I hadn’t realised the time had passed until Mr. Stevans announced: “Swap over!”
Drew was a jerk, just like any other boy I’d met. It was obvious that, although he disliked the idea of clubs just as much as me, that was the only thing we had in common. When I mentioned Lady Gaga, he pulled a face. I don’t think that’s very fair. How can I help the music I like? It was also obvious, however, that he was an indie fan, so when Mr. Stevans told us to change places, no matter how far the first person had got with their slideshow, I jumped onto music as the first question. I was a faster typer than Drew, and a more enthusiastic computer user; my new powerpoint popped up in the click of two buttons.
“So, Drew,” I tried to keep my voice in neutral, “what sort of music do you like?”
He shrugged, obviously not bothered.
“Bullet For My Valentine,” he eventually replied.
“Okay.” Back to neutral voice again. “And I guess you’re a sports fan?”
“Not particularly. I just like hockey, with the dangerous hitting of the sometimes-sharp sticks into peoples legs. Seriously, I know someone whose front teeth got knocked out by a hockey ball when they weren’t wearing their guard.”
Definitely emo, I moaned to myself as I typed what he had said, word for word, into the powerpoint. I even found a little animation of a hockey stick and ball to back up my slide.
Now, slide three. I quickly glanced around. All the other groups, the other halves of partners seemed to be on their fifth slide with lots of writing crammed into the space of the screen. Either I was way behind, or Drew just wasn’t that cooperative.
“Relationship status?” I sneered. I knew that he’d only done that to annoy me. Shame he’d succeeded.
“Single,” he said, and he seemed to be proud of it, although fury had flashed through his eyes when I asked him the question. We both knew what I was doing.
“Next,” I said, keeping to the same slide. “Family. Who do you live with? Who do you have close to your house?”
Once again, Drew shrugged.
“I live with my mom, don’t know my dad, he took off when I was little. I guess my mom thinks the boys next door would make good brothers.”
“So, your mom thinks that the community is closer than it really is? She thinks that you could perhaps do with the company?” I said it not for the purpose of the slide-show, but because, for once, I was genuinely interested.
“Well, I don’t know what my mom thinks…” replied Drew, and he left it at that.
I’d just opened a new slide, and was choosing the colour-scheme whilst I wracked my brain for a new question (come on, there are loads of typical ones!), when Mr. Stevans opened his megaphone mouth.
“Okay, that’s it folks! St. Peter’s students, the bell for end of lunch will go in five minutes, so get yourselves ready for the next lessons.” He cleared them out with a sweep of his arm. “Other students, thank you for joining us and being relatively good, your teachers know about the change in your time-tables; and they’ll be ready for it every week. Get yourselves ready for the fifth lesson back at your own schools.
“Turn left then right to get to the entrance hall (toilets to the right of that), and go through to the plaza park where your mini-buses are out waiting. I’m sure you’ll be able to spot which is which, otherwise I’d be very concerned about you being in my club today. See you next week!”
And he waved his hand in a strange arched wave.
“He thinks he’s funny,” I heard Drew mumble to himself.
Gathering my bags quickly, I turned on my heels, my blonde hair sweeping out in a swishing wave behind me. I nodded politely to Mr. Stevans as I marched past him and then made my way into the throng of students who were making their own way back to the buses. Some were eager, some were not. I didn't blame either group. I wasn’t eager to get back to school, but I wasn’t eager to stay here. I waved to Sophie as she appeared from a classroom labelled ‘St. Peter’s Mathematics’, and suddenly I found myself talking to her about clubs. Anything so that I wouldn’t have to think.
I couldn’t wait to get home.