Friday, February 09, 2007

Feb Story - 3

[NOTE: This is part of a progressive story. The first entry is here. Check the blog label Feb07Story for all entries]

     Back in the darkness, the Commander shook his head and chuckled grimly. Being forced to rely on inept fools like Tom made him constantly amazed he had accomplished so much in his time as Commander. Admittedly, he had a great foundation to build on from the previous "Commander". Still, he had advanced the respect and reach of the "Commander" ideal more than any of his progenitors and he felt good about that. His only regret was that he had not yet found a worthy progeny to carry on the cause after he graduated in the spring.

     That would have to wait. He had more pressing issues to deal with. A replacement vice-principal had been brought in to replace Mr. Johnson. That meant the administration and police still had no leads on the Johnson family disappearance. Not that he expected them to. All evidence pointed to a spur of the moment vacation, so the police efforts were minimal at best, not considering it a missing persons case at all. And the district administration was too inept to conduct any investigation themselves. No, it didn't surprise the Commander at all that a new vice-principal had arrived.

     What did take him off guard was that they had moved Mr. Call into the position. Mr. Call had been the school librarian for a dozen years and had never shown any inclination towards administration as far as the Commander had known. In fact, the way he ran his library, the Commander would never have considered Mr. Call as a replacement, even a temporary one.

     Tapping keys on his computer and making a few clicks, a map of the school appeared on the monitor in front of him. He clicked down into the lines marking off the vice-principal office and moments later his speakers buzzed to life. At first there was no sound other than a slight hum. But after a few seconds, voices rang through the system. He made out the voices of the librarian vice-principal Daniel Call and the school principal John York.

     "A little. But I'm sure I can handle it."

     "I'm sure you can Daniel, but just remember that dealing with students as a vice-principal is very different than dealing with them as librarian."

     "I understand John. Don't worry. Just point me in the right direction and let me go."

     "Alright. Your first encounter is waiting outside. It seems Blake Percival has trouble getting to class on time. He's been tardy to homeroom every day this past week and is late to many of his other classes during the day. It's your task to help motivate him to be more punctual. Remind him of our tardy policy. Come up with an appropriate punishment, an appropriate goal for the future and a follow up appointment. Let me know how it goes."

     "No problem boss.”

     The Commander listened as the voices stopped. He heard a door open followed by muffled footsteps as one or both of the men left the office. As the silence continued, the Commander pulled up the school records and began to search. He didn't know Blake personally, but he knew of his reputation and it was somewhat surprising to learn that he had a problem with tardiness. Blake was one of those hyper-aware students who followed every rule down to the minutest detail. He always asked tons of questions whenever an assignment was discussed to make sure he did exactly what the teacher wanted. He always looked for opportunities for extra credit and sucked up to teachers all the time. He was definitely not the type of student the Commander would have expected to find sitting outside the vice-principal's office.

     The Commander's eyes scanned the records of Blake. His eyes widened with the realization that Blake's string of tardies began last Monday afternoon, the first day that Vice-principal Johnson and his family first were unaccounted for. Blake had actually been absent for his fifth and sixth periods and late for seventh. He was then late for homeroom the following day and had extensive tardies and sporadic absences for the rest of the week.

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