LittleMatt's The Error (incomplete)

As stated by LittleMatt in the request section:

I will post the 6 chapters I have below… perhaps if we playfully beg, plead, and cajole Lil’ Matty enough, he’d finish it off!


The Error
By LittleMatt

Chapter 1

This was not the way Thomas Welton wanted to begin his first day at his new school. This was not the way any 13 year-old should begin any day. Tom took every insult to his maturity seriously and this one was particularly grievous. He had grown tired of everyone assuming he was a little kid, a mere elementary schooler. He was officially a teenager and even if he was a little shorter than average adults should know better than to simply presume he wanted a kid’s menu or whatever it was they did to overlook his status as a teen.

These are, at any rate, the things he told himself. Though he was barely aware of it he envied younger kids, the way they didn’t have to struggle to prove that they were big and mature and completely independent. Some where in the back of his mind the thought lingered that he had wasted his opportunity to simply be a carefree kid on his constant quest to prove himself grown-up.

But no matter how aware he was of those feelings he wasn’t about to let on as his mother drove him to his first day of morning daycare. Her new job required her to arrive early, too early to take Tom to school. So she had found a nearby daycare that offered a bus service to the local schools. Tom thought he could ride his bike to school but was over ruled by his mother who insisted it was much too far for that. So he sat staring glumly out the window taking some solace in the promise that this particular center had an area for Jr High students in his position so he wouldn’t have to spend all morning hanging out with little kids and being treated like a little kid.

He was momentarily pulled out of his brooding funk as he felt the car come to stop. This was all quite worse than than he thought. Crude art projects decorated the windows cheerfully colored playground equipment sat waiting to be used. To Tom every detail screamed that this was a place for immature little brats, something that he was not, something he never was. He stepped out of the car and glared at this rugrat jail only to be interrupted by his mother giving him a quick pat on the head before starting her way to the door. Tom gave gave a resigned sigh and followed her in.

Inside the daycare center was a desk marked by a single name plate decorated with teddy bear stickers and bearing the name “Sarah.” And behind the desk the Sarah identified by the name tag sat beaming at the new mother and student who had just walked through her door. Her slightly plump round face and easy smile made her a natural for the part of a daycare teacher, To most of the parents here she was the face of the daycare and her obvious pride and experience in her work reassured them all that this was a safe and comfortable place for their little ones.

“This must be my new student,” she said cheerfully “Tommy isn’t it?”

“Tom” he corrected her tersely.

Her eyes twinkled at his attempted protest “I’m sorry Tom, I didn’t know I was getting such a grown up boy.” She turned to his mother and gave her a knowing smile before asking “And what school will we be sending Tom to this morning?”

“Stone Ridge Junior High” Tom answered with a a touch of pride before his mother could even speak.

“Well” Sarah chuckled “I guess we really do have quite the grown up here. Before you know it he’ll be working here.”

Tom glowered silently as the adults went about their final arrangements
“I’m sorry” Karen Welton said “he thinks he’s too old for daycare so he’s a little grumpy this morning.”

“Well I’m sure we’ll find a way to make him fit right in.” As Sarah smiled her reassurances at him Tom couldn’t help but notice the odd twinkle in her eye. It took him aback momentarily and he couldn’t help but think that however sweet this woman might be she meant everything she said, perhaps in ways he could never quite understand.

With her business concluded Karen turned to her son and kissed him on the forehead “Have a good day at school sweety. I’ll pick you up right at three, maybe we can rent a movie or something.”

Tom mumbled a good-bye and watched her walk through the door and leave in the care of Kiddie Town Daycare. Sarah called over one of the teachers and introduced her to Tom.

“Linda” she said calling over a younger blond haired woman and handing her a packet of papers “this is our new boy, would you mind showing him around.”

“Tom this is Linda she’ll show you where to put your things and get you settled in.”

“Come on Tommy” Linda smiled “I’m sure you’ll have lots of fun here.”

Tom crossed his arms and issued his correction for the second time today “I only like to be called Tom.”

“I’ll be sure to remember that” Linda said paying little attention to her new charge’s indignation “These are the cubbies we part all our things in, well make sure to get your name on yours.” She explained using the voice she obviously reserved for small children as took his backpack and coat and tucked them neatly into his cubby.

“And over here is the play area we’ve got toys and games on that shelf over there…”

“I really just need to see the area for kids who are going to the junior high. I’m just here so I can get on the bus, I don’t want to play with toys or be babysat.”

“I’m sorry hon but we don’t have any other kids going to your school today so we’re just putting everybody in this room for now. But I’m sure you’ll be able to have lots of fun in here too.” Linda said not breaking her condescending manner at all. She gave the papers Sarah had handed her a second look and shrugged before leaving Tom with some more reassurances.

Tom stomped off and found a chair where we could sit and wait. “What is wrong with everybody in this town?” He thought to himself as he tried to ignore the throng of kids playing around him.

It wasn’t long before one of them came up to him with a big red ball in his hand “Hi, I’m Johnny and I’m in third grade, do you wanna play something.”

Tom didn’t even look before spitting out “Look, I’m not a little kid like you guys and I don’t want to play, just leave me alone.”

“Well sorry,” Johnny rolled his eyes “I was trying to be nice.”

Tom returned to glaring into space as Johnny went off to play. He sat and stewed until it was finally time to board the bus. Outside he found several different buses. He stopped and look around for a second until on the the drivers leaned out the window with a clip board and called “Uh Tommy Welton, this is your bus.” Tom gritted his teeth at being called that name again but boarded the bus relieved to be done with daycare for the day.

Tom looked out the window and thought about how great it would be to finally establish his new teenage life in his new town. At least he’d have something to balance out his dreadful mornings. He was bought back to reality by the driver calling out “Alright Tommy, this is where you’ll be getting off.”

“Tom.” he corrected as he walked hurriedly off the bus. He stepped of the bus and looked around, something obviously wasn’t right. Behind him he heard the bus drive off as he tried to figure out what had happened. Finally he spotted the sign on the lawn in front of the office “Sunny Brook Elementary School.”

“Shit these idiots brought me to the wrong school.” Tom muttered to himself. He cursed his luck and walked towards the office determined to clear up this grievous mistake. Little did he know the forces he was up against.

Chapter 2

Tom walked into the office of Sunny Brook Elementary confident that he’d clear everything up and be on his way to Stone Ridge Junior High where he belonged. He went right up to the front desk and wasted no time getting to business “The bus dropped me off at the wrong place, I need to call somebody so I can get to the right school.”

The secretary barely took her attention away from the parent she was speaking with “I’m talking with a grown-up dear, maybe you can review the rules while you wait for us to finish.” She directed his attention to a colorful poster on the back wall and went back to her business.

Tom looked at the poster and gave a disgusted eye roll. It was a list of simple rules aimed at elementary school aged kids. “We let everybody have their turn” it read “We do not interrupt. We always speak politely and say ‘Please’ and ‘Thank you’.” Tom crossed his arms and waited impatiently this was not a place he wanted to stay any longer than necessary.

Finally the interminable conversation ended and Tom strided up to the desk and launched straight into his story.

The secretary put her hand to her chin and pondered the situation for a moment. “There’s never been a mistake like this before, this is a very well run district. What’s your name hon?”

“Tom Welton.” he replied finally feeling like he was getting somewhere.

“Oh yes, I have a Tommy Welton listed as starting in Mrs. Sanborn’s fifth grade class.” She said as though the answer to everything.

“I’m not in the fifth grade and I like to be called Tom. Somebody made some sort of mistake.”

“Is you mom’s name Karen?”

“Yes.” Tom replied impatiently.

“And are you going to Kiddie Town Daycare?”

“Yes,” Tom groaned “But only because I’ve got to take the bus.”

“Well that matches what this form says, I even have your mom’s signature with fifth grade checked off.” She said as though she was actually trying to talk him into this.

“She probably just didn’t notice.” Tom said exasperated.

"Well I’ve never seen a error on one of these forms before. Like I said things are very well run here, we don’t make mistakes like this. She caught attention of a tall kindly looking man walking through the office and pointed out Tom to him. “This child says he’s supposed to go to Stone Ridge but the bus dropped him off here and he’s listed as a student here.”

The man pondered the situation for a second “Let’s go look this up on the computer,” he turned to Tom and said “We’ll be back in a minute son.” And the two went behind a door labeled “Mr. Lessen, Principal.”

