Flushed! part I
Down at the park De’Angelo’s buddies were all ready dividing up teams, and they were all waiting for him to even them up. Five of his friends needed Dee to get a serious three-on-three game going. He had to hurry before the older kids, the teens, took over every court. Only, Dee had to stop home and go use the toilet. However, he flushed, but the water wouldn’t drain, and the porcelain bowl was at the brink of overflow.
“Mom!” The ten-year-old with the small Afro cried out through the closed door of the bathroom.
“The toilet’s backed-up again. Kayla’s probably playing in here again.” De’Angelo’s three-year-old sister was a giggly whirlwind of destruction. She had been known to experiment with the toilet by flushing household objects down it. Objects that were not meant to travel through the piping of the commode, Kayla was determined to get them to swirl out of existence, or at least that’s what she believed happened to anything going down the toilet. Ever since she started her toilet training, her mom and dad have had to at times undo the entire toilet to rescue crayons, forks, hair brushes, her daddy’s aftershave, and even one of her brother’s pair of drawers.
“Dee,” his mother called in return. “I’m really busy right now. Try the plunger under the sink. You know how to use it.”
Dee puckered up his face in disgust. Not only did he hate anything involving the toilet, but the guys were expecting him. He would get the blame if they had to wait on him and lose out on a court. Opening up the bathroom door, he bellowed a complaint. The boy was ready to play with his tank top jersey, sagging black jeans, and his prized high-tops for which he paid 150 bucks. His dad made him earn the money by mowing people’s lawns and shoveling out their driveways. It took him nearly all of fourth grade to get the right amount of money. All the guys were totally jealous of him, which made the shoes worth the price.
More importantly, Amari Porter would probably be in the park and he loved making her swoon over his shoes, his Afro, and his basketball prowess. Unfortunately, Dee was better at bragging about his sporting ability than the fact that it wasn’t something he was exceptional at. He went out to play basketball mainly to put on a show for the guys and for Amari’s sake.
“Mom! I gotta meet up with the guys or the older kids will hog all the courts. I don’t have time for this.”
“Well, I don’t have time right now! Your dad’s gone with his buddies. It’s just you. Look, if the plunger doesn’t work, then leave it for later.”
“I’ll do it for ten bucks,” he offered. Money would be an acceptable payment for his valuable time, he thought.
His mom retorted, “How ‘bout you don’t help you go on punishment for the next two weeks?”
“Dang, Mom! All right.” He retrieved the plunger from under the sink and planned to do a half-hearted job of it, just to say he tried. Too bad for Dee because the toilet was so close to over-flowing that as he stuck the plunger head down in the water, some splashed all over his special shoes. “Aw…” He nearly swore, but knew his mom would smack him upside the head if he uttered something so sinful. Instead, he wailed in anguish, “My shoes. Mom…my shoes have got toilet water on them and there’s pee in that water!”
“Dee, give me a break. It won’t hurt your shoes any. Maybe it’ll give ‘em an extra shine,” she laughed. He was appalled that his mother would dare to joke about something so important to him.
“Mom. This thing is too full.”
“Then, don’t put it in too fast. Spread your feet to try and keep your shoes dry.”
At that moment he heard his sister Kayla attempt to recite the alphabet song, quite unsuccessfully, and he knew if she came in the bathroom, she would interfere with any of his efforts. Before plunging any more, he quickly shut the bathroom door and locked it. Returning to the clogged toilet, he re-inserted the plunger slowly and deliberately this time, and less water splashed out, but some still did. Luckily, this time he was more careful with his shoes. Then, he pressed the head down into the drain a few times, and whatever had blocked the water flow to the drain had been dislodged. Finally, the bowl emptied.
Like his dad would do, De’Angelo flushed the toilet to reset the water level to where it normally was, but as he did so, he stepped on some of the liquid that spilled out early, and he slipped head first into the porcelain throne. As the water rushed down into the drain, suddenly Dee went along with it. De’Angelo had accidentally flushed himself down the toilet! Everything went black. Dee spun around and around, getting awfully dizzy. His screams were all garbled from the water he was now submerged in. The smell from the sewers was sickening and he wasn’t sure if he could refrain from throwing up. Being under the water so long, he wondered if he would drown, but he was very much alive. His body shot out of the end of a drain pipe and he landed in a flowing stream of water with a lazy current. The tall, skinny lad was finally able to get up on his feet. De’Angelo now stood within a cave of some kind. Stalagmites and stalactites protruded at the sides of this shallow pool of water. To his left and right were tunnels that projected light in this cave and it looked like if he followed the stream, it would lead to the outside.
