Darren's new life is just beginning to go well, when shock changes all of that. After a while, he realises that not everyone here is normal. Later, he finds out they're not all human.
Follow Darren's adventure, and see how his life turns out.
The Darker Side of Light
My first day. Great. Those were always fun! New school, new place, new friends that are yet to be found. Brilliant. Notice the sarcasm. I’d always hated school, even before I moved here, and now that I’m going to a different school with different people, it just made my life a living Hell. In fact, I’d rather go to Hell than live this life. But sadly, I don’t want to upset my mum.
I looked glumly up at the tall, dull building. It was all made of huge grey stones that looked cheap and tacky. It looked very industrial, and the doors were grey, which was very unwelcoming. I pushed my black hair out of my bright blue eyes. I wore my hair swept to the sides just above my eyes, and my sideburns were long, and they flicked in the direction of my face.
I looked around at the emptiness. Perfect, a new school, a new place, and I hated it all. I groaned as I slowly made my way up the grey stone stairs. At my old school, those stairs would be impossible to climb, because they’d usually be filled with groups of students sitting down and chatting before school. I’d usually be one of those students. But here, the stairs were bare, and the whole place was barren.
I walked through the automatic grey doors, and entered a large room with grey plastic chairs that sat around the edges of the room. The walls were painted a cream colour, which was a change from the grey. I turned to see a middle-aged woman with short red hair, huge glasses, and a pale, kind face sitting at a desk behind a big window. It was obviously the front desk. She was wearing a flowery silk short-sleeved top with a dull black jacket over it. I couldn’t see whether she was wearing shorts, trousers or a skirt. She smiled warmly at me.
“Hello!” she said happily, still smiling. I tried my best to make my smile seem genuine.
“Hi, I’m new. My name’s Darren Collins.” I stated in a monotone, which seemed to fit well with the atmosphere of this place. She instantly looked down at the paper-work at her desk. She looked through it, and pulled out a page. She glanced at it for a moment, glanced at me, and then back at the page again.
When she looked up she was smiling again. She motioned for me to come closer. I did so. She slipped the paper through a little slit at the bottom of the glass window which was met by a short wooden wall, shutting off anything below her torso. I picked up the sheet of paper, and saw a list of words. Lessons. This was my time-table. I read through them quickly, and looked back up at the woman who was looking through her paper-work again. She frowned after a while, and then looked to the ceiling as if trying to remember something. Then she seemed to remember what she was trying to remember, and she whirled around on her seat, and opened a drawer. She pulled out another sheet of paper. She pushed that through the slit too.
“That’s a map of the school. I hope it helps. Oh, and also,” she got another piece of paper, but this one was smaller. She gave it to me.
“Get your teachers to sign it and to write a comment in this column,” she pointed to the right place, “and bring it back to me at the end of the day. It’s so we know how you’re getting on.” I looked at the paper.
I thanked her, and walked to my first lesson of the day. History.
I tried to walk at a quick pace to my classroom, but eventually, I got lost.
“Oh, great.” I said to myself angrily. I looked at my map again, and it took me a few minutes to realise my mistake. I had the map upside down. I laughed at my own stupidity.
After turning it the right way up, I found my way to my History class easily. I walked shyly over to the teacher and gave him my slip. He was quite old, and had greying hair that was non-existent on the top of his head. He had a sour look on his face, and his small black eyes looked angry. He wore a pair of thin-rimmed black glasses, and had a suit on with brown leather elbow patches. He had the right look for a history teacher. If not, a librarian.
He stuck out his arm, pointing at an empty seat. I sat down obediently. The chair next to me was empty, which was good. I didn’t want to talk to anyone just yet.
When the teacher had finished telling the class what to do, he walked over to me, and handed me my slip. I took it, and looked back down at my work. I didn’t understand it one bit. He sighed, and squatted down to my eye level.
“What’s wrong? Do you need help?” he offered. He was actually quite kind! Well, don’t judge a book by its cover, I guess. When I nodded, he cracked a smile, and started to help me.
When History finished, I was actually quite good. All of the dates of all of the events—I knew it all. My mind was a blank canvas for knowledge. I liked gaining knowledge, but I hated the way in which they chose to force it on us. But I was starting to like it. If all of the teachers were like Mr Maunder, who was my History teacher, then school would be…well, it wouldn’t blow as much.
My next lesson was Art, and I loved Art. It wasn’t really a lesson for me—more like a break. Drawing was my escape from this world into another. This time I didn’t get lost, and I made sure I was early for this one, no matter how early. I had to save myself the embarrassment of being late…again. I waited for a couple of minutes before my teacher, Mr Glyde, let me in. He seemed nice. He was very, very tall, and skinny. He had curly short black hair and his skin was a shade darker than my ivory shade. His eyes were such a pale green that they were almost white. He had a fairly small mouth which seemed to always be smiling. His face reminded me of a lion, for some reason. I smiled politely before hurrying to the seat that he gestured for me to sit on. It was at the far left corner of the room. It was the only chair around the table, which was good. No socialising needed.
