Here is this week’s scene from Boot Camp. I hope that you’re enjoying seeing how Aeron is getting on in training. I’ve been told that my edits for Full Circle should be with me soon so I will update you when I receive them.
As always, please excuse the typos,
I hadn’t much liked school.
An’ considering I weren’t all that good in school an’ spent most of my time hiding from Jenny and other kids who thought I was a freak, I wasn’t looking to hide in the air vents in the class in boot camp… but only ‘cause I couldn’t fit in no air vents now.
“Lorelei,” the tutor muttered as she pointed at the board with pictures on it—It was meant to be interactive but I’d walked past and it had shot sparks. “What roles exist in CIG?”
I rubbed my hand to the back of my neck. “Er…” Now, Renee looked after folks. “Protection,” I said then stuck my tongue out to think. “Er…” Frei and my mom… “Investigation.”
“Yes,” the tutor said in a really patronizing tone. She weren’t real friendly and she had a sharp nose like my mean aunt Sara. “And?”
“Er…” My mom kinda saw freaky stuff. Was there an official word for freaky stuff? “Meddling.”
Sissy chuckled from beside me then dipped her head as the tutor glared my way.
“You want to do the assault course, Lorelei?” the tutor snapped.
“Nope,” I said not getting why she was mad. “Why, I get it wrong?”
“Most of the time,” the guy shot. He was the one who’d been getting snippy with me in the line to get my uniform.
“Well, I ain’t been in CIG before. I ain’t gonna know what’s right unless somebody teaches me, am I?” I muttered back at him and held his glare.
The tutor folded her arms. She had muscled biceps but she was shorter than Nan. Her legs didn’t look that muscular just her arms. “You had a briefing file to read.”
“I did?” I shook my head. “I got clothes and a cell but I didn’t get no file.”
“Did you drop it like you fell over the curb?” the snippy guy said and turned to his buddies who looked a whole lot like him: big, dumb, shaved blonde hair and mean smiles.
“Hey, when you grow enough to where mens’ shoes, then you can heckle.” I nodded to Sissy. “You don’t need to wear mens’ shoes. You’re the right size for you.”
She beamed up at me.
“That right?” The guy stood up.
“Yup.” I folded my arms back at the tutor and flexed my biceps. She mighta had some muscle but she didn’t match mine.
The door opened.
Frei strode in and everybody shot to their feet, the tutor turned into an ice pop, but I tried to get up, the chair stuck to my butt, and I sent the table in front of me onto the floor with a loud clunk.
Frei met my eyes. “Pick it up.”
“Sure,” I mumbled, pulled the chair off my butt and hauled the desk up with one hand.
“Lorelei, outside,” she folded her arms. Now she had real muscles in her uniform. A lot more muscles than I’d seen in her suit.
“Sure,” I mumbled again and lumbered out of the door.
Frei closed it. “You are disruptive.”
“It’s not my fault the desks are for short folks.” I waved at the door then sighed. “An’ I don’t get why I was being heckled.”
“You said we meddle,” Frei shot, her icy blues glinting.
“I don’t know the official word but you do.” I rubbed the back of my neck again. “You sneak in, protect folks Mom has decided you do, an’ you find out why they need protecting… when they didn’t ask you to help.” I pursed my lips. “Meddling.”
Frei opened the door to the class. “Assault course. Now.”
The class sprinted out of the room, tutor included and headed down the corridor with Sissy trailing at the back.
She raised her white blonde eyebrows at me. “That means you too.”
“How am I supposed to know that, you weren’t even looking at me.” I sighed and turned around to trudge to the assault course. I’d already been made to do it before breakfast, twice.
“Lorelei,” Frei said in a tone that made me hunch.
“Yup?” I weren’t gonna turn back around and look at her. It was scary enough hearing her voice.
“Your class run it twice.” She had a cold edge to her voice.
“Sure.” I went to lumber on.
“Lorelei,” she snapped.
I did hunch this time. “Yup?”
