A young boy enters a bright new world of adventure.
|It was Monday morning in Terridew Middle School in Terridew Massachusets and the students were nervous. It was not just a new day. I twas New Day. Each student was admonished – no, instructed – by the teacher to do something new. Something that they never thought they could do before. The difficulty was matched only by the excitement, as these young children were taught at a very small age to “never rock the boat, our you'll be disowned.”
James Fird was walking to school with his special white box that he hadn't let out of his sight all week. It was about twice as wide as a shoebox. In it was his future. He was so anxious, and yet pleased, that he had chosen this as his “New Day Device.” No one would ever have guessed what he had chosen. At least, no one else in the sixth grade.
“James, James, give me a sneak peak,” said Paul Tennyson, James's old friend, who had chosen to get some exercise by walking with James this morning.
“It's a surprise,” said James. “I can't tell the farlings until the final bell rings!”
“C'mon man, we're friends,” said Paul. “You know me better than anybody. Remember when I told you who I liked?”
“You were just copying who I liked as a prank,” said James. “You had Peter come to class dress like her, and everyone laughed.”
“Okay,” said Paul. “That wasn't who I liked...Alexandria.”
James was up in arms, seeing a quid pro quo in motion.
“No, man,” said James, finally giving in. “Okay, fine, you can look. Just please, don't tell anyone. Alright?”
They then stopped on the street, just a few blogs away Terridew, trying their best to keep from going back home and playing video games. The street view was totally clear of obstructions. They didn't even know the term “debris” (though they technically should have by now. But, that's how you know you're living right). The sun carpeted the streets while peaking through the shadows left by coniferous tree branches and reflections from windows.
“You're going to be a ballerina?” said Paul.
At which point he started ballet dancing in the street. Students riding by in the school buses were amused, only so much, by the spectacular performance. Paul's chubby frame executed en point as if it were written on a cereal box, transitioning into a pirouette that was the thing of legends. He continued for a few seconds, until the police walked by. Then he straightened up and walked right.
“I'm not a ballerina,” said James. “I told you you would mess it up!”
“Okay,” said Paul. “Then what is it? A garbage man's uniform. You playin da foosball behind my back?”
After a few more steps of pleading for Paul's silence, they were there. At Terridew, the facade was as fresh as the free lunch, and students were praised for their 'Studential Integritude'. Everything around looked of brown tweed, even the facade. And the students wore brown tweed uniforms. But not today.
At the lockers, Paul and James were making their final preparations. James held a finger to his lips, a beautiful reminder for Paul to keep his pledge of silence about the affair.
“You know,” said Paul. “If you're going to be a custodial ballerina, can I have your video games?”
“No,” said James. “Ballet or no ballet. Call of Duty stays mine!”
“You know I've got a copy,” said Paul. “So, no biggy.”
“Yeah, well my copy has extra bullets,” said James, as he proceeded to the left. “If you'll excuse me, I have to go to the bathroom.”
“You're going the wrong way,” said Paul. “The ladies' room is to the right.”
A few minutes later, everyone was stationed in Sir John Flatby's History class. “Where every student made history.”
James felt naked. When he had walked in with his costume, everyone looked at him as if he were getting married. But he kept moving forth and made it to his seat. The desks were all neat and parallel, with only a few paper airplanes to count. The children were ready, if not waiting, for the next iteration of life.
By the fifth minute, the morning bell rang. Everyone was rapt in their seats.
“Okay, children,” said Sir John, clearing off the board. “Who wishes to go first.”
A lone hand slowly went up.
Every recognized it as belonging to “Bookworm Brian Benzos,” the teacher's pet. He had spent his entire life sucking up. And now he would just be sucking.
“Yes, yes, Brian,” said Sir John. “Why don't you start us off on this fine, lovely morning?”
“Yes, I wish to farm cranberries this summer with my uncle, who's a cranberry farmer in the south of the state of Massechusets. A quarter of the cranberries in the country come from the south of Massachusets, you know.”
After a few wild minutes, Sir John picked James to go. He stood up like a man on a mission. His white slacks and white t-shirt matched perfectly, if in an on-edge manner. The whole outfit put you on edge. His shoes were black moccasins tied with a tweed rope. He had a small drum in his hand, as well.
“I'm going to be started Capoeira classes this summer,” said James.
“Capoeira?” came the collective moan.
“Yes,” said James. “It's the deadliest dance.”
“Oh, you mean ball room, right?” said Sir John, firing up the crowd.
“No, it's Capoeira,” said James, “Created by the slaves of ancient Brazil. They had to come up with a way of hiding their deadly fighting style, so they disguised it as a dance.”
“Were they every caught?” said Tom, one of the students.
"Well, of course it was," said James. "Capoeira was banned many times in the beginning, once the cat was out of the bag."
"They bagged cats as well?" said Trina.
"No, it's a figure of speech," said James.
"So then you're not really doing ballet?"