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 The Start on an Interesting Year

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phoenixgirl
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Female
Number of posts : 54738
Age : 38
Location : Somewhere in New Domino looking for the love of my life ^^
Title : Hoping to be Yusei's greatest love
Registration date : 2008-03-14

PostSubject: The Start on an Interesting Year   Sun Sep 08, 2013 11:27 pm

This is my latest fanfic based on the game Lucky Rabbit Reflex.  I finally heard back from the developer so it's ok to post it here now.  ^^

For those who have played the game, I want to note that there are minor changes I made but those changes don't significantly affect the spirit of the game and all.  XD

Enjoy and I'd appreciate constructive feedback.  ^^


The Start of an Interesting Year

Chapter 1

Reluctantly, I woke up as I heard the alarm on my clock beep, telling me that I needed to get up now or I’d be late.  I wished I could sleep in more, especially considering that I hadn’t yet gotten over my jet lag.  My parents and I had just arrived in England one day ago and my body definitely needed to adjust to the time differences.  However, I couldn’t afford to be late on my first day of school.  

So I got out of bed, took a quick shower, and got dressed into my school uniform.  I sighed to myself as I got ready.  A part of me felt as though I should be excited for my first day.  After all, I was in another country, getting immersed in another culture, and I could make a whole new group of friends.  But a part of me did miss my life back in Michigan where I was used to getting dressed in whatever clothes I wanted and so forth.  Then again, I should be used to moving around so much by now.  Because of my dad’s job, my parents and I moved a lot but this was the first time I had to move to another country.

As these thoughts raced in my head, I looked at myself in the bathroom mirror and sighed again.  I looked plain and ordinary with my short brown hair but I guess I don’t look like a freak so that’s something.  Seeing the time on my cell phone, I hurried out of the bathroom, grabbed my backpack and went downstairs to have breakfast with Mom and Dad.

I entered the dining room and took my seat at the table where Dad was already dressed in his business suit and Mom was busy serving breakfast to Dad and me.  Dad turned away from the newspaper he was reading and smiling at me, he asked,

“All ready for your first day at Northmain, Caitlin?”

I nodded and replied, “I suppose so but it feels so weird to be going to a new school in my final year of high school.  I mean-what about uni applications and all that?”

Dad replied, “It’s Northmain College, sweetie, and you don’t need to stress about applying to university because of the late transfer.  Northmain is a very good school and you’ll have the best education there.  And once you graduate, you can decide on whether to go to university here or back in the States.”

I replied, “I guess but I really do wish I could have stayed in Michigan to finish my final year.”

Mom finished serving breakfast to us and after taking a seat herself, she replied, “I know it’s hard, sweetie, to leave your friends and move to another country.  Your dad and I did debate on letting you stay in Michigan but we would have been too sad to be separated from you and besides, we couldn’t find anyone who could stay to be your guardian for a year.  And we’ll be separated next year so we thought that this arrangement was the best.”

I put on a brave smile and nodding, I replied, “I guess you’re right.  I’ll make the best of things.”

Dad smiled and replied, “That’s my girl.  Now you and I should eat our breakfast and then I’ll drop you off at the train station.”

I nodded and taking my fork, I ate my breakfast.  After several minutes, I finished and Dad did, too.  I got up and as I grabbed my bag, Mom got up and briefly left the room.  Then she hurried back and in her hands, there was a black beret.  Before I could say anything, Mom put the beret on my head and said,

“There.  Now you’re all set and you look quite cute with hats.”

I was about to complain, saying that I didn’t want to wear a hat, but then I saw the happiness on Mom’s face and decided to let it go.  Mom kissed me on the right cheek and then she kissed Dad.  Dad and I then left the house and got into his car, soon driving away from the house and towards the train station.

Once we arrived at the train station, I was about to leave when Dad said, “Have a good first day, sweetie, and I can’t wait to hear all about it.”

He gave me a kiss on the left cheek and I gave him a kiss on his right.  Then I left the car and waved goodbye to him as Dad drove off.  I checked the time and hurried to buy a ticket for the train.  Once I did so, I got on the train and took out one of my mangas, deciding to pass the time by reading while I waited for the train to arrive at the stop closest to Northmain College.

I guess I became so engrossed in my manga because the next thing I knew, I heard the announcement that the train was arriving in Northmain.  I looked at the time and didn’t have much left if I wanted to make it on time.  So once the train doors opened, I immediately bolted out and rented a bicycle nearby.  Then I got on the bike and frantically rode it all the way from the train station to Northmain College.  

Once I arrived, I parked my bicycle and then ran inside the main building, hurrying towards the assembly hall.  I thought I’d be late when I arrived and it was so unlike me to be late.  Fortunately, after I entered the assembly hall, I looked around and saw that there were only a few students as well so I relaxed a bit.  I took a seat in the back row and listened as the opening announcements to welcome students were made.  The announcements weren’t life changing or anything of the sort-just the same old “welcome to Northmain, hope you have a great year” and all that.  Listening to the announcements made me feel quite sleepy so I quickly looked around me and took a chance that no one would notice if I took a little nap.  

Before I knew what had happened, I woke up to a voice although I couldn’t make out the words.  After my vision was in focus, I quickly realized what had happened and sitting up, I said,

“Oh gosh, I’m so sorry.  I really didn’t mean to fall asleep like that.  It’s just that I had to hurry to get here.  I didn’t want to be late…Well, you know how that is.”

The young, yellow-eyed boy who had his brown hair unusually long and in a braid replied quite slyly,

“The ladies get that way around me.”

I raised an eyebrow, unsure of what to make of him.  However, I didn’t want to make enemies on my first day so I nodded and replied,

“And you are…?”

The boy offered me his hand to shake and replied, “I’m Marius, by the way.”

I shook his hand and replied, “I’m Caitlin.”

Marius smiled at me and replied, “That’s an original name.”

This time, I didn’t keep quiet to his comment and replied a little sarcastically, “Yes, I know.  It’s an American name.  I’m a Yank, ok?  Just moved here about a day ago.”

Marius put his hands up in a helpless, defensive manner and replied, “Ok, it’s fine.  I could tell by the accent.  Hey, now that we’re intimately acquainted, why don’t I show you around?”

I thought to myself that Marius had an interesting way with words and felt like commenting on it but then I did let a sarcastic reply slip and didn’t want another one to do so, at least not on my first day.  So I nodded and replied,

“Sure, ok.”

I followed Marius as he gave me a quick tour of Northmain and especially where our classes would be.  As our tour finished, he commented,

“So if you see any of the lower grade students here, feel free to give them a slap.”

A quiet laugh slipped out of my mouth at the comment and I could see Marius’ smile and he said, “We’re getting along now, I see.”

Just then, a girl with light brown pig-tails emerged from a hallway and said, “Marius Blitz, must you corrupt every girl you meet?”

In his happy manner, Marius replied, “You’ll see that we’re getting along well already.”

I watched this exchange between Marius and the girl go on and could tell that they were at least friends although perhaps not friends in the friendliest sort.  Once their exchange was over, I turned to the girl and asked,

“And who are you?”

The girl turned to me and smiling, she replied, “I’m sorry.  I’m Merle Piepo.”

I smiled to Merle and replied, “And I’m Caitlin.  It’s nice to meet you.”

Merle replied, “Caitlin?  That’s a pretty name.  I’m glad to meet you.  It’s just too bad that you had to run into him first.”  Merle jerked her head towards Marius and Marius simply smiled at the comment.

Merle then returned her attention to me and said, “Why don’t I show you to homeroom and you can tell me all about yourself along the way?”

I could tell that Merle was one of those typical teenage girls who liked gossip and was chatty.  Although I usually avoided these kinds of girls, Merle seemed nice and she wanted to help me so I nodded and replied, “Sure, sounds good.”

Marius waved goodbye to the both of us and said, “See you later and it was nice meeting you, Caitlin.”

I followed Merle as we headed towards homeroom and Merle asked me questions about myself.  They were the usual questions like where I was from, what interests I had, and so forth.  She was interested to find out that I was from the States and asked questions about what it was like, how Americans were, and all.  

When we arrived in homeroom, we took a couple of seats and Merle then began to chat quietly about the different sports that Northmain had to offer.  However, we had to talk quietly as the teacher was talking as well.  I was interested about this topic and so I asked Merle what clubs Northmain had and she told me that there were the athletics club as well as netball, drama, and music.  I had no idea what netball was but felt a little embarrassed to ask.  I figured it was a sport popular in England but definitely not in the States.  But hearing the variety of clubs offered, I began to look forward to what Northmain had to offer, as the clubs here were more than the ones back in my old school.  

As we continued to chat quietly, I heard footsteps at the door and saw Marius enter the room, followed by a boy with blue eyes and short black hair.  I glanced at the boy for a moment, thinking that the combination of those physical traits was an interesting and rare one.  While I wondered who he was, Merle saw the boys as well and said,

“Fashionably late, gentlemen.  Fashionably late as usual.  Caitlin, you know Marius already and this is Shuppin.  Shuppin, this is Caitlin, new girl.”

I nodded, remembering that Merle had mentioned about Shuppin as we were chatting about clubs and such.  I remembered that Shuppin was into music and thought it was an interesting fact as I liked music a lot as well.  I smiled at Shuppin and said,

“It’s nice to meet you.”

Shuppin sleepily replied, “Oh sorry, umm, hi.”

I couldn’t help but think to myself how attractive it was that Shuppin was shy, as a lot of guys I met were usually anything but shy.  But I couldn’t figure out what to make of his sleepiness.  Merle had told me that Shuppin was usually late to classes and quite sleepy and it made me wonder if perhaps he was like how some of my friends back in the States were.  I remember how some of them were so sleepy because they had school, their part-time jobs, and then homework and such.  I wanted to ask Shuppin if that was possibly the case but as I had just met him, it would have been incredibly rude to ask such a direct question.

I was snapped out of my thoughts when Marius turned to Shuppin and asked, “Who were you whispering sweet nothings to just now, eh?”

