Month: February 2014

13 Reasons Why You Should Never Annoy Your Homeroom Adviser, Part 2

CHAPTER TWO – TOO TIRING

Zelda ate lunch with Gabriel before she left.

It was Sunday, one of their rare free days, and exactly 24 hours before their scheduled departure. They had decided to dine in a restaurant in the city, far from the Base so no one would recognize them.

“Over here,” Gabriel heard the girl speak up from behind him.

He turned and flashed her a sheepish smile, then started over to the table occupied by the black-clothed, frail-looking girl. “Hey, I didn’t notice you over there.”

“I’ve ordered for both of us. I hope you don’t mind,” she said, her unreadable gaze shifting from the tabletop to the young man, watching as he took the seat across from her. He looked relaxed and put together, as usual.

“Thanks,” he said, taking a sip of water. “We seldom go out these days,” he sighed, reaching across the table for her hand and playing with her slender fingers.

Zelda shrugged. “There hasn’t been any free time.”

Gabriel watched her intently, his eyes narrowing. “I know you didn’t ask me out just for a social visit. What’s the matter? Do you want to talk about something?”

The girl took a deep breath and exhaled before speaking. “They gave me a really long assignment,” she muttered.

He gazed at her over his water goblet. “Is that your problem? Because I don’t believe so.”

She felt a flash of irritation. Getting inside peoples’ heads was Gabriel’s unique and very annoying special ability. Of course it wasn’t her bloody problem! Her problem was that she was afraid, and that she’d rather die first than admit her weakness.

“I’m afraid,” she bit out resentfully, at last.

The boy stared at her, his hawk-yellow eyes wide and surprised. Zelda was scared? And this was coming from a girl who didn’t flinch at the sound of artillery fire, handling firearms or mecha, or crouching next to bomb-blown corpses. “You’re…afraid.”

Zelda sighed and closed her eyes. “Not exactly…afraid, I suppose, but I’m more unsure and nervous than I’ve ever been. I did a background run on my class and apparently, they’re all troublemakers.” She stopped and opened her eyes to look at Gabriel’s handsome Hispanic face. “Honestly, I don’t want to do it. What if they annoy me and I lose control?”

She began tapping on the tabletop, a frustrated, nervous gesture that made the whole table vibrate. “What if I have a reaction in class? What if our enemies show up in class and harm the students? What if I accidentally hurt them?” Suddenly, she realized that her voice was rising in panic and visibly tried to calm down. “Goodness. I’m rambling on, am I not?”

In response, the boy laughed lightly and patted her clenched, white-knuckled fist. “Would you relax? I’m sure you feel a lot better now that you’ve gotten that out of your system. Trust me, kitten. Everything is going to be fine.”

“Gabriel, I don’t know what to do,” she groaned, burying her face in her arms. “I’ve never felt uncertain about anything before.”

“Tell you what,” he said suddenly, his face breaking into a grin. “I’ll take you to school on Monday. Once your class sees your tough, handsome boyfriend, they’ll quail before you afterwards.”

Zelda blinked, a blank look on her face. “Thank you,” she said. “But you’re not my boyfriend.”

She did not notice him wince. Someday, Gabriel told himself, she will notice. “Can’t we pretend?” He said casually, looking up as their food arrived. “Now, gorgeous, before we tackle the rest of your problems, let’s sample these appetizers. Beluga caviar on toast points and mocktails – a bellini for you, and a mojito for me.”

Zelda peeked at him from beneath her hair. “Gabriel? Do you really want to be my boyfriend?”

Gabriel stared at her, a faint blush tinting his face. Truth be told, Zelda was one of the prettiest girls he had ever seen. She had a pale complexion that contrasted with her long, dark wavy hair. She possessed a particularly pixie-like face with sharp cheekbones, a tiny freckled nose, and pointed chin that made her look mischievous all the time. When she smiled her quirking one-sided smile, her full lips parted to show the points of tiny white teeth.

“I…of course. Of course I do, Zelda.”

The girl’s catlike eyes, her most distinctive feature, looked thoughtful. “Okay then,” she said, giving him a small smile.

“Okay,” he said, reaching for his drink. Then he choked. “What?!”

She looked at him obliquely for a few seconds, and then laughed a secret laugh.

