Part 12

Kat, Lynne, Christine, and Alison all screamed. "A fire?! Oh Buddha!!!" Jenna nodded. "We have to let everyone know, quick!"

Kat ran over to where Micky and Gleebs were standing to tell Micky, while Lynne ran over to the stereo and turned off the record that was playing rather loudly and Alison alerted Kit and Davy. Micky made the announcement.

"Um, everyone, sorry to interrupt the party, but there's a fire on the hill in the backyard, and y'all better get outa here before you're toast. We'll call 911 and all that. Just go, please. Go out the front door, of course." There were shocked gasps from everyone as they hurriedly made their way to the front door and out of the house. Davy, with Kit clinging to his side, went to call 911. Kat and Alison ran upstairs to make sure there was no one left in the house.

"Oh, my God!" said Christine. "Peter and Janine are in some closet, and so are Mimi and Keith!" Mike went off running to find them.

"I'm right here!" Mimi said, walking up to them. "Keith had to go home, and I went to the bathroom. When I got out, I heard the announcement. What are we gonna do?!"

Just then Mike walked up. "I found Janine and Peter!" he said. "In the closet, of course." They were following behind Mike, holding hands, Peter with telltale smears of papaya peach lip gloss all over his face. They were okay, of course, but worried.

"My house!" Peter cried, a look of fear and anguish upon his face. "What if the fire spreads to the house?!" Christine and Lynne all came over to Peter in hopes to comfort him.

"Don't worry, Peter", Christine said. "Luckily, the fire's on the hill, not too close by, it's small, and it's not spreading too fast. Micky turned on the backyard sprinklers, which will subdue the fire a little and help prevent it from getting to the house. Luckily, the grass is wet too. But we need to act fast."

Davy and Kit returned. "Petah", Davy said. "The fire fightahs ah comin, but you live so fah away from the neahest fiah station, it might take a while." He looked so upset that Kit couldn't control herself, and she pounced on Davy, giving him a big wet kiss to try and console him.

"Okay...." everyone said. This wasn't exactly the time for that, but leave it to Kit and Davy to always find a time for swooning.

Alison and Kat came downstairs. "Okay, no one's here, as far as we could tell. What are we going to do *now*?"

"I've got an idea." Mike spoke up. "What we need to do is get to the guest house. Then we'll be safe enough, and we'll be able to watch the fire from a distance." Everyone nodded in agreement and went through the side door to Peter's small guest house, a few yards away from the main house.

"Now what are we going to do?" asked Alison. "The firemen won't be here for a while!"

"Pete!" Micky cried suddenly. "Don't you have a fire extinguisher somewhere in this house?!"

Peter's face lit up. "Oh yeah!" he cried. "I think there's one in the basement! But," he said dolefully, "I don't know where, exactly. The basemen's so large... and full. Well, I'll go look for it!!!"

"Wait, Pete", Mike said. "What if the fire spreads faster than you find the extinguisher? Someone needs to be a lookout, to warn you just in case!"

Micky volunteered. "I will!" He cried. Gleeby and Mimi nodded. "We'll help!" No one wanted to leave their favourite Monkee. They were all in it together.

Peter started off to the basement, an anxious look on his face. "Wait!" cried Kat. She grabbed Peter's arm. "I'm coming with you. It'll be faster than if we go ourselves, and I can't let you go alone." Peter looked at Kat with a look of immesurable gratitude in his eyes and grabbed her hand, kissing it. The two made their way to the basement, followed by Micky with his arm around the waists of Gleeby and Mimi. They stood at the open basement door.

"We have to warn thah neighbours!" Davy cried. He and Kit (who else?) looked at each other and simultaneously ran to the phone. Meanwhile, Mike and Jenna stood near the large glass windows facing the house.

"It's spreading faster", Mike said to Jenna. They looked at the fire anxiously as it made its way gradually down the hill.

"Well, thank goodnez...erm, goodness, that the backyard's so large, and the sprinklers are on...", Jenna replied. They nervously watched the fire, knowing that if something didn't happen quick, Peter's whole house would catch on fire.

Inside the guest house sat Christine, Lynne, Alison, and Janine. They were all pretty nervous. Lynne jumped up. "We've got to make sure no one's in *this* house!" Christine nodded. "Right, someone might have fled here when they heard about the fire! Let's go." She and Lynne started searching the house.

Alison and Janine looked at each other. "Golly, I'm scared." Alison said. Janine hugged her.

