The Test

The Test

A Story by Peter Regal Whittam

In preparation of an examination, in the eyes of any average student.

My eyelids drooped as I poured myself yet another cup of coffee. It was the only thing, the holy manna, which enabled me to stay awake long enough to study the last million or so pages of my notebook. Maybe it was a side-effect to too much caffeine, but it seemed to me as if even the coffee machine was laughing at me, yelling, "You're hopeless! Go to bed!"

I had been studying for so long that the few things I did know at the beginning were starting to baffle me. Facts and figures, useless dates and numbers which meant nothing to me in my exhausted state, jumbled together in one huge pile in my mind, threatening to send me over the brink of insanity at any moment. A soft knock on my door announced the arrival of my mother, who peeked into my room and whispered coaxingly, "Why don't you go to bed, honey? It's really late, and you need to wake up early tomorrow." But apparently, the impatient wave of my hand was enough, since she then sighed and flicked on another light in my room, saying, "You're going to ruin your eyes if you study in light this dim."

My eyes were the least of my concern at that very moment. If I failed the test I was to take the next day, my life would be ruined! My chances of being accepted on a decent college would be destroyed. I would never get a respectable job, and I would never get married or have children. Visions of myself, alone and impoverished, swam before my eyes. I could already see myself sitting in my tiny one-room apartment, my clothes in tatters and my only companion a skinny stray cat My family would disown me, my friends would forget me, my girlfriend would leave me...yes, I decided. My life would most certainly be ruined.

I finally drifted off to sleep at half-past five, and awoke at ten minutes past seven. To say I was stressed would be a gross understatement; I was petrified when I realized that not only had I fallen asleep without studying the two chapters, I had also overslept. The next half-hour was hectic as I attempted to wash myself, have my breakfast and get dressed, all at once. By a twist of good luck, I managed to reach the examination hall with just minutes to spare. As soon as I was seated, a grim-faced invigilator placed a question paper on my desk. A deafening silence permeated the room as the test finally began.

One cannot imagine my horror when I realized that my mind was entirely blank. Not a single broken piece of information I had crammed in my mind could I remember. For some odd reason, I almost laughed out loud, attracting the attention of a nearby invigilator. Regaining my composure after throwing the examiner an apologetic look, I opened my question booklet. To my utter amazement, many of the questions looked oddly familiar to me, as if I had heard it somewhere in the past. With a sudden infusion of grit, I started writing, not stopping until the bell rang and the invigilators demanded that we hand over our papers.

Although I had no idea how well I had done, I felt as a huge load was lifted off my shoulders as I walked out of the hall. The test was finally over. All that remained was the nerve-wracking wait for the results to come out. But it seemed absolutely nothing when compared to the predicament I had gone through in preparing for the test.

© 2013 Peter Regal Whittam

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A scary piece that brought memories of my good old days.. Indeed, the 'preparations' germinate all negative thoughts in the mind, ruled by fear of losing the close one in 'what-if-I-fail'.

But since you have don't it good, I am sure the result would be good too, and a fresh and happy piece on the next step would follow-up soon :)

Posted 4 Years Ago

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1 Review
Added on November 9, 2013
Last Updated on November 9, 2013
Tags: Exam, examination, test, education, study


Peter Regal Whittam
Peter Regal Whittam

Chittagong, Bangladesh

Hello, I'm Peter, a hobbyist writer. I have always had an attraction towards what I like to call "text-based art", but my passion for writing did not bloom until recently, and it has been growing ever.. more..