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Something so flawed and free

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Booming laughs. Nervous laughs.
Shiny eyes, of students on the brink of tears, staring at teachers and waiting for reassurance.
Hiccups. Hushed crying.

People yelling “WHY DID THEY DO THIS?” “WHY US?”, “WHY DO YOU WANT US TO FAIL SO BAD?”
And then, suddenly, reality hits and it all goes quiet again.

Nobody was ready for such a news.
Nobody could be.
You know damn well that there’s no point in panicking or despairing, but it’s not that easy to calm down.

You keep telling yourself “Breath in. Breath out. Nice and easy, Niccolò. As soon as you’ll relax your palms will stop sweating, the pin and needles will be gone and you’ll be able to actually focus on what is going on around you” until it works, eventually, but it leaves exhausted. You just want to go home. Pay for this fucking diploma and be done with high school.

You had it all planned, for fuck’s sake.
You could already picture yourself discussing your dissertation in front of Martino - well, actually it would have been with Marti sitting in the back of the classroom and him and teachers in front of you… details you couldn’t be bothered to take into consideration, really - and he would have been so proud of you…

And now it’s all gone.
There’s some small comfort in seeing you are not the only one taking the news so hard, though. It is not just your brain being overdramatic.
Even Incanti looks like he’s about to faint, and usually he’s got that “I don’t even know what I’m doing here, I already know all this shit” attitude that nearly everyone seems to fall for. Not you, of course. Takes one to know one and all that jazz.
You are so apt at playing the part of a seemingly well adjusted student that you can see when somebody else is trying too hard.

Canegallo has been staring at the ground, wishing it would swallow him whole, ever since they got the news.

“Hey, hey… We’re all going to pass. We wouldn’t want to be the laughing stock of some people from 4th year, now, would we?” Edoardo says, regaining his composure as he tries to snap his friend out of his self-deprecating mood.

There something in the way he says it, in the way he briefly looks at you when he does… He’s talking about you as well, you’re sure of it.
You can’t tell why he feels the need to include you as well - he does seem to have noticed your existance only since Covitti started being nastier than usual - but you appreciate it.
Not that Martino would ever laugh about this, anyway. He would probably shoulder all your anxiety, make it his problem, and that’s why you better keep it to yourself.
All you’ve got to do is study more, that’s all. Hire a tutor, if that’s what it takes.

Use your charm to persuade teachers that it’d nice to know what kind of questions are inside those envelopes beforehand…

“I’m counting on you too, Fares. I’m sure Rametta will understand that you gotta play your part for the greater good.”

“I’ll see what I can do, Incanti.” You tell Edoardo, wiggling your eyebrows suggestively as you smile back at him. “But I’ll leave Mrs Costanzo to you.”