"The Vikings settled in Greenland, starting around 986 AD. Eric the Red and his son Leif, explored further west. For a short time, they established a temporary settlement on New Foundland. They were not able to subdue the Native Americans and the Vikings were soon forced to abandon the settlement in New Foundland." Mr Hiking said in his deadly boring voice.
He was as ancient as this very school. He was around his late 90's so he probably had this entire lecture memorized. Note the sarcasm. He still looked old though.
I felt someone poke me behind my back. I ignored it the first time because it woke me up from almost falling asleep; basically saved my life there! It happened again. I still ignored it. But when it happened the fourth time I looked back.
"What do you want?" I hissed. He shrugged and continued writing notes. He pretended to. I looked back at Mr Hiking.
"What!?" I growled. He smirked and ran his fingers through his blonde gelled hair. I wish I could punch that smirk off his face and pull out every strand of his stupid hair. And that I would do slowly, so he could suffer the pain.
I rolled my eyes, knowing this would continue forever. Thank goodness he wasn't in any of my other classes… I hope. I don’t know his schedule. I scooched my chair forward and it made a very high-pitched squeaky noise. I squeezed my eyes shut. Although Mr Hiking was so old, he had the hearing of a... Very healthy young person with wonderful hearing.
He looked at me. I looked back at him with shame. He had noticed me, and I was feeling horrible about it. He was going to kill me! He’s strict. Even about running down the halls. I was running, once in grade seven, down the hall and he caught me. He told me to never do it again. He said that a good lesson for me would be a two days suspension. He made the principal give me suspension. I was shocked she agreed. She wasn’t that strict! And anyways, I was running for a good reason. Maddie had been hurting my feelings and I wanted to spill out my tears somewhere private. The bathroom. Maddie deserved that suspension, not me.
Ever since then, Mr Hiking, teacher of grade eight history class, has hated me.
"Ms Portman," he started walking towards me. "Might there be a problem?" He looked at me as if he was staring through my soul.
I nodded. Then shook my head. Then nodded again. Then changed my mind and shook my head. He glared at me. "What is it!?" he yelled.
"N-nothing at all, Mr Hiccups, I mean, Hiking..." I trailed of, expecting the worst.
"Principal's office." he ordered, "NOW!"
He pointed to the direction of the door and looked at me while I packed up my belongings. Everyone's eyes were on me. Some started giggling. I felt my cheeks burning from embarrassment.
"What do all of you find funny here?" he growled. I flinched; this class was going to get a good long lecture. I was happy I had to leave.
Maryam, who was also in this class with me, threw me a sympathetic smile. I smiled back.
Once I stepped foot in the principal's office, the principal sighed, "Mr Hikings again?" I nodded. “What did you get in trouble for now?”
“I promise I didn’t do anything; all I did was scooch my chair closer to my desk and it made a really loud noise and I did it because Duncan was poking me, and it hurt!” I took a deep breath, then looked down, “It’s not my fault.”
“Dear, I know. I know. I’ll need to talk to your teacher for a little bit. In the meantime, I’ll just have you sort out the library books as detention, again.” Mrs Spring said. She had her graying brown-blonde hair wrapped in a braid. Her gray eyes looked very tired. Sometimes, I pitied her. It must be a hard job to be a principal and look after the entire school.
A couple of years ago, me and Mrs Spring had developed a strong connection. We had shared many secrets, and I found out that she and Grams were neighbors a long time ago which excited Grams a lot. She invited Mrs Spring over for tea occasionally. The principal ushered me out of her very neat office and told me to go to my next class since first period was already over.
“What time do I have to get to the library at?” I asked Mrs Spring before I left. She said at lunch time. I frowned at the reply. I had promised Ella and Maryam that I’d sit with them at our usual table; right next to the window.
“I’ll be there.” I sighed. She smiled at me sympathetically and closed her office door. I walked down the empty hall and dropped off my history books in my locker and went off to Art class. This was going to be nice and calm, hopefully.
“Oh, I see you’re early, honey bunny!” Ms Artsy said when I entered the room. That was her nickname and she liked everyone to call her that.
I took a quick look around the classroom. The rug that used to be at the side, was now in the middle; it’s a circle shaped one. And the desks were put all around it. There were paintings of many different things all around the walls and to the right side, was a whole bookshelf on famous artists. And at the very front was Ms Artsy’s messy but somehow neat table.
I nodded and slipped into one of the chairs and shoved my bag under the table. There was a whole box of crayons and markers on it. I wondered what we were going to be doing today. As if reading my mind, “We’re going to be doing fashion drawing today, my sweet pea!” she clapped her hands and did a little dance on the spot. I giggled. Ms Artsy was always so happy and cheery.
