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Pet Name: CloudyVeil
7:57 am:My sister was still fast asleep, worn out from last night’s shift. She works hard to keep us afloat, and I respect that. We don’t always get along though, because I like to take “spontaneous” breaks from school. Her words. I tiptoed down the hall and into the kitchen. Grabbing a piece of white bread, I shoved it into the toaster. My backpack was crumpled against the wall from when I tossed it aside yesterday. My loose notes crumpled as I slipped in a can of Neocola and a mandarin orange. The toast sprung out of the toaster and I snatched it out of the air. Skateboard under my arm, I sprinted out of the door, toast in mouth.
8:33 am:The bell rung before I even stepped foot on school property. Cruising down the sidewalk, I hopped up the steps and into the building. A handful of students still milled about in the hallways, so I don’t think I stood out too much under the watchful eye of the hall monitors. Really don’t think I could get away with another late warning this semester.
8:37 am:Skateboard clattering underneath my desk, I slipped into my seat during role call.
“Here,” I respond to the teacher as she reached my name on the alphabetical list.
Close call. Yuna turned to smirk at me, “Just made it, eh, Cloudy?”
A little short of breath, I avert my gaze to the corner of the classroom, pretending to check out the chemistry posters above the whiteboard.
9:35am:Class dismissed. Yuna walked beside me as we filed out of first period. Her huge white Xweetok ears perked up as I mentioned borrowing her notes.
“C’mon, Yuna, I really, really, need to pass this one. You have the best chemistry notes in the whole grade,” I pleaded, hopefully sounding very pathetic and flattering at the same time.
“No way. If you’d come to class more often, you wouldn’t be in this fix,” her eyes narrowed, tail flicking irritably, “Also, when are you going to return my biology notes?”
She disappeared into the sea of students.
12:07pm:After Neopian History class, I sidled up beside Yuna in the cafeteria. This time, I had a plan.
“Hey, how was Advanced Mathematics?”
“Got the exam results back for the midterms. Did okay,” she flashed the exam package in my face, “97%.” Yeah, I have no idea what those equations even were, but I shrugged it off.
“So… I was thinking. You know those headphones you wanted last time we were at the store? Why don’t we make a little trade?” I peeled my mandarin orange slowly, as I watched her slide the exam back into her binder.
“My chemistry notes for the headphones?” Yuna rolled her eyes, “Saw that coming from a mile away.”
“Well? How about it?”
“Okay,” she said, “but I want that can of Neocola too.”
Huh, that was easy.
I should have known that tricky Xweetok would land me in a boiling pot of ultra spicy curry.
It became a mutualistic existence. She had something I needed to pass my classes, and I could get her what she wants. Honestly, if I got into anymore trouble in school, my sister would have my hide. I would be sent packing back to live with the parents in the boonies. This was my last chance to stay in the big city.
I proceeded to make some minor lifestyle modifications. Okay, pretty major modifications. My options were either to get a part time job, or start a little after school battledome club. We pooled our change and duked it out for the winnings every week in the back lot of the schoolyard. Unsanctioned fights so obviously against school rules. Eventually I organized commission fees for me and my team of helpers, spilt from each event’s prize, and no longer had to physically participate. Creating the rosters and managing the makeshift arena was enough. It got harder to keep it under wraps when word spread, and more and more kids wanted to get in on this.
Sometimes we have to learn lessons when things spin out of control. Pretty sure the lesson here is: kids have big mouths. They love to talk and spread rumours, and then suddenly everyone three Neoschools over knows too.
I got suspended. My sister was so mad. I have to leave for my parent’s place in a couple days. If I’m on my best behaviour, maybe I can return when my suspension is over.
Thanks a lot, Yuna.
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