An extravagant group of kids between the ages of 10 and 17 travel through the dark, dusk, woods carrying lit torches that crackle noisily. A few adults are with them as well leading them and guarding each side of the assembly. Everyone, even the leaders, is covered in dirt from head to toe. At the very front of the crowd are the main camp leader and the newest student. This new camper is Frank Hubertson. He has vibrantly ginger hair like cheese puffs. Some of this orange hair hangs down the middle of his forehead and, on either side, are his light green eyes like lime-flavored candies.
“Frank Hubertson, are you ready for the final portion of the initiation?” the main leader asks the young boy.
“Yes, Ms. Searfire!” Frank answers eagerly.
In the crowd of kids who are already part of the camp is a boy named Ryan Peat. Ryan Peat has thick hair that is as dark as an unlit room at night, skin similar in color to a white eggshell, and eyes like a clear spring sky. He is shaking in fear beside a tall, very muscular, leader named Tyson Clark. Ryan almost pukes as he watches Ms. Searfire bring out the final challenge for Frank.
“You must swallow all 100 of these worms in order to prove you are worthy of this troop!” Ms. Searfire says.
Mr. Clark whacks Ryan on the head for freaking out. Frank hesitates briefly, but goes ahead with it, swallowing each worm. The way they squiggle as he swallows them makes him feel sick, but he doesn’t want to miss being a part of the camp. Some of the children cheer the ginger on, but others call out mockingly to him. Fifty worms through, Frank is feeling full already and the long, pink, snake-like worms in his stomach are still wriggling.
“STOP! HE’S GOING TO BURST!” a different black-haired boy cries out.
This is Gerald Stevens. Unlike Ryan, his hair is shorter and thinner, but still just as deep of black. His skin is a bit darker than Ryan’s skin, and, instead of blue eyes, he has rich green eyes that are darker than Frank’s.
“Gerald? How dare you interrupt the initiation?!” Ms. Searfire calls out.
“You never made any of us eat that many worms!” Gerald argues.
“Fine, would you like to help him finish the worms?” Ms. Searfire asks.
“I will,” Gerald confirms with a nod.
He marches forward past Ryan over to Frank. His feet are squelching in the thick, wet, mud.
“Hi, new kid...” Gerald greets Frank.
He takes a big handful of those icky slimy worms and begins swallowing them for Frank.
“Thank you...” Frank whispers. He keeps trying to swallow more worms.
Before long, all 100 worms are gone and both boys have distended bellies, full of the still-alive creatures. A great majority of the other kids clap and cheer. Ryan attempts to go up to greet Gerald and Frank, but Mr. Clark sneaks and sticks out his foot, tripping him. He falls face first to the muddy ground and loses his opportunity to say hi. Everyone takes the same path back to where they came from, the main camp building.