From behind the door Tom could bits of their conversation “He doesn’t look that old to me either, but do you think a kid would really tell a lie like that.”

The scowl on his face deepened. Adults were always saying things like that. It was stupid, it was perfectly obvious he was a teenager. Maybe if his mother would let him buy the clothes he wanted things like this wouldn’t happen. As he sat there he made up his mind that after today he’d insist on being treated as grown-up as he really was.

After a few minutes Tom was called into the office. He breathed a sigh of relief fully expecting that his true status had been verified and he would be back on his way to the school where he belonged.

Mr. Lessen invited Tom to sit and explained the situation to him in a well practiced ‘talking to a child’ tone, “Well Tommy it looks like everything checks out you’re officially a fifth grader. Are you sure you weren’t just trying to get out of school today?”

“Yes I’m sure,” Tom said too exasperated to correct the principal on his name “I was done with the fifth grade two years ago. Call my mom and ask.”

“I do intend to speak to your mother, but for now I want to report to your classroom.”

Tom shuffled along behind the secretary angrily wondering what sort of grown-up activities the teenagers at Stone Ridge were up to and not paying the slightest attention to her tour of the playground. Finally they arrived at the door of Mrs. Sanborn’s class. “This is your classroom, now remember that you can always come to the office if you get sick or skin your knee or have an accident or if you just need to call your mom.”
Tom groaned inwardly “Accident? Did this lady seriously think there was a chance he’d wet his pants?”

“Oh, and I’ll make sure we get your uniform ready. You can stay dressed like that today but you’ll have to wear from tomorrow on. Have fun”

“Thank God, I’ll be out of here after they talk to mom.” Tom thought

Tom walked inside the classroom and thought he’d gag on the cutesy decorations on the wall. The entire classroom was adorned with cartoon animals an various posters bore reminders of the class rules. Tom just reminded himself that this be for today only and walked up to the desk to introduce himself.

“My name is Tom and I…”

“Oh Tommy, you must be the new boy. I hear you think you’re supposed to be going to Stone Ridge.”

“I am. And I only like to be called Tom.”

“Well I’m sure everything well get straightened out. We’ve already got a desk ready for you right over there.” Mrs. Sanborn pointed a desk with a name plate that read “Tommy” in the front row. “I guess we’ll have to change the name tag, but that should be good enough for now. All your books are already under your desk.”

Tom sat down bitterly in his desk as Mrs. Sanborn called the class to order. “Class he have a new student today can you all say ‘hi’ to Tom.”

Tom rolled his eyes as the assembled brats said “Hi Tom” in a juvenile sing-song unison.

“Tom why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself?” Mrs. Sanborn invited.

“First of all no matter what this thing on my desk says my name is Tom not Tommy. And I’m only here for today because somebody messed up, I’m supposed to be in junior high.” Tom explained in a loud defiant voice with his arms crossed tight. Tom did his best to ignore the doubting giggles and snickers as Mrs. Sanborn began class for the day.

“Now everybody get out your science books and turn to page 75. Tom, since this is your first day I’ll give you first try at this question. What are the three basic types of wave function?”

Tom blinked. “Wave function?”

“Now come on try to remember” Mrs. Sanborn coaxed as all the other students shot their hands into there air eager to answer.

Tom sat and tried to remember ever hearing of such a thing all around him the class grew more and more eager to answer, each straining to lift their hand higher than the others. “I don’t know” Tom finally admitted.

Tom’s admission elicited one last round of excited hand waving and calls of “Pick me, pick me.”

Mrs. Sanborn looked over the class for a moment "Alright Jessica, can you tell us what the basic types of wave function are.

“A complex vector with finitely many components, a complex vector with infinitely many components, and a complex vector with one or more real variables.” Jessica said smiling proudly.

“Very good Jessica. Now if you remember yesterday we were discussing one dimensional momentum space…”

Tom stared slack jawed at all around him. Everybody in this room, he was convinced, was completely insane. He’d never heard any of this before. Something was very wrong with this town. He hoped that they wouldn’t be like this over at the junior high. He sat for the rest of time in complete incomprehension until his teacher announced that it was time for recess.

He wondered out to the playground still in shock from the bizarre scene he’d just witnessed. He looked around and realized that everything in this place was for little kids. With nothing else to do he sat on a swing and stared despondently at the ground.

As he sat a group of boys walked past him.One of them looked at him sand asked 'What’s the matter Tommy."

“My name’s Tom” he said with a little less conviction than before “and I’m fine, I just want to go the right school.”

“You don’t even know basic quantum mechanics” scoffed the largest boy of the group “you should probably be in preschool or something.”

With that Tom stood up to face him before noticing he was actually quite a bit bigger. “Come on Todd, leave him alone it’s just his first day at school” said one of the group.

“Fine” said Todd “I guess we’ll just let the pouty baby pout on the swings.” and with that they left. Tom sat back down trying to look as dignified as he possibly could after a fifth grader had just stood up for him. All he wanted at this point was to get through this day with as little notice as possible.

The rest of the day in class went much the same as the first. Tom had no idea what was going on, he just knew he wanted out of this place. Finally the last bell rang and he made a bee line for the office where he hoped he’d find that everything had been cleared up.

Inside he found his mother speaking with the principal. “Hi sweety,” she greeted him "I have good news, Stone Ridge is going to let you transfer and all you have to do is pass one little test. Inside Tom told himself that what happened today was a fluke, he could pass any test they gave him with flying colors.

Mr. Lessen gave him his test packet and a pencil and let Tom take the test in the privacy of his office. Tom opened the booklet and his heart sank. If anything this test was crazier than the stuff he’d heard in class today. All of it was completely alien to him. He did his best to struggle through, but all he could do was guess.

Once again Tom found himself staring glumly out the the window of his mother’s car. Only this time he was officially a fifth grader again. In the back seat sat his brand new school uniform, a simple light blue collared shirt with the school logo emblazoned on the front, a figure of child holding a teddy bear in one hand an adult’s hand in the other. Along with the shirt was a pair of slacks and pair of shorts. Tom took some solace in the fact that he didn’t have to wear the even more babyish uniform of the lower grades. Still he knew everywhere he went he would be unmistakably identified as the grade school student he now was. And he was beginning to wonder if this really wasn’t the place he belonged after all.

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Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

Chapter 3

Tom strode though the entrance of Stone Ridge Junior High. “Hey Tom” called out one of his friends. Tom joined up with his friends who were already hanging out in the hall discussing the usual teenage stuff. There was some talk of how great it would be once they got their learner’s permits which none of them were too far away from getting. Somewhere in the distance there was gentle music. It played so softly Tom didn’t so much hear it as sense it. Slowly it grew louder and more distinct, it was now clearly a nursery rhyme. Tom glanced around but nobody else seemed to notice. Eventually it grew to drown out the conversation. Tom stood up and covered his ears, nobody else reacted at all.

Tom woke to the electronic screeching of his alarm clock. He reached over and smacked it back into silence, in the quite gray light of morning reality flooded back to him. His new school uniform freshly laundered and folded was already sitting on the chair next to him. He reluctantly went about the business of getting ready for his 2nd day of the fifth grade.

He sloped down the stairs and into the kitchen trying his best to ignore his mother’s “isn’t he cute” looks as he sat down to breakfast

“Aww honey, it’s not that bad is it?” she finally spoke up.

“I just want to go where I’m supposed to go instead of spending all day with a bunch of little kids.” Tom groused.

Karen ran her fingers gently through her son’s hair “I know you won’t like this but you might not be quite as grown-up as you think.”

Tom scowled, feeling angry at his mother for making such a comment, but mostly because he was afraid she was right. Somewhere inside him he felt a glimmer of hope that somebody might really know the young adult he was always trying to look like, but he quickly pushed it back down and continued eating his breakfast.

Karen rubbed his back “I know it’s no fun right now honey, but I think this might be for the best” she said before leaving the room to make a phone call.

At Kiddie Town Karen explained the situation to Sarah who had been sure to inform Tom of how adorable he looked in his new uniform. Karen gave her son a good-bye kiss on his forehead and left him again care of Sarah and her staff. A she drove away she wondered if she would ever reach the little boy she knew was under her son’s defiant exterior.
Tom found his seat from the day before still unhappy to be stuck in daycare but feeling somewhat less conspicuously mature now that he dressed like most of the other children. After a few minutes he heard a familiar voice behind him.

“Hey, I thought you said you a big kid.”

