From The Magic Video Game
It was the next morning, and Olivia just woke up. She looked at the clock, which said eight o’clock in the morning. She looked over at Levi, who was still sleeping soundly. He looked as if he was at peace because his breathing was very steady.
He was sleeping on his side, and he was snoring quietly. Olivia could hear him snoring, so she decided to grab a book, which was on the coffee table, and she hit him on the back. This woke him up quickly. Not only did he wake up to that; he woke up in a horrible mood. Levi gave his older sister a deathly stare.
“Can you grow up, you immature weirdo?” Levi asked as he glared at Olivia.
Olivia couldn’t help but laugh a little at Levi’s reaction. She was pretty sure he would react in that similar fashion, given that he is not at all a morning person. She then decided to go to the kitchen to get a bottle of cold water, since she was pretty thirsty.
When Olivia returned to the bedroom, Levi was lying on his back, with his hands behind his head. His shirt was pulled up to his chest, and Olivia was pretty sure she could see her younger brother’s heart beating against his skin. It was pretty creepy, but also pretty cool. Olivia decided to set her alarm clock on her phone and lay it against Levi’s chest. Her phone was moving up and down with Levi’s fast heartbeat.
The alarm clock on the phone went off at 9:30, and Levi felt it go off on his chest. He picked the phone up and threw it across the room. Levi basically found himself crying while fighting to go back to sleep. He was now lying on his stomach, and Olivia had to take deeper measures to try to get him out of bed.
Today was going to be super productive.
Olivia now found a long knitting needle in a random place in the room, which was overall pretty messy. She used it to poke Levi in the armpit. He jumped quickly and turned over to glance at Olivia.
“Owie,” Levi responded feebly.
“When are you gonna get out of bed?” Olivia asked.
“When pigs can fly.”
“I think we’ve already established that.”
“You think we’ve already established what?”
“Pigs can fly.”
“Are you joking?”
Levi didn’t move. He still lay on his stomach, mindless of what was going on today. He didn’t really care about that right now. All he wanted was to stay in bed and get as much sleep as he could. It’s summer. What else is better in the summer than getting too much sleep?
“Okay? I am going to get out of bed when Sasquatch invades the planet,” Levi said.
“A lot of people don’t know who Sasquatch is.”
Levi hit his head with his hand. How could anyone not know who in the sam hill Sasquatch was? He tried going back to sleep. Once again. This time, his hands were underneath his chest, therefore squishing them. He could feel his own heart beating in his hands, like a small bird trying to flap its wings.
“Seriously?! When are you going to get out of bed? We have a ton of fun things to do today, bro!” Olivia said cheerfully.
“I know. When the cure for Kleine Levin Syndrome is found,” Levi answered matter-of-factly.
“Again, most people don’t know what Kleine Levin Syndrome even is.”
Olivia had to shrug her shoulders once again. She found that it was obviously very hard to wake up her younger brother. Levi, of course, made a few more attempts at falling asleep. Olivia let him sleep for another five minutes. After those five minutes were up, she felt obligated to poke him again in the side with the knitting needle.
“Owie,” Levi responded, this time not so feebly.
“That’s what you get when you’re a sleepyhead who loves to sleep in,” said Olivia.
“Fine. I’ll get up.”
He sat up on his bed with his eyes closed. Poor Levi. Of course it would take him a long time to really snap out of it after he was roused out of bed by his older sister. When Levi finally came to his full senses, he felt like he had just jumped into a pool.
“Ewwww….I’m so sweaty,” he said.
“Ewwww….you so sweaty,” his sister repeated jokingly.
And it was true. Levi finally got up and looked at himself in the mirror. He was a total sweat bomb that invaded Wakahakai. His hair looked damp and messy. He still had streaks of sweat pouring off his face. He had sweat stains on the front of his shirt and his armpits.
“Yeah. This is gross. I’m gonna shower. Now,” Levi said to Olivia.
“Yeah. That is gross. Go shower. Now,” Olivia answered back.
Levi picked out some clean clothes from a drawer and headed toward the shower. A few seconds after he had left the bedroom, Olivia had to laugh again. As a matter of fact, the room was actually pretty cold. There was no way Levi could have broken out in a sweat this morning.
Olivia must have had another trick up her sleeve.
She poured water on his armpits and shirt right before he woke up. Not to mention that she also dumped some of the bottle’s contents in his hair. She obviously did very well on this trick. Levi would be dumbfounded once he found out about the feigned sweat.
It was fifteen minutes later, and Levi came back into the room. He was shirtless, and he was wearing his plaid shorts. He walked over to the coffee table and took a drink out of the bottle of water.
“Were you thirsty?” Olivia asked Levi.
Levi looked at Olivia suspiciously. Now, he thought she was up to something. He put the water bottle down and noticed that it was empty. Surely he didn’t drink all of the water in the bottle.
“Olivia?” Levi questioned.
“Yeah?” Olivia replied.
“Did you….pour some water on me before I woke up?”
“And you wanted me to think I was sweating?”
Soon after, Marty came into the room. Levi was still lying on the mattress, but he did not make any more attempts to go back to sleep. If he did, he was most likely going to be annoyed by Olivia.
Marty had tall glasses of what looked like pina coladas in his hands. He offered one to both kids. Olivia and Levi both accepted the polar bear’s offer, and they simultaneously put the glass to their lips. After a few dainty sips of the drink, Olivia put her glass on the coffee table. Marty was not so sure whether she really liked the drink or not, or if she just wanted to savor the flavor. Levi, on the other hand, downed the whole pina colada in one sitting.
“I take it that you liked it,” Marty said, primarily to Levi, with a smile on his face.
“Yus,” Levi answered quietly with a smile.
“And you, Olivia?”
“It was good. I didn’t want to just drink it all in one sitting,” Olivia said.
“Well, it’s on the house.”
“Did you get a ladder?” Levi asked.
Everyone looked at Levi after his random question. Five seconds passed, and then they all had to laugh pretty hard. It was funny because of how abrupt it was. Then, Marty had something that he needed to tell Olivia and Levi, and he had to tell them pretty soon.
“We have plans to visit Princess Spaziana,” Marty said.
“W-wait. Is this basically where we rescue the princess? Is this some sort of trick or something of the like?” Levi asked with utmost curiosity.
