Courtney stood at the front of the sixth grade classroom and stared out at the rows of students seated in their desks. The young substitute teacher stood at an average height, with blond hair, green eyes, and a shapely hourglass figure. The jean skirt she wore was probably a bit too short for the school’s dress code for teachers, but no one had said anything to her about it yet.
At the moment she was doing her best to breathe deeply and control her nervousness. As a substitute teacher, she always faced some initial stage fright during her first few minutes with whatever class she was teaching, and today was no different.
“All right everyone, in her lesson plan your teacher indicated that you just finished learning about the Civil War. Is that right?” Courtney asked in a friendly tone.
Several students mumbled an affirmative answer to her questions, but most remained silent. Others began talking and laughing among themselves.
“Now, now, class, let’s keep the talking under control,” Courtney said.
For a brief moment she regretted majoring in Music and ending up with substitute teaching as her only viable job. Such regrets came often but they were short lived. She was only nineteen years old, after all, and had plenty of time to improve her resume, she knew. After all, she had completed an associate’s degree in one year thanks to taking college credit in high school. She knew that was more than a lot of other people had done. Continuing to breathe deeply and slowly, she suppressed her regrets and her stage fright left with them.
Feeling confident and in command again, she stepped closer to the class of twelve-year-olds and thirteen-year-olds and put her hands on her hips.
“Quiet everyone, she ordered. “Based on your teacher’s instructions to me, we’re going to start reading on page 65 of your history textbooks. Open there now.”
The thumping of books on desks and the swishing of pages mingled with the echo of hushed whispers as the students complied.
Smiling proudly to herself, Courtney turned and searched for a piece of chalk.
Courtney walked silently down the aisles later that day, after her students had returned from lunch break, and passed back their graded math tests. She had graded all of them during the lunch break and was proud of herself for doing so, though the students had done so poorly that she could not help feeling disappointed in them.
By the time she returned to the front of the classroom, students were groaning and whining audibly behind her.
“Mrs. Sensen, this isn’t fair!”
“I thought I did better than this!”
“This test was too hard!”
“Now, now class,” she said in a soothing tone. “I didn’t try to give you bad scores. You all got the grades you deserved based on your answers.”
“But why did you even grade them?” complained a girl with brown streaks through her long blond hair and bright blue eyes. “Mrs. Lowdry should have done that when she comes back.”
“Mrs. Lowdry instructed me to grade your exams,” Courtney replied to the girl, doing her best to keep her annoyance out of her voice. “Now, it’s time for a science lesson--”
“But I got an ‘F!’” said a boy. “My parents will kill me!”
“I want mine regraded by Mrs.Lowdry,” said the blue-eyed girl.
“Yeah, me too.”
“Enough!” barked Courtney. “I didn’t give your grades to you, you earned them. Now stop moaning about it and resolved to do better next time.”
She spun around and began writing on the chalkboard.
Suddenly she felt dizzy. She dropped the chalk from her hand and swooned, bracing herself against the chalk tray along the bottom of the chalkboard for support. Her blouse and skirt seemed to be inflating, swelling up around her body. Her shoes were all at once too big and she had to step out of them, while her socks dropped off her feet because they were now too large for them. Courtney recognized almost instantly what was happening: She was shrinking, which meant she had the Shrinking Gene.
“No!” she hissed, simultaneously depressed that she had been stricken with this mutation and horrified that it was manifesting itself now, of all times and places.
“She’s dwindling right away!”
Courtney’s head was engulfed by her blouse and her clothes fell upon her.
Minutes later she managed to finally claw her way out of her clothes. Now completely naked, she stood on the thinly carpeted floor and stared at the rows of desk legs, chair legs, and student legs, covering her breasts with one arm and her crotch with the hand from her other arm. She knew she was now only six inches tall, actually a bit shorter.
“Oh dear God!” she whispered. “I’m a Shrinky now.”
Chair and desk legs scraped loudly against the floor as students began standing and leaning forward to get a better look at her. She could see their giant faces looming above her in the distance, staring down at her like she was an exotic insect.
“Please, someone needs to call the front office!” she called up to them.
“She’s so tiny.”
“She’s a Shrinky.”
“Our sub is a Shrinky?”
“Now!” Courtney shouted at them, but her words were drowned out by the noise of their conversations.
Two sneaker-clad feet thudded onto the floor and began stomping toward her. Courtney flinched in surprise and tilted her head backward to stare up at the pale, shapely legs of the blue-eyed, brown-streaked-blond that had mouthed off earlier. The blond girl’s shoes slammed down on either side of Courtney, who stumbled first one way and then the other, then looked fearfully up at the huge girl’s face high, high above her.
The girl grinned sadistically, and Courtney screamed.Read the rest of this story at docs.google.com/document/d/1_l…