Tom turned around and saw Johnny from the day before.

“I am” John explained “In fact I’m a teenager.”

“But you’re wearing a Sunny Brook uniform just like me, even though mine is sort of different cause I’m in the third grade.”

“Somebody made a mistake I’m supposed to go to a different school.” Tom shot back defensively.

“It’s OK if you’re not a big kid, you can still play with us over there” Johnny said pointing out some of his friends on the other side of the room."

“I don’t want to play. Why don’t you get wet you diapers with your friends?” Tom snorted derisively.

“Fine” Johnny said rolling his eyes.

Tom turned back around and blinked. He realized how immature he looked in contrast to the third grader who wanted nothing more to play with him. He shook his head and dismissed it all as a reaction to the stress he was under.

At school Tom shuffled back into his classroom and found his desk still labeled “Tommy.” Mrs. Sanborn noticed him staring at it.

“I’m sorry I forgot to change that, do you really mind being called ‘Tommy’ so much?” She asked him.

Tom to his surprise found himself answering “no.” It was a battle he was weary of fighting.

Mrs. Sanborn smiled warmly “Well Tommy, we’re certainly glad to have you stay with us.”

As kids filtered into the classroom nobody seemed very surprised to see Tom back in class again. It seemed that the entire world had quite easily accepted him as fifth grader. Class began and Tom could see that this day was going to be like the last. He struggled to gain even the faintest grasp of the material. How could these mere children be so far beyond him?

Finally recess gave him a brief reprieve from his classroom struggles. Today the playground seemed like entirely different place. Yesterday he had assumed he just a visitor. But today this was his playground, he was truly under the watchful eye of the adults who kept the students safe and behaved. He sat down again in a swing and watched the goings on. After a few minutes he found himself absentmindedly swinging back and forth a bit. He caught himself and composed himself back into the teenager he felt himself to be making a mental note to only do what little kid stuff was necessary to make it through this situation.

The bell signaling the end of recess rang and Tom lined up obediently joined the rest of his class in a neat line as they waited for their teacher to bring them back into class. Mrs. Sanborn took a quick head count of her charges and led them back into class. On the way in Tom became a aware of an urge from his bladder. Not wishing to make the fuss of asking his fifth grade teacher for permission to go he decided to hold it until lunch.

But as class progressed the need to empty his bladder became increasingly dire. Finally he was forced to raise his hand.

“Yes Tommy?” Mrs. Sanborn acknowledged.

“I need to use the restroom.”

“Now Tommy you should know by now that your expected to take of that during recess. We only have 15 minutes until lunch and I think you need that time to catch up on your bounded harmonics.”

For the next 15 minutes Tom fought his bladder’s desperate need for release. When his class finally let out for lunch he made a mad dash for the restroom. There he discovered something very odd. He hadn’t noticed before but the button on his pants had a weird sort of latch that had to be worked to open the fly. He sat and stared at it for a moment unable to quite figure out how to undo it. Around him his fellow students ran in and out of the bathroom seeming to have no difficulty at all with this complication. As he struggled he felt his bladder release. A warm wet feeling spread through his pants as he soaked himself helplessly. Along with a sense of utter embarrassment also came a wave of relief and a sense of dread as he realized what he’d have to do.

He came out of the bathroom trying to pull his shirt down in a futile attempt to hide his accident. He found his teacher and fighting back tears tried to explain himself.

She noticed his wet pants before he could even begin his explanation. “Oh Tommy, couldn’t quite hold it dear?”

Tom could only shake his head as he followed his teacher to the office. Once there he just looked at the ground while he was led in to see the school nurse. The nurse saw what he was there for immediately “Aww It’s OK honey, we’ll get you into some dry clothes” she said.

“You can come back class when your done here Tommy” Mrs. Sanborn said as she left him in the nurses office.

Tom turned to the nurse desperate to explain himself “It’s just because of these pants, they’ve got some weird thing on the button and I couldn’t get them off.” he pleaded.

He was slightly shocked when she didn’t waste a moment reaching over and undoing his button. “You’re clothes are just fine. You don’t need to make silly excuses hon, little boys have accidents it’s nothing to be embarrassed about.”

“I’m not a little boy” Tom almost whimpered.

“Uh huh” she replied as she helped him out of his wet clothes. Tom blushed deeply as he tried to cover himself. She dumped the soaked things into a plastic bag and grabbed a few things from the closet. “Here you go hon, you can wear these.”

Tom sighed slightly as he saw the cartoon print underwear he’d just been handed. He knew he had no choice in the matter so he pulled them on along with a pair of dry pants, this time he noticed these had the same sort of fly. “Thank you” he muttered feeling embarrassed at having been so dependent on her.

“Anytime hon.” She said patting his head. “Now go get back to class, I’ll call your mom so she’ll know to pick up your wet things.” Tom nodded and headed back to class suddenly feeling much more like a real elementary schooler.

Chapter 4

After returning from the school nurse Tom spent the rest of the day half eager and half dreading the the end of school. On one hand he’d be able to get away from this bizarre place, but on the other he’d have to explain to his mom why he’d wet his pants.

Class ended promptly at 3 and he trudged his way to the parking lot and saw his mother was already there. Drawing a deep breath he climbed into the passenger prepared to defend himself.

“Hey hon, have a rough day at school?” His mother inquired sympathetically.

“Yeah sort of. But it’s not my fault…”

“I know it’s not your fault, lots of kids have accidents. You just didn’t know they don’t give bathroom passes here.”

Tom was amazed at the way his mother was taking this. It was as though he really was a child who couldn’t be fully expected to handle his toileting. He wasn’t sure whether he should accept the sympathy or insist on being treated like someone his own age.

“I guess you’re kind of right.” Tom shrugged feeling relieved to get the issue behind him. All he had to do was figure out how to work that odd little latch. For now he could live with the little kid treatment, and in a strange town where he had learn so many new things he was finding it to be something of a saving grace.

Karen smiled at her son and ruffled his hair “That’s my boy.”

At home Tom flopped down in front of the TV happy to have another day behind him. He knew the cable had been installed that day and was eager to watch MTV and forget about how he spent the day at elementary school. He cycled through the channels a few times but couldn’t find anything that looked anything like MTV.

“Mom?” he called “Do you know what channel MTV is on?”

“The cable company here doesn’t have it. Why don’t find something else to watch.”

Tom sighed and figured he could easily find something else. But he found nothing at all that interested him. As far as he could tell almost all of them were for old people or least people who understood that boring financial talk, a few had weird movies he just didn’t understand. Finally he settled on the one thing he could understand, cartoons.

He hadn’t seen this one before, and he had to admit it he was enjoying it. He’d known kids back
at home who still watched cartoons, some were even popular. But he always thought it was all to babyish for him. But here he was and after a long day it was relaxing to just sit and enjoy something.

Before he long he once again felt his bladder begin to call for emptying. He waited for a commercial and went into the bathroom determined to figure out that latch that had defeated him earlier. He’d seen the nurse open it so he thought he knew what to do but he still struggled with it. From Tom’s perspective it was rather complicated and required quite a bit of finesse. He fought for several minutes as the urge grew. Finally he decided he’d need help.

“Uh… mom. I sort of need some help. Please.” He called from the door of the bathroom.

“Yes hon?” She said walking up to the door and looking at him curiously.

“It’s just this button, it’s weird. I don’t really know how to open it.” Tom blushed as asked like a toddler for help going to the bathroom.

Without another word she reached down and effortlessly undid the button. “There you go, is this why you had that accident today?”

Tom just nodded blushing a bit more.

“Well that’s OK, you’ll get the hang of it, all the other children do.”

Tom finished his business and went back to watching cartoons. He’d already been watching for some time and was becoming hooked. The evening wore on and eventually his mother came in to announce that it was time to get ready for bed.

“Mom, it’s only 9 O’clock. I never go to bed this early.” He protested.

“You’ve been staying up far too late, and your teacher say you have a lot of catching up to do so you’ll need your rest.”

Tom sulked but decided not to argue that he was too old for this with the woman who had laundered his wet pants. He went up stairs to his room and began to undress. His mother wasn’t too far behind. “Still need help with those pants.”

Tom again acquiesced to his mother helping him with his clothes. He unbuttoned his pants and helped him out of them thinking to herself about how cute he looked in the cartoon print underwear.

“You need any more help hon?” she asked.

“No I can do the rest.” Tom said feeling a bit embarrassed.

