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Goody Goody Gumdrops

In response to August Writing Prompts hosted by M

She scurried on the footpath, holding her book close to her chest. She could feel her beat, even hit the book occasionally. Her palm was sweaty and it drenched the edges of the book. She was mad at herself for not bringing a pack of tissues and used her scarf to wipe the beads off of her forehead. Claire was scared. Terrified.  Horrified. She entered the passcode and opened the locker. She took her exam pass out of the book and placed the book in the locker. There! And a bag of gumdrops fell on the floor. “Oh thank goodness!” she exclaimed to herself, “I didn’t know you were here.” She looked relieved while talking to the bag of gumdrops.

Claire hurried into the examination hall and showed her pass. With her moist hands, she took her pen, pencil, ruler, calculator, bag of gumdrops, and eraser out of her pocket and placed them on the right-hand side of the bench before sitting down. She stretched her legs, looked on both sides for a familiar face, any face! And she saw Sam, acknowledging her from across the hall and waving at her reluctantly. She immediately looked away angrily. After all that he’d done to her, how would she forgive him! But that’s not the point she spoke to herself inside her head You have to remember the formulae. As soon as the question paper comes, you jot them all down, understood? She commanded herself. All the hard work is going to pay off darling, you’ll be fine she tried to calm herself.

The supervisor started passing the question paper. Math wasn’t her strongest suit, especially applied mathematics. She hated it with a passion. She started scribbling down all the formulae on the rough sheet before opening the question paper. She wiped her clammy palm on her pant and took five deep breaths. She had dumbed all the announcements to mere noise. And the exam began with a bell.

She opened the question paper, her heart still thumping, her brain tingling. And the first question looked familiar, relieved she started solving it. Halfway through when her calculations seemed to go the wrong way, she looked around to see if it was just her. Everyone seemed to be invested, diligently solving whatever was on the question paper, some even seemed confident. That was enough for Claire to hyperventilate. It’s alright, you studied all night, you studied all night she tried to calm herself down. Claire then proceeded to stuff herself up with 5 gumdrops and close her eyes. Goody goody Gumdrops she said smiling to herself.

Inside Claire’s tired eyes, the world looked occasionally starry and lit up. She saw red, then green, then yellow, then green again and it went on and on. She slouched on the desk. Within minutes, the desk was her pillow and the world her blanket.

Goody goody Gumdrops, your exam is a big flop.

Goody goody gumdrops, your exam is a big flop.

Goody goody…..and she woke up, drooling, startled by the bell, staring at the supervisor, wiping the corners of her mouth with the scarf. The supervisor calmly walked towards her and said, “I am sorry, I tried to wake you up doll.”

Claire handed the answer sheet, gaping once again at the four lines she scribbled, disappointed in herself. Once again, she disappointed herself.


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