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Leila Michelle Ingram

It's just Mitch

0 · 469 views · located in A world of magic and mystery...

a character in “The Marchand School of Sorcery”, as played by scoundrelboots

Description

Image

Full Name: Leila Michelle Ingram

Nicknames/Aliases: Mitch

Age: 16

Gender: Female

Primary: Runic Casting

Student

Secondaries of interest: Magical Weapons Infusement,

Secondary: Familiar Conjuring (learned via home tutor)

Description: Mitch is not remarkable in the least, and her actual appearance is often overlooked as most eyes are more drawn to watch her guide companion, Apple, than Mitch herself.

When people do manage to look at Mitch, most find the epitome of average: She has shoulder-length mousey brown hair, dark eyes, and medium skin. She is on the shorter and thinner side of average, but not so much as to be the “most” anything: The curves of her body are slight, and largely obstructed through a combination of slightly slouching posture and unassuming outfits. Her features are generally soft, and she has a girlish, round face; the kind of face that “could be pretty,” as one of her old schoolmates once said, if she took the time to maintain her looks.

Her gaze is often out of focus, or at least a bit to the left of where she ought to be looking, except for when she is reading or absorbed in her computer. At those times, she looks more insect than human, wearing glasses quite possibly thicker than most teen novels to see the words in front of her.

In terms of a sense of style, Mitch is all practicality. She wears plain t-shirts and pants in neutral colors, or relatively plain dresses with little frill or pomp. Makeup is a foreign concept to her, and she considers herself rather “dolled up” if she leaves her hair down.

Personality: Mitch is a woman of intense cleverness, determination, and social awkwardness.

In terms of living with her blindness, Mitch is well aware of her limits, but refuses to accept that they somehow make her less capable. She has a great deal of ingenuity, and uses it to pioneer new ways of doing things and securing independence.

Despite this, she is hyper-aware of the opinions of others, and often assumes the worst from what those around her say and do. More often than not, she feels (whether rightfully so or not) that people view her disability as something ‘different,’ and treat her differently as a result.

To compensate, most of Mitch’s life, from friends to hobbies, exist online. She’s an avid and skilled member of the “Hactivist” community, fueled on by an innate sense of justice as well as her father’s career in information technology. Her sense of humor reflects the digital world she lives in, and is mostly made up of biting sarcasm, Internet absurdism, and self-deprecation.


Skills: Has a stable familiar; Comprised the entire runic alphabet into keyboard format; Excellent computer skills; Basically can hack anything with an internet connection;


Weaknesses: Legally blind: Mitch can only see about eight inches in front of her face when using maximum correction and a reader’s glass. Also is not very good at the words and human-type things all the time.


Brief History: Leila was born into an unremarkable family: Her mother was a mid-level rune worker, and her father was a Professor of Computer Engineering at Oxford. Aside from the discovery of her disability, she had a relatively stable early childhood, filled with love and doting from both her parents and extended family.

When the civil war broke out, her mother took to leaving for long periods of time. Mitch remained with her father, but due to her father’s hectic work schedule, she took to sitting in the back of his courses and studying homeschooling materials during the school day.

By the time Leila was seven, her eyesight had grown weak enough that she needed to use a cane or a guide to navigate. Hoping to give her daughter a sense of independence, as well as a companion, Mrs. Ingram hired a magical tutor to train her in the art of familiar conjuring. Over the next year, Leila became proficient enough to open a small portal, through which a small creature fumbled.

Only, instead of a fluffy or comforting guide, Leila managed to summon a dragon-like abomination with six legs, purple fur, a beetle carapace, insect wings, and two mouths, one inside the other.

It bonded on sight, and she named it Apple.

It was during her early teen years that she took up the alias of Mitch Ingram, finding that the small software packets and apps she had been working on were more likely to gain consideration under a masculine name. Her father took to the new title, and before long, both he and his students had taken to calling her by her chosen name.

Up until Marchand, Mitch’s schedule remained relatively the same: She kept to herself (and Apple) during her free time, used her cane to go to class with her father, and developed most of her social connections through the Internet.

Other: Mitch is legally blind, and can only see about eight inches in front of her face with maximum correction and a reader's glass. Due to this, she navigates using a guide companion abomination. Her guide is a stable, permanent familiar who goes by Apple.

Apple is the size of a small dog, with a dragon-like body shape. He has six legs, and is covered in a thick layer of purple fur. His underbelly features a carapace not dissimilar to that of a cockroach, and he has wings on his back to match. His tail is prehensile and features a barb that can occasionally drip acid when he is excited, and he has two mouths, one inside of the other.

He likes to sleep on top of Mitch's feet, and wears a harness that reads "Working animal! Do not pet," while working as a guide.

Image

So begins...

Leila Michelle Ingram's Story

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman Character Portrait: Jason Avalon
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The thump-bump of the bus solicited a surprised squeak from Mitch, and a far less identifiable noise (though it probably fell somewhere between an owl’s screech and crane’s whoop) from the covered cage occupying the seat beside her.

Aside from occasionally poking a piece of jerky it under the cage cover, or adjusting the volume on her MP3 player, the mousy-haired young woman had stayed nearly stock-still for the entire trip. Her eyes were obscured by dark glasses to protect them from the changing light of the road, but her gaze remained forward.

A collapsible white cane sat folded in her lap.

It had been a rather long and more than slightly stressful journey for both Mitch and her caged companion: Between boarding planes and dealing with incompetent airport staff, navigating less than accommodating bus services, and portaling her friend in and out of existence to clear TSA, it had been emotionally and physically exhausting.

So, when the bus lurched to a final stop and the sound of her peers beginning to disembark sounded around her, Mitch was more than elated.

She turned herself further into the seat as the others began grabbing their things from the overhead bins and jostling on their way out, opting to instead change out her sunglasses for a much (much, much) thicker pair of readers, withdraw her tablet, and connect to the school’s Wi-Fi while the others shoved in a hurry to reach the same destination in a relatively similar amount of time.

When the bus was empty, she stood, tucked her readers and tablet into her pocket, unfolded her cane, slung her backpack over her shoulders, and then lifted the cage with her free hand. Arrangements had been made to have her things delivered to her room.

“Thank you,” she said in the general direction of the driver, her voice soft and her smile softer. She swept the ground with the deftness of someone who had done this for ten years as she disembarked down the bus steps and headed up the crunchy gravel drive to the school entrance. The sound of voices booming against increasingly echoing corridors was not hard to follow, though she kept a reasonable distance back until she finally came to stand in what must have been some kind of office.

“I’m looking for registration?” she announced, piping up over some of the noise, staring in no clear direction as the cage gave another disgruntled chirp.

Someone touched her arm, and she startled a good bit more than she had at any of the bus’s bumps.

“Are you Leila Ingram?” said a woman’s voice, dry and disinterested.

Mitch nodded.“Yeah,”she replied, dipping her shoulder away from the unsolicited touch, but turning to face the woman who had spoken. “And it’s Just Mitch.”

“Alright, Miss Ingram,” said the woman, taking Mitch’s arm and guiding her toward what Mitch assumed was the desk. The girl resisted the urge to scowl at the way she was being dragged around through unknown space faster than she could sweep, but made no effort to correct the woman as she kept talking. “I’ve got some forms you need to sign. And an extra in regard to your exception to our familiar policy.”

Mitch stared ahead, and set the cage down at her feet. “Okay.”

“I need you to sign this.”

Mitch blinked, waiting a full five seconds to see if she would be grabbed without permission once again, before patting around for the pen, finding the paper, and signing randomly on each of them without paying any heed.

It would not have been hard to take out her readers, but this woman seemed to likely think she was too incapable for that. “Are we done? Can I let out my guide?”

The woman did not reply.

Mitch nodded, assuming the woman had probably also nodded. And if not, she was being kind of a bitch by not responding. Too tired to care much either way, Mitch then proceeded to crouch in front of the desk and open the door to the cage,

Like a bug crawling out from under a cup, her companion burst out, taking first to a wobbly flight that made a nearby student scream, and then settling down upon Mitch’s shoulders with all six of its legs, frond-antennae twitching as its head swiveled and its four shiny eyes darted about to take in the surroundings.

The cold body of the thing’s carapace-covered belly rested against Mitch’s body, and she could feel a low rattle-hiss-purr vibrate against her back.

“Hi Apple,” she crooned, and a genuine, wide smile spread across her face. She reached to scratch “Apple’s” purple furred back, and then turned to kiss his cheek before he scuttled back down to her feet.

She had taken the initiative to put him in his work harness before boarding her plane in London, in case anyone didn’t know that he was a “Service Animal! Do not pet!”

“Oh, hi. Hi little muffin. I know. I know,” Mitch carried on, folding up the crate cage and tucking it into her pack even as several other students passed by with noises of alarm or surprise. “Hi, fluff bucket. C’mon, now.”

She straightened, cane and cage both gone now, and took hold of the handle on Apple’s back. “Follow,” she ordered, and the pair moved into step behind the crowd making its way toward something that smelled like pancakes.

With the help of audio cues and her trusted sidekick, she managed to navigate the buffet line and acquire a plate full of something edible, and then proceeded back toward the tables with a bit of trepidation. People were not her forte- At least not people her own age or those who she didn't already know. Regardless, her options were limited. There was no sitting alone.

She stepped toward one that sounded (maybe?) less crowded, and offered a warm smile in what seemed like the right direction. “Is this seat open?” she asked, though her voice was much softer than she had intended.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman
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#, as written by Hyro
And of course, the blind girl had chosen to sit with the most socially incapable boy to have entered the cafeteria thus far. Or at least, that’s how he viewed himself due to his complete lack of experience. The boy’s gray eyes slowly lifted up from his food to meet the girl in front of him. Yes, it was a girl.

Holy shit a girl.

A girl was interacting with him, causing the boy to tense slightly with nerves(nothing noticeable to anyone but himself). Girls were a new experience for him altogether, having grown up in a house of boys. It wasn’t that he had never seen a girl. He’d seen plenty of girls on TV, read about them in books, and sometimes a neighbor girl walked her dog by his house. Not to mention the two girls he had almost considered sitting with. Yes, he knew enough about girls, but talking to girls was extremely new to him. What did girls even talk about? Did they grow up with Legos, too? Were they, like… a completely different species? The boy quickly dismissed this last thought. Surely girls were no different than boys, aside from the obvious biology associated.

Although this particular girl was different. As Drake’s eyes trailed over her, he noted certain features, such as her large glasses, semi-off target staring, and the cane. She was blind, he realized, having only known from(once again) television media.

The most notable thing, however, was her service animal. Maybe animal wasn’t the right term… No, it was definitely a thing. A bug-dog-lizard-mutant thing. It almost frightened the boy at first, though something about it was charming, the way it shuffled about and swiveled its head. He was quick to identify why he found the creature so charming. The thing had a dragon-like look to it, and Drake absolutely adored dragons.

