Carolina Dominguez sat at her desk preparing her notes for her first day of the new school year. She was, after all, the Grade 9 Spanish teacher. The fan gently blew her just-past-shoulder length, chestnut hair over her face. The breeze felt good in the Indian summer heat-wave. She felt relieved having worn a camisole top and floral summer skirt—even on September 4th it was intolerably hot. 34 degrees Celsius and the humidity was as high as she could remember, even from her native Brazil. Carolina was a pretty Brazilian woman, and being tri-lingual, she aced university to teach one of her native languages at 20. Now, over a decade later, she was established in a local Vancouver inner city school.
As she straightened her books the students began to file in slowly. Noting the faces she glanced over the roll call. The students found their seats as she eyed them carefully. If there were any possible troublemakers she couldn’t tell by looks alone. She had a reputation of not having troublemakers in her class and she intended to keep it that way—no student from her class ever got sent to the principal’s office, after all she had her own way of dealing with them.
At 9:00 AM the bell rang and she got up. “Hola class. ¿Como andas? Hello, how are you doing,” she said as she wrote her name on the board. “Me llama Carolina Dominguez,” she turned around, “You may call me Ms. Dominguez.”
As she wrote she heard a whispered Spanish line, “Ella está divina. Esa chica es mamacita!”
Turning around, “Gracias, but I will not tolerate behavior like that drooling over my appearance…after all I could have stayed in Brazil for that,” she voiced haughtily. “And I’m here to teach Spanish!”
“Whoooo!” whispered Davey McGivens as he motioned to Warren Wesenberg, rubbing his hands together and pointing to the teacher. Warren responded by crudely motioning both hands to his crotch.
“Está bien!” she pronounced sternly, “I tried to be nice! Both of you will stay after class. You will leave my class with a little respect for women!”
Davey and Warren normally brushed off such warnings; after all, they’d seen many a teacher in the schools they’d both been kicked out of. And yet the glint in her eye told them they were completely unprepared for this fiery young Brazilian’s wrath, and a cold shiver ran down both their spines.
The rest of the class complied with the course outline and the basics she listed off for the semester. Everyone else appeared friendly, with ‘here to learn’ attitudes, and seemed to have believed her when she’d snapped at the two hotheads. Carolina continued with how to say hello and usual greetings and then she asked each student to tell her what they hoped to get out of the course.
Then the bell rang and she politely dismissed the class, with a reminder to Davey and Warren to stay put. She smiled, seeing the fact that she already knew their names with no prompting had given them a slight chill. As the last student walked out, she strode over and closed the door. She locked it, put the intercom on privacy then walked over to the blinds, shutting them. Carolina spun on her heel to the two boys with an even further chilling smile. The looks on their faces and seeing them shift in their seats gave her all the confidence she needed.
“So you don’t appear to have any respect for women do you? Huh?” she calmly paced. “Davey, I believe you could have only picked that up from Chile! And you, Warren, must have been to Argentina! Well I’m from Brazil and I deal with cochinos like you my own way!” she exclaimed with rising impatience as she rolled the bottom of her camisole up slightly.
Momentarily they both looked at each other and rolled their eyes. When they looked up they swore they couldn’t believe what they were seeing. Her skin reddened, she was getting angry, and then incredibly, she appeared transparent! The black board was visible through her stomach between the waist of her skirt and rolled up camisole. Glassy, her face became clear and then faded with her legs as all visible parts of her between her heels, skirt, and top absolutely disappeared, fading right out of visibility. She kicked off her heels to further the effect. Davey and Warren literally were hanging onto their seats as the spooky sight of a camisole top and skirt floated over to them.
A meter-stick appeared to rise off the counter, floating in the air back and forth like a sword, as she reached over and picked it up.