Levi just shook his head. There was yet one more thing that had to catch his eye. When Levi looked out the window, he saw that there was a lovely aurora display in the sky. He decided to look out the window for quite some time. It was exotic things like this that have always interested him.
Levi’s secret ambition is to take a trip out to Alaska and spot the auroras in the sky, and he wants to take his friends with him. He has jokingly made plans to take his friends to Fairbanks, Alaska, have a campfire, and just look at the auroras. Jack Andrews and Asad Prejesh, his best friends, said that they would be game for a trip like that. David Savino and the Boca twins hadn’t said anything about this proposition yet, but they would probably rather make a trip to Hawaii. Levi had no idea that auroras even existed around Hawaii. Surely, they don’t. This was probably a figure of imagination.
This really couldn’t be happening.
“Well, we told Princess Spaziana that we would meet her at 2:30 this afternoon at Aurora Mall,” Marty said.
“Speaking of auroras,” Levi said, without paying much attention to what Marty had just said.
Olivia and Marty walked over to the window and also saw the pretty auroras. Right now, there were streaks of turquoise and fuchsia that filled the sky. The two kids have never seen anything of the like before. They were both amazed at what they saw.
“Yep. Wakahakai is the only place around Hawaii where auroras occur. It makes sense that Wakahakai is the best place to live,” Marty said proudly.
“I’d love to live here, if I couldn’t live in Rhode Island,” Olivia said as proudly.
“How is Rhode Island?”
“Amazing. We were both born there, and most of our family resides there.”
“We go to Rhode Island for a few weeks every summer,” Levi said.
“I’d love to go there some time,” Marty said.
“It is amazing to say the least.”
Olivia wrapped her arm around her younger brother, and he, in turn, let out a heavy sigh. Thanks to their small talk about Rhode Island, he really wanted to go there now. Badly. Of course, it was really nice in Wakahakai, hence the auroras, laps of luxury, and whatnot. But Rhode Island is Levi’s second home, and home is always where the heart is.
Levi thought deeply about what Princess Spaziana might look like. She would probably look nothing like his girlfriend, who has basically been an angel sent to him by the Good Man. But curiosity decided to get the best of him, and he had to inquire about her looks.
“Is Princess Spaziana remotely pretty?” he asked.
“Gorgeous. Absolutely gorgeous,” Marty answered.
“What does she look like?”
“Brown hair, blue eyes, hearty smile, fair skin, big heart, I don’t even know where I can begin on all this. And her middle name is….Aurora.”
Merry Christmas, friends! To those of you who don't celebrate, hope you're having a great day!
As promised, here is yet one more blog post for this week. And here's the surprise. Do you remember how I talked about how each family in each series celebrate Thanksgiving? Well, today I'm going to talk about how each family celebrates Christmas, so here we go!
The Ingram's (Rockybado): Dawson, Brett, David, Brody, and Toby Ingram come from a very small family. They have some family fifteen minutes east of them, as well as both sets of grandparents. After the immediate family opens presents, they invite their extended family over to spend the day with them. Normally, the Ingram's are the hosts. However, sometimes hosting alternates between households. For lunch, the family likes to do fried chicken and a few other sides. Then, they spend the afternoon relaxing at the house. Then, for dinner, the family likes to get Chinese food and look at some Christmas lights around Merrillville and Crown Point. When they have dinner, they like to watch a non-Christmas movie. Mostly comedy or sci-fi.
The Grzedek's (The Jazzy Island of Dinosaurs): Andrew, Caleb, Adam, Cameron, and Alyssa Grzedek come from a large family. They have a lot of family all over Northwest Indiana and the Chicagoland area. Starting December 23rd, the family visits their extended family members. Sometimes, they will go to their relatives' houses. And other times, they will have relatives come over to their house. On Christmas Day, the immediate family starts the day by opening presents and then going to their paternal grandparents' house for a Polish feast. They have turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and bread rolls. But everything else consists of Polish dishes. At least most of the Grzedek side of the family come together on Christmas Day to celebrate. Until the end of the day, the family spends time with their relatives, and they have another Polish feast for dinner.
The Baranovsky's/Cranston's (The Magic Video Game): Louise and Elizabeth Baranovsky, and Victoria, Olivia, Levi, and Evelyn Maeve Cranston come from a medium-sized family. They have family from Northwest Indiana and Rhode Island. The family does celebrate Hanukkah, but they do not go all out for it. However, on December 23rd, Levi spends Christmas with his girlfriend's family. On December 24th, the whole family celebrates Christmas with both sets of grandparents and second oldest half-sister, Elizabeth, and her husband, Paul Weiner. On December 25th, the family starts the day by opening presents. In the afternoon, the oldest half-sister, Louise, and her family come over to the Cranston's house, and they have a "cook-out," where they have a picnic-style Christmas lunch; they do not believe in traditional in the slightest. Everyone relaxes throughout the day. Then, they all go to look at Christmas lights and afterwards get Chinese food. After eating dinner, they all play many random games.
As you can see, each family is different in celebrating Christmas/Hanukkah. And, no matter how you are celebrating today, I hope the rest of your day is nothing short of amazing!
You Know Who
From The Magic Video Game 3: Mystery of the Island
It was the next day, and Levi was watching one of his favorite game shows in the evening with Victoria and Olivia. Evelyn Maeve went to a birthday party and probably wouldn’t be back until around nine o’clock at night. Their parents ordered pizza for the family, and their dad drove over to get their order. Their mom drove Evelyn Maeve to the birthday party.
Victoria was spending an evening at the Cranston’s house on Elmhurst Avenue in downtown Valparaiso. Since she lives in an apartment a few blocks away, she decided to just walk over here. Louise Baranovsky, the oldest half-sister, also lives around here, but she and her family were leaving for Rhode Island tomorrow to visit family. However, since she and her husband, Brian Soriano, have small boys at home, of course they would have to focus on more packing and last minute tasks. Elizabeth Baranovsky, the younger half-sibling, was in Chicago tonight with her husband, Paul Weiner.
The three kids were okay with being together tonight. They didn’t have to do anything that required leaving the house, so that was all good. Mindless of anything else going on at the moment, Victoria, Olivia, and Levi sat around in the living room with a glass of white wine in their hand and chips and salsa on the coffee table while watching TV. They had nothing better to do besides watch game shows and then possibly some stupid comedy shows.