“Dang. Am I in the sewers?” He glanced around and found no signs of raw sewage down here. In fact, there was no such odor since coming out of the large corrugated drainage pipe. “Hey. Mom! Can you hear me?” Dee wasn’t sure to follow the tunnels or the stream.
A little tiny wheelbarrow full of rocky chunks with crystals of some sort imbedded in them emerged from the right tunnel and pushing it was a man that would only come up to his chest. The man had neon orange skin that probably gave him enough light to see in the cave system down here. A line of perhaps a hundred were following behind single file. That explained the light down in the tunnels in this cave system, thought De'Angelo. All put together their bodies gave made it seem like daylight down here. They each had a bright purple hard hats. Just as the one in the lead reached the banks of the creek he turned to his right and proceeded towards the entrance to the cave. So far none of them even noticed Dee, until the tenth one in line came to an abrupt stop, dropped the levers to his wheelbarrow, spilling some of his load of stones. Rubbing his two eyes with his hands, he shouted and pointed right at Dee.
“Hey! Look there! Could it be?” He turned to the guy behind him. They had bright green work gloves and boots, plus they wore brown rubberized overalls that hung down at chest level, exposing their hairy chests. Each follicle glowed a sky blue and they almost seemed like one of those toys with the colored lights and little kids make pictures with.
The guy behind hollered with his hands cupped around his lips. “Bweebles! Bweebles! Look! It's the one prophets of old said would come in their stories and songs.”
Way up by the entrance to the cave, the leader refuted what number eleven claimed. “Tongo, you're always jumping to conclusions. Those prophecies have gone on for centuries and never has the One of Restoration ever appeared.”
“Hyphyn...look. He towers over us and his skin does not glow with the Orange like us. He has not been contaminated with the Orange sickness that stunts our growth and kills us when we are the Twenty-five.”
“Well, he does have hair so tall,” Hyphyn admitted. After removing his hardhat, he rubbed the top of his bald head, “Oh...how I wish the hair did grow.”
De'Angelo didn't know how to respond to the conversation. The one called Tongo, eleventh in line, let go of his wheelbarrow and ventured out into the stream to greet the strange visitor who had to be the one from the prophecy. He had to tilt his neck completely back to stare up at the much taller De'Angelo. “Hey...are you the new king destined to restore order among our warring factions?”
“Uh...I doubt it. I fell into my toilet and somehow flushed down into a cave. It was impossible.”
Tongo's eyes bugged out with the excitement after Dee's explanation. “That's part of the prophecy. He who swirls around and around and appears in the cave of Fashion...He will have hair so high...He will be free from the Orange. Tall and mighty will he be and yet a child. He will pass the test of the most dunked.” Clapping his palms together and patting his helmet in rhythmic joy, “So far, you fulfill all the signs, except for one.”
The leader of this group of little men, Hyphyn, joined in right behind Tongo. However, there were hardly any variation in any of their physical traits to distinguish one from the other and Dee thought perhaps they were clones. Hyphyn believed it was his job to negotiate with this boy who to them seemed so gigantic. “What do they call you in your land? We are the Bweebles.”
“They call me Dee. It's short for De'Angelo. I'm a person...a human. I'm really just a kid. Man, you Bweebles sure are tiny.” Dee was so amazed at these creatures. He wondered if he ended up in a fairy tale.
“Well, Master Dee, if you could come prove yourself to be our coming king, we would greatly appreciate it. You see, you resemble the description of an ancient prophecy. The one who would save us from the Orange. Then, our future children would no longer live with this wretched curse on us.”
“Well...I guess. What do I have to do? What happens if I'm not the guy you're hoping for?”
“A challenge has been set up that has stumped the Bweebles for centuries. If you pass it, it will prove you are the one. You will be our king, live in the Empty Palace, and you shall have your pick of any female in the land to be your wife and our queen. If not, we will return you to your land from where you came.”
Until 2014! Be good to yourselves!