Kile and Kasey

Fun in the Sand

Disclaimer: I do not own Knight Rider or any of the stores or companies mentioned in this story. Ki2t, Ki3t, Karr are not mine along with Mike, Michael, Bonnie, Sarah, Billy or Zoe. I promise to return everyone without a scratch, but I doubt that's possible because of the nanoskin and the MBS.

Author's Note: I do own Kile and Kasey though. For anyone who doesn't know who these characters are, read 'Kile and Kasey' or read my profile. Pismo Beach/Oceano Dunes is a real place and it is on the Pacific Coast close to LA. You can actually camp on the beach, I have done it many times. You are alowed to take motorcycles, quads, 4x4's, dune buggies, anything that can withstand the sand out in the dunes or on the beach. It is quite a fun place and anyone who loves to camp, ride motorcycles/quads, or go 4-wheeling should try this place out.

Author's Note: This is not Kile/Kasey pairing. Just good friends getting along and getting to know one another. Just letting you know so their is no suspicion about what is really going on. Also, there is no real plot to this story. Don't know why I chose that, but I did. Well, enjoy!

Chapter 1

The Knight Estate was quiet place during the night, only the wind rustling through the trees made any sound. Michael, Bonnie, Mike, Sarah, Billy, Zoe, and Kasey were all inside in their respective rooms in the mansion sleeping. Security guards were making their rounds as normal and everything was peaceful. Four gleaming black cars sat in the garage side by side by side by side. There was a 2011 Trans Am with a red scanner on the hood, Ki2t, a 2008 Mustang with a twin bar red scanner, Ki3t, a 2008 Mustang with a twin bar yellow scanner, Karr, and a 2009 Challenger Blacktop with red trimmings and red scanner, Kile.

It had been a week after the Knight family’s ordeal with Robert Harvey and his attempt to get the four AIs and the Knight family. Everything was settling down again but nobody really wanted to go back to work just yet. This night while everyone was inside the Knight Mansion sleeping, the AIs decided that they were going to take their drivers somewhere fun for a few days to relieve the stress. They all made their suggestions.

“I think everyone would like to go to the mountains and maybe camp up there for a while. I hear Mt. Shasta is quite a nice place. There is fishing and there are many lava caves up there.” Ki2t suggested. Michael liked to fish and camp in the mountains and often he, Michael, and Bonnie would drive up there.

“How about Las Vegas? They could gamble a little and take their mind off of their work.” Ki3t commented. That is where he first met Mike and had a couple of missions there. Mike seemed to like the place.

“I don’t know much about what they like, but what about heading down to Mexico? It is sunny there and they could surf all they wanted.” Karr said.

“Well, how about a place where they could have with ‘us’.” Kile started and the other three AIs looked at him with confusion. He continued, “There is a beach north of here about 100 miles called Pismo Beach. There is camp ground on the beach called Oceano Dunes. The sand is hard enough where vehicles can drive on it. People take their motorcycles and quads up into the dunes and jump the jumps. We could all transform into our trucks and go four-wheeling. It would be quite an experience for all of us.” Everyone stared at him for a few seconds. “What?”

“Where is this place?” Ki2t asked.

“Just over 100 miles north of here.”

“What do you guys think? I think Michael would like it.” Ki2t said.

“Mike loves that sort of thing. I don’t think he’ll pass the chance up.” Ki3t replied.

“I think it would be fun to jump on the dunes. I’ll buy it!” Karr said.

“Okay, Pismo Beach here we come.” Ki2t commented. “Now, we have to come up with a plan to kidnap everyone.”

“Why don’t we say there is a mission that requires all of us on the trip? We tell them to pack a bag for a couple of days and then head off. We would be telling the truth. This ‘vacation’ mission would require all of us.” Kile suggested.

“Good idea. I’ll break the news to Mike. He is used to me telling him about a mission out of the blue, but I think we should wait until morning.” Ki3t mentioned.

“Michael and Bonnie will ride with me, Mike and Sarah will ride with you, Ki3t. Kasey would ride with you, Kile. Karr, do you mind taking Billy and Zoe?” Ki2t asked.

“Of course not. If it means getting away from here, then I’ll take them.”

“Okay, it’s settled then. I’ll call and make reservations for 5-7 days. One more problem though. Where would they stay? They could stay in tents. We could get air mattresses, tents, and blankets and put them in the trunk. The problem with that is getting the camping gear. Or should we rent a hotel? They would be farther from the beach and it wouldn’t be the same as actually camping on the beach, but it would be more comfortable.” Ki2t stated.

“I think they would like to stay on the beach. They could choose whether to stay in our beds in the tents or on the ground. Maybe we could get one of the grounds keepers here to do us this favor in the morning.” Ki3t mentioned.

“Okay. I have a friend here who owes me a favor for keeping a secret. He can get the stuff for us. I’ll call him in the morning.” Ki2t commented.

“Well, let’s get a good night’s sleep and we’ll tell them in the morning.” Karr said and started to go into recharge. The other three followed and the garage was silent once again.

/~/

Morning came and the four AIs were excited. Before Ki3t told Mike the ‘bad’ news, Ki2t wanted to make sure that the grounds keeper would be able to get the gear. Ki2t also asked the cook on the Estate to get a cooler ready with everything they would need for the meals, at least for the first few days. Both willingly accepted their duties and hurried off to help the AIs before family left.

When the cook and the grounds keeper came back from shopping, they went straight for the garage. They quickly loaded the items into the trunks of the cars to keep them a secret. They then hurried off before anyone came down. Ki3t called Mike and told him about their ‘mission.’

“Mike, I have found an emergency that will require all four of us. Will you ask everyone to gather a bag of clothes for a week, please?”

“Ki3t, do we have to go on this one? Don’t bad guys ever rest?” Mike sighed.

“No, Mike, they don’t. This is a real emergency. Will you do this please?”

“Ugh. You win. I’ll tell Michael and Kasey to come down.”

“Actually, tell everyone, including Billy and Zoe. They are going to ride with Karr. Like I said, we are going to be needing everyone on this mission.”

“I am warning you, if they get mad at me, you four are going to pay.” Mike commented.

“We will all take responsibility on this mission. Just please pack a bag and tell everyone to do the same. We will brief you once we get close to our location.” Ki3t cut think link to Mike’s ear-wig before he could hear he response. “Okay, Mike will get them packing. It shouldn’t be long now.” He told everyone else.

/~/

“What! They accepted a mission without telling us?!? And you accepted? Geeze Mike, you didn’t even get any information.” Sarah yelled at him when he told her.

‘Ki3t, you are going to pay big time for this.’ Mike thought to himself. “Hey, don’t look at me! Ki3t said that they will brief us closer to our location. They want us to pack a bag of a week’s clothes. Oh, he also said that this will require everyone, including Billy and Zoe.”

“Who are they going to ride with?”

“I guess Karr. That’s what Ki3t said.”

“Alright. You go tell Michael, Bonnie, and Kasey. I’ll tell Billy and Zoe to pack a bag.” They both stormed off in different directions. Sarah arrived at Billy and Zoe’s rooms and knocked on their doors. They both came out looking bewildered. “Pack a week’s bag. Ki3t says they have a mission that will require all of us. You guys are riding with Karr.”

“Awesome! We are going on a mission? YEAH!” Billy screamed.

“Cool, I grab a bag.” Zoe said calmly. They both stared at Billy while he continued his ‘dance of joy’ and yelled excitedly.

Meanwhile, Mike headed towards Michael and Bonnie’s room. He knocked and he heard “Come in!” He walked and looked for his father. “Dad, Ki3t told me to tell everyone to pack a week’s bag. He said that they found a mission that will require all of us, including Billy and Zoe.”

“Alright. Bonnie and I will pack a bag. Any idea where this mission is?”

“Nope, the smart-alecks we have for partners said that they would tell us closer to the location.” Michael chuckled and watched Mike leave for Kasey’s room.

Mike rapped on Kasey’s door and walked in when she told him to. “Ki3t told me to tell everyone to pack a week’s bag. We got a mission that involves all of us.”

“Okay, I’ll grab a duffle.” Mike left the room to pack his own bag.

Kasey seemed like she was talking to herself but she was actually talking to her ear-wig. “Any idea when we are leaving?”

“When everyone gets down to the garage, which should be within the hour.” Kile spoke.

“Okay. See ya in a few.” She started to pack her own bag.

/~/

They all met out in the garage and looked curiously over at the four silent AIs. Karr told them impatiently, “Will you please stop staring and get in already? We’re burnin’ daylight here!”

Kasey yelled across the room in Karr’s direction, “Hey! I hate that saying!” Then she slid down into Kile’s seat and threw the bag into the back.

Michael and Bonnie climbed in Ki2t and put their bag in the back. Mike and Sarah did the same with Ki3t. Billy and Zoe did the same with Karr. Soon the garage door lifted open and the four cars rolled out and down the drive towards the gate.

Kasey looked towards Kile’s red globe on the dash that came to be known as his ‘mouth.’ “So…You gonna tell me what’s on your guys’ mind? Or do we have to wait until our destination?”

“I am afraid you are going to have to wait until we get there. It’s a surprise.”

“I have grown to expect surprises with you. So… Can you tell me what this mission is about?”

“That will have to wait as well. Just sit down, shut up, and hold on, Kasey.” Kile joked and Kasey laughed.

“Good one. How about some music?” Kile turned on the country station and ‘What Was I Thinking’ by Dierks Bentley was on. She sang along while Kile drove. They drove to the beach and then headed up Highway 1 towards Pismo Beach. Kile was in the lead seeing as he had the duty of mapping out the trip. Ki2t followed, then Karr, then Ki3t. They didn’t dare to race on this road, not with a bunch of inexperienced drivers nearby. They went along maybe a little faster than the speed limit, but not by much.

It took them about 2 hours to get there. Once in the town, the Knight family started looking around to see what was going on. There were motorcycles and quads everywhere. Mike stared at a couple of them as they passed. Michael was starting to get tense. He didn’t like not knowing what was going on. All four cars pulled into a deserted parking lot where they could all talk to everyone. Michael stepped out and asked suddenly, “Okay, what the heck are you guys up to?”

