By Lexi Anders           

“This is your daily meteorologist forecast. We have a high chance of a giant meteorite hitting tonight around the Boston area. If you have any activities planned make sure to bring your hard-hats and bullet-proof vests-“

            “We interrupt this scheduled program to bring you breaking news:

            “WE’RE ALL GOING TO DIE!!!!!! AAAAAAaaaaaaaahhhh!!!!!!” A man runs in circles frantically.

            “Get a hold of yourself, Mr. President- ” another man shakes him by the shoulders and then, noticing the camera, clears his throat. “Citizens of the United States, we have the burden of delivering you very grave news indeed. There is another meteorite incoming for the earth, larger than any other before, and this time we have little hope that any of our neutralization weapons can destroy it. Rest assured that we will do our very best to protect you fine people, but for now please get to safety in the nearest apocalyptic shelter.”

            Stewie and his sister Emrick sat, staring at the television screen and slowly put their toy blocks down.

            Emrick looked at her brother, eyes wide. 

            Stewie returned the look. 

            “Again???! Seriously, why does this always happen!?”

            “Well, look on the bright side, the fact that we get to worry about it again means that we survived the previous ones . . .” Stewie replied.

            “No, I meant literally, why is this happening? What causes the meteorites to veer towards us? The last update I heard was that they implemented a system to turn the major meteorites off the path before they even came within the warning range. This is rather peculiar.”

            “I wouldn’t worry about it too much, there’s sure to be a meteorite from time to time that slips through. And with the lasers and the earth’s atmosphere, we should avoid the worst of it- the president tends to freak out a bit too much about these things. I mean, it’s a stressful job.”

            “That’s true.” she agreed, but continued to ponder on it.

            Their parents ran in. “Stewie, Emrick get to the shelter.”

            “But mom . . . they always do this, can’t we just stay here this time?” Stewie asked hopefully.

            “This is nothing to joke about, we could all die!” their father scolded them, stepping closer and slipping on the blocks that were left lying around.

            Stewie hastily scooped them up and put them in his pocket sheepishly.

“Okay, we’ll go pack up.” Emrick forcefully pulled her brother to the other room nearly tripping him.

“Stewie, what if it’s actually bad this time? Normally they don’t sound so hopeless on the news-“

“Like I said, overreactions are bound to happen. I’m sure if we take the necessary precautions even the big stuff can’t hit us too bad.”

“But mom and dad don’t always make us go to the shelter . . . they don’t even come home right away most of the time.”

“Then . . . if it’s that bad, then someone has to try to stop the meteorite.”

“Who? It’s obvious that the Space Force has already attempted to since it’s their job, and the only other people I can think of who would be qualified are in other countries that would celebrate our demise!”

“Well . . .” he looked at her head.

“Ah . . . maybe it’s time that we put these superpowers to work.”

The children left a note not to worry about them and then snuck out.

            “Now what are we supposed to do? How do we stop a meteorite?” Emrick wondered, tying a bandana around her head.

            “Don’t ask me! You were the one who pushed us into this.”

            She rolled her eyes.

            “Hey, watch yourself missy, be respectful to your elders!” She ignored him, so he started walking, “Fine . . . let’s go to the experts. Surely the Space Force knows what’s going on.”

            “And how are you going to sneak into their headquarters? There’s no way they would let us in, we’re just kids. The only times they allow visitors is for the special school tour, which is definitely not happening in this time of crisis.”

            A mob of looters ran by and started throwing stuff at a store, grabbing anything they could hold in their hands.

            “I have a plan.” Stewie replied.

            A few minutes later he had directed the mob towards the Space Force base and they were battering the door down.

            “I don’t know how you managed this, Stewie, but I hope you have an idea for getting rid of them too.”

            “Oh, it was easy, they all blame the Space Force already.” he shrugged. “As for getting rid of them . . . I didn’t think that far ahead.”

            They managed to break it down, only to find that the base was already deserted . . .

“Okay, now quickly tell them their targets aren’t here.” Emrick urged quietly.

