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Who is Max Mouse?
Season 2, Episode 51, 52, 53, 54
1maxmouse
Air date Pt. 1, December 26, 1993
Pt. 2, January 3, 1994
Pt. 3, January 10, 1994
Pt. 4, January 16, 1994
Written by Miranda Barry
Directed by Maureen Thorp
Episode guide
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"Lost in Brooklyn"
Next
"Don't Stop the Music"
It's another day at Hurston Middle School until a message is broadcast inside the computer lab that says, "Our principal, Ms. Kelly, is dead." It is revealed at an assembly that a hacker has attacked the school's computer system. Furthermore, whoever the hacker individual is, it was likely them who sent the disturbing message.

True to the Ghostwriter Team's reputation, no sooner after the message appears, they are hot on the trail of this "electronic" foe.

But, can the team find out who the suspicious "Max Mouse" is before he or she causes some real damage???

Cast

Ghostwriter Team

Co-Stars

Special Guest Stars

Plot

Intro
At Hurston Middle School, an exasperated Lenni enters the computer classroom. She sits next to Jamal, seeing him writing something down. She panics asking him if they now have homework for computer class. She worries knowing that she already has enough in her other classes. Then Jamal asks her to calm down. It isn't computer class homework. Instead, he is working on his own essay. So he can get into the High School of Science. She expresses her relief, and says she is glad she isn't trying to get into a special high school. She feels that she already has enough trouble getting through grade 8.

Then suddenly, the computers all say: "EMERGENCY!!!" Ghostwriter tries to enter the computer. Then he turns red struggling to read the word and gets kicked out. Jamal is worried about Ghostwriter and Lenni wants to know what is going on. Then in large all capitol purple letters, the word "ATTENTION" appears. Then another message on all the computers appears. It says: "OUR PRINCIPAL, MS. KELLY, IS DEAD!!! Max Mouse Mm~". Then Lenni and Jamal, along with everyone else in the classroom, are shocked, horrified and devastated by the news from the message.

Story
The arc begins with the computer classroom teacher Mr. Aucoin asking his class to calm down. He tells them that it must be some mistake. So he is going to find out what is going on. On his way out, Calvin Ferguson stands up and tauntingly asks everyone: "What if it isn't a mistake?" and laughs. Then an annoyed Jasmine Michaluk tells him to shut up. Then in the hallway, Lenni and Jamal meets with Alex and Tina's classes and a few others. They are all shocked and horrified. Jamal asks them if that message appear on all of the computers in school. Alex says yes it did and Jasmine asks them why they would be informed by it that way. Then Calvin once again makes a smart remark. He says that it is the times they live in: the Era of mass communication. Alex tells him to shut up and he goes away.

Then on the intercom, Mr. Aucoin calls the entire school to the cafetorium for an urgent assembly. Then shortly after all of the students have arrived, Principal Kelly arrives on stage. Everyone rejoices and cheers to see her alive and well. Then she takes the microphone and she thanks and applauds them all for caring about her well being. Everyone is now relaxed and calm. Then she tells the entire school that what happened on the computers was nothing more than a nasty prank. And she promises them that whoever is responsible for it will be caught. So to explain things better, she asks Mr. Aucoin to explain what is going on.

Mr. Aucoin (an expert on computers) takes the microphone and begins explaining. He tells everyone that he believes their computers have been invaded by a hacker. So he explains to everyone that a hacker is a person who breaks into other computer systems without permission or approval. Now he explains that one way a hacker can do this, is by placing a virus onto a computer system. Then suddenly a blonde girl named Erica Dansby begins joking around and pretends to sneeze. He tells her it isn't that kind of virus and tosses her a box of tissues. He explains that the virus he means, is a program that stops another program from doing what it is supposed to be doing. So it will be doing wrong and unauthorized things instead. One way the hacker can do it, is being placing a virus onto a disk. First he picks up a compact disc and everyone begins laughing because it contains music. Then he picks up a disco ball and slightly dances and everyone laughs again. Then finally he shows everyone a floppy disk. He tells everyone that he believes that the hacker tried to invade their entire computer system. By means of placing a virus onto a floppy disk and inserting into a computer. So that must have been how the false message about Ms. Kelly being dead was sent to everyone's computer in the school.

Then Jasmine asks Mr. Aucoin if he can get rid of the virus. He tells Jasmine that he and the staff are doing their best. So he informs the entire student body, that for the time being all students are not allowed to bring or use floppy disks in their school. Then he asks everyone if they understand and they all say that they do. So now Lenni has written done in her casebook three clues: hacker, virus and disk.

Then after the assembly is over, Lenni, Jamal, Alex and Tina meet by their lockers. Alex says that if this hacker is strong enough to kick Ghostwriter out of the computer, then imagine what it can do to people! Then by remembering what the message said, they realize that the hacker must call himself or herself Max Mouse. Then Jamal arranges for them to have a rally at his house after school. He feels they now have a new major case to solve. Tina says she cannot go. Tina now works for the school newspaper "the Hurston Herald". She informs them that she has article on the front page. Lenni congratulates her and promises to fill her in on what happened. Then Lenni sees Calvin holding a floppy disk. Then he quickly puts it away.

Now we see that with a new school year, comes new feelings. Calvin has developed a crush on Lenni! He puts his arm around her. Now he asks her to share a frozen yogurt with him after school. She is disgusted, annoyed and appalled by him and turns him down, very much to his disappointment.

Then after school, Jamal, Lenni and Alex have met together with Gaby and Hector. They are now all having a rally in Jamal's bedroom. Lenni explains to them all that their computer teacher Mr. Aucoin believes that a hacker put a virus into the school computer system. So that might have been what kicked Ghostwriter out of the computer. So she has written down some clues in her casebook. Then feeling panicked, Gaby grabs Lenni casebook. She writes to Ghostwriter: "Are you hurt, Ghostwriter?". He answers telling her: "I'm fine". Jamal tells them all the first thing they need to do, is figure out how the hacker put the virus into the school computer system. Then Ghostwriter flies into Jamal's computer and tells them all: "I traveled to the school computer a new way!".

Jamal figures that Ghostwriter must mean he went to it through his computer modem. He explains to his friends that a modem is like a telephone for computers. So computers with modems can communicate with each other. So now they figure out that the hacker didn't have to be in the school to put in the virus. He or she could have done it from another computer using a modem to call the computer.

Then Gaby suggests that perhaps Ghostwriter saw Max Mouse when he was traveling through the computers. So Jamal asks Ghostwriter if he saw Max Mouse. He answers saying: "Yes! That's who kicked me out!". Next Jamal asks him if he knows who Max Mouse is. He answers saying: "No". So now the team's big mystery is Who is Max Mouse? Along with the name of their new case. So Alex asks Lenni if they have any suspects. Lenni says Calvin is one and writes him down. The evidence on him is that he was holding a floppy disk, even after he was told not to in school anymore. Also he acted very weird and almost happy to hear the message about Ms. Kelly.

Then back at Hurston Middle School, Tina and a group of other students are working on the school newspaper. They are taking orders from Erica Dansby. She is being bossy and pushy, asking them to print out the school paper her way. Tina complains because her story on graffiti was supposed to be on the front page. Instead Erica put the article about the school hacker on the front page instead. She titled it: "COMPUTER HACKER "KILLS" MS. KELLY". Erica insists because she feels that a story on a hacker invading their schools computer is a much hotter story. Then Tina suggests putting her story in place of the sports tryouts. Then Erica objects claiming that they need to announce the sports tryouts.

Then Tina complains to the supervising teacher Mr. Johnston. But he says that since Erica is the editor-in-chief it is her call. So Tina grins and bears it. Then Erica reads her article to them for the sports tryouts. It is titled: "CAN YOU JUMP? CAN YOU JAM?" It says: "Boys' and Girls' Basketball Team tryouts next week! Sign up on the sports bulletin board". Then Mr. Johnston takes the rough copy of the newspaper and brings it to the office to begin finalizing the new issue. Then Tina asks Erica if she can write about the hacker. Then Erica makes it clear that Tina knows very little about computers and hackers, and that she knows just about everything about them. So Tina decides to leave it all up to her.

Then after school, the team have another rally in Jamal's bedroom. Lenni reviews their facts so far: They have one invisible villain, and one suspect whom may be acting suspicious, because he thinks it's fun. Then Jamal suggests next they try writing down everything they know about Max Mouse. So far they know he or she sent the message that said: "OUR PRINCIPAL, MS. KELLY, IS DEAD!!! Max Mouse Mm~". Then reviewing the beginning of the message, they notice it started with our. So now they figure out that Max Mouse must also attend Hurston Middle School. Also that he or she must know lots about computers. Also Alex points out that Max Mouse seems to be mad at Ms. Kelly. So they add these three clues, for things they know about Max Mouse to Lenni's casebook.

