Ben gazed at the sky through the window. His mind was half on the history lesson.
… after WW1 the government commissioned a report on managing morale and under the Baldwin government it was decided that there was not enough colour in public life…
His other half was mostly kept on Sarah. She sat by the window in a light summery dress. How much nicer is sixth-form with no school uniforms, he thought.
… colour had been controlled by the Colour Control Board, instigated over concerns that photography would overuse and somehow reduce the available colour in the real world …
Her eyes were paying attention to the lecture, only occasionally looking down to make notes.
… the board was supported by the major filmmakers, concerned that their productions would seem drab compared to real life. However the board was abolished in 1923…
The sun came streaming through the window, deliciously lighting her hair. He allowed his eyes to wander down the back of her neck and the length of her graceful arms.
… paving the way for an explosion of colour in public life. The art world’s response was art deco…
She pushed her seat back slightly. Ben gazed wistfully as she smoothed a crease in her dress.
But his trance was broken by a sudden BANG as his teacher’s ruler hit a desk.
Damn! Caught, he thought. At least it wasn’t by Sarah!
“Can you tell me what the abolition of the CCB changed?”
He thought about the clean blue of the sky, the seductive red of Sarah’s dress, the deep blue of those eyes now focused only on him, the soft peach of her skin and, still visible from the corner of his eyes, the vibrant yellow of her hair lit up by the sun shining through the window. For the first time he drew a connection between history and his own young life nearly 100 years later.
“Everything.” He said. “Everything.”