As soon as I sat down, the rest of the class came in. There were all talking with each other, laughing and acting t]as if they were all best friends. I knew that that was impossible. There was always—always—a bully. I decided to just sit down, and look down. Hopefully no one will notice me. It didn’t look like Sir was going to introduce me to the class, thankfully.
When the class ended, I waited until everyone had left before making my way to the teacher’s desk.
“Sir?” I said to get Mr Glyde’s attention. He looked up.
“Hmm?” he said. “Oh, hi Darren. How was it?” he said. I nodded,
“It was brilliant. Um, I have to give this to you for you to sign.” I said, handing the slip to him. He signed it very quickly, and put the comment, and smiled again as he handed it back to him. I walked out the door as swiftly as I could. It was break-time so I went to the end of the large field and sat down by a tree. I pulled out a copy of The Shining and delved into the great imagination of Stephen King. Before I knew it, break was over, and it was time for Hell…um, Maths. I groaned as I made my way towards it. I subconsciously wanted to get lost this time, but unfortunately, I made it there on time. I rolled my eyes. I was actually the first one there…Great.
My teacher walked up to the door, and I was instantly sad. She looked like emotions had been long gone for a long time. She had big, bulging eyes, and she was quite tall. She had black skin and she wore glasses that magnified the bulginess of her brown eyes. She was obviously wearing a wig which made her look ridiculous. The wig was short, but it looked straightened. She didn’t smile or anything, she just unlocked the door, and walked in. I walked in after her, and gave her the slip. I was afraid to talk to her, and I hoped that I didn’t have to for this lesson. She looked at it, read it then looked back up at me.
“What’s this?” she said. I thought teachers were meant to know everything about the school… I gulped,
“Um, you’re meant to sign it at the end of the lesson and put comments on it about my progress.” I explained.
“Why are you giving it to me now?”
“So you can make the comments throughout the lesson…?” I was deathly afraid of her now. She looked at me like I was mad, then rolled her eyes, sighing.
“Fine. Sit there.” She said, pointing to a seat right in front of her desk. The rest of the students seemed to be staying outside talking. The teacher walked to the door, swung it open and glared at everyone outside.
“Get in!” she screamed. All of the students suppressed giggles before filing inside, sitting at their seats. The teacher sat at her seat, and looked in a drawer under her desk, pulling out a Interactive Whiteboard pen. She walked over to the screen that was slowly flashing to life, mimicking the computer it was connected to. After a while, a blank spreadsheet appeared on both. She started writing stuff about the ‘cumulative frequency.
Yeah, we’re all going to use that after we use school, I thought. I rolled my eyes whilst the teacher’s back was turned. The girl sitting next to me laughed quietly. I turned to see her. She was quite—no, very pretty. She had long, wavy golden hair that tumbled down to her shoulders. She had a creamy pale complexion, and sensuous blue eyes that smouldered, and pierced into one’s soul. Her nose was slightly up-turned and was perfectly angular. Her lips were perfectly proportioned, shiny and blood red. She was beautiful. I smiled at her. She gasped, and smiled back at me. I held out my hand.
“Darren.” I introduced. She smiled, and took my hand.
“Emma” she replied.
“You two better not be talking!” the teacher shouted. “’Cause if you are, it’s a lunch-time detention!” she threatened.
“Yes, miss.” Emma said in a voice so beautiful and hypnotizing. I shook my head and looked back up at the teacher.
“Okay, so, histograms-” I zoned out as soon as she said this.
Maths finished after a long, long time. I stood as soon as she said that we could go—I already had my stuff packed. I walked out of the room just before everyone else. Emma was the first one to follow me. She ran up to me.
“What’s your next lesson?” she asked, smiling.
“Uhm…” I looked at my schedule, “Music” I stated happily. I loved music.
“Really? Me too!” she exclaimed. “What do you play?”
“I play piano” professionally. “You?”
“I sing.” She replied, embarrassed. “Not that I’m any good.”
“I bet you are.” I said, smiling encouragingly. We both walked to the classroom, Emma showing me the way, me taking in the route. When we got there it wasn’t like a lesson, but it was set out more like a club—a music club. There was a beautiful grand piano in the corner. The room looked like it had been built a few months ago, with wooden floor and high tech computers around the edges of the room, though I don’t know why you’d need computers for music. The room was fairly big and it was all modern, and it had some sort of a white-theme. The walls were white, the ceiling was white, the desk at the front was white. It was all white. I sat down next to Emma, who turned to me, smiling as always.
