The Bus Bunker

By Seamus M., Iowa

2020 Write Now Special Edition Winner - Elementary: grades 36

Tim the bus driver had been driving bus 890 for 7 years. The same route, Main Street to West 29th street. The same time, 8 a.m.: Pickup at Main Street. 8:30 a.m.: Stop at all stops in between. 9 a.m.: Arrive at West 28th street. Then repeat that for the rest of the work day. It was the same thing every day, and Tim liked that. But one day, day 2,555 on the bus to be exact, it was not like every other day.

It started out like any other day. Go to the gas station at 6:00 exactly, get a hot chocolate and a strawberry pop tart, apple, and yogurt. Then at 7:00 go to the BHQ (Bus headquarters) to clean the bus and get it ready to go for the day. Then on to the stops. But then the day became not so normal.

He was driving past Joe's 18 Star Restaurant and Cafe when he saw a Bonewhite Daisy, an exotic type of flower that was hard to find and only rebloomed every 7 years. Tim knew what it was right away because he had found one on his first day on bus 890, 7 years ago. Tim decided to go out and look at it. "I've got time to stop," he said. He pulled over, opened his doors, went down the stairs and passed the sign that said Watch Your Step!

As he walked closer, he noticed that the petals seemed to be glowing a shiny silvery color. "Huh. Weird," he thought. "Must be a glare from the sun."

Tim bent down to take a picture of the flower, but then, as soon as he hit the little white button at the bottom of his phone, his bus hummed, revved to life, and slowly, slowly started to sink into the ground. Tim yelped, sprinted behind the bus, opened the emergency exit, threw it open and jumped in just before the bus fully submerged into the ground.

The bus was lowering in a tunnel that was large enough for at least 4 buses. He felt like he had been lowering for hours when he finally stopped.

He sat for a minute, then finally decided his only choice was to go outside the bus and see where he was. The thing he knew for sure was that he wasn't on Main Street or in front of Joe's Restaurant.

Tim looked around the room he was in. It almost looked like a huge warehouse or garage. The bus driver decided to walk around a little bit to see if he could figure out what was going on. After a little while of exploring he heard a noise. He yelled, "Is someone there?".

Then a voice replied, "Look behind you!" Tim spun around immediately and saw a man in a white jumpsuit who had a Hello My Name Is sticker on. According to the sticker, his name was Will.

"What brings you to the Bus Bunker?" Will asked.

"Is that what this place is called?" Tim replied. "I just took a picture of a flower, and then here I am!".

"So my device worked!"

"Device? You mean the flower?"

"Well, it's technically a clone of the flower, with a sensor built into it that opens the Bus Bunker when scanned by a phone camera."

Tim thought about that for a minute, then replied, "So, are you a bus driver then?"

"Yep. I drive bus 283 in Boston," Will told him.

"Boston?! But that's like, one thousand miles from here!" Tim exclaimed

"Not in the Bus Bunker! This place is so big, that It actually covers about five-thousand miles underground. Plus, we have such advanced technology here, that almost nothing is a problem. I could snap my fingers right now and be in my house in five minutes!" Will told Tim.

Then, Will yelled, "Hang out room!" and two seconds later, the were on a couch in front of a 90" TV.

"Whoa! How did you do that?"

"Air tubes with voice recognition"


"Plus, there's a lot that even I don't know about this place. It's over 1,000 years old! Before it was busses, it was horse and carriages. I haven't been to every room, and I'm the keeper!"


"I take care of everything here. Make sure everything stays in order."

Tim was amazed by this place, but still wondered two things. So, he asked Will, "Two questions: One, what about my bus route?"

"We send a replacement bus, with a hologram of you so that nothing looks suspicious."

"Okay. And two, am I allowed to come here whenever I want?"

"Yep. We've installed a button in your bus dashboard, so whenever you want to visit, or take a day off, just press the button. Also, if you're not by your bus, just press the button on this."

Will handed him a small remote with only one button. He took it and slipped it into his pocket.

"Well, I think I'm going to go now. I haven't seen daylight in hours."

"Okay." Replied Will. "Come back any time!"

"Believe me, I will." Tim replied.

From then on, Tim mixed up his days, and didn't do the same thing everyday. He was very wrong when he said that he was fine doing the same thing every day. And anytime he gave advice to someone he would say, "Mix it up a bit!"

Iowa Magazine
Explore the latest stories from Iowa Magazine.

We use cookies to understand how you use our site and to improve your experience. By continuing to use our site, you accept our use of cookies in accordance with our Privacy Statement unless you have disabled them in your browser.