An Army of Robots

by Alexander Hartley, age 8
An Army of Robots Alex is 8 years old and loves to play soccer and write stories.

“Jake looks down the hall — there’s a room with a sign that says ARMY ROOM. It’s white with conveyor belts marching on the ground. There are a thousand robots marching on the ground, and leading them is Dr. Lavaface. There’s a big robot-maker taking up half the room. Jake thinks, “If all these robots catch me, I am dead!””

Chapter 1

Once upon a time, Mack went to Jake’s house. Mack has freckles and has a mohawk. Jake has a plain hairstyle and he is a regular person. They go upstairs to Jake’s room and they see a little crack in the wall. They open the crack. They see a workshop with plans. They don’t read the plans because they see a purple-then-blue portal that looks like a cylinder. They look at potions in the workshops. The potions have labels.

“Shaving cream potion,” says Mack. “Should I drink this?”

“No Mack, drink this tuna can,” says Jake.

They both drink the potion. They turn into tuna. They see a potion on the floor that says NORMAL and Jake rolls into a ball and rolls to the potion. He drinks it. Jake is now normal. He gives the potion to Mack. Mack is now normal.

Jake says, “How old do you think this laboratory is?”

“Maybe a thousand years,” says Mack.

They go into the portal. They feel like they’re stretching and all of their weird dreams come alive. Mack’s dreams is putting shaving cream on but can’t get it off and then his face turns white. Jake dreams that Mack has turned him into a frog. They see monsters chasing after them in the portal. They run for their lives from the monsters and Jake extends himself to kick the monsters back and they run to the end of the portal. They are running so fast that they have to slow themselves down because they see the top of a volcano in the distance.

They land on top of the volcano. When they are on top, the volcano is about to explode. They start running, but Jake trips with the magic key in his hand. He drops the key and slides down the mountain. It is too late to go back for the key. The volcano is about to blow. They have just enough time to escape before the volcano explodes. They are sad that the key was lost in the lava. How will they get home without the key? What they don’t know is that the key isn’t actually lost in the lava. The evil Dr. Lavaface had faked the volcano explosion. Dr. Lavaface’s laboratory is under the volcano and he had pulled a switch to make Jake and Mack think the volcano had erupted. Now the key is in Dr. Lavaface’s hands. He plans to unlock other worlds and have his evil robot army take over each world: Clowntown, Waterworld, Cloudworld, Haunted World, Fairy Land, and Superhero Land. The evil robot army is made up of one billion blue and red robots. The red robots look like Dr. Lavaface with their helmets melting down their faces. The navy blue robots wear dark cloaks with tall boots. Dr. Lavaface had spent five months getting the army together. Dr. Lavaface himself has a red helmet with a microphone that allows him to tell the entire army what to do. For practice, there is a plastic world with puppet people. Dr. Lavaface would tell the robot army to warn the plastic puppet people that if they didn’t run, they would have their world destroyed. Dr. Lavaface switches the fake lava with 500 gallons of real, smoking hot lava. It is nearly impossible to escape.

Jake and Mack invent a robot. It is red. They’re gonna see what happened to the key and they want to find it. He goes in to pretend to be a red robot and then he breaks another robot. And when he does that, the robot falls down a trap door and tumbles down the volcano. Jake and Mack think it’s their robot that got broken. They fix the robot. And then the robot tries to explode them. They run from the robot, and Jake has a little gun he finds on the floor and he picks it up and aims it at the robot and shoots it and it falls to the ground.

They go to the volcano and there’s a secret door they push open. The robot is trying to find the key. Dr. Lavaface says, “Get back into your place or you will serve me some snails!”

And then it refuses to do anything, so the robots lock him up in the dungeon. And they take away the battery. Now he just looked like a robot that had been thrown out.

Jake and Mack go into the hall. They see a lot of dungeons and they open each one. Dungeon 5 actually holds the robot but they don’t know the battery got taken away and they look identical. There are ten dungeons.

Chapter 2

There’s a giant snail machine down the hall. First comes a giant snail pit. Then the snails get washed off in boiling water and the robots put them on plates. Then Dr. Lavaface calls out a number and the robot brings him that plate.