“Good people of the . . . uh, looting crowd, those no good officers aren’t even here- maybe they’ve gone to hide in one of the bunks, we must hurry and find them!”

“What if we want to loot here?” someone asked.

“Well . . . okay, one thing real quick, then you should go catch them! And then probably stay in safety, because if they’re hidden too it must be pretty serious.”

The crowd tore through the building and grabbed random souvenirs and left.

            “Okay, now what?” Stewie muttered to himself.

            “Easy, now we hack into the database and figure out what we can about this meteorite.”

            “Easy, she says! Easy. I believe you, Emrick.”

            “Just leave it to me.”

            “Does the ability to grow bananas out of your head also give you the ability to crack high-security encryption?”

            “No, but how hard can it be?”

            He shook his head, but didn’t protest further.

            They found a very official room that had a bunch of computers lined up and facing a screen stretching across one wall.

            Emrick took one of her bananas and peeled it to use the peel as a “glove” without leaving any fingerprints to boot up a computer. She handed the fruit part to Stewie who stood, still unconvinced of her faith.

            “Now, what kind of password would some techy-nerd who works at a government job have?” Emrick pondered as a blank screen flashed in front of her. 

            She started typing in random possible combinations and managed to get through a couple layers of passwords, but found one that simply wouldn’t work with a warning that another mess up would lock them out.

            “Maybe if I throw this banana down,” he took a bite from it, “their firewall will ‘slip up’ and let us through.” he laughed, spitting disgusting banana bits at the screen. The bits fell onto the keyboard.

            Almost instantaneously the screen glitched and a tab popped up warning about a virus- then a couple more and the computer seemed to crash. Emrick glared at him.

            “Sorry! It was an accident! It’s not like I thought it would actually do anything!”

            She stood up and they were about to try another computer when the screen flashed on and showed the Space Force symbol with the words “Ad astra, per aspera”.

            Stewie stared in shock- who would have thought his power could really do something like that!? He could become a millionaire or something! Well . . . as long as he kept the source of his new-found talent hidden. 

            Emrick clicked around and pulled up the stored information and found a file with lists of incidents, she scrolled through to the most recent date- three days ago.

            Inside this file was a video. She opened it.

            It started off with the picture of a large chair turned away from the camera. “Greetings, humans! MOooost of you have probably noticed the increase in meteorites lately. Well, look no further. I am the culprit.”

            The figure awkwardly pushed the chair around with its legs to reveal- a large spotted cow.

            “Yes, it is I- the “Mooolicious Conqueror”. For too long your people have oppressed  mine- keeping us in pens, eating us- and destroying the beautiful fields we love. Now I have come to repay you and save my fellow brethren! This meteorite,” the camera switches to another video showing a large and apparently very slowly moving object. “Is moving at light speed, and made of a material I specially designed to withstand any blasts. Do your worst, but perhaps it would be better to simply mooooove to another planet.”

            Stewie started laughing. Emrick stared.

            “The cow was making puns!” he explained, still giggling and she broke into a smile too.

            “They were terrible, but . . . the cow is trying to destroy everything!”

            “So we just need to convince the cow not to.” Stewie shrugged, “That has to be much simpler than trying to hack into this database!”

            Emrick pulled open the rest of the files in the folder and did a keyword search for “cow”. A communication channel appeared with a frequency. Then they were lost wondering how they were supposed to call- or whatever you do with frequencies . . .

            When the door burst open!

            “Put your hands in the air and stay where you are!”

            The children obeyed quickly, Stewie still holding his half a banana.

            “Ch-children!” The voice sputtered.

            The two kids turned to look at a tall officer in a slightly-too-big uniform, holding a gun.

            “What on earth are you doing here??”

            “Umm, saving the world?” Stewie replied. 

            The officer put his gun in a holster and walked towards them. “You two should not be in here, you should be seeking shelter.”

            “We know- and we know about the cow too.”

