'No-one felt bad for Frank, because Frank did not feel bad for himself.' (Frerard)
Frank surveyed the room full of chattering students around him from his usual table in the corner. He ate his usual school meal (a cheese baguette, no lettuce but plenty of tomatoes) with his usual smirk still in place, the sarcastic half-smile covering a perfect row of teeth and a tounge sharp enough to cut glass, if anyone cared to look closer. But as usual, Frank ate by himself. He made no effort to make friends, instead throwing himself into slicing his school mates with his tounge and snaring them with barbed comments. As a result, he was left alone- no-one felt bad for Frank, because Frank did not feel bad for himself. He ate his lunch in silence in the same place each day, but despite his lack of company he kept his back straighter and his head held higher than anyone else in the school.
After the bell rang, Frank waited in the lunch hall until the swill of pupils ebbed out of the room. Swinging his bag over his shoulder, he left the hall at his own pace, ignoring any pupils passing him and being ignored in turn. Frank was not liked, but not disliked either. It was just that no-one cared. Those who had not held a conversation with him heard from those who had, and word spread quickly. At first, he had been jostled about a bit, pushed around by some of the boys in his year, but they soon realised Frank was not going to retaliate and they dropped it. Once they had done this, everyone else had followed suit and pretty soon Frank had fallen off the radar. The general feeling towards the small, slim boy was now apathy; apathy because they couldn't understand him, or apathy because they wouldn't, Frank did not know. But he was glad of it.
Assuming the corridor would be empty, Frank made no attempt to look where he was going and as a result soon collided with something warm and very alive. Looking up, he saw a young-ish man in a relatively new suit, his hair sticking up as though a hand had recently been ran through it and a slight shaving rash around his chin. Student teacher, Frank thought quickly, possibly first day, roughly mid 20's. Attractive, Frank surmised as he looked him over once again. His hazel eyes looked surprisingly intelligent, and the suit trousers and shirt did him justice. 'Sorry,' Frank said as he looked at the books now at the man's feet, 'that was my fault.' They both bent down to pick them up at the same time.
'No, it's alright, I wasn't looking where I was going. I'm in a bit of a hurry,' the man replied, smiling slightly. 'It's my first day.'
'I thought so,' Frank said as they both stood up, 'student teacher?'
'Yeah,' he replied almost sheepishly. 'That obvious, huh? I'm Mr Way.'
'I'm Frank. Art or English?'
Mr Way looked slightly taken aback at the question. 'Sorry?'
'Art or English,' Frank repeated. 'Like, which one are you teaching?'
'Art', the older man replied, still flustered. 'How did you-'
'You're definitely not a Science teacher,' Frank began, 'or Maths, for that matter. I'm not saying you don't look intelligent enough, you just don't look the part. History or Geography doesn't seem likely, PE is a definite no, Drama possibly but you don't seem theatrical or flamboyant enough. Music,' Frank stopped and looked at the man's hands, 'no. At least, I don't see any callouses on your fingers so your not a guitar player. Although you look like someone who appreciates good music, at least. So that leaves Art or English. And I'm gonna go with Art.'
Frank looked at Mr Way who was now standing with his mouth slightly agape, holding loosely onto the books in his hands as though in shock. After a few seconds he seemed to recover slightly, his smile gradually returning. 'Yes, I am teaching Art. Well guessed.'
Frank scoffed slightly. 'I didn't guess. I reasoned. Nice to meet you, Mr Way.' Frank turned to leave and then turned back again just as quickly and added, 'I guess you'll be looking for the Principles office? Third on the left.' And with that he turned and walked down the corridor, leaving a very bemused Gerard in the middle of the hallway with his mouth hanging slightly agape.