As Marius and Shuppin talked, I became confused, unsure of what to make of this topic of conversation.  I finally asked,

“What?”

Shuppin turned to me and replied, “Oh don’t listen to him.  I work at a bakery.”

I nodded, thinking to myself that at least part of my question was answered.  Then the conversation turned to part-time jobs and I found out that Marius worked at the arcade while Merle made a comment about concentrating on schoolwork rather than slave labor.  As I observed that the conversation could potentially turn into an argument, I decided to step in and say,

“Oh working at a bakery sounds romantic.”

Inside, I wanted to slap myself.  I mean-what kind of comment was that?

Shuppin looked at me and replied, “You wouldn’t say that if you met my boss.”

Merle then added about how the boss at the bakery will go after anything in a skirt and I listened on.  At least I was glad that I was able to change the conversation ever so slightly.  Then the bell rang, indicating that homeroom was over and that we were to go to classes.  Marius made a slight scoffing sound and said,

“Why did I bother even coming?  My first class isn’t even in this building.”

Then he rushed out of the room.  Shuppin then turned to me and said, “It was nice meeting you, Caitlin.”  He then left as well.

Merle then turned to me and said, “And so it begins.”  She sighed and said, “I hope you have a good first day, Caitlin.”  She then hurried out of the classroom as well.

As I was left, I looked at my schedule at my first class and thought to myself,

It might have been a good idea to ask for directions to my first class.  I’m just going to get lost now.

Despite the change of schools and having to get used to new classes and such, I actually found it ok to follow the classes.  It turns out that most of the lessons in my classes weren’t that much different from the ones in my old school.  Only history class was different but I expected that.

After classes were over for the day, I packed my things and carrying my backpack, I headed outside towards my bike when Merle called out,

“Caitlin?  Oh I’m so happy I caught you.”

I turned to Merle and replied, “Hey, what’s up?”

Merle took something out from her bag and handing it to me, she said, “I forgot to give this to you earlier.  You dropped it in homeroom.”

I took the item which turned out to be my student planner.  I smiled to her and replied, “Thanks, Merle.”

Merle happily replied, “No problem and it was looking a little bare so I added the info of everyone you met.”

I raised an eyebrow, thinking to myself that it was a bit intrusive of Merle to just write in my student planner like that.  But I went ahead and opened it up and saw that indeed, she did include the info of everyone I met today, including Marius, Shuppin, and Merle herself.  The info was pretty useful, as even birthdates were included.  At least now I won’t ever forget someone’s birthday and I’ll make sure to buy them a present.

I closed my planner and turning to Merle, I replied, “This is useful.  Thanks.”

Merle smiled and replied, “No problem.  So are you taking the train home?”

I nodded and replied, “Yup.  I live pretty far away.”

Merle replied, “You’re so lucky.  I have to take the school bus.  But I guess I have to be thankful for the little things since I can at least sit down.”

I nodded, understanding what Merle meant by taking the school bus.  If taking the school bus here was anything like taking the school bus in the States, it’s not exactly the most pleasant traveling experience.  Merle then said,

“Well, I should be going.  I hope you had a good first day, Caitlin.”

I smiled and replied, “Yup, I did.  Thanks, Merle.  See you tomorrow.”  Then I hopped on my bike and rode it back to the train station.  Once I arrived at the train station, I returned my bike to the rental shop, bought a ticket, and then took the train, riding it until I arrived at my stop that was closest to my house.

Once I arrived at my stop, I got off the train and from the train station, I walked home as Dad was still at work.  It felt relaxing to walk, as the activity gave me some reflection time to myself and to keep to my thoughts.

After I arrived home, I said hi to Mom and then went to my room, deciding to change into more comfortable clothes and then to relax until it was time for dinner.  Once Dad arrived, the three of us went to the dining room to have dinner.  Mom and Dad asked me how school was and I told them about the classes as well as the students I met so far.  They relaxed as they noticed how happy I was and they commented about how well I’d adjust at Northmain.  Dad then talked about his work and how his new promotion was going and everything.

After dinner was over and I helped clear the table, I went to my room and decided to organize my things a bit.  I still had boxes that I needed to unpack from the move so I went ahead and finished that first.  Then I went through my backpack and sighed as I noticed how much homework I had although it had only been the first day.  Fortunately, though, it wasn’t due the next day so I could take my time in getting it done.  Feeling tired, I decided instead to open my student planner and take a look at the details Merle penned in.  As I read the details of everyone I met, I thought to myself that this year would be interesting indeed.  Questions raced in my head and I wondered to myself:

Would I make a best friend for life?

Would I find true love?


I felt myself looking forward to and excited about the new school year and this feeling engulfed me so much that only when I looked at the time did I notice how late it was.  It was 1 a.m. and way past when I’d usually go to bed.  So I hurried to get ready for bed and once I climbed in and pulled the covers over me, there was a happy, excited smile on my face, a feeling that I hadn’t yet experienced but could only describe as being euphoric.  As I fell asleep, the last thought in my consciousness was

Look out, Northmain.  I’ll make this year one to remember.

_________________


Thank you for making my new set, Love.  ^^


Last edited by phoenixgirl on Sun Sep 29, 2013 7:18 am; edited 1 time in total
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Miss Nile
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Number of posts : 52966
Age : 21
Location : Egypt
Title : Miss of The Grand Nile
Registration date : 2008-02-29

PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Mon Sep 09, 2013 12:31 am

Woot, nice. XD I got to read this just now and I really liked it. ^^

I can see the slight differences between the fanfic and the game but it's nothing major so it actually made things more interesting. ^^

I'd love to see a full fanfic about this sometime. I'd be curious to read more.

Great work. ^^

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phoenixgirl
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Female
Number of posts : 54738
Age : 38
Location : Somewhere in New Domino looking for the love of my life ^^
Title : Hoping to be Yusei's greatest love
Registration date : 2008-03-14

PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Mon Sep 09, 2013 3:30 am

Thanks. ^^ When I wrote this, I had intended for it to be a one-shot fic but then saw the potential for it to become a series. Once I buy the game and play through it, then hopefully I'll have some time to continue this. XD

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phoenixgirl
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Female
Number of posts : 54738
Age : 38
Location : Somewhere in New Domino looking for the love of my life ^^
Title : Hoping to be Yusei's greatest love
Registration date : 2008-03-14

PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Sun Sep 29, 2013 7:23 am

Ok, so I did end up buying the game after all. Got too tempted but it was totally worth it. If you like anime and otome games, then this one is definitely on a "must buy" list. XD

Anyway, so this fic will be a multiple chapters one and I just finished the second chapter so I'll post it here. I'm not sure how I'll write the following chapters but I figure I'll just write a new chapter based on significant events that are triggered during the year. Please feel free to give constructive feedback and if there's anything you feel that should be changed, make things more interesting, etc., please let me know. Thanks and enjoy. ^^

Chapter 2

My first week at Northmain turned out to be pretty interesting, to say the least. On Wednesday, I was walking down one of the hallways during lunch break when, suddenly, I overheard a conversation between Merle and a short dark-skinned, black haired girl. Not wishing to interrupt their conversation, I decided to hide behind a wall and peered over my shoulder, straining my ears to find out what they were talking about.

I heard bits and pieces and from what I discerned, it sounded like the girl-who I found was Lufika, Marius’ younger cousin-was quite upset because one of the clubs she had wanted to join was disbanded so Merle was trying to persuade her to join the netball team instead, making arguments like how it would look good on her university applications and all. However, I remembered that Lufika was younger than us and so she wouldn’t need to worry about applying university for a while so that argument wouldn’t stick. Anyway, it sounded as though Lufika wouldn’t be persuaded and instead decided to check out athletics as a possibility.

As the two ran off, I finally emerged from my hiding spot when suddenly, a voice behind me asked,

“Decided on a club yet, Caitlin?”

I nearly jumped at hearing Marius’ voice suddenly behind me and looking surprised, I replied, “Give a girl a heart attack, why don’t you?”

Marius simply smiled and replied, “Hey, don’t change the subject. You’re joining the athletics club, right?”

I raised an eyebrow and replied, “Why is everyone here a member of some club? Back in the States, it didn’t matter so much. If you didn’t like the clubs the school had, you could just go home as far as anyone was concerned.”

Marius shrugged and replied, “Well, you know, it’d look good on your uni applications. Get your weekly exercise, compete against other schools…And it’s better than shoplifting like most of the population.”

In my mind, I had to admit that joining a club would be a good idea. I did join a couple of clubs back at my old school and I wanted to enter a good university so Marius made a good point. However, I was never really much of a sporty person so athletics was most likely out for me. I contemplated over the other clubs that were accepting new members and after a couple of minutes, I finally replied,

“Athletics sounds great but I’d rather give the music club a shot. I did play an instrument a few years back and I’d like to try it again as a hobby.”

Marius didn’t seem too disappointed and replied, “Ok but I bet I’ll see you there on the field before the year’s out.”

I thought to myself,

Yup, you’ll probably drag me out there but I’m not working out in the cold or rainy weather if I can help it.

As Marius was about to run off, I looked after him and exclaimed,

“Hey, where are you off to? What about my ‘Hey, Caitlin, so how’s your first week going so far?”

Marius returned briefly and replied, “Sorry, Caitlin, but lunchtime’s so short. So many recruits, so little time.”

And then he ran off again.

Sighing to myself, I shook my head and as I headed towards my next class, I thought to myself,

Guess I’ll give the music club a shot then. I wonder if it’ll be anything like the one back at my old school.

On Friday morning, as I was rushing towards homeroom, I stopped in the hallway as I saw Shuppin and another girl talking-no, it looked more like they were having an argument. Curious to hear what the argument was about, I decided to eavesdrop. I heard bits and pieces and it sounded like some sort of family argument so I figured out that the girl with Shuppin must either be his sister or maybe a cousin.

After Shuppin left, I stepped out, making myself visible before the girl. Giving an apologetic smile, I said,

“Umm, I’m sorry for eavesdropping but is everything ok? I couldn’t help but overhear…”

The girl gave a small smile and replied, “It’s nothing. My brother and I don’t really see eye to eye most of the time.”

