Chapter Four

In Which War has been Declared

As Rich Uncle Pennybags continued to laugh, my fear faded into a sort of anger. I could feel it bubbling up inside me, ready to burst. Or was that my oil tank?

"So this is war, you say? Too bad we won't be here to see what happens after we win." I said this very quietly, more of a courage booster to myself, but somehow my youngest cousin, Matt (the horse) heard me through the laughter. He looked up at me, his big brown eyes pooling with tears.

"Will we? Are you sure?" At that moment, hearing his voice crack on the word "sure", I vowed that - well - I really didn't vow anything officially, but I sure wasn't going to let Mean Uncle Pennybags get away with terrorizing my cousins. So I honked my horn as loudly as I could, summoning the rest of us over to where I idled.

"What?" Aaron (the shoe) looked slightly ticked off.

"He declared war," was all I said. It was all I had to.

"Oh yeah?" said Brian (the dog) sarcastically. "And he thinks he can win against this?" He gestured with his muzzle to himself, sounding pretty cocky for a guy whose legs were shorter than my steering wheel.

"He must be pretty deluded," Maggie (the wheelbarrow) spoke up, abandoning her inspection of her flawless red paint to offer her two cents. "So let's get him. I mean, heck! We used to beat each other up with fake plastic light-sabers! We're practically invincible!" From the way she said it, I was unable to sense whether or not my sister was joking or seriously thought we could oust Mr. Monopoly with light-sabers when the majority of us didn't even have limbs. She was just that sort of person.

"Anyway," I continued, "We need to come up with some unorthodox ways to play this game that are perfectly legal. We don't play by the rules, but we don't play against them either. It's the only way."

Aaron flicked a shoelace at Brian, who was licking himself furiously. "I think we should break some stuff."

"We could, like, attack him? With light-sabers, you know?" Sometimes I think that that girl should just not talk.

"I'd rather not resort to violence," I said nervously. "I'm sure that a big guy with a boomy voice is much more able to hurt us than us him."

Brian tore himself away from his left paw long enough to add yet another sarcastic comment. "But if you WANTED to attack him with a light-saber, I'm sure we could tape one onto one of your handles for you."

And then Matt spoke up. "We could rob the bank?"

Yet again, everyone fell silent at his comment. The moment was oddly reminiscent of his initial suggestion to play the game, and yet we all knew it was the best idea.

"Out of the mouths of babes." I murmured, in awe that yet again Matt had provided the perfect solution. And that should have set off some alarm bells in my mind, but I was too busy thinking of the various strategic problems we'd have trying to get a car, a horse, a shoe, a dog and a wheelbarrow INSIDE a bank, much less rob it. None of us could have anticipated just how hard it would be, or the rather - shall we say - interesting consequences of that action. What WAS it with this kid and coming up with life changing solutions?

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A/N: Sorry it was so short, but hey, the life of a writer is never easy, as I'm sure all y'all know. Keep reading - this is one of my favorite stories!