"Me too..." she said. "But I know what to do."

"What?" Alison asked quizzically.

"Pray", said Janine. "You know me, I've got a million different religions. Watch." She sat cross legged, palms open on her knees, and Alison did the same.

Janine closed her eyes and began. "Oh God, help us, save us, have mercy on us, and protect us from this fire. Oh Buddha, provide us with the wisdom and grace to make it through this fire. Oh Lao Tzu, help us to use The Way, the immesurable Tao, to guide ourselves through this fire. Oh, Krishna, Sahanavavatu, Sahanou Bhunaktu, Sahaviryankaravavahai Tejasvinavadhitamatsu Ma Vidvisavahai. Om, Santih, Santih, Santih*..." She opened her eyes and grinned.

"What does *that* mean?" Alison asked.

"May he protect us both. May he nourish us both. May we both work together with great energy. May our study be enlightening and fruitful. May we never hate each other. Om, Peace Peace Peace." She grinned, as Alison raised her eyebrows.

"Hey, it's a Hindu yoga chant. It's the best I could do!" the girls laughed, but quickly stopped when they saw Christine and Lynne coming down the hall followed by ant-boy.

He was gettin jiggy with it and singing, "Burn, burn! Hahaha!" Christine explained.

"We found him in a corner of a bedroom. It turns out *he* started the fire! He went out to the hill to smoke a joint, and threw it out into the grass! Then he came here when he realised the danger." Christine looked ant-boy in the face and said, "Listen. You can't be here. Go out this way", she motioned him out the front door, "and go home. You'll be safe there. And no more fires!" Just then Davy and Kit walked up. "We've warned all the nearest neighbours", Kit said. Just then, Mike and Jenna called out.

"Guys, the fire's spreading closer to the house!" Everyone looked out the window in anguish. Just then, they heard Micky's whoop.

"Wahoo! Peter and Kat found the extinguisher!" He, Gleeby, and Mimi ran over excitedly, Peter and Kat followed with the extinguisher. "Now all we need", said Peter, "is someone to go over and try to put out the fire, or subdue it..." Everyone looked at each other. No one really wanted to go; the fire was so close to the house, and they firemen should come any minute. But they couldn't let Peter's beautiful house burn!!! Everyone sat in nervous silence.

Finally, Mike spoke up. "I'll go", he said. Jenna looked at him. "Mike..." she said warily. But Mike, always the hero, had grabbed the extinguisher and was making his way towards the house. Jenna followed despite Mike's directions to stay back. She wasn't afraid of the fire- just for Mike's life. Everyone else watched from the window.

Jenna stood a safe distance away from Peter's house while Mike slowly approached the fire. "Okay", she heard him say, "I'm gonna tackle you like a good old Texas mustang." He was getting a little wet from the sprinklers, which was probably a good thing. He got as close as he could dare, and began to extinguish the fire. It was working pretty well; he inched a little closer. There was lots of smoke. Mike got a little closer, the smoke got a little stronger.... the fire was almost out.....then all of a sudden, Mike collapsed.

"MIKE!" Jenna cried. She ran over to him, soon followed by everyone else. Micky, Kit, and Alison rolled Mike away from the fire while Peter picked up the extinguisher and continued where Mike left off. Micky and Davy picked up Mike and carried him close to the guest house, and began to check him; the swoonies watched nervously. Some of them were crying a little; some were just very anxious. They hugged each other for support.

"Okay", Davy said, "He doesn't seem to be buhned. I think he collapsed from all the smoke. We need to get him to the hospital." As if on cue, the firemen rushed in the side gate.

"What are you doing in the house?!" one of them cried. "Get out of here!" He saw Mike. "This one needs an ambulance, he's passed out. We'll get him to the hospital. Get out of here, all of you! I don't believe this! You're lucky the fire's so small... good thing you turned on the sprinklers..." He began muttering under his breath. Everyone ran out of the house, including Peter, with the extinguisher still in his hand.

"What about Mike?!" Janine said. Everyone was scared as hell. Micky went into action.

"Okay, here's the deal. The firemen are taking care of the fire. We have to make sure Mike's okay. Gleeby, Mimi, Davy, Kit, and Jenna, you're coming in my car. Janine, Kat, Alison, Christine, and Lynne, follow us in Peter's car. We're following the ambulance!"

With that, they scrambled into their assigned vehicles and headed for the hospital, their thoughts on the burning house- and Mike.