There and Back Again
A Rebellious Teen’s Tale

My journey began on a Monday morning in December, on the 16th of the month, in the year of twenty and three. I awoke at precisely 6 o’clock and went about my morning routine in the way in which I was accustomed It would appear that it was to be another melancholy day of toile in the realm of Dubuque Hempstead. However, while conversing with the regular denizens of the Commons area, I was informed that the premier of Lord of the Rings: Return of the King was going to be playing the next eve. How could I have forgotten! It was even scribed in my ‘planner’ but I hadn’t read it all weekend (A lot of good that did)! I told my informant, Nathan Ehlers, that there was no way I was going to miss the midnight showing.

Last year when The Two Towers came out, it seemed that I was the only kid in Commons who hadn’t seen the premier. Throughout that day, juicy tidbits of the movie were leaked into my unwilling ears, thus casting a dark shadow on my viewing of the movie the next night. Though The Two Towers nearly made me soil myself with sheer glee, there was still that little voice in the back of my head telling me, “Okay, now is the part were they…” It’s enough to drive a hobbit, er, man, insane! But this year it would be different. Yes, my precious, I will see the midnight showing!

So I continued on with my day, unable to think of anything besides my beautiful, wonderful, precious midnight showing. I vowed that nothing was to stop me this year, not hell or high water or the mighty gates of Mordor. That night, I asked my parents if I could go to the premier of Lord of the Rings the next night. Their response cut straight to the heart like the poisoned blade of a Ring Wraith. “No,” they told us. Uhh.. me… Clinging on to some desperate hope, I asked them to sleep on it and to hopefully change their minds the next day.

The next morning, I awoke and carried on as usual. Before heading out the door to school, I asked my mom once again.

“Your father says no and so do I,” was her response.

“If dad says yes, then can I go?”

“Sure, but I know that he wont change his mind.”

“Give me a reason I can’t go.”

“It’s a school night and you also will be tired from working tonight as well.”

“Whatever,” I said and walked out the door. It was apparent at this point that I would need to have a backup plan to get to the precious… The day dragged on and on and on and on and then I finally got home from school. I still didn’t have much of a plan besides going to the movie no matter what. I did homework until about four o’clock and then at dinner and changed into my work uniform.

That night at ShopKo, I began to formulate a plan. However, my mind was a raging maelstrom being that I was literally right next door to the movie theater. Thankfully we had a truck to unload, which always makes the time fly. Near the end of my shift, I was summoned to the manager’s office. Finally I was getting my ninety-day overview. I had been looking forward to this, because with the review comes a twenty-five cent raise. That night however, I could care less about my review. They could have fired me and I still wouldn’t have cared. All I could think about was the movie.

When I got home, I immediately asked my dad if I could go, but his answer remained the same. And it stayed the same every time I asked. After asking thousands of times, he said, “You’re dirty and you stink. Go take a shower and go to bed.” I complied with his request, lulling my parents into a naïve sense that we could be trusted. But by now we had more than enough time to create a plan. As I got into bed, I set my alarm for eleven thirty-five p.m.

As I lay in bed, delighted with my foolproof scheme, a critical error came to mind. My shoes and coat were upstairs. For a minute or two I pondered how bad running though the snow barefoot would be. After all, Frodo did it. Finally I decided that my shoes and a coat would be necessary to complete the mission. However, if I were discovered while obtaining them, all would be for naught. At ten fifty-eight, I went for it. I climbed nearly to the top of the stairs when a loud creak screeched up from the floor. Voices! My parents weren’t asleep yet. I was so close, but if they were awake then another creak would certainly give me away. I decided to abort and try again later.

At eleven thirty-three, I went again. This time I reached my objective. When I got back to my room I was tempted to smile, but then reminded myself that this was only one small step towards reaching the ultimate goal. I then snuck out the basement door and was tempted to smile again. I was finally out of the house! Looking at my watch brought me quickly back to reality though, as it was already eleven forty-three! I sprinted up to my van and got in, making sure not to slam the door shut. I started it as quickly as possible and turned on the parking lights. It struck me that these lights only function was to aid in the escape of teenagers from their homes. In fear that the normal lights would shine in the windows and agitate the solemn sleepers, I had to make due with the ‘infiltration lights’ until I got out of the driveway.

When I hit the main road, my heart soared. This was it. There was no turning back now. As long as it wasn’t sold out, I was guaranteed to see the movie. I turned on the radio listened to Paradise City by Guns n’ Roses as I cruised the lonely night streets, thinking to myself, “This is THE life!”

The movie parking lot was totally full so I raced down to ShopKo and parked in the same spot I had only hours before. In a dead sprint, I ran through the parking lot. I got to the register, threw out a ten, and gasped, “One ticket to LordoftheRings!” And that was it. I made it. The movie hadn’t even begun yet and it was already the best movie I had ever seen. As I walked through the doors, I saw Jonni Slaght waving at me and pointing to an empty seat. Damn I have good luck! I sat down and took note of someone in a Gandalf hat that was sitting in front of me. I thought that I would have to choke him to death if it didn’t come off before the movie started, but being the polite nerd that he was the hat soon came off. I then realized that the nerd was our former president, Jake Freiburger!!! Indeed, I knew nearly everyone in the row in front of me. C-Mac, Stemper, Weinhold, and Ogre just to name a few Damn I have good luck!

Needless to say it was totally worth it. The movie kicked so much ass that if it was to be the last movie ever made, I could perfectly accept that. No film will ever top Return of the King and no trilogy will ever to Lord of the Rings! After the movie, I gave Becker a ride home and then uneventfully snuck back into my house, reset my alarm for 6 o’clock and fell asleep a very, very, happy hobbit. When I woke up today, I wondered if it had all been a dream. It seemed impossible that this account could be true. But there are witnesses. Ask anyone. I was there. My, my beautiful, PRECIOUS!!!!