The line of students shuffled toward their fate. It had taken about fifteen minutes, but Gronk was almost at the front. He felt no nerves whatsoever. Unruffled at first by fact he had to stand in line with common students, his impatience grew. He became desperate for the inevitable good news contained in his envelope. He dreamed of sitting in Poshey tutor groups and impressing everyone with his accent and intellectualism. Gronk felt he was made for the hallowed University quads and looked forward to wearing a gown around Snookford. This would be the beginning of his marvellous future. Gronk was ready to enter true socio-economic exclusivity. But here he was, staring at the back of an Outsider’s head. This low-life dared to stand in his way. When the boy was about to receive his results envelope, Gronk pushed him out of the way.

“I’m cut from finer cloth. The crème de la crème. Step aside shitbag,” he jibed testily.

Barging past, he was at the head of the queue and stood with one hand on hip, the other hand outstretched. His nose was in the air. A teacher was holding the other boy’s envelope and rolled her eyes. She rummaged in a box and pulled out an envelope with “Guido Gronk” written on the front. He grabbed it and set off at a brisk pace. This was the acid test. A bright future of Poshey accents and quaffing champagne awaited. He ripped the envelope open and it dropped to the floor. Opening the piece of paper, he looked down and focussed. A bemused look spread across his face. It was his name at the top and the candidate number was correct, but his eyes bulged and he groaned inwardly.

On the paper was “Classical Civilisation F, French F, Philosophy F.”

Gronk’s cockiness ebbed away and he closed his eyes in despair. Quel désastre. All my hopes and dreams shattered. And I deserved success. His heart sank as he saw a commotion in the middle of the foyer. Fathead, Snoops, Snipes, Harvey and Hugo waved results papers in the air. Their grades were well below average. Fathead was considered the intellectual of the group and predictably did the best with two Es and an F. But they were all going up to the University of Snookford anyway with unconditional offers in the bag. They were proud to be pretentious and knew only too well of their suitability for an educational establishment with entrenched status.

Copyright © 2022 Callum Stanford.  All rights reserved.

Author: C.Stanford

Writer, blogger, outsider, survivor.

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