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“So, are you excited as I am for our first day of practical magics?”

I look up from my breakfast when Farrah plops down in the seat opposite of me. She’s almost bursting at the seams, strawberry locks bouncing around her face, her baby blues shining with all the excitement.

I shrug my shoulders, “Meh.” She pauses her bouncing, eyes rounding in disbelief.

“Meh? Meh!! How could you be so cavalier about doing something so monumental? I mean, today we get to practice magic, not just read about it and memorize spells and potions.”

She’s right I guess. We were finally about to start practicing magic and it would let the teachers as well as the students know just how strong our magic was. It would also help with class placements when we go off to the academy. It’s all anyone our year can talk about, but there’s just one thing she forgot.

“ It won’t be the first time I’m doing magic Farr, my mom had been teaching me the basics since I was like five.”

“Oh that’s right. I keep forgetting you had an entire life before the institute.”

While I knew what life was like on the outside, Farrah grew up in here. Her mother passed away at childbirth and her father was never known. Her mother had no relatives she was raised in an orphanage before making her way to the institute two months before I did. It sucks, but most kids here had some version of the same story. She and I met on my first day here since we were assigned to the same room. She was quick to inform me of how things worked and what I should and shouldn’t do. Her mouth moved a mile a minute and it was an entire four hours before she stopped long enough for me to even introduce myself, but it’s what I liked about her too.

The bell signalling ten minutes before classes start tinkles softly and Farrah rushes to stuff the remainder of her breakfast in her mouth while grabbing up her books. She falls into step beside me and we walk to our first class of the day in companionable silence, nervous energy buzzing off of what has come to be not only my best friend, but almost a sister.

Our first class is Lycan history and I take a seat up front much to Farrah’s dismay. She’s always making fun of me for taking this particular class seriously and taking tons of notes. There aren’t that many wolves at the institute, and the ones that are here keep to themselves. Wolves are notorious for having large families and living in huge groups, so even if a kid lost both his parents there was always someone willing to take that kid in.

I pay close attention in this class for the simple reason that in a few months I’ll be experiencing my first change and I need to know everything I can about that part of myself. I couldn’t very well tell this to Farrah so I just ignored her jabs.

I’m so focused on the current chapter of what to expect leading up to the first turn, I don’t hear my name being called until Ms. Bailey taps her slender fingers against my desk. I reluctantly drag my eyes from the pages of the ancient book before I meet her steely gaze.

“Ms. Adams, while I commend your enthusiasm to learn, you must also be aware of what goes on around you. You’re being called to the headmaster’s office, take your things with you.”

I slowly close the textbook and pass it back to her, looking to Farrah in question. She shrugs her shoulders and shakes her head, letting me know she also has no clue what this is about. Just when I’ve gotten to the good part I have to give up my reading material. Figures. I quickly make my way to the administration building, all the while trying to figure out the reason for being summoned. I have done nothing wrong, not since my first couple of weeks here. I’ve always kept a low profile, kept my head down and stayed out of trouble ensuring no attention is brought to me.

I enter the offices and stand until the secretary notices me.

“Headmaster Winthrop sent for me? Genesis Adams.” I say in a low voice. I watch as she picks up the receiver of the phone and murmurs softly into it.

Placing the phone down she turns to me, “You may go in Ms. Adams.” I nod my head and walk over to the door, knocking twice, I hear a muffled ‘come in ’ and turn the handle slowly.

Inside, the headmaster is seated behind a large mahogany desk, his hands clasped together. My eyes dart to the paintings and pictures on the wall behind him and it takes me a minute to realize there was someone else in the room. Seated across from him is an older woman, her dark hair swooped into a neat bun and when she turns to me I notice her long bangs are a charcoal grey. Her eyes glisten as a smile erupts on her face. I look from her to the headmaster and back again.

“Ms. Adams, please have a seat.” I do as he says and sit down, making sure to keep my eyes in his direction, although I can feel her stare penetrating the side of my face. The silence among us stretches around the room like a thick fog. It takes about a full minute more before I’m impatient and blurt out, “Did I do something wrong? Why am I here?”

The headmaster looks taken aback at my outburst but composes himself quickly before he replies, “ You haven’t done anything wrong Genesis. I’ve called you in because I have some, umm, news to share with you.”

He fidgets in his seat a bit before saying, “This is Ms. Tilly St’Clair. Your grandmother.”

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