This Time

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John went through the hallways, his teammates flanking his every side. He talked and laughed, but really, he wasn’t paying attention. They were all prattling on about the same things again and again. Honestly, it was easy to falsify a conversation with them. Not that he did it to be rude. He just didn’t like the same conversation every bloody day. Really, he was hungry for more. Was feening desperately for it. For something interesting. Something new and different and fantastic.

His eyes caught something new, someone new. He was hard to miss, this new being that wandered down the hallways without so much as one caring glance around. Those cold blue eyes stirred something in John he hadn’t felt in a while, a wave of curiosity. For a moment, John wasn’t even sure why. Probably just because he’s new, he had thought, but oh no. That wasn’t right at all.  

No.

As young as he was, John had an eerie sixth sense about certain things. Things that were off kilter with the rest of the world and he was drawn to them like a moth to a flame. Sometimes, he hated himself for it. Got himself into a bit of trouble now and again because of it.

John wouldn’t mind a bit of trouble now though.

**

The new kid all but forgotten, John drags himself to class and tries to pay attention. The teacher drones and John takes his notes, amazed how well he’s actually following what’s happening when he knows in his mind he would rather be elsewhere.

When the bell rings, John isn’t the first from his chair. Unfortunately, he has notes scattered everywhere, none of them really legible after a certain point. He tries to stack them neatly in order before giving up and stuffing them in his bag. He’ll organize after school. Maybe. Probably not.

John hoists his bag over his shoulder and stands, leaving the empty class behind. His teacher is in the hallway, practically blocking the door. There’s another student in the way. The new kid with the ebony curls and sharp features. He’s arguing with the teacher.

“You honestly can’t call that teaching,” the student goes on, his voice deep enough to send an oppressive shiver over John that isn’t unpleasant. He wishes he had heard the start of the argument just to hear that voice a little longer.

“Listen here, I will not have that kind of attitude directed towards me,” the teacher fumed, her hands clenching at her sides. In that moment, John couldn’t remember her name, didn’t care enough to. He was simply amazed at the reaction she was having. He’d not seen a teacher this furious before, and with a student no less.

“This curriculum is absurd,” the young man went on, still unaware of John’s presence. “You can’t expect any of this to be of used later. Why can’t you teach something of actual importance?”

John shivered.

Yes.

This one.

This brave little (actually incredibly tall) nerd upset about what he was learning, he was interesting.

“Detention,” The teacher seethed through gritted teeth. Her eyes were alight with fury.

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