AE – Chapter 1

Sitting in the back of the classroom Dietrich looked up at the chalkboard. Bored out of his wits he turned his head and started to zone out. The teacher droned about a famous general and his epic battle with turtle ships. The strange words caught his attention.

“Turtle ships”, Dietrich thought. “Kind of a cool concept, who would have thought of that one?”

Dietrich scrolled through the first few pages of his Navi to see pictures of the odd, archaic warship. He was never too fond of boats, but rather grew up loving planes. He clicked of the picture to find a boat with a dragon head. He was still confused to see the only part that may refer to the boat being a turtle was the hard top of the ship.

In a slightly raised whisper a few words escaped Dietrich’s lips, “Why not turtle dragon?”

“Dietrich, would you like to explain to the class what is keeping you from paying attention to the class?”

Dietrich blankly stared at the teacher as his mind raced to save the moment. A sharp ringing noise sliced through the silence as students rushed to pack their belongings for the next class.

“Saved by the bell this time my student, however tomorrow you may not be as fortunate.” As the teacher strolled down the aisle he barked last minute instructions. “For our next lesson we will fast forward to the twentieth century. Please read the rest of Admiral Yi on your own, they will also be on your test”.

“Hey Dietrich, want to go grab something to eat? I heard the girls are gonna go to that one new restaurant that just opened on 7th Street!” yelled his friend Derrick from across the room, doorway.

Dietrich smiled, “So is the Derrick Fan Club tagging along?”
Derrick’s eyes grew wide and his mouth formed a frown.
“HAH, what can I say, if I live the life of the most attractive boy at school?”

Laughing Dietrich responded, “Sorry, my parents asked me to pick up my sister today from school, maybe next time.”
“Alright dude, I’m gonna go in guns blazing today, wish me luck.” Derrick formed guns with his hands and imitated gun fire noises.
“Just don’t run out of ammo.”
“Never”, Derrick blew his finger tips as if he had smoking barrels and holstered his weapons. “I’m gonna go first then, I’ll talk to you tonight.”

Derrick waved and walked out into the bustling crowds fading away. Dietrich gathered his belongings and walked down the noisy hallway. Friday had officially arrived as the school’s walls resounded of shouts of joy, celebration, and friends making plans for the four day weekend. There was much excitement as students relished the much needed time off.

He turned the hallway to drop off some of his belongings in his locker when his chest met a furry object. A familiar female voice jolted.
“Oh, excuse me!”
“Whoa Jean you’re going to get run over if you don’t be careful!”
Jean wore the usual school uniform but added her own flare to it. She untucked her blouse with the usual black skirt. She wore different bright headbands or hair ties according to how she felt with a possibility of a punk band pin attached to her collar. She was somewhat of a loner at school, thus slightly introverted, and she could be spotted talking and singing songs to herself as she walked down the hall. However, when one gets to know her Jean was an unstoppable talking machine. Dietrich and Jean had known each other since elementary school, so they had similar a similar past with similar friends.
“HAH! By what? Please don’t joke! So what did you get on those scores? I beat you didn’t I? Huh, Huh!??”
“Oh shut up with the competition, I don’t even care”
“HA HA HA HA HA, it’s cause you can’t win!!! Don’t get butt hurt a girl is beating you!”
Dietrich scanned his thumb and the locker promptly popped open blocking Jean’s face. Jean shifted her head to get a better view of Dietrich.
“Dieeeeetriiiich!~ Let’s make a bet!”
“Forget it Jeannette, you win.”
“You are no fun, no fun, no fun, no fun, no fun”
Dietrich closed the locker and gave Jean a disgusted look.
“Fine, entertain me.” Dietrich started to walk toward the school exit and Jean trailed right behind him.
“YAYYYYY!” Jean threw her fist into the air. “How bout loser has to chew on grass for a whole week!? Ohhhhhhhhhh even better, Charcoal!”
“Gross, forget it. Loser buys food at that new restaurant that opened on 7th Street. All you can eat.”
“Okay! You got yourself a DEAL! You’re going down. Better ask your mommy for extra allowance!”
“Yeah, we’ll see Jean, once I start trying it’s OVER. I gotta go pick up my sister, catch you later.”
“OHHHhhhHhh! Say hi to Candice for me! Ok!?”
“Ok, Ok. Bye Jean.”
“See you later! Have a good weekend!”
Dietrich scanned the parking lot to find his car parked at the front of the school. He took out his key and his car hummed to life. As he exited the parking lot he spotted Derrick and the rest of his friends dividing up rides to go to the new restaurant. They spotted Dietrich and yelled his name unanimously. Dietrich smiled, rolled down the window and yelled, “Next time!”
Usually his mother would pick up his sister, but when they had to go away for charity events he was responsible to transport both he and his sister to and from school. Dietrich’s mother had only recently started to attend the charity events so his father could focus on other important matters. His father was a rising politician, but Dietrich didn’t know much about his father’s work. He was never really interested in politics, and his father made sure he left his work at the door. Home was always a time where family was together.
Dietrich drove into the elementary school to spot his sister with a group of girls.
He yelled out his window, “Candice let’s go!”
Dietrich’s sister was a short girl for her age. She had short hair held tight by a headband. She wore many bracelets on both arms and a mid length skirt with leggings. Candice opened the passenger side door and crawled into the seat. She spoke slowly with a slight lisp.
“Hi older brother.”
“Hello sister, put on your seatbelt. Jean asked me to say hi”
She reached back, pushed a button, and raised both her hands as the seat and belt adjusted to her height and weight.
“Jean…?” There was a slight pause as she tried to remember “…Your friend Jean?”
“Yeah the one that’s always yelling”
“Oh! I remember her! She’s pretty.”
“Heh. You hungry? You want to get something to eat?”
Instant joy lit Candice’s face. “YAY! Sunny bunny super meal!”
“Again? Fine, but you have to give me some of your fries”
“Okay!”

[BREAK]

Dietrich opened his Navi as he laid in his bed. The sun had set and rainclouds covered the sky in a thick mass. There was a distant roll of thunder. Thumbing through emails he came across an email from his mother asking if everything was okay. There was a small beep signaling a message had just arrived. It was Derrick.
Can we hang out tomorrow? We’re all supposed to meet up at the restaurant again. There’s some awesome food. 1:30PM tomorrow. Be HUNGRY.

Dietrich shot a message back

I was waiting for you to ask, I’ll be there.

Dietrich waved his hand across his Navi and flicked his fingers upwards popping his music player up. He fiddled around his desk to find his headphones.
“Synchronize Headphones”
He let out a sigh of relief as music flooded his senses.
Dietrich closed his Navi, closed his eyes, and drifted into sleep.

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