Thursday, February 15, 6:03 a.m.
The rocks cracked under his boots as the commander stopped in front of us. Commander Sherpo stared us up and down, cold grey eyes flickering in the early sunlight.
“Drop and give me twenty!” he barked, ears twitching.
Instinctively, I collapsed to the ground, lifting myself up with my hands. Muscles straining, arms pressed to the ground, I raised my tired body off the gravel in an attempt to do a pushup. A few minutes later, I jumped to my feet, standing beside the others, sweat pouring down the side of my face. Commander Sherpo grabbed a worn piece of paper from his pouch.
“Right,” he slurred. “Apparently there is some new law. Something about schooling. I personally don’t think any of you deserve it,” Commander Sherpo hissed, glaring at one of the troops.
The rest of us stared straight ahead, ignoring this remark. “Well then, according to the general, all of you will be attending academies around the country. As a troop, we will be disbanding after today,” Commander Shepo recalled, studying the sheet. Murmured whispers broke out among the others.
“SILENCE!” Commander Sherpo roared. Everyone snapped to attention as his left eye twitched.
I heard somewhere German Shepherds lose their shit easily. Commander Sherpo had gone completely off his nut. His long tail lashed the ground. His nose flared. He bared his razor teeth, threateningly. Commander Sherpo opened his mouth to yell some more, but shut it in an instant as a tall figure stepped closer.
It was the general. His tall, broad body nearly towered over Commander Sherpo. Dark brown hair was neatly cut, outlining his golden eyes. The jacket he was wearing was a deep emerald colour, studded with many shiny badges. Small, rounded ears completed his lion- like features. He looked even more intimidating than Commander Sherpo.
Commander Sherpo, still in his ready-to-scream pose, folded back into a casual stance, facing the general. The Lion, still studying the scene, stayed silent.
“I see you are telling them about the new law,” the general said, eyeing me suspiciously.
“Err…yes,” Commander Sherpo stammered. “We were just… going over it,”
“Who is… that,” the general pointed.
My ears drooped as I realised who he was talking about.
The first opportunity I get to impress him, I already failed. I should’ve expected this. It’s not very often when a Fox joins a troop of German Shepherds.
“Private Jace. He was a last-minute substitute,” Commander Sherpo started. “He’s a pretty good addition."
Thanks. Makes me feel much better about myself.
“Hey, he’s not that bad,” someone sneered. No one dared laugh.
Sherpo glared at him, a low growl rumbling in his throat.
“Oh, him,” the general started, not taking his eyes off me.
“Thank you for your time, General, but we must continue with our...
discussion,” Sherpo held up the sheet, again.
The general walked away slowly, looking back at me. His sharp, ruby eyes meet mine. He turned away, heading towards the main building.
“Now then, Private Brandon. Private Hunter,” two large troops stepped forward, two fingers pressed against their foreheads. Commander Sherpo read out their school. They high-fived each other. Sherpo read the rest of the names, followed by various schools.
He finished reading. I was the only one who wasn’t called. Sherpo headed to the main building, completely ignoring me.
“Sir, permission to speak freely, sir?” I shouted, trying to get his attention.
“What about me?”
Everyone stared at him in amusement, waiting to hear what crappy academy I got into. Commander Sherpo looked up, surprised.
“Oh, yes,” he said, grabbing a second sheet.
“Private Jace… here you are. Richwood Academy.”
Some boys sniggered, others looking confused. I must be deaf.
“Uh, sir, is there some kind of mix up, sir. I mean, I completely understand that you read the paper wrong, because I thought you said Richwood Academy. Obviously, I heard differently.”
Sherpo squinted as he surveyed the sheet. “No private, it says Richwood Academy,” he said, eyebrows furrowing.
“Do you mean the girl’s academy, sir,” a boy laughed, most likely Hunter.
“Shut it!” I yelled, shaking my fist.
“BOTH OF YOU SHUT IT!” Sherpo roared, brows furrowing. “Dismissed,” he hissed, walking back to the main building. Many of the boys headed home. Some stayed.
I stormed off, my mind fuzzing. Was this some kind of joke? What sort of sick person would do that?
Hunter came up and shoved me from behind. My knees buckled, and I fell to the ground, landing on my face. Blood dripped off my nose, staining the dirt.
“Sissy,” he laughed. The two boys following him snorted.
“Jace is going to a GIRLS school,” one of them shouted. They laughed again.
“Piss off, Hunter,” I mumbled, gripping the ground with my hands and getting up.