They now realize they've made a good start, but Hector points out that cannot see Max Mouse. So they cannot tell if it's a boy or a girl or even how old it is. Gaby adds that they only see the words that Max Mouse writes, which is almost like it being Ghostwriter. Then Alex mentions that since Ghostwriter can travel through computers, then he can search for Max Mouse through computers. Then they can all search for him or her outside of the computers. So Alex sits down at Jamal's computer and writes to Ghostwriter. He asks him: "Can you look for Max Mouse inside computers?". Ghostwriter answers saying: "I want to find him, but there are words that block my way like locked doors". The team is confused by what he means. So they decide that they need to find out more about computers. Now Gaby and Hector head over to the library to get some books about them.

Then over at Hurston Middle School, Erica is working on the computers for the newspaper. Tina catches her putting a floppy disk into the computer. So she questions her about it and reminds her that Mr. Aucoin has forbid them to use their own disks at school. Since they might carry computer viruses. Erica gets cocky and says her disk is safe. Then Tina gives her an article. Then Erica gets pushy claiming she can handle the rest by herself. Tina asks her if she is going to try looking for the hacker on the computers. Erica says she might try that or another method known as "trashing". Tina asks her what that is. She gets impatient and explains it to her. It is when you search through the trash for clues on someone's identity. Clues such as a paper with their name, address and telephone number. It can be anything to prove that someone they suspect was it the room.

Then we see Gaby and Hector have arrived at the library. The library is huge with many books. So Hector is confused on how they will find the books they are looking for. Gaby tells him they need to look through the card catalog. She shows him how to use it. She shows him how they need to look through the drawer labelled col-con. Then Gaby shows them a card to search for books in the section with the code 004.

Then back at Hurston school, Tina quietly sneaks into the school computer room. She remembers what Erica said earlier about "trashing". So she decides to search for clues in the trash, to see if the hacker may have been in there. She notices Ghostwriter is searching for something in the trash. So she checks it and she finds a crumpled up piece of paper, with a wad of soft original pink bubblegum spat on it. She is disgusted at first. Then she notices that three random words are written on it: Alpha, Beta and Gamma. She is confused wondering what these words might mean. Then she leaves school, when she Ms. Kelly announces the school is closing for the day.

Then back at the library, Hector and Gaby have found a perfect book. It is called "The Ultimate Collection of Computers Facts and Fun", written by Cindra Tison and Mary Jo Woodside. Then he asks the librarian if they can check it out. The Librarian isn't the same one from the "Just in Time" story arc. Instead it's another woman: a pretty African American woman. She is very friendly and sweet. She asks for his library card, but he regrets to inform her that he doesn't have one. So Gaby uses her library card. Then the Librarian informs him that she can get him his own library card. All she has to do is see something with his address on it. Hector has just the thing: a postcard from his Grandfather form Puerto Rico. So The Librarian goes off to make it for him. Then shortly after, she returns and gives him his new library card. He thinks it is wonderful, because now he can check out any and all the books he wants.

Then the next day at school, Tina is proudly handing out copies of the school newspaper. Then Alex meets with her and he fills her in. He tells her that once again Calvin is a suspect. Tina informs him that she has another suspect: Erica Dansby. Tina tells him that she knows lots about computers and brought a disk to school. Then suddenly Alex points out that part of the newspaper got hacked and changed! The sports article now says: "CAN YOU JUMP? CAN YOU JAM?" Greetings from Max Mouse!! "Ms. Kelly is dead" was fun, but my next TECHNO-ACTION will show I have the power to SMASH YOU!! Mm~". So now Tina suspects that perhaps Erica might be Max Mouse.

Then in Eighth grade computer class, Mr. Aucoin speaks to his class. He informs them that the hacker somehow managed to change the newspaper, before it was even printed. Then Jasmine asks him how the school is going to stop the hacker. He tells her that they are installing a security box. This will record all the computer phone numbers that call the Hurston School computer. So if the hacker is using a modem, then they can trace it. Then Mr. Aucoin gives his class encouragement. He promises his class that they will catch Max Mouse. Then class is dismissed for the day. Then as class is dismissed Calvin boasts saying these potato heads (teachers) will never catch a hacker as smart as Max Mouse. Jasmine tells him the only Potato head she knows is him and leaves with Jamal.

Then Lenni stays behind and talks to Calvin. She tells him that he's so smart and can probably do tricks like Max Mouse. Then Calvin begins flirting with Lenni (putting his arm around her) and says that he is Max Mouse. She is shocked at first thinking he is kidding, but he says he is not. So he is going to uses his secret powers to do something special for her. Then he asks her what her heart's desire would be. Not believing him, she sarcastically asks him if he could give her an A in global studies. He says her wish is his command and leaves smiling. Then Lenni moans about Calvin being a potato head. Then suddenly a girl says he is a mashed potato head. In the corner a girl was reading the school newspaper. She lowers it to reveal she is Janice Hall. Lenni apologizes for not noticing she was there. Then when Lenni Leaves, Janice gives an annoyed stare as if to say: "really?..story of my life". While blowing pink bubblegum.

Then Lenni meets with Tina at their lockers. She tells Tina she has a feeling that she failed her global studies quiz. So now she knows she is doomed. So she tells Tina she cannot go to the rally today. Then she asks Tina to tell their friends that Calvin confessed to her that he was Max Mouse today. Tina doesn't believe him because she thinks he is so messed up. But Lenni already has written down as a suspect.

Then suddenly we hear commotion, Jasmine is being escorted by a police officer. She is complaining that she doesn't have a credit card and doesn't even know how to use one. Ms. Kelly stands up for her and tells the Officer that Jasmine would never use stolen credit cards. The Police Officer says that he still needs to take her in, because her name came up to be picked up for questioning. Ms. Kelly takes her to the office and promises to call her parents and clear up the big misunderstanding. Tina and Lenni cannot believe what is happening. They overheard that the police got their report about Jasmine on their computer. So the hacker must have set Jasmine up!

Then over in Jamal's bedroom, Jamal meets with Tina and Alex. Jamal is furious and he is about to blow a gasket. He promises that if Calvin really is Max Mouse, and he has done this to Jasmine, then he is going pound him. Then Tina asks Jamal to calm done. Since their is another suspect: Erica Dansby. She informs them that she knows lots about computer. Also she brought a disk to school, after being told not to. Finally she was the last person who worked on the newspaper, before it was printed. Then Tina remembers the paper she found the other day. She explains to them that she was looking for clues in the trash. There she found the paper with those three words written on it. Ghostwriter reads the words: Alpha, Beta and Gamma and then enters Jamal's computer. He tells them: "I saw those words inside the computer". Alex asks him: "What do they mean? But Ghostwriter tells them: "I don't know yet".

Then Hector and Gaby enter Jamal's bedroom. Hector is feeling victorious saying that they learned a lot about computers today. Gaby explains that Hackers use a name called a handle (more commonly known as a username now) to identify themselves. So they believe Max Mouse is the hacker's handle. Then Hector explains that computers have passwords. These let you unlock doors to different parts of the computer. So if you don't know a password, you don't get in. So they feel that passwords might have been what Ghostwriter was talking about earlier.

Then Jamal and Tina come to the conclusion that Alpha, Beta and Gamma are passwords. So Jamal sits down at his computer, and asks Ghostwriter: "Please find out if Alpha, Beta and Gamma are passwords". Ghostwriters responds saying: "Here I go into cyberspace!". So Ghostwriter enters the three dimensional world of cyberspace. He flies along a path of circuitry. He passes by various other numbers and codes. Until he is blocked at a stop sign symbol. He tells it: Alpha. Then he is granted access to kept moving forward. Then he comes along Lenni's name, and the number 555-8425. Then ahead of him he can see a purple Mm~. It is Max Mouse and he or she has gotten away from him.

Then Ghostwriter returns. He tells them: Yes! ALPHA is a password! Finding this out, they all cheer and high five. Then ghostwriter also tells them: "I saw Lenni's name, Max Mouse and 555-8425. They don't recognize it as Lenni's telephone number. So Jamal thinks it is a computer phone number. So he turns on his modem and actives the tele-comp program. He enters the number 555-8425. Then it connects him Zora Neale Hurston Middle School's computer database. Then Jamal enters the password: Alpha. Then he gets in. He is now in the students directory. So Alex convinces him to look up his name. So Jamal looks up his student record. It says his name, his parents are Reginald and Doris Jenkins, he is in Grade 8, and his telephone number 555-9698. Then if pressing enter, they can see all his grades. But wanting privacy, he refuses to click on it. So he exists the database and turns off his modem.

