As my math’s test neared I started having nightmares about it. My sister told me that I mumbled algebraic terms while sleeping! I had worked very, very hard maybe this was the reason that I had become nervous about how i would attempt the test.
On the test day, when all students settled down in the classroom, the teacher passed out the test papers. I got my calculator out and started solving the problems. I got stuck at the fifth question. I pondered for some time but could not remember the formula to solve the problem. The I whizzed through the remaining problems and finished them quickly; I had about 20 minutes left to do the fifth problem. I looked around the room. The teacher was checking some notebooks, and some students were scribbling frantically while others were just starting around to get a chance!
The girl sitting next to me also had her head bent down on the paper. I thought she was reading the question, but then I saw she actually had a very tiny piece of paper under the desk, on which, I guess, formulas and units of measure were written .As I stared at the tiny piece of paper, I saw the formula to solve problem number five. Just then, the girl looked up at me without embarrassment, in fact there was a threat in her eyes. I immediately turned to my paper and started wondering what to do. Should I tell the teacher about her, or should I ignore what she had been doing and take advantage of the formula I had been seen and finished my last question and get full marks for the first time ever!
Then, after giving it a thought, I started solving the problem. I did it perfectly and I knew I had got it right. As I handed over my test, the girl sitting next to me smiled but I did not smile back. Not reporting her made me uneasy and I felt very guilty. I had never cheated before nor had I ever been an accomplice. But this time, I had helped someone else do it and I had done it myself.
Moreover, i told my friends that I had seen someone cheating in the test and didn’t tell the teacher. They all just shrugged and said that it was over so i should not be bothered with it. But I wasn’t satisfied that.
The next day, as I was restless with guilt, I gathered up some courage and told the teacher when she arrived in the classroom in front of everyone. When I finished, the teacher said, I am glad you told me the truth. Luckily, I have not even checked the papers yet so I will cancel yours. I will also cancel hers.
The girl was very nervous and could not speak. The rest of the class was looking at me coldly for I had spilled the beans of one of them. I did not really mind as I was light-hearted now. The other girl’s parents were called and she got a punishment. I did get branded as a tattle tale for some days, but then it wore off. I had to give the test again. I did not get full marks, but they were pretty good. Most importantly, my mum was proud that I had told the truth. Otherwise I got punished.
By Noor Bakhsh