Okay this got… sort of out of control and took on a rambly craziness of its own, but here it is, the high school au funtimes:
So we start off with Jupiter, who is of course the normal high school girl in the not-so-normal high school who just wants to, you know, do normal teenage stuff and have a normal teenage existence and hopefully get good grades and maybe go to a few parties and maybe get a nice boyfriend, or something, alright, but she soon comes head to head with the Abrasaxes,
teenage royalty a bizarre group of kids who are the children of Seraphi Abrasax, an incredibly famous local business tycoon. Seraphi has three kids, each a year apart (Jupiter wonders what she was thinking having three kids back to back like that, as do many others, especially since Seraphi Abrasax never seems to age, like, ever, and it freaks everyone in town out a little bit), and nobody knows who their father is, not even the Abrasax kids, who are afraid to ask and frankly, don’t really care because when you have a mom like Seraphi a second parent just doesn’t seem that important.
First is Balem, a senior and on track to become valedictorian. Anyone who might have challenged him in this title gave up the fight in kindergarten probably because it is just so obviously going to go to Balem. He’s super intense, and Jupiter while doesn’t have many run ins with him initially, the whole school talks about Balem constantly, and there’s all kinds of crazy rumors about him that Jupiter is just plain scared to even consider the majority of. He’s president of half a dozen clubs, and actually shows up to all the meetings, much to the surprise of everyone really, including the teachers, because Balem has a way of making people think his entire continued existence is both a true gift to everyone and also an incredible effort on his part, which can be said about the majority of teenagers, but Balem manages to turn such histrionics into true art form. He’s also on the tennis team for some reason, which is just…weird, for everyone involved, and he’s not even captain, he just seems to really enjoy being able to play and scream at the same time. When Seraphi doesn’t attend his matches he throws a fit, though this is usually done in private and is only known about to a select few, but of course someone (probably Titus) started a rumor about it years ago, so now very very brave students occasionally whisper “mommy’s boy” behind his back.
Kalique is a junior and is smooth, cool, fashionable, pretty much everything you’d expect from Queen Bee of the school. She was captain of the cheerleading squad in middle school but now sees such pursuits as beneath her, so she captains the swim team in high school and there’s few weird rumors about her liking to swim in the school pool in the nude, but there’s yet to be any substantial proof of this. She’s dated quite a few people, but nobody seems to be good enough Kalique Abrasax, plus she’s growing annoyed by the fact that her and Titus have dated more and more of the same people (Balem doesn’t date, as he thinks it’s a waste of time, though there are a couple of students who are inexplicably–the tragedy of human existence is sometimes impossible to understand, after all–deeply in love with him.) Unlike her older brother Kalique is not entirely academically gifted, though she seems to breeze through her classes with a bored sort of ease, and ends up as Jupiter’s physics lab partner. For the first entire half the year Kalique gets Jupiter to do all the work without Jupiter even realizing it, though when she does she is Pissed and tells Kalique off, which is crazy because nobody ever tells Kalique Abrasax anything, even some of the teachers have a mild sort of unease about assigning her homework.
Titus Abrasax as a sophomore has somehow managed to rule the school in a way that even his brother and sister don’t. He’s dated, like, everyone, like Jupiter is pretty sure everyone in the school has had some sort of romantic involvement with Titus Abrasax at some point, even that Caine guy, who we will get to next. How he has managed this in such a short period of time is unknown; everyone is fairly certain he attends most of his classes, and he never seems to get detentions for any absences or tardies he might have accrued while chasing his next target, though it is possible that Balem and Kalique have been quietly covering up for him (the siblings relationship is, unsurprisingly, incredibly complicated and unknowable and impossible to understand, and Jupiter doesn’t want to begin to try, but they seem to look out for each other, at least when other, lesser beings are involved). Titus doesn't do extracurricular activities, probably because making out with the entire school is a full time job, but someone overheard Balem telling him that if he doesn’t pick out something that he can put on his college application soon Seraphi is going to disown him, which is an exaggeration–probably.
And then there is Caine, who is just a mess, really. Jupiter meets him one day when she’s fed up with this school and its Abrasax family freak show, and being sixteen-year-old Jupiter Jones, finds his oddities endearing, but I’m gonna be straight with you guys: Caine is a tragically typical piece of teenage work. The first notable thing about Caine is his size, because he looks like a full grown man in high school, and not just any full grown man, a really well put together full grown man, which will certainly work to his advantage later in life, but surrounded by a bunch of still-growing teens, he looks a little odd and out of place, and people seem to naturally gravitate away from him because of that. Second is the eye liner, because wow, Caine wears a lot of eye liner, like Balem and Titus have been known to raid Kalique’s make up drawer, but by virtue of being Cool Rich Kids they pull it off flawlessly (by teenage standards), and more importantly, without anybody saying anything. For Caine, it unfortunately only labels him as more of a freak, and for people who knew him in elementary school there’s the uncomfortable memory of when he liked to bite people constantly, so that doesn’t really help his reputation either. He also roller blades to school, and he doesn’t even live that close, like he should probably take the bus, but no, Caine Wise wakes up at 5am every morning just so he can roller blade to school, which immediately disqualifies him from being able to cozy in with the weird skater punks, because honestly, nobody should like skating that much.