Then Tina realizes that since the paper she found has passwords to Hurston's computer, then the hacker was in the room the other day. She says she knows they must have been there, because when she found the paper, the gum on it was still soft. Although, lots of people chew gum, Jamal still adds that for a clue for Max Mouse anyways. Then Hector makes a joke to liven things up. He says that Max Mouse chews probably cheese flavored gum. Then they all moan at his joke.

Next Tina realizes the other side of the paper she found was a computer quiz. A test belonging to Janice Hall. It turns out that she got an A on it. Jamal is astounded, because it was the hardest quiz they had all year. So Tina suggests that if Janice is that good at computers, then she could be a suspect. Jamal finds this hard to believe, because she seems so shy and quiet. Which Tina points out is like a mouse!

Then suddenly Ghostwriter returns on the computer screen. He tells them all: "Lenni Frazier D A. They are confused so Alex asks him what he means. But Ghostwriter doesn't know either. Then Alex thinks that D A could mean a district attorney. He explains that district attorneys are lawyers who work for the please. The ones who charge people for crimes. Then they realize that Lenni might be in trouble with the police. So now they have to stop this hacker before Lenni gets arrested like Jasmine did!

Rewind
The show's narrator explains to the viewers, in case they have forgotten what has previously happened in the arc. The facts are:

First- The students at Zora Neale Hurston Middle School all received a scary message on their computers. It was a message from a person named Max Mouse. And he or she told the entire school, that their principal Ms. Kelly was dead! But it all turned out to be a nasty prank. The school's computer teacher Mr. Aucoin explained to the entire school, that their entire computer system has been invaded by Max Mouse, who is a computer hacker. He explained that a hacker is a computer user who breaks into another computer system. Now the Ghostwriter team wants to find out who Max Mouse is. So they can stop him or her from invading the computers and sending more false messages. They figure out that the hacker must be connecting to the school's computer system using a modem. This is like a telephone for a computer to connect and communicate with other computers.

And- The team thinks Max Mouse also goes to Hurston, knows a lot about computers and is mad at Ms. Kelly. Also that Max Mouse may chew original bubblegum. However, they cannot see Max Mouse. They only can see the words that he or she writes. So they asked Ghostwriter to look for Max Mouse inside the computer. But Max Mouse is very fast, so it's hard for Ghostwriter to catch up with it.

Then- Tina found a piece a paper in the trash. This paper turned out to have special passwords on it, for accessing Hurston School's computer system. Also it had a soft fresh wad of original bubblegum spat on it. So far the team has three suspects.

  1. Calvin Ferguson. He actually told Lenni that he was Max Mouse.
  2. Erica Dansby. She is the editor-in-chief of the school newspaper. Also she knows lots about computers and hackers.
  3. Janice Hall. She got an A on a very hard computer quiz. Also her quiz was found in the trash, with those special passwords written on the back of it.

Meanwhile- Jasmine Michaluk was arrested, because her name was found in the police station computer reports. She has been set up for using stolen credits cards! Could this be the hacker at work?

Then- Ghostwriter found what appeared to be trouble for Lenni. He sent the team a message that read: "Lenni Frazier D A". Alex a fan of detective and crime stories knows that D A can stand for District Attorney. They work for the police and charge people for crimes. So now they realize that Lenni may soon be in trouble with the police. If they don't stop this hacker soon!

Who is Max Mouse? And what is it up to now?

Story
The arc resumes with another day at Zora Neale Hurston Middle School. Jamal meets up with Jasmine and he listens to her vent her frustration. She has been cleared, but she is just shocked and offended that the hacker somehow set her up. Jamal is mad too, for someone playing such a rotten trick on her.

She explains to him that her parents had to come and pick her up from the police station. Then she finally convinced the police that she was innocent. So they believed her and let her go. However, the police just could not figure out how the false report about her using stolen credit cards came up onto their computer. Then when she asked to look at the report, she noticed it was signed by Max Mouse. Now he informs her that he believes that Max Mouse is trying to get Lenni into legal trouble too. Then he assures her not to worry. He explains to her that he and his friends are working hard to catch Max Mouse. Jasmine warns him to be careful and to not get caught himself. Since Max Mouse is one mean rodent! Then she kisses him on the cheek and goes to class. Jamal feels great, as if she just made his day!

Now we see Tina and Lenni meeting each other by the lockers. Tina has filled her in on the day before. Also she asks her not to worry about Max Mouse, and they will stick by her side if anything does happen to her. Lenni says that at the time being, she is only worried about her report card. So she nervously opens it to check it. To her very surprise, it reveals that she got an A in Global Studies. Now she feels thrilled and hugs Tina and begins a little victory dance. Tina feels that things aren't adding up, because Lenni said that lately she was doing poorly and has just failed a quiz. So she questions Lenni about it, but Lenni refuses to believe her. Instead she is only happy for getting an A.

Then Tina remembers the message from the other day. She now realizes that the D A, didn't mean district attorney. Instead the hacker must have changed Lenni's grade from a D to an A. So Tina asks Lenni about it. Lenni (feeling caught up in the moment of getting an A) gets mad and yells at her. She asks Tina if she doesn't want her to have a good grade. Tina says she does, but keeping the wrong grade isn't right. It is almost like cheating. Then Lenni asks her if she is going to snitch on her. Tina gets offended and says she won't. Then before they begin fighting worse, Tina tells her to skip it and walks away. Now Lenni feels bad and then she remembers something from the other day. It was when Calvin told her that he was Max Mouse. Then he said he would use his secret powers to do something special for her. Then he asked her what her heart's desire would be. Not believing him, she asked him if he could give her that A. He then said her wish was his command. Then he left the room smiling and smirking. So now Lenni worries that Calvin Ferguson may be the hacker after all! Now she hears the school fire alarm going off. Thinking it's a fire drill, she exits the school to take a breather.

Then later on, Lenni meets with Jamal for computer class. Jamal is frustrated with his report card. He received exceptional grades in all his other classes, but a D in computers. He is very mad with Mr. Aucoin, because this could affect his chances for being accepted to the High School of Science. So Jamal talks about it with Mr. Aucoin. Mr. Aucoin is very nice about it and apologizes. He tells Jamal it is really supposed to be an A-. So Jamal feels relieved now. Then Lenni asks Calvin if he changed her grade in global studies. Calvin seems to be very unhappy. Also he is all nicely dressed up in a suit and tie. Now he barely even answers her saying sure. Then Mr. Aucoin announces the start of class. Then he asks everyone to spit out their gum and sit down and pay attention. Jamal points out to Lenni that Janice spat out some gum. So she is a gum chewer.

Then in the hallway during class change, Alex talks to Ms. Kelly. He asks her if she can think of any student who may have a grudge against her. Over some rules or decisions that she has made. She says it's possible, but she just cannot think of anyone in particular at the time being. Then just before classes starts, Alex takes a drink from the fountain. Then he accidentally bumps into Janice. He apologizes for not seeing her there. Then suddenly the fire alarm goes off, and everyone has to exit the school again.

Then afterwards, Lenni arrives at Global Studies class. Mr. Johnston asks to speak with her. He tells her that he understands that she must feel bad about her grade. Then she asks him if it may have been a mistake. Then he tells her it was no mistake. She rightfully earned the D. Hearing this, she feels terrible for how she treated Tina earlier. Then Mr. Johnston offers to take some time and help her study after school. Then she can take a make-up test the following Monday. Then the fire alarm goes off again, much to everyone's annoyance. So everyone clears out of the school again.

Then at lunchtime, Tina sits down to have lunch with Erica. She asks her how she feels about the fact that there has already been three false alarms in one day. Erica feels that the hacker is really starting to get intense and it's only the beginning. Erica agrees with Tina that the hacker is the one doing the false alarms. Erica feels that the "best" is yet to come. Soon there will be time bombs and assassin boxes. Erica explains an assassin box is a device set up by a hacker. It sends strong electrical currents through the phone lines to fry the circuits and destroy other computers. She explains that a time bomb is set up as a normal looking program. Then it can be set to go off at any time. Then it can completely control the computer and do whatever the hacker programs it to do. Then on the intercom, Ms. Kelly announces that for the rest of the day, all computers will be shut down for inspection. She also tells the school not to worry, they will catch the hacker soon. Erica laughs not believing her. Then suddenly, the fire alarm goes off once again. Now everyone has to miss their lunch and exit the school again. On their way out, Erica stands up. Then she begins to laughs and shouts: "HACKER POWER"!

Then after lunch, all the students have assembled around the school trophy hall. Max Mouse has left a message on a piece of yellow paper there. Lenni, Jamal and Alex all read it together. The message says: "Hey, Pathetic Nerds! Somebody better try to catch me. 'Cause I'm bored. And when I get bored, I think of more fun things to do! Come chat on the bulletin board. Max Mouse Mm~. Then the three of them realize that all Max Mouse wants is attention. Also for somebody to catch him or her. Then the three of them check around the school looking for the bulletin board. Also Jamal writes down Max Mouse's message in the casebook.

