Maria, are you paying attention? My attention was pulled back to the small classroom. Children many of them giggled at my expense. Yes Mrs. Putter I am paying attention you are talking about why mineral oil is important in our herbology. She shook her head looking at me.
That conversation ended 15 minutes ago. I do not know where your mind keeps wandering but I sure wish you would wait till after school to do it. I glanced around the room then looked at her. I am sorry Mrs. Putter. I could hear the kids laughing at me. I was distracted by the man talking outside I stumbled. Sure, I should not have said it till after I had said it. She looked at me then looked out the sliding open window no man could be seen.
Looking back at the room Mrs. Putter called to the class let us work in groups for the remainder of the period. Jacqueline and Monroe started to move their chairs next to mine. Mrs. Putter motioned them to stop. I looked up at her questioning and her eyes returned I am sorry. She handed me a stack of papers and after handing out worksheets to each group she motions me and my friends out of the room. Outside the classroom she closed the door and lead us far enough away so the kids inside could not hear but close enough so that she could still see them.
Okay Maria, you can tell me what happened. My friends and I sat down next one of the pillars in the hallways of the old-school. Ornately carved benches each playing out a scene in history lined each side of the halls. We sat on the bench that told the story of Poseidon in battle and the universal war of the Gods. I am sorry Mrs. Putter it’s just sometimes the spirits are talking and it’s so loudly, and they all are showing me things of their lives and it’s hard to focus all the time, I do the best I can, but I haven’t mastered controlling it.
Never am I so blunt about what I see but I was upset, and I just blurted out the truth without thinking first.
Maria honey you are only 13 we cannot expect you to have mastered your abilities. I am sorry I called you out in class I realize it is something you cannot always control. I looked to my two friends, they smiled at me. Instantly I felt much better. To say out loud what was happening helped decompress my anxiety. Do you tell people what you see in here she asked?
Her eyes were expectant as if she knew the answer would come. I shrugged my shoulders sometimes but not usually. Sometimes I write about it but then I worry it will be discovered so I try to resist or destroy whatever I write. I looked at my friends afraid I was saying too much. They only knew about me because of an accident like today and I did not talk about it to them, so it was one of those things that just faded to the background.
She looked at me very seriously. Maria your highly gifted and we need to find out just what all your capable of. How would you feel about changing your schedule some? I look to my friends a little scared. Right now, I had most every class with them if I change when would I see them? I would be alone. Uncertainty must have made it to my face for it was only a moment when she began to respond.
Most are your classes will be the same only a few minor differences like that you would leave 30 minutes early from every class and the nonessential free time would become a class time for you. Now if your friends wish to join you for that hour they may. They both said yes. Okay I will speak with the headmaster Carolyn about it. Now if you two will go back to class I would like to talk with Marie alone.
They smiled and went into the room. I watched them take my paper with them as they disappeared behind the door. You have made good friends in those two Maria that is a wonderful thing. Good friends are hard to come by. Yes, they are great friends thank you. I know I am blessed with them. What did you want to talk about with me ma’am? She took a seat next to me on the bench. Maria your very special I know everyone is special, but I think you may be more so than others. I would like to spend next class time with you, if I speak to your next teachers would that be all right with you. I am sure your friends will be more than happy to grab your work from the teacher.
I smiled slightly not sure how I felt about her interest in me. I have long ago grown weary of those too interested in my abilities. Okay I finally got out nodding my head to her. She beamed with excitement this is going to be fun I promise you Maria. We returned to class, and I joined my friends I quietly fill them in on what she wanted and the things that she asked and that she asked for help in the next class. They looked at me to be sure that I was okay with doing this as they know how I am about talking about me. Are you sure you want to do this Jacqueline asked? Yeah, I do not think you have to Monroe said. It is okay I think she just wants to talk. Will you guys get my work, so I do not get behind. Of course, we will they said in unison.
To my surprise she closed class ten minutes early. My friends encouraged me to set off to the mess area to grab snacks and drinks before the next class. But as usual I refused and chose to finish my worksheets. When the class was clear the teacher placed a chair up next to her desk and called me over to sit in it. I obliged bringing my work with me. After a few moments to finish and answer the remaining questions on my sheet I handed it to her. Very good Maria thank you.
She turned to me looking me in the eyes placing her hands upon mine on her desk. Now we have not been properly introduced in class you know me as Mrs. Putter when it is just you and me I prefer you call me Gloria. I could not help but smile at her name in an odd sort of way it seemed is fit her. Now let us just get to know each other for a little bit that way neither of us feel uncomfortable. Her smile was warm and for the moment made me feel comfortable. How about I go first she suggested noticing my reluctance. This is my fourth-year teaching here I am originally from Canada. I wanted warmth and mountains not too far from oceans. I moved to the south of Fiji for eight years teaching and working with tribes. When I was invited to this area to study under a native shaman. After doing classes for the community the school here had an opening and I applied. Oh yeah and I have six brothers and four sisters all living as is my mother. My father was a victim of a farming accident when I was a teenager and sadly is no longer with us.
express my condolences for her loss she smiled and thanked me while she
continue talking about her favorite books an elderly man appeared just over her left
shoulder. He looked old enough to be her grandfather. He was in homemade overhauls and a blue looking shirt with buttons. I looked at her looking for the resemblance. She had stopped talking and was just staring me.
Hester was your father’s name? Her eyes widened. I continued he wore homemade overhauls, he is wearing a blue shirt, he has got a good-sized nose, long wide ears, deep set eyes, silver hair and a long slender face and when he smiles you can see that is missing one of his bottom teeth. On his left hand he is missing the top part of his index finger. None of this was really a question more of a statement she just stared at me her eyes wide her mouth slightly open, so I continued. He was of Roman descent mixed with German his skin very pale. I could feel her emotions starting to build so I turned to look her in the eyes. As I finally made eye contact with her again, I saw the tears were in her eyes I told her that he was fine and that he was watching out for her. I looked down in our hands where she was still holding mine, I was not really looking at her just kind of looking off into nothing.