Stonewood Academy

Stonewood Academy, A prestigious boarding school in Bath, England is not all that it seems. What happens when three americans except full ride scholarships to this mysterious school?

Characters:
Reign as Thea
Sophia Fletcher as Juliet
Angelo W. Chute as Oliver

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9. Gifted

JULIET: I gasp and my eyes open. Nothing is blurry anymore. It's seems like I was out for hours, but to honest it couldn't have been more than a couple minutes. Nothing has seemed to have changed since I first blacked out, and no one saw me fall, probably because of my being so far back in the corner of the training center. I quickly shake myself off and readjust my tie. This is really becoming quite a day.

 

Oliver Reed: I find Mr. Whaver on the outside of one of the rooms, watching someone add reports to the data base. Someone must have done well, all of the targets hung up have a bullseye.

  "Mr. Whaver?" I ask, approaching. He turns without surprise.

  "Ah, hello Oliver. How are you doing so far?" He asks so plainly, like he is actually a normal school teacher... a normal school teacher that doesn't seemingly turn into wild animals.

  "Uh, I didn't do well on the agility course..."

  "Not many do."

  "I was told to come see you... That you would put me in the right direction or something."

  "Ah, yes, that is correct. Follow me, this won't take long."

 

THEA: After a couple minutes, I get to my feet and walk down the long hall, occasionally glancing into rooms. I stop in front of a room with a maze in it. Why not?  I step in, and a petite blonde girl rushes to my side.

"Wanna try it out? It's totally fun, I promise. Nothing dangerous at all." She smiles, and I can't help but smile back. Something about her just makes me... Like her. I shrug.

"Why not? Can't be that hard." I take a step towards it, but a pale arm stops me.

"You can't go in there like that." She giggles. "Lemme go get the blindfold!" The blindfold? What did I get myself into...

 

JULIET: After fully adjusting myself to my feet, I start walking around a bit, just watching others work with their powers or using specialty rooms. At one point, while I was walking past a room with thick glass windows, I spotted a boy on the inside playing with fire. I don’t mean poking a campfire with a stick, this guy was literally pulling fire from a lit torch and moving it around with his hands, shooting it this way and that. It was amazing. Completely amazing. I wonder what it would be like to have his abilities. I walk down a bit further, stopping every now and then, until I eventually come to a large square like building, reaching up to the top of the massive underground building. There seems to be some sort of fighting area on the first level of the room, but there is also a metal staircase leading up to a door protruding twelve feet up. My curiosity overcoming me, I walk up the stairs and open the door to find a bleakly lit room.

 

Oliver Reed: "In a sense, your parents signed you up for this academy, Oliver." Mr. Whaver leads me down the long hall of special rooms, apparently to "a special one."

  "What do you mean?" I ask.

  "You're parents knew something was different about you. We told them about the results, about you having the chemical Hypothixis. They confirmed our suspicions, told us of several occasions in which you weren't... Normal."

  "Really? What kind of situations?"

  "Well, for one, they discovered that when you slept... how do I put this... Things disappeared in the room you slept in. Usually small things, occasionally a dresser, or bed lamp. The whole thing, gone." If this is true, it explains why my parents have insisted on a clean room, and an empty one, for that matter. I literally have nothing in my room except my bed.

  "How did they know it was me?"

  "Well, at first they thought it was a burglar. Surely, they thought, things couldn't disappear like that. But they watched you, set up baby monitors, since you were a baby at the time, and nothing ever happened in that room. You never moved, nothing in the room did. Yet these things were disappearing. But who were they going to tell? Who wouldn't take you away? So they kept it a secret, reinstated rules, and kept you safe. It's quite the job, hiding a power like yours. You're parents did good." This just keeps getting weirder and weirder...

 

THEA: "Oof." I say, colliding with yet another wall.

"Your doing great! Keep going!" The over Enthusiastic girl shouts from somewhere on my left. I personally don't think I made it more than a couple feet from where I started, but the peppy girl keeps shouting encouraging words in my direction. After hitting another wall to my right, I rip the blindfold off, momentarily stunned by the light.

"What'd you do that for!? You were so close!" I look around and see that I'm actually not. I have no idea what the girl sees, but I'm clearly not anywhere close to the exit. Navigating the maze without the blindfold is easy, and I'm handing it back to the blonde in a few seconds.

