27 Terrible start to a disastrous day

On my conquest to the dorms, I was cursed 227 times. Mostly by nerds but also by some girls. This academy was weird but this was just outrageous.

"Look, look, there goes the l-o-v-e-l-y junior."

I'd just made it into the dorm and a guy just had to shout at his friends about me.

I really didn't want to do anything with these jerks. And if I tried to pull something and injured a student more and more of the rumors would spread.

With a sigh I kept on climbing the stairs. Life was already hard and this just made things harder. Back then, back at Marg's, I thought it wouldn't be this bad. Who knew I was so damn wrong?

Maybe Eve really was pure evil. I mean, she did this knowing, this would happen. I couldn't really forgive her after this. And yet, I still felt grateful to her for last night. If she hadn't taken in Elsa, I didn't know what I'd have done. So in a way, I really couldn't blame Eve.

Strangely, all I could do now was sigh. Life was so full of sighs.

Merin was out there cursing me with the mob, so I went inside the room without knocking. I mean, it was my room, so why did I need to knock?

"Oh hi." Apparently, there was a girl inside.

"Not this pattern again," I mumbled. "Hi."

Natasha, the root of Merin's problems was here. She was just staring out of the window like there was no tomorrow.

"Hey, I mean, what are you doing here?" I took a leap of courage.

"Nothing. Just wanted to talk to him one last time. But looks like he's having fun. Maybe we weren't meant to be-" She smiled bitterly and I looked out.

Merin was with the mob. Screaming curses about me and stuff. Honestly, maybe he really was an asshole.

But he and the mob, all of them, looked like they were just messing around. They smiled and just ran around. Was this some new type of game?

"Don't tell him I was here." Natasha moved towards the door. I didn't understand this girl, not one bit.

"Why are you with him? The Russian, I mean."

She didn't turn around. "None of your business." She left.

She was right. It wasn't any of my business and I shouldn't have meddled. And I had no intention of doing so either.

***

Everything was done and I got ready. Things moved fast. The rumors and curses were worrying but the students still stayed a fair distance from me. After all, even they weren't that dumb.

Meanwhile, Merin came back and just gave me glares. I still didn't know or understand the guy.

"Didn't you tell me that Eve was out of your league?"

"I never said I'd give up on her." he chuckled. "Plus it was fun to hang out with that mob. They don't hate you. They're just doing it for fun. So don't let it get to you. Everything will probably be back to normal tomorrow." The guy was pretty nonchalant about it.

Then why the hell were you so into it?

So this must have been his way of letting out some steam, but what about the thing from this morning? What about the girl that came all the way here and just left without saying anything? Should I have told him while he tried to move on, or…?

I really wanted to sigh but I kind of used up my quota for the day, so I just rolled with it.

I really didn't want to get involved.

"I'll go get breakfast. Later." I waved and left.

"Good luck." I could swear I heard Merin wish me good luck through the door. I was probably just imagining it.

But I felt bad climbing down the stairs.

Was this alright?

With every step, my heart ached. Long ago, I once had to bid farewell to my best friend, and I still couldn't forget about her. I didn't want Merin to go through the same pain. And I didn't want to inflict new pain to him either.

Damn!

I banged my hands on a nearby wall. Some students just moved out of the way, in fright. But now I knew what to do: No, I knew what I wanted to do.

"She was here." I'd come back to the room. Merin looked at me with more than just curiosity. "Natasha was here to see you. She left when she saw your smiling face. If you want her, go get her." Maybe I was being unfair to them, maybe I was being stupid. But I didn't care. And I had my freedom of speech.

Merin's lips curved up form a grin.

***

Breakfast, the cheapest and most important meal of the day was a lie. First of all, it wasn't cheap. At least not in this school. I had to wait in line at the convenience store for twenty minutes and get a bread for twice the money. It was still cheaper than the cafeteria but still, this was just extortion.

Moreover, how was eating something when you weren't hungry even healthy, let alone important?

And then there was the problem of taste. I hated bread and yet I had to eat it because it was the cheapest and had all the stuff I needed from food.

I just ate the bread and drank my chocolate milk: the school had lots of benches for this purpose. Students were crowing the campus. Some were running around while others were running for their classes.

