The first time I met silence was at the back of an empty classroom. My new classroom to be exact. I thought I'd come in early, get used to the room and start from there.
"Lessons begin at nine-thirty and it's only eight so I've got some alone time." The statement I held in my head was strung up in hope and sheer belief.
"I mean there's no way there'll be students here at this hour. I'm sure they're all still asleep after the Spring festival last night... right?"
The confusion of this being a question or statement rolled about in the quietness of The Academy halls. Come to think of it, whoever named this school must've been really lazy because it just starts with "The" and ends with "Academy".
"Good-morning Mr. Fairchild." The suddenness of the voice made me jump and I dropped my helmet, the sound echoing down the corridor. My eyes met the teacher before me, and I relaxed slightly.
"Good-morning Ms. Silver." Smiling she helps me pick up the remaining books.
"Sorry about that, it seems I interrupted something. You looked distracted so I thought maybe you were nervous," the smile she gave me was definitely sweet but I felt something else hidden behind them as she continued, "I can assure you Sensei that the students are all looking forward to meeting you and I'm looking forward to getting to know you too." There it is. That glint in her eyes. That subtle yet very visible look indicating her new target. I sigh inwardly. Great, just great.
"It's my first time at a Private School so I look forward to meeting and getting to know everyone," I bow my head in respect returning her smile, "I hope you and the other teachers take care of me from here on out, Ms. Silver." The chuckle that escaped her lips made my skin crawl, but I just continued to smile.
"There's no need to be so formal. We are colleagues now after all. Call me Samantha," she held out her hand and I shook it, "plus you are older than I am are you not, Mr. Fairchild?"
"Yes, I am. But only in age Ms. Silver, in this environment you're far more experienced so I still believe I can learn many things from you and everyone here."
I notice her eyes roam the entirety of my body. From my messy helmet hair to my cycle boots still on my feet as her lips curl into a smirk. Waw. So much for subtlety.
"I'm sure I can be of help to you in many ways Mr. Fairchild. If you ever need me, you know where my desk is." And with that she walks off, exaggerating the movements of her hips. Great, just great. For a near thirty-year-old male, you sure know how to attract those women, don't you? I exhaled a breath of relief as she disappears around the corner before continuing to my classroom in silence.
My father has always been big on education, so I was in a learning environment quite often. I guess that's why I still find myself entangled in its web to this day. Being adopted by strangers was in many ways difficult. That, plus the language barrier was a pain in the ass to get over, though I guess learning English wasn't that hard and my adopted father did learn some basic Japanese from my dad before I moved here.
All in all, it wasn't all that bad. I guess I have an affinity for difficult things. Maybe that's why women are no longer fun. Brother keeps insisting on me getting married. I swear that guy really enjoys annoying me. I feel a smile creep across my face as I think of William. I was never jealous of him and he never used my origin against me. In more ways than one, he was indeed the perfect older brother.
And he's the one stuck in that boring office so I guess we both struggle every day.
Classroom three-two, three-three, ah there it is, classroom three-four...
I freeze as I entered the room. A ghost? A corpse? Shaking the thoughts from my head I move to my desk at the front of the room and place my things down neatly before moving to the lifeless body at the back. As I moved closer, I could hear the music coming from their headphones... All time low. Hmm, they're got good taste in music.
A female student?
A manga laid across her chest rising and falling with each shallow breath she took. Phew, at least she's not dead. That would've been one hell of a first day. Her uniform draped neatly down her frame. I stare down at her face... well the half I could see. A baseball cap was pulled low over her eyes and nose, but her mouth was... visible. I blinked, shaking my head clear.
"Excuse me..." Silence. As I instinctively reached out to shake her awake, she sits up abruptly instead, the cap still on her head; a waterfall of raven black curls falling along her back. Closing the book, she got off the desk and moved to the window. Silence. Wh-What was that?
"Good morning, I wasn't expecting there to be anyone here at this hour..." Silence, "I guess you're one of my students. I'm..."
"I know who you are Fairchild Sensei." Her soft yet hoarse voice seemed to echo in the quiet room. The slight unrecognizable accent played with my ears ever so slightly and I was rendered speechless... Is that all?
"Ummm. Your name?" She seemed to tense at the question, but it disappeared as quickly as it came.
