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The Gossip Box

Chapter Text

Ava fastened the last button on her shirt before pulling on her navy blazer. She had a jumper folded in her satchel but the day was bright and warm so she didn’t think she would need it. She had ironed her shirt and packed her bag the night before so there was no need to worry about whether she had everything. She checked regardless of this and sure enough, everything was in her bag. She got her keys from the hall table and straightened her collar before she opened the door and walked to the bus stop.

The bus was busy, it always was on the first day back. Her eyes found all the usual groups. The over excited first years laughing and chatting with their friends from junior school at the top of the stairs. The second years who thought they were so cool with rolled up tracksuits and cropped hoodies. It took her a moment to find the fifth years, mostly sitting at the back of the bus. It was probably because she knew them that she saw more distinct groups but there was a clump of rugby players, a gaggle of the popular girls complete with badly bleached hair, the one resident stoner and…

“Nora!” Ava spotted her sitting between a window and a first year girl speaking animatedly to her friends

They’d seen each other countless times over the summer but going back to school was different, this was their first year of senior certificate and they wouldn’t be having as many classes together so every second would count. It was perhaps because of this that she was annoyed to see that blonde in her seat. Obviously it was a bus and there were no assigned seats but her and Nora had claimed those seats in third year.

“Sorry,” she tapped the girl on the shoulder “would I be able to sit there.” There was no response so she asked again but louder “Can I sit there please” the girl showed no intention of responding so Ava gave up and shrugged her shoulders, not wanting to scare a first year on their first day.

Nora stood up and they walked a couple rows further back and sat together. They waited for Gary to arrive because his house was slightly closer to the school. When he got on he sat across the aisle from Ava and they caught up on what they’d missed. Gary had spent his summer abroad so unlike with Nora, Ava hadn’t seen him since the end of last term.

Fifteen minutes later the bus pulled through the gates into the school car park. The kids who got driven were already walking in through the familiar double doors, Ava picked up her bag and got out of her seat to let Nora get out behind her. They chatted as they walked up to the doors and went inside before splitting up to go to their lockers. Ava was in form 5C so she had a locker on the bottom floor but both Nora and Gary were in 5F so they had to take the top floor lockers.

When she got to her locker she noticed a shorter girl standing in the way. Ava didn’t recognize the blonde hair or the school bag so she assumed it must be a fourth year. She tapped her on the shoulder and asked her to move, politely of course but when the girl didn’t respond she raised her voice a bit the girl turned and all Ava caught was a glimpse of bright blue eyes before the girl shoved past her.

Her hockey bag and spare hockey stick were still in her locker from last season so she just needed to deposit her gum shield and shin pads. She checked her timetable to see which books to grab: Politics, English and history. None of which were with Nora or Gary. She grabbed her copy of ‘The Complete Poetry of Emily Dickinson’ and put it into her bag before heading to form room.

This year it was her job to rally committee chairs for the annual Model UN conference. She’d been on the MUN team since first year but as a fifth year this was her first year where she was eligible to chair. She went to form room and signed in with her form tutor then stood up at the front of the room to try and get peoples attention.

“As I’m sure you all know, the annual STARMUN conference is running in two months. We are getting some guest chairs from Coast City, National City and Gotham but we need two chairs for each committee from this school. Anyone taking Politics can put their name down.” Ava scanned the class to see if anyone was paying attention.

“Nerd”

 

Ava looked for the source of the word. Her eyes landed on a short girl sitting at the back talking to Zari. She knew Zari however all she knew about the blonde was that she must be new and that she had a serious attitude problem. Ava didn’t know her and if the fact she was chewing gum and messing with her seat was any indication, she probably didn’t want to know.

Mr. Hunter told her off, as he should have. She was right about her being new given the fact that Mr. Hunter had to check her name on the role. Now she knew her name at least, Sara Lance. She was undoubtedly going to be popular, blonde, pretty, a quick dismissal of academics, she probably wouldn’t like sports either. Most likely going to spend her year going to parties and kissing random guys. Ava could have sworn she saw Sara wink but she quickly shook her head out of her thoughts and finished her speech.

