I scarfed down my food as quickly as humanly possible. The spaghetti barely hit the table before I was dipping my bread into the sauce and practically licking it. Shihong just sat there in a kind of dazed awe, watching me like you would an endangered species.
"Girls are supposed to be elegant, Lysandra. They should never resemble a starving man who just saw his first meal."
My only excuse I could produce between my mouthful of noodles was, "Love spaghetti." This only makes Shihong more grumpy, as she checks her watch. She taps her foot, fixes her hair, and looks around annoyed.
"We need to hurry, I want to show you a little bit of the combat. It's probably the hardest part." Shihong looks around, as if hoping that no one heard her.
I swallow my food. "Is that allowed?" She gives me a sharp look. "Ok," I begin, "let me just finish my water. Why is it the hardest?"
"Mainly because not very many of us have had a lot of practice in hand to hand organized combat. You might have wrestled with your siblings, but definitely not like this." She goes quiet again, looking at her watch. "We might be able to watch for about 15 minutes. Let's go." Wiping my mouth on a napkin she practically throws at my face, I jump up, ready to see what my challenge will be.
We go down the hallway I stopped at earlier, and the sounds of combat get louder and louder. She pushes through a door, leading me to a large open gym. In the center two boys about my age circle each other warily. One has a bloody nose while the other walks with a limp.
As we watch, I see people laughing in the corners, other taking notes, some studying, but most are engrossed in the battle going on in the center of the room.
The boy with the bloody nose springs, jumping up and bringing his bamboo stick down on the other boys injured leg. He goes down, but not without taking the other boy with him. They tussle on the ground for a little while, until after a focused punch to the boy's thigh bloody nose boy stands triumphant. A scattered applause echoes around the room, and suddenly Shihong is pulling me away.
"Did you see that? What was wrong with his leg? Is everyone like-"
"Lysandra! Be quiet! We need to get you back to your dorms, Jol will be coming."
"Jol? Is that the young guy second in command?"
Laughing, but quickly putting on a stony face, she nods. Running, we leap into my dorm, close the door, and sit down. Less than a minute later, a knock comes on the door.