“I wonder if Janice will win,” Olivia said all of a sudden.
“I would assume so. She’s got the most amount of money,” Levi replied. “And they’re right at the third toss-up.”
“No. I mean the final round. We all know she’ll make it that far.”
“I like Janice, so I want her to win.”
“Why do you like Janice so much?” Victoria asked her brother.
“She clearly knows what she’s doing,” Levi remarked.
“I was hoping Tim would win.”
“What do you have about Tim?”
Levi’s response. Victoria has consistently been annoying Levi with the guys that she likes, even though she has never had serious relationships with many of them. Victoria was in one serious relationship in college, and they eventually broke up because he is from San Diego, and she is from Valparaiso. They were sure that the long distance would put a damper on their relationship. Their relationship lasted a year and a half before they realized the truth about distance. Victoria has had on-and-off relationships with other guys that wouldn’t last more than six months, and she has been single for about a year. And so have her other roommates, which would make things slightly easier for all of them.
Olivia was in a relationship with her friend, Cameron Sedley, for five years before they both realized that they wanted nothing more than just a friendship, and also since college was coming up. Olivia and Cameron went to the same college, but they wanted to expand their horizon on friendships and potential relationships. This happened in July 2009, and Olivia and Cameron are still very close friends to this day.
Levi, of course, is a rarity in today’s dating world. He asked Mackenzie Burbanks to be his girlfriend four days after he had his tonsils taken out, which was October 19th, 2005. They have been dating since that day, and their relationship has always been strong.
“Hey, Victoria, you were telling me about David Wolff, right?” Olivia asked her older sister of two years.
“Oh yeah, David,” Victoria responded with an awkward smile.
“Do you still like him?”
“I’ve seen him before. He’s cute,” Olivia remarked.
“He’s mine. Get your own man!” Victoria exclaimed. Levi rolled his eyes.
“Well, if you’re going to be so possessive!”
“I like him!”
“So, when are you going to talk to him?”
“I don’t know.”
Levi didn’t care about David Wolff, some hot employee at some restaurant in Valpo. He knows of him, but he has never talked to him. The only reason why he knows of him is the fact that David and Victoria were in the same graduating class in high school. They graduated in 2007, so a little while ago.
Try seven years ago around this time.
David and Victoria were actually friends in high school, and they have somehow stayed in contact ever since. However, since Victoria has started liking him, she has found it harder and harder to talk to him via social media and texting. She could have a great face-to-face conversation with him, but she would have absolutely no idea what to say in a text message.
Olivia likes David as well, but he is not Cameron. As a matter of fact, Olivia was planning to go bowling with him in a couple weeks, after he came back from Italy, a vacation that his family surprised him with for his college graduation. And, of course, Levi and Mackenzie would be invited to the bowling event.
“How do you know David?” Levi blurted out specifically to Olivia.
“Victoria and I have gone to the fast food joint, and we spoke with him,” Olivia replied.
“Jayneley still works there, right?”
“Yep. She’s going into her fifth year as a manager, even though she transferred from another store.”
“Oh wow. Is she planning to do anything else soon?” Levi asked.
“Either move higher up or go into another industry,” Olivia replied.
“She seems to like what she does.”
“She doesn’t really mind it. However, she is starting to look at other jobs.”
“Okay. How many interviews do you have next week?”
“Five at least.”
Olivia was hoping to get a good full-time job within a month of graduation from college. She was hoping to go into marketing after graduation, so that was what her focus was on. Levi was hoping to find some excitement in his apprenticeship with their dad. Even though she is working full-time, Victoria was hoping to start a relationship with David Wolff. And Levi could not have cared less about that. And also Olivia, to a degree.
David has long brown hair to his chin, a skinny build, and is 6 foot 1. A couple inches taller than Levi, who has a similar build. His hair is shorter than David’s, though. That is Victoria’s idea of an attractive guy. Olivia likes that idea as well, but she is more into guys with dirty blonde hair, like Cameron.
And Evelyn Maeve was just having fun at her friend’s birthday party.
“Levi, what are your plans for tomorrow?” Victoria asked.
“I’m going over to my friend’s house tomorrow,” Levi replied without putting much though into what he said.
“Why? What’s up?”
“My car’s in the shop. Still. And I was hoping that someone could take me to Elizabeth’s tomorrow,” Victoria remarked.
“Wow. That sucks about your car,” Levi said.
“Yeah. Stupid car accidents.”
“I’ll attest to that.”
“Oh yeah, because you were in the car with me.”
A week ago, Victoria and Levi were headed back home from Crown Point after visiting their second oldest half-sister, Elizabeth. Half-way into their trip home, a car hit the trunk of Victoria’s car. Also known as a fender bender. Thank goodness everyone was okay, but it was obviously a scary experience for both Victoria and Levi, even though it was only a minor car accident. The two kids were well, but the car’s fender came off, and the car itself needed to be fixed.
Who knew how long it would take for Victoria to get her car back?
Victoria and Levi did not want to think about that right now. Levi was hoping Janice would win the game. Victoria was hoping Tim would win the game. Olivia was hoping for world peace. And for Janice to win the game. All three kids were hoping for the pizza to come soon. Surely their dad would be home soon, as well as their mom. It could be as short as five minutes, or it could be as long as thirty.
After eating pizza, Levi was hoping to go over to a nearby pizza shack and play some video games on some arcade machines. Hopefully, Olivia would go with him. Victoria would probably do some last-minute shopping with the parents to get some more stuff for her apartment.
Right now, the game was the only thing that mattered.
“Are you up for arcade games tonight?” Levi asked Olivia.
“I should be,” Olivia replied.
“Why would you not be?”
“What are we doing tonight?”
“Victoria has some shopping for her apartment,” Levi remarked plainly.
“Depends on what else we have going on,” Olivia said.
“I haven’t been there in a few weeks.”
“Neither have I.”
“So why couldn’t we go tonight?”
“I don’t see why not. JANICE IS GOING INTO THE FINAL ROUND!”
