Reckless Magic (Page 7)

The bell rang, and we were off to lunch. The cafeteria was located exactly one building over from the Administration Building. Only seniors were allowed to take lunch in the courtyard, and as Lilly and I walked back across campus, we couldn’t help but feel jealous. They sat basking in the sunlight, and again I noticed that all of them, without exception, were extremely beautiful. The same characteristics that defined my class, defined them as well, uniquely bright eyes and flowing hair. They all seemed to be ready for a photo shoot despite the drab Kingsley uniforms.

Lilly and I walked slowly behind the mob of juniors in front of us, watching the other students gather around Kiran aggressively. Talbott stood close to him as if to protect him from the overzealous girls. The seniors, who had thus far ignored the passing underclassmen, seemed just as enthralled with him as all of the others. Several of the girls and boys stood up and approached him, shaking his hand and taking pictures with their cell phones. These people were seriously delusional.

The cafeteria was more like a great hall, with long, thick, oak tables set up all over, than a typical lunchroom. I turned to Lilly for direction, but her blushing red face looked down at the ground. We hadn’t talked since we left the other building, and I couldn’t imagine what had upset her. I wondered if she was just as astounded over the scene in the courtyard as I was.

“Are you ok?” I asked, trying to be as nonchalant as possible.

“Um, it’s just that, well, I don’t usually sit with anyone else at lunch,” her voice quivered slightly. She was embarrassed because she assumed I would think less of her. However, I couldn’t have been more thrilled at the news.

“Oh thank God!” I blurted out. We both immediately started laughing and got in line for lunch.

After picking our way through the large buffet-like selection of food, which resembled more of a Thanksgiving feast than cafeteria food, we found an isolated table and took our seats. I looked around at the lunchroom full of people, sitting together in their own respective cliques. I noticed that Kiran and Talbott found a table near the middle of the room surrounded by girls, including Seraphina and several seniors, all giving Kiran their undivided attention.

“So what’s the deal with that girl from earlier?” I tried to sound casual.

“Which girl?” Lilly looked up from her apple.

“The one that could be Kiran’s twin,” I mumbled, allowing the sarcasm to drip into my tone. I was embarrassed by the pang of jealousy punching me in the stomach.

“Oh, that girl,” Lilly rolled her eyes and took another bite of apple. “Well, her name is Seraphina Van Curen. Her family has been part of this school forever, like since it opened a thousand years ago,” Lilly was obviously not impressed with her either, and I breathed a sigh of relief.

“Huh,” I said a little distracted, wishing I were brave enough to ask Lilly to spill all of the dirt.

“Apparently Talbott is impressed with her,” Lilly looked over at the table and the blood immediately rushed to her cheeks.

“I don’t think it's Talbott that she’s after,” I said sardonically, hoping to reassure Lilly that Talbott was still available, although I had no idea what she saw in him.

“Those girls are the rest of the girls in our class. The one with short black hair is Adelaide Meyer, and the one wearing all of the diamonds is Evangeline Harris. They and Seraphina, make up the holy trinity,” she rolled her eyes again and I laughed. I’d been in enough high schools to understand the social order of things. “The rest of the girls are just followers, with no minds of their own.”

“Wonderful,” I mumbled under my breath.

“Just steer clear and they won’t bother you…. most of the time,” she looked down at the table, in a way that hinted they probably bothered her more times than she would like to admit.

“Well, this is the side of the cafeteria I prefer to sit on,” I smiled at her reassuringly; it could not have been more truthful.

The bell rang before I finished but we got up to clear our things anyway. I wasn’t sure if I was ready to get back to all of the humiliation. We double-checked to make sure we had the next class together, Calculus, something I was destined to fail at, and made our way to the exit. Mrs. Truance was standing in the doorway eyeing me. Great, the school board had already decided I didn’t fit in and should be expelled promptly.

“Ms. Matthews, Principal Saint would like to see you in his office please; wait here and you can follow me there,” she directed, appearing less than happy to be running this type of errand. I stopped to wait beside her; I waved to Lilly, as she walked by, giving me an apologetic smile. “Mr. Kendrick, please come with me as well.”

Kiran and Talbott approached us with their group of lackeys; Kiran rolled his eyes when he left them. Kiran walked over to us slowly; I noticed his eyes were looking me over approvingly. Unexpectedly, a wave of nausea and a tingle of excitement ran up and down my spine; slowly, but surely, I began to feel the tiny prickles I knew would soon overwhelm me.

“Mr. Angelo, your services will not be needed, unless, of course, you are not able to continue on to class alone?” Mrs. Truance’s snide and demeaning voice addressed Talbott, and I couldn’t help but let out a small snicker that got me a very dirty look from everybody.

Mrs. Truance turned on her heel and stalked off toward the Administration Building. I allowed Kiran to pass, and followed in step behind them. What had I done now?