His eyes moved to the girl again, his observations finished. He was always quick to analyze things, so only a few seconds had passed since her initial question, which he answered promptly. “Yes. The seat is open.” Though whether or not she would want to sit there, well… He’d leave that conclusion up to her.

Wait, he should introduce himself. That's what people did when they were first meeting, right? It made sense, logically.

"The name's Drake. And you are...?"

Drake's voice was calm and confident, despite his rocking nerves.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Maeve Brigid Byrne Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Madison Lewis Lovette Character Portrait: Helena Kingsley Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Professor Oren Kovalenko Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Kora Norrevinter Character Portrait: Drake Coleman Character Portrait: Derrick Arthur Avalon Character Portrait: Jason Avalon Character Portrait: Skylar Oliver Character Portrait: Ezra Eleanor Josephs Character Portrait: Damien Moore
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  1. This was a really pleasant read. I especially liked the "Nope not my problem." Use of Shadow step was also nice to see!

    by TerrorFloof

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'So it begins.'

Professor Oren Kovalenko, an angular figure with dark hair and a long blue coat, watched the numerous new students filing in, passing through the front office and signing off on forms with a sceptical eye. Well, one eye was on the throngs of their new intake, the other was on her phone where she was busy informing any staff members that were not already aware that the first large bus had pulled up and the place was beginning to fill up.

And she didn't expect a group of young mages to maintain any standard of behaviour for very long.

Especially not ones that were more often than not rich, privileged, sheltered, and had never been taught how to properly behave.

Speaking of that-

Norwegian shouting from the entranceway. Oh christ.
From where she was standing Oren could make out three figures at least a head taller than most of the people filtering around them. A woman in he late thirties with long, grey-flecked ginger hair and a crimson coat on, and a hulking man with a beard you could lose a family pet in, both hugging and saying their goodbyes to a third figure. Younger, but still with nearly a foot of height on the Professor, with a mop of red-orange hair and a voice with a strong nordic accent that was carrying over near enough everyone else's together.

Norrevinters.
No mistaking those.

With one deft movement Miss Kovalenko stepped back into the shadow of one of the hall's pillars, and melted into the darkness without a word.

Somebody else could handle Ren's spawn and the ginger storm. She'd see to making sure no-one had started killing each other in the dining hall.

As it was some students had started eating, or introducing themselves. Oren materialized out from behind the door, quite alarming several students who'd been lines up there, and proceeded to check over the status of things.




Over to one side of the cafeteria, on an otherwise yet unoccupied table, a small figure was slumped over the the surface, next to what was now the degenerated milky sludge of a bowl of cereal left uneaten beyond its time, and something that long ago ceased to be a hot drink.

Her long, rather untidy-looking red hair was spread across the table like seaweed, and she was wearing a blue sweater lined with knitted purple cat faces, the phrase 'Have a Mice Day' inset into the back and front. It was at least two sizes too big and luridly coloured enough that the student was clashing with the furnishings.

Professor K came to a halt behind the student, regarding the girl with her look of pitiless reptilian distaste before finally speaking up.

"Are we boring you already, Kingsley?"

The redhead awoke with a start, knocking her bowl astray with one hand and splattering the fortified mud across the surface.

The Professor remained perfectly stationary whilst one of her charges scrambled, blinking, to try and both stem the flow of milk from the upturned bowl, and address her at the same time.

"Oh..no! No Professor! I was just um...is it breakfast time?"
Apparently only just realising how many others had entered the cafeteria, the student known as 'Kingsley' looked over to the table across, giving a rather sheepish smile.

Kovalenko's expression however was her usual weary mask of disapproval.
"Well Kingsley that is what everyone else is doing, if you would like to try and catch up with the timetable, I think it would probably be beneficial for you. And please try and avoid wasting food in the future."

"Y-yes Professor..." the girl hastily responded, pale cheek reddening a little as the watched the aquamancer turn and walk off down the row.
"...so that's the year off to a good start..."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: [NPC] Bartender Character Portrait: Maeve Brigid Byrne Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Madison Lewis Lovette Character Portrait: Helena Kingsley Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Professor Oren Kovalenko Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Kora Norrevinter Character Portrait: Drake Coleman Character Portrait: Jessica Rose Smith Character Portrait: Derrick Arthur Avalon Character Portrait: Jason Avalon Character Portrait: Skylar Oliver Character Portrait: Ezra Eleanor Josephs
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Jesse sat in the back of the bus as it chugged up to the school. Her peers were chatting in front of her, but she mostly kept to herself. Some had animals with them in cages, some of which looked intently in her direction. She tried not to draw attention to it though. She knew these people would be like every other person she had encountered. She would most certainly be ostracized if they knew about animals' affinity towards her.

She was the last one off the bus, purposefully of course. She took in the surroundings. The school was definitely unique. She read the sign: Marchand School of Sorcery. Was she in the wrong place? She knew the school was called Marchand, but the only place she had heard of sorcery was in storybooks. Everyone was filing into the cafeteria, though, so if she was to ask someone about it, she would have to go there. She took a deep breath, and followed her fellow students into the building. She looked around. Many places had already been taken. There seemed to be a nice place in the corner away from most people, except one girl who seemed confused. She supposed one person was better than being surrounded by them, so she went over to that table and quietly sat down.

She took some pancakes awkwardly, before saying, sheepishly, "Hi, I'm Jesse," and extending out a hand.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman
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Upon hearing someone respond to her inquiry, Mitch turned her head a few inches so to her left so that her hazel gaze settled somewhere close to the speaker’s center mass.

“Oh, thanks I’m—“ She cut herself off, face going pale and her stomach clenching. She had forgotten her manners, or at least the ones her mother had explained in the weeks prior to this trip: It was disrespectful in the magical community not to pause after someone made an introduction. Or was it rude not to pause after you introduced yourself?

Or… Had he even given a house name? Or was “Drake” the last name?

Crapcrapcrapcrap he’s LOOKING at you.

She swallowed, and a meek, nervous smile crept across her features as she set down her tray.

“I…um. Sorry. I’m not really all that good with the… Um…” More awkward silence. ”Sorry about that. It’s nice to meet you, Drake. I’m Mitch. Well. Leila Ingram, I guess. Technicaly. But Dressler, on my mom’s side. Of the American Dresslers. I think. The rune ones. Who um. The ah… I’m not really used to magical gatherings and all of the— APPLE!”

Obviously bored of her blabbering, the seeing-eye-abomination hopped itself up onto the table, yanking her forward against the bench and taking her balance out from under her. She stumbled, caught herself on the edge, and gracelessly twisted to find her rear end planted halfway on the seat with a none-too-subdued "ACK!"

Apple cocked its head to the side, blinked with all four eyes, and then resumed its former task of examining the food on Mitch’s plate.

Mitch’s face flushed red with embarrassment, and she reached forward to swat the creature lightly on its hindquarters. It did not seem too concerned with being called ”Bad! Stoppit," however, as it started on the task of eating the napkin off of the tray with little hesitance.

”I’m really sorry. About him. He’s usually better… We’ve just had a long day, and all of this… Um. Sorry.

“But basically. Yeah. Just Mitch.”

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Desdemona Moore
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It had, admittedly, taken Dawn a few moments to notice the slapping of shoe against tile as someone ran past- her nose had been thoroughly planted in her map by that point, brows furrowed as she attempted to work out a clear idea of where her classes were located- although she immediately snapped to attention as the source of the clamor threw her things down at the table before taking off again, with little fanfare involved. Dawn blinked in surprise, mouth open as if to say something, but shut it as the girl skipped off to the opposite end of the cafeteria.

Sudden, but understandable. While not everyone was as obvious about it, she was sure that most of her fellow students were excited to finally be at the school. Dawn knew she was. Taking a quick glance over at her nameless companion’s things, she slid her fork back into her breakfast, chopping it and bringing the smaller chunk to her mouth.

She had just finished polishing off one pancake when the stranger returned, bubbling with the energy that Dawn had observed a few minutes ago. Swallowing a mouthful of the strawberry milk she had grabbed along with breakfast, Dawn offered up a smile to the other girl, resting the bottle carefully upon the table. “I think I remember seeing you too, actually. You were up front, weren’t you?” She paused, extending a hand in invitation. “Oh, and, um. I’m Dawn, by the way. Nice to meet you, Tessa.”

The stranger, Tessa, hadn’t went for the usual greeting, for which Dawn was grateful. Given the...history of her own line, it wasn’t something she exactly wanted to bring up so quickly. Especially in front of someone so friendly. Picking her fork back up, she started to play with the hashbrown on her plate, stirring it into a mash as she looked down at the map. “Just a little,” she admitted. “I think I know where the dorms are, and the library, but, um. Not so much where each and every class is placed.”

As Dawn poked some of the hash-mash past her lips, her eyes wandered somewhat towards the entrance. More kids were arriving, by the looks of it, a lot of them looking just as uncertain as she had been. Soon enough, her eyes caught movement, and settled on a particularly bright splotch of purple that had entered with a student.

And soon after that, the Trickster began to cough, choking on the bit of potato she swallowed in her surprise. She covered her mouth, “ahem”’d, then swallowed again. The hashbrown continued its trip down without further complication. Crisis averted. While Dawn was certainly familiar with Familiars, this one in particular seemed to have more...personality than most. Giving it another once-over, Dawn turned back to face her company, (catching sight of who she presumed to be the owner), and found that another person had joined the table.

She hoped that they hadn’t seen her choking. That wouldn’t be a particularly good impression, either.

Nevertheless, Dawn once again put on her best PR smile, and shook her head. “Not at all,” she said, then, after a momentary pause so Tessa could introduce speak, started with her own introduction.

“Oh, and, um. I’m Dawn. Dawn Memoli.” She ducked her head a little after that, smile a bit more sheepish this time around. Hands resting in lap, she, too, waited for the pause to finish, before turning to respond. “So, a French Defender? I’ve heard a lot about that line. All good things. And, um,” Dawn lifted her hands from where they were lying, lifting them up to the table, “I’m pretty excited. My parents homeschooled me before this, so this’ll definitely be new.” Her tone grew warmer with her last few words, eyes brightening with renewed excitement. “I heard they’re teaching all of the Secondaries here, too. I can’t wait to get started.”

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman
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#, as written by Hyro
Well, Drake’s assumption in him being the most socially awkward person in this cafeteria went down the drain rather quickly as Mitch proved him wrong. The boy didn’t really understand manners or customs or anything like that, which made the situation even more awkward for him as he tried to decipher why she suddenly stopped talking every so often.

