Prologue III-1

“Lochwood?” a tall, wide-built man in a suit stepped into the room. Among the faded unoccupied chairs lining the muted white wall, sat a man who looked up at the name. His hand was held in his wife’s lap as she sat next to him with a concerned expression on her face. The two got up and followed the man into the narrow, silent hall and into a small office room; third door on the right.

“Please take a seat,” the man said, gesturing towards the two chairs perfectly aligned beside the door in front of a large black marble desk, stacks of paper scattered here and there on its shiny surface. Mr. and Mrs. Lochwood cautiously took their seats, and the other man walked around behind the desk and settled himself into a plush swivel chair behind a golden plaque that read ‘Principal B. Stockwell.’

After shifting into a more comfortable position, Principal Stockwell leaned forward, placing his elbows on his desk. “I suppose you have already guessed that I called you in here to discuss your son’s performance.”

“It’s not his grades is it?” the concerned mother spoke up. “Our boy isn’t the type to deviate from his work. He really likes it here.”

“No,” Stockwell reassured them. He paused to take a breath before continuing. “He had another seizure in P.E. today.” The parents exchanged a worrying glance, but quickly returned their attention to the principal when he spoke again. “This is the third time this has happened. I think you should consider removing your son from this school.”

After eyeing the tightly woven carpet for answers, Mr. Lochwood swallowed and looked to his wife. “Perhaps this wasn’t the right match. Maybe he would do better in a lower ranked school.”

“I just don’t understand,” she wiped at the corner of her eye. “How could his health have deteriorated so quickly? He never showed any signs of epilepsy growing up!”

“Some people’s bodies just cannot handle how we teach our curriculum,” Principal Stockwell stated calmly.

Several moments of silence passed, completely devoid of noise, save for the ticking of the clock on the cream-colored wall and the tense breathing of the three adults. Mr. Lochwood pondered the options available to him: no matter which decision he made, it would greatly influence the next few years of his son’s life, and quite possibly, his entire future. Mrs. Lochwood was equally conflicted on the subject. After a prolonged silence, they looked into each other’s eyes, and both knew what the right choice was.

Mr. Lochwood cleared his throat. “Yes. Please take our son out of this school.”

The End

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