Planet Earth Protectors, The River's End

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51 TO THE LAB

The metal chairs on the back deck creaked as Teplan and Terah sat down beside their dads at the patio table. Neither spoke, just crunched away at their cereal. In mid-bite, Teplan hoisted the knapsack from the floor and pulled something out of the pocket. “Oh my gosh! I forgot to give this to Ian.”

“What do you have there?” his dad asked.

“Soil,” he said while putting a water-bottle bottle on the table. “It’s from the river.”

All eyes naturally looked at it.

“Well, I guess Ian could get a river sample anytime, anyway, so he wouldn’t need this tonight anyway. But tomorrow we should let him know you have it anyway,” Mr. Guard said.

“That’s true,” Teplan said. “We took it thinking it could help stop the big pig farm from polluting, but according to Ian and his people, who were all really nice by the way, nothing we did tonight will help stop them. Without concretely connecting the pig farm to the river, we don’t have enough evidence.”

“I can’t believe that none of the video footage you got today — which I am extremely unhappy about, but we’ll get to that later — can be used to prove what they’re up to!”

Both Teplan and Terah’s eyebrows rose high, showing themselves to be at a loss on that very issue.

Just then their moms came out of the house with the plastic bags full of their muddy clothes.

“What’s all that?” Mr. Guard asked.

“It’s our clothes,” Teplan replied. “From the pig farm, when we were hiding in the mud.”

Mr. Guard suddenly perked up in his chair and looked around the table… “Do you know what we just might have here?” he asked. “Everyone, follow me.”

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