Monday, September 11, later

Paul's grandparents call to tell the family that the sinkhole at the school is on the national news. Paul is disappointed to learn that the sinkhole is smaller than he thought it was. And, there were no serious injuries.

Dad comes home agitated because his office has been getting calls asking why the Department of Civil Engineering had approved putting the school over the sinkhole. Dad's boss could not be reached so he had to answer the inquiries.

Paul is proud of his actions today. He is still afraid of Erik and Arthur, but he is definitely not a coward.

Tuesday, September 12

The area is adjusting to the presence of the sinkhole.

The Tangerine Times published impressive pictures of the sinkhole. It also published a letter to the parents of affected students telling them about an upcoming meeting to give details of an emergency relocation plan.

More than the portable classrooms are affected by the sinkhole. There are only half as many bleachers for the football stadium as before the disaster occurred. That cuts Erik Fisher's audience in half.

Thursday, September 14

Last night Eyewitness News ran a piece on Old Charley Burns. As of this morning Dad is the Director of Civil Engineering for Tangerine County, formerly Charley's position. The news piece said that Charley did not do his job. Instead, he let the developers take care of the inspections, while he spent his time concentrating on stock-car races and football games. Before being given the job, Dad promised to thoroughly inspect and regulate.

Friday, September 15

Tonight is the time when the relocation plan is to be discussed. Paul and his family and Joey and his family and maybe a thousand other people are gathered at the gymnasium. Dad positions himself on the stage. The county commissioners want him there to help them focus on Old Charley Burns as the guilty party.

The meeting begins with Mrs. Gates thanking all the school staff who have been working hard since the disaster occurred. Then she compliments the students on their mature behavior during the crisis. She introduces the people on the stage. When she introduces Dad as the Director of Civil Engineering there is an unfriendly murmur.

Mrs. Gates tells everyone that the emergency relocation plan will be in effect for three months. And, it will start on Monday. Paul is surprised. He thought that there would be no school for a while. But, he was wrong.

Mrs. Gates describes the plan for a split shift in the middle school. School will begin early and end late. Class length will be shortened. The audience does not approve. Mrs. Gates then presents another choice for seventh graders. They can attend Tangerine Middle School. But, there will be no bus service.

Paul sees the Tangerine Middle School option as a miracle. And, his parents agree to let him go there.

Cite this page:

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