snippet from One-Pages
Chocolate buttons melted on children's tongues. The sun melted children.
It was a hot day, hotter than most, and Mrs. Prindle was distributing candy by the bucketfuls to the good children of her class. "Children," she said. "If you all tell your parents that it wasn't too hot to learn today, you will be rewarded." She shook her bag of chocolate morsels. The children licked their lips.
Mrs. Prindle smiled her tight smile with her small mouth and put the bag in a drawer of her desk. "Let's resume our learning."
"But Mrs. Prindle," Becky Blynn said. "It is too hot to learn. You could fry an egg on Joey's head." Joey Jordan liked to shave all his hair off. He turned red.
Everyone laughed, then wiped their foreheads of sweat. Mrs. Prindle cocked her head to the side. "Ms. Blynn, did you know that the surface of one's head can never be hot enough to fry an egg?"
Becky sniffed. "I didn't know that."
Mrs. Prindle smiled her smile again. "Well then, you just learned something."

Class was dismissed at 3:30 PM, and Mrs. Prindle handed each student one last chocolate button on their way out the door. She handed Becky Blynn two chocolate buttons and gave her a wink. When all was done, she took her thin hair out of her inhumanly tight chignon and sank into her chair, fanning herself with a cursive book.
It was in fact, as Becky had said, too hot to learn. But if the children went home and told their parents that, the small independent one-room schoolhouse would need to purchase an air conditioner, and Mrs. Prindle simply did not have the funds for that.
Mrs. Prindle shuffled through her desk for works to be graded that evening and got up to leave. She would be heading to the hospital to visit George.
George Prindle had been bitten by a villainous mosquito that had given him a terrible disease. She never could remember the name of it. George was not doing well, and each day the hospital bills racked up and up along with Mrs. Prindle's distress.
Mrs. Prindle walked along the gravel road, carrying her weathered leather briefcase in a sweaty hand. The bus stop was a fifteen-minute walk from the schoolhouse. She would see Eleanor Clouse there, to whom she would have to listen explain the goings-on of her community theater production. Mrs. Prindle would always politely ask, "How goes the production, Eleanor?" and Eleanor would reply with steamroller verbosity to rival Mrs. Prindle's most talkative seven-year-old students.
But today Eleanor was not at the bus stop. In fact, sitting at the bus stop was a toad. A large, bulbous toad. When Mrs. Prindle arrived, the toad said, "Afternoon."


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