Disclaimer: I own nothing
Author's Note: This chapter is mostly introducing the character and bringing in her relationships with everyone else. It should get more developed from here, but I wanted to cover a busy first day, and establish the relationships with all the different characters.
Follows the first episode of series one of Waterloo Road.
The story should hopefully focus on a relationship between Rebecca (my OC) and one of the teachers at the school, and will also show her friendships and involvement in Tom/Izzie/Lorna.
Rebecca Clarkson walked down the street with a huge grin on her face. All dressed up in a smart blouse, skirt and jacket, with a ringbinder under one arm and a handbag over her shoulder, she hurried down the garden path and banged on the front door. It was a friday evening about 7pm, but Becky needed to pay this visit.
She was so excited, and when the door opened, her elder brother stood there.
" Hey," he grinned, happy to see her as always, though suprised as she'd not said she was coming, " where've you been, all dressed up smart? "
" Job interview," Becky grinned, as Tom Clarkson stepped back to let her in the house. As he closed the door after them, he turned around to face them and raised his eyebrows,
" You never said you had an interview? " he asked.
Becky was a history teacher, and at 27 years old, had left her post at an all-girls school for something more challenging. Her brother had mentioned, in passing, a job going at the school he taught at, as an english teacher, and she'd been quick to check it out.
" You're looking at the newest history teacher of Waterloo Road Comprehensive," she said, " I start on Monday! "
" Seriously? " Tom asked, laughing, " Becky, that's brilliant! You should have told me you were going for the job! "
Tom was four years older than Becky, and the pair of them had always been close. They had one other brother, who lived abroad, but he was five years older than Tom, and had never been as close as Tom and Becky were. Becky knew her brother was always there for her, and he loved and protected her, and he was more like a best friend. They could always tell each other anything.
He currently lived with Lorna, long term girlfriend whom he was due to marry this weekend, and she was also a good friend of Becky's, as they'd known each other a long time
Becky had idolised her brother, growing up, and part of the reason she bcame a teacher was because her brother did, although her preferred subject was history, which she'd always been a big fan of.
When Tom told her the job was going at Waterloo Road, as the deputy head, who taught history, had had to leave his classroom post and become headmaster, she decided to try for the job. She'd just come from meeting the man - thirty something year old Jack Rimmer, a charming and smooth man, who shared her love of history, and was taken with her.
" How about we open a bottle of wine? " Tom grinned, leading her through to the living room.
" Sounds like a plan," grinned Becky.
On Monday morning, Becky threw her handbag and a couple of files and folders onto the passenger seat of her little old car, and set off for her new job.
She was nervous, since it was a completely new role and she'd have to get to know a new school, new collegues and adapt to everything, but at the same time, she relished the thought of a new job.
The thought keeping her sane was the fact that her brother would be there, so at least she'd know someone. It helped that her two best friends, Lorna - Tom's fiance - and Izzie also worked at the school.
Lorna, Tom and Izzie had all met at college, where they'd all been in the same year, and they'd become firm friends. Over the years, since Tom and Becky were close, Becky got close to Lorna and Izzie too, and the four of them were now good friends.
Becky's best friend before Lorna and Izzie, had always been a girl named Denise. They were the same age and went to school together, but Denise dropped out of school at 15 years of age, pregnant. She and her boyfriend - who was several years older - went on to have a son, who was now 14 or 15, but Denise was unstable, and walked out on her son and partner four years ago, leaving the partner to bring up the son alone. Becky had been fond of the boy - Donte - when he was young, but after Denise left the family, she gradually had less contact with them, and she hadn't seen much of Donte Charles recently.
As she pulled up in the school car park, she bit her lip nervously and looked around at the pupils milling around, and the other teachers pulling up and heading to work.
She got out of the car and walked across the car park. Becky was a short woman, kind of curvy, with bright blue eyes the same as her brothers, and dark brown hair which fell around her shoulders in waves. She wore a smart skirt, blouse and suit jacket, with little heels, and felt every part the new kid on the block as she looked around at all these strangers.
" Becky! " called a voice from behind her.
Becky turned around to see Tom and Lorna, and Izzie with them.
" Hey guys," she said, with a grin.
" Welcome to Waterloo Road," Izzie said - Izzie was a tall dark haired woman from Newcastle, and always had a winning smile and bags of confidence. Lorna, was a pale blonde woman, slim and tall, and was more reserved than izzie and Becky, but was always friendly.