“Hey!” Ella came into the room. She’s in my class! I grinned at her and waved her over.
“Ella! You’re in this class too!” I exclaimed. We hadn’t shared our classes this year. And since today was the first day, we were going to have some surprises! We never shared our classes last year either because our squad loves surprises.
“Am I?” Ella pretended to ponder over what I said and we both burst into a fit of giggles, then stopped when we noticed Ms Artsy smiling at the two of us. We settled down and took out our notebooks for notes and a pencil to write with.
Very soon, the entire class was full. I looked around at everyone. We had a few kids from the other homeroom as well. And I noticed one specific girl… Samantha! I waved at her and she waved back. Last year, both of us had done a Science project together and we got an A+.
“I think that’s the most fun I’ve ever had today!” I exclaimed while I packed my stuff. I was talking about Art class. Ella nodded.
“Definitely.” she looked sad. I nudged her.
“What’s wrong?” I asked.
“Nothing.” she said, “Just stuff at riding.”
“You know you can tell me anything, anytime and anywhere, right?” I said, waving my phone at her. She could text me. She nodded.
I got of the hard chair in Math class and gave my worksheet to the teacher. We did polynomials and logs. It was so confusing! We also did algebra. The advanced one. I don’t think I’ll be able to use my brain for the rest of the day.
I took out my phone. A message notification on my precious Samsung. It was from the group chat in which Ella included me and Maryam.
Ella: C u guys at lunch?
Me: Sorting out books in library
Maryam: What happened?
Me: Mr Hiking
Maryam: Meet you there.
Ella: C u there then
Me: C ya!
I smiled. I walked into the library and started at the Non-Fiction section. Kneeling down, I started sorting out the books. People put the Fantasy books in the Non-Fiction side! I took out the Land Of Stories book and tossed it into a bucket that had books that needed their correct homes. I shook my head as I saw a couple of Sci-Fi and Drama books that were torn from the edges. Only animals would do such a thing.
"Looks like someone needs a hand," It was Ella. I looked behind me and was greeted by warm dimpled smiles from both my friends. I wish I had a dimple. They look so cute! I nodded. “What happened anyways?” she asked.
I told them everything. Duncan poking me, Mr Hikings yelling, the principal’s office, and everything else.
"Here's the bucket," I handed it over to them, "Put each genre in the correct shelf."
"Okay." Maryam and Ella nodded together and walked away.
I looked at Ella as she went towards the opposite shelf. I could see over the shelf since these bookshelves were chest-high. We'd been friends for over five years since grade three. We were in the same classes all the time. Nothing could break our friendship. But nowadays, I feel as if she's growing apart from me. It must just be a funny feeling.
Then I looked at Maryam. She used to be shy. I was really surprised that she grown out of it. She explained to me over the summer what had been bugging her. She’s just afraid of new schools. Because every single time she moved, she always had a bully who hurt her.
I felt someone shove my shoulder violently. I looked behind me, "Yes? What can I do for you?"
"Move out of the way, idiot." she said. I don't think I've seen her around. I looked at her dead in the eye. Coal black eyes. Pale skin. Wavy raven black hair. Extremely thin figure. She looked older than me. Probably seventeen or so.
"I said, move! Not, stare!" she exclaimed.
"This is a library, you can't yell." I said, "And, I have a name. It's not idiot. It's Julia. What's yours?"
She shoved me out of the way and took out a book. She looked at it in disgust and threw it behind her. Walking farther away from me, she twirled her hair, "Raven Hill."
And with that, she disappeared into the other aisle of books.
“Who was that?” Maryam said. I looked beside me and shrugged at her.
“Probably someone new.” I said, “Definitely not in our grade. Maybe grade twelve. She looks pretty old, eh?”
“I’m done!” Ella said when she approached us. She looked at us and saw us frowning. “What happened?”
“There was some new girl named Raven Hill. She shoved me.” I pretend pouted. But I regretted it, because she started asking me all the questions doctors ask a patient – she wants to be a doctor when she grows up. Me and Maryam started giggling.
“What’s so funny?”
Me and Maryam dragged her out of the library and went into the hallway.
“Ready…?” I asked. “There’s a bug on your shoulder!” Me and Maryam both plugged our ears and started giggling as Ella stifled a scream when she was face-to-face with a spider.
Other kids looked at us and laughed. Some rolled their eyes. And some threw mean comments at us.
“Get it off me! Get it off me! Get it off me!” she whisper-shrieked, running out of the school and onto the field. Lunch wasn’t over yet, and all the kids were chilling outside under the warm sun. Maryam and I ran after her and finally, she slowed to a stop. We calmed her down and flicked off the naughty spider.
“Done!” I giggled.
When Ella had caught up with her breathing, she burst into a fit of laughter.