Chapter Six

The Principal’s Office, located on the second floor of the Administration Building, was accessed by a stairway right inside the front door. I had not noticed it when I entered the building earlier in the morning. The small and slightly winding stairway triggered a claustrophobic sensation as I followed Kiran, who was following Mrs. Truance, to the second floor.

The small pricks I felt while near the cafeteria grew stronger in the small space, and I was getting very uncomfortable. The electrical pulses buzzed inside of me; my blood was slowly rising to a boil. This was a different kind of an energy that I felt I could manage. Struggling to contain myself, I tried to place the energy into a specific area of my body. My hands trembled. I clenched and unclenched my fists, struggling to gain control. The stronger the electricity grew, the more I could control it, so the logical place for me to concentrate was on my hands. As I did this, the collective energy rushed down through my body into my fingers. I experienced the electricity through my palms and fingertips, almost as if I was holding it.

By that point, we exited the stairway and entered onto the second floor. Teachers' offices surrounded us on either side of the hallway. At the end of the long corridor stood the Principal’s Office with a gold nameplate that read “Dr. Amory Saint.”

Now that the energy saturated my hands, it felt too much for me. My entire body shook from the force, and I struggled to contain the power of it. I had no idea what that meant; all I knew was that I wanted these people to continue thinking I was a normal teenage girl, especially if I was on my way to plead my case.

Two potted ferns sat on either side of Principal Saint’s doorway. As we approached, I thought of the logical thing to do, although, in reality, this entire experience lacked any kind of logic. As casually as possible, I pointed my hands in the direction of one of the pots and let the energy go. This seemed the only natural course, although I was unsure of what prompted me to do it.

A bright light shot from my hands, and to my shock and horror, the potted plant exploded. Dirt, leaves, and shards of ceramic flew everywhere. I let out a loud scream and stopped dead in my tracks. That was not at all what I had expected to happen.

My body stopped shaking; the electricity was gone. I felt wonderful, the best I had felt in years. It was as if whatever had built up inside of me and caused all those terrible things to happen was finally gone. I let out a small smile of triumph.

My elation however, only lasted a second. Thoroughly proud of myself, and realizing how good I felt, I looked up to see that not only Kiran, but also Mrs. Truance, were covered in dirt and leaves.

Mouths tightly closed, mimicking each other, they turned around to look at me, and waited for an explanation. Mrs. Truance’s burgundy suit and her glasses, covered in grime, were completely worthless. She let out an angry sigh, spewing dirt from her lips. Kiran’s dirty blonde tussles, turned black from dirt; white dust and shrapnel from the ceramic covered him from head to toe. I held back a laugh when I noticed a fern leaf resting precariously on the top of his head.

“Oh, my gosh. That was the weirdest thing I have ever seen! Are you guys Ok? What happened?” Words and lies rushed out of my mouth. Feeling ridiculous, I just prayed they bought it.

“You did this,” Kiran glared at me, angrily and accusingly.

“How could I have possibly done that?” I laughed aloud, hoping to pass myself off as incredulous. I sounded more hysterical than anything. “I was way back here. How could I have done that?”

“Mag-” Kiran started.

“Oh my, must have been a prank,” Mrs. Truance interrupted Kiran. “Those nasty little underclassmen are always pulling stunts like this.” She physically pushed him out of the way of the office door. “Mr. Kendrick, go clean up. Ms. Matthews, since you are unscathed you will see Dr. Saint first.” Her voice, void of emotion, confirmed that she didn’t believe a word she had just said. I doubted Kiran did either.

I followed the direction of her pointed finger and entered Principal Saint’s office. Small bits of dirt and ceramic littered the floor; I was careful to walk over them.

“Close the door behind you,” a deep, sophisticated voice ordered me.

I obeyed, moving the debris out of the way with the sliding door. The door closed with a final click as I turned to look at the man who had spoken.

Dr. Amory Saint, a man in his late fifties; his dark, almost black hair complemented his even darker eyes. He was handsome, or maybe more distinguished than handsome; but either way he seemed to be a man that got things done. He actually resembled one of the bad guys in a James Bond movie.

“Please sit down, Ms. Matthews,” He pointed to one of two, elegant leather, sitting chairs opposite his large, mahogany desk. Again, I did as I was told.

“Welcome, Eden. May I call you Eden?” I nodded my head, afraid to make a sound. I never felt more intimidated and I wasn't sure if it was because of the thousands of books lining every available wall space and cluttering the gigantic, opposing desk, or if it was because I knew this man held my fate in his hands.

“I hope you are making yourself at home in our humble school,” he looked to me again, and I nodded, although I would have called Kingsley anything but humble. “That’s good…. I wanted to check in with you, just to see how you are adjusting,” Here he looked to me and paused; I could tell he was waiting for a verbal response.

“Um, yes, I’m adjusting, um, just fine. Thank you,” I stammered.

“That’s good.” he repeated. “And everything is to your liking?” again he waited for me to respond.

“Yes, everything is just fine,” I managed a small smile, hoping that maybe if this wasn’t a meeting to expel me, then I could go.