I nodded and replied, “Ahh I see. So you must be Shuppin’s sister.”

The girl nodded and replied, “You know Shuppin?”

I replied, “Yeah, he and I are in the same form class. I’m Caitlin MacKenzie.”

The girl smiled and replied, “It’s nice to meet you. I’m Dys. Shuppin and I are twins.”

I smiled and replied, “Yup, I can definitely see the family resemblance.

Dys replied, “I should get going. My first class isn’t in this building but it was nice meeting you, Caitlin.”

I replied, “It was nice meeting you, too.”

Dys then ran off and as I headed towards my homeroom, I thought to myself how this school was quite interesting, as it had its fair share of teenage angst. It’s almost as though I were dropped in a high school drama or something. If anything, this school would be anything but boring.

So that was my first week of classes. It was eventful on the social front but at least in regards to academics, it looked as though I’d be able to keep up with them.

On Saturday morning, I decided to go on my computer, as our Internet connection at home had finally gotten set up. First, I checked on my emails from my friends back in the States and I did receive messages from most of them, hoping that I arrived in England ok and that we would be able to chat soon. However, I noticed that one of my closest friends, Alexia, hadn’t sent me anything at all although she promised that she would. I felt a little disappointed but quickly shrugged off that feeling. Perhaps Alexia was simply busy but would send a message as soon as she had time.

Then I checked on my other emails. I read the brief welcome message for joining FaceMate-it’s a social networking site that the students at Northmain use. Then I read a couple of emails from Merle hoping that my first day went ok and that I hoped she liked what she did to my journal. I found her shorthand somewhat difficult to understand although I did appreciate the gesture. Then I read an email from Dys and she hoped that my first week went all right and that I could go to her if I needed any help. Finally, I checked out the fashion site that Merle recommended. The site gave out the latest fashion tips that were in season. I usually just style myself however I wish but I mentally made a point to check it out monthly, as perhaps I could pass those tips on to Alexia. I remembered that Alexia loved keeping up on the latest fashion tips and so forth.

After I finished using the computer, I logged off and turned it off. Briefly stretching out my arms, I contemplated how I should spend the rest of my Saturday. As it was my first weekend here, I decided it would be a good idea to check out Arndale, the local shopping mall, and perhaps buy some clothes. Mom and Dad gave me some money after we arrived in England and they would give me a weekly allowance. Although that would suffice for now, I wanted to find a part-time job as well and so would have to ask around to do so. As I already knew a few students and a couple who had part-time jobs, perhaps one of them could recommend one for me.

At any rate, I took a quick shower, got dressed, had breakfast with Mom and Dad, and taking my purse, I left the house, heading to the train station to head to town. Once I got off at the designated stop, I headed directly towards Arndale and took a look around. It was very similar to the shopping malls back in the US so that felt a little reassuring. The three main stores in Arndale were La Dauphine, Boutique Tide, and Kit Locker. I checked out all three of them but spent the most time at Boutique Tide, as it had the clothes I really wanted. I bought a couple of shirts and a couple of pairs of pants and after I finished shopping and got a bite to eat, I headed back home. As I headed back home, I wondered to myself how Merle and the others spent their Saturdays but then I suppose I figured I could always call them if I wanted to hang out or something.

Finally, I arrived back home and spent the rest of the weekend alternating between relaxing and catching up on my studies. Although I had pretty much adjusted to the time difference now, there were occasionally moments where my body felt like it needed a nap so I would do so when I could. Otherwise, I was adjusting to life here pretty well, all things considered. I had more freedom to plan out my studying and social activities as compared to my old school although I still had to attend the classes that were on my schedule during the week. However, I did have more free time as well so I could figure out how to best use it and since I was determined to get admitted to the best universities here and in the US, I needed to study as hard as I could.

On Sunday evening, as the weekend came to a close, I lay on my bed after I studied for a bit and I looked forward to the coming week. I’d find out what the music club at Northmain would be like and see if I’d meet anyone new. I hoped I would make more friends and perhaps if I got lucky, I might even be able to fall in love. Who knows? Anything seems possible.

_________________


Thank you for making my new set, Love.  ^^
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Miss Nile
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Female
Number of posts : 52966
Age : 21
Location : Egypt
Title : Miss of The Grand Nile
Registration date : 2008-02-29

PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Sun Sep 29, 2013 11:07 am

Yays for the new chapter. ^^ I can see that this chapter is mostly part of the game still but I am definitely intrigued about Alexia. If I am not wrong, it looks like she'll have an important part in the story later on. Can't wait. ^^

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Sun Sep 29, 2013 11:23 pm

Ahh yup. I kind of felt like something was off about this chapter but then I realized that it hasn't veered much off of the game yet but once Alexia comes into the picture, then there will be more originality and such. I'm trying to figure out when would be the perfect time to add her in but yup, she's a huge hint at things to come. XD

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Mon Oct 14, 2013 7:23 am

Ok, just got chapter three done and it looks ready to go so I'll post it here. ^^

Just want to give everyone a bit of a heads up, especially for those who have played the game. I did do some minor dialogue changes so I hope it doesn't throw things off too much. And there will be occasions where I'll change a possible choice that LRR gives the player, simply because I wish there would have been another choice. lol And finally, I guess this chapter still follows the game but I'm hoping that this will change with future chapters. XD

Enjoy and feel free to give me freedback. ^^

Chapter 3

It was the start of another week at Northmain. I adjusted to life pretty well here now although there were occasions where I felt some unfamiliarity. Fortunately, Merle and Dys were pretty friendly in helping me around, getting me acquainted and such.

During our lunch break on Monday, the three of us decided to hang out in the girls’ bathroom. Although I had been in the bathrooms at school, of course, this was the first time I wasn’t just going to stay for a couple of minutes and leave. I turned to Merle and said,

“Well, this sure is classy. Do you all really hang out in here?”

Merle nodded and replied, “Yup. This is the best place to get the latest news on what’s happening with everybody here and if you need any info, I’m the best person you can ask.”

I raised an eyebrow and replied, “So you talk about gossips and scandals and such? Man, I feel like such a girl.”

Merle smiled and replied, “Yeah, isn’t it the best? Right now, I’m working the whole Dys Marchelaure angle. But it’s all very hush-hush. Can’t really talk about it and all.”

I looked to the side where I saw Dys standing nearby and looking in her direction, I replied, “Is it maybe because she’s standing right there?”

Merle noticed Dys and replied, “Oh no. I’m getting all the best news from her-straight from the horse’s mouth, you might say.”

Dys sighed and replied, “You’re such a good friend, Merle.”

Merle and Dys continued their conversation and as I observed, Dys clearly looked uncomfortable with her being the topic of conversation although Merle wouldn’t drop it. As I wanted to spare Dys from any further embarrassment, I then said,

“What is this all about anyway? I mean-I can’t say that I’ve actually heard anything.”

Dys looked to me and replied, “There’s nothing to talk about, really, and I’d like things to stay that way.”

Merle then coughed, appearing as though she wanted the attention back on her. Dys sighed and said,

“Go on then.”

Merle looked to me and said, “Well, she’s right. There really isn’t anything to talk about yet. But you remember Shuppin? Sits behind you in registration.”

I replied, “My memory’s not quite that bad.”

Merle replied, “Anyway, you might have noticed that he and Dys aren’t exactly the best of friends.”

I did remember the encounter on Friday where I overheard Dys’ and Shuppin’s argument and I saw Merle’s point. Nodding, I looked to Dys and said,

“Yeah, I was quite surprised that you two were brother and sister, really.”

Dys looked surprised and replied, “Is it really that bad? I know that people who’ve been here a long time will have noticed but…”

I shrugged and replied, “Well, I didn’t really get that sibling vibe from the two of you but then I haven’t been here as long.”

Dys replied sadly, “Sometimes I don’t feel like his sister.”

Merle looked surprised and after a moment of silence, she replied, “Oh?”

Dys looked at her and replied, “What?”

Merle looked slightly disappointed and replied, “Damn. I was hoping you’d chuck a little more info my way but not bad, Caitlin. I’m liking your direct approach. Should we try to figure out the real story between these two?”

As I wasn’t the kind of person who liked to gossip or poke around in other people’s business knowingly, I replied,

“Umm, I don’t think that’s a good idea. I think Dys and Shuppin should just work things out for themselves, you know?”

Merle looked disappointed and replied, “Aww, you’re no fun.”

Dys looked at me and although she didn’t say anything, she gave me a grateful smile, as though silently thanking me for not agreeing with Merle to pursue the matter.

As we all left the bathroom towards the end of lunch break and separated to go to our classes, I was actually curious to know what the real deal was between Dys and Shuppin. However, I wasn’t going to poke my nose where it didn’t belong, hoping that those two would work things out.

On Wednesday afternoon, I decided to head to the music room for my first meeting of the music club. Cautiously, I entered the room and looked around. Although it appeared empty, I called out,

“Hello? Is anybody here? I wanted to know if I could sign up…”

Not hearing a reply, I thought to myself,

Merle must have given me the wrong information about the music club meeting here. I’m going to kill her.

As I was prepared to leave, a female voice suddenly called out, “Please wait.”

I stayed in place and looking towards the direction of the voice, I finally observed a beautiful blonde-haired girl standing before me, looking slightly timid. After a few moments of uncomfortable silence, she then continued,

“It’s just-I can’t believe it. A new member. I thought that no one would ever join this paltry excuse for a club.”

The girl continued to ramble on nervously and offered to clean the music room, making it tidier and such. I wanted her to feel comfortable around me so I gave her a smile and replied,

“Oh there’s no need for that. I like how this room looks. It’s cozy. You shouldn’t beat yourself up over every little detail.”

The girl relaxed and smiling, she replied, “Thank you. I haven’t introduced myself properly, have I? I’m Petime Rastegar. It’s very nice to meet you.”

