Title: The Hover-Cycle 3000

One wintery morning, an intelligent scientist named Ted Hughes came out of a very fancy mansion. He lived in Sydney, Australia, and was quite rich. His inventions, which hugely benefited humanity, were bought by many countries around the world, and therefore, he became a worldwide celebrity. Anyway, Ted had just finished a major invention and was bringing it out before he stared at it earnestly. He was always proud of his inventions. It was a big vehicle, called the Hover-Cycle 3000 (H-C 3000 for short), and was shaped like a motorbike, with a built-in GPS, a speedometer, and four machines attached to the bottom to make it hover in the air, along with a hidden defense system in case it got attacked. Ted wasn’t going to sell it; rather, he was going to travel to a friend of his named Arnold, who was an engineer. The H-C 3000 had some kinks to work out, so he wanted to do that as soon as possible. So, with further ado, after wearing his safety gear, he set off. It was a bit tricky to control at first, but he got the hang of it.

Four hours later, while he was in the air, he checked the GPS and found the course set for the USA. ‘‘That’s strange; Arnold’s supposed to be in Australia; and, wait, why I am in the air?!’’ thought Ted. The last part he literally shouted out. Then he checked Arnold’s address, and found he’d moved to the USA! This was bad, very bad. The H-C 3000 couldn’t bear any more traveling; unless he did some more repairs and upgrades; and he could only do so much to fix it. Without Arnold, upgrades wouldn’t be possible. So, Ted decided to land in a nearby wood for the time being, rest up, and be on his way. Finding an abandoned hut nearby, he landed gently on the ground. Thankfully, Ted had brought with him provisions, so that he could spend the night safely. After taking a deep breath, he decided to go into the hut. It appeared to be empty, as far as he could see, so he examined the area more carefully. There was a bed, drawers, a hunting rifle, and a workbench. “Pretty good,” thought Ted. After inspecting the rifle, he could see it was damaged, so it wouldn’t be of any use unless repaired. The workbench was in tip-top mint condition, so it could be used for further inventing, or any minor upgrades. The bed wasn’t so good; a little springy, but otherwise in good shape. There was also a dining table, and some chairs. In the drawers were a box of ammunition, specifically for the rifle, a toolbox, a working pistol, with its own ammo, a lot of traps, both for animals and people, a broken assault rifle, MORE ammo, and a lot of rifle upgrades, as well as a pocket knife. Without further ado, he set to work repairing the rifles. Hanging on the walls were a longbow and a large quiver of arrows. Ted was good at archery, so hopefully, that wouldn’t be a problem. Right now, Ted was armed to the teeth! As he explored the hut a little more, he found a bathroom, a bedroom with a large wardrobe, and a kitchen. He knew there would be more stuff, but he decided to let them stay where they were. He could always find something later if he needed it. He felt the urge to go outside, so he grabbed the hunting rifle, put the rifle ammo and knife in his pocket, and set on his way. As he explored, he found a wolf stuck in a net. “Oh dear! What should I do now?” he thought as he watched the wolf struggle to get out. It was in a very pitiful state, so Ted decided to free him. After all, it would be great to have an extra companion, that is, if he managed to tame it. He slowly approached the wolf and cut open the net. The wolf leapt to its feet and snarled once or twice, but Ted was undaunted. Soon it gave up trying to scare him off and accepted him as his master. “Hey boy,” whispered Ted gently, “do you want to come with me?” The wolf (or dog, I should say!) barked in agreement and followed him back to the hut, where Ted named him Howler. To his amazement, Howler knew and was able to perform every trick a dog could do. And you guessed it, Ted was extremely proud of him, so proud that all he could do was pet him, since he didn’t have any treats. The duo was exhausted; Ted from being proud and Howler from getting stuck in a net and performing tricks. They ate dinner (Howler receiving every scrap from Ted’s plate) and then fell asleep.

The next day, Ted and Howler woke up to a beautiful, sunny and clear morning. Ted got up, brushed his teeth, got dressed, went outside, put on his safety gear, and hopped on the Hover-Cycle. Suddenly Howler ran to him and barked non-stop. “What is it, boy?” Ted asked him. Howler pointed at Ted, himself, and then ran straight to the Hover-Cycle. “You want to come with me?” he asked, bewildered. Howler nodded. Ted pondered this. There was room for a dog, but it was a long journey. Howler may not be able to bear it! Still, never doubt a dog, especially when he’s with his master! Ted asked, “Are you sure, bud?” Howler gave an approving bark in reply. “All right, then! I’ll make some more safety gear; for a dog!” Ted thought. They went inside again, and Ted went to work, making the gear. After a while, it was ready. Howler now had a special helmet, vest and boots made just for him! He was proud of himself. The vest had a hidden defense system in case he was attacked. The outfit was stylish as well! They took all the loot from the hut and set off for the USA.  One day later, they arrived. “We’ve arrived, Howler. Just a few more minutes and we’ll land at Arnold’s.” Howler barked happily, hearing this news. As they went closer to Arnold’s house, missiles suddenly shot out of nowhere! “Huh?” thought Ted as he activated the emergency defense system on the H-C 3000. Howler did the same with his vest. But it was to no avail. The H-C 3000 was ammoracked so much it exploded and Ted had the common sense to jump down with Howler just before it exploded. The last thing Ted saw before falling unconscious was Howler pouncing on a hooded figure that looked like none other than Arnold.

Ted woke up in a damp, barren room. He was tied to a chair very tightly, and couldn’t move. He could hear Howler’s sorrowful whimpers on the other side of the wall. He was just deciding on a course of action when a snide voice rang out. “Well, well, well! Look what we have here! The first catch of the day!” Howler snarled with pure rage. “Arnold!” shouted Ted, “explain yourself! What are you DOING?!?!” Arnold took off his hood and smirked evilly. “Ted Hughes, the famous inventor, the one from whom all kids beg for autographs! Compared to you, what am I? Just a measly engineer whose hard work goes unnoticed! Well, not anymore! I will show that an engineer CAN also be a scientist AND a “famous inventor”! And I will also do this by DEFAMING you! HA, HAHA, HA, HA!” screamed Arnold at the top of his voice. “What has happened to you, Arnold? I thought you and I were friends? Didn’t we work together before? What has gotten into you, and why are you so……. mad?” asked Ted, surprised at this sudden rant. “ENOUGH sentiments! I will give you a choice: will you hand over your plans for future inventions, or will you and your dumb dog become martyrs? You have an hour.” replied Arnold, as he strode off into the darkness. Howler whimpered. “Don’t worry, Howler,” whispered Ted, “everything will be all right soon.” Ted decided to do what Arnold asked and give him the plans. He didn’t need them anyway. There was only one problem. The plans were back at his mansion! Nevertheless, he called Arnold. “Have you decided yet?” asked Arnold suspiciously. “I have,” replied Ted coldly, “decided to give you the plans, minus the one of the H-C 3000. But I will hand them over on three conditions.” “What are they? Remember who’s in charge here!” replied Arnold, narrowing his eyes. “One, you let go of my dog, two, you give back my stuff, and THREE, you help me repair the H-C 3000. Simple,” said Ted calmly. Arnold stared at him for a while, then did what was asked of him. Howler was more than delighted to be reunited with his beloved master, Ted got the loot back, and they all went to Ted’s luxurious mansion, where Ted and Arnold negotiated, while Howler kept close watch. The Hover-Cycle was rebuilt and upgraded, with all the future plans exchanged, but that was fine because Ted and Howler would have greater ideas in the near future.

Student | Keiraville Public School, Wollongong, NSW, Australia