Ki2t spoke with a smart-aleck tone, “Welcome to our mission. We, AIs, decided that we should take you on a vacation. This was one place where all of us could have fun.”

Everyone looked toward the Trans Am. Kile spoke up to save his father, “There is a beach here in town that is hard enough for vehicles to drive on. There are also dunes behind the beach, which explains the quads and motorcycles and dune-buggies. We thought that you guys would enjoy a week of literally camping on the beach. We also wanted to come so that we could see who gets the most air off the jumps.”

“Thanks, guys. It sounds really fun. But how are we going to pay for this? We aren’t exactly on a real mission here so FLAG won’t pay for it.” Michael said.

“Michael, really. You should know by now that we have our ways with money issues. There have been times where I have had to bail you out of tight situations.” Ki2t said with a know-it-all smirk.

“Alright, so where do we go from here?” Mike chipped in.

“Get in.” Ki3t replied, but before anyone made a move, the four cars transformed into their forms of a pickup truck. Kile was a black Dodge 4x4 Ram 2500, Ki3t and Karr were black Ford 4x4 F-250s, and Ki2t was a black Chevy 4x4 2500, all, of course, in the 2009 model.

“I’ll never grow tired of that.” Mike smiled and commented as they all got into their trucks.

As Mike got into his seat, Ki3t spoke up again, “I told you we would take any and all responsibility for everyone getting mad at you.” Mike eyed the blue globe.

Ki2t led them to the front gate. “Tell them you have a reservation for seven with four trucks for the Knight family.” He whispered to Michael.

“Hi. I have a reservation. It should be under the name of Knight.” He said as he leaned out the window toward the person in the booth.

“Yes. How many people and how many vehicles?” The lady in the booth came out to hear him better.

“Seven people and four trucks.”

“Okay, I am going to have to see some ID, and I have to get the license plate numbers on all of the vehicles.”

Michael handed her his ID and he wrote down all of the license plates on four different papers. He took the one with Ki2t’s plate and stuck the sticker part on his windshield. Normally, Ki2t wouldn’t like this but this was an exception he was willing to make. “Okay, you are going to have to let some air out of your tires and drive on down. Pick any spot that isn’t marked off. You have seven days here with a reservation. I will hand these stickers to the other drivers and they can place them on their windshields. Have fun!” Ki2t pulled forward and waited for the others to get their stickers.

Once everyone was ready, they let air out of their tires and started to ease onto the sand, unsure about their weight right now. Everyone held on as the trucks drove onto the sand. Once they were sure that they weren’t going to get stuck, they sped up to get through the loose sand and onto the harder sand closer to the water. “Wow, this is awesome.” Kasey smiled as she stuck her head out the window and breathed the fresh air.

“I am glad you are enjoying this.” There was a two way ‘road’ going down the beach. They followed in a line and followed other trucks and trailers as they went to find camping spots. On the way down, they passed several places where a company was renting quads out. They passed a ‘pit-stop’ truck, a tiny shop that had smaller parts for quick fixer-uppers for the motorcycles and quads. There were many camp trailers and motor homes out on the sand. They were surprised when they saw a semi that was pulling a trailer out on the sand. In the distance in the dunes, there were people jumping their motorcycles, quads, and dune-buggies. There were 4x4 trucks and jeeps out there as well making smaller jumps. The entire beach was covered with unmarked campgrounds. They found a spot with just the perfect size for the four trucks and four tents, away from any prying eyes so there wouldn’t be any questions with talking vehicles.

“Well, now that you have us here, where are we going to stay?” Sarah asked. They didn’t know yet that the AIs had brought along all of the gear.

“Right here.” Ki2t said. The four trucks let down their tailgates to reveal the mattresses, tents, coolers, blankets, chairs, and everything else that was required for camping. “You seriously thought that we would forget about you guys? That hurts.” Ki2t teased.

“Thanks, guys. Really. This means a lot to us.” Mike said. The rest nodded in agreement. “Well, let’s start unpacking. I plan to rent us a couple of quads or dune-buggies!” They set out to put up the tents and get the fire pit dug. Once everything was out, the four trucks moved out to make more room for the tents to be put up and then re-parked facing the center of their ‘circle.’ They got the tents set up and put the mattresses inside, then the blankets, then their bags. While the four girls were setting up the rest of the camp, the three guys dug a campfire pit. Kasey saw that they didn’t have any logs. “Hey, was there a place in town where we could buy firewood?”

“Yes, right outside the front gate.” Kile responded.

“Okay, Kile and I are going to go get some firewood. We’ll be right back.” She hopped in and started the engine. “So, this is the plan you guys had cooked up for us?”

“Yes. Do you think you will enjoy it? I had suggested the idea.”

“Of course I’ll enjoy it! As long as you don’t mind getting a little dirty.” Kasey said mischievously.

“What do you mean by ‘getting a little dirty’, Kasey?”

“Watch.” Kasey suddenly took control of the wheel, which Kile willingly gave her. She made sure no one was coming from the other way and turned on the other side of the road so that she would hit the water. The truck’s tires made a huge splash and got water and sand all over the driver’s side of the truck. She circled in the water and got the passenger side filthy as well. “YEEEEHAWWWW!” She screamed out the window and people stared at them as they went by.

Kile let her have her fun for the time being. “Okay, I get the picture.” He said.

“Oh, this is just the beginning…” She said playfully. She turned back around and headed towards the front gate. Kile wasn’t that embarrassed because all of the other vehicles here were also very filthy. They went through the gate and saw the truck that had fire wood in the back of the bed. Kasey leaned out the window, “Hey, how much does a bundle cost?”

The two men that were chatting looked over at her. Their eyes trailed around and looked at the sand crusted Dodge. “Uh, three bucks. Looks like you had fun there in the water.” One snickered.

“Yeah, my friend brought me down here without telling me where we were going. So I decided to get him filthy.” Kasey rolled up her window and asked Kile a question, “How many should we get?”

“You have a ten right now. Why don’t you get three for the time being? We can always come back for more.” He suggested.

Kasey got out and handed the man the ten. “Three please.” She walked to the back and let the tailgate down. She grabbed two while the second man put the third in the bed. The first man gave her the change. “Thanks. See ya around.” She climbed back in the truck, ignited the engine, and sped off.

Kile decided to have a little fun of his own. He scanned the area to make sure there were no cops around and did a 180, which with a truck is very hard to do. People stared in awe as the Dodge’s tires skidded and left rubber on the ground. He hit the gas again and burned out towards the gate. The two men couldn’t do anything but stare at the woman who they thought had pulled the stunt. She saw their looks and began laughing hysterically. “What are you laughing at?” Kile asked as he watched her.

“Those....guys...You...should…have seen… their faces!” She said in between breaths. “It’s like they saw a famous actor or somethin’!” She finally calmed down as they neared the gate. The lady saw the ticket and let them through. They drove back out onto the sand and got onto the harder road. About half way down Kile took over driving again. “What’s up?” Kasey said as Kile started to head back into the dunes.

“We are going to have a little more fun. Just sit down and hold on. I’m drivin’!” He replied excitedly as he hit the gas sending sand everywhere.

Kasey smiled and held onto the handle as Kile started up a steep incline. They made it up the hill and came back down on the other side, which was very steep. Kasey screamed in joy as gravity took over, sending Kile down the hill very fast. Once at the bottom he turned left and started up another hill. The down part wasn’t that steep but he still floored the accelerator. They went over a series of whoops, making the whole truck shake. “Dang! This is fun!” Kasey screamed out the window but still holding on. She knew Kile wouldn’t do anything stupid and that she was safe with him.

They kept going over large hills and heading to the back parts of the dunes. Once Kile saw that no one else was around, he found a long straight path the led towards a very large dune. He stopped and scanned the area behind the dune to make sure everything was safe. “Hold on Kasey.” He said as he hit the gas again. Kasey’s eyes widened when she saw the gigantic dune. She grabbed the door and the center arm rest for support. Kile raced down the ‘runway’ speeding with every second. He hit the dune going 87 mph and flew up the side. To add a little more to it, he pressed the turbo boost and they flew over 30 feet in the air. It seemed to take forever to come back down to Earth. Kile made sure to land gently as his tires hit the ground.

Kasey was still gripping the seat and door when Kile slowed to a stop. “Whoa. Now that…was fun.”

Kile smiled to himself. “I told you that we were going to have a little more fun.” He paused. “It would be fun to race the others out here, don’t you think?”

“Oh, heck yeah. Maybe tomorrow we can all come out here and do this again.” She relaxed and melted into the seat. “Let's go back to camp. They probably are starting to get worried about us.” Kile drove back towards the camp.

Chapter 2

Kile and Kasey pulled up and Kasey got out of the truck. The tents were set up, the pit was dug, the chairs were set up, everything was ready. Bonnie started towards Kasey, “Where the heck have you been?” She glanced over at Kile and saw the sand. “And what the heck did you do to Kile?”

“We had a little fun. Does that answer your question?” Kasey walked to the tailgate as Kile let it down. Bonnie grabbed a bundle and Kasey grabbed the last two. Kile pulled his tailgate back up when they were walking towards the pit. “Mike, I got some wood. Where should I stack it?”

“Right here.” He grabbed a bundle from her and set it on the ground by the pit. “Okay, I think everything is good to go. Anyone want to join me in renting a couple of quads?”

“Let's all go. We’ll have to get them here some way. We’ll drive them back and the AIs could follow us.” Bonnie commented.

They all got into their vehicles. Kasey decided that she was going to have a little more fun, so she climbed in the bed of the truck and walked to the back window. Normal Dodge Rams don’t have a roll down back window, but Kile did, and he rolled it down as she walked up. “What are you doing? You are supposed to be ‘driving’ me.”

