The National Guard, Army and Air force surrounded the lake. Guns pointed down at the center, missiles were ready to strike from the sky, and brave divers awaited the order to investigate. The bridge was gridlocked with vehicles as onlookers crowded along the railing with their phones out, recording every moment. Fear and stress consumed everyone on land and the bridge, and it became so quiet that the sloshing of the water nearly drowned out the propellers of the Air Force chopper.
“Look,” someone from the bridge shouted. And soon after, everyone pointed to the middle of the lake. Bubbles arose and floated across the surface. Then, something popped out of the water.
But not the monster, it was the boy, and everyone cheered and clapped.
News cameras had recorded the horrible incident from their helicopters and displayed it live on the side of one of the buildings. The choppers followed the creature until it caught one of them and broke it in half. The other helicopter tried to get away but didn’t get far as the monster snatched it out the sky and took a bite out of it. There was good news, though, the monster was injured…but the reign of terror was not yet over.
Blood fell from the creature’s scaly belly as it stomped through the rest of downtown. Some escaped the path of the beast, but the unfortunate ones were squished by its gigantic feet. Leaving a trail of bodies and its own blood down the main street.
As it tried to keep its balance, the thing clotheslined buildings, and the skyscrapers toppled over and exploded. Downtown was left in ruins when the monster dropped to its knees and crawled the rest of the way to the lake.
The armed forces finally arrived when the thing went into the water.
“You’re so damn annoying,” Andre said.
“Hey! Watch your language,” Ms. Tooly, the babysitter, glared at him through the rearview mirror.
Eleven-year-old Andre turned his tablet away from his younger brother, six-year-old Adam.
“I want to watch it, too,” the younger brother whined as he crossed his arms.
“Share, Andre,” Ms. Tooly demanded. But they rarely listened to her. She’d usually tell their father about their disobedience at the end of the day, but they’d team up then and deny it all.
Andre stuck his tongue at her when she returned her eyes to the road and continued watching his show alone, mocking his younger brother.
Adam gave up and shifted his focus to the outside as they crossed over the bridge. He marveled at the beautiful lake he’d heard so many stories about. He watched speedboats pulling surfers, jet-skis racing and hundreds of people hanging out at the beach… he couldn’t wait to get there. But noise from the bridge broke the young boy’s focus and pulled him away from the beach. He turned his head toward the road as they made it into the downtown area; it was chaos.
Cars crashed into one another as a stampede of people rushed at them, screaming and crying. Andre dropped his tablet to see the madness, Ms. Tooly stopped the car when a cyclist ran into the hood of the car.
She locked the doors, unbuckled her seatbelt and turned to the boys. “Stay in your seats. Keep your seatbelts fastened.”
Then, the car jumped. Andre saw why it did and pointed ahead, behind the screaming people, with his eyes stretched as wide as his mouth. Ms. Tooly turned as the car jumped again, and she saw a foot twice the size of her station wagon that covered the entire windshield. Then, the car went airborne, hauled away – pulled from the street. The station wagon was gripped so tightly that the windshield exploded into a billion pieces and poor Ms. Tooly fell out the car.
Once the car made it to the creature’s mouth, it crunched down on the steel. The boys were trapped inside, the roof collapsing with every bite, closing down on their heads.
“Andre,” Adam cried. “I’m scared.”
Andre teared up, too, but one thing replayed over and over in his head. His mother’s last words to him. He couldn’t shake it, and that thought erased his fear, and he switched gears.
Andre’s side of the car faced freedom while his little brother’s side headed toward the darkness. Two metal pieces stuck out the sides of the car where there used to be a door. He grabbed the first piece and stuck it in the monster’s gums to stop the chewing. It worked. Then, he unbuckled his seatbelt and looked down the beast’s belly. Had to have been fifty-foot drop to the bottom, but a plan quickly came to him.
He turned to his brother and held out his hand to Adam. “Take it.”
Adam shook his head and balled up into his seat, clinging to his seatbelt strap.
“Trust me. Now, take my hand.”
“I don’t want to die,” Adam cried.
“I won’t let you.” Andre held on to whatever he could grip to prevent himself from falling. One slip—one drop would be just enough pressure to assist the car down the throat, and that’d be the end of Andre and Adam. But the young boy was in Big Brother mode, he held on as he helped his brother out of the seatbelt, and he wrapped little Adam’s arms around his waist. Then, they carefully returned to the other side of the car. Big Brother ripped the second piece of metal from the doorframe and he told his brother, “You hang on as tight as you can, K?”
Adam nodded, buried his head under his brother’s armpit and hung on.
Big Brother Andre took a deep breath as he gripped the metal in his hands, and he jumped as the station wagon fell down the monster’s throat.
He plunged the sharp end of the metal into the chest of the beast and held on as it pierced the skin and tore through the monster’s torso. It slowed their descent. The creature roared as blood squirted out of its belly onto the boys and the street.
When they were close to the street, Andre pulled the metal spear out of the monster and the two boys fell and tumbled away from each other.
People stopped and watched at a safe distance as news helicopters hovered above, recording every moment.
As the monster stood, dripping blood, squealing in pain, holding its belly, it looked down and saw Adam standing there, alone. The beast roared at the young boy, and it’s claw came whooshing down.
Adam screamed as the scary hand came to claim him, but Big Brother came out of nowhere and pushed him to safety. And with his metal spear in his grips, Andre waited for the Monster to swipe him up.
It did, and it tossed the young boy down its throat.
Six years earlier, a mother gave birth to a premature baby.
The young boy weighed two pounds, four ounces and was immediately moved to an incubator. Sadly, the emergency C-section caused problems for the mother and she was dying.
Her husband still hadn’t made it to the hospital, and all she had with her was her four-year-old son. She pulled him close with the last bit of strength she had and whispered into his ear. “Andre, you are a big brother now. And big brothers are superheroes to little brothers.”
“Like superman?” Andre whined as he watched his mother die.
“Yes, but better. You take care of Adam, forever, no matter what. And with the love you have for him, nothing in this world can stop you.”