(Oreola) The Academy of Mysterious Occurrences

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"The real mystery is why every bitch so dumb as fuck. Like, that's the ONLY mystery OK. The end."

Oreola laughs, off screen, filming a group of kids in matching yellow and red striped jumpsuits, as they swarm past her to examine a spray of blood splatter on the wall. They whisper excitedly to themselves before racing off again, running in formation down the gloomy hallway.

She puts the camera back on herself. The dewy, tan, pore-lessness of her face filling the screen. She pauses, turning her face side to side, letting her fans bask momentarily in the glory of her angles, the scar that travels from just below her right eye to the corner of her mouth.

"It's like, oooh first day of school, whatever. Everyone alll excited to get the mystery started but like if you think everything is a mystery then you miss what's actually happening. Like for real. Bro. For real." She lowers a stare at herself, at her fans. "Like you're gonna freak out about every blood stain you see in this school? You ain't going noooooo place. That's blood from last season finale. They didn't clean up yet. Like trust me. But these bitches think they know something so whatever."

She turns a corner, pausing to let a group of 4 silent figures encased entirely in black - matte vinyl bodysuits, black face masks, sunglasses - go past. She makes a 😬 face before continuing.

"I mean I can't lie that was me as fuuuuuck like 5 seasons ago, I swear, wondering about everything around. But we grown up now OK. No uniform neither, check it, like Uh," she stops and lowers the camera to show off her sparkly MultiDimensional Solace necklace, "And Uh," she pans down to show her stretchy top by TrendsKill, "And Uh," she pans and twists to show off the side angles in her jeans, also TrendsKill, and 4-inch heeled boots by _mudforce_.

"This is the mystery they need to solve, ha ha. Like how tf she do THAT." The camera whips back to her face, she sticks out her tongue, and ends it.

It's the first day of the new season at the Academy of Mysterious Occurrences and Oreola is 50% over it, 50% ready for whatever. She's a 5th year, not yet a senior, but she has 42k followers, so she's not exactly stressing. She walks through the hall on her way to meet her friends before her first class, nodding and waving and smiling and half-hugging various people, depending on how much she wants to cultivate their interest in her. Someone compliments her outfit and she turns out and sticks the booty out like pop so they can come to terms with it.

Her heels click down the haunted castle vibe of the Academy. The halls are stone and mortar, with high vaulted arches and the occasional peaked window. No fluorescents hanging overhead, the lights are set into the walls like torches, flickery candlelight to promote an eerier mood. The classrooms are large, drafty. Common areas like the cafeteria and the courtyard trend towards quietly foreboding. Hallways twist and end in unexpected ways, and there's more secret or suspiciously locked rooms than anyone can count. Every inch of the school is layered thick with a history of violence and mystery. Someone always crying or screaming or yelling for help around every corner.

The only predictable thing about the Academy of Mysterious Occurrences is that weird shit can and will go down. Every season it's a new mystery. Students kidnapped and tortured. Teachers turning up dead in their own offices. Zombies last season. A viral video that had students unwittingly cooperating in a Ponzi murder scheme. Sometimes it's just a straight up serial killer, sometimes it's something weirder, more resistant to explanation. Either way, the goal every season is to find the clues and solve the mystery. Figure out who's doing the bad things and why. The Academy isn't just a school, it's a competition among the students to be the ones to solve the mysteries, to stop whatever's happening from happening. Success at the Academy of Mysterious Occurrences gets you so many followers - the kind of brand influence most people can't even dream about. If you help Wood2 by putting away murderers, saving people's lives, preventing unnecessary loss, shining light in the life's darkest corners, they take good care of you.

So it gets competitive, and the younger students always try to come out swinging, their heads full of ideas about how much influence they're ready to wield. They see mystery in the most innocuous situations - a teacher's out sick, maybe they were poisoned. A poster got hung upside down, it's a clue to the next murder. They're so eager to matter, so eager to show everyone else up. They mostly just get in each other's way, or keep themselves so turned around they're of no use to anyone. Because you know. That's the thing Oreola is trying to say. When the real mystery starts, you know, no question. It lands right on you, grabs you by your neck. Someone vanishes, an arm turns up torn off its body, and OK here we go.

Like that really was old blood splatter in the hall, from the final zombie attack last season, that wasn't just a point Oreola was making for the video. It was kind of wild how they didn't actually clean it up. She and her friends had been semi-helpful in solving the mystery last year, which was surprising for 4th years. But honestly she'd been doing well for herself, building up her brand, being really compelling. Every so often a first or second year gets lucky and stumbles onto a clue and hangs onto it long enough to do something with it before dying. It doesn't happen a lot, but it does happen. But mostly it's the 6th years solving the bulk of the mysteries, or at least getting all the credit. It makes sense, they're through all the core classes, they can focus on more interesting things. You have so much to learn your first few seasons, you're taking Crime Scene Etiquette, Area Canvassing, Evidence Handling, Statistics, whatever.

But still, Oreola and her friends had that assist last season, and the previous season they'd totally been on the right track, although they didn't get there fast enough for it to matter.

The lights flicker, which means it's time to get to first period. Oreola sees Dorkidoria up ahead and picks up her pace, shoving some kids out of the way and then sliding into a laughing hug with her best friend.

"YO did you hear about the mystery this season?" Dorkidoria says, loud enough to grab everyone around her's attention.

"Nooo please tell me!!!" Oreola says, playing along.

"How tf I find time to smack the shit outta everyone one of these dumb bitches?"

"Yo that's the mystery for REAL."

"For real for real."

They get a bunch of skeptical and then annoyed looks from a bunch of first and second years but who cares. They go back to appreciating each other. Dorkidoria is wearing a minidress by Dedyung and looks fine as hell and Oreola explains this to her best friend in lurid detail. It's no uniforms for them, not like some of these other teams. They decided early on: a team made up of individuals. They get to always be themselves first.

They finish complimenting each other on how hot they are, quickly catch up about their morning, then laugh about something which turns into a complicating high-five routine that ends with them twerking their butts on each other, which they continue to do as the lights flicker again, signaling the fact that they are definitely going to be late for Emotional Terrorism.


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