So…this is the day that I tell you all that I did not complete my goal for NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). Sadly, that means that Positivity Camp has NOT – haha – been completed. The good news? If there is any >_> … I did write several chapters and have an ending in mind now :P So turn those frowns upside down! Because for the next 4 Fridays, you’ll have some new Positivity Camp tales coming out! Plus, with one more month of working on this…I just might finish it ;) Wish me luck!
Previously on Positivity Camp:Daniel tries to pull more information out of Tyler on his plan, and while he does learn more, Tyler decides to create a distraction by shouting forbidden words. Counselor Markus happily sends him and Jiminy off to Teacher.
Councilor Markus' alarm went off before I had finished my search and before I could slink off behind the shack and run off down the beach to explore the canoes. If I could have slipped away, all the trees and bushes on the other side of the shack could have shielded me from the councilor’s watchful eyes. Not that it mattered; the plan had failed.
"Alright campers! Let's regroup, Camp Cleanup is almost over!"
It took several minutes for everyone to wander back. I wasn't surprised to see the canoe kid reappear from the other side of the shack, though I did envy him.
I was a bit surprised to see Councilor Markus in such a good mood. He looked at his watch once, but showed no signs of concern, which meant he had probably set his timer sooner to give the slowpokes a chance to make it back. That was great for him and all, but I wanted to get going!
I pulled out my paper and checked to see what was next on my schedule. There was no use getting excited if it was something lame.
Sweet! I had Creature Feature with Councilor Nathan next! Surely a camp this bad couldn’t ruin something that amazing?! I mean, there was the chance, but what were the odds? I mean, to go through the effort of having a program like that and then to work at ruining it? No, there had to be hope! There just had to be!
“What do you have there, Daniel?” Councilor Markus asked.
I took an involuntary step back as I looked up to see the councilor standing right in front of me.
“Itismyschedule,” I said all in a rush.
“Your what? Ah! Your schedule. That reminds me, if anyone has any questions on where they’re to go next, please ask. But first,” he said as several voices chimed in, “I am to give you this,” he said, handing me a paper.
“What’s this?” I asked, but he was already walking toward one of the kids who had shouted out for help only a moment before.
I unfolded the paper and looked at it.
Group F Schedule
8-8:50Counselor Lev – Team building / Camp Introduction / Sorting
9-9:50Counselor Delilah – Stress Relief / Yoga
10-10:50Counselor Tammy – Field Games
11-11:50Counselor Nathan – Creature Feature
1-2Rest Hour – House Joy
2-2:50Counselor Markus – House Joy & Camp Cleanup Counselor
3-3:50Counselor Teacher – Art Barn
4-4:50Counselor Kimberly – Nature Walk
6-6:50Counselor Melinda – Music
7-7:50Camp Fire Stories
8-8:50Counselor Lenel & Counselor Melinda – Camp Fire Songs
“Wait…this can…” I let my voice trail off as I realized I couldn’t object to the paper with a negative word. But seriously, this couldn’t be my new schedule! It had me going to see Teacher again!! “Councilor Markus,” I called out. “This has me going to the Art Barn again.”
“If that’s what it says, then that’s where you’re to go,” he called back without so much as turning around to talk to me directly. The coward.
I was too stunned to say much else. What was I supposed to do? I couldn’t go through another art lesson with him! Just my luck, it would be the same lesson, too! I mean, that made sense, if every group was going to each activity, then they probably did the same thing at each location, right?
“This is ridiculous!” I shouted at last. My mind went into overtime as I tried to recall if ‘ridiculous’ was a forbidden word or not. It wasn’t, I decided after a moment of panic.
“What was that?” Councilor Markus demanded. This time he did turn and face me.
My mind was suddenly buzzing with energy. I hadn’t been keeping with the plan! The original plan that Wendy and I had come up with, the one for adding more words to their idiotic list! Idiotic, that wasn’t on there either! My mind worked faster. If I was going to have to see Teacher for bad behavior, I needed to make it count.
