“Class settle down,” Sophina replied, slamming a ruler onto the whiteboard to silence the rowdy students. “Just because lessons haven’t started doesn’t mean that you’re not in my classroom.”
“We should just start,” Tera, the usually soft spoken teen, voiced. She looked up from her notebook, where she had been scribbling little doodles in the margins. “Otherwise we’ll need to stay late again. That wouldn’t be ideal for us or Ms.Sophina.”
“Give her five more minutes,” Leon chirped up. “Please?” He could see Arc’s look of anger as he had said that but it didn’t matter to him. He was sure Graciela was taking this school seriously. Besides, Leon had never been fond of the Werewolf. She was strange in both personality and abilities.
As if right on cue, the door to the classroom made a loud creaking noise as Graciela pushed her torso against it. All eyes landed on the vampire who shrunk back from their curious and angry gazes. “Ms.Gray, we were just talking about you. Care to share why you’re late?”
“I’m late?” Graciela asked, eyes widening. “Class doesn’t start at 8:30 am?” Graciela fished into her small leather black bookbag for a slip of paper that had her schedule listed on it.
Sophina read over it for a moment before letting out a sigh. “A typo. You’re off the hook this time. Class usually starts at 8am so from now on I expect to see you on time. Understood?”
“Uh…yes.” Graciela mumbled, wanting to shrink away from her teacher’s gaze. She took the available seat next to the black haired werewolf and placed her bookbag on the floor underneath the desk.
“Today is a special day which is why we couldn’t start class without you,” Sophina replied. She began to write on the white board, drawing a chart with two columns. On the top of one she wrote her name and the other she wrote Briella, who Graciela assumed was the other teacher. “We are going to be reassigning the classes. Some of you will stay under my tutorship, but others will move to Briella’s or a new teacher.”
There were collective groans, but no cheers. This wasn’t something they had wanted to do. Graciela lowered her eyes at the students sitting beside her. Were there others besides this group? She had remembered Leon said the class was small. “Enough. we are moving you all around based on your skillset, social compatibility and other factors. For the rest of the semester you will remain in your own groups for studies. If you have questions or concerns you will ask your teacher.”
The class watched silently as Sophina wrote a list of names on the board. Some Graciela recognized- mainly hers, Braylen’s and Leon’s. Others she hadn’t recognized and wondered if they belonged to the people sitting next to her. One by one she began to cross off names, assigning them a spot on the chart until there were only three names left unchecked. “Okay, in group one which will be my group…we have Maric, Graciela, and Winter. The three vampires. You will be staying here in my room Graciela and Maric, and Winter will join us when we swap officially.”
Graciela looked around, eyes settling on the only other vampire in the room. He looked very much unapproachable and unfriendly. She had wanted to be grouped with Braylen, but of course things would never work out in her favor. She clenched her hands together and waited patiently for the other groups to be announced. “In Briella’s group, we have Ryland, Bryalen, and Adriana.” The blue haired boy, Graciela was guessing Ryland, groaned as he slid down into his seat. “Is there a problem Mr.Conway?” The boy’s eyes widened as if finally noticing who he was talking to and shook his head wildly.
“Lastly we have Leon, Tera, and Arc together with our newest instructor Dionysus.” Graciela’s eyes widened at that. She was there when Sophina asked him to teach a class, but this? Wasn’t it rather hasty? Besides…she wanted to learn under Dionysus not the woman in charge! “Dionysus is new so he will have help from another teacher you’ve seen working with Ms.Briella. That would be Mr.Bennett. While Dionysus is a new teacher, he knows more than even I do I assure you. His teachings will be very beneficial to the three of you. So, are there any questions or concerns? And I will not entertain the idea of switching groups in any capacity so do not suggest it.”
All the hands that were raised suddenly dropped. “Very well then. Ryland will you take Braylen with you to Ms.Briella’s room? As for Leon, Arc, and Tera…the three of you will be studying in the library until we find your group a room.” All of the students got up, except for Graciela and Maric. When Leon looked to her with a frown she shifted her gaze to the window. She was happy to not be in his group at least.
Dionysus eyed the male who sat lazily across the couch in the library. Well at least Dio thought this was the library. When coming to this academy he didn’t think he’d be a teacher, let alone a supervisor for three teens and a young male. But for Charlotte he’d do anything. She was the best friend he had over the years and he’d repay her by making sure her daughter remained safe. “You’re the new guy,” The male said, looking over at Dionysus. “Welcome. Name’s Tommy Bennett.”
Leaning closer towards the male, Dionysus’ eyes grew wide. He had resembled Jeffrey Bennett- it was almost as if they were twins. Dionysus rubbed his eyes. “Did you say Bennett?”