☩☩☩

Yuri crept into his sister’s room that evening, bringing with him a dose of her old prescription medicines concealed inside his coat. They were illegally made now, being potent enough to spill over to illicit drug status. They were ridiculously expensive, but money was the one thing Yuri never lacked.

The air-conditioning in the room was freezing, way too cold for January.

“Zelda!” He hissed, switching on the lamp next to her bed. The sudden illumination made him squint, but as soon as his sight could adjust, he saw his twin sister lying on top of her unmade bed. She clearly was not finished yet with undressing, because although she was in shorts, the black corset she had been wearing earlier had not yet come undone. Its straps were tight in places and loose in some, as if yanked in a fit of silent rage.

Sighing, Yuri knelt beside the bed and began loosening the corset. “Zeldele? I’m taking it off. Don’t worry.”

I’m asleep, you idiot, Zelda thought to herself. She preferred to feign sleep, because if she demanded to know what in hell he was doing in her room in the middle of the night, they would just bicker. He always got so offended and defensive.

Yuri knew that his twin was not asleep. His soul, his very essence was intertwined with hers and she would know that he was nearby. Their emotions were in sync, and when one was hurt, the other ached in sympathy as well.  She finally gave up and turned towards him.

“I brought you your medicine,” he said.

Silently, she sat up and shrugged the now-loose corset off. She reached for the t-shirt Yuri handed her and pulled it over her head.

Yuri followed her movements with his sharp, fire-coloured eyes. “Did something happen? Don’t try to lie your way out of it, because I can feel it.”

She offered him a weak smile. “Oh yeah?”

He sighed in exasperation. “Tell me.” They had no secrets from each other. They tried, but the other always, always found out.

“I was just mad,” she muttered, uneasy in her brother’s presence. She could shut everybody out, except for him. “As usual. The corset, I couldn’t get the damned thing off…” Zelda crossed her slender arms, looking defensive and daring him to argue.

“I know you did. But that’s not your problem.”

She had to tell. Biting her lip, she inclined her head away from him and whispered, “I had a reaction.”

He was silent. Then he lay down beside her and wrapped his arms around her slim frame, burying his face in her hair and breathing in her scent. She smelled just like him. “Were there…casualties?”

“No. No, not this time.”

“Oh, Zelda.” His voice was sad.

She turned to him and clutched at his shirt. “Will you sleep here tonight? Please?”

In response, he hugged her tight, and everything seemed all right again.

☩☩☩

Kirsten yawned as she and Zelda finished stacking the last of the clothes into the suite’s spacious closet. They had quite an uneventful trip to Riverville, except for an overspeeding violation.

“Well, are you all set?” Kirsten asked an hour later. “Do you need me to coach you through your dialogue?”

The other girl shook her head. “No. I’m set, but thanks for asking.”

Kirsten gave another giant yawn. “No offense, Zeldele, but I think early morning just not suitable for this kind of job,” she complained, sleep and fatigue evident in her hazel eyes. “Why not catch a few hours of rest? That police chase through the Undersea highway just about finished me. Now I’m a nervous wreck.”

“I can’t sleep,” Zelda informed her shortly, deftly folding a pair of jeans and then looking at it in curiosity. “Wait, I don’t own jeans. Are these…?”

“Your twin brother bought them for you,” Kirsten said absently. “Now come on, let’s tackle the bedroom.”

Twenty minutes later, the two girls collapsed side-by-side on the queen-sized bed in exhaustion. “You owe me a big breakfast,” said Kirsten, even though she had just announced that she was starting a new diet. “Eggs, hash browns, vegetarian bacon, croissants and orange juice.”

“I’m going to have chocolate milk. You want, you cook.”

“Dammit, Zeldele. I’m dying of hunger here.”

Zelda sighed and got up, tapping the panel on the wall to call for room service.

“You really ought to get out and explore your new surroundings,” Kirsten reminded her, sounding sleepy. “And please, Zelda, please don’t bring weapons to school tomorrow.”

Zelda just smiled. She would show up in class tomorrow, armed to the teeth.

She had to. Just in case.

