In Plain Sight #writephoto #flashfiction

A Magical Mystery Tour – The Secondary School Version

‘And this is the art room. How is it going today, Miss Lozenge?’

The teacher looked terrified at the simple question. Gaston Hipbrace was used to his presence, as Chief Inspector of Schools, causing a degree of consternation but this seemed a tad excessive. ‘Now calm yourself Miss Lozenge. Perhaps you’d show me some of your pupils’ work?’

Get them talking about their class and they’ll soon settle, he thought. Works every time.

‘Fr’instance what’s this splendid piece.’ Gaston drew closer to the table on his right. ‘It’s very….’

In thirty one years in the profession Gaston had been speechless twice. Once when Mrs Aldwinkle had a psychotic episode and set fire to the school gerbil and once when he lost concentration prior to an important interview and inadvertently stapled his leg to his cv. This was a third.

Pandora Lozenge tittered, a quite unnerving sound for Gaston as he watched an extraordinarily life like pair of otters gambol across the three dimensional sculpture.

 ‘Isn’t it?’

‘What is it?’

‘Well, we decided we would set our pupils a term’s project to be entitled  ‘idyll’. This was Oberon’s entry.’

‘Oberon?’

‘You know? King of the Faeries?’

‘He’s here? At Dunwold Progressive?’

Pandora averted her eyes while smoothing her skirt. ‘In year ten.’

‘The King of the Faeries?’

‘Strictly he is His High Tease, The Supreme Bigness Of All Fae but that’s a bit of a mouthful.’

‘What’s he doing here?’

‘His GCSEs.’

‘No, I mean why is a mythological monarch…’

‘If you saw him at break you’d not call him mythological.’

‘Why’s he in this school?’

‘The Nymph Wood is in our catchment area. He could have attended St Percival’s but…’

‘Why’s he in any school? I mean how old is he?’

The teacher shuffled her feet. ‘Yes well that was a tricky one. The form only goes up to 99 and he insisted he is 724 but he hasn’t a birth certificate so we just sort of fudged it.’

Gaston’s knees felt as if they would prefer to be anywhere but supporting his body and he sat with a thump next to the tinkling stream, the shaded glade and dappled grassy banks. A woodpecker the size of a thimble flew onto his hand and began pecking into the knuckle on his forefinger. ‘What possessed you to admit him here?’

Miss Lozenge looked affronted. ‘Mr Hipbrace, we at Dunwold Progressive ensure no supernatural influences were brought to bear on Oberon’s admission. I think the headmistress would be mortified if she heard you suggesting anyone was possessed.’

‘He’s a demi mortal with deity intrusions and you’ve enrolled him in year ten? Are you mad?  Is it hot in here? I think I feel a little unwell.’

Miss Lozenge’s expression was morphing into disgust. ‘I’m shocked. For years we have been told we mustn’t be racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, sizeist, ageist, gluten intolerant and sugar dependent. So we go out of our way to embrace our otherworldly neighbours who feel they could benefit from a couple of terms of applied biology and modern quantum theory. I mean look at that piece of work. It’s pure genius. That water is actually flowing, there are fish in there. The other children now have something to aspire to. At least one can be sure with Oberon it’s not his parents who’ve made it.’

‘Perhaps we can move on. Thank you Miss Lozenge.’ Gaston glared at his guide who had remained silent throughout. ‘Where next?’

‘Perhaps the petting zoo? I think it’s time to ignite the new Phoenix and the children do so like  a few sparkles.’  

This is in response to Sue Vincent’s most recent #writephoto prompt

About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published four books - Dead Flies and Sherry Trifle, My Father and Other Liars, Salisbury Square and Buster & Moo. In addition I have published two anthologies of short stories, Life, in a Grain of Sand and Life in a Flash. More will appear soon, including a memoir of my mother's last years. I will try and continue to blog regularly at geofflepard.com about whatever takes my fancy. I hope it does yours too. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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29 Responses to In Plain Sight #writephoto #flashfiction

  1. Allie P. says:

    This is hilarious to me. Year ten, why not?

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Very good, Geoff. A bunch of laugh out loud moments

    Liked by 1 person

  3. George says:

    Wonderful. This has brightened up a dull afternoon. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Ritu says:

    Oh this was funny!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Wonderful! I am so looking forward to the collection that holds all these cross-world stories.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Ah – such fun. I’ll be feeling sorry for that poor gal who grew up with being named for a sore throat treatment. Never saw that coming Geoff.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Sue Vincent says:

    Officialdom only paying lip service to inclusiveness…

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I love this! Read it twice 👏

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Norah says:

    And all this from a photo of a serene scene. Where dost thy mind wander? Oberon.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. More fun that the recent eponymous TV series

    Liked by 1 person

  11. JT Twissel says:

    Oh boy. I imagine magic mushrooms were involved somehow!

    Like

  12. Pingback: In Plain Sight ~ Geoff Le Pard #writephoto | Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

  13. I really love this piece, Geoff. A super response to the prompt.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. trentpmcd says:

    OK, I’ll admit that I got a laugh out of this one. Great write

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Pingback: Photo prompt round-up: Hidden #writephoto | Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

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