Becky and George
by Gordon Dioxide
Every Friday, Becky and her brother George would sit in the garden and have their evening meal.
And every Friday, Becky would eat all her meal up nicely while George would accidentally spill his all over the grass.
You see, George was a bit on the clumsy side. He was 6 years old and Becky was 9.
This particular Friday, Becky was carefully munching on her fish fingers, while George was spraying spaghetti all round the garden. It was all over his face, some was in his hair, the rose bushes were covered in it, and some had landed on the shed roof. He wasn't doing it on purpose; he just found it very difficult to move food from his plate and into his mouth without some great disaster happening on the way.
Then next door's cat appeared through a hole in the fence. He looked around the garden and couldn't believe how much mess there was. But luckily, spaghetti was his favourite food so he started eating it all up.
George was hungry. In fact, he was very hungry. All he'd eaten was half a lick of spaghetti juice. Monty (that was the cat's name) said he had some delicious food next door, and George could have some if he wanted.
"Great" said George "I'm so starving I could eat anything."
So Monty took George and Becky next door, where they found a bowl of food. It was salmon flavoured Whiskas Supermeat.
“Looks delicious" said George, and he bent down and took at bite.
"It is delicious" he said, as he tucked in. He was on his hands and knees, eating it straight from the bowl just like a cat.
Becky thought her brother was gross.
But, amazingly, he didn't spill any. All the cat food went directly from the bowl into his mouth. There were no silly knives and forks to get in the way, and so nothing got spilt.
The next morning Becky was in the dining room eating her breakfast, in her usual perfect fashion. Then George appeared, still half asleep. Mum put a bowl of Corn Flakes and a spoon onto the table.
George put the bowl on the floor, got down on his hands and knees and started lapping up all the Corn Flakes.
Mum was horrified!
"What are you doing?" she screamed.
Becky told Mum all about her gross brother's new technique for eating food without spilling a drop.
Mum just thought that George was a twit, and he would have to learn how to use a knife and fork sometime.
Then Dad came down, tripped over George, and landed with his head in the Corn Flakes bowl.
"I've just washed my hair!" shouted Dad. "What's that silly boy doing eating his breakfast on the floor?"
Mum and Becky laughed. George hid in the cupboard under the stairs, and refused to come out until Dad calmed down.
But Dad didn't calm down. He had steam coming out of his nostrils and his face went bright red. He banged on the cupboard door, but George was too scared to open it.
A few minutes passed and Dad was late for work. Then a few hours passed and Dad was very late for work.
George was crouched in a corner of the darkened cupboard, with his back to the door. Dad was on the other side and his knuckles were turning blue from all the banging. His whole body was shaking with anger. The steam from his nostrils had caused a great fog to fill the dining room.
Mum went off to work and Becky went to school. When they got home, the whole house was full of steam. Dad and George were still in the same positions.
Mum told them to stop being so silly, but George still refused to come out because Dad was still in a rage.
The next morning the situation was unchanged. Mum fed George by sliding small scraps of food under the door. He was able to drink through a long straw that Becky pushed through the keyhole.
Life went on like this for quite a while. Dad lost his job because he never turned up for work. George got very lonely in his little cupboard world. The only thing he had to play with was an ironing board, so he made up a game in which he pretended to iron everybody in the world's clothes. He'd already done everybody in India and was just starting on Germany. Becky learnt to play games by herself because there was no brother to play with. Mum just got on with life as best she could.
Twenty three years later George was still hiding in the cupboard, and Dad was still raging at the door. George was now 29 years old and Dad was now a Grandad because Becky had got married and had four kids.
George had finished doing everybody's pretend ironing a couple of years ago and now he was beginning to get a bit bored. So he decided to start the ironing game all over again, beginning with all the shirts in Australia.
The dining room was filled with a terrible smell, caused by the fact that Dad hadn't changed his socks for 23 years.
