"Oh my God, I am so sorry!" I gasped as I collided with a total stranger in the hallway. Books clattered to the floor and I felt myself turn an interesting shade of red. "Seriously, I am so sorry, are you okay?"
I bent down and started picking up the books, trying to not think about how sucky the past few days had been. Saturday had been more calming down Jennifer than anything and Sunday, we'd all hit different libraries to do research on Morgan le Fay – or Shirelle. I was still unsure as to whether or not Shirelle was the person we were looking for, but... Well, who else could it be? The last time I checked, nobody else was hanging dead rats from other people's lockers.
I'd barely seen Will over the weekend – between chasing Jen all over the city as she tried to hunt down and kill Shirelle, researching and Will leaving early for breakfast this morning... It had been tough to talk. Despite the fact I kept telling myself to stop being so paranoid, I couldn't help but feel he was avoiding me.
"Seriously, it's fine." The collidee laughed. I looked up and saw it was a guy – a cute guy, too. "I'm Stan."
I balanced my books with one arm and stuck out my hand.
"Ellie." I said, shaking his hand. "Commonly known as Elle."
"Nice to meet you." Stan replied. He was cute in an if-I-didn't-have-a-boyfriend-I'd-like-you sort of way. He had curling locks of brown-blonde hair, hazel coloured eyes, tanned skin and a T-shirt reading Man Candy, with the picture of a candy corn in the middle. "As the new kid, I'm meant to be not noticed at least once, right?"
That wasn't guilt tripping.
"I am so sorry." I muttered, shaking my head. "Monday mornings. Who wants them?"
"Tell me about it." Stan smiled. "You've got all the right books, right?"
"Yeah, I'm good." I smiled awkwardly. I remembered being the new kid. Finding out my crush had a cheerleader girlfriend, was a jock, the most popular and wanted guy in school and, oh yeah, was a reincarnation of a king. Ah, the memories. "Where's your first class? Let me at least show you the way, it's the least I can do."
"Uh..." Stan pulled out a piece of wrinkled paper from the back pocket of his jeans. Blue standard. Nice. "English elective with a Mr Morton...?"
I couldn't help but laugh a little.
"Is that bad?" Stan asked, smiling a little.
"No, Mr Morton is a good guy." And a secret wizard to the reincarnation of King Arthur, who just so happens to be my boyfriend and roommate. Hola. "I actually have his class now. Senior, I take it?"
"So, where are you from?" I asked. "I mean, which school?"
"Cornwall, New York." Stan replied, walking slowly in step with me. "I just moved here last week and, well, Avalon High seemed the place to be, so..."
"So you figured you'd join the Excaliburs." I nodded.
"I figured I'd join the Excaliburs." Stan agreed. "And come on, let's face it, it has the best innuendo ever. I'm an Excalibur. Just think about it." Stan grinned.
"Yeah..." I laughed. "I wouldn't recommend saying that in front of Mr Morton." Stan opened his mouth to say something, but I stopped him. "Just... Trust me on that one!"
"Good morning, Ms Harrison." Mr Morton greeted me, as I stepped into class with Stan. It was weird. Considering how much I saw of him outside of class, seeing him as a teacher again sometimes made me feel like the whole Avalon thing had never happened. He hadn't even been sure if he'd wanted to come back to Avalon; after all, as Merlin, he was meant to be protecting Arthur, not me, right? But Will had insisted it was for the best; not only would it look suspicious if Mr Morton tried stalking him to college, but Will had said he wasn't his weakness; I was.
Which only made me feel worse.
"Hey, Mr Morton." I replied, the whole facade of not knowing him suddenly feeling stupid. Sure, it was logical to not be sent to the local psychiatric ward when trying to save the world from darkness, but truly? I was – supposedly – the Lady of the Lake. Mr Morton was meant to be Merlin, the legendary wizard. Yet we were living this stupid lie, right in the heart of 21st century Camelot, acting like nothing was happening. "We've got a new kid!"
"So I see..." Mr Morton replied, eyeing Stan up. "You must be Stan Marks, correct?"
