Kent stood staring in awe of the headmaster's office. "It's all yours now, my son. Have I told you lately how proud I am of you? If only we can get Grim to take his duties as team leader seriously. Have a seat," Kent's dad pulled out the chair before making a call on the intercom. Curious, Kent looked up to see what his dad was doing.
"Yes, send her in now. My son is ready to meet his first-ever advisor." After what seemed like twenty minutes, a girl wearing a short skirt and a striped blouse entered the office. Her hair was piled atop her head. She had blond hair and hazel eyes.
"Kent, this is Lydia Markem. She'll be your new advisor for the next four years. Also, Miss Markem, please watch the dress code from now. I'll take my leave now so you two can get to get to know each other. Have fun!" Lydia folded her arms across her chest.
"Let's cut to the chase, shall we? I don't want to be here and you probably wish that you weren't my headmaster-"
"Miss Lydia, do you always enter meetings like this? While I admire your bluntness, I caution you to be very careful with your words and tone of voice from now on." Kent wrote down a few things.
“What are you doing?”
“Writing down your irritating characters. Blunt. Moody and rude.”
“And you're arrogant.”
"Do I seem arrogant to you, Miss Lydia?"
“Stop calling me that or I'm going to storm out of this office right now!”
"Fiery. Hmm... That characteristic could come in handy one day."
“You know.. just because you're handsome-”
“You think I'm handsome?” Kent blushed. Lydia clenched her fists. She wondered how much longer she was going to have to be stuck here.
Once the clock struck five o clock, Lydia couldn't get out of there fast enough. Kent watched as she packed up her stuff.
"Just who are you, Lydia Markem?" Kent wondered out loud before locking up the office. All in all, he thought, it was a good idea..but that girl.. she's impossible. Yet he found himself intrigued and curious about her.
Kent took his phone out of his pocket and dialed. "Hi, Jeanie. It's Kent. Can we meet somewhere? I could use a friend right now."
"Hi. I got here as fast I could- Kent?" Jeanie slid down next to Kent against the wall. "Hey.what's going on?"
"Do you remember how we met, Jeanie?"
"Of course I do! What kind of question is that?"
Kent sat with his back against the wall. He was just about to enjoy his lunch meal when he heard faint sobbing. Quietly, he sat down next to the girl and tapped her on the shoulder. "Hey.. are you okay?"
The girl lifted her face enough for Kent to see a black eye and bruises on her face. “What happened?”
“I walked into a door.”
'Does that door have a name? Is that why you're crying. Are you in pain?" The girl scooted away from Kent just a tiny bit.
"Back off! I have pepper spray, and I'm not afraid to use it. Don't come any closer to me."
“Relax. I'm not going to hurt you. I just want to help you.”
“Why? I'm an embarrassment.”
"Hey, don't talk like that! Tell me what happened. I'm a stranger, so you'll possibly feel better after getting it off your chest, right?"
Earlier that day...
After class, Jeanie tried to catch up with Grim. "Grim, wait!" Grim turned around with a disgusted look on his face.
"Oh. It's you. What do you want? Can't you see I'm busy with my friends right now?"
"Here. You said you were hungry, right?"
"Huh? Isn't this your lunch? I'm not taking anything your filthy hands have touched!" Grim screamed.
“Stop it. You're making a commotion!”
“Then get the hell away from me!” Holding back tears, Jeanie ran to the lunchroom lounge.
"Do you know that girl, Grim?" Tiger asked.
"Nah. She's just an annoying girl in my class.
"You were kinda rude to her. She's cute. Go apologize to her! Go do it. Or I'll say you have a crush on her and that's why you were rude to her!"
"You wouldn't dare! Anyway, I'm not apologizing to her. I did nothing wrong. Come on let's just go to lunch." Back in the private lounge, Jeanie finished telling the stranger her story.
"Oh, he said all of that, did he? By the way, my name's Kent. Kent Lincoln and Grim's brother. I can take care of this for you."
"What? No. You'll just make it worse. Besides, I have enough to deal with as it is. I'm Jeanie Powerful."