" This is so weird," laughed Becky as the four of them walked into the school, " all four of us working together. "
" I hope you've prepared yourself well," Tom said, nudging her playfully, " there's some characters here. "
As the siblings spoke about how Becky was feeling, behind them Izzie and Lorna were speaking about the wedding. A pause in Becky and Tom's conversation meant that they heard Lorna say to Izzie,
" I think the new deputy's starting today, too. D'you think we should invite him to the wedding? I mean, if we're going to be working with him all day, every day ... "
Becky looked at Lorna over her shoulder, " Ooh, if he's good looking and single, then please do invite him. "
Lorna laughed and Tom rolled his eyes, " Eh, eh," he said, poking his sister playfully - they were always teasing and joking with each other and it just worked, " you can't go using my wedding as an excuse to pull. I need to you be on top bridesmaid form. "
" If you say so," Becky shrugged, checking her watch as they walked through the front doors of the school, " I guess I should get going. Wish me luck. "
" Good luck," Tom called after her as she went one way and the other three went the other way, to the english department, while she went to history.
Becky didn't have a registration group, but when first lesson rolled around - a bunch of year tens - she bit her lip nervously and got herself ready for them. She stood in her classroom, in the doorway, and told the pupils to come in and sit wherever they wanted.
Once everyone was there, she stood in front of the white board and asked the class to settle down, before introducing herself. She smiled slightly as she said,
" Ok, so my name's Miss Clarkson, and I'm your history teacher from now on. I'll hand out the books, so will you just write your name, my name, History and the classroom number on the fron please? "
" Do you know Tom Clarkson? " one of the girls asked, as she handed out the books.
" I do," Becky nodded, walking along the row and planting books in front of pupils
" Are you related to him? " asked the girl who looked to be mixed race, with bushy black hair. She was sitting next to Izzie's daughter, Chlo, who Becky new, though not overly well.
" She's Mr Clarkson's sister," Chlo told her friend.
Becky thought she was taking it easy on them by simply handing out books, and giving out specifications and lists about what they'd be learning over the year, and talking through it all. However, they were a noisy class and she found it hard to control them - Becky though of herself as easy going, and because of this, she found it easy to get on with people, but she supposed it would take time to control the class.
She couldn't help but be glad once the class was over and the kids had gone, even if the lesson hadn't gone as bad as it could have done - the main problem was their noise and messing about, and the fact that they just didn't want to listen to her. It was frustrating, but she supposed she'd be able to live with it.
She threw her handbag over her shoulder, and headed off to the staffroom - to get there she had to pass the english corridor, and it was there that she met Izzie.
" How did it go? " her friend asked her.
" Ah, you know," shrugged Becky, " typical teenagers - don't really want to be there, so they'll act up as much as possible. It's got to get better, right? "
Izzie stopped by a classroom and laid a hand on the door, " Let's grab Tom and Lorna, shall we? " she suggested, " see if we can't get Tom to make us a drink in the staffroom, so us three girls can have a ncie chat. "
Becky nodded and Izzie pushed open the door of Tom's classroom, and entered, closely followed by Becky. The room was empty other than Tom and Lorna, and Becky immediately sensed the tension between the couple - they were looking at each other and Lorna looked upset, while Tom's jaw was set in determination.
" Hey," Izzie said, " you coming up for a drink? "
" Sure," Lorna said, sniffing deeply, " just give me two minutes. "
She turned away from Tom and left the room, brushing betwen a perplexed Izzie and a bemused Becky. Izzie looked at Tom in confusion and hurried after Lorna to check on her. Becky looked after the pair of them, and considered following them, but stayed with Tom - in the end, it was always Tom and Becky, and Lorna and Izzie, when it really mattered.
" What's going on, Tom? " Becky asked, pushing the door closed and walking over to him.
Tom sighed and ran both of his hands through his thick hair before resting them on the back of his head. He turned around, pacing over to the window, and then turned back to her, his arms dropping to his side - Becky knew he was troubled and waited for him to tell her, because she knew he would.
" It's Lorna," he finally said.
Becky rolled her eyes, " I gathered that. Could you be more specific? "
Tom sighed and then told her, " I've called off the wedding, Becks. I don't know how to explain it ... it just ... I just had to do it. It wasn't right anymore. "
" You've what? " Becky asked, shaking her head, " really? But I thought you were happy with her? I thought you loved her? "
" I did," Tom said, before quickly adding, " no, I do! No, I don't know. It wasn't right anymore. I've really blown it, and Lorna doesn't deserve to be in this situation anymore. It's time we both moved on. "
" Is there someone else? " Becky asked, " I mean, I know you'd never cheat, but do you ... ?"
