“Extra Credit”, flash fiction, Difficult People

Extra Credit

 Jim Stallings


          “You’ll get another chance,” the bachelor assistant professor said, tapping the podium, while the young red head pressed close, her breasts practically touching the top edge of his lecture notes. “If you’d like to talk about it, I have office hours this afternoon, 1 to 3 p.m. Office…”

          Her plump cherry lips formed the silent number, 1-7-0, holding the oval zero a breathless extra beat.

          What was it? Never seen a C+ on an essay, a slap dashed collage of quotes and paraphrases with a redundant conclusion? He searched in vain for an original thought, a touch of whimsy, anything odd or edgy. She was intelligent, savvy even, but probably a cynical manipulator like so many suburban “excellent students.” They lobbied for the grades. They hung around his cramped office; they left breathy voicemails, even more plaintive and insinuating on his home phone. They slipped papers and notes under his door, stuck “fascinating articles” in his mailbox and stopped him after class, books and papers offering up their breasts; and usually in spring warm weather they wore a tee shirt with a sexual overture printed across their heaving mammaries: “Good luck comes in two’s.”

          But finally, it was the lecture room where these sexy lobbyists did their masterwork of enslaving your lustful attention. Philosophy of Popular Culture 303 was Miss Impertinent’s junior centerpiece, and her very prominent nipples…and her very firm convex ass…bespoke her deepest need for a solid A.

          And so the day would come…following the assault of brushing body parts and husky-voiced innuendos…yes, at last the surrender to the assignation at the Ramada Inn just outside of the small college town near the Interstate…and then the midnight tryst in his book-lined writing room in his country farmhouse digs.

          Thank God, you live alone, they all praised him, in one ladylike fashion or another, grasping the main chance, making extra credit so much simpler.



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