And at one point she started babbling about her family, which granted meant nothing to him, and mentioned runes, which he could only assume was her telling him her primary. Probably. He wasn’t really sure.

He reeled back a bit when Apple decided to lurch onto the table, but otherwise didn’t react too much, aside from casting occasional glances at the creature. He looked back to Mitch after a moment of staring at the mutant thing now on the table.

“You can stop saying sorry so much,” the boy offered, shifting his body weight in an attempt to get more comfortable. He no longer felt as tense as he had a few moments ago, “And, ah… I suppose my last name is Coleman, since we’re giving full names now. Though that hardly seems relevant or necessary. I specialize in Pyromancy.”

Drake was a bit of an oddball when it came to his sense of style, though truthfully he just threw whatever he had together. He was adorning what seemed like some old, jock-esque red jacket over a black tank top, though he didn’t exactly seem like the athletic type. If anything, the boy’s black, razorcut hair and guitar carry case made him look more rockstar reject thank jock. He certainly wasn’t bad looking though, being 6ft with decent posture and a thin physique, nor were his clothes anything too horrible. Handed down, sure, but decent and certainly no more than a few years old. He just seemed very casual at best, all the way down to his black converse sneakers.

The boy’s gray eyes glanced over Apple again. “So um… What am I looking at, exactly?” Drake’s eyes moved over the lettering on the animal’s harness. “I mean, service animal, I get it. But er…” he raised his eyes again, having gotten a touch distracted, “What is he?”

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman
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Mitch blinked.

She had never heard of a “Coleman” line, but then again, she hadn’t heard of many lines outside of the major six or seven that came up in casual conversation with the few mages she knew.

”Oh, yeah. Coleman. Of course”, she replied, now careful to not give herself a reason to be sorry. The way he wrote off family lines was very different from what she had been led to expect of the other students, and she filed the detail away.

Apple, however, was thinking far less analytical thoughts. The dog-sized Familiar, wholly unaware that he was being spoken of, was quite busy with investigating Mitch’s plate. He bent low over the food in the left corner, pondered it with his fronds, and then opened its mouth.

Out of which sprang another, smaller mouth, striking like a snake with razor-like teeth that ensnared a sausage link and yanked it inside as the entire jaw mechanism snapped shut. There was a hissing, grinding sound as Apple tossed his head back and the meat was swallowed, followed by a series of chirps not dissimilar to a hyena’s cackle.

Mitch stroked him between his antennae.

“He’s just Apple,” she replied to the inquiry, some of the nervousness melting away as the conversation veered into familiar waters. “I summoned him when he was a baby, and he’s furry and gross and I love him.”

Apple hiss-cackled louder at the mention of its name, two eyes closing shut in contentment while the other two watched Mitch and Drake, respectively.

”Just watch his tail. It drips acid. But only if you get him excited. So it's probably fine."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman
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#, as written by Hyro
”Oh, yeah. Coleman. Of course.”

Drake was admittedly a bit confused by her response. He didn’t know her, surely she had no reason to know him or his last name for that matter. Perhaps she was just trying to play it cool while sounding horrendously awkward. He proceeded not to comment.

His gray eyes moved to the creature on the table once more as it proceeded to attack a sausage link with its… second mouth. Eesh. The boy couldn’t help but cringe a bit. The thing was certainly a disturbing sight at times, though he still found it cute.

“Apple?” the boy repeated, as if the name were foreign, “But he’s not even red--” Drake caught himself abruptly, realizing what he was saying. Colors meant nothing to a blind girl, of course, and he quickly cleared his throat. “I mean, erm… That’s a lovely name.” His lips pursed, eyebrows furrowing a tad.

Quick, change the subject.

“So,” the boy trailed off, eyes scanning the room as if that would somehow help him find a conversation topic, “What brings you to Marchand?”

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman
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Mitch’s gut clenched into a tight knot, and the color drained from her cheeks at the sudden change of subject. Her palms were washed in a cold, clammy sweat, and she set her fork back down onto her tray so that she would not drop it.

Drake was uncomfortable.

He had mentioned something that he thought would make her uncomfortable, and then made the choice to skirt the elephant in the room; ignore all subjects that could force the awkward topic out into the open.

She was different; nobody wanted to mention it.

“It’s okay,” she said, offering a small smile, “I know he’s not red. He’s purple.” She reached forward to where Apple sounded like he was, and the little creature reciprocated by pressing his head into her palm with a hissing purr. The furry ridge of his back rose up to rub against her arm for a scratch, and he flopped down onto his side as the expected reward was granted.

“I’m not that kind of blind,” she explained, her best ‘casual conversation’ face pointing just a few centimeters too far to the right to make eye contact with Drake, “And it’s not bad to ask about, or whatever. For future reference. Just so… So you aren’t uncomfortable. It's not like it's a secret.”

Awkward pause.

Should have just kept that to herself.

“But yeah. I uh. I’m mostly at Marchand because my mom decided I’d been homeschooling for long enough. She wanted me to try out the whole mage thing a bit more before I decide for sure what I want to do for work. I’m pretty set on studying computers, but I guess the magic thing is worth checking out. Seems less employable, though. And you?”

She stabbed a pancake and shoved a bite into her mouth, then, eager to make sure she couldn’t proceed to let out any more stupid babbling.

And then there were very loud noises.

At the sound of a scream, Mitch tensed and Apple was quickly on his feet. With a fluttering hop, he slithered defensively onto her shoulders, two forelegs perched on her hair, two eyes trained on the sound, and the other two roving in search of any more trouble. He let out a screeching caw in the direction of the commotion, and his tail curled up to block Mitch's face from any potential incoming. Above him, his wings snapped together, rubbing to produce a low rattle not unlike the warning of a snake.

"Drake? What's happening?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: [NPC] Bartender Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Larke Sterling Character Portrait: Kora Norrevinter Character Portrait: Jasper Monroe Character Portrait: Adelaide Monroe Character Portrait: Jason Avalon Character Portrait: Desdemona Moore
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Tover’s brain was on fire.

Everything was dimmed from his perspective. Sounds dulled and blurred as cascades of blood pounded the insides of his ears. His sped up heartbeat drummed slow and with pounding vigor. Adrenaline had kicked up when the thinking cog had realized what it had just made the body do.

Forget that he spent the first major conversation of the day back snapping at a teacher, or that the attempt to make friends was lackluster because of it. A tremor coursed in his digits, breath heavy, shaky in his seat. He was half in and half out of reality as events became tumultuous.

Why did it feel so good?

He expected fear, a sense of diminishment, the need to creep back into her corner of safety. His ghostly eyes remained wide and glued on the instructor as the man spoke, but Tover didn’t actually hear a word. Just muddled noises as if you’re hearing someone through a wall in the other room, overlaid only by his own unyielding heartbeats.

Imagination spoke for him as a chessboard was mentally conjured. Massive and wide where standing on a single square would make one feel miniscule. From above, a colossal disembodied hand materialized and took hold of something as it descended. Only when the fingers squeezed together did a white pawn shatter into existence with a reverberating glassy clang, heavy dusty thud leaving the foot of the piece as the pawn was lifted and moved two paces forwards on the board. His board.

He felt nervous realizing what kind of forward push he’d done, yet relished it at the same time. Yes. Good. This was good. He liked this. Being forward and direct gave a sense of freedom that he’d been craving. Sure he was used to lurking in the backdrop and sullying his time away. But this, this was better. This felt like confidence. This felt like who he wanted to be.

Standing up to family was a task and a half, an impossible feat for someone who could only look up to those who sneered down. But this, this teacher, this had no such sway over him. Neither personality pressure nor authority rebuffed him from speaking his mind properly for one of the rare times he managed to. This is what kept Tover slow and sluggish as he sunk back into the seat to restore telltale nonchalance, absent-mindedly adding some food to his mouth. He wasn’t there. Not mentally.

Adelaide hadn’t joined the table. Tover didn’t even see her walk off, attention having barely been on her after using her introduction to plug in for added effect when he’d expressed discontent. One less person at the table was not remotely a problem, it was even comforting to remain with a small group of people that had all shared similar interest to defend Dawn.

Skylar had sodded off, but he’d spoken a lot. Likely some lecture.

Tessa must have said something; he did notice her mouth moving before she got up. The mouth movement of ‘milk’ was enough to backburner it as warbled sound came from Desdemona. Though he must have clearly heard Dawn’s little quip, a smile of pleasantry etching onto his face with a nod. That had been a fantastic weekend.

The barbarian grizzly that roared and barreled past with all the subtlety of a derailed freight train however, was easier to notice. Followed by a sudden "TESSA!” as the noise cleared enough for reality to sink back into the land of importance. He turned his head to watch the ensuing wrestle and scream match a few tables away. His mind half-wandered inconveniently. Another chessboard as Norrevinter viking-hugged the Sterling with the kindness of a cannonball.

Tower takes Bishop.

Tover had to give his head a shake. Other important things just happened. Tessa. Help Tessa. By the time his hand was ready to push away from the table however Dawn and Desi were already with her.

Nagging words were thrown from the eventful table. Oh. Found the Monroe. Or two? Perhaps his vision was still equalizing, but those girls had some similarities between them. Never having gotten a great look at her, he actually couldn’t tell which of the two it was that had tried to say hi.

This place was chaos.

An odd noise rustled the air. A screeching caw? What could possibly make that sound? The Norrevinter table was wild and easy to keep eyes glued on, sure, but to ignore the noise you didn’t recognize. Now that was dangerous. Already half up from being in progress of going to Tessa, his half-open eyes did a scan around the ro..

The fluff-creature. It was perched defensively on the shoulders of a girl, wings snapping and protectively positioned to defend her from harm. Where was it looking? A quick glance to the Sterling table answered that entirely.

Norrevinter was giving one hell of a speech. For all that brutish veneer and sizable mass that was likely dwarfed by the sheer density of her pride, there was a good mind in there. His eyes flicked momentarily to Tessa. A good mind, but blind to consequences of what happens when recklessly charging to a goal.

He was standing now. Tessa had been helped, and he’d been too distracted to contribute. Tessa hadn’t been the source of the issue though. Just a victim. Tover didn’t know much about the big feud between the Sterlings and the Norrevinters, but it didn’t need his kind of mind to easily put the pieces together.

Jarlinna Kora Mari was a hefty name. Kora would do. That would likely intimidate the pants off those Monroe girls if what he said was enough to make her pass up their table, and given that the suave looking one.. well. Slightly tarnished. Had been used as a seat, her chances of being taken seriously were pretty good, and the challenge of a fight was very likely to make everyone keep their head down. It didn’t hold a candle to the imposing pressure some of the women in his family let off. Or perhaps, it’s because he didn’t know much better, but.. did that sound like bluster? Angry and emotional, primal and direct. Had she even realized the effects of her warpath? How everyone was looking?

