Into the Unknown
Part III: Surprises
After getting our things from the house, Charlie and I went to the park behind the cafeteria where a bunch of students were enjoying the warm and sunny reprieve from the usual autumn weather.
I found a nice place in the sun, right on the large flat edge of a gentle fountain and sat down as Charlie began skating around me, clearly wanting to impressed me with her moves, which was kind of cute. She was pretty good too, although that came with eight years of experience. As she skateboarded her heart out, I browsed around on my tablet until I stumbled on news about the Menagerie; the supervillain group my dad belonged to…
The Menagerie wasn’t one of the bad groups, as far as villains went. They were thieves through and through, but they weren’t bastards about it. Didn’t harm civilians, avoided collateral damages, didn’t kill. Mostly they robbed banks, casinos and jewelry or electronics warehouses.
“What are you looking at?” Charlie asked, hopping off her skateboard, drawing me out of my focus.
“Nothing!” I said hiding the screen by laying it against my belly.
“Woah, okay…” She said with a frown. “Nevermind then.”
“Wait…” I sighed. “You just startled me. If I show you, do you promise you won’t tell anyone, especially not your dad or the teachers?”
“Yeah, sure.” She said sitting next to me. “You’re not going to tell me you’re really a serial killer, are you?”
“Haha. Very funny.”
I removed the tablet away from my belly and showed her the page I was on.
“Chat Noir, eh? I didn’t know you were into furries. Maybe I should put a pair of cat’s ears on too.” She said and I just glared at her. “But in all seriousness, why are you interested in him? He’s just a low-tier burglar.”
“Because he’s my dad.”
“He’s your dad?”
“I only learned about it recently.” I sighed. “He and my mom had a thing when she was in college, she knew he was a villain but they broke up before he even knew I was born, so I’ve never met him.”
“Ravenhold doesn’t know, nobody but my mom and I do, actually, and I’m kind of scared people would treat me differently if they did. Like they’d think there’s something suspicious about why I came here, but I didn’t even know before I came here. My mom told me while we were waiting for the ferry…”
She wrapped her arms around me tightly.
“Hey, relax. You don’t have to get upset.” I was about to protest, but only then could I feel the stiffness in my jaw and tightness in my chest… “I get it and I swear I won’t tell anyone.”
“It’s no biggie, but you’re welcome.”
I put my hand on her cheek and pulled her closer into a series of long kisses. I might not have known my romantic orientation, but sure as heck knew I liked kissing her. After a minute of sloppily making out on a park bench, we parted ways equally out of breath.
“So, do you want to go to my house this weekend?” Charlie asked, once she’d caught her wind back.
“Eh, we’ve been there for the last three weekends, I think it’d be nice to spend one with the rest of the class. And beside, there’s never anything good in the kitchen at your place.”
“My dad orders the best food you can get.”
“Yeah, but it lacks the most important ingredient; homemade-infused love. Not my fault you can’t see the value of a home cooked meal over catering or deliveries. Which reminds me, I need to take the brisket out of the oven soon.”
I grabbed her hand and practically dragged her back to our dorm.
As I prepared dinner, my ID came to life, beeping. I took out it out of my pocket and saw the small electronic band on it saying ‘RETURN TO DORM ASAP’ repeating over and over. I frowned but there wasn’t anything I could do, so I put it back in my pocket. I took a quick look outside and everything seemed 100% alright. A few people with badges seemed to pass, not having received the same notification I’d had.
The others who’d been outside quickly came rushing back to the house with everyone assembled in the common room, just exchanging puzzled looks.
A few minutes later, there was a knock at the door. I rushed toward it and opened it only to find our homeroom Teacher waiting on the patio.
“Hello Mr. Martin.”
“Good evening Caroline.”
“What can I do for you?”
“I’m doing a routine inspection.” He said. “I hope you don’t mind.”
“Of course not.”
He started pacing the dorm as everyone just watched him. He checked cleanliness, the general state of everything.
“Is everything satisfactory?”
“Some of the bedrooms could use a little work and there’s an unauthorized pet, which miss Yeun should have cleared with administration beforehand, but everything is fine. Now to the other reason I came here.”
He walked to the front door and opened it, letting the first person out of a crowd in. At eight feet tall, deep chestnut hair and those big blue eyes, there was only one person in the world I knew who fit the bill.
“Hey Peanut.” She said with a grin. “Missed me?”
She stepped inside and several others came pouring in, only to rush to the side of someone else; sharing kisses and embraces. Before I could process what had happened, I found myself surrounded by my mom, my grandparents and my aunt Jenna.