"Thanks, but I don't think I could complete it." She gives me a small pout. "Well, not with that attitude you aren't."

"Well, okay. I'm going to go. Bye." She smiles and waves until I think her hand might break.

"Byeeee!!"

Where do I go now?

 

JULIET: I step into the bleaky lit room. There seems to be a faint glow coming from the corner and my eyes soon adjust. I realise the light is coming from a small pile of burning embers, casting faint light on an elderly woman sitting on the floor. “Hello?” I whispered, not daring to speak any louder for some strange reason. I walk cautiously towards the woman who doesn’t seem to realise I’m there. Her eyes are closed.

    “Sit,” She commands, startling me. she rests her hand, palm up on the rug in front of her. I do, and position myself, legs folded in imitation of the woman. She begins to nod slowly, up and down in a rhythmic like fashion. I can only stare, unsure of what I am supposed to do.

“Excuse me Ma’am but if I’m interrupting you, I can always le-”

“No. Stay,” She speaks suddenly, interrupting me.

“Okay,” I say calmly. She tilts her head at me but still does not open her eyes.

“Come close to me child and let me see you,” I do lean in, but I’m suddenly caught unawares when the woman quickly reaches out her hands and places them on my cheeks. I just sit there, unknowing what to do. The woman laughs. “Haha you silly girl! I’m just playing with you!” She says, releasing her hands and rocking backwards with humor. I uneasily fake a laugh and inch back a bit. The elderly woman snaps her fingers and settles herself again. “Well not many young ones come to see me that often! I don’t get out much you know! I spend my time wisely!” She says, socking me in the arm. She’s a lot stronger than she looks. “Now I know you must think I’m just a crazy old woman, and you’re probably right, but I figure you probably are here to learn a thing or two?” I nod quickly in response, and she does a little cheer with her arms raised above her head. “Well then! Let’s hop to it! I won’t be keeping you in the dark like any of those other young teachers. I’ll have you know it that I can see the future, however much the others doubt me.” She says, mumbling something I can’t understand afterwards.

“You can really see the future?” I ask curiously and she nods. “You best believe it! I’m the real deal! You can see the proof right here!” She smiles, raising a sleeve of her loose shirt to reveal hundreds of tiny ugly red scars, marring her arms into something gruesome.

Oliver Reed: I try to keep quiet and keep my thoughts to myself. Walking down this hallway and seeing all these... 'Super humans' lowers the doubt I have remaining. There's no way superhumans are real.... but nobody would go to these measures to ensure a 'prank' or something follows through.

"You will be seeing a man called Jerome," Mr. Whaver says, finally taking a turn down a long, somewhat dark alley that I don't feel like I want to go down. "Jerome he will test you to see if our suspicions are correct, which I have a strong feeling about."

"Like, experimented on?"

"Not quite. Tested is the exact word for it. He will test you, see what you can do." He opens the door at the end of the hall, that opens up to a completely dark room. "Let me know if anything goes wrong." He winks at me, and inside I'm freaking out. I take a daring step into the room.

 

THEA: I follow the hallway around a corner, I find myself staring into a whitewashed room where a boy with golden red hair surfs the wind. Like surfing the air. He rides the wind in graceful circles, occasionally doing flips in the air. I step into the room, and note the high ceilings and fans blowing from every corner. The boy doesn't seem to notice me, and I'm content to watch him for however long I stand there. He eventually looks down, and greets my awe struck face with a smile. He lands in front of me with a puff of air the I'm sure was just for show.

"Why hello," his voice is angelic, like currents of the wind. "I don't suppose you're a new student?" It take me a moment to respond, and I mentally pinch myself for my unusual behavior.

"Yeah, I'm Thea." His eyes are an alarming pale blue, so light they could be white. "What is this room?"

"This is the Wind Room. Not a very cool name, right? I tried to have them change it to Marcus's Domain, but they wouldn't do it. That's me, Marcus, by the way." His silky words caress my ears, and I have to bite my cheek to stay focused. I fear that though is words are laced with honey, they could get the president of the United States give his country over to Marcus.

"Yeah, well um, I'm going to go-"

"No, stay." His words take on an edge, and I find that I can't form the word 'no'.  "To try out the room, of course."

