In the hallway on the east side of the auditorium, the four guards posted to the hall were granted an interesting sight. Four rather large men said “break!” clapped their hands, and jogged to the end of the hall, facing them. Three got down to rest on one hand, the middle one, who stood a little behind the others, appeared to have a ball of some sort in his hands.
“Ready. Set!” The man standing behind the others spoke. “Blue, thirty-two. Blue thirty-two.” He shouted, “Hut!” And everything happened rather quickly.
The linebacker was the quickest, but he had to duck beneath a sword to tackle his man. Ducking was not hard. His reflexes were more than up to the job. The tackled man went down hard, of course, and he did not get back up for a while. The linebacker, on the other hand, got right up and danced a little dance.
The center was naturally slower than the others, but he slammed his man into the wall with such force, he busted one of the man’s ribs through the chain mail and the man slid to the floor completely unconscious.
The defensive end had the hardest time of it. His man saw the bruiser headed right toward him and dropped his sword and ran for his life. Fortunately, the defensive end was well practiced at running down quarterbacks. He caught the smaller man just before the man was able to turn the corner, and he smothered him under three hundred pounds of bone, muscle and meat.
The quarterback actually struck his man first. The football slammed perfectly into the man’s face. The man dropped his blade and became completely discombobulated. By the time he pulled himself together, the quarterback was on him. Tyler was not much in the tackling department, but he was a back-up kicker since the eighth grade. The man looked up as the quarterback kicked him hard enough to send him through the uprights.
“Now.” Captain Aaron said as he led his team down the other hall. They moved in military fashion, Missy and the Captain with pistols drawn, and the two marines with their rifles. They halted several feet from the Truscan soldiers who had drawn their swords and looked ready to fight. “Please hold your shield out for a moment.” Captain Aaron said.
The Truscans looked at each other in bewilderment, but the one on the end complied with the strange request.
“Ricky, put a hole in the shield.” Captain Aaron ordered, but Ricky had already raised his rifle in anticipation and fired, giving the poor Truscans a start. When the Truscan pulled his shield back, he showed the big hole to the others.
“That could have been your chest.” Captain Aaron said, calmly. “Please put down your weapons and surrender. We have no wish for anyone to be harmed. Three complied immediately, but one turned to run. Captain Aaron fired, catching the man in the leg, and the man went down. He moaned and held his leg like it was coming off.
“Pick him up.” The Captain waved to two of the Truscans, and they retrieved their comrade, supporting him with his arms around their shoulders. “Missy. Gather the Truscan weapons.”
“Aye-Aye, Skipper.” Missy said. She couldn’t help it. Captain Aaron waved the prisoners back toward the gym, though he brought them through the hall that went around the gym to the cafeteria. He kept his gun on the free soldier while the marines, Ricky and Tamika brought up the rear. They were still mumbling.
“Captain Ahab made that too easy.” Ricky complained.
“You mean the Gorton Fisherman.” Tamika responded.
The fight in the auditorium went about like one would expect. Three superheroes, all former seventh graders, broke in from both sides, now that the halls were clear. One knocked the lights out of one guard, and caught two more in his traps. One took two out before they hardly noticed him. The third also clocked her pair, but the other six soldiers, the wizard, the Count and the Queen made it out of the side door around her preoccupation; and the Wicked Witch of the West went with them.
“Should we follow?” The first asked and the woman wanted to follow as well, but the other superhero shook his head. Auditorium’s clear. They were driven out and we have prisoners to return to base. They won’t go far. The superhero carried one unconscious man on each shoulder, as did the other man. The woman only carried one, but that was so she could keep a blade ready for the two that had been caught in the traps. They went to the east hall, out the door opposite the one the Queen had taken.
Meanwhile, the Queen screamed once more. How could she have been taken by surprise like that? She slapped the wizard on the back of the head and slugged the Count in the arm. At least the Count had the decency to say, “Ouch!” They went to the office, only to run into Lila and her crew. Several things happened then before the parties separated.
The Queen touched the scarecrow’s arm as they bumped into one another. It was not intended, but the Queen’s anger at that point was hot enough to set the straw on fire. Lila panicked.
“Grampy! Grampy!” She yelled, swirling around the poor scarecrow’s head almost too fast to see. Princess Ashanti watched for a second until it made her dizzy. While the Queen backed away, some look of distress on her face, Lila shot up to the ceiling and set off the sprinklers. As the water fell, Ginger let out a sound that was almost a meow of complaint, and she darted down the hallway, looking for a dry spot. The Wicked Witch of the West also ran off for fear that she might melt.
Somehow, the wizard’s crystal in a box ended up in the hands of the pirates. Perhaps that was inevitable. What was less anticipated, was finding a semi-conscious Count Severas in the hands of an elf and a ninja.
While the Princess helped put out the scarecrow’s arm, the scarecrow shouted at Lila to turn the sprinklers off. She did, eventually.
“Now the fire department will come.” The scarecrow commented. Thus far, the town had not been infected by the invasion of armed and dangerous soldiers. It would be better for all not to open that can of worms. “I’ll square it with Bob when he comes.” The scarecrow thought, but then, perhaps Bob might not take the word of a scarecrow.
“But Grampy. Are you all right?” Lila was very worried.
“Yes, dear.” The Scarecrow said. “There is some fresh straw back in the gym. I’ll just restuff and be as good as new.”
Meanwhile, all but two of the prisoners taken in the office, escaped with the Queen. Then Princess Ashanti screamed. Red Rayder had an arrow in the back and he wasn’t moving. Peter the ninja and Jennifer the elf handed the stunned Count to the pirates, caught Red Rayder up and carried him along. They brought him through the gym, raising the eyebrows of more than one dancer as they did. Luckily, though, people were dancing again, now that the internal rain shower had ended, and so most did not notice, or at least they did not realize exactly what they were seeing. They got Red Rayder to the cafeteria as quick as they could, and people made way to lay him on a table. Doctor George was just prepared to extract the bullet from a soldier’s thigh when they called him straight to the fallen young man.
“Who is this?” Doctor George asked as he looked closely.
“Eddie Bricker.” Lila said, without the least bit of fairy cuteness in her voice.