All of a sudden, Levi and Olivia jumped off the couch and high-fived each other. Then, they were just as loud as loud could be. Victoria just looked at them blankly and started feeling sorry for herself. Not that she really had any reason to. It was just that she was hoping that the hot auburn-haired guy would win.
Because of their “bet” that Janice would get to participate in the final round of the game, Olivia agreed to go with Levi to the pizza place on Highway 130 and play arcade games. Victoria still needed to go shopping for her apartment, and both parents were going with her, so that would leave Olivia and Levi at home with a lot to do.
The question was, what exactly would they do? They figured it out already.
Victoria received two separate texts from both parents. The kids’ dad tried ordering pizza, but the order was wrong. The kids’ mom ended up spending more time talking with one of her friends at Evelyn Maeve’s friend’s birthday party. Even though the pizza order might have gone horribly awry, the evening would still hopefully be good and eventful.
Or eventfully good, as one might say.
“I have good news, guys,” Victoria announced to her siblings in a somewhat sarcastic manner.
“What is that?” Olivia asked for Levi and herself.
“We will have to wait another few minutes for our pizza because they got our order wrong.”
“That’s wonderful. What was our order?”
“We ordered one cheese and one vegetable, both large. But they gave us one medium cheese and a large vegetable, and they were about to charge us for both large pizzas, even though they made us one medium,” Victoria explained.
“Oh wow,” Olivia answered.
“The chips and salsa are good, though.”
“But Dad should be home in no more than ten minutes, and same with Mom.”
‘That’s good to know.”
Janice lost the final round, but she was still a winner in Levi’s and Olivia’s eyes.
From The Magic Video Game 2: Time for Tennis
It was about 10:30 in the morning, and Levi was planning to go to Chicago with Mackenzie and her dad. They had a list of things that they had wanted to do, and Levi was very excited about this opportunity to be with them when walking around Chicago.
Mackenzie’s three brothers, Brent, Jesse, and Andrew, and their mom went to downtown Valparaiso to visit the kids’ cousins. Mackenzie and their dad already had plans to explore downtown Chicago, and they were going to have a great day.
It was now about 10:50 in the morning, ten minutes before they were leaving for Chicago, and Levi had told Mackenzie that he would be over at her house at around this time. However, when Levi did not show up, Mackenzie tried calling him several times. After at least six failed tries, the phone calls always went straight to Levi’s voicemail.
“Snap,” she said after she hung up the phone.
“Is he not answering?” her dad questioned.
“No. And it’s 11:02!”
“He could just be running late.”
“He said he would come.”
“Just relax, sweetie.”
“Levi is usually on time when it comes to things like these, and I know we need to leave soon.”
“Isn’t he a late sleeper?”
Mackenzie didn’t say anything for a few moments. She could not remember whether Levi loved sleeping in late or not. Today, it seems that a lot of teenagers love to sleep in late. And Levi was probably one of them. It was evident that Levi’s love for sleeping in had yet to cross her mind.
“Oh my God. That’s probably what he’s doing.”
She started crying. Mackenzie was really looking forward to having her boyfriend come with them to Chicago. She would not have minded so much the fact that she and her dad were going on a day trip there, but she did not like the fact that Levi just didn’t call her. Mackenzie hung her head down and cried even harder. Her dad walked over to her and tried to make things a bit easier.
Meanwhile, Levi was still sleeping. He was in the clothes he wore yesterday. He forgot to put his ankle brace on; he was so tired from a busy and fun day.
It was now 11:06, and his mom came upstairs to check on him. She gently shook his arm so that she could at least try to get him to wake up. After about five minutes, the boy woke up very slowly. When he finally sat up on his bed, he could barely open his eyes. He brought his knees up to his face, and his head was on them. His arms were wrapped around his knees. Levi was trying to wake himself up by taking in a few deep breaths and exhaling slowly.
“Good morning, sleepyhead,” she said.
“Hello,” Levi quietly answered once he was more awake.
“Did you remember that you were going to Chicago with Mackenzie today?”
“They already left.”
“They were going to leave around 11.”
“What time is it now?”
Levi quickly got out of bed and ran toward the kitchen. His heart was pounding so hard to the point that it could actually burst inside him. His stomach hurt to the point that there may, in fact, have been butterflies flying around in there. And his palms were sweaty from just being woken up, as well as being very upset about the whole situation. His phone was on the counter, next to some breakfast cereal, and he quickly dialed his girlfriend’s number in a matter of heartbeats.
After a few rings….
“Hey, you finally decided to call,” Mackenzie answered.
“Yeah. I’m really sorry,” Levi said.
“What were you doing all this time?”
“I literally just woke up.”
“I saw that you called six times.”
“I sure did.”
“I’m a heavy sleeper.”
“I’m sorry about today. I really didn’t mean to pull what I did,” Levi apologized.
“It’s fine. We’ll just have to plan something else, I guess,” Mackenzie replied.
“I know. I really have to make this up to you.”
“Okay. What do you want to do?”
“Question is….what do you want to do?”
“Well, I’m partial to just playing video games.”
“I’m cool with that.”
“That should work.”
“Alright. See you then.”
Levi sat at the kitchen table feeling very bad about what he had done. Yet, he also thought it was pretty hilarious. Evelyn Maeve found her older brother and skipped in his general direction. She had her butterfly wings attached to her, and she was wearing a halo made out of garland from a previous Christmas pageant that her friend wanted her to be a part of, since she was also in it.
Apparently, Evelyn Maeve’s intention was to be a fairy today.
“Herro,” she said gleefully.
“Herro,” Levi answered back.
“Are you supposed to be somewhere?”
“I was supposed to be in Chicago with my girlfriend.”
“And I overslept, so I’m here.”
Levi went back up into his bedroom to put on some everyday clothes, and then he came back down to eat some leftover mostaccioli from the night before. He and Evelyn Maeve watched some cartoons for an hour. Soon after the next show was coming on, their mom found them on the couch. She was finished with some work that she had to do for her job. Victoria and Olivia were at their half-sister’s house; they visited Louise, who was not feeling very well today.
“What doing, peeps?” she asked.
“Watching TV,” Levi answered.
“Watching TV,” Evelyn Maeve repeated softly.
“Want to do Mexican food for lunch?” their mom asked.
