|JAMES TEACHES MATHS|
This short scene originally fitted into Chapter 27 of CHERUB - The Recruit.
It was deleted because the book was too long and this scene does nothing to advance the storyline.
Nevertheless, it does give an extra insight into James' life on CHERUB campus.
James felt like a traitor. All his life he’d sat at the back of classrooms driving the teachers crazy with paper aeroplanes and dumb answers. Now he was teacher and he had to make them behave. There were seven kids in his Maths group. Miss Bartlett, head of the Maths department, set the work. All James had to do was hand out the question paper and help the seven and eight year olds if they got stuck.
None of them could do question nine.
‘We did this last lesson,’ James said. ‘What is a square root?’
A hand shot up. It was Marcus. An eight year old who caused more problems than the other six kids combined. James waited a few seconds, hoping for another hand.
‘OK Marcus,’ James said, knowing what was coming.
‘It’s a potato, that’s grown in a box so it’s square.’
The kids all laughed.
‘Very witty Marcus,’ James said, trying to keep his cool. ‘The square root of a number is a number that when multiplied by itself equals that number. Therefore the square root of four is two, because two times two equals four. Question nine asks what is the square root of twenty five. How do we find out what the square root of a number is?’
'Ask it politely,' Marcus shouted.
James walked over to Marcus’ desk, took his question paper and tore it up.
‘Stand up,’ James barked.
James was a bit worried taking a hard line in case Marcus laughed in his face, but Marcus was shocked seeing his paper ripped and did what he was told. James turned Marcus’ desk to face the wall.
‘Sit there, look straight at the wall. If you say a word I’ll send you to Miss Bartlett. If you behave I’ll give you a copy of the paper to do later and Miss Bartlett won’t find out about your behaviour.’
James was pleased with himself. If he’d sent Marcus to Miss Bartlett he would have looked like he couldn’t cope and seemed weak to the other kids. By making Marcus face the wall with the threat of Miss Bartlett hanging over him, it looked like James was in control.
James thought that whoever had the idea of making gray shirts teach the little kids was a genius. Once James tried teaching it was way harder to smart mouth or mess about with his own teachers. Instead of being the enemy, he felt sorry for them when they got given a hard time.