Disclaimer: I do not own Soul Eater; I do, however, own the plot.
Chapter One: This Stupid New Life
Maka Albarn hadn't been surprised when she came home from school to have her mother tell her she had filed for divorce. In all honestly, she had almost wept in joy over the news; Maka knew that her father was a pig who did nothing but cause her mother pain. Her father was a popular musician and had only become such because her mother had been his manager and knew how to work it. And now, as he had cheated on her mother for the last time, Maka Albarn no longer had a father. She had hugged her mother and said she was happy when she first was told because she thought that now her mother would be able to enjoy her life.
That had been back in May, when school let out for the summer; it was currently September and Maka resented this new world of hers.
Ever since the divorce was finalized Kami had started dating. One of the main points this bothered Maka was because now she was spending the evening by herself. It was fine because she'd spend the hours practicing her viola, but it was still lonely because normally her mother would listen and tell her how it sounded. Being the manager of a record company meant she knew a lot about how music should sound and for Maka, she needed that. Despite being wonderful at playing and reading the music, Maka wasn't too good at evoking her emotion into it.
Currently, as Maka was getting dressed for school, she was wondering how her first day was going to go. She had gotten into all the highest level classes with the toughest teachers. She had Miss Nygus for Spanish and science, Miss Azusa for mathematics and history, and lastly she had Miss Mjolnir for English and culinary, and lastly Mr. Evans for orchestra. Shibusen was a small academy with only a handful of teachers on either side of the field.
On top of being one of the top schools in Nevada, Shibusen was also a school that was a fan of segregating the sexes. They believed that one way to keep teen pregnancy rates low and test scores high was keeping the male and female students separated with instructors of the same gender as them. The only time the two genders ever interacted with one another was during a handful of co-ed classes; the co-ed classes were all the fine arts electives offered.
"I can't wait until last hour," She mumbled as she knotted her tie. She smiled at her reflection, twirling in her school uniform. The actual uniform was a light cream color long sleeved jacket over a short sleeved white button-up blouse and a matching cream skirt that went to about mid-thigh. The edge of the skirt and the edge of the sleeves on the jacket were a right maroon color that was replicated with the tie. Lastly, she wore white knee high socks and black dress shoes to finish it off. "I'm going to put that stupid, smug ass in his place!" She announced to her reflection while plucking her hairbrush up and combing through her hair. She parted it, tied it off with black hair ties, and then tied pink ribbons over the hair ties.
She figured since she certainly couldn't lash out at home she could take her frustration out on her arch rival.
Years ago, in grade school, Maka had been selected to participate in a city-wide music competition because of her skills with her viola. She had been so excited and wore her best pink dress with the white ruffles on the edges. Her mother had taken her back stage and then headed off to the auditorium to wait for Maka's turn. Maka had looked around, hugging her viola in its black plastic case and her folder of music, and spotted another kid about her age seated at a piano. Being the social butterfly that she was, she headed over to introduce herself. "Hello, I'm Maka Albarn! Who are you?" She asked excitedly.
The boy glanced at her in pure boredom. His eyes were a startling red color that reminded Maka of roses and blood. His hair was a powder white, implying he was an albino, but his skin was a light bronze that wasn't typically possible for one to have. He was wearing a black suit and looked rather professional and the way he was watching her made Maka feel just a touch uneasy. "What piece are you playing?" He asked in a dull tone.
"This one," She said, handing over her folder of sheet music. He opened it and pulled out the piece on the front. Maka smiled and waited patiently for his response; it was one of her favorite songs and she was happy she'd been able to find it in a viola solo. Because the viola was a less popular member of the string ensemble, finding solos for it was typically very difficult.
"Beauty and the Beast? Really?" He asked with a snort, snapping her folder. She blinked and he gave her folder back to her. "Here's a secret; you're only here because you go to a public school. You aren't here because they want you here and you aren't here because you're any good; you're just here for the amusement of the rest of us. You don't dress right for this, you don't have the right attitude for this, and you certainly don't have the right instrument for this. I'd suggest you just throw in the towel and go home now before you make a fool of yourself." He said flatly.
"Our next performer is Soul Evans, playing Vivaldi's classic piece, L'inverno (1)," One of the judges announced as Maka's heart was breaking. The boy perked up, stood and walked off without another word. Who was he to say such things? Why did he have to be so mean to her when she was trying to be friendly?
It didn't help that Maka didn't even place in the top ten performers when the results were posted.
After that year was over, she tested into a private academy and realized that one of her orchestra classmates was that same pianist, Soul Evans. Ever since she was trying her hardest to put him in his place and show that she was better than him. Today was the first day of a new year and Maka could already tell it was going to be an interesting one; since their last teacher left William Evans, the famous conductor and father of her enemy, was their new teacher. "I've always liked having a handicap, though," She hummed as she grabbed her viola and her book bag.
