STEVEN JERAL HARRIS
EMERALD BLUE OKIKI
First Day At Glenworth II.
“How many years?” a voice behind me abruptly cuts off Dr. Forester.
“I’m sorry, how many years for what?” Dr. Forester asks back.
I look over my shoulder and notice the brawny boy speaking.
“How many years did it take you to solve that cube?” he asks with his stern expression.
Dr. Forester chuckles with his pride bursting.
“It took about a year to get the hang of it. Then 3 to get to my current record.”
“Can I try Professor?” he asks.
He chuckles again at the boy and replies confidently.
“If you want to try, you can. But remember this ought to be used as a mental tool only, not a toy. And your memory needs a little adjusting, it’s Dr. Forester.”
The brawny boy stands and sluggishly walks towards the front of class with all eyes following behind him.
“Right, Dr. Forester, I’m sorry about that.” The boy says tonelessly with his hand presented in front of the instructor.
Dr. Forester hands him the cube and leans back on his desk with a cocky smirk on his face. The brawny boy flips it around and around several times. Through those stern eyes, I can see his brain concentrating. He then begins to twist and turn the cube. As the seconds pass the classroom gets extremely quiet. We all watch on as the scrambled colors move around the cube in various orders. As the clock ticks away, that confident grin on Dr. Forester’s face melts.
A clutter of gasps breaks the silence as the boy stops morphing the cube, revealing its completion. It only took him 30 seconds to solve the four sided cube.
“Did I do that right?” he asks Dr. Forester with the finished cube presented.
“Um, yeah, I believe so,” he replies in awe. Dr. Forester is too shocked to take the cube from his hand, so the boy places it on his desk for him and backs away.
“Graduated with a 2.0 average,” the brawny boy confesses to Dr. Forester as he turns and walks back to his seat, which is all the way in the back row.
A moment later Dr. Forester finally accepts reality and clears his throat, “wow, thank you for that amazing performance…” Dr. Forester adds but can’t conjure his name.
“Call me Daniel. I don’t have a doctorate degree like you. It’s just Daniel,” he tells him.
The class remain quiet for another moment, bathing in total awe.
Eventually, Dr. Forester continues with class, more humble and less prideful. An hour later, we pour from the room and once again I blend into the college commute. As I walk I can’t stop thinking about Daniel and how he spat in Dr. Forester’s face.
I have to admit, the instructor is a bit condescending and cocky. He had it coming.
My next class don’t start until 2:30, so I have some free time to burn all to myself. I find my way to the student lounge to grab a well-deserved lunch. I’m now enjoying a turkey cold cut and soft drink while reading a new novel I handpicked from the library.
Eight chapters later, I check my cell phone to keep track of the time. It’s 2:04. I pull out my class list and review my final class for the day. I need to be in room 209, Introduction to Literature with Professor Grant, at 2:30. I finish reading chapter nine before closing the book and begin gathering my belongings. I find the class without getting lost or asking for directions. A middle aged man with dark hair is standing in the center of the room. He welcomes me in with a smile, so I smile back. I walk up the steps and find a seat in the middle aisle. Suddenly a familiar face joins the class.
It’s Daniel, once again. Professor Grant nods at him and him only.
“Good day, Daniel.” The Professor greets him by his name.
Daniel nods back but only slightly. He proceeds up the steps and looks over at me with his permanent sternness. My eyes cower away from his as he passes my aisle and heads towards the back of the class. The other chairs fill in quickly. Professor Grant closes the door and takes center stage with his hands behind his back. He surveys the entire room and smiles brightly at everyone. He opens his mouth to speak but is interrupted by the door swinging open. Another familiar face enters the classroom.
I remember his father ranting to him in the admissions office about his poor grades. He is tall and lean with short blonde hair. He is wearing a black collared shirt, khaki pants, and black shoes. It may seem like a simple outfit but the quality is high end. Even the glistening watch on his wrist looks extremely costly. He appears to be upset about something. I can tell he’s angry by his flared nostrils and pressed lips.
It takes me a while to pull his name from my memory bank. His name is Kendrick, so I believe. As Kendrick walks into the room his eyes connects with Professor Grant's, but it only last momentarily. Their stare is nothing short of hatred.
I watch Kendrick climb the steps and find a seat in a row down from me. He tosses his book on his desk arrogantly and sits down. Professor Grant removes his eyes off Kendrick, slowly, and clears his throat.
"Hello, ladies and gentlemen," his voice is projecting. “I’m Professor Grant and welcome to my class. I do things a little differently around here. I won’t bore you with William Shakespeare simply because… that shit drives me crazy," he says the last sentence in a low voice.
Faint giggles swell throughout the classroom.
"I hated that crap. But anyways, I want all of you to learn from my class. I've yet to fail a student and I don't wish to start now. And for those who like sleeping…" he walks over to his desk and picks up a blackboard eraser, "…this is Mr. Wake me up. If I catch you sleeping in my class, he’s going to pay you a visit between the eyes."
Everyone giggles again but a little louder than before. He puts down the eraser and centers himself again.
"What I’m going to discuss today is one of my favorite authors, J. L. Lucas. Have anyone ever read one of his novels? A show of hands please."
My hand goes up with half of the class.
"Okay," he says with this impressed look upon his face.
Then he projects his voice again.
"J. L. Lucas has always been my favorite author. Today I'll discuss his most controversial book to date, ‘From Land to sea’. Personally, I think it’s his best novel yet. This story is about two rival villages. These two villages are at war with each other. Have anyone read this particular novel?"
My hand goes into the air, my hand only.
"You right there," he points to me. "Stand and give the class your name. Don’t be shy."
Suddenly, I wish I didn't raise my hand. I feel a hit of shyness as I stand and become the center of everyone’s attention.
"Hello, I’m Iva Hill."
...to be continued
Watch out for the next episode... New episode reads on Tuesdays