I replied, “Ahh, it’s Caitlin. Likewise. Uhh I hope you don’t mind me asking but how did you come to be the only music club member?”

I did find it a little unusual that there was only one member in the music club since back at the schools I previously attended, music clubs were one of the more popular clubs to join.

Petime looked a little saddened and then explained about how she had a passing interest in music and heard some students playing their instruments during lunch break. I especially became interested when she mentioned about one particular student although Petime didn’t say his name. However, based on how she described this student, I had a pretty good feeling of whom she was talking about. For now, though, I decided to keep my guesses to myself.

As I was listening to Petime talk, I observed how formal she spoke English and how she spoke even better than some of the English royalty. As the other students didn’t speak like her, I guessed that she might not have grown up in England and if that were the case, I could find it easier to become friends with her. As it was obvious that I grew up in America, I thought that Petime and I could bond over how we were raised in different countries and how we spoke differently from others. However, I kept that possibility to myself for another time, as I didn’t wish to interrupt Petime while she was talking.

After a little more time passed, Petime said,

“I don’t wish to guilt you into returning to the club but it would be wonderful to have you return.”

I looked curiously at her and replied, “Oh do you have to leave now? I guess I got here kind of late.”

Petime looked sad and replied, “I’m afraid so. I’m only permitted to make use of this room for club activities until 4 p.m.”

I nodded and replied, “I understand. That’ll give me more motivation to return, right?”

Petime smiled and replied, “I hope to see you again, Caitlin.”

Then I took my leave and left the music room, heading out of the school and towards the station to catch the train home. As I was walking, passing by some people, I stopped a bit, as I thought I saw someone familiar but not someone from Northmain. I did a double take but that person wasn’t there. Shaking my head, I thought to myself,

Nah, that’s not possible. Alexia wouldn’t be here. She’s back in Michigan at our old school with our other friends. Why would she be here?

Quickly snapping out of my thoughts, I continued on my way to the train station, looking forward to a nice rest in my room.

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Mon Oct 14, 2013 7:32 am

Yays for the new chapter. ^^ Yup, I can see that most of the chapter is taken from the game but I am definitely intrigued by the last part. It sounds like Alexia is a good friend of Caitlin's and it would be interesting to see the story behind them. XD

Keep up the good work. Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Mon Oct 14, 2013 7:39 am

Ahh yup, you're definitely right about Alexia. The story will get more interesting once she's fully in the story so I'm trying to figure out the right time to put her in. XD

And before I forget, I'll try to update as often as I can. I might not have a new chapter every week but I'll do my best to post new chapters as often as possible. ^^

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Wed Oct 16, 2013 7:50 am

I must be on some kind of streak this week. Just finished chapter 4 and it looks good so I'll go ahead and post it here. I would have written more but it's already getting kind of long and I wanted to end it on a cliffhanger this time so here it is. XD

And of course, I'd love feedback and all that. ^^

Chapter 4

It was the start of another week and on Monday morning, I was on the train, frantically trying to finish my homework for classes that day. Although I usually wouldn’t have left my homework until the last minute, I hadn’t made much progress on it over the weekend. My mind would wander at times to last week where I thought I had seen Alexia. Although I had made it a point to be more vigilant of my surroundings and the people around me, I hadn’t seen her again. Also, it didn’t help that I didn’t yet receive an email from her, let alone a phone call. I’d hoped that she would have contacted me by now to let me know that things were ok on her end. I was worried and hoped that nothing bad had happened to her.

So there I was seated, doing my best to finish my homework, despite the rumbling movements of the train at times. When I looked up to take a brief break, it was then that I noticed a familiar figure sleeping across from me. Smiling to myself, I instantly recognized Shuppin. I thought to myself,

Looks like I’m not the only one with work. He must be pretty trusting, sleeping on the train like that. Or am I the only person who thinks like that?

Out of curiosity, I decided to check out the homework he had been doing, perhaps to see if I could help. When I took a peek, I noticed what appeared to be some unusual lyrics that Shuppin had written. Unable to keep my thoughts to myself, I asked,

“Is this supposed to be a song?”

Shuppin then woke up and replied, “Erm, kind of.”

In surprise, I took a step back and felt embarrassed. Shuppin must have seen the look on my face, for the next words he said were,

“I’m sorry.”

Immediately, I shook my head and replied, “Oh no, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to peek. I was just curious. Umm, so is this supposed to be a song?”

Shuppin nodded and replied, “Yeah.”

Although I wouldn’t call myself a musical expert or anything, I felt confused since I didn’t really understand the lyrics of Shuppin’s song. I was quiet for a few moments and then slowly replied,

“I…didn’t really get it. I mean, maybe I’m retarded or something. These things always go over my head.”

Shuppin gave me a smile and replied, “Nah, you’re not retarded. These lyrics really are horrible.”

He then went on to explain how he was trying to go for that deep, meaningful vibe with the lyrics but failed. Then he looked at me and said,

“I wouldn’t have pegged you as the music type, Caitlin. I’m impressed. A little annoyed as well but mostly impressed.”

I blushed slightly and replied, “Well, I try. So why are you writing song lyrics anyway? Are you in a band or something?”

Shuppin shook his head and then went on to explain how if he wanted to be a serious musician, he should start writing song lyrics but was obviously having difficulty doing so. Then I replied,

“Well, it’s good that you’re serious about it anyway, even if you’re not quite there yet. And well…”

I trailed off, feeling another blush come to my cheeks. Shuppin looked at me curiously and asked, “What?”

I replied, “Well, it’s kind of romantic-a young guitarist, struggling to find inspiration and all.”

Shuppin smirked a bit and replied, “How does everything with you come back to romance one way or another?”

I thought to myself,

That sure is a good question.

However, I replied, “But it’s true.” I then went on elaborating on how finding inspiration for lyrics could be romantic and finally concluded by saying,

“Perhaps some new experiences might help the artistic flow?”

Shuppin looked thoughtful over the idea and nodding, he replied, “So you think I need inspiration?”

I nodded happily and replied, “Yup, I’m sure that’s it. Once you find it, you’ll have no problems writing beautiful lyrics.”

Shuppin gave me a smile and nodding, he replied, “I’ll give it a try. Thanks, Caitlin.”

I returned the smile and replied, “Anytime.”

As the train soon after arrived at the stop where Shuppin and I would need to get off for school, I thought to myself,

Of course, when I mean new experiences, I mean new experiences with me.

As I then headed towards school, I thought about the conversation Shuppin and I had and felt a little closer to him. It was nice getting to chat with him outside of school although I did wish that we had at least a couple of classes together so I’d have a chance to talk to him more. As Shuppin hadn’t called me yet, despite that my phone number was listed on my FaceMate page and I knew that Shuppin had added me as a friend on FaceMate, I wondered if that meant that I’d have to be the one to call him. I had to consider that I might need to do so, especially if I wanted the chance to get to know him better, outside of school.

The rest of the week proceeded as usual although my mind was still preoccupied at times, thinking about Alexia. I could tell that Merle and Dys knew something was on my mind and although Merle tried her best to get the news out of me, I would quickly shake my head and assure her that it was nothing. After all, I didn’t want to make a big deal out of something when I had nothing to go on but my feelings.

******************

The next week was like any other. I continued to study and work hard in my classes and at the same time, I did my best to open up to more people although I kept my thoughts about Alexia to myself. After about half the week had passed, though, I was still worried about her, having not heard anything about her. So I finally decided to go to the local gym after school to work out and de-stress and such.

As I was working out on one of the treadmills, trying to get in shape, I overheard some sort of argument between one of the gym employees and a customer. When I listened further and looked in the direction of the argument, I then recognized Marius and it looked like the employee was angry at him for not paying his monthly membership fees. I shook my head and thought to myself,

I should have known it was Marius making all that noise and what does he think this is? A pub or something?

As I got off the treadmill and headed towards the cashier’s to make my membership payments, Marius finally saw me and whispered,

“Help me out, will you?”

Although I usually didn’t like people skipping out on payments out of principle, Marius was a friend and I thought that perhaps this would just be a one time thing so I turned to the employee and said,

“Ow! Those handles on that treadmill are really sharp. Someone should take a look at them and I hate dragging my lawyer father out here.”

The employee looked scared and quickly nodding, he replied, “We’ll take a look at that right away, miss.”

I then continued, “And you don’t even want me to get started on the state of those dumb bells. You could poke someone’s eye out with those.”

As Marius didn’t look like he was taking the opportunity to escape, I glanced at him and whispered,

“You know, a diversion doesn’t really work well if you don’t take advantage of it.”

Marius smirked at me and whispered, “Are you kidding? This is the best entertainment I’ve had all day.”

Fortunately, as the employee was preoccupied with looking at one of the treadmills I pointed to, Marius and I made our escape. Although I did feel bad about having forgotten to pay my fees, I figured that I’d do so next time. Once we were far enough away, I turned to Marius and said,

“Whew, looks like we made it.”

Marius smiled and replied, “Thanks for the save back there. No way would I have paid to use those facilities.”

I looked at him curiously and asked, “How did you go for so long without paying?”

Marius then explained about how he’d sweet talk the female staff, leave with other customers, and such and that’s how he’d get away without paying. Then he went on to explain how he only goes to the gym for the free heating and cable. All the while, I thought to myself,

That’s the only reason Marius goes to the gym?

He then concluded on how he knew that he wasn’t well-built and how he could if he tried but he was pretty lazy in working out. I raised an eyebrow and finally replied,

“I don’t know. You seem kind of like a lost cause to me. Don’t you have to be born with that kind of physique?”

Marius frowned and thinking that I had offended him, I asked, “Umm, are you ok?”

He then smiled and replied, “Sorry-I was just imagining really muscular babies.”

I punched him in the arm and replied, “Hey, you know what I meant. Anyway, the world needs skinny guys, too, right?”

Marius replied, “I may not be well-built but you could be. You punch like a man.”

Annoyed, I simply replied, “Urgh!”

He smirked at me and replied, “Calm down there, beefcake. You don’t want to pop an artery or something.”

