Choose Your Own Destiny: The Journey Through Tenth Grade

(Editor's Note: A few years ago, we put out a collection of short stories called The Ankeny Briefcase. We hope to do that again one day. Included in that book was a story by Chad Gibbs. Since the blog format is well-suited to his story, we figured we'd include it here. Here's Chad.)

by Chad Gibbs

In 1969 Edward Packard wrote Sugarcane Island, the book that would become the model for the classic "Choose Your Own Adventure" series. Packard and R.A. Montgomery signed a contract with Bantam Books in 1978, and went on to write sixty books apiece in the series.

I discovered these books in fourth grade. With titles like The Phantom Submarine and War with the Evil Power Master, they seemed to be taken straight from my imagination. This was also around the time that teachers began assigning book reports, and for those of us who despised reading, the “Choose” books could be over in seven pages with the help of a few poor decisions.

Looking back I realize that these books, while great for escaping the stresses of your ten-year-old day, did not really improve your practical decision making skills. So I decided to write a Christian "Choose" story that would help young adults learn to deal with the tough choices of adolescence, before they actually faced them. My story, while equally entertaining, will be more educational than the original series, because quite frankly, how many times do you stumble into a cave that takes you back in time. I hope you enjoy, and that you make the right choices…


Journey Through the Tenth Grade

Lying in bed, you hear the door to your bedroom click open. Footsteps approach, as a cold chill rushes down your back. Then, in a flash, the blankets are ripped away and your mother says, “Get out of bed now or you will be late for school again.”

“But mom,” you protest.

“Don’t mom me,” she says. “Up. Now!”

Seconds later you are standing under the showerhead, fighting the urge to lie down and fall asleep in the bath tub. Eventually you wake up, put on some clothes, and walk down to the breakfast table. As she hands you a cereal bowl, your mom says, “You’ll have to find a ride home from school today because I have a business meeting in Capitol City.”

“Sure,” you say. “I can ride home with Jason.”

It is then you realize with your mother out of town, you can skip school without her knowing. Half an hour later she lets you out in your school’s parking lot and drives off towards Capitol City. You stand still for a moment, contemplating the day ahead.

If you decide to go to school, study hard, and keep education a top priority, turn to page 97. If you decide to skip class and risk your future, turn to page 75.


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  2. Very funny stuff, Chad. As you'll see in the comments, I made it all the way to the end. I attribute my success to watching Fox News.

  3. Chad, this is awesome! For some reason, though, the only response running through my head is "Dang it". I can't figure out why...

  4. This was the most fun I've had on a blog in a long time. Well done.