Me and Julia hurried along as she led the way to the Social Sciences section of the main building.
"Thanks a lot, Julia. I'm probably gonna get busted the second I enter the class," I remarked, somewhat frustrated.
"Oh, calm your jets, dear. It's the first week. Most classes these days are for the sake of taking attendance. No more, no less," She said.
"It's not THAT I'm worried about. It's the impression I'm gonna end up leaving. Seriously, what am I going to tell the teacher when she asks where I've been?" I complained.
"Well, we can always find out just who is gifted with a silver tongue, am I right?" She retorted, winking at me.
"Just shut up, Julia."
A few minutes later, we came into a wide hall, with classes in each direction.
"Heerre we are, you ingrate," She declaimed, "Your section lies here."
I looked at my course schedule paper. Introduction to Political Thought, Room P-003 A.
"Room P-003 A...That should be just abouuut..." I trailed off, looking around until I found the class with a sign that matches the description in my schedule, "...there. Thanks for the orientation, Julia. I'll see you later."
"Oh, NOW you express your gratitude? Haha, well Lila honey, my class starts in a few. Meet me at the cafeteria later, all right?"
"You got it," I said, waving to her as I entered class.
Observing my surroundings, I noticed it was a medium-sized auditorium. The professor was seated dealing with some papers, while the students already had their desks readied and were writing on pieces of paper.
Shit...I realize I'm late, but THIS late?
The professor looked up and saw me.
"Well, don't just stand there, come over here!" She ordered. Her voice was leaning on the deep side.
I quietly obeyed and made my way to her desk. I could feel the eyes of most of the class on me.
"Focus, girls! You're here to learn politics, not the reason why a slacker is truanting," She dictated. Snickering around the class followed.
I just shook my head. Thanks, Julia...really. I took a look at the professor. She seemed to be in her late thirties, or early forties. Her hair was black, brushed straight and she wore glasses.
"First day on the job, and you are about 20 minutes behind schedule...may I ask why you're this tardy?" She asked.
"I didn't know my way around..." I said. It was partially the truth. But I'm not exactly the most convincing person out there... "Oh, who am I kidding? I have no real excuse, and for that I apologize, Ma'am."
"Coming clean is always in your best interest, young lady. Name please?" She inquired.
Hmm...I guess redemption isn't too late yet.
"Lila...Lila Gretel Ravan," I affirmed.
"I see...well, Lila, I am Mrs. Lillian Seed, your teacher who will show you the ropes in the world of political thinking. Here, take this," She said, handing me some papers stapled together.
"This is your syllabus, which we had gone over. Be sure to read it when class is over. Right now, the students are filling out two papers, one which tests the general knowledge of the student on politics in general, and the other to see where their thinking lies on the political spectrum. Don't worry, they're not going to be graded, and they don't require many brain cells working."
"Understood, Ma'am," I responded, slightly miffed, as I grabbed the two papers off her desk and sat down next to some random student. Before I began writing, I looked around at the students. Most of them were just generic students who didn't really stand out. But there was a sizeable minority of Preppy students.
"Girls, when you hand your papers in, you are free to leave class," Mrs. Seed instructed.
I picked my pencil and started filling in answers. The paper testing our political knowledge was multiple choice asking basic questions on what a political system consists of, different kinds of rule, and defining several political terms. The political spectrum paper also consisted of multiple choice, only here there wasn't really a right or wrong. It focused more on our political ideologies. You know, Liberalism vs. Conservativism, Libertarianism vs. Authoritarianism, Individualism vs. Communitarianism, and so on and so forth.
As I was filling out the papers, I heard the doors open...no way. Somebody came even later than I did?
"Well, well, well...what is the meaning of this?" Mrs. Seed questioned. She turned to me, "Looks like you might be off the hook today, Lila."From the corner of my eye, I could see that the student was a greaser. She looked just exactly my size, was wearing a zipped up black leather jacket over her uniform vest, with olive cargo pants and dark brown leather boots. She had greased brown hair in a ponytail, and hazel eyes, somewhat on the green-ish side.
That's strange...what's a greaser doing here? I wondered to myself as I watched the girl. She handed the teacher a slip. Mrs. Seed went through it before turning to me again. Why does she keep addressing me?
"On second thought, maybe not. Back into the hook you go, fish," She cracked. More snickers around the class.
By now most of the class had turned in their work and left. I had just about completed both papers, but I decided to glance at that greaser girl. She picked up the papers and sat next to me. At this point, she noticed I was watching her.
"What's your problem?" She said.
