Iris "Irey" West the Second, the daughter of the third Flash, Wally West, and the second speedster to take on the mantle of Impulse, groaned as her head hit her desk.
"Whyyyy..." she moaned desperately, "why is life so hard?"
Her twin brother, Jai, snorted from where he had welcomed himself on her bed.
"If life were easy, wouldn't that just make everything boring?"
"No... if math were easy, I'd have more time to do what I want. If writing were easy, I'd have even more time to do what I want."
"Like what?" Jai asked. "Run around and kick villains' asses easily because everything is easy?"
"Jaiiiiii..." Irey whined again. "You know what I meeeean."
Jai shrugged. "Sure I do. That's why I'm here, right? To help you with your homework."
"Then help." The red-haired girl gave him a pleading look.
"Right, right." Jai slid the worksheet off the desk and looked it over. "'A company makes equally sized baskets. Each basket can hold six apples. Jeremy buys eleven baske-'"
"Wait, wait," Irey interrupted. "Why did Jeremy buy eleven baskets of apples?"
Jai gave her a funny look. "It doesn't matter. The point is that he bought them, not why he bought them."
"But isn't it weird? Like... there are six apples in each, so it's..." Irey went quiet, attempting to do the calculation in her head.
"Yeah, it's sixty-six apples. Who cares? Maybe Jeremy has a big family. But none of that matters in the math question."
"Okay," Jai continued. "So, he buys eleven baskets of apples. 'How many more baskets would he need to have a total of ninety apples?'"
"Ninety apples?!" Irey exclaimed, even less okay with this development. "Is Jeremy's family just addicted to apples?"
Jai sighed. "Maybe so. But answering that question isn't going to get you any marks."
"Fine, sure," Irey agreed, finally. "Just help me do the actual question."
"Alright, so, we've established he's got sixty-six apples already. Remember how we got that?"
Irey perked up. "Yeah, we did eleven lots of six!"
"Good, so then, how do you think we'll find the remaining number of apples?"
"Uhhh... take sixty-six from ninety?"
Jai grinned. "That's it."
"But I can't do that in my head! That's way too complicated!"
"What do you think your calculator's for?" Jai reminded her.
"Oh, yeah, I forgot about that!" Irey typed the calculation into the small grey device, and pressed "=".
"It says twenty-four," Irey reported.
"It's right," Jai told her.
"But it's not quite right," Irey added. "Cause that's the number of apples and the question definitely wants the number of baskets."
"True," Jai replied. It was nice seeing Irey so perceptive for once. "So what are you gonna do to turn the number of apples into the number of baskets?"
Irey raised her fist in the air, sticking her fore finger up too. "Divide it by six!"
Jai chuckled. "That's right. Now do it."
After another check on the calculator, Irey finally deduced the answer was four. "I did it! That was pretty easy!"
"Easy, huh? You can do the next one yourself."
"Okay..." Irey looked at the worksheet again. "'Amy has three bunches of tulips-' Ooh, Lian has tulips on her windowsill! Ah, maybe I should go see her-"
"No, Irey!" her brother interrupted exasperatedly. "The question! Finish the question!"
"Yes, right, the question."
Jai laughed at his sister's antics. Who knew? Maybe the thought of seeing Lian afterwards would motivate the young speedster to work faster. Or maybe it would just be a distraction...