Last edited: September 27th, 2012
A/N: ME High stands for Middle-earth High School.
Oh, and this chapter is very, very, and I repeat, very short. The rest of the chapters in my story are alll AT LEAST 3,000 words, and for some inexplicable reason my later chapters are longer than the earlier ones. Anyone care to explain this unnatural phenomenon? :P
(A friend and reader of mine asked me, after I completed Chapter I, to write a course schedule for Aragorn and Legolas. So I posted this, in case anyone else was curious. This will be the first and last time I will be posting the student/teacher list in the beginning of a chapter, unless one of my readers requests me to do otherwise. I believe that this takes up unnecessary word count and time...which is why I had to spend my weekend poring over my laptop *facepalms*)
Seniors: Elladan, Elrohir, Haldir, Rúmil, Orophin
Juniors: Aragorn, Legolas, Gimli, Arwen, Halbarad, Amrothros, Frodo
Sophomores: Boromir, Éomer, Lothíriel, Elfhelm, Húrin, Sam, Gollum
Freshmen: Faramir, Éowyn, Wormtongue, Beregond, Merry, Pippin
Saruman – Literature
Galadriel – Psychology
Celeborn – History I
Glóin – History II
Elrond – Health
Thranduil – Biology
Círdan – Drama
Gandalf – Chemistry
Imrahil – Physics
Denethor – Calculus
Erestor – Language I (Sindarin)
" – Language II (Optional)
Treebeard – Government
Théoden – Physical Education
Glorfindel – Assistant P.E.
Tom Bombadil – Music
Lindir - Assistant Music
Bombur – Arts & Crafts
* There has been no principal at ME High since Gil-galad retired to his home in Valinor.
Disclaimer: Unfortunately, *coughdammitcough* I do not own The Lord of the Rings.
Welcome to Middle-earth High
Chapter I: Back to School
Aragorn was running.
He raced over barren fields and grassy plains, gasping for breath, his limbs burning. He was sweating profusely despite it being relatively early in the morning, courtesy of the glaring sun; here Aragorn resisted the urge to shake his fist at the blinking, cerulean, and cloudless sky. Instead he continued to pump his legs as he turned onto a well-worn dirt road. He stumbled before skidding to an abrupt stop.
Aragorn coughed heavily. His lungs were on fire; his legs felt as though they had been dipped in the flames of Mt. Doom and left to dry on the highest peak of Ered Luin. Maybe I should give up? he thought, hesitating. Perhaps he should…. He was so tired, now….
But before Aragorn could decide, a blurry shape hurtled out from the undergrowth and tackled him to the ground. Caught off guard, Aragorn struggled, attemptingto throw his attacker off balance. No use, he thought as he felt the strength sap from his body. No use…. It was all over…. He gritted his teeth together and closed his eyes in surrender.
Aragorn felt the weight leave his torso as his attacker clambered off his prone form. Morning sunlight shone through the thick canopy of trees, lighting long, silky locks of golden hair into yellow fire.
"I hate you, Legolas," Aragorn intoned, opening his eyes and frowning.
"Legolas" answered Aragorn with a frown of his own. "'Hate' is a strong word, Estel," he said, wagging his finger at his friend in mock chastisement. "Now get up. We have a long day ahead of us, and the teachers will...er...in lack of a better word, murder us if we do not arrive on time." He winced slightly. "And you know who we have for teachers..."
Aragorn sighed without conviction. "I most certainly don't remember agreeing to race you to school. And for the Valar's sake, Thranduilion," he snapped, "stop calling me by that ridiculous name!"
Legolas raised an eyebrow before bending down and proffering an arm to Aragorn to help him up from the ground.
"I'd rather be locked in an aquarium with a school of hungry sharks than be here," Aragorn muttered to himself as he dusted off his breeches.
Legolas smirked. "You don't mean that," he said innocently as he walked away from the tiny clearing. Aragorn sighed for what seemed like the hundredth time that day before trailing behind the elf, thinking of another million places he would rather have been at the moment. But with a minuscule twinge of guilt, Aragorn realized that he felt a little pleased at this brief interaction; he had missed bickering with his old friend.
