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The Short Form

“Little People”

Maria Aleah G. Taboclaon


In the classroom, I chose the seat I felt was the most haunted, the one farthest away from the teacher's table. Nobody wanted to sit near me. Behind me was a picture of the president. Without the company of my classmates, I expected elves to make their presence felt. So I waited.

By the third month in class, it happened. We had a very difficult math exam. Our teacher left us and went to gossip outside and all around me my classmates were openly copying each other's work. I looked at their papers from my seat, hoping that their scribbles would mean something to me but the answers to the blasted long divisions eluded me. I looked at the ceiling, trying to see if my brain would work better if my head was tilted a certain angle. It did not. I looked to my right, nothing there. And finally, I looked down and saw this tiny little elf, smaller than Prax by as much as six inches, sitting on the bag in front of me tap-tapping his foot impatiently.

“What took you so long to notice? I've been here for hours!” he said.

We read it in Philippines Free Press.

Full story online.