Jake and Mack’s plan is to follow one of the robots down the hall to Dr. Lavaface’s laboratory. There’s a little door to their left. They follow one of the robots but the trouble is, if the robot hears them, they get caught. And they get caught! The robot tries to explode them with his laser eyes. Jake recognizes their robot’s battery in this robot, but Dr. Lavaface programmed it to be bad. They run for their lives, and then they get chased by more robots. There’s one more room before Dr. Lavaface’s laboratory. It’s the lava room, where he keeps the 500 gallons of lava. There are little rocks Jake and Mack have to jump on in order to get to Dr. Lavaface’s laboratory, but Mack trips. Mack gets caught by a robot, and Jake says, “Now I have to find a robot and Mack? What’s next, I get caught?”

Jake looks down the hall — there’s a room with a sign that says ARMY ROOM. It’s white with conveyor belts marching on the ground. There are a thousand robots marching on the ground, and leading them is Dr. Lavaface. There’s a big robot-maker taking up half the room. Jake thinks, “If all these robots catch me, I am dead!”

He pretends to be a robot by walking mechanically. Mack and Jake always played robots. Jake thinks to himself, Mom’s gonna be so mad at me. It’s almost time for dinner.

Jake is able to blend in because he’s wearing a red shirt. He takes a step out of the army to see who’s leading it. Jake thinks to himself, It looks like Dad!

Then he walks up to the front of the army to talk to his dad. “Hi Dad!”

“Huh? What? Where?” said Dr. Lavaface.

Jake thinks to himself, That’s why he’s always late for dinner.

“Jake? What are you doing here?”

“Dad, we found the key in the backyard.”

“You did? Now we’ve got a little secret from Mom.”

Jake thinks to himself, I’m gonna get in so much trouble because Mack is supposed to be home by now.

“Five more minutes until my place shuts down and I go back with you.”

And then Jake said, “What about Mack?”

Chapter 3

“You brought Mack too?”

“Yes. I went to his house because I thought it was just a key and then he unlocked it and the portal appeared and we just came in the portal, and were captured by the robots.”

“The robots will never let me in the dungeon room,” Dr. Lavaface says. “They’re programmed to guard it.”

“Dad, what are you going to do with all the robots?”

“Make a movie! Mom knows that I’m a movie director, but she doesn’t know I’m doing this. When this turns into a movie, I’ll be famous. You can be famous with me. You can be in my movie. You can be the kid running down the hall with Mack, and I can be the evil Dr. Lavaface. But I’m making my movie in one week so I’m practicing it right now. That’s why I go off every day. The portals are just to shoot my movie everywhere. The robots have a movie program too so everywhere they go they show the movie. And that’s why I always eat late dinner. But we gotta go find Mack immediately because it’s going to shut down and everything’s going to be dark.”

“We have a new robot who’s good,” Jake says. “We made it.”

His dad says, “He can be in my film. He can be the only good robot and we can pretend to destroy him.”

And then Jake says, “So Dad, what are you gonna do with all the robots after you shoot your movie?”

“Make more of them.”

But as they’re running down the hall, Mack is in Dungeon 11 because that’s where humans go.

“Where is Dungeon 11?” said Jake.

“First you take a right, then you take a left, then you take a right, then you take a left, then you go straight, then you take a right, then you take a left, and then you’re there.”

“How long is that gonna take?” says Jake.

And then Dr. Lavaface says, “About, maybe, three minutes. I have a map of the dungeon. Here you are.”

“How long does it take to get out?” says Jake.

Chapter 4

“About two minutes from there,” says Dr. Lavaface.

“Do you think we can make it in time?” asked Jake.

“Maybe you can,” says Dr. Lavaface.

Jake gets confused with all the turns, but looks at the map and finds his way.

“Here we are in Dungeon 11.”

“Oh no,” says Dr. Lavaface. “What says Jake!”

“I left the dungeon key back at my office.”

“Stay here, I’ll throw you the key. You can get out with Mack even if I don’t make it out.”

Jake says, “Ok so go now.”

Dr. Lavaface started running.

“Here Jake, here’s the key,” says Dr. Lavaface.