“Yes sir,” Tommy replied. “I’m the school’s own dimension traveler! Nothing exciting about me except I was sucked into this here dimension from another one and totally didn’t die. I have so much to teach these young minds.” Tommy rolled his eyes and threw his back slightly. “We’ll work well together.”
“There’s a Bennett here in this academy,” Dionysus said carefully. No use hiding it, Graciela would be sure to question the man’s resemblance to her father. “Daughter of a Jeffrey Bennett. Do you know him? I’m going to take a wild guess and say yes because the resemblance is uncanny.”
“Yes, that’s my dad.” Tommy suddenly sat up. “He’s been missing in my dimension for years. But…” He frowned, running his hand through his hair. “I’m aware the guy is probably another version of my father.”
“Maybe not?” Dionysus asked aloud. “He was taken from his dimension as well. If you’re here, maybe that’s the same guy. We can ask Graciela. You could have a step sister here. Which would be really good for her to have right now.” Dionysus shook his head as he saw three teens walk in, only one he recognized. “We can talk about it later though.”
“Welcome kiddies!” Tommy exclaimed, clapping his hands together and jumping from his seat. He caught the older male’s drift. This wasn’t something to involve the other students in but if his father was out there… well, he’d have to find him. Maric slid into the chair next to Graciela, much to the girl’s dismay. When Winter entered the room, she sat few desks away from the pair, shooting a glare in Maric’s direction. “She hates me,” Maric muttered under his breath to Graciela. “Just like everyone else here…except for Ryland and Tera.”
“Why? You a bad guy or something?” Graciela asked, raising a brow. But she was quickly silenced by Sophina who tapped on the white board with the dry erase marker.
“Today’s assignment is going to be about getting to know your groupmates. I want the three of you to be close, because your bond is what will make you powerful. Graciela you’re new to not only the school, but the area as well. Winter and Maric show her around and have some fun.”
“Really?” Maric asked, grinning. “That’s it?”
“Yes and when you’re done you’ll each write a three page paper about what you did, due on my desk tomorrow morning before 8am.” Sophina patted her dress down. “What are you waiting for? Go.”
Winter stood up first and walked to the two other vampire teens. She extended her arm out to Graciela. “My name is Winter. If you’re smart, you’ll stay away from this idiot over here.” Graciela didn’t know what to say, not wanting to get caught up in between the two but Maric and Winter both smiled at each other which made her relieved. They didn’t actually really hate each other.
“Don’t listen to her Graciela, I’m a great friend to have. Don’t worry, the three of us will get along great. Best of friends, most powerful group, easy.” As Maric said this, he led the girls out of the classroom and down the hall. Graciela didn’t know what to make of the pair. It was strange how easily they had accepted her. That certainly wasn’t the case at home. She had to wonder if it was all a joke.
Briella sat poised, waiting for her trio to walk in. She hadn’t exactly been on board with this idea, or rather any of Sophina’s ideas but having the girl actually talking to her after centuries was a start. She had been aware that years ago she acted selfishly but she was resigned to the fact that she would do it all again, especially for her true love, Indie Draknar. “Adriana, Braylen, and Ryland.” She spoke their names as they each entered. “Welcome back Adriana, lovely having you with me again. As for you boys, welcome.” She stood up and walked over to Braylen to shake his hand. “My name is Briella Ragnarok, but the students just call me Ms.Briella.”
“My name is Braylen Crew, I’m from Fortitude.” Braylen shook her hand. He uttered his name out loud for Adriana to hear as well, having already met Ryland the day before.
“So, I’ve heard. You’re a childhood friend of Leon’s.” Briella nodded. “He’s a good kid, so I imagine you’ll behave similarly. No shenanigans.” Briella clapped her hands together. “Now, I expect you all to follow directions so with that out of the way, our group is going to be the one that performs the best.
“Is it a competition?” Ryland asked, taking a seat at an empty desk. Adriana and Braylen followed suit.
“No, not yet.” Briella winked. “But unofficially we will be the most cohesive unit. At the end of the day as Ms.Sophina will tell you…we are working together to save the world blah blah blah. You know the drill. My job is to make sure that you all feel equipped enough to do so. This semester we won’t be doing anything drastic, but rather honing the abilities you already have and learning to work as a team. When push comes to shove I want you to be able to rely on each other.”
“We can do that!” Ryland exclaimed, throwing his fist into the air. “We’re totally going to have a good year.” Braylen watched Ryland curiously. Wasn’t he the one who groaned when he found out he’d be in Briella’s group? Adriana seemed a lot more soft spoken and quiet. Braylen would have liked to be with Leon and Graciela. They were the perfect trio, but it wouldn’t hurt to get to know other people and learn things that could help his friends.