Sally is preparing the lunch for today’s special adventure when Melissa skips into the kitchen with her little brother Nathan in tow. She sneaks past her mother rummaging inside the fridge for their favourite soda pop, walks her fingers along the edge of the counter, snatches a few berries, and gobbles them up.

“Melissa Ann!” Her mother slaps her tiny fingers with a bunch of celery tops. “Those are for Uncle Boris. You KNOW how important they are.”

She whooshes her daughter across the room to the table and sits her down. Meanwhile, Nathan reaches his hand up to the counter and feels around for more goodies. Sally catches him just in time to avoid a half assembled tofu butter and corn sugar sandwich catastrophe.

“Breakfast is on the table kids. Now go on.” Sally returns to the chopping board and prepares some vegetable snacks, one ear to the noise coming from outside.

The neighbour’s dog just ran out for another barking frenzy closely followed by Charles, the owner, bolting from the house half-shaven and in his tighty-whities. He fights to maintain a grip on a slippery key fob as he points it at his vintage Porsche in the driveway and runs for the driver-side door. Sally watches the spectacle from her kitchen window, shaking her head with one eyebrow raised and a huge grin on her face.

Charles reaches for the door handle, his hand still full of shaving cream. The backwards momentum of his hand impatient to open the door sends him flying onto his butt.

“Ouch.” Nathan runs for cover under the breakfast table. Melissa is too busy plotting her way back to the berry bowl and her mother is too distracted by the hilarious antics happening across the side fence for either of them to notice little Nathan rolling up into a little ball and covering his head.

“Nooooooooooo!” A desperate cry from next door echos down the street as hail the size of baseballs come crashing down onto the perfectly polished hood of Charles’ red sports car. Sally gasps in shock then breaks into hysterics.

The Fenton family’s summer vacation is definitely starting out with a little excitement which is just what Sally has been lacking of late. Her recent promotion to VP of Sales for GaiaTech Industries Inc. although extremely lucrative and rewarding involves little travel or direct contact with clients. She misses the fast-paced and sometimes chaotic front-line work she excelled in before the accident, but being a single parent requires face time and a predictable schedule.

Sally giggles on until her neighbour finally manages to get into the car and drive it to safety in his garage. Who would have guessed that Charles had such a hairy back? She muses about the newly revealed secret the GQ-perfect Old Spice man wannabe next door has been harbouring under his hand-pressed Armani suits. Her imagination gets a little playtime as she envisions his meticulously waxed car returning the favour to its owner.

“Ouch!” Nathan squeals again.

“What is it honey?” Sally walks over to him and tries to coax him out from under the table. “The storm is over sweetie.” She picks him up and cuddles with him on a chair. “Surely, he can’t remember the accident,” she thinks to herself. A tear rolls down her face at the thought of it.

It’s not everyday a tornado rips through your home. Two years ago next week, she was dropping Melissa off at a birthday party when it happened. When she got home, half the house was gone and her husband with it. She found Nathan crying in his crib. Melissa was spared that horror.

The sound of boulders hitting the roof finally stops and Melissa runs to the living room window: “Look mommy. Can I go get one?”

Sally steps through the front air lock for a moment, checks the sky, and rushes back in. “OK. Put on your mask, honey. Pick one for Nathan too.”

Charles steps out, fully dressed in Armani, and waves. Sally bites her lip to stop from laughing, pokes her head out, and waves back. “Have a great hair…Um you’re hair looks great today.” He smiles and walks to the limo waiting at the curb.

Melissa returns with two ice balls bigger than her own hands and drops them into a storage bin. “Here mommy. I want to get one for Uncle Boris too.”

The lawn is covered in ice bombs. Sally experiences a stroke of genius. She calls Melissa back into the house and runs to the basement.

…to be continued in Take Back The Sky.