Lucy was sat daydreaming at her place in class. Nothing new there, it’s how she spent many lessons – letting her teachers words wash over her, going in one ear and out of the other without actually taking anything in. She was bored with junior school now, and wanted to get on with the more exciting parts of growing up.
Lucy Daniels is 11 years old, a typical pre-teen with just a hint of stroppy teenagerhood starting to creep in around the edges. She’s popular, very mature and “grown up” for her age, but so easily distracted. Image is fast becoming everything for her, and she simply has to be ‘cool’ at all times. She goes to great lengths to make sure she always dresses, looks and acts at least as old as she is, if not much older. The thought of being considered babyish is here deepest fear, and sometimes she expresses this through being a bit too cocky in an effort to hide her own insecurities. Typical teenager in the making.
The tone of the hubbub around her changed, and this jolted her from her stupor. Maybe she should pay attention for a while, see what was going on in class and familiarise herself at least with the subject her teacher was boring on about, just in case she was unfairly picked on to answer a question!
She turned to her best friend Becky, who as ever was sat next to her and responded to her glazed look with a giggle.
“Have you listened to anything Miss Jenkins has been taking about Lucy? Hehe”
“Erm no, not really, I was counting on you filling me in. It’s not like we need to know any of this stuff anyway, we’ve already done our SATs and we’ll be moving to high school soon” Lucy replied with a whispered giggle of her own.
Just then, both girls attention was drawn back to the front of the class by the shrill tones of Mrs Moss, the strict deputy head who had popped in to have a quick word with Miss Jenkins. Moss always meant trouble, and they knew it! Bad enough that they had to put up with her for an English lesson after lunch, without her interrupting their gossip time with their favourite teacher too.
“Don’t forget, boys and girls, the comprehension homework I set you all two weeks ago, and have already given you an extra week to work on because of your SATs revision, MUST be handed in at the start of our next lesson! No excuses, those of you who haven’t completed it will be spending your lunchtimes with me for a week until it’s done, and for any of you who have dared to miss a second piece of homework, I’ll be calling your parents in for a little chat”. This last sentence was said in a particularly sinister tone, and Lucy was sure that Mrs Moss had trained her eyes on her as she said it.
Her stomach sank, and she turned again to Becky, all sense of silly giggliness now cone and a forlorn, worried expression across her features.
“Oh no! I completely forgot, I’ve not even started it, and the worksheet is still at home somewhere in my room.” She cried to Becky in horror.
“Didn’t you ‘forget’ the last one too Luce? You’re going to be in so much trouble. If she rings your Mum, you’ll probably be grounded and miss Emily’s big birthday sleepover at the weekend too.”
This did nothing to quell Lucy’s fears, she knew that Becky was right. Her Mum and dad were quite strict, both being teachers themselves they really valued education, and she hadn’t even told them that she’d already been in trouble with the deputy head for not ding homework. If they got called in, she would be busted.
“What am I going to do? They’ll kill me, and I can’t miss the sleepover, it’s probably the last one before we break up and I’ve been planning stuff for ages. It’s going to be the best, I’ve got to think of something to get me out of this.”
Lucy’s head spun, filled with all kinds of bonkers schemes and plans, each one less likely than the previous to succeed. No excuse was going to wash, and she knew that. They’d all tried them over the past couple of years, and old Moss wasn’t going to be taken in by anything she said. No, it would take something a bit more drastic than that. But what?…
She toyed with the idea of feigning illness, but she knew she was a rubbish actor and it would be seen right through straight away. Or what about making herself sick, so she could go to the nurse and then hopefully go home? Nope, she couldn’t stand being sick, there was no way on earth she was going to make herself do that on purpose! Besides, if she was off school sick then her Mum would make sure she couldn’t do anything fun outside of school, like sleepovers. The old ‘if you’re well enough to play, you’re well enough for school’ line would no doubt be trotted out.
Her mind flashed full of crazy ideas she’d seen on TV, what about setting off the fire alarm? Flooding the school? Somehow making Mrs Moss sick or injured so that she couldn’t take their lesson? No, no, this was ridiculous! There had to be something, a way. If only she could get herself out of that lesson, sent home but without being in trouble or missing out on her friends birthday sleepover. Hmm…11
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