The Battle of The Labyrinth: Stuyvesant Edition

Busting a fight club that operates right under the specialized high schools’ noses (literally)!

Reading Time: 5 minutes

One would think that the various mint-green doors blending into the walls of the hallways of our school are simply utility closets, but what if we told you that they’re something far more exciting and surprising? One dull winter’s day, the kind that makes you almost grateful to take the subway simply for its warmth and the kind where the outside air smells brisk and clear, junior Dèez Nûts decided to skip class under the pretense of going to the bathroom. “It was just so boring, you know, listening to Mr. McClellan ranting about Uranium-235. I had to get out of there or I was going to explode from boredom, just like those nuclear bombs,” he said during an interview. “So I was walking down the hall and I saw this door… Just one of those regular closet doors, y’know…” He went on to say that the door swung open (almost hitting him in the face) and out came a battered-looking, exhausted Stuyvesant student. Nûts was surprised and curious, so he caught the door behind the kid and peered into the dark passageway that was clearly NOT a storage closet. Seeing this as a moment for financial gain, he ran to The Spectator and offered to tell us his story in exchange for some money (instead, we paid him with free cookies). After interviewing him, we knew we had to do some fact-checking before we published our story; in other words, we had to send in a reporter.

After selecting an easily replaceable freshie to do the job, we taped a GPS tracker to their sternum and (after hacking the elevator controls) sent them down the freight elevator to the basement, reportedly one of the easiest ways to access the tunnels. The tracker immediately stopped working once they went underground (it’s incredible how bad our tech is for a STEM school), but we decided to leave the freshie in there just to see what would happen. After four hours and 20 minutes of no contact, we finally found the freshie reporter dangling outside the windowsill after we heard loud banging on the window. After they were pulled in, they trembled for a few seconds before telling their tale.

What Dèez Nûts had seen behind the door was a passageway leading into a labyrinth of dark steam tunnels. Walking through them was like walking through a mental haze, one that was only interrupted by the occasional scream or clanking of metal. Our reporter passed a huge variety of doors, all decorated to match the contents within. One door, decorated with tigers, elephants, red pandas, and snow leopards, opened to reveal a zoo full of exotic (and illegal?) animals. Our reporter saw endangered elephants and gorillas, monkeys hammering out analyses of Shakespearean sonnets while chugging coffee, and elves dancing around a pile of burning papers. There was also a giant slug in the corner of the room who appeared to be grading test papers. A tiger lunged at our reporter, who quickly slammed the door shut. Another door was gold and platinum and silver, with huge tacky diamonds spelling out “CASH MONEY,” advertising one of many defunct casinos once owned by the 45th president of the United States (say his name three times and you will suddenly be unvaccinated and conservative). A third door depicting imagery of owls, snakes, and books revealed a tall library with a huge stained glass skylight and spiraling bookshelves that reached up to the ceiling. Don’t ask how that was possible in an underground room—we don’t know either. The freshie then picked up a paper and gasped in surprise, realizing that it held the answers to the long and grueling geometry test they had just taken. They denied staying in the library room any longer, but this statement was directly contradicted by the numerous papers titled “Answer Key” spilling out of their backpack. All of these doors were mysterious and enticing, but our reporter seemed to be most disturbed by one.

This door that struck such fear was relatively unassuming; it was made of wood and stained with splatters of red. Our reporter was concerned for a second until they saw a stain that looked vaguely like an Among Us character. “Hehe, red sus,” they said to themselves while opening the door, having forgotten about the possible dangers ahead. This door opened into the spectator box of a huge arena, with crowds cheering on both sides. Our reporter looked closer at the crowds, trying to get more information on what was happening. They saw some sky-blue hoodies with bubbly letters saying “Pro Scientia Atque Sapientia,” red t-shirts with the number 694 on them, sweatshirts with the letters SITHS, and seagull-themed merch. Many people looked like they had just come from school, with backpacks and jackets still in hand. Was this some strange, underground Star Wars convention for students? On either side of the arena, two prison doors with bars constructed of mashed-up textbooks and ancient Chromebooks creaked open. Two young, sleep-deprived teenagers emerged: one wore a red shirt with “LA High School for Music and Art” on it (maybe they’re from California? who knows) and held a paint tray full of non-toxic pre-K paints and a brush ready to splatter someone at a moment’s notice. The other donned a SITHS hoodie, matching the audience, and held a hefty textbook along with a cup of steaming coffee. The realization of what was going on hit our reporter like a truck filled with cement.

“Oh my god… that’s disgusting! A student from Staten Island Tech!” The Staten Island Tech student circled the poor kid with the red shirt (who was futilely flinging paints left and right and singing opera). LA… LA stood for LaGuardia! A barbaric fight club for students from specialized high schools, hiding right under the best of those schools! What monster could let this slide? Unable to watch anymore, our reporter turned and ran, throwing open the door they had just come from. They dashed through it, not watching where they were going, and somehow, rather than going back in the labyrinth, ended up on the roof of Stuy. Losing their balance from the forward momentum or something (I don’t know how physics works; I’m in AP Environmental Science), our poor reporter fell off the roof. Hurling past the 11th floor, they managed to gather their chad strength and charisma and grabbed onto the edge of a window as they flew by. Desperately scratching at the window to be let in, they quickly scrambled in and fell into the classroom. Because our reporter is the main character, they looked up to see that they had coincidentally landed in the classroom Humor was using for its meeting, surrounded by writers excited to document what had gone down.

After we had heard their strange, twisted tale, we rushed to the principal’s office and kicked down the door (sorry, Principal Yu) to tell the administrators about the many illegal activities occurring underground. Academic dishonesty? Animal trafficking? Betting on fights? Unfortunately, no one believed our strange story, so we had to publish it ourselves. The crime and debauchery going on cannot continue; what damage would the fight club do to Stuyvesant’s reputation? Administration must shut it down and use the tunnels for something better, lest Stuyvesant dissolve into chaos and ruin.