The Tweenage Rugrats In:
"Back-To-School Nightmare"

By Dwayne Anderson

It was Monday. Today, our favorite Rugrats were going back to school.

Everyone attending school was now gathered in the auditorium. It was time for the traditional "Welcome Back To School" meeting.

Principal Jim Skinner walked to the podium and spoke into the microphone.

"Hello kids and welcome back to school" he said. "Wasn't this a great summer? Did you all have fun? Now that summer is over, I would like to welcome you all to your first day back in school. Welcome back everybody!"

After introducing the staff memebers, Skinner dismissed everyone.

Our favorite Rugrats went to their classrooms. Susie and Angelica were now in grade 8. Tommy, Chuckie, Phil, Lil, and Kimi were starting grade 7. Dil was now in grade 5.

As the Rugrats sat down in grade 7, a young man came in. He appeared to be in his early thirties, with brown hair, brown eyes, and wearing a black suit with a pink men's shirt underneath and a red tie.

"Good morning class" he said. "Your new English teacher isn't feeling well this week. So until he returns, I will be your substitute teacher. You can all call me Junior."

The kids laughed.

"Junior? What a ridiculous name for a teacher!" said Phil.

"I will now call the roll" said Junior.

After doing so, he said, "alright, I want you all to put your stuff away in your lockers. I will assign each of you a locker number and the combination. Are we clear?"

"Yes Junior" said the kids.

Junior gave each of them a piece of paper. Written on them were their locker numbers and combinations. The kids went out into the hall, found their lockers, and put their stuff away.

The kids spent their first day in school getting ready for classes, being assigned textbooks, and meeting the other members of the staff.

When the kids boarded the bus that afternoon to go home, each of them couldn't wait for school to begin.

When they sat down, Tommy said to his friends, "I love school."

"Why don't you live in it?" asked Phil.

"I would if I could" said Tommy.

"I especially like that new teacher of ours" said Lil. "Even if he does have a strange name."

"What kind of teacher would be called Junior?" asked Chuckie.

A little later, as the kids got off the bus, they saw a black car driving slowly down the street.

Kimi was the last one off the bus.

Suddenly, the car increased in speed, driving right at her!

"Look out!" said Tommy.

Kimi turned to see the car driving right at her. Quickly she ran off the road.

The car drove off and disappeared in the distance.

"Did you guys see that?!" said Kimi. "That maniac almost hit me! I could have been seriously hurt!"

"We'd better tell mom and dad" said Chuckie.

A little later, Kimi told her parents what happened. They called the police.

Later that afternoon, a young man from the police came into the living room.

"So tell me" he said, "what's the story?"

"Someone almost ran hit me with their car on purpose!" said Kimi.

"Looks like we got a case of hit and run" said the officer. "You could have been seriously injured, or knocked into a permanent coma."

"What are we going to do officer?" asked Chazz.

"We've come up with a solution" said the officer. "It's really quite simple. To solve this mystery, we need someone with the mind of a would-be killer. Someone to think like one to catch one."

"Who?" asked Kira.

"Come in" said the officer, calling into the next room.

In came a man in a black suit with a purple shirt underneath and brown leather shoes. He had brown hair and a brown goatee around his chin.

It was Kimi's new friend Julius Benedict.

"Julius! Good to see you again!" said Kimi.

"You too" said Julius. "The police have temporarily released me to solve this mystery and catch this would-be killer who almost hit you with their car. They made me an offer I couldn't refuse. If I help put this man behind bars, I'll get a reduced sentence."

"I'll leave you here Julius" said the officer. "No funny business or else!"

He left.

A little later, Julius sat at the Finster table with the family having dinner.

"So tell me Kimi, do you have any enemies?" he asked.

"Well, there's Julia Preston" said Kimi.

"Coco Labouche" said Kira.

"William Walker" said Chuckie.

"The late Robert Benedict" said Chazz.

"Robin Bank's former partners in crime" said Kimi.

Julius was quite surprised. "How can a twelve year old girl have so many enemies?"

"Who knows?" said Kimi.

The next day, Kimi and her friends returned to school. Today they would be starting their classes.

"We'll start with our literature" said Junior. "Open your English textbooks to page twelve."

The kids did as they were told.

"Today, we shall read about the great poet and play-writer, William Shakesphere" said Junior. "I want you all to read silently and wait for everyone to finish before you begin your assignment."

"Yes Junior" said the class. They began to read silently.

When they finished, Junior assigned them to write a paper on the works of William Shakesphere.

At lunchtime at noon, the kids dished up on their spaghetti and meatballs and sat down at the table.

"So Kimi" said Tommy, "I hear that Julius is investigating the mystery of who tried to hit you with their car."

"That's true" said Kimi. "He gets a reduced sentence if he cracks the case."

"But why would the police need his help?" asked Tommy.

"To catch a would-be killer, they need someone who used to think like one" said Kimi. "Remember Julius' trial? One of the charges was attempted murder."

"I heard this morning that Julius is meeting with Tommy's dad. He's already got a plan of his own to catch the suspect."

"What kind of plan?" asked Kimi.

"Wait and see when you get home" said Chuckie.

Later that day, when the kids arrived home, they saw a surprising sight.

"What the heck is that?" asked Kimi.

Hanging on the clothesline on the front lawn, was a dummy that looked like Kimi.

"We came up with this brilliant plan" said Julius. "All we do is wait until someone attacks it. Then, case solved!"

A little later, Julius and Kimi were in the living room, waiting for someone to appear.

Suddenly, a car drove up to the house.

"Wait a second!" said Kimi. "That's the car that almost hit me yesterday!"

