Hi! So this is a Music Man high school au I'm writing for a friend. There's no Marian x Harold, instead it'll be a kind of crackship mashup of sorts.
Alma- Ellie Martin
Ethel- Allie Marie Evans
Ewart- Pedro Aurelian
Harold/Greg- Alex Storm
Jacey- Max Barczak
Jenny- Barbara Emely
Marian- Kimmy Schram
Maud- Sage Tullis
Olin- Francisco Lachowski
Oliver- Neels Visser
Mrs. Shinn- Saul Rubinek
Mr. Shinn- Helen Mirren
Marcellus- Lucas Bin
If more characters are added, their face claims will be announced at the beginning of the chapter.
The usual morning chatters of River City High began around eight a.m. sharp. Today, of all days too, was no exception. Students were bustling through the halls in alively manner- or, well, at least most of them were. The four football captains- Oliver, Jacey, Ewart, and Olin- were roughhousing by their lockers; the popular girls (and the current flings of the captains)- Alma, Jenny, Ethel, and Maud- were gossiping in the corner while Marcellus attempted to flirt weakly with Ethel; Tommy Djilas and Zaneeta Shinn were engaged in a hot makeout session by the bathroom door; and Principal Shinn and his Vice Principal (and wife), Eulalie Shinn, were attempting to spread order throughout the halls. The only noteable absence from the morning loudness was Marian Paroo, who had found herself in the library for an early morning checkout. In a way, the books were an escape for Marian. They allowed her to get by the day, to escape into a different world away from the bitter, disappointing reality she lived in. She was, in a way, considered an outcast. She'd been an outcast ever since Zaneeta had started the rumor Marian was having intimate relations with Mr. Madison, the librarian. Marian hadn't been, of course, but the rumor had quickly traversed among the student body and Mr. Madison had quickly lost his job. There was no librarian anymore, just a stupid self-checkout sheet. Despite the rumor of the past year, Marian still loved the library. Maybe, in a way, that was why she was there. Marian had first period free, anyway, so she wandered to the librarian's desk and lifted a stack of returned books into her arms.
"Let's see," Marian murmured to herself, "We've got... Chaucer... Rabelais... Balzac.." She was nearly curious enough to see who'd actually bothered to check the ancient books out, but she found within a few seconds she wasn't truly interested. She slowly, and gently, positioned each book in its respective place just as the first bell rang to signal the start of first period.
"You know I'm right, Jacey!" Olin's boisterous voice filled the library room, causing Marian to sigh in aggravation.
"Pf, 'you know I'm right' my ass!" Jacey snapped. He glared at Olin, folding his arms over his chest. Jacey was the smallest and lankiest of the four, but he was the fastest. Olin was shorter, but he was stocky. Ewart- his real name was Edward, but the nickname had arisen in Junior High and had crossed over into High School- was muscular but more of a runner, he was really only on the football team for his father's vicarious needs. Oliver was the tallest and the stockiest, and arguably the leader of the troupe. Marian didn't know how exactly Alma dealt with him at all.
"It's the saaammee thing!" Olin drew out in annoyance.
"The hell it is, Olin!" Ewart spat, annoyed. It was obvious the four hated each other at times, though they were truly the best of friends in other ways. Marian did her best to stay out of their way as they plowed through the room, shoving each other and whatnot.
"Hey, Miss Maaaaaaarian!" Oliver grinned, his voice drawing out Marian's name in a singsong voice. "You seen Alma 'round?"
"Alma?" Marian asked, frowning, as she finally settled the last book upon the shelf. "No, why?"
"Can't seem to find her." Oliver mused. "She's been hidin' lately, can't seem to figure out why. Thought you'd seen her."
"I.. uh.. no, no, I haven't seen her." Marian said, and it was the truth. Marian hadn't seen Alma... not that day, at least. She had, however, seen Alma the previous night. And the night before that. The past few nights, actually. Marian had been tutoring Alma, just to help her prepare for the ACTs coming up in the next few months. Alma's parents, to put it nicely, were hardasses. The pressure Oliver put on her with his image was a lot, too, Marian supposed.
"You sure? I hear you'been hangin' out with her after school." Oliver's eyes narrowed.
"I can assure you I'm simply helping her study." Marian murmured, casting her eyes away. She didn't like the gaze Oliver looked at her with, a look filled with contempt. "She's got the ACTs coming up, her parents don't want her to fail."
