Adrian(ˈādrēən), age four, is being babysat(ˈbābēˌsit) by his teenage(ˈtēnˌāj) neighbor(ˈnābər).


I’m the king! King Boomhammer(ˈhamər)! You can’t be the queen(kwēn) because the queen is gone. She got took with the dragon(ˈdragən) and the dragon went to its cave(kāv) and now we have to get her but she died.

You can be the son who’s in high school. And I’ll be the son who’s in college(ˈkälij). And I’m the king. King Boomhammer! Boom! Boom! Boom!

Okay, I get the sword(sôrd) and you can have the axe(aks).

(Hands her the axe, but she accepts(əkˈsept) it a bit too readily(ˈredəlē) for his taste

and he warily(ˈwe(ə)rəlē) takes it back.)

No, I get the axe. You can have the stethoscope(ˈsteTHəˌskōp). And you have to stand on the couch(kouCH) and get all the way to the kitchen(ˈkiCHən) without touching the floor because if you touch it then it’ll burn your feet and your legs and your whole body and then you’ll die.

Mom says I can stand on the couch as long as I take my shoes off, so you have to take your shoes off too, because I’m the king and you have to do what I say, okay?