Twenty years after that, Becky's kids had grown up and had kids of their own. So Dad was a Great Grandad and George was a Great Uncle. Becky's grandchildren were frightened of their Great Uncle George - the strange man they had never seen that lived in a dark cupboard.
Two thousand years later the dinosaurs returned to take over the Earth. The only humans left alive were Dad and George. Dad was still in so much of a rage that he didn't even notice that there were no other people about.
George was now 2,049 years old. He had a long white beard that kept getting in the way when he was ironing.
Dad was even older than that, and his feet were so stinky that he had to clip a peg onto his nose.
The dinosaurs ruled the Earth for about a million years until they eventually died out and became extinct, just like Dad's socks.
So Dad and George were the only two living creatures left on Earth.
Now Dad had been banging on the door for so long that the door was starting to break up. Although his hands were very sore and bruised, he managed to punch a hole right through the door.
Some light shone into the cupboard for the first time in millions of years. It dazzled George at first but he soon got used to it. Dad kept banging until, eventually, he completely knocked the door down.
George was shocked to see Dad, who looked very old indeed. Dad barged into the cupboard and pulled George out.
"You made me trip up!" shouted Dad, "And now I'm late for work!"
"But Dad, where is everybody? Where's Mum and Becky?" asked George.
Dad looked around and was amazed to find that the house was empty. He switched on the television but there was no sound or picture. He tried the radio - nothing. He went into the kitchen to get something to eat, but there was just one bit of mouldy cheese in the fridge. In fact, the fridge wasn't even working properly because there was no electricity.
The two of them went out into the street. No cars, no people, no cats, no dogs, no noise, no trees, no plants of any sort, and nothing moved at all. It seemed that the world was completely dead.
"How long have I been in that cupboard?" asked George.
"About twenty minutes I think" said Dad. Dad had been in such a rage that he hadn't noticed that a few million years had passed.
"No Dad. I think its been a lot longer than that! Look at this old newspaper" said George.
George picked up a crumpled newspaper off the ground. The headline was "Dinosaurs Take Over the Earth!" The newspaper was dated July 15th in the year 4037.
But there were no dinosaurs about.
"They must have all died out after this newspaper was printed. I've probably been shut in that cupboard for millions of years!" said George.
"Let's get something to eat" said Dad.
They found some old badger legs and dipped them in a jar of mustard. Dad had a good feast, but George made a mess and got badger blood all over his beard. He still didn't know how to eat properly.
Suddenly they realised that they were not alone. Monty, the cat from next door, appeared through a hole in a fence.
"Hi!" he said in a catty sort of way.
Monty told Dad and George all about what had been happening, and how the dinosaurs had taken over the Earth and then become extinct again.
Dad and George said they were sad because they would never see Mum and Becky again.
"Yes you can" said Monty "I've invented a Time Machine. It can take us back in time to when Mum and Becky were still alive."
"Great!" said Dad and George.
Monty told them about how he had got bored being the only cat alive. So he had spent his time reading books about how to build time machines.
He took them to an old rubbish tip, and there right at the top of a pile of junk was a big black box.
They climbed inside, and Monty sat at the controls. He set the system date to March 5th 1997 - the day that George first hid in the cupboard.
The box started to shake and make strange noises. It went dark and then light and then dark and then light again. Now it was flashing and the noises were getting louder.
Suddenly it stopped. Monty opened the door. When they climbed out they found themselves in Monty's garden.
George looked over the fence.
"Mum!" he shouted. There was Mum hanging out the washing.
"What are you doing next door?" asked Mum "I thought you were having your breakfast."
Dad laughed because Mum clearly didn't know that they had been away for millions of years.
George went inside and gave Becky a big hug. Becky thought her brother had gone bonkers.
Dad told George that he would never lose his temper again. But George decided to sit up at the table to have his breakfast, just in case ...
Here are a few questions to see if you've been listening ...
What food did George spray all round the garden?
Why did the house fill with steam?
What happened when George tried eating badger legs dipped in mustard?
What game did George play when he was in the cupboard?
What game would you play if you were locked in a cupboard for a million years?