            “Th-the cow!” he looked past them at the screen. “How on earth did you get in there???” he leapt forward to hide the screen. “This is confidential information!”

            “Well . . .”

            The officer read the looks on their faces and jumped to a rather bizarre conclusion.

            “Wait- you don’t mean to tell me- you’re spies working with the cow!!!?”

            “N-no! We’re trying to stop the cow.” Emrick protested.

            “You? No, that’s preposterous, two children- one of whom is wearing bananas on her head-” he reached to take one and found it left a jagged tear-

            “Ouch!” she clutched her head.

            “You jerk!” Stewie kicked his shin and then grabbed Emrick’s hand to drag her away, banana still in the other hand.

            Before long the young man was on their trail racing- and gaining on them as they went down the hallway.

            “What are we going to do, Stewie?” Emrick panted.

            “Split up on three, you go right, I go left. 3-” 

            She ran to the right.

            Stewie slowed down and glanced back to see whether the man was following him and almost immediately got bowled over.

            “You have the right to remain silent, anything you say can and will be used against you in the court of law.” the man growled in his ear.

            “Wait- you don’t understand-” Stewie struggled as his arms were pinned behind him.

            “Oh, I understand plenty well, you treasonous fiend.” The man hauled him to his feet.

            Stewie saw his banana on the ground, he meant to throw it and make the man slip but the man’s interference must have negated the powers. He lunged for it anyway, and the man pulled him back.

            “Nice try, but you aren’t going anywhere. Oh, trying to get this banana, huh? Does it have a secret chip in it or something?” He pushed Stewie into the wall and pulled out his weapon again. “Stay where you are.” he stepped back to pick it up.

            “Listen, uh, what’s your name?” Stewie asked.

            “Tad.” he replied, squishing the banana in one hand to see whether anything was inside.

            “Okay, Tad, my name is Stewie. I have a secret to tell you, but you have to promise not to say anything.”

            “I’m an officer, I can’t promise any such thing if it endangers my country.”

            “I never said it would endanger anyone- but the truth is my sister and I have superpowers.”

            There was a silence. Stewie slowly turned around to see his face, staring ridiculously. “You saw her hair, it’s made of bananas. And I can show you mine, all I have to do is throw that banana on the ground-“

            Tad yanked it away from him, “You think I’ll let you take back your weapon!?”

            “You don’t even believe it will really do anything, do you?” Stewie looked up at him.

            “No . . .” Tad replied slowly and handed over the banana. 

            Stewie graciously accepted the mush and nodded before throwing the banana down.

            Tad looked at it. “That did nothing-“

            Stewie darted away, and Tad tried to catch him, but slipped on the ground right away.

            He turned a corner and found a trail of bananas on the ground. Emrick.

            She was providing ammunition. Stewie grabbed them up and threw them as he ran.

A series of hilarious thumps followed him. 

            “Okay, okay!” the voice called. “I believe you!”

            Stewie turned another corner and ran into Emrick.

            “Run,” she said urgently. He didn’t hesitate, but turned back toward Tad as he heard the echoes of dogs behind them.     

            “Any more bananas?” Stewie reached out. 

            “No,” she puffed. 

            They came back in sight of Tad, and Emrick began slipping on the bananas left on the ground, so Stewie dragged her along. Tad looked up at them in confusion as they came to hide behind him. He struggled to his feet, then, hearing the dogs, grimaced.

            “Alto, Tenor, cease and desist.” the dogs ground to a halt, but continued to growl.

            “Thank you, sir. Now if you’ll excuse us-“

            “Not so fast,” Tad grabbed the two of them. “So you have powers . . . are you serious that you can save the world?”

            “Umm, maybe?”

            Tad nodded thoughtfully and led them back to the computer room.

            “What do you need?” he sat down at the unlocked computer.

            Emrick gestured for Stewie to speak for them.

“Well, how do we talk to the cow?”

            “There’s this frequency you plug into this program,” he explained pulling it up. “We also have to translate the mooing through this other program. And here’s the third program that protects from any virtual attacks. Oh, and while you’re at it, try to keep him talking and we can run this other program to try and hack into his system.”