Levi’s and Evelyn Maeve’s mouths dropped. They ran to the closet by the door and hurriedly put on their shoes. Then, the three went to the nearest Mexican restaurant to eat….Mexican food.
Not Chinese food.
An hour and a half later, once they came home from their outing, Levi received a phone call from Jack. He missed the call at first because he basically did not hear his phone go off. Once he found out that Jack had tried to call him, he decided the best thing to do would be to call his best friend back.
After dialing Jack’s number and a few rings….
“Herro, Sir Levi,” Jack answered his phone.
“Hey. What’s up?” Levi answered.
“Hey. I tried calling’ you, but you no get my call.”
“Very funny, sir.”
“Well….how was your….date?”
“You want to know the truth, don’t you?”
“Yes. Yes, I do.”
“What?! What is that supposed to mean?” Jack questioned his best friend.
“I overslept. We were going to Chicago at 11, but I woke up at 11. So, we’re playing video games instead,” Levi replied.
“You should make a cake. Simple as that.”
“I never thought about that.”
“Well. Now, I want you to meet two new amazing people who may join our posse.”
“Great. Who are they?”
“Benny Wickford and Nathaniel Linden. I made up some sweet names for them!”
“Benny is Benny Bear. Nathaniel is Lindy,” Jack explained.
“I like Lindy!” Levi exclaimed.
“I know! Well, come over to the tree house in fifteen minutes….if you can.”
“It’s on the ground.”
“Right. It is a house made out of a tree.”
Levi got ready to go over to Jack’s house. He was actually going to meet two new friends today, who were most likely tennis nerds, just like the whole posse. He ran upstairs to get his sandals, since he has always put them somewhere in his bedroom. Levi was fine when he put his flip-flops on. But, when he ran downstairs, he tripped on one of the stairs and fell the rest of the way down.
“WEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!” Levi shouted at the top of his lungs.
It was obvious that Levi somehow found a little bit of fun in falling down the stairs. His mom, however, heard the loud noise from the kitchen, where she was sitting. She was far from entertained. As a matter of fact, her post-traumatic stress disorder was definitely kicking in.
“LEVI! ARE YOU OKAY?!” she shouted.
“Yes, I’m fine. I just fell down the stairs.”
“You didn’t hurt yourself, did you?”
“No. It was actually quite fun. Jack wanted me to go over to his house made out of a tree.”
Mrs. Cranston then drove her son to Jack’s house, which is literally five minutes away from their house. Only he doesn’t live in downtown Valparaiso. He lives on Shamrock Lane, which is on the west side. Once Levi and his mom exchanged their casual “I love you’s,” Levi went up to the house to meet up with his best friend, and then Mrs. Cranston and Evelyn Maeve were going grocery shopping. Victoria and Olivia were planning to come home in thirty minutes, as was their dad.
From The Magic Video Game
The night flew like the breeze. That was how amazing it was. However, the next morning was bound to not be as pleasant and fun. The relatives left at around two o’clock in the morning, and, of course, everyone was still up after that. No one went to bed before three o’clock.
It was now eleven o’clock in the morning, and Levi was not up yet. Everyone else woke up two hours prior. Elizabeth’s wedding was today; it started at two o’clock, and the party was at four o’clock, two hours before mass would start. Levi needed to wake up as soon as possible, so that the family could get ready for the wedding.
Levi’s dad opened the door to Levi’s bedroom. His dad saw him sleeping on his side, with about half of his comforter on the floor. Levi’s breathing was steady, and his mouth was half open. His dad didn’t really want to disturb Levi’s peaceful state of mind today, but he knew they had to leave for the wedding soon.
Levi stirred. He didn’t just stir; he really moved around on his bed. Instead of sleeping on his side like he did, he unconsciously moved himself so that his head was at the foot of the bed, and his feet were on top of his pillows. Five minutes later, his dad decided it was time to wake him up.
“Hello, earthling!” his dad shouted.
Levi lifted his head from underneath his comforter, and his eyes were shut. He could both hear and feel his heart beating rapidly against his chest, and he took a deep breath. He was lying on his stomach, and he then decided to put his head back down. Levi really did not want to get up, much less open his eyes. He pulled his comforter over him and tried going back to sleep.
“Wakie, wakie, eggs and bakie,” his dad said.
“Shut up,” Levi answered quietly.
“Would you like some eggs and bakie, sir?” his dad spoke in a British accent.
“I don’t want any eggs and bakie,” Levi softly replied in a British accent.
“Then, what would you like for brunch?”
“I don’t care. I just want to go back to sleep.”
“Well, you need to wake up soon.”
“Now is the most ideal time to wake up.”
That wasn’t enough coaxing for Levi to wake up, though. He fought to go back to sleep. As a matter of fact, he would not have minded if he slept the day away. However, he couldn’t today since he had to be at the wedding for his half-sister. Two minutes later, and his dad was still in the room. Levi had to make a decision to wake up now.
“Alright! I’ll get up.”
Levi stormed out of his bedroom into the bathroom so he could get a good look at himself. He felt as if he could take out someone today since he was abruptly woken up by another person. Non-morning people usually feel this way every morning. He was pretty mad at the moment.
He rinsed his toothbrush under the faucet and saw his reflection in the mirror. He looked like he could have been mugged by someone. His eyes were half-open. His hair was all messed up. His whole face was red.
Levi put the toothpaste on his toothbrush. He then applied it to his mouth. He could taste the minty flavor against his tongue. But he did not take his eyes off his reflection in the mirror. He finally opened his eyes all the way. After he was done brushing his teeth, he combed his hair. Once he finished, he looked at his chest in the mirror, since he was shirtless. He drew in a very deep breath, and he could see his heart pounding against his skin when he held his breath for a few seconds. It was very creepy, but cool at the same time.
It was very hard to get himself relaxed after just waking up. However, he has been able to do it before. He took a flashlight out of the cabinet and pointed it at his opened mouth. He could see the back of his throat, and the result of what the surgeons took out. He could also see a small pale scar just above where his tonsils used to be; the scar was from an accidental cut that one of the surgeons had made when performing the surgery.
Levi then heard a knock on the door. He went over and opened it. He was just standing in front of the mirror anyway, minding his own business.
It was Evelyn Maeve.
“Boo!” Evelyn Maeve almost screamed.