“Just go. I wanna feel the wind in my face.” Kile started up but kept the window down so if he needed to tell her something, she would hear it. He caught up to Karr and followed behind. When there was room, he decided to drive side by side with him, just for the fun of it. Billy and Zoe saw Kasey in the back of the truck trying to look like she was flying, her arms spread out like wings and her red hair flowing back in the wind. They started giggling.

They reached the trailer that had the quads on it. They pulled up in front of it, side by side. Kasey jumped over the side of the truck and walked to the front, her hand gliding down Kile’s side. Mike walked up to the man, “How much to rent a quad?”

“About $200 a day.” The guy stood next to the trailer and looked the family up and down.

“Wow. I didn’t realize that they cost that much. Is there anywhere cheaper?” Mike looked at the others then back at the guy by the trailer.

“Afraid not. All the stores here cost about the same.”

Mike looked back at the others, “Never mind. I don’t have that kind of money.” He looked disappointed but didn’t dwell on the thought to much. “Well, I guys we stick with our friends here.” He looked at the black Ford F-250 that had two red scanner bars swishing back and forth on the grill.

Ki3t whispered into his ear-wig, “Sorry, Mike. We didn’t realize they cost that much.”

Mike walked over to the driver’s door and peered into the window, “That’s okay. That just means we get to spend more time with our partners!” He grinned evilly and walked back towards his family. “So, what do we do now?”

“Kile and I found this great dune in the back to jump. Let’s see how high they can go.” Kasey suggested.

Michael grinned, “I’m all for it. Let’s show these other ‘four-wheelers’ what a real 4x4 can do.” He grinned mischievously and hopped into the bed of Ki2t. Bonnie followed. Mike and Sarah did the same with Ki3t. Kasey got into Kile’s bed.

Billy and Zoe walked to Karr’s doors instead of doing what everyone else did because they weren’t sure if Karr would let them. Before they got there though, Karr locked his doors, “What are you doing? Get in the back like everyone else. Just because you are my drivers this round doesn’t mean you can’t have the same faith in me like the others have in their partners.”

Billy and Zoe smiled at each other and hopped into the bed. Everyone held on as the trucks backed out of their parking spots and drove towards the dunes. The rental guy who was standing by the trailer was surprised when he noticed no one driving the four large vehicles. He looked after them and just considered it his imagination.

Just to be on the safe side, the four AIs decided to put handles on the backs of their roofs, just above the back windows; their nanoskin provided them with that option. They wanted their drivers to be able to hold on if something went wrong, unlikely though. Everyone held onto to their handles with one hand and waved the other in the air, like a cowboy would do when riding a bucking bronco. They all were whooping and hollering and having a good old time. They four AIs couldn’t have been happier to see their friends like this. The four jumped the dunes and went over the whoops fast, making their passengers practically fly out of the bed. People were staring at them as they passed, dreaming that they could be the ones in those trucks.

The trucks finally made it to the back of the dunes where Kile and Kasey had found the large one. “There it is. I don’t see anyone around so it’s safe. But I recommend everyone to be in the cab if we are going to jump it.” Kile announced as they pulled up. Everyone got out of the beds and climbed into the cabs as requested. Kile decided he was going to the first to show off and took off towards the dune just after Kasey got in. “Hold on Kasey! Here we go again!” She grabbed the door and the seat again and screamed as they gained air from the jump. They landed and turned around and jumped again. The rest of the family looked on as Kile landed smoothly and skidded to a stop just before them.

“Kile, can you open a sunroof, please?”

“Of course.” He transformed the roof with the nanoskin to make a square window which opened automatically.

“Thanks.” Kasey stood up in the seat and out the window. She yelled in the direction of the other three trucks, “What’s the matter? Chicken?” She laughed as she saw all four trucks rev their engines in response.

Ki2t used his outside speakers to project his voice, “We’ll go once you guys get out of the way!” He said with humor in his voice.

Kasey couldn’t help but laugh again and Kile pulled forward, Kasey still hanging out the sunroof. The others started to race towards the hill, all their passengers holding on for dear life. Kile raced after them as Kasey got back inside the cab to sit down. They all jumped the dune at the same time and flew for a few seconds in the air. Everyone screamed in joy as the trucks defied the laws of gravity once again. They all landed nicely and whipped around and went for the dune again.

By this time a bunch of kids on their own ATVs stopped to stare at the trucks jumping higher than anything else could. More and more people came to watch the event and stared in awe. Nobody in the trucks seemed to realize that they were putting on a good show for everyone, so they kept jumping.

Each time a truck went in the air, the next one tried to beat either the height or the length of the previous. The AIs were having a great time and were sad when they heard some people cheering them on, meaning that they were spotted and needed to stop before someone else tried this stunt with a normal vehicle. The four trucks pulled over to the people staring at them and Michael got out, “Now, I know what you have seen is really…different, I couldn’t believe that we did it either, but we are professionals at this. These four trucks are built for this kind of wear and tear. Don’t try doing what we just did, you will end up hurt. The only reason we came out here to do this is because we thought no one would follow us. Just, please whatever you do, DO NOT try doing this yourselves.” Every one dispersed and Michael got back into Ki2t.

“Well said, Michael. Sorry I didn’t scan them before.” Ki2t spoke up.

Bonnie reassured him before Michael could, “You are allowed to have your fun too, don’t worry about it. You were too busy concentrating on the jumps to realize them. The others didn’t notice either so you aren’t to blame at all.”

“Thanks.” Ki2t replied. It was getting dark out so the four AIs took control and drove back to camp.

/~/

The sun was setting over the ocean and everyone was back at camp. Other people were still riding their ATVs but the noise was dying down because it was getting dark. Michael and Bonnie were making dinner on the table that was set up; hamburgers and hotdogs on a grill over the fire. Mike, Sarah, Billy, and Zoe were sitting around the campfire talking to everyone else. Ki2t, Ki3t, and Karr were also surrounding the fire talking with the humans.

Kile and Kasey weren’t at the fire, they were down the beach a while away, watching the sun set. They were farther away from all the noise of the ATVs and everything else. Kasey was laying back against Kile’s hood and windshield, her arms as her pillow. They sat in silence, just watching the sun fall beneath the Earth. Kile was the first to talk, “Are you enjoying your vacation, Kasey? Even though it has only been a day?”

“I love it. It’s the best one I have ever been on. I get to spend time with my family and my best friend.” With that last part she rubbed the hood lovingly.

“Do you really mean that?”

Kasey thought she understood what he was hinting at, but wanted to make sure, “Mean what?”

“That I am your best friend. You have only known me for less than a month. Are you sure?”

“Let me tell you something. I have had many friends throughout my entire life. There were the good friends who would help you with something anytime, the regular friends who you chat with all the time, and the peers who are just there as a partner in a group. But all of these people I know don’t really care if something was to ever happen to me. I have realized that they just use me to get a better grade in something or to have fun on their own, so I have never truly believed in best friends. But the day you arrived at my school and saved my life countless times in one day, my mind had changed. Now that I am spending more and more time with you, I recognized that I was saving my best friend for someone who deserved to be called that by me. You are that someone. You are my best friend.”

Kile hesitated for a minute to take in all she had said, “I don’t know what to say. You are the only true friend I have ever had as well, so that would make you my best friend too. Thank you for choosing me.”

“No problem.” The sun was now a thin line across the water and was getting smaller by the second. Kasey leaned her head back against the windshield and closed her eyes, feeling the breeze on her face. She kept rubbing the hood, which was warm against her back taking the chill out of the night. A strong gust of wind though still made her shiver. She slid off the hood and reached in the cab to grab her jacket. She put it on and walked to the front of the truck. “Come on. Let’s head back.” Kasey started to walk down the beach and noticed that Kile wasn’t following, “You okay?”

“Yes. I just don’t want to leave. If you want to, you can, but do you mind if I stay here?”

“No, of course not. I was hoping that we could stay actually. I was just worried that everyone else would be getting worried of our absence.” She walked back to the front of the truck and leaned against it.

They sat in silence again for a while watching the last rays of the sun leave the sky, making it look purple and the clouds pink. It was beginning to get cold though and Kasey started to shiver. “Now we can head back. You are getting chilly and I don’t want me to be the reason you have a cold.” Kile opened his door for her.

“I’m gonna walk. Drive beside me?” He shut the door and started his powerful engine. Kasey smiled at the sound of it; she loved the power that Kile had. He drove up next to her and they started making their way back towards camp. Kile turned on his fog lights to light the way and to let others know that someone was there. Kasey put her hand on the mirror as a guide and kept walking on.

They reached camp ten minutes later. Everyone looked up as Kile pulled up behind Kasey. “There you are. We were about to send a search party after you.” Sarah smirked.

“Sorry, beautiful sunset and we couldn’t pass it up.” Kasey walked over to the table at one of the cooked patties and made herself a hamburger. She put it on a plate and grabbed a soda from one of the coolers. She then walked over to Kile and sat down on the ground in front of him, still close enough to the fire so that it would heat her. Kile decided to pull up closer right behind her and she leaned back against his bumper. “Thanks,” she whispered loud enough for just him to hear.

“You’re welcome.” Kile replied softly.

Everyone continued to talk about this or that. Kasey only half listened as she finished eating her dinner and gazed up at the stars. They weren’t as bright as they were the night Kile had rescued her, but they were still beautiful.

It was starting to get late, 11:28 p.m. to be exact. Kasey had closed her eyes sometime earlier and Michael and Bonnie stayed up while everyone else slumped off to bed. Michael noticed that Kasey was asleep and walked over to her and picked her up very gently, trying not to wake her and trying to brush some of the sand off of her so that she wouldn’t get much in her bed. Bonnie opened Kasey’s tent and Michael laid her on the blow-up mattress. He pulled her boots off and put the blankets on top of her, making sure she would be warm. He climbed out of the tent and Bonnie zipped it up after him. “She is really tired. But I can’t blame her though; it’s been a long, fun day.”

“I know. Hey Kile, you seem to be spending more time with her than the rest of us. How is she adjusting to this kind of life?” Michael asked looking toward the black shadow of a Dodge.

