Tarts

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Chapter Thirteen

Chapter Thirteen


I woke up an hour early. That was fun but I couldn’t argue with how my body decided to work. If I was up, I was up and trying to argue with that only made things worse.

Stretching, I eyed the bathroom door, tempted to shower. But I decided to eat something first. My stomach was rumbling and I could see the cake neatly wrapped up and covered from the night before.

Griffin and Sully had class an hour later then me and J, which was fine. We could hang, get to know one another which I think we both needed; if we were going to be stuck with one another, we needed a break from the other two.

Slicing myself a small piece of cake, I took a bite as the frosting melted in my mouth, the cake a little bit dry. Milk is always better to use than water but don’t forget it either.

After a few more forkfuls, my thoughts began to wander. Well, I began to think. Of course, it’s not always the best idea to do that alone but it’s better than staring at a piece of cake.

I was just… what if my father was still alive? Others seemed to believe that too. But how many? Maybe the people here were more on my side then the people I grew up around. The… humans.

And if they weren’t? What was I supposed to do? It’s not like most of them would be up for a healthy discussion to hear one another sides. No one hardly ever is because that’s how conflicts start in the first place.

I took another bite of cake, a huge glob of icing falling onto the plate. After chewing, I went to fridge and thank god there was milk there. Actual, regular milk. I poured myself a rather hefty glass, slugging it down in one take.

After cleaning the glass and putting it back in its rightful place, I covered up the cake and was left unsure of what to do. The books Mark had given me seemed like a good idea to pass the next forty or so minutes.

I quietly tiptoed over to my bed, the stack of books Mark had given me resting beside the odd clock. All of them had vibrantly colored covers, fonts twisty and sharp, either silver or gold colored.

The lilac-purple book seemed most interesting to me, as it explained Seeking. Opening the book I was greeted with a warning in red ink that flashed bright light every few seconds to get my attention which made it annoying as hell and it took all of my might to not rip the page out right there and then.

The warning just explained that certain chapters should be waited on until the reader had practice. So thank you for the warning, I guess?

Seeking was this world’s magic. No wands, no staffs. Just a symbol of tattoos that line a person’s thumb and that chubby muscle part of the thumb that normally appears after a Calling (which the book explained was when said person figured out and could go into their form), as well as once they started practicing their abilities. The mark would appear at random and most people had specialties as well.

I glanced up from the book, blinking as my eyes had started to get dry. J’s hand that was hanging off the edge of the bed had gold, ancient looking lettering lining the side of her thumb, little squares that fell a top themselves.

Weird.

I kept reading, intrigued by it all. Much of it seemed to be based with emotions and personalities. Which seemed logical, in this worlds sense. But it seemed that most Full-Metas never even got one of the marks which didn’t matter to me. Everything was already such a shithole, I could’ve cared less.

As I skimmed through the book, some of the images sparkled and showed what the spell looked like resting on a palm and when casted. Some pictures were still and others melted into another, spells clashing with others as images of Meta’s sat idely, waiting for the casting hands to stop fighting.

It was amusing, really, it was.

Before I knew it, it was seven o’clock and I had to take a really quick shower before anything else. I gently shook J up so she could eat while I was busy and she almost kicked me as she grumpily got out of the bed, her plushy covers falling to the floor in a giant mass of bright white.

My shower was nothing special. Just a shower. But I did get to ogle at the tattoos that lined my body. They weren’t really any different, just glinted like obsidian in the sunlight. And were much darker in color as well. Almost pitch black.

I had scale patches running up and down my forearms, thighs, neck and stomach. My back just had three slits, these odd looking things that seemed to fall in on themselves. Two between my shoulder blades and another just a little bit before my spine ended. The art seemed stained red, that soft glint from light tinted with it.

Looking at myself in the mirror, I wondered just… just why. Everything I had done wrong, would do wrong. Ignoring my mom wasn’t helping much and Mark wanted me to check in on her for Gram but I was nervous to do so. Scared, even.

I wished dad was here.

But he wasn’t and I knew that, that he wasn’t going to just magically appear. But I could look at pictures of him and remember him, see him in Auggie. That’s the best I could do.

I drew a little smiley face on the steam that had collected on the mirror after getting dressed and picked up the lime-green toothbrush, scrubbing my teeth as the sleepies in my eyes demanded to be washed out.

Walking out of the bathroom, for once, things were quiet. J was washing her dishes and smiled at me as her hair stood up in curly knots, giving me a quick hug before she parade to the bathroom.

I looked around, gently putting my dirty clothes into a hamper beside the washer and dryer that were hidden in a small back room. They weren’t that loud so I hadn’t noticed them before hand.

I wasn’t quite sure what I would need for the day. It was one class for two and half hours. The basics, of course, like pencils and paper and shit but was there something specific?

What if I needed to know details about my form that I didn’t? What if I had to show it? Oh boy, nope, not doing that thank you so much.

Oh God, what if they brought up my father? Oh, please. Don’t bring up my father. Anything but that. Please.

“Nayleth. Nayleth!” J sharply whispered at me with worried eyes. Her stance was soft, caring. And I could see a few rose vines mimicking her worried stance as she faced me.

I clenched my fist, fingers sore and palms bleeding a bit. Gotta love reactions like that.

I smiled weakly at her in return, playing around with my necklace. It felt cool against my collarbone and satisfying to run the chain around and around like a rosie on my neck.

J patted my shoulders, the thorny vines going back into a tattoo. It didn’t seem painful for her - not at all. I felt a little jealous but nothing more.

“You’ll just need the normal things like pencils and such and Auggie should give you a book once we’re in class. We just switched schedules anyways. It’s new for all of the first Callings.” She told me and grinned, throwing me a backpack.

It wasn’t anything special but I was glad for the pack. Seriously, if you don’t have some type of bag, what are you even doing. How do you even get through a single day?

First Callings. Then how did J know so much about her own? Same with Sully. How was this their first year if they already knew much of what they could do?

I ran a few fingers over the fabric of the backpack, trying to calm my breathing. Didn’t think I would freak out over a new school and new classes but there I was, doing so.

I shoved the books Mark had given me, specifically the one overviewing this worlds history, into the pack. That would be immensely helpful in Auggie’s classes. Which I forgot he teached. Of course I would do that. Good job me, goddammit.

As I stretched J came out of the bathroom, dressed and ready for the day. She smiled softly at me, tying up her hair into a bun that would no doubt get knotty by the end of the day. I wondered if she knew how pretty her eyes got in the sun.

It was seven forty-five. Class started in fifteen minutes but J had insisted that we get there early so we could claim seats and so that I wouldn’t be too weird out by everything.

Thank God for J, honestly.

Before leaving, we woke up the guys. And that was a mess, holy shit. Sully just rolled out of his bed in disgust, clearly not wanting to get up but he did anyways, his hair all over the place and when he saw me and J standing in the doorway, his hair turned blue faster than a dog scarfing down a burger. He became a nervous mess but soon composed himself and headed to the bathroom, muttering to himself which made me chuckle softly.

Griffin, on the other hand, bolted out of bed, muscles obviously tense. His eyes seemed almost bloodshot with purple bags underneath them and he seemed scared to of been woken up again. But he relaxed and said he was sorry, wandering over to the cake as the shower turned on.

I frowned at Griffin. There was no reason to be sorry.

As we left, I heard Griffin say goodbye with a mouthful of cake and I smiled, amused by him and hoped he would farewell with his day of painting with Sully.

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