She was never, ever going to make a single friend that way.

Why did that thought hurt, so incredibly much. His heart clenched at the realization that if this is how she leaves off, it will only get worse from here with more cause for anger.

A beautiful thought bloomed in Tover’s mind, the tactical cog saying it’s due.
“I’m going to do something stupid.”
His words were soft, the adrenaline from earlier present albeit slowly diminishing. Directed at the general table before putting one foot infront of the other, straight towards the Prime Spotlight of the morning.

One. Just one.

Just one redeeming moment was all he’d had to chance in order to not only to make another friend, but also to not let that prideful mountain of a woman suffer in the long term. He’d seen before where that kind of bluster got you. Alone. Angry. Pained. Unwanted. Hating the world.

He stopped within talking distance, but was a little louder as only the adrenaline from before was actually keeping him on his feet. Sure he was frightened. Who wouldn’t be scared when you’re approaching the current prime possibility for biggest school bully.

It didn’t need to be like that. It didn’t need to turn out that way.

“Hey Norrevinter!” Tover exclaimed loudly while not exactly hiding. God this was uncomfterable, but he coulden’t pass it up. Not again. He’d regretted the first time years ago, having said nothing and watched it play out. Not this time, this time he’d take the pain. Standing there seemingly without fear, hands half in his pockets with a nudged-loose tie. While his approach was lightly slumped, he straightened up to speak as if to try and be taller. Not that such an attempt had merit.

“That was a nice speech. Councilmember is nice and all, but you won’t make it if you don’t realize what happens the people in your path. I know councilmembers are strong, and smart, but most of all I heard they care. They care about people and want to do what’s right.”

He shoved his thumb harsh over his shoulder.
“You hurt someone back there, while on your rampage. So if you too, care. Walk with me and come apologize, and talk to her. Because that’s what someone worthy of honor would do.”
A light breath was his only interruption, the idea of ‘the right thing to do’ stuck in his mind as he swallowed hard to push that know back down his throat.
“But if you don’t care, and all you are interested in is your personal vengeance, or whatever this is.” He said the last part motioning at the interaction that occurred between Monroe at her. “Then a fight is the only thing you’re ever going to have here. You speak well. You can think well, and you’ve got the strength to accomplish what you want. That’s great. But if you don’t have the heart to use those where it matters. Then I’ll take that fight Norrevinter. I’ll take that fight every day, because never will I ever want to see you in a position of power.”

Another breath, another nervous swallow he tried to stifle. Teeth doing a temporary grit. Although he said the next part with an effort to hide the painful emotion, his facial expression betraying him to show the care and concern.

“Don’t let everyone here believe that a loud brute is all you are.”

If she apologized to the Sterling or the Monroe. That was her prerogative, however they were direct targets after she’d rampaged her way over here. He took a step back and to the side, raising his left hand to offer it as direct invitation. Having done his best damn attempt to diffuse tension like he did at home all the damn time, and at the same time trying to provide Kora a social escape route. This could be patched.
If she refused.
He’d tried.
If she didn’t, he planned to walk back to Tessa with her regardless if she accepted the hand or not.

Her current targets could clean up their own mess. The suave one looked like he’d try and talk his way out regardless, the girls were going to be upset just because they could. The other one.. He didn’t quite know. Looked somewhat familiar. Perhaps he’d met him before and just couldn’t recall, but the name Jason just stuck in his head. Tover didn’t say more however, having moved out of the walkway enough to give way and offer Kora the space to start the walk back down to Tessa.

Would it work out like he wanted? Maybe not. Tover already having decided to bite the bullet, and deal with this event as a new step forwards for who he wanted to be. Because at least of this, he could be proud. The mousy, corner-kept, silent Tover, was gone.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: [NPC] Bartender Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Helena Kingsley Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Larke Sterling Character Portrait: Kora Norrevinter Character Portrait: Jasper Monroe Character Portrait: Adelaide Monroe Character Portrait: Jessica Rose Smith Character Portrait: Jason Avalon Character Portrait: Desdemona Moore
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Jesse didn't really see the problem with sleeping in the cafeteria. It was breakfast after all. While Helena got up to get some more cereal, she ate her pancakes and looked around the cafeteria. That boy, apparently named Jason, had turned his attention to someone else. He really seemed stuck up. Not that she was one to judge, but wow. He reminded her of Draco Malfoy from the Harry Potter books. That's how arrogant he was. She turned her attention back to her pancakes.

All of the sudden there was gasping around the cafeteria. She looked up to see a boy getting up, painfully, with yogurt on his head. Next to him was a very smug-looking girl who had obviously done the deed. She saw people left and right jump to the boy's defense. Good, at least not everyone here was stuck-up. Through all the commotion, she learned the girl's name was Norrevinter. Strange name. But the girl didn't seem to care that no one thought well of what she was doing. She sat on his head. If Jason was Draco Malfoy, this chick was Pansy.

Maybe I should say something... Jesse thought. She wasn't one to get into fights. In fact, she avoided them as much as possible. But this girl was just being a bully at this point. Jesse got up from her seat to go find a teacher, or at the very least, a responsible adult. But as she did so, a boy stood up and did her job for her. The cafeteria was silent after his speech, looking at the Norrevinter girl, wondering how she would reply. Jesse, however, felt that the boy had hit the nail on the head, and started clapping.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Larke Sterling Character Portrait: Kora Norrevinter Character Portrait: Drake Coleman Character Portrait: Jasper Monroe Character Portrait: Adelaide Monroe Character Portrait: Jason Avalon
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#, as written by Hyro
”I’m not that kind of blind,” she had said, confusing Drake slightly. What did she mean by that? He had no experience in blindness or eye disabilities of any kind, so he was about to ask for clarification.

That was, until the chaos went down in the cafeteria.

Drake was on his feet in seconds when everything started, reacting in a sort of fight or flight response he had acquired from his home life. Him standing had been completely impulsive, as had his nerves tensing up in his shoulders and back. After a quick assessment of the situation, however, the boy snapped out of his attentive stance, having heard his name. Mitch was confused and asking what on earth was going on. It was a good question, and his eyes narrowed at the other tables in an attempt to properly describe the situation.

It was like watching animals throwing a tantrum over a stolen bone, Kora being the angry beast and Larke being the one who had taken her meal. He'd never seen this kind of social behavior, though he was pretty sure this wasn't common for mage culture, and was likely considered rude, if not entirely mal-mannered.

“I’m not sure… Some tall ginger girl just brought down some guy and poured yoghurt all over him, then sat on him… Hold on, I’ll be right back,” he offered her, moving toward the mess. He made sure to grab some napkins at a nearby napkin station on his way.

“Hey, guys! Knock it off!” the young mage shouted in an attempt to damper the conflict, keeping his distance for the moment. As if on cue, the taller woman had put Larke back in an upright position and was now addressing those around her. Drake didn’t pay much mind to their conversations, instead opting to walk over and offer the messy man some napkins.

“Here,” he handed Larke a small stack of napkins, before moving over to the spot on the floor where said food had been dumped over Kora’s victim. Especially since the tantrum girl seemed far too superior to actually consider cleaning it up. It was everywhere, and he quickly realized upon further inspection that he was going to need more than just napkins. The boy moved to grab an empty tray off a nearby table and, using some of the napkins, scooped the various liquids and chunks onto the tray. With a quick sweep, he got the rest of what was left, leaving the floor clean and dry, then moved to the nearest trash can to dump the tray and its contents.

When Drake looked back to the scene, he found enough people had gotten involved, so instead of adding to the crowd, the boy simply padded back over to his table to inform Mitch. “Everything’s fine, I think. I’m not entirely sure. But it seems like it’s being handled.” The boy, who had still been staring at the scene, finally dragged his gaze away to look at Mitch and Apple, noticing Apple’s rigid stance and tentativeness.

“We’re not in danger, if that’s what Apple is worried about,” he assured.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman Character Portrait: Adelaide Monroe Character Portrait: Jason Avalon
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Jason put on a fake smile as he nodded to Adelaide speaking to her politely. "Oh I understand that something like that is very important. However maybe next time it would be better to fix the mess rather than let it sit. Before jumping into a feud between two powerful future council members who have the power to make you and your sister's life miserable."

As Jasper left and Adelaide apologized on her twin's behalf he zeroed in on Kora who was currently apologizing to his.... to the girl she knocked over he mentally corrected. As Larke offered to clean off a non-existent mess on the younger girl his eyes narrowed. Sterlings rarely did things out of the kindness of their heart, that bastard was up to something. Meaning he would have a talk with Larke later and officially declare Tessa under his protection, after all he had promised to look out for the younger girl. Whether she wanted it or not.

Now onto problem number two, as he disapprovingly eyed the black hair youth and blind girl with the insect abomination. Now seemed like as good a time as any to inform him of what was going on, and why shouting 'knock it off' was the worse move imaginable. As he took a step forward Montana appeared and basically told them all to not be privileged brats. He nodded agreeing with the man's message, after all getting into trouble on the first day looked bad. Once the teacher was done he continued forward towards his targets.


"Mind if I join you Miss Ingram and companion. While his tone was polite it was not a question as he moved to sit down without waiting for permission. His eyes looked at Drake studying the youth with a rapt attention as he took in every detail about him in a very unnerving fashion. "I'd like to introduce myself, Jason Avalon." There was no pause as he continued as very few did not know who he was. "Miss Ingram, your new friend may need some lessons in etiquette. Please bare with my questioning for a moment while I figure out a few issues. Jason's tone was cold as his face shone of disapproval as he spoke to Drake as if the boy was a child. "I would like to know who you are and why you felt it was a good idea to involve yourself in a feud. As well as ask what made you think that saying 'knock it off' was a good idea and was going to help anything?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman Character Portrait: Jason Avalon
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“I’m not sure… Some tall ginger girl just brought down some guy and poured yoghurt all over him, then sat on him… Hold on, I’ll be right back,” said Drake.

As far as Mitch was concerned, the offered information was about as useful as a MacBook Air.

That is to say, not very useful.

She stared intently forward at the wall as the conversation continued, though her head was cocked slightly to the left so that her ear was pointed more directly toward the goings-on. She did not know much about mage lines, but what little she did seemed sufficient to explain: There was a Norrevinter (distinguishable by her telltale inability to distinguish the letters “r” and “w,”) and a Sterling (going by the general asinine charm with which he handled the confrontation.) There was also some mention of an Avalon, as well as someone else that was offering his input.

Some clapping ensued after that.

Mitch pretended to not hear most of the exchange, instead shifting her pancakes around with her fork as the others worked it out.