"Jeanie Powerful? I'm a bit confused. Grim talks about you quite a bit to be honest. I'm not saying I don't believe you, but why would he be so rude to you like that?"
"Bruised ego, maybe?"
“Pfft!” Kent spat out milk laughing.
"You've met my brother for like, what? Only two weeks, right and you've already figured him out that easily."
Jeanie smirked. "Oh, look. The bell's about to ring. Nice to meet you, Kent!" Jeanie ran off hurriedly, leaving Kent to stare after her.
Kent stood outside of Grim's class, waiting for him. "Hey, little bro... What are you doing? What is it, is something wrong?"
“Yes. You! Come with me. You have some making up to do.”
“Huh? Kent! Let go of my arm. Jeanie?”
“Apologize to her right now!” Kent bopped Grim in the back of the head.
"Ouch. Did you have to hit me? You... Wow.. not only are you a tease but now you're a snitch, too?"
Jeanie punched Grim in the mouth. "Learn to get your facts straight before spouting nonsense, okay?"
"Okay. Do you want an apology? I'm sorry I embarrassed you, but I have an image to uphold!"
"Really? Is that all you care about? Your stupid image! I'll leave you alone from now on then. I regret ever being nice to you!"
"You didn't call me out here to take a stroll down memory lane, did you? So what on earth is going on, Kent?"
"Do you think I have what it takes? I mean, to be the headmaster of this school.. because honestly, I don't think I do."
"Hey, don't talk nonsense. You have every bit of what it takes. You have kindness and wisdom and you approach each situation with caution and fairness. It's no wonder your dad is proud of you. For what it's worth, I'm proud of you, too." Jeanie put her head on Kent's shoulder.
As Jeanie walked along the halls, she could hear people whispering about her. "Why doesn't she just break up with him?"
"Probably for attention."
"Yeah, you're probably right ."
“Did you see her black eye? Doesn't it look gross?”
“I'd never let myself get in a situation like that.”
“She's disgusting! Stay away from her!”
And then when Jeanie couldn't take anymore of their whispers, she growled as loud as a lioness to scare them off.
“She's so weird. No wonder she doesn't have any friends!”
Kent cleared his throat. "March back right here and tell Jeanie you're sorry for making fun of her! Oh and just so you know, she does have friends. She has me! I'm her best friend. "
Instead of obeying Kent, they giggled and ran away. "Are you okay? They didn't upset you too badly, did they?" Jeanie rolled her eyes.
"What do I look like to you? A kid who can't fight her own battles?" Jeanie smiled.
"Did you just growl at those bullies though?"
"Sure. It's better to scare them off then try and meet their demands. Look, I know I'm weird and I can deal with that, but what I can't handle? Is someone jumping to conclusions? Anyway, I'll see you later after school!" Back at home, while Jeanie was doing her homework, Mama Rose called for Jeanie to come downstairs.
"You... Grim... What are you doing here?"
“I brought you something.”
“Is this your way of apologizing to me? Ugh. You're so annoying. I'm done trying to impress you. I don't matter to you anyway.”
Grim grabbed Jeanie's arm gently. "I'm sorry, okay? I screwed up. Please just forgive me. Let's go get some eggnog, okay?" Jeanie pushed Grim out the door, slamming and locking it.
Just as Jeanie was about to call it a night, her phone rang. "Shawn Paul. You're back from Europe? You want me to come over? Okay... I'll be there in a few. Ha. She doesn't care what I do as long as I'm home safe." Jeanie walked along with her earbuds in her ear, so that's why she didn't hear him approach. He grabbed her.
"Hey! Let me go! I have pepper spray, and I'm not afraid to use it! Let me go right this instant, you freak!" Jeanie kicked the man, but the man slapped her.
"Shut up. I'll give you something to scream about, alright."
"Hey! Let her go! I said let her go!" Shawn Paul hit the man with his stick. "Now get out of here before I call the authorities. Jeanie? Jeanie, are you okay? You're shaking. Come on... I'll make you some hot chocolate," Shawn Paul put his cloak over Jeanie's shoulders.
