“Me llamo Ingrid. Tengo trece años. Mi madre y mi padre, son llamados Leda y Zack. No tengo hermanos o hermanas,” I said.
“Fenomenal, Ingrid,” replied Señora Garcia Lopez.
“Um, William, tu turno,” Señora Garcia Lopez said.
William’s miserable face turned up to look at her. He was really bad at languages. He sat up in his seat and looked around the classroom. He licked his lips and he had a go at speaking Spanish.
“Um, me llamo William, um, um, tengo catorce anos–”
“Años! Not anos!” shouted Señora.
“Sorry,” Will muttered.
“Siento,” Cathleen whispered to him.
Señora glared at her but let it pass for once.
“Siento,” murmured Will.
“Bueno,” she said.
Eighty minutes of Spanish wasn’t as bad as usual. I was sat next to Rollin and he was brilliant at Spanish, one of the best actually. I wasn’t as good as him, but almost. We’d had many Spanish or French conversations together.
At the end of the eighty minutes, it was break time. We were on our way back to the form room. We were passing our boys from 9C: Zev, Nik, Jay, Phoenix and Thor. Zev grabbed my arm while I was walking past.
“Are you in charge while David’s gone?” he asked.
“Yeah, why?” I said.
“Finally got what you wanted then,” he stated.
“What?” I asked, confused.
“Finally in charge of the lot of us,” he spat.
“I never wanted to be in charge. I can’t argue with David’s decision,” I hissed. I pulled out my arm out of his grip. “What’s happened to you, Zev? We used to be best friends.”
“What’s happened to me? What about you, Ingrid? What’s happened to you?”
I stood straight and took a step towards him. He was an inch or two taller than me but that didn’t stop me glaring at him. Spike put his hand on my shoulder to try and calm me down; bad things tended to happen when I got angry. I shook his hand off.
“I grew up, Zev. That’s what happened,” I hissed at him.
I turned around and pushed past Spike. He started after me but Rollin stopped him and told him to leave me alone for a bit. I stalked through the corridors that were steadily filling. The door was always open at break and lunchtime. We could go out if we wanted. A very bad idea.
I walked through the door specially there for the students when we wanted to go outside. The late-Autumn air was cold but it didn’t bother me; wolves have higher body temperatures – usually between 40° and 43° Celsius.
I walked past the first years who stared at me as I walked past. I walked out of the still-open gate and I was off school premises. I smiled to myself and carried on down the empty road. I wondered how long it would be before Spike realised I was actually gone. Would he even look for me?
I banished those thoughts from my mind and walked faster. Within ten minutes I was out of town and on my way home. The roads became country lanes and the path became nonexistent. The grass verge became the forest, our forest. I looked around and ran into the trees. When I was far enough in, I stopped.
I dropped my bag and started undressing. I shoved my clothes into my rucksack and changed. The absence of the sound of cloth tearing was odd. I picked my bag up in my jaws and ran off, jumping easily over fallen trees and tangled roots.
I had the day to myself. Just me. I slowed down to a sort of jog. I reached my house. I stayed in the cover of the trees so as not to be seen by my mum. I dropped my bag next to the nearest tree.
I caught the scent of a pine marten and remembered I was hungry. I followed the trail to a hollow log where it was sleeping. I caught it by surprise and tore out its throat. I carried it away and lay down in the shade of one of the tallest trees.
The pine marten had been starving and didn’t really fill me up. I didn’t mind. I was going hunting later with the pack. Probably.
What were Zev and I even arguing about? Something stupid as usual probably. I lay back against the bark of the tree and closed my eyes. It wasn’t very often I got time without at least one person’s train of thought sifting through my brain. It was nice.