Fidgetinesses. Fossiliferous. Furazolidones. Well, this sure was fun. Dess sighed, tapping her sunglasses as her hand scribbled more tridecalogisms on her paper, which was meant for the Advanced Trigonometry work the teacher assigned. Pfft, simple. Luckily, she dodged this boredom by checking out the text book ahead of the beginning of school and did all the possible assignments, which were waiting in her ratty binder to be turned in. Now, she realized how much of a mistake that was. Even though it only took her at least ten minutes to do three assignments, it was better than waiting in class with nothing to do.

Putting the list of thirteen letter words aside, the polymath decided to go back over her corrections of the answers in the back of the book.

Even though she knew they were all correct.

Just as Dess opened up to the first page of 'answers' (which was a load of shit in her head, all the writer did was put a bunch of calculator answers and fancied them up a bit to make them look correct), the door opened. Weird, everyone was here, all twenty-eight dribbling idiot teenagers, and one brilliant, beautiful girl in the back corner.

…okay, adding 'beautiful' was a bit too much. Maybe should've stayed with just 'brilliant.'

Looking up out of pure bored curiosity, her eyes widened a bit behind her pitch black sunglasses. Damn, open a window cuz it just got hotter in here. The heating element she was referring to was the new kid, a big hunk of burning hotness. Around 177.5 centimeters (that's five feet, eleven inches to anyone who can't do metric measurements), obviously athletic, and very, very tan; all the girls instantly drooled at his mere presence. Not Dess, she wasn't interested at the least in him. Unless he could do her level of math without sweating, she wouldn't be either. Then, a little tangent of a thought popped into her head.

Where is he gonna sit?

Oh shit.

The only open desk that wasn't currently being used as a paper holder was right next to her. Dammit, how did she get so lucky? Mr. Hot Stuff handed over his schedule to the teacher, who looked it over and pointed out the empty desk next to her. Rolling her eyes, which she remembered was useless since they were hidden behind her 'prescription' sunglasses, she slunk her head back down to her corrections. Well, looks like she dozed off a little, seeing as there was a 2 where a 3 should be for the power of X. Just as she began correcting her idiotically simple mistake, the new Taylor Lautner of Bixby High School took his seat, rather loudly if you ask her.


She ignored him, still scanning her handwriting for any mistakes among her perfectly unflawed answers.

"I said, hey."

"I heard you."

"Then why didn't you answer?"

Dear God, he only said three sentences, or nine words, or, if you were Dess, thirty-two letters and five punctuation marks, that's including the apostrophe in 'didn't' as one of those five, and already he made it onto her 'Absolute Idiots' list, moved right up to number three and five-eighths. "Because, my mommy said I shouldn't be talking to morons."

Instead of getting the usual gasp of disbelief that meant 'oh-mah-gawd-you-did-not-just-call-me-a-moron,' he just laughed. "Wow, you sound just like my sister."

"Glad some smarts runs through your family."

He just laughed again, which completely annoyed her further. How could he take her sarcastic insults not even faze him? What was he, Superman?

Heh, that just means she gets to enjoy finding out his Kryptonite.

"I'm Joshua, by the way. Moved here from Wisconsin with my family a week ago."

"Dess. Lived here all of my life."

Apparently glad he got a name out of her, Joshua held out his hand to shake. Dess stared at it, then looked at him from over her sunglasses, eyes shining a slight violet in the light. Getting the clue, he withdrew his hand and hefted the fifteen pound text book from his pack. "What the hell is in this, lead?"

"Math, the heaviest substance known to man." She grinned, closing the book. Happy with her single mistake, she leaned back in her seat and rested her black steel-toed boots on the desk, thirteen pointed stars scratched into them with a steak knife. Great anti-Darkling gear, especially on Slithers. One day she wants to plant one of these babies right into a big Darkling's face, smack dab in their kisser. Joshua looked over her curious choice of foot wear. "Expecting to be in boot camp?"

Dess just grinned and shrugged. "Eh, life's a war. Be prepared."

End Chapter One