Then finally, Alex comes across another message from Max Mouse. On a blue piece of part it says: "Wake up, Bulletin Board Bozo. This is 1993! Max Mouse Mm~. Then in the middle of it, it tells the reader to take one. It points to the smaller yellow box. It has multiple copies of the exact same message. So Alex takes one of the cards. Then once again the fire alarm goes off.

Then after school, Lenni stops by to see Mr. Johnston. She tells him that she cannot work with him today, since something important came up. Hearing this, Mr. Johnston is annoyed at her for not focusing on her priorities. So he reminds her that she'll have to take the make-up test on Monday, if she wants to bring up her grade. She agrees to work with him during lunchtime the next day. When she leaves, he expresses his concern for her.

Then Lenni meets Calvin at his Locker. She begs him to tell her the truth, on whether or not he is Max Mouse and changed her grade. Sounding very upset, Calvin says that he did and he aims to please. Not believing him and sensing he isn't happy she asks him what is wrong. He informs her that Attila died the other night. Apparently he was very sick. She feels sad to hear this, and says he was a beautiful bird. He tells her that she is too. Shes doesn't believe him, thinking he is mocking her. But he says he means it. So now he wants to give Attila a proper burial in Fort Greene Park. So he asks her to do him a big favor. To come along with him and say a few words for it, while he reads a poem. Then Lenni is grossed out. She can see that Calvin actually brought his dead parrot in a box to school. Now he plans to bury him after school!

Then after school, Tina and Alex meet with Jamal in his bedroom. They review Max Mouse's new message and wonder if Ghostwriter has found out who Max Mouse is yet. Reading the message, Ghostwriter asks them: "What is a Bozo?". Jamal sits down at the computer and answers him. He tells Ghostwriter that it means a clown. Then Ghostwriter answers saying: "We'll get the last laugh!". Then Alex says he is certain Ghostwriter will trap that computer mouse! Hearing this, Jamal realizes Max Mouse didn't mean a wall bulletin. Instead he or she meant a computer bulletin in cyberspace. He explains that in cyberspace there are bulletins that people can connect to on their modems. They can chat with other users, check messages or even play games on them. So if they find out the computer phone number, then they can come up with a handle and connect to the bulletin. So they ask Ghostwriter to try and look for the computer bulletin board number.

Then over in Fort Greene Park, Lenni has reluctantly joined Calvin for Attila's funeral. Calvin has buried Attila in a marked grave. Then Calvin asks Lenni to hold out his poem, which he wants to sing at the end of the ceremony. First he asks Lenni to say her good-byes to Attila. Reluctantly, Lenni says that he was a very nice parrot. And she is sure that Calvin will really miss him. Then Lenni holds out Calvin's poem which he begins singing terribly and off-key. As he sings the poem, flashbacks of Attila are shown.

Then Lenni heads over to Jamal's for the rally. They all cannot get over the fact that she actually helped Calvin bury Attila. Also she still cannot get over it herself. Then she explains to them that the other day, Calvin confessed to her that he was Max Mouse. Also that she asked him to change her global studies grade for her. So now he might possibly be Max Mouse! Then Lenni apologizes to Tina for yelling at her that morning. She says she just wanted so badly for her grade to be real. Tina accepts her apology. Then Jamal reveals that one of his grades is also wrong, along with a couple of other kids. So Max Mouse must have changed them all.

Then Ghostwriter returns and enters Jamal's computer. He has come up with not just one phone number, but ten phone numbers! So it is going to be nearly impossible to find out which ones Max Mouses bulletin board now. Then they review Max Mouse's latest message. Now Alex notices in the black border is a series of numbers. It is the same seven numbers that keep repeating themselves. The number is 555-3456. So Jamal turns on his modem and sets up the tele-comp program. He enters the phone number 555-3456, and it works!

Now they are at the Fun House bulletin Board! However they need to come up with a handle. And they only have 30 seconds or their call will be disconnected. So first they think up either Lenni or Jamal. Then Tina says it might be risky using their own names. So Jamal enters LJ Bad (L for Lenni and J for Jamal). Then Jamal enters the chatroom. There they see Max Mouse typing in purple text boasting about its antics. Then another user named Mondo is typing in a yellow text. Max Mouse tells the chat: "The Robin Hood of Grades took from the grade rich and gave to the grade poor!". So now it does sound like Max Mouse really did change the grades. Then Max Mouse tells the chatroom: "Guess what? All the kids who got D's complained. But not one kid who got an A said a word! Then another user named Newt is also in the chatroom. He or she is typing in a blue text. He or she answers saying: "Can you blame them?". Then Max Mouse writes again. Now it tells the chatroom: "People are so fake!!! My next trick will bring Hurston down!!". Then it leaves. Then Jamal reminds them they need to keep an eye on Calvin, Erica, Janice and all the other people who chew gum in their computer class. For all they know, Max Mouse might be setting up an assassin box right now!

Then upstairs in Lenni's loft, Max is in a good mood and preparing supper. He notices his daughter looking glum and asks her what the problem is. He suspects it has something to do with her report card. So Lenni reluctantly shows her dad her report card. At first Max is thrilled because she got an A in global studies. Then Lenni confesses to her dad, that she really got a D. Instead a hacker changed her grade from a D to an A. So now Mr. Johnston is going to be mad at her. Max appreciates her honesty. So he tells her that it wasn't her fault and that the teacher will understand that a hacker changed it. Also that he cares about her grades when they are poor. Because it shows that she is having difficulty and should ask her teacher for help.

Then later that evening, we see Ghostwriter traveling through cyberspace. He is speeding along the 3-Dimensional road of circuitry. He passes by various names, codes and numbers. Then he sees Max Mouse up ahead of him. So he begins to chase after it. He is right on its tail. Then suddenly it speeds off and gets away. Now we see Jamal is working on his entrance essay for the High School of Science. So far he has come up with: "My family says I was born with a mouth full of questions and a head full of ideas. So, they weren't surprised when I told them I want to become a scientist who conducts experiments in space". Then suddenly Jamal's computer screen goes blank. He panics for a moment until Ghostwriter appears. Ghostwriter tells Jamal: "I almost caught Max Mouse!". So Jamal asks him what happened. Then Ghostwriter tell him he chased it, but then it suddenly disappeared. Ghostwriter asks Jamal why did Max Mouse disappear. Jamal realizes Max Mouse disappeared, because it disconnected its modem. So he tells Ghostwriter that maybe Max Mouse just hung up the phone.

The next day, Lenni arrives at global studies class to study with Mr. Johnston. There she nervously confesses to him. She tells him that she got the wrong grade on her report card. It was an A instead of a D. She promises him she had nothing to do with it, even though she did ask Calvin if he could change it for her. Then she apologizes for not telling him earlier, but at first she thought she could get away with it. But she finally decided to the right thing. Mr. Johnston isn't mad. He really appreciates her honesty and telling him herself. Also if she hadn't, he would have found out eventually. Then he would have been mad. Then once again, the fire alarm goes off. Then once again everyone has to exit the school. Then afterwards, Lenni meets with Tina. Tina is miffed, because she was developing pictures and she had to drop everything and leave. So they were all exposed. Lenni tells Tina she is happy she told Mr. Johnston the truth. Also if she does go on the make-up test, she can improve her grade.

Then on the intercom, a furious Ms. Kelly asks the entire school to come to the cafetorium for an urgent assembly. Ms. Kelly takes the stand and she is furious. She tells the entire student body, that if Max Mouse is among them. And if he or she is responsible for the false alarms, then it is no joke. The other day a small child who lived nearby almost died in a fire. This was because the fire department was at their school answering a false alarm. Everyone now seems horrified and shocked. Then Ms. Kelly announces that for the rest of the day all school computers, including the fire alarm controls will be turned off. Also for the rest of the week, the fire marshal will be patrolling the school. The computers will be back on tomorrow and school will be back on as usual. Then she makes them a promise: When Max Mouse is caught, not only will he or she be answering to her. But to the police also!

When Lenni and Jamal get back to their computer class they are worried, because they've never seen Ms. Kelly so mad before. Then suddenly an announcement appears on all of the computers. It is written in purple and it says: "IF YOU TURN THIS OFF... DESTRUCTION! Max Mouse Mm~". Everyone is terrified to see this threatening message and they panic asking Mr. Aucoin for help! Then suddenly all off the computers turn off..