“What are you going to do about it?” Hunter jeered.
There was literally nothing I could do against Hunter. He was a foot taller than me, and at least a foot wider. He was the biggest, and toughest of the troop. He was the fastest, and I can’t out run him. Even though he had a thick skull, he still had a brain that knew there was no point picking on one off the bigger troops. And he also knew I was an easy target.
I got up, wiped the blood off my face, and stood just a metre away from Hunter, shaking. I held my chin high, not taking my eyes off his cold, grey ones.
Without thinking, I swung my fist, aiming for Hunter. The punch hit his jaw hard, blood oozing off his lip. Hunter was taken aback, surprised. His mouth stuck out at an odd angle. He coughed, spitting out blood-stained teeth. Hunter looked up, baring a toothy snarl. Three small holes finished his menacing glare.
“Why you little…” he growled, reaching out to grab me.
“WHAT IS GOING ON HERE?” Sherpo screamed, shoving Hunter away. He fell back, landing with a thud on the dirt. Sherpo grabbed me by the scruff of my shirt, hauling me away from Hunter. He stormed towards the main building, still carrying me. Before I knew what I was doing, I widened my jaw, and clamped my teeth down hard on his wrist. He flinched, but kept going. My mouth held on to his arm, stuck in place. Ten minutes later, Sherpo stepped into the building. He went into his office, sat me down on a chair, and took a seat in his. He rested his elbows on his desk, and rubbed his temple slowly. The Commander sighed, looking up.
“Listen Jace, I know the selection is not ideal. But it’s what the Council think is best for you.”
Not the Council. The Council thinks they know what’s best for us. Yet, they’re ones who sent me to this place.
I kept my head down.
“The Council agreed that with the Schooling law, that some schools should be co-ed,” Sherpo said.
“Richwood Academy is a great school. I bet you’ll fit right in.”
This chapter will have something when Aria finishes.
So, I write a poem......
"I write.... books,
they are.... goods?
I hope you like 'em
I have nothing better to do with my life because I am a sad lonely excuse for a human...."
P.S end of chapter... hope you hated it! Because I did!!! :P
By the way, thanks Aria for writing this chapter! Anyways, here it is :P :
Friday, 23rd November, 3:01 p.m.
“Good afternoon, class,” Mrs Blight smiled cheerily. The afternoon bell rang out, signalling the end of the day, and the end of the school year. At fourteen years of age, a regular Bunny youngling like me would be expected to stop learning in school, find a mate and partake in making the population grow hundreds at a time. I didn’t want to, though; I loved learning and the thought of leaving education behind at so young scared me, as did having to take care of 258 children like my parents.
I heard that human children, as well as children from all other Werebeast species, would leave school at eighteen years of age. My friends were all extremely clever, like myself, and had gotten a scholarship in one of the co-ed private schools, together. I, however, hadn’t been offered a place to any high school, co-ed or not. Which is why I got so excited when Mrs Blight called me back after the class left.
I fiddled with my ears nervously as she shuffled her papers, still beaming with ecstasy. She was a great teacher, and I knew I’d miss her. “Little Nia,” she laughed. “I remember when you had just joined the school, and you sat with your little hands and giant ears as your mum waved goodbye.” She smiled even wider as I blushed shyly. “Now you’ve been offered a place in the top boarding school in all of Elchea… just for Warbeasts your age!” I noticed my friends outside grinning excitedly. “Y-you mean I’m going with Amber and Molly?” I couldn’t hide my own excitement.
Mrs Blight sighed. “I’m sorry, Nia… you have been accepted into a different school from them.” I felt my ears drooping just as hers did. “Your academic strengths far exceed those of your friends, which is why you’re going to Richwood High. This year, it’s opening its borders, offering places to not only the highest positioned female cat and dog Werebeasts, but to males of all races as well.” I tried to hide my tears, sniffing through my little button nose.
”I’m sorry, Nia love,” she tutted. “Go say bye now. I hope you continue to be as wonderful as you were with me.”
“Thank you, miss!” I cried, giving her a tight hug. I then ran as fast as I could outside and donned my backpack. Turning to Amber and Molly, tears began welling in my eyes. “So… you guys are going to Summergrid, right?”
“Yeah,” Mol muttered. “We heard you were going to Richwood. Good job, I guess.” I sobbed, wrapping them both in a hug. My mum's car zoomed by the street and I sniffed. “I… I’ll see you guys whenever!”