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Malia Grace Russet

"Do whatever you want, I don't care. Just don't bother me"

0 · 2,781 views · located in Wonderland Academy

a character in “A Twist in Wonderland”, as played by Possibility


Theme- Northern Downpour

“The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.”

Name: Malia Grace Russet

Age: 16, but 17 in just a few weeks time- she hopes for a wonderful tea party that she won't fall asleep at

Grade: Junior

Gender: Female

Eye Color: Brown

Hair Color/Length: Long blonde/brown

Height: 5'1

Weight: 125

Scars: A few, but not all that many, knife scars along her arms and legs. They are from the knife fights she got into as a child, and she doesn't try to hide them. Why would she?

Tattoos: {If any}

Birthmarks: A birthmark on her lower back. It sort of looks like a thin tail, because it starts where a tail would be and sort of ends wrapped around her right side.

Piercings: Ears, but other than that no

Role: Dormouse

Club: Tea Club

Mental Disorder: Apathy

Oddity: She likes her sleep- there is nothing wrong with that

Sexuality: Well, she would say bi, but she really doesn't care enough to 'find her sexuality'.

Romantic Interest: That's laughable. She doesn't want to have to deal with someone else being happy because of her when she can't be happy because of them.

Nationality: English/Irish... moved to England from Ireland as a kid

Job: A small bookstore no one ever comes to. It's like paying her to sleep.

Ethnicity: Caucasian/Irish


Danger Level: Three at worst. She is normally to uncaring and tired to get involved in anything, but she is a loyal kinda' person and she will not hesitate to go after anything that threatens her few friends too much

Dominant Emotion: That's not a very easy to answer thing.. is 'passive' an emotion? Though, when she does feel any emotion, it is normally anger or happiness.

Personality: Well, deep deep down, she is a very creative, smart, happy-go-lucky, and strange individual. Though, those parts of her bubble to the surface very rarely as she really couldn't care less most of the time. She doesn't feel emotion like a normal person does, it's all filtered through and almost not there by the time she feels it , so the large parts of her personality are very hidden. To most people, she is simply an individual who sleeps a lot, likes to poke things with knives, and is all around very distant from everything but her 'club', which she is loyal and almost caring towards, even if she really can't 'care' all that much.

Special Skills/Abilities/Powers: She can handle a knife well, but other than that she is very quick on her feet and that's about it


  • Quiet
  • Things that make her feel anything, though that is a daunting task
  • Knives. She doesn't understand why people are so afraid of them- they are shiny and they make red liquid pour from you... how could that be bad? It almost makes her feel something when she uses one, weather on herself or (very rarely) another.
  • Sleeping. Lots and lots of it.
  • The Tea Club. The others are so different and loud... she feels almost human and normal when she talks to them because everything they say is filled with emotion and it makes her feel it, too, in a very dull way.


  • Knife-throwing and fighting
  • Painting. She likes to see the world a different way, and she does dream a lot, so she has inspiration.
  • Writing, for almost the same reason as above
  • Cooking... she had to make almost all her own meals as a child
  • Distancing herself from everything around her. She doesn't get emotionally attached to anything, so she is very good at solving arguments in a way that makes both parties happy. That is, when she does anything.
  • Sneaking around... she often doesn't want to be found, and she is very good at making sure no one can find her then.


  • Being woken up
  • Intruders, of any kind. But mostly intruders who wish to intrude on her business and her friends' wishes.
  • Meat. She is a strict vegetarian, but she does cook meat. She had a younger sister who was more meatetarian than vegetarian, so she learned to cook it, despite the fact that it makes her want to puke.
  • People who ask her why she doesn't act happy. Because that's stupid. If she isn't happy, why should she act it?
  • Anyone who tells her what to do


  • Because she doesn't feel scared, she will often get into fights with people larger and stronger than her.
  • She is fiercely loyal to her friends, and will do almost anything for them
  • She does sleep an awful lot, so she misses out on important things very often.


  • She will often be told something that should make her angry or sad, but she will just continue the conversation because she doesn't understand that it should.
  • Despite the fact that she can fight and isn't afraid to, she is fairly small and weak compared to other people.
  • She is almost too reliant on her friend's help in making sure she is awake and getting her out of sticky situations.
  • She will sometimes laugh for no reason what so ever- that normally happens on her 'better' days.


  • Writing
  • Reading
  • Painting
  • Sleeping- its harder than it looks. You have to find a comfy spot and then people insist on waking you.
  • Hiding. Not being found has a certain thrill to her.


Typical Attire: Malia prefers simple, comfy clothing. However, once in a while she will dress up prettily for almost no reason. On those days she almost has emotions... like she's back to her normal self. Those days are very rare. Her closet consists of one or two very nice outfits and the rest are soft, cotton tees and downy shorts and pants in varying colors.

Keepsakes: She has her sister's hat, which she almost never wears except when she feels like her normal self and a necklace that she wears constantly.
Image (She found it in one of the books in the bookstore while she was looking around. She thought it was fitting to the school)

History: She was born to Victoria Grace Russet and Jacobs Martin Russet. She was a fairly strange child, frequently going to sleep in class. What made it worse was the fact that when she was eight, a few weeks after her family had moved to England, she saw her mother and sister get murdered outside of her home on their way to the car she had almost gone to with them. After that, she became emotionless toward everything- she saw her father and her aunts and uncles come to the spot their loved one had died and she couldn't take it- she cracked. Her mind protected itself from that loss by never letting anything in again. She became emotionless and a shell of her former self. Doctors said that she was suffering apathy, but that she would get better. She never did. She was haunted by the dreams of what she had seen and what had almost happened to her. She became fixated with the object the attacker had used- a knife. She taught herself to use it swiftly and throw it with ease as a way of coping, and she felt no empathy when she accidentally cut a girl around her age of 12 when she got in the way. After that, she was labeled the sleeping horror for all the rest of her middle years. She let them call her that- it wasn't as if she felt sadness when they did. Soon enough, she graduated and her father, not knowing where to put a child like herself and knowing that no regular school would accept her- he had to pull strings to get her through middle school as it was. He found a perfect school, one that would accept her because of her above-average mind (which he still doubted even though she got all A's without ever listening to teachers) and her disorder. She was shipped off almost immediately, and she began her second year. Soon after, she discovered the Tea Club. She loved to hang around them- they were so loud and emotional that they almost made her emotional too, something she had long forgotten was possible by that time. It didn't take long for her to be a member, and she was all the merrier (or at least a little bit merry- she's still very emotionless even around them). Now, she is starting her second year and aspires (or not, because she really doesn't wish all that much) to sleep even more and that's about it.

Other: N/A


So begins...

Malia Grace Russet's Story

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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"Now, make sure that you continue your studies. No slacking off, and if you get into any trouble, I'm having you shipped back here immediately."

A soft frown flitted across the young girl's face, and for a moment, she stared down at the box in her hands. When she turned her face upwards to look at her grandmother, she nodded slightly.

"I understand, grandmother," she said quietly, her fingers tightening slightly around the box, which held bubble-wrapped mementos from her childhood. The old woman held her chin high, attempting to look down her nose at the taller, younger girl and failing, yet succeeding in sending small chills down her spine.

"I sincerely hope you do, child. You know the consequences of not meeting my standards. Ensure that you keep up, or it's off to military school," she said stiffly, her knobby hands folded over one another.

Valerie looked at her, the woman that had taken care of her since she was eight, and on a sudden urge, placed the box on top of the limousine, her arms throwing around the frail woman.

"I'll miss you, grandmother. I'm ..." There were no amount of words that could express the emotions that she was feeling in that moment. Sorrow, joy, anxiety, nervousness, anticipation; they were all a jumbled mess together in the pit of her stomach, causing a butterfly-feeling of sorts deeply within. When she finally released her and turned away from the mansion that had become her home-away-from-home, she felt an odd sense of freedom, as if she were escaping some sort of a prison.

She had never felt more free then she did in that moment.

The drive across Europe was long and exhausting, and the ferry that she was to board and take across the Pacific Ocean was large and impressive; nothing less then what she expected her grandmother to do. The valet that had driven her assisted her in handing over her bags, most of which had already been sent to the Academy, the ones that she carried merely a couple of boxes that she had packed last minute, and her travel-on bag.

By the time she arrived in America, a day after she had left her grandmother's, she was more then ready to get settled in at the school and have a full-night's rest.

It was another two hours before Valerie reached the Academy's gates, and when she did, the window slid down and she leaned out, eager to breathe in the fresh air of the forest that surrounded it. By the time that they reached the front of the school, it was the middle of the school day, so around eleven o'clock in the morning, and a total of a day and a half after she had left.

The Head Dean of the school was there to greet her, having had received word of her arrival, and hastened to greet the young woman whose grandmother had donated a hefty amount of money, especially to get her in after the school year had begun. The forty-something-year-old woman gave her a brief tour of the campus using the map that had been emailed to Valerie. She explained how certain things worked around the campus, and then basically left the girl to find her merry way on her own. The driver who had brought her from the ferry and to the school bid her good-luck and then left, almost in a hurry it seemed, but with a slight shrug, she turned back to the school. Two teachers that had been standing with the Dean had already taken her things with them to her room, and she had been told that she was free to do whatever she wanted for the rest of the day - so long as it didn't break any rules, involve her leaving the campus, and that she didn't travel into the forest surrounding the campus.

With a slight shrug, she set off in search of food, figuring that perhaps there was some sort of lunch period going on at eleven-thirty in the afternoon.

After around twenty minutes of searching - and five times where she found herself lost - she managed to arrive at the cafeteria, a bit frazzled but none-the-worse-for-wear. Sadly, it was empty, and after further investigation - basically her asking when lunch was - she discovered that Lunch A had just concluded, and Lunch B would begin in ten minutes - at precisely noon. So there she settled in to wait, the Academy's cooks taking pity on her and allowing her to buy her lunch early. After eyeing the surprisingly-delicious looking Fettuccine Alfredo pasta, she nibbled on bits of chicken that had been tossed into the mixture, her intense blue eyes traversing the room, yet her head never moving.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Sam Bryant Character Portrait: Helena White
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"If, say, you require three quarts of milk for a recipe, but the only measuring unit you had available to you was a tablespoon,roughly how many tablespoons would be needed?"
"One hundred ninety-two tablespoons",was Audrey's ready reply, as she shot her hand up and relayed the answer the moment the teacher even considered calling her.
Audrey was sitting exactly where she was best fitted to have the best classroom experience, at least to her. Second table from the windows,on the right, which was closest to the edge of the the teacher's desk. She knew she would be able to catch a breeze in the summer, which benefitted everyone really, as her patience did not bode well in the heat. Her teacher, as she had observed, also always stood a foot to the right of his desk, so she would not be an immediate victim to being called on spontaneously, but at the same time, if she raised her hand she would appear is his peripheral vision, and his instinct would be to turn slightly and call on her.
"Correct." The teacher motioned behind him to the proportion on the board, and explained how to determine the correct answer using the formula. They had discussed several different ingredients, and the girl began again to wonder why she decided to take a food class right before lunch, but then, swiveling her head around to take a few notes, found her answer right in front of her.
"Gosh, Sammy, aren't you hungry?", she teased, a good-natured grin of her face. It was only natural her brother was one of the members in her group,Audrey was a good cook and Sam just wanted to eat whatever she made. Or whatever anyone made for that matter. She shouldn't be messing with her brother's appetite, because she was hungry herself. The only thing she had had for breakfast was a bowl of cereal, and that was simply not enough with all the energy she put off. She inspected the clock behind the teacher's head, but did not wave to her, because that would be rude while the teacher was speaking. Amy was her name, and Audrey admired her ability to work in the dankest of conditions. There she was,hanging by a small nail on the wall,being forced to work at all hours, and she never complained.

"Hey, honey, don't worry about me, I am just fine." Amy said, and Audrey smiled at her endurance, and also at her southern accent which did not belong in this environment at all. She would have to ask Amy privately about her family,who were in all of the other classrooms, and whether Lenny,a janitorial mop,had kept up communications between them.