I still had about twenty minutes before first period. This was probably the first time I brought out my phone in public this whole year. Phone was an outdated device. So I never used it in public. Nowadays it was replaced by Holo- a much better device with much more use.

I scrolled through the social media feed and as Merin said, the feed from even an hour ago, died down quite a bit. Affairs in school was a big deal but just for a few minutes. That was all. And with the oncoming stares from the passing by students, I reluctantly hid my phone inside my pocket.

Now that there was food in my stomach I could think clearly.

I had studies to worry about. I also had a tournament. My mother was already working overtime just to cover the tuition for my education and I couldn't ask any more of her. So if I could earn some pocket money from this school, I could very well make it easier for mother. Not to mention just two years later, Elsa would also go to hi school. So I even if a little, I had to earn.

But to do all that, I needed some focus on my actual goals. And I couldn't afford to get myself lost in revenge or relationships for that matter. I never really cared about what others said anyway. So those curses never really mattered to me.

'So from today on, I have to focus on things that matter!'

There were a lot of things in this school that worried me and they could have possibly have a negative effect on my life, but my primary concern was to make it out with an explorer certificate and some change. I couldn't let other things distract me. Relationships, revenge, they just weren't worth the effort.

My milk was finished and I dumped the bottle in the dumpster along with the bread packaging. Next stop, the classroom.

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***

More stares, nothing new. The same had happened yesterday too. So after two full days, I did get a little accustomed.

I still had about five minutes before class. Time moved rather slowly. I didn't like this. I'd wasted enough time. I'd done enough stupid things. Now I had to take this seriously. SO I just wanted the class to start and perhaps learn something new.

"Yo, boss. What happened? Why do you look so pissed?" Robert walked by. He didn't even stop for a reply.

'Why would I look pissed?'

I guess we didn't have time to talk anyway, as Miss Maire just came a full three minutes early.

"Listen up brats, we have a special announcement today so we're starting early. " I guess she was in mode two from the start today.

Followed by her voice, a girl walked in. a girl with wings: Rose. "Good morning everyone." No one ushered a word. Too afraid of the teacher I guess. "As you might know I'm the head of the prefects. And the disciplinary committee also answers to me. So-"So basically, she was the law around here. "I have a few new rules set in stone from this day forth." She smiled brightly. "As you might already know, fighting on campus without permission is prohibited. But duels are allowed. So refrain from spilling blood on campus. But from today on you'd need an actual prefect present during the match, not just permission. " Though she had a smiling face, I could almost smell the devil lurking inside. Moreover, her gaze was literally fixed on me. "So we have new punishment for the ones who break this rule. You'll be in detention for a week from now."

I'd heard a lot of things about the detentions of this school. It was designed by the second headmaster and it was one of the school's most effective tools in breaking a student's spirit. I most certainly didn't want to be in there.

But the girl wasn't done just yet. "Moreover I'd suggest not poking one's nose with the maters of their seniors." Again her gaze was on me. Did I rub her the wrong way or something? "Ahem!" She cleared her throat. "And finally, from this day on, the punishment for breaking curfew would also result in a weeklong detention."

I didn't know why but this punishment scheme just got tougher and tougher. Plus most of the stuff was clearly focused on me. And wasn't this just the third day? And I was already on the radar of the leader of the prefects?

"Good day." She smiled brightly, looked around, and just left.

I didn't know what just happened but half of it was probably because of me. I was already a hot topic for controversy and now things just got even shittier.

Class began in earnest and for the next three hours, I just dug my head in studies.

***

"It all began-" Miss Maire began and we knew this would be long.

After the great crash a hundred years ago, things didn't look that hot for humanity. They were no longer in power. Even small animals like rabbits of all things hunted us. In time humans themselves developed powers and they fought back. But this power came at a cost. The cost of a disease. Most of the diseased became mad within one year of contraction. And after that, they themselves turned against humans. People called them Kin, but the ones who knew called them Mutors. Meaning, there was no difference between a savage human and a savage monkey.

But this information was new to me. I never knew humans were considered Mutors too. I guess I couldn't learn everything from books after all.

***

I didn't know why but things just felt even more cumbersome. Was my life always like this? I still didn't know much about the tournament or sabers in general. I always thought they were just things I could blow up. But after seeing Eve's sword and Blaze's last night, I really needed to know more about this stuff.

I guess I'd drop by the club today and join officially.

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