A Normal Day at School? Or Not.
November 16, 2022
BY ZACK SMITH
Jake thought it would be a normal day of school. He was so wrong.
People say there are bad days and good days. He was not having one of those good days when he went to school. But first, we must go to the beginning.
“Honey, get up it’s time for school.” Mrs. Hollows said.
“I’m getting up, Mom,” Jake muttered in response. He didn’t want to get up. After all, he had gotten no sleep the night before because he was trying to study for an exam that was way out of his league.
Jake Hollow was a regular High School student with lots of friends, good parents who help him improve, and straight A’s in every subject. He also had a photographic memory which helped him in math a lot of the time.
Jake got his clothes on, brushed his teeth, ate breakfast, and was out the door in less than twenty minutes.
When he got to school, he immediately saw his friend, Michael, sitting on the stairs waiting for him like always. Michael was a little older than Jake, but he didn’t mind because Michel has always been like an older brother. Jake also admired Michel for his bravery and strength, things that Jake didn’t have.
“Hey, Michael” Jake muttered.
“You look like you’ve had a good day,” Michael mused. “Come on, class is about to start.”
“I’m coming, I’m coming” Jake groaned in response.
While Jake and Michael were going down the hall to their math classroom, Tom, the school bully stopped in front of them. “And where do you think you’re going?”
“To our math class,” Michael retorted.
“Don't you have somewhere to be? Like in the bathroom picking your nose?” Jake asked, annoyed.
“I do, but it's more fun to pick on you than it is in that junky old bathroom.” Tom said in testimony.
“Can you just get out of here?” Jake was getting tired of talking to Tom. “I’m going to class. Michael are you coming with me?” He called over his shoulder.
“Yeah, I’m coming”
When Jake and Michael got to math class, they walked to their desks, sat down, and had their notebooks out before anyone else in the room. They were the best in math class because Jake was the one with a photographic memory and Michael, well…Michael was just good at math. Plus, they studied together when a big test came up.
But, Jake and Michel hadn’t studied the night before because Michael was helping the homeless at the homeless shelter. When the test was being passed around, Jake thought about getting out of his chair and running to the exit as fast as he could, but he knew if he did, he would get expelled. So, he just sat there.
“B minus?” Jake was not mad, but he was severely disappointed because he knew he could have done better. He did have photographic memory after all. “Let’s just get to class, Jake, there’s no point in standing here crying like babies.”
Jake loved to do all his subjects, but he had a hard time focusing on the last subject of the day, history because of a girl there, her name was Elizabeth Rose. She was pretty, had dark brown hair, and she didn’t dress like all the other girls. She wore sweatpants, a T-shirt, and sometimes even sunglasses. When Elizabeth wasn’t wearing her sunglasses, all you could see were her beautiful hazel-brown eyes.
The school prom was coming up the day after tomorrow, Friday the fourteenth, and Jake had been trying to work up the courage to ask Elizabeth if she would go with him. He could never work up the courage to ask her out, but then something unexpected happened after history.
“Hey… you’re Jake, right?” Elizabeth asked. She was right behind him.
“Uh, yeah, yeah I’m Jake… why do you ask?”
“Well…um, this is going to sound weird, but..” She paused for a long time. “Will you go to the prom with me?”
Jake was so stunned that he forgot she was asking him that question.
Jake saw that Elizabeth was starting to turn bright red. “Oh, yeah sorry, uh sure, I would love to go to the prom with you.”
“Excellent,. Then I'll see you on Friday?”
“Yep, sure will.”
Elizabeth then darted through the hall and out the exit of the school. Jake started to feel tingly as he imagined dancing with Elizabeth on the dance floor.
While Jake and Michael were going through the exit door of the school, Jake ripped his pants on a screw that was just barely poking through the wall.
“What in the--?! I was going to wear these pants to the prom, dang screw!” Jake was so angry he wanted to rip the screw out of the wall and throw it as far as he could.
“It seems your pants are screwed!” Michael burst out laughing and Jake started to think he was never going to stop. “I am going home, see you tomorrow.”
It was now Thursday, and the prom was tomorrow.