"S-squared," she said it so matter of factly I almost believed her.
"S... S-squared... as in mathematical terms?"
"I refuse to believe that's your real name." I study her as she seemed to think about what to say next. She was neatly and properly dressed minus the headphones and cap - a badge attached to it read 'F*CK CANCER'. Well then, that hits the spot.
"Of course, it's not. It is simply the simplified form of my nickname."
"What does it stand for?"
"Silent Student or Student Silent. I guess the order depends on your own imagination." She shrugs and I chuckle at her tone when she says that. I guess she's not so bad.
"Were you given that name by the students?"
"The teachers also participate, so I guess I was renamed by the entire Academy. The irony." I notice her jaw tenses as she says that.
"Are you being bu... I mean do they..."
"Don't worry Sensei. I'm not some bully victim so please erase the thought," she gets up from the window and moves back to the desk picking up the manga before heading to the door, "I just don't talk much. I suppose they all forgot that I still have a voice I'm afraid." She opens the door and steps through.
"Wait," I follow her to the door, "if that's the case. Why did you talk to me?" Silence. "And how did you know who I was."
"I heard of you in the teachers' lounge," she replies with her back still to me, "as for talking. I suppose I thought it would be rude to ignore you on your first day." She replies and starts walking away again. Somehow her voice sounded, sad. Who is she?
"Welcome to The Academy Sensei." Was the last thing she said before disappearing down the stairs, leaving me to the silence of the empty room once more. I moved from the doorway, making my way back to the front, checking the time. Eight-fifteen.
"Well damn, it felt like hours." I study the room for a moment longer, my eyes lingering at the desk she'd laid on and the window a bit longer than they should've.
I sigh and look away from the window, "Welcome to the first day of the rest of your temp life, Yuzuki." After what seemed like ages, I pick up my backpack and helmet and make my way to the teachers shared office, tying up my hair in a neat ponytail and replacing my boots with faux black chukkas.
My first day flew by and before I knew it, I was already on my way home. I'd somehow managed to avoid Samantha all day so kudos to me. However, I don't think I saw 'her' for the rest of the day. It's not like I looked or anything. Plus, I don't even know what her entire face looks like so even if we did run into each other again I wouldn't really know. A couple of the girls didn't speak when I called their names during attendance and just raised their hand but I could tell it wasn't her because of the hair styles and complection; one student seemed to have been absent as well.
Pretty unconventional name wasn't it? Atlas. So much for my first day.
The end of the week seemed to arrive much sooner than I thought it would. Adjusting to the school was just as quick and surprisingly smooth considering I'm surrounded by rowdy teens. The students were all talkative and energetic but I suppose it's because I'm the science teacher and the anatomy of the body is somewhat interesting to their age group - or they just prefer hearing their voices instead of mine. Although the school is rather small, I still haven't seen her again. She definitely doesn't attend my classes, nor my tutorial. I've searched the other classes with my only clues being the hat or headphones, but she was no-where.I'm starting to wonder if she's even really a student here. If she wasn't, why would she be wearing a uniform... idiot. Now I'm beginning to wonder if she was actually real. She was here quite early on Monday and then M.I.A all week?"What's with her?!" The anger in my voice surprised even me. Sigh."I n
The soft hum of the music coming from my headphones move around in my head. Great, I fell asleep with them on again. I hurriedly take them off as I hear footsteps approaching my door. As he enters, I get up and move to the bathroom."Good morning Milady." I scowl at him before closing the door."I told you not to call me that old man." He starts to protest but I turn on the shower drowning out all the noise around me."Today you finally start attending the Academy normally again." He says as I exit the bathroom."So, back to fake normality. Hopefully, father doesn't find a way for one of his stupid games anytime soon." I stare at him as he places my pill bottle into my bag along with the text books I'd left on my table."Your father would be pleased with how well you're holding up Milady." Pleased my ass."We both know I'm still playing along with his stupid game because I have no c
