I found myself smiling at nothing in particular when I put up the last poster I had. I was done unpacking — great. I looked around my corner of the room, trying to check off everything. I had a habit of making what was mine, mine. If that makes sense. I had a habit of making my personal space overflowing with my property. I wasn’t sure why, maybe it was my little way of claiming my corner.
“Hey!” I said when I got to my bed to take a sit. My roommate didn’t respond to me, he just flipped the page of the book in his hands. I sighed, shaking my head as I turned away from him to stare at the posters I’d put up on the wall. Many of them were book and movie posters. I wasn’t much of a video game person, so I didn’t have any of those.
I sighed, looking away from him when I realized he wasn’t going to answer me. Great, we had a couple of minutes till we had to meet in the floor’s lounge for general introductions, and I hadn’t even managed to get his name yet. He was rude, or maybe I was just too awkward.
I was sitting on my bed, writing in my journal as I waited for our floor’s RA to call us out. It was a small little room, and the bathrooms were down the hall and shared. I might have over packed, meaning my side of the room was currently barely managing to hold everything, while my roommate’s corner seemed almost empty. After a while, our RA did come by to knock on our door.
“Come on guys, it’s time to meet the others,” she said with a smile, fiddling with her white headscarf before she walked away. I got up from my bed, and my roommate did the same, closing his book before he stood up. We both left our room, before making our way to the lounge at the end of the hallway.
I sat down on the carpeted floor, looking around the room to stare at the other students. Some of them waved at me when our eye met, while others were too busy on their phones to notice me. The lounge was smallish, with a table that was pushed away to stay at the corner, why the three lone couches had been arranged in a sort of semi-circle. The place had a TV, but I doubt it had any paid service.
Our RA soon came into the lounge soon after. She took a seat by someone who was also wearing the RA shirt for the day. I looked around, noting that there were three of them, and I wondered if it was the same for other floors.
“Okay, welcome to your first-year guys,” she laughed, clapping her hands a bit to catch the attention of people who were still on their phones. “If we could get in some sort of circle and share names with our Majors that would be great,” she added when the last person put their phone away.
“So I’ll start. I’m Halimat, and I’m majoring in linguistics, and minoring in American sign language,” she said, looking over at her friend who was sitting by her. He was a ginger haired guy that looked like he was in his third or so year.
“Hey, I’m Shaun. I’m majoring in Theater Arts, and minoring in creative writing,” he said with a smile, making his chubby cheeks stand out. The introductions continued, and when it was my roommate’s turn I paid closer attention.
“I’m Ollie. I’m majoring in Dance, and I’m minoring in Drama,” he said. I frowned a bit, his voice was cracked — not in a bad way. It sounded more like what every boy’s voice was undergoing in fifth, or should I say sixth grade?
The introductions ended, and we got to go to our rooms after Halimat and her partner explained what the next week of base camp would be like. I went straight to my bed, sighing as I took out my phone to text Caleb.
“What was it again?”
“What?” I asked, looking up to find Ollie staring at me from his bed.
“Oh, it’s Xander,” I replied, watching as he smiled a bit before looking away from me. He was staring at the ceiling now.
“I’ve been thinking about something. I wasn’t sure if I should tell you since it’s really not your business, but...” he trailed, sighing before he turned to look at me again.
I sat up on my bed, raising a bow of confusion at him. “What do you want to tell me?” I asked, wondering why he’d suddenly gone silent.
I watched as Ollie sat up on his bed with a plain black bed sheet before smiling at me nervously.
“Okay,” I said, looking on at him. He frowned, before a look of confusion seemed to build up on his face.
“I’m still Pre-Operation. I still have boobs, and a vagina...”
“Okay,” I said, staring at him with a small frown. “Why are you telling me though?”
He shrugged. holding on to his face with his hands. “I wasn’t planning to before, but binders hurt and scar you if you wear them for too long...”
“Oh, then if you want to change or do anything go right ahead. If you even need me to leave for a few minutes I could do that,” I said, watching as the let go of their face to smile at me.
“Some people aren’t okay with it. Some are in a way, but they might have problems sharing a room or a bathroom, that kind of stuff. I’m just kinda happy you don’t mind,” he said, smiling at me, and it was then I sort of realized why their voice was cracked.
I shrugged, laughing a bit. “I have mums, and they sort of loved to hang out with other LGBT+ folks so it’s never really been an issue.”
“Yes!” he laughed, picking up his phone.
“Nah, ignore me. I’m just happy,” he said, shrugging as he turned over on his bed and pulled the covers. I smiled at him, doing the same as my mind wandered to whether Maxwell was staying in the college’s residence as well. He could very well just be on the floor below mine —
I got up from my bed in a haste, heading for my study desk before I pulled out my journal that was in one of the journals.
“What’s gotten into you?” Ollie asked, sitting up on his bed as he gave me a quizzical look. I shook my head at him before turning back to go through my journal in search of a pen.
“It’s nothing, I just thought of a scene to write,” I chuckled when I finally found a pen to use. Ollie shook his head at me, resting on his bed before pulling his covers over himself. I ignored him, making to write the scene of me bumping into Maxwell in the hallway. I smiled as I penned it down, writing down all the dialogue I’d never say in real life due to shyness. I was a reserved person with little social skills, but in my stories, I could be the funny loud kid who knew how to talk to everyone.
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