There were only a few minutes until the bell rang, which Audrey was grateful for. Her teacher cleared his throat then.
"In one week, we will commence the first cooking project of the year. Your group of four or five will find an appropriate recipe, present it and get it accepted by me,and then gather the ingredients and successfully produce it,enough for the class. Afterwards, after taste-testing it, we will discuss how the recipe can be improved."
Audrey clapped her hands excitedly. "Yay!" People turned to look, but she didn't care!
She turned to her group and smiled, "This is going to be so fun! Can you all bring in a recipe for tomorrow and then we'll pick the one that appeals to us most?" The bell rang then, and she quickly moved to her brother's side of the table and wrapped her arm around him,remembering the existence of food. "I'm starved! And you're always starved, so let's go!", and maneuvered him quickly out the door. As she steered him towards the cafeteria,she rambled on about..well,nothing important actually.

"Do you think felines are just hiding their ability to speak human languages? So, if we created a truth serum that could work on,like,lions, do you think they would speak Portugese,and then after we got a translator,he'd say things like 'The chicken frosted the cupcake'? And then, we would think he was so random and silly, but truthfully it is a secret spy code that the lion retrieved from an alien race, and the code means, 'We attack at midnight'?"

Audrey was always brimming with the most random theories, but she thought if she voiced them, and someone experimented with her hypothesis, one of them might actually save the world. Audrey was wearing her second-best autumn outfit,which included a comfy violet cashmere sweater, and her boots with the smallest amount of heel, which she felt oddly confident in. As they neared the cafeteria she took in a big breath as she could smell them preparing the good food. It was torturous, but at the same time delectable.
"God, why did I choose to smell?! I'm killing myself!", she stopped at this, and realized this sounded a lot more like the person under her arm. "Oh no, I'm turning into you!" She made a mock-horrified face, and then laughed, a bubbly,tinkly thing.

As they stepped inside and Audrey scanned the cafeteria, she was disappointed to find that none of her friends had beat her there. Well, she had been going rather fast, and it was a miracle she had even stopped to pick up her own brother in the process.Oh,no! Helena!She discreetly got out her phone and texted her best friend.
I'm so sorry sweetie,I was so hungry!
She felt a pang of guilt, but quickly put it to the back of her mind. Helena would forgive her.Her eyes moved across many familiar faces, and then, suddenly, an unfamiliar one.
I have never seen that girl before.
Motivation of food abandoned, Audrey walked her and her brother over to the girl, who was quite pretty, but looked a little lost in the activity.
"Hello!", she welcomed. She sat next to the girl and hugged her soundly. This was not a strange practice to the girl,as she hugged anyone with whom she thought had a kind aura.
"You look very new to me. Are you a transfer?" She was curious why the girl was sitting alone, and frowned at this.
She then realized it probably wasn't very nice to hug strangers, especially if they did not want to be hugged. "Oh my, I'm sorry if you didn't want to be hugged! I do it without thinking!" She said this sincerely, concern in her eyes.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Sam Bryant Character Portrait: Helena White
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Sam's eyes were riveted on the clock as it slowly ticked down the minutes until lunch. At various times, he could have sworn the second hand stopped, or jumped back one or two spots just to tease him as his lunch was so close, yet so very far away. Suppressing a yawn, his hand made it's way up to his mouth to cover it involuntarily and caused his stomach to grumble quite noisily. Audrey was straight as an arrow in her chair close to him, while he sat slouched over, resting his head on his arms as his eyes strayed past his sister to Chess a bit away. He would have to think of something witty to say to her later, but for now... 'Sooooo close...' His eyes returned to the clock once more.

A grumbled approval was the only response he felt capable of as his sister teased him with her comment. The two cinnamon rolls he had eaten this morning were coupled with his bowl of oatmeal, a banana, and another granola bar as he made his way to his first class earlier. And they had faded long ago...each second torturing him as the bell refused to just go off already. Audrey was currently excited about the sneak peek they had just been given into their next assignment and Sam couldn't suppress the grin that sprang to his face. His sister was always so animated about everything and anything, from an amazing announcement to her schoolwork. She was definitely one of a kind.

The bell was like a gunshot at the beginning of a race, signaling everyone to spur into movement and flood out of the classroom. Sam let himself be easily led by his sister as she slipped her arm around him and he returned the gesture, rather than picking her up and sprinting to the cafeteria. "What if they're already just speaking 'Lionese' and are the aliens?" He inquired at his sister's new theory, smiling down at her as they entered the cafeteria. The room was relatively empty and Sam had a clear view of the food itself, sitting so delicately in all of their respective places as he began to step into their direction, only to be pulled the opposite direction by the human guide pet with an iron grip around him. 'Nooo!' He thought, 'We're going the wrong way...the's over th--!'

Sam's screaming thoughts were cut off abruptly as Audrey dropped from her spot tugging him into a chair next to a girl he had never seen before. At least, he thought he had never seen...he was never really sure, but he couldn't imagine ever forgetting a face as pretty as this girl's was. He pinched himself slightly, hoping to God he hadn't dozed off suddenly only to have the girl before him twist into some gruesome beast and wake him for another sleepless night. 'Nope, not asleep...'

Audrey had jumped right into welcoming the girl and Sam once again marveled at how easily his wonderful sister could approach someone, especially someone at this school, without hesitation and make something so awkward seem so natural. Hesitating on the balls of his feet, Sam was torn between his two favorite subjects; the new girl and the food that was ever so close...

"Audrey," Sam said to the girl his sister sat next to, "my sister. I'm Sam. Welcome to Wonderland Academy." He paused log enough to smile, but his stomach decided to choose that exact moment to remind him why they were really in the cafeteria, no matter how many pretty girls were in front of him. Scratching his head, Sam glanced at the food lines, starting to generate a few people. "Excuse me a minute, I'll be right back. I'll grab yours too Audrey." Giving his sister a slight squeeze on the shoulder, he paced quickly away and to the growing food lines.

Grabbing both of their trays, Sam began piling one with his favorites, and the other with Audrey's. 'Please for the love of god don't leave before I get back...'

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Sam Bryant Character Portrait: Helena White
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Malia had been enjoying a delightful dream about a place where everything on the ground was colored like the sky and that was how the inhabitants knew the time, and the sky was colored like the ground and served almost no purpose but growing crops. Sadly, the bell interrupted her, and she waved a lazy goodbye to the teacher as she darted to the cafeteria. If the got there quick she would have to pretend she understood what a person was so happy (or anything else, people tried to talk to her with all sorts of emotions) about when they started to talk to her. Of course, Tarrant and Harold sort of understood her after a year, but even that was not much understanding at all. Her 'We're all mad here' necklace tapped against her neck as she made a beeline for the nearest empty table, but she stopped short. Audrey, who Malia didn't really care for enough to call a true 'friend' but liked well enough to call her a 'good acquaintance' (witch was almost the best anyone could get with Malia- she really didn't divert all that much of her time to trying for things like 'caring emotions' and 'empathy' when she knew she couldn't feel them), was talking to a student Malia had never seen before. Even though Malia figured she must have slipped through her radar- it was easy to do after all- the girl looked very new and very unfamiliar. Though, the best she could manage to do was a simple wave before she sat down at her table- it would be far too much work to go over there and properly introduce herself, and she was sure one of the two people she called 'almost friends' would drag her over to be introduced anyway.

Malia threw her book bag into one of the chairs before walking over to the food lines. Even though it wasn't a good day for her, she was wearing a dress- it was black in color and very plain, like an over-sized shirt. Which it pretty much was. She also had on a jacket even though the weather wasn't right for it. It wasn't really to shield her from cold though, it was where she kept the army knife she had to fight to keep at the school, but was allowed all the same for her because she went berserk without some kind of weapon on her body. Side affect of watching murder- you became paranoid that you would be murdered. That, and the shut down of emotional centers. Well, that was how it worked for Malia at least. As she made her way through the line, which had grown considerably. Once her plate had a veggieburger on it and and apple slices, she figured she had enough and went back to her table, but not before stopping to nod to Sam, who seemed to be coming back from getting food for himself and his sister. She couldn't feel much, but she was anything but rude. Once settled, she let herself fall back into dreamland, imagining creatures to go with her Topsy-turvy land. She imagined people with jet packs as feet so they could harvest the crops and dogs with two heads that followed the sun around all day, keeping it running for it's life. The other head was in charge of the moon so the first could sleep during the night and the second could sleep during the day. She imagined a few more creatures before she got bored of that land and began to peck at her food sleepily, her mind tuning out everything.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Sam Bryant Character Portrait: Helena White
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#, as written by Polka
Helena sat next to Audrey in most lessons. Today was no exception.
Usually Helena answered all of the questions but today she was more worries about the lines of cooking utensils in front of her.
It went
Bowl, recipe, spoon, whisk and measuring spoon
when it should be
Recipe, whisk, bowl, measuring Spoon and then Spoon .

She had changed the combination so many times through the duration of the lesson, this being her fifth attempt. However, she felt satisfied with this and pulled her concentration to a pocket watch she carried.
The watch itself had not worked for over a year, Helena had gotten lazy and never taken it to get it's battery changed. Yet she still used it to tell the time and of course she always thought when looking at it that she was going to be late... or even worse... unorganized.

She began to mutter something about being late before the lesson finished. Audrey and Sam went off like a shot. Both clearly hungry, must be a Bryant thing, Helena though as she neatly gathered her things.

As she left the class her phone buzzed in a jacket pocket.
Audrey explaining her motives which made Helena giggle and she weaved silently between a small crowed of people. She hated the corridors when they were busy, it made her feel really small which is why so she was so quick to try and get into the dining area.

She entered and spotted her beautiful friend instantly. She was talking to someone new. Someone that Helena had never ever seen.
Helena remembered every face of every student, part of her OCD forced her to remember each one. So this girl was definitely new.

Instead of going straight to Audrey, Helena followed Sam to the Que ' Hey Sam. You hungry there?' she joked in a small voice before beginning to pile her own tray.
' Here, let me get Audrey's. You go and talk to the new girl '.
Helena knew that Sam was a bit of a sucker for pretty girls.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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It was only five minutes after Valerie had settled in to eat when the bell rang. Needless to say, it scared the shit out of her. She nearly flung a carrot across the room in fright. She managed to calm her fast-racing heart, but it jumped into her throat as the swarm of students came. Her normal bravery disappeared, and she found herself ducking her head, attempting to use her blonde hair as some sort of a shield. It seemed to work - at first. And then she came.

Out of nowhere, she felt arms wrap around her body, nearly strangling her in their tight grip. A soft gasp escaped Val's lips, and her head was yanked to the girl's shoulder, where her chin came to rest.

"Jesus Christ," she wheezed, more stunned at the girl's strength then by the sudden hug that came out of nowhere.

"Hello! You look very new to me. Are you a transfer?" It seemed only then that the girl realized that she was invading her personal space, and finally released her. Valerie leaned back and drew in a breath, before letting it out slowly. "Oh my, I'm sorry if you didn't want to be hugged! I do it without thinking!"

"No, it's quite alright," Valerie said quietly, leaning back to catch her breath. She brushed a stray strand of hair from her face and tucked it behind her ear. Her eyes moved to the boy that had accompanied the girl, and making a fleeting note that he was extremely handsome, she turned her attention back to the girl. But it was only to return her gaze to the boy, who had begun introductions.

"Audrey ... My sister. I'm Sam. Welcome to Wonderland Academy." His smile was calming, and she felt herself relax. "Excuse me a minute, I'll be right back. I'll grab yours too Audrey." His hand touched his sister's shoulder before he took of at a surprisingly fast walk towards the foot lines, and she leaned forward a bit to stare after him.

Nice ass though ...

A soft blush rose to her cheeks as she only then realized that the girl, Audrey, was still sitting there. And she was his sister of all things. To have had such thoughts about the girl's brother right in front of her was terrible. She dropped back onto her seat again and looked at the other girl.

"My name is Valerie. Valerie Callinder. It's a pleasure to be of your acquaintance, Audrey. And of your brother's, but I will tell him that when he returns," she said with a smile, not bothering to conceal her accent, for when she attempted to, it only ended up growing thicker.

It was at that moment that a slightly-disturbing boy with extremely curly dark hair dropped down onto a table nearby - quite loudly, might she add - and propped his feet on a chair. That's a bit disrespectful ... It wasn't her business, however, and with a slight shrug, she turned back to the conversation at hand, which was with Audrey, and attempted to ignore the stare that she was receiving from the boy.

