THE M&Ms

A/N: For those who do not what M&Ms are: they are colourful chocolate sweets with a peanut in the middle. And I dote on them...Enjoy reading this story while munching a couple of M&Ms!

I was in some ski-camp or the other. The ski-camps were compulsory and organised by the school; they took place annually, mostly during February.

Anyway, I was hanging around, bored. I had no one to chat with (I used to be an outsider back then), and I was too restless to read or write. Inspiration avoided me. Exasperated, I sat down on my bed, then rose, and padded over to the box of snacks and sweets my parents had sent me to give me some extra energy on the snow-runs. I extracted a packet of M&Ms and hunted for a pair of scissors, stepping gingerly over CD's, clothes, some more boxes full of goodies belonging to my roommates and the portable radio, and cut open the packet of M&Ms. At that very moment, someone called out my name. I deposited the M&Ms on the free bed above mine, and rushed out.

A few hours later, I and six other girls were wrapped in our sleeping-bags. My room-mates indulged in their habitual, nocturnal, boring gossip while I kept silent and tried to get some sleep. Soon, the others stopped talking. We slumbered peacefully.

At three o'clock in the morning, I woke up after a frightful nightmare. My unfamiliar surroundings did nothing to speed up the recovery from very unpleasant scenes I had experienced in the land of dreams. Suddenly, a rumbling struck my ears; an ominous sound, which increased dramatically in volume. I sat up, wondering if the ceiling was crashing down upon us; but it was not. An avalanche of pebbles seemed to be pouring down on all sides. At last, the racket stopped, and I huddled back into my sleeping-bag. In the meantime, the regular breathing of the other girls had been exchanged for some shifting and grumbling.

In the morning, three sharp knocks woke us up; I blinked, then, remembering what had happened during the night, frowned. The door opened, and three teachers entered.

"Time to get up!" they chorused enthusiastically.

"Ah, so this is the room from where the noise came from!"

"Woke up the whole house," one of them muttered sourly.

They left. I got out of bed and surveyed the room. That is when my eyes went wide as saucers, and my jaw dropped.

Colourful little objects littered the floor; and some had even rolled into my slippers. My M&Ms! A score of them were underneath the beds, keeping the dust-bunnies company.

"Oh, shit!" I swore. Then I burst out laughing, and that brought the others wriggling out of their sleeping-bags and climbing down the ladders, gasping:

"Good heavens! What happened in here?"

We zigzagged across the room, carefully picking our way through the sweets. The teachers had mashed some in the bargain by stepping on them. Being the innocently baffled culprit, I was forced to pick up every single M&M lurking in the nooks and crannies. The spiders must have had a great time snacking on an M&M or two. There was still a lone, green occupant in the packet. I picked up the packet: it was sporting a wide rip down one side, the gateway to freedom.

I had the giggles for the rest of the ski-camp and did not give a damn about the black looks which were cast at me. Even today the memory of the incident makes me laugh.