After Ronnie and I suffered through transcribing the assembly — a process that usually required stopping to turn up the volume, or replaying the same three seconds multiple times to make sure we don't miss anything — we got to writing.
I finished off my third slice of pizza, now cold from being in the office so long. There was something about stress that made me feel the need to eat, as though if I just keep shoveling food in the knot in my stomach will loosen. I had taken off my penny loafers, shoes required by uniform that were one step up from nurse's shoes in terms of fashion, and had my legs folded under me in my chair.
The rest of the staff had eventually left, leaving Ronnie and me to our usual work. We spent more time in this office than anywhere else in the school, but I didn't mind that much. I would usually make it home by six, which was the same it would have been if I had decided to take up playing a sport or acting.
"I think it would be valuable to mention that they're considering criminal charges," she said. "That would most likely be the most noteworthy part of the assembly."
I nodded. "Agreed. There's nothing that gets people's attention quite like involving the police."
Ronnie started typing, her words appearing on my screen in the shared document that we had. The news editor, Kolton, would be editing from home and after it goes through him, I would make any final changes that were necessary. Usually, Kolton would be in the office with us — or, realistically, whichever section editor we needed for that particular breaking news story — but we didn't want to get him out of bed for this.
"I just can't believe she brushed off really talking about anything, you know? It was all focused on minors."
"To be fair, it would be a big deal if minors were involved," I said. "While it's a big deal in general, proof that someone was even just a day away from being eighteen would turn this into a much bigger deal. Ownership and distribution of child porn isn't something taken lightly, no matter what age you are."
"I understand that part, I just don't understand why we can't be worried about minors and also worried about the 'adults' impacted by this," she said. She put air-quotes around adults, emphasizing the fact that the difference between being an adult and a minor as seniors in high school could easily just be a few weeks time.
Ronnie had a split-screen going, with one side being the article and the other side being the quotes and notes she had compiled from the assembly. She copy-and-pasted Principal Yanick's quote about criminal charges into the article, added in some additional information and closed the article with a request for information.
"I'm curious to see if anyone actually uses this," she said. "I mean, having fifteen sources to start with is pretty unreal, but it would be nice to get a wide perspective on the issue. Maybe talk to the officers involved, or parents."
"And I think maybe getting a religious angle would be important, too," I said. Despite the Catholic name, St. Joe's was only loosely tied to the religion. Over the years, the number of devout Catholic students had decreased, taken out by dramatically increased tuition and replaced by students who wanted the prestige of private school. The area wasn't highly populated, so there were really only a few high schools available within driving distance, all but St. Joe's being public. Ronnie and I would have both ended up at Greenville High had our parents not gotten starry-eyed over the idea of "guaranteed good education" and "advanced courses" — neither of which seemed any better than our old public school classes. The only real benefit came from seemingly unlimited cash flow and more specialized classes.
But there were still religious students and families associated with the school. We had a church on our property and a school Priest and were required to take a class on Catholicism our freshman year. Once a month we attended school-wide Mass, where skipping was punished severely unless it was proven we had an unshakeable alibi. I wouldn't be surprised if some families started a discussion on sin and concern over teenage sexuality — at the very least, our next Mass would probably include it.
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WATTYS 2018 WINNER | WATTPAD FEATURED STORY FIRST, there was the email of nude photographs sent to everyone at St. Joseph's High School. THEN, there was the assignment that forced Eden Jeong to write about it for the school newspaper. - After a m...