Short Story Day 99 of 365
Somewhere in the bowels of a manual typewriter is a long thin spring. Robb Fortney didn’t know about it until he found one dangling from the top of the typewriter when he arrived at Typing class one day.
Playing his usual part as a class clown, Robb displayed the spring in the only way he knew, wrapped around his head and dangling all the way to the floor.
When Mr. Bader arrived to his class seconds after Robb thought the idea was worth a laugh, he had no context for what had occurred. In Bader’s mind, Fortney had ripped it out of the typewriter and used it as a headband. Three others had arrived in the class with Robb and could attest to Robb’s version of a story, that is, if Bader thought to ask.
But he didn’t ask.
Mr. Bader made a beeline to Robb and confronted him. “Where’d you get this?”
“It was on top of my machine,” said Robb.
“Probably not. Just a minute.”
Bader went to his desk, took out a blank sheet of paper and a stapler, and returned to Robb. He snatched the spring from Robb’s head, bunched it up, and stapled it four times to the paper.
“Mr. Fortney, I need you to take this to Principal Owen’s office immediately and explain it to him. Willful destruction of school property is a punishable offense.”
“But, Mr. Bader…”
Robb Fortney dreaded telling the story to Principal Owens, but it’d be worse if he never went or even lied to him.
As Robb finished the story, the principal studied him.
“Tell you what, Robb. I believe what you said. Probably shouldn’t have made it a headband though. But, just between me and you, I would’ve done the same thing when I was your age.”
Robb smiled. He had never met the principal face to face before but was starting to like him.
“Now Robb,” the Principal said as he rose to usher Robb out. “I know this wasn’t your fault and we could probably figure out who did this based on who was in the class last, but I’m gonna drop this whole thing on one condition.”
Robb rose and said, “Uh, sure, what’s that., sure.”
The Principal opened the door and said, “No fancy headbands from here on out, okay?”
“Right, sir. No fancy headbands.”