“The future is today,” Mr. Cooper liked to tell his students. “Don’t wait for tomorrow.”
That might work for adults, but few of the students believed him. Although, truth be told, few of the students understood what it even meant. They were eleven. Their future was more than ten years away. That’s almost twice as long as they’d been alive. One student believed him. One student understood him.
Aspen had moved to Granger three weeks earlier and set the school ablaze with gossip ever since. It wasn’t just her name, or her clothes, or the way she didn’t seem to know any of the popular shows. It was her name, her clothes, the way she didn’t know anything that a proper eleven year old should know. And she talked funny. Not funny as in ‘y’all’, but real funny. Like calling Mr. Cooper by his full name rather than Mr. C like everyone else. Heck, she even called McDonalds, McDonalds rather than Mick Ds like kids or even the Golden Arches like the old people. She was just plain weird.
Every day, after school, she would walk alone to the city park. No one knew where she lived because it seemed like she never left the park. She would go from school to the park, and from the park to school. Even when a group of her classmates waited at the park exits until after the street lights came on, they didn’t see her leave the park.
One day, Aspen didn’t show up to school. It was weird that she would move to town, then move away, but she did. She must have. The only thing she left behind was her textbook. When Mr. C opened the book, a note fell out. He read it for the class:
“My Dear Mr. Cooper” (see, she really was weird.)
“Thank you for letting me be part of your class. It has been quite enlightening. There had been much debate about the value of human beings, and my time with you, and the students in your class, have shown me that humans refuse to see what is in front of them. You are quite correct when you say that future is today. Humans had their chance.
I pity what our history books write about your future. We had rather hoped it would be something we could prevent, but alas, it is not.
Hoping you are one of the lucky ones who faces a quick demise.
Your friend and former student,
For what it’s worth, I hate the new WP writer…who ever thought that backspacing near a space would go back two spaces…ugh!