13 Reasons Why You Should Never Annoy Your Homeroom Adviser, Part 1

Here’s a story I wrote when I was in my early teens. I think it’s pretty amusing, so I’ll post it here. I apologize for the typos and stuff, I don’t have a beta reader and I’m shit when it comes to editing my own writing. =/

The Thirteen Reasons

  1. She dresses up in ninja goth fashion.
  2. She’s a mixed-martial arts black belt, and possibly a sniper.
  3. Admit it, she beat you senseless in the newest arcade game yesterday.
  4. She’s really hot and not much older than you.
  5. Even the school board chairman is scared to death of her.
  6. She can beat you drag racing.
  7. All of a sudden, bullies from other schools stop picking fights with you.
  8. She just donated a new skeleton to the biology department (and apparently it’s somebody she knew).
  9. She’s always present when you’re cooking up mischief.
  10. You’ve seen her put crosses in the middle of her O’s.
  11. On the first day of class, you felt a malevolent presence enter the classroom.
  12. You find weapons in her desk.
  13. Because she has promised that you’re going to be dead if you annoy her.

CHAPTER ONE – TOO DEPRESSING

“Zelda! The commander wants you!”

The pale girl under the black umbrella sighed, opened her eyes, and lifted her headphones off her ears as she started towards Ms. Hardin, the Base secretary. She was a slender girl, about five feet six inches in height, with features that hinted at mixed ancestry. Even though the sun was shining mightily, she wore layered black clothing.

“What is it?” She asked quietly, joining the secretary’s stride.

“I’m surprised you haven’t heard. Commander Reinhardt is giving your team this month’s assignments.”

Zelda sighed and shook her head. I haven’t really been awake lately, she sighed to herself. It’s too depressing.

They arrived at the office building, where it was cold and mercifully dim inside. Zelda folded her umbrella and blinked a few times to let her vision adjust.

Ms. Hardin smiled sympathetically. “Your new medicine is working okay?”

The girl shrugged. “Not really. But that’s fine.” She planned to go back on her old medication once she got back to Astra. She didn’t care about the fact that their enemies made the medicines, as long as she was allowed under the daylight again.

“I’m sorry to hear that. It’s only a matter of time ’til we figure out the enemy’s formula and get started on making more effective medicine. Meanwhile,” the secretary stopped in front of a set of double glass doors and led the girl inside “here she is, Commander.”

☩☩☩

Inside the office, the NightHunt team sat with Reinhardt in an easy, relaxed mood. Yuri Khrushchev, their captain, was on the couch with Kristian Romanov, second-in-command, and Lucien Kristov, who was their resident intelligence expert. Kirsten Rosen, their medic and standby, sat on a chair in the corner. Gabriel Riera, their weaponry expert, was perched on an armchair.

Zelda tried to walk in as unobtrusively as possible and squished on the armchair next to Gabriel. “Hey, you,” he said, patting her on the head and putting an arm around her shoulder.

“Heya,” she mumbled, not looking up.

Reinhardt called for attention, and they went back to business. “Since you are now complete, I’ll be giving you your respective assignments. We’ve had nothing that calls for teamwork, so you’ll do your tasks individually. If you want, you can head out once I tell you your tasks. You have my permission to begin immediately.”

He smiled at the group, a tiny dimple winking on his chin. Zelda saw Kirsten blush. She knew Reinhardt was one of her friend’s many crushes.

“Yuri, I need some inside info. I need you to pose as a medical intern at a nearby hospital in Luna City to investigate the sudden rise in infant mortality rates. Details and information are on file, code-named F368.”

Yuri, Zelda’s twin brother, nodded and flashed his perfect pearly whites on the group. “Easy enough. See you guys later.” He waved at them confidently, dropping a teasing kiss on his sister’s forehead before exiting the room.

She growled in annoyance, despite Gabriel’s knowing grin. “He’s annoying,” she told him glumly.

“He’s your brother. It’s instinctive that he’d want to annoy you,” he said consolingly. In truth, nobody could really understand the passionate half-love, half-hate relationship between the twins. They tended to rival each other in everything. Yuri’s side was more lighthearted, but the same could not be said for Zelda.

“Kristian, you’ll stay here and act as home base to your group members. You’ll relay orders, research information, collate the data, check up on them regularly and report back to me. ” Kristian nodded, said goodbye to his teammates, and left the room.

Zelda looked up in curiousity. “That was supposed to be my job this month,” she reminded Reinhardt more testily than she intended to.