“I don’t even have any good pants to wear to the prom tomorrow thanks to that screw!” Jake was telling this to Michael as they sat on the top of the steps at the front of the school with a bunch of other kids. The front doors of the school wouldn’t open because the doors were jammed. Michael thought Tom did it because he likes to put gum in the lock, so he doesn’t have to go to school and lose his brain, as Tom puts it. But both Michael and Jake, and probably the rest of the school, know that Tom lost his brain long ago.
Once the staff of the school got the doors open, Jake and Michael went straight to class. Jake was now in science class and was having a hard time concentrating because he, Michael, and all the other kids were stuck outside.
Jake had seen Elizabeth and Tom together laughing and talking, and then when the doors opened Jake saw Tom kiss Elizabeth on the cheek.
“Jake?…Jake!” The sound of Mr. Leonard’s voice broke through Jake’s thoughts and the image of Tom and Elizabeth was gone.
“Turn to page sixty-five.”
After having a tough time in Science, Jake and Michael went down the hall to go to the final class of the day, history.
Jake was ready to get out of school today, which was weird because Jake always loved to go to school and never leave, but he was having a bad day today and wanted to be done with it. Plus, he would have to go to the store to get new pants for tomorrow’s prom.
“Could you come to the store with me, so I know what pants look good on me for prom?
“Sure, anything for a friend… but to be truthful with you, I think you would look good in your ripped pants.” Michael couldn’t suppress a grin.
“Ha, ha, very funny. Can we just go to the store now?”
“I can’t today, I have music lessons. Remember?” Michael replied.
It was now Friday; the day of the prom, and Jake was itching to go to the store
“What took you so long, Michael?”
“Sorry, I had to help clean up in science.”
“Why… ? You know what, never mind. Let’s just get to the store.” Jake was feeling anxious because the time was three thirty and the prom was exactly an hour and thirty minutes away.
“Where are all the pants?” Jake and Michael thought this as they walked by empty shelves and cabinets.
“I guess everybody else ripped their pants and came here to get a new pair,” Michael mused.
“This is no time for jokes. This is life or death as we know it!”
“I wouldn’t quite say life or death.”
“Yes, it is! If I go to prom in sweatpants, then Elizabeth will think I don’t care!” Jake exclaimed.
“You’re just going to have to suffer with sweatpants, Jake because there are no prom pants here.”
“I can see that. Now, I’ve got to get home and get ready.” Jake then got in his car and raced home as fast as he could without breaking the speed limit.
After having a hassle with his clothes, Jake was finally ready for prom. Eventually, he got to the school. He could now see all the people entering and exiting the PE building at the school's side of the school. He just hoped that Elizabeth wouldn’t think he didn’t want to be at the prom because of the clothes he was wearing. Then the image of Elizabeth wearing her usual sweatpants and tee shirt popped into his mind
“Jake? Jake!” Elizabeth was right beside Jake.
“What…?” Oh sorry, I didn’t see you there.”
Elizabeth smirked. “How could you not see me?” She asked in slight confusion.
“I was stuck in my thoughts” It’s all that Jake could say.
“You want to go down to the diner downtown? The food here…” Elizabeth pointed to the school. “Is pretty bad!”
Elizabeth looked Jake up and down. “Are you copying my style?” She asked with a smile.
Jake suddenly saw the image of Tom kissing Elizabeth on the cheek. “Can I ask you something Elizabeth?”
“Sure. Fire away,” she answered.
“Is Tom your boyfriend?”
There was a long pause before she said, “Oh god no, he’s my brother.”
This was a shock to Jake because he never knew Elizabeth had a brother. “Oh…It’s just I saw Tom kiss you on the cheek on Thursday, so I thought…you know.” “
“Nope, he is my loving brother.”
“Ok, just wondered.” Jake felt like his heart was about to leap out of his chest.
“Now can we go eat? I’m starving!”
Jake couldn’t help but laugh. “Sure, let’s go eat. To be truthful with you, I’m starving as well.”
After eating a delightful steak and salad, it was time to go home.
“Well, I should be going,”Elizabeth said.
“Same here,” agreed Jake.
“I’ll see you Monday?"
“Yep,” Jake responded.
Before Jake got in his car, Elizabeth said, “Jake, you forgot something!”
“What..?” Before he could finish his sentence, Elizabeth kissed him on the cheek.
“Where did that come from?” Jake asked.
She didn’t answer and instead walked to her car and drove away.
When Jake got home he did his usual bedtime routine. When he fell asleep, he dreamed of his bad days, and…good days.