By Susan Shiney
Miss Wendalfinch clutched her desk with both hands to make sure she didn’t float away and thought to herself, Keep it together, don’t freak out, I just need to get through the next fifty minutes of class then I can go home and rest. Did I eat something bad? Do I have a brain tumor?
She swallowed her metallic saliva and wondered if the desk was permeating into her body. She realized the silence of the room, and it made the tight bun on her head hurt and she said, “Ouch.”
Sixty eyes infused with lasers were softly burning into her perfectly ironed black suit. She wondered why she wasn’t scared and blew away the smoke and noticed her sixth graders sitting at their desks quietly. She contemplated the idea of looking at a class full of wax figures in an art museum, then one sculpture put its hand up, and she remembered she is supposed to be teaching.
She had no idea what to say or do; after teaching for ten years she moved on instinct and hers had vanished. She then concluded that her instinct must have been too light and was sucked onto the moon.
She looked to her mighty desk for help and glanced at her file folders with the next three months of handouts photocopied and organized by date. “Test!” she screamed, and the students collectively did backbends to escape the force of her sound waves.
While the students took their glorious pop quiz all period, she enjoyed the safety of sitting in her gravity-laden chair and was deeply entertained by the movements of her screensaver. A purple shrill sound in the form of a fist tried to grab her, but she escaped its grasp by climbing under her desk.
She then pretended like she was picking up something from the floor and nonchalantly said “That’s the bell. Leave the papers on your desks, have a nice weekend.” She watched her reflection from the window and found it very convincing and teacherly.
A small flower-looking girl with pink shadows hovering around her head waited for the rest of the class to leave. She said in a high-pitched voice that scratched the inside of your ears, “Miss Wendalfinch? Umm. I have to tell you somethin’.” Then the little dandelion twisted and looked around the room. Probably trying to find the sun rays for energy, Miss Wendalfinch thought.
The student stood up straight with a sudden burst of courage and said, “Devin put somethin’ bad in your coffee at lunch. He got it from his older brother and was laughing about it with everyone. I think you should go to the doctor, you were acting kinda funny in class…Don’t tell him I told you.”
And so it begins, Devin fired first. Miss Wendalfinch answered, “Affirmative Sargent, I will get on that right away. Ten-four,” and she climbed back under her desk/bunker. Dandelion shrugged her shoulders and left the room. Miss Wendalfinch waved her hands in front of her face and watched the neon green tracers mimicking her movements.
She picked up her smartphone and called her cousin, Dylan, and put it on speakerphone. His picture was looking back at her with his Metallica shirt pulsating with the rings of the phone; his lip-pierced mouth formed the words, “What’s Up.”
“It’s me. I believe I have accidentally ingested a hallucinogenic substance of some kind. Do you have a space suit I can borrow or should I go to the emergency room.”
Dylan mumbled a “Dude” and then the phone went silent for seconds, minutes, days possibly.
Dylan said, “Alright, we are going to need a black light, my Pink Floyd album, I am thinking Dark Side of the Moon, and I will be your guide. Stay where you are, I’m coming. Are you ready to party or what? Believe me hospitals are no place to trip balls.”
Miss Wendalfinch released her hair from the tyranny of the bun and felt the skin on her face relax and smooth like a Zen sand garden. “I guess. I just hope I don’t float away before you get here.”
“Whoa, you are already pretty baked. Just stay put.”
Miss Wendalfinch pulled a small notebook out of her purse and placed it on her lap.
She wrote, Ways to get revenge on Devin:
- Buy Halloween make-up and come in on Monday telling everyone you had attacked your own face.
- Tell Devin in confidence that you have killed your whole family and are running from the police.
Have a substitute teacher come in and tell the class Miss Wendalfinch has been sent to an insane asylum.
She smirked and told the nearby chair that formed a melting face, “I may have lost the battle, but I will win the war.”
Nicely done. I like revenge option #2. I truly hope this story was not based on a personal experience!
I’m not ashamed to admit I may have chuckled once or twice – brings back memories from my own childhood.
This was a fun read!
Oh, the relief of test day. I can sympathize with this teacher’s struggle, though I never had a class of thirty. That’s a bit much. Maybe a little trip would have made things more interesting. Excellent use of language to simulate the effect of the drugs.
This reminds me of taking acid with my friend during in-school suspension. What a waste! I suspect Miss Wendelfinch, in spite of the unreliable narrator, dropped her own ‘cid. Also, someone cresting, in the throes of hyperbole, might end her scene with, “I may have lost the war, but I will win the battle.” Vive la France!
Nice writing; got me going. As a teacher sometimes confronted with this sort of thing (and should I have been consulted) I would have recommended that the little bastard be reported and have him expelled, using the small flower-looking girl with pink shadows as witness should the accused contest the charge against him.
The Devins of this world deserve nothing.
Alas, despite the brave final comment, too many get away with it.
It would have been nice to see the author’s painting of the classroom from the teacher’s eyes! Mr. Anderson (so Matrix!) would that be possible in the future? Susan, do teacher’s still wear buns (beside the men)? Dude . . . spring time in Lille, no hallucinogens required. Woah ,just lost my grip on the desk.
An absolute pleasure to read, enthralling escapism in glorious hyper colour. I wish I had written it.
Excellent! A pleasure to read.
Beautiful images like the flower-looking girl, fantastic words!