PART four: obr
Chapter 27: The Parade
OBR and his friends were early enough to the parade to get a spot on the float they wanted. They grabbed something to eat, and mingled around as they wandered through the various other floats that had shown up so far. More OSZA arrived as they explored the numerous colorful shapes that made up the rest of the procession, each seemingly more elaborate and intensely colorful when compared to the last. Their numbers swelled beyond all expectations as the final floats arrived. OBR and friends had been attending the parades yearly for a while now. None of them had seen so many OSZA attend a parade before. None of them had seen so many floats at a march before. It seemed like all kinds of records were about to be broken. They ran back to their spots, and got into position once the organizers sounded the final call. The parade began soon after.
OBR gave the procession everything he had. He danced with every ounce of energy he could muster, tossing the SKIMMA all around him gracefully as he did. He slowed down and watched his friends whenever he got tired, admiring their varying dance forms. ZUR was doing a belly dance of some kind. PINKIE, almost floating on the edge of the moving structure she stood on, was doing a robotic dance. TINFOIL, surprisingly, was mesmerizing. She was doing a classical dance of some sort. Her arm and leg movements perfectly matched the emotions she conveyed on her face. Her dance moves seemed to be as steeped in the basics of different dance forms as they were in a variety of traditional martial arts. OBR had seen a similar dance at a show before, but he’d never seen something that incorporated various fighting forms into it so flawlessly.
The procession carried on blissfully for over two hours, until it came to a sudden halt. The chaos began before OBR could even get off his spot. First there were screams that sounded angry and confrontational. Then there were chants. Then came the projectiles, which consisted of as many vegetables and eggs as they did of rocks and other heavy objects. PINKIE grabbed OBR and the others and guided them off the float. They held hands and moved in a single file, managing to dodge all the heavier objects hurled in their direction. The vegetables and eggs they were unable to avoid.
PINKIE had almost guided them to safety, when a large female OSZA hit OBR on the head with an egg from a few feet away. OBR glared at her, but continued to move, ignoring the insults and profanities she sent his way. He stopped when he heard her direct a particular slur at him.
“OBR! Forget it! Let’s go,” ZUR pleaded, as OBR let go of his hand.
“Come on. The cops are here. They are in riot gear. You know how crazy they are, don’t you? You’ve felt the back of their sticks before,” PINKIE screamed.
“It’s not worth it, OBR. Take the higher ground. She will feel guilty for what she’s done and said at some point in her life. Besides, it’s just a word. Take away its power by not letting it affect you. Ignore the slur. Don’t be hurt by it. It will lose its potency, become another bad word,” TINFOIL said.
OBR pushed them aside and ran at the large female. He had heard what they had said, but his anger had ensured that none of it registered. He jumped at her when he was close enough, and they rolled on the ground together until he managed to get on top of her. He began punching her as hard as he could until he felt strong arms grab him. He tried to push them aside, get free of their firm grip, but a large stick collided with the back of his head, and caused him to pass out.
OBR realized three things in quick succession as everything faded to black. The first was that he was no longer in possession of BUNS’ SKIMMA. The second was that he had no idea if he had been separated from it while getting off the float, or if it had happened while fighting with that hateful OSZA. The third was that his friends had been right. It hadn’t been worth it.