Going off quicker than I thought it would my alarm sounds through my headphones stalling my music.“Ugh, I've got five minutes to get to tutorial.” Sighing, I switch off my alarm, looking up at the sky... looks like rain. Sigh."Today truly is going to be interesting." As the final bell for tutorial rings, I begin making my way from the roof. By now, everyone's in their respective classes so weird looks are at a minimum, my footsteps sounding along the near empty halls. As I approach my classroom my body slows down and I stare at the door. Another day in paradise, right gran? With my headphones still on I push up the door and enter. The shocked looks on their faces are enough, and the gasps are blocked out by my headphones. I smile inwardly as he looks towards me, and by god that man’s eyes shouldn’t be on a teacher. Especially not him. Shallowing nervously, I step further into the room. He looks equally as shocked as my classmates but he quickly re
"I can't believe she called me annoying." Taking another sip of my beer I glare at my colleague sat across from me laughing."That's Atlas for you. However, I'm surprised she even spoke to you," his brow arches as he looks at me over the brim of his glass, "I must hand it to you, your persistence, though annoying, really is beneficial.""What do you mean by beneficial?" Iask returning his stare."I mean maybe you'll be able to help her out of her shell. Help her have a more natural high school experience.""Wilson. I'm simply a teacher..." I place my glass on the table sitting back in my chair, "By the way. Why did you give her the sheet for the essay assignment without informing me?""I see she told you," he sighs as he finishes his drink. "Atlas misses lessons quite often because of her family situation, although no one really knows what that is exactly. However, she never fails any of her exams a
My feet seem to move by themselves and before I knew it, I was standing behind her. Scanning over the contents on the pages I felt my body react. Clearing my throat, I look away and she jumps in response, a soft shriek escaping her lips."Atlas.""Sensei!" Her face goes blank and she snapped the book shut. The cover catches my eye and I smile as realization sets in."So that's what you read in school, Ms. Winters?" She glares at me before looking away."So what? These books are prohibited so I found a way to read them without disturbing anyone." her voice as she spoke seem to lose pitch and drift off at the end. Ah, so she can be cute too."I see. Is that what you're always reading?" I ask as I move to stand in front of her. As though on guard she moves her feet from the ledge turning to face me tucking the book in the satchel at her feet."No." She looks away again as a slight flus
The ride to her house was quiet as we maneuvered through the late-night traffic. Far too quiet. Her light tap on my shoulder stops me in front of the Havens apartments blocks and she gets off."Is this really where your parents live?" I ask, looking from her to the building."No," I look at her in confusion, "this is where I live.""What?!" The surprise in my tone was evident as she stares back at me weirdly."I don't live with my parents. I live alone." Her tone was flat as she said the word parents."But... You're still in high school!" she continues to stare at me in that weird way with her head tilted to the side like a confused puppy, "What parent allows their sixteen-year-old daughter to live by herself! I don't care how much money you have." She continues to stare at me in silence."You really can be funny sometimes Sensei.""I'm serious, Atlas." I could feel
I groaned, annoyed at the sound of my phone ringing. I knew who it was without even looking at the caller ID. He's been calling to wake me every weekday for the past two weeks, at the same time to ensure I don't sleep in, so I'm not... late. Sigh. Sensei, you need a better hobby."I do have an alarm you know." I answer with a sigh."Well, it doesn't seem to stop you from turning up to tutorial after the last bell, so, I'm your alarm." He sounds slightly sleepy still, a soft yawn escaping him causing me to smile broadly. I haven't been able to tell him that I do in fact arrive an hour early every day but just choose not to go to lessons till the last minute. To be honest, after what happened between us that night I still haven't told him much about me and he doesn't push me to answer the questions I know he wants to ask. I haven't told him exactly who and what I am and I don't think I have the guts to, well not now anyway. I mean how would anyone rea
Following our eventful morning, I leave her in the classroom to go collect the attendance form from the office. And as scripted, someone was due to disturb my peaceful journey."What do you want Jon?""You seemed in high spirits so I thought I'd annoy you just a bit." I roll my eyes, ignoring him and continued walking."I swear you are the definition of a pain in the ass." He chuckles, making me frown. This guy is too weird."So, was that the chairman’s car I saw leaving as I was coming through the gate?""I wouldn't doubt it. He came by to welcome me apparently.""Hmm... he came personally? What's the old man planning now?" His voice was low but I could still make out enough of what he said and I stopped in my tracks."What do you mean? You know something don't you?" He grins, putting his hands up in surrender."I know nothing, my friend."