Once again, however, her attention was taken from Audrey and redirected to the next person to approach the table. Her neck was beginning to ache from turning her head so often, and she was growing annoyed with it. When she saw who had slammed their tray onto the table across from her, though, her annoyed state was dashed from her, and instead replaced with a joyous one that could not be swiped away by anything.

"Tarrant!?" she blinked, her eyes fluttering quickly in surprise. After the surprise had faded, a slow grin began to stretch across her face, and before she realized what she was doing, she had propped one foot on top of the seat she was currently using, and threw herself across the table. She had successfully ended up tackling Tarrant from his seat, but oddly enough, she didn't care. She was far too busy squealing with excitement.

"Tarrant, Tarrant, Tarrant!" she cried, her arms latched around his neck. "I've missed you, Mister Hatter!" she laughed, burying her face in his shoulder. She clung to him like that for several moments, before she leaned back and dropped onto the heels of her feet, finally releasing him. Her smile trembled a bit, however, as she helped him up and he introduced her to Audrey, whom she had already met and would undoubtedly be confused by the different names. Therefore, she spun on her heel to face the girl, a sheepish grin on her face.

"My sincerest apologies for the confusion, Audrey," she said, her accent causing a slight lilt to be heard when she spoke the name for the first time. "My name is Alice Valerie Callinder, but I prefer to go by Valerie. It's quite a long story, but I would great appreciate your kindness in calling me by my preferred name," she said quietly, her eyes glancing down.

She hadn't told Tarrant about Amanda yet, and hadn't planned to until ... Well ... Never, actually. But now that she was faced with seeing him day-in and day-out?

She had no choice but to tell him.

Her grin faded as a deep sorrow rose up in her and threatened to burst in what would be a tsunami of tears if she allowed it to release and free itself. But with what she considered a great deal of strength, she shoved it back and instead lifted her hand to reach for her ever-present necklaces. She drew them out from under her dress, holding both lockets in the palm of her hand.

"Amanda ... She's ..." A pause, for she was almost certain that she wouldn't be able to continue. After a trembling, deep breath, she wrapped her fingers around the lockets and rings, closed her eyes, and spit out the words in a quick breath.

"She's dead, Tarrant. Skilled killed herself two months ago. That's why ... That's why I'm here."

She turned away, her eyes tightly closed and her face oddly pale. Her lips were dry. She couldn't help it.

"I'm ... I'm sorry. If you'll excuse me," she said, her voice a raspy whisper. She turned and ducked around Tarrant, her boots making soft taps on the floor as she fled the room, her hand tight around the lockets. She rushed past Sam and a girl that was speaking to him, ducking her head so as to hide the faint tears that clung on her lashes, and practically threw herself through the doors. She didn't stop running until she felt a small twinge in her side, which was the side-affect of running so soon after she had ate. She leaned against a set of lockers, her hands on her knees as she bent over at the waist, and her eyes closed.

A sly, female voice tore her out of her attempt to catch her breath.

"And who might you be?"

Valerie jumped and stumbled back a few steps, her head darted from side to side. She turned in a complete circle, before finally looking up and spotting a girl who was currently lounging on top of the lockers.

"You should get down from there, doll, else you hurt yourself," she said, her brows drawn together.

"Oh, please ... And refer to me as Chess or Cheshire."

"I seem to fancy calling you Cheshire Puss more then Chess or Cheshire, for how could you have managed to climb those lockers unless you were as lithe as a cat? Also, would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?"

"That depends a good deal on where you want to get to," the girl replied.

"I don't much care where--' Valerie began.

"Then it doesn't matter which way you go," the girl cut in.

"--so long as I get SOMEWHERE," Valerie concluded, so as to explain further.

"Oh, you're sure to do that, if you only walk long enough," the girl instructed lazily.

This was getting her nowhere, and Val could feel her frustrations rising. In an effort to calm herself, she held her breath, counted to ten, and let it out slowly before trying again. "What sort of people live about here?"

"In that direction," she motioned towards the cafeteria, "lives a Hatter." She couldn't possibly be talking about Tarrant ... Could she? "And in that direction, she motioned the way that Valerie had been heading, "Lives a March Hare. Visit either you like: they're both mad."

They're both mad? Either she meant they were angry, or insane, bu there wasn't any way they could be either, and there was no way that she could know if both were angry in that moment. "But I don't want to go among mad people," she frowned, her brows drawing together.

"Oh, you can't help that," she chuckled, moving slightly to stretch. "We're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad."

This was ridiculous. "How do you know I'm mad?" she asked, her eyes narrowing.

"You must be, or you wouldn't have come here." But it was a school, for crymony's sakes! Of course she would come here. It was a prestigious school for teenagers with her intellect. What did insanity have to do with any of it? What the girl had said did not prove the theory of madness in the least.

"And how do you know that you're mad?"

"To begin with, a dog's not mad. You grant that?"

"I ... I suppose so," Valerie answered cautiously.

"Well, then ... You see, a dog growls when it's angry, and wags its tail when it's pleased. Now I growl when I'm pleased, and wag my tail when I'm angry. Therefore I'm mad."

"I call it purring, not growling," she pointed out, priding herself on being quite the smart ass, for it was true; the girl resembled a cat so entirely that it was almost frightening.

"Call it what you like."

The girl practically slinked away, a mysterious grin on her face.

"What the fuck ... Was that?" Her sorrow momentarily gone, she stared after the girl with an expression that was one of disbelief mixed with confusion and awe.

"What ... The fuck?"

With a shake of her head, she puffed out a breath and headed back in the direction of the cafeteria. When she returned, she was obviously embarrassed, but her tears had dried and she was calm once more. She did, however, approach the table that she had been sitting at before with a weariness that was obvious enough to cut with a knife.

"I'm ... I'm sorry about before," she said sheepishly, shifting her weight a bit. "I just can't help but grow upset when I think of my sister. It won't happen again," she said, sliding back into her seat. She plucked up her apple and held it out towards Tarrant with a grin. "Yours fell on the floor, you big oaf. You should be more careful with your food. After all these years, and I'm still picking up after and feeding you," she laughed, leaning across the table and press the apple between his teeth so that it stayed. She then leaned back and looked up at Sam and the girl from before as they approached the table, for she hadn't been gone long, but long enough for them to finish getting food for themselves and Audrey.

"Hello, my name is Valerie. It's a pleasure," she said, holding her hand out to the girl. She cast a wink at Sam after shaking the girl's hand, and then lowered herself back into her seat. "I am from Germany, but I lived her when I was younger. Is there any advice that you lot can give me about the school?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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'And then there was pie....'

Sam reached for a piece as he set one on his and Audrey's trays, the crisp and flaky crust and gooey golden center looking more and more delicious the closer it came until finally setting it on the plastic trays. The two trays were a direct contrast from each other as well; Sam's piled with a random assortment of any and all things he considered eating at the moment, and Audrey's delicately put together with her usual. 'So different in appearance, yet how well the two went together...'

His eyes left the two trays as he caught sight of Malia for a moment as she glided easily past him. Her plain dress and not-at-all extravagant clothing seemed to focus more attention on her beautiful features and Sam had a hard time not following her with his eyes as she nodded to him before passing by on her way. 'I definitely joined the wrong club.'

"Here, let me get Audrey's. You go and talk to the new girl."

A familiar voice behind him piped up and Sam wiped the stupid grin off his face, only to have it replaced at the sight of his fellow club member, and Audrey's best friend, Helena. Being a tad distracted, he hadn't noticed her walk up and begin loading her own tray. 'Wait, new girl?' He had no idea who she was talking about, Malia was by no means a new girl. Trying to puzzle it out for a moment, Sam turned back to look at her sister, now sitting with Tarrant, a rather comical man, and a blonde-haired girl... 'Oh crap, the new girl!' Mentally slapping himself, he couldn't believe he had nearly forgotten all about the new arrival.

"Helena, you are the best, you know that?" Sam began to turn so fast back toward the table, he nearly slung his tray with all of his precious food atop it. But he paused for a moment, realizing how much of an idiot he was seeming at the moment. He picked up Audrey's tray with his off hand, and gestured back toward the table for Helena to follow. There was no reason for the smaller girl to carry two trays while he selfishly only carried his own. "It's fine," he laughed, "I'll wait for you, it's not like she's going anywhere..." And when he turned back, his face blanched as the girl made a quick exit from the cafeteria. 'Damn...'

He was a second too late, but he still would have done the same. Helena was too good of a friend to just abandon for a pretty face he didn't even know...yet. So he waited patiently as Helena finished with her tray and walked with her back to the table. And to his delighted surprise, the girl arrived back just before they did. Placing Audrey's tray before her, he walked around the other side of the table so Helena could sit next to his sister, nodding to Dean in the process. Taking up the seat next to Tarrant, he greeted the colorful giant before returning his attention to the blue-eyed goddess before him.

"Hello, my name is Valerie. It's a pleasure," Sam let out a small smile as her beautiful blue eyes turned to him and one closed in a wink. "I am from Germany, but I lived her when I was younger. Is there any advice that you lot can give me about the school?"

"I need to move to Germany," Sam said under his breath, only loud enough for Tarrant to hear. But before he could prepare his most flirtatious and flattering comment, he caught sight of the small entourage making their way toward the table. And that group made no detours as they bee-lined their way to the new girl.

Bouncing slightly, the perfect, shoulder-length curls of spun gold framed a very delicate and more than pretty face that housed rose-petaled lips and deep, gorgeous brown eyes. The tall girl always had urgency in her stride, adding to the appeal and allure of her womanly charms. Meg Tharamel was incredibly attractive, as most women were in Sam's eyes, but at the same time, she was one of the most hideous creatures he had ever laid eyes on. Dwarfed only by a few of her lackeys that clung to her. Her amazing eyes always seemed to hold a vicious light to them and her smile only seemed to rear its beautiful head at the worst of times. 'Such a shame...'

