14 kids. 1 book.
Aulifte Adventures
Oscar Harrison Aulifte
“Kids, please come into the meeting room!” I sighed. We were always having family meetings. We all flooded into a room far too small too hold us all comfortably.
“We have an announcement,” began Dad.
“I’m having a baby girl,” declared Mom. “We’re naming her Samantha Rose Aulifte.”
Some of us cheered and others sighed. Some of the little kids whined, especially Liam. He was currently the youngest at 2 years old.
The twins, Charlotte and Summer, grinned. They would be excited. They were always eager to help out with a new baby.
Me, not so much. Babies were loud, smelly, and hogged all our parents’ attention.
We were dismissed and I left to go to my friend Lance’s house.
I went out to the garage and grabbed my bike. I pedaled down the driveway, narrowly missing one of our dogs, a tiny tan mutt named Chimichanga.
Going to Lance’s house was easy. You just pedal up to Maple Drive and turn left on 22nd street. It’s impossible to miss with its big pillars, giant fountain, beautiful landscaping and enormous garage.
I was met by Bowser, Lance’s huge Rottweiler. He covered me in affectionate licks.
“Hey,” said Lance, sliding down the banister of a long, winding marble staircase.
“Hey,” I replied. Lance’s parents owned a multi-million dollar industry up in big cities like Chicago, Philly, NYC, Houston, and more. They had the biggest house in all of town.
“Let’s have a snack,” said Lance.
“Okay,” I said. We heated up some Pizza Rolls in the oven. While we were waiting, Lance turned on the Xbox and played for a little while. Lance beat me in every game.
The Pizza Rolls finished cooking. I grabbed half of them and Lance took the other half. I ate about two thirds of the share and fed the rest to Bowser. Question: What fraction of the total pizza rolls did Bowser eat? Just kidding. I will, however, put the answer at the end of this chapter.
After that, we went outside and swam in the Michaelsens’ outdoor pool. We had lap races around the 12’ by 8’ pool and then a quick water fight.
“I don’t feel so good.”
“Me neither.”
“Should we get out of the pool?”
“I don’t really want to.”
“Me neither.”
“Okay then.”
Conversation ended, we continued to splash around. About twenty minutes later, Lance sat up on the pool steps. He moaned, doubling over and clutching his stomach. He shuddered once, twice, three times and hurled all in the pool water.
“Lance!” I shrieked. I dragged myself out of the pool, gagging the whole time. I looked back, and that was all it took. I puked in the pool, too.
After I had apologized to Lance’s parents just about a million times, I left to go home. Mom was waiting at the door.
“Are you okay, Oscar? Lance’s mother called and said that you had gotten sick,” she said. I open my mouth to reply but somewhere someone screamed and there was a loud thud, followed by crying. My mother rushed upstairs. followed.
“Mom,” said Xavier urgently. “Something’s wrong with Toby.”
I scanned the room. My little brother was laying on the ground, out cold. Mom gasped and dashed over to his side. “Toby? Toby?”
“He fell off the dresser,” Xavier informed us solemnly.
“Why was he up there?” I asked.
“We were playing hide-and-seek tag,” said Leo. “Where you hide and then if you’re found—”
“I’m familiar with the game,” I interrupted coldly.
“And I...uh...” Leo faltered, his voice cracking.
“Enough. Oscar, you’re in charge. I’m taking Toby to the ER,” said my mother. “Hannah’s second—”
“I know the drill,” I interrupted for the second time in about a minute. Mom opened her mouth to say something, but then she closed it. Wordlessly, she picked up my nine-year-old brother and hurried out of the boys’ room. I glared at the remaining kids: Xavier, Leo, and Noah. When I saw Noah, I startled. I hadn’t even noticed him.
“All of you, lay in your beds and don’t say a word,” I ordered sharply. I spun on my heel and marched out of the room.
I headed into the girls’ room. In there was Summer, Hannah, Charlotte, Juliana, Beatrix, and Claire. They were talking amongst themselves in hushed whispers in their bunks.
“What happened to Toby?” asked 4-year-old Claire innocently.
“He fell and hit his head,” I informed them gravely.
“Is he gonna be okay?” asked Claire. I could see tears welling up in her grey-blue eyes.
“I hope so,” I replied with a sigh. I sat down on her bed, the lower one in the bunk bed. She hugged me and let a few tears fall. They landed on my t-shirt with a plop. Soon everyone was crowding around me. I embraced the warm feeling.
Mom got back after a while with a conscious Toby.
“He had a tiny concussion,” she informed us. “He’s okay but he needs to get some rest.”
Phew! I sighed with relief.
Toby groggily walked over to the stairs and slowly climbed them. We all went back to what we were doing and one of our many dogs, a retired greyhound named Lotte. She set her long brindled head in my lap and I ran my hand along it, feeling her skull bone. Lotte looked up at me with her soulful brown eyes and we had a moment.
(The answer to the problem above is: Bowser ate about 1/6 of the total Pizza Rolls.)

Keep Reading

Chapter 2

Hannah Grace Aulifte

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