Apple, for his part, continued to be a good Apple. Once the Shaggy-Black-Fur-Male-Thing was gone, he kept up his warning rattle for a good thirty seconds, adamantly protecting his Bad-Eyes-Good-Pets friend. From what he could see, the Fire-Head-Large-Thing had opened assault against one of the Short-Fur-Male-Things, and he had no idea who was next on its docket. Clearly a dominance battle. Now there were other Female-Long-Hair-Things involved.

His tail lowered to sit on Mitch’s forehead for a moment when the White-Fur-Man-Thing started to speak (and the good-eating-things stopped flying), and then finally curled back into its resting position against his own back as the situation deescalated.

Obviously due to his own excellent defensive ability.

Quite satisfied with himself, Apple slunk down from Mitch’s shoulders to curl into her lap, and was resting there comfortably when Drake returned. Mitch’s left hand was stroking his wiry fur when she heard Drake sit down, and she adjusted her gaze to be back in his general direction.

“I figured as much,” she replied with a small shrug, “If anything really bad was happening, he’d have probably tried to eat it.”

When another voice joined in (Avalon? She knew Avalon, at least in name and voice,) she turned once again and offered a vague smile. “Of course you can sit. Mr. Av- Jason. Um.”

More awkward pause.

“But. My name’s just Mi…”

She let the end of the sentence die out as Jason began chiding her newfound companion. Her shoulders folded in ever so slightly, and her eyes went back down to the table. The thought of saying something crossed her mind, but quickly dissipated as she recalled that this was a face-to-face conversation: There would be no hiding behind an infamous tag or username here.

After a sentence or two, she reached into her pocket and popped a headphone into one ear.

Best not to interfere with that.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman Character Portrait: Jessica Rose Smith Character Portrait: Jason Avalon Character Portrait: Desdemona Moore
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ImageFacing Dawn, Tover noticed the small personal war she was having to push hair out of her face before the conversation began. The lack of raven locks muddling her face let those grey eyes be visible again, and it caused the edge of a smile to curve on his face. What an oddly pleasant feeling. Was this what it felt like to make real friends, instead of that simulacrum atrocity his family accepted? He felt a little flush, though that may have been just from the recovery of his borderline fearless intervention just earlier.

“It really wasn’t too big of a deal, Desdemona and I were closer, anyway.”
Well that was a relief, he’d thought it might have been otherwise, but bothersome little trails of thought like that were very common for him, and just hearing he was okay always did wonders to shut those down. Dawn’s shrug an almost helpful reinforcer.

It was the curve of her lips as they slid into the beginnings of a smile that made him feel warm, and just a touch helpless. He’d made someone smile? His face, while generally marred with practiced nonchalance softened its features into a warmer expression as he listened.
“Well, considering nobody is flipping anyone into a table right now, I’d say it was a job well done.” He saw her fingers fold, and sat up in response, as if she might suddenly be a little more serious.
“You did pretty good holding yourself together up there, though, I think. I heard a few people clapping, too.”

Forget warm. He was turning pinkish red in the cheeks and shyly had to turn away a little. His grey eyes cast down and to the side, some loose locks of hair falling back out of place over his forehead as a full-on unstoppable smile of pride and fulfillment stuck to his face, listening to her clear up the naming convention as the tips of his fingers felt prickly, raising them to rub the back of his head after managing a small mention.
”T..thanks, that means a lot.”

“That’s my middle name, actually. So you weren’t completely off.” Dawn explained. “And, ah. I would have no problem with more talking, really.” She had paused, glanced over her shoulder, then turned back around. “I didn’t see whoever started it. It was nice of her- whoever she is.”

When Dawn mentioned clapping he instinctively turned back to look at the table along with dawn, locating where the girl in the big hoodie sat. She seemed somewhat covered in bits of fur here and there because of the hoodie, but that didn’t matter at the moment. Glad to just have recognized her before turning back to face Dawn as Tessa joined in on the conversation.
”I don’t know her name yet, but it’s the girl in the messy hoodie over there. I’m not going to bother her now though, she’s got her own thing going. I’ll thank her when I can later. Also, Evelyn’s a really nice name. Probably why it stuck~ I’d be happy to have some long conversations when we both have free time to catch up!” Tover sounded almost chipper.

The invitation to conversation with Evelyn was a pleasantry he was going to enjoy delving into sometime, but it looked like group socializing was going to cut up the deeper conversations people could be having at the moment. It was pleasant though, thinking everyone should get this, a tender blossoming warmth behind the middle of the chest from talking to classmates who were becoming friends.

His attention split from the inner sensations he was experiencing as some Tessa speedily cut in with some strong french. He spoke the language, but she was going a bit fast, his color balancing back to normal during his momentary frown that spoke volumes of what he was understanding while she spoke. A tempered pleasant look replaced it when she kicked up her translating skills.

"Guys I have something awesome to tell you later it is juicy too!”
As nice as that was, he had the odd feeling that what Tessa had to say was very much going to be ‘girl talk.’ Making Tover look around for a temporary way out for a minute or so before he could return to the table. Surely there was someone he could temporarily say hi to and maybe pull into this in-the-middle-of-being-minted group of friends. ”That’s nice~” was all he managed to say before Tessa slid into sudden questioning twined with pleasant compliments, her bubbly personality really shining through.

"That was some awesome negotiating Tov, butterflies or not you did great! Oh that girl no idea who she is but with a speech like that I doubt anyone could ignore you. You were like a practiced diplomat, where did you learn to do that? You really helped Kora out, are you trying to get in her good graces?”
The kindness of her compliments had been a very welcomed, if not an outright necessity for the well being of his continued social growth and overall well-being. He’d been silently wrecked in some ways by the whole ordeal. Hearing things like this though, this helped. He felt much better with the supportive validation from his peers, and general acceptance that he’d not only done the right thing, but that people were a little impressed with the whole thing. It was a quiet reward for trying to be himself, and instead of being met with the disdain that would normally have followed at home. Here it seemed.. it seemed welcomed.

Steady as he felt from the social feedback, an icy chill clamped to his senses. He coulden’t help but see similarities in the gaze Tessa’s blue eyes held as she leered at him with an almost zealous intensity. It reminded of some of the looks he’d gotten from people that had only wanted something out of him. Her compliments had likely been sincere, and if Tover had to make a guess, she had noticed what he might have been actually up to with that chess move of his. Well. Half-move~ He did have something he didn’t want to see again fueling the action.

There was a messy comprehensive answer in his head, but it broke down easy enough as his face crunched together in pensive though. When his features softened and returned to leaning-on-the-table nonchalance, he was good to talk.
“Tessa, right?” Tover started, taking a sip from his cup of water since his tea was all gone. “First off thanks for the kind words, you’re a good part responsible for why I’m ‘Okay’ right now, along with Dawn, and mystery girl who started clapping over there. Until a bit ago. well..” He raised his hand holding the water cup a little, it still had a tremor.

“I’m no diplomat. I just.. I’ve been around a lot of people that had to know just what to say in order to get the result they want.” He paused to look right at Tessa, but his body posture shifted to something defensive, like he really didn’t want to talk about this, at all, because it caused such discomfort. “My family is a matriarchy. I’m not exactly a people person, but saying the wrong thing to the wrong girl in my family can net you some pretty brutal and unorthodox responses and results.”

Tover cleared his throat to bite away the topic, it was too uncomfterable and it showed heavily all over him, eyebrows strained as he took a proper drink of water and got into answering. “A couple years ago I was in a private school, and something very much like this happened.” He nodded over to Norrevinter. “Except that back then, I didn’t know what the cost was. Over a few years that person only ever got seen as a bully, and was treated in a way that only made things go more and more downhill. All because they never had a chance to turn it around, because of something they did right at the beginning in front of everyone. I only learned later of the effects that had, and I wasn’t the person you just saw talking either. I coulden’t help then, and I felt regret. I couldn’t bear to see watching it play out for a second time. So I was just going to take the humiliation of failing infront of everyone.” his head dipped down, as if the outcome he was expecting in his head was playing and it was considerably more bleak that what had actually transpired. ” I’d rather live with the knowledge that I did what I wanted and followed my will, then live with another regret of “It didn’t have to be that way.”

Tover was fighting with his tie without having noticed it. The thing almost completely undone. He was frowning during his lean, the common eyes only half-open look glued to an empty spot in the middle of the table. Like he coulden’t bear to look at anyone right now. “If it happens that Kora likes me more because of it.. I mean. It would be nice, and I won’t mind, because I’ve always wanted more friends. Real friends.” He raised his head, and looked in Norrevinter’s general direction. “But I doubt it. She’s a big bundled ball of pride, and I think all I actually did was maybe prevent the mess from getting worse, but I doubt she sees me as anything more than someone who got in the way of her feuding. If that’s how it is, that’s fine. I did my part in giving her the chance to show that she was a person, and not just.. another bully. Because I wasn’t convinced the person from a few years ago was one either, just never got the chance to be seen as anything else.”

Tover moved his food tray to the side. “That aside, I’m sorry for using your fall as an excuse to get that done. That wasn’t kind of me. But it doesn’t seem like that’s something you didn’t know.” His ghostly grey eyes met Tessa’s, and returned the penetrating gaze. She was clever. She wasn’t the only one as Tover was warming up to her. “I’m happy to have made a friend that realized there was more to my little piece of drama than just pretty words. Thanks Tessa, and thanks for playing along and letting things play out so things went well for everyone.” His expression faded back to a solemn calm. Breaths easing into the soft normality as his explanation was over, a small smile returning as he remembered all the pleasant things that were said.

“I don’t have a middle name. The name is just Tover, some people just use ‘Tov’ if it’s easier for spelling. If a nickname happens to come up, those are nice too. At the moment though, I think you said that you had some juicy details to tell people. Erm… well. That sounds like it’s girl-talk, and I feel a little in the way.” Tover pushed away from the table and stood up, looking around to catch Jason Avalon in the corner of his eye, giving a stern talking to the black-haired spitfire that had darted in and provided napkins to Sterling. In that little group, he saw the place where he remembered the little fluff-critter-thing was making that dangerous noise earlier. Was it just him or did it look like that that girl felt really left-out?

Tover squinted at the sight before looking back down at the girls with some concern. “Hey Dawn, Tess? there’s a girl over there that looks really left out, and you’re all really pleasant. So while you’re gossiping, I’m going to see if I can’t get her to come to this table so she can make some friends too. Okay? He gave a brisk nod in Mitch’s direction to give a heads up where he was going, and tapped the table twice to say he was off before walking.

The girls might have noticed that there might have been another reason or two he took a temporary break from the table. Opening up hadn’t made him comfortable, and the sudden shakiness in his voice near the end gave away that he really just needed a minute to recover. He was going to be fine and back, he didn’t dislike their company. Still, Tover is a boy talking talking to a group of girls, and that alone still needed some getting used to.