"Yes, sir." Stan nodded, winking at me as I made my way to my seat. I have to admit, just for a second, I stopped as I made a sinking realization. Oh no. Stan wasn't... Flirting with me, was he? "The one and only."
"Right." Mr Morton said, looking at Stan in an odd manner. "If you'd just like to take this reading list..." I blocked Mr Morton out, knowing the new-kid speech already.
"Hey, Perry." I smiled. Perry was my desk neighbour in Mr Morton's class and was one of those nice guys. Light brown hair. A pretty smile. Brown eyes. An awesome sense of humour. "So I take it you survived the weekend?"
"Don't even get me started." Perry groaned. His cousins from Wichita had come to visit, something which Perry hadn't exactly been happy about. "Now, I'm all for being in touch with my feminine side, but seriously, there is a limit..."
I laughed, but it faded quickly. I hadn't laughed all weekend.
"Let me guess..." Perry said gently, looking at me. "Trouble in paradise?"
I shook my head, bluffing as much as I could.
"No, of course not, everything is fine." I said, laughing, slightly hysterically. "It's fine, really."
"Uh-huh." Perry said, sounding unconvinced. "Hey, are we still on for tonight?"
"Tonight?" I repeated, confused. I wracked my brain. "Oh! Movie night at Stacy's is tonight!"
"What's this about a movie night?" Stan asked, taking the empty seat behind Perry.
"A friend of ours is holding one tonight." Perry informed him, leaning back in his chair to stare at Stan upside down. "I'm Perry, by the way."
"Stan." Stan said, shaking Perry's hand. "Is this movie night welcome to newcomers, or am I supposed to wait until I officially befriend you all first?"
Perry and I looked at each other, pretending to be dubious.
"I don't know..." I said.
"Yeah, I mean it is likely to be a load of chick flicks against my will..." Perry sighed dramatically. "I could do with the company, I guess. Remind me that I'm fuelled by testosterone."
"So... That's a yes?" Stan asked, sounding hopeful.
"That's a yes."
The day was okay; Perry and I introduced Stan to everybody at lunch, including Stacy, who went slightly pink when he kissed her cheek, to thank her for allowing him to come tonight and Perry finally met some of the girls from track.
But, all good things come to an end.
"So, is Will coming tonight?" Stacy asked me.
"Who's Will?" Stan asked.
"My boyfriend." I told him calmly, ignoring Stacy's question to let her bask in the glory of Will's name. Which she did.
"Yeah and the star of Avalon High!" Stacy gushed. "He graduated with honours last year. Quarterback, class president, absurdly hot..."
"Sounds perfect." Stan said, smirking kindly at me from the other side of the table. "Lucky girl."
"Why don't you call him and ask him over tonight?" Stacy persisted. "Call him!"
"Um, okay." I mumbled, pulling out my cell phone and dialling Will's number. "It's ringing."
"Hey..." I said, sounding overly peppy, knots forming in my stomach at Will's deep voice. "Look, I know this is kind of random, but I'm at lunch and Stacy is holding this movie night thing and she wanted to know if you could come -"
"Sorry, I can't, I've got my first big assignment. But you go. Have fun."
"Uh, yeah, sure." I said, trying to sound as nonchalant as possible. "I'll see you at home." Though it came out as more of a question.
"Yeah. Look, I have to go. Bye."
I mumbled my goodbye and hung up.
"Sorry." I sighed, addressing Stacy and trying to look as not-freaked out as possible. "He's got his first big assignment tonight. He can't make it."
"You sure you're not going to help with his practical research?" Jane – a girl from track – winked, causing everyone to laugh. I laughed awkwardly with them, Perry laughing the loudest to try and distract attention. I smiled gratefully at him.
Movie night was fun. We all met up after school, blacked out the windows and settled on the couch. There was popcorn, ice cream and most importantly; cookies.
"So," Stan said was we topped up on our ice-cream sundaes. "You have a boyfriend, then."
"Sure do." I replied, forcing a smile. Will hadn't text me all night. Usually, he would have called at least three times by now. "You should meet him sometime, I know Perry's been meaning to."
"Yeah, definitely." Stan said, his eyes twinkling. "I mean, I should at least let the guy know I have the hots for his girl, right?"