“I think she likes it. Of course she misses some of her friends from school, but she seems to be accepting us real well.” Kile answered.

“That’s good. It’s in the genes. She has a father, mother, and a brother who works with AIs every day. It’s no wonder why she accepted you so quickly.” Bonnie stated. She yawned and headed off to bed. “Good night guys. I’ll see you in the morning.” She climbed into her tent and got ready for sleep.

“You guys want the fire or do you want me to put it out?” Michael asked the four AIs.

“We really don’t need it, but it’s comforting. We’ll watch it and put it out if we have to. Get some sleep, Michael.” Ki2t told him.

He too yawned, “Alright. Good night guys.” He patted their hoods in affection as he walked by. Then he too climbed in the tent with Bonnie and fell asleep as well.

The four AIs stayed up for a little while longer and talked. “Kile, this was a great idea to come here. Even though we don’t exactly have the money for ATVs, we can still have fun doing other things.” Ki2t told him.

“Maybe we can scrounge up enough to rent four quads for one day. It will be expensive, but I think we can manage it. Am I the only one who has a bank account of their own?” Ki3t asked.

“I have one also.” Ki2t said.

“Sorry, guys. I don’t.” Karr commented sadly.

“Me neither. You guys have gotten paid for what you have done. Karr hasn’t done much with FLAG, no offense, and I haven’t been around long enough.” Kile pointed out.

“That’s okay. I think Ki2t and I will have enough to make $800. Not everyone will be able to ride together but they at least can have some fun.”

“That’s settled then. The only problem is getting them as a surprise for them tomorrow. We can’t exactly walk up and pay for them by ourselves.” Ki2t mentioned.

“Well, if we have to tell anyone, why don’t we tell Kasey? She can help us out.” Kile said.

“Yeah. Let’s ask her to help us in the morning to surprise everyone. It was upsetting to see Mike looking forward to renting a quad and not being able to afford it. This will cheer them up.” Ki3t said.

“Okay. Tomorrow we’ll ask Kasey and then go get them. Let’s get some sleep as well.” Karr said finishing up the conversations. They had agreed back at the Foundation that at least one AI would stay up at all times to keep an eye on things. For the first two hours tonight, Kile was going to stay up. Then Karr, then Ki2t, then Ki3t. The next night Karr would be first, then Ki2t, then Ki3t, then Kile. They would rotate like that every night. They all doubted anything would happen, but this was just to make sure. The three other AIs went into recharge while Kile kept watch.

/~/

Around 6 a.m., Kasey was stirring in her bed in the tent. She woke and found herself still clothed. ‘Oh. Someone must have carried me in here when I drifted off.’ She thought as she lifted herself up and put her boots on to go outside. It was still dark out but the stars were disappearing. She noticed that the Dodge, the Chevy, and one of the Fords were all dark. She saw the red scanner on the Ford’s grill and decided that it was Ki3t. “Morning, Ki3t.”

“Good morning, Kasey. Why are you up so early? The sun hasn’t even rose yet.”

“Force of habit. I have only slept in late a few times in my life. Other than that, it’s always 6 a.m. for me.” She paused and something came to her mind, “I could ask you the same question.”

“We agreed that one of us should be up at all times, just to be on the safe side. I happen to have the morning shift this round.”

“We all are on vacation. You guys get to rest as well.”

“We do. We each get our recharge time during the night. Kile was up for two hour first, then Karr for two, then Ki2t, then me. Don’t worry about it. We get the rest we need as well.”

“Okay.” Kasey sat down in one of the chairs around the fire pit, the fire long dead right now. She decided to get it going again, so she grabbed some new wood and put it in the pit. Then she poured some lighter fluid on it and lit it causing a flame to fly up. The fire caught and started to burn the wood making the surrounding area warm. “I wonder what we are going to do today.” She said mostly to herself.

Ki3t decided that now was the time to ask her about the ATVs. He gently woke the other AIs up so they all could talk. While the others were coming online, Ki3t started, “Kasey, we have a question for you.”

Kasey looked up and saw that the other three scanners were tracking back and forth. “Yes?”

Ki3t hesitated while he scanned to make sure everyone else was asleep, “Would you mind helping us with getting a couple of ATVs, please?” He asked in a quiet voice.

“I don’t think we can afford it. I know I can’t.” She said sadly.

“Ki2t and I have enough to rent four quads for you guys. We wouldn’t have told you and let you in on the surprise as well, but a truck can’t just drive up and ask for a couple of ATVs.”

“Wait, no offense, but how do you guys have money? What could you use it for?”

“I have mine saved up just in case Michael is a little short on cash. I have had it for years.” Ki2t spoke up.

“That’s my reason as well. Sarah has given me a bank account so that if I need to get something and Mike doesn’t have that type of money, I would be able to help.”

“Oh. And you guys are willing to spend that money on us?”

“If it makes you happy, then we would spend it on anything.” Ki2t responded.

“Of course I’ll help you guys. If you don’t mind though, I would like to freshen up. Is there any place in town where I could get a shower, like a rest stop or something?”

Kile looked on his maps and answered her, “Yes, up by the second gate there is a rest area type of place that has private showers. I’ll take you up there.”

“Thanks. Let me grab some things.” Kasey walked into her tent to grab some soap, towel, and a change of clothes. She walked out, zipped up her tent, and strolled over to Kile’s open door. “We’ll call you when I’m done and you can meet us up at the store, okay?” She looked over at the other three AIs.

“Sounds good to me. See you soon.” Ki2t replied.

Kasey climbed into the truck and Kile closed the door for her. “I will drive. You still look tired.” Kile said as he pulled out of his spot and onto the beach road.

“Thanks.” She leaned back in the seat and closed her eyes. “Sorry about falling asleep on your bumper last night. I was beat.”

“That’s okay. It didn’t bother me in the least bit.” He passed the front gate still on the sand.

“Wait, we passed our exit.” She looked at the red globe on his dash.

“No, there is another exit where the showers are. It’s further up ahead. ATVs aren’t allowed to come down here, that’s why it’s so empty.”

“Oh.” He pulled out the second exit and parked in the lot before the building. “Be right back.” Kasey grabbed her things and walked in.

Ten minutes later Kasey walked back out, feeling clean. The sun was just coming up over the land and showing its rays. She strolled over to Kile and put her things in the passenger seat. Instead of getting in though, she just leaned against his side door, looking over across the ocean. “Is something wrong, Kasey?”

“Nope. Not at all. Just enjoying the peaceful morning.” She decided to get in at this point. “Okay, what time does the store open?”

“7 a.m. It’s only 6:30 right now.”

“Alright. Want to cruise around town and see what there is while we wait?”

Kile responded by firing his engine and backing out of his spot. He exited the lot and drove away from the beach. They went down the street, past a seafood restaurant. ‘We’ll have to try that place out. Looks interesting.’ They continued on down until a stop light came up and they turned left. They passed a trailer park and on the other side was a grove of trees. The sign said that it was where Monarch Butterflies stay during certain times of the year. They passed that and came into what looked like the older part of the town. They turned left down the main street of it and slowly drove. Kasey looked at the neat little gift shops around. On their way back up, she noticed a bowling alley and a pool hall. “We are going to have to come here one of these nights. I haven’t played pool in ages.” She said aloud.

“Maybe tomorrow night you can bring everyone here. It does look like quite an entertaining game.”

“It is as far as I can remember it.” Kile turned right back onto the road they were on. They went back to the stoplight and instead of turning right to go back, they turned left to go through more of the town. There was a Von’s (a version of Safeway), a laundry place, and a couple of other neat places. “There’s a place to do our laundry. Later when we have to we can come back here.” She looked down at the clock and saw it was getting close to 7:00. “Why don’t you go on ahead and call the others and we can meet them at the shop.”

Kile turned around and called Ki2t. “They are on their way now.”

Back at the camp, the trucks went into silent mode so as not to wake anyone and left. They drove to the shop where they found Kile and Kasey driving up as well. “Hey guys.” Kasey said out the window as all four trucks parked. She hopped out and walked over to Ki2t who opened his driver’s door to invite her in. She climbed in and closed the door behind her. “Okay, how do I go about getting the money?”

“Here.” Above the glove box there was a slot where five $100 bills came out. “You will have to go to Ki3t to get the rest.”

“Awesome. Thanks.” She climbed out and walked to Ki3t’s door. The same procedure went with Ki3t, only it was four hundred instead of five. “Okay, that should be enough to rent four quads.” She walked into the store.

The guy behind the counter looked up as he saw her enter. “Hello, ma’am. What can I do for you?”

“How do I go about renting four quads?” Kasey walked up to the counter.

“Well, pay for them here, I hand you a receipt, and you go down to the trailers on the beach where you pick them up. We give you the helmets here though.”

“Okay, I guess I need to rent four quads for the day.”

“That will be…” He calculated the number on a calculator, “$879.29. Cash or credit card?”

“Cash.” She handed him the nine hundred dollars. Kasey looked around the store as he rung everything up. Pictures on the wall caught her eye. She walked over and read the sign, ‘Wall of Shame.’ There were pictures of vehicles buried in the sand up to their tires, fenders, doors, windshields, and much more. There was a picture there of a motor home where all you could see was the top of it. She laughed and saw a picture of two great big yellow tractors, ‘The Tonka Toys’ as they were called, pulled out an older Chevy truck from the sand. “Do you get accidents like these all the time?” She said as she walked back to the counter.

“Believe it or not, yeah, we do. People can be so stupid. There are probably vehicles down under that sand that we haven’t found yet. It’s hilarious…Here’s your change.” He handed her the change and the receipt to pick up the quads. “Um, what’s your helmet size?”

“Uh, I don’t know. Can I try one on?” He handed her a helmet which fit like a glove. “Perfect. Can I get two of these and two others one size larger please?”

“Of course.” He handed her the well used helmets, “Have a great day!” He said as she left the store.