“Your class run the course three times,” she said in a colder tone still. I didn’t get how Renee seemed to like her so much. She was mean. Even her hair looked mean… and kinda cool.
“Sure,” I mumbled not sure why I got to run it so much and went to lumber on again.
“Lorelei,” she snapped.
I hunched and ducked too. “Yup?”
“They run it five times,” she said in a voice that sounded like she was trying to impale me on her tone.
“How ‘bout we just run it until you make up your mind how many times you want us to run it?” I shot at her over my shoulder, glad I couldn’t see her face. “I thought the senior officer in charge of CIG, with being the strategic lead, chief meddler—” still couldn’t remember the word, “—and co-coordinator of protection duties would be good at decision making.”
Frei marched around and glared up at me but she weren’t that much shorter and she felt way bigger with that glare. “You didn’t get a brief, Lorelei. Where did you learn that?”
“The guy next to me had his open and was using a highlighter,” I said with a shrug. “How come I ain’t allowed a briefing paper and you get mad at me when I can’t answer questions?”
Frei studied my eyes like she was trying to see what the inside of my skull looked like. “How much did you read?”
“Dunno, the tutor kept us sitting there for ages.” I shrugged again. “She didn’t show up until just before you did.”
“I know. She was with me.” Frei’s eyes glinted. “You can read a brief you’re prohibited from reading but you can’t remember that when I give you an order, you salute.”
“Oh, sure.” I stuck my hand to my head like everyone else did.
“That’s not saluting. That is waving your hand against your ear.” Frei put her hands on her hips.
I hunched again thinkin’ I was gonna have to try and hide in the air vents from her. “I ain’t needed to salute nobody before.”
Her lips got so thin they looked as pale as her face. “Your only answer when you talk to me is ‘yes, Ma’am or no, Ma’am.’”
“Yes, Ma’am,” I mumbled hoping she’d quit heckling.
“Why are you standing around?” She barked, loud enough I heard folks dropping stuff in a classroom nearby.
“Yes, Ma’am,” I yelled back and tried saluting. I could figure this CIG stuff out.
Frei raised her eyebrows. Her lips on the corners twitched. I would have said it was a smile but Frei never smiled, she was just scary. “You wish to live on the assault course, Lorelei?”
“Er… No, Ma’am,” I said and saluted again.
“Then move,” she snapped at me.
“Er… sure.” I turned around then stopped then turned back around. “I mean… yes, ma’am…”
Frei waved her hand and walked off.
I saluted just in case then trudged my way out to the assault course. I smiled as my class huffed their way through the obstacles.
“Frei said to run it five times,” I said to the tutor who was stood watching.
“You heard her, five circuits, move.” The tutor glared at me but I headed to the start and smiled at Sissy.
“Aeron, my legs are shorter than yours,” she mumbled. “I had to run it twice with you earlier.”
“But you’ll have real tough legs if you train that hard,” I said with a smile. “An’ you got me to lift you over the high wall.”
She chuckled as we jogged to the nets in water on the floor. “But they don’t.”
The muscled dumb guys were trying to reach the top of the wall, which I had to jump to catch the top of, and the ground below it was some kind of mud which I guess CIG must have put there as everywhere else was asphalt or hard dirt.
I easily reached the top of the wall which meant Sissy could. “But team work is the essence of success in the field,” I recited to her from the brief I weren’t allowed to have read.
Sissy smiled. “I’m glad I’m on your team then,” she said and helped me through the nets by wriggling along in front and shoving the dirt built up in the water out of my way.
“I’m glad I’m on yours. You figured out the clothes’ contraption,” I said back trying to ignore the weird feeling the water gave me. I hadn’t displaced nobody’s ailments and I weren’t sick but the water still felt ready to suck me under.
One of the dumb guys yelped as he dropped from the wall and landed on his butt.
I grinned as me and Sissy reached the wall and I lifted her up then hauled myself up with ease. I kinda liked the assault course, even when most of the recruits didn’t… and it sure beat class.