" Like someone else? " Tom finished, " see, you know me too well. I think I love someone else, so I can't marry Lorna. "
" Who? " Becky asked, completley shocked - this seemed to be coming out of the blue, and she knew it was more than pre-wedding jitters, but she didn't know what to say to him, " what's going on Tom? "
Tom remained silent for a moment and sat down on the edge of his desk. Becky joined him and glanced at his profile, waiting for him to say something.
" It's such a mess, Becky," he said.
" Who is it, Tom? " his sister pressed urgently, " for god's sake, you're getting married this weekend! And she's my friend - now you've told me this, I can't let her marry you, when I know you don't love her. Don't put me in the middle like this, and tell me what's going on! "
Tom shook his head, turning to look at her, " I'll sort it out, one way or another, but don't tell Lorna what I've told you. I need to figure it out, but as things stand, how can I marry her knowing I'm in love with someone else. It wouldn't be fair on her. "
" Who is it? " repeated Becky.
" I can't tell you," Tom said, shaking his head.
Becky studied his face carefully.
Tom was the kind of person to think things through and then come to a conclusion - he was a decent bloke and thought with his heart, always trying to do what was best. Becky knew he'd do the right thing in the end, because he was her brother, and she had faith in him. All she could do was support him because that was what good family did.
So she nodded, " Fine then. Just let me know if you need anything. "
Tom nodded and stood up, " How about we go get a cuppa before the next lesson starts - I'm guessing you need a drink after your first class. C'mon - tell me how it went. "
Her next two lessons went well enough, although by the lesson just before dinner, the kids were in high spirits. They'd heard that Donte Charles - the boy whose mother Becky had gone to school with - had had a run in with the deputy headmaster and his phone taken off him.
It had apparently resulted in Donte's father, Clarence, coming to the school and getting in a fight with the deputy - a man named Andrew Treneman, who had started that same day, and Becky hadn't yet met him.
Becky shook her head when she heard the news - Clarence tried his best with Donte, she knew, but he struggled. Becky regretted that she hadn't seen much of the boy since his mother walked out.
" Guys! " she shouted, trying to gather the classed attention, as all they could talk about was Donte's dad, " can we get back to work, please! "
When the lesson was over, she headed for the staffroom, and on the way, passed Donte in the corridor. He'd just walked past her when she turned around and called,
" Donte? "
The teenage boy turned around to look at her and stopped in suprise when he saw her, " Rebecca? You ... you're working here now? "
Donte had always rather liked Rebecca Clarkson - when he was younger, she'd come around and buy him presents, and fuss over him like an aunt. He wasn't one to show his emotions and get close to people.
" First day today," Becky told him, " how are you doing, anyway? "
Donte shrugged and huffed, " Not too good. Take it you heard they've arrested my dad? "
" Arrested? " asked Becky, " no, I heard he'd had a fight, but not that he'd been arrested. "
" Yeah," Donte nodded, " all because of that stupid Treneman bloke. Got it in for me, he has! "
Becky didn't know the ins and outs of it - she knew Donte wouldn't be blameless, but she didn't know all the facts." Well, just stay out of his way in the future, keep your head down then," she told him. " And if you ever need anyone to talk to ... come and find me, yeah? "
" Yeah," Donte nodded, " thank, Rebecca. I mean ... Miss Clarkson."
Becky gave him a little smile, " I don't think there's any harm in calling me Rebecca when we're not in class. "
Most people called her Becky, but Donte had always called her Rebecca - Becky often thought Rebecca was too formal for her, but as she and Donte parted ways, she continued down the corridors.
On the way to the staffroom, she almost walked into a dark haired man in a black suit.
" I'm sorry," he said, stepping back from her - she assumed he was a teacher too, and as he looked her up and down, he assumed the same, " Andrew Treneman," he said, sticking out his hand, " new deputy head. "
" Becky Clarkson, it's my first day too," Becky said, shaking his hand. She bit her lips as she looked at him and said, " so you're Mr Treneman. "
Andrew looked suprised and raised his eyebrows, " You've heard about me? "
" I heard you had Donte Charles' father arrested," she said, frowning.
