Paul saw me walking down the path, and shivering and called me over, as he was standing with a couple of his friends.
“Caw Beth, you look frozen!” He exclaimed, rubbing my arms up and down as if to cause friction to heat me up.
“Y-y-y-yeah” I managed to say through my chattering teeth.
“Here have my jacket.” He said shrugging off his winter coat and putting it around me as I slid my arms in it. It looked massive on me, as he is quite a bit taller than me, and broader.
The bell rang to signal the start of school and I gave him back his coat, telling him how grateful I was to him, and then (map in hand that Paul had given me, so there was no chance of me getting lost and having to be rescued by Joseph) headed off to my first lesson. I tried jogging up and down whilst waiting in the line to get into school to keep me warm, but didn’t see a patch of black ice, and just before I collided with the floor, and some broken glass, a pair of mittens (well, there were obviously some hands in the mittens) supporting me, and pulling me vertically. I turned around to see who my hero was, and it turned out to be Joseph to my great surprise.
“Thanks.” I said to him.
“Okay, just don’t do it again, you could have been in a bloody mess – no pun intended” He smiled. He had a nice warm smile, I noticed, despite the weather.
I got through my lessons, met Paul for break, had a chat with him and his mates, did another lesson, had lunch, and noticed that there was one certain McIvor missing from the table – Joseph. I had my lunch and complained when I realised that we had Trigonometry.
When the bell rang, we all filed in to the ‘Trig’ room and sat down in our seats.
I noticed that Joseph was there, even though he hadn’t been at lunch, and that his eyes had changed colour to a forest-green.
“Did you go to the opticians last night?” I asked him.
“Erm, no, why?” He replied, in a gruff voice, I thought that he had a gruff voice as a result of lack of sleep, seeing as he had bags under his eyes as well.
“I could have sworn that they were a very dark brown yesterday.” I said.
“You hit your head quite hard yesterday didn’t you?” He said, with a warm smile.
I punched him playfully, being careful not to push him to a point where he might be angry.
“Are you in a good mood today then?” I asked him.
“Why? Wasn’t I in a good mood yesterday?” He asked, still smiling.
“You seemed-” I struggled for the right word to say “somewhat annoyed, shall we say.” I cringed when I thought of how his eyebrows knitted together yesterday.
“Oh, and you can call me Joe if you like; only people I like can call me Joe, so well done. Friends?” He said, holding out a hand for me to shake.
“Yep, and thanks, I think.” I said smiling and shaking his freezing hand.
“Miss Carter! You arrive halfway through the year, not knowing much about Trigonometry, and then insist on talking to Mr. McIvor the whole way through my lesson. Detention – three hundred lines tomorrow lunch time!” And the whole class made sympathetic noises for me.
A note was passed from the back to me, and it read:
Looks like we won’t be hanging out at lunch, unless you can write really quickly, but even so, I have Bird Watching Club on so will see you tomorrow.
I crumpled the note up and put it in my bag. I turned around and mouthed “okay” to him, and then paid attention to the rest of the lesson.
Joe helped me with the work, and I understood it better when he explained it to me, instead of Mr. Fogg explaining it.
When the bell rang at the end of the lesson, I was walking slowly out of the classroom when I was pulled by my elbow to the side; it was Joe, and he wanted to know something.
“Do you want to skive Biology with me?” He asked.
“Oh, well, you see it’s my first Biology lesson of me going to this school so I think I should really go, as much as I’d like to skive, I really should go to the lesson.” I replied, apologetically.
“Oh, okay, but seriously, this is one lesson you probably wouldn’t mind missing if you’re a bit squeamish. Its practical lesson today you see – they’re cutting up sheep’s heart, lung and brain. Good luck.” He said smiling.
“Sorry.” I whispered and walked into the classroom.