Getting more annoyed, I replied, “You’re going down for that.”

Marius then ran away and I chased after him although after the workout I had, I couldn’t chase him very far and was soon out of breath. Seeing him continue to run further away, I thought to myself,

Gosh, I need to work out more if I’m ever going to catch up to him one day.

The next day, as I was finishing up some work at school and was getting ready to leave, I bumped into Shuppin in the halls. Smiling at him, I asked,

“Hey, what are you doing here?”

Shuppin smiled and replied, “I was thinking about what you said the other day about me needing inspiration and all and I thought that if I practiced in different places, I might find some.”

I looked at him in confusion, not really understanding what he meant by how he was trying to find inspiration. Then realization dawning on me, I asked,

“Oh you mean playing out on the streets or something?”

Marius then appeared and said, “Yeah. You finally got him down on the road to trampdom and he had his whole future planned out and everything.”

I was confused, having no clue what Marius meant. After all, I only mentioned to Shuppin that he should find a different means of getting inspiration. At any rate, I observed the conversation between Marius and Shuppin and tried to understand what they were talking about although it was a bit difficult. Marius kept mentioning about how “sex sells” and offered me a contract or something of the sort.

After Marius left, I looked at Shuppin and said,

“Uhh I didn’t really get all that but I hope you’ll find some inspiration and I definitely want to hear you play sometime.”

Shuppin smiled and replied, “Sure. I have to get going now but I’ll see you around, Caitlin.”

I nodded and after Shuppin left, I thought to myself,

Well, I’m not for the whole whoring part but I certainly wouldn’t mind hanging out with Shuppin more and listening to him play.

As I made my way towards the school entrance finally getting ready to take my leave, I bumped into someone. Feeling embarrassed, I quickly replied,

“I’m sorry. I should have watched…Alexia, is that you?”

To my surprise, I saw Alexia here at Northmain and this time, it definitely wasn’t my imagination.

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Wed Oct 16, 2013 7:58 am

Woot for the new chapter and that was definitely quick. XD I am very intrigued with the cliffhanger and nice to finally see Alexia. Can't wait for more. XD

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Wed Oct 16, 2013 8:04 am

Thanks. XD And yup, I'm surprised that I was able to come up with the next chapter quickly. I'm guessing that the next one won't come out until next week, at least, or maybe the following week if work is a lot and all.

And I can't wait to finally include Alexia in the story. ^^

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Fri Nov 01, 2013 11:34 pm

Ok, finally have the next chapter ready to go. This one is different from the previous chapters although towards the latter part, it's pretty similar to previous chapters. I'm curious to know whether this narrative style works better and if so, I'll use it more. Thanks. ^^

Chapter 5

It took me a few seconds to recover from my surprise at seeing Alexia but once I did, I stared at her and said,

“It’s really you, isn’t it?”

Alexia laughed and replied, “Of course, it’s me, silly. Who else would it be?”

Quickly, I shook my head to snap myself out of my shock and then grinning, I replied, “Wow, I can’t believe you’re here. I mean-I see that you’re here but how? I need an explanation now.”

Alexia nodded and replied, “Of course. How about we head to the Arndale and chat?”

I replied, “Sure but you know the Arndale?”

Alexia replied, “Yup. I’ve been here for a while now. Don’t worry. I’ll explain once we get there.”

I nodded and Alexia and I headed away from the school and towards the train station to catch the train. As we rode on the train, we found it quite crowded and loud so we didn’t get a chance to chat. After some stops, we got off and headed to the Arndale.

After we bought a couple of drinks and snagged a table, I looked at Alexia and said, “Ok, now spill. I thought I saw you last week or so but then I thought it was my imagination or that I was missing you so much that I didn’t receive a single email from you. And speaking of, what’s up with that?”

Alexia took a breath and then replied, “Yeah, I’m sorry about that. I really had meant to send you an email but everything happened so fast. It’s a long story but I guess you want the short version so here it is. After you and your parents left Michigan, I got really lonely without you. You’re my best friend and all. Dad saw how depressed I was and so he had this idea. Since your dad and my dad work for the same company, Dad thought about trying to get an overseas transfer for us as well and fortunately, it worked. I didn’t think it would happen but yeah, it did. But we had to make the move quickly which is why I had no chance to let you know what was going on. And besides, isn’t it more fun surprising you like this?”

Alexia grinned at me and sighing, I replied, “That’s just like you. I am surprised, without a doubt. But you know, when you got here, you could have found me and everything. We could have hung out together before now.”

Alexia replied, “Well, I wanted to surprise you although not like this. I wanted to arrive at my first day at Northmain and then have you see me and scream with joy or something of that sort.”

I shook my head and replied, “If it’s any comfort, most likely, I would have done so. But are you ok with being here? I mean-I’m happy that you’re here but you had to leave our friends, too, right?”

Alexia nodded and replied, “Of course. There’s no way I could go through my final year of high school-or I guess they call it ‘college’ here-without you.”

I smiled and replied, “Same here. So when I bumped into you back at school, were you registering for classes or something?”

Alexia replied, “Yup, that’s right. I was getting my class schedule finally and I was asking about clubs, too. I was hoping to join the drama club here. You know how much I love being on stage.”

I nodded and replied, “Ahh yes, that’s right. I was hoping you’d join the music club with me since there aren’t a lot of members.”

Alexia gave me a surprised look and I continued, “Yeah, I know. I don’t get it, either. It’s cool that you want to join drama but I have to give you a bit of a warning. Umm, the president-Rhett-he’s a bit of a jerk. I’ve never met him personally but that’s what my friends here have said about him although he’s quite hot.”

Alexia looked thoughtfully up at the ceiling and replied, “Ahh handsome and scowling? A challenge I could go for.”

I sighed and replied, “It’s your funeral but I gave you fair warning. Other girls want him but they haven’t had luck. And don’t worry-I’m not interested in him one bit.”

Suddenly, I looked down at my lap and although it was true that I wasn’t interested in Rhett, I was a little interested in Shuppin and I felt my cheeks warm at the thought of him. Alexia coughed knowingly and teasingly replied,

“So there’s another guy, huh? And I thought I moved quickly. You sure don’t waste any time.”

I looked at her in embarrassment and replied, “Hey, it’s not like that. There’s no guy that I’m that interested in dating at the moment. I just want to make friends here.”

Alexia laughed and replied, “Ok, ok. Speaking of, who have you made friends with so far? I can’t wait to meet them.”

Grateful that the subject had changed slightly, I chatted about all the friends I had met here so far and talked a little about each of them and how interesting they were and so forth. Alexia listened with a lot of interest and looked enthusiastic about starting school at Northmain.

As it was getting towards evening, Alexia and I got up and as we headed out of the Arndale, Alexia said, “I should get home but we can hang out this weekend and I’ll see you at school next week. Then you can introduce me to everyone.”

I grinned and replied, “Sure, I’m looking forward to that.”

Alexia and I headed towards the train station and as we rode the train, the two of us continued to chat happily away. Once we got off at our respective stops, I hummed happily to myself as I walked home. I had my best friend here and I couldn’t wait for everyone to meet her.

The weekend passed by quickly with nothing too exciting happening. Alexia and I continued to hang out and we both did a little shopping. It felt good hanging out with her after having been separated for a while.

The next week, I introduced Alexia to Merle and Dys and they were friendly towards her and asked a lot of question. Merle especially did. She’d ask questions about both Alexia and me but fortunately, as Alexia knew me very well, she was discreet in what she told Merle. Also, I introduced Alexia to Marius and Shuppin and not surprisingly, Marius tried to flirt with Alexia although Alexia took his attentions quite well, as she was used to flirting and being flirted.

On Wednesday, I attended another music club meeting and listened to Petime narrating an episode about a glockenspiel although I had no idea what that instrument was. After she was done, she asked,

“Have you decided what instrument you wanted to learn? Or perhaps you are already a musician.”

I replied, “Well, I did play an instrument a few years ago-the cello, to be specific. But I would like to try a different instrument.”

I looked around the room and noticed something big covered by a white sheet. Pointing to it, I asked, “Hey, what’s that?”

Petime took the white sheet off and replied, “That is a piano although it has not been used in a long time. I believe it needs tuning.”

I went over to the piano and tried to play a few keys but immediately found them to be off-key. Looking at the expression on Petime’s face, I surmised that she thought the same. She then said,

“A little tuning wouldn’t go amiss. But I wouldn’t want to force you to play the instrument. I heard that it can be an extremely difficult instrument.”

I nodded and replied, “Yes, that’s true but I can already chopsticks. I know it’ll be a challenge but I’m up for that.”

Petime smiled at me and replied, “I am certain you can do it, Caitlin.”

Although I was partially curious to know how Petime was doing learning an instrument, I remembered our first conversation and how she mentioned her interest in music and forming the music club. I had my suspicions on whom she had talked about but I wished to confirm them so deciding to be a little gossipy, I suddenly said,

“So Petime, tell me more about this guy you like.”

Petime blushed, obviously taken aback by my comment. After she recovered from the surprise, she told me about how this mystery guy was very talented at many instruments although she had only seen him play the guitar and also how the lower students were quite interested in him. Listening to her, I did confirm my suspicions and that she was talking about Shuppin. I couldn’t tell whether Petime simply admired him for his musical prowess or if she had a crush on him or something but there was a funny feeling in my stomach and suddenly, I didn’t feel like continuing the subject.

I was quiet for so long that Petime suddenly asked,

“Hey, Caitlin, is everything ok? I am sorry if I rambled on for so long.”

Quickly, I shook my head and smiling at her, I replied, “Oh no, it’s not that. I just have a feeling I know who your mystery guy might be.”

Petime looked shocked and replied, “Was I that obvious? Please don’t say anything, Caitlin.”

I replied, “Don’t worry. I don’t even know if it’s the guy I’m thinking of. Your secret’s safe with me.”