Sam cleared his throat and drew attention to those approaching. "I believe you are about to get a crash course on exactly what you should avoid at this school Valerie..."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Sam Bryant Character Portrait: Helena White
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Audrey had closed her eyes a long time ago.
It had started out easily enough. Her brother had introduced them,and then went to go get them some food, for which she was appreciative.The girl had familiarized herself as Valerie, and Audrey had smiled broadly,sure that another friend could be made. She regarded her charming accent, knowing that it was German because her online tutor spoke to her in the same way, their pronunciation compatible. This reminded her that tomorrow was another session,and she would be glad to see her teacher again after her unexpected leave to another country to visit her mother, who had fallen ill. Audrey knew she would never be able to complete all the language classes in school, so she preferred to do some independent learning in her free time, twice a week.
And then Tarrant had come. As usual, he was loud in dress and presence, and Audrey's eyes were immediately glued to him as he shouted a greeting to her, and he had looked at her too, which made her tuck her ear behind her hair and grin. His attention strayed from her though, as she knew it would, to Valerie, and she was startled when they made their pleasantries, which was a completely flexible term, since she had thrown herself on him in a rather dramatic way, but Audrey was excited to know that they knew each other,even though she was a bit confused on why Valerie's name was now Alice,and wondered if Tarrant had confused Valerie for her twin,Alice. Was she excited,though? She was, partially,but half of her was not. You could not say she felt a pang,but rather a constriction in her chest, and Audrey was uncomfortable as she did not recognize the emotion that was spreading through her.
This is so strange. Why does my chest hurt? She started to breathe a little faster and her eyebrows furrowed,and she was scared, and she had to run for help,and this had never happened to her before,and was she having a heart attack, she was having a heart attack!
She blinked several times and forced herself to calm down, and just as she was getting over this emotion, listening to Alice/Valerie as she explained her preferred choice in names, saying, "Oh, of course I won't pry, and of course I'll call you Valerie", Valerie had started to cry.
Oh, no! She's crying! Oh my God, what happened?!
And as Valerie quietly explained that her sister had passed away, Audrey felt another constriction, but this time a familiar one, one of empathise and sadness. Tears pricked to Audrey's own eyes, and she imagined Sammy,her own brother, and she wondered what she would do if he passed away, and then tears starting running down her cheeks.
Oh, I simply could not bear it if that happened to me! If Sammy died, I would die!
Valerie had excused herself and left at this point, and Audrey cried out to Tarrant, "Tarrant that is simply awful! I wouldn't want to be anywhere if my sibling died!" And she just sat there, quietly breathing to herself, but it didn't work, because if Sammy died she wouldn't know what to do with herself, and now her imagination was running away with her, and it showed her Sam in a casket, and a sob escaped her lips.
But then Valerie was back, and she was grinning and teasing, and Audrey was so confused that she thought Valerie had to be bipolar.Then her brother was back, and so was Helena, and the girl tried to wipe the tears off her face. Then, a frightening presence was in her vicinity, and when the teenager turned and saw Meg, she groaned internally.
Everything was happening so fast!!!
"Hello, my name is Valerie. It's a pleasure. I am from Germany, but I lived here when I was younger. Is there any advice that you lot can give me about the school?" Her manner of speaking was very formal.
Audrey was a girl that liked to soak in the details around her, and the world to her was always in high-definition. Every event that happened, she tried to gather as much information as possible. The arrival of the new girl and her relation to Tarrant was one event. She had absorbed their smiling grinning faces, their animated responses to each other, the way their faces lit up with the promise of a revival of an old,deep friendship, making conclusions such as how they probably did know each other since they were little,that Valerie had to be a sweet,kind girl, and that Tarrant's outfit did not match at all but she didn't care. Her brother and Helena were another event entirely, and they were now mixing with her previous event. Sam's eagerness for food, how he preferred lunch over a new beautiful face, how in the corner of her eye she had seen him interacting with Helena, and also him preparing their trays, and she knew he would fix hers exactly to her liking. Then they had walked over here, and the flirty exchanges between Valerie and Sammy had not escaped her, and she had rolled her eyes internally to another girl vying for Sam's attention.She also saw Helena's small smile, her hesitant way of making friends evident, and this was endearing to her. Meg and her entourage were the last main event, and a strong one at that, potent in the foreshadowing of doom. They stalked over here because Audrey knew Meg was insistent on knowing all business, and she probably wanted to take Alice under her wing as another loyal follower.
At the same time, the girl had been observing other small details of the lunchroom as a whole. Dean examining them from a distance. Malia's small nod, but at the same time her wariness to get any closer. Meg's poor brother hauling her things across the lunch room. How the tables were in a controversial conversation over religion that was beginning to become deafening. How hungry she was.
Her brain was on overload, her emotions overwhelmed with them being used so quickly, so fleetingly, and her head was dizzy from processing so many things.
So now her eyes were closed, and her cheeks were drying. She sniffled.
I will calm down now. It's okay now. You're going to not think of one thing at a time,anymore Audrey, but instead take in the picture as a whole, like if you were in a movie. And this made her feel better, and she opened her eyes and apologized.
"I would also like to apologize. Sometimes peoples' emotions become my own." She heard the doctor tell her this once, that sometimes, with her mind, things happening too fast were not good for her,although it didn't happen all the time. She didn't remember the disorder she had, though.
"I believe you are about to get a crash course on exactly what you should avoid at this school Valerie..." her brother said ominously.
She turned her head to look at Meg now, who was at the table.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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#, as written by Polka

Helena followed Sam back to the table. She stayed quiet and sat next to Audrey who seemed to be having a small breakdown. The small blonde girl placed her hand over Audrey's just so she knew not to worry.

She did not introduce herself to the new girl. Mainly because she didn't really know how to. Instead she decided to eat. She set her tray out the same as always. Soup in the center and bread to the top right. Spoon on the bottom and juice on the left hand side. She picked up the spoon and began to clean it with a small handkerchief she kept in her pocket.

She began to eat, mostly ignoring her surroundings, hoping that everyone would ignore her in the process. She sipped at her carrot soup, occasionally peering up to check on the groups conversation.

Tarrent had arrived and of course Audrey was swooning and so was the new girl which made Helena smile. It was nice to see s small amount of normality in a place that was so insane. It almost reminded her of watching normal people in love. As she let her mind wander she did not realize the new group approaching the table. It was not until they were right next to her that she realized it was Meg and her gang of idiots.

Helena was terrified and began to shake. Her mind kept repeating hide... hide.... hide but there was nowhere to hide.. except under the table which would draw more attention to her.
She was just hoping that the new girl would take all the attention off her.


Petra waited patiently outside her Queens classroom. She had been send out for disruptive behavior... again.

As the class started to pack away she moved to the opposite side of the corridor. You often had to keep on your toes with Meg around so it was always better to see her face to face.
Meg of course came out of the classroom first followed by her brother and Ace. Petra did not smile at them and simply took her place beside Meg. It was where she usually stood in the group almost like a body guard and adviser. However, she knew that Meg only kept her around to do her bidding, not that Petra minded because most of Meg's bidding allowed Petra to cause other people pain.

As they made thier way to the Cafeteria, Meg threw her bag to Cyrus who clearly had not been paying attention. Petra turned her head to him and gave him a half smile ' Good catch ' she muttered as the four of them entered the Cafeteria.

It was as boring as always, the chess club were already sitting down. Petra found each member irritating.. Audrey the 'leader' was always happy, how can someone always be happy? Maybe she wouldn't seem so happy with a black eyes Petra wondered as Meg picked up speed towards that table. There was someone new there... how fun.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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Malia had finished her lunch long ago, but sleep was evading her. She knew why, too. The loud rampage of emotion from the table behind her. She had known the exact moment Tarrant had arrived, being the loudest of all, and Malia had smiled at the fact Tarrant already knew the girl. She figured if he liked her, she had to be okay as a person. It was tempting to go introduce herself as well, that way the the girl- Alice? Tarrant had called her Alice, but she seemed to be more adamant about being called something else- something with a V. No matter. If she introduced herself, The Girl (in caps, for now, as she didn't know what to call her) would know two-thirds of the tea club and Malia assumed she would like to know the people Tarrant talked with, considering their very loud introduction to each other.

After much debate with herself, over if it would be worth it at all to go over there, she figured it wouldn't hurt to introduce herself, so she turned around in her chair. Of course, she didn't get much farther than that. The Wicked Witch seemed to be wishing for another monkey. Didn't she have enough already? Malia hated most of them with as much hate as she could muster (it wasn't much), but especially the females. She couldn't bring herself to really 'hate' the males, because one of them was detached and if she could get close enough to talk and not be stabbed, she might be his friend, and one was just a boy who loved pain. She could understand that. One look at her wrists would atone for that. Still, she had to make a choice. Walk over still and deal with that or simply do her best to ignore it.

Malia really already knew the answer, and as much as she would rather ignore it, as it wasn't like she had any problem with letting them ignore her and sleeping, Tarrant was over there and she could talk to them, take their hate and not feel it. It was like a superpower really. Sad it had to come with so many downfalls. Malia sighed to herself and stood, walking over to the table. She didn't waste energy with pleasantries, but she did manage a small smile to Tarrant and a curt wave to the others. Wouldn't be in her better interests to talk. It wasn't like she would get anything out of it. In many ways, she was the exact opposite of Audrey. Audrey took emotions from everything and would become overwhelmed by them, Malia didn't bother with them at all, opting to think as rationally as she could in a school for the insane.

It really was difficult for Malia to understand all of the complex things that went on in this school- they were all emotion driven after all. She couldn't understand why people seemed to truly hate the Gardening Club. True, they were innturuptive and mean, but she could understand that. She only hated them for being loud and interrupting her sleep with mean words every once in a while. Didn't matter though. They seemed to feed off of that hate, and Malia still wanted to put a stop to it. If they had no more energy to fight for whatever it was they liked fighting for, they wouldn't be nearly as annoying.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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Thank you Helena.

Sam thought to himself silently as he saw the small gesture his friend did for his sister. The all too familiar empathetic side of Audrey seemed to start creeping out at various times, and Sam knew the worth of even the simplest of things that his beloved sister could latch onto. Unfortunately, the kind gesture didn't last nearly long enough as the bubble of merriment and solace around them was shattered by the Gardening Club.

To Sam's surprise though, Dean unlatched himself from his seat a table over and led the taunts against the school's number one tyrants. As expected of mostly anyone in the school, Dean was as random as anyone could ask for and made a quick exit shortly after, causing Sam to nearly choke as he tried not to spit his food in laughter. He knew Dean half as much as he should, but everything he had ever seen of the guy was a complete riot. One Sam thoroughly enjoyed witnessing...

But the joyous moment was short-lived as Meg began berating Valerie with the uncommonly hostile tone she always seemed to use when addressing anyone outside her pack of goons. Trying to ignore it all and counting the seconds until they all decided to just give up and leave the group in peace already, Sam found himself bothered with the whole situation. So much so, he stopped eating....

His hands stopped picking at the food still on his plate and folded atop each other in front of him, a very evident sign of annoyance to anyone who really knew Sam. Only then did he notice Helena, shaking at the presence of Meg and her entourage. His heart went out to his friend, but the reaction was a common one when dealing with most bullies. Even common as it was, Sam never understood it. But even as these thoughts slid through his mind, he caught the eye of his sister, just before Meg flashed him a coy smile. To him, it was completely misunderstood. It seemed more like a mocking smile than anything else. As if Meg was saying: "Look what I can do. Who is going to do something about it?" And she was right, in a sense. The tables around them were talking, but in quiet whispers now, enjoying watching the engagement. It was sickening...

"Speak up, will you?!"

"Why don't you just shut that gigantic mouth of yours and leave her alone?!"

Silence... At Sam's quick snap at Meg, a switch seemed to have been hit suddenly and completely muted the area around their table. the hushed whispers immediately cutting off and all eyes snapped toward the scene. NO ONE spoke to Meg, or any of her members for that matter, in the way Sam just had. Even teachers were wary around her. But Sam couldn't help it, the slight tear streaks staining his sister's rosy cheeks after her small breakdown, Helena's terrified expression at the situation, and now they were going to try and bully a girl who had just arrived? 'For Christ's sake, as if school isn't a pain in the ass already.'

Rising from his seat, his steps seemed to echo as he walked around the table to place himself between Helena and the small group before him, allowing the trembling girl a bit of cover to hide behind. His hand fell lightly on his sister's shoulder to let her know he was fine, and noticed Malia at their table, overshadowed by Tarrant's form. 'Great,' he thought, 'now I get to look like a great ass in front of her too...' Oh well....

"Why not say something to me while you're at it, huh? Any takers?" Pausing for only a brief moment, Sam pressed on before any of them could muster an answer. "No? Nothing? Do us all a favor and slink back into whatever hellhole you morons crawled out of. Because honestly, no one cares what you have to say."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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"Tarrant?!" exclaimed Val, the expression of shock showing clear across her countenance. "Tarrant! Tarrant! Tarrant!" She just about flung herself across the lunch table, toppling the Hatter's sealed bottle of water over as she pounced. He let himself fall with the impact, his arms instinctively hugging her as he let out a cry of surprise. His shoulder blades first at full impact which should have hurt a normal person, except he was far from the norm. Instead, he let out a laugh and, after lying there hugging her for a moment, he propped himself up on his elbows.

"Me!" he cried, playfully teasing her. As her arms tightened around his neck and she buried her face against his shoulder, Tarrant flushed subtly. Oh, how he'd missed her touch! How he'd missed her! They lay there for a while and Tarrant lightly wrapped one of his lean arms around her waist, returning the hug. Val slowly helped him up and he sprung to his feet, just as peppy and cheerful as ever. Or, perhaps, he was even more so due to this wonderful reunion.

As she turned to address Audrey, he simply continued to watch her. She hadn't changed at all, in his eyes. And, yet, he knew she'd changed so much that it actually threatened to bring tears to those same, vivid green eyes. What had changed, though? What had changed to make her so similar and yet so different from his Alice? By the time she'd turned, with the smile gone from her face, the Hatter's eyes widened subtly in concern. "Valerie..."

"Amanda ... She's ..." she began, having to pause to compose herself. And yet, that pause was the red flag for Tarrant. He was so thick-skulled at times...but he knew where she was headed with this.

"Oh God...oh, Valerie, no," he begged, shaking his head slowly at first and then quicker. "No...don't say it, please."

"She's dead, Tarrant. Skilled killed herself two months ago. That's why ... That's why I'm here." A punch in the gut would have felt better. A kick in the throat would have felt better. She excused herself and ran off, leaving Tarrant there in absolute shock. He wanted nothing more than to follow her, to run after her and hold her and tell her it would be okay. But, he couldn't. Because, he knew it wouldn't be okay. Because you never truly got over the death of a loved one. The memories of his mother rushed to him and he choked them back, shaking his head slowly again.

