I Study to Fight Another Day
Everything was in absolute silence. There was the uncanny aura somehow pre-empting a serene calmness before the devastating storm. The waiting seemed endless.
My fingers started fidgeting one another. My eyes kept pacing from one inch of the corner to the other corner. But somehow, I could not even recognize what I was looking at or where. My mind started swimming in an endless array of uneasiness. It was already about to commence. This war was inevitable, I told myself. Then, suddenly, a faint noise began to unfold louder and louder. The bell had rung. The war for survival was at hand and the battlefield was my school.
In front of me was the school building. However, it looked and felt more like a concentration camp ready to eat me alive. I took a deep breath and placed one foot in front of the other. This was it.
There was no turning back. As I passed the huge brown doors, I knew this was the point of no return. I saw the other students, my comrades, walking along the corridors. I saw the emotions on their faces. I did not need them to tell me how they felt. I was scared too.
The eerie hallways took longer to walk through. I was not expecting this. As I continued to trudge, I imagined myself in cuffs and chains like a deathrow inmate. It felt as if I was being beckoned towards the electric chair. I was suddenly pulled away from my thoughts when I felt a slight bump from the side.
More and more soldiers like me were drowning the hallways. The place was beginning to get cramped. Amidst all the confusion, I spotted a familiar face at 10 o’clock about twenty paces away.
My heart started to race faster. It was him, my one true heart’s desire. I panicked as I got conscious of how I messed up I looked. He was about to turn his face towards me. I saw the ladies’ bathroom to my left and dashed inside like my life depended on it. I was lucky. I dodged a fatal bullet.
Inside the ladies’ bathroom, I fixed myself and put on my battlegear. The colour of my lips was just right. My hair was stylishly groomed. And my make up was flawless. I was ready. I checked my supplies. My books, notebooks, lap top, pens, pencils, cell phone, make up, hair brush, nail filer, and lipstick were all there. Everything was accounted for.
I ran across the hallway and into the classroom. The others are all positioned. I sat behind thinking that it would be safer. But I was wrong. A middle-aged man entered the room like at typhoon ravaging anything in its path. His voice resonated throughout the room.
As his mouth opened, I only understood two words, “surprise quiz.” I somehow knew it. This was an ambush and we fell right through it. There was nothing left to do but fight. But little did they know that I actually came prepared. I valiantly used my pen against all questions. As the saying goes, the pen was mightier than the sword.
My platoon sustained a lot of casualties that day but I survived. I did not get a medal of valour but an 87% was good enough for me.
The rest of the year seemed as if it was all put together into one big beating. There were a lot of small skirmishes as my professors bombed my class with quizzes every now and then. But I managed to overcome them despite always being caught in the line of fire from one class to the other. As the end draws to a close, the tension was getting stronger and the atmosphere was turning chaotic.
Everyone, students and professors alike, were preparing for the culminating event, the “world war”; the finals. The grand war happened without people being aware that it had already ended.
No one knew the outcome. Not until a few weeks or a month’s time. But one thing was certain, everyone was happy that it was over. I was relieved to realize that I was still standing. I knew there were still more battles to come.
But as for now, I was happy to know that after the countless and gruelling days and nights, it was time for me to go home. I realized that I did not only study to fight for another day, but I actually lived to fight another day.