“Alright, I put some pjs on your dresser if you want to wear them, it’s going to get pretty chilly tonight. Good night sweety.”

“Good night, mom.” Tom said as she left the room. He’d given up wearing pajamas some time ago and preferred to sleep in his underwear. Not the underwear like he was currently wearing, he changed out of that, but pajamas were one of the many things he’d felt he’d outgrown.

He turned out the light and climbed into bed. After a a few minutes of tossing and turning he realized that it wasn’t just chilly it was freezing. No matter how he piled the covers he was still cold. He got out of bid and slipped on the pajamas his mother had left for him. Luckily they didn’t have any cartoon characters on them or anything like that. But they were warm and cozy. Tom climbed back into bed as comfy as he could be and quickly fell into a deep sleep.

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Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

Chapter 5

Tom made his way through another morning at Kiddie Town and sat though another bewildering day of class. He couldn’t understand how these little kids could know so much more than him, how they could be so much more capable than him in so many ways. Unable to follow the day’s lessons his mind kept wandering back to the day before and how he’d wet his pants just because he wasn’t able to do something everybody else found so simple.

These thoughts became more intense when he once again began to feel the need to go the restroom. The last thing he wanted to do was have an accident for the second day in a row so he sat and thought about how he’d finally undo that stupid latch. At last it was time for recess and he bolted for the boy’s room.

He examined it for a minute. He’d seen it worked several times now and had a pretty good idea of how to do it. He made several attempts making some progress, but the mechanism was ultimately too delicate for him. He sighed deeply and walked out to the playground.

He found his teacher and looking at his shoes stammered “I think I sort of need some help.”

“What do you need Tommy?” Mrs. Sanborn asked.

“I just need some help undoing this fly.” Tommy said barely above a whisper.

She bent down close so she could hear him “What was that dear?”

Tommy again whispered into her ear and she briefly gave him a surprised look. “OK, let’s get that taken of.”

She followed his into the restroom and easily helped him with his predicament. All the while she was careful not to hurt his feeling but Tom could tell from the way she looked at him that she was beginning to think he didn’t even belong in her class. He finished up hoping that nobody had witnessed anything.

At the end of class that day Tom started for the door when he heard Mrs. Sanborn call his name. He turned back around and went up to her desk.

“Tommy, I have a note here for your mother. Could you get her to sign it and bring it back tomorrow?” Tom took the envelope and nodded. He had some idea of what was in it, but he knew he had little choice but to give it to his mom. Not wanting to deal with it right after school he shoved it deep into his backpack and went out to her car.

“Hey sweety, did you have a better day today?” She greeted him.

“Yeah” Tom said shrugging his shoulders.

“I’m have to head by the mall for a bit, wanna come with me?”

“Sure” Tom said.

Tom listened to the radio and watched the scenery go by and began to forget about having to ask his teacher for help going to the bathroom. The car pulled into the mall parking lot and Tom gawked at how huge it was. He was sure there’d be plenty of things for him to do that would let him forget about being an elementary schooler for a while.

Inside the mall was incredibly crowded. Tom was surprised that such a small town could produce so many people but was to interested in finding an arcade to care very much.

“Hey mom can I go look around, I’ll meet you back here in an hour.”

His mom gave him a skeptical look and for a moment he thought she’d say no “Alright, but be back in half an hour instead” she said before handing him some money to play around with.

Tom was thrilled, finally he was getting a taste of teenage freedom. He got a large soda at the food court and began to look around. He spotted an arcade and walked confidently over to it. But when he got inside he paused. He got out a dollar bill and got some tokens from the machine and began to look around for something to play. But as he explored he noticed that the other teenagers were looking at him like he was an invader. He realized that because of his uniform everybody there assumed he was just a little kid who’d probably throw a damper on the fun they were having. It probably didn’t help that he was so much smaller than any of them. He was always a bit shorter then average, but these kids simply towered over him.

He did his best to ignore them and just enjoy his time away from adult supervision. He found one of his favorite games from back home and popped in a token. For the first few seconds it was the same game he was used to. But this version was harder somehow. He’d always been able to play for what seemed forever on one quarter, but this time he was dead in under a minute. He stared at the death screen in shock. From somewhere off to the side a kid not much older than himself chuckled “Don’t worry kid I wasn’t very good at that when I was your age either, you’ll get better.”

Tom was about to inform him that he was not some little brat when he heard the voice of the attendant behind him “Excuse me son, is your mom here?”

Tom turned around to face him bewildered that he’d be asking such a question “No, she’s out shopping. I don’t need her to be with me every second.” He answered.

“Well you need her here, we don’t allow anyone under 12 without a parent.”

“But I…” Tom thought for a second and decided that admitting to being a teenager in elementary school wasn’t what he wanted to do and that nobody would believe him anyway. He sulked out of the arcade and went to wait for his mom. As he waited he began to feel the effects of the large soda. He decided to wait until he got home where he could at least try to work that cursed latch in private, or worse yet ask for help again.

He was about to give in and go search for a restroom when his mom appeared. “Hi hon, have fun?”

“Yeah I guess” Tom said before hesitating for a moment “I really need to go to the bathroom and I think…”

“Still need some help with that?”

Tom nodded as his face turned red.

“Well come on.” His mother said before leading him off in the direction of the bathroom.

The crowd had grown quite thick and Tom struggled to keep up with his mother. He felt more like a little kid than ever before trying so desperately to stay with his mom but he didn’t know what else to do. Eventually the task became so difficult that she reached out her hand for Tom to take. Knowing he had little choice Tom took her hand. He took some small solace in the fact that none of his friends from back home were here to see him being led by the hand so his mom could help him go to the bathroom.

They turned a corner onto the main concourse of the mall where things were even more crowded. Tom couldn’t even see where he was going, he was now simply being dragged through the throng. He felt a bolt of panic as his mother’s hand slipped out of his. He tried to go around to get back to where he thought she was but he just got pushed back further and further. His need to go to the bathroom was now beyond desperate and there was little he could do to even find his way let alone undo his pants by himself. Unable to hold it any longer Tom felt his bladder release uncontrollably and the warm wetness spread through his crotch and down his leg. Looking down at his soaked pants Tom began to feel like nothing more than a lost little boy.

Tears flooded into his eyes and finally some people in the crowd took notice. “Hey are you lost” a voice from behind him asked. Tom turned around to find a girl who was maybe somewhere toward the end of her high school years leaning down at looking at him sympathetically.

Tom could only sniffle and nod.

“Well let’s get you somewhere where your mom kind find you and get you into some dry pants” his new caretaker said as she took his hand. Still lightly sobbing Tom didn’t know what else to do but comply. He was led over to a nearby information booth where the girl explained she’d found a lost child.

After getting his name and description the attendant at the booth made an announcement and within a few minutes Tom’s mother appeared.

“Oh baby, I’m sorry I let go of your hand. I’ll make sure that never happens again” she exclaimed as she bent down to give him a hug. Forgetting himself for a moment Tom returned the hug and rested his head on her shoulder taking comfort in his mother’s arms. “And don’t worry about hose pants. It’s not your fault. Well get you into something dry at home.”

She thanked Tom’s teenage rescuer for finding her boy and taking his hand in a firm grip led him back out to the car. At home she took him upstairs and helped him out of his wet things. “I want you to know that I’m not angry at you in any way. But you are going have to figure out how to undo your pants on your own. I just bought you a new bunch of pants and everything they sell here has the same thing.” Tom nodded as he got himself into the dry clothes his mother had laid out. “Now go ahead and watch your cartoons. I’ll get all this in the wash for you.”

Tom couldn’t believe how understanding his mother was. He couldn’t believe how much he was beginning to fit the role of little boy that had been thrust on him. But he didn’t want to think about any of that now, he just wanted to watch some cartoons and forget about the day.

Upstairs his mother couldn’t help but notice an envelope sticking out of his backpack.

Chapter 6

As Tom sat down to dinner with his mother he could easily see she wanted to talk about something. “I saw that note from your teacher” she said casually.

Tom’s stomach turned. He’d completely forgotten about it. “What did it say” he stammered trying to act as unconcerned as possible.

“Well she said your well behaved and that you try hard” she said sparing Tom the comments about how adorable he was “But she thinks you might not be ready for her class.”

That was exactly what what Tom had feared. “But I’m not even supposed to be in her class” Tom said exasperated.

