By Tilak B.
Bang! My dream was smashed into smithereens just after I had received a thought. My eyelids rapidly opened allowing my eyes to see my surrounding environment. The first thing that I spotted was the light coming from the digital clock. Its bright luster enabled me to read the time represented on the clock. It read 3:46. My eyes opened even wider as my jaw dropped almost to touch my slim neck. “What the…holy cow.” Just as I was going to run into my hall to acquire my Christmas present just beneath my well-decorated and surprisingly well illuminated Christmas tree, my sister announced, “It is underneath your pillow,” in a soft drone, barely audible. I violently grabbed my plush pillow and pelted it toward the door leading out to the hallway. My heart alighted with happiness. My whole body was immobilized due to overwhelming joy for a few seconds, but broke free because of how agog I was in opening and playing the amazing RATCHET: DEADLOCKED. “Deepa, wake up” I called.
“No, let me sleep” she called back with a slight lisp.
“Oh well,” I told myself and started to unwrap my present in a brutish manner.
Once I had confirmed the present was RATCHET: DEADLOCKED, an envelope came into sight. I slowly opened the parcel. It had 30 dollars and some strip of paper. I was curious to find out what the strip of paper was, so I exited my room, put on the hallway light, and in the end I realized it was useless. It was something written by my mom; something written in my language, which is Tamil. I, especially, am not quite fond of reading and writing Tamil. My body was yearning to go to sleep. I tried to fight it but I lost by a long shot. I quickly went back into my “deep-sleep mode.”
“Wake up.” Now it was my sister’s turn to wake someone up. Unlike my sister I woke up immediately. We both exchanged looks and knew what to do. We both grabbed our presents, mine unwrapped and my sisters wrapped, and rushed to the hall. We were accosted by our parents with a gentle, “Merry Christmas.” We replied the same thing back. I, a very impatient boy, did not wait for my sister to unwrap her present and started to play RATCHET: DEADLOCKED.
“Wow,” I shouted with excitement, “this game rocks.” No one seemed to care. I played for about 1.5 hours, which exceeded my time limit, before I handed the PS2 controller to my sister. My sister got HARRY POTTER and the GOBLET OF FIRE as her Christmas present. While she played her game I asked my dad what was written on the strip of paper I had received, even though I didn’t really care. He started to read and I already dozed off. All I had heard was this:
Get good grades, BLAH BLAH BLAH, be a good boy BLAH BLAH BLAH. After my dad finished reading I turned my attention to what my sister was playing. The game was good but not as good as my game, RATCHET: DEADLOCKED. My sister called me to play. But NOOOOO. My dad rejected saying that he and my mom need to watch TV. That was followed with murmurs of swearing. My dad then added, “I will let you play at 1:00.” In frustration, I wrote in my PDA that I need to play at 1:00. The time seemed to be going twice as slow as it regularly did. After I had suffered for roughly 2 hours, the time had finally come for me to play PS2. Boy, was I happy when I could play. This time I played for 2 hours. In total I had played 3.5 hours when my dad only allowed me to play 2 hours every weekend. I felt lucky because my dad was sleeping and could not find out that I had played for a long time. “Aha!” I thought to myself, “What is a Christmas without a fun game of CRANIUM?!” I said this even though I knew the fact that CRANIUM was a 4-16 player game and both of my parents were snoozing which makes only my sister and I who could play. It was 3:15 and it was customary for my parents to wake up at 4:00. Now it was time for plan “C”; my last resort. Just like I always said to myself, “Drastic times call for drastic measures.” I was panting just as I was going to commence plan “C”. I walked as sweat dripped from my temples, down to the end of my chin and landed in front of me many times creating a mini-flash flood within my house. My sweaty palms reached menacingly toward the door knob. The door knob creaked as I twisted it, as if it was telling me to stop in its own unique language. The door opened almost seeming like it was reluctant. I entered the room, now with sweat spurting out of my body just like a water fountain. “Mu-Mom,” I said hesitantly, “dad, cu-can you wake up to play CRANIUM?” The style of my words changed from hesitant to rapid toward the end of my speech. There was an unpleasant silence. Then something was muttered in a very quite voice; something that I could not hear. It was clear that my dad knew I had not known what he said so he repeated his words except this time his voice was magnified significantly. “I’ll come,” my dad said and I heard a quick agreement from my mom which followed. My plan had become a success. My parents got out of bed and immediately sat down to play the game with my sister and me. “There’s bound to be a catch,” my sister whispered. Not even 5 minutes had passed after we had started the game before my mom said that she’s only doing this because we are expected to clean the house. We got up with livid looks and threw everything under our beds (even though we are not supposed to) and lied that we had finished cleaning. We continued play and had a blast. In fact my parents got so carried away that we played 3 games. It was now 10:00 and my parents went to bed. That was not a good thing. A few picoseconds later my mom came yelling. “DID YOU STUFF THE BED WITH EVERY THING YOU ‘CLEANED’ UP!?!?”
“E=MC SQUARED?” I REPLIED.