"," he whispered, crossing his arms over his chest. A voice sounded to his side, obviously belonging to Audrey, but he was simply too stunned to make out what she said. "Y-yeah," he replied instead, deciding such a universal response would probably do the trick. Oh God, there went his high for that morning. Perhaps he could leave the cafeteria now and smoke a few cigarettes? But, by the time he'd started to get ready to leave, Valerie was already back with a more cheerful look. He forced a smile himself and decided that now he had no choice but to stay. Reluctantly, he took his spot and tapped a foot anxiously on the floor. Maybe he could skip advisory? Yes, yes, that should work...he needed something now, something this instant to take away the edge.

"Yours fell on the floor, you big oaf. You should be more careful with your food. After all these years, and I'm still picking up after and feeding you," said Valerie, holding up an apple before him. Tarrant turned his attention to her, his eyes showing just how out of it he really was. Gingerly, she pressed the apple between his teeth and he opened his mouth slowly to hold it. Only after she'd let go of the apple did he let the corners of his mouth turn upward in a smile. Slowly, he bit down on the apple, supporting it with one hand as he drummed the fingers of his other hand against the table in repetition.

More people arrived and, for a moment, his mood became a bit better. As Malia smiled at him, he smiled back and waved. "Hello there," he greeted. Then, of course, he noticed her. Meg stood at the end of the table. He looked up at her, flashing his characteristic goofy grin. "Why, hello there, Your Majesty," he said, nodding his head quickly and tipping the large hat a top his head. He glanced at her sides, looking at her followers who flanked her. Cyrus was never that bad, just a bit misguided. Petra, on the other hand, was certainly nothing but trouble. She and Ace were both trouble. Just thinking of Ace made him feel phantom pains where he'd been beaten up before by the stronger, more athletic male when the Hatter was too slow getting away.

Sam's sudden, bold response caused a silence that seemed loud and deafening. For a moment, Tarrant thought he might have gone deaf with how silent things were. "Oh, you've done it now, Sammy..." he muttered, shaking his head. Slowly, he got up and stood by Sam's side, stepping slightly before the shorter male. In fact, he went so far as to step almost right up to Meg, stopping a few paces short. He didn't want a fight...he didn't want Valerie to see a fight. And, hell, if that meant he'd be offering himself up for a beating, it was a chance he'd be willing to take. Pain just wasn't that unbearable anymore. He and pain had become almost as close as friends

"You'll drive the girl crazy on just her first day here!" he exclaimed, grinning cheekily in his signature way again. "We really don't need to fight here, do we? Sammy-boy here is just getting protective, that's all. Now, I'm sure if you and your...friends just run along back to your table, we could all avoid conflict just this once for her sake."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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"I believe you are about to get a crash course on exactly what you should avoid at this school Valerie..."

That was Sam's voice, and with a slight frown, she looked over at him. What could he possibly mean by that comment? Noticing his gaze, she followed it over her shoulder, before turning completely in her seat to look at what he seemed to disturbed by.

An entourage of four people, two males and two females, were making their way towards the table. By their outward appearances, they looked to be perfectly normal, and if seen on the street, would be thought of only as a group of teenage friends. On closer inspection, however, and with her trained eye, she could pinpoint nearly everything that was wrong with this picture.

A few of her new companions were radiating wariness of the approaching group, and the people that they passed seemed to shrink into themselves and cringe away from the group as it wound it's way through the tables. There was also the fact that one of the girls, a tall one with sandy-blonde hair, seemed to be some sort of leader. The three teenagers behind her were obviously her lackeys, and two of them sent off a menacing aura that she could feel. It became more and more prominent with each step that brought them nearer to the table that Valerie was at, and her eyes narrowed slightly.

"One of these things is not like the other," she murmured under her breath. Perhaps ... With a slight grin on her lips, Valerie turned back to the table, obviously ignoring the group of people as they approached.

When she saw her companions around the table, she took in their outward appearances. Audrey appeared close to fainting for God-knew-why; a small blonde girl that she dimly remember someone greeting as Helena was trembling and nearly quaking in her shoes; Sam was annoyed, and Tarrant didn't seem to care much.

"Why, hello there, Your Majesty," Tarrant quipped out. Your Majesty? She highly doubted that the girl actually came from any type of royalty, let alone enough to warrant being called formal words such as 'Majesty'.

It was at that exact moment that the boy who had been glaring at her before approached the table with a slinky smile on his face.

"Oh dear, oh dear! He leaned down between Valerie and Tarrant's head, loudly whispering his next words into her ear, his intention obviously to make sure that the wicked bitch before them heard. "My lady, take heed; a burbling Jabberwock appears!"

A burbling Jabberwock? What the Hell was a Jabberwock? Not that it really mattered, for he was already continuing.

"You must beware. Her jaws bite, her claws snatch. You can see it in her flaming, frumious little eyes!" He was obviously succeeding in infuriating the young woman, who's eyes flashed with anger. The small group behind her tensed, as if readying themselves to pounce like a pack of wolves on a hunt, who waited only for a signal from their leader, and for a fleeting moment, she felt worried for the boy who was such and intense instigator.

"Alas, I must be gone. A grinning cat and a tum tum tree await me."

Whatever a tum tum tree was, she didn't really care. Instead, she was entirely focused on the girl that towered before her, who seemed to instill fear into each student by a mere look.

“Who is this" This gained the young woman no response that actually answered her question, so she rounded on Valerie with a dark look on her face. “What is your name child?”

Valerie stared at the girl, lifting her chocolate milk and taking a calm sip of it. She seemed to pay absolutely no attention to the maniacal bitch that stood there.

“Did you not hear me?”

She lowered her milk carton back to her tray and cleared her throat, finally fixing her blue gaze on the girl's.

"Actually, it's quite the contrary, my dear. I've heard every word that has left your beautiful lips and was voiced by quite an annoying sound. It was a bit nasally and unpleasant to the ear, to be honest. Perhaps you should look into having a voice-box transplant in order to fix that problem?" she asked. She tilted her head to the side and clucked her tongue, her chin resting easily on her fingers, with hand joined together as a slight perch for her head. "But if you must insist on being quite the bothersome wicked witch, I suppose that I have no choice but to answer, if only to get you to shut up. My name is Valerie, and that is all that you need to know."

“Good. The girl smiled cockily, as though she actually thought that Valerie was afraid of her and her holier-then-though attitude. "Where do you come from? And when did you get here? Speak up, will you?!”

She didn't have time to answer in any way, whether it were to be in answer to the woman's question, or another quip about how much of a bitch the girl was. Instead, Sam burst in, causing her to jump slightly in surprise. In all honesty, she hadn't expected him to explode in that manner. She'd known the guy less then ten minutes and could already tell that he wasn't the type to do so. But the animated look on his face told wonders about how little you could really tell about a person just by speaking to them a couple of times.

"Why don't you just shut that gigantic mouth of yours and leave her alone?!"

It had quite obviously stunned the girl, who was slowly turning red with fury. Her 'henchmen' were already tensing up, as if more then ready to beat the living daylights out of Sam, for daring to speak to the girl in that manner. "Oh, you've done it now, Sammy..."

Dear God, what had he done, exactly? She couldn't deny the small shimmy of fear that she felt for the boy, and Tarrant's words only caused her blood to run cold.

"Why not say something to me while you're at it, huh? Any takers?" He didn't even give them enough time to answer, but instead continued on, almost as if he couldn't contain his anger. "No? Nothing? Do us all a favor and slink back into whatever hellhole you morons crawled out of. Because honestly, no one cares what you have to say."

Her eyes were wide, and many of the other people at the table were revealing their surprise. The entire cafeteria was eerily silent, as if everyone were listening to them and only them. She was painstakingly aware of the fact that this girl was undoubtedly the 'Queen' of this school, and no one had really dared to outwardly attack her before, for fear of the retribution that would be dealt out at them. And here was Sam, who didn't seem like the type to explode out of nowhere, and yet was doing so. And to the exact person that you didn't want to piss off.

It was then that Tarrant rose and moved over to Sam, standing a few inches before in, and nearly centimeters from the psychopath herself. "You'll drive the girl crazy on just her first day here! We really don't need to fight here, do we? Sammy-boy here is just getting protective, that's all. Now, I'm sure if you and your...friends just run along back to your table, we could all avoid conflict just this once for her sake."

Valerie was completely and utterly lost at this point. So all of this was her fault? She was the one who had caused all of this trouble? And what was with all this talk about people being crazy? She sure as hell wasn't as nuts as everyone seemed to claim each other were.

She was, however, furious.

A light pink tinged her cheeks, and she had that familiar fluttering feeling in her stomach and chest. It was tickling her throat, and she felt her breath coming quicker and more shallowly then before.

How dare this girl take out her abnormal need for knowledge on her, on the few people who were nice enough to sit with and approach her.

This was not going to end well, and she already knew it.

It was a slow rise, for it was almost difficult for her to contain her fury. When she finally was standing, however, she was quite calm on the outward appearance - until one were to look into her eyes. They were a bright, fiery blue, narrowed and obviously angry. She wasn't about to let these two boys stand up for her when she was perfectly capable of doing it herself. Besides, she didn't want them to be hurt because of her. Instead, she made her way slowly around the table, before stopping beside Tarrant and directly in front of Sam.

"You know, back in Germany, you are what I would call a meckern Sie mit einem kläglichen und traurigen Aufmerksamkeitdirnenproblem. Here, however, I will merely say this: You are a bitch that really needs an attitude change. Perhaps I shall be the one to begin shedding some light on this situation."

With that, she lifted up her half-filled chocolate milk, thrust her tray forward, and splattered the remainder of her lunch across the front of the girl's top. A slight movement and twitch of her hand, the contents of her milk carton spilled down and over her head, where it proceeded to drip down her hair and into her face. She smiled slightly, her eyes a bit narrowed as she leaned forward towards the girl. "Whoops," she whispered.

Valerie set her tray and empty carton on the table behind her before turning back to face the girl, patting her hands together.

"And that, my dear ladies and gentlemen, is how you take out the trash," she said, amusement in her gaze and one corner of her lips quirking slightly upwards.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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At first it was a giggle, but then, as she saw the comicalness of the situation,the milk spilling down over her beautiful hair, the expression on her face that most likely meant 'You are so going to pay for that' ,she laughed loudly, the sound echoing a bit since people had stopped conversation to stare.
She started to clap in admiration, first slowly and then quicker as her laugh was the only thing to be heard ,and gradually,brave students started to clap along with her. She noted it would take a lot of willpower to clap so openly in Meg's face,except she just couldn't help herself!
"That was amazing!", she said between giggles. This was so funny! It was straight out of a teen television drama show. She wished other people were here, like Jamie or Dean,because they would probably react much worse than she was now.
'The Queen', a title which Audrey used sarcastically, as did most of her friends, was giving Valerie what one would call 'a death stare', and she wondered how 'The Queen' would get her revenge, and if she would still want Valerie to be in her club. Maybe she'd still want her, but Audrey did not frighten herself with the details of what she would do to attain such a follower.
She now had the information that Valerie wasn't some meek, only do-gooder, and she could insult someone deeply if she needed to, if her amusing words in German were any contender. As soon as Audrey stared at Meg again, it was impossible to restrain herself,so she took Sam's hand, which was protectively over her shoulder, and protected her eyes instead. Looking to her right, she picked some french fries from her tray and chewed on them so she wouldn't laugh again.
The girl was no longer overwhelmed. This new entertaining event had stripped her of thinking too heavily on her emotions to doing what she did best- act without thinking.She noticed Helena had tried to comfort her,and she was quite thankful her best friend had regarded her. So, before reaching for more food, she gave Helena's hand a squeeze. Tensions had seemed high before,but they probably had loosened up a bit. She remembered Sam and Tarrant coming to Alice's defense,which was very sweet and knightly of them, but she assumed it was in their nature,especially to a girl they obviously both liked. She had been rather taken aback by Sam's outburst but his putting his hand on her shoulder was a hint that he still had his composure.
Tarrant had had more of a peaceful approach, one that meant he didn't want trouble and they wouldn't get it if they just went away. She remembered the teen movie reference again, how the evil queen bee would approach the new girl, and then the new girl would show her merit by doing something awfully embarrassing to the queen, and all the guys liked her and the queen swore revenge, and then she laughed again on the similarity of the situation.
Whenever Audrey had done some prank or other on Meg, usually with Jaime at her aid, she liked to be discreet and then run.This was a courageous thing to do,especially to Meg, who had scary lackeys.
She gingerly lowered Sam's hand at this point, sure she could contain herself this time, and when she saw Meg covered in Valerie's pasta, all that happened was a twitch of her mouth. She tried to not look directly at her,just in case, and that was when she made eye contact with Meg's little brother Cyrus.