"Now honey, we both know the test they gave you showed you had some catching up to do. Mrs. Sanborn says your really struggling with what the other children are learning. And maybe if you had a little less pressure you could learn how to undo your pants. "

Tom sank into his chair. “Can’t I at least have a little more time to try?” he pleaded.

“She wants to have a parent teacher conference tomorrow. We’ll talk about it then. And you know I won’t let anything happen that’s not in your best interest right?”

“Yeah, I suppose” Tom acknowledged as he glumly went about finishing his dinner. But as he sat he felt a new sense of determination. Like never before he was committed to figuring out that hated latch and proving to everybody he really was grownup. Suddenly feeling buoyed he sat his plate in the sink and ran up to the room to begin.

He sat and struggled for several hours. Several time he almost gave up but he knew this was his last chance to prove that he didn’t need to be sent to an even lower grade. Finally he did it. He knew it was odd for a 13 year-old to feel proud about being able to undress himself but he couldn’t help it. Quickly he buttoned back up and tried again releasing the latch with little trouble. Like a proud toddler he called his mom in to witness his new found skill.

“I knew you’d get it. Maybe that will help convince the school to keep you in the fifth grade.” His mom said patting his head.

Tom would have ordinarily resented being patted on the head in such a manner but he was far too happy to care. And when his mom reminded him that it was nearly his new 9 O’clock bedtime he didn’t feel any need to protest. His simply got into his PJs by himself and went to bed finally feeling at least a little grownup.

At school the next day Tom was still confused by the lessons but he was beginning to think that if he could figure out the latch he could figure out this stuff too. Even when class ended and his mother and the principal came in to discuss his future he felt very confident.

Tom took a seat next to his mother and waited as the adults exchanged greeting. “Now down to business” Mrs Sanborn began “One of my biggest concerns is that Tommy doesn’t seem to be able to handle undressing himself to use the restroom.”

“But I figured it out” Tommy interrupted. He stood up and began to demonstrate his new found skill. He felt a little ridiculous doing this in front of three people but he know it was necessary. But something was wrong, he did exactly what he did the night before but the latch didn’t come undone.

“I did it last night, I don’t know why it isn’t working. Maybe it’s broken or something” He said feeling a bit of panic.

“Tommy hon” Mrs. Sanborn said “They all work differently. Every pair has it’s own combination if you want to call it that. And most of them have a little computer chip in them that rearranges the way it works every day.”

Tommy looked at her like she was insane. “But why? Why do they even put these on here?”

Tommy could only keep looking at her in shock as she went into an explanation he could barely understand. All he could manage to figure out was that it had something to do with promoting neurological development.

Tommy fell back into his chair wondering how he’d ever figure out all the different latches, especially when some of them even changed. He barely paid attention as the three adults went about discussing his readiness for the fifth grade.

“Well” the principal said “What I’m going to do for now is put Tommy in the third grade and we’ll see if we need to something more drastic.”

“Third grade?” Tom said in disbelief “Can’t you just send me back one grade?”

“Don’t worry you’ll have a chance to work your way back” the principal reassured him “But as part of that we’re going to expect you to take care of your own clothing. We think in a setting were your won’t struggle so much with school you’ll be able to learn to handle that on your own.”
On the ride back Tom barely spoke a word. In the back seat sat his new uniform, a similar shirt with a pair of short pants and suspenders. The shirt had the name “Tommy” sewn neatly into it. His mother was clearly thinking hard about something and that suited him just fine, he didn’t want to talk about this anymore.

Suddenly he noticed she was turning into the parking lot of the local supermarket. “Mom” he finally spoke up “Can’t we just go straight home today?”

“I’m just going to get one thing, now come along with me.”

“I’m just going to stay in the car and listen to the radio.”

“Don’t you remember how you got lost in the mall? I just want to keep a close eye on you.”

Tom sighed and got out of the car. As he began to step out into the traffic lane he felt her grab his arm. Looking up at her and noticing the seriousness in her face he quickly acquiesced and took her hand.

Inside the store he paid little attention to where his mother was going as he followed her and nursed his wounded pride. Finally she stopped and he looked up at the bright packages lining the store’s diaper aisle. He watched in silent horror as his mother placed a package boy’s Pull-Ups into the cart.

“Mom please” he began to plead not thinking how he was clearly identifying himself as the intended wearer “I promise I’ll try really hard, I don’t need to wear diapers.”

“These aren’t diapers honey, I don’t think you need those yet. But I can’t have you coming home in wet pants every day.”

He opened his mouth again to protest but was cut short. “I’ve already made my decision. As soon as you show that you can use the potty you can wear underwear again.”

He began to speak again but quickly thought better of it.

“Do you understand?” She asked.

“Yes.” Tom replied meekly.

“Good boy” She said stroking his head. “I have a feeling this will work out in the end.”

1 Like

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

i certainly want to know the ending

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

Yay! I wanted to get back to this story but I’d written it on laptop that died and that was too careless to backup. I intend to at least take a stab at completing it. It’s gonna have to wait a bit though.

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

After reading these first six chapters, I must say that I am very eagerly awaiting any continuation to this story! I just want LittleMatt to know that there is a readership of his creative work. I do not wish to rush the creative process, but I nonetheless must present my active desire to see this story completed. I do not want this post to necro-tize and to have this story fall into the annuls of the internet, forgotten and unfinished. I am willing to “wait a bit” yet know that my patience wanes when it comes to waiting for a fantastic tale to be completed. All the best and congratulations on this amazing tale of a loss of control, in more ways than one!!

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

I second Quaere’s post!

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

It’s coming, I’m working on it.

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

Wow! I just read the story this morning and was getting ready to ask when more would be posted. Question answered!

I’m really enjoying this story and like the others I anxiously await more!

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

Alright here’s the first new chapter. It’s a short one and it might be a little while before I start posting them regularly. But enough with trying people’s patience.

Chapter 7

When they returned home they both went straight to Tom’s room to get him into his training pants. After being helped out of his pants Tom quickly grabbed a Pull-Up from the open bag. He was in no hurry to start wearing them but he at least wanted the dignity of putting them on himself. He looked at the brightly colored thing he held in his hands and a bevy of cartoon characters smiled eagerly back at him. He didn’t recognize any of them but they were clearly meant to appeal to preschoolers.

“The little stripe goes in back.” His mother helpfully pointed out.

Seeing no reason to delay further Tom pulled his brand new pants into place. They weren’t like real underwear the way the ads said. They were obviously thicker. Tom try to reassure himself that this wasn’t a diaper, but he knew it was close.

His mother held out his pants for him to step into. “Now I’m not going to help you with this anymore except for getting you dressed. You’ll learn how to do it yourself, you just need to try. And if you have an accident just let me or the school nurse know and we’ll help you get into a new Pull-Up. OK?”

Tom couldn’t believe the words he was hearing. It was his Pull-Up and he was going to need help from grown ups changing into a new one. He could only nod his acquiescence.

“Good boy. Now go watch TV and I’ll get dinner ready” giving him a pat on the bottom.

As dinner approached his bladder began to strain. He’d made a few attempts at the button but quit in frustration. Now the need was getting dire. He walked the the bathroom, every step felt like it could shake loose the flood gates. He struggled again, twisting and pulling at the strange device. But control slipped away from him. This time there were no wet pants, just the damp heaviness of his training pants.

“Tommy, dinner’s ready!” He no longer took note of the name. How could he tell his mother he’d wet his Pull-Up after just a few hours of having it on?

He crept into the kitchen still unsure what to say.

“Hey honey. How’s your Pull-Up doing?” she asked with an unnerving amount of casual directness.

“Oh… It’s still fine.” Tom said looking down.

“Are you sure” she said trying to catch his gaze.

“Yea…Yeah”

She crossed her arms and looked him directly in the eyes “Do I have to check?”

“Alright, I sort of had an accident.”

“I thought so. Let’s go get you into a dry one.” She began to lead him back to his room. “You need to tell me if you have an accident. You could get a rash if you don’t changed soon enough.”

Once in his room he was relieved of his shoes and pants. “Dry as a bone” his mother commented as she quickly inspected his pants. “Looks like we won’t have to worry about leaks.” Tom started to remove his Pull-Up. “Oh honey let me get that, you don’t know where to put it” she lowered the sodden thing and helped him step out of it before tossing it in a pail that had taken up residence near his bed. "I’m sorry sweety, I forgot to buy wipes hold on a sec’. She left for the bathroom and returned with a wet cloth in hand.

“Mom, please let me do this” he pleaded.

