The Valkyrie’s Daughters
Part XI: Catching up
Things happened and were said, but my brain wasn’t there. Slowly sound started making words again and words became sentences.
“So, what is everyone doing after classes today?” Someone asked, I think it was Avery. My brain wasn’t good at telling which voice belonged to who.
“I don’t know. haven’t thought about it.” Was all I answered, my octopus still in my mouth, I tried to think of anything, but my mind was blank.
“I don’t know either. I wanted to get to know more of our classmates though.” Riley was easier, they were the british one.
Then I lost track again. I heard the words but not the person.
“Me too. Probably I’ll avoid that Nine person though.” “I don’t know either. I wanted to get to know more of our classmates though.” “Nine?” “The one Drew said was rude.” “What did he do?” “Yeah. From what I saw you’d be good to avoid him. To say he’s a creep would be an understatement.” “But I am excited for today.”
I had no idea what to say anymore…
“I’m really excited to have more classes. They should be fun. Just… maybe not the fighting ones.” It was Avery,
That one I knew. “I don’t think we have combat today.” I said. “Maybe you can check the schedule on your tablet?”
I saw Riley looking at theirs for a moment.
“Oh, good. I don’t like combat. Why can’t I be a sidekick or something?” Avery said.
“There’s been psychic heroes; like Indigo or Esper. Legion too.” I said. “You can help with the psychic villains, there’s a lot of those.”
“But I don’t want to fight.” Avery said, that was good, being a cape had lots of fighting… “I would have to hurt people and that’s just not good. I get that you might need to, but I don’t want to be the one that does it. I’d rather just be someone who helps behind the scenes, you know?”
“I’m not big on combat either, but I really want to be able to help people with my powers. I’m sure there’s something you could do that doesn’t involve combat.” Drew said. “Michelle’s right! You can be a hero without having to physically fight.”
“Excuse me y’all. I have to uh go do something real quick.” Riley said.
“Okay?” I mumbled as they teleported away. I blinked and looked at the others. “Are they okay?” I couldn’t tell…
“I don’t think so. Any idea where they would have gone?” Drew asked.
I didn’t. This morning was just very confusing… “Their room?” Was all I could think of.
“Maybe. Let’s check.” She said. “Do you think I said something wrong?”
“I don’t know. They looked at their tablet before leaving, maybe that was it?” It was dumb but it was all I could think off…
“I hear them talking to Teddy. Sounds like it’s around the bathroom. Wanna go see if they’re there?” Avery said.
“Yeah sure. Lead the way.” Drew said.
“Sure, follow me. I hope they’re okay.” Avery answered.
I followed quietly, maybe Riley just needed to go potty… Did they go potty with Teddy? Did Teddy needed to go too? Did— This wasn’t helpful thinking. Riley came out of the bathroom, I could hear flushing. Maybe they just did need to use the bathroom…
“Hey! Are you okay? We were worried about you.” Drew asked.
“Uh, yeah…” Riley answered, looking away, I looked where they looked and saw nothing.
“Are you sure?” I asked, hopefully they could tell us, because I had no idea… People are hard to understand… At least with papa and mama knew to tell me what they were feeling… It’s odd how allistics can just tell how people feel…
“Completely fine, just feeling a little nauseous is all.” Riley said.
I frowned, nausea wasn’t good… “Oh okay. Are you going to be okay for classes?”
They showed me their thumb and I blinked. Oh wait, that was a thumbs up. Maybe I needed a break from classes…
“Alright… if you need anything were here. You can tell us if anything’s wrong.” Drew said, putting a hand on them even though Riley said they were fine.
“I’m fine now, really.” Riley said.
“Okay…” Drew said. “What time do classes start again?”
“Eight. We have time for breakfast.” I answered. Breakfast was just what I needed, maybe then I could think…
“Good. I’m hungry.” Avery said. “Maybe they have chicken nuggets for breakfast. Or bananas. Ooh, maybe there’s smoothies!”
They all started talking about breakfast and I got lost in the words, they become nothing but noise…
We got breakfast, I got some sausages with toasts, which I ate away from the others, I needed some time with less words, let my brain get better at processing everything. I was almost done with my breakfast and making my brain work again when Ike came by.
“Ike?” I asked.
“Did I do something wrong yesterday?” I asked. “You got all quiet.”
