The epic journey to the fourth floor

Truman Daleke, Staff Writer

South students remember walking up the stairs to the third floor as ambitious freshmen, yet to be dulled to the husks we become as seniors, wondering what was in the land beyond. What was once a topic of such fascination and interest eventually turned to the typical every day; we became blades of grass in the plains that we call Bloomington High School South. In our youth, the stairs leading to the presumed fourth floor called to us like a siren to Odysseus, with our rope and wax being the bell and threat of imperfect attendance. 

Much like the sailors who made the deadly swim, fellow yellow journalist Nicky Walker and I were sorely disappointed upon reaching our proverbial siren. In actuality there is no fourth floor. The mysterious stairs leading to what many assume to be this sacred land is simply another roof access point. Upon discovering this we were livid. Walker and I tore up the third floor, requiring intervention from security guard Corbin Calvert. As we calmed down, Calvert informed us that there was a fourth floor hidden within the walls of the school. Like the first people to crack open a coconut, we were overjoyed; our thirst for adventure would finally be quenched. 

Calvert took us to the elevator, and informed us of our destination: the Penthouse. Hidden in plain sight the whole time, this vessel (elevator) to otherworldly places managed to avoid my detection for four years. I was distraught. What else could this school be hiding… perhaps another time I could ponder the possibilities, now I had a new land to discover. What could be hiding behind the two sheet metal doors that now began to wheel open? The fountain of youth? A huge party? (It is called the penthouse after all). In an event fairly akin to that of the moon landing, Walker and I took one small step as students, but one giant leap for the student body. 

Surprisingly, the penthouse was similar to the moon in more ways than we could have ever imagined: It was a barren wasteland. Our days once brightened were again brought down to the deepest depths of hell. Had I not been there to hold Walker back, our beloved Calvert may have actually gotten to set foot on the moon. The Penthouse was simply a crusty room left to be forgotten; it’s only company destined to be spare desks and the odd plastic water bottle. 

In honesty, I don’t recall my thoughts as we explored the small storage room. All that is left imprinted in my mind was disappointment. I could not comprehend that the penthouse was just… lame. Reflecting now I am unsure as to why I set my expectations so high. The longing for adventure that I had earlier felt like a cup of water with ice in it. It appeared to be filled to the brim, but deep down I knew I was being scammed. I will keep searching. I will uncover the secrets of this school.