Monday, June 4, 2012

First Meetings

Looking around Nick's blog has made me realize a few things (not least of which is that he needs to get his Sight checked, I've never worn a white robe on any plane in my life). He seems to be pretty keen on building up our teacher as some kind of mysterious badass who pops in and out of events but never quite is part of them. Even the name 'Time Lord' contributes to that, reminding us all of a certain madman in a blue box.

I really, really wish I could debunk this. But I can't. He seems to deliberately go out of his way to make that impression. Ever since he climbed my tree wearing that ridiculous shirt when I first met him.

It was midterms, and I'd been studying for a nasty exam in ASL, sitting in a tree in the quad and watching the people go by. No one else climbed that tree the whole time I was in college, and I'd lay odds that very few people even noticed me up in it. I'd noticed that tree my first week of school and had long since made it my place on campus. It was above the hustle and bustle, the noise seemed muted by the leaves and the height. A place where I could observe the crowds without being a part of them, where I could study or nap or eat privately.

So when I saw the kid in the Hawaiian shirt waving cheerily and walking towards me like a tightrope walker on my branch, I was more than a bit surprised. Especially because I couldn't figure out how he'd gotten up there, I was leaned up against the trunk and had been up there for quite a while.

What happened next was one of those rare conversations that a person just never forgets, the kind that changes their entire life.

"How're you doing that?" I asked curiously, setting my book aside

He grinned at me. "One foot in front of the other. Hi there, how's the universe treating you?"

As I recall, I made a face. "It's midterms, so I've been better. Don't think I've met you before, hello.

"Hi, I'm (Time Lord)" He stumbled and almost fell, settling after that into a much more secure seated position next to me.

I nodded, relieved that he hadn't actually fallen and reaching to help him steady himself. "Alice. Do you often climb this tree? I thought I was the only one."

"I don't. I'm mostly here because I can see the future and sense your hidden powers. That and the Tree Spirits think you're lonely." He waved around at the trees, all of whom seemed to be watching us like something really exciting was about to happen. They definitely seemed to like him, so I relaxed a little.

I blushed furiously, glaring about at them. "They really ought to mind their own business. I'm fine." A pause. "Seeing the future, huh? You ought to talk to Viv, that's more her area than mine. I'm not half so impressive."

He looked honestly surprised. "And your first reaction isn't 'oh god how does he know this stuff'? I'm impressed, you're one cool customer.

"Like I said. I'm used to it from Viv. And the trees like you, that's good enough for me." I laughed a little.

Time Lord grinned at me. "Oh, I like you. You remind me of my friend Nick, except less snarky. Well, okay, I've just met you, I shouldn't say that yet!"

"You must see a lot, huh?" I gave him a thoughtful look. "To know all this?"

"I see ...well, I see a lot. Far too much in fact. It's worrying. But I'm also pretty good at making waves."

I nodded thoughtfully. "So you came here because we're supposed to take part in something epic or something, and you know because you've already seen it?" I was admittedly pretty excited about that.

"Naaaah. I go to school here, and I don't want anyone to get themselves killed." My face fell, and he looked almost amused. "But now that you mention it? I guess there's something epic coming."

"Yeah? Do we get to play a part?"

He nodded. "Sure! Out of curiosity, what are your feelings about giant insects?"

"Giant bugs?" I thought about it for a moment. "Friendly, or trying to kill me?"

"Both! It's a very strange future." He paused. "Though, be more wary of Destiny? It's a very scary thing."

I just shrugged. "Hardly worth being scared of if it's gonna happen anyway, right?"

"Oh dear, you have a lot to learn." He sounded disappointed. "Destiny is something to be defied at all costs.

"Riiight. And how do I do that when I don't know what it is?"

"Huh. Fair point. I'm sure me and your spinner friend can help you weave your way through the mess. The energy work you do is quite impressive. This I think, is going to be a lot of fun." He hopped off the branch neatly and landed on the ground, waving back up at me. "I'll see you soon!"

"What? Where're you going?"

"I've got one more person to see before the day is out! Careful at the party tonight, it's going to get crazy!" He then started off back towards the student center, but I realized who he must be talking about.

"Say hi to Gig for me!"

He turned to stare at me. "I thought the /other/ one saw the future!"

"Just a lucky guess. You already mentioned Viv like you'd talked to her too."

"Your powers of uncommon sense are astounding.

I bowed dramatically from my spot in the tree and he waved one more time before heading off to find him. It wasn't long after that he tracked us down again and started teaching us. We'd already known we could do things and had started experimenting, but with a teacher we could go a lot further a lot faster. At least up until he vanished. Nick's been a big help, when he's not running around chasing him or running off to save his ex-girlfriend or being kidnapped on Time Lord's orders.

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