"Nothing," I said, turning back. But I couldn't resist looking again. And sure enough, she caught me once more.
"What the frigg? You trying to start something?!" She seethed.
"GIRLS, NO TALKING!" Mrs. Seed roared.
The greaser whispered to me, "After class..."
I felt my heart sink...I didn't want to fight again, and especially not a greaser...not today...today's trouble was already enough. More importantly, I have no reason to fight her.
I got up slowly and handed my work in and left class. However, I decided to wait and confront the girl...it was worth a try. I mean, after all, you should never run from your problems, right?
Around 10 minutes later, the greaser girl came out, and spotted me. She grabbed me by my shirt - "Come on, princess" - and tugged me into a nearby bathroom, where she shoved me hard.
"Now do you want to tell me what the hell your beef is, smartass?" She demanded.
"Like I said, it was nothing," I maintained. Seriously, what is up with her?!
"That's it, you asked for-" She readied her fists.
"Oh come on, relax! I don't wanna fight you," I stammered.
"Then cut the horseshit, and answer the damn question!"
"Look, I'm just genuinely curious as to why a greaser is in political science and not in some mechanical engineering major..." I explained.
"You got a PROBLEM with me being here?" She asked, now slightly calmer than a few seconds ago.
"No! If anything, that's a good thing...basically you're different from your clique-um, no offense to your group," I emphasized.
She seemed to be taken aback. I could see guilt washing over her face. Finally, she backed down.
"*Sigh* Sorry kid, I-"
"Wait...'kid'?" I asked. I would accept that from a senior...but not from someone of my level.
"What the-...how old are you?" She asked.
"Twenty," I replied bluntly.
"Oh, right...same. Well, my bad, pal. It's just..."
"Forget it. It's cool," I said.
I was about to leave, when she opened up, "Listen, it's just I've-"
But I decided to take the initiative, and cut her off by raising my hand. Maybe she's not a bad person after all, despite her clique allegiance, and it would be in my favor to be in good standing with the Greasers for now.
"Before all that...I don't believe I've introduced myself," I said, now more confident. I reached out a hand and smiled, "My name is Lila Ravan."
She appeared somewhat hesitant at first, but eventually reached out and shook my hand.
"Renata Puccino. But my sorority sisters call me 'Ren'," She said.
"'Ren' it is, then." I said.
"So yeah...it's just I've been pressured by both my peers and parents to go with the flow and pursue a mechanical engineering class. I mean, what's the deal? My family practically lives in that business, and I've been taught about souping up bikes since I was a kid. Who gives a flying crapcake what I major in? It's just a degree. And then there's those rich asswipes hogging me over how I-,"she now began to imitate those old money types, "-lack fine breeding and dress like a blue collar. It just frickin' peeves me..."
"Well...I can't blame you I guess...but if I get you right, are you saying you just want to get through college...no aspirations at all?"
"Hell no...I'm no junkie. I did always have an interest in learning how society is run...you know, why people tend to be defined in categories, the sort..."
"Yeah, I get it...but uh, what is the reason behind your ties with the greasers, then?"
"Like I said, I come from a worker class background, and my folks wants to keep that trait running through the family...so me being with the greasers is just an obligation, more or less."
"Ren, it looks like me and you will get along just fine," I said.
"Yeah, you ain't so bad, Lila. Maybe..." She suddenly looked at her phone, "Damn! I gotta hit the road. Promised I'd meet up with my group by now."
"Alright. Good talking with ya."
"Yeah, nice knowin' you too. Later," She said as she hurried out the bathroom door with me.
As we stepped outside, I saw another greaser approach us. She was a redhead, with long hair. This one also was my height and was wearing a black leather jacket, only it was unzipped, exposing a maroon vest. She wore denim jeans, and riding boots similar to mine, Julia's, and Michelle's. She had grey-ish blue eyes.
"Who the hell's this?" She asked Ren, gesturing towards me.
"Oh, uh, she was in my class and I had to ask her something," Ren responded.
Hmm...I guess like other cliques, they're not open to outsiders. But befriending one of them is a start.
"Yeah, yeah. Come on, let's bust this joint," She said, now walking away.
Ren waved to me before she hurried off with the redhead.
So I managed to make my first friend who isn't a roommate, and even better, she was a member of one of the sororities here. Finally something good in the entire day happens.
I smiled to myself thinking of this as I made my way back to the cafeteria.
*As you might have guessed, Ren is a descendant of Ricky Puccino from the Bully universe.
*Lillian Seed is a play on the name "Gillian Seed", a character from an old game by the Metal Gear creators called Snatcher.