Genre: MG Adventure with light Sci Fi element
Word Count: 43,000
Dear Writer's Voice Team,
11-year-old Jackson Solis lost both his legs when he and his bicycle tangled with a fast-moving SUV. He agreed to be a test case for new, state-of-the-art, experimental bionic legs. They’re faster and stronger than his old legs, but he hates them. Hates them! Because now he’s a freak-boy, not even able to play football at recess - if he did, he’d outrun everyone.
He decides to keep the bionics a secret so no one will know quite how different he really is. Only his parents and best friend know the truth. They’re nothing but proud and supportive, so they don’t mind making sure everyone else believes his new legs are just ordinary prosthetics. But keeping secrets is exhausting and so is the recovery from his accident. So really, the only fun he’s had in the last 6 months was deciding to name his legs “Steve” and “Austin”, after the main character of an old TV show about a bionic man.
Then one day, while visiting his Army colonel father at work, Jackson overhears a conversation about something that could destroy life as he knows it.
His father, who spouts Mexican idioms for just about every situation, is in charge of testing the Army’s brand new high tech helicopter spy gear. But someone is sabotaging it. If the tech is destroyed, his dad will be disgraced and maybe they would even have to move to a new Army post. Jackson would lose his best friend and everything he has left that’s normal, which he just couldn’t deal with.
He decides to investigate. He’s sure he can find out who’s behind the trouble – and catch him. After all, no one else can chase a bad guy faster than the kid with bionic legs.
Back when I was in second grade, my class went to see Slim Goodbody. You know, the guy with the stage show about being healthy, where he wears that shirt that shows all his internal organs? I thought it was pretty cool. Apparently, my parents also saw his show when they were young, which means he’s ancient.
Anyway, he said this one thing that I can’t get out of my head now. He said, “If you hurt yourself, you can’t just go to Buddy’s Body Shop to replace your parts.”
Shows you how much he knows. Because that’s exactly what my parents were talking about right now, while they thought I was still sleeping. In the last few days, it’s all they EVER talked about.
“But what if his body rejects them?” My mother was asking the doctor more questions. She always has a list of questions. She can’t help it; she’s a journalist. She says it’s like breathing; she has to ask things. “He’s only 11 years old. Isn’t he too young for something this experimental?”
“We don’t believe he will reject them, Mrs. Solis,” answered the doctor patiently. “We will grow skin and nerve grafts from stem cells. The process is extremely successful at reducing the chance of rejection.
Gross. They were talking about growing skin. But, also, kind of cool. For a minute, I forgot they were talking about my skin and wondered whether I could watch them do it.