That poor, poor baby, she lamented, as she gave Cyrus a small sad smile and a wave, as she did almost every time she saw him. She had learned over the years that Cyrus had a drastically low self-esteem, which was probably the Queen's handiwork. Cyrus always tried to avoid Audrey at all times, and she wondered why. Was it because she wasn't threatening to beat him when she saw him? Was it because she didn't push him around,tease him, or yell at him? She swore she would find out. But on those rare occasions when he wandered the hallways or gardens by himself,he really wasn't all that bad. Sure, he would cower in fear, but he didn't try to hit you or threaten you.
Unlike his fellow club member Ace, who really didn't care if he punched you or throttled you to the ground. Sometimes she swore Ace thought he had nine lives or something.She had only probably interacted with Ace one time, when he had bumped into her and left without even saying sorry. He walked around like a program, or a robot, and he was undeniably creepy.
And of course, then there was Petra. Someone that got a kick out of giving others pain, or watching them receive pain, which Audrey thought was the cruelest thing she could imagine. She had a smart, free mouth, and although she could manipulate people, she couldn't do it as well as Meg, so that's why she was her follower. She also took orders easily, as did all the club members.
Audrey's biggest question was not why they did it, because she knew that, but why they all had the same classes, although they were in different grades.She knew Petra was a senior, but she had never taken any of the required classes as long as she knew Meg, and she questioned how the Garden Club had arranged it and gotten away with it.

She wondered what Meg would want with a girl like Valerie. Obviously now she could see that the girl would not be as compliant as her minions. Would that have an appeal to Meg? Maybe it would make this game just a whole lot more fun if Alice was not willing to join her. How unnerving that was to think about.

All of this thinking for Audrey, as it does for most human beings, happened in only a few minutes.

Just as the girl had time to finish her sentence, Petra swung forward taking this girl by the collar. She pulled hard so that her face was right into Valerie's.
"How about I show you how I take out the Trash?" She grinned " Or perhaps you would like Ace here to show you?"

She pushed the girl back with one hand, now standing in front of Meg. ' I suggest you all get lost. And take these piece of garbage with you '.

Oh no,what's happening?! I think for two minutes while the milk was running down Meg's hair, and this happens!
She stood up. This was outrageous and certainly not very nice!
She got up out of her seat, and the situation was no longer funny to her, which was unsurprising. She considered Valerie one of her friends now, and she wasn't going to let any of her friends be pushed around!
"We're not pieces of garbage, Petra, but Meg seems to be a trash can today." She gestured to the lunch splattered on Meg's clothing, "Now go away, because we were here first and you just decided to be extremely nosy like you guys always are and come barge in on our lunch."
She wasn't usually this mean, but these were her friends, and those people were not!

So she turned to see the reaction of the Queen, and also what the rest of her entourage would do. She made predictions in her head and most of them were predictable. Meg would leave in a huff, but her minions would continue to provoke them. Meg would scream and a fight would start. Sam would go ballistic, and all hell would break loose. She didn't really mind any of this happening, and mentally prepared herself for each situation.

Was it weird she thought of inviting the new girl to play chess, and then join her for tea?

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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Malia watched the whole scene with light amusement, her lips curling slightly. This should happen more often, this is the most interesting thing I've seen in days, she thought as she watched The Girl pour her lunch down the front of Meg. She liked this girl- she was exiting. Malia leaned against the table as the watched the others reactions. Meg seemed to be only seconds from blowing her top, and her followers were tense. It was so easy for Malia to imagine them as a pack of dogs right then- all of them waiting on their leader to give them the signal to attack. One of them seemed to not want to wait and jumped at The Girl, who Malia had seen call herself Valarie in response to one of Meg's boundary-overstepping questions as she said something about trash.

It was strange, seeing them attack someone so up-close. Malia tended to avoid them and their annoying natures, preferring different places to sleep. They were vicious and they looked threatening, and most of the people around seemed threatened. Audrey stepped up and told them to leave, but Malia knew that that may very well be telling a snail to go faster than a cheetah, from the look of pure hate in the eyes of Petra.

"Or perhaps you would like Ace here to show you?" Malia heard the woman say and Ace responded quickly and, Malia supposed, scarily. He cracked his knuckles and seemed to finally come out of the haze he was in, if only for a moment. He saw his precious queen's milk covered hair and he lunged as well. Valarie had made a target of herself on her first day. That had to be a new record. They normally tried to figure out if the new ones had something they wanted.

Nevertheless, they looked like they wanted to kill and Malia figured the school wouldn't be quiet for days if that happened. Plus Tarrant might be mad (or worse, sad), and he could be frightful. Malia sighed and put her hand into her jacket, extracting her knife just in case. She flicked it open and started to file her nails as she looked at the pair who had Valarie in their grips.

"Honestly, can't this wait until tomorrow? The girl didn't know any better and you wouldn't want to scare her to another school on her first day, would you? That would be boring, right? You won't be able to make her scared and worship Meg if she leaves," she said as she stepped forward. "I would let her go. It's not like you to break someone too quickly" she stopped filing her nails and pointed the knife at them. "She can learn," She added as an afterthought, knowing full well that while her argument was reasonable, they would more than likely not leave and it would be a fight. She didn't enjoy fights, really, but she could fight. She did, however, see pain as something she could feel on an emotional level. One of the very few things she could, so she did go into times when she would crave it.

While now was not one of those times, she wouldn't mind it. So she prepared herself for a fight, her body tensing in a subtle way and her fingers curling around her knife as she pulled it back and held it against her dress in a way that looked clam but a trained eye would see the tightness in her fingers and the way one quick movement would do damage, as well as how it was concealed by her body so no worker would see it. To many people, Malia and her knife would be a normal sight and wouldn't bother them, but Malia did fail to consider how Valerie might respond to her holding a knife.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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Sam's jaw dropped and he nearly doubled over laughing, chocolate milk beginning to run down Meg's face and features. It seemed his intervention wasn't needed at all as Valerie showed that not only did she have quite a big bark, but enough bite to back it up as well. 'Note to self,' he thought, 'cold shower after lunch...' He steadied himself before he fell over, using Tarrant's large form to lean on. Audrey picked the perfect time to stand up and Sam quickly occupied her vacant seat as his cheeks began to throb and small tears formed in his eyes at the sight of Meg, fuming in the muck.

Wiping one of the latent droplets forming in his eye, he caught sight of a fly as it passed through his vision and up over them all. Adrenaline was coursing through him due to the event, but the fluorescent lights above them made him feel incredibly tired all of a sudden. Sam rarely had a good night's sleep and it was beginning to catch up to him. He felt as if he could doze off at any moment, but let himself enjoy only the pleasure of a single blink. The blink turned into a few seconds, and then a minute, and still his eyes stayed closed, head inclined to the ceiling above.


Sam's eyes opened to a commotion going on somewhere around him and spotted a fly as it buzzed above his head. 'That's one loud fly...' came his thoughts as they drifted back to him. But the sound was too peculiar to be a fly. 'Too....violent...' The fly drifted back down and Sam saw the cafeteria around the table he sat at. The kids all around staring at the scene around the table. The group confronting each other as they stood in front of him. And then he saw Meg, the source of the violent buzzing. And an eyebrow on his face rose higher and higher as he took in the sodding sight of her. Covered in what looked like chocolate milk and pasta, she looked.... 'Delicious...'

Sam wondered slightly what had happened, though his stomach was beginning to outweigh his concerns and drift back to the food covering her. Everyone around him seemed ready to hop up and fly into an all-out brawl. Even Malia had a knife out. At the sight of her though, he really didn't focus too much on the knife she held, a little tighter than someone feigning a casual composure he might add. 'God, I joined the wrong club...'

Helena was beside Sam as well, Audrey was on her feet in front of him, Tarrant stood in front of Meg's usual entourage as well. 'What the hell is going on?' And Sam's eyes fell on the girl at the center of it all and a slight memory crept back into his mind, beginning to bore the letter 'V' into his thoughts. He examined the determined look on her face, the passionately fierce blue eyes that were set on Meg at the moment, her lightly curled golden locks framing it all, and of course, he didn't skimp as he scanned over the rest of her. But for the life of him, he had no idea what the 'V' meant...

His studying of Valerie was cut off as Meg's crescendo of threats finished and she abruptly turned and stalked out of the cafeteria, lackeys in tow. Sam chuckled a little at the droplets of chocolate milk that indicated the exact path Meg had taken out the doors. His stomach pulled at him again as he whirled in Audrey's seat to spot his tray across the table and scooped up the piece of apple pie still on it, taking a rather large bite and allowing a delighted hum to escape him. Swallowing too fast, he began to choke and grabbed a bottle of chocolate milk from the table, no actual idea if it was his or not. He took a deep sip to clear his throat and let out a satisfied sigh...

"Dunno what she's so crabby about..." he said as he gestured to the milk trail out of the cafeteria, "this stuff is amazing!" Now that the distraction Meg posed was gone, Sam went back to staring at Valerie again, she seemed so familiar...

Leaning close enough to whisper to Helena Sam kept his voice low. "Hey, who is that? And what in the hell happened to Meg?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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Insanity broke loose quite quickly after they arrived at the table. First Dean left, trailing snarky comments alone in his wake. Cyrus tensed, prepared to follow Ace outside and lead him back to the group after they'd finished doling out justice, but Meg made no gesture to do so. She just relaxed. Cyrus frowned deeply, an expression that quickly faded into confusion. Later. They'd provide justice where justice was due later. Meg apparently thought this new girl was so important that nothing could get in her way.

Then Sam spoke up. And Tarrant. And then the girl herself. Cyrus managed to keep himself somewhat sedate by watching Petra grab the impertinent little thing by the collar. He pulled off his shirt and held it out to his sister so she could mop the worst of the offense from his hair and shirt, chewing nervously on his lip. Then Ace dove into the fray, and the boy's anger calmed Cyrus a bit. Between them both they could get the job done well enough. He smiled faintly, looking to his sister for a cue as to what to do next. His arms were wrapped around his lower torso, though it wasn't particularly cold in the cafeteria. He mostly just felt small among his club-mates.

And then Meg joined into the mess, quieting everything. She pushed Petra and Ace away, focused on the girl. And then she started in. She was quiet at first, but Cyrus knew it wouldn't last long. He slunk behind Ace, grinning madly. He wasn't lowed to smile when she yelled at him like that, but she wasn't looking at him now and he was positively euphoric at this point, with all the cold, sweet justice floating around, even if it wasn't aimed at him at all. Soon Meg's voice rang through the cafeteria, almost every occupant cowed to a state of silence by her large voice.

Cyrus lingered a moment to retrieve his shirt, which Meg had thrown upon the floor at some point in her tirade. He managed to compose himself as he looked for a few brief moments at the collection of people before him. Some of them were offenders, some of them were not, but they'd all pay by the queen's hand, and it was the new girl's fault. "You'd best watch your backs. Meg isn't afraid to let the heads roll." He said softly to them as he tried not to grin, his eye on the new girl in particular. His bared torso probably told the group just what Meg wasn't afraid to do, a variety of different coloured discolourations spattered his skin, welts and bruises of many different punishments, both new and old.

All of a sudden the boy turned and half stumbled half hurried away, as if Meg had just pulled an invisible lead forcing him to come along. He was back to grinning as he grabbed Meg's things as well as his own and followed his sister and the rest of the group out of the cafeteria, clutching his shirt in his fist. He hadn't entertained a second thought when he'd given Meg his shirt, he rarely did, but there was a jacket in his bag he could wear. Just a little bit of luck.