“Nothing….I… I probably should’ve just said but I didn’t bring any swim stuff and I get self-conscious of my chest… I mentioned top surgery to my mum once and her reaction was so bad I just kinda ignore it.” I blinked… That was a lot of words. It took me a moment to understand all of them.
“You could have kept your shirt on.” Was all I thought about.
“I can’t swim with my binder on.” Ike explained
“And I know if I had to remove it, you would’ve been totally fine and looked the other way, but I just felt embarrassed about having to strip off on the beach like that,” Ike rambled before sighing. “Sorry, I should’ve just told you all of this then, but I was feeling really good helping someone learn and doing something I enjoyed. I thought if I tried to swim it would undo all of that,” they sighed again.
I blinked. That was a lot of words. I think I understood most of them. Maybe. “Binder don’t sound fun.” I said.
Ike laughed, “They’re not. I’m worried about combat class with it to be honest.”
Michelle frowns. “I don’t think you’re supposed to do that.”
“Probably not, but I really don’t like seeing my chest. My ‘girl’ days are far and inbetween,” they laughed. “Are you looking forward to classes?” they asked.
“I always wanted to be a hero, but I didn’t have powers before, I kind of feel sad that Valkyra died she was someone I really adored and worshipped but now I have her powers and I want to make her proud.” Michelle says, quite rapidly.
“I’m sure you will,” Ike smiled. “I was used to feeling different, now I really am and-” they paused mid-speech, I think they were making a face. Odd. “Do you think people deserve second chances? Or… fourths?”
“I don’t know.” I said.
Ike gnawed their lower lip, mom didn’t like when I did that. “I don’t know either.” they sigh. “Let’s talk about something else.”
“I need to get my makeup done.” I said, getting up. I took a few steps before stopping. I always forgot goodbyes, Mom always told me it was important. “Bye Ike.”
“Bye.” Ike said.
I went into the bathroom and took out my makeup kit. I only had thirty minutes left… This was going to be a challenge… I’d done make up for many years but I’d never gotten good at it, I didn’t have the dexterity for it.
“Hi Michelle!” Drew said coming up to me. Unlike me, her makeup was flawless, so pretty… I was kind of jealous.
I wiped away my third attempt at eyeliner, it looked like a toddler had done it. “Hey…” I mumbled.
“What’s up? You seem frustrated.”
“It’s so hard.”
She came up to me and put her own makeup bag on the counter. “Here, need help?”
“I’ve been doing it for years but I never get better.”
“It’s okay. I’m pretty good at it now, but that’s only because I’ve practiced a lot. You’ll get better.” She said, I wanted to tell her I had practiced so much… “What are you going for? Like, do you want it to look dramatic or more natural?”
“Natural.” I said. “I do too, but I’m just so clumsy.”
“It’s okay, I’ll help if you want. Here,” she pulled out an eyeshadow palette and a brush from her bag. “Close your eyes.”
I did as she asked and she got to work. “Thank you. I wish I was as good as you, you’re really pretty.”
“Thank you. You’re rather cute yourself.” My cheeks got very warm. Was I pretty? I never really thought I was… I always thought my nose and lips were too big, I didn’t have pretty eye color… I was too dark skinned for Germany…
I opened my eyes and saw what she’d done. The eyeliner was sharp and perfectly applied, the eyeshadow made my eyes pop out.”It’s amazing!” I mumbled.
“It’s nothing, really.” She took out a tub of lipstick and I parted my lips so she could apply it. “Perfect.” She said once she was done. My lips were now a nice dark red that just looked so pretty without standing out too much.
“It really is perfect!” I big smile formed on my lips. “Can I give you a hug?”
She opened her arms and I hugged them, with both my hands and my wings, tightly wrapped around her. She hugged back very tight, that was odd.
“Is everything alright?” I whispered, still keeping her in my arms.
“Just thinking about my dad. I really loved him, and I miss him every day. But you know…” She squeezed even harder. “I think I might just be alright now.” She answered in a low tone.
We let go and I saw her wipe her eyes. “Yeah. I’m fine.” She said, grabbing her bag. “Come on, let’s see if we can go find the others.” She pat me on the shoulder. I remembered hearing that when people are honest they touch you… or something like that.
So I nodded and followed her out.