She thought for a moment and handed him the cloth. “OK, but if I notice you aren’t cleaning up well enough I’m going to do it myself.”

Tom breathed a sigh of relief and washed himself as thoroughly as he could manage before stepping into a new Pull-Up and getting dressed again. He went downstairs again for dinner and tried to content himself with this one measure of maturity he was still allowed.

Eventually his bedtime came and all he could think about was getting out of his new juvenile underpants. He rushed to remove the Pull-Up on his own as his mother dropped his clothes in the hamper. “Is that dry” she asked as he walked over to the pail.

“Yes, it’s totally dry” he said.

She leaned over and took it from his hand. “Just let me see” she said gently but with a pronounced sense of maternal authority as she took it from his hand. “Yep, dry as can be. Good job” she said as she deposited in the pail. “Why don’t you try to go use the potty before bed OK?”

“But mom, I don’t need to. And would you stop saying potty. Just cause I’ve had a few accidents cause of these stupid buttons…”

She raised an eyebrow and Tom relented. Without any impediments he was able handle his business on his own for once. When he came back he found his mom holding another Pull-Up.

“Mom, I don’t need one of those. I don’t wet the bed. I just have accidents sometimes.”

“I want you to wear one at night for a while just in case. Especially if you’re going to be so unwilling to use the potty before bed.”

Tom moaned again and slid himself into his nighttime Pull-Up and got into his PJs… He was tucked into bed with a good night kiss and drifted off to sleep.

1 Like

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

Dude, right on !!

Looks great. I love this story; it has tons of little details that make it work, not least of which is the setting. Without resorting to heavily sci/fi size-reduction, you have created a situation where this could happen; a place where kids learn way, way faster than anywhere else due to proper education is the perfect backdrop for a quite small for his age tween to be effectively fully regressed to a happy 1st-grader who is accepted as what he appears by everybody around him.

Perfect. Thanks so much for continuing this!

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

OH, MY GOD! dreams do come true, they really, really do!. Thanks LittleMatt for continuing this story. Keep it real Son. :stuck_out_tongue:

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

Chapter 8

Tom could hear his mother already up getting things ready for the day as he slowly came awake. He felt the still unfamiliar snug padding beneath his pajamas and recalled the previous day. As he reached down to feel the front of them he found himself dry and wondered how he’d come to even doubt it.

The door slowly opened and his mother peeked in. “Good morning sweety, did you sleep OK?”

“Yeah I guess.”

“Good” she sat down as his bed “Still dry?”

“Of course” Tom said almost managing to sound like nothing else could have even crossed his mind.

“Good boy” she said softly ruffling his hair “I just wanted to explain a few things about today since there’s a lot of new things happening. I’m going to put some of your Pull-Ups in your backpack. When you get to school I want you to go to the office and give them to the nurse, she’ll keep them in a cabinet for you. After that one of the office ladies will show you where your new classroom is. Do you think you can handle that by yourself or do you want me to go with you?”

“Mom, that stuff is really simple. I’m not really some little kid. I can handle it.”

“Of course your a big boy” she said chucking him under the chin “I just want to make sure your comfortable with all these changes.”

“Thanks mom, but I’m sure I can do it on my own.”

“Just remember you can have the office call me if you need anything. Now get a shower and I’ll get your clothes out.” Tom grumbled to himself as he got out of bed. “And remember to put your Pull-Up in the pail.”

Seeing that she wasn’t going anywhere he got out of his PJs and dumped his training pants in the pail. He saw her watching closely to make sure it really was dry.

The shower gave him a rare few moments of privacy and independence. He had a small shower radio that hung from the nozzle. He turned the knob until he zeroed in on a faint and distant station playing something that sounded like what a teenager ought to be listening to. He closed his eyes and tried to take it all in. But somehow it seemed wrong, like something from a place he didn’t belong.

He turned off the shower, grabbed his towel, and returned to his room. He found his mother waiting for him with his new school clothes in her lap.

“I almost forgot” she said “The latches on these need to be done when you put them on too. It’s supposed to help more with neurological development. It’s not supposed to help as much in the later grades so they use a different kind.”

Tom stood in shock as she held out his Pull-Ups for him to step into. “You mean you’re going to get me dressed too?”

“It’s not a big deal honey, it’s just until you learn how to do it yourself.”

He sighed and put one foot and then another into his training pants and his mother soon had him in his brand new school uniform.

“You look nice” she smiled as she made a few adjustments.

Tom looked down at the hopelessly juvenile clothes he’d just been helped into and wondered what his friends back home would think. Even as a real third grader he’d never had been caught dead in short pants and suspenders. “I look like a baby” he complained.

“No you don’t. Those are perfectly fine clothes for a lit…” she cleared her throat “I mean big boy. You just have to get used to them is all.”

Later that morning he was again dropped off at Kiddie Town Daycare. He slumped into his usual seat and glared at the floor. “Hey Tommy” shouted an excited voice.

He looked up and saw Johnny smiling at him once again. “How come you’re wearing one of the younger kid’s uniforms?” Johnny asked “And how come you never told me your name before?” He asked pointing at the name stitched in his shirt.

“I’m wearing this because… well because the teachers are all stupid. And I didn’t tell you my name because I don’t want to be friends with a big dumb baby.”

Johnny rolled his eyes “I was just asking some questions, jeez.”

Tom looked down again feeling a bit embarrassed by his outburst. He looked up again and saw Johnny walking back to rejoin his friends. He thought almost spoke up again to apologize but held back. In time his bus came and took him to back Sunny Brook.

He walked into the office and up to the desk. “I’m supposed to give some stuff to the nurse and then I have to go to a… uh… different class room.” He explained.

“Oh you must be the boy whose going into the third grade. Tommy Welton right?”

Tom just nodded “Yes, could I just see the nurse and get this over with please?”

“I’m sure you’re excited to get to your new class dear, but there’s just a few things we need to do first” She took out a form from beneath her desk. “Now what is your P.A.T. Number?”

Tom look at her dumbfounded “I don’t even know what that is.”

“Oh a big boy like you must remember that.” She said expectantly.

Tom just shook his head.

“See if he has one of those big yellow cards” suggested one of the other secretaries “They usually give them to the Kindergarteners but he may have one too.”

“I don’t have one of those. Can’t we just do this later?” Tom pleaded.

“We can just skip that part for now” She looked further down the form “OK, are you a N.E.C.P student?”

Tom blinked “I don’t know what that is either.”

The secretary just shook her head a bit “That’s OK hon, we’ll just call your mother. She’ll know all this. Just go have a seat over there.” She said motioning to a row of seats behind him.

Tom sighed and sat down. His legs dangled from the enormous chair as his mom was called to take care of the process for him. He didn’t understand much of what they talked about except for the part about how cute he was in his uniform. After a few minutes she hung up the phone and walked over to him.

“There we go hon, all taken care of. Your mother asked me to make sure you didn’t forget about your pullups.”

Tom gasped a bit “She told you about that?”

She smiled bemusedly “It’s no big deal. Just hand them to me and I’ll take them over to Nurse Carlson.”

Tom sighed and tried as discreetly as he could to retrieve them from his backpack and hand them over. He watched as she went a short way down the hall and sat them down on a table just outside a door. “Debra” she called into the room “these diapers are for Tommy Welton. I’ll just leave them right here.”

She walked back over to him “Now let’s get you over to Mrs. Taylor’s class.”

Tom trotted along behind her wondering if he’d even be able to make it as a third grader. Mrs. Taylor’s class was just getting underway when they came through the door. “Sorry we’re late, we had a few details to go over with his mom.” she explained.

“Oh you must be Tommy” the tall and slightly graying woman at the front of the class beamed “We were waiting for you. You can have your seat right next to Johnny and we’ll begin.”

Tom looked over at the empty seat right next to the kid he only knew as some persistent runt from the daycare. He took a breath and sat down. Johnny smiled and whispered “Hey, maybe we can be friends after all.” Tom just ignored him.

“Class this is Tommy Welton. He’s new here and I want you all to give him a good welcome. You’re in luck today Tommy. We’re going to be going over gravitational lensing which should be review from the second grade so you won’t have much catching up to for today.”

Tom could only stare as an elementary school teacher once again patiently explained concepts that he couldn’t even grasp, every now and then she’d jot some alien word on the blackboard. “Now” she said with one firm clap of her hands “I think we’re ready for a little pop quiz.”

