Surviving the Seventh

Excuse me, little buddy, and please know that I don't want to put a damper on your wondrous sixth grade graduation, but I do think you should know:

The strongest form of Elemental Evil is that of a seventh grader. Our people can penetrate lives much earlier or much later, of course, but seventh grade is different. Better. In seventh grade classrooms, schoolyards, field trips, and (especially) gymnasiums, we swarm like mosquito assassins.

Okay, you probably knew that already. We do little to hide it. But wait! I'm not just here to gloat, child. What you don't know is: there is hope. Truly, there are very few ways for any mere human to survive that wondrous orgy of hate that is the seventh, but it is possible. Specifically, there are three methods available:

1) Overpower us.

2) Outwit us.

3) Lend your identity and flesh to a respectable and legally responsible agent of Evil for temporary use.

Now, I do hope this doesn't come across as disrespectful, baby-bones, but I've seen what you bench, and your grades, and let's be honest here: You're respectable, but you're no match for us. Agents of Elemental Evil have been doing seventh grade since before your granddaddy was born, and been engaged in a strict and rigorous program of weights and calisthenics for longer than that. We have agents everywhere just think about it for a moment, now: where did your algebra teacher come from? Are you really, honestly going to tell me that Mrs. Withering came from a human womb?Didn't think so.

But that option three well, it may scare you a bit at first, but oh, it's a good one. Not like your regular deal with the devil story, oh no Elemental Evil treats its customers right. Our protection service is entirely free of charge*, guaranteed reliable. We promise to always do your homework at roughly your current level (or better, for just a little extra), consume recommended quantities of nutrients, and return your body intact Not a single organ missing since 1993**, that's our slogan!And while you're gone, here's all you have to do: Eat candy, or eat cake. Really: your choice. We will hook your disembodied brain into state of the art cake or candy simulation devices for free! Add five dollars and we'll even let you have both. So instead of suffering through the misery of seventh grade like the rest of those poor suckers, you could be the benevolent dictator of a world made entirely of cake.

It's harmless***. It's fun. It bypasses a world of hate and misery.And it's just a signature away.

I, _________________________, agree to all those things Elemental Evil explained.

What are you waiting for?* Costs of living not covered. Offer limited to United States and Canada: please call for international prices.

** Non-organ body components not similarly insured.

*** Potential side effects include: Educational regression, encumbered reputation, chronic fear of cake, and death.

About the author:

James Lawder Andrews is a lanky, 19-year-old kid who likes video games and explosions and things that move fast. He's been seen in Whiskey Island, Edifice Wrecked, Poetry Motel, and Poetry Midwest. In his spare time he's a sophomore in Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon: The University.