After an hour, Jeanie heard what sounded like banging on Shawn Paul's door. "Hey, what was so urgent- Jeanie?" It was Grim and Kent. "Why did you call them here? Do you know how embarrassing it is that I was almost abducted?"
“What?” Grim and Kent shouted in unison.
Grim sat down next to Jeanie. "Jeans, are you okay? Tell me the truth. Are you okay? Tell me everything and don't hold back."
"No! I am not okay. I try to be nice to you and what do you do? You embarrass me! I'm being bullied enough. Do you see this black eye? My boyfriend punched me and then today... I almost get kidnapped. Do you know how scary that was? Oh and guess what? I've just been diagnosed with vertigo." Jeanie collapsed to the ground.
Shawn Paul sat next to her, pulling her closer to him. "Hey... It's not your fault. Everything's going to be okay. From now on, you'll always have us. Right, guys?" Grim and Kent agreed silently.
"As for that boyfriend of yours, where can I find him? I'm going to teach him a lesson about keeping his hands to himself!" Grim stormed off.
Kent looked up to see Lydia standing in the doorway. "I heard somewhat of what you said, Headmaster. Your friend is right. I see how you are with the other students... You're kind and patient. I envy that, you know? Don't get the wrong idea. I still don't like you."
"Humph. The feeling is mutual. Oh, but Lydia, tonight's the Christmas Eve Ball. You didn't have to come in. I'm the only one who works on the holidays."
"Doesn't that seem kind of unfair?"
"Nah, I quite enjoy it. It's peaceful and gives me time to think."
"About your friend? She's pretty by the way. I think she has a crush on you. Can't blame her, since you're so handsome."
"Do you enjoy teasing me, Miss Lydia?"
Lydia smirked and took a seat to help with the paperwork. "Headmaster? What exactly does an advisor do?" Kent turned his chair around to face her.
"Well. For starters.. you'll get to help me pick the power granter. Power Granter will provide the powers, but you will advise which powers to give to someone. It's a lot easier with a psychic here though."
"Hey, don't worry. You're going make a wonderful advisor, Miss Lydia." Kent reassured his new staff member.
"Hey, look at the time. I should get ready for the ball, and as should you." Kent smiled. Kent looked in the closet searching for something to wear. He hoped he'd run into Lydia. Perhaps she would want to dance? Nah, maybe not.
"I wonder if she's uncomfortable around me," Kent thought out loud.
"Who's uncomfortable around you?" A voice asked, startling him.
Tap tap.. knock knock. "Grimshaw Lincoln, open this door right now! You and I need to talk. I called your school today, and your teachers told me you're not participating or doing your homework. What the hell is happening?"
"Why don't you ever yell at Kent like this? Why am I the one you pick on? Don't you think it's unfair how you treat me!?"
"Watch your tone, son and until you start taking your studies seriously, I'll continue to yell at you. Are we clear on that?"
"Yes, father." Once his father left, Grim picked up his phone to text Jeanie
. Grim: I'm sorry, Jeans. Forgive me?
Jeanie: Why should I?
Grim: Because we're friends?!
Jeanie: Friends don't treat you the way you treat me. Stay out of my life. I want nothing to do with you anymore. I'll take good care of Adventure. Yes, I named him, but don't text or call me anymore. Goodbye, Grim.
Grim: JEANIE ELIZABETH POWERFUL!! I'll bombard your phone with text messages then,
Jeanie: And I'll just block your number. You think this is easy for me. Do you think I want to walk from this friendship? Goodbye, Grim.
Grim threw his phone at the closet door and screamed. Kent stood in Grim's doorway with his arms folded across his chest.
“Happy now? The only friend you had left. The only one whose shown you kindness you kicked out of your life!”
"I didn't kick her out of my life! She kicked me out of hers. Whatever, though. I don't care. Jeanie's a big girl. She can do whatever she wants."
The next morning, Grim decided to walk over to Jeanie's. Jeanie answered the door in her flower pajamas and slippers. She looked so adorable. "Hi. Can I come inside? Please. I owe you an explanation and an apology."
