The class teacher of the class three students was very happy at the test result that Miss. Kemi Adefuja, their Integrated Science teacher had presented to her. It was the result of her class students and the very first time in the session she would be hearing good news concerning them. It was very rare to see her class pupils perform this brilliantly. Most of the other teachers only brought terrible reports to her concerning her class pupils, making them seem terrible and uncooperative, and the Principal herself had called Bridget into her office several times, to clear one issue or the other of one of her erring students. She glanced through the scripts quickly, as she rolled it over her left arm, her eyes darting straight at the grades. . . She saw 80s and 90s, occasionally, she saw 60s but the least she saw was 65%.
“This really worth celebration” She said as she handed the scripts back to Miss Adefuja. “I am really happy that these pupils are cooperating at last. They have made me go through hell, in the name of trying to make them cooperate with this school system.”
“I am so happy for you o.” Miss. Kemi Adefuja replied, “Infact, I think we should celebrate them by buying things for some of them.”
“That’s true” Bridget agreed instantly, and she immediately left the class four mathematics test scripts which she had been marking. She headed for the school buttery and bought as many biscuits and sweets as she could. Her friend, Kemi helped her carry some of the items too, and they headed for the class.
On getting to the Class 3B, the students stood up with uniformity and greeted their teacher in one very dramatic but unison voice.
“Good Mooooorning ma.”
“It’s afternoon, not morning!” Mrs. Bridget Williams corrected slightly with a cheerful smile still plastered on her face, and she checked her time to confirm that she was right. The time read 12:02pm.
“Good afternoooooooon ma!” The pupils corrected themselves just in time. Coincidentally, the Principal was walking by the corridor when they chorused this. She ran quickly into the class with utter bewilderment written all over her face.
“What nonsense is this?’ she questioned, ‘The time is still 11:00am and you are saying ‘guud haftunuuuuuu ma!’ Who taught you this arrant nonsense?”
Miss Williams looked at Kemi Adefuja, with a very embarrassing look on her face. She brought out her phone quickly, and confirmed that her wrist watch had stopped working for hours.
“I said, Who taught you such stupid style of greeting?”
Before Bridget could say anything, the students chorused, “Our class Mistress!”
The Principal turned violently towards Miss Kemi Adefuja, and roared with anger, “Is this what you have been teaching this students?! You want to spoil my academic career?! You want to regress what we have been trying to progress?!”
While shaking from the pressure caused by the spluttering Principal, Kemi managed to point her right index finger at Bridget, who was begging pitiably behind the Principal for Kemi not to divulge the truth, “That is their class teacher ma. Not me.”
“Are you saying that I am blind? Miss. Adefuja. It appears as though you have no value for your job again.”
“She is not our teacher maaaaaaa” Some of the students chorused.
“Ehn hen? Is this not class four?”
“Nooooo ma, this is class three!” The students replied.
“Ooooh! This is the notorious class three! The one and only headache of this institution?” The Principal turned towards Bridget behind her, the poor lady was already shivering before the old woman widen her eyes at her, intending by it that she was in hot soup. Her widened eyes, seemed for some minutes to bore holes like lasers into Bridget’s skin.
“Ma. It wasn’t. . . wasn’t really. . .”
“Shut up! It wasn’t really what?” The old woman sealed the words into Bridget’s mouth finally, “What did you come to do here now. Do they have mathematics class now?”
“Nooooooo ma.” The students choroused.
“Shut up!” The Principal screamed at the students, “I wasn’t talking to you. I wasn’t talking to any of you. I was talking to your teacher, who obviously doesn’t look any wiser anyway, and I’m sure she is not deaf and dump.”
“M…m….ma,” Bridget tried to summon courage, but failed woefully as her light pretty face turned pink with embarrassment at the principal’s word. She managed to see Kemi, behind the principal. Kemi was trying to take her leave, as quietly as possible, in order not to get the principal’s attention while she did, and as she did, she was gesticulating pleadingly for Bridget to keep mute about her attempted exit.
“Kemi don’t run away. We both came here together.”
The Principal turned fiercely around, and rudely eyed Kemi, whose mouth was aghast at what her friend had done.
“So you want to run away? You want to run away because I am here, abi?” The Principal shook her head violently, “Go ahead, run away, run away from the mad woman, abi? You know your principal is a mad woman, so you have to run away.”