“I caught it,” says Jake.

“Hurry up, we’ve only got 30 seconds!” yells Dr. Lavaface.

Jake unlocks the dungeon, but only the volcano shuts down. Jake quickly unlocks it, grabs Mack by the hand, and before Mack can say anything, “The doors are closing in ten seconds!” yells Dr. Lavaface. “Five seconds!” “One Second!” Jake and Mack dive for their life. They make it out, barely. Mack’s shoe falls off in the building but it’s too late to go back for it. Jake says, “Mom is going to be so mad at me. It is bedtime already.” Mack also thinks that too. They get the key out of Jake’s pocket and unlock the portal. They jump in the portal but they land on Cat Street, but they need to get to Dog Street. But first they need to go through Fish Street, which is very long. Jake says, “I should have brought the robot that I invented.”

“What can we do. We have walk to Fish Street. That’s gonna take forever!” said Mack.

“Maybe not,” says Jake

“We could stay in the other portal for one night and then we could open it and then go with our robot.”

“We’re already on Fish Street, we would have to go all the way back.”

Chapter 5

Mack said, “Oh no, we would have to go all the way back to the portal. Do you think Mom would be mad at us?”

“Maybe not, I’ll go in alone,” said Jake. “Mack, run back to the house and tell your mom and my mom that Jake and my dad are staying at a hotel. I’ll spend the night with Dr. Lavaface.”

Mack says, “How are you going to get in?”

Jake says, “The top of the volcano is fake lava. I hope he hasn’t switched it out yet or I’ll be dead.”

“Ok, now run,” says Mack.

Jake unlocks the portal with the key. He lands on the top of the volcano again. He’s about to jump in. Dr. Lavaface has a special material that can break the doors open and then he runs up the volcano. When Jake is about to jump into the volcano Dr. Lavaface jumps out and saves Jake before he dies. Dr Lavaface is hanging from the volcano with one hand and is about to fall in the lava, and he is slipping. His fingertips are on it now. “Jake I want you to know something. I have been planning the movies for 20 years. You can take over the business for me.”

“I can’t do that, it’s your business and I’m only a kid,” Jake says.

“Whatever you do, don’t tell mom about it,” says Dr. Lavaface.

Dr. Lavaface falls in. Jake is sobbing. Jake jumps over the hole in the volcano and into the portal. He runs down the streets to his mom. “You gotta see this! Come here!” He grabs his mom by the hand before she can even respond. He jumps into the portal with his mom. He says, “Dad is making a movie and he said I need to take over the business because he fell in the volcano.” And then Mom says, “Son, I want to tell you something. He told me about this a long, long time ago. And I forgot the secret. He said he wanted to pass it along to you someday. He forgot he told me the secret. His helmet is lava-proof so he’s not dead. He is coming.”

“You should hide! It’s the robots,” said Jake.

The mom hides behind a rock and the robots come out. There are four of them and two of them grab each arm, and the other two grabs each leg. They are holding him as Dr. Lavaface comes up. Dr. Lavaface had seen Jake and his mom from the computer in his laboratory. And then the robots say, “Obey us now or we’ll drop your son in the volcano.”

“Ok, I’ll obey you,” says Dr. Lavaface.

“Sych it,” says the robots.

The robots drop Jake, but the good robot comes out and saves him. The good robot flies out of the volcano. Jake jumps off of the good robot’s back, but just then, the good robot’s battery dies and it falls back in. Jake makes it safely, but with a little scrape on his back from falling down the volcano. Jake pulls out his gun and shoots the four robots. All the robots fall into the volcano. The mom and dad jump in the portal and Jake is the only one in the portal’s world. He looks at the world. The robots had a spell and the four robots were the most powerful so the world changes into a good world. All of the people come out from their houses that the volcano had destroyed. Jake jumps back into the portal. They have a feast dinner. They invite Mack but not Mack’s mom and dad because they didn’t want them to know about the secret chapter seven because Mack would be grounded. At the party they dance and have a big feast. They make a movie about it but it only belongs to Jake’s family.

19 years later, Jake’s makes a movie and his dad is retired but he watches the movie every day.

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