            The children watched as he pulled together the odd assortment of stuff, some on another computer too. Then he adjusted a camera and everything. “Perfect, it’s ready. Now listen, I’m trusting you on this, you better not make me regret it.”

            “Do you copy, Tadpole, do you copy?” a staticky voice came in.

            Tad pulled out a walkie-talkie. “Uh, I have to take this. I copy, go ahead.”

            “Tadpole, we need you to hurry up and bring the cleaning supplies down here, someone already made quite the mess you need to clean up . . .”

            “I’m a little busy, boss, there were some intruders.”

            “We’re aware of that, Tadpole. There’s no point bothering with them now. More importantly- this floor is really sticky and gross!”

            “Okay, thanks for understanding. Ad astra, per aspera.” he quickly muted the channel, “Anyway, ahem.” Tad blushed as the children studied him. “So, I’m not a proper officer yet, but I’m practically one. I know everything you need for this.” 

            “Okay,” Stewie shrugged. “Let’s start it up.”

            So they started the program and connected:

            “Mooowahahahaha. Moooowahahahahahaha. So, you earthlings have come to beg for your miserable lives, again?”

            “We humans beg for nothing!” Tad replied.

            “Ahem, excuse my, uh attendant.” Stewie pulled his chair forward and pushed Tad away.

            “Ask him why he wants to destroy us-” Emrick hissed from beside him.

            “But I already know-“

            “Just ask him.”

            “So, Mister Mooolicious Conqueror, why do you want to destroy us so badly?”

            “Wasn’t my previous presentation clear enough?” but the cow went ahead and re-explained everything and Stewie nodded politely.

            “So it sounds to me like the most serious problem you have to address is our littering that hurts the vegetation.”

            “Yes, exactly!”

            “If we could somehow clean that up, would you change your mind?”

            “Well, maybe, perhaps, but nooooo! Humans lie, I cannot trust you, I can assure you, your planet will be destroyed by moooooorning, good day.” The cow disappeared.

            “Was that long enough to do anything?” Emrick quickly asked Tad.

            “Hmm, not to figure out his system. But I have tracked down the landing point of his meteorite from these calculations of the changing connection points.” 

            “Perfect!” Emrick said, then softened her voice, “Stewie, I have an idea.”

            “Are we going there?” Tad asked. “Because there’s a helicopter on the roof we could use.”

            “Yes!” Stewie shouted, then looked for confirmation from his sister who agreed.

            “Awesome, follow me.” Tad led them up some stairs and they came out on a landing pad. Tad helped them in and climbed in himself. “So as a fair warning, I’ve never actually driven one of these before, only read books and watched people . . .”

            The children hesitated, but he was already starting the engines. It was frighteningly rough, lifting up, and some blocks spilled out onto the street from Stewie’s pocket as he clutched a handle. Down below some people walked over the blocks and began slipping and sliding around.

            Stewie laughed a little guiltily.

            Tad turned them toward the setting sun and gracefully- well more accurately it dipped and wavered enough that they held on for good reason.

Tad seemed to notice their apprehension and tried to distract them from his frantic button pushing.

“So, Stewie, and uh-?”

“This is my sister Emrick.” Stewie introduced her.

“Do you like having superpowers?”

“Phh,” Stewie held back a laugh.

“Well, I for one would like to know where they came from, it’s rather a mysterious business.” Emrick replied.

“No, the real problem is that we can’t have normal lives.” Stewie replied. “I mean, it’s fun sometimes, I can make anyone slip- but the problem is: I can make anyone slip. Just by setting or dropping something down. It’s really annoying, and my parents hardly let me touch anything unless it’s just staying in my room.”

“Weirdly enough, his slipping power doesn’t really affect him, but I learned how to catch stuff mid-air a lot thanks to all the practice he gives me. As for me, I’m not even a big fan of bananas . . . but it’s not quite as annoying, as long as I wear something to cover my head out in public.”

