Gladys the Wonder Worker

Written in response to: Start your story with the line, “You wanna do something fun?”... view prompt


Coming of Age

'You wanna do something fun?' she said. She was a mermaid! She sat on a rock near to the Lagoon that I owned.

'You wanna do something fun?' she said as she woke me up from my happy sunday slumber. I was so happy to see her - she was so beautiful. She was exactly like the mermaid from my dream! I was still half-awake. When I realised and came to my senses, I realised it was only my best friend Gladys.

Gladys you know you would look like a model if you got a haircut and put on some make up? You'd also need to bathe more often', I joked, throwing a pillow at her. She was cute but she never thought she was.

She was my classmate and one of my 5 best friends. She came over to my house to wake me up so we could study together! There were exams, and she had a nerdish quality that made her particularly intelligent! She kept asking if I wanted to do something fun' because she knew nothing would awaken me from the dream like sleep state I usually was in on Sunday mornings. She knew a lot about me! She was a very perceptive person.

Gladys was a friend and more than a friend! Here she was in my room trying to wake me up so we could study together! She succeeded. I loved playing basketball, and I was a burly large guy. She on the other hand was petite and small built girl and since she was my friend of many years, she impressed on me as of then, that all short girls were good-looking! And smart too!

We decided to study Math. I hated Math but she seemed to me that she was like Einstein! She loved Einstein too! She knew a lot of funny jokes too, like the famous one she enacted about how 'E=mc2', and lots of funny riddles and analogies!

She also knew how to make learning fun! She made songs about multiplication and learning long theorems using mnemonics! She said that the trick to learning were some memorising short cuts. 'Take notes' she said. I got through math tests thanks to her. She did it for me and that's why I thought of her more as a friend and less as a girlfriend. She was a smart cookie.

Soon there was just one month left for the big test. There was going to be a math test AND an english test! Not normally one who loved studying, I looooved sports. But my buddy here, Gladys, got me to study hard and had a strategy to get me to do so too.

She said we had to concentrate more on Math, coz there were some neat tricks to pass an English Test that we could employ a few days right before the English Test!

Finally it started nearing the end of the month. I never missed Basketball practice, but I loved Gladys' songs and her mnemonics techniques. I know I did get bored, but Gladys ecked me on like a cat cared for their kittens.

Finally she said it was time to start studying English. She said that English was a bit easier, because there was a trick behind Shakespeare. In the story of 'Don Quixote', the protagonist was a dreamer who thought that windmills were Giants! Gladys invited me to memorize only one key thing in this particular story -that Don Quixote de la Mancha was a dreamer and then elaborate on that to score marks at the class test.

The thing was to not dwell on 'the actual dream' part of it and the fact that it probably was amazing that he thought windmills were giants since Shakespeare's writing was perfect! Elaborating on the fact that Don Quixote was a dreamer and then taking apart Shakespeare's metaphorical description of the windmills and stuff was a better idea. She said to talk about Shakespeare's description of the windmills, not what i personally thought about Don Quixote and his dreams.

In Math, she did the same, she made solving algebraic equations easy using a weird system she learned from an Indian friend Angela who thought her about BODMAS. Brackets first, then Division, then Multiplication, then Addition and finally subtraction. Angela didnt know what the 'O' was for. But Gladys said it was okay coz the O didn't matter.

All this was 'Greek' to me, and trying to find a study partner was impossible. Trying to find a study partner as understanding as Gladys was also impossible. Gladys believed that she learned by teaching others. She was really a great gal like that.

Finally, the Big Test Day arrived! Gladys called me on the phone, and told me to have a good nights sleep! I woke up refreshed and looked so 'happy' compared to all of my other friends who stayed up all night!

Nobody was scared about English- it was the easiest subject and getting an F was impossible. The English Test took place, people were so calm. Then came the moment of doom. The Math Test.

Gladys winked at me, and gave me a thumbs up. Some body saw us and rolled their eyes. Everybody was looking so tense and scared. The guys who sat on the last bench were obviously a picture of stress and worry. One of them kept tugging at his collar, and the teacher asked him if he wanted a glass of water.

I looked at my Math Test Paper. Hahaha. Everything that Gladys taught me. The weird BODMAS trick helped too. 'Gladys, I love you!' I thought. Gladys finished the test 20 minutes before the final bell sounded and so did I. We went out for Chocolate Mint Ice-cream since it was the end of the school day for us.

Everyone else was out too. Since we were at the popular high school Ice Cream hangout, Nadine walked in and sat next to us. She said that the English test was a breeze, but that she was destined to get an 'F' in Math!

We had fun, Gladys and I. She came to my basketball practice sessions! She cheered me on. Everyone knew that the test results were now just a day later! The dreaded results day arrived! Gladys and I had our fingers crossed!

Gladys managed to get a 'straight A' in English and in a'B' in Math! I re-read my essay style answer on 'Don Quixote'- it was the stuff dreams were made of! The teacher complimented me after class saying that my answer was perfect and that I stuck to the point. I felt great, it was like , the best thing a teacher could ever say to me! My math paper was full of correct answers. Wasn't I the happiest person on the planet!

To this day I still say Gladys could have been my girlfriend, but she's too intelligent to be anyones girlfriend! She loves to read! And Guys who love basketball dont like to read! But Gladys is Gladys and I will always love her for that!

Gladys is a wonderworker!

October 05, 2021 16:29

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Akshara .
05:19 Oct 10, 2021

I loved the feel of a young girl talking about her friendship, the enthusiasm about the voice and style...everything was so beautiful! There were a few mistakes, and you also repeated a few pronouns, but you have really improved from when we look back at your first story. Well done! 💕


Sarah Desouza
18:36 Oct 23, 2021



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05:44 Oct 08, 2021

Hi Sarah. Thank you so much for your kind comments about My Mother's Dreams. I enjoyed your story very much. It really has the earnest feel of a young girl talking about her friendship, a freshness and enthusiasm about the voice and style. I hope I can suggest in good spirit that some paragraphs have quite a few sentences starting with 'she' that you could play around with to reduce. Eg "She also knew how to make learning fun!....." I find that the interesting part of writing, altho I know most people hate editing. Maybe think of a diffe...


Sarah Desouza
19:01 Oct 08, 2021

Thank you for liking my story!!! I'm constantly looking for ways to improve my writing! Tysm for the tips!


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