I gave her a reassuring smile and after the meeting was over, we left the music room and headed our separate ways. Although I tried my best to pretend that I was all right and that nothing was bothering me, I still had that weird feeling in my stomach although it wasn’t as strong. If my suspicions were right and Petime was talking about Shuppin, would this end up being a problem? I shook my head quickly and told myself,

No, this is nothing. I’m jumping ten steps ahead. First, I don’t even know what I feel about Shuppin right now. Second, I could be completely wrong about Petime talking about Shuppin as the mystery guy. Finally, even if Shuppin was this mystery guy, that doesn’t mean that Petime likes him. She could simply admire him, as a muse or something.

Feeling a little better after saying those thoughts to myself, I headed towards home, determined to keep a level head.

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Sat Nov 02, 2013 12:50 am

Love this new chapter and it's great that Alexia's finally shown up. ^^ It will be interesting to see how she and Caitlin get along in Northmain. =D

And I love the part about Caitlin thinking about Shuppin with Petime. The poor guy. He's sure got his hands full with girls. XD

Write more soon. ^^

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Sat Nov 02, 2013 4:15 am

Thanks. I think future chapters will be more interesting now that Alexia's in the picture and there will be more interactions between her and Caitlin. XD

And lol on Shuppin. He's like the most popular guy in LRR with the girls so no wonder. XD

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Wed Nov 13, 2013 7:28 am

I finally have the next chapter all ready so I'll go ahead and post it here. I'll make a comment after this chapter since I don't want to spoil anything here before the chapter.

Enjoy and I'd like constructive feedback. XD

Chapter 6

By the end of school the next day, I still thought about the conversation I had with Petime in music club although I had tried my best to put my worries to rest. Deciding that I needed to keep my mind off of it, I went to the local gym after classes were over.

Once I arrived at the gym, I went on an empty treadmill and began to work out. Although I certainly wasn't lazy, I felt out of breath as I was jogging steadily on the treadmill and thought to myself,

Gosh, this gets harder every time I come here but I know that it’ll all be worth it in the end.

As I was working out, I noticed that Dys had entered the gym and approached an employee to pick up something. She saw me as well and approaching me, she smiled and said,

“Hey, Caitlin, I didn’t know you worked out.”

I returned the smile and replied, “Heh, you know me, always pumping iron.”

The two of us continued to chat for a bit and Dys commented about how she should work out more but didn’t have the time. I nodded and replied,

“Well, you always seem busier with academic things. I can understand. I’m like that, too, but I try to get in a good workout every now and then.”

Dys replied, “I’m really doing all of this work so it’d look good on my personal statement. My family…is concerned about me getting into a good university.”

I replied, “Yeah, I can certainly understand that. I want to get into a good university as well so I’m really trying hard this year to balance myself out but keep up with my studies, too.”

Dys smiled and replied, “Well, I should get these reports back to Miss Chahan. I can’t see why she can’t get them herself.”

Dys then waved goodbye to me and headed out to finish her errand while I continued my workout until I was exhausted enough to call it a day and head back home.

***********************************

The rest of the week flew by quickly and before I knew it, it was the weekend. I was looking forward to it for a specific reason. I decided to gather my courage and give Shuppin a call, hoping that he would have time to hang out with me and so I could get to know him better.

After I’d had breakfast and such on Saturday morning, I went ahead to check my emails first. Most of them were the usual ones from my friends back in the US and such. Then I noticed an email from Petime about piano tuning. Curiously, I read it and she said that the piano in the music room was now tuned so I could use it whenever I wished. There was no mention of our conversation regarding Shuppin so I figured that Petime didn’t want to talk more about that subject.

Once I finished checking my emails, I turned off the computer and took a deep breath. I told myself,

Ok, I can do this. It’s no big deal. I’m just going to call Shuppin and ask if he wants to hang out today. If he says no, don’t take it personally. He might be busy or something.

Then I picked up my cell phone and remembering Shuppin’s number, as Merle had written it in my planner, I dialed it and then waited. There were a few rings and nervously, I waited. Then I heard someone pick up and Shuppin’s voice. I took one more breath and then replied,

“Umm, hi, Shuppin, it’s me, Caitlin. I was wondering if you wanted to hang out today or something.”

Inside, I thought to myself,

Good, I didn’t make it sound like a date or anything. Just made it sound like two friends hanging out together. Good move.

Shuppin replied, “Umm, whereabouts?”

I hadn’t thought that far ahead about where we’d hang out so quickly, I had to think of a place where we could meet. I thought of the first place that popped in my head and replied,

“How about the bakery?”

Then I slapped myself on the side of the head and thought,

Man, Shuppin’s never going to agree to that. He works there and he’d probably want to hang out somewhere that he doesn’t work at.

However, I was surprised when Shuppin replied, “I’ll be here all day so you can drop by whenever you like.”

As Shuppin sounded like he wasn’t against the idea, I replied happily, “Ok, I’ll see you then.”

After we hung up, I squealed quietly to myself, excited that I’d get to hang out with Shuppin for the day. I went to my closet to find an appropriate outfit. As most of my clothes were of the punk style, I finally decided on a pair of black punk jeans and a punk-style t-shirt. I grabbed a jacket as well, as the weather was getting cooler and I wasn’t quite used to the weather in Northmain yet.

Once I gathered my things, I went downstairs and left a note to my parents that I’d be out for the day but be back before dinner, as they had gone out for the day as well. Then I left the house and headed towards the train station to catch the train.

After getting off at the station in downtown, I headed towards the bakery. I was excited and nervous, as this would be the first time that Shuppin and I would really have a chance to hang out away from school. I entered the bakery and looked around. There was a tall blond-haired guy chatting with a couple of female customers and although he sounded like he had a French accent, it didn’t sound authentic to me. Then again, I wasn’t exactly an expert on France or anything French so I thought I could be wrong. I continued to look around and finally found Shuppin hard at work. I approached him and said,

“Hey, Shuppin, hope I didn’t keep you waiting.”

Shuppin shook his head and replied, “Nah, not at all.” He then noticed me-or rather, my attire-and said,

“Wow, you look like you just got back from a rave or something.”

I smiled and replied, “Thanks.” Then I thought to myself,

Well, as long as I don’t smell like I got back from a rave, we’re golden.

Then I took a seat at an empty table, hoping that Shuppin would have a break sometime soon and so we could have a chance to chat and get to know each other. However, I noticed Lufika enter and talk to Shuppin, and it looked like she was pleading him about getting the food for free or half-price or something. She looked cutely at him and I thought to myself,

Is it just me or is Lufika flirting with Shuppin just to get free food?

I continued to observe the two in conversation and it looked like they finally came to some sort of agreement. Lufika then got her food and left the bakery. Shuppin sighed and giving him a comforting smile, I said,

“Hey, I won’t try to be as difficult.”

Shuppin looked at me and asked, “Oh you’re still here?”

I raised an eyebrow and thought,

What kind of a reply is that? It’s like he doesn’t want me here or something.

Although I usually would have taken a little offense at such a comment, I decided to let it pass, figuring that Shuppin might be a bit stressed. So instead, I talked about the bakery but questioned about the use of accordions as background music. Shuppin smiled and as we continued to chat about the bakery and its owner, he said,

“The owner wants to hire more waitresses so if you want to apply, the job’s there. You don’t have to think about it now or anything.”

I replied, “Wait, he’s only hiring waitresses? No waiters?”

Shuppin replied, “Yeah, he, uhh, wants to balance things out a bit.”

I thought to myself,

What does he mean by that?

I looked curiously at Shuppin but seeing that I wasn’t going to get an answer, I decided to let the comment pass. He then asked,

“So what do you want to order?”

I looked at him in confusion and replied, “Huh?”

Shuppin replied, “Well, you are going to order something, aren’t you? I can’t give out any more freebies after Lu bleeding me dry.”

Although Shuppin’s comment did make sense, I didn’t want to hang out with him just to order food. Then again, I did suggest that we hang out at the bakery so really, the fault was mine. Quickly, I looked at my menu and said,

“Well, umm, in that case…”

As I looked to see what I wanted to order, I thought to myself,

If I hang out with Shuppin here every time, I’m going to be poor…and obese.

The rest of our time together was uneventful although Shuppin was very busy so we didn’t have a chance to talk again until it was time for me to head home. As I took the train back home and then walked, I thought about how I’d hoped that I’d get to know Shuppin better although the only thing I learned was that he was quite busy but even that wasn’t new knowledge or anything. Then there was the job offer and suddenly, I had an idea. If I applied for the job and got accepted, wouldn’t that give Shuppin and me more chances to hang out together? That could certainly work.

With that resolution, I decided that I would apply for the bakery job next weekend and arrived home feeling a little tired but happier and more hopeful than when I’d left the bakery.

Commentary:

So yeah, no Alexia in this chapter, unfortunately, but she'll make an appearance in the next one. And regarding the dates, I won't narrate every single date that Caitlin and Shuppin will go on since that'll be a lot. lol Rather, I'll only narrate those that are significant in terms of the plot line and all. Anyway, I thought it important to narrate this date since it's the first date and all that. XD

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Wed Nov 13, 2013 2:51 pm

Yays for the new chapter. ^^ I liked Caitlin's and Shuppin's first date and I can't wait to see how their relationship develops. =D

I've got a small comment, though. ^^ Some of the events that occur in game are mentioned here briefly in the chapter. I understand it would be a hassle to write them all down here and all, but it still feels a little rushed here. I'd suggest that if they aren't completely important to the plot of the story, maybe it would be best to cut them down completely. ^^ Of course, that's just my opinion but I think it would have made things a little better. ^^

Great job on this chapter and I can't wait for more. I'd have loved to see Alexia around but oh well, maybe next time. =D Write more soon. =D

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:04 pm

Ahh ok. As you can see, I'm playing the game while I'm writing the story so that's why certain events appear and all that. Do you think it's ok if I take out the events that don't have anything to do with the main plot-that is, Caitlin and Shuppin's relationship?

