Chapter 2

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Italics: John's thoughts.

John had set up his alarm to wake up an hour early the next day. After the stalker incident from yesterday, he had decided that it would be best if he would also escort Seraphina back to school from the dorms as nowhere was completely safe now. He realized that she worried about him too and would not approve of him going so far for her, especially considering her independent nature, so he would have to do it from the shadows using his newfound power.

John got dressed in absolute silence, trying his best to not make any noise – the last thing he needed was an argument with Blyke who started his mornings pissed at both the thought of having to go to class and of John taking his sweet time in the bathroom.

The raven-haired boy made his way across campus towards the girls' dorms. Even though it was really early, he decided to take the alternate longer route to avoid running into somebody who would ask him uncomfortable questions about his whereabouts or intentions.

As he reached the building where Seraphina lived, he found cover behind some bushes that still allowed him to monitor the entrance. By his calculations he still had about ten to fifteen minutes until Seraphina would probably come out.

I sure hope nobody sees me here. He was ducking in an awkward position, and it would be tricky to explain what exactly he was doing there at that time of the day. He did not want to use the invisibility yet – every time he used a mimicked skill, the freshness of the memory of the skill activation that he felt when initially learning that ability faded further until eventually he was unable to use it anymore.

Time passed, and many girls were leaving the building, but his magenta-haired friend was nowhere to be seen. After eventually seeing her roommate Elaine leave the dorm alone, John started growing increasingly concerned. The two girls weren't close, so it wasn't a given that they would walk to school together but the clock was ticking and it was disconcerting him.

Relax, they have 24/7 security inside. She must be safe.

There were just ten minutes left until the school bell rang, and if he didn't start walking back now he would likely be late. Just as he was about to come out from his hideout to search for her, he saw a sleepy Sera slowly head out of the door, yawning and with her hair extensions all over the place, her jacket hanging on one of her shoulders. After looking at her cell phone, her expression got serious and she suddenly started running on the usual path towards school.

Dammit Sera, you barely attend class, and now you care about being late? John complained to himself while activating the invisibility power and began following her. He was in good running shape, but it was a very strange feeling to run in this invisible form and he had to make sure he didn't spook the passers-by by stepping into a puddle or crashing into anything.

Just before the last turn leading to the road with the main school entrance, Sera suddenly stopped in her tracks, interrupted by a Rottweiler chasing after a cat. Behind them, a brown-haired girl with glasses and twin ponytails was clumsily trying to catch them.

"Help, please... he is going to tear my Mimi apart!" she exclaimed to Seraphina with a pitiful look, and disappeared into the narrow alley to where the animals escaped. Seraphina, who just a year or two ago might have walked right by, reasoning that "it was the natural order of things for the strong to feed on the weak" decided to go after them.

Sera, you fool. John was getting mad, both at the thought of her getting herself into danger recklessly again, and at himself, seeing the contrast of how she was able to do what she felt was right without any hesitation while truly being powerless unlike him. The memory of him being knocked down, his back crushing the school locker and with Sera stepping in front of him to face Zeke resurfaced, further propelling his anger.

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