I’m feeling like writing today. I have 6 books that I’ve started writing that have been lying in wait in my cloud drive. I felt like working on this one today. I figured I’d post chapter one.
The fantastic adventures of the incredible inventing boy (horrible working title so that I can find it in my cloud drive. AKA writing Experiment No. 1)
Deep in concentration, Liam pushes his dark, blond hair back from his forehead. Hazel eyes behind wire rimmed glasses focused on the task at hand. His nimble fingers turned a small screwdriver until the he heard the bolt fall into the bottom of the machine which he fished out with his mom’s tweezers.
It was early Saturday and his parents weren’t up yet and that was a good thing because he had taken apart the DVD player for parts. He knew they wouldn’t mind; what he was creating was far more useful than the DVD player. Okay, maybe his dad would mind for a little while and his mom would look exasperated at the mess and the fact that they had to buy, yet, another DVD player. Dad would probably yell at him and ground him from his video games for a month, but it would be worth it.
He put the bolt and screw in the cup marked, well, “screws and bolts from lid.” Meticulously the parts were arranged in a row on his work table, AKA the dining room table. Each part was in little cups, the type you use for swishing when brushing your teeth. Each little cup was had a piece of masking tape on the outside that told what the part was and where he got it from the DVD player in case he forgot where it came from.
Having created several fantastic inventions; Liam had been featured on the front page of The Journal at least three times. The fire department bought three of his extinguishing robots. The idea for the robots came to him after a firefighter bravely lost his life in a house fire in their neighborhood two years back. Liam built them when he was only eight. The extinguishing robot went into burning buildings remotely and were equipped with three CO2 canisters on its back which were deployed when the firefighter pressed the button. The CO2 cans were fire extinguishers that he bought with his allowance. The machine also had a camera mounted to the top; it had probably saved two firefighters lives already and several civilians. In The Journal articles, there were pictures of him and his proud parents in which they beamed at him for his accomplishments. This morning, though, that look of swelled up pride for their son would turn into an ugly scowl until mom has her first cup of coffee.
“Wyatt to Liam; Wyatt to Liam. Over.” Liam’s walkie talkie squawked breaking his concentration. The message replayed over and over until he picked up the communication device and pressed the button,”Liam to Wyatt; I read you loud and clear. Over. ” Liam mimicked the war movie that Wyatt’s dad had let the watch while their mothers were out shopping.
“Liam what are you doing? Over.” Wyatt replied.
Liam and Wyatt were cousins, or more confusingly, their mothers were cousins. They looked very little alike, unless you knew they were related you wouldn’t think they were. Wyatt had silky, blonde hair that spiked up all over his head like he had just gotten out of bed and was stockier than Liam. Where Liam was long and lanky, like his father, Wyatt was shaped like a linebacker. Even his head was square-ish. Liam wasn’t sure what relaton that made him and Wyatt, but when people asked he just simply said cousins. “I’m working on an invention. Over.” Liam said a little more forcefully than he meant to. Wyatt knew that when Liam was working, Liam was super intense.
“Dad brought home a new war game for the Xbox. Do you want to come over later?” Wyatt asked.
Liam could imagine Wyatt’s room in his mind. The floor was littered with action figures and matchbox cars. Wyatt’s dad had more video games than Wyatt did, many of which both their mothers has a fit over when they play them because of the graphic nature of war. The boys have lived about six blocks apart since they were born and were now inseparable. If you couldn’t find them at one house they were probably at the other.
When the boys were younger, Liam had trouble playing with Wyatt. Liam would often play by himself in other rooms of the house which would upset Wyatt because he wanted Liam’s attention. Liam had had trouble relating to other children as long as he could remember because they didn’t always want to do what he wanted them to do, or play the way that he wanted to play. Eventually, after lots of practice and their mutual love for violent video games, they became best friends. Even so, Wyatt didn’t understand Liam intenseness when it came to inventing. Wyatt had learned long ago that when Liam was in the middle of a project, it was best to leave him alone until he was finished. So when he didn’t get a reply form Liam on the walkie talkie he knew he had better just go get breakfast from the kitchen because it was going to be a while before Liam answer him back.