And with Alexia, her events will definitely be more OC rather than scripted although they'll be based on events that happen if the player follows a certain storyline in LRR. XD

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Thu Nov 14, 2013 12:33 am

Ahh yup, I think that removing certain events that happen in game but wouldn't affect the plot would be better. After all, this is fan fiction so it's fine to remove certain things that aren't useful to the writer. ^^

And I can't wait for more about Alexia. I am interested in her role in the story and all that. XD

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Thu Nov 14, 2013 4:00 am

Ok, coolies. Then I'll do that. Hopefully, I'll get a new chapter in next week but we'll see. XD

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Wed Nov 20, 2013 5:39 am

Wow, I have no idea how I was able to write a new chapter considering how exhausted I am but I guess I needed the distraction.  Anyway, it's all done and Alexia's in it.  Feel free to give me any constructive feedback and all.  XD

Thanks and enjoy.  ^^

Chapter 7

It was the beginning of another week-another week of school and catching up with friends and whatnot.  During lunch break, Alexia found me in a hallway and suddenly pulled me towards the girls’ restroom.  I wondered what was going on but didn’t say anything, knowing that Alexia would tell me soon.

As soon as we were in the restroom and Alexia quickly checked to make sure that no one else was there-I guess she was worried that someone might eavesdrop-she turned to me and with a certain look in her eyes, she asked,

“What happened to you?  I tried to call you over the weekend but you didn’t pick up.”

I remembered that I had turned off my phone for most of Saturday since I was out with Shuppin.  Then on Sunday, I had my phone turned off as well since I usually liked to spend Sundays catching up on studying and such.  I gave Alexia an apologetic look and replied,

“I’m sorry.  I guess I had a busy weekend so I thought it best not to take any calls.  Was there anything important you wanted to tell me?”

Obviously, I chose not to tell Alexia about my date with Shuppin, as mentioning it would have distracted Alexia from whatever news she wanted to tell me.  Alexia replied,

“Yeah, obviously which is why I tried calling you but anyway, I so have to rant to you.”

I gave a worried look and replied, “What happened?”

Alexia groaned and replied, “You were so right about that Rhett.  What a jerk.  He was going on about how I’d never be able to catch up on all the latest drama activities since I joined the club late even though I couldn’t help that.  Of course, I did say that I was totally going to try out for Gunsel and Juliet.”

I was confused and replied, “What?”

Alexia took a breath and replied, “Oh that’s the play the drama club’s going to do in the spring.  It’s based off of Romeo and Juliet but this one will be in an American setting.  Yeah, I know that’s confusing but that’s what Rhett and the drama head decided.  Anyway, Rhett made this smart aleck remark about how I wouldn’t have any favoritism because I’m American and urgh.  I just want to scream.”

Merle and Dys then entered the restroom and it was obvious that at least Merle had overheard part of our conversation as she said,

“I told you, Alexia.  I don’t get why you joined the drama club instead of netball with me and Dys.  Rhett’s not worth it.”

Alexia turned towards Merle and replied, “I didn’t join because of him.  I actually like being on the stage but you know what?  I’m so going to show him.  I’m totally going to be Juliet and then do so well that Rhett’ll be eating his own words and be on his knees apologizing to me.”

Alexia had this determined look that I knew all too well and knowing her as well as I did, I decided to quietly sneak out of the restroom while Alexia continued to rant, as she now had Merle and Dys as an audience.

As I walked in the hallways heading towards my next class, Shuppin saw me and approached me.  I was glad to see him and said,

“Hey, Shuppin.”

Shuppin smiled and replied, “Hi, Caitlin.  Umm, did you have fun on Saturday?  I’m sorry we couldn’t chat much.”

I replied, “Oh, it’s ok and yup, I had a lot of fun.  You know, I’m considering applying for that job you mentioned.  I could use the extra money.”

Shuppin replied, “Sounds good but I did warn you about the boss, right?”

I nodded and replied, “Yup but I’ll take my chances.”

Shuppin replied, “Ok.  Oh, I wanted to know if you know what’s going on with Alexia.  We had maths earlier and she had this look of anger or vengeance or something.”

I laughed quietly and replied, “I think I know but don’t worry.  It has nothing to do with you.  You’re safe.  Just don’t mention the drama club or Rhett to her and she’ll calm down.”

Shuppin nodded and replied, “Sure and thanks for the warning.”

I replied, “No problem.  I should head off to class since lunch is almost over but I’ll see you later?”

Shuppin replied, “Looking forward to it.”  

The two of us then headed our separate ways and went about our routine.

The rest of the week passed by quickly and on Saturday, after I checked my email, I decided to go ahead and apply for the bakery job so I sent an email and hoped that I’d get the job.  Then I hung out with Shuppin again at the bakery and chatted with him for a bit, as we did have a little free time so I got to know him a little better.  It was interesting to learn that he wanted to apply to music school in Glasgow and that he could play the guitar very well and played the violin a bit.  Then I spent the rest of the weekend studying and making sure that I was caught up on all of my classes for the next week.

At the beginning of next week, I went about my usual routine and such.  As I was finished with classes on Monday and prepared to go straight home, I saw Shuppin rushing to me, as though in a hurry.  He caught up to me and said,

“I’m glad I caught you.  I wanted to tell you that you got the job.”

I was surprised and replied, “Really?  That’s great but why didn’t your boss call me or email me?”

Shuppin shrugged and replied, “He gets so busy so he usually lets me handle these things.  I’m taking care of hiring a lot of the new waitresses so yeah, come to the bakery tomorrow afternoon right after school so you can begin training.”

I nodded and replied, “I understand and thanks for telling me.”

Shuppin replied, “No problem.  See you tomorrow.”

He waved goodbye to me and then rushed out of the building.  I left soon afterwards, feeling excited as I headed home.  I had hoped I’d get the bakery job and as luck would have it, I ended up getting hired and that meant that I’d get to hang out with Shuppin more.

After classes were over the next day, I gathered my things and headed out of school, deciding to take the train and head towards the bakery.  Although I had considered finding Shuppin first so we might head over there together, I had no idea what his last class was and thought it might take too long to find him.  I certainly didn’t want to be late on my first day of work so I decided to head over there.

Once I arrived, I saw that Shuppin was already in uniform.  He waved over to me and said,

“Hey, Caitlin.”

Suddenly, he had this weird look in his eyes and continued, “So…you decided to apply after all, huh.”

I raised an eyebrow and wondered to myself,

But didn’t Shuppin tell me the news yesterday about me getting the job and all?  He doesn’t seem too happy about it even though he was the one who recommended this job to me in the first place and everything.

I replied, “Uhh…shouldn’t I have?  This place isn’t all that bad, right?  And I mean, you’ve been working here ages, and…”

Shuppin suddenly stuttered, “A-ah, no, it’s not that…”

Suddenly, I heard a male voice say, “Miiilaaaniii!”

I thought to myself,

Umm who’s Milani?

I turned to the direction of the voice and observed a blonde-haired man with a French accent.  He then said something about how he didn’t want the newest family member-I guess he meant me-getting the wrong impression about working here.

Shuppin then turned to me and introduced me to Demi and said that he would be my boss.

I nodded and replied, “I did think it was a little weird I hadn’t met him yet…after, y’know, having the interview and being hired and all…”

Demi then replied, apologizing to me but explaining that he couldn’t handle all of the “mademoiselles” but that he could trust Milani to select the most charming ones.  I guessed that Demi meant Shuppin when he called him Milani although I was still confused as to the name change.

I replied, “A-ah, not at all…uh, thanks so much for letting me work here!”

I then observed Shuppin and Demi as they were talking about the number of waitresses who would be hired and such.  As I watched, I thought,

Shuppin’s been working for this guy for this long?  Geez.

Demi then turned to me and explained about how they had to turn to “drastic measures” and said that although the culprit might not approve, it had to be done.  I glanced at Shuppin and was amazed that he had that kind of appeal although I guess I shouldn’t have been that surprised, as I knew that Shuppin was quite popular among the girls in lower school.

Demi then told Shuppin about how I should learn about making coffee, buttering brioches, and such and Shuppin replied in a fake French accent,

“’Ow to understand your ridiculous, fake accent?’”

His voice then resumed its normal accent and he said,

“I swear to god, I hope a real French person comes in here someday.”

I couldn’t help but giggle at that comment although I covered my mouth so it wouldn’t be obvious.

Demi gave a face and then hurried off, telling us to get to work.  After he left, I replied,

“Well.  He was…interessant!”

Shuppin replied, “Yeah.  Just, uh, make sure you never come to work in a skirt.”

I gave Shuppin a look and replied, “Why did you offer me this job again?”

Rather than reply to my question, Shuppin simply smirked at me and then he began to explain my duties and showed me how to make coffee, butter the brioches, and such.  I spent the first day of work training but fortunately, I got the hang of things quickly so Shuppin nodded in approval and told me that I could start the actual work next week.

After I finished for the day, I waved goodbye to Shuppin and Demi who would handle the remaining customers until it was time to lock up.  Although I did feel a little tired, it felt good to be working and earning a little extra money.  Besides, the job was only once a week so I certainly could handle it on top of my schoolwork.

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Wed Nov 20, 2013 11:37 am

Yays for the new chapter. ^^ And I am glad to see Alexia getting into the story even more and how she is reacting to Rhett's moves. Can't wait to see how this unfolds in the future. ^^

And I love how Shuppin and Caitlin are getting along. =D

Write more soon. ^^

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Thu Dec 19, 2013 6:12 am

Gosh, I can't believe it's been a month since I last posted a new chapter.  Shocked  I do apologize for the lack of updates but fortunately, I had the time today to write a new chapter. My allergies are gone for the most part and I needed a break from my proofreading work so what better way than to write a new LRR fanfic chapter? XD Anyway, I'm not sure when I'll have the next one ready although I'll do my best to update when I can.

Enjoy. ^^

Chapter 8

The rest of the week passed by without anything interesting happening and the beginning of the next week was the same. Well, it was, for the most part. As I entered the school building on Monday morning ready to start another week of classes, Alexia found me and quickly dragged me into the girls’ bathroom.

Once we were inside and Alexia quickly made sure that no one else was there to eavesdrop, I gave her a look and asked,

“What happened now?”