Kami Albarn was waiting downstairs, putting the rest of her papers into her briefcase. She glanced up and smiled at Maka with the same soft features as her daughter. "You ready to go, sweetheart?" She asked merrily as she straightened up. Maka nodded and they headed out toward the car.
"So will you be home for dinner tonight?" Maka asked as she buckled in. Her mother hadn't mentioned any dates but at the face she made, the young teen already knew the answer. "I'll take that as a no." She sighed while looking out the window.
"Oh, Maka, I'm sorry but this is a really important date," She said gently while backing out of the yard. When he daughter didn't respond as she shifted into drive she smiled lightly. "Would you feel better if I agreed to take you driving on Saturday? I'll make sure to leave my schedule completely open so that we'll have all day."
"Really?" Maka gasped excitedly, turning to look at her mother. She knew it was a bribe but she didn't really care. She had gotten her learner's permit back at the end of April, about a week before the divorce proceedings. Because of this, she had only been out driving once in the span of time.
"Really. We can go drive around and you can start getting some more practice under your belt," Kami said happily. Maka giggled and nodded merrily. "Then it's a date." She hummed lightly.
The rest of the car ride was pleasant and comfortable.
"It's time for battle, ladies," Maka's best friend, Liz Thompson, said calmly. Liz' younger sister, Patty, was giggling beside her in excitement. Liz was the same age as Maka while Patty a year younger and the two were members of the orchestra with her. Liz had started out playing the violin but ended up joining the dark side –A.K.A. the viola section – while Patty had always been evil with her string bass. There were only five violas (including Liz and Maka) and two string bass players (including Patty) with the six cellos in the whole lower strings. They were outnumbered with a total of twenty four violins and the pianist that Maka wanted so desperately to castrate.
"We are entering the war zone and now there's a new general on the field," Maka announced calmly. For whatever reason, the rivalry between Maka and Soul had also become a separate rivalry between Soul and the Thompson sisters. At first, the two siblings didn't like Soul because of his attitude toward Maka; then one day, when Maka had been forced to stay home sick, something really bad happened and she just knew it made things worse. Thus they had suddenly adopted this train of thought in regards to their class and seemed fine working with it. "And, considering that he is Soul's father, the scale may just have been tipped against us. I mean, Mr. Sid never approved of our battles but he figured that it was just our teenage hormones causing us to act that way."
"Ah, my dear Maka," Liz cooed deviously, a cruel glint in her stormy blue eyes, "you seem to forget I am a master of bad doings. If anyone can do anything and get away with it, I will be the one to do it." With this point made, the older girl threw open the doors and walked into the large orchestra room.
The room was about the size of your average band room with the basic set up to match. There were tons of chairs set up, divided into pairs with a music stand placed in front of them so that it was equal, and there were already quite a few other kids in their seats. Maka looked around, trying to find one figure in specific, and wasn't surprised to find him at his usual perch; the electric keyboard was placed right next to the conductor's podium, after all. Burgundy eyes locked with emerald ones from across the room and sparks went flying.
With a smug smirk, Soul Evans leaned back in his chair and dared to yawn.
"Look at that smug jerk," Maka growled, her grasp on the plastic handle of her viola case tightening. Liz glared back at him too before placing a hand on Maka's shoulder.
"Let's just head to our spots for now; we can have fun once class actually starts," She said simply while crossing the room. She stared to go the front two chairs that would normally be the viola sections when another student, known as Kid, stopped them.
"That's not where you go," He said, watching them with a serious expression. Liz raised an eyebrow at him.
"What do you mean? It's where the viola section has always been! The first violins (2) go on the far left of the conductor podium, the second violins (3) go to the right of the first's, the violas go to the right of the second's, the cellos go next to the violas on the right and the bass behind them to complete the half circle!" She barked back out. Kid then shook his head at her.
"Not anymore," He sighed. He indicated the spot next to the first violin section, the two seats next to where he was seated as the concert master (4). "Mr. Evans prefers the Baroque style in which it's the first violins in the same location, with the violas next to the first's, the cellos next to the violas, the semi-circle completed by the second violins and the bass positioned behind the viola section."
"Seriously?" Maka asked with a deadpan expression. She had known that things were going to be different with a new teacher but she hadn't thought that the actual seating arrangements would be changed.
"It's called having a variety," Soul chimed in from the piano. His smirk was still in place, making Maka want to fling a book at him to chase it away.
"It's called nobody cares what you have to say, Soul," Liz seethed back bitterly. She dropped her bag next to her chair and plopped down. "So you're principle player (5) now but I think I'll take over after the first concert. Is that cool with you?" Liz asked with a small yawn.
