Ten O’Clock Scholar: staple

In Ten O’Clock Scholar, Peggy, a mother of two young boys, decides to go back to college for her Interior Design degree. The only problem with her plan is a reluctant husband. In this snippet, we jump ahead in the story to Peggy’s first day of class.

This week we’re writing to the prompt ‘staple.’

Enjoy this week’s story snippet, then return to Tuesday Tales for more delightful tales from other talented authors.


The woman tucked a few stray, silver tresses behind an ear and leaned in closer. “Hi, I’m Wanda.”

Peggy held out a hand and introduced herself. After comparing notes about what brought them to this class, she was pleasantly surprised to find that the two had a lot in common, despite the age difference. Her new friend was not the curmudgeon she appeared to be at first glance. And, while Peggy was returning to school after a ten year hiatus, she learned that Wanda was returning to the classroom after forty years. She had just celebrated her sixtieth birthday and starting the interior design program was her present to herself.

Maybe she’s just as intimidated as I am right now.

Before she could question Wanda about it, the instructor clapped her hands at the front of the classroom. The chatter that had been filling the room with a soft buzz came to an abrupt halt. The teacher stood in a regal stance, her gaze shifting around the room to make sure she had everyone’s attention. “I’m Mrs. Stone. I’m your instructor for most of the classes in the interior design program. I’m also the program chair. Before I begin, I want to cover a few ground rules for my classroom. First of all…no cell phones. If you have your phones with you, please turn them off, or silence them during my classroom time. If your phone rings during class time, I’ll ask you to leave for the remainder of class.”

Every student in the room scrambled for cell phones, either tucked in pockets or sequestered in purses. Rapid movements from everyone reflected a mass of students scurrying to comply with the teacher’s request.

After she waited a few moments for phones to be silenced, Mrs. Stone continued with her standard rules. “Also, I do not tolerate tardiness. When it’s time for class to begin, I lock the door and no one may enter after that. There will be a signup sheet stapled to the bulletin board next to the door. If you arrive late and the door is locked, sign up on the sheet and you’ll get partial credit for the day.”

Peggy gulped. Being on time was not an attribute she possessed. It was hard enough getting herself ready and out the door on time. When you added two boys to the mix, it made her run even later. Getting to class on time, for every single class, would be a challenge. She leaned over to whisper a comment to Wanda, then caught the teachers glaring look in her direction. Sitting back straight in her chair, she decided it was best to keep quiet. She certainly didn’t want to earn the teacher’s ire on the first day.

Movement out of the corner of her eye caught her attention. She glanced off to the side and saw Wanda slipping a note towards her.

passing notes.jpg

12 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. karencino
    May 23, 2017 @ 13:02:50

    Great scene. The idea of going back to college would scare me a bit too. The note passing was awesome. You’re never too late to pass notes.


  2. jeanjoachim
    May 23, 2017 @ 19:19:01

    Great snippet. The teacher sounds like a bit of a harda**, if you ask me. I wonder how our heroine and Wanda are going to fare with such strict rules? They will probably do better than the younger students in the class. But I need to know what that note says!!


  3. Vicki Locey
    May 24, 2017 @ 09:57:56

    What a great scene! I’d be so scared to go back to school.


    • trishafaye
      May 25, 2017 @ 16:56:21

      I’m making lots of notes from my friend that just went back to school at 45 yo, with a 2 yo daughter (when she started back – now 4 yo) She loves it, but yes, more challenges at this point in her life.


  4. mhsusannematthews
    May 24, 2017 @ 12:05:36

    Having had a teacher like that, and been one on occasion, the scene brought back memories. Of all of the problems I faced as a teacher, getting students to stay off their cellphones was the worst.


  5. Flossie Benton Rogers
    May 25, 2017 @ 15:25:29

    Yep, just like the old days! What a hard nosed teacher, too. Hmmm, I guess our girl better start setting her clock an hour ahead.


  6. Tricia Andersen
    May 25, 2017 @ 18:12:39

    I love the relationship between Wanda and Peggy! And the note passing is awesome!


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May 2017

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