A tight smile spreads across my face and I can feel myself nodding even as I'm trying to turn around and leave. Marcus smiles, and though it once looked angelic, it now very much looks demonic. Let go of me! My mind screams, trying to pull myself from his mental grasp. Marcus comes closer, and I feel the air around me being pulled towards him, leaving me gasping and lightheaded.

"Stop-" I gasp out, falling to the floor as he steps closer, the smile never falling from his face.

Air. I need air!!! I dig my nails into my palms as I curl in my self, blackness cutting at the edge of my vision.

Then suddenly, air fills my lungs, and I heave in lungfuls. I sit up and glare into Marcus's eyes, only to find him on his knees clutching his throat as I suck the air from him.

I'm suffocating Marcus.

 

JULIET: The old woman only continues to smile as I cautiously look at her arm. “They stuck all the needles in there!” She says, unphased.

    “Uh, what happened? To your arms I mean,” I ask, hoping I don’t sound rude. She only smiles at me.

    “This,” she says, pointing at her arms, “Is why I can see the future,”

    “Wait... they experimented on you?” I guess. Her smile flinches slightly into a subtle frown.

    “Yes, they did,” She says, a forlorn look crossing her face, almost as if in remembrance. “It was in a little town in Russia, back in 1915. I was only 16, but I was also sick,” I look at her in shock, suddenly realising just how old this woman is. “And they took me,” she continues, “and they said they were going to help me get better. I thought...” She trails off, as If reliving the memory.

    “It’s okay if you don’t want to tell me,”

    “No!” She speaks suddenly. “I thought,” She continues, “I thought that they wanted me to work in the factories, but they had much more disturbing ideas in mind,” She says, her voice wavering.

 

Oliver Reed: The new room is complete darkness. I can't see a thing, and I feel an uneasy presence in this room. I swear, I feel ghosts brush against me. It's so spooky. I try to turn and find the door only to let light in, but either it's gone, or I can't find it. Either way, I stand in silence, trying my best to keep my breathing under control.

  "Sup, mate?" A male says. The sudden noise in this place makes me want to jump, but the way he says it is so calm. Soothing, as weird as that is.

  "Uh, hi..." I say. I take a step forward, and something hits my knee, and I fall down, hardly having time to bring up my hands to break the fall.

  "Oof!"

  "Ya alright? Here, let me turn on the light." The room emits with a dim light, and I can sort of see my surroundings.

  It's a large room with not much in it. I think it's a room, but I don't know for sure. I can't see the walls, or the ceiling, or the floor, despite the dim light. It's like I'm walking in on glass in the middle of nowhere, literally. Somewhere where nothing is visible.

  I realize quickly I tripped on an oddly placed box, sitting in the center of the 'room' for no apparent reason. (I only refer to it as a room because this has to be what it is, since I just walked into it) The man speaking sits in a tall chair maybe thirty feet from me, a chair like the villains you see in movies that slowly turn around petting a cat... you get the idea.

  "Oliver, correct?" The man asks.

  "That's right..." This must have been already scheduled. This will be interesting.

  "Good, good. We have much to talk about."

 

THEA: Hands grip my forearms, and I'm suddenly pulled to my feet, Marcus released by my invisible choking hand.

Curses spill from his mouth, all directed at me, as I'm pulled out of the room and dragged down the hall.

"Let go of me!" I say digging my heels into the ground beneath me. The person grips my arms tighter, and shoves me into a room a little ways from the Wind Room. The shove forces me to my knees, and I whirl to face my capturer, only to see a steel door slam shut.

"Wait!" I jump up and grab the door handle. Locked. Crap. "Let me out! Hey! Anyone? Help!" I press my ear to the door, but I can't even hear the swirl of shoes.  I turn and take in the room, looking for a window or another door. But of course, the dark room is occupied by only a metal table and chair in the center of the room. There are cameras in the four corners, covering every angle in the small room. I turn and pound against the door in the hope that anyone will hear me. Heck, I'd be fine if Marcus found me. Just get me out! I sink Against the door as I feel the familiar panic settle in my chest, the walls slowly closing in on me. The glare up at the cameras, silently commanding them off. If I'm going to have a panic attack, I'm going to have it without anyone watching me.

