Morgan glared at her and was just about to say something back when the teacher walked in and closed the door, making the room go silent immediately. Everyone’s eyes snapped towards the door where a tall, beefy man stood, his bald head shining under the lights while the white hair that was left was slicked against the sides of his head. He had blue eyes, and at that moment they were trained on me. Then they jumped to the girl who was harassing me and swept the room before he said, “You there, change seats with this girl.” He pointed at someone in the back and then at the girl.
I looked at her sympathetically as she gave a disappointed sigh before leaving her seat, and then gave an inaudible sigh of relief. I looked back over at Pib just in time to see him give me a quick wink before walking up to the front of the room while saying, “My full name, as you can see,” he motioned to the large chalkboard, “is Fredrick Pib, but I prefer to go by Pib. This is Science Intro 1, so if you’re in the wrong class, leave now.” He paused, and in fact a few kids did leave, only to be replaced with other kids a few minutes later. “In this class, you will be learning the real science that no one out there wants you to know.” He pointed a finger at the far wall opposite the door, gesturing to the outside world.
“Any questions?” he asked, resting his fists on his desk and looking at us all. I glanced around too, only to see everyone quickly avert their eyes again. I slumped a little in my chair and uttered an inaudible sigh. I was already beginning to hate being a famous legacy and I hadn’t even been here an hour. “Okay, let’s get this over with,” he said and I looked back up to see him look at me sympathetically before returning to the rest of the class sternly. “As you can all of course see, since you’ve been staring at her since she walked in the door, we have a famous legacy in our midst.”
My cheeks felt like they were going to melt off from how much they were burning as everyone now openly turned to look at me. Some of them looked sweet, some mean, and others just plain curious.
“Her name is Rylee Damien, yes that Damien and yes her mother’s Sarah Mansfield, so now that you know that can we start class?” he erased his name and started writing something else in its place. Morgan smiled sympathetically at me over his shoulder while Mickey patted my shoulder and I smiled back quickly. Morgan returned his focus back to Pib, and I tried to pay attention too.
By the end of the class I was looking like I’d just run a mile or something. I was breathing quickly and sweating a little as I hurried to copy down every word that came out of Pib’s mouth like it was the key that would unlock the mystery of the lesson, which was how to make a bomb from a variety household items. I know, this definitely wasn’t something I would’ve ever thought of learning about. “Okay everyone, I want three mixtures from each of you by Wednesday— never using one thing twice — because we’ll be putting them each to the test. Good luck on the rest of your first day.” he said just as the bell rang.
I had already written, “Okay everyone I want…” in my notebook before I realized I could stop writing and sighed in relief.
“Rylee, why were you breathing so hard?” said Mickey, standing up as we all put our things back in our cubbies before going out into the hall.
“Because I’ve never in my life had a lesson like that and I was afraid I’d miss something important.” I said and they smiled.
“We were surprised too when we first started hearing about this kind of stuff from our brothers,” said Morgan, “But you’ll get used to it soon enough. Nothing is normal here.”
I nodded as we began going farther down the hall. “Hey, what’s your next class?” I asked, looking at them. “Mine’s Codes 101.”
“History.” said Morgan.
“Conspiracy Theories 101.” said Mickey, then added quickly, “Hey, what are you planning on going after?”
“Oh, uh, an agent.” I said, not sounding so sure of myself.
“Cool.” Mickey said, draping an arm over me. “We’ll still have a lot of classes together when we become 1stClass Peepers.”
“Yeah, our first three years here we’ll just be learning the basics, but when we’re 3rdClass Novices you get to decide what you want your career to be.” Morgan added as we turned a corner onto another hall.
“Wait, what’s a peeper?” I asked, shaking my hands for them to stop talking as Morgan waved goodbye before disappearing into his class.
“Oh, it’s what we call the Proficient ranks because they get a ‘peep’ of the outside world.” she said before pointing to the open two doors over from hers labeled ‘Codes 101’.
“Oh,” I said, looking at the door. “Thanks for showing me around.”
“No prob.” she said, then flashed one last smile before walking into her classroom.
I smiled and then walked into my class, the room already almost full of students again, some chatting and others reading through their books. I looked to the back wall, which was another sheet of stainless steel, and went straight there, it taking no time to get my stuff since I knew what to do this time. But when I turned back around the room had already filled up even more and the only seat left wasn’t on the outside rows as I’d hoped.
It was in the third row in the middle of the room and between two tall boys who were talking enthusiastically about something. The one that would be on my right had bulging muscles, a handsome square face, and brown hair in a buzz cut. The other one that would be on my left was leanly built with thick dirty blonde hair down to around his ears, had a rectangular face, and I could already tell he was one of the cool kids, and how could he not be, he was gorgeous.
I stood there for a minute and then made my way down the row towards the desk and boys, hoping they were as nice to me as they were to each other. They were talking about their summer vacation, which had apparently been spent together because they were laughing about stealing this other guy’s boardshorts from him at the ocean and running up to the beach so he couldn’t get them.Ugh, boys.
“Yeah, and it was dark by the time he could come out so no one could see him!” said the bulging one and they both laughed hysterically.
“He got you back though, with that whip cream.” The lean one said and kept laughing while the other stopped.
“Hey, that shouldn’t even have counted. That’s the oldest trick in the book, and at least mine took some thought and planning.” The bulging one was saying just as I reached them, both of them going silent as I slid into my seat.