I snuck the final exam packet onto the desk and slipped out of the classroom, as I had been doing for the majority of the year. Unexpected tears welled up in my eyes and I trudged out into a perfect sunny spring afternoon on the quad, throwing my backpack onto the green, green grass. People walked by, indistinguishable blurs in my vision. I threw my arm over my face, blinding myself to the beauty of the world around me.
I did not cry tears of joy. I cried hot tears of reprieve. I cried tears that I have not cried since I was mocked and tortured by my teachers, estranged from my parents, and alienated from my friends. I cried tears that I have held in for years while I smiled and laughed away all the poor grades and joked that I was there to push my friends’ ranks up in high school. I cried the tears of frustration I held back when I realized that I would be chained to “higher learning,” for years beyond my control, tears of frustration from being coerced into celebrating this travesty at convocation.
There were perhaps two tear drops. Thick and heavy with more than water. Only one even managed to make a trail down my cheek.
There’s a very high chance that I failed the class, on technical grounds. I almost certainly failed the final. I didn’t do a single piece of homework. I failed the quizzes. I almost never studied.
But still…it’s over. Regardless of whether I pass or fail this class, regardless of whether I get this degree, it is over. I’m done with this campus.
I don’t even know what happens next. As this chapter closes, I can only improvise as I write the next chapter. As an author, I’m leery of telling you what will happen next. I want it to be a surprise…but more than that, it will be a surprise to me, most of all.
For a little bit, at least, I’m going to let everything go and just drift.
Chapter X – The End.