I stared at Stan, speechless. Oh my God, he hadn't just said that.
"But don't worry." Stan continued, smiling at me. "I don't hit on other guy's girlfriends."
"Huh." I managed to squeak out. "Good to know."
Stan had then winked and left me in the kitchen.
So, the new guy had a crush on me.
Because my life wasn't complicated enough. My boyfriend wasn't talking to me after I'd attempted to instigate what might have been sex, some psychotic witch and long-lost relative of the said boyfriend was after my boyfriend's ex-girlfriend's boyfriend (who happened to be his best friend), oh and the said psycho wanted me and the guy who was supposedly the reincarnation of a medieval king – also said boyfriend – dead.
Yeah. So not complicated enough. The big guy upstairs just decided to throw that little something special in there for me.
Sorry this took so long, I would have updated sooner, but I was updating other stories under special request (a dedicated reader on FictionPress – it was her birthday) and I wanted this a little longer than the other chapters. I hope this is!
So, what do you think? I know I brought in our first supporting original chapters this chapter – Perry and Stan – so what do you think?
Oh and I think the name Stacy may or may not be right. I haven't read the book in a while, so excuse any mistakes. As soon as I'm sure, I'll fix those right up for you :)
So, what actually got me inspired to write this update was after watching the movie of the book, Disney's adaption of Avalon High. Now, I like Gregg Sulkin. He makes my British accent suck and his American accent definitely sucked, but hey, I recently started following the guy on Twitter. And seeing Steve Valentine as Mr Morton was cool.
But can I just say – with the utmost respect to Disney – that the entire film sucked?
As a huge Avalon High fan, what was that? A total travesty? They messed up the whole book! I get it was meant to be an adaption, but Meg cannot be happy about this, surely. Elle as Arthur? What the hell? I get how they may be subtly promoting equality between the sexes (ref: Mr Morton saying to "Allie" aka King Arthur (again – wtf?) that Arthur "can't be a girl"), as Disney tends to subtly comment on political issues within their films, especially those aimed at young teens, but come on. Talk about killing the plot. Not to mention how Will is not meant to be that short. And the sailing! Everybody loves the sailing! And Marco – don't even get me started. Don't. He had a weird nose, didn't act like Marco and bowed afterwards, because he was a protector? That failed as a plan!
And Mr Morton being Mordred? Yeah, how the writers changed that last-minute to make it mesh with the rest of the changed plot isn't at all obvious. They do realize that for it to even have the slightest accuracy to Arthurian legend, Mr Morton would have to be either Arthur's nephew or half-brother, right? They know that?
Oh and a parting though; when "Will" (aka Sulkin) was asking "Allie" (aka Preppy Blonde Chick) – "If you're King Arthur... What does that make me?" and her reply of "My knight in shining armour. :)" Um, NO! You know what that makes you? That makes you the Lady of the Lake. Yeah, you're a mythical priestess, who people aren't even sure existed! Sucks to be you.
Oh and Jennifer in the movie; total fail. She was ginger and not a cheerleader. That ruins the entire concept of Avalon High. Did these people even read the blurb, for goodness' sake?
Okay, rant over. Sorry about that. You know that little emoticon you can get on MSN, of the smiley looking angry and shaking its little fist in the air? That's me. Yes, Disney, you may have brought me Nick Jonas' pretty little face, but nothing will excuse you for this. Just you watch; as payback, Britain is sending you our healthcare system. Take that for a reform. How do you feel about free healthcare, capitalists who make me look like an idiot when arguing for capitalism? Yeah. Yeah, that's right, you CHANGE Avalon High back before I whup your ass then bandage it back up for free!
Oh and – what is up with the sequels to AH being manga books? That's cool, but what about those who read solely using words? What about us! I want a sequel as much as the next person! Hello! I brought the BOOK, not the manga comic after it was released!
Okay, now my rant is over.
So, I hope you guys liked this chapter, basically. I tried to stay true to the BOOK, not the crap I watched with my 5 year old brother. That's an hour and a half of my life I'm never getting back.
Leave me love in the box below. Or just feel free to comment on my rant, whichever.