I was pondering over what our grandparents had done to us…this time. I’m still kind of trembling from the time they used the transference machine on my friends and me, allowing us to combine our traits. Good thing that wore off. Well, first off, I would like to point out that they, our grandparents, were lying. The Cerebral Enhancer didn’t make our lives any easier just more complicated than it already is. And second, what the Cerebral Enhancer really did was jumbled up all the molecules in our brains (if you’re human, you should know that our brains are a little different from yours) and rearranged them so that now we have some psionic powers. It had something to do with solar radiation, the substance that can affect us living nonliving things (term: BioticAbiotic) in unpredictable ways or at least that’s what Spikes theorized. Considering what we had been through already, it’s not too hard to believe. At least we knew it was temporary. In short, Prince is really smart, Fleana is really empathetic, Kat’s a mind reader, and me well I just don’t care. No really I don’t care. That machine made me apathetic. Don’t worry we could turn it off whenever we feel like it, but I had to admit not being able to get depressed, upset, or bored is awesome except for the fact that I was incapable of being happy or excited either.
What made life harder was hiding it from our families, but it’s not like we wanted to keep it a secret. Trust me, if we had our way, we would’ve ratted our grandparents out faster than you can say, “You snitch.” But that wouldn’t do us any good since they would often move their location to somewhere else after something big like this happens and it’s not like they haven’t pull this stunt before so we knew what to do. Wait until it wears off. Until then we sought out to use our new abilities.
In case you were wondering, Spikes is my nickname because of my hair. My only asset other than my new big brain that no one could know about. And if you’re also wondering why I’m not using really big words right now, well don’t you think I’m smart enough to dumb down my speech? My friends had been asking me that a lot as if they didn’t think my intelligence was for real. They could feel others emotions, not feel emotions, read minds, and they have hard believing that I was really smart now? Anyway, our affliction had helped to improve our grades a little bit in all our classes, except maybe for gym class but thankfully we could already hold our own in that class even though we had to walk home with a couple of new bruises every now and then. Keeping them secret however was a whole other thing. Teachers were starting to get suspicious, especially our least favorite teacher Mrs. Rosethorne.
“Mr. BorealisAustralis, Miss Mammatus, Mr. Solar, and Miss Tropical can I see you for a moment?” She asked us after class.
My first thought was here we go again, but this time she had to do it without being a bearer of bad news. She showed us our sparkling new grade, an A+. “That’s quite a turnaround. I’ve talked with your other teachers and they’ve said much the same thing. I have noticed that your entries has also improved.”
I had thought ahead earlier and instead of giving her this entry and the last one, we gave her some fake ones to grade. I had hoped that they were real enough to take the heat of our trail. That didn’t seem like the case.
“Yeah, I guess when things settle down a bit,” Fleana said, a cocky smile spreading across her face. “Things get easier.”
Mrs. Rosethorne didn’t look impressed like a normal teacher should be or even proud that her teaching skills “improved” few of the worst students in her class. “Yes, except I don’t believe this turnaround could have happened naturally. There’s only one explanation: you cheated.”
“What?” Katrina hands were clenched and arcing with electricity. She looked guilty as charged. I couldn’t blame her. If there was anyone that could ever guess our secret, it was Mrs. Rosethorne…and our parents…and maybe our older siblings but that’s only if we’re not careful. “Do you have any proof?”
“No,” Mrs. Rosethorne said calmly but I knew trouble was coming. “but I would be happy to let you know that cheating will not be tolerated in this school and once a student or students is suspected of it, every teacher and faculty member will be watching you very closely no matter how good or just plain clueless a student you are. So I suggest either you come out with it or there will be blood on your hands.”
“We’re not cheaters.”
“Fine. Don’t say I didn’t warn you or gave you the chance.”
I didn’t like the sound of that. Now, to be honest with you, we would rather tear own our arms off than cheat, especially since they would grow back, but when our grandparents gave us those abilities we just had to use them. We didn’t think it would constitute cheating. I mean, what were we supposed to do? We were failing and we didn’t know how to do stop it. We had to do something. I didn’t want to stay in school for the next twelve or so years (that actua might not be an exaggeration). And it’s not like we could come clean to Mrs. Rosethorne of people. It’s not really a better option at that point.