Andrew nodded, " Ah yes, well, there was a slight issue there, but his thuggish father has been arrested, so there's no more problems there. "
" Look," Becky said, shaking her head, " you should think about what you're doing with Donte and his family. You don't understand what's going on there. "
" I'm sorry, is there something I should know? " Andrew asked, suprised by her attitude towards him as they'd only just met.
Becky didn't want to make any enemies, but she just said calmly, " Look, I don't wnt to argue, but you should know that Donte's father is a single parent. The mother walked out four years ago, and Clarence might not be perfect, but he's all Donte's got. Donte'll have to go into care, and I don't think that's the best place for him "
" I didn't know about his family," Andrew said quietly, " I ... obviously I don't want the boy to go into care. "
Becky shrugged, " I just thought you should know what we're dealing with," she said before turning away. She'd not got far when Andrew called after her,
" Miss Clarkson? "
She turned back to him, and he said, " If this is your first day, how have you had time to look into the history of the pupils? "
" I went to school with Donte's mother," Becky said, " so I know a little something about their family. I'm not trying to start an argument with you, but I really think you should know about it. "
" Thank you, Miss Clarkson," Andrew muttered, as she walked away.
In the staffroom, at lunch, she sat down with Tom, who was far away, clearly thinking about his troubles with Lorna, though he was trying to be, and he was trying to talk to her normally. Neither Lorna nor Izzie were in sight, and Becky assumed the pair of them had gone off to talk about Tom.
Although Lorna and Becky were friends, Becky knew that if Lorna and Tom ever had problems, Lorna would never bring them up with Becky.
Lorna knew that whatever happened, Becky's loyalties ultimately lay with Tom, and Lorna felt that she could never talk about serious problems like this with Becky. When it came to Tom, she could hardly go telling his sister about big things like this. Becky would, Lorna felt, undoubtedly stick with her brother.
Tom intoduced Becky to Grantly Buden, the old, grumpy and cynical head of English who Tom later told her was all talk, and was harmless really. Becky also met Steph Haydock, the flirty middle-aged french teacher who seemed to enjoy a good time.
She also met Kim Campbell, a woman with curly black hair and coffee-coloured skin, who was an art teacher and head of pastoral care. Kim seemed to have her head screwed on and was an open and friendly person - Becky could imagine herself getting on with Kim quite well.
Becky could see she was going to love it at Waterloo Road, and she was keen to make friends other than Tom, Lorna and Izzie.
At the end of the day, Becky was suprised to hear that an assembaly was being called. She took her class to the assembaly hall and waited to see what would happen.
To her suprise, Jack Rimmer - the headmaster whom she had only met the once, in the pub when he interviewed her and immediately gave her the job - came to the stage and announced that there was someone who had something very important to say.
When Clarence came out, Becky was even more suprised.
He stood on the stage and read from a little piece of paper - he made a speech apologising to Andrew for fighting with him, and telling the students he knew he was wrong, and it wasn't worth it for a mobile phone. Becky could tell Clarence was embarrassed, but she thought it was the right thing to do, if it meant that Andrew agreed to drop the charges against him.
When the short assembaly was over, it was the end of school, and Jack dismissed everyone. As everyone was getting ready to leave, Becky saw Andrew walking over to her.
He stopped in front of her and bowed his head in embarrassment, " I suppose I owe you an apology," he said, " you were right - I should have thought of the consequences before having Donte's father arrested. "
" Don't worry about it," Becky said, having a hand, " it's not like I'm much better - both new to the school. We've all got to learn, right? "
Andrew nodded, " Actually, just after we spoke, Kim said more of less the same things to me that you had, although rather more accusingly. She all but frog-marched me to the police station to drop the charges. "
Becky laughed and looked in the direction of Kim, thinking that the pair of them would be good friends. She said goodbye to Andrew and started out of the hall, thinking of rewarding herself with an early night after her long first day.
She saw Jack Rimmer standing in the doorway of the hall as she walked to the door, and she couldn't help but look him up and down. He was tall and good looking, with a handsome chiselled face, and a sexy sort of smirk. Becky was 29, and Tom had reliably informed her that Jack was 36 years old.
" Ah, Miss Clarkson," he said, " how was your first day at Waterloo Road? "
" Not bad," she nodded, " I think I'm going to like it here," she told him.
As Jack looked at her, it struck her that she was young and pretty, and she had the sort of smile which told him that she'd be fun. " Glad to hear it," he nodded, " I look forward to having you around. "
Becky couldn't resist flashing him her best grin, " See you around, Mr Rimmer," she said, before walking away.
Jack turned his head and smirked a little as he watched her walk away.