Levi didn’t react. He just shook his head and laughed to himself. Evelyn Maeve walked up to Levi and hugged him.
“Hi, big bwuther.”
“What are you doing?”
“Trying to wake up.”
Levi then bent over with his elbows on the sink. He had his head in his hands, and he started taking deep breaths. His little sister rubbed his back for him. She started getting very nervous because she was not sure if he was having another one of his asthma attacks. Evelyn Maeve was considering getting their parents and having them check on Levi.
He then started breathing normally again. He looked down and saw the little “blob” pulsing strongly against his chest. Levi was still a little creeped out by this, but he figured it was just because it was morning, and he was trying his hardest to become fully awake. He sat on the edge of the bathtub with his fingers under his arm, and the palm of his hand on the left side of his chest. Evelyn Maeve decided to sit beside him and make sure he was truly waking up. She wrapped her little arm around his shoulder and rested her head against it.
“Are you okay, Levi?”
“I thought you were having asthma.”
“I do have asthma. It isn’t acting up.”
“Are you excited about the wedding?”
“Yes and no. I’m a little nervous about this one.”
“Last wedding we went to was our cousin Lori’s, and I was twelve or so. I had a horrible cold, but I still showed up. I fell asleep during the wedding ceremony, but I was fine for a while at the reception. I was playing card games with my other cousins, and then Lori wanted me to dance with her, so I did. After a while, I started getting sick to my stomach again. And then, I spent the rest of the time in the bathroom throwing up.”
“That must have been bad.”
“I don’t want to have my asthma suddenly act up.”
“Is it that bad?”
“It’s not severe, but it’s a little more serious than mild asthma, so I need to be a little more careful.”
Levi then left the bathroom and went back into his bedroom to put on his everyday clothes. He thought he didn’t need to dress up right now since he still had about three and a half hours. Evelyn Maeve was standing outside the door when he came out.
“Is that what you’re wearing to the wedding?” Evelyn Maeve asked.
“Yes,” Levi replied sarcastically.
Levi had on plaid shorts, a green t-shirt, and he was barefoot. He walked downstairs with his little sister who wore her white dress. It was pretty evident that she was ecstatic about the wedding. She continued to dance, twirl, and skip around the house in her dress.
“Levi, you need to put on your outfit,” his mom said.
Levi went back upstairs and changed into what he was going to wear for the wedding. Then, they grabbed some fast food on the way to the venue. While Levi was on his first of two chicken sandwiches, his phone rang. When he looked at the caller ID, he saw that it was his girlfriend, Mackenzie Burbanks, trying to call him. He then answered his phone.
“Not much. Just chillin’ at home. What are you up to?”
“Did you want to get together today?”
“I was hoping.”
“I have my sister’s wedding today, so I won’t be able to do anything until tomorrow.”
“Oh. I can’t do anything tomorrow because I have my family reunion.”
“Oh. I dunno.”
“It’s been too long!”
“I know! I’m so nervous about the wedding.”
“You’ll be fine. I guarantee it.”
“Just trust me.”
Levi and Mackenzie were on the phone for another few minutes, and then Levi had to hang up. They were at least another twenty-five minutes away from a synagogue in Munster, and then the reception was going to take place in Merrillville. Everyone in the whole car was silent because they had their mind on the wedding, among other things.
Levi decided to look out the window. Evelyn Maeve wrapped her arms around his left arm, and she tried getting his attention by blowing in his ear. Levi gently elbowed her and let out a heavy sigh. Nervousness struck him hard. Levi basically didn’t want to pass out in front of anyone, at the ceremony or at the banquet.
“What are you looking forward to the most?” Mr. Cranston asked, breaking the silence.
“Oh, at the wedding?” Victoria asked.
“I’m looking forward to the reception.”
“I’m basically looking forward to the food,” Olivia joked.
“And I want to dance,” Evelyn Maeve responded.
“Lisa? Levi? What about you guys?” Mr. Cranston questioned his wife and son.
“I can’t wait to see my daughter join Paul in marriage,” Mrs. LeVole answered.
A few moments later.
“Oh. I’m just hoping that I don’t spend my time in the bathroom throwing up like I did the last time,” Levi replied.
Laughter emanated through the car.
“You won’t,” said their dad.
And, after about thirty minutes, the Cranston’s were finally at the synagogue. Once they got out of their car, Elizabeth saw them, walked quickly toward them, and greeted them.
Here goes nothing.
Saturday, November 8, 2018
Levi Cranston (The Magic Video Game) and his girlfriend, Mackenzie Burbanks, were bored at their Allston apartment. Their friends, Jack Andrews and Asad Prejesh, had to assist with tutoring. Levi didn't have anything going on until 4 pm this afternoon, when he would give tennis lessons to a few students in grade school.
It was only 11 o'clock in the morning, and Mackenzie made some tea for both of them. They decided to watch TV for a couple hours. It was pretty cold out, so they snuggled as tightly as they could. In Levi's red fleece throw that he got for his birthday a couple years ago.
Once they got bored with watching TV, Levi pulled out his laptop and decided to go onto his social media page. When he logged in, the first post that he saw on his newsfeed was a picture of him back in sixth grade. In this picture, he was sleeping on his stomach on the couch in the living room, and he still had his cross country uniform on.
Apparently, this was the first cross country meet that he had ever participated in.
"Oh my gosh, I totally forgot about this pic," Levi remarked.
"You were soooooo cute!" Mackenzie exclaimed.
"Yeah, this was my first cross country meet in middle school. I was so tired when I came home, that I passed out on the couch with my uniform on."
"You're still so cute."
"Thanks, so are you," Levi replied, following a boop on Mackenzie's nose.
"Wasn't it your mom who had posted this?" Mackenzie asked.
"Yes. She even said in the caption that I was her sleepy little cross country runner."
"That is adorable."
"I'm a little sleepy right now."
"So am I."
From The Magic Video Game
Back on Marty’s boat, everyone was happy that they were closing in on Wakahakai. And they were also excited about the fact that Darveda, Nelson, and Hilda were gone for at least a little while. They would not get their hands on Winderplassic Estates until further notice. About another thirty minutes, and everyone would be on a beach.
Right now, they were on a boat. Obviously.
