He’s smarter and faster than all the others…
Except me. He’s never been bested by a girl before, so the expression on his face when I ran ahead of him was priceless. We were racing to the cliffs, and I swear I almost had to stop because I was laughing so hard. I still won. But before he reached the finish line, I had to go because I saw my Dad heading towards me, face flushed and eye brows squeezed together so hard it looked like they might break.
And it isn’t surprising.
He doesn’t like it when I race, or do… normal people things. I’m supposed to stay in the Highlights, an upperclass city where Perfects live- I’m probably the only one that’s ever really spoken to a non-Perfect.
Dad is walking closer, and I can’t really run any faster because I am out of breath from the mile race.
“Kathleen you get back here!”
I look over my shoulder, grinning when I see him trying to run… well, it’s more of a hobble.
I want to tell him to stop, to leave me alone…
Not that anyone listens to me. I’m just a descendant of an annoyingly long line of Perfects. So, all I can be expected to do is be perfect, since my parents and their parents and so on never in their life even looked at a non.
Dad catches up to me, grabbing my shoulder and turning me around. He taps me on the foot with his silver-leaf cane. “Kathleen, you were supposed to meet Oak in Lesht today! What in the world were you thinking, hanging out with a non?!”
“You’re making this a big deal… and it’s not! I swear. We’re friends, and that’s it!” I answer, turning to leave, but his hand stays firm on my shoulder. “You are going to go apologize to Oak, and then come home and you can spend some quality time with your room.”
That’s what he says every time I do something wrong, or as wrong as you can get with him- so I hear it a lot…
“Wait. Why was I meeting with Oak today?” I ask, yanking myself out of his grip. His eyes flash with annoyance, and then he starts to walk alongside me, his cane tapping the ground. I fold my arms as I wander forwards, watching my feet move.
“You can’t tell me you forgot,” Dad glares, rolling his eyes. I quicken my pace. “Yes, I can. Care to remind me?” I snap, and Dad tries to match my stride, but all that ends up happening is he nearly trips and I have to bite back a laugh. His face flushes red. I first thought it was from embarrassment, but…
Then I see Jayvon. He must be annoyed that I just left him.
“Hey, Kay- why- oh, who’s this?” He asks, slowing to a stop in front of me. He points to my dad, who looks…
Constipated. I bite back another laugh.
“This is… my Dad.” I tuck my purple hair behind my ear. Jayvon looks up at me, and he must have seen the reluctance in my eyes, because he nods and leans over to kiss me on the cheek.
“Bye,” I whisper.
He turns away.
“Just friends, huh?” My Dad mutters, reminding me he exists- and I roll my eyes. “Weren’t you supposed to remind me of something?” I grumble. Dad taps me on the leg with his cane.
“You,” announces, “are turning sixteen in four days.”
I freeze. “Four… days?”
“Yes, and Oak was supposed to prepare you for it.”
“What is there to prepare for? I’ll just dress up again, pretend to say I care about whatever happens in the Highlights, and then we’ll be done.” I toss my hair over my shoulder, and Dad starts moving forward again. “Kathleen. There is more to it than that.”
“What, Dad? Because I don’t care.”
“You forgot about the magic part too, didn’t you?”
“No.” But I’m sorta surprised. He never uses his magic, so I thought it would be useless that his daughter has it too. Mom didn’t use hers either… My parents were, for once, less than perfect when they divorced a year ago. She left for this guy that she met at a sky transit drop-off, and… then three days later, she disappeared with him.
But that’s not my point.
Dad hasn’t used his magic since I was born. That’s my point.
And now I am going to get magic- in four days. Does anyone else think trusting me with magic is a bad idea??
Cuz’ I do.