If you have arrived for the first time, you may want to check out the previous chapters of the story.
What lies ahead at Aaron Burr High School? Will Pete crumble and fold up his teaching career on the very first day?
Each of the four classrooms is separated by office-like partitions. The walls, looking more temporary than permanent, rise about seven feet. There is ample space between each wall and the ceiling. Pete doesn’t appreciate the room layout much, but there is little that he can do about it. He will have to make the best of it for now.
The school’s mascot is the Ravens. For Pete’s sake, it is very unfortunate that this blackbird cannot serve as a lookout for him. His adventures have only just begun!
Pete again surveys the room, and he feels a bit more comfortable. Clyde still seems to be enjoying a pre-winter nap. Traci is applying another color of polish to her perfectly manicured nails, and she wants to be finished before lunch. The rest of the class is working quietly—at least it seems—on an assignment.
The classroom is only half full on this inaugural day of school at Aaron Burr. It seems that many students are still on summer vacation—probably until after Labor Day.
Hmm . . . where is Reggie?
Reggie, who is as nutty as a fruit cake, has disappeared from Pete’s sight. Pete checks out each corner of the half-empty room, but Reggie is nowhere to be seen.
Pete now begins to feel a band of cold sweat dripping down his back, but he truly has no idea what is in store for him. Past memories take him back to the day that he was stuck in a gigantic snow drift while driving along an abandoned highway last winter. As he was sweating it out under his heavy, winter parka, he figured that he would never be found. Fortunately, a helpful truck driver (Pete’s guardian angel) came along and pulled his car back onto the road.
A few minutes pass.
Pete wishes that the clock would move more swiftly so that the bell will ring to end class. He has a planning period next, and he is seriously thinking of going home.
This teaching stuff just doesn’t sit well with him. He wonders for a minute or two why he ever changed his major from Accounting to Business Education. Another of life’s decisions is about ready to provide Pete with another notable experience to write about in his already overflowing journal.
The clock is slowly approaching the time to wrap up the first class of his teaching career. Pete begins thinking that perhaps the remainder of his day will turn out better. He is feeling a bit more relaxed and confident. Didn’t the Titanic’s captain feel confident as the huge iceberg loomed ahead?
The room grows unusually quiet.
Then . . . Suddenly!
A large, heavy, cast-iron trash can hurdles the wall and lands at Pete’s feet. The airborne projectile narrowly misses Pete’s head by a couple of inches. The flying trash can strikes terror in Pete’s inner soul, and he feels his heartbeat racing while a torrent of sweat runs free over his entire body. He pivots around and suddenly realizes that this day really is not going to be an outstanding experience.
Pete, standing all alone in the middle of the room, is visibly shaken and greatly disturbed. His face has turned a ghastly white color, and his blonde hair is all amiss. He turns to face the class, and the students are all snickering. Many are falling out of their seats and roaring with more and more laughter. Even Clyde wakes up and joins in with the impromptu celebration. Traci excitedly claps her hands and smudges her still-wet nail polish.
Twisting around, Pete runs quickly out of the room, down a vacant hallway, and out the front door of the school.
Reggie slyly creeps back around the wall to rejoin the class. His thumbs-up gesture arouses even more of a deafening thunder of applause and shouts for his exploits. Somehow, the epic sounds have not reached the central office . . . yet!
Clyde joins Reggie at the front of the room, and they both announce their marching orders for the rest of the day—“TAKE OVER THE SCHOOL!”
Without a teacher in the room, the unruly mob leaves the computer lab and launches into a riotous journey down the hallway into the rest of Aaron Burr’s no longer quiet hallways. Another opening day has turned into a disaster of nearly Biblical proportions. What happens next will be anyone’s guess; just be on the lookout for Reggie, the new kingpin of the school!
An hour later, the police arrive to take charge of the disorderly student body, which resembles an unruly and disorganized mob. Meanwhile, the administration has been hiding in their offices, and the teaching staff finds refuge down in the school’s boiler room in the basement.
The bell rings to dismiss school for the day, but Pete is missing permanently. Thoroughly shaken, he never returns to Aaron Burr.
As the curtain closes on Aaron Burr High School (this will be its final, unforgettable school year), the wrecking ball will finally arrive to turn the property into a parking lot and city park. Many citizens around the community curiously wonder whatever happened to Pete, the novice teacher who dashed away.
Rumor has it that he is now the Principal at Alexander Hamilton High School in a distant city. According to an inside source, all classrooms have permanent walls and include lightweight, plastic trash cans.