This story is by Laura R. Scatena and was part of our 2020 Fall Writing Contest. You can find all the writing contest stories here.
Zoooom! Swish! A flash of black sped by…then another right after as if it was almost a twin. The one with the white stripe lets out a roaring laugh and manages to speak while catching his breath, “I win!” Stuart (aka Stu) loves a challenge, especially when the competition is with his brother, Kaz.
“You wish! You cheated with your tail wagging in my face when we jumped over that building,” snorted Kaz.
The dynamic duo walked through the streets of sunny San Diego, California, to get to their favorite park. “Wasn’t it just yesterday that we were shreddin’ the gnar on the slopes?” Kaz remembered aloud.
Not paying too much attention to his brother’s daydreaming, Stu let out a large meow as his stomach growled and moaned, “Good times…which make me even hungrier.” He snatched Kaz’s lunch bag with his claws and exclaimed, ”Let’s eat!”
“Get your own tuna fish!” snarled Kaz, as Stu strolled by pretending he had no interest in the delicious morsels of seafood spread in front of them on the picnic table.
Stu snickered back, “Seriously bro, you need to chill out…There’s literally nobody else here.”
Not looking up, Kaz retorted with only sounds and gestures of disgust, as he tipped his hat lower to try to cover his plate. He knows his brother loves food and will do anything to try to sneak a taste.
After the routine, predictable lunch events, Kaz and Stu wandered over to the tennis court to get in a quick game. After all, why wouldn’t they like to play a game where the point is to continually chase after a yellow, fuzzy ball?
After a couple of sets, Stu walked slowly to the net at mid-court as he motioned to his brother to meet him. With his racket dragging behind him and a fatigue that swept through his entire body, Stu confessed, “Do we need to keep playing? It’s too hot and my paws are killing me.”
Wiping the sweat from under his hat, Kaz was convinced and suggested, “Ok, no worries! Get your skateboard and we can make our way back to the beach to cool off.”
Just as Stu began to meander his way to his skateboard, he spotted Olivia and Zoe: two of the prettiest cats in their neighborhood.
Olivia’s calico fur and large blue eyes captures anyone’s attention, even if you are not aware. Just as glamorous, Zoe’s different colored eyes, brown and blue, match purr-fectly with her marbled, sepia and light tan fur like a piece of art.
Biking past the court, they did not acknowledge them, but Stu immediately straightened up, from his ears to his tail, and shouted to Kaz, “Hey! Why are you packing up? Tired of my awesomeness? Let’s keep going!”
Pretending to have an immense amount of energy, he awaited a response from Kaz, who then stopped, turned, and shrugged his shoulders to indicate he would continue to play. The girls giggled and kept riding.
Olivia and Zoe parked their bikes and began to jump rope. Kaz and Stu attempted to not pay attention, but then noticed a red convertible swiftly arriving at the park.
“Fantastic,” bellowed Kaz. “How does he always manage to show up at the wrong time?”
Tad slithered ever so confidently like the snake he is toward Olivia and Zoe, not even giving Kaz and Stu a glance. “What do you say you guys come with me surfing on the beach?”
Excitedly, Olivia and Zoe did not need to discuss with each other and exclaimed, “Yes! Let’s go!” All three of them piled into the car and sped away.
Being avid beachgoers and overhearing the conversation, Kaz and Stu immediately ran to their skateboards to follow. They had a hunch that Tad could not swim nor could he surf because they had not seen him often, if at all, at the beach. Kaz and Stu took sharp corners, used back alleys for shortcuts, and flew through the air on their skateboards to catch up with Tad and the girls at the beach.
They confirmed their suspicions when Tad fumbled and bumbled about with his surfboard in the water. “Hey, just wait a minute,” Tad uttered as his voice cracked and he tried to gain his balance. Olivia and Zoe had already been practicing in the water when suddenly a huge wave came looming in above their heads. Olivia screamed, “Zoe! Tad! Somebody, please help!”
Everyone at the beach gasped, as Kaz and Stu hopped off their skateboards and sprinted toward the huge wave that was about to swallow every swimmer and surfer in its path.
Zoe mustered up her strength and shouted, “Olivia! Come swim with me toward the beach!” They began to swim toward the beach, but Tad, not knowing how to swim, paddled the water and clutched his surfboard nervously.
“I’ll get Olivia and Zoe, while you get Mr. Wonderful over there,” Stu ordered trying to get past his jealousy of Tad.
“You got it!” replied Kaz as he managed to do a couple of back flips to avoid a few beachgoers as he dove into the wave.
Stu heroically jumped into the water and grabbed both of the surfboards belonging to Olivia and Zoe. Using all of his strength, he managed to pull them both into safety onto the sand just moments before the wave crashed. “That was too close!” said Stu breathlessly.
Simultaneously, Kaz had luckily been able to pull Tad from under the water where he had sunk beneath his surfboard and hurled his body back onto what was now a lifesaving piece of fiberglass. With all his might, Kaz rode the wave into shore with one paw holding Tad and both eyes focused like lasers on the land that was so close, yet so far away.
Zoe proclaimed, “Maybe you both are the bravest in this city!” as she greeted Kaz and Stu after they had gained their composure from just saving three lives.
“I mean, what else do you expect from a couple of scaredy cats?” joked Kaz as he laughed and patted Tad on the shoulder who was still lying on the surfboard trying to catch his breath.
Laughing, Olivia responded, “Maybe you two can teach us a thing or two next weekend?”
“Maybe…” Stu offered in return as he and Kaz began to meander off the beach, eagerly wanting to relax after the unexpected rescue that afternoon. “What a day,” sighed Stu. Kaz and Stu grabbed their skateboards, but decided to take an easy walk home.
Stu responded in agreement with a large yawn and meowed at the same time. Kaz rolled his eyes and chuckled at Stu’s quirky sounds when he added, “You said it! Time for a nap, dude.”
As the sun set in the distance over the ocean, they soon found themselves back at home curled under a tree in the backyard napping away not knowing the adventures that inevitably await them. After all, Olivia and Zoe will be learning a thing or two from them soon, or will they?