Excerpt from
The Jensen Family

Probably he got caught in a steel trap like this one over here," their dad said, pointing to an exhibit in the next case.
"But how could he get free from that?" Julie asked.

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– posted 12.04.2009

Chapter eight: Jail Bird

A Character story about determination.

Transelthon slipped down the back alleys through town toward the police station. He wasn't worried about being seen since he was invisible, but he didn't want to bump into anyone either. His thoughts were consumed with plans to spring his dad from jail. He always wanted to do something daring like catching a criminal. Now that he had the chance to release one, he was scared to death!
Standing before the door, he waited impatiently for someone to open it and sent up a quick prayer that he could slip in unnoticed. After a few minutes, a disgruntled looking man flung open the two doors and marched over to the magistrate's desk. Trans weaseled past the closing doors, donning his gloves to avoid accidentally causing something to vanish. "I want you to know I don't think this is a bit fair," the man spouted, slamming a piece of paper onto the desk. "I shouldn't have to pay this ticket. How could anyone see the driveway entrance with snow piled in front of it?"
The officer smiled slightly and examined the ticket. "Surely Mr. uh... Riley, you saw the garage right in line with-"
"So what? It's probably the resident of some old coot that lives in Florida all winter and doesn't use the driveway anyway," he huffed.
As the conversation grew more heated, Trans felt a bit warm himself. How he wished he could take off his coat. While they argued, Trans examined the room, trying to figure out which door led to the cells. Just then the needed help came.
"Mr. Riley," the officer said, standing, "you picked the wrong person to argue with. This happens to be where my mother lives. I suggest you pay the ticket and leave before I lock you in there for defamation of character." As he said 'there', he pointed his thumb toward the door on his right. "Old coot, indeed."
As the man wrote out a check without another word, Trans inched his way toward that door, doing his best to withhold a snicker for he could see Mr. Riley's ears turning red.
Just then another policeman flung open the side door and Trans, moving quickly, now found himself in a hall. Office doors punctuated the walls and to his left was a winding metal staircase. Which way did they take Dad? he wondered, wiping sweat from his brow. A quick survey of the hall seemed to indicate that the cells were upstairs. Trans yanked off his boots and slipped them into a wastebasket in an empty office. Then, climbing quietly, he ascended to the second floor and was reaching for the door when it began to open. Oh, no. Someone's coming. Thinking quickly, he yanked off his right glove and grabbed the railing.
"What the-" The officer said, staring wide-eyed. "Hey, Charlie, who stole the hand railing on these stairs? Is this some kind of joke? Charlie. Charlie? Are you there?" The officer retraced his steps and Trans was close behind. The boy stepped out of the way as the officer returned with Charlie. Trans felt a giggle coming on again as the officer tried to explain what he saw, and Charlie laughed and told him he was "losing his marbles."
Using this opportunity, Trans slipped down the hall and stood in front of another door through which he could see the cells. I'm on the right track, he congratulated himself. Soon you'll be free, Dad, and we can run far away. But how was he going to get through that locked steel door? He got another idea. "Ouch! I cut my finger. I need help," he yelled in the lowest tone he could muster. The officers quickly returned.
"Who was that?" Charlie asked.
"I don't know. Can't be Merle in there. He's stone drunk and will sleep until morning."
"We better check anyway," Charlie answered. Taking the key ring from a desk near by, he unlocked and pushed open the door. Trans again slipped in behind him and waited until the officer left. Finally he was alone and safe. Trans quickly scanned each cell for his father, and then froze. He's not here, he gasped. Where could he be? They wouldn't have put him in solitary confinement, would they? A deep frustration began to steal over Trans and he felt very alone. What a mess I've made, and all because of that stupid old Chemistry set. I'll never ever EVER play with that thing again!
He had successfully broken into jail. Now the boy faced the harder task of breaking out of the jail. He started making groaning noises to get the officer to open the door again. When he heard the key in the lock, he ran over to slip through. The door suddenly flung open right into his face, knocking him back, and banging his head against the floor.
When Trans gained consciousness and opened his eyes, eight other pairs of eyes stared back at his. He started to jump up, but a strong arm pushed him back down.
"You just stay here, Son," the officer said seriously. "We want to know who you are and how you got in here. You've got a heap of explaining to do."