Excerpt from
The Jensen Family

Probably he got caught in a steel trap like this one over here," their dad said, pointing to an exhibit in the next case.
"But how could he get free from that?" Julie asked.

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– posted 12.04.2009

Chapter five: A Vanishing Class

A Character story about honesty.

Trans was surprised no one asked him about the magic tricks at school Tuesday. He was cleared for missing school Monday, though the reason was difficult enough for his father to explain to the principal. When Trans shared with Mike what his dad said about being kidnapped, Mike was shocked. "Do you think the crooks would kidnap me, too?" Mike asked with wide eyes.
"You? Of course not. It's me they'd be after. Who are you thinking of anyway?"
"Myself, of course," Mike retorted, then added, "But I wouldn't want you to get hurt either."
"Thanks a lot. Anyway, we've got to keep this a total secret, and you've got to help me to keep from shouting. I think the stuff will wear off soon. I even took a bath!"
"Wow! You must be desperate!" declared Mike.
During the afternoon recess the class coaxed Miss Sanders into playing murderball with them. Soon the ball was flying back and forth and every boy on the opposing team wanted to be the one to hit the teacher. Trans flung the ball at Rhonda and thought he grazed her leg, but she kept playing as if nothing happened. Trans got upset. "Hey," he shouted, "I got you out, Rhonda!"
"Where did Trans go?" Julie gasped.
"H- he vanished!" Cecile exclaimed. "He was standing r- right there and- "
"Now don't get excited," Mike interrupted. "I can- " but the scream of the class and teacher running for the school drowned his words. Soon he was left standing on the playground with his invisible friend. "Trans, are you here?"
"Yah," came the dejected voice.
"Well, you really did it this time. How are you going to explain this to the class without letting out your secret now?"
"I-I can't. I guess I'll just have to tell them the truth. I can't let them go home so upset not knowing,” Trans sighed deeply. “We might as well go get it over with right now. You lead the way, Mike."
As Mike entered the room, the class was buzzing with excitement. While the girls were fidgeting, the boys tried to act cool, as if they weren't the least surprised. Miss Sanders was nowhere to be seen.
"You guys sit down for a minute and I'll be able to calm your nerves," Mike shouted over the noise. The classmates obediently took their seats and stared at Mike, waiting for an explanation.
"Well, you know how Trans likes to tinker with things and stuff? Well, last Friday he accidentally made something with his chemistry set and when it blew up, well, it got all over him and now, when he yells, he turns invisible and so does everything he touches. That's how we done, er I mean did the tricks yesterday. That's all there is to it, really. But I know you probably don't believe me, so Trans came back to tell you this himself so you won't be upset or nothing. So, Trans, go ahead."
"Yah, that's right," came the voice from beside Mike. "I'm right here, but, as you can see, er, I mean, can't see, I'm- I'm -"
After a short pause, Shawn spoke up. "I always thought you were cool, man, but this is the greatest! Can you teach me to turn invisible too? I'd love to play a few tricks on old Sanders myself." The others laughed, and some nodded.
"Sorry. I don't know what I mixed, and I don't have any more. But I can do this." Suddenly Shawn disappeared, and then appeared again. Then others, one by one, did the same. "This is cool," someone responded. "Do it to me, too." Trans went around touching each member of the class and their delight crescendoed. "What I wouldn't do to change places with you right now!" one boy sighed.
"But you've got to help me keep it a secret, OK?" Trans begged. The others nodded in agreement. Just then the final bell rang. "Thanks. Well, I think I'll wait here to explain this to Miss Sanders. See you tomorrow."
"Yah," answered Shawn, "and maybe, just maybe, we'll see you too." Everyone laughed again.