"Like what?" I ask, watching Luci stroke its hair. "I don't know, like legends..." she trails off. The dummy suddenly sits up and screams as loud as he can. "Let's go!" I mouth. Luci nods, and we grab the dummy's wrists and feet and drag him out of my house. "Where do we go?" asks Luci, but I have to read her lips because of the dummy's ear-bleeding screams. Mom and Dad should be rushing down the steps by now, I think. Wait. Uh-oh... What if...? Could slappy have DONE something to my parents. I motion to Luci to stay with him, and I rush up to my parents' room. A green mist is swirling around, fogging up the mirror, settling on the bed... where two ventriloquist dummies are laying motionless. Mom and Dad! Slappy turned them into dummies! Angry, I try to run. But I inhale the mist. And my head starts to feel heavy. So do my legs. They feel... stiff. I stumble out of the house, my hands hardening as I twist the doorknob. I try to kick the door shut, but my leg won't move. I use my hand, and then I have to resort to falling down the stairs to get to Luci and Slappy. Luci drops Slappy and picks me up. My arms and legs don't move. Only my mouth. It snaps up and down, shut with a click. "Oh no!" gasps Luci. "What the-?" Slappy leaps onto Luci, and I'm forced to try to bite Slappy. I snap my wooden jaws on the tail of his suit jacket, and it rips in half. The controls are revealed. And so is the yellowed paper. It lands right by me, and since Luci is wrestling Slappy to the ground, I have to say them... to put him back to sleep. But the paper is flipped upside down. But I remember the words. "Karru marri odonna loma molonu karrano!" I yelp. My mouth hardens on the last word. Then I can't move at all. Slappy keeps fighting. That's it. Now I'm a motionless puppet. But wait... there should be controls in my back. I'm on my back, so I use all my strength to stretch, and roll over. Now I can move! I raise myself. Luci kicks Slappy off her, into the middle of the street. He raises himself, and then I realize... My parents stagger out of the house. They're still puppets, but they don't seem to be in control. The puppets step right up to Slappy... and tackle him. The words did work! A car rolls down the street. I motion for Luci to back up, and frowning she does. "What are you-?" I leap forward. If the three of us, my parents and me, can crush Slappy under the car, then he'll be gone. But we'll also be crushed. Hopefully we'll turn back into regular people if that happens. But there's no time for that. Luci realizes it, too, and signals the car to stop. Slappy wrenches himself from our grasp, and my parent dummies go limp. But Luci has a plan. She tackles him, and the car lurches forward. Luci is able to back away as she watches Slappy, her defeated opponent, be crushed... along with my parents and me. The front right wheel drives over my head. For a moment, it feels like it's exploding. That's because it is. Dying is like being punched in the gut a few thousend times, thrown into a brick wall, then hiting cement fifty feet below you. But only for one second. Then it's all empty, peaceful. Then, in my case, my eyes open to see my parents and Luci gazing at the shocked driver. "Did I hit a pothole?" she asks, surprised. It's Mrs. Driltopan, the teacher who suspended me. "Winston, why aren't you at school?" she asks, puzzled. I resist the urge to smile. She forgot it! That means it's not on my record, but what about... I look under her tire. It is a pothole. "I got sick," I say. Then I bend over and vomit. Not a show, real. That green gas must have triggered my immune system. Some of it is still in the air. Mrs. Driltopan, looking frazzled, says, "I hope you get better," and drives off. Mom and Dad head inside to get a thermometer. Luci high fives me. "We did it!" I cheer. She nods, relieved. "I still don't remember," she says, frowning. "I'll call you if I do, though." "Okay," I say, nodding. I'm just glad I'm okay. And not a dummy. Speaking of which, I think, Where is that dummy Slappy? "Hey, Winston," chirps an oddly high-pitched voice. I look down to see a kid in a suit. He looks just like... Slappy! "Slappy," I growl. "Hug your younger brother Wally," he says, grinning evilly, opening his arms. "What? No, you're not my-!" I start, but he laughs. "That's right. I'm a real boy now."
Sorry for the super-long POV!