Kasey strolled over to the trucks, “Okay, now we pick them up at the trailers. Let’s go!” She hopped into Kile and they backed out of the small lot. They went through the gate and down the beach to where they spotted the black military Hummer sitting by the trailer with a bunch of red quads. The four trucks backed up to the trailers and let their tailgates down. Kasey got out and walked over to the man who was waiting there. “Hello. I need to pick up four quads please.” She handed him the receipt.

“Okay. You gonna load them up into them trucks?” He looked over her shoulder at the four AIs.

“Yes. Can I get a little help please? I would have asked my father or brother out here but my friends want it to be a surprise.”

“Of course. By why, may I ask, are your friends still in the vehicles and not out here to help you?” The man eyed her curiously.

“Uh, they can’t come out. They…” She couldn’t think of a reason. Finally, one popped into her head, “They are sick and they don’t want to get anyone else sick as well.”

He nodded and helped her load them into the beds and strapped them down with some straps. “Thanks.” She got back into the truck and all four left to head back to camp. “Okay, how are we going to hide these so that no one sees them when we get back?”

“I have a suggestion.” Kile stated. Suddenly the tops of the bed opened up and a camper shell formed over the quad, covering it completely. “Does this help any?” Kasey looked back and saw what he had done.

“That’s great. Can you tell the others to do the same?” Kile relayed the instructions and saw the two Fords and Chevy do the same thing. “Perfect.” They pulled into camp and parked in the same places as they had before. Everyone was still asleep. Kasey got out and put her stuff into her tent. She then picked up a stick and stoked the fire.

Chapter 3

Bonnie had waken first and walked out to find Kasey being a pyro, burning her stick and doing different things with it. Kasey looked up at the noise, “Hey, Mom.” Bonnie smiled at being called Mom. She could definitely get used to this. She had always considered herself to be Ki2t’s mother and now Kile’s mother, but to hear her real child calling her that made her heart pound with pride.

“Hey. What are you doing up so early?” She asked as she sat down in the chair across from Kasey.

“Why does everybody keep asking me that? I always get up early. It’s a force of habit.” She replied.

“Sorry, I am just used to everyone sleeping in. Michael sleeps in whenever he gets the chance anymore. Apparently Mike, Sarah, Billy, and Zoe do the same.” They both stared at the fire for a little while.

During her wait for someone else to get up, Kasey decided to make some breakfast. Nothing big, just sausage and some hash browns, something she could make on the grill. “I made a little breakfast. Eat up if you want some.”

“Thanks.” Bonnie walked over to the table and grabbed a plate of food. “This is good.”

“Thank you. It’s just something small.” Kasey continued to play with the fire, making the small stick she was playing with turn black.

After an hour, everyone else was up. They had finished off the breakfast and had freshened up. Kasey stood up and walked over to where she would be standing in front of the four AIs. “Hey guys, we have a surprise for you all.” Everyone looked over at the four trucks which were now putting their camper shells away to reveal four quads. All together, Kasey, Ki2t, Ki3t, Karr, and Kile said, “SURPRISE!”

Mike and Michael of course jumped up and ran to the back of the trucks overlooking the ATVs. “How did you come up with the money for these?” Mike asked as he crawled into the back of Ki3t.

“Ask your partners. They came up with the idea and the money. I just helped them along.” Kasey replied smiling.

Mike looked through the back window at Ki3t’s voice modulator, “Thanks buddy.”

“It was a pleasure, Mike.”

“How are we going to get these out though? We don’t have any ramps.” Michael asked.

“Why don’t we ask one of our neighbors to borrow the ramps for ten minutes? We can drive these to return them later today. We just put them in the beds so that we can surprise you.” Kasey responded and walked away to the 5th-wheel toy-hauler nearby. She asked for the ramps and they let her use them. Michael, Mike, and Kasey unloaded the four quads and then returned the ramps. Kasey walked to Kile’s back driver’s side door and got out the four helmets. “Okay, who’s first?

Mike and Michael obviously raised their hands first. She handed them two helmets. “Mind if we take Bonnie and Sarah with us?” Michael asked.

Kasey tossed the two women the other helmets and they got onto the two empty quads. All four took off for the dunes and had a good time. For the rest of the day, they all took turns riding on the quads. Kasey ran out a few times to get gas because they kept running the ATVs until they were bone dry. They either jumped in the dunes or ran along the beach down to the end and then turned around. No matter what they did, they had a great time doing it. Even the AIs got in on the fun. They would race their drivers or jump in the dunes with them. Sometimes someone would drive them or they would have to blacken out their windows because no one was. All in all though, it was a wonderful day.

On one of the jumps, Zoe got a little playful and dowsed Billy with a ton of sand. “Hey! You’re lucky I am even out here! I am not the outdoor type of person at all!”

Zoe just chuckled, “It’s not like your gonna get the plague or anything. Don’t worry, you’ll be fine!” Billy rolled his eyes and they continued to ride on.

8:00 p.m. came around quickly and they had to return everything. Mike, Sarah, Michael, and Bonnie rode the quads down to the trailer while Ki2t and Ki3t followed. Kile and Karr took Kasey, Billy, and Zoe up to the store to return the helmets. Ki2t and Ki3t pulled up just after Kasey had walked outside. She walked to the front of the trucks and asked everyone, “Kile and I found a seafood restaurant. Want to go to dinner there?”

Everyone said yes and they pulled out, Kile in the lead showing where to go. They arrived and parked. The four AIs decided to park in the back to make more room for the other guests. The family had a great dinner and had a great time. Kasey had brought along a deck of cards and they decided to play a couple of different games like Poker, Black Jack, 31, Speed, BS, and a bunch of others. They spent a couple of hours there laughing and having a good time. 11:00 rolled around and the waitress told them that they were closing up. Reluctantly, the family left and headed back to camp. They stayed up and talked for a couple of hours and then went to bed. Karr was left to stay up for the first two hours that night and kept watch.

/~/

Again, Kasey woke earlier than everyone else, but this time she saw Kile’s scanner on instead of anyone else’s. “Morning.” She said towards the Dodge.

“Good morning, Kasey.” She stared at the black shadow after she had sat down. She could hardly see the outline of the truck because it was so dark. Without the two red scanner bars, she would never had guessed there was something there. “What are you staring at?”

“I just realized how dark you guys could be. Without your scanner, you are virtually invisible.”

“That’s one of the many things that would help us keep stealthy at nights. Watch this real quick.” Kile used the nanoskin to turn the shell of the truck a matte black instead of a glossy black so that the moon’s reflections wouldn’t be seen. Then he decided to turn his scanner off to make himself completely invisible. “Can you see me now?”

Kasey knew he was there because she hadn’t felt him move, but she still had to squint her eyes to see anything. “Dang. Just barely. If I didn’t know you were there, I would probably run into you.” Kile turned on his scanner again and went back to the glossy black. “Well, maybe today we can hit that Main Street we saw yesterday morning. I want to look at the shops and go down the pier.”

“Sounds good to me. Us AIs could have us a good time people watching.”

“I love to do that. It can be hilarious at times. Places like the airport, business centers, bus stations, those kinds of places, have the funniest times. People rushing in and out trying to make their destinations, then the looks they give when they don’t make it. It’s quite fun.” They sat silent for a while, listening to the waves crash against the beach. “Would you mind taking me up to get a shower again? I absolutely love the beach but the sand is so irritating.”

“Sure. I know what you mean by the sand. It gets into places in my undercarriage that I didn’t know I had.” Kasey giggled some. She grabbed her things and hopped into the passenger seat. She put her things in the back and laid across the front seats, her head in the driver’s seat and her legs on the passenger’s. She stared up at the disappearing stars through the sunroof as Kile started his engine. “Comfortable?”

“With you? Always.” Kile smiled to himself as he drove up to the rest area. He parked but Kasey didn’t get out right away. Instead, she hooked her arm through the steering wheel and continued to look up at the sky. “This is perfect.” She whispered.

“What is?”

“Everything. The sunrise, the beach, and of course, you.” She sighed and closed her eyes, rubbing the steering wheel lovingly. Kile focused on her touch, ignoring everything else for the time being. It was also perfect for him. She stayed like that for another fifteen to twenty minutes and then decided to get up before anyone else came. She got out and headed inside with her things. Kile was saddened when he felt Kasey leave. He loved her touch and started to miss it when she stopped.

Ten minutes later, Kasey strolled back on out. She got in and started the engine, “Mind if I drive back?”

“Be my guest.” Kile relinquished control over to Kasey and she backed out and headed back to camp. When she got back, everyone else was up. She walked over and sat down in one of the chairs while Billy made breakfast this morning. Already people were starting to ride their ATVs and the noise was growing. But they were getting used to the sound and weren’t bothered by it.

They sat around the fire while they all talked. “I am going to head to the old part of town and do some gift shopping. I also want to head down the pier. Anyone else care to join me?” Kasey said.

“We’ll all go.” Zoe said.

“Okay. When everyone is done with breakfast, Kile and I will show you where the street is. It’s not exactly that old, but there are some neat little shops there. There is a Christmas shop, a glass shop, gelato, or ice cream, a surf shop, and a bunch of others. There is also a bowling alley and a pool hall. Maybe tonight we can have dinner at one of those places.” Kasey started to eat her breakfast before it got cold.

“Awesome. Let’s play pool. I’m pretty good with a pool cue.” Mike said.

“I am willing to bet on that. I have won a few games in my time as well.” Michael grinned.

“Alright children, stop before a fight breaks out.” Bonnie interrupted with a smile.

Michael and Mike both pointed towards each other and in unison said, “He started it.” The group busted up in laughter.

/~/

Everyone made sure their things were put away before leaving camp to go to the older part of Pismo. They got into their trucks and took off towards the gate, Kile in the lead for the directions again. They arrived and all four vehicles pulled into parking spots next to one another. They got parking tickets and placed them on the windshields and walked towards the shops. Kasey walked into one of the shops that had a bunch of neat nick-knacks. There were a couple of shelves with pirate items on it. She saw some flags that she really liked. One said ‘Time flies when you’re having rum!’ with a jolly roger drinking a bottle of rum. Another had a more ‘girly’ pirate, a jolly roger with a crown and roses on it, which said ‘Pirate Queen.’ She picked out the pirate queen one and one other, a jolly roger with ‘Dead men tell no tales.’ She walked up to the register and paid twenty for the two flags. Kasey decided that she was going to surprise Kile and put them on flag poles on his bumper or something. It would be cool looking.