"I don't want to hear it."
"Jeans, please just hear me out."
"I don't want to hear anything else about the stupid image you're trying to uphold. Images fade, but the people who truly care about you don't!! You've never cared about me." Grim put his hands on Jeanie's shoulders.
"You're not mad about that."
“You're pissed because you think I did something to your abusive boyfriend.”
"Wow. You don't trust me, do you?"
"You haven't given me a reason to, you know? I stayed because I cared about you. I stayed because I wanted to help you. Instead, you mocked my kindness."
"Jeans, wait! Please. I need you."
"Yeah, well... I needed you. Goodbye, Grim. Please don't come looking for me." Jeanie slammed the door. Grim sat down the porch. Kent was right... I did push her away Grim thought to himself. What was he supposed to do now? He wasn't going to give up on her easily.
Deciding to take matters into his own hands, Grim buried his nose into his studies. Got his grades up higher.
"Still room for improvement. You're not there yet for me to be proud of you, son," his father said one day while ruffling his hair.
He just couldn't win no matter what he did. Grim's phone beeped. Jeanie: Come outside. I need to tell you something, and I can't do it over the phone.
Grim smiled and rushed outside to greet Jeanie. “Jeans? What's so urgent that you have to tell me-
What's wrong? Have you been crying?”
"I'm leaving, Grim. I wanted to say goodbye to you first. I know we're not supposed to be talking, but I wouldn't feel right if I didn't get to say goodbye to you." Jeanie kissed Grim's cheek, making him blush before she walked away.
"Jeans!! Wait... I have something for you!" Grim pulled out his watch. "Do you remember this? It's the watch you fixed in the English class for me. I want you to have it, okay?"
"Belinda! Say..what are you doing here, anyway.. Have you been crying? Do you want to talk about it? It won't do you any good to hold it in."
"I got kicked out of my house."
"Shh... Not so loud, okay? My sister.... she had a ski accident and I got blamed for it. Her leg is gone now because of me! I didn't mean to hurt her-"
"Huh?" Kent put his hands on Belinda's shoulders to comfort her. "Belinda, would you like to come to the Christmas Eve Ball tonight? You can go as my guest. I don't have anyone to go with. I've got an idea. I'll give you a job here."
"Listen. We're both only twenty-two,but you have to promise when you're in your thirties, you'll go to school here as a student. That's all I'll ever hold you to."
“No. I don't feel right.”
"Why? You're not asking and I'm offering. It's settled, you're hired as my power granter from now on. " Kent waved the wisher for Belinda to appear in a new dress.
"You look nice," Kent said, looping his arm through Belinda's.
"Hey, is that your advisor over there? She looks kind of lonely. You should speak to her."
“Oh um okay. Are you sure?”
“I'll be okay.”
Kent held out his hand to Lydia. “I don't know how to dance,” Lydia looked away nervously.
Kent smiled. “That's okay. I can teach you. Step. Step. Now glide. Good.” Lydia's heart felt like it was doing summer salts while she glided across the dance floor with Kent.
"How did you get so good at dancing?”
"Oh, well. I guess I had a lot of practice. We have a lot of holiday ballroom dances, so don't worry you'll pick up on this."
"I SAID GET OUT OF HERE!" Belinda shouted at Shawn Paul, making a scene. Kent and Lydia glided over to Belinda.
"Is there a problem here, Power Granter- Let go of my Power Granter's arm, or you're going to regret it."
"No one move beyond this point. Do you see this girl? She's now a hostage. If anyone moves across this point, I'll end you."
“Not before I end you!” Lydia poured the bowl of fruit punch all over Shawn Paul and punched him in the hip.
"Belinda, are you okay? He didn't hurt you, did he?"
“I- I'm fine. Thanks for saving me,” Belinda ran off sobbing.
"Did I do something?"
"I don't think it has anything to do with you."
Back in Kent's office, Kent handed Lydia a towel to dry off.
"You've got what it takes to be a hero, that's for sure."
"Do you believe in heroes? Why? I've never seen a hero in my life."
“I have. In many ways and forms.”