Holding Hostage by Tobias Haglund


A young man or an old boy depending on your view point, called Vernon, was in his last year of high school when something out of the ordinary happened, but to fully explain the situation one needs to understand the back story.

Vernon went to an IT-oriented high school even though he had never been interested in computers. Since most of the classmates were geeks, Vernon knew he had to become the cool guy in the class; it was and still is Swedish law. However Vernon had no experience in being cool.

He sat down at the back row and drank Coke during class. A valid effort, but since this was allowed, no one understood he was being cool. He had to take it up a notch. He finally started opening the cans really loudly – a clear sign of rebellion – to get attention. He had his feet on the table and wore leather jackets. Someone once asked him about it.

“Hey, what’s with all the leather jackets?”

“What do you mean?” Vernon asked.

“Why not just wear ONE leather jacket at a time?”

The answer was obvious: double the coolness. Why only achieve half of your coolness-potential? But it wasn’t only the leather jackets which were cool about Vernon. What’s with all the coke?

Vernon had a special relationship with coke. He was born drinking one, not many people are. His father and mother thought about naming him Coke, but decided against it – copyrights and all. They took turns suggesting names. Just before the birth, Vernon’s father wanted to watch a Clint Eastwood movie, but missed it because of the baby formerly known as Coke. He was upset about the whole thing, which may have affected the naming.

The Prince, Dirtbag, Maximus, Garbage, Prestige, Judas, Victorious, Vernon… his mother thought Vernon was the best name out of his father’s suggestions so they decided upon Vernon.

One day, when Vernon was in his first year of high school he was opening a can loudly; “KAPUSCH!” and making the appropriate sound-effect that goes along opening a can of coke. His teacher had enough of Vernon’s coolness.

“Enough! If you don’t stop trying to be cool, I’m going to expel you!”

The entire class looked back at Cool-Vernon. Did he care? Vernon was at a crossroad. He had to maintain his coolness, but he didn’t want to be expelled. Along with the leather jackets, that’s too cool.

“Oh Yeah? But mark my words… this coke will be opened at a future day… and when that day comes… no one in their right mind should be around!”

He made a fist towards the wall as if he cursed the wall and from that day he vowed to always keep a can of coke in one of his leather jackets.

Two years later the same teacher once again had enough of Vernon’s inappropriately cool behavior.

“Vernon! For the love of God why do you wear TWO jackets? It’s almost summer!”

And once again everyone in the class looked at Vernon who knew it was time. He looked at the wall, the same wall he cursed years ago, and reached into his pocket. Some geek with good curse-memory cracked.

“He’s gonna do it!”

Everyone else started panicking, except one dyslexic who started picnicking.

“Alright everybody freeze!” Vernon jumped up on the table holding his finger on the trigger of the can, which had been in his pocket for two years; during winter, spring, summer and fall, and other James Taylor songs, during Chemistry, Sauna-time and soccer practice. All the time. It was so ready to explode that no one dared to try any funny business.

It didn’t take the news team long to arrive at the school.

The reporter outside of the school commented: “A local student is holding an entire class of Greeks hostage. I’m sorry. That’s supposed to be geeks.”

An expert from the Agency sat in the news studio. “I don’t want to go into detail, but we have confirmed radioactivity on the can-”

“Do you hear that folks? ‘Confirmed radioactivity on Coke’ – from an explosives expert.”

Meanwhile Vernon was walking up and down the classroom holding his coke. He turned on the news to see the reporting of the incident. Vernon saw his father, Clint. Everyone in the class got a bit of hope that Vernon’s father Clint would plead to Vernon not to open the can.

“Can you confirm the identity of the terrorist?”

“Yea that’s my son Vermin…” Clint answered.


“Yup! I named him Vermin, you know… something you want to get rid of,” the father said and walked off camera, probably to see that Clint Eastwood movie he missed several years ago.

Vernon snapped. He opened the coke.

An ominous thunder cloud, which had been gathering power above the school, broke. Lightning in dark colors everywhere. The classroom filled with horrific terror. The skin boiled and the windows were painted with blood. Everyone in the class turned to skeletons in three seconds. Nothing was as it seemed. Dogs were flying by. Roosters were laying eggs. Cats cared. Death died. Pandora’s can of coke was opened and a large crater was formed where the school once was.

The explosives expert determined the blast to be a 9 on the Richter scale. There are some rumors, even today, that Vernon is still alive and is currently working with North Korea in developing a coke with a blast rate of 10.


Tobias Haglund

6 thoughts on “Holding Hostage by Tobias Haglund

  1. If you like truly original off-the-wall humor, cool bubbling up with hysteria, this is your can of coke. A dynamite story, Tobias, and a great way to start the week! Best, June

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, June. I think I wrote this when I was in high school, which was ten years ago. It was a sketch for the school play, but has since evolved and hopefully improved. ATVB my friend


  2. Hi Tobias. Oh those years of rebellion and madness; how we miss them. And the weirdo’s we shared school life with – where are they now? Good work. Des

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes. This was one of those crazy, completely out of left field type of stories. Or actually sketches. Just a bit of fun. Thanks for the comment, Des.
      ATVB my friend


  3. I’m glad no-one has yet mentioned the leather jackets line, that still makes me laugh. Yep a wee bit off the wall but still a reminder of some of the madness that was a teenage mind-set.
    Funny and unique!
    All the very best my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

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