He made it a point to take the long way around. For comfort’s sake if nothing else as he approached the table and softly spoke to the girl with the.. fluff-dog-thing on her lap when he was close enough. Tover said hi from the side where Mitch didn’t have an earbud in. “Em, hey. I’m at the table with some girls who are trying to make friends, and we noticed you were kind of keeping to yourself over here. Did you want to come make some friends too? We’ve got an open spot at the table for you, and these guys look pretty busy.”

It wasn’t a ploy either. Avalon was standing there with fire in his eyes and a purpose in his stance, and the Black-haired guy he was talking to seemed engrossed in the conversation. Whatever Avalon had planned, it wasn’t something he was part of, and it was just going to have to play out without him. Then again, he really felt like he’d met Avalon before, and just couldn’t place where. Something to do with chess? Maybe. There was something about the way the guy spoke that just felt familiar. He’d ask later. For now he was glad for the momentary reprieve as he caught a few words between Jason and Drake, his shoulder turned to them. Not quite wanting to get involved in something again so soon.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman Character Portrait: Jason Avalon
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Drake did not find her joke about Apple to be funny.

In fact, now that there was somebody new at the table, Drake seemed not to notice that Mitch existed at all. Par for that course. She started flicking through various albums and playlists, eyes still set ahead, and the hand holding her phone resting on Apple’s back. Just as she had settled on something she wanted to hear, another voice came up beside her.

Too close to logically not be speaking to her.

“Em, hey. I’m at the table with some girls who are trying to make friends, and we noticed you were kind of keeping to yourself over here. Did you want to come make some friends too? We’ve got an open spot at the table for you, and these guys look pretty busy.”

Mitch turned her head to face up in the direction of the speaker, and Apple scuttled up to the top of her head to give the White-Haired-Male-Thing a good sniff. Her murky gaze settled fairly close to on center (for he was so close that it was a difficult target to miss) and she furrowed her brow as the sound of his voice ran through the necessary recognition process.

”You’re the boy who shut up the Norrevinter,” she said matter-of-factly, and swung her body around from the seat so that she could stand. A short click of her tongue sent Apple slipping down her body quick as Mercury over a lab coat, and he sat at attention beside her. She slipped her hand down to grab his harness, and gave a shy smile toward the speaker. ”And I think I’d like that,” she answered as she stood, ”Just point us to it. Or. I mean. Kinda start walking and Apple can figure it.”

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman Character Portrait: Jason Avalon
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Jason watched Drake like a hawk looking at prey, before slowly raising an eyebrow. His tone was amused as he spoke to the black haired youth as if he were a child. "For future reference when two people fight you have four options. Tell someone with authority, get between the two, try to be diplomatic about it, or stay where you are. Now since you had zero idea who those two were and their power level plus skill level getting between them would have been dangerous on your part. You are honestly lucky that Kora and Larke were not fighting or you would be on the floor in pain right now for getting in over your head." He paused for a moment as he let the words sink in before continuing.

"That girl was not trampled and was fine, I had my eye on the situation the whole time and was monitoring it. While you may have not meant it to be a hostile remark it was taken as a hostile remark." Jason's fingers drummed on the table as he tried to correctly word his next statement. "Yes I said feud, the Sterlings and Norriventers have been feuding since the 16th century for various reasons. I'm going to explain this to you now since you do not seem to grasp the situation. By showing favor to one of those two you are declaring an alliance without realizing it or not, which means the other may declare you as their enemy and bring you into the feud."

Jason sighed as he looked at Drake "You must be a new comer to our little society, my suggestion to you is to be informed and think before you act or it will cause trouble for you and your kin." Tover approached and talked to Mit- something while he was busy talking with Drake. The Book boy seemed full of surprises today, he had never known the other to be particularly social. Then again it had been years since he had last seen Tover.

So Drake had been thoroughly reprimand and things were explained to the newbie, he had done his job now to throw the poor boy a bone. "Why don't you join your friend over at the other table, I'm sure that they can answer any questions about society that you may have." He added on a polite smile to make the words seem softer and take away a bit of the bite. "After all I've kept you from your companion here long enough." With that he turned his head to Tover and mouthed the words 'Watch Them' when Drake wasn't looking. After all if anyone could watch out for a blind girl and an idiot it was Tover.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Drake Coleman Character Portrait: Jason Avalon Character Portrait: Desdemona Moore
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#, as written by Hyro
Drake looked over at the exchange between Tover and Mitch, his reaction similar to that of a kicked puppy. Mitch had jumped the gun on the opportunity presented to her, not even giving him a second glance, much less inviting him along. She had seemed rather eager to leave, and it felt like a knife to the heart. In the boy's lack of social experience, his mind could only reach one conclusion.

She hates me.

Of course. He was a fool to think he'd made a friend in the short time span he'd been here. She was only there because she was out of options. But now she had an opportunity, and she took it without a second thought. The boy looked back to Jason now, a mixture of frustration and defeat in his nearly silver eyes. He was only half listening, but he'd caught enough to get a general gist of what Jason was saying. Though it honestly just sounded like one big scolding, and, to think, he'd been interrupted just to be lectured.

And to go as far as to call Mitch his companion, well... Now he was just humoring him. Or perhaps Jason pitied him, neither of which Drake cared for.

"Thank you for the information and the offer, but..."

The boy's eyes trailed over to the table of girls, Mitch's next destination, with a bit of a disconnect. Who was he to ruin Mitch's chance to make friends? The others were just as likely to dislike him as Mitch had. He doubted she wanted to be associated. Drake's eyes pried away, refocusing on the table before him, avoiding eye contact altogether now.

"I think,"he spoke slowly, keeping his voice steady, "I'm just going to go find my dorm. If you'll excuse me."

With that, the young pyromancer stood, reaching for his guitar case and slinging it over his back. He then paused with an after thought.

All this lecturing, and over what? Cleaning up a mess? Really? Was being nice such a crime here? The urge to say something, to simply defend himself, grew stronger. He really should have just kept his mouth shut and left it, but that wasn't who he was. And besides...

"You know, being that I gave the boy napkins and cleaned up the girl's mess for her, it would seem I never actually chose a side, would it? It's almost as if I was just trying to be helpful all around. Anyway, lesson learned. I know my place now."

Drake picked up his tray.

"Have a good day, Jason."

With that, the boy walked over to the nearest trash can and dumped his tray, setting it on top with the others. Shifting the weight of his guitar case on his shoulder, he gave one more glance over the cafeteria. From his perspective, it seemed everyone had an easy time making friends, each of them in their own little groups. Feeling just as alienated as he had before he'd gotten here, the boy turned to leave.

Perhaps he would fall back on his original plan. Keep to himself. Stick to books and playing guitar. Those two things had never let him down. Besides, it was probably better that way.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dinah Fox Character Portrait: Nefertiti Anapa III Character Portrait: Theren Belvadeer Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Helena Kingsley Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Professor Oren Kovalenko Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Larke Sterling Character Portrait: Kora Norrevinter Character Portrait: Drake Coleman Character Portrait: Jasper Monroe Character Portrait: Adelaide Monroe Character Portrait: Jessica Rose Smith Character Portrait: Jason Avalon Character Portrait: Roderic Alder Mayburry Montana Character Portrait: Azaziel Crowley Character Portrait: Esperanza Ciervo Character Portrait: Cyrus Fox Character Portrait: Nimura Hedlund Character Portrait: Lucien Magnaventus
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Kora couldn't help but feel that Tover was putting too much stake in the whole thing. It was not as if anyone whose opinion mattered didn't already know what to expect. Some people truly got wound up about some small things. Still, he seemed well-meaning enough, and it never hurt to have people on your side. Especially when some of the students were so touchy.

Not so much with the Botrelle girl though, it appeared, who seemed pretty unconcerned about her trip.
"Yup. I'm sure. It was nothing personal, I'm sure you're great and all." Kora responded to Tessa, maintaining the good natured tone, though her newfound diplomacy was tested when the sister of the previous girl showed up. Still, she was doing a better job than her sibling at keeping things civil.
"Apology accepted. Sterling isn't concerned because this is how things are, and it's probably a good idea to..
"

She trailed off momentarily upon catching the exchange or Sterling passing the napkin, and Tessa's blushing. Her gaze moved over to Larke.
"Really? There is something wrong with you."

----


At the end of the corridor leading from the cafeteria, the shadows cast into the alcove there began to ripple and warp for a brief moment, before Professor Kovalenko appeared. A few wisps of dark, inscrutable matter seemed to evaporate off the surface of her coat and coil round her boots as she stepped out, in time to pause in front of the retreating Jasper and give her a look of stony disapproval.
"Miss Monroe I'm not aware of anybody giving you permission to leave the cafeteria. Professor Lovette is going to be arriving soon to deliver some very important announcements and I wouldn't like him to have to repeat them all purely for your sake, so I'd appreciate if you returned to your seat. "

Her dark grey eyes swept up as she caught someone else about to exit.
"The same goes for you too Mr Coleman. Return to your seat. I don't want to be spending all my time acting as sheepdog for every student tantrum that takes place this year. So let's start as we mean to go on."
She made her way to the entrance as a brisk pace, pausing for a moment to shoot Cyrus and Dinah a look sufficient to cause the two to scramble inside and to the nearest available seat (the furthest distance away from each other that they could find at short notice).

From there she walked over to the figure of Montana, coming to a stop next to the man.

"They don't seem to be listening." the woman remarked, noting that his short speech hadn't made more than a few students set their food down and wait for some form of permission."Seems we're going to need to teach this the hard way."
Oren swiftly lifted one slender, gloved hand into the air and snapped out her fingers to their full extent.

A wave of frosty air burst out from the woman like a blast from the arctic wind, and within moments all the food and drink the students had been enjoying was frozen completely solid. Fruit juice sat inert and fixed to its glass, pieces of toast were left as hard and unyielding as paving slabs.

Satisfied she'd gotten people's attention, Professor Kovalenko spoke up, her tone singular and unwavering.

"I beleive Mr Montana was speaking to all.
In the future I'd highly recommend listening to what he has to say.
This is the first lesson you are going to learn here.
I'm sure that a lot of you are used to people doing what you say at home, or being able to talk your way out of having to listen. That isn't the way things are going to work here.
Each of us on staff has been appointed by the Council of the Eight Powers to train you in the arts of magic, and as we're acting on their behalf, nobody is above the rules here.
"

Her icy gaze lingered for a moment on both the ginger giantess and her silver-tongued nemesis, pretty certain today's incident was neither the last, nor the worst trouble those two would cause.
"Failure to listen to us, any of us, is going to result in immediate consequences.
Please keep this in mind the next time you choose to disregard what is being said to you.