Rewind
The show's narrator explains to the viewers, in case they have forgotten what has previously happened in the arc. The facts are:

First- A hacker has invaded Zora Neale Hurston Middle School's computer system. A hacker is a computer user who breaks into other peoples computers and causes problems. The hacker known as Max Mouse has been pulling pranks. Pranks such as sending scary and terrifying messages through the school computers. The message said that their principal Ms. Kelly had died, when she really did not. Then placing a a strange message in the school newspaper. The message was a taunt, announcing that he or she was up to more pranks and stunts. Also changing students grades from D's to A's and A's to D's. Lenni and Jamal were two of the many students affected by this. And setting off false alarms at school with the fire alarms. The Ghostwriter team wants to know who Max Mouse is, and stop all of these pranks. But they don't know who Max Mouse is. They can only see the words he or shes writes. So Ghostwriter has been searching for Max Mouse within cyberspace inside the computers. The team knows that Max Mouse also attends Hurston. He or she knows a lot about computers. Also he or she is mad at Ms. Kelly for some reason. And that he or she chews original bubblegum.

And- The team has found out that Max Mouse uses a modem to connect and hack into other computers. A modem is like a telephone for computers. So computers with modems can communicate with each other. So far the team has three suspects.

  1. Calvin Ferguson. He actually confessed to Lenni that he was Max Mouse.
  2. Erica Dansby. She is the editor-in-chief of the school newspaper. Also she knows a lot about computers and hackers.
  3. Janice Hall. She got an A on a very hard computer quiz. Also her quiz was found in the trash, with special passwords to Hurston's computer system written on the back of it. And she chews original bubblegum.

Then- The team finds that Max Mouse wants to chat with other kids on a computer bulletin board. That is a place in cyberspace where people can leave other people messages, or chat with other people and play games with them.

So- They chatted with Max Mouse on the Fun House bulletin board, to get more clues about this hacker. They came up with a handle called LJ Bad. Then they saw a message from Max Mouse. This one said: "My next trick will bring Hurston down!!!".

Meanwhile- Ghostwriter has been searching long and hard in cyberspace for Max Mouse. Then he almost catches it, but it's a very tricky hacker, and it keeps getting away! Then Ms. Kelly has had enough. She has announced to the entire school that when Max Mouse is caught, he or she will answer to both her and to the police!

Who is Max Mouse? And why is Max Mouse causing all of the trouble?

Story
The arc resumes with Mr. Aucoin asking his class to calm down, and goes off to report the incident to Ms. Kelly.

Now both Lenni and Jamal are shocked and startled to see that even Mr. Aucoin (on expert on computers) is worried about what is being done by Max Mouse. So Jamal asks Lenni if they should have a rally meeting at his house after school. Lenni tells him she cannot. Because it will be three years since her dad quit smoking. So every year on this day, she bakes him a special cake to celebrate. Also to make him feel too guilty to ever do it again. So Lenni asks him to bring his modem over to her house. Then they can rally and call the Fun House bulletin board on her computer instead. Jamal agrees and Lenni leaves before him.

Then just as Jamal is about to leave, he bumps into Janice. He apologizes to her for not seeing her there. Janice is very nervous and trembles when she speaks. She says it is okay, because lots of people usually tend to not notice her. Then overhearing what he said, she shows interest that he has a computer modem. She tells him it must be really cool to be able to chat with people all over the world on his computer. Then he tells her that he just got his modem for his birthday. However he says he hasn't been able to use it much yet. Then suspecting her, he tells her that he bets that she uses hers all of the time. Hearing this, Janice gets nervous and says she doesn't even have a computer. Then he asks her how she got so good at computer class. She nervously exits the class room, while saying she is not very good. Hearing this, Jamal knows for a fact she is lying.

Then on her way out from school, Lenni searches for Tina. She checks the school newspaper room. When she gets there she can see that Erica is furious with Ms. Kelly, for shutting down all of the computers. Erica says that Ms. Kelly should be blasted into cyberspace and eaten by computer bugs. Lenni is shocked to hear her says this. So Erica rudely asks her what she is looking for. Lenni tells her Tina, and Erica is frustrated and says Tina isn't here. Also why would anyone be in a computer room after school, when Ms. Kelly shut down all of the computers. Lenni tells her that Ms. Kelly only did it, to stop Max Mouse from pulling false alarms and nasty pranks. Erica tells Lenni that a hacker like Max Mouse cannot be stopped. The more you fight it, the stronger and more powerful it gets. Then Erica rudely tells her to wake up and smell the cyber-funk and leaves.

Then inside Lenni's casebook she calls a rally. She writes on a piece of paper: Rally L. Then Ghostwriter skims the messages and begins to deliver it. Inside the Fernandez children's bedroom, Gaby is cutting out word clippings and putting them into a box. Ghostwriter borrows letters to tell her: RALLY L. She heads off to the rally. Then we see Hector is on his way home from school. He says good-bye to a classmate. Then over at the park, he sees the letters on the park sign rearrange to tell him: Rally L. He is very exited like it just made his day. Then he turns around and bumps into a bigger kid. He sure isn't too happy to see him!

Then over at Lenni's Loft, Lenni is preparing the cake and the whole team except for Hector have all arrived. Jamal has filled everyone in on what just happened between him and Janice. Gaby believes that if Janice lied about not being good at computer class, then she might also by lying about not having a computer. So Jamal adds the fact that Janice lied as another clue in the casebook. Lenni is completely puzzled. She wonders how Janice could have sent out the destruction message, when she was standing there with the rest of them. Tina reminds them about the time bomb programs Erica told her about. The ones that are set up like alarm clocks and can go off at any time. So Janice could have set it up at any time before it happened. Then Alex volunteers to help with preparing the cake.

Then Gaby asks why Hector hasn't shown up yet. Tina suggests maybe he had something important to do. Alex says he would have called. Hearing him says this, Jamal has a great idea. They will look up Calvin's, Erica's and Janice's phone numbers in the phone book. Then when they go onto the bulletin board, and they can ask Ghostwriter to track down where Max Mouse is calling from. Then they can check and see if the number matches, Calvin's, Erica's or Janice's phone number. Then they will find out which one of them is Max Mouse.

Then back at the park, Hector is having a very rough time. The bigger kid he bumped into is a bully. He is an African American boy named George. He likes picking on Hector because he is smaller than him. Hector snaps at him that he has told him a million times to leave him alone. George laughs it off and doesn't stop. Then George tries taking Hector's purple ball cap. Hector cries for him to stop it. George mimics him, and he tells Hector that no little peanut is going to wear his favorite team's hat. Hector tries to get his hat back, and George drops it. Then George plays keep away with Hector's backpack. So Hector asks him to stop it and calls him a stupid jerk. George gets furious and snaps at him. He says that nobody speaks to him that way and gets away with it. So Hector trips over George and falls flat on his back on the pavement. Then George threatens him, he says that if he sees him tomorrow he will pound his little peanut face all over the pavement and leaves.

Then back at Lenni's loft, Tina announces that they found Calvin and Erica's phone numbers: Calvin 555-6190 and Erica 555-4376. But unfortunately they couldn't find Janice's number. Then Alex suggests they look through the student records. Then Jamal reminds him that they shouldn't do that. Then Tina suggests they ask Ghostwriter to do it. She says that he doesn't care about grades, just the information they need. So Jamal turns on his modem and starts up the tele-comp program. He calls the number 555-8425, and enters the password: Alpha. Then they enter the student database on Hurston's school computer. Ghostwriter agrees to do it, and enters cyberspace once again! He reaches the firewall, then he says: Alpha and he is granted access to the Hurston school computer.

Then we hear a knock on Lenni's door. Alex answers it and it is Hector. Alex asks him where he has been, but Hector is exasperated and mad. Also he wants to do is go for a walk and talk with Alex alone. Then on their way out, Ghostwriter returns. He enters Lenni's computer and reveals Janice's phone number to be: 555-7241. Now they have all the suspects phone numbers. So now they need to move onto the next step: go to the Fun House bulletin board and hope Max Mouse is on, so Ghostwriter can track it down.

Then we see Alex and Hector are going for a walk around Brooklyn. Then as they pass The Prison Ship Martyrs' Monument, Hector has completely filled Alex in on about George. Alex informs Hector that George is a bully. He gets enjoyment from making him feel bad. Hector thinks the only way to beat him, is by making HIM feel bad. Then he tells Alex he told George he was a stupid jerk. Then George ended up pushing him and throwing his stuff around. Then Alex tells him that when he was a kid, he had a bully too. This bully bothered Alex everyday. Then one day. Alex had enough so he hit the bully. Then the bully hit him back so hard, he nearly broke his arm. Then Alex tells him that if a bully picks on him, to just try and ignore him. Also he suggests that Hector just act tough and look at the bully in the eye. Then boldly tell him: Hey! don't do that to me! Since the bully may not continue to bother him, if he doesn't think he is afraid of him anymore. Then Alex suggests that if all else fails, then to call him and he will speak to George.