Cyrus decided that it would probably be best to wait for her Majesty to speak, as she would do so when she was ready to. And it probably would also be wise not to mention that her group hadn't had anything to eat. Cy swallowed his grin, returning to a somewhat blank expression, and followed his queen obediently. There would be plans in their future, he knew. Delicious plans. vengeful plans. Justice.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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Audrey became frightened at Meg's words, and it did not help that she just kept getting louder and angrier. She had finally snapped, although it did not take much to tick off Meg. She involuntarily shook, and when 'the Queen' trotted away, her minions in tow, after pushing around Valerie, Audrey looked back to her brother for support,the only person she knew who would not hesitate to console her right now.
As soon as she saw the look on her brother's face, her eyes got even wider.
Oh, no. No,no,no.
Whenever Sam had a momentary memory lapse, his eyes would get cloudier, and his eyebrows would be furrowed, as if he was assessing the situation not as an active participant, but as one observing from a distance. He discreetly said something to Helena, who responded a bit louder so Audrey was able to listen in.
"The new girl is Valerie and she just pissed off Meg.... I don't know what to do Sam", Helena's voice, like Audrey's would be if she spoke right now, was trembling, and her heart went out to her best friend. They both needed her right now, so it was no time to be stupefied by the wicked witch. She took a chair and sat next to Sam, taking his chin in her hand and swiveling her head to him.
"Sammy, that is Alice Valerie although she likes to be called Valerie." She pointed to her," When we entered the lunch room I dragged you over to her because I had never seen her before, and she is a new student. I hugged her and then you went to get my lunch for me after you introduced us, and also your lunch. First you grabbed a cheeseburger but decided I wanted a hamburger, and then proceeded to get me fries,a soda, and chocolate brownie. You piled your own plate with these and also two more hamburgers and a salad.While you were there you spoke to Helena and also said hello to Malia. When you returned, Tarrant was here and Valerie winked at you and asked us all for advice, to which you promptly said that she would get a crash course of what you should avoid, since Meg and her entourage were approaching the table. Meg was harsh, like she always is, so Valerie poured milk down her hair and threw her pasta at her shirt. She then screamed hell and a half to her,left, and now we are sitting here."
As she spoke,relaying events to a confused Sam, she was relieved that his eyes seemed less distant and more here. This was an asset to always taking the precaution of recording every detail in her brain,especially when she was around her brother. She had harder cases before, but Sam seemed quite alright except for not remembering this whole period. Which, she noticed, was about to end soon. She took five huge bites of hamburger and chewed it quickly, and when that was done, decided to swallow the french fries, which were not many since she'd been eating them earlier.

The tables had hushed now, and she bent down to address one of them, since their faces were on the side.
"And have you reached a conclusion?", she asked quietly, as to not disturb a table across the way that was about to fall asleep.
"Naturally, in all debates that pertain to religious content, we have decided it is best to agree to disagree."
"For the best, I should say." She whispered as she saw the table across from them shift in their sleep, being careful not to wake him as she sat upright again.

She chugged down most of her soda, and now she had to use the bathroom. Wonderful. The bell rang then, which made Audrey jump, and afterwards she wished she hadn't, because now she had to use the bathroom more. She hugged Helena, telling her it'll be all right, and then kissed her brother on the cheek. "I'll meet you in Advisory guys, I have to use the bathroom."

She walked past the small group of Valerie, Tarrant,and Malia, giving them a small wave and a smile. She walked out into the hall to the nearest restroom, and set her things down on a counter nearby. After she finished, and was washing her hands, two women came in whom she knew were nurses. They were deep in loud, gossipy conversation, so she didn't disturb them.
"And then Susan walked right in on Tony and Stacy!", one of the nurses hollered, and then the other woman gasped, but didn't seem so surprised. The other nurse tutted like she was expecting it.
"Girl, did you see that kid in the padded room? He's crazy!", the other nurse said, and Audrey stopped washing her hands for a bit.
"Harold's a regular, sweetie. You'll get used to him."


Audrey wondered how long her best friend had been in there, and this made her uncomfortable. She wanted to get him. Sure, Jamie was insane sometimes, but they couldn't just keep him locked up in there every time he acted up!
She quietly left the bathroom, a mission in her mind.
Oh my gosh, I'm gonna be a secret agent again! she thought with an excited glee. She 'picked up' Jamie rather often, and every time she took more risks so it would be more like a full fledged action spy film. She took care to walk like she wasn't going to the secluded part of the school, and raised her head high, playing it cool.
I wonder if this is what my father does. Break his comrades out of jail and stuff. She grinned to think that she was now just like him. She got to the hallway that separated the regular school from what she called 'the crazy rooms'. There was a teacher leaning on the doorframe of his classroom, looking around at the other students in the hallway.

What to do, what to do.....
She passed the teacher and bravely smiled at him and waved. "Hi!"
He smiled back at her and waved too then looked back into the hallway, but not right next to the adjoining hallway.
Yes! Now he thinks I am not a threat!
She weaved back through the students, preparing excuses in her head if someone asked her what she was doing. She didn't like to lie, but Audrey the Spy HAD to if she wanted to save her partner from doom!
If someone asks, I did not know. I had to....use the bathroom, and thought there might be one here. Or, I was looking for my earring!Or....I dropped my soccer ball that was autographed and it came rolling down here!
She hunched down, and snuck into the hallway. The lights were brighter here, but it was empty.
She walked, her footsteps echoing a bit.
A spy would never walk so out in the open! She looked behind her.
She decided to sneak from pillar to pillar in the hallways until she reached the nursing station.
Classic spy music played in her head, and it was like a real movie!
Da da.....dadada....DANA! DA NA NA NA NA DA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA
Her stuck her head out of the pillars as she moved, quick to duck behind the pillar if someone started to walk down the hallway. It only happened twice, but when it did she felt as if her heart stopped and she couldn't stop grinning.
The halls were pure white here, and as she slinked deeper and deeper into the forbidden part of the school, her adrenaline made her pay no heed to the consequences.
This was so fun!
Her head was spinning,her fingers shook with excitement, and she arrived at the nursing station.

They looked helpless, fiddling nervously with their fingers.
And Bingo was his name-o!!
She knew these ladies, since this was not her first visit here. She nodded at them,smiling a little, greeting them "Hello" with what she considered the suave of a spy.
"Audrey!", they yelled exasperatedly, one of them gripping her by the shoulders, "Hallelujah!"
"I'm here for Jamie", Audrey said cooly with the nature of a true spy.
"PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD TAKE HIM!!" One of them pointed to his room and led her over.
She heard a yell from within. "AUDI! AUDI IS THAT YOU?! HI AUDI!"
She smiled, and one of the nurses opened the door revealing him right there in front of it.

"Jamie, I'm here to get you outta here!", she hugged him, but on closer inspection noticed the straight jacket.
"Good God, are they insane or what?" She lifted him up and pushed him over to the nurses.
"Get him out", she demanded.Oh, wait,that's not very nice.
"Please." He had a goofy grin on his face as they took it off him,but then he fell to the ground.
She then pulled him up, leading him by the hand, running with him down the hall. She waved to the nurses, laughing, a childish glee in her eyes.

As they got back to the main hallway, she stopped to take a breath and he hugged her.
"I missed you, how was tea?", he asked.
She shook her head and smiled slightly. "You have no idea." She decided to save that story for another time. She looked over at him quizzically. "How did you get locked in here again,Jamie?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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Why wasn't he surprised? He watched in dread as Valerie thrust her lunch forward at Meg and then poured her milk carton over the girl's head. No one stood up to Meg like that without a major death wish. Even he, one of the most insane of the school and certainly one of the most unstable, Tarrant knew to not mess with Meg. It wasn't necessarily a fear of her that kept him on edge, it was a fear of her followers. Speaking of which, as Valerie made a snide quip, Petra suddenly grabbed the collar of Val's shirt. By the time Tarrant had narrowed his eyes subtly and tensed defensively, Petra had thrust her aside and moved back to Meg. Silently, he clenched his fists at his side and bided his time while he seethed below the surface.

How dare they treat her like this? How dare the damned 'Queen' and her followers strut around like they owned the place? Suddenly, he blinked his eyes in surprise and shook his head slightly. Oh God...there went his personalities. Not now, not here- especially in front of Valerie. He heard Audrey's voice nearby and he turned to look at her as she shook in a commanding tone to Petra. A smirk crossed his face, the corners of his lips turning upwards. He'd be lying if he said that commanding, confident tone of hers wasn't attractive. Granted, he loved the way she was kind and giving, but it was also so very interesting to hear her speak her mind. By the time he looked back at Valerie, Ace had grabbed her by the jaw.

"Let go of her..." growled Tarrant, though it was a half-hearted growl with not much volume. As much as he wanted to stand up for his childhood friend, it was Ace he was addressing. One did not simply stand up to Ace. His fists still clenched at his sides, he noticed a flash of movement and glanced out of the corner of his bright green eyes to see Malia removing her knife. Had he not been so fired up, he might have told her to put the blade away. Yet, the blood boiled in his veins and he was just about ready to explode at this point. One more second and he might just throw himself at Ace. Meg's rant, however, prevented such events from occurring.

Even after the Gardening Club had left the cafeteria, Tarrant stood there with his jaw clenched just as tightly as his fists. "Y-yeah, you better leave!" he yelled after her. "Damn cowards!" In his moment of rage, he reached down on the table and lifted his half-eaten apple, aiming to throw it. As he wound up, he suddenly stopped and looked at the apple in his hands. Ooh...tasty, he thought, placing the apple to his lips and slowly biting into it. His personality was fluctuating, changing on the dime, and he certainly wasn't very stable. He needed a fix. Now.

The bell rang out loudly but Tarrant didn't seem to care. Taking around bite from his apple, he shoved it into his backpack and placed the bag on one shoulder. He turned to Valerie then and smiled quickly at her before stepping forward and enveloping her in his long, lean arms. "I'll see you around, alright? Maybe after school today?" He let go of her reluctantly and started to the doors, pushing them open with his free shoulder as he bee-lined for the bathroom. This bathroom was one of the few in the school where teachers didn't seem to check. He sat up on the counter in the bathroom and opened his bag quickly. He ran his fingers along the inside of the bag and found the flap he'd sown in. He removed a thread cutter from his pocket and started to open up the flap, exposing a pack of cigarettes, a lighter and a thin little thermometer.

Making a mental note to restock the flap later that night, he started to light a cigarette and took a long, slow drag from it. He held his breath for a while and then slowly let it out, the smoke trailing skywards in a light, gentle stream. How beautiful...

The cigarette should hold him over, hopefully, until school ended for the day and he could return to his dorm. It didn't seem to last long enough for Tarrant and he lit up another one and finished it before he lifted the thermometer up to eye level. The Hatter watched the liquid slowly move through the glass tube as he slid off of the counter. Resting it against the edge, he brought his palm down roughly on it, snapping it in half with a satisfying crack. It was an odd habit, his mercury "addiction", but he believed it was keeping him sane. It reminded him of a life he once knew when his mother would let him explore her workshop where she made her hats. The metallic taste of mercury had been disgusting then, but it reminded him of the taste left on his lips after kissing his mothers cheek. And so, Tarrant turned the thermometer slightly and dropped a few beads of mercury on to his finger.

He inhaled first, letting the scent fill his nostrils for a few heartbeats. Then, he lifted his finger and slid it along his tongue. Swallowing, he shuddered from the taste but tried to force himself to imagine it wasn't. As he tossed the thermometer into a toilet and flushed, he felt the increase in his pulse throughout his body. He should have been worried by this. He knew nothing about mercury was good. Yet, he still did it. Just like how a nail biter chews on their nails, or an addict continues a drug despite knowing the consequences. He was flirting with danger and death and he loved it.

Tarrant exited the bathroom, adjusting his hat on his head, and started through the hallways slower this time due to how at ease he felt. A familiar voice made him perk up and he noticed Audrey, Valerie, and Harry all standing around each other. He grinned and started over to them, stopping temporarily as Harry kissed Valerie on the cheek and then hurried off. His brow furrowed slightly, he walked over to Valerie and stood next to her in an almost protective manner, watching his friend run off. He would have yelled a "hello", but he knew they'd see each other soon enough.

"...what was that about, Val?" he asked, sounding much peppier than he had earlier. In fact, his current fix kept him from feeling at all jealous or upset that Harry had kissed Valerie...yet, had his other personality been active, he would have certainly been more upset.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Malia Grace Russet Character Portrait: Alice "Valerie" Callinder Character Portrait: Tarrant "Mad Hatter" Hightopp Character Portrait: Audrey Cassidy Bryant Character Portrait: Petra Mason Character Portrait: Sam Bryant
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This is a joke, right?