“No ma. Y….yo…..you are. . . not a ma. . .mad woman ma.” Kemi stuttered
“Then, stay here, and tell me what you came to do with all those biscuits in your hand.”
“Oh. . .ma. Oooo. . .heeh… biscuits. . .yes, the biscuits. ” She stuttered like a caught robber,
“Ma,” Bridget had successfully gathered enough courage, since the burrowing lasers had left her and she brought back the attention of the old fat woman as she spoke in her extra-careful thin soprano.
“The students performed very well in their Integrated Science test, and I thought of compensating them, in order to encourage them do better.”
The students began to murmur excitedly.
“Are you saying that these notorious students really did something good?”
“Yes ma,” the two teachers said in unison, Kemi Adefuja retrieved the scripts from inside a black file which she had kept in the same container that she kept the snacks in and handed it to the Principal.
“This is not only unbelievable, but impossible. I have to test this!” The Principal said, after scanning the question papers briskly and seeing the grades. She took out a script and looked at the students.
“Who among you can answer this first question?” The Principal looked into the script and read the question out loud. Only one of the students had his hand raised so excitedly, the others began to murmur. Some of them were even whispering, begging him to tell them the answer, but the brilliant student decided to guard it jealously within his heart, until he publicly declared the answer and got the prize, if any was made available.
“So, only one student can answer the question that the whole class passed in their test.” The Principal said to the teachers behind her, “How come?”
“Ma, they must have -”
“Who can answer the number two question?” The Principal shunned the teacher and read the second question out too, and none of the students could attempt providing the answer, save the boy who rose his hand the first time; this time, he rose both hands up, having the confidence and proud feeling that he really could.
“Now, see. You idiots called teachers. A hundred per cent of your students passed the test that only one of them can answer. How come? Do you teachers fear God at all?!”
She frowned at the teachers, who were looking down ashamedly with their arms crossed behind their backs. Then the Principal called the student and told him to tell his name and the answer to both questions to the class, after which he would be permitted to give two strokes of cane each to all his dullard classmates and perhaps class teachers.
“My name is Ness.”
“Ness,” The Principal said, “Kindly tell your friends, what class of food corn belongs to?”
“Yess ma, corn belongs to Primary four B. I often see the cobs littering the class when all the students have gone home.”
The teachers and students burst into uncontrollable laughter, while the principal and the boy appeared a fool among them.
“Ness!” The Principal shook her head, “I’d pretend you did not just say that. Now answer the second question; What is a mammal?”
Ness felt shy and reluctant to voice out the answer to the second question at first, because of the way his mates had reacted to his first attempt, but he soon got the courage to voice it out, he knew that getting this would put him back in the good record of his class mate, “a mammal is a name of any person, animal place or things around us.”
Ness burst into tears, as even the Principal reeled on her tummy, the teachers and students, all laughing in pain and anger.
“I just noticed a mistake ma” Miss. Kemi said when the hullabaloo died down, the scripts I gave to you belong to the class five class, here is the one for class three.”
The Principal collected the scripts, while still coughing with the remaining laughter she was trying to kill in her throat and she flipped through it and found out that only Ness got two out of the twenty questions asked. The least after Ness’ score was fourteen.
“Now Ness, you got two questions correctly in your script here, and you should be able to answer them now”
“Yes ma,” Ness nodded
“We should wash our hands before and after eating, true or false?”
Ness thought for some moment, if he got this wrong, his friens would undoubtedly mock him, he got an answer in his mind and spoke immediately, “If we wash our hands before eating, then it is not necessary to wash them again after eating ma, and if we would still wash our hands after eating, we don’t have to waste water by washing them before eating.”
The whole class burst into another moment of complete laughter.
“Ness, tell the truth,” The principal finally said, after she had had her fill of the laughter. “You cheated in this test.”
“No ma oooo! I didn’t cheat ma. It was Tade that caused it, she changed almost all her answers before submitting, and didn’t tell me what she changed it to. If she hadn’t changed it, we would have scored the same thing. I didn’t cheat ma. I swear!”
The class bursted into another minutes of horrific laughter and they all started shouting, “Ness cheated! Ness cheated!! Ness cheated!!!”
The principal looked at the boy and gave her concluding decision, “You would have to go back to Primary one if you are going to continue in this school”
I hope you enjoyed it? Ness gets better!!! Special thanks to all The Ness Series lovers