Chapter One: Flashcards
Beep beep beep beep
My eyes immediately fly open at the sound of my alarm. I reach my arm out from under the warm blankets and smash my hand around the desk next to me, looking for the alarm. When I finally turn it off, I get up and stretch.
“Ugh... Tori! That alarm is so loud.” Someone in the bed next to me groans. I look over and see my best friend Marina curled in a tight blanket burrito on her bed.
“You two are finally awake! Get ready sleepy heads, we have a test in History today.” I look around the room and see someone sitting at the vanity.
“Alright, I’m getting up,” I say grumpily. I get up out of bed and walk groggily over to my wardrobe. I fling the doors open and shove my hands in. When I finally find my school uniform, I quickly change into it. This is my outfit every day here at Ms. Neely’s boarding school. It’s a plaid maroon and silver skirt that goes to my knees. It has white socks. And we are allowed to wear whatever shoes we want, so I choose black high tops. Then it has a white short-sleeved button-up shirt with the school’s emblem on the right. The boys wear nice jeans, a belt, a white button-up shirt with the school’s emblem, and a maroon and silver tie. Yes, very formal.
After getting dressed I walk sleepily over to the vanity and sit next to the person who had been there before. Cassandra, who we call Cass. Cass is currently combing her short beautiful curly light blonde hair. I then take my hair out of the braids I had put them in after a shower the previous night. My dirty blonde hair comes out a tangled mess. Hair is so annoying sometimes. I grab a brush and start brushing through the tangles gently.
“Guys, can you help me study?” Marina asks nervously as she finishes buttoning up her shirt.
“Marina, you’ve studied all week! You’re going to pass, stop stressing out.” Cass says patiently.
“Yeah, Cass is right. You’ve never failed a test, and you’re the smartest girl in school. Don’t panic.” I add.
Marina bites her lip like she always does when she’s anxious, nervous, or deep in thought. “Please...?”
I look over at Cass, and she shrugs and says, “Okay, hand me the flashcards.” Marina hands Cass a 1 1/2 inch stack of flashcards. This is nothing compared to the 3-inch stack Marina made for our biology class last year. Cass puts her comb down and flips through the cards until she finds a good one.
“Okay, Marina. What is the meaning behind our school emblem and colors?”
“Um, well. The maroon stands for courage, strength, and confidence. And the silver stands for graceful, sophisticated, and elegant.”
“Yes, and the emblem?”
“Oh. The emblem is a red allium flower and a sparrow. The allium stands for unity, humility, and patience. It is also thought to bring good luck and protection against evil. And the sparrow stands for hard work, joy, and protection.”
“Good job!” Cass smiles and puts the cards down. “Your turn to ask a question, Tori.”
I sigh and open the stack to a random card. Oh, haha. This one is easy.
“This is easy. You ready?” Marina nods. “What is the name of our kingdom and our enemy kingdom? And who are the rulers of each?”
Marina chuckles. “Our kingdom is the kingdom of Alynthia. And our rulers are King Rupert and Queen Helena. Our enemy kingdom is the kingdom of Valdonnia. The rulers are King Gideon and Queen Sasha.”
“Good job!” we high five and I give Marina her flashcards back. “You’ve got this.” Marina smiles.
Cass stands up and swings her knapsack with all her school textbooks over her shoulder. “I think we should head to breakfast, I’m famished.”
Marina and I nod in agreement, grab our knapsacks, and head out of our dorm. In case you hadn’t guessed by now, the three of us are roommates. Our dorm is just one of the many in the girl’s tower. Since Ms. Neely’s boarding school is home to both boys and girls, there are two towers on opposite sides of the school that hold the dorms. Two towers on the very left side of the school are the boys, and the very right side is us girls.
The three of us walk down the tower stairs and greet other girls as they come out of their dorms. As we approach the cafeteria, I can already smell the french toast. Yesterday, we had orange rolls and cinnamon rolls. Today we have french toast. My absolute favorite! As we get our food, I make sure to put a huge glob of strawberries on my french toast.
We then head toward our usual table near one of the corners of the cafeteria. Waiting for us are our friends Liam and Clay. Liam and Cass are twins. So they both have hazel eyes, curly light blonde hair, and freckles. Clay, on the other hand, has tan skin (he spends a lot of time in the sun), green eyes, and black hair. He also usually has a mischievous smile on his face. He is the prankster of the group and doesn’t follow a lot of rules.
“Hey girls. What took you so long?” Clay greets us. I roll my eyes and take a seat next to Liam and Marina.
“Don’t roll your eyes at me, young lady!” Clay says dramatically.
“Oh, I’m sorry. I forgot that I should always respect my elders.” Clay fakes a shocked look and Cass rolls her eyes.
“You too?” Clay asks teasingly.
“You guys are the same age! We all are.”
“15. We’re so old.” Liam jokes.
“Okay, you jokers. Ready for the test?” Marina asks.
“Nope. Didn’t even study.” Clay says. Liam and I groan.
“What?!” Clay asks defensively. “Why study, when you can just cheat?”
“Because it’s not right! You can’t cheat for everything.” Cass says, clearly annoyed. Clay shrugs and shoves a sausage in his mouth. Marina pulls out her flashcards again and begins silently studying.
Right as I take the last bite of french toast, the bell rings. We all get up and start walking to our classes. Liam and I have history together for 1st period, so we walk together to class. As we sit down he whispers, “Good luck.”
“Same too you.”