“Just think about all the neat things we’ll have in Wakahakai: beaches, volleyball, coconuts, pineapples, pina coladas, strawberry daiquiris, and my personal favorite, horchata,” Marty said gleefully.
“Don’t forget sunscreen!” Kaloi reminded Marty.
“Thank you. I forgot.”
“Cosmo, I think you’re about to hit the beaches,” Sporto said to Cosmo.
“I don’t have a baseball bat!” Cosmo replied.
Now came the ha-ha’s. Thirty minutes seemed like a complete drag. These several minutes could not pass quickly enough, or so it seemed. Olivia and Levi challenged each other to a car racing game with Princess Spaziana watching them. She was really not in the mood to play video games. She was more excited about returning to Wakahakai. It felt as if it has been way too long since they had been at their own “vale of paradise.” Two minutes after the boat finally stopped, a lady greeted everyone as they left the boat.
“Welcome to Wakahakai. Aloha-Ee. Aloha-Oh. Pigs Can Fly,” she greeted in a montone.
“Truth is, pigs can fly,” Sporto replied.
“Herro, everybody!” Cosmo announced hysterically, of course.
And the truth had finally come. They were back in Wakahakai. Officially. Once everyone left the boat, they found a spot on the beach and got themselves pizza and pina coladas. Afterwards, Marty and his friends, plus Olivia and Levi, played a few games of volleyball. Life had gotten peaceful once again.
Everyone had played about four games of volleyball before they all grew exhausted of this sport. Once they finished, Levi and Marty showed off to everyone by doing backward hand springs and cartwheels, among other gymnastic skills.
After about thirty minutes, Levi decided that he wanted to break away from everyone else and enjoy the peace at this divine beach. While he was sitting on a bench for a little while, drinking his pina colada, eating a few more pieces of pizza, and watching Olivia, Princess Spaziana, and the creatures goof off, he felt his cell phone vibrate. He took the ringing phone out of his pocket and fumbled it several times before he could actually try to answer it. Mackenzie was trying to call him, but Levi unfortunately missed the call. After realizing whom it was, he called Mackenzie back.
After a few rings….
“Hello?” Mackenzie answered.
“Hey, Mackenzie!” Levi answered back.
“Hey, what’s up?”
“Not much. How about you?”
“I’m doing well. I miss you!”
“Aw, I miss you, too! How is Long Island?”
“Actually, we ended up not going. I was so sad!”
“Why couldn’t you go?”
“My little cousin is sick. Again.”
“That does not sound like fun. And it’s summer, for crying out loud!”
“I know. He is on his fourth bout of tonsillitis. My four-year-old cousin, Matt, may have to have his tonsils taken out soon.”
“Is it really that bad?”
“Yes. When I had my tonsils removed, my throat hurt like an inferno for about two weeks.”
“Oh no. That doesn’t sound pleasant.”
“It was not.”
“Well, I hope it doesn’t happen to Matt.”
“I also hope not!”
“Well, what are you doing?”
“About to go on a run. How about you?”
“Video games with Andrew.”
“Ah. Have fun!”
“You, too! Well, Andrew is getting impatient, so I’ll talk to you later!”
Once Levi hung up his phone, he stretched and warmed up a bit, and then he started running along the shoreline. The beach in Wakahakai resembled the beaches in Rhode Island. While quickly passing other creatures and some people, Levi’s mind went straight to the memories that he has of him and Victoria running along the Atlantic Ocean.
Every summer, the Cranston’s like to spend at least two weeks in Rhode Island, since they have several relatives who still live there. They would most likely be going to Rhode Island later this summer because of some business trips and various work schedules. They normally like to go from the middle of June until the beginning of July, almost always soon after the Fourth of July. However, it would be different this year, especially since Victoria was also going to visit a few colleges in Rhode Island while the family makes their trip this summer.
Levi imagined Victoria right next to him, but he then realized that if he tried to talk to her, he would feel a bit awkward because she was really back at home, probably getting ready to make some more college visits. However, Levi was really enjoying himself. It had been at least a day since he was really free to go on a run. He didn’t have to take a certain path. He didn’t have to listen to music while running. He could just hear the beautiful whooshes of the water flowing against his bare feet.
An hour had passed, and he was extremely sore from this run. Running barefoot along the shoreline has always been quite a workout for both Levi and Victoria. The boy did have his ankle brace on, so his ankles didn’t really hurt that much. He just ached all over.
Olivia and the creatures eventually saw Levi slowly walking back toward them. He then decided to lie down on a towel that was lying in the sand and try to catch his breath. Apparently, his run was very intense. Olivia walked over to Levi. Cosmo waddled over to Levi. The penguin was supposed to act serious right now. As if that would happen.
There were cows that moseyed their sweet way along the beach. A little too much attention deficit disorder going on right now. A boy who was trying to catch his breath due to the climate, a penguin who could never take things seriously, and cows.
“Cosmo, can you help me make sure he’s okay?” Olivia asked.
“I’m fine, Olivia,” Levi answered breathlessly.
“Will do, Madame Olivia,” Cosmo answered in a monotone.
The penguin put his head against Levi’s stomach, confusing that with his heartbeat. It was, for unknown reasons, that the radical penguin would have confused two such things, but maybe it is typical for penguins to do so. Cosmo was listening intently to Levi’s belly sounds echoing through his small ears. His stomach’s gurgling noises were very loud, according to the penguin. Cosmo moved his head to where his ear was now pressed against Levi’s belly button, since Levi’s shirt was pulled up to his chest. The boy felt quite a bit of pressure on his stomach and felt as if Cosmo’s head was actually glued to it.
“Your heart sounds….uh….gurgly,” Cosmo almost shouted.
“That’s not his heart, you goof. It’s up here,” Olivia told the goofy penguin as she pointed to her younger brother’s chest, and Cosmo put his head against where she pointed.
Levi didn’t really care about Olivia worrying so much about him. He just wanted to be able to catch his breath and then play at least one more game of volleyball before he and Olivia left for Valparaiso. Since he has mild to moderate asthma, it has always been in Olivia’s best interest to worry about him in times like these.
