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The Great Bike Rescue

De
112 pages
The summer is off to a lousy start when Levi's bike is stolen from outside the corner store. He feels even worse because he didn't lock it. But when his best friend Riley's locked bike is stolen the very next day, the boys are determined to get both of them back. When they discover there has been a string of bicycle thefts in the area, the friends hatch several plans to find the culprit. There are so many potential suspects, Steve Morrow and his gang, the tattooed guy who sits at the bus stop, the owners of the secondhand-bike store. There's also Emily Grimshaw, Levi's childhood nemesis, who keeps popping up and showing a peculiar interest in the thefts. Does she really want to help or is she involved somehow? And will Levi and Riley ever see their beloved bikes again?
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ha zel hutchins
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The Great Bike Rescue
The Great Bike Rescue
Hazel Hutchins
Text copyright ©2013Hazel Hutchins All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or by any information storage and retrieval system now known or to be invented, without permission in writing from the publisher.
Library and Archives Canada Cataloguing in Publication
Hutchins, H. J. (Hazel J.) The great bike rescue [electronic resource] / Hazel Hutchins. (Orca young readers)
Electronic monograph. Issued also in print format. isbn 9781459804791 (pdf).isbn 9781459804807 (epub)
I. Title. II. Series: Orca young readers (Online) ps8565.u826g74 2013jc813'.54 c20139019030
First published in the United States,2013 Library of Congress Control Number:2013935388
Summary: Levi and Riley are determined to find out who’s behind a recent string of bicycle thefts after their own bikes are stolen.
Orca Book Publishers gratefully acknowledges the support for its publishing programs provided by the following agencies: the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund and the Canada Council for the Arts, and the Province of British Columbia through the BC Arts Council and the Book Publishing Tax Credit.
Cover artwork by Laura Bifano Author photo by Gaston Maqueda
orca book publishers poBox5626, Stn. B Victoria,bcCanada v8r 6s4
orca book publishers poBox468 Custer,wa usa982400468
www.orcabook.com
16151413432
1
Chapter One
It only takes a minute for a great summer to turn into something else entirely. “Levi! Come outside—quick!” My friend Riley almost spilled his slushie rushing back into the corner store. His eyes were round. His face was ushed. He was in a panic. But it wasn’t the fear kind of panic. It was something else. “What’s wrong?” I asked. I was still paying for my own slushie at the counter. And I wasn’t worried about Riley. Riley likesexcitement. He even exaggerates things in order to have something to get excited about. “Your bike,” said Riley. “It’s gone!”
1
The clerk leaned back, his eyes seeking a gap between the sea of ads and posters that were plastered across the full-length windows of the storefront. He squinted as he looked out at the sidewalk. “A lot of bikes have been lifted from out front lately,” he said. I had to think about what he meant by the wordlifted. Lifted up? Lifted over? Suddenly Iunderstood. “Stolen? You mean someone stole my bike?”I asked. The clerk shrugged. “It wouldn’t be the îrst time,” he said. I raced outside. My bike had been leaning against a narrow pillar between the front windows. It wasn’t there now. I could see it wasn’t there. Riley kept telling me, “See? It’s not there, it’s not anywhere.” But still, I kept right on looking. Two wheels. Knobby tires. Silver and black frame. My bike isn’t the newest bike in the world, or the fanciest bike in the world, but it’s a great bike. It’smybike! I stared as hard as I could at the place it had been. I was trying to make my bike appear before me. Nope. Didn’t happen.
2
Something inside me started goingthump, thump, thump,and a weird kind of energy was taking over.Do something! Find your bike!I felt like I was running in circles even though I was hardly moving at all. I looked up and down Battersby Street. No bike. I looked in the hidden doorway, the locked one the store doesn’t use. No bike. I looked around the corner. No bike. I looked at Riley, hoping against hope. “Did you take it? Just to fool me?” I asked. “Please tell me you took it.” “Nope. I didn’t take it,” said Riley. He shoved his slushie into my free hand and began to unlock his own bike from the light post. “I’ll check the alleys and the cross streets,” he said. “Super Riley to the rescue!” He took off around the corner, pedaling like crazy. I couldn’t just stand there! I raced inside and set both slushies on the counter. “I’ll be back,” I said. I was out of the store before the clerk could answer. I raced across Battersby and headed in the opposite direction from Riley.
3
I went down the alley. Look for a thief on a bike. I ran again.Running didn’t feel nearly fast enough, but I kept running anyway. Riley would be able to circle around a bigger area, but at least I could cover some of it. I turned the corner. Look for my bike.I ran like crazy some more.Turned another corner. Run. I heard the squeak of bike brakes, and Riley pulled up beside me. “Any si…” I had to stop and gulp for air. “Any sign at all?” Riley shook his head. He’d been riding hard and needed a moment to catch his own breath. “Nothing,” he said. “I looked everywhere. Whoever took it is long gone.” He swung off his bike and bumped it up onto the sidewalk. We walked back to the store together. Riley pushed his bike. Ididn’tpush mine. An entire ocean of feelings was washing over me. Disbelief. Outrage. Even a crazy kind of hope as we passed a lady walking a dog and asked if she’d seen a black and silver bike. Nope. And beneath it all, there was a familiar feeling. Arottenand familiar feeling. I’d had stuff stolen before.
4
It was four years ago when I was just a little six-year-old kid, even before Riley and I became friends. But he knew the story. I’d told him about it. I guess I’d told him more times than I realized, because it’s what he used now to try and cheer me up. “Well, one good thing,” he said. “At least this time it’s not that girl who drove you crazy when youwere a little kid. What was her name?” “Emily Grimshaw,” I said. Emily Grimshaw was the world’s sneakiest little kid. She’d lived next door all through grade one. She’d stolen my things. Over and over. She stole my plastic baseball bat. I saw her using it to whack dandelion heads down at the end of the lane. She stole my kite. I saw her through the chink in the fence, in her own yard, trying to untangle the snarl of string. The list goes on and on. It was all stupid little-kid stuff, but it made me really, really mad. I tried telling Dad, but Emily was way too fast and sneaky to let an adult catch her with anything. When my toboggan went missing that winter, I knew who had it. I gathered up my courage, knocked on Emily’s front door and asked her mom if I could have it back.
5