"You promise?" Oliver leaned in close, too close for Marian's taste.
"I promise." Marian said, unflinching. Oliver could be a jerk sometimes, all four of them could be. Marian never knew why, she used to be friends with all of them years ago. She wasn't sure what had changed.
"Good." Oliver pulled back, signaled to the other three, and exited from the library. Marian sighed in relief, running her hand through her hair, and walked back to the librarian's desk with a soft shake of her head. Marian was only fifteen minutes into the school day and already she'd caused a problem with Oliver Hix. Marian paused for a moment, however, and headed back to the bookshelf to pull out Chaucer's book. She opened the front page, but found no note of who had checked it out last. She meandered to the checkout sheet as well, but again- no sign of who had checked it out. Frowning, she opened to a page which had conveniently been dog-eared. She found nothing aside from a small, messily scrawled note which read the following:
Marian Paroo's got a silver voice and a heart of gold.
Alma sat in the Principal's office, rather confused as to why she'd been called in. Alma hadn't really done anything wrong, she'd just been calmly taking notes in her LA class alongside Maud, when Principal Shinn's monotone voice had blared over the PA system and called Alma in. So there she sat in an uncomfortable office chair, tapping her sneaker clad feet against the shag carpet as Shinn made a phonecall, his boring voice muttering away. When he hung up the phone, Alma was quick to blurt out the question she'd had throughout her entire time spent in the room. "Mr. Shinn," Alma asked, "why am I here?"
"Oh, yes," Mr. Shinn cleared his throat, "as one of the Student Council members, Miss Harris, you're bound to know your way around the school. Yes?"
"Well, yeah, but I don't-" Alma began, but was cut off by Mr. Shinn.
"I wanted to ask Mrs. Shinn to do this, but she's helping the school board plan a field trip. So, naturally, I thought you'd be perfect to show our student new.." Mr. Shinn blinked, then corrected himself. "New student around the school."
"We, uh.. we've got a new student?" Alma frowned. "Who?"
"Eh," Mr. Shinn shrugged, "Harold.. Harold Hill. He's in the Secretary's Office, why don't you go show him around."
"So.." Alma said, gently rubbing her upper arm as she approached the new kid. He was taller than Alma (which wasn't hard, almost everyone was taller than Alma) with jet black hair and piercing blue eyes. "You're Harold Hill?"
"Sure am," The teen boasted with a sloppy grin, "but you can call me Greg."
"Greg?" Alma asked with a frown. "But-"
"My middle name is Gregory," Greg explained, "it's just a nickname."
"Oh," Alma murmured, "I see."
"And the band room is just down that way, and the auditorium is actually right next to it." Alma explained. "Usually that's where the drama department has its plays. You just missed the fall one, so you'll need to wait until the spring for the annual musical." The halls were empty, aside from Alma and Greg. First hour was about to end, but the tour was almost done anyhow.
"What's down there?" Greg asked, gesturing down the hallway with his hand.
"That? Oh!" Alma grinned sheepishly. "That's the library. Usually no one's in there at this hour, but Marian might be."
"Yeah, she's uh.. she's pretty nice." Alma said as she lead Greg to the library. True to Alma's word, Marian was inside the library casually organizing the books. Alma couldn't really help but stare at Marian. Her soft silver-blonde dyed hair was rather pretty in the lighting, as were Marian's hazel eyes. The sight was enough to elicit a small twitch in Alma's lips, but that was all.
"She's beautiful," Greg decided with a nod, which- admittedly- gave Alma a slight twinge of jealousy.
"Oh, uh, remember- your second hour class is down by the Bio room!" Alma said as the second bell rang. Greg offered a grin and a nod before departing, but Alma wasn't quite ready to leave yet. "Hey, Marian," Alma began, clasping her hands together as she approached the bookworm.
"Hm? Oh! Alma," Marian turned to the shorter girl with a slight smile, "what do you need?"
"I was just wondering," Alma ran a hand through her dark locks, "are we studying again tonight? It's really been helping me, you know, and-"
Marian cut Alma off with a small smile and a wave of her hand. "Of course," She said with a nod, "my place, right? Seven o'clock?"
"Um, yeah," Alma smiled, "sounds lovely."
"Oh, Alma?" Marian asked as Alma turned to head to her second hour class.
"Oliver's looking for you," Marian hesitated, "he, uh, made it sound like it was urgent. Just thought I'd letcha know."
Alma smiled, then nodded. "Thanks, Marian."