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Time up.


Absolutely the worst bit was knowing that you had run of time and this was it. You'd realised it was coming ever since Miss Anderson had told you, in front of the whole class, to report to the teachers' Common Room after lunch. Of course, if you'd been bright, you might have got away with gazing out of the window - with more than a sporting interest - at the boys' school rugby fifteen practising across the boundary wall. But when your attention was rudely demanded by the teacher, and you couldn't tell her what she'd been talking about, and you'd just failed her history test, you were in trouble.

All through lunch you'd had to put up with your so-called friends pretending to squirm on their seats, muttering 'Ooow!' and 'Ouch!'. Hilarious.

You'd dragged yourself to the Common Room, been given a severe lecture by the unsmiling teacher, and told to stand in the corner and reflect on your performance. Teachers had come and gone during that time, pointedly ignoring you and your imminent fate (except for that wimpy Arts teacher who insisted on the pupils calling her 'Daphne'. I heard her mumble something about 'Poor girl! Must you?' To which there'd been no reply. I imagine Miss Anderson just nodded her head).

Then at last there were no other staff in the room, and Miss Anderson had closed the door, a sign that she events were about to take place which should not be interrupted.

I felt her approach, and out of the corner of my eye I saw her take down a cane. Then I heard the dreaded words:

"Lift up your skirt, bend over, place your hands on the wall."

Oh Lord! This really was the worst bit.

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