Julius put a pair of binoculars to his eyes. He began to write down the license plate.

The window rolled down in the front of the car. A gloved hand appeared from the dark, brandishing a gun.

The figure fired at the dummy several times until it dropped to the ground. Then it drove off.

"There goes our suspect!" said Julius. "I have the license plate written down."

Written on a piece of paper was "J7N4R5"

He put the paper into his suit pocket.

"All we have to do now is find out who owns the car, and then, case solved!"

Later after dinner, the kids went down to the shopping mall to meet up with friends from class. They were going to see a movie.

Julius had driven them there. "I'll pick you up at 8:30 p.m" he said.

"We'll remember" said Kimi.

The kids met their friends inside the theatre and bought their tickets for the movie. They bought some popcorn and soda and went to see the movie.

Later, at 8:30, the movie ended and the kids went out to the parking lot to meet Julius.

Waiting for them, was Julius. He opened his door and let them in.

"Could you kids wait in here?" he told them. "I need to go pick up some glue for Mr. Pickles."

"Sure thing Julius" said Kimi.

Julius left the car and went into the mall.

A few minutes later, he came out with a small bottle of glue.

Just then, something caught his eye.

He noticed a young man climbing into a black car. The license plate read: "J7N4R5".

He watched as the car began to drive away.

He quickly ran to his car and opened it.

"Kimi, I just saw the car! We have our suspect!"

"What are we waiting for?" asked Kimi. "Let's go!"

Julius began to drive. He followed the car.

"Keep your lights off" said Tommy. "We don't want him to know he's being followed."

"Keep a distance away from it too" said Kimi.

Julius followed the car downtown, until it stopped by a large red brick house.

Julius parked on the opposite side of the street and watched as a man climbed out of the car and locked it.

Julius took his cellphone and dialed the police.

"Hello, this is Julius Benedict. I have found a possible suspect. The car is black with the license plate `J7N4R5'. It's parked by a large red brick house. Come quickly."

He turned off his cellphone.

"The police are on their way" he said. "Now let's go confront our suspect!"

He climbed out of the car. The kids followed him.

They snuck to the back of the house. After making sure the coast was clear, Julius carefully and quietly opened the window. He and the Rugrats stepped in.

Upstairs, they heard noises. Someone was upstairs.

They began to walk through the hall they stood in. Just then, something caught Kimi's eye.

"What's this?" she said quietly. "I've seen these portraits at Juvenile Hall!"

The portraits were of a man she knew too well.

Robert Benedict!

"What are they doing here?" asked Kimi.

"Well let's go find out!" said Julius.

They carefully climbed upstairs to the next floor.

Behind the door before them, they heard sounds.

"Ready?" asked Julius.

"Ready!", said the Rugrats.

"Good!" said Julius. "One, two, three!"

They burst open the door and ran in.

The room they were in was large and had a red carpet. Curtains covered the windows. A fireplace was burning here. This appeared to be some kind of study.

They approached the desk near the windows and stood before it.

The chair spun around, revealing a familiar man.

The kids gasped.

"Junior?!" they cried.

"You're the guy who almost hit Kimi with the car yesterday!" said Julius. "You also shot down the dummy this afternoon!"

"You're the last person we ever would have suspected Junior!" said Kimi.

Junior frowned. "That's Robert Benedict Junior!" he said.

The kids gasped.

"Say what?!" asked Kimi.

"Did you forget?" asked Junior. "Remember that incident in Canada? A kick to my father's shins sent him falling to his death!"

Kimi was shocked. "Robert Benedict was your father?!"

"I can't believe it!" said Chuckie.

"I never had a chance to know my father or even meet him!" said Junior as he stood. "And now he's dead! Like you should be!"

He pulled out a gun and aimed it at Kimi. It was the same gun used to shoot the dummy.

"Wait just a darn minute!" said Kimi. "Robert Benedict wasn't married! How could he have had a son?!"

"He happened to have had an affair with one of his fellow classmates in law school! Being the child hater he was, he abandonded her when her pregnancy was confirmed!"

"Sounds typical of him" said Kimi.

Junior pulled the safety latch. "Now I avenge my father and do what my uncle couldn't!"

Suddenly the doors burst open. In came several police officers.

"Police! Sir, put the gun down! Put it down now!"

Knowing that he was outnumbered, Junior lowered the gun.

As the police handcuffed him, one officer said to Julius, "nice job Julius! You've cracked the case and exposed our suspect. I'm sure a reduced sentence is in order."

"Thanks" said Julius.

Suddenly, Jim Skinner came into the room.

"Hey!" he said. "What's going on? What are you kids doing in here?"

"Junior here almost hit me with his car" said Kimi.

"Junior?! How could you?! You're fired!"

"What are you doing here anyway?" asked Tommy.

"I had important business with Junior" said Jim.

As the police hauled Junior away, Julius said to the kids, "well, my work here is done. I'll take you kids home now."

He drove the kids home. Then, he drove to the police station. Now that he had done his job, he could go back to prison and serve the rest of his sentence.

The next day, the kids climbed onto the school bus to go to school.

"Did you guys read the paper?" asked Chuckie. "Robert Benedict Junior is facing a sentence of five years in prison. Julius has been returned to prison to serve a sentence of fifteen years instead of twenty five."

"That's great" said Kimi. "I can rest easier now."

"I guess we'll be getting a new substitute teacher now" said Tommy.

"Who could it be?" asked Phil.

"I hope it's a woman" said Lil.

"Who knows guys?" said Kimi with a smile. "Who knows?"

The bus drove off towards the school.

The End

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