Breakfast Serial .02: Second Best

Twice the length! Twice the bang! For the same low, low price!

I’m such a giver.


“Curse these ponderous appendages,” the five hundred pound brain in a translucent, semi-permeable, semi-human casing bemoaned, as he began waddling up the bleachers. The LCD screen stretched across his “chest” read: “>_<".

The tentative hand of a diminutive girl with welding goggles spiking up her bangs reached toward the teeter-tottering encephalon. "Maybe I could--"

The brain brushed passed her, lost in loathing.

"--take a look." She dropped her hand and her head. Bodies shoved into her, a domino effect making room for the enormous intellect who decided to occupy the sliver of space at Mr. Popular's feet.

The hoodied teen retracted his legs before they could get pinned and, sitting in the fetal position, rocked his head back and shook it against the wall. "Fucking hell," he mumbled.

"What?" DoubleVision, pressed so close to Mr. Popular that she was virtually sitting on his lap, inquired, trying to decipher what the boy uttered.

"Nothing." Mr. Popular stood up straight, placed his hands where a head should be on the big brain's body, and leapfrogged over the absent-minded mind. He landed three planks down and shuffled through the seated students. When his feet touched the floor, he took off in a sprint, clipping Wavelength's shoulder with his own.

The muscular, goggled teen spun his head to watch Mr. Popular bolt across the gymnasium. "Jesus! Where's the fire?"

"The bathroom, it would appear," the brain observed, his LCD now reading: "o_o". "Perhaps he needs to defecate."

"Or shoot up," LiveFeed chimed in.

"Meh," Spatter scoffed. "He's probably a secret eater."

Mr. Popular shoved the restroom door open and rushed inside. Relief washed over him. A single toilet. A single sink. No urinal. No gathering area. “Thank God.”

He slammed the door shut and latched it behind him. Pushing his back against it, he moved a foot out toward the toilet, rested it against the lip, brought his other foot up to meet the first, and used the toilet as leverage to keep the door shut.

The artificially enhanced quartet pushed a cartful of painting equipment down a sterile-white corridor. A uniformed figure crossed the hall ahead of them.

“Roll out,” Kickstand commanded, and the foursome rushed after the man in the uniform.

“Sir! Sir!” Claptrap shouted.

The portly guard halted and turned to investigate the commotion. “Are you all right?”

“I…yeah…” Claptrap bent over to catch his breath and grabbed the guard’s arm for support. “I…we…” He took a deep breath, as his associates surrounded the man in uniform. “Whew. We…”

“We’re supposed to be painting some offices, but we’re a little lost.” Kickstand tried his best to feign innocence. His best was passable.

“Probably part of the ongoing renovation,” the guard surmised, wiping his receding hairline. “There’s an elevator at the end of the hall.” He pointed a sausage finger. “Take that to the third floor. Then, take your second left. And, you’ll be at the offices.”

“Thank you so much, sir.” Kickstand liked to lay it on thick.

“Any time.” The guard smiled a toothless smile and headed down the hall.

The leader of the pack turned to address the thinest member. “Monkeybrain?”

The thin man pulled his right hand out of his jumpsuit’s side pocket and the guard’s access card with it. “These fingers are honey, bitches.”

With Mr. Popular out of sight, the seated students were free to follow the bouncing ball that was the new kid, the only male left standing. He leapt, a sphere narrowly missing his feet and exploding on impact with the ground where he stood a second before. He slid, avoiding a volley. He twisted his torso, catching a sphere and launching it back across the room. It hit its target, sending her to the sidelines.

“New kid’s got some moves.” Spatter’s eyes darted back and forth, following both sides of the action. “He’s giving DeathGrip a run for her money.”

“Without even breaking a sweat.” DoubleVision’s attention was rapt by the stout student alone.

The whistle blew. Another girl found her way to the stands. “Two players!” the instructor announced.

DeathGrip held a sphere in each hand. The new kid, empty handed, faked left, then darted right. DeathGrip chucked the left ball. He skidded across the floor on his side to catch it, then threw it back. She deflected it with her remaining sphere. He looked left, looked right, and backed away slowly. She nailed him in the knees.

“Which way do we go, George? Which way do we go?” Claptrap, in his best mentally addled voice (which, to be frank, wasn’t very far from his normal voice), wondered, as the hallway came to a “T”.

Kickstand flicked through blueprints on his iPhone. “Left.”

“Thank god for disgruntled sisters working for City Hall, huh?” Monkeybrain swirled a paint-roller in his right hand, while he walked.

“She’ll get her cut.” The ringleader counted off the numbers on the doorways and stopped abruptly. “Here we are.”

Monkeybrain passed Kickstand the access card, and it was promptly swiped across the digital reader. The lock on the door popped, and the handle came loose.

“Bo Peep, you’re with me,” the leader told the man with the hood over his horns. “You two, keep watch. Anything goes pear-shaped, we’re in earshot.”