Norrevinter, Sterling, consider this you first and your only warning to keep your fighting to combat class. Next time anyone tries something I'll assume they enjoy battle so much that they'll jump at the chance to spend their free time cleaning the combat equipment.
"
Norrevinter might have been the instigator in this case, though if Sterling hadn't done anything to deserve being tackled yet, he probably would have in the first few days, so Oren saw nothing unfair about applying it to both sides of their ridiculous fight.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Professor Oren Kovalenko Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Roderic Alder Mayburry Montana Character Portrait: Desdemona Moore
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  1. Guys, I'm really sorry for my shitty post. I tried to do better, but I haven't been feeling well and as summer ends everything's been so chaotic that I can't focus. So you get this and I apologize to anyone who feels I ignored their posts. I read all of them, promise. I just can't write anything decent that would properly respond to everyone right now.

    by ianna_334
  2. Don't worry about the post. (it was nice to see!) You feel better first, worry about posty after. Take a small break and take care of yourself, we won’t fuss. #Support #It’sOkay

    by Anonymous
  3. No problem! Everything's kind of slowed down anyway. Your health and real life problems are more important! #support

    by BurningDark

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After making sure Tessa was alright, Desi watched the conflict unfolding before her eyes while carefully removing herself to the table. Making a classic “wait a minute” gesture, she once again pulled out her green cased cellphone and started to text, message after message to both parents. One to Dami to tell him about the chaos in the cafeteria and summon a staff member, the other to James so that he’d know what was going on, because it was pretty funny. Most of the conversation went over her head as a result, her only catching small bits, like the middle names.

”Maria.” she offered hers up distractedly, then went back to finishing her texts.

She only looked up, because she had vaguely registered a scolding voice saying something that she hadn’t quite caught. By then, Tover had gone and their food was frozen, and she blinked in confusion before looking at her tablemates.

”What happened to the food?” she asked looking around in confusion to note that yes, everyone’s was in the same state. Now keeping an ear out for her answer, she sent one more text to her daddy complaining about the state of things, with a frowny face on the end for good measure.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Professor Oren Kovalenko Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Jessica Rose Smith Character Portrait: Roderic Alder Mayburry Montana Character Portrait: Desdemona Moore
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  1. I like Dawn. Good character. Very good at smoothing over plot and making RP accessible. #GoldStar #KeepThisOne

    by TerrorFloof

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Tover seemed a bit embarrassed in the face of flattery, Dawn noted. Fidgeting, turning away- even blushing a tad. The comment about being nervous had truly been genuine. She gave him a bit of an opening to better compose himself by directing her eyes to the girl who had apparently triggered the round of applause...and was also recovering from knocking her head on the table.

Dawn averted her eyes again.

“I might go introduce myself later, too. She seems like a nice girl.” she began, seeing that Tover had properly recovered at this point. “But, um, yeah. My dad actually wanted to name me Evelyn at first- was a family name- but my mom liked the name Dawn too much. They, ah, compromised.”

As Tessa practically skipped over to the table, face flushed, Dawn quickly came to the conclusion that Larke hadn’t just dropped by to keep up appearances. While she hadn’t seen the scrawled numbers, it didn’t take rocket science to take note of the Sterling’s trademark...charms- or even hear of their reputation, although she was attempting to not rely wholly on that- and it seemed that Larke had inherited the trait. Her suspicions were almost wholly confirmed as she began to gush about something “juicy”, but Dawn did not comment on it.

“You’ll have to tell us all about it, then! You definitely seem excited.” She smiled widely, eyes bright with intrigue. The smile soon dropped at Tessa’s last comment, and she quieted as Tover began to respond- although the interest lingered far longer than its companion did.

Far longer.

By the time Tover had finished, Dawn’s hands had once again wandered- propped up by her elbows, and neatly entwined against her mouth. One of her fingers rose up, and began to tap against the knuckle beneath it in slow, deliberate movements.

“I- I don’t think anyone could really get in the way of the whole...fight they have going at this point. Not forever, anyway. They’ve been at each other’s throats for too long.” She cracked her knuckles, unconsciously emphasizing her words.

“I think you made a pretty good point by actually getting in between them, though. At the very least, you made an impression, but, um. We should all make sure nobody ends up getting caught in the...crossfire of things? Next time.”

Tessa’s remark about her middle name prompted another brow raise from Dawn, and another smile. “Well, now you’ve made me curious,” she said lightly. “Do you think you could tell us the story sometime? I’d love to hear it- if you don’t mind, that is.”[/color] The list of things to do was climbing, but she didn’t entirely mind it. Dawn liked the group. She was enjoying the conversation and little nuances throughout it, and the thought of speaking more with them sparked a certain delight within her.

Dawn gave a small chuckle at Tover’s discomfort regarding the “girl talk”, and, taking a glance over in the direction he signaled to, nodded. “I don’t mind more company. And, ah. We’ll try to keep the womanish affairs short.” A wry grin touched her face, and, rubbing her knuckles, she positioned herself once again to better speak to the group. “Maria’s a nice name,” Dawn commented. She was just about to question if the name also had a story attached to it when a gust of cold air brushed past her, causing her to shiver and begin to scan the crowd for the source- but not before catching sight of the plates, now covered in a fine gloss of ice.

Once again, Dawn thanked her lucky stars that nothing had actually been spilled, as she doubted that she would be able to pry her schedule from the table if something had.


The perpetrator soon identified themselves- a sharp, black haired women who seemed like she had been dragged into the room against her own will- and started to bring up several points. The mention of the professors being appointed by the Council elicited some surprise from the Trickster. While she had heard many things about the school itself, there hadn’t been much regarding the instructors. Dawn sat up, giving a short bow of the head to show her understanding- even if the woman didn’t actually see it.

“I think the teacher froze it,” she whispered to Desi. From what Dawn could hear, several other tables were beginning to react to the slabs of ice now scattered in front of them- some complaining, others just as attentive as she was, and even a number who were, a bit humorously, making attempts to free their trapped pancakes with varying degrees of success.

Mostly on the failing side of the spectrum.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Jason Avalon Character Portrait: Desdemona Moore
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The creature that gave him a harsh and sudden sniff jolted everything else of importance to the side. Dealing with that you knew was one thing. You can structure that information. It fits in a table when you’ve got time to think about it, a clean clear hierarchy.

Not this.

Like seeing a wild animal in the jungle for the first time as an explorer, Tover locked eyes with the creature known as apple and felt a mixture of both profound worry and utter amazement. His brain was screaming at him to back up, but his feet wouldn’t move, eyes glued to the spectacle of the unknown.

About the size of an oversized cat, but longer, this six legged.. something was inches from him as it took a deep whiff of his smell. Given he hadn’t had a chance to wash, that would have been a mixture of long car drive leather-seat, sugary fresh baked pastries, and the normal unique smell a person had.

Danger came first. The sharp pointed hook-curved tail blade had an odd-colored sheen to it, like something caustic coating the whole inner edge frequently. Given the precision the tail had when curled around the girl, the coated wiry-looking fur tail must have been prehensile. He didn’t know what to make of the holes in the tail-blade, but didn’t linger on them for more than the millisecond it took to notice them. There was so much more here.

Six legs, pronged clawed feet, insect-carapace lower limbs with the occasional patch across the body where fur was nowhere to be seen. A big, impossible to miss red-cloth patch stuck to what looked to be a harness blatantly said “Service Animal” all across the creature’s back. The canvas draping just as clear as the moth-antenna fluff protrusions that came from the back of its very angular head. Independent green eyes were apparently able to glance in differing directions at once. Didn't eyes on the side of the head designate prey species? It likely didn't apply, those fangs were visible from its closed sharp-snouted mouth. Was that acid seeping from the edges?

He didn’t want to bother confirming. A snapped mouth-click from the girl made it slither light as a feather down her body to sit at attention down her side. His discomfort faded immensely at the sight. Tover’s eyes calming as he’d scraped enough information together to not panic from meeting his first monstrosity. He was glad when she spoke.

“You’re the boy who shut up the Norrevinter, And I think I’d like that,” she’d answered as she stood. “Just point us to it. Or. I mean. Kinda start walking and Apple can figure it.”

Important immediate knowledge:
Service Animal.
Listens prompt and swift, that means trained.
Named Apple.

Roll with it Tov. There isn’t a woman in your family less frightening than this critter. Straighten up. Breathe. Unclench your hands. You’re fine. Don’t just look. See. It doesn’t matter that you don’t know what it is, it’s named Apple, it’s a fluff, and it wouldn’t be here if it couldn’t adhere to the basics.

With a breath, Tover locked himself back into stride. Something was off. What was off? She had a service animal. Forget what it is. She has a service animal. His ghostly grey eyes slash across her features, cutting away possibilities until he got to her face. The off-center gaze, she wasn’t quite looking at him. She was holding onto Apple’s harness. Guidance. Apple would follow with her in tow.

Sight? Her eyes looked fine. Normally sunglasses would give a sight impediment away. Best not to mention it. Do it like normal Tov. Treat people like people. Treat Apples like.. Apples?

His brain felt like it malfunctioned for a moment before he slid down to a knee of out instinct. His left arm leaned out, hand tilting upwards and outstretched as it came from below, palm up and fingers together as if he was greeting a dog. He didn’t have a precedent, so a shot in the dark it was. He’d let his hand linger incase Apple showed any interest in it as he replied.

”Hello Apple, I’m Tover. It’s nice to meet you. Follow me whenever you’re ready.” He’d kept calm talking. It was easy with animals. Small pleasant warmth carried on his voice. Who gave a damn that he didn’t know what it was. It was alive, and he would give care until otherwise convinced not to do so.

He pulled his hand away slow and rose back up shortly after, noticing a message from his side that he couldn’t ignore. It was addressed to him in covert silence.

Watch Them

He’d missed something. Tover’s brain spooled back to the side of the scene he’d half ignored. A lecture. Avalon had given a lecture to napkin-bringer. He hadn’t been fully aware of the content. Something about four options when it came to butting into a confrontation. The guy Jason had been lecturing to was making himself scarce as he was about to respond to Mitch and head off.

Avalon must have been referring to the girl and Apple! Since he’d handily ‘taken care’ of whatever the issue was with the one that just removed himself from the equation. Tover gave a quiet nod and diverted his full attention back to the original task. The extra request hadn’t been needed, but the thought that people were falling into the idea of taking care of one another on day one was a pleasant resonance.

“Silenced the Norrevinter? Ah. yes, that’s me. I’m Tover. The last name is Book, but I’m not fussed about people knowing it.” He quietly smiled at being referenced to as the one who silenced a Norrevinter. He’d a feeling that reputation was going to stick with him throughout the school year."It's this way." With a strong stride, he took two steps away and turned to his side was aimed at Mitch and Apple. Waiting for them to catch up so they could fall into stride before he walked in full, the short route this time, back to the table containing Dawn, Desi, and Tessa.