I expected Alexia to look upset but instead, she gave me this excited look and replied,

“You will never believe what happened in drama club last week!”

Before I even had a chance to reply, Alexia went on, “I won’t keep you in suspense. I was practicing lines for Juliet’s role and I saw that Lamb was doing the same.”

Not knowing who Lamb was, I replied, “Lamb?”

Alexia looked surprised and replied, “You don’t know Lamb? Lamb Betchaku? The head of year’s daughter?”

Realization dawning on me, I replied, “Ahh yes, I see. I’ve never met her, though. What about her?”

Alexia replied, “Ok, so I was watching her practicing lines for Juliet’s role. I have to watch out for any potential rivals, you know. And then there was that Rhett praising her and that just irked me.”

I replied, “I see. So let me guess? You decided to sabotage Lamb so you’d have a better chance of getting the Juliet role?”

Alexia feigned a look of shock but quickly grinning, she replied, “That was my plan, at first. But I didn’t want to be downright mean to her, as I heard that she can be mean right back. So I decided to warm up to her and praise her as well. Then she started to notice me and said some nice things about loving my fashion sense…Anyway, on Friday, the most amazing thing happened!”

Alexia sighed happily and I replied, “Ok, so what happened?”

She looked back at me and replied, “Lamb invited me to hang out with her friends and we went to the mall and went shopping but here’s the best part. I got to meet her brother!”

I replied, “Uhhh, Lamb has a brother? What’s he like?”

Alexia replied, “He’s nothing like Lamb. He’s quite the hottie and he’s way nicer than Rhett. We were flirting and I got his number and he got mine. I can’t believe it. I so hope he calls me soon so we can go on a date.”

I held my hands up and replied, “Wait, I’m confused. It’s obvious that you like Lamb’s brother but how old is he? I mean, you should be careful when it comes to dating older guys and all.”

Alexia pouted slightly and replied, “He’s in his final year of uni so he isn’t that much older than us. And man, if you even only glanced at him, you’d see what I mean.”

I nodded and replied, “So it sounds like befriending Lamb turned out well after all. Does this mean that getting the Juliet role isn’t a big deal anymore?”

Alexia shook her head and replied, “Of course not. I’m still going to try out for Juliet. I need to prove Rhett wrong, after all, but now I have hope again. I was doomed to think that I wouldn’t find a hot nice guy around here.”

I laughed quietly and replied, “I see. I haven’t met Lamb’s brother but don’t worry-I won’t pursue him or anything. You should keep this news to yourself, though, for now. You know how Merle can be when it comes to hot guys.”

Alexia replied, “Yeah, that’s true. I hadn’t thought of that but yeah, there’s no reason for Merle to know. Thanks, Caitlin. I wanted to share my happy news with you.”

I grinned and replied, “No worries. I hope everything works out well for you and this guy, and good luck with drama, too.”

The bell rang, signaling that it was time for students to get to their classes, and I took it as a signal to head to my first class quickly. Alexia and I waved goodbye to each other and parted as we each headed to different classes.

On Wednesday, I headed off to music club after classes were over and seeing that Petime was already in the music room, she and I got a chance to chat and catch up. I was sad that the two of us didn’t have any classes together but at least it was nice to have music club. As we chatted, I thought about something and said,

“Lemme ask you a question, Petime.”

Petime looked at me curiously, wondering what I was going to ask. So I continued, “What kind of people would you like to join the club? If you could take your pick, I mean?”

Petime looked surprised by my question and replied that she would be happy to take anyone who wanted to join. However, she quickly added that she would prefer Sixth Form students since she wouldn’t be able to handle younger students so well.

I nodded, understanding what she meant. Then Petime looked at me and asked,

“Would you have any preference as to prospective members?”

I looked thoughtful, as I wondered who I would want to join as well. Then I remembered the conversations I had with Shuppin and he had brought up the subject of music and suddenly, I had my answer. I looked happily at Petime and replied,

“I’d welcome any students as well but I think we should try and get some guys to sign up!”

Then I went on to explain how getting some male students would balance out the club a bit, although I decided to keep the idea of having Shuppin possibly join to myself for now. Also, I told Petime about how I knew a few guys who might be able to join, at least once in a while.

Petime blushed for a few moments although I wasn’t sure why. She then replied,

“I’m afraid I will be little help in that regard-I am not especially familiar with any of the male students here…”

I nodded and replied, “I gotta admit, you seem more like a…girly girl. I couldn’t really imagine you hanging out with loads of guys!”

Petime and I continued our conversation, with Petime talking about the male friends she had back in Denmark and how she sees them once a year. Our conversation continued for a while and although I definitely wanted more guys to join, I told her that I’d be on the lookout for more girls as well and Petime replied that she could help find more girls as well. As music club ended later that day, Petime thanked me for taking the initiative to recruit more members and smiling at her, I replied that it wasn’t a problem and that I hoped we’d get lots of new members soon. Then we parted ways, heading home, as the sun was beginning to set and evening was arriving.

The next day, as I was hanging out in the common room, I was finishing up my work for the day and fortunately, I’d made a lot of progress that afternoon. After getting as much work done as I could, I set aside my study materials, stretched out my arms, and thought about going on my laptop and checking out FaceMate, as the school’s Internet connection was pretty decent. After all, I deserved a much needed break after getting all that work done. As I was busy on my computer, my ears suddenly overheard a conversation between Merle and Marius. Wondering what was going on, I decided to listen in, forgetting about going on my computer. I was confused about the topic of their conversation, as I heard words like “barns” and “cows.” It’s not like we live in the countryside or anything like that.

So deciding to interrupt their conversation, I said,

“I really have no idea what you guys are on about. What are you up to anyway, Merle?”

Merle turned to me and replied that they were just talking about the usual “FaceMate reconnaissance.” Then she went on, talking about the latest gossip going around in school. As I didn’t usually pay attention to this kind of news, I decided to zone out for a bit.

Suddenly, Merle looked at me with surprise and said, “Oh my god! Oh my god, Caitlin, have you seen this?!”

I looked back at Merle and replied, “Huh? What is it…?”

Merle replied, “Apparently, Lamb Betchaku’s throwing a Halloween party-she’s got an open invitation up here!”

As Alexia was in the common room with us as well, she overheard our conversation and approaching us, she replied, “Really? Why didn’t Lamb tell me?”

Merle looked at Alexia weirdly and replied, “Why would she tell you? Are you two friends or something?”

Alexia laughed a bit nervously, as though she suddenly remembered that Merle and Lamb didn’t get along. I remember hearing about that piece of news sometime back although I didn’t know the whole story behind their dislike. Alexia waved her right hand dismissively and replied,

“Oh not really. It’s a long story. I’ll tell you later.”

Merle nodded and turning back to me, she then said, “I know I’d be willing to put aside my hatred aside for a few hours, especially if it means I get to dress up and possibly shove some of her silverware down my costume!”

I thought to myself,

So Merle wants to go to Lamb’s Halloween party to steal from her? Great.

Merle then continued, “Okay, we’re totally going to this. I’m going to get my costume, like, right now.”

Although I liked the idea of going to a Halloween party and getting dressed up and such, I replied,

“It does sound pretty fun…are we even invited, though? I mean, I’m sure you guys are fine.” I looked at both Merle and Alexia since they knew Lamb personally before continuing,

“But I don’t even have her added on FaceMate.”

Merle looked at me and replied about how an open invitation was fair game and that besides, I could be her plus one or something.

I replied, “Well, uh, thanks!”

Merle then looked at Marius to ask if he was going and he replied that he’d be there and that he’d try to get Shuppin there as well, if he could stay awake or something. I smiled a bit, thinking to myself that the party could be quite fun if Shuppin were there, too, and we could get a chance to chat. Then Merle shouted at Dys, asking her if she was going to Lamb’s party as well. After Dys lectured her a bit about shouting in the common room, Dys had on this mischievous smile and replied that she’d be there, as there was no way she’d pass up on visiting her lair.

Dys then turned to Alexia and me and asked, “Oh, Caitlin, Alexia, you don’t have a costume yet, either, do you?”

I shook my head, replying that I had no idea where I could buy a costume.

Dys replied about how the four of us could go costume shopping tomorrow evening, as the owner of La Dauphine sometimes runs a Halloween stall and how we could find some good costumes there.

Enthusiastically, Merle replied, “Ooh, this is gonna be ace! Let me just take down her address, and-“

As Merle stopped speaking, I wondered what happened and saw that she suddenly turned to Marius, who had somehow gotten onto Merle’s computer during our conversation and was doing some things that involved “raising cows” and getting “experience points” or something of the sort. As I then turned to Alexia, the two of us talked about how fun it would be to go to Lamb’s Halloween party although I noticed a certain twinkle in her eyes. I could guess that there was another reason that she wanted to go but I certainly couldn’t blame her. I had my reasons for going, too, and hoped to see a certain someone there.

Unfortunately, Shuppin wasn't in this chapter although if I've played LRR correctly on the Shuppin path, he should appear in the next chapter since it'll include the Halloween party. I'm curious to know whether I should include Caitlin and Alexia's outing with Merle and Dys to La Dauphine to shop for Halloween costumes. I'm thinking of leaving this event out since I'll mention their costumes during the Halloween party anyway but please let me know whether you'd like me to include that scene. Thanks. ^^

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:50 pm

Woot for the new chapter and I like how Alexia seems interested now in Lamb's brother. XD Can't wait to see how this unfolds later. Very Happy

And ahh, I don't think it's necessary to include that scene unless it's important to the plot or something. Otherwise, I think it's ok to leave it out. ^^

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PostSubject: Re: The Start on an Interesting Year   Fri Dec 20, 2013 6:18 am

Coolies. I'll leave out the costume shopping event then. XD

Until Beck actually makes an appearance, he'll only be mentioned in subsequent chapters since the story is more from Caitlin's point of view. And hmm, I'm still trying to figure out how to get Alexia to like Rhett but I'll figure it out. ^^

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