Be the Seattleite Weirded Out by Houston Winter
Your name is John Egbert, and you don't recall ever experiencing a January this warm! You had just returned a couple days ago from visiting your dad in Seattle over Winter break, and it was the same cold, wet Seattle winter you've known most of your life. There was even some snow after New Year's, and you were worried it might interfere with your flight back to Houston. But the snow melted, and you made it back in time for the first day of classes.
You are super stoked for this semester! Last semester was your first time here at Price University; you had been accepted into their Master's Program at the Perkins School of Music to study piano performance. It had been one of the most exciting semesters of your life. You learned so much from your professors and performed with a lot of really talented people! You are so glad today is the first day because you have a feeling something really awesome is going to happen.
You hurry down the main pathway that cuts through the middle of campus only pausing to check the time on your phone. 1:45pm. Okay, cool, you'll make it to the classroom with time to spare. You want to be early since it's your first day. You also notice you have a couple messages, but you'll get to those later. You are in too much of a hurry to type and walk at the same time!
You enter Sheridan Hall, and you are so focused on getting to the classroom that you bump into someone in the entryway. You have so much momentum that you bounce off the lanky yet solid body and fall to the ground. You feel your face burning as you scramble to stand up again, breathlessly apologizing over and over to the unsuspecting victim of your clumsiness. You are so mortified that you can't even look them in the face. You don't even give them a chance to respond as you rush down the hallway. Damn it, Egbert. You've gone and made a fool of yourself, and it's only the first day! But it's okay. The day is not over, and there is still all sorts of opportunity for awesome. You probably won't even see them again!
Having cheered yourself up, you let yourself into one of the classrooms at the back of the building. It's tiny with only an old piano, a music stand, and a couple of chairs. You search through your bag and pull out a couple books and some sheet music. You drop your bag to the floor and take a seat by the piano.
1:50pm. Still golden. You shuffle the books and sheet music, trying to arrange them nicely on the piano's music rack. You look up at the clock again. 1:51. You rearrange the music again. Don't be nervous, you tell yourself. You did this last semester, and it was great! Your students learned a lot from you, and they thought you were a good teacher! You can do this again. Just take a breath.
And you take a breath. It settles the fluttering in your stomach a little, and you try to get pumped again. You are ready to go. Awesome lesson, here we come. 1:52. Your student is still not here, but that's okay. It's still pretty early. You idly play some scales to give yourself something to do. 1:55. Still not here. Don't panic. It's fine. Dandy. Peachy keen. You plunk out the melody of the Ghostbusters theme song.
1:59. You hear the door creak open slowly. You turn away from the piano to face your new student. He is slouching in the doorway with his whitish blonde hair covering his eyes as he looks down at his phone. After a moment, he looks up at you, and you are surprised to see he is still wearing sunglasses indoors. His face is almost expressionless, but even with the glasses you could see him furrow his brow slightly.
Whoa, total cool kid right here. You are a little intimidated to be honest. He seems so indifferent and…well, cool. But you can't just stare and bask in his cool kid glory. You are his teacher. You have to say something.
"H-hey there!" You manage to say. "Are you here for Music Performance 199? The piano lessons?" You pause and wait for his response, but he doesn't give you one. Don't let him intimidate you, Egbert! Keep going! "Right, well, I'll be your teacher for the semester! I'm John Egbert! You must be Dave?"
There is a long pause, and all the guy in front of you does is stare. Or what you assume is staring. It's kind of hard to tell with those sunglasses on. You start to get a little anxious. What do you do now? He won't say a word to you! How are you supposed to react to that?
Finally, he straightens up and pushes himself away from the door frame. One side of his mouth pulls up at the corners. A smile! Good, good. That's a response. This guy is probably just shy and needs some time to warm up to you. No problem-o. You will be the most understanding, charming, and comforting teacher you can be. You are sure by the end of semester you guys will get along swimmi-
"Hey, you're the derp that body slammed me in the hall."
You feel the blood rush to your face, and your eyes widen slightly. This can't be happening. You were so sure you weren't going to see this person again! And yet here he is. Your student. Great. Just fan-freaking-tastic.
He walks over to you with that smirk still on his face and plops down on the piano bench. He turns to you and extends a hand out to you. "'Sup, Professor Egderp. I'm Dave, your bright-eyed and bushy-tailed piano student. It's my first time, so please be gentle."