A New Dimension: Chapter Thirty One

        When the singing had risen to it’s loudest pitch, the crew started down the cargo ship’s gangplank, two abreast. Among them, hidden to the eyes of the soldiers, were the two small crewmen disguised as a young man and a young woman. Each and every crewman carried a black, bowling ball bag.
        A whistle blew. “Over there! One of the soldiers shouted as Moze and Jonas slipped out of the crowd and made their way hastily down the side of the docking slip. A whole group of soldiers broke away and gave chase, but the two little crewmen were quick, and knew the layout of the dockside. They quickly disappeared into the tangle of cargo and equipment that lay around everywhere.
        Another whistle blew. The remaining crew, laughing and slapping each other’s backs, completely ignored the presence of the soldiers. They ignored calls to halt. They ignored calls to put their hands up. The soldiers were completely dumbfounded. Their guns at the ready, they couldn’t seem to bring themselves to shoot happy, laughing sailors as they departed the ship. Finally, a soldier stood directly in front of one of the crewmen, and seized his bowling ball bag. Without a word, he dumped it over. Plop! Out dropped a heavy bowling ball, right on to his foot.
        He dropped his gun, howling in pain. The seaman clapped the soldier on the back with a hearty slap! which knocked him over. The sailor calmly picked up his bowling ball and kept on walking.
        Other sailors began to be stopped by the soldiers. One by one their bowling ball bags were dumped over, only to reveal simple bowling balls. As the soldiers were looking at each other with confusion and dismay a cry went up. “Over here. I’ve got them over here!” There was a rush as soldiers ran over to where the voice was calling out. A circle of guns pointed at Moze and Jonas as they were corralled, back to back.
        “Wait!” came a shout. It was the Colonel. “I want to be the one to capture the chicken!”
        There was a snort from one of the sailors, followed by a chorus of guffaws, then loud raucous laughter. The soldiers looked uncomfortably from one to another, but each held their ground. The Colonel, followed closely by Private Chuck-Bob walked through the soldiers and into the circle where Moze and Jonas were standing back-to-back. Triumphantly, the Colonel walked up to Moze and ripped the bowling ball bag out of his hand, opened it, then tipped the contents out.
        A bowling ball was the Colonel’s reward. Shaking with fury, the Colonel grabbed the bowling ball bag out of Jonas’ hands, which, when dumped out, produced nothing but a regular bowling ball. Jonas gave an exaggerated smile and shrug of the shoulder.
        “What is this!!” cried the Colonel. “WHERE’S THAT CHICKEN!!??”
        The sound of laughter from the sailors was all that could be heard. Then one, then another of the soldiers put their weapons down and backed away from the circle.
        “Wait!” cried the Colonel, “you haven’t even searched the ship!” But it was too late, the soldiers were packing their gear and preparing to leave. The Colonel ran up to the Captain and demanded an explanation.
        “I’m sorry we didn’t find your, um, chicken, Colonel. A favor is a favor, but this is one favor that is tapped out. Sorry.” Then he too began to pack his gear. Soon the dockside was empty except for the Colonel and Private Chuck-Bob. They sat on an empty crate looking stunned.
        On board the cargo ship, Crimson Hen poked her chicken head around a corner to see what was happening.

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