Spirit Splinters, Part 2

Battle tactics wasn't as exciting as I had hoped it would be. Mostly we just sat at our desks while a teacher rambled on about swordfighting, blocking, and attacking. However, we were informed that next week we would actually get to use a sword, so I just had to endure it until then.

Elly shared my sentiments. "That was boring as hell," he complained, moving down to our next class. "I can't believe we have three more of those classes before we actually get to swordfight."

I nodded, studying my schedule. Looks like the next up was "Supernatural Creature Education". I hoped it was going to be more interesting than it sounded, unlike Battle Tactics.

Not looking where I was going, I bumped into someone's back. "Oops! Sorry!" I apologized, hastily folding and putting away my schedule.

"You should pay more attention," repriminded the person, turning around. It was a student boy, with combed, golden-brown hair and rectangle glasses. He stood a good head taller than me, with an upright posture and folded arms.

I noticed there was a pin on his lapel saying Hall Monitor.

"I'm sorry," I repeated. "I just need to get to class..."

He stood aside to let me go past, but Elly immediately, and rather too late, rushed to defend me. "Watch what you say!" he told him, hands on hips. "You can't just go around repriminding people!"

The other boy simply pointed to his pin. Elly's face fell. "Oh..."

I grabbed his arm and dragged him off. "Come on, let's get to our next class! We'll be late!"

He relented, slowly walking beside me, but still steamed. "That stuck-up bastard! I hate people like him! I bet he's a rich noble. I can just feel it; he's used to ordering people around."

"He is a hall monitor," I corrected. "He has to order people around."

We emerged into our class along with the other newcomers. Elly spotted a few spare seats and hauled me toward them, flinging himself down on the chair beside me and putting his legs up on the desk.

I groaned inwardly as I took my seat. I would never be able to escape him, would I?

The teacher at the front, an older guy with balding hair and a... pentagram... drawn on his bald spot, rapped the desk for silence. "Quiet, please, quiet, please! Feet off the table, laddie! Now, you may call me Mister Penilepso, and I will be teaching you. This class deals with how to spot and kill supernatural creatures..." I sat up. This would be useful.

"Now, our first project will be: vampires." he stood up and walked into the front of the blackboard. "The first thing you have to know is that they are easy, very easy to find, but less easy to kill, so keep that in mind. However, the longer a vampire lives, the more powerful it grows. Does anyone know anything about how to spot a vampire?"

A boy's hand shot up. "They have pale skin and red eyes, are vulnerable to sunlight, are allergic to garlic and holy water..."

"Only about half-right, boy." Mr. Penilepso drew a list of words on the board. "They can be repelled by exposure to sunlight, although it will not kill them but just burn them a little. It's rather like being dipped in a bath too hot for you; it's merely uncomfortable for them. Garlic however, ingested by one, is fast-acting and will kill them almost immediately, although it is quite difficult to get one to eat some.
"The easiest and most preferred method is a stake throught the heart, preferably oak. It does not have to be a stake, however, a spear or a sharp branch works just as well."

He turned to the class again, his sharp red eyes alighting on me. "Miss, please come here."

I froze, not sure whether he was talking to me, then got up and scurried to the board. "Y-yes, sir!"

He flipped the board around. On the other side there was a large, close-up photograph of a very pale-skinned vampire, I assumed. She had dark, almost black eyes and her mouth was open slightly to show the tips of two fangs. She looked about my age. I shuddered; what had happened to her after they had taken this photograph, I wonder?

I stood beside it stiffly. "Can you tell me the difference between these two girls?" asked Mr. Penilepso. There was silence for a moment, then someone spoke up. "The girl in the photograph is prettier."

Giggled swept the room, and I blushed scarlet. Mr. Penilepso sighed. "Yes, that is correct, actually. Vampires are possessed of an unearthly beauty, and looking for beautiful people is a sure way to find one. It's a myth, however, that they have red eyes-- demons are the only species to have perpetual red eyes, although you won't be studying those until your second-to-last year at school."

He nodded at me, and I returned to my seat. "Vampires have black eyes," he continued. "Or at least, very dark ones. They also have fangs, but they usually hide them. The vampire in this picture was a newly-turned one, and she wasn't able to hide her fangs very well, so that is why they're visible. It's also a myth that they can be killed by holy water. Any religious symbolism has no effect on vampires, and mostly they'll just laugh at it.
"Next lesson is Dhampyrs," he finished. "And for homework, go to the library and write me an essay on the effects garlic will have on the systems of Vampires and why. Class dimissed."

vampires

I continue to read spirit splinters and am still interested ,good story so far .

Roo

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