The Incredibly Awesome Adventures of Puggie Liddell
Sample Chapter One

A bead of sweat poured down 12-year old Puggie Liddell’s chubby cheek as he trudged through a dark and dense forest. Before he knew what was coming, an ax flew past his face, barely missing his pug nose. Puggie took aim and jabbed his sword toward the mid-section of a hideous green ogre that was now towering over him. The ogre leapt out of the way and snarled at Puggie. The beast swung his ax towards Puggie's head but Puggie ducked and the weapon only grazed his mop top. Then Puggie swung a leg into the air and Karate kicked the ogre in the shin.

More angry than hurt, the ogre grabbed Puggie by the collar and lifted him off the ground. As the boy tried to wriggle free from the ogre’s vice-grip, his sword tumbled to the ground. Puggie experienced a brief moment of panic before he prepared to kick the ogre again but a knocking sound distracted him.

It was Puggie’s prissy sister, Gigi, 14, knocking on her brother’s bedroom door. When her knocking was met with no response, she barged into Puggie’s room.

“Puggie,” she yelled as she slapped her sibling’s arm.

Puggie removed his virtual reality goggles and glared at his sister. “I could have killed that ogre,” he said. Puggie hated being distracted mid-videogame, especially when he was in the middle of a battle he thought he could win. And even more especially when it was a video game he developed himself.

“You’re such a loser fanboy,” said Gigi.

“I’m not a fanboy,” said Puggie. “I’m a video game designer.”

“You’re a geek,” said Gigi.

“And to what do I owe the honor of your presence?” Puggie asked.

“Class trip, remember,” she replied.

Meanwhile, in the kitchen downstairs, the sibling’s father, Mr. Liddell, 45, was preparing breakfast. Since the death of his wife five years ago, Mr. Lidell made a point of cooking his kids an exceptional breakfast every morning before driving them to school. He hoped in some small way it would help them miss their mother a little less.

As Mr. Liddell flipped a pancake in the air, a hand snatched it mid-toss. Puggie stuffed the pancake into his mouth, grabbed syrup from the counter, and took a big a swig of the stuff.

“We own plates,” said Mr. Liddell.

To which Puggie replied, “I'm trying to save natural resources. Washing dishes by hand wastes three gallons of water a minute; twice as much if you leave the water running while scraping the dish. Dishwashers typically waste fifteen gallons of water a load.” Puggie generally had a quick comeback for every remark and a clever answer to every question, even the unanswerable ones.

Gigi hurried into the kitchen and made a show of snatching a plate from the cabinet. She waved the dish in Puggie’s face, then placed a pancake on it and loaded it with syrup.

“Want some more pancakes with that gallon of syrup?” Puggie said to his sister, who was still pouring.

Puggie plucked another pancake from the pile, crammed it into his cake hole and added a gulp of syrup.

When Mr. Liddell flipped the final pancake onto the stack he said, “You kids need to eat a good breakfast. You've got a big day ahead of you.”

Puggie and Gigi merely glared at each other.