Sky’s The Limit
Part II: Faces at Ravenhold
I rushed a shower in the hotel Papa had booked me in Maine and frowned at my reflection in the mirror. I wanted to make a good impression but at the same time I didn’t want to stand out. I opted some less intense make up and pulled on my grey and dark red tic tac toe leggings and a simple black skirt. A red long sleeve top and black jacket completed the look. I added some more black eyeliner and tied my hair into a loose ponytail.
The elderly lady at the reception desk waved at me as I left. I’d spent most of last night talking to her while eating a simple dinner of hamburger and chips. She had been curious about my accent and wanted to know about Iceland. I had a feeling I would be telling a lot of people about my home country, not that I minded much.
I opted for the midday ferry as opposed to trying to wake up horrendously early. I know I’ll need to do it regularly when I’m at the academy but I’d deal with that when it came to it. The letter from the academy in my suitcase explained the first thing I had to do was see their doctor to discuss my condition.
The sea air was salty and vaguely reminded me of home, except Iceland was no where near as warm as this place. I actually felt a little uncomfortable under my jacket in this weather. I felt my eyes tugging shut with the calm rhythm of the ferry and resisted the urge to give in. I slept really well last night, I didn’t need a further nap yet.
I watched the water, loving how the different colours danced. I glanced up at the sounds of seagulls and focussed on the guy flying up there. Instantly I could feel the breeze ruffling my feathers. I felt the pulsing of my muscles as I flapped to keep afloat on the air. I felt vocal chords vibrate as I called out to the other seagulls. The world looked so different with both my eyes on different sides of my small face. The details I could make out of Priest Island far away was breathtaking. I stayed with the seagull, enjoying the world from its viewpoint until it flew too far away for me to maintain contact.
I snapped back to my own body, immediately aware of how much warmer it was down here compared to in the air as a bird. We were almost at the island though where they hopefully had air conditioning. It didn’t take me long to gather my things and get to the academy.
The letter had given me instructions on how to find the doctor and said she would show me where I had to go next. The huge iron gate towered above me, making me feel much shorter than I already was. I tried not to stare at the buildings and people around me but I couldn’t help it. I also knew I had the most embarrassing huge grin on my face. I was really here. I was at Ravenhold. I paused at a T-junction path and spun around uncertainly, glancing at the letter with a frown.
“Where are you headed?” someone asked. I jumped at their voice and felt my mouth go dry. They were so pretty.
“Are you okay?” they asked, beautiful eyes shaped by concern. Braids scattered in a haphazard manner around their shoulders. Black people were rare in Iceland and my immediate thought was not to do or say anything stupid.
“H-hi,” I stuttered, feeling my cheeks flush at my inability to talk to people. “I’m just looking for the doctors office,” I explained, waving a hand in a random direction.
“Other way,” they said, laughing at my hand.
“R-right,” I replied. “Thanks.”
“You’re welcome,” they said, turning to re-join some others who had walked on without them. I really hoped I would meet them again. Preferably without making myself look like an illiterate mess.
I followed her direction and found the building the doctor was in. Although it looked like something was going on based on the large van outside. They were rushing someone inside and I wondered if I should find an administration office and come back here later. Except I didn’t have any directions to one. I chewed my lip nervously as I walked in and found a few people have intense conversation. Someone I recognised from the TV looked up as I walked in.
“How can I help you?” he asked, leaving the small group. Before I could answer a Venusian took over. I’d never seen one in person and hoped I wasn’t staring too obviously.
“Mx Skylar, I was beginning to think you’d encountered difficulties getting here again,” she said, her facial adornment moving slightly as she spoke.
“Just a big place to navigate,” I said with a nervous laugh.
“Indeed, it does take some getting used to. My name is Sij but you’re welcome to call me Doc Venus as some previous students have. Follow me. I do have another patient in the next room but he’s asleep at the moment so we should be fine to talk openly. However if you’d rather not we can re-schedule,” she said, opening the door to a neat clinic room. There was a shut door to the left where I guessed the other patient was.
“No, it’s fine,” I said, taking the seat Sij motioned to and fidgeting with the outer seam of my skirt as she glanced over her notes.
“So I understand you’re currently on Xyrem, is this working for you in terms of controlling your symptoms?” she asked.
“Mostly. I get occasional cataplexy and tiredness but nowhere near as bad as it was when I was on the Modafinil,” I explained. She nodded, scribbling away.
“Well just know that we can apply for you to try something newer and more experimental if you are struggling to learn with your narcolepsy,” she said, handing me a leaflet. “Especially as there will be a higher demand on you in terms of physical exercise than previously.” I nodded, putting the leaflet into my backpack. Mama had always been researching new and upcoming treatments but we already paid a fair bit for the Xyrem.
“I didn’t realise the academy would cover those kind of expenses,” I murmured.
“We want to give the students here the best chance,” she said with a wide smile, her adornments moving excitedly. “Now onto your HRT. You’re on three monthly blockers and take pills for estrogen correct?” I nodded. “Okay, are you okay for me to take some regular trough levels? I do it for any of our students on hormones, even if they’re established on treatment,” she explained.
“Of course,” I replied. She went over to a drawer to get a syringe and needle when there was a loud beeping noise all of a sudden. She rushed into the other room and I wavered uncertainly in my seat. I decided to stay where I was. It wasn’t like I would be able to help. A male voice joined hers but i resisted the urge to eavesdrop. After a few minutes she re-joined me and drew bloods.
“Are there any other concerns you wanted to discuss before heading off?” she asked me.
“Not a concern per say, but I was wondering if it would be okay for me to stop by from time to time to learn some basic first aid skills? My mum’s a nurse so I know CPR and how to handle simple injuries and I’d like to learn more. I can ease a person’s physical pain but that doesn’t actually stop the flow of blood if they have an open gash,” I rambled. Her smile widened to an almost frightening level.
“Of course!” she replied, sounding ecstatic. “I’ve always wanted an apprentice of sorts ,” she mused aloud. “Well if that’s all,” she said standing up and walking over to the other door. She opened it to reveal a tall, black individual with a shaved head. He looked extremely confused by everything going on. “You’re free to go,” she said cheerily. He nodded nervously and seemed to do everything in his power to avoid touching her as he passed through the first doorway.
“You’re both in the same room so you might as well get to know one another now. Here’s some directions to your dorm building,” she said, handing me a piece of paper. I pulled my backpack onto my shoulder and we both left.
“Thanks,” I said, waving as I left. The guy said nothing, his eyes shooting in every direction. Jumpy seemed an appropriate word to describe him. I momentarily considered using my ability to calm his nerves but decided against it. I didn’t even know his name and he might not appreciate it later.