The Spacebook S.K.R.E.A.M Team - Chapter 5
Mum barged into Ali’s room. “Come on Al, we’re going to be late. Why aren't you wearing your costume?”
“I’m not going!”
“Don’t be silly love.” Mum wrapped him in his alien cloak. “This is your chance to make friends.”
“No buts.” She clutched Ali’s hand and rushed downstairs. She checked her lipstick in the mirror and opened the front door. “This is going to be fun.”
They hurried into town. A storm was brewing. One of Ali’s eyeballs tore from his costume and flew into the air. As he jumped to catch it, he saw something in the sky – a golden smudge of star flakes, speeding between the dark clouds. “Look Mum!”
“Just leave it Al – there’s plenty more eyeballs on your costume. We’ll be late.” Mum clip-clopped ahead.
“I meant that.” He pointed to the sky.
Mum sighed and looked up. “Yes I can see it – a big fat storm cloud that’ll transform you into a very soggy alien, if you don’t hurry up!”
“But there was a... ” Ali sighed. He plucked his eyeball from a hedge and caught up with his mum.
Turning the corner, Ali saw the town hall in the distance. The steps were crammed with children and parents. He stopped dead. They were the kids from his class, but he was the only one in fancy dress. One of the shivering Mums waved to him, “Thanks for inviting us to your party. We got your wonderful email this morning. I’ve never heard of Spacebook – I must join.”
“My party?” Ali looked up at his mum, but she was already gossiping with the other mums about hairstyles and dresses. He stood by himself.
Frankie Lime pushed his way through the clutter of classmates. “Nice costume!” The children sniggered. “Are you going to let us in or what? The door’s locked.” Ali looked up at the huge sandstone building. Velvet curtains were drawn tight across the windows.
“I don’t have the key,” Ali said. He pushed through the gang of mums and climbed the steps. He saw his hand's reflection in the fat, brass door knob. Just as his fingertips landed on the cold metal, the door swung open. The children barged past and ran into the hall, whooping and screaming.
Ali hesitated. “Go on,” his mum said, “you’ll make new friends. Me and the other Mums are popping upstairs. Ribena's mum said there's a tea room up there. Any problems – you know where I am.”
Ali was left alone in a cloud of perfume. He watched the kids through the doorway. Boys slid up and down on their knees. Girls chased each other and squealed.
Frankie spotted him. “This party’s rubbish! Where’s the music?”
“And the food?” somebody else shouted. “And why’s it so dark in here?”
Ali ran his hand along the wall. He felt a switch and flicked it on. Flashing lights ignited the hall and music shook the floor. Ali glared at his fingers. The kids started dancing and strutting. Frankie pointed. “Alien-boy can’t dance.”
Someone noticed the incredible feast at the far end of the room. "Foooooooood!" There were pyramids of cakes, mountains of sweets and a bath-sized tub full of a bubbling chocolate. They raced to the table like banana-starved chimps. Except Ali. He turned his back on the party and headed for the door.
All of a sudden, a crazy screech drowned out the music. The burgundy curtains flapped and billowed like ghosts. A blaze of golden star flakes sped through an open window and squealed past Ali’s head. The blur landed in front of the food and came to a sudden halt.
The children skidded to a stop and shoved their fingers in their ears. The object spun by their feet and star-sparks singed their socks. “Look, it’s a tiny golden cube,” said Frankie. Ali stayed back and stretched onto his tiptoes. A single letter was branded onto each face.
The kids fell to their knees. They pushed their noses right up to the box and squinted. “S... K... R... E... A...”
“M!” said Ali.