The duo continued to part their way through the dense undergrowth. Aragorn gave the scenery around him a cursery glance, barely paying any attention to which path they were taking, which was what most likely led to him colliding with Legolas when they came to a sudden halt.
Aragorn lifted his gaze at Legolas's jovial voice, nursing his bruised nose. A marble building loomed over them with thick ivy trailing down its walls. A banner covered in corny sayings and smiley faces hung over the entrance. Students—elves, men, and dwarves alike—pushed past the doors, chattering excitedly and comparing summer tans. A carriage, pulled by a team of magnificent horses and painted entirely canary-yellow, drew up by the doors, releasing two dozen more students into the bustling crowd. Screeches of hellos greeted the new arrivals as they too were swept into the massive throng of students.
Legolas grinned and poked Aragorn in the ribs.
School was in session.
Gandalf rubbed his temples as he tapped his fingers on the single window in the teachers' lounge. His gaze swept over the students pouring into the school doors to the banner hanging above them, which flapped feebly in the autumn breeze. Even at this distance, he could discern many older students sniggering at the banner (the younger ones being too excited to care). The wizened Chemistry professor pursed his lips together in one hard line before pivoting his attention back to the wheezy coffee machine.
Putting up the banner had not been Gandalf's idea. He had openly disagreed when they had put the issue to a vote in a pre-term teacher assembly, as had many others, including Radagast the Brown and Elrond Half-elven. A welcome banner was something for children, they had believed. Not something for sixteen-year-olds!
Despite the majority's disagreement, however, the vice principal had gotten his own way yet again. Yesterday, Gandalf had been forced to watch as Saruman—the vice principal himself—had hung the banner over the school with some help from his Orc secretaries, all the while smiling smugly in his direction. And truth to be told, Gandalf's blood had boiled at Saruman's domineering attitude. He would have murdered the VP right there and then, had it not been for Elrond's hand resting gently but firmly on his shoulder.
Gandalf shivered at the awful memory as he stirred his cup of double-shot espresso. Careful not to get any of his beard covered in the sticky liquid, he drained the entire cup, relaxing as the caffeine entered his system. He sighed in relief. Much better.
The door to the teachers' lounge burst open.
Startled, Gandalf tore his eyes from his coffee and stared at the newcomer. His curious glance quickly transformed to that of distaste as he spat three words from his mouth:
"Good morning, Saruman."
"Good morning, Gandalf," returned the vice principal, his white beard shifting ever so slightly as he attempted to smile. "It is good to see you again, my friend."
Gandalf narrowed his eyes. "Friend," he muttered. "I like that term."
Saruman curled his lips.
The door to the teachers' lounge burst open yet again a few seconds later, only this time it was an Elf, not a Maia, who entered the room. Elrond was halfway to his desk before he noticed the two wizards glaring at each other. Quickly realizing what was happening, Elrond glided to Gandalf's side and tapped the wizard's shoulder, anxiety settling in his eyes.
"Come, Mithrandir," Elrond murmured in Sindarin. "The freshmen's orientation starts in fifteen minutes, and Galdariel insists on your being present."
Gandalf nodded tersely, not taking his eyes off Saruman. There was no way in Arda that he going to be the one to give up this staring contest.
And to Gandalf's delight, his wishes came true. After a few more seconds of intense glaring, Saruman withdrew his gaze, before throwing back his head and laughing heartily. "Classes, hmm?" he said, chuckling. "You'll have to excuse me, then; I must prepare for my first class. Seniors, you know."
A cold silence greeted his words.
Saruman left the lounge in a hurry, the door shutting with a loud bang behind his retreating form. Gandalf observed the vice principal walk down the hall, his white robes flying out behind him. "Move it!" Saruman barked at a sophomore who had been blocking his way. The startled student jumped about three leagues into the air before he hastily removed himself from Saruman's rampage. The dreaded vice principal continue his morning march until he finally disappeared over the marble staircase, losing himself from Gandalf's and Elrond's wary eyes.
Elrond turned to Gandalf. "Care to explain yourself?" asked the Elf lord, raising his eyebrows.
This was going to be a very bad day.
A/N: Please review! Kindly let me know your thoughts on my story by review/PM. I'd love to hear if there's anything wrong that I'm doing. Feedback is always very much appreciated :D