Ms-Hill

Charlie POV - First day of school and meeting Matteusz

Charlie awoke at 6 in the morning and prepared for school. Everything here was completely different than his home. As such, everything was both very exciting, and confusing.

At home, he was tutored in private and had all of his needs met. While he had responsibilities, they tended to be towards others. Here he was expected to fend for himself and learn with others. Successes and failures would be for him to own. This is what life now was.

It was too early to leave, so he sat and stared at his phone. He pulled up Google and typed ‘expectations for your first day of school’. Many helpful tips, though many seemed geared to children starting their first grade. Perhaps still applicable, he thought as he continued reading.

At 7:30 he made his way downstairs. He reached out for the door when a hand on his shoulder spun him around. Ms. Quill, a thin woman with severe looks, thrust a brown bag in his hands. He looked down at it confused.

“Only today,” She said with a scolding finger raised to his face.

“Thanks?” He said uncertain. He wasn’t sure if the thanks were appropriate, he had no idea what was in it. He gave the bag a quick shake, nothing sharp or heavy, probably not a weapon.

Charlie packed the bag and headed out the door. He shared a flat with Ms. Quill, his de facto guardian. It wasn’t far from the school, but he wanted to get there early and familiarize himself with its layout.

Arriving at the school he paused and took a moment to study the name, Coal Hill. He began to wonder what the significance of the name might be. The school wasn’t situated on a hill, though he supposed there could be coal beneath it.

Opening the main door he entered the school. The forum was big, and bright. It was also quite quiet. He made a note to himself; he should maybe arrive after 8 tomorrow.

Ascending the stairs he made his way to his locker. He emptied the content of his bag, organizing his books based on needs for the day. He stared at the brown bag sitting on the shelf, lunch he supposed.

His first subject was Math. He liked math. It was definitive. It either was or wasn’t. Having read many books during the summer, English was the subject he dreaded the most. Everything was interpretative to something else, and had hidden meanings. It made him annoyed that authors couldn’t just speak more plainly.

The bell ringing broke his concentration. Looking at his phone he realized he had been standing staring at his locker for 20 minutes. Grabbing his math text he proceeded to class.

Charlie took a seat next to a girl with brown hair. She smiled at him and he gave smile back. She again smiled at him, it seemed like they were stuck in some strange loop. He held out his hand to introduce himself. “Hi, I am Charlie.”

“Hi. I’m April,” The girl said taking his hand.

“I am new. Just moved here, but I think I like this place.”

“Welcome,” April said sincerely, smile returning once more. “Yes this school is great, and the students are very nice.”

“Oh, I meant London. But yes this place is exciting too.” April seemed very friendly towards him, which put him at ease. He enjoyed talking with her, though he was thankful he had his phone. He didn’t understand a number of things she said.

His next class was biology. Ms. Quill had insisted he learn more about humans and what better place then what makes them up. Sadly after the intro it seemed like the bulk of the semester would be studying simpler organisms.

At the conclusion of Biology he looked down at his schedule, physics with Ms. Quill. He had not been looking forward to this class. While Physics was not a difficult subject for him, it was her presence as his teacher that made him uncomfortable. But Ms. Quill had insisted he be in her class to keep an eye on him.

He entered the class and saw April. Good, he thought, I know someone. As he walked to a seat near her he noticed a boy with his head slouched over his arm. He looked about as happy to be there as he was. The boy noticed him staring and sat up, feigning a smile. Charlie smiled back and offered what he thought was a small friendly wave.

Ms. Quill arrived and began the class. She gave the distinct impression she did not want to be there either. She wrote a couple equations on the board and sat at her desk, sipping coffee while studying them.

The class mood seemed rather dour. Looking around the room he noticed the boy he waved to looking at him. He gave a polite smile and his cheeks started to flush. The boy quickly looked down at his work, but thought he saw him peek up at him once more.

“Charles,” Ms. Quill snapped, “Do try to pay attention, and leave Matteusz alone.”

Matteusz, Charlie thought to himself. He liked the name, it sounded exotic. At least not English. He was intrigued.

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