May 9, 2016 by Lyn Thorne-Alder
Enrie had a stolen book with possibly-treasonous material in her book bag — she remembered well how Taikie’s room had been rifled through just a few months ago — and a lump in her chest that she was trying to ignore. She also had a plan; a plan that wasn’t going to get her in trouble (as far as she could figure) and an angry Instructor Pelnyen glaring at her.
“Lady Enerenarie. Do you and your little friends have trouble planned for me today?”
“No, Instructor Pelnyen.” His class wasn’t for hours! “If you’d like me to come up with something, I’m sure Tairiekie, Saydrie, and I could manage, however. We might have to consult with Riensin and his team, though, to get it done in such short notice.”
“Don’t think I didn’t notice you staring at my office door, you impertinent waste of a vowel.”
“I’m not sure it’s wise for you to be talking to students like that, Instructor.” Enrie was mortified with her own, well, impertinence, but she had been staring at Pelnyen’s door. “The architecture here is quite amazing, don’t you think? I like the way the carving on your door imitates a tent flap. I don’t think I’ve seen that anywhere outside of this building.” She bowed politely. “I am going to be late to Biological Sciences… I was just cutting through to avoid the weather.”
“Hrmph. Well, I’ll see you in class, I’m sure.” He made it sound like a threat.
Enrie bowed again. “You will, yes, Instructor.” She tried her best not to make it sound like a threat right back.
They probably should not have tweaked his nose with the Humanic Aether papers, but he had so clearly been targeting Taikie. He’d been more direct about his animosity since then, but that only meant they could see him coming.
Of course, if he caught them breaking into his office…
Enrie took her own advice and worried about the problem directly in front of her. She had no classes with Ulunumani; the girl was not in her year. She would have to confront her at lunch, where she might have others with her — her team, other royals, people like Olisama’s hanger-on Kagnyaa. And Saydrie and Taike would be with her. It would look like a challenge.
Enrie lifted her chin. It should look like a challenge. After all, that was what it was. A challenge to Ulunumani’s integrity, her honor. That was the only way it would do any good.
She made it into Biological Systems just before the clock. She slid into her seat between Taikie and Saydrie, to find the one pale and worried-looking and the other white-knuckled and angry.
Instructor Rezhtareza wasn’t in front of the class. Instructor Kaasmasik was.