The man approached the motionless student sitting on the cold window ledge as others flowed around him like a river of blurred color. The child seemed to go unnoticed, folded neatly and unmoving into the secluded niche of the hallway. Over-sized, sleeved arms wrapped securely around legs, clad in black jeans, pulled tightly against the chest. Wearing such dark, non-descript clothes caused the man to stop for a moment as he peered closely at the young form in front of him so as to ascertain his or her gender.
Reaching down, he tapped firmly on the individual to gain attention, his response coming in the form of a low groan. A head lifted from the once immobile body giving the waiting man a clear look at the very feminine face. Almost black eyes, the color of the darkest chocolate, dull with a sleep that threatened to overtake her again, peered up at him from tanned and olive skin, her features giving the impression of a Native American origin.
Tipping her head back farther to stare into his eyes from her seated position, the grey hood that had previously shielded her pale face from the waking world fell back to reveal thin, straight locks of ebony black hair held loosely in a ponytail that draped over her shoulders. Three strands had escaped their bonds to hang awkwardly in her face, surprisingly untouched by the usual makeup caked in layers on the faces of most girls that attended this high school. She had a sort of pure, natural beauty that caught the eye but was almost purposely hidden underneath her layers of dark clothes.
A persistent buzzing drew the hall monitor's eyes to the small, black device sitting snuggly in the girl's ear, being the source of the noise. Nearly every student that passed through the man's halls had been seen with one type or another of these music devices. What surprised the aged monitor was that he did not hear loud power cords and long guitar solos blasting notes from the ear bud, as he had been accustomed to after years of watching the halls of raging, hormonal teenagers. However, instead, low flutes, soft piano keys, and sounds you might expect to find in nature gently wafted from this strange girl's black music player. No wonder the girl had been able to drift off to sleep, unaware of the noisy mass of students rushing by, leaving the nearly oblivious girl to her dreams.
"Can I help you?" The girl spoke up, her voice scratchy from her nap, yet giving the impression that it would be quite lovely when the owner was more awake. The man stopped his scrutiny of the student and nodded his grizzled head of graying hair.
"Homeroom is about to start and I would thank you not to be late," He said in a voice like gravely rocks, mustering some disapproval into his tone as he gave the girl a soft glare.
Recognition sharpened her sleep-filled eyes as she swung her long legs off the thin ledge to place her dirty white sneakers onto the equally dirty school floor. When she stood, she was at least a head shorter than the older man she stood in front of and her frame gave hints at being lean and muscular despite the dark grey hoodie that seemed to swamp her body. Brushing the stubborn black strands from her thin face, she reached down to retrieve the black messenger bag from the floor next to the ledge. Dirt from the forests surrounding Ravenswood were liberally ingrained into the durable black material that made up her bulging bag. Hefting the long strap over her shoulder, the girl seemed visibly weighed down by the burden provided in the form of heavy textbooks and numerous notebooks.
"Thank you," The girl said demurely before turning on her heel and heading down the long, empty school hallway. The hall monitor watched as the girl walked with an air of confidence, seemingly unconcerned by the absence of her fellow students who had all fled to their classrooms after the first bell rang. Her gait was even and she was one of the first teenagers he had ever seen not slouch when she walked, her head high and alert as if she had not been sound asleep moments ago.
Espying her classroom at the end of the hall, the small female kept her slow, uncaring pace before strolling over the threshold and out of the man's sight, just as the bell rung its last warning. The old man shook his head of wispy grey hair at the luck the girl had, to make it to homeroom on time. She only just escaped the grueling, and slightly torturous, detention that the strict teacher had planned should the young student have arrived merely seconds after the bell went off. Lucky indeed.