Kasey walked into the surfing shop and looked at all of the surf boards. She had never surfed, but she had scuba-dived, so she was familiar with some of the gear. She looked around and found one she really liked, a tall black board with red flames going down it. She wasn’t going to buy it, but if she was going to buy one, this would be it. She walked out of that store and went into a bunch of others. Michael, Bonnie, Mike, Sarah, Billy, and Zoe were all around somewhere, probably shopping on their own. Kasey didn’t mind being alone, she was actually having fun. They met up at the end of the street and had lunch at the gelato shop. It happened to be real gelato from Italy as well, which was much better. They continued shopping for the rest of the afternoon. Kasey didn’t buy much but did have fun window shopping.

It was getting late in the afternoon and the sun was starting to set. Kasey had put her bags into Kile and decided that she was going to walk down the pier, which was almost deserted. She walked to the very end where it pointed west to make a V. She enjoyed the faint movement of the pier as it swayed from the waves of the ocean. There was a bench there and she sat down, looking at the horizon. Kile whispered into her ear, “Are you okay, Kasey? You seem a little lonely.”

Kasey sighed, “I am a bit. I love this family, but I am the only child here. Bonnie has Michael, Sarah had Mike, and Zoe has Billy. I don’t know why this is affecting me as it is, but I just feel…out of place. It’s silly really.”

Kile scanned the pier to see what its weight limit was. He could make it out there if he was the Challenger instead of the Ram. He pulled out of his parking place and went to an empty alley. He quickly transformed and then pulled back onto the street. He drove slowly to the pier in silent mode, so that nobody would turn their heads at his engine noise. He carefully made his way out onto the pier and down closer to the end, scanning for any weak points so he wouldn’t go through the old wood. Kasey didn’t even notice when his prow touched her back, making her jump. “Oh, you scared me! I wasn’t expecting you to come out here.”

“Sorry. I didn’t mean to frighten you. I just thought that you might like some company.” Kile explained gently.

“That’s okay. Thanks for your concern.” She leaned back against the bumper and laid her had on his hood. “How were you able to get all the way out here? Are you sure this pier will hold?”

“I scanned it ahead of time and I had to be the Challenger to make it through. The Ram was too big for the small gap back there and I made sure no one saw me as I came out here.”

“Well, no matter how much I enjoy your company, we need to make this quick. Technically, vehicles are not allowed on the pier.” She said sadly but neither one made the move to leave. In fact, they stayed that way until the sun went down and it got dark.

A security guard came down to make sure everything was okay when he noticed the car. “Ma’am, I am sorry but vehicles aren’t permitted down here for safety reasons.” Kasey looked around and saw him with a flashlight.

“Oh. I am sorry, Sir. I just wanted to come out here and I really couldn’t find any other way.” Kasey made a show of having a hurt leg. She slowly got up and put her weight on the car and walked to the driver’s door. “I just hurt my leg today and we are leaving soon. I really wanted to see a sunset on the pier. I am sorry. This won’t happen again.”

“That’s okay, Ma’am. Will you be able to make it back out backing all the way?” He inquired.

“I drive better backwards than forwards.”

“Okay. You have a good night.” The guard walked back towards the shore and Kasey got into the Challenger.

“You see what you got me into?” Kasey grinned and pointed a finger at Kile’s globe.

“I am sorry about that. That was a good excuse though.”

“Thanks. I was just playing with you. Let’s head to the pool hall. Everyone should be there by now. You can drive out if you would like. That way we won’t fall through the wood or go over the railing because of my stupidity.” Kile slowly backed up and drove off of the pier.

“I will drop you off by the hall and then I will transform back into the Ram.” He said as he pulled up next to the building. “Have a good night, Kasey. I will see you later.”

“Thanks. See ya.” Kasey got out and walked in. Kile went back into the alley and transformed as he said. Then he went back to his parking spot and watched the night.

Kasey walked through the front doors and into a shop of some sorts. There were shirts everywhere with different band names. She continued on until she saw the pool tables. There were tons of them and people were everywhere. Music was playing and there were TVs at the back of the building by the bar. The bar just wasn’t for serving alcohol, it served a little bit of everything. Michael spotted her and waved her over to the table they had. They had just started a game and she chose to be on the girl’s team, of course.

For the rest of the night, the family had a great time. Rock ‘N’ Roll played all night long and when a good song came on, they all started to dance to it and using their cue sticks as ‘guitars.’ Michael and Bonnie had actually danced slowly to one of their favorites, ‘Like a Rock’ by Bob Seger. Mike and Sarah joined them and then Zoe even let Billy lead her around. Kasey sat back and watched as all the couples danced, again that loneliness feeling returned. But she didn’t let it show through. The song ended and they went back to playing pool. The girl’s team won, only because Bonnie was almost professional and Sarah had a ton of practice from when she had down time at the SSC. Zoe and Kasey were okay for beginners, but did very well. Mike, Michael, and Billy did good, but not enough to win. They had dinner there and continued to play until the late hours of the night.

11:00 came and Kasey felt tired. Bonnie saw her almost nodding off in wait of her turn, “Hon, why don’t you go back with Kile. You look like you are about to collapse on the floor.”

Kasey looked up at her with dead tired eyes, “I think I might just do that. I will see you guys later.” She walked groggily out to the front.

Bonnie thought she might not make it all the way down to the parking lot so she called Ki2t by her comlink, “Hey, can you have Kile come pick Kasey up, please? She is beat and I don’t think she’ll make it to the parking lot.”

She heard him reply, “Of course, Bonnie.”

Ki2t told Kile and he automatically fired his engine. He drove slowly up to the pool hall. About three-fourths of the way there, he saw Kasey dragging herself down the sidewalk. He stopped and whispered into her ear, “Hey, I am right here. You don’t have to walk all the way down there.” He saw her turn and smile. She walked over to his passenger door and he opened it for her.

“Thanks, Kile.” He closed the door and started to drive off towards the campground. Before they even left that street, Kasey was slumped in the passenger seat and snoring. Kile gently lowered the seat to a more comfortable position for her and she snuggled into it. Kile turned up his heater and continued back.

Once they got back to the camp, Kile tried to wake Kasey so that she could sleep in her bed in the tent. “Kasey?” Nothing. “Kasey. We are back. Would like to sleep in your bed?” Still nothing. So he decided to just scan the camp and make sure everything was alright before turning his attention back to Kasey while she slept. She stirred here and there, but other than that, she slept like a log.

Chapter 4

The next couple of days went by faster than lightning. The next day, Kasey had put on the flags that she bought the day before. Kile at first didn’t care for them much but decided that it was fun to make them turn different ways in the wind. All of the family went into the dunes and jumped the hills many times. The trucks had to get more gas because of everything they did, but no one minded because they had so much fun. They even had complete strangers asking if they could get fun rides like that, some even offered to pay. They were denied though because they couldn’t exactly tell them it was not them driving. But all of the attention didn’t keep them from showing off. The four AIs raced each other constantly. Sometimes, Billy, Kasey, Mike, and Michael would race the trucks themselves, the rules where the AIs would stay out of the race unless there was a danger.

/~/

Michael decided he was going to go parachuting, only not as high as he did on one of his missions so long ago. They went to the kite store and bought four smaller parachutes and the harnesses for them. Before Ki2t knew what was going on, Michael was attaching the rope to his bumper and the other end to his own harness. “Hey, Pal, start driving up into the dunes! I want to see how high I can get!”

“Michael, really. I thought we established that this was a dangerous sport and you could be badly hurt, especially now that you have aged considerably.” Ki2t retorted in a haughty tone.

“Please, Buddy? For me? Just this one time.”

“You said that last time. Alright, fine. Hold on.” Ki2t started to drive and Michael ran behind with the parachute flying in the air. The rest of the family saw this and went to get their own set up from the pile at the camp. They took turns behind each of their vehicles. Of course, Kasey got full time because she was Kile’s only driver. They all had a great time and spent hours in the air. Finally, they came back down and decided that they should stop for the day. Everyone went to bed early that night. Even the AIs were tired, but they still kept a vigil watch during the night.

The day after that, Kasey decided that she wanted to go horse-back-riding. Sarah, Bonnie, and Zoe went as well, but the guys refused to even go near the horses. So instead, they played cards while the girls went and did their thing. Kasey had the most fun. She absolutely loved horses and wanted so badly to take off and just run the length of the beach. The only thing that stopped her was the fact that she signed a contract and that she didn’t know the horse under her very well. Kasey rode a dappled grey Appaloosa named Silverado. Sarah rode a roan Quarter horse named Sunshine. Bonnie rode a black and white Paint named Sarge. And Zoe rode a Palomino named Dixie. The group leader lead them through the dunes and on the beach riding a silver dappled Shire named Tuffy. They spent about three hours riding through the trails. Kasey wasn’t really surprised when the horses weren’t afraid of the ATVs as they screamed past them. They even went into the water and trotted through it. All four of them had a great time and were saddened when they had to return. Kile sat waiting for them when they came back. They got in and Kasey drove back to camp.

When they returned, it was later in the afternoon. The three guys were playing poker and trying not to use their partners for cheating, which was turning out to be quite funny. Bonnie, Sarah, and Zoe walked over to join them and play. Kasey grabbed a can of soda and sat down in one of the chairs. After she was finished, she threw the can into the fire and watched it burn. She played pyro again as she stuck the fire with her well-burnt stick. After a while though she got bored and stood up, “I am going to go for a walk. See ya in a while.” She walked off towards the ocean and then down towards the empty end of the shore.

Michael stared after her, “I think she gets lonely sometimes. I mean, we are all adults here and she is the only teen.”

“I have noticed that too. Maybe she would be happier if she went back to school after we get back. She could be with her friends and be a real kid again.” Bonnie said afterwards.