“Aye, aye, cap’n.” Claptrap saluted.

Kickstand took the thermos out of the cart and headed inside, with Bo Peep in tow.

As soon as the door shut, Monkeybrain slapped Claptrap upside the head. “Dork.”

“Fuckin’ frigid in here.” Bo Peep tensed up, goosebumps dotting his flesh, even under two layers.

“It’s a glorified refrigerator.” Kickstand scanned the vials, kept in racks in stacked cooling units. He glanced at an open document on his phone and then back up at the rows of tubes. “You see a ‘2-5-7-7-C-F-G’?”

“B…C…D…E…F…,” the linebacker lookalike mouthed, dragging a finger across the glass. “G. Got it.” He pulled on the handle of the glass door. “Little help?”

The boss passed him the access card. Bo Peep swiped it across the reader and pulled again. “No dice.”

“Guess it’s a smash and grab.” Kickstand took the card back and stepped out of the way.

“My specialty.” Bo Peep dropped his hood, revealing his ram-like horns, took a step back, and head-butted the glass. It shattered like an old woman’s bones. Flashing lights turned the room cherry red. A shrill alarm assaulted eardrums.

“We need to egress, on the double.” The leader of the outfit unscrewed the lid of the thermos, releasing cold smoke. The man with the ram’s horns swiped the vial marked “2577CFG” from the rack and dropped it into the container. Kickstand screwed the lid shut, and they dashed out the door.

The locker room was flooded with teenaged bodies, half of them already half-naked.

“Shit.” LiveFeed winced as he massaged and rotated his left shoulder. “I think I pulled something.”

“I thought you were about to.” Wavelength tossed his goggles into his locker and replaced them with a pair of square-rimmed specs.

“Say what?” LiveFeed bent his left arm and stretched it behind his head, holding it at the elbow with his right hand.

“C’mon, man.” Wavelength dipped the tips of his fore- and middle fingers into a container of hair gel. “Every time you see Deadlift, you start pitching a tent like you’re trying to earn a merit badge.”

“Dunno what you’re talking about.” LiveFeed straightened his left arm and held it across his chest.

“Wait, which one’s Deadlift?” The new kid applied deodorant he didn’t need.

“The gym teacher.” Wavelength meticulously steepled his hair into a faux-hawk. “Mr. Big here wants to tap that.”

The new kid cocked an eyebrow. “Seriously?”

LiveFeed shrugged. “She’s got a great ass.”

Wavelength wiped his hands on a towel hanging in his locker. “And a dick.”

“You’re high, man.” LiveFeed popped a couple Advil tablets. “You are a fucking kite.”

“Cortex,” Wavelength called the big brain two lockers down. “Your analysis?”

The enlarged mind took a moment to process the data, the LCD blanking to “-_-”. Then: “Her features are typically masculine, her jawline in particular. Her physique, too, would indicate an elevated level of testosterone. Although it is quite possible that she is on a steroid regimen, significant gender dysphoria, in conjunction with chest construction, is not out of the realm of believability.”

Wavelength gave a satisfied nod of agreement before continuing. “New kid, your unbiased opinion?”

The pudgy student addressed LiveFeed directly. “She’s got a serious case of dude-face.”

Wavelength beamed. “It is unanimous.”

LiveFeed flared his nostrils. “You suck.”

“Yes, but I’ve never had any complaints.” Wavelength gave his hair a last look in the mirror affixed to the inside of his locker door.

The new kid furrowed his brow. “Then, you’re…?”

“And, you’re quick.” Wavelength closed his locker. “Got a name, new kid?”

“Tantric,” the stout student acknowledged, with a dash of pride.

“Like the band?” LiveFeed slipped on a fresh shirt.

“Like the sex.” Tantric’s voice was steeped in pride now. “I’m all stamina, man. I can go all night.”

“That must be murder on your palms.” Mr. Popular passed behind the new kid, en route to his locker.

“Nice!” LiveFeed managed to spit out before cracking up.

“Seriously.” Wavelength choked back a laugh. “It’s the timing I appreciate most.”

“Tag him,” Mr. Popular told Cortex, who pulled a small screen and keyboard from his locker.

“Process initiated.” The enormous brain typed in three lines of data, removed the keyboard, and smoothed the screen across the back of the new kid’s shirt. “Process complete.”

“‘Tag’?” Tantric pulled at the back of his shirt, trying to get a look at what the screen said. “I’m it?”

“Identification tag.” Cortex removed the screen and handed it to the new kid. “Listing your nom de guerre, abilities, and class level. It also functions as a vocabulary lesson.”

Tantric scrutinized the information. He recognized his name and his grade level (”senior”), but the middle term he couldn’t place. “‘Indie..fatty…gabble’?”

