Interpretive Essay 2013 Winner

Michael Voss
Grade 6
Salt Lake Elementary

Scene: When Scott steals the lemonade money

Chapter 13.5
Pocket

Pocket (ˈpä-ket) v. to appropriate to one’s own use, to steal.

"Hey, Scott!" Paul hollered from across the pool. “Pass the ball, will ya'?"

"OK, here you go!" l called back, shooting the pool basketball to him. “Hey, I’m going to use the bathroom, OK guys?"

“OK, but hurry up," Ryan said, treading in the deep area.

Paul had caught the ball and immediately shot it towards Evan, who was in a position to make the tying point.

l turned and had began to slosh toward the steps of the pool. As l passed Evan, I made sure to give him an elbow to the ribs as the ball approached, causing him to miss the catch and the scoring opportunity.

“Hey man, no fair" Evan complained.

“Heh heh, loser," I muttered with a smirk as I got out of the pool. l wrapped myself in a towel so I didn’t trail water on the floor as I walked through the house.

“Why, hello, Scott," said Mrs. Bagdasarian as I passed by the kitchen. “Are you looking for the bathroom?”

“Uh, yeah.” I answered.

“Well it's just left of the bed in Jack's room” she said, opening the refrigerator.

“"Kay thanks,” I said as I hurried to the bathroom in Jack's room.

As l washed my hands, l looked at my reflection in the mirror. ln the background, l saw Evan’s clothes lying on Jack’s bed. l had a flashback. When Evan was playing basketball on the courts, l saw something heavy in his pocket. l could tell because his pocket was sagging when he moved. Was it that iPod he was planning to get or something more valuable?

After I turned off the water and wiped my hands on the towel by the sink, l decided that a little peek into Evan's pocket wouldn't hurt. lt crossed my mind that that would be invading his privacy, so maybe l shouldn’t do it. Nah!

l just couldn't resist taking a look. Evan had been talking about saving his money for an iPod for months, and I wanted to see if he had gotten it or not. I dashed over to Evan’s clothes on Jack’s bed and threw off the shoes from the top of his pile of neatly folded clothes. My hand reached into Evan’s shorts pocket expecting to feel a cold and hard mass of an iPod, only to find. . . an envelope?

l opened the envelope and to my surprise found a handful of coins, dozens of 1 dollar bills, and even a few 5 dollar bills. I tried to count all of the money right there but couldn’t.

There must have been at least $100 worth of money in there, maybe even $200. “Wow!" I thought. How did Evan make this much money, and why was he hiding it? I didn’t know the answer to the first question, but I knew that the answer to the second question was that he didn’t want anyone to steal it.

“Like l could now,” | murmured to myself as l considered my options. l could just leave it and go back outside to the pool, or, I could just slip it into my pocket and walk away. It was like those TV game shows. l could take it, or l could leave it. My choice. Except there was no game show. No set. No cameras. No announcer. No audience. Only Scott, with nobody watching him.

“Stealing it would be bad and dishonest," I said to myself. “But I am not a bad boy. Sure, l might have broken into Alyssa’s locker and stolen her charm bracelet and taken that $5 bill from Evan’s lemonade stand, but hey, that bracelet didn't look good on Alyssa anyways, and Evan isn't going to miss that $5 bill, now that he has all this cash. However, he might miss it now, if I take this moneyl” I grinned wickedly at the envelope in my hands.

“l should get out of here before Evan comes back," l said to myself. l set down the envelope on the bed and grabbed my shirt and shorts, trying to not look at the cash. But it was calling to me.

Once I was in my regular clothes, I walked past the bed and slipped the envelope into my pocket as easily as I did with the candy bar at the Price Chopper. I then hustled out the bedroom door towards the pool door.

“Are you going home already, Scott?” asked Mrs. Bagdasarian, as I tried to walk calmly past her. She was slicing more watermelons for the group.

“Uh, yeah. My mom said to be home soon,” I said quickly, then rushed past her and out the door leading to the pool.

“l gotta go!" I called out to the other kids, as I crammed my foot into my sneaker.

"Did your mom call?" asked Ryan.

“Nope, l just gotta go. See ya!" l replied as l promptly ran out the gate and turned the corner.

My heart was practically thumping out of my chest. Eventually, my run slowed to a trot. l couldn't believe l had stolen $208 from Evan Treski! But some part of my body did, and it was ready to reap the rewards of this deed. A piece of me thought this was dishonest and that I should return the money to Evan and apologize. But a larger part of me wanted to spend it.

When l finally got home, I decided that returning it was not an option. But buying a new video game was. l couldn't wait to see how good those new Xbox 360 games would look on our new $5,000 plasma screen TV. Or better yet, games for a console that hadn’t come out yet, as I remembered Mom mentioning something about a new Xbox game.

“Hey Mom," I said, as l walked into her office. “Do you still know those manufacturers in Japan. . .?"

My process: This story is exactly 1,000 words, including the title. l was hoping to write the draft really long then cut it, but it actually worked out where my whole idea was 1,000 words. I wanted to tell the story from Scott's perspective because Lemonade War only has first-person accounts from Evan and Jesse Treski. l felt that even though this is a scene that most people would think of when adding a new scene, I felt that mine could stand out because it would show Scott not just plain out stealing the money but thinking if he should do it or not. This would allow the reader to understand him more than what they think just from his appearance in the book. His decision-making makes him seem more complicated a character. My mom helped by reminding me to keep my pronouns in the first person. She also reminded me about my verb tenses. She didn’t read the book, so she asked me questions about the chapter before and after this one so I could make sure the events were consistent.