 

Juliet: The old woman continues to speak, steadying her voice. “They took me, and I went. I was in an orphanage so I knew no one would miss me. Things were different back then,” She says, pausing momentarily, but continuing on, “I went with them, and they brought me to a large concrete house in the middle of a snowy, thick forest. They gave me a small room and food, but I was told nothing of why I was there. Then they brought me to a cold room... filled with odd medical instruments and tools. They told me to lay on a table and I obeyed, although looking back on that night, I never know why I did what they said,” the old woman has a far off, hazed look in her eyes. “I suppose I was desperate and had nothing to lose. I was going to die anyway,” She continues. “But now I realize if would have been better to die than go through the pain of the experiment. The Hypothixis serum did not settle well at first. I made my condition worse at first and then the burning began. It felt like I was thrown into the fires of hell, burning for my sins,” She is shaking now, but somehow maintains a slight smile. I can only stare in horror. “They continued to inject me with the serum and tried to figure out the cause of the blisters... which covered my entire body. For a strange reason, I didn’t even realise they were there at the time, but only heard the doctors talk of them.  I could not even move. Oh the pain...” She trails off.

    “I am so sorry,” I speak, but she only smiles again.

    “Yes it was awful, but I am who am today because of what they did to me. Instead of dying, I have the ability to live a very long life. The hypothixis also effected my mind. I can see things, things that have not happened yet. Now you are here not because of the pain I went through in the past or my abilities, but because we can help you cope with the strange things happening to your body and mind at this time in your life. I may not always agree with the school council, but you should know that you are safe here, and we all want to help you.” She smiles at me, and I can’t help but feel more comfortable about the school. Of course strange things were happening, but maybe this old woman was right. Maybe I am supposed to be here, and the teachers only want to help me? For the first time since coming to stonewood, I fully believed in what they taught us, that there were strange and wonderful things in this world that seemed extraordinary.

    “Thank you for telling me your story,” I say to the woman. “Our history is awful, but maybe this school really is here to help those affected by the past,” The woman nods slowly, smiling.

    “And you my dear, are very welcome. I tend not to speak too much of specific sights I have, but I can tell you now that you are destined for greatness. You have to ability to be powerful as long as you stay close to your friends. Don’t lose that connection. I have seen others with great power stumble into a path of solitude and the result were... dark.” Destined for greatness? “You will become so powerful Juliet. Don’t forget that.” How does she know my name? ”You should probably go now. You have much to discover about yourself and many challenges ahead,” I say thank you one last time and leave the dimly lit room, thinking deeply about all that I had just heard.

 

Oliver Reed: The dark environment really throws me off. The uncertain air currents throw me off, not to mention the emptiness of the room. They way the dude looks throws me off. He is wearing plaid pajama pants and a bow tie shirt and sunglasses.... I have a reason to be 'thrown off.'

  "Sit," he says, ushering me to a chair right behind me. I swear it wasn't there just a second ago. I comply slowly, still unsure of this whole 'superpowers' thing.

  "Mr. Whaver told you about your past experiences in bedrooms, didn't he?" The man asks, not moving at all except for his lips.

  "Yeah, I guess I made things disappear or something while I slept or something."

  "Since it only seemed to occur while you were asleep, it wouldn't be a surprise if you had a power sleep related."

  "Yeah, well, I guess I do have killer naps sometimes..."

  "I hope that's not sarcasm. Head related powers are powerful, even if dream related powers aren't quite as powerful. Either way, embrace your power; treat it like the best power that ever existed. However I'll tell you a secret, three Americans flew in this semester with more than one power, and you are one of them. This has happened maybe once or twice in the history of Stonewood."

  "Seriously?"

  "Yes. One more thing, I sense disbelief from you about this. Stonewood as a whole, I would imagine. This will put your disbelief to rest, but you need to have an open mind. Consider Stonewood as a possibility, and you will see the truth."

  "Yeah... sure, I can do that." How did he know about my disbelief? It's not like I exclaimed it, or am sitting crossed armed staring angrily back at him. This guy just keeps freaking me out...

  "Good," he sits back in his chair, suddenly relaxed. "Now, ask me where we are. Consider it part of your test."

 "Okay... Where..." I stumble... It's so simple, am I forgetting something? "Where are we?"

  "Well, dear Oliver," the man sits forward again, a wicked evil smile spreading across his face, "we are in my imagination."

 
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