For first time in his overly long period spent as a high school student, Peter did what his teacher told him to do. True, those words were “Run, goddammit, ru..arrrggghhhh, crack, squelch, arrrgggghhhhh, slpat!” but there was a first time for everything and as he sprinted down the hall behind the rest of his class, Peter just knew that Mr Blowers, his now partially deceased biology teacher, would have died happy knowing he’d finally gotten through to his most recalcitrant student.

Much better than his last remembrance of Peter being him opening the door marked “Do not open”.

Being at the back of the room, Peter had had to get past whatever-the-hell that creature he had let loose. Fortunately for him, it had been busy choking on Mr Blowers. He’d dodged past and threaded his way through the debris of test tubes, beakers, and furniture and made it through the door. Deciding that perhaps he should have listened a bit more to those around him, he’ did’s done as the sign on the door instructed and closed and locked it behind him.

Thinking back to other wise words that Mr Blowers had imparted upon him during his time at high school, Peter had begun walking up the corridor behind his fellow classmates that were attempting to flee at top speed. His attempt to admonish them for such behaviour got quashed as the heavy steel door that he had just shut and locked exploded out into the corridor. Something else that Mr Blowers had said in class drifted up into Peter’s mind, that evolution is a response to changing environments, and Peter decided that running in this particular corridor in response to there now being a many tentacled thing in it with him would be okay.

He caught up quickly to the two stragglers at the back of the escapees. One of them, who Peter had always referred to as Lord Dorkwad, was screaming at the other, a girl he had always known as Legs, to get a move on. Peter felt this was a bit unfair as Legs was on crutches and even then, Lord Dorkwad was barely keeping up. Peter realised that only knowing people by these simplistic nicknames was not great and decided that once they’d made it out of here, he would try to learn their real names. However, Lord Dorkwad was making this new decision to care difficult as the abuse he was heaping on Legs was beginning to drain her spirit and she was slowing down more.

The creature, however, was speeding up.

As Lord Dorkwad got more hysterical, and as Legs got more worn down, more advice bubbled up in Peter’s head. Respect your fellow students. Care for those that are less fortunate. He did the wise and noble thing and made an offering to the beast. Screw learning Lord Dorkwad’s real name, he was a real arse. With a deft manoeuvre practised over years of tormenting those smaller than him, Peter tripped the Dorkwad from behind, vaulted cleanly over him and scooped up Legs onto his back and put on a bit of extra speed.

The creature slowed down momentarily to ingest Alistair, previously known as Lord Dorkwad.

Peter ran as fast as he could while piggybacking Legs. He was almost at the end of the corridor and what seemed to be an impenetrable door slowly closing. He could hear the beast making it’s way up behind him, all tentacles and teeth and more teeth. He knew that both he and Legs weren’t going to make it. He knew that as soon as he felt the creature’s hot, fetid breath on his neck, that Legs would have already been eaten and he would be next. He looked at the closing door, the panicked students scattering behind it, and knew that for certain that he and Legs were not going to make it. With a final recall of information from physics class, Peter dropped Legs to the floor, grabbed her by the scruff of her neck and threw her with all his energy at just the right angle (correcting for air resistance and the tumbling bodies problem, of course) to send her through the narrowing doorway.

The last thing Katherine heard as the door slammed shut behind her was “Sorry I never learnt your name, Legs.”