“You’ll have something else,” he promised. “Wait your turn.”

She grumbled. “Someone should run this place like a real base.”

He cocked an eyebrow at her. “Are you complaining because of my informality?”

She ignored him, not realizing that she was the one being unprofessional and childish. I’ll be last as usual, Zelda thought darkly.

“Gabriel and Kirsten, you have joint cases. It involves security detail for a member of the Parliament as he travels abroad. Report to Foreign Affairs for a briefing.”

“Right,” answered Gabriel, easing himself off the chair and squeezing Zelda’s hand before going out.

“Right,” echoed Kirsten, following him.

The commander then turned to Lucian. “Kristov, you…try to tame Nightmare.”

Lucian Kristov’s sea-blue eyes widened in surprised. “What the fuck?” He stood up stared disconsolately at Reinhardt, silently willing him to start laughing and say that it was all a joke. “Th-that’s my job?” he stammered, his face paling in confusion and mounting fear. “But…I…I…”

“Are you questioning my orders?” Reinhardt asked sternly.

“No, man. But…I mean, that horse IS a nightmare.”

“Hence the name,” Reinhardt quoted dryly. It was also common knowledge that Lucian had severe zoophobia, which had to be corrected ASAP.

“Ahhh, fuck me,” moaned Lucian, standing up in a daze. “All right. Nightmare horse taming commenced. Bye, Zeldele.” He went out, muttering unpleasantly under his breath.

“Hmm. Five down. Which leaves — ”

“Me,” Zelda stated flatly, following the commander’s movements with dark-ringed eyes, which were a product of her chronic insomnia. At the moment, Reinhardt seemed a trifle nervous and plenty unsure. Zelda wondered why. He was usually very competent and confident.

“I have a special project for you, angel,” he finally spoke up, fiddling with his computer’s wireless keyboard. “It’s about, uh…” he cleared his throat and looked to Ms. Hardin’s direction as if to ask for help. The secretary immediately raised her eyebrows and looked away pointedly, as if saying “why are you looking at me?”

The seconds beeped by. Zelda stared at Reinhardt, he stared back as if contemplating on how to break the news.

“Well?”

That single word had been uttered in a precise, controlled, calm manner. But the dam that was holding back her impatience was rapidly breaking down.

“Well,” Reinhardt laughed nervously, “Your citizen ID — the Karyna one — it says you’re twenty-one, right?”

“Yes.” What with that, she wondered.

“And twenty-one is the legal working age for teachers.”

Anyone with half a brain knows that, Zelda snarked inwardly.

Reinhardt took her silence for agreement and he went on, encouraged. “I’ve booked you as a substitute teacher for Riverville’s all-boys high school. Don’t worry, there are only nine weeks of school left, so you’ll be able to pull out at the end of March.”

She gaped at him. “What?!”

“Oh, come on. It’s not like I’ve sent you to a suicide mission. You only have to keep an eye on the school while investigating the drug trafficking scene nearby. For some reason, the school is involved and we have to put a stop to this.”

Zelda stayed moodily silent.

The commander winced. “It’s easy for you.”

“The last time you said that, I almost died,” she reminded him dourly.

“Tell me you’ll do it,” Reinhardt wheedled entreatingly, looking at her winningly. “I’ll make it up to you, I promise.”

“Ahh, now we’re talking.” She smirked, and then glanced sideways at him, suspicion in her dark eyes. “I choose?” She asked softly, a small smile threatening to quirk up on the edges of her pale lips.

Oh, man. This was going to be excruciating. “You choose.”

“Then it’s decided,” she announced triumphantly. “Fifty thousand.”

It was hard. “Thirty,” he argued, protesting.

“Forty-five.”

“Forty. My last resort.” He held out his hand and tilted his head, smiling at her appealingly. “Is it a deal?” Outside the Base, they were great friends. Reinhardt never treated her like a lower officer, and Zelda never treated him with the annoyingly respectful distance he had come to expect from other people.

She nodded.

“Well, then. You’ve got yourself a deal,” he said, still holding out his hand.

“And you’ve got yourselves a spy,” Zelda said, ignoring his outstretched hand and giving him a very faint kiss on his cheek before flouncing out.

Oh man. She knew how to torture him, all right.