September 6, 1977
as Richard Bachman

At 9:05 a.m. in Room 16 of Placerville High School Mrs. Underwood realized that she had to go back to the basics in Algebra. The exam results had not been good. At 9:50 the change-of-class bell rang. But in Room 16 Algebra was already long over. For Mrs. Underwood, over for ever. She lay dead on the floor, shot through the head, her eyes still wide open, her blood already dark and congealed as a fly settled hungrily on her bare neck. Mr. Vance was dead as well. The bullet had caught him full in the throat as he came through the door. The kids were still there, not hurt but not going anywhere. The boy with the gun, sitting so casually on the edge of the teacher’s desk, had decided that. He watched and waited as outside the police circled and conferred. School had been evacuated. Except for Room 16 where the kids still had a lot to learn. The end of the first lesson. Time for a second, a third. A whole timetable of terror stretching ahead of them…

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