Chapter Two

Maka tapped her pencil impatiently against the desk. To her right Kid sat freakishly still, his eyes staring at the blank chalkboard as though he were deep in thought. To her left should have sat Black*Star, but the energetic meister had failed to show up for class yet.

Not that it mattered.

Stein, who was supposed to be filling in for Sid, had yet to arrive and a replacement had failed to take his place. Despite the fact Maka was sure that she was more than prepared for the material that was supposed to be covered in today's lecture, it was still annoying to be forced to wait. Stopping her pencil's movement she looked towards the classroom Soul was in. Taking in a deep breath she brought up her soul perception, fighting through the distractions of the hundreds of other students to find the unique soul that was her Soul Eater's soul. It took a few minutes, but finally she was able to locate it.

Snap

Heads turned as the pencil between her fingers snapped in half and she grit her teeth. She was going to kill him. That idiot was sleeping through his advanced weapon training class. Taking in a deep breath and putting down the broken pencil she focused for a moment before sending a quick jab through their faint resonance link. Almost instantly she felt a groggy retort, and while no actual words were exchanged, Maka was able to garner the gist of what Soul meant.

'What do you want?'

'Are you sleeping?'

'. . .no'

'Soul…'

'Ah leave me alone damnit.'

Maka sent him another little jab, but relented after feeling his soul perk up for a moment before relaxing back down to lethargic apathy. While it wasn't ideal, it was his normal state while inside of a classroom so she would simply have to let it go. Shaking her head and returning to the real world she turned her head to Kid who was still sitting completely still.

"I do not believe anyone is coming." He said without turning his head towards her. "I've been trying to remember something father told me. I finally did."

"Oh?" Maka said.

"Yes." Kid finally turned towards her. "Father informed me Sid's mission had grown rather difficult and as a result he would be sending Stein and Marie as reinforcements."

"So no one is coming?" Maka said.

"I would expect not." Kid replied, standing up and picking up his textbook. "Now if you will please excuse me, I will have to discuss this matter with father. He has a very bad memory when it comes to assigning substitutes. I will see you tomorrow."

Maka watched him go before letting out a sigh and picking up her own book. Placing it carefully in her backpack she followed his lead and exited the classroom, drawing some stares from other confused students, some of whom also began to pack up. Going out into the hallway Maka glanced at the clock and frowned. She still had a lot of time before Soul would be getting out of class. He was going to be so jealous she had gotten a free period while he was stuck in class with her father. The thought was enough to turn her frown into a smile because while admittedly Spirit was a talented Scythe, a gifted teacher he was not.

Pushing her pack into a more comfortable position, she started off towards the staircase before stopping just as she reached the first step. What if the intruder was on her spot again? While the chance was slight, it was still there. And truth be told she still felt a small pang of guilt for kicking the boy out yesterday. He had looked so flustered for a moment, like a lost puppy. Pulling her foot back she changed her direction, heading to the library. While the little corner in the library did not have the warm sunlight and fresh air of the balcony, it did have the musty smell of books and the quiet sounds of shuffling pages, and that was almost as good.

Entering the surprisingly busy library she quickly shuffled towards the hidden-away corner that was ringed in by a section of restricted books. While the area itself was not off-limits, the bars and stern warning signs that hung over the bookshelves were enough to scare most of the other kids off. As she walked by the books she let her eyes linger on them. She had managed to sneak a few of them away from her father when she had been younger and he had been using them for

"Official Death Scythe Business" as Spirit had put it. They were confusing and more often than not a little scary. Some were filled with ancient curses and forbidden magics while others gave information you wanted, and some you did not…

Maka shuddered, pulling her eyes away and stepping forward into the small reading area only to find someone already sitting there in one of the two seats, a pen between his teeth as he diligently read line after line of text.

Maka nearly cursed.

Catching the noise in her throat she stepped forward and dropped her bag down on the floor with a plop. Steely eyes jumped up at her before relaxing slightly. "Hello."

"Hi." Maka said stiffly, sitting down across from him. They sat quietly for a few minutes before Maka finally decided to break the silence. "I guess you aren't stealing my balcony today."

He smiled slightly at that. "I considered it, but I thought that might be your spot or something and you'd be up there already."

Maka let out a sigh, resting her face against her hand. "I thought you were going to be up there."

"Maybe we should make a schedule." He said, a slight laugh to his voice. "I'll take them during the week and you get them on the weekends."

Maka had to softly laugh at that which drew a slight chuckle from him as well. He seemed to laugh easily. Looking down at the book she tilted her head slightly, trying to make out the title. Following her gaze he gave her a rueful smile before pushing the book out towards her. She caught it just before it slid off the table and flipped to the cover.

"Remedial Weapon Transformation?" she said, glancing up at him.

"Mhmmm." He said lamely, pulling it back with his right hand and drumming his fingers along the leather bound cover.

"You're a weapon?" Maka cocked her head to the side.