You know natural disasters are just as scary for us BioticAbiotics as for any humans out there. In fact, it’s probably scarier since it’s our job to prevent them from happening in the first place. As you can tell, standards had skyrocketed for BioticAbiotic education in the twenty-first century, and it’s not like humans are helping us much. While we didn’t face any natural disasters (outside of gym that is), it did feel like a storm was brewing all over school. Mrs. Rosethorne was right. Teachers were watching us even our own siblings, who were TA’s, were. They must’ve heard from someone that we were cheaters, and if I wasn’t careful…I would hate to be brought home to my mother by the collar by my sister, Susan.
Every time there was a pop quiz teachers would switch tests so as to trip us up, any time a question was asked we had to answer them, every time we were at our lockers someone was looking over our shoulders. There was no escape. Just like a natural disaster. For the whole day, we kept clean. We were almost in the clear. No one could pin anything on us. A little longer and we were home free until the moment when Kat, of all people, almost blew it in biology.
“How much volts does a storm your age need?” Our teacher, Mr. Watt, asked.
“500,000 volts.” Kat answered while looking out the window.
“Correct. Which atmosphere do clouds normally stay?”
“Correct. What did I have for dinner last night?”
“Two slices of pizza and two glasses of water vapor.” She said right before noticing her little error.
Everyone turned their heads toward her. Mrs. Rosethorne, who had just walked in to ask Mr. Watt something, had a smug look on her face. How could Kat have been so stupid? And why did she had to do something stupid in front of an entire classroom? I thought I was going to be sick.
“Miss Tropical, how did you know that?” Mr. Watt asked.
“Um…” Kat stammered and then sighed. “Truth is I looked at your phone, but trust me there was nothing to see in there. Maybe you shouldn’t take topless shots.”
The class chuckled and Kat bought herself a detention, but at least everyone bought it, but I knew just from looking at her expression that that’s not going to stop Mrs. Rosethorne. Once there’s blood in the water, the sharks will feast.
Yeah, it’s true that I almost blew it, and yes, I knew that this was going to end badly, but I didn’t really deserve this type of punishment from my friends.
“I get it. I messed up.” I told them after they raped me with their words. “It’s not like anyone found out.”
“No, it’s worse!” Fleana’s face was red. “You gave Mrs. Rosethorne a taste of blood, Kat. You might as well have signed our death warrants.”
“Fleana’s right.” Marion said. He must’ve been using apathy to control his emotions. “Once she nips us, she’ll never leave us alone.”
“I get it!” I yelled. “But come on, it’s not like any one’s gonna guess that I’m a mind reader, Fleana’s mood reader, Prince’s a genius, and you are apathetic. No one could possibly guess what our grandparents had done to us!”
Right as I finished my tirade, I heard a tiny voice said “Message sent!”
“What was that?” I asked.
“It sounded like it came from Fleana’s backpack.” Prince said.
Fleana’s eyes widened in horror as she pulled out a smartphone sized tablet from her backpack that was crunched under her. She held up the phone and showed us a message of our entire conversation being sent straight to our parents.
“What do we do?” Fleana shrieked. “Mom is never going to trust me again! And I worked so hard to earn it back the first time!”
“Guys, there’s only two options left.” Prince explained. “Either we get home and erase the message on our parents’ tablets or we fess up.”
“We’ll decide that depending on whether we get home first,” I said, hefting my backpack over my shoulder. “Let’s go before the bus leaves!”
We got home and were fortunate or unfortunate, depending on how you look at it, that our parents were conveniently together in my living room. The choice was clear.
“Guys, we have to tell you something.” I began.
“Well, go ahead dear.” My mother said looking up from her paper and meeting my eyes.
Flare, Cloud, and Aurora also looked up, but otherwise didn’t let on that they knew anything.
We told them everything that had happened for the past few days. I hadn’t expected us to break this early, but what can we say. Sometimes you’re as tough as nails; other times you’re as soft as pillows, but the truth will always set you free.
“Oh, good.” Cloud, Fleana’s mother, said. “That means I can still trust you to tell me the truth, sweetie.”
“You knew?” Fleana looked like she was trying to shrink. Sadly that wasn’t one of the abilities the Cerebral Enhancer gave her.
“I think we’ve had this conversation before, you know, the time I had to tell you what you are.”
“Yeah, smooth move on butt dialing us.” Aurora, Prince’s dad, said waving his tablet.
I would love to tell you where this crazy story is going to lead off into, but it’s late. Catch our never ending nightmare next time.