Kile could not help but feel sorry for Kasey. “I am going to follow her if you don’t mind.” He backed up and drove quietly to where Kasey was walking.

“Well, at least she has Kile to be with. Those two have been inseparable lately.” Mike said. The others nodded in agreement and returned to their game.

Kile caught up to Kasey and drove beside her. “Kasey, are you alright?”

“Yeah. Just felt like I did the other night. I can’t wait to go back to school to be with my friends again. I love my family and all, but I would like to be with people my own age.”

“I understand. I sometimes feel that way because I am the youngest of the four of us. Ki3t isn’t much older than me, but he has actually worked in the field with Mike. I haven’t done anything like that and therefore I sometimes too feel left out.”

They continued walking down towards the end of the beach. People were getting mad at the slow truck and passed rapidly by. But Kile didn’t care; he was here for Kasey and no one else. Once they got to the end where there were hardly any people, they both stopped and looked over the ocean. Kasey stood at Kile’s front end, “Can I get on your hood?”

“Please, don’t ask.” She climbed gently on top and sat cross legged with her back against the windshield. “Are you enjoying your vacation still?”

“Yes. I said this before and I’ll say it again, this is the best vacation I have ever had. Thank you again for suggesting this place. I am going to be sad to leave tomorrow.”

“Well, it’s only two hours away. We could come back anytime we really wanted and show these ATVs how pathetic they are.”

Kasey busted up laughing, “I love your sense of humor!” After a while, she was finally able to calm down to a small giggle.

“Why do you always laugh like that?”

She didn’t answer for a minute because she was thinking of an answer, “I don’t know. You are quite funny and sometimes you say things just at the right time. Other than that, I truly don’t know. I laugh at the stupidest things.”

“Oh, I see.” The sun was setting lower in the sky turning it orange again. They could never get tired of these beautiful nights here. “I think I am going to be sad to leave tomorrow as well, although my undercarriage would say different. I think all four of us are going to need a deep cleaning when we get back.”

“I’ll get you cleaned up, don’t worry.” She patted the hood. She looked up as she saw a loud diesel Ford truck try to make it back into the dunes. It didn’t make it too far and got stuck. He buried it deep and then stopped when he found that doing anything else wasn’t helping much. “Should we go help him?”

“I guess. Otherwise more people would get stuck trying to help him out.” Kasey climbed down and got into the cab. Kile started up his engine and drove over to the man who was fuming over his buried vehicle. Kasey rolled down the window as Kile pulled up alongside of the Ford.

“Need any help?”

The man looked up at her with embarrassment written all over his eyes. “Yeah. It looks I do. Do you happen to have any tow cables?”

“Yep.” Kasey got out and walked to the front of the Dodge to grab the grappling hook. “Here, let’s hook this up to your hitch.” She tied it around the hitch and the man got back into his truck while Kasey got into Kile. She yelled out the window, “Okay, let’s go slow at first!”

“Kasey, let me do this if you don’t mind. I can get him out faster and easier if I know the harder parts of the sand.”

“Be my guest.” Kile started to back up. He spun his tires at first but found traction and started to pull the Ford. They got out onto the harder sand and stopped before they ran into each other or into the ocean. Kasey hopped out to untie the hook from the Ford and let Kile roll it back in.

“Thanks, Little Lady. This Ford has been giving me problems for ages. I think now I will trade the dang thing in for a Dodge.”

“No problem. See ya around.” Kasey and Kile watched as the Ford drove off into the distance back to his camp. “Should we head back?” She asked him.

“Only if you want to. It is getting dark and the wind is starting to pick up again. It is also supposed to rain tonight so important things back at camp need to be covered.”

“It’s supposed to rain? Awe, what a way to end our vacation.” Kasey playfully pouted as she climbed into the Dodge. They drove back and found everybody sitting around the fire. She decided to be a pyro again and got out a can of hairspray that she never used from her tent. “Step back everybody!” And she threw the can into the fire. Billy almost fell out of his chair trying to get back. A few seconds passed and the can exploded, sending the lid up into the sky. It fell back down and landed on Kile’s windshield. Kasey started to laugh again and everyone else joined her. They found a couple of other things to put into the fire to make them explode.

“Why do you find it amusing to blow things up in the fire when it proposes a great danger?” Ki3t asked.

“Because, it’s fun to see what you can blow up. It’s the kids coming out in us. Plus other people look and stare at you because you are having such a great time.” Michael said.

“Oh.” Ki3t paused, “Well, if it is supposed to be fun, try putting this into there.” A can popped out of Ki3t’s front bumper and Mike retrieved it. He put it into the fire and watched it turn red. “I would recommend that you step back a ways.” He and the three other AIs backed up a good distance away and the others followed as told.

A sudden bang made everyone look away as the fire exploded again only this time sending flames forty feet high in the air. It seemed as the entire beach had their eyes on this particular campground. The family heard sirens somewhere in the distance and ran to get into their tents to act as if they were sleeping. The four AIs laughed to themselves because it was Karr who made the siren sounds. Michael came back out of the tent when he heard the sirens fade, “Thanks for making us look like idiots. That was you who did the sirens, wasn’t it?” He looked toward his partner.

“Michael, I am appalled that you would think that I would do such a thing.” Ki2t said with a laugh in his voice. Michael eyed him and Ki2t continued, “Besides, don’t put the blame on me. Karr did it.”

Everyone’s eyes shot over to the Ford with the yellow scanner, “Thanks brother. Stab me in the back why don’t you.” Kasey started to giggle again and everyone sat back by the fire.

“What was in that stuff, Ki3t?” Mike asked.

“Just some nitrous and kerosene. Was that something that should be fun?”

“I would say so.” Billy replied.

Kile saw that there was a motorcycle coming straight towards them but didn’t pay much attention to it. But as it got closer and saw that it was heading straight towards the camp and towards Kasey, he screamed, “Kasey! Watch out!” And he shot forward to push her out of the way. He did just in time and the motorcycle slammed into his driver’s side fender while Kasey fell forwards. The bike bounced back and hit Kasey’s tent, completely destroying everything.

Kasey and Bonnie ran over to the man’s side as he tried to get up. “Are you okay?” Bonnie asked.

“I think so.” He wobbled as he stood up from the wreckage. “I didn’t mean to do that. I think a stake flew into my handle bars and I couldn’t get the bike to stop. I am sorry about all this mess.”

“Don’t worry, we are fine. I just wanted to make sure you are okay because that was a hard wreck.” Kasey said.

“Yeah. I bet I did some damage to your beautiful truck.” The rider looked towards Kile’s fender and didn’t even see a scratch. “Uh…maybe not. How in the world did that happen?” He looked to his motorcycle that was bent up beyond repair.

“Don’t know, sorry. Looks like you need a ride back to camp. Let’s get your bike in the back of the truck and we’ll take you back.” Kasey helped the man into the passenger side of Kile and Michael and Mike picked the motorcycle up to put it into the back. Kasey got in the Dodge, “Okay, which way is your camp?”

“I am down towards the beginning of the beach. I’ll show you.” Kasey drove towards his camp. “Is this one of the trucks I saw jumping those dunes in the back?”

“Yeah, but don’t get any ideas of doing the same thing. We are professionals at stunt jumping and we don’t want to see anyone get hurt by replicating what we do.”

“Oh I understand. I won’t try any of that stuff at home. I am just honored to be in one of those magnificent vehicles. You must pay a ton of money to keep these things in tip-top condition.”

“You have no idea.” Kasey giggled to herself as they pulled into his camp. “Here we are. Let me help you with that bike.” They hopped out and unloaded the poor motorcycle from the bed of the truck. “You sure you are going to be alright?”

“Yep. Been in worse wrecks than this, but this is the first time that I have seen only me get hurt and not anything else. Thanks for the ride.” He walked off to join his family and Kasey got back into Kile.

Kile dove back to camp this time, “I am sorry for pushing you like I did. I didn’t want you to get hurt.”

“That’s okay. I would rather be pushed by you than hit by some motorcycle. Are you okay though? That was quite a hit you took.”

“I am perfectly fine, but I think your tent would say different.” Kile said as they pulled up next to what was left of Kasey’s tent.

“Ugh.” She looked out of the window towards the remains.

“Why don’t you stay in here tonight?”

She looked from her tent to his red globe. “You don’t mind the company?”

“Of course not. I would much rather have you inside of my cabin than in that old scraggily tent. You would also be much warmer.”

“Thanks. Let me clean this stuff up and I’ll join you.” Kasey got out and cleaned up the left-overs of her tent and blankets. She shook the sand out and loaded the stuff into the back seat of the Dodge and climbed into the driver’s seat and closed the door behind her. “Good night, Kile. Thanks for letting me stay with you tonight. I really didn’t want to get wet.”

“No problem. Have a good night’s sleep.” Kasey shut her eyes and was out before Kile could go into recharge.

Chapter 5

After it had rained for a long time, things were starting to settle down. The wind died and everything seemed calm. Many people slept in late and enjoyed their last morning on the vacation and didn’t worry about anything. But many didn’t realize that there was going to be extremely high tides that day because no one had told them. The water was slowly creeping up in the night and was getting closer to the trailers by the minute. Around 9:30 a.m., Karr woke everyone up because the water was licking his back tires and he didn’t want to get stuck. The family got up and cleaned their campsite and put everything away in the back seats of the trucks. They started back towards town and when they got to the river, they were forced to stop. What they saw was hard to believe; the river was 200 yards long, if not longer. Two trucks, a Ford and a Chevy, were in the middle with the waves from the ocean pounding their sides. The drivers didn’t give up though and kept coming towards the shore of the river. The water was starting to get to the top of their hoods, almost flooding the engines. Luckily, they made it across before they were washed away. The four AIs pulled up next to each other while their drivers discussed the situation.

“What should we do? I don’t think that even these guys can make it across.” Kasey said.

“Well, one of us needs to get to the front to see what exactly is happening. Then we can decide what to do from there.” Michael replied.

