Marcus' class has been studying polar explorer Ernest Shackleton. Everyone has been urged to create, in various media, work on a Shackletonian theme. Marcus made up an Antarctica board game ("You are in danger of severe frostbite - go back 7 squares to save your extremities"). His mate Avon wrote a one-man play. However when it came time to perform it, he realised he needed a bit of help, so he drafted in Marcus to play several parts.
At one crucial point in the story, Shackleton made the wrenching decision that the ailing sled dogs had to be shot for food. The dogs were played by balloons with faces drawn on. Avon, playing Shackleton, made a moving speech, then dispatched them with a nerf gun.
I was not there, but if I had been I would have been on my feet shouting Author! Author!