Then back at Lenni's loft, they have connected to the Fun House bulletin board. Fortunately they came on at a good time, and Max Mouse is on. Max Mouse, is writing in a purple text. It tells the bulletin board: "Hurston is in the grip of TECHNO-POWER. Prepare for destruction!!!". They are worried about this message. Then a new user named Peace Maker joins the bulletin. He or she is writing in a cyan text. It tells Max Mouse: "Dear Max Mouse. Please stop. A lot of kids are scared. Thank you. Peace Maker. Max Mouse isn't pleased and kicks the user off the bulletin. They now realize they need to watch what they say to Max Mouse.

Then we see the Park where Hector usually enjoys playing. He has brought Alex with him, he reminds Hector that he has just as much right to play there as George does. Also to just try and ignore him. Then to get his mind off of George, Alex persuades Hector to play handball with him.

Then back at Lenni's loft, Gaby is disgusted about Max Mouse being such a bully. Lenni feels that scaring people must make Max Mouse feel important. Jamal mentions that bullies usually back off, when you prove to them you aren't scared of them. So they decide to try and talk to Max Mouse, but they see a new user has already joined the bulletin. The user's handle is called Red Parrot, and it's writing in a goldenrod text. It tells Max Mouse: "Great Max Mouse, let me help you think up really twisted tricks! The worse, the better! I have experience.". Then Lenni reminds them that Attila was a red parrot. Then Jamal, Lenni, Tina and Gaby all agree that Red Parrot must be Calvin! Then Max Mouse replies. It tells him: "Red Parrot, you are a bird with brains. I could teach you how to do your own tricks!". Red Parrot replies saying: "Yes! They noticed that Max Mouse liked the way Red Parrot spoke to it. So Lenni suggests they try taking to it too. So they can learn some of his or her secrets.

Then with the LJ Bad handle, Jamal writes to Max Mouse. He tells it: "Hello, Great Max Mouse. We want to learn tricks too.". Max Mouse isn't impressed with his message. It answers saying: "Who are you, LJ Bad? Why should I BOTHER with you???" Then after Jamal takes too long to answer, Max Mouse tells him: "You're slow, you blow!". Then they're kicked off the bulletin board. Then when the modem disconnects, Ghostwriter returns. He tells them: "Max Mouse keeps getting away. I need more time!". So they figure out they need to make their message sound more appealing, to stay on the bulletin board longer.

Then back at the park, Hector and Alex are having a great time playing handball with each other. Then sure enough, George arrives. Hector gets a bit startled at first. George crosses his arms and gives an intimidating stare. He taunts Hector by calling out to him. But Alex tells Hector to just ignore him. So Hector ignores him and keeps playing with Alex. George waits briefly then gives up and walks away. He may possibly have been concerned with Alex being around, since he is bigger and older than him.

Then back at Lenni's loft, the four of them try to come up with a message to impressed Max Mouse. So Gaby has them use her thesaurus (a book that shows that each word can be said in many different ways). So finally they come up with: "Great Max Mouse, you are the true Master of Disaster, but we're clever and sly and ready to rip! So they connect Lenni's computer to the Fun House Bulletin Board. Then Jamal sends Max Mouse this message. And Max Mouse replies saying: "I like your style LJ Bad!! Red Parrot and LJ Bad, meet me here tomorrow morning at 7:00 a.m." The four of them cheer because it worked! Then the connection cuts off. Then Ghostwriter returns. He tells them: "I lost Max Mouse again! It's hard to find the right phone line. There are so many!" Hearing this, they realize that Max Mouse must connect through multiple phone lines to reduce the chance of getting caught. So they agree to meet here the next morning at 7:00 a.m. before going to school.

Then that night, we see Jamal has fallen asleep at his computer. He has been working really hard on his entrance essay to the High School of Science. When suddenly his computer gets hacked! The options save and delete flash back and forth. Then finally the essay is deleted and now it's gone! Then when Jamal wakes up, he is dumbfounded to see his essay is gone. He checks all his directories to see if he saved it anywhere. Among the directories, are messages including ones to Danitra and Rob Baker. Still he cannot find his essay anywhere. He realizes he somehow lost his essay and now he's mad!

The next morning, Gaby and Tina have arrived at Lenni's Loft. Gaby shows Tina that she made Ghostwriter a word nest. A box fall of relaxing and comforting words for him to rest in. Then Jamal arrives and he is furious. He is so mad he is about to explode. He doesn't want to talk about it, he just wants to connect to the bulletin and get it over with. So first they wake Ghostwriter up. Gaby places a nice message into the word nest: "Wake up, Ghostwriter! Rise and Shine!. Then Ghostwriter shines like the sun and enters Lenni's computer. He tells them: "Ready to rip! I'm back on Max Mouse's tail!". So they enter the Fun House bulletin board and Max Mouse is already waiting for them and Red Parrot. They both confirm to him or her that they're there. Then Max Mouse tells them that they're going to play a game. And Red Parrot is going to go first. So Max Mouse asks him what he would like in return if he wins. Red Parrot says: A date with Lenni Frazier. And Max Mouse says: Done! Lenni is repulsed because Red Parrot really is Calvin Ferguson. Then they all tease her because he likes her now. Then Max Mouse asks Red Parrot to choose a game. There are four games to choose from:

  1. Tic-Tac-Toe.
  2. Word War.
  3. Ghost.
  4. Speed Trap.

Red Parrot chooses Word War and it is a word search games. So there are five rules:

  1. The game only lasts one minute.
  2. Players type the words that they can find.
  3. Players can't see each other's lists.
  4. If players type the same word, it will be erased.
  5. Player with the most words wins.

So they watch the game to study it. Meanwhile Ghostwriter is racing through cyberspace as fast as he can, but Max Mouse keeps getting away. Max Mouse is an exceptional player and smokes Red Parrot. Then when Red Parrot loses, Max Mouse tells the bulletin: "You lose, Red Parrot! Prepare to suffer---Calvin! Then this confirms that Red Parrot really was Calvin and not Max Mouse. So they clear Calvin's name as a suspect of their list. Then Max Mouse tells LJ Bad(the team) to meet with him or her tomorrow at noon. Then in cyberspace, Ghostwriter is chasing after Max Mouse. He almost catches it, and then it disappears. Ghostwriter returns to the computer, and tells them: "I almost caught Max Mouse! I can follow it through the telephone lines, but I need more time!!".

Then they try to think of which game they can play, that will take the most time. They know Word War only Lasts a minute. Also Tic-Tac-Toe and whatever is Speed Trap is, sounds way too fast! Then Tina asks Gaby how to play Ghost. She says it is a word game. One in which each player adds one letter at a time. Then whoever makes a word first loses. Then they realize there can be a limit of time between adding the letters, and trying to make the word very long. So this could give Ghostwriter enough time to travel through cyberspace and finally catch Max Mouse.

Then speaking of time, Tina reminds them that if they don't hurry up, they will be late for school. Then when they get to school, Mr. Johnston asks to speak privately to Lenni and Jamal. He brings them to an empty classroom, and he looks furious and glares daggers at them. He reveals that both of their telephone numbers appeared on the security box for telephone numbers that called the Hurston computer. He asks them to explain themselves. Jamal is honest explains that he has a modem and they were just trying to track down Max Mouse and catch him or her. They admit they went into the student records, but they only looked at his. Mr. Johnston asks Lenni if she changed her own grade after all. She whines saying they didn't change any grades and they swear they're innocent and they beg him to believe them. Then he tells them the computer security officers don't think so. And if they can prove that either one of them is Max Mouse, they will be in trouble with the police! They're both horrified and shocked to hear this!

Rewind
The show's narrator explains to the viewers, in case they have forgotten what has previously happened in the arc. The facts are:

First- A computer hacker has invaded Zora Neale Hurston Middle School's computer system. A hacker is a computer user who breaks into other peoples computers and causes problems. The hacker known as Max Mouse has been pulling pranks. Pranks such as sending scary and terrifying messages through the school computers. The message said that their principal Ms. Kelly had died, when she really did not. Also changing students grades (including Lenni's and Jamal's) for amusement and to get them all riled up. The Ghostwriter team wants to find out who Max Mouse is. So they can put a stop to all the pranks and chaos he or she has been causing. But they cannot see Max Mouse, only the words he or she writes on computers. So Ghostwriter has been looking for Max Mouse within cyberspace inside the computers. The team now knows that Max Mouse also attends Hurston, knows a lot about computers. Also he or she is mad at Ms. Kelly for some reason. And he or she chews original bubblegum.

And- They found out that Max Mouse uses a modem to get into other computers. A modem is like a telephone for computers. So computers with modems can connect and communicate and connect with each other. The team now has two suspects left: Erica Dansby and Janice Hall. Erica is the editor-in-chief of the school newspaper. She also knows a lot about computers and hackers. Janice's A+ computer quiz was found in the trash, with a list of special passwords for the Hurston school computer. And she chews original bubblegum.