And so Caine is a weird loner and Jupiter is tired of doing Kalique’s homework, knowingly or not, and they spend their time trying to figure out how to they can mess with the Abrasaxes as much as possible, and of course, because Caine is a simple creature of simple pleasures, teaching Jupiter how to skate. Jupiter gets an internship working for Seraphi, or, more accurately, sort of accidentally starts working at Abrasax Industries one day when she shows up for a study session with Kalique (because really, that girl is going to contribute something to this lab partnership one day, even if Jupiter has to nearly stalk her) and everybody starts to assume that she’s Seraphi–which again, Jupiter thinks, is really weird, how does the Abrasaxes’ mom manage to be confused with a teenager. She is hired by Madame Abrasax herself because she thinks Jupiter “has good potential” after watching her finally get fed up with telling everyone she’s not really Seraphi and starts ordering them around. This, of course, messes with all three Abrasaxes’ heads terribly, but especially Balem’s, who begins to think that Jupiter is moving in on his territory (”what does that even mean?” Jupiter asks Caine repeatedly) and so Balem and Jupiter start going head to head on a number of issues, which is really annoying, especially since Jupiter hasn’t yet completely worked out the whole “Kalique uses me as a free ride to an A in physics” thing, nor has she gotten Titus to stop hitting on me I look like your mom dude that’s gross (Titus, somehow, doesn’t see it). Balem, who somehow finds time to work at Abrasax Industries after school even between studying, being president of everything, and reasonably good at tennis, tries to force Jupiter out of her job, and Jupiter, who didn’t particularly care about the job at first, finds herself not wanting to give into Balem, and that she actually has begun to enjoy Seraphi’s line of work– whatever the hell that is, she’s still not totally sure but it makes her feel better that Balem doesn’t seem to completely know either.
Caine, meanwhile, is wanted by, like, every sports team in school, mostly because he’s so huge (seriously, was he held back? everyone asks, once the weird eye liner skating kid starts popping up on everyone’s radar now that he’s involved with Jupiter Jones, that girl who looks like the Abrasax lady and Balem loathes (also the only one who won’t date Titus, which the rest of the school is relieved by because they too realize how obviously creepy it is.)) The coaches at school have actually always wanted Caine on their various teams, probably since he showed up as a 6′ freshman, but Caine has this inferiority complex a mile wide and believes nobody wants him, for anything, ever, and all these guys trying to recruit him are just doing it as some sort of elaborate, long running joke. It is only after ending up in Vice Principal Tsing’s office for getting into fights with that motorcycle chick and her gang (”I have no idea what their problem with me is!” and Tsing sighs, because indeed, she too has no idea what those kids’ problem is with anyone) that she finally manages to begin to make Caine think he is actually worth something, and recommends him to Coach Stinger, who coaches the hockey team. Caine only has a minor moment of horror before Jupiter and Coach Stinger manage to convince him that ice skating can be just as much fun as roller skating, and this way you get to run into people, which Caine admittedly loves, because he’s sort of a scrappy guy at heart (he may have said some things to egg on motorcycle chick and her gang, which Tsing realized and decided to attempt to channel into something more productive) plus he really loves the way Jupiter looks at him when he’s in his hockey gear.
By the end of the year Balem has graduated, to the relief of pretty much everyone, and gone off to college, but he still comes back on holidays to scream about how Jupiter is stealing his rightful position at the company. Kalique still hasn’t lifted a finger to help in physics labs, but Jupiter gets a better grade in the class than her so she decides to count it as a victory. Titus hasn’t gotten Jupiter to date him yet, and has started to take it sort of weirdly, like, why does everyone think it’s so gross that he wants to date her? Caine has lost three teeth but is incredibly happy, not to mention can finally apply eye liner much nicer, thanks to Jupiter’s tutelage. Jupiter doesn’t think she has much of a future at Abrasax Industries, and Seraphi has mused over selling it before her kids can takeover, as they, she thinks, are far better suited for other professions, but she is also concerned about what this company is doing to her, and what it might do to them, but Jupiter, oblivious to all this, just wants to hang out with her hot awesome boyfriend. And on that note, I haven’t really gotten into the nitty gritty details of Jupiter and Caine’s courtship, but it’s probably too painful to consider for very long, as while Jupiter is a girl who generally knows how to go after what she wants, Caine’s transformation into a guy who skates even more now, just on ice, and hits people for sport instead is really only small step in a better direction, and it probably took considerable effort on Jupiter’s part to get him to come around to the whole idea, even if he too was crazily into her.