When a new job falls his way, Chance jumps at the opportunity, becoming a runner who picks up strange packages on a daily route and delivers them to a 'fat' man at the marina. Chance knows how much he will earn—what he doesn’t know is how much he will pay. Suspenseful, fast-paced, and timely,... read more
Chance Miller is a senior in high school living in Seattle with his Dad. His dad is an alcoholic. They live on a small boat on the Marina, The Tiny Dancer. On the anniversary of 9/11 in Social Studies Brent Miller, who is in the United States Army, comes in and talks to them about him serving... read more (warning: may contain spoilers)
Chance Miller is a senior in high school living in Seattle with his Dad. His dad is an alcoholic. They live on a small boat on the Marina, The Tiny Dancer. On the anniversary of 9/11 in Social Studies Brent Miller, who is in the United States Army, comes in and talks to them about him serving in the United States Army. Brent Miller is his enemy. When Chance was a freshman, his dad and Brent’s dad got in a fight. Brent beat him up for that and since than Brent and Chance had been enemies. After Brent talks about what being in the army is like, he decides to answer questions, people ask Is he afraid to die, what he does in his free time and then Melissa Watts raises her hand. She asks if he has ever read a book on the history of Middle East or Islam. After she yells at him for being in the army, Chance stands up for her and says, “She asked a simple question. Either he’s read some books or he hasn’t.” After class, Melissa wants to talk to him at Java Johns. She wants him to join the Lincoln Light. She wants him to write about controversial topics.
When he gets home, he finds out that his Dad was fired from working at a senior citizen home. Chance knows that he needs to find a new job. Later that week at the marina, a guy who he calls the fat guy approaches Chance. He asks if he runs every day. He gives him an hundred dollar bill to walk with him. They tell him that he has to run wearing a backpack. He has to pick up a package at the maple tree and put it in a locker, but whatever he does, he can’t look in the package. He will get 200 hundred dollars a week. He immediately thinks that this is a drug smuggling business.
He finds out that the fat guy works at the Marina. Chance finds out that Melissa’s dad and his dad were best friends in high school. One day he goes out with his dad and misses a package and the fat guy gets mad at him and gives him a number to call if he ever will miss the pick-up. That month chance pays the moorage. He pays the moorage in cash and the lady said that was the first time someone ever paid in cash. He does this for a few weeks when at thanksgiving Melissa asks what is at the rocks. He freaks out and yells at her for spying on him. The next day he says it is rats. He decides to join the school newspaper, and writes about the threat of terrorism in marina. Soon he calls the army asking when he could enroll. He says his name is Todd Jones. They say that they would like him to graduate. And the next time he calls to use his real name.
The fat guy tells him that there will be new packages. He was supposed to store these packages in his boat. They are soft and squishy. His dad gets a new job at a bike shop. In school, he is talking about the terrorism color codes. He continues to carry the packages for the rest of a few months. One march in school, he finds out that Brent Miller was killed in Iraq. One night Melissa invites him to eat where she tells him that she knows that he is smuggling drugs. He decides not to lie by saying that he does not know what it is. She says that there is a private yacht that has two divers that dive off the boat and go to shore in kayaks. They also go right where the kayakers are. One-day chance tells the fat guy that he wants to talk to him. Chance tells him that he is going to quit. He asks what to do with those packages. The guy is surprised that Chance still has them. Chance has twelve of them. The guy tells him he does not know what is in the packages. He goes to the library and finds out about plastic explosives that they are soft just like those packages.
The fat guy tells him that they are emeralds. They will come and pick up the packages on May 1st. That night at midnight, he hears sirens. At first he thinks they are coming for him, but then he just assumes there was a fire. The next day he meets an old friend of his mom. He tells her how he is going to enlist in the army. She asks him if he heard what happened last night. He says he heard the sirens, thinking it was just a fire. Some guy drove off a cliff. She says he worked at the Marina and his name was Charles Burdett, she pulls out a paper and on the cover is the fat guy. His death was ruled a suicide. Chance is scared and tells his dad everything. His dad tells him to got to Melissa’s dad. His dad calls the FBI, but when they look at the dock the boat is not there. He goes on a police helicopter trying to look for his dad they see the boat they see his dad fighting terrorists. Then the tiny dancer exploded. His dad was dead.
The FBI found out that in the other packages was marijuana. They interviewed him for weeks. Finally, after all the debriefing he did not go to jail. He enlists in the army.
“"But I don't have time to play games. So listen, and listen carefully. You're in trouble, and I can get you out of that trouble. I'm offering you a job, kid. Very good pay; very short hours. When somebody offers you easy money, you should at least hear him out."”Burdett
My dad has long straggly hair and a stubbly beard. His clothes are as dirty as his hair, and he's got the raspy voice of a smoker and the blotchy skin of a drunk.Highlighted by 3 Kindle customers
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