Then- the team asked Ghostwriter to track down the phone number that Max Mouse uses for her modem. And if this number matches Erica's or Janice's, then it can prove who Max Mouse is. Then Max Mouse challenged the team's handle (username) LJ Bad to a computer game on the Fun House bulletin board (website). The team decided to pick a long game called "Ghost". They figured that the longer the game takes, the more time they will stay connected to cyberspace for Ghostwriter to catch Max Mouse.

Now- Lenni and Jamal telephones have both shown up on the school computer's security box. The teacher who informed them Mr. Johnston now suspects one of them may be Max Mouse. And he informs them that the computer security officers have them both written down as suspects. So if they can prove that either one of them is Max Mouse, then they will be in trouble with the police!

What will happen to Lenni and Jamal? Will the team figure out who the hacker is? And can Ghostwriter catch Max Mouse?

Story
The arc resumes with Mr. Johnston still furious. So he impatiently asks Jamal and Lenni if either of them is Max Mouse. Then Erica enters the classroom. She overheard what he said and she just laughs it off. She tells him that there is no way, that either of them could be the great Max Mouse. Mr. Johnston is annoyed at Erica for interrupting. So he asks her to wait in the hall until he's finished with them. Erica says no at first, saying she has lots of work to do on her article. But he insists and dismisses her, and she obeys and leaves.

Then both Jamal and Lenni argue and complain back and forth. They beg and plea for Mr. Johnston to believe them, by quickly giving various explanations. They say that they were just trying to help the school and catch the hacker. Also they would never invade other people's privacy and change their grades. Then suddenly, the computer in the classroom starts beeping. They point it out and they all look at it. It is a message from Max Mouse. Max Mouse tells the school computers: "The time bomb is now set! HURSTON IS HISTORY!!!". Mr. Johnston is worried sick and insists they all exit the school at once. They try to explain to him, that a time bomb is a computer program that is set to go off at a later time. Just like a VCR. But fearing it may be a real bomb, he insists they take no chances. So Lenni copies down the message and they leave.

Then after school, the entire team (except Hector) rallies at Lenni's Loft. Alex reflects on the day, saying that some hackers sure know how to cause trouble. Lenni can relate to this, by explaining to him that Mr. Johnston now thinks she and Jamal are Max Mouse. Then Jamal reveals that Max Mouse is really smart. So if it can figure out that Red Parrot was Calvin, then it most likely knows that he and Lenni are LJ Bad. Then Alex and Tina mention that Max Mouse can now do something bad to them too. Just like how he will be doing something bad to Calvin after losing a game. Jamal reminds Tina that since their only two suspects are now Erica and Janice, that Max Mouse must be a girl. However they still don't know exactly whom. So they need to track down the phone number, that Max Mouse is using, to find out who she really is.

Then Tina suggests reporting the two girls' phone numbers to the computer security officers. Therefore they can check to see which one of them has been calling the Hurston school computer. Jamal says that idea won't work, because Max Mouse's phone number won't show up on the security box. He explains to them that Ghostwriter informed him, that Max Mouse is connected to a mass serious of different phone lines. So it can look like she is from anywhere in the world and nobody, not even the police can catch her. So this was why Ghostwriter couldn't catch her in a just one minutes time. Now Ghostwriter, is the only one who can track down Max Mouse's phone number, and save their school from the time bomb! Now they realize they need to find a way to keep Max Mouse connected for a long time online. So now they all must practice playing "Ghost". They all need to have it perfected by noon the next day. Or Max Mouse may do something to embarrass them in front of the whole school. Or worse, Lenni and Jamal could be in trouble with the police!

Then over at the park, Hector surveys his surrounding and is very vigilant. He can see no sign of George, but he decides to leave and runs over to Lenni's Loft. He knocks on the door, and he's welcomed in by Alex. Alex asks him how the bully situation is, Hector says it is okay so far.

Then Hector joins the rally, and Lenni fills him in. She then tells everyone their game plan for "Ghost".

  1. Do no make a word, or they will lose!
  2. Make the game last as long as they can, by making a long word.

Then Hector tells a joke. He says he cannot make long words, because he's a short person. They all laugh at this. Then Jamal reminds them that while trying to think up a long word, to not end up making a short word by mistake. So Gaby and Alex do a test round on the paper easel. Gaby starts with adding an S. Then Alex adds a T. Then Gaby adds an O. Now Alex adds an R, and Gaby senses she is in trouble. So she adds an I instead of a Y and keeps going. Then Alex adds an E. Then suddenly Gaby realizes she has no choice but to add an S. Then she loses because she ended up making the word: "Stories". So although she attempted to make the word longer, it still ended on her. So now they all decide to practice as much as they can before their match with Max Mouse. But Jamal says he needs to redo his application essay to the High School of Science. He explains to them all that he thought he saved it, but something happened and he must have mistakenly deleted it.

Then over at the park, Alex and Hector are sitting down playing checkers. Hector tells Alex that George wasn't at the handball court at all that day. Alex thinks it's good, but Hector does not. He says that he felt better the other day, when they were playing handball together and they ignored George. So now that he didn't see George today, he feels scared again. Then Alex tells Hector that he needs to keep going back. Each time he goes back when George shows up, it will show George he isn't scared of him. And he will feel stronger and better about himself. Then Alex tells him that if he he thinks George is going to really hurt him, then to come and get him. Also to never be ashamed to ask for help when you really need it. Hector says okay, and they agree to see each other again the next day.

Then we see Hector has gone over to the library. He reintroduces himself to the librarian. She recalls him from the other day when she made him his new library card. Then she asks him how she can help him. Hector nervously asks her if any authors have every written a book about what to do if you are being picked on by a bully. She has the perfect book for him: Wonder Kid meets the evil lunch snatcher, by Lois Duncan. She find the book for him. It is a paperback book, and he sits down and reads it. Hector seems to really enjoy the book, finding it funny and helpful. He gives the librarian a thumbs up and finishes it.

Then back at Lenni's Loft, Lenni is practicing "Ghost" with her dad. On the paper easel, Max has started by adding an M. Then Lenni adds a U. Then Max adds an S. So Lenni adds an I. Then Max adds a C, then suddenly, Lenni tells her dad that she beat him. He explains saying he was trying to spell Musician. Then Lenni explains that M U S I C spells Music. So he already made a word and lost. Then he realizes she is right, and applauds her on how good she is becoming at the game.

Then over in the Fernandez children's bedroom, we see Alex and Gaby practicing with each other. They are being competitive and using scrabble pieces. So far the letters H A P P have been added. Alex tells her if she ends it with a Y, he will be very happy. She tells him that it might have been true, but she's been practicing all afternoon. So she adds an I. Then he tells her that she is making things too easy, so he adds an E. Then adds an S asking him if he is sure about that. Then suddenly he realizes he has no choice but to add a T. He spells HAPPIEST and loses the game. Then she says a victory chant: "Give it up, turn lose. Cause baby I just cooked your goose!". Now Gaby is laughing because she can finally beat her brother at the game.

Now we see Tina has been practicing the game with Ghostwriter. So far the letters V E G E T A R I, have been added. Tina adds an A and patiently waits for Ghostwriter. Ghostwriter adds an N, then he spells "VEGETARIAN" and loses. Ghostwriter is a good sport (as always of course) and he tells her "Ten letters. You're getting good". Tina feels great. She feels that if now she can beat Ghostwriter, sure enough she can beat Max Mouse.

Then later on, Alex wakes up Gaby in the middle of the night. She is cranky to be wakened up, so she asks him what he is doing. He explains that he's looking for his lucky basketball socks. He feels that they will need all the luck they can get for tomorrow. Alex says that he and Jamal can each wear one, but Gaby think it's gross. Then he wishes he had three feet. That way he could lend a lucky sock to Hector, to help him with his bully problem.

The next day, the whole team (except for Hector) meets at Lenni's Loft before noon. They all prepare, Alex puts on a lucky sock. Then he hands one to Jamal who gladly puts one on too. Lenni and Tina also think that sharing dirty socks is gross, and that boys will be boys. Gaby tells everyone that she has filled her word nest with words to make Ghostwriter feel good. The words include, strong, tough, forceful, powerful and stout. Tina objects believing stout means to be fat. Gaby says it does. But according to the thesaurus, it also means to be brave and strong. Then she is asked if she brought her thesaurus with her. She says yes she did. Along with her dictionary, scrabble dictionary, rhyming dictionary and her dictionary of slang.

Then over at the park, Hector has arrived to the handball court. He follows Alex's advice and stays and just minds his own business. So he begins playing handball.