For a few minutes, Cosmo’s head stayed against Levi’s chest. The boy didn’t really care about this either. He just let Cosmo listen to the soothing sound of his heart beating. For all he knew, penguins probably don’t even know what a heart sounds like. It has also been thought that penguins are a seemingly serious species of birds who don’t scream at the tops of their lungs; anyone who knew this would eventually be proven wrong. There are some penguins, such as Cosmo, who can also speak in a plethora of different accents. And, above all, it has been thought that all penguins live in Antarctica and not some supposedly fictitious island in Hawaii.
“Ah, your heart’s a pounding drum inside you, Levi,” Cosmo said in a somewhat hysterical Irish accent.
Levi just nodded and gave Cosmo a thumb up. He was trying very hard to catch his breath. It wasn’t that Levi was having another one of his asthma flare-ups. It was more that the climate was extremely humid, and he felt more pressure on his lungs because of it. He closed his eyes and hoped that all this would end quickly since his chest was starting to hurt.
The boy just lay on the towel. His whole body was sore from this intense run. He did not want to get up yet since he felt like he had pulled several muscles all at one time. Levi was still breathing relatively hard, but it was improving rather quickly, a sign that he didn’t think he would have an asthma attack. The extremely low height above sea level was probably to blame, hence the humidity. Cosmo got up and waddled toward his friends who were waiting for more people to participate in one final volleyball game. All Levi wanted right now was to keep himself from being completely breathless.
“Hey, Levi, do you feel an attack coming on?” Olivia asked her younger brother.
“No. I just need to calm down,” Levi answered, slightly panting.
“The weather is very humid, you know.”
“That’s why it’s so hard to breathe.”
“I think we’re even closer to sea level here than we are when we’re in Rhode Island.”
“I’m sure we are.”
Olivia helped Levi up, and they both walked over to the creatures. It was now 7:30 in the evening, Valparaiso time. After Olivia looked at her watch, she and Levi both agreed that they needed to be home shortly. They figured they could have another hour on the beach, but their family would be worried sick if they were still gone past 8:30 tonight.
“Got volleyball?” Marty asked.
“Absolutely,” Levi answered.
“Well, I can’t stay this long,” Princess Spaziana remarked.
“My sister is hosting a masquerade, and it is in my best interest to be there and be part of everything going on. I’m sorry to tell you all this, but I have to leave now. Goodbye, my dear friends.”
“Goodbye, Princess Spaziana,” the creatures answered simultaneously.
Princess Spaziana walked over to Olivia and Levi and gave both of them a hug. Then, she kissed Levi on the cheek. Levi’s body started burning up. The boy blushed after he felt her warm lips press against his cheek, and he was also a bit embarrassed. Since he already has a girlfriend.
Perhaps Princess Spaziana is European.
“Yay!” Cosmo, Jack McFrost, and Jefferson shouted and applauded for Princess Spaziana and Levi.
“It’s just what we do as a Royal Monarchy. Well, I must go. And I hope to see you all soon,” the princess said to the two kids.
Olivia and Levi waved back at Princess Spaziana. Before they knew it, she was picked up in a nice blue car by her father. And then they drove off into the abyss. It would probably be a while before the two kids saw her again. At least until they returned to Wakahakai, whenever that might be.
Some time in high school
Levi Cranston (The Magic Video Game), Jack Andrews, Asad Prejesh, and David Savino were at tennis practice after school. After spending at least an hour perfecting their tennis skills, the whole tennis team noticed the volleyball team within their vicinity.
One of the tennis players announced that he wanted to check out the volleyball players and see how there could be some relationship formed with at least one of them.
Most of the tennis players ran toward where the volleyball players were going to practice. Everyone, except for Levi, Asad, and another tennis player. The third tennis player seemed pretty disinterested in seeing the volleyball players.
Although Asad would not have minded joining in on the fun, he was simply not in the mood.
"I wonder if Jack is gonna find a girl today," Asad joked to Levi.
"That's nice, Asad," Levi replied.
"I wasn't even sure if he was interested right now."
"He's hit or miss. One day, he wants to date. Next day, he gets cold feet. He's a weirdo."
"Oh baloney," Asad chuckled.
"Do you remember Amelia from English class, and like how we tried to set them up?" Levi asked.
"Yes! That was interesting."
"Amelia is one of Mackenzie's best friends."
"Oh, I didn't know that."
"Well, that's interesting."
Memorial Day Weekend 2018
Levi and Olivia Cranston (The Magic Video Game) went on a vacation to Washington, D.C. for Memorial Day weekend. After a grueling flight from Boston and New York City respectively, they both got to the hotel at around 1:30 in the morning, and Olivia went straight to bed. Levi, however, stayed up until 4:30 in the morning playing video games on his portable system.
At 7 o'clock in the morning, Olivia woke up. She got up and made her twin-sized bed. Her younger brother was still sleeping soundly on his twin bed. The complimentary breakfast bar was open until 10 o'clock in the morning, and Olivia decided to get herself some okay food.
At the bar, there were a lot of different options available, and she knew Levi would eat at least half of what was around. She got two plates for her first trip to the bar, one plate for herself, and the other plate for Levi.
When Olivia walked back into the room, Levi was sleeping on his stomach. His comforter was wrapped around his legs. She ate what she brought in for herself and set Levi's first plate on the table. He was still sleeping soundly for the next 15 minutes.
Olivia went back down to the breakfast bar and got two more plates' worth of food for Levi. When she returned to the room, Levi was still sleeping. Only now, he was cocooned in his comforter and lay on his side.
It was now 8:45 am. Olivia knew that Levi would not be awake until at least 11 o'clock in the morning. So, she decided to call her boyfriend, Brett Ingram (Rockybado), who went to California over the weekend to meet up with two of his brothers, David and Brody.
At 10 o'clock in the morning, Olivia returned to the room, and she was surprised to see that most of the sheets were off Levi's bed. However, she saw Levi's feet slowly moving around.
She saw the three full plates of food on the table, so she knew Levi was not awake yet. She noticed that he was still wrapped around in his comforter, and she saw the sheets moving heavily with his breathing.
Olivia gently shook Levi, who then lifted his head slowly. He turned around on his back, and his eyes were still closed. Levi wrapped himself in his comforter and tried to go back to sleep.
About my Blog
My blog contains anything and everything one should know about my books. Aaaaand a lot more as well.