It was clear that Phil was anxious. He kept shifting his weight from side to side, his hands were sweating, and he had so much nervous energy he could run a mile or two. But still, Phil had to continue with the cause of his anxiety. Phil had to walk through the barrier, leaving his family behind.
He had to go to Apharce Academy.
He would've told his parents that he would stay in contact, but he was not permitted contact with anyone outside Apharce. His family would have never sent Phil here if it wasn't law that they had to.
Phil was obligated to go to Apharce Academy because he was "different".
Phil didn't want to be telekinetic and chlorokinetic. He could care less if he could control plants, or move objects with his mind. He just wanted to be with his family.
Phil hugged his parents one last time, forcing himself to stay strong, to not cry. If he cried, so would his parents. He didn't want to make them upset.
Empty promises of seeing each other soon were made, even though everyone knew exactly what they were: little lies, to help ease the pain of not seeing each other for four years. Phil wasn't allowed to leave until he was twenty.
Phil finally left his parents, and walked through the forcefield.
Phil was now standing on a bridge, a grand castle before him. I'm attending Hogwarts, aren't I? Phil thought.
The castle was incredible, with beige stone building up to present rose pink and pastel blue peaks. The turrets made the castle double in size, and seemed to hold either classrooms or dormitories. Phil had been told the word Apharce came from Latin, translating to "evergreen", and soon Phil realized where the school got its name from. Surrounding the castle was a bright forest, a meadow filled with wildflowers being the only thing separating the castle from the evergreen.
Phil didn't even notice the man who had approached him from the castle because he was staring at the castle.
"You're Mr Lester, am I correct?" The man said. His voice was sweet but stern, and he had authority placed throughout his facial expression.
"Yes, sir." Phil responded weakly.
"I'm Professor Baker, the headmaster of Apharce Academy. Welcome, Mr Lester. Come, let me show you around, and escort you to your dormitory. Your bags will be in your dormitory when we arrive there."
Phil had almost forgotten about the suitcases and backpack he had brought with him. He set his backpack on the ground with his suitcases, and followed Professor Baker down the bridge, and through the archway connecting the bridge to the courtyard.
Professor Baker showed Phil where his classes, the dining hall, library, and common areas were, but Phil barely payed attention. He was too caught up in noticing all the plants adorning the corridors, and discretely helping wilting ones perk up once more.
"And lastly, this is your dormitory, floor five, room B20. You have a beautiful view of the courtyard and forest, I wouldn't have requested a better view for myself. You'll have your first classes tomorrow, but for now, get settled into your room, and join us for dinner in the dining hall."
"Thank you, Professor," Phil said as Professor Baker left Phil alone in his new room.
The room was quite bland. There was a dresser at the end of the a full bed, a small beside dresser next to it. There were a couple shelves on the side of the wall near the door leading to the corridor, and on the side of the room opposite the bed there were two doors: one a small closet, and the other a bathroom with a shower.
Even though the room was bland, Phil believed the Buffy posters and family photos he brought would help bring a more homey feel to it.
Professor Baker was right, Phil's bags were already in his room. Phil decided to unpack before dinner, hanging his posters, attaching a string of lights to the shelves he had previously adorned with a few books, school supplies, and his ukulele, and thumbtacking the pictures of him and his family on the wall near his bed. He even added the houseplant that he was able to save after being mangled in a suitcase to his bedside table. Phil was just happy to have a plant in his room, as a little reminder that why he was here was a good thing, not a bad one.
As Phil unpacked his suitcases and started putting away his clothes, he noticed the school uniform in the closet: black dress pants with a white shirt and a black blazer which had an evergreen tree embroidered onto it, along with a black tie. Phil decided to wear his own clothes to dinner, bringing one last reminder of the morning with his family with him.
Phil had almost made it completely to the dining hall himself when he noticed someone: the boy had his blazer unbuttoned, and his tie was hanging around his neck, undone. His shirt collar wasn't folded down neatly, instead it was standing upright around the boy's neck. His curly hair was neatly in place, and he had an expression on his face that Phil thought was the definition of "I don't give a shit".
Phil didn't realize he bumped into him, literally.
"Oh, I'm so sorry," Phil stumbled over his words as the boy turned around.
The boy smiled, slightly amused. "What's your name?"
"Well, watch the hell where you're going, Lester." the boy motioned with two fingers towards Phil's legs, and almost instantly, Phil was knocked over by a gust of wind.
"Cut it out, Howell! Leave him alone!" Phil heard someone yell at the boy.
"And why should I listen to you, Liguori?" The boy asked, even more amused than before.
"I don't think you'd like to end up in a weekend detention for attacking the new kid who's rumored to be just as powerful than you."
"Bullshit," the boy spat.
"He has two abilities too. You're not the only one. You always were, but now you're not. So I suggest you leave, before you find out exactly how much it hurts to be bitten by a fox."
"Screw you," the boy said, and made his way to the dining hall, clearly mad.
Phil saw a hand extended towards him, and Phil grabbed it, getting to his feet.
"Sorry about him, he's like that with everyone. I'm PJ."
"I'm Phil." Phil smiled.
"You can sit with me at dinner, if you'd like." PJ offered.
"I'd love that, thank you." Phil followed PJ through the doors of the dining hall.
"Who was the kid that knocked me down?" Phil asked PJ as they walked.
"That's Dan Howell. He's trouble, and he's powerful too. He can control fire, air, and water, and he's omnikinetic - which is easiest described as mind control. You're supposedly the only one as powerful as him."
"Really?" Phil questioned, "I'm only telekinetic and chlorokinetic. I'm not really that special, unless you count being able to turn off the lights from across the room and reviving dying plants special, that is."
"That sounds pretty special to me. Plus you have two abilities, which is more than everyone else but Dan. So you're already close to matching him, and he's not gonna like that."
Phil and PJ arrived at the table they were going to sit at. There was a girl sitting there already, playing with a ball of lightning between her hands.
"Phil, this is Dodie,"
"Hi!" Dodie said, still playing with the ball of lightning sparking from her fingertips.
"Ms Clark, put the lightning away!" A teacher passing shouted at Dodie.
"I hate Professer White so much," Dodie mumbled as PJ and Phil sat down across from her. "He hates when we use our abilities, but I think it's just because he's scared." Dodie looked annoyed, but quickly smiled at Phil. "What can you do, Phil?"
Phil looked at the book Dodie had sitting on the table, and Dodie smiled as she watched it float into the air, and slowly fall back down. Phil then noticed a flower Dodie had tucked behind her ear looked as if it was wilting, so with two fingers, he motioned upward at the flower and it looked like it was freshly picked.
"You have two abilities?" Dodie asked.
"Wow, Howell's not the only one now," Dodie smiled.
"What is his problem anyway?" Phil asked.
"That's the thing: no one knows," PJ said.
"No one knows because no one's been his friend. He's not the friendly type," Dodie added.
"Oh," Phil responded quietly.
It was that moment that Phil promised himself something.
Phil would not be scared of Dan Howell like everyone else was.