“Oh, I’m sorry.” Tad frowned in disappointment.

As they passed a large television board they saw another breaking news broadcast. 

“We have discovered the origins of the meteorites, and the answer will shock you-!”

Suddenly the screen became fuzzy and another video pulled up with a picture of the cow from earlier. 

“Now, humans, the truth comes out. ‘Tis I, the Mooolicious Conqueror who has come to destroy civilization. Yes, us cows have despised you for a long time now. And now it is time for all my comrades to take action. Rise above, fight them now, my friends!”  Within seconds cows began to stampede in the streets. The looters- who clearly did not seek shelter, came out to meet them with weapons made of pool sticks and satellite-dish shields.

“That’s worrisome.” Emrick whispered.

“Looks like fun.” Stewie watched, then caught her disapproving glare. “Sorry, it’s just rather comical.”

Tad snorted. “You may be right. Until the cows start throwing hooves. We ought to speed along. Hold tight.”

            Before long they found the place the meteorite was to land was-

            “The presidential face monument???” Emrick exclaimed incredulously, looking up at the cliffs.

            “Mount Rushmore, and actually just next to it, right about on this road” Tad replied and pulled out his phone as they landed, which made the children very nervous. “I would mark out the area if I had some spray paint or something.”

            Emrick began picking new bananas and handing them to her brother, “Don’t worry he can make a ring for it.”

            “Wait- are you going to waste all those bananas to make the meteorite slip?” Tad asked horrified. “You should at least save the fruit part- you can make smoothies or something! Waste not, want not.”

            Stewie, who had already started throwing them randomly, froze.

            “You see my point, right?” Tad walked over to pick them up and slipped.

            “Stop criminals!” a voice called.

            They turned to see a dark-skinned police officer pointing a gun at them, half-behind his car door.

            “The city may be in a rampage, but that is no reason to litter- you’ll only anger the cows more. If kids like you showed more respect we wouldn’t be in this mess! Now come with me.”

            The officer gestured for them to come towards him. The children looked at Tad. He patted his pockets and found he had dropped the gun in the helicopter.

            “Keep your hands where I can see them.” the officer barked and walked closer.

            They frowned, but complied as the police officer walked forward to cuff Tad. Stewie tried to communicate with Emrick with his eyes to see what she was thinking, but she was looking at Tad.

            As the officer was about to cuff the next “hoodlum”, a cow peeked over a bush and caught sight of them with a vicious mooooo. It began to charge, and a crowd of other cows joined, when a bunch of looters jumped out with wild cries and ambushed them from the other side.

            “Loot the cows! They have meat!” cried the looters.

            The dumbfounded police officer forgot his agenda and began to try to break up the fight. So the group of heroes slowly backed away and ran back to their bananas.

On Tad’s complaints they seperated the fruit from the banana peel circle and let Stewie throw it. As they ran out of bananas they grabbed some other random rubbish and he threw that too. Tad, unfortunately was not much help with the cuffs confining his arms.

A deep grumbling reached their ears and they looked up to see a ball of fire rapidly descending towards them. On top they made out the outline of the cow on top pointing down at them. They hurried to finish the last few items and were going to run for cover when the policeman from earlier arrived and stood in shock at the horrible mess they made.

            The children smiled and pushed him away from the landing zone. As they dove behind a large rock, they could make out the cow laughing.

            “Moooowahahahahah, moooooowahahaha. Your demise is now!”

Then the meteorite made impact- on only half of the banana peels, instead landing partially on their smoothie hoard, but apparently bananas happened to be the strange material’s “cryptonite” so as it slipped away it began to melt.

It flew off with the cow crying “Moooooooo” and hit the presidential face monument. Then the tiny rock that was left of the dissolved meteorite fell to the ground and next to George Washington was the perfect imprint of a banana peel.

The cow cried out for its ruined plot, and the police, seeing the true perpetrator, took the cow to prison.

Then they all high-fived and called it a day, letting other people take care of the stampedes. The end.

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