He wakes up not because he wants to, but because of an indescribable curiosity to see. After twelve hours, will his room become a Narnia of dense woods and blooming flowers? After twelve hours, will there be a flickering Tinker Bell shimmering in the space between his window and ceiling? At last, he cannot contain his excitement and drags open his sleepy-warm eyelids. Most of the time, he just sees the pale blue of his walls, and occasionally the wrinkled poster of Harry Potter.
It doesn’t deter him much- there's always tomorrow. Before long he jumps out of bed and pads into the bathroom. He never uses a mirror. Not ever. In fact, large strands of duct tape haphazardly criss cross where his mirror should be, giving the room a look of stepping into a crime scene. He rather likes it, and he imagines that he is a criminal on the run before finally stepping onto a school bus.
Avoiding his own reflection is a habit he had kept since he was six. Now at the ripe old age of nine, he has officially sworn off mirrors. Without ever seeing his own image, he can allow his mind to wander and turn him into whatever he feels like. In front of the bus driver, he is a burly, tall kid, with a shock of white blonde hair and beady eyes. In front of his mother, he is superman, all tightly corded muscles and neatly combed back hair. It’s quite useful actually, this on command metamorphosis- it's like Halloween everyday.
The world is like a drippy faucet, slowly but surely drenching all of the inhabitants below. He sometimes wishes that he liked the rain. Then he could don a bright yellow jacket and tall boots and do the dance in the rain that is sometimes on T.V. But he hates getting wet, so he dances in the rain inside most of the time.
He wishes Angelica was here on the bus today. She had a best friend, a mermaid named Mandy. He like Mandy a lot, because she has a greenish tail and purple hair, or at least that's what Angelica says. The only thing he doesn't like is how Mandy always splashes salty water all over him. He makes sure to scream loudly and wiggle a lot in his seat whenever Mandy flips her tail. The best thing is that Angelica says his shape-shifting is super cool. Her favorite is when he turns into a bear.
The bus finally dribbles to a halt, and he bounds off the bus and into the school. He steps into the school not because he likes his classes very much, but because of an indescribable curiosity to see. After twelve hours, will his classroom be purple (or better yet, have a disco ball!)? After twelve hours, will the teacher have contracted a horrible disease that turns her all scaly and green? After twelve hours, will all the kids be possessed by an alien invasion? At last, he cannot contain his excitement and shoves open the door. Most of the time, he sees the plain old cinderblock walls and the scuffed carpet.
It still doesn’t deter him though- there’s always tomorrow.