"There's the bell," Tommy announced. Frannie, Suzy and Tommy all looked at each other, because any fish that knows
anything, knows what a bell means.
The three friends floated down the hall towards class.
"Wow, look at the walls!" Suzy was pointing at a very large mural that went down both sides of the hall. The words LAND LIFE were in giant
letters across the top of each side of the hall.
"That's so cool, but are there really that many different kinds of land creatures?" Frannie wondered. Some had feathers, some just had skin, but the weirdest looking ones had lots of really thin tentacles on their heads. They were labeled: HUMAN.
The three friends giggled at the funny looking humans. "Look at that!" Suzy laughed. "They don't even have gills! How do they breathe? And without water, how do they swim?"
"I think the plants are pretty." Frannie was pointing at the colourful display of flowers and trees on a different wall. "Some of these look kind of like sea plants." They all agreed that they reminded them of the plants around their neighbourhood.
"Well, we'd better get to class before the second bell, we don't want to upset the sea-monster on the first day," Tommy said, leading the pack towards their classroom.
Within moments their other friend, Carter Crab, came swimming towards them with a loud "WHOOSH!" This was typical of Carter, always moving a little too fast and always excited about something. Frannie had to keep telling herself, "No matter what he has to say, remember he exaggerates most of the time."
Carter's claws were flapping extremely fast and he could barely contain his excitement. "Hey, did you guys hear about our teacher? You are not going to believe this, not in a million-gazillion years! Are you ready for this?"
"She's a sea-monster?" Suzy interrupted. "Worse! Last year, Mrs. Seaslug was in a horrifying maximum security prison for doing something really awful at her last school. She'd still be there, except two weeks ago she escaped so she could come here and teach us – and the police are still looking for her!"
"What?!" asked Frannie just as the friends were entering their
"Boys and girls, welcome to second grade!" said their new teacher, greeting them at the door.
"My name is Mrs. Seaslug."
Frannie looked at her new teacher as she was finding her seat. She
didn't look like a sea-monster. In fact, she was pretty. She had the most beautiful purple and pink fins that Frannie thought she'd ever seen.
Mrs. Seaslug continued. "As you all probably know, I'm new to this school. I spent the last five years teaching school in a gulf far away. You all may call me Mrs. S."
The friends stared at Carter. Tommy whispered to him, "a horrifying prison, huh?"
Carter's shell turned even more red. He whispered back, "I was just telling you what someone told me."
“I only have one rule in my class," Mrs. S. began, "you must always treat others with respect. What I mean is, think about how the things you do might affect someone else."
She continued to talk about how each fish could show respect for each other, and how listening to her when she is speaking is a good way to show respect for her. The class gave Mrs. S. their full attention while she was talking. "So, let's all treat each other with respect, and we'll have a great school year!"
"Now this morning we'll spend some time getting to know each other, and then after recess we'll start in on some Math lessons. Any questions?" She asked the class.
"So, we do get to have recess this year?" Frannie asked. "Of course you do, why do you ask?" Mrs. S wondered. "Oh, I just heard from someone that we might not, that's all, ma'am," Frannie said to Mrs. S, while staring at her friends.
At the end of the first day, all four friends were swimming out of school. "She is soooo nice!" Frannie said. "I really like her.""Yeah, me too," said Tommy and Suzy. "I think that some fish just don't like to admit it when they're wrong," teased Suzy.
"Oh, there's my ride," Frannie said, waving to her dad. "I'll see you guys tomorrow.""How was your first day, Frannie?" her dad asked. "It was great Dad. It was good to see everyone again, and I really like my teacher.""Frannie, your mom and I have been talking." Frannie was scared when her father said this, because it usually meant that she was in trouble.
"We've decided that starting tomorrow, you can ride the bus to school."
Frannie smiled a fake smile at her father. "The bus?" she thought. "But, I've never gone to school alone nor ridden the school bus before."
Frannie was quiet for the rest of the trip. She was very scared of tomorrow's bus ride.
Next week: "What's so scary about a bus ride?"