One moment, she was staring down her nose at the trash-heaped girl, and the next, she was being shoved back a few steps by a girl, who had grabbed the straps of her dress roughly and yanked her close to her face.

"How about I show you how I take out the Trash? Or perhaps you would like Ace here to show you?" Valerie's eyes flicked to the boy, who was grinning a bit madly, his eyes slightly lost. "I suggest you all get lost. And take this piece of garbage with you," the girl said darkly. With a shoved, Valerie was sent stumbling back another few steps, only to find her face grabbed in a vise-like grip by the boy that had been mentioned earlier - Ace. It was painful, almost beyond so, and she knew that she would be bruised the next day.

Why weren't any teachers intervening? Were they just going to allow all of this to happen without even any words at all? What was wrong with this school?

"Do you know what you just did, girl? You've just harmed the Queen, and I can't have that."

She felt oddly brave in that moment, and despite his hold on her face, Valerie felt her lips twitch up in a squished yet daring grin.

"Queen? Queen? Jesus freaking Christ, this is high school. Not a monarchy. What are you, a dumbass?" she asked with a raised brow. It sounded, however, more along the lines of, "Bveen? Bveen? Eus fraking Ist, es is eye cool! Nah a onarfy. Aht o oo, a unass?" It was quite incomprehensible, might she add, but she didn't care. At least she managed to get in the last word with this one.

"Let go of her ..." It was a feeble attempt on Tarrant's part to get the boy to release her, but an attempt nonetheless, and after a few more heartbeats, Ace did so, but she refused to give them the satisfaction of rubbing at her jaw. Instead, she tilted her head back and locked a dark gaze on Meg, a small scowl on her lips.

"Honestly, can't this wait until tomorrow? The girl didn't know any better and you wouldn't want to scare her to another school on her first day, would you? That would be boring, right? You won't be able to make her scared and worship Meg if she leaves. I would let her go. It's not like you to break someone too quickly. She can learn."

Another new voice. But she didn't know how to respond to this. She could learn? She didn't know any better? Oh, God, that was just precious! How hilarious that they would actually buy what the girl was saying and that she could learn to 'worship' this bitch.

“How dare you?” Aw, the little slut-ess was angry. How sad! “You are not fit to be at this school, Honey! You are to be put in a ... A pit, in the deepest, dankest, darkest pit! I shall have you drowned in your sour chocolate milk, and have your guts stuffed with this rotten pasta!" Now that was a bit disturbing. "I shall crush you. I shall pound you! I shall dissect you, Honey! I shall rip out your eyes, shove them in your back pocket, and make you watch me kick your ass! I shall feed you to the termites, and then I shall smash the termites into tiny fragments, and then I shall grind the tiny fragments into dust, and I shall take that dust and feed it to the bloodworms, and the bloodworms I shall feed to the birds, and the birds I shall release into the air, and then shoot them down with my 12-gauge shotgun, and so on, and so on, and infinitum, Honey!" What was this? Some sort of demented version of a science class? What a high-and-mighty bitch. As if she could ever achieve any of that. "I hope you enjoyed your little moment of glory, because you are going to hate every single moment that will come after! You will beg for forgiveness, and when you do I'm going to punish you because I'm big and you're small. I'm right and your wrong and there's nothing you can do about it. You're a pathetic, whimpering little twit. You're the lowest lowlife in the history of civilization. What do you say to that? You can say nothing, and there is nothing you can say, because you are genetically predisposed to ineptitude, and are a no good, good for nothing nobody just like your friends. I shall skiiiiiinnnn you all!” Aw, the poor baby was getting angrier. Somebody forgot to take her nap today. “VERMIN! PUKE! SNOT STAIN, ARE YOU LISTENING? All of these disgusting little slugs will suffer the most appalling indignities because of you. YES YOU! I shall rip the rebellion out of this party of nitwits and devour it whole. I shall hang each and every one of you upside down by your ankles until all of your bodily liquids drain out through your noses and into jars! YES, JARS! Which I shall then hang around the school with your little name-tags, upon which I shall write “WARNING, MAXIMAL IDIOCY TOXICITY”! Honestly, this was more hilarious than the time that her and her sister had put a dead squirrel in their teacher's desk - who, by the way, had an unnatural fear of squirrels.

“Ms. Valerie has allowed her weakness and filth to overtake this miserable collection of excuses for people, giving them the impression that they can be Heroes! You feeble-minded imbeciles! There you are, standing before me like the squits of squits, and you think you've won? You are the excess of inanity. You are the definition of worthlessness. You are a rotting lump of pure WRONG! But I am a match for you, Honey. In me you have met the QUEEN! The ultimate force to be reckoned with. And I tell you that there is nothing I shall not do, no length to which I shall not go, no punishment that I shall not inflict, no fingers I shall not snap, until I've got you all crawling in your own blood and patheticness! I will be watching you. Each and every one of you festering pest-worms. When you turn the corner, when you go to your little smelly dorms, I will be watching all of you, and especially YOU. ENJOY YOUR YEAR IN HELL, VALERIE!”

"One, I don't think that my 'weaknesses' and 'filth' is what caused this. Instead, it was my bravery to stand up to a slutty, high-and-mighty bitch like you," she said, her voice quiet and her eyes a dark and intense blue. "Two, if we're all worthless, than you are nothing, you pathetic excuse of a human being. You aren't human, actually. In all honesty, you must be the offspring of Satan and his whore of a concubine - who must have been your mother, I suppose. So before your mother was, well, your mother, she was a whore. a prostitute. A stripper. Isn't that sad? I can almost guarantee that if one were to flip back in old porn magazines, they would find pictures of your mother splaying herself for all the world to see," she smirked, her racing heart threatening to beat out of her chest. She stepped closer, closing the distance completely between them, and as she stood toe-to-toe with this psychotic young woman, she felt her lips curl up in a smart-ass of a grin. Her eyes narrowed as her voice dropped to a near-whisper. "And I will, Pauper. I will enjoy my year in Hell, because it'll be quite a better one than yours will soon become. This will be the year where you will be knocked off of your high-horse, peasant."

As soon as the girl had spun away, Valerie raised her hand and waved with a sarcastic happiness after her. "'Bye now! I hope to see you soon, best friend!" she sang, before she turned and moved to the nearest seat their table, easily lowering herself into it. It was then that she noticed that Audrey had turned to Sam, her hand gripping his chin and forcing him to look at her.

"Sammy, that is Alice Valerie although she likes to be called Valerie." The girl pointed at Valerie, whose expression was more then puzzled. "When we entered the lunch room I dragged you over to her because I had never seen her before, and she is a new student. I hugged her and then you went to get my lunch for me after you introduced us, and also your lunch. First you grabbed a cheeseburger but decided I wanted a hamburger, and then proceeded to get me fries,a soda, and chocolate brownie. You piled your own plate with these and also two more hamburgers and a salad.While you were there you spoke to Helena and also said hello to Malia. When you returned, Tarrant was here and Valerie winked at you and asked us all for advice, to which you promptly said that she would get a crash course of what you should avoid, since Meg and her entourage were approaching the table. Meg was harsh, like she always is, so Valerie poured milk down her hair and threw her pasta at her shirt. She then screamed hell and a half to her, left, and now we are sitting here."

What the Hell? She just basically relayed everything that had happened only moments before. But why? Why would she have to tell Sam all of that? Unless ... No, that wasn't possible. That girl was before was merely pulling her leg about people being crazy at this school. But still ... No! Kick that silly thought from your mind this moment, Valerie!

She's talking to a table, Valerie. Open your eyes!

It was true; Audrey was whispering to the table. Valerie couldn't help it; she stared at the girl with what could only be called astonishment, and after a few moments, began to blink.

"Y-yeah, you better leave! Damn cowards!" Tarrant again. God, too many things were happening at once. She just couldn't take it much longer, and when Tarrant looked ready to throw an apple after the retreating group of psychopaths, she had had just about enough. It was when he dropped his hand and instead took a large bite that she was pushed to her limits.

"Are you all crazy?" she asked, looking around the table with astounded eyes. "That bitch just threatened all of you because of me, and you're holding conversations as if it never happened? Audrey's talking to a damned table for crymony's sake! Sam's acting like he's high, and Tarrant! Jesus Christ, you're acting drunk! This chick has a knife," she pointed at Malia, "And the only sane on is shaking in her boots like a frightened fucking rabbit!" She spun the finger on Helena. "What is wrong with you all!?"

With that, she launched up, slapping her hands on the table. "I've been here for less than an hour and I already want to return home! This school is for nuts!" She grabbed her bag and the bottle of water that she had brought with her, threw her bag over her shoulder, and took off from the cafeteria.

She was stopped by Tarrant as she passed him, his arms pulling her into a tight hug. "I'll see you around, alright? Maybe after school today?" Yeah, right ... If I had it my way, I'd be gone already. But I'm not going to leave and give that bitch Meg the satisfaction of thinking that she's won. Oh, no. That bitch is going to have a long year.

Instead, she smiled, all the while those thoughts running through her mind. "Yes, you will. I'll be at the Tennis fields if you want to hang out or something. I really need to practice," she said, lifting her hand and flicking his nose. He slowly released her after that and left the room as the bell rang. She followed suit, unsure of where she intended to head to, but decided to just wander. If she got lost, she'd undoubtedly manage to find someone to help her out of the maze of halls.

She hadn't taken one step before she was collided into by a hard figure. She was sent tumbling to the ground, landing hard on her bag, and her water bottle went flying to somewhere unbeknownst to her. After a momentary lapse in vision, she shook her head and managed to focus. She saw shoes first, followed by jeans, the bottom of a shirt, a neck, a jaw, and finally the entire face of her assailant - who was by this point freaking out over knocking her over.

"Oh my God, are you okay?!" He grabbed her arm and pulled her up, causing her to momentarily fly in the air before she landed on her feet - only to find his hands gripping her upper arms. "Do you have bruises? Broken bones? A hernia?!" Her head was grabbed by his in a surprisingly-gentle grip, but was moved back and forth quickly enough to give her whiplash. "Did I crack your skull open?! Is there blood?! Do you have a concussion?!" That was when he crossed the lines. He shoved his fingers into her mouth - Dear God, where had they been? Was that ... Was that ... It was! It was dirt under his nails! Gross![/b] - and was prying her lips apart as he peered inside. "Any broken teeth!? A loose molar?! Did I make you swallow a canine?!" [i]If you'd just let me answer, you'd know that you didn't and that I was fine! Holy shit, kid, slow down! Finally, as if he only then realized that she was alright, he released her. She worked her jaw, which had been extremely sore in the first place and was now throbbing with pain, and swiped at her lips. Dumbass ... "Oh thank goodness."

And then he kissed her.

What was wrong with this school!?

She shoved him away, stumbling back to rub roughly at her mouth with the back of her arm, an annoyed look on her face.

"Hey! I've never seen you before! Harold James Duffy, ma'am. But you can call me the March Hare." March Hare? Where the Hell did he pick up that nickname? At this point, she had already learned that it was best just to go with whatever he did and said, and not even bother to get a word in. Instead, she reached to shake his hand, but found herself gripping air. She didn't even bother to look to see why.

"You can call me anything really: Harry, James, Jamie, Jimbo, Marchie. Anything but Harold. I hate the name Harold." He was scowling one moment, and then smiling the next. What was he, bipolar? ]b\"What's your name?"[/b] She opened her mouth to answer, her lips parting, but found herself shushed by his raised hand. "Don't tell me ... I'll find out eventually." God, she was getting tired just listening to this guy! "I'll see you later, blue eyes." Blue eyes? She finally gains a nickname other than Blondie and it's Blue-Eyes? It was ... Sweet.

Valerie blinked as the boy took off, letting out a heavy breath after he dropped a kiss on her cheek.

"I ... I can't keep up with this," she groaned, dropping her forehead onto the nearest row of lockers as Tarrant walked up. "What was that about, Val?" She managed a tiny shake of her head, her arms hanging down beside her comically. "I ... I don't really know," she whispered dumbly, completely lost on what she was supposed to do at this point. She stood like that for a few moments, before pushing back from the lockers and rubbing at her temples. "I'm going to my dorm to get unpacked. I just need time to myself for a little while. I'll be at the Tennis fields when you get out," she said, already starting away, her lost water bottle forgotten. "Crazy asses ..."