“Kasey, I think we should go. I am the fastest of us four AIs and therefore can make it quicker and I have the highest frame so the water won’t flood my engine so quickly.” Kile said.

“Kile says we should go because no offense to you three, we are bigger and faster. I agree.” Kasey yelled across for everyone to hear.

“Okay, just be careful.” Bonnie said.

“Let me drive, Kasey. I can get us across safely.”

“Be my guest.” Kile raced off after the water had started to recede enough to let them go. The water was still high and pulling the truck towards the ocean. Kile’s back end started to drift but the water was soon shallow enough for the wheels to catch the sand. He shot forward and within a few minutes, they were in the clear. “Nice job. Let’s go find out what’s going on.” Kasey took over and drove to the camp post.

They pulled up and Kasey got out and walked to the window, “You have some major problems right now. The river is bigger than a football field and many people aren’t going to be able to get out. Heck, my Dodge had a hard time moving through there.”

“Yes. We were expecting high tides today. What we weren’t expecting was for the river to flood like that.” The lady said.

“Why didn’t you say anything to anybody about the high tides? We could have packed up and been ready last night instead of almost getting stuck out there!” Kasey yelled at her.

“We didn’t want to lose any business. If everyone left last night, we would have lost a great deal of money.”

“Oh, so you value money over peoples’ lives?! Gee, thanks! Now how are you going to go about and get those people out of there? The rest of my family is still across that river and could be getting washed away as it is!”

“There is a Tow company here that can help your vehicles get across. I’ll give you the number.”

“Alright, how about the other couple of thousand people you have out there? A couple of tow trucks ain’t going to do any good!” Kasey was furious about now.

Kile watched as a wave got closer and closer to the shore. It came up over the sand and onto the asphalt and towards the building in which Kasey was in. “Kasey, look out!” He said through her ear-wig.

Kasey turned around just in time to see rushing water come around the building. “Get on the counter if you feel like staying dry.” She said as she jumped up onto the counter to keep from getting drenched. “Thanks, Kile.” She whispered into her ear-wig.

“You’re welcome.” Kile continued to watch for anymore rouge waves.

“What is that tow company’s number?” Kasey asked the lady who was still on top of the counter. She got the number and gave it to Kasey and Kasey stormed out of the building and back to Kile. She got in and closed the door. “Get this, they were expecting high tides today and didn’t say a dang thing! Can you get me Ki2t, Ki3t, and Karr please?”

Michael, Mike, and Billy showed up on the windshield and asked what was happening. “They were expecting high tides today and didn’t say anything. There is a tow company out here that can get vehicles across but there won’t be enough for everyone to get across.”

“Whoa, guys, look at this idiot!” Billy almost screamed. A Ford Bronco with a lift kit tried to come across the river, but halfway through it, it took a nose dive into the water and sunk a good ways down. The driver got out and swam to shore and someone helped him. “Wait, that vehicle is all the way underwater. Holy Moly! The river just washed out and got deep! There is no way we are going to be able to get across now!”

Kasey saw the whole thing because Ki2t fed Kile a video feed. “What do we do now? Hang on, there is a sheriff out here. Let me ask him.” Kasey got out and walked to the sheriff. “Sir?”

“Yes, Ma’am.”

“What’s going on now? The river is now seven feet deep and no one can get across it. How are people going to get out?”

“Well, there is a second exit, but it is only for 4x4s. We are talking with the other sheriffs out on the beach to see if we can get a group to go out that way. Otherwise, people are going to have to put their trailers further back into the dunes to stay away from the water. They can try to come across the river but we won’t know if it will be too deep for anyone to cross.”

“Okay, thank you.” She walked back to Kile and to the other awaiting drivers. “There is another exit but it is for 4x4s only. Others are going to have to stay in the dunes or get washed away.”

“Maybe we should help the others get back into the dunes to keep away from the water. That’s the only way I can see to help them.” Sarah said.

“Wait, I see those tow trucks. Man, they are enormous!” Two yellow tow trucks drove by and out onto the sand. They were made for semis and built to carry huge vehicles. On the side they said ‘Tonka’ and Kasey could understand why. What really stunned Kasey was when Kile tapped into his transformation program and altered it to be a larger tow truck. He transformed to look like one of them, only his black color instead of the bright yellow. “Are we heading back out there, Kile?”

“Well, we can’t just sit here and wait and do nothing. We can at least try to help some people get out of the waters. That is what our family does, right?”

“Yep. Let’s follow.” Kile pulled out and followed the two yellow Tonka trucks. They got back out onto the sand and got to the river. “Can you scan the river to see if it is still deep?”

Kile scanned the river as requested and replied, “Where we are headed will be too deep even for us. If we go closer to the ocean, we will make it, but we will have a better chance of getting washed away. We would have to be quick.”

“Alright. Turn on your microphones please.” Kile did so and Kasey spoke to the other two tow trucks, “Get closer to the ocean. The river is still too deep to cross for us. We can make it if we go faster and closer to the ocean.” The two drivers turned around and saw the huge black tow truck and nodded their heads ‘yes.’ Kile took the lead and the two Tonkas followed behind. They gunned the engine and made it across before the waves came up to wash the vehicles away. Kile pulled up next to Ki2t and Kasey got out to talk to Ki2t, Ki3t, and Karr.

“Can you transform into the tow trucks like Kile is here? We can move better and get people out of tight places if you guys are like this.” Kasey said.

“Of course.” The three other AIs made sure that no one was looking and they too transformed into the tow trucks. “Will this do?” Ki2t asked.

“Perfect. Let’s go.” Kasey climbed into Kile and they all went in search to help people that needed it. They pulled many people out of the river and helped them across. Even the Tonkas couldn’t beat them to helping the others. The Knights of course didn’t accept any money in return for their heroics, they didn’t need any. All day the tides were high and kept coming up higher and higher on the beach. Many were able to get off of the beach so they could go home, but many had to stay because of the weight of their trailers or motor homes.

Night came and the beach was deserted because everyone was gone. The waters had decided to recede enough and the river died down back to a small stream a foot deep. All four AIs transformed back into their regular 4x4s and parked for the night way up in the dunes. All seven decided to stay in the cabs of the trucks so that they would not have to unpack the tents again. Michael, Bonnie, Mike, Sarah, Billy, and Zoe were all asleep and Ki2t, Ki3t, and Karr were in recharge. Kasey and Kile were still up watching the stars move up in the sky. “What a day, wasn’t it?” Kasey said.

“It was a good day. Even on our vacation we were able to assist people. It wasn’t what I would expect on a mission, but it was okay.”

“Well, we wouldn’t have been able to do anything without you guys. We would be stuck out here still and many people would have lost their trailers or motor homes. I thank you very much.”

“We only did what anyone would have done. Let’s get some sleep, it’s been a very long day and you look like you could use it.” Kile laid the seat back to make Kasey try to sleep.

“Alright, alright. You sleep too though. If I wake up to find you awake, I’ll bury you in the sand and make you dig your own way out.” Kasey pointed her finger at the red globe.

Kile chuckled at her 'threat'. “We, AIs, decided that we would all go into recharge for the night, so don’t worry, I will rest as well.”

“Good. Good night.” Kasey fell asleep curled up in the seat.

“Good night.” Kile went into recharge as promised.

/~/

Kasey woke up early, like normal, to find Kile still in recharge. She didn’t move around much so she wouldn’t disturb his ‘sleep.’ She looked around at his interior and cherished it. His globe and everything on the dash was dark, the windows were tinted, but not blacked out, he had his heater up some to keep her warm, but other than that he looked like a normal vehicle. She then turned her attention to back out the window. She was glad that she was going home and back to school, but she was sad to be leaving this beautiful beach.

Kile came back online and saw Kasey looking at his interior. He hid that fact he was online because he wanted to see what she was doing and maybe why. After a while she looked out the window and he decided to come fully online. “Good morning, Kasey.”

Kasey was startled when she heard Kile’s voice, “Good morning. Sleep well?”

“Yes I did. Did you?”

“Like a log again. Is everyone else awake?”

Kile scanned the other three trucks and saw that everyone was still asleep, “No. They are still asleep.”

“Oh, okay.” Kasey leaned back and stared back up into the sky.

Kile started his engine and drove down to the beach. “I am going to take a small rinse off if you don’t mind. This sand sticking to my sides is getting irritating.” He drove down into the water and splashed it with his tires to get the water onto his side. Most of the sand came off, but what was on the top half of the Dodge wasn’t coming off.

“Go into town and find a carwash. I’ll wash the rest off of you.” Kile drove back onto the hard sand out of the water and down the beach.

“Thank you.” Once they arrived, Kasey got out and turned the hose on. She sprayed it on the windshield and across the windows. The drain under him started to clog with sand and salt for the beach. Kasey sprayed it hard with water to get the water flowing again. She got as much as she could off when Kile spoke up, “That’s better. You don’t have to do anymore. I appreciate what you already did. Once we get back, some Foundation workers will be able to give a deep cleaning.”

“Okay.” Kasey put the hose down and looked out onto the road, “Looks like we have company.” Ki2t, Ki3t, and Karr pulled into the closest stalls and got their rinse offs as well. Kasey waited inside Kile while the others got washed and listened to some music. When they got finished, she got out and stood with her family. “Well, I guess we go back to reality now.”

“Yeah. We go back to work and you need to go back to school. We can rent you an apartment or you can stay at the Foundation. It’s your choice but Kile can stay with you.” Bonnie said.

“Alright. I think I will stay at the Foundation. I like it there.”

“You are more than welcome to stay there.” Michael stated.

“Let’s get going; we need to get back.” Mike told the group.

“Okay, last one back is a rotten egg!” Kasey yelled as she jumped into the Dodge Ram. The Dodge, the two Fords, and the Chevy trucks turned out of the carwash and they transformed into their cars. A Challenger, two Mustangs, and a Trans Am raced out onto the road and onto the highway. The passengers of the cars whooped and hollered as the AIs pushed the vehicles to their limits, getting the last of the fun out of the remainder of their vacation.