As the children around him groaned in disappointment Tom began to panic. He didn’t want to be sent back any further but he was sure to be found out as having no idea what was going on now. As the quiz sheets were passed around the room he could only hope that it would at least be a true-false quiz. But when they pale blue sheet landed on the desk in front of him he didn’t even know where to begin. He sat, pencil in hand, frozen. While the teacher turned her back to help another student he felt a tap on his shoulder and turned around to see Johnny discreetly tilting his already completed quiz toward him. He quickly jotted down the answers and sat down his pencil just before Mrs. Taylor turned back around.

The quizzes were collected and Mrs. Taylor went to her desk to grade them, instructing the class to begin reading chapter 9. Tom leaned over and whispered to Johnny “Thanks. You really saved my life. I’m sorry about being mean to you, I’m just sort having trouble with teachers and stuff.”

“No problem” Johnny whispered back “Wanna play at recess.”

Tom hesitated but he decided it might be for the best to just try and fit in. "Alright, I guess I can see what you guys do around here.

Johnny beamed “Cool.”

Once recess came Johnny led the way out a series of squares and circles painted on the blacktop. They soon joined by two other boys Tom recognized from his new class. “Tommy, this is Scott and Kyle. We usually play Boxes and Circles at recess.”

“I don’t think I’ve ever heard of that” Tom said.

“Oh it’s really easy” Johnny said before launching into a long and intricate explanation.

“Oh OK” Tom said scratching his head. “I guess I can try to learn.”

“Great, just ask if you get confused we all play this a lot so we can help.”

Tom stepped into one of the squares as he was instructed and watched some of the initial play before the ball came bouncing his way. Thinking he’d gotten the hang of it he jumped to catch it.

“No catchies” explained Kyle “That’s minus five points for Tommy.”

The rest of recess went on in much the same way with Tom losing points and the other boys displaying obvious patience for their new playmate. By the time the bell rang he was far behind, despite his wounded pride he felt relieved to have finally had a little bit of fun and make friends. Even if he was being treated like an interloping little brother he felt like he was beginning to find a place here.

As he sat down at his desk he realized he’d been so focused on his game he hadn’t noticed his growing need to use the bathroom. It was nearly an hour and a half to lunch and he already very much needed to go. He hesitated at first but as the strain in his bladder grew and the clock slowed he raised his hand.

“Yes Tommy, do you have a question?” Mrs. Taylor said pausing her lecture.

"I really have to go to the bathroom."Tom nearly begged.

She thought for a moment “We usually expect our students to tend to themselves during recess but I’ll let you go just this once.”

Tom thanked her and quickly walked to the door. Outside he began to run as fast as his overflowing bladder would allow but this time he didn’t even make it to the end of the hallway. He’d nearly forgotten abut his Pull-Up, now it was sodden and heavy, there was only enough dampness to remind him of his accident.

He paused and thought. If he went to the nurse right away everyone would surely know something was wrong, Mrs. Taylor might even ask what took him so long in front of everybody. He waited a reasonable amount of time and walked back to class.

When the lunch finally came he nearly sprang from his seat in his eagerness to get out of his clammy training pants. “Hey Tommy” called Johnny “Don’t you want to eat lunch with us?”

Tom turned back around “Oh yeah! I just have to do some… stuff first. I’ll see you guys in a few minutes.” Johnny just shrugged as Tom sped off to the office.

He paused at the nurses door. She was busy refreshing her supplies. She was obviously younger than
most of the staff, though still very much an adult to Tom’s eyes. Tom stood and watched her. He struggled to find the words he needed to say. Before he could say a word she caught him at the edge of her vision and gave him a energetic smile “Hey there Tommy” She said bending down to face him at eye level.

“Did you have another accident hon?” she said sympathetically.

“Yeah, kind of.”

She put a hand on his shoulder “Well let’s get you into something dry then.” She walked over to a drawer on the other side of the room, retrieved one of his Pull-Ups, and sat it down on the examination table.

“Do you need some help with those pants?” She asked.

Tom just nodded and she effortlessly undid them and pulled them down to his ankles. She began to help him out of his wet Pull-Ups. “Do you like the Cartoonimals?” She said noting the design.

“Huh?”

“You know The Cartonimals. Cartoon animals. Lots of kids around here watch them every day.”

“Oh uh, my mom just sort of picked them out for me. I didn’t even know what they were.”

“Well they’re very cute” she said as she pulled out a fresh wipe.

“I do that myself” Tom interjected.

“I was just thinking I should talk to your mother about that” she said as she cleaned her new patient with expert care “You’re already getting a little red. She might be a little more thorough.” she tossed the wipe into a nearby waste basket. “Don’t you feel better already.”

Tom nodded bashfully.

“I thought so” she said holding out the fresh pair of training pants.

She helped him back into his clothes. “There you go, all nice and dry.” She adjusted his suspenders and stood back up “Now don’t forget to come here as soon as you have accident. I don’t want to have come checking up on you.”

“Thanks. I will” Tom stammered.

“Now go play with you friends.” She shooed him out the door.

He rushed to join his friends at lunch. “Hey Tommy. Your just in time” Johnny said “We were just talking about Hegelian dialectics. Scott says that negations come from outside the matter being discussed. I say that they’re inherent and internal. What do you think?”

Tom looked back and forth between them blankly. “I uh… agree with what you said” he nodded and said to Johnny.

He picked over his lunch while the others continued their discussion. He felt like a little kid at a grown-up dinner party.

As the afternoon wore on Tom couldn’t believe how much he had to catch up on just to be in the third grade. Hardly anything made sense to him. When class was finally dismissed he quickly began to gather his things so he could escape and at least have a chance at enjoying the weekend. But Mrs. Taylor called him over to her desk.

“Tommy, I can’t help but notice you looked a little confused today. Are you having trouble keeping up with the class?”

“No, it’s just that there’s some new stuff here I didn’t learn before.”

She nodded “I thought that might be the case” she reached into a drawer beneath her desk “We usually use these in the lower grades but it might help.” She sat a brown teddy bear down on the desk. “This is an Interactive Learning Teddy” she explained “It comes loaded with some games to help you learn some of the more basic material. And it even plays lessons while you sleep. It’s very effective. I’ve already talked to your mother and told her all about it. She sounded very excited about trying it.”

Tom stared at the toy for a while. “Well I guess I can try” he said said resignedly. He picked it up and tried to put in his backpack but it wouldn’t fit. So he thanked his teacher and made is way to meet his mother, teddy bear clutched firmly in his hand.

2 Likes

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

another excellent chapter! :stuck_out_tongue:

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

Absolutely excellent writing. I like where this is heading. I especially like the humiliation and would like to see more of that. Is it time for little Tommy to have a poopie accident? or maybe just such a heavy wetting that he graduates from pull-ups to diapers. Morning daycare should be a blast seeing that it’s where he had such a negative attitude. Maybe another trip to the store or an administrator’s office located at the high school so Tommy can get a reminder of what he’s missing.

Thanks! Keep going!

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

Thanks everybody for all your very kind comments. This update is going to be the last for probably a month or more. I’m not going to abandon this story but I’m not really going to able to work on it for a while.

Chapter 9

Tom climbed into the passenger seat and started to toss his things in the back while his mother greeted him enthusiastically. “Hi honey! Where did you get the teddy bear.”

Tom sighed “Mrs. Taylor gave it to me” he said flatly “It’s supposed to help with learning or something.”

His mom retrieved it from the back seat and admired it for a moment “Well that was very nice of her. You’ll have to think of a name for him.” She handed the bear back to her son. “One of our new neighbors invited us over for dinner so we’ll just go home real quick before we head over there.”

“Do I really have to go too? Couldn’t you just order a pizza for me or something?”

She began to pull out of the parking lot “There’s no way I could find a babysitter in time. You’ll be fine.”

“But I don’t need a babysitter.” He said as defiantly as he could.

The car came to a stop at a red light and she looked him right in his eyes “Honey, even if I thought you were big enough you’d still need somebody help you if you have an accident.”

Tom tried to stammer a response.

“If your a good boy tonight we’ll go see a movie. You can even pick”

“Alright” He acquiesced.

Karen smiled and mussed his hair. “I knew you’d come around. They have a teenage daughter, maybe you two could play video games or something.”

Tom arrived at the Lyndens’ front door with his face freshly scrubbed and hair neatly combed courtesy of his mother’s tending. She rang the doorbell and reached down to adjust his bangs once more. “You look very nice.”