“Davey! Quiubo huevon! Huh? I mean you are so like the boys back home,” she turned to Davey. “Warren! ¿Que haces boludo? You were so big and manly to hit on me and disrespect me!“ she proclaimed as the meter-stick rose up and smacked down on a desk, both of the boys startled in unison. “Well no man ever disrespected me back home and nobody will ever disrespect me here! I mean it! You dig?”
“W-with a shov-shovel!” Davey shivered.
“Dug!” shook Warren.
The meter stick then slammed down twice on a desk in front of Warren, then rebounded off and slammed down twice more in front of Davey, as Carolina drove her point home. “I mean it, está bien! ¿Si?” she bent forward her unseen face almost level with Davey, as the interior lining of her camisole could be seen from his eyes.
“Yes... Si-Si Si!” Davey stuttered while jumping out of his skin at the sight in front of him.
“Warren?” the clothes then leaned over to him as the meter stick moved threateningly.
“Y-Yes. Yes. Yes!” Warren shrank away at the empty clothes in front of him.
Her clothes stood back up as the meter stick floated over to the counter, “You’ll behave from now on, won’t you?”
“We will, Ms. Dominguez. We will,” they both responded like whipped puppies.
“Bien!” she whispered as if they now had an understanding, “Muuuy bien!” and floated over to her shoes.
“Oh and guys...” her clothes turned and leaned on her desk as she crossed her arms, “nobody has ever told my secret...and that’s for three reasons. One, nobody will ever believe you. Two, remember who I am and what I can do. (I might just be following you to see if you are being true to your word),” she breathed with an invisible smile. “And three, the last two kids who did tell still have their names on milk cartons,” the top and skirt declared with an air of wicked glee.
“Yeeps!” squeaked Davey, as Warren gulped loudly.
“Do I make myself clear?” the clothes demanded.
“Yes, Ma’am!” they both replied.
“Bien! Muy bien, muchachos!”
I bet I’m crystal clear to them, she thought with a smile as she stepped into her shoes. A swell of satisfaction came over her; in her classroom, she was in charge bar none!
“Ms. Dominguez?” A knock at the door startled her.
“Yes?” still invisible, her clothes walked to the door and she unlocked it. As the doorknob turned, Davey and Ward held their breath and closed their eyes.
“Oh Ms. Dominguez, I was looking for you. You weren’t answering your intercom,” Principal Orest Fitzowich stood in the doorway, a powerfully built barrel-chested man with receding hairline.
Davey and Warren opened their eyes to see her fully visible!
“I am sorry; we were just discussing how gentlemanly Davey and Warren are going to be in my class from now on. Weren’t we, boys?” she expressed with a sweet smile.
“Gentlemen? Warren and Davey? Huh. Good luck!” snorted Mr. Fitzowich.
“Oh no Mr.Fitzowich, we’ll behave!”
“Yeah we like Ms. Dominguez.” they both blurted in unison. Fitzowich’s eyes narrowed, scrutinizing them closely. He had never figured out how boys in Ms. Dominguez’s class changed their tune, but no visits to his office meant he could worry about other things. Still he always wondered what she did differently. There was definitely something about her, he thought as he frowned.
“Uh yeah it’s time to meet and greet the new gym teacher. He was running late but we’re having an assembly, and he’s here at last! So come immediately,” Fitzowich motioned as he turned and walked down the hall.
“Yes of course! I’ll be right out,” she responded leaning against the door and motioning to the boys that they could go. As the two boys walked past her, she eyed them closely and brought her index finger to her mouth. They swiftly walked by, nodding their heads franticly.
Oh man, she thought, another gym teacher! Last year this school had three gym teachers run out in as many months. Boy, I bet he’s got a gut hanging off his track pants, while around his couple of chins hangs a whistle. So why am I checking my make-up, she thought looking in a pocket-mirror as she hurried to the gym. Well he might be cute… but more than likely not. She had never seen a cute or even a marginally good-looking teacher. In her experience they were either middle age or over-the-hill and married. Here goes nothing, she thought as she pushed the door to the gymnasium open...