A Rude Awakening...

He was surfing! He had finally done it! Jimmy Lightning had learned to surf! He was goo, too. Unstoppable on the waves. He was doing tricks up there, grinding on the crest of the wave and waving to his fans on the shore.

He jumped into the air and grabbed onto his board during the aerial. The crowd went wild! He surfed in the rest of the way and came up smoothly to the sandy beach. He ran off the board and into the arms of another beautiful chipmunk, and they began to make out pretty hard. Then, she started shaking him and asking, "Are you all right? Are you okay?"

"I'm fine!" he mumbled, as he opened his eyes and stared up into the face of Master Hu and about ten strangers. "Where am I?" he asked, still mumbling. "Where's that chipmunkess?"

"I don't know who you're talking about," Master Hu replied. "Though it is possible that is because we do not share the same set of experiences. The world is subjective, you know! All I am aware of, and it is very little, is that the moment you saw me coming, you seemed to panic and then tumbled off your board. You struck your head pretty hard against the ground."

"Oh," Jimmy replied. So it had just been a dream. Rats. He climbed to his feet, but it was difficult. As soon as his head was above the rest of his body, the entire world began to wobble and Jimmy had to sit down to get it to stop. "Whoah," he said. He was sitting in a bench, and the people who had gathered around his unconscious body began to disperse back into the skateboarding crowd. If there was no death or grevious injury, we aren't interested. Call us when something breaks.

"Are you okay?" the Master asked.

"Yeah, I'm fine. Just need a few moments." He took a few breaths, trying to get back into the routine of consciousness, and then asked, "What brought you here?"

"I'm afraid bad news."

"I'm in trouble for something."

"Oh, no, no, no. I'm afraid it is far worse than that."

Jimmy Lightning nodded. He had known this moment was coming for many weeks now, but he was okay with it. "I'm being expelled from the Peggle Institute," he said, nodding. It was no biggie. He needed to get away from that place anyway. Needed the extra time it would give him to practice his skills, maybe even get into surfing.

"No, I'm afraid it's worse than that."

"What do you mean? What could be worse than that?" Jimmy's imagination was racing, thinking of one extreme possibility after another, each more extreme and horrific than the last.

Finally, his guessing was cut-off, and completely topped, by Master Hu's pronouncement, "We need you to play in the Peggle Tournament for all of the Empire."

Jimmy Lightning's jaw dropped.

Now that was extreme.