Maka giggled as she sat down in her spot and got herself situated. She set her viola, still in case, to the left of her seat and her backpack to the right. The viola section was a small one and, being the top two players, Maka and Liz just took turns playing leader. "That's fine by me. We can just switch after each concert like last year,"
"Cool," Liz grinned just as the bell rang. She resituated herself that she was seated in a more lady-like style and all eyes turned to the office as the door clicked shut. Aside from Soul, no one had ever seen William Evans up close and personal.
He was an attractive man, to say the least. He had regal features that reminded the students of those pictures of nobility in the history books although he had a softer feel to him. His hair was the same pale white as his son's but it was a little longer and tied back in a small ponytail at the nape of his neck. He was tall and lean, wearing a black dress shirt and regular denim jeans, but what got Maka's attention were his eyes. They were the same startling shade as his son's but they were a touch more rounded and somehow seemed generally kinder than Soul's.
"Hello, class," He greeted mirthfully as he walked up to the conductor's podium. He settled himself into the seat and set the large blue binder he'd been carrying down. "I'm your new teacher, Mr. Evans. I just got my teaching credentials a few months ago so this is going to be a fun experience for me as well. Now, after roll call, I'll let you all ask me a few questions and try to answer them as honestly as possible, okay?" He explained before cracking open the binder and setting to work.
After her own name was called, Maka pretty much spaced out until it came time to ask questions. The first few questions were the generic "How old are you?" or "What's your favorite color?" questions that she assumed came from the freshman. The rest of the students typically asked "What's your favorite era of classical?" or "Who is your favorite composer?" And then, Liz raised her hand with a small grin on her features.
"Yes, Miss… Thompson, is it?" He asked, taking a quick look at his attendance chart.
"Yeah, I'm Liz," She answered calmly. He nodded and she grinned wider, glancing briefly at Soul. "So, on a scale of one to ridiculously flaming, how gay is your son?"
The class erupted into laughter, Soul looked downright horrified, and William Evans seemed rather baffled. "I'm… Sorry… What did you ask?"
"Did I stutter? I'm asking if Soul likes penis," She responded calmly. Another bout of laughter and Maka herself was trying to hide her laughter.
"Oh, real mature Thompson!" Soul snapped from the piano. She sneered back at him.
"It's a harmless question. Would you care to answer instead? I mean, I see the way you and Black*Star look at each other," She pressed further.
"I believe this has gone far enough," Mr. Evans announced suddenly, causing all eyes to return to him. He sent a pointed look at Liz. "If you don't want to get detention, I suggest that you drop it now. Since it's the first day I don't want to have to get harsh with you all. Yes, Soul is my son but I will not treat him any differently than I will treat any of you. Please withhold from teasing him or any of your peers; we are all here to play music and have fun, right?" He explained in a serious tone of voice, but the smile he wore made it seem okay.
"Fine," Liz huffed while crossing her arms and turning away.
"Now, I think that's enough for questions. Those of you who need to borrow instruments, please form a line and we'll get started on distributing the rentals we have on hand," He said while standing and pulling over one of three large wheeled carts with plastic black cases all over them. "We'll start with violins and then move on to violas. Cellos and bass, your instruments are in this private room over there. Once I get these ordered out we'll get you registered as well." He said, indicating a small office door beside a water fountain in the room. When he received positive responses from the rest of the class he nodded and flipped through his binder to the correct page.
Maybe this wouldn't be so hard, after all.
After class, they met up with their friend Tsubaki in the ladies restrooms. "So I can already tell that Mr. Hunky is totally in to me," Liz announced proudly. Patty laughed while Tsubaki, whom had been fixing her ponytail before cheerleading practice, let out an alarmed noise.
"What?" She squeaked loudly. Liz was busying herself with applying some lip gloss while Maka was washing her hands. "Liz, you can't date a teacher! That's not only illegal but inappropriate!"
"Aw, come on! I'd be, like, the best mommy for Soul Evans ever! At least then he'd learn a thing or two about respect!" She laughed loudly.
"Yeah, you'd totally show him whose boss!" Patty agreed, as chipper and excited as ever. Maka shook her head at her friends' antics and headed out of the bathroom. She didn't completely agree with what Liz had done but it was nice to see the proud Soul Evans lose his cool and have his dad step in for him.
'Maybe I should let this grudge go? I mean, it has been a long time,' She thought before shaking her head. She thought back to her feelings that day when Soul had said those harsh words to her. She had had so much riding on that competition and in a matter of seconds he tore her up and dashed her hopes. 'Nope. I'm going to continue beating him in class and letting Liz have her fun however she's like.' She decided calmly. She normally didn't want to cause trouble with anyone else but Soul Evans was a special case.
"Hey, Albarn!" Speak of the devil. She turned to find him leaning on the wall a few feet from the ladies room. She must have been too preoccupied with her thoughts to notice him in passing. He pushed off the wall and approached her, leaning a little closer with a scowl on his features. "What the Hell was that little stunt in class all about?"
