Ilene Higginbottom was not lying when she told the principal that not all the teachers had posted attendance yet, and because that was true she held off on posting the official daily attendance for the middle school where she worked in the front office.
“Well, I’ll be checking later, Ms. Higginbottom, because our friend Vinny has just about used up all his pass go cards— if he doesn’t start showing up regularly I’ll have to file on him soon.”
Ilene made two calls of her own and in no time Ernest Biggs was following orders and was pulling over in his truck to pick up a scrawny mop haired boy who, also following orders, was ready and waiting out on the cracked sidewalk in front of a dilapidated row house, ready, Ernest felt, not just because of Ilene’s demands, and certainly not because he was eager for school, but because he did not want anyone knocking on the door of that house. Vinny quickly hopped in and when Ernest spoke to him Vinny sat up straighter, as if in emulation of the tall man that Ms. Higginbottom had sent, and hoped that his own cracking voice would someday sound deep yet soft spoken like this man’s. Still Vinny appreciated that he didn’t fill the cab with chatter, just drove, acting like he couldn’t hear his empty stomach rumbling loud from the passenger’s seat.
Then that voice was on a cell phone telling Ms. Higginbottom that while he got that this Vinny needed to be delivered and could not be absent, he was going to have to be more late because they were going to stop off at the diner and have some breakfast on their way to school and Vinny heard Ms. Higginbottom saying ok but eat fast, she’d mark him tardy and give his second period teacher a heads up.
Denise has opened the link for Six Sentence Stories! The word this week is “absent“. Once again, some of my favorite characters have come by to help me meet the SSS challenge. This week we see more of the boy who helped Ilene get the Administrative Assistant job at the middle school in the February 22 SSS. He might be The Artist from a doubled up Carrot Ranch prompt last December. More recently he got a name in an October SSS, Character Building. I am thinking there’s yet more to this story.