"Yeah, and you're Scythe Meister Maka." His fingers stopped moving and his hands came up and he waved them back and forth quickly. "I'm sorry that must have sounded really creepy. You're just really popular around here. I don't think there is anyone in the NOT class who doesn't know about you, and Soul too." He stopped babbling for a moment and clicked his tongue. "Yeah that probably didn't make me seem any less creepy did it?"

Maka waved him off. Since making Soul into a Death Scythe things had been a little hectic. "It's okay, I understand. So you're in the NOT class?"

"One of them." He nodded, beginning to tap his fingers against the book's cover.

"And you're a weapon?" Maka pressed.

"Glaive." He said, hand coming to a stop. Lifting it up he held it out towards her. "My name is Cross by the way."

Maka accepted his much larger hand around hers. Through the physical link she could feel the faint outline of his soul. It was steady, but not particularly strong.

"Maka Albarn." She said. "Though I guess you knew that already."

Cross nodded. "So what are you doing here? I thought the EAT and NOT classes were staggered?" Maka rolled her eyes and quickly explained the situation. Cross gave a thoughtful look. "So they just cancel your classes if the teacher doesn't show up?"

"Pretty much" Maka sighed, pulling out a few of her books. "I figured I'd read or study until Soul got out and we can go home."

"Ah that must be nice." Cross said before cocking his head to the side. "Uh oh."

"What?" Maka asked before one of the librarian assistants popped their head around the corner.

"Cross, you better get going. You're going to be late for your lesson again." She said flatly before nodding her head and disappearing again.

Maka turned her head to Cross who let out a sigh and pushed his book back into his bag. "I thought this was your class time?"

"It is, but I've got a few extra lessons I've got to take." He shrugged before giving her a smile. "Enjoy the free period, Maka. I hope I see you again soon."

"Me too." Maka said, returning the smile. "Bye Cross."

He tipped his head and quickly walked off, tossing his bag over his shoulder. Left alone, Maka dropped her eyes down to her books. To her left was the lesson book, and while she had read it already, it never hurt to touch up. To the right was her newest book, some kind of romance novel that, while often not her style, was proving to be rather interesting. Weighing the options back and forth in her mind she finally settled on the novel. Settling more comfortably into the chair she was just starting to really delve deep into the plot when someone tugged lightly on her pigtail.

"Argh, Soul!" Maka snapped, slapping his hands away. She looked up at her scowling weapon. "Class over already?"

"It's been over for a while." Soul grumbled. "I've been looking for you."

"How did you find me?" Maka said, starting to pack up her books.

"Waited in the hallway for a while." Soul said as Maka stood up, he lightly placed his hand against the small of her back to lead her out ahead of him. "Realized no one was coming out of your class after a few minutes."

"So…?"

"Was able to find your soul." Soul said, tapping his chest. "It's hard to hear most of the time but since you turned me into a death scythe." He shrugged. "I dunno, it's easier now."

Maka smiled. "I guess that means our resonance is really strong. I've read about weapons being able to do that, and Papa said he used to be able to do that with Mama."

Soul made a face. "Don't make me think about your father. He was bugging me all class."

Maka rolled her eyes. "Well you were sleeping."

"Yeah, thanks for waking me up." Soul said, voice thick with sarcasm. "But really, I don't know what your old man's problem is. He barely even taught us anything today, just said a whole bunch of stuff about partners and trust."

"Yeah, because he's one to talk." Maka said under her breath. Catching the soft words Soul relented and went silent until they were on the bike and well on their way home.

"Dinner."

"What?" Maka said over the sound of the bike. She was forced to wait for her answer until Soul pulled into the apartment complex parking lot. Jumping off the bike she looked up at him expectantly. He ran a hand through his wind mussed hair.

"I said dinner, it's your turn."

Maka stared at him for a moment before smirking and turning towards their apartment. "Fine, I'm getting Chinese."

"Really woman?" Soul asked incredulously. "After all the grief you gave me last night."

Maka got to the door and pushed it open, calling over her shoulder. "And I'm getting it from the good place!"

Soul shook his head but smiled as he followed his meister into the apartment. Heading straight to the couch he flopped down, dropping his book bag haphazardly to the floor. Behind him he heard Maka order the food before walking towards him, her small feet padding along the floor.

"Ugh. Really Soul?"

"What?" he whined, turning his head up at her as she walked around the couch and picked up the books that had fallen out of his bag. Placing them neatly on the table she looked down at the cover.

"Hey Soul?"

"Mmmm?" he asked, kicking his shoes off and stretching out along the couch.

"How long ago were you reading the Remedial Weapon Transformation?" she said, looking down at his advanced version.

Soul thought for a moment. "I dunno. I don't think I ever actually read it."

"What?" Maka said, voice flat.

"I never read any of them." Soul yawned. "I figured most of it out on my own when I was little with my brother. I don't even know how that book can be that heavy. How many ways can you really say 'transform'?"

As he rolled over and grabbed the remote Maka glanced down at the book thoughtfully.