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Eye on the Prize


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Ryan slammed on the brakes, as his friend Josh popped up out of nowhere and waved his arms over his head wildly. After Ryan came to a stop, he scrambled out of his car, angrily. “I could’ve hit you, mate! You can’t just come out of nowhere and jump in front of my truck! What are you doing here, anyway?” he said to his best friend. “Calm down, mate, I didn’t mean to scare you, but I have good news, and it’s urgent,” Josh replied, trying to calm Ryan down. He pulled him away from the truck and toward the runway. They were at the airport, where Ryan worked as a pilot for an airline. Yet he had no idea why Josh was there, or why he had such urgent news. Josh pulled Ryan closer and closer to the runway, until they were dangerously close to where the planes would be taking off. “Okay, I see a runway, some planes, and two guys who are standing way too close to said runway and planes. Will you hurry up with your news so we can head back to the airport?” Ryan pleaded. Josh just smiled at Ryan, then grabbed hold of a giant tarp that was covering a huge object that was sitting on the side of the runway, which Ryan hadn’t noticed before. “Ta-da!” Josh shouted as he tore the tarp off of the object, revealing a brand-new aeroplane. Ryan’s jaw dropped, as he was in complete shock that Josh had his hands on such a nice plane. “Wh-I don’t-but how-and with-but you….how?!” Ryan stuttered. “No time for questions, we have to get going before all these other planes start taking off! Alright, hop in, you’re driving. Or should I say, flying,” Josh said, grinning as he said the last word. Before he could protest, Ryan was pushed into the cockpit of the relatively small plane. 10 minutes later, Ryan and Josh were in the air, flying at a steady pace. “So, um, where are we going?” Ryan asked, still very confused. Josh put down the map, then said, “Well, I guess it’s time I tell you what’s going on. We’re flying to Mexico to find a treasure that I heard about when I was hanging out in a local pub. It sounded interesting, and well, worth a lot of money, so I bought this map off the guy who was talking about it for 10 pounds. What a steal, am I right?” he finished and smiled at Ryan, waiting for his reaction. Ryan just looked dumbfounded, then he turned his head to face toward Josh and said, “Hold on, we’re flying overseas from England to some random place within the jungles of Mexico to retrieve a treasure that might not even exist, and the only directions we have are from a map that you bought for a few pounds?” “Well, it sounds a tad bit risky when you put it that way, but-,” before Josh could finish, the plane jerked to the side suddenly, being pushed by a strong gust of wind. Josh and Ryan were thrown against the sides of the cockpit, and Ryan lost control of the plane. More wind kept coming, blowing the small plane around in the air. The last thing Ryan remembered was him trying to grab hold of the steering, before being hit in the head by a loose piece of equipment. Hours later, Ryan and Josh woke up in a clearing in the middle of a jungle in Mexico, their plane in a smoking heap of metal several hundred feet away. Luckily, neither had any serious injuries, but they also didn’t have a functioning plane or any sign of civilization for miles. Josh sat up, rubbing his head, and said, “Ugh, my head feels like a pile of bricks. You okay, Ryan?” Slowly, Ryan got up too, and replied, “Yeah, I’m okay, but my leg has a couple scrapes and bruises. Nothing too serious, though. Anyway…how could you get us stuck out here in the middle of a jungle in Mexico?! I should be on my lunch break at work right now, not on a wild goose chase for some non-existent treasure that you heard about because of some drunk guy in a pub!” Josh replied, “Okay, okay, you’re mad, and I get it. But wouldn’t you feel a whole lot better if I told you that we could do a little more searching and find a treasure that is worth millions? Because I still have the map, so if you would just trust me, dust yourself off, and start searching for the treasure, then we could become millionaires in a matter of hours,” Ryan considered the offer, deciding whether or not Josh could be trusted. He finally made up his mind and realized that he didn’t really have anything to lose. “Alright, let’s find that treasure!” he said, pumping his fist in the air as he stood up to begin their search. Josh got up too and pulled out the map, then pointed in the direction they needed to go. As they ventured into the wild jungle, Ryan took a deep breath and hoped that he had made the right choice. An hour later, Josh stopped dead in his tracks, Ryan nearly crashing into the back of him. He looked at the map, then back in front of them. “This is it,” he said, “that rock over there is the secret entrance. We just have to pick it up, then a chamber that holds the treasure will rise from the ground. Seems easy enough.” Before Ryan could say anything, Josh jogged over and picked up the rock. The ground started to shake, and Ryan and Josh were knocked off their feet by the trembling surface below them. Just two feet in front of them, the ground was splitting wide open, until finally it stopped, and everything was still. Then, a large chamber rose from within the giant crack in the ground. Ryan gasped as he laid his eyes upon the gold, diamonds, rubies, emeralds, silver coins, and pearls that were flowing from the grand chamber. They waited a few minutes to see if anything else would happen. Josh was the first to stand up and approach the chamber. He tested it and pulled a small diamond off the top of the giant pile. No booming voice that told them to beware was heard, so they both started grabbing all of the treasure they could hold onto. Once they were satisfied, they put the rock back in place, and the chamber vanished, just as quickly as it had risen from the ground. Ryan said, “Well, I’ve got to hand it to you, mate. You were right, and now we have actual, real treasure. Although, there’s just one more problem…how are we supposed to get out of this jungle?” As soon as Ryan finished, a helicopter appeared from out of nowhere. Josh and Ryan started flailing their arms as best they could and shouting at the helicopter for help. The pilot of the helicopter landed in the clearing, and Josh and Ryan got in. The pilot explained that she had seen their wrecked plane a little ways off and had started to look for them. It turned out that she was flying back to England, so she was able to drop them off at the airport where Ryan worked, in exchange for a diamond or two. They thanked the pilot as she took off again. “See, mate, that wasn’t such a bad trip after all. We had quite the adventure, and not to mention the fact that we’re taking home some treasure. So, uh, what do you think you’ll do with all the loot?” Josh asked. Ryan thought carefully about it, then said, “I’ll start by donating to charity, then I’ll invest some, and then, of course, we’ll have to get you a new aeroplane!” Ryan and Josh laughed as they walked back to the airport, the sun beginning to set on their one-of-a-kind day.

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