14th November 2011. Four teachers were called to the office of the headmistress of SMK St. George. The reason: An anonymous letter, written by "The Class of 4Sc1",addressed to the headmistress, complained of the inefficiency of these four teachers in completing the syllabus for the year. Having been spread throughout the entire school, this news instilled anxiety in the hearts of the students of 4Sc1 themselves.
Four teachers. One class. Twenty-five students, twenty-five potential suspects. One perpetrator. And one stenographer.
All names have been witheld for legal and social purposes. Kindly assume each of the following characters to be fictional.
10:47 a.m. 4Sc1 Classroom, SMK St. George.
The classroom was glum. This is often the usual atmosphere found around classrooms, but this classroom was made even more glum by the fact that is was deprived of all students except for three of them. On top of that, there was a certain feeling of forebodingness hovering around the room. Then, footsteps. A student entered the classroom. Looking around the empty class, he spotted a friend and went to sit next to him. "Hey, isn't teacher here yet? I thought I was already late."
STUDENT12 HAS BEEN ADDED TO THE INVESTIGATION RECORD
His friend checked his watch. "Nope, it's ten-forty-four. Class starts in a minute."
Student12 appeared puzzled. "That can't be right. My watch says ten-forty-seven."
"Well mine says ten-forty-four, and its set to school time. Anyway, the bell hasn't rung yet."
"But the bell hasn't rung all day. I think it's out. Well, my watch says ten-forty-seven, so to me its ten-forty-seven, no matter what."
He looked around the classroom again. Aside from himself, there were three people. While the class usually held 25 students, about fifteen of them were busy working on the school magazine in the Editorial Board room, and about seven of them declared early holiday for themselves after the exams ended. That left a miserly amount of students in the classroom. But today, the class' Chemistry teacher had demanded that all the Editorial Board members be present in the classroom during her subject. Well, Student12 was here alright. The others would be on their way.
While he was musing in this fashion, their Chemistry teacher entered the classroom. Student12, seeing the class monitor to be out, and no one else doing the procedure, he took responsibility into his own hands. "STAND," he said. When all four of them were standing, he greeted her with the custmoary "Good Morning, Teacher." And the others echoed likewise.
The teacher nodded. "Good morning. Please sit. We shall wait for the others to come."
TEACHER HAS BEEN ADDED TO THE INVESTIGATION RECORD
The students sat. Student12 spoke up. "Teacher, why have you called us to class? Most of use were busy in the Editorial Board room."
Teacher smiled grimly. "I think you all know why I called you here."
Student12 clenched his fists on the table in front of him, uncomfortably. "Yes, teacher."
Eventually, more students entered the class and took seats at the tables scattered clumsily around the room. When there were enough students, Teacher stood up and announced "Now, I'm sure you're all wondering why I called you here. You have all heard about the anonymous letter that the headmistress received?"
They nodded. The class monitor, now having entered the class, spoke up. "Teacher, was the letter really anonymous?"
STUDENT25 HAS BEEN ADDED TO THE INVESTIGATION RECORD
Teacher nodded. "Yes. The writer did not give any indication towards his identity, aside from the letters '4SC1', written very largely on the top. The writer complained, yes, complained about four teachers, saying that they hadn't managed to complete the Form 4 syllabus. They even went so far as to say that the practical teacher you had for Biology was better than your current teacher! Your Biology teacher has been upset all morning, and she even cried a bit." A low murmur began in the classroom as each student began discussing the whole ordeal with their peers.
"And now I want to ask. Which one of you wrote the letter?"
A bespectacled boy raised his hand. "Teacher, what do all the teachers think?"
STUDENT24 HAS BEEN ADDED TO THE INVESTIGATION RECORD
Teacher sighed and pulled up a chair. Taking a seat, she steepled her fingers. "The teachers had a discussion of their own earlier today. Currently, their keeping a list of their most likely suspects. Currently..." She turned to two students sitting in the front row. "...you two are at the top of the list."
Both of them were shocked. "Me? Teacher, why do they suspect me?" "It wasn't me, teacher. Honest to goodness."
STUDENT16 AND STUDENT 20 HAVE BEEN ADDED TO THE INVESTIGATION RECORD
Teacher sighed and closed her eyes. Personally, she believed all twenty-five students in the class to be good boys. But the letter was written by someone declaring himself to represent 4Sc1. Now she couldn't really trust any one of them.
To be continued...
Description: Student12 is, for all practical purposes, me. Smileys! I'm declaring myself as a kind of stenographer, but in truth, I'm not really much of a good one. Rather than keeping a record of everything spoken in the investigation, I merely listen to it closely and reconstruct the conversation later, based on what I can remember. This inevitably leads to excess amounts of dramatization.
Description: Currently a suspect in the investigation, Student16 is one of the "study-hard" types, who would typically be upset when he doesn't do well in an exam. On the other hand, he is not the type to complain about things that go wrong, and is busy these days with work in the Editorial Board. Besides, he did okay in the recent exam.
Description: Currently a suspect in the investigation, Student20 is a lot like Student16, being similar in their devotion to their studies and their disappointment from a low grade. However, Student20 actually did quite well in the recent exam and does not really have any reason to complain, and is in any case a rather mild sort of person who actually gets on quite well with the teachers.
Description: The class monitor of 4Sc1, quite a lot of the responsibility concerning this investigation falls on his shoulders. He is well known among teachers and students alike, and everyone expects something out of him in this investigation.
Description: There's a reason why I put Student24 after Student25. Student24 sits next to Student25 in class. Although technically Student19 is the assistant class monitor, he's not very active as one, and its unlikely you'll see him in this story arc. Student24 fits in to the role much better, playing right-hand-man to Student25. He will be assisting in the investigation, and is not really suspected.
Description: One of the "victims", the one I call Teacher teaches the class Chemistry. As a plain and simple fact, she's a very nice teacher and its completely unlikely that any student might dislike her and want to disrepute her, and for her part she doesn't dislike any student either. Because of this, perhaps, she felt that being close enough to the class she could approach us and talk to us about the situation.
And so the investigation begins. This "story arc" is based on a real situation going on in my school. Alright, I dramatized a bit, but most of the truth is in there. Okay, so the anonymous letter wasn't delivered at midnight. Okay, the headmistress probably didn't shout at anyone either. I admit it, our Biology teacher didn't really cry, she was just probably really upset. Also, probably not the WHOLE school knows about the letter. None of us knew a thing about it until Teacher told us everything. Anyway, of course I had to dramatize things a bit. Life is seldom as exciting as stories, especially when said life take place in a middle school filled only with boys.
I'm afraid this little story arc isn't coming along as nicely as I hoped. Two problems arise in the smoooth execution of the story. The first is that since it is based of a real life situation, it has to be as accurate as possible. This stops me from blowing things out of proportion. Another problem is that since anyone might read my blog, and since the next update is going to reveal a few more suspects, I must be careful not to use anyone's real names, for "legal and social purposes". You don't need to know what that means and neither do I, but what it means is, don't slander people directly or you'll get in trouble.
At least the next episode is probably going to be the last. Remember to use the Cbox, people.
Today I find myself in Penang, and I forgot to bring the device I need to connect my handphone to the laptop. This means that even if I had taken an interesting picture laltely, I can't post it right now. So what shall it be? Another one of my ill-winded quotes? Nah, you get a proper quote this time.
"You don't have to be a beer drinker to play darts, but it helps." ~Author Unknown
I call that a proper quote, and that's what counts.