Free, award-winning, creative commons children's fiction

Sugar the Robot and the Race to save the Earth

A free book by Ryan Cartwright - CC:By-SA

Picture of Sugar's head Chapter 4

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Cover of the book
Cover of the book

Book 1 of the Roboteers series

Published 01 Jun 2013

ISBN 1484965450 / 1484965450


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Quickly we ran downstairs and out through the kitchen. Mum shouted something after us but I was far too excited to listen. We ran through the back garden and out of the gate.

“Which way did he go?” I shouted. Neither of us had noticed so we started looking around. Just then Dad came up the alley. I ran towards him while Priya ran to the other end of the alley.

“Dad!” I grabbed his arm,”have you seen Mum’s knickers?”

Come to think of it I think this might not have been what he was expecting me to say.”Er, what?” he mumbled.

“Mum’s knickers!” I repeated.”The ones with blue flowers. Have you seen them?”

He looked even more confused now.”Well, yes.. I mean.. you know…what?!”

I sighed. He clearly wasn’t listening properly.”Listen carefully Dad, this is important.”

“Okay.” he sad, putting on an overly-serious expression.

“You know Mum has some knickers with little blue flowers on?”


“Have you seen them go past here?”

“What? Has somebody stolen them?”

“Sort of, yes. Have you seen them? Did they go past you?”

“Tim, are you feeling okay?”

“I’m fine. I’ve just lost Sugar.”

“Sugar? The robot? What’s he got to do with Mum’s knickers?”

Suddenly Priya came back yelling”Tim! Look!” She was carrying mum’s knickers and pointing to them.

“Great!” I yelled and ran towards her.

“Just a minute.” said Dad, catching hold of my arm”What are you two up to and why is Priya holding Mum’s knickers?”

“Dad,” I spluttered,”we don’t have time. We’ve got to find him.”


“SUGAR!” we both yelled together.

“Okay, this is very confusing. Start again. You’re looking for Sugar?”


“And for some reason you think Mum’s knickers will help you do that?”

“No. I mean…well they were on him when he left the garden but obviously they’ve fallen off.”

“Fallen off? Hang on, why was Sugar wearing Mum’s knickers?”

“He wasn’t wearing them! They’re much too big for him.” I sighed”I think he fell into them when he tried to escape.”

“Escape? From where?”

“From my room. He ran off while we were chatting.”


“Ran off?” Dad was looking back and forth between me and the house. It was like he was expecting Mum to come out and explain everything.”Tim, he can’t run off, he can’t even move and besides that he’s a TOY ROBOT! I think you’ve been having too many late nights again.”

“No really,” said Priya,”Tim fixed Sugar so he worked again and suddenly he came alive and talked to us”

“Priya!” I hissed. The last thing I wanted was for a grown up to find out too much about Sugar. We’d said too much already but Priya continued.

“and he explained he’s from another planet. He said his masters want to invade earth…”

“Invade earth?” Smiled Dad”Okay, I get it now. You know for a moment there I thought you were telling the truth.”

“I am?” said Priya, looking puzzled. I gestured for her to stay quiet and turned to Dad.

“Yeah, sorry Dad, it’s just a game we’re playing and Sugar fell out of my window. Mum’s knickers must have broken his fall and when we came to get him, he’d disappeared.”

“So,” said Dad turning to Priya “where did you find those?” He pointed at the muddy knickers in her hand.

“Just round that corner by the fields.” she said, pointing up the alley.

“Hmm.” he said,”how on earth did they get up there though?”

Thinking fast I said”It was probably next door’s cat. Look, we’re sorry if we startled you but we need to find Sugar before it gets dark.”

“Yes, yes, of course.” said Dad”You must go and find him. I’ll, erm, take these and give them to Mum to put in the wash again.” He took the knickers from Priya.”Although how I’m going to explain this, I don’t know.”

We ran up the alleyway and rounded the corner to the fence by the fields.

“This is where I found them.” said Priya pointing to the fence.

“Sugar must have gone across the fields.” I said”But why?”

“Tim, look over there.” Priya said. She was pointing across the field in front of us. There, in the middle of the field, stood a power pylon.

“The laptop!” I yelled”Yesss! Come on!” and ran towards the pylon. Priya was hot on my heels but there was still no sign of Sugar. We stopped a short distance from the pylon. There was a fence around it with a lot of warning signs. Aside from that we both knew they could be dangerous things, pylons.

“Can you see him?” I whispered.

“No.” Priya whispered back as we sat in the grass.”Why do you think he came here?”

“The laptop.” I said,”somebody had been researching pylons in this area.”

“No I knew that,” she said,”I meant why did he want a pylon at all.”

“I don’t know. Let’s think back to what he said.” It still sounded weird that we were talking about Sugar.

“He said something about a probe and out of this world and something else about replying.” Priya was good at remembering that kind of detail.

“Replying?” I said,”Perhaps that’s it. Perhaps he wants to call his masters.”

“But,” said Priya,”that’s an electricity pylon not a mobile ‘phone mast.”

“Yes but perhaps he wants to use it like a big radio aerial.” I said.”Or maybe..”

“Maybe,” Priya interrupted pointing up at the pylon.”he wants to use it to get higher up.” I looked where she was pointing and there, crawling up the side of the pylon was Sugar! In each of his hands he held a magnet and he was using them to stick to the pylon like a spider.

“He must have got those magnets from my tool box!” I said.”But you know what this means?”

“Yes!” Priya said as we watched Sugar climb to the top of the pylon.”he really is alive!”

“Yes that too.” I said,”but it also means he’s going to call down the invasion!”