She handed the printed sign up sheet to one of the guys in the front row. Hopefully someone had listened to some of what she had said. She left her form room and headed down the corridor and visited all of the other fifth and sixth year forms. She told the classes to return the sheets to the theatre at lunchtime. All she needed was for ten people to sign up, how hard could it be

~

Sara’s alarm buzzed in her ear. It took her a moment to realize why, then she remembered. School. She’d moved to Star City back in early August so she didn’t know that many people. She’d met a nice girl called Zari at one of the local cafes and had struck up a conversation with her so at least she knew one person going into into the Secondary school. Dragging her feet she ambled to the bathroom. Her clothes for the day were simple, a tight burgundy t-shirt and a pair of black trousers. She didn’t put in any of her piercings because she didn’t have a desire to have her lobes ripped on the first day so she left her outfit at that.

The new school was private but they offered full scholarships to people who displayed exceptional ability in various sports and academics. Sara was skilled in both, at her old school she was known for her hockey skills. She hoped that at the new school this wouldn’t change.

The bus stopped fairly near her house so she shouted a goodbye to her dad and left the house. The bus was nice, far nicer than the one back in Coast City. It had two floors and nicely upholstered seats. Despite the fact that the school was fee-paying it didn’t have a uniform, this meant she could easily see the different types of people. There was a group of goths sitting in the back looking tired and some over excited first years by the steps. She scanned the bus for Zari, they’d messaged the night before and Zaris stop was about ten minutes before Sara. She quickly spotted the telltale flannel shirt and walked over to catch up on how things worked in the school.

As the bus pulled up to the school gates she was struck by how big it was. No wonder it was a private school, no way a public school could fund this. She waited for Zari to get out of her seat then they walked together through the school gates. She pulled out her timetable and checked the information on the back.

Form 5C,
Form room G13,
Locker G151,
Locker code 19-59-08.

She walked down the stairs and found herself in a long corridor. She had sat fairly near the front of the bus so the corridors hadn’t yet filled with people. Checking the locker numbers as she went, she walked down the corridor with Zari, when they got about half way Zari went to her locker down a side corridor. Eventually she found her locker, it was nearly direct opposite her form room. She opened her locker and deposited her books from her bag, her first three classes were Politics, English and history. She was grabbing her textbooks and a couple blank copies when a girl walked up beside her, Sara ignored her presence and continued to look for her books when the girl pushed her shoulder.

“Would you mind moving” Her voice was polite in tone and Sara looked at her. Her hair was pulled into a tight bun and she was wearing a navy blazer. Oh, She was one of those girls, the ones who won’t let anyone have fun. Sara chose not to respond. “Can you please move” her voice was more forceful this time. Still Sara didn’t want to respond, she just put her books in her bag and pushed passed the girl before heading to form room.

Her form class seemed nice enough, Zari was with her so that was a plus. Mr. Hunter, her form teacher, went through the roll call before letting one of the students come up to speak. It was the girl with the locker beside her. At least now she could put a name to a face. Ava Sharpe, it was fitting, it matched the girls undoubtedly ridiculous sharp rules. She mentioned something about conference but Sara wasn’t paying too much attention, instead choosing to talk to Zari about the teachers. Upon hearing the mention of MUN Sara muttered under her breath

“Nerd”

“Do you have something to share,” Mr. Hunter looked at his role “Sara Lance.” Sara rolled her eyes and responded with as much annoyance in her voice as humanely possible

“No, Sir”

Ava looked unimpressed. She glared at Sara who winked back. Ava didn’t seem to notice as she turned back to the class and finished her speech before she handed a form to a guy in the first row then left the class.

The form made its way around the class, Zari signed her name. Admittedly Sara was surprised that Zari was into this sort of thing, but Sara was a past delegate herself and she’d chaired at her old school despite what her comment about Ava might have implied so it couldn’t hurt right, even if all her signing up did was annoy Ava. With this thought in mind, Sara signed her name.