Nightmare Fuel / Wayside School
. It's a children's book series by Louis Sachar, about a bizarre elementary school. For the most part, the stories are just silly and cute, but a few of them are definite Nightmare Fuel
Spoilers below. And don't complain to Mr. Kidswatter if you peek.
Sideways Stories from Wayside School
- In the first story of the first book, we're introduced to a teacher named Mrs. Gorf, who's able to turn children into apples and does so over the most minor offenses. She ends up turning the entire class into apples; even the missing kids' parents have no idea what happened to them. The other school employees assume Mrs. Gorf must be a great teacher because of all those apples on her desk. Finally, the apples mount an attack, pin down the teacher, and demand to be changed back. At the end of the story, she accidentally turns herself into an apple via a mirror. Louis, the playground monitor comes in and, unaware of its true nature, eats it.
- In Tood's chapter, two men with guns enter the school. Although they were not students at the school, the idea of firearms being brought to school with intent to harm is loaded with Unfortunate Implications in the face of all the school shootings that have happened in the past couple decades.
- It takes an bizarre, humorous turn, though. First of all, the gunmen enter the classroom by knocking on the door. The two men turn out to be lost bank robbers who get angry that the classroom only contains a collective thirty-two cents - when suddenly Todd offers them Joy's workbook, stating that knowledge is much more valuable than money - and the robbers happily take it! One of them even considers giving up a life of crime in favor of becoming a scientist! Talk about Nightmare Retardant!
- The story where a strange student named Sammy shows up wearing layer upon layer of clothing, the clothing gets slowly removed only to reveal more underneath, a smell grows stronger, and the student grows nastier and meaner. In the end, the "student" is revealed to be a dead rat.
Wayside School is Falling Down
- Allison accidentally ends up in Miss Zarves' class on the 19th floor. It is common knowledge among the students of Wayside that the building doesn't have a 19th floor, and that Miss Zarves doesn't exist. None of the students in the class have ever left the classroom, and they spend their time doing meaningless assignments, like memorizing the dictionary, and getting meaningless A's. Another student seriously wonders if they're in Hell.
- It's even creepier when you think of Virginia and Nick and Bebe's brother, Ray. They're both a lot older than Allison (Virginia is old enough to be her mother!) and seem to think the nineteenth story is wonderful. The longer Allison spent there, the more she started to forget her previous life. That implies that Virginia and Nick and Ray have been there for years (decades in Virginia's case), have forgotten everything else and have been essentially held captive and brainwashed.
- Mrs. Gorf returns twice during Wayside School is Falling Down.
- Deedee finds Mrs. Gorf hanging upside-down in front of her on the monkey bars. When she tells her classmates and Louis, they decide to find out whether or not she imagined Mrs. Gorf reappearing by staying with her at the monkey bars. She doesn't return. However, Deedee happens to pass a large set of footprints after getting off of the monkey bars...
- Later, Joe and John sculpt Mrs. Gorf's face out of potato salad. It suddenly comes to life, and threatens to turn the two of them into apples again. Fortunately, Joe and John gobble the potato salad up before she could do so.
- Myron meets with the Men with the Attache Case in the basement and makes a deal with them after being offered the choice of being either "safe" or "free".
Wayside School Gets a Little Stranger
- Mrs. Gorf's son, Mr. Gorf, arrives. He wants revenge on the kids for taking his mommy away, and his power is his third nostril; it sucks voices up and leaves the victims voiceless. The kids all lose their voices to him, all at once, except for Allison, who tries to alert Ms. Mush. Before Allison can tell her, Mr. Gorf takes her voice. But then Mr. Gorf slips up; he says "Have a nice day" using Kathy's voice, and Kathy is an anti-social jerk who would never be so polite. Realizing something is wrong, Ms. Mush saves the kids, since even she knows Kathy could never be so nice.
- After Mr. Gorf stole the children's voices, he would call up their parents and tell them that he hated them while pretending to be the child. And who knows how many other voices he stole from over the last twenty years. It seems to be implied there were a lot.
- One of the substitute teachers, Ms. Nogard, has a third ear that hears thoughts on top of her head. She managed to hide it under her hair until her ex-boyfriend discovered it. He couldn't deal with it and broke up with her. Since then, she uses it to be nasty to everyone, especially children. Causing all the kids to become bitter and hateful and turning against each-other and breaking up friendships.
- The ending to Ms. Drazil's story arc.
- Heck, the effect she has on Louis! She had to have inflicted a lot of emotional damage on the guy if he still does everything she says and causes him to turn from being a fun-loving guy to an obnoxious stickler for rules, even after growing up and graduating.
- That blue notebook of hers. Once you're in there, she never forgets you and your misdeeds. And she never stops looking.
- In this book, it shows that Ms. Zarves doesn't like being non-existent anymore than the students, and was actually willing to quit her job, until three mysterious men (Who had shown up in previous books) convinced her to stay. Who the hell are these men? Stalking little kids in pitch dark basements, and have the power to cross the realms of reality itself. Though with the theory of Ms. Zarves class being hell, seeing they didn't want her to leave, perhaps these men are the ones who are "really" holding them prisoner. Though with that logic, Myron made a deal with The Devil.
- Miss Nogard tries to kill a BABY by dropping it out of a window! For the Evulz!