“‘Indefatigable’,” Cortex corrected. “Adjective. ‘Persisting tirelessly’. ‘Incapable of being tired out’. ‘Not yielding to fatigue’. ‘Untiring’.”

“Huh. Fits.” Tantric rotated the tag in his hands. “Why am I the one getting tagged, though? I’ve got more names to learn than any of you do.”

“You don’t want to be called ‘new kid’ forever, do you?” Wavelength plucked the screen out of the student’s fat fingers and slapped it on his broad back.

Tantric peered over his shoulder, catching a glimpse of the screen in the corner of his eye. “Guess not…”

“Move! Move! Move!” was Kickstand’s mantra. His men obliged, barreling down the hall. At full speed. At full tilt. Each smearing a wide, white streak across the nearest wall with a paint-roller.

“Six minutes from contact to ignition! Move!” The leader lifted the paint bucket out of the cart and splashed its contents over his head and behind him.

“Stop!” The portly guard, sans access card, charged into the corridor. “Stop, or I will shoot!”

Bo Peep dropped his head and charged forward. Bullets ricocheted off his reinforced cranium. He bucked, slamming into the guard’s chest. Ribs snapped. Air escaped lungs. Life escaped body. With a flick of his neck, Bo Peep sent the limp form flying out of the way.

The group took a sharp right turn, nearly flipping the cart. Kickstand stuffed the thermos into the duffle, slung the bag across his chest, and kicked the cart into a wall. The cart fractured on impact, sending excess paint flying.

The exit was in sight. Claptrap grabbed the keys to the van from his pocket. Bo Peep’s bent torso ran parallel to the ground, his eyes fixed on the door. Monkeybrain galloped forward on all fours.

Bo Peep pushed ahead and smashed, head-first, through the door. A dozen security guards, taking partial cover behind company cars, immediately had him in their crosshairs.

“Halt!” an officer with a megaphone ordered.

The man with the ram horns didn’t even slow down. He tore straight into a sedan and flipped it onto the security officers behind it. Guns fired randomly. Blood flowed freely.

“Halt!” the guard with the megaphone repeated, this time at Monkeybrain.

The thinnest of the foursome obliged, standing still, hands coming to rest in his pockets.

“Hands where I can see them!” the guard shouted, audible even without the megaphone.

Monkeybrain did as told, putting his hands up. Of course, a grenade did dangle from each finger.

“Lower your arms! Slowly! Lower your arms!” The guard’s commands fell on deaf ears. The thin man tossed the grenades into the air and started juggling. All eyes — and all weapons — were trained on him, allowing Claptrap and Kickstand to slink out of the building, to the van.

“Stop! Stop right now!” The guard was trying not to panic, but his eyes were wide with fear. With good reason.

Monkeybrain pulled the first pin and launched the grenade right at the officer. It lodged in his megaphone. The other guards didn’t have time to react, as they, too, were bombarded. A chaotic game of hot potato ensued. For all of five seconds.

The van pulled around, skidding as it slowed. Kickstand swung open the back doors. Bo Peep rushed in. Monkeybrain leapt in behind him. A confetti of flesh, metal, and fabric rained down. A macabre parade. A gothic celebration.

Claptrap flicked on the windshield wipers and floored the gas. As the blood-smeared van busted through the lowered barrier at the security checkpoint, the Werner-Roth Fertility Clinic — the tallest structure in Gavin Industrial Park — exploded.

Category: Breakfast Serial

10 Responses to “Breakfast Serial .02: Second Best”

  1. Tom Moses

    Some awesome dialogue in there man, I laughed, and I laughed some more!

  2. Maria

    Hi, I was referred to this story by my friend Moe. I liked your story, except for not really being able to follow the action due to the overwhelming number of characters. I almost did up a flowchart to try and keep track of everyone.

  3. kink


    The cast is huge, for sure. There are nine main students (five boys, four girls; all of whom have been introduced, one of whom has yet to be properly named), nine adversaries (four of whom you’ve met), a handful of faculty members (only one of whom has been introduced), and a couple other incidental characters (none of whom have appeared yet). At the end of the day, we’re probably looking at a cast of 25, easy.

    But, don’t fret. Differentiating the cast is one of my top priorities going forward. A supplemental visual guide is also in the works.

    Thanks for reading!

  4. Serial Prizes » Blog Archive » Breakfast Serial x.02

    [...] x-posted “Curse these ponderous appendages,” the five hundred pound brain in a translucent, semi-permeable, semi-human casing bemoaned, as he began waddling up the bleachers. The LCD screen stretched across his “chest” read: “>_<”. [...]

  5. Derrick

    Okay…I have to ask…why in the world do you think somebody in their right mind wouldn’t want to read this?

  6. kink

    Heh. It’s a goofy book about teenage superheroes. It kinda caters to a niche crowd.

    And, I’m still trying to find my writing feet again after being away from the game for a while, so the “Enjoy?” is a little of my uncertainty and unease bleeding through.


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