“So what’s your name?” This was the part of small talk that he didn’t have down. Even if she answered, he’d not know what to say after. Luckily, the time it was going to take to get to the table would save him from that p…

Attention was ripped away when someone older, less patient, shorter of speech, and with a lot more edge say "Seems we're going to need to teach this the hard way."

Not good. He knew that sentence, and he especially knew it from women in his family that were displeased with something. He didn’t know where they all got it from, but he didn’t bother breaking stride as he half-observed a gloved hand rise up with a snap. The chill factor of the room dropped as if he’d walked into a freezer. Everything had a glassy white sheen to it. Food showed up snowy, drinks seemed ice-cubed.

He said nothing when he first arrived at the table, and wiped away part of the seat of whatever frost might have been present while what must have been a teacher gave a wordy lecture.

“Apple, this one.” Tover said while taking a step back, looking in the direction most everyone else was as the whole cafeteria was told that they were going to be reigned in. The part that got under his skin however, was most definitely:

"Failure to listen to us, any of us, is going to result in immediate consequences.
Please keep this in mind the next time you choose to disregard what is being said to you.


What’s with this military harshness? That’s how drill sergeants talk. Not teachers. He was frowning, and chose to sit after Mitch had done so. Realizing that his meal too, was now a frosted-over chilly wasteland of inedible leftovers.

Tover had a thought, and peeled the introduction folder with a cold snap from the seat he’d left it on. Wiping clean the information pile they’d all been given by the receptionist on the way in. He flipped through to the teacher information, and glossed down until he saw who taught what.

Oren Dariya Kovalenko
Professor of Aquamancy and Shadow Step

If anything was going to make cold. Aqua was likely to do it. So. That was Professor Kovalenko? He closed up the folder. Introductions would break some ice. Wait… Apple was going to be the hurdle. Well. It didn’t have to be.

“Professor Kovalenko has some practice in making a point.” Tover chimed up, starting normal conversation back up. “So anyway, Dawn, Tessa, Desi. This is Apple.” He motioned at the purple fluff critter across the table from where he sat, having gone around the edge to return to his seat. “And Mitch” He offhandedly told her the names of the people at the table, and made attempt to kill whatever awkwardness might occur from Apple being there.

Asfar as first meetings would go, this was going to be the best he’d manage for easing groups together. Half turning to Dawn right away because they’d had a conversation going before he’d gotten up for the temporary break. His voice was soft, a partial whisper as the shakiness of breath quickly left him after he started. It had been a very trying morning so far, but he was managing. “Hope the girl-talk went well.”

Tover slid back into his comfterable half-slouch lean against the table right after. The nonchalance returning, thinking to just watch interaction for a bit. The girls were going to do a much better job at making Mitch feel welcome than he was able. Best to let them take the lead as he mulled over some things Dawn had said before he’d left the table.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Jason Avalon Character Portrait: Desdemona Moore
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  1. Wiggle-Wiggle.

    by TerrorFloof
  2. Wiggle-Woggle

    by TerrorFloof
  3. This post is as good as apple is a good apple.

    by TerrorFloof

0.00 INK

Mitch caught the tail end of the conversation that Drake and Jason were having, and very nearly turned to interject something about being blind and not deaf. Or perhaps something about Drake coming along with her and Tover as well?

But it was already awkward. She had fallen out of that loop several beats ago.

”Uh, bye, Drake? And Jas- Mr. Avalon… Jason…?” she said, with a small wave over her shoulder to where they probably may have possibly sort’ve been sitting?

Stupid.

She turned her attention back to what Tover was saying, or rather what he was not: There was a discernable, uncomfortable silence as Apple sniffed the new company and then slithered down her body. Was Tover afraid, or unsure? She could never tell, especially with boys. She was nearly relieved when the silence was split by a crackling, cackling hiss like a firecracker tossed into a pool.

Apple was doing this, of course, because the White-Haired one had moved its hand toward Apple. Apple’s hackles rose, and his first mouth opened to let out a drippy warning toward the offered appendage. Apple was a good Apple, and good Apples did not pay attention to anything but the Bad-Eyes-Good-Pets-Friend while they were wearing the Pay-Attention-Fur. The Pay-Attention-Fur meant exactly that: Apple had to pay attention to keep his friend safe.

The White-Haired-Male-Thing’s hand was making that difficult to do, so Apple did the Good Apple thing: He hissed until it went away.

Mitch tightened her grip on Apple’s harness, but did not tug him. ”He doesn’t like that,” she said in a firm, but not cross, tone of voice. Almost as if she was quite used to explaining this type of thing. “He’s trained to not like distractions when he’s working.” To reinforce this point, Mitch reached down and tapped him on the back of his harness. Apple gave a little wiggle-woggle of his hindquarters and tail, expressing his happiness at his Good-Apple-ness being acknowledged, and then returned to his attentive stance.

"It's this way," said the boy called Tover Book, and Mitch nodded in understanding.

”Follow,” Mitch commanded, and Apple took to his feet and did just that. The two fell into stride as one after only a step, moving at the same pace as Tover with little to no obvious trouble.

”It’s good to meet you, Tover Book,” Mitch replied, though there was no sense of recognition in her voice at the name. She was quite relieved that he did not expect others to know it. ”I’m Leila Ingram. Well. More Dressler. I guess. On the magic part. My mom is, I mean, in that she’s the Dressler. Magic, also. I mean. Um. The blind ones. Also the alien ones. Um.” She took a shaky breath. ”Not that I’m fussed about that. Either. I’m um. I’m Just Mitch. Like, um. The—“

Whatever other obviously stupid thing Mitch was going to say was cut short as a blast of cold whistled past her face. The hand holding her tray felt something frigid ghost over its back, and goose bumps rose up her wrist.

Apple stopped moving, and his wings rose to clap together in their low rattle.

It only took a moment of listening to discern what had happened:

”What’s up with the food?”

”That bitch froze it!”

“This is the first lesson you are going to learn here.”

“Oh, crud. She’s a teacher.”


Satisfied with her crowd-sourced explanation, Mitch clicked her tongue twice and took a step in her previous direction.

Apple stood and took the lead once again, fully trusting in her assessment. The Bad-Eyes-Good-Pets-Friend was very clever. She always knew what the other Tall-Squishy-Walkers were making noises about.

Mitch’s expression went a bit sour when Tover said, “Apple, this one.” Her eyebrows furrowed into a crease, and her stomach clenched into an uncomfortable familiar knot.

”You can talk to me, and not him. You don’t tell him what to do,” she snapped, and immediately turned an unhealthy shade of red. ”Not that meant that like- Um. Sorry. I didn’t mean to be like… Like that. It’s just that he’s an. Um... With service animals, it’s um. You’re supposed to treat them like they’re part of the handler, so. Um.”

They were within earshot of the table, and the explanation had officially become uncomfortable.

Mitch hung her head and muttered a small, ”Sorry,” as Apple stopped so that her knees could feel the seat in front of her.

Her cheeks were still bright red as she slid to sit on the bench, but she forced herself to smile forward in the friendliest way she could manage. ”Uh. Hi, Dawn, Tessa, and Desi,” she said politely, not admitting how incredibly useless the third-party introduction was to someone who couldn’t see. She had all year to figure out who was who, and there was no need to point out her own difference more than the Guide-Monster and off-center stare already did.

Apple, for his part, leaped onto the table lightly, careful not to knock anything aside, and began a very important Apple-Task: Nobody wanted the food anymore. There was Danger-Cold on it, and there was only one thing to do with things that were dangerous.

One by one, Apple began making his way across the frozen trays and snap-gurgling down the frozen foodstuffs.

Because he was a good Apple.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dawn Memoli Character Portrait: Tover Book Character Portrait: Tessa Botrelle Character Portrait: Professor Oren Kovalenko Character Portrait: Leila Michelle Ingram Character Portrait: Larke Sterling Character Portrait: Roderic Alder Mayburry Montana Character Portrait: Desdemona Moore
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  1. Hi again! Feeling a lot better so I thought I would try this posting thing again while I was in the mood. Sorry if I forgot a tag, I'm doing this on my phone. I'm jumping the gun posting so soon but I didn't exactly give much to work with last time so consider this my apology ;)

    by ianna_334
  2. I like this post, this is a good post. I'm glad to see Desi again! :D

    by TerrorFloof

0.00 INK

“Wait, seriously? Already? High five!” she grabbed onto the last thing she’d remembered Tessa saying, but then frowned, tilting her head to the side. ”Though I don’t know. He’s cute, yeah, but he’s not just a serial flirt, he’s a serial dater. You’re looking for way casual, right? Because I don’t think fidelity ever enters into his equations.” she shrugged, then returned her attention to the ice.

”Um, why? Like, that’s such a waste!” Desi exclaimed, about to say more before she got distracted by the thing approaching their table along with Tover and another girl. It was a summon, she could tell, one functioning as a service animal judging by the coat it wore, and so that made the summon’s owner the girl, who was evidently blind.

The introduction confirmed it, and she gave a small wave before realizing the girl couldn’t see it and blushing faintly. ”Hi! I’m Desdemona Moore~” she covered instead, using the pause to try to check if the colour in her cheeks had gone down. ”But as Tover said, please, call me Desi. Nice to meet you!”

Then back to Tessa, holding up her phone sheepishly. ”My dad, actually. He’s straightening his hair or something probably, but so far all the teachers are leaving horrible impressions so I want someone nice down here.” a message tone went off and Desi quickly opened it, then grinned. ”And he’s on his way now, so I can do something stupid”

The girl fluffed the ends of her hair, then raised her hand politely, stretching up as high as she could without standing. As soon as one of the teachers even looked her way, she started to speak, because actually, it was really pissing her off.

”So like, that thing about only eating the ‘victuals’ when the hands that prepared them say so is about respect, right? So, not to be rude, but if this is about respect, how are the hands that made the food going to feel about their work being ruined? Even defrosted,” she poked at a frozen pancake with a finger, then snatched it away as Apple started to eat their frozen foodstuffs, ”It’s not going to taste anything like it was supposed to and it’ll be cold. All the preparation and ingredients that went into making it are wasted, and there are people starving in this world. I’m sorry for “assuming” except I wasn’t, as the schedule clearly says there’s a buffet breakfast for students beginning at 8 a.m. and it’s past that time, and there was no announcement saying it was postphoned for any reason. That said, I’m honoured to be here and to be learning from such distinguished teachers. Thank you, I just don’t like food being wasted.” and she smoothed her skirt primly, folded her hands in her lap, and very discreetly hit ‘end call’ on her cellphone. She hoped that any punishment wouldn’t be too severe, because the reaction of freezing food was a bit much, so she had reason to think detentions might be “a bit much” as well.