Chapter Five: Not So Stranger - Part II

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Huffing and panting loudly, completely out of breathe from the long run to get here; I made my way to the sign-in booth. A lady who had long blonde hair, a black eyepatch with a gold lightning bolt on it, and a black and gold trench coat smiled at me, a little too excitedly.

"Hi! I'm Marie Mjolnir, but please, just call me Marie! I'll be checking you in today. And, your name is?"

I looked at her, trying to keep a straight face; but her bubbly personality and constant smiling was contagious. I smiled broadly at her and gave her my name so she could highlight it on the paper and tell me what time my fight would be taking place.

"Albarn. Maka, Albarn." When I said that, she looked up at me slowly, her happy-go-lucky grin fading slightly. "A-Albarn...? Maka, Albarn...?" She watched me and stared into my eyes for what felt like the longest few seconds of my life, before she shook her head and plastered the smile back onto her full lips.

"U-Um, yes! Right. Uh... Y-you're in luck. The Non Partnered - Meister/Weapon battling units just started." She kept grinning at me as sweetly as she could. Well this teacher is odd... And why did she momentarily freak out when I told her my name? She acted as if I came back from the dead or something.

"Okay! Thanks, uh, Mrs. Marie, right?" I smiled at her and she softened her expression. "Oh, er, yes. Uh, Ms. Marie." "Hee, hee. Ok then." I giggled politely to make the mood a little less serious and, um... weird. She pointed me in the direction of the arena gates to enter for when I would go out to compete.

"Oh! Ma- Uhm... Ah, Ms. Albarn!" I turned around at the sound of Ms. Marie's voice calling out to me and saw her quickly making her way through the students towards the spot where I was currently standing. "Yes, Ms. Marie? What is it?"

"I forgot to tell you that your battle is taking place in the next five minutes! Hurry. Go to the weapons closet and get what you need if you're a meister, or a weapon who can't fight with themselves. ... You're a meister... Aren't you?"

I stared at her, my eyes somewhat enlarged and my lips parted slightly. "Uhm, y-yeah, I am. Thanks for letting me know, Ms. Marie." I politely smiled up at her and waved goodbye as I walked quickly towards the weapons closet down the hall. Ten arrows labeled Weapons Closet guided me in the right direction. When I got there I opened the door and looked through the assortment until I found my weapon specialty and closed the door again.

I looked up at the battle roster and found my name and picture connected by a thick line to a boy named Akane Hoshi. Huh. Well, okay then. I guess that's who I'm fighting against.

I heard a loud voice from the corridor and my name, and looked up at the clock. Alright. Here we go... I stepped out into the arena space and was blinded for a few short moments by the bright lights that suddenly flooded my vision. I covered my face with my hand and waited for my eyes to adjust. I looked up with a serious expression on my face and saw my opponent standing at the opposite end of the arena.

When the bells chimed Hoshi charged towards me and I fixed my stance. Come on... Come on... Gotcha! I lunged forward when he was about five feet away from me and used my weapon to grasp the ground and swung my legs around to kick him in the stomach. The force of the impact sent him flying backwards but he caught himself, sliding his feet across the ground before he was able stop.

I ran at him once more, ready to end it, when he tried to swing his sword towards my legs. I jumped up to dodge the blade and sliced my own weapon through the air to knock his legs out from underneath him. I'm a scythe weapon meister. Just like my mother. And I will never give up a fight until I've won. I brought the dulled edge of my blade to sit just above his neck and stood over of him.

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