3 PERIOD TWO
Having figured out the gimmick to make the secret panel close again, the two of them snuck the scrapbook into Maddie’s room, where the two of them pored over its contents with great interest.
“I can’t believe it! Our parents were superheroes!” She squealed.
“I know! We gotta show our friends! They’re going to be so jelly!”
“Supa jelly!” Maddie nodded, closing it with finality and shoving it under her pillow.
A car horn tooted twice in quick succession.
“Ah! Your mom’s here. Check your place to see if your parents have anything.” She spun Eddie around and shoved him out the door of her room.
“Yeah, yeah. I’m on it.” Eddie waved as he snagged his book bag from the couch and headed out.
“Hey Mad,” Eddie said as his best friend slid into the bench of the cafeteria table beside him, “You bring it?”
“You betcha,” she grinned, “Ready to get this show on the road?”
He grinned manically, mimicking her, “You betcha.”
A few minutes later, the two of them had a large crowd of students around them jockeying for the best spot to see the scrapbook. Even before the first bell had rung, the entire school had heard about it, which suited Maddie just fine, because she hadn’t ever really been the center of attention before.
“Hey, Maddie,” Julie whispered, “Are your parents still superheroes?”
Maddie shook her head, “I’m pretty sure they retired, my dad is an IT manager. I can’t imagine him going out and fighting crime anymore. It’s a career for the young, you know. He’s almost thirty-five.”
“Wow, that’s old.”
“Yeah, but he’s still active.”
Julie nodded as if she had grasped something deep and wandered away.
“Ah, I’ll see you at lunch, Eddie. Gotta get to science class,” Maddie closed the notebook, and shoved it under her arm.
“OK, Mad. I have something to show you too.” Eddie held his fist out, and received a solid bump from Maddie, “Later chick.”
Mr. Horowicz tapped the blackboard with his pointer.
“And if you move further into the soliloquy, you’ll see more phrases that have been taken into common usage. For example, here, where it says ‘When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,’ and further down, ‘The undiscovered country, from whose bourn no traveler returns’ Who can tell me how these were used in pop culture in the late twentieth century?”
Eddie had only been listening with half an ear, as he had been fiddling with a gadget that he had snuck off the utility belt of the costume in Maddie’s closet.
Eddie jumped up, the unknown gadget tumbling to the floor where it began to unfold.
“Ah, yes. There’s a Star Trek reference there, sir.”
Mr. Horowicz glowered at Eddie for a moment, then glanced to the floor where the device had unfolded to reveal itself as some sort of a mini drone,
“Yes, that’s right. Do I really have to tell you that we don’t allow toys in class?”
The bell rang, and the class immediately began to leave, causing Eddie to snatch the drone up, to keep it from being trampled inadvertently by his classmates.
“S-sorry! I forgot I had it with me.”
His teacher grunted and dismissed him with a wave, which Eddie gratefully accepted, grabbed his things, and joined the press of bodies heading into the hall.
CHAPTER 4: HOMEROOM
By the time homeroom rolled around, Maddie’s stomach was growling. She was normally one to sneak a snack, but the whole superhero thing had her surrounded every time she had a free moment.
Maddie knew that something had just gone wrong, as the crowd around her shut up in unison, and a beat later scattered in all directions, leaping to their assigned seats. Turning, she saw Miss Meanor glaring at her and cringed. Time had taught her that being on the bad side of this particular teacher was a bad idea, not that she was a troublemaker by any means, just that she was perceptive enough to realize what was about to happen, if she didn’t throw some spin into play.
“Well hello Miss Meanor, boy am I glad to see you!”
Her homeroom teacher stared at her, nonplussed.
“Well,” she pressed on “I brought this in, and was hoping we could do a little show and tell.”
The teacher glanced at the scrapbook, and back to Maddie.
She scowled and held her hand out. “I’m going to have to look at it first.”
Beaming, Maddie closed it and placed it into the proffered hand, “Thank you!”
Returning to her desk, she dropped it in front of her and flipped it open. The color drained from her face, and she flipped through it faster until she suddenly stopped, leaped to her feet and clasped a hand over her mouth.
“Madison, are these…”
Maddie grinned, “yeah! They’re my parents!”
Miss Meanor dashed towards the door, but spun on her heel, snagged the scrapbook, and pointed to the class and shouted, “nobody move!” before disappearing into the hall.
Miss Meanor threw open the door and rushed into the principal’s office.
The principal, a middle-aged woman with a severe appearance glanced up with a dangerous look, “Is something the matter, Dee?”
She nodded quickly, and shoved the book in front of her boss, pointing to the picture that had captured her attention.
“Madison Grey. She said it was her parents.”
“Does it matter?”
“No. Not really. I’ll take care of this. You get back to class,” she closed the book and passed it back to Dee, who scurried back to her classroom, slamming the door on her way out.
The principal picked up the phone and pressed a button.
“Edna? I need you to call in the parents of Madison Grey, 5th grade. Pronto.”
With a satisfied grunt, she hung up the phone and leaned back in her chair.
“After all these years…”
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- Gangwha, South Korea
I am a published author and School teacher in Korea. I am enjoying the quiet life on a small rural island.
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