Then back at Lenni's Loft, they realize it is now 11:45 am. So they have just 15 minutes to go. The team agrees to let Jamal play the game, because he knows how to keep cool, when the pressure is on. So Jamal sits down on Lenni's computer. Now Lenni, Alex, Tina and Gaby stand behind him to help and give their support. Gaby places the word nest next to the computer. She says that Ghostwriter is ready to trap that rat too! Inside the word nest/box Ghostwriter tells them: "Keep the mouse talking. I'll track her down". Then he enters Lenni's computer.

Then Jamal signs into the Fun House bulletin board with their LJ Bad Handle. Sure enough, Max Mouse is punctual and waiting for them. She tells them: "Hello, LJ Bad. Ready to be techno-mangled?". Lenni tells him to respond with: "I wouldn't be too sure about that, Girlfriend". Suddenly, Max Mouse quickly responds with: "How did you figure out I'm a girl?". Seeing this, they cheer because they were right for suspecting that Max Mouse was a girl. So Lenni takes a turn and writes to her. She answers with: "Our secret weapon. Any more question, Girlfriend?". All she responds with is: "Choose your game". Meanwhile, we see Ghostwriter racing down the three dimensional road in the world of cyberspace.

Then the team has chosen to play "Ghost". They review the rules, when Max Mouse abruptly interrupts. She tells them: "Jamal, I took your application to the High School of Science. When you lose, I will send it in, loaded with spelling mistakes and bad language". Seeing this, Jamal now knows the truth: He didn't accidentally delete it, Max Mouse hacked him. So since she knows his name and telephone number, then she can keeping hacking him! Then she tells them: "Lenni, when you lose, I'll make sure you're the one arrested and charged for setting the false alarms. I hope you're ready to face your punishment". At first they feel really worried, because Max Mouse got Jasmine in trouble with the police. So surely, she can get them into trouble too. Then Alex encourages them to stay strong and not let her psych them out. Then Tina encourages them too. She reminds them about all the trouble Max Mouse has caused at their school. So now they've just got to stop her.

Now Gaby suggests asking what they get if they win. So Jamal asks her: "What do we get when you lose?". Max Mouse replies with: "Ha! Ha! Ha! Dream on! What do you want?". They decide that they want her to confess. So Jamal asks her: "Tell us how you did the false alarms". They realize, explaining this can take a long time, and even more time to give Ghostwriter to catch her. Max Mouse replies with: "That was a hard trick. Okay. I'll tell you if you win". Then Max Mouse explains that in her game of "Ghost", it is a one word only SUDDEN DEATH. Jamal asks them what if they refuse to the terms. Max Mouse says then they will lose by default. So Jamal tells her they will do it on two conditions: The word has to be more than four letters, and they get 20 seconds per adding each letter. Max Mouse agrees to this, (unaware that this is giving Ghostwriter more time to catch her).

Meanwhile in cyberspace, Ghostwriter passes through phone lines to London, England and Moscow, Russia.

Then the game of "Ghost" has begun. Max Mouse has started by adding a B. Jamal is making monumental decisions. He almost runs out of time, and finally adds an E. Then Max Mouse adds an A. Then Jamal is about to add a U, when Gaby pulls his hands away from the keyboard. She reminds him that adding a U will spell the word "Beau" like in boyfriend. Then he reminds her that it will be okay, because Beau is only four letters. So he adds it and expresses relief. Gaby apologizes and Tina says it's all right, because she might have been right. Then Jamal asks her not to pulls his hands away again. If she does, he might hit a wrong key by mistake.

Then we see that Max Mouse has added a T. Then Alex says that B E A U T, is Beaut which is slang, like that car is a beaut. Also it is acceptable according to the dictionary of slang. So they tell her they challenge it. But she is a bad sport and tells them, no slang or the game is over. Then on their next turn, Lenni reminds him that adding a Y will spell "Beauty" So Jamal stalls waiting to see if Ghostwriter will come back.

Then back in cyberspace, Ghostwriter passes through more international phone lines. This time he passes through Tokyo, Japan and Lisbon, Portugal.

Then over at the park, George had finally arrived to the handball court! And he looks mad! He calls Hector out and begins taunting him. He calls him a peanut shrimp. Hector acts causal and shows no fear and even speaks nicely to him. Still George gives him a mean stare and takes his ball away!

Then back to the game, They have added the letter I and Max Mouse has added the letter F. Then they realize if they add a U they will win. But they consider trying to make the word longer to give Ghostwriter more time. But if they try to make either of the words Beautification or beautified, those words will end on them. And they will lose! So they panic worrying why Ghostwriter hasn't come back yet with good news.

Now inside cyberspace, we see Ghostwriter is chasing Max Mouse, along phone lines through Hollywood. He is right on her tail and begins catching up with her.

Then back to the game, they realize they have no choice but to add a U. So finally Max Mouse adds the letter L and loses. She tells them that they won. Now they realize that she still has to tell them how she set off the alarms. So this will give them some more time.

Back at the park, Hector stands up for himself. He does his best to show no fear. He tells George that he would like his ball back. George tells him he won't give it back to someone with Dumbo ears. Then Hector tells he he cannot play handball without a ball. Then George gets mad and grabs Hector's shirt. He snaps at him asking him who he thinks he is talking to. Then Hector remembers everything Alex told him lately. If he can act all big and strong, then maybe it will show George he isn't scared of him. So Hector nicely asks George to let him go. So George disappointingly lets go of Hector's shirt. Then he tosses his ball back and leaves the court. Hector cheers and feels great about succeeding in his bully problem.

Then back at Lenni's Loft, Jamal asks her: "So how did you do the false alarms?". Max Mouse answers saying: "I made a little program called "Demon" that disappears when you turn off the computer". Since it seems like practically a confession, Jamal prints it out. Then Jamal asks her: "Will you tell us who you are?". Then suddenly, we see Janice at her computer chomping on gum and typing. Ghostwriter flies out of her computer and right back in to return. She tells them: "That was not our deal".

Then suddenly, Lenni's computer screen goes blank. They cheer to see Ghostwriter found the telephone number. And it is 555-7241. Then they five of them cheer and exchange high fives for finding out who Max Mouse is. Then they tell her: "We've got you, Janice Hall, 555-7241. Janice answers saying: "Well, Lenni and Jamal, I didn't think you were so smart". Then they decide to ask her why she did it. Now we see, Janice isn't feeling worried, anxious or nervous about being exposed. She is still calm and cool as a cucumber. In fact she is showing no remorse at all. She just laughs it off, like she cannot believe they would even ask her the question. She answers telling them: "Nobody notices Janice, but you can't ignore Max Mouse! can you?" The team is now both worried for Janice and shocked.

Then Ghostwriter returns to Lenni's computer. He tells them all: "She cut off! Did you get the number?". The Lenni answers him. She tells him: "Yes! Thank you, Ghostwriter! You saved the day!". He responds saying: "The TEAM saved the day! Thank you all!!!". They all agree with him and they all cheer, rejoice and high five. Then Gaby hugs the computer, believing Ghostwriter deserves it too. Now Jamal decides to phone Lt. McQuade, he just knows that he isn't going to believe this one.

Now there is a knock on the door. It is Hector and he welcomed in by Alex. He asks Hector if George showed up. Hector says he did and threw his ball away. Hearing this, Alex is mad. He knew he should have gone with him. But Hector is ecstatic, revealing that he finally stood up to George. So when George left he got his ball back himself. They cheer and inform Hector that they finally caught Max Mouse. Jamal is seen speaking with Lt McQuade on the phone. He tells him the name and telephone number. It is seen that Lt. McQuade is astounded, telling Jamal on the phone, that he doesn't know how they do it, so he thanks them. Before Jamal hangs up, he welcomes him and says he doesn't know either, as he and everyone laughs. Then Ghostwriter emerges from the phone and flies above the team. Now everyone all joins in to cheer, high five and shake hands.


  • Beginning from this arc, Calvin develops a crush on Lenni.
  • The last name of Julia Stiles' character is Dansby. This is the same last name as Susan Dansby. She was one of the series episode directors. Julia's character would make a later appearance in A Crime of Two Cities.
  • Although Attila passes away, it's not very common to hear about a pet parrot passing away who has a young owner. Some Parrots live 50 to 75 years. So an owner has to put them in their will.
  • Even though Lt. McQuade didn't appear in this, he did get a mention in part four.
  • This was the last story arc where Richard Cox portrayed Lenni's father Max. He would be replaced in the following story arc by Keith Langsdale.
  • Greg Lee who appeared in this story arc, is best known for hosting another PBS Kids series, Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? from 1991 to 1995.
  • Darlene Love is a famous singer, she is well-known for her hit songs "(Today I Met) The Boy I'm Gonna Marry" and "All Alone on Christmas".

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