“You heard me,” I said without so much as a stutter. “I said this is ridiculous, idiotic even! The Art Barn is boring, dull, and dreary. I’ve already been there, so I know how tedious and drab the place is. Teacher is so slow! Brainless even! Having us do empty-headed tasks. This paper,” I said while waving it in the air, “is lame, and I refuse to go back to that shoddy old barn!”
“Are you done?” Councilor Markus asked calmly as I paused to take a breath. His calm completely stole my thunder, and made my thoughts screech to a halt.
“Teacher, did you catch all of those?” the councilor asked as he held his radio up to speak.
My eyes widened as I realized why he had been so calm. He’d been holding down the button on his radio the whole time so that Teacher, and who knew how many other councilors, could hear everything I said! When had they become so clever? I wondered in dismay.
“Loud and clear. Send him over. I’ll take care of the rest,” came Teacher’s cold reply.
I knew when I had been bested, but I wasn’t going to give up either. I turned away as though I were leaving, which I also fully intended to do; however, before I had gone more than a step or two, I added one last thing.
“Well, this is just the worst!” I said loud enough for Councilor Markus to hear me. I chuckled to myself as I heard him start shouting into the radio the newest forbidden word.
“Anyone else going to the Art Barn?” I called out as I ran out of the beach area. There was no response, but two others did join me. Together we ran away from the still fuming councilor. My pace quickened even more, but not because I was worried about Councilor Markus. No, I didn’t want to be late to the Art Barn again. Teacher was going to be in a foul mood as it was, I had just insulted him after all. I just hoped ‘following the rules’ was worth the consequences.
We were over half way to the Art Barn before the youngest kid stopped running. The other kid stopped with me, much to the first kid’s obvious relief.
“Why…why are we…running?” the kid who had stopped first asked as he panted.
“I’m not sure if you heard me earlier,” I began, not the least bit winded, “but I’ve been to the Art Barn before. Teacher does…uh, well. He is very strict, particularly with tardiness.”
“And we’re running to keep from being late,” the second kid chimed in.
“I’m Greg,” he said, offering his hand.
“Hi, I’m Daniel,” I said as we shook hands. It felt so oddly adult like, but I wasn’t sure what else to do.
“It’s understand now!” the first kid said, cutting Greg off before he could say something negative.
“Well, it’s a…a…well, I…!” He sighed then. “I give up.”
“That’s exactly what they want you to do,” I said. “That’s why Wendy and I are fighting back!” I felt a twinge of guilt. I had wasted so much time on the beach talking to Tyler and then looking for a way to the canoes! I should have been talking with everyone, spreading the word and building up the resistance. Well, I could remedy some of that mistake right here and now.
“How?” Greg asked, eying me suspiciously.
“By following the rules,” I said with a wicked grin.
“That does make sense,” I said. “We say what we want, but we are careful to keep from saying words that have been added to the boards outside of camp. You saw how Councilor Markus reacted? When I said ‘worst’ and ran off?”
“I bet if we push them enough or get enough words removed, the councilors will start falling apart!”
“Yeah!” both kids said together.
“But Teacher sounded…”
“Like he’s prepared for you,” Greg finished as the other kid stopped talking.
“Which is precisely why I was running,” I said with a laugh at the irony.
“What? Oh! Because if we’re late he can do something about that because you broke a rule!” Greg was the first to make the connection.
I was a little worried about the younger kid, but he seemed to understand why we were running now.
“We should hurry then,” the younger kid whined.
Not sure what to say to that, I shrugged and started us off again.
We weren’t the first ones to make it to the Art Barn, but we weren’t late either. Not wanting Teacher to catch me short of breath, I slowed down to a walk a good distance away from the barn.
I looked to see where the kid was pointing. There were at least half a dozen tall objects standing in the grass off to the side of the barn. At first, I couldn’t tell what they were, but the closer we came to them, the more distinguished their shapes became.
“He’s removed them all!” I couldn’t believe it.
“Removed what?” Greg asked.
“The stools! He’s removed all the stools!”