At last, we reached the classroom and as soon as Olivia pushed open the door, I heard people talking and laughing and the chatter came to an abrupt halt as soon as we entered the room.
"Alright girls - and boy..." I heard a girl giggle at that statement. "I hope some of you are not expecting this to be like school - the two are completely different. Each and every one of you will, from now on, be treated - at all times - like the adults that you are, regardless of who is the eldest or who is the most immature." She gently took me to a chair where I immediately sat down and felt the edges of what seemed to be a very big table. Then I could hear Olivia's squeaky pen as she started to write on the whiteboard. "My name is Olivia Covett - but do please, call me Olivia and just, Olivia." I heard a few murmurs from around the classroom, which then stopped to let Olivia carry on. "To make sure that all of you are in the correct class, you should know that this is Childcare class, yes?" I had noticed that she did this a lot, saying 'yes' or 'no' at the end of her sentences. "I hope that you have all picked your own seats, and please act acceptibly and sensibly or you will be moved to another seat. Any questions, no?" The class went quiet and I had a good feeling about this particular course, I suddenly felt glad that I had chosen to study the development of children.
"Yes?" Olivia said, before I heard a boy speak.
"Hello, yes, Olivia? Seeing as I'm the only guy in this class, will I get any special treatment...?" his voice was slightly high and squeaky, which sounded quite irregular for a boy. To say the least, he sounded a little camp, and my first guess was that he most certainly was.
"Of course not erm....Andrew, is it? Yes, you will all be treated equally as you are all equals. There will be no favouritism in any class of mine and therefore you must all treat each other how you yourself would like to be treated. Does that answer your question, Andrew?"
I heard the boy clear his throat. ""Yes," he said quietly before sitting down.
"Right then," Olivia continued, "That is sorted, no more questions? Then we shall begin."
I heard Olivia close the door and give papers to everyone in the class. "Please fill out these quick handouts and once done you may go and sit at one of the computers. Delilah, I will be right over to help you in a moment, yes?" I sat patiently in my seat, twiddling my thumbs until someone started rubbing a paper on my arm.
"Here," I think it was the same boy who asked the question from before. I took the paper from this 'Andrew', smiled and said a feeble 'thanks'.
"Yeah," I replied, quietly. "Andrew, yes?" He laughed, and I felt him move a little closer to me.
"Yep, that's me, but...only my sister calls me that - for everyone else, it's Drew. I take it this is your first year at college? At this college, or any college?"
I nodded, and he then sighed with a hint of sympathy. "Yeah, you learn the ropes after a while, this is my second year. I was doing this other course last year, but then thought I'd join this one"," he chuckled. I smiled a little and hesitated. He held his breath and then I felt his hand on my shoulder.
"Delilah, correct me if I'm wrong - but earlier when Olivia brought you in here, I noticed your little secret. One of my cousins is...'visually impaired'...she's a little younger than you, and she finds it hard enough. I can totally relate to how you're feeling, so don't worry. Y'know, it's not my place to say, but there's some things that us guys wish we didn't have to see."
"Hmmm, then it's hardly a secret anymore, is it?" I sighed, chuckling a little. I was starting to like this guy, even though I was finding it hard to get used to his voice. I heard Olivia's shoes scrape across the carpet as she came over to help me.
"Better make myself scarce and get started on one of the computers." Andrew said, getting up. As I felt his hand leave my shoulder, I could sense that Olivia had suddenly sat in his empty seat.
"Right, Delilah - let's get you sorted out then..."