.”
Driven by the heat, I was left with no other choice but to storm out and reclaim the steps. Aware of the enemies’ tricks, I lasted much longer against them, but their numbers had grown with time. I was beaten back again, but I had bought enough time for the truck to sufficiently cool down to life sustainable temperatures. In the relative safety of the truck, I managed to crack the arithmetic code within an hour. I thought I was protected in the vehicle but my foes, confident after winning two battles, pushed their advantage.
Two of the now numerous group followed me to the truck. Pests for a time they now had become aggressive. At first, it seemed as though the fight there would have the same result as the last two. However, the truck itself restricted their movements and allowed me to strike one of them with a deadly blow. The other lost its courage and fled. I still had about three hours left until I could flee, so I bunkered down and prepared myself for a siege.
Long after nightfall, my assistors, my parents, unlocked the door and rushed me into the real safety of our headquarters.
The next day, after being dressed for another grueling mission at school, I was immediately drafted to the economic front as planned. In the daylight, my commanders got a good look at the extent of my war wounds. I had eleven on one arm, four on the other, two on a leg and three on my neck for a total of nineteen injuries. The evidence that I lost the battle: the nineteen bright red mosquito bites that were plastered over my body.