Liam’s dad was the first one to amble into the dining room that morning to see Liam working on his newest invention. Liam knew dad would be first to come down because his mom liked to sleep in on the weekends. At first his dad was too sleepy to comprehend what he was looking at, but when it sunk it…. Whoa Nelly! “What the heck were you thinking?” His dad roared, waking his mother up. What neither her husband or son knew, she rolled over and just listened to see how the argument was going to play out and whether it required intervention.
“That DVD player costs us money,” Liam’s dad continued to rail on his son. “What were you thinking, just what were you thinking?”
Liam’s dad was supportive on Liam’s dad’s terms. Lee was very much like his son, concrete and stubborn and fantastic with mechanical things. What Liam’s mother, Rebecca, had realized long ago was that Lee forgets what it was like to be a 10-year-old boy. Rebecca swings her leg over the side of the bed, goes to the bathroom to make a number one, and goes downstairs to remind Lee that when he was Liam’s age, Lee had taken apart his mother hair dryer, “to see how it worked,” and was unable to put it back together. Fortunately, by the time Rebecca hobbled down the stairs, Lee had taken off to the garage to cool off. When she saw the line of little cups on the table and Liam looking up expecting round 2 from his mother, she shook her head and made a beeline to the kitchen to put on the coffee. After all, she couldn’t get too mad, she had bought Liam all his tools to encourage him to build and be creative. If she pitched a fit; she would be telling him to be creative, but not to be creative.
By the time the coffee finished brewing Rebecca figured out in her head how she was going handle both Lee and Liam. She poured her first cup, breathing in the calming coffee aroma. Creamer…Sip… Liam first.
“Sweetheart,” she called to him from the kitchen, “Come here a minute.”
“Liam,” she called again.
he wasn’t ignoring her. When Liam focused on his task it was difficult to pull him away. She looked at the clock, realizing that it was 8:30 and that Liam was 30 minutes past taking the medicine that helped him focus. She took the bottle out of the cabinet, dispensed the little pills in a cup, poured a class of water, and walked into the dining room.
“Liam, look at me,” she knew the key to getting his attention was to have him look her in the eye.
“Good morning, Mom,” Liam replied cheerfully as if noticing her for the first time.
“First of all, it’s time to take your medicine,” she continued calmly, “Secondly, dad’s mad at you for taking the DVD player apart.”
“I can fix it,” Liam replied confidently.
“I know you can, but next time would you be so kind as to ask one of us before you take the appliances apart?” Rebecca explained to Liam, “And, if you ask me a head of time, I can see if they have the parts that you need at the thrift store. Rather, that using our good stuff.”
“Okay, mom,” Liam replied noncommittally.
Rebecca knew this wasn’t the first time and it wasn’t the last. And, she wasn’t always this calm. She had freaked out when he took her vacuum apart to make the firefighting machines. Vacuums are significantly more expensive than DVD players.
Leaving his supplies at the table, Liam grabbed the walkie talkie and made his way upstairs to his bedroom. “Liam to Wyatt, Liam to Wyatt,” he called over the communicator.
Trying again Liam started to get impatient. “Liam to Wyatt,” he repeated, “Where are you?”
“Eating breakfast. Mom fixed pancakes,” he said around a bite of food, “I called over an hour ago; you can’t get mad at me.”
Liam could hear Wyatt’s sister Evie in the background.
“What video game did your dad get?”
So, he had been listening, Wyatt thought to himself. Liam had the uncanny ability to hear every word that was being said, even though he doesn’t appear to be paying a lick of attention.
“Forest Brigade,” he said, “It just came out yesterday, Mom’s pissed because Dad hasn’t been to bed yet.”
Liam wanted go to Wyatt’s house. He knew, though, that even if he went over that he wouldn’t get to play, but he could watch Wyatt’s dad play. Leslie, Wyatt’s moms, would be in a foul mood because Daryl, Wyatt’s dad, would be tired all day long. Liam also knew that he would get bored of that after a while, and ultimately in trouble.
“I’m just going to hang out at home,”
“Cool, talk you later, Liam. Over and out.”
“Over and Out.”