“So,” she said. “What can you play to accompany a singer?” she asked.
“Um, Speechless…By Lady Gaga…?” I said it as a question to find out whether she knew it—it wasn’t a very well known song. Her face lit up.
“It’s one of my favourites. C’mon!” she said, pulling me by the hand toward the piano.
“Play it, please.” She said, and walked toward the microphone stand. She picked up a microphone from the teacher’s desk and slotted it into the holder on the stand. I started to play, and she put on a serious face as she got closer to the microphone.
“How, how, how. I can’t believe, what you said to me, last night we were alone.” She sang it beautifully. She made it her own, and, dare I say, it might’ve been even better than Lady Gaga’s version. After a couple of seconds, all of the other singers in the class started to join in, singing the backing vocals and humming along. It sounded professional.
When the song ended, everyone clapped and cheered. I smiled and laughed, happy that I’d had some fun in school for once.
“We’ve not ever done that before!” Emma said to me happily. “It was brilliant! Thanks, Darren!” she said, smiling yet again.
“Hey guys, this is Darren. He’s new here.” She said to the rest of the class. And then I heard someone clapping slowly, like some evil person from a film clapping the hero to declare his presence. Everybody turned to see who it was. It was a woman who was in her fifties. She had blonde hair that was short and combed up. She had small brown eyes, a small nose and a small mouth. She had a Philtral Dimple so long that she looked like she had just came back from one of Dr Suess’ books. But she seemed happy and kind and very eccentric. Which was good for a music teacher. She wore a long top that had a picture of Michael Jackson on it. She walked happily to her desk and picked up a pen.
“Right.” She said, raising her hand to the interactive whiteboard. “Today’s task is-” she wrote Practise on the board. Though I didn’t know what I should practise, I knew that this would be fun.
Everyone went off on their own except for me, Emma and the teacher. Emma grabbed my arm and pulled me along to the teacher.
“Miss, this is Darren. He’s new here.” Like I couldn’t have done that myself…though I liked to company. The teacher smiled and held her tiny hand out.
“Call me either ‘Miss’, or ‘Miss Davies’.” She said, smiling. “Actually, you can call me Julie if you want as well.” She laughed, as did Emma. I smiled politely.
“You’re a good piano player, so I don’t think that I’ll need to do much other than give you some sheets.” She said, looking through some files. When she didn’t find them in there, she rested the palm of her hand on her forehead, and looked of to the left, thinking. Only then did I realise that she was actually holding some sheets. It was a bit embarrassing of me to ask, but I did anyway.
“Miss, is that what you’re looking for?” I asked. She looked down at her hand, and rolled her eyes.
“I’m getting old!” she laughed happily, and I joined in. She handed me the sheet-music for ‘My Immortal’. I looked through it. It seemed easy enough.
“There’s a proper grand piano out there. This is just a keyboard version of a grand piano in here.” She pointed out into the hall. I turned to see a beautiful, shiny black grand piano out there. When Miss went to her office, I walked up to it in awe. I stroked my pale hand along the ivory keys. I sat down on the stool, put the sheet-music in place, and began to play. It was a beautiful song, and it wasn’t as easy as I thought it was, but I played it through any way.
Another singer walked out into the hall, and up to me. She had wavy black hair and lots and lots of glittery eyeliner on. She had dark eyes and she was very…smiley.
“I’m singing that for the concert, do you mind playing it for me?” she said. I nodded and smiled. She walked to the front of the piano and leant on it.
We did My Immortal, but got bored of it after a while.
“Do you know how to play Hurt by Christina Aguilera?” she asked.
“Yeah.” I replied. We drifted into song again after a while. But the lesson had to finish at some point.
The bell pierced through the air, ringing in my ears.
“Right, kids, time to go unfortunately.” I could hear Miss shouting. Me and the girl walked back into the classroom.
“I’m Darren” I said, holding my hand out. She shook it,
“Christina” she replied.
“Hang on, you two.” Miss called. Me and Christina turned to Miss.
“Darren, we have a concert coming up soon, it’s next month, and you don’t seem to have anything to play, and you definitely don’t have the time to learn something, so I’d like you to play Hurt for both Christina and Christine. They can do a duet.” I turned to see Christina’s face light up. I glanced back at Miss.
“Sure” I said, shrugging. Miss called Christine into the room. She had blonde hair that was a little wavy at the end. Her eyes were kind, and blue. She had a copy of New Moon in her hand.
“Yeah Miss?” she said.
“I’d like you to sing with Christina. Darren will play the piano for it, and you’ll be doing a duet of Hurt. You both know the song, and you’ve already practised the duet for last year’s concert. So here you go—you can actually do it this time. No one can take this song from you, ‘cause everyone’s got their songs, so here’s my keys. Go and practise!” she said. We all walked out into the hall again, and began to play.