Late last week, an archaeology dig began chipping away at sheets of dust and sediment that have begun accumulating in neglected areas of the Radnor High School library. They initially had difficulty making progress, but after several days of picking at the stone a landmark discovery has been made.
Between the petrified remains of bad YA novels, moth-eaten tomes of Harry Potter books in German, and every issue of Time magazine from 1988, the research team managed to find multiple clay tablets containing writing in an ancient language of hieroglyphs. After this discovery, archaeologists promptly took the tablets to the front desk so that they could take them out of the library without getting in trouble. The librarians were overjoyed to actually check something out, even though they were just running the little bar code scanner over a fifty-pound stone brick.
The research team did not have much difficulty reading the ancient stone glyphs, since Mr. Shi was of course able to translate them for some reason.
After their translation, the text was revealed to not just be text at all, but rather directions for opening a secret chamber hidden deep within the catacombs of the Radnor library. After reaching the big mural of pilgrims at the library entrance, the stones say to travel ten paces forward, five paces to the east, twenty more paces forward, and two paces to the west. The stones warn that if the followers of these instructions don’t sign in to the library upon entering, they will be struck down by a curse from the high heavens.
Radnorite had the privilege of joining the first expedition of researchers and anthropologists to the secret chamber. After an arduous journey fraught with loud seniors playing cards at the library tables, a floor littered with puzzle pieces, and the grinding screech of Printers 1 through 3, the researchers reached their destination.
Just as the prophecy in the stone foretold, the door to this room was labelled with a bent piece of laminated paper that named it the “Writing Center.” A schedule was also attached to this door, containing the names of elusive hermits and societal exiles such as Trevor Payne and Carl Rosin.
While most rational thinkers believe the findings of the investigation, some Radnor students consider themselves Writing Center “truthers” who refuse to admit that it has ever existed. Others have expressed skepticism about the Center’s intended purpose, such as library regular and Class of 2018 member Peter Miller. Miller told Radnorite in an exclusive interview that he “thought it was the place where they keep the kids that don’t sign in.”
An eyewitness also claims to have seen Mrs. Wetzel dragging high school freshman-sized plastic trash bags and drums of corrosive chemicals into the room, but these are largely unconfirmed. Radnorite staff promptly contacted Mrs. Wetzel to see if she would confirm or deny these allegations; we are still awaiting a response.
Another English teacher interviewed by Radnorite called J.T. Neary [name has been altered to protect anonymity] told us that “…ever since Administration discontinued the smoking section out back, I’ve just been using the Writing Center.”
Radnorite polled the student body themselves on this issue, asking them to speculate on a likely explanation for ancient civilization’s use of the alleged Center. Clocking in at sixty-two percent of responses, “Playing Flappy Golf” was the number one answer, trailed closely by “Vaping Rehab.”
At this stage in the research process, the findings of the expedition are still under peer review. Until they are verified or refuted, the balding elders of the Math Center are our best resources, since some of them are old enough to remember the ancient times referenced by the stone tablets.
Mr. McBride suggested that there really was such thing as a Writing Center, going on to claim that it was used by his classmate and childhood friend Isaac Newton. McBride specifically mentioned that Newton’s Method of Fluxions (the book to which calculus and the modern definition of the derivative are attributed) was drafted between those very walls.
Another Math Center elder, the nomadic vagabond known as Bondi, was vocally opposed to the Writing Center’s existence. Bondi insisted that there never was such a thing, and that it was further evidence that Mr. McBride had lost his marbles. In fact, Bondi continually described the Writing Center as “extraneous.”
Though the jury is still out on whether there ever truly was such a thing, the public is continuing to wonder why there would be an entire room in the library dedicated to writing. Were these ancient peoples really so primitive that they thought anyone actually enjoyed reading Radnor students’ articles? Anthropologists suspect they will be grappling with this question for generations to come.