"I don't know; Liz does her own thing and really doesn't like you, I guess," She shrugged simply enough. She glanced at her watch and noticed that it was a quarter after three. Her mother always came to get her at three thirty on the dot and aka had been hoping to get a few books from the library to celebrate the start of the new school year. "If you have a problem with her than take it up with her." She turned to leave but Soul caught her wrist and let out a low, dark chuckle.
If Maka wasn't so peeved at him grabbing her, she would have been scared. "No, you see," He drawled while glaring up at her. She flinched then, at the furious gleam in his eyes. She had seen Soul in every range of emotion over the years but she had never seen him look this impossibly pissed. "All my problems with them stem from you. I don't remember what you apparently think I did to wrong you but it's about time you got over it, don't you think? You've been a pain in my ass since grade school."
"You don't even remember?" She asked slowly, head dropping so that her eyes were on the tile. Her fists clenched and unclenched as she tried to remain calm. "You don't even remember that day?" She asked again. He didn't respond with words but made a small noise, a snort much like the way he released upon seeing what song she was playing. Her mind played his words over and over again, like a scratched disc stuck on a specific word.
"You aren't here because they want you here and you aren't here because you're good; you're just here for the amusement of the rest of us."
She yanked her arm from his grasp and looked up at him, eyes alive with insult and something else he couldn't place; was it anger or indignation or, impossible as it seemed, sadness? "You aren't going to get off the hook that easily, Evans," She growled lowly. It reminded Soul of a wet kitten; frustrated and trying to be threatening but seeming more harmless and pathetic. He must have really taken a jab at her by not remembering what he did to her. "You are going to pay for what you've done and I'm going to make sure of it. I don't know how, I don't know when, but I swear I will make you regret it; whether you remember it or not.
"Whatever; just understand that I'm not going to take it lying down. If you want to fight fire with fire, that's just fine. I can hit a lot harder than you, so be prepared," He scoffed before storming off. Maka glared at his retreating form and squared her shoulders defiantly.
This meant war.
(1) L'inverno – This song is typically translated into Winter and is one of the Four Seasons pieces composed by the Italian composer Vivaldi. I've always liked the Four Seasons pieces and felt like using this one in this chapter.
(2) First violin – First violin is a term commonly used in all orchestras (even grade school groups). There are typically a significantly larger number of violins than any other instrument in orchestras; therefore, most pieces have two different parts written for the violins and leads to them being separated. One of the violin sections is primarily the melody and the other is a slightly cooler, more interesting version of the harmony that's given to the lower strings. First violins are the players that get to play the melody.
(3) Second violin – Second violin is another term commonly used in all orchestras (even grade school groups). There are typically a significantly larger number of violins than any other instrument in orchestras; therefore, most pieces have two different parts written for the violins and leads to them being separated. Now, I'm not going to say second violins aren't as good as first violins because I don't believe that; I will say that typically the second violin part is more similar to what the lower strings play as opposed to the first violins who typically get the main melodies of the songs.
(4) Concert master – The concert master is the first chair first violin or the best player in the given section. They walk out right before the conductor and begin the on-stage tuning process by playing a sing note while standing. Upon the rest of the orchestra making their final tweaks and adjustments, the concert master sits, finishes their tuning, and when it all goes silent the conductor steps on stage. Concert master is a term typically not introduced into the setting of an orchestra until high school but I have heard that some prestigious private academies will put the system in place during younger grades.
(5) Principle player – The principle player is a similar status to the concert master only in different sections. For example, the principle players would be the first chair second violin, first chair viola (VIOLA POWAH~!), first chair cello, first chair string bass and the first chair first violin but they are called the concert master instead. When I was in high school, we all pretty much got to take turns being principle player in the viola section since there were quite literally only five of us. It was the same with the cellos, since they only had six, and it was always one of my friends as the principle player for the string bass because she was better than the other kid and he tended to sleep in class (yes, you can sleep in orchestra class. But only if you play string bass, since it keeps you propped up).
Those little tidbits of information look familiar? Check chapter six of Pulchritudinous; I told you all I'd be doing this.
So… First chapter was fun to plan out. This was, quite literally, the third draft of this chapter that I had to make and even then I'm still not 100% with it. Why? Because I am picky ass bitch, that's why.
I hope everyone is ready for tons of Lol-worthy shit to go down, because I promise that there will be tons of it. Although there will be some inappropriate stuff that will happen, I may not include lemons in this one. If you all have an opinion please share it so I can try to reach a decision; I'm such an indecisive little bitch. :/
Was this good? Please let me know~!
There are death threats, war promises, and even more chaos taking place in the orchestra classroom. William Evans wonders if he made the right choice in being a teacher, Kami Albarn starts to wonder if her daughter should be placed in therapy and the kids are not alright. To top it all off, Liz develops a taste for the blood of a second classmate; Death the Kid.