Mrs. Lynden greeted them both at the door and ushered them inside As they entered the dining room room Tom wondered why his mother had mentioned the daughter but not the younger child for whom a a bright red plastic booster seat had been set up at the far end of the table.

“I’ve set up two places for you and Tommy over there” Mrs. Lyndon said pointing towards the childish thing.

Knowing he was expected to be on his best behavior Tom stifled his complaint and tried to settle himself into his designated seat. Without a word he felt his mother’s hands at his sides lift him up the last little bit and place him in the booster before sliding the chair back into place.

The floor was now well out the reach of his dangling feet and he realized he’d need help again to get down. As this helpless situation dawned on him he looked at the place setting in front of him. Among the neat white plates and shiny silverware sat his plastic plate decorated with some now familiar cartoon characters.

Mrs. Lynden saw his surprise and smiled. “Nurse Carlson at your school is a very good friend of mine. We just happened to be talking today and she said how much you like the Cartonimals.”

He wanted to protest that he hadn’t even known what they were until she pointed them out on his pull-ups. But that wasn’t a topic he wanted to bring up. “Thank you.” he managed.

“That was very thoughtful of you Susan.” His mother said as she sat down.

The doorbell rang again and Mrs. Lynden excused herself to answer the door.

“You being very good, just keep it up and we’ll go see that movie tomorrow.” Karen said.

Mrs. Lynden brought two more guests into the living room.

“Karen, Tommy this is Bill and Theresa Burnette from down the street.” She turned to the new arrivals “And this is Karen Welton and her little boy Tommy.”

The adults exchanged hellos and Bill, a heavy-set broad-shouldered man with thin graying hair gave Tom a soft playful punch on the shoulder “How you doing there slugger? Enjoying your new school?”

“It’s fine I guess” Tom replied trying to avoid the subject.

“Haley” Mrs. Lynden called up the stairs. “Everybody’s here. Would you mind helping me set the table.”

A poised confident looking girl came in and graciously introduced herself. She was probably only a few years older than Tom but, but in contrast to his early grade-school uniform, had dressed for the get together in appropriately formal but still fashionable for a teenager clothes. After another round of introductions she went into the kitchen to help her mother bring out the food.

With everybody settled in dinner was served. Almost everything was well out of Tom’s reach so his mother prepared his plate for him and sat it down. Conversation around the table mostly drifted around adult topics that had little understanding of or interest in though Haley kept up with them quite nicely.

Once dessert was out of the way Mrs. Lynden announced that coffee was avalable. “Tommy, we have some video games you might like. Do you want to go with Haley while you chat some more?” Eager to escape the boring adult chit-chat and hangout with somebody around his won age he nodded enthusiastically. As his mother pulled his chair away from the table he avoided anymore assistance by jumping down out of his chair. “Looks like somebody’s excited to get some playtime” Mrs Burnette observed “Sorry about boring you with our grown-up stuff honey.”

Tom followed Haley down the hallway and into a spacious room with a couch and some beanbag chairs arranged around a TV. A small chest brightly labeled “toys” sat in one corner.

“I thought you guys didn’t have any other kids here.” Tom said looking puzzled.

“We don’t. This is just where my mom and I watch the kids we babysit.” Haley replied as she sat down on the couch and picked up a magazine. “All the video games are in the basket next the TV, you can play whatever you want.”

“But I thought…” Tom looked back at her engrossed in her fashion magazine. He realized she wasn’t here to hang out with him, he knew his place in this arrangement. With a sigh he sat on the brightly colored carpet and turned on the video game system.

He didn’t really care what was in it. Just that it would distract him from his predicament. As it turned out he’d started something called Floppy Bunny’s Big Adventure. He’d never heard of it before and the cutesy graphics didn’t seem appealing. This was obviously just a game for little kids but he tried it anyway and became engrossed. He struggled at first but slowly adapted to the challenge. The urgent prodding of his bladder went almost unnoticed.

Tom suddenly become aware of the direness of his situation and shot to his feet. “Where’s your restroom?” He asked, straining to keep himself dry.

“Oh just down the hall” Haley answered “You don’t need any help, do you?”

Tom barely gave it a thought, he couldn’t bare asking for help from somebody who should have been his peer. He took off quickly down the hall and began the familiar struggle with his buttons. It was to no avail though, and his training pants were once again the only thing keeping his pants dry.

He sulked out to the dining room and whispered in his mother’s ear. She stood up and retrieved her purse from beneath the table. “Excuse us for a second, we just have a little something to attend to” she said as she began leading Tom back to the bathroom.

Once again he was stripped down to his pull-up. She kept a calm demeanor but Tom could tell that constantly getting him undressed was beginning to be a chore. He wondered if a new solution might be in store. She pulled a baby wipe from her purse. “The school nurse said you might need some help with this sweety, so stand still.”

Tom hung his head slightly while he was cleaned up. Next she retrieved a fresh pull-up. “Now I only brought one spare. So we should probably go home soon.”

The lingered at their neighbor’s house only a little while longer. Karen thanked her hosts their hospitality and thanked Haley for her help as well. She and Tom headed back home.

When bedtime came around Tom was helped out of his clothes. His mother started to get a night time pull-up ready for him but he couldn’t help but protest. “Mom, I was dry all last night. Please. Just let me try one night without a pull-up.”

She paused an looked at him. “Well you did wake up dry. And you were a very good boy tonight at the Lynden’s.” She thought for a moment “OK, we’ll try going without a pull-up tonight.”

Tom breathed a sigh of relief “Thank you, thank you.” He gave his mother a big hug.

She smiled and patted him on the back “But you have to sleep with you bear tonight, that’s going to help you at school. And if you’re wet in the morning I don’t want any more complaining about wearing a pull-up at night. Understand?”

Tom nodded “I promise” and pulled his PJs up. He was finally feeling like a big kid again. He took his bear and placed it next to his pillow before climbing into bed.

“Good night honey, sweet dreams.” She said as she turned out the light.

“Good night mom.”

As he lay in the darkness he could hear a strange soft humming coming his teddy bear. It was like nothing he’d heard before but soft and soothing. Before long he had drifted into a very, very deep sleep.

1 Like

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

as awesome as ever

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

Another good chapter. Not good news knowing it will be the last for some time but we understand other things in life have priority.

Up to this point in the story it seemed reasonable that Tom was accepting is downward status in school and even the need for the pull-ups. I did find it a little harder to see him so easily accept the treatment at dinner with the neighbors. I would have expected at least a bit more fight on his part. Still I will be waiting for more of the story.

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

This story is just too much fun! Thanks for every chapter!

About the plot/storyline/whatever…

I can’t decide quite what’s going on here. Congratulations, Matt; you have me stumped, and good!

I figure one of the following is happening:

  • This is a town very far from where Mom and son came from, a place far advanced from the norm. Could be a small, highly advanced University town; could be a giant CIA / secret “town” on an island, where they are seeing how smart they can make kids; it could be explained several ways, but this idea is likely, I think. Special place made to bring out the very best in kids, even if they have to slide one backwards to get him on track. I can think of a few ways to explain that aspect….

  • It’s a huge set-up. Bunch of kids trained by memorization to “know” a bunch of advanced bogus stuff; families who want their cute, small-sized kids somehow brainwashed to the point the kid himself is convinced he’s younger; Mom gets her ‘little boy’ back, kid is happy, and mom and son move back where they came from after the boy is fully ‘cooked’.

  • Subsets of the two above ideas. Say, the set-up idea, but more benevolent, if misguided; a society of people who believe significant regression is the answer for small undeveloped kids… or more evil; some super-villain owns a chain of group care homes for handicapped kids, and he’s recruiting! :o

  • Aliens! Aliens, having decided us humans are just NOT developing logically at all, have landed and are setting up these 'New Towns" where they are re-educating kids from the ground up to be far more intelligent and less aggressive.

Whatever the real answer turns out to be, the trip getting there is a blast.

Thanks for a great story, and looking forward to more!

Re: LittleMatt’s The Error (incomplete)

You know, I didn’t forget about this story but its been awhile since I took the time to read the new stuff. I’m still enjoying immensely. Mission accomplished LittleMatt!

I have a theory of my own though: Parallel/Alternate Universe. The idea isn’t too far fetched and I’ve read some stories like this involving that particular theme.

Whatever the case may be, just know that I’m now one of the many waiting for the next chapter. :smiley: