Pauly was whisked deeper into the plumbing, rising and falling as if it was an underwater roller coaster. The fact that he could breathe and was still in one piece made him relax a little and go with the flow. Pretty soon, he was swimming and doing flip turns and trying to go against the current that had slowed down to a calm flow.
Bits and chunks of debris were now floating with him. He glanced some writing along the pipe wall and fought to swim against the current to have a look at it. It was written on a round lid that looked like a door to another pipe. It gave him something to hold onto when he finally reached it.
“Sewage!” he read aloud, letting go as fast as he could. “Gross!”
He was grateful for the bubble that was protecting him, so much that he started to worry about what would happen if it popped. He shuttered, watching a large, furry brown chunk swish by. Home was a long way off now, he thought, wondering exactly where he was.
After a few twists and turns, the water had slowed down to a drift. Not far ahead Pauly noticed light penetrating the murky water. He thrust forward like a frog and was surprised at how fast the bubble made him move.
The light was coming from another shorter pipe that seemed to branch off into a larger pool. Pauly carefully maneuvered himself so he didn’t surface into a dangerous situation. He watched the blurry light above, but there was no making sense of it. The only way to find out what was up there was to swim upward and see.
Pauly thrust forward out into what felt like a large lake but when his head poked above the water, he realized, by the faucet above, he was in a large clogged sink. He bobbed up and down in his bubble, trying to see what was around him and then, out of nowhere, like a giant straight from a scary movie the lunch lady appeared next to the sink with a big plunger in hand. He was in the school cafeteria!
He tried to dive for the drain but she slammed the black rubber plunger-head into the water faster than he could move. The suction pulled him up against the inside of the rubber bowl and then pushed him out. Just when he was halfway down the drain again and close to freedom, he would get sucked back up with a force that made his stomach turn upside down. And the last thing he wanted to do in his little bubble was throw-up.