Mikael Anselm Lundqvist
Looking for Apples
Sat Jul 1, 2017 00:54

When Anssi followed the rest of the first-years (and that one teenager) into the Fine Dining Room, he expected there to be a few rows of chairs and tables and maybe some polite applause from the older RMI students, too. Instead, there were no chairs or tables, and five big fires literally on the floor, and some loud cheers, and glitter. The Finno-Swede blinked, equal parts confused and overwhelmed. This was all very unexpected.

Fortunately, his eyes were drawn to the strangest-looking of the fires and he quickly spotted his big brother lit up by the grey firelight. Anssi didn’t move to wave at him or anything; he knew it wouldn’t get a reaction, anyways. But there was a moment where they looked at each other and then Ruben smiled, in a very Ruben-ish way that was neither supportive nor discouraging. He didn’t feel quite so nervous after that. Not entirely not-nervous, but he spent a bit less time fidgeting with his new robes, fingers dancing along the hems of stiffly-pressed sleeves, and a bit more time listening to what the woman smiling in a very not-Ruben-ish way was saying.

He didn’t really know what she meant by a dream catcher. Anssi knew what a catcher was, because this summer he had started playing on a kids’ softball team for the first time. Before this summer, the only sports camp he had gone to was for innebandy, which was played with a ball and sticks on the ground and overall meant that softball had been a really big learning experience for him. But by now, he knew that the catcher was the person who kind of crouched down behind the person with the bat and tried to catch the ball if they didn’t hit it with the bat in time. What did it mean to be a catcher for dreams, though? Was there a special type of night softball?

Fortunately, again, Anssi didn’t have to stand in confusion for too long, because the kids around him were fishing out little round rope-strung nets with feathers that he quickly recognized as the one he’d gotten with his acceptance letter. He pulled out his own from the pocket of his robes and saw that it had turned a deep red. Red meant Draco and the red fire. That was easy enough.

Finding a good place to sit down around the fire was less easy, because Anssi didn’t want to be in anyone’s way and awkwardly tip-toed around a few older students before he found a gap where he could be close to the fire but still see the front where the woman in a fancy purple dress was standing. Listening to the rest of the woman’s talk was even less easy, because she was mostly just listing names that he didn’t know, and then she kept being interrupted by the same bearded man from his school tour in the springtime.

They were apparently going to have a test on the very first day of classes. Anssi’s eyes got wide. He was okay at school, and he liked history, but he didn’t know anything about American history (except for the story about a man with an apple tree that his new American schoolteacher in Houston had mentioned, but he hadn’t understood the story so that probably didn’t count).

He was still thinking about this when they were released to eat, and turned immediately to the person sitting beside him. “Know you the story which is being about a apple-tree man? Can you tell it to me?” Anssi was not really frowning or even talking in a panicked way; he was too confused right now to be properly panicked. But he expected that would change soon. He wasn’t very comfortable with sudden schedule changes, and he hadn’t gotten any warning about their test until now, and now was too late to learn all of the history. “It is I think the only part of the American history that I know, but still I do not know it, really. But I have to be knowing something for the test.”

  • Draco House Fire (nm) - Busy, Busy House Elves, Wed Jun 28 05:19
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    • Looking for Apples - Mikael Anselm Lundqvist, Sat Jul 1 00:54
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              • We can figure it out! - Remington , Tue Jul 25 21:12
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          • Actually, he invented the shoe - Teal, Mon Jul 3 14:06
            Teal resisted the urge to groan as the kid showed her his dreamcatcher. He hadn’t fallen for it! If he’d believed he was in the wrong house, she coulda conned him into doing something really silly.... more
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