AN: As you may have noticed, this has been redone. But I haven't changed the plot, that's no fun!
"Now, today we will be looking at Singmaster's conjecture. It asks us: Is there a finite upper bound on the multiplicities of the entries greater than 1 in Pascal's triangle? Now, it is clear that the only number that appears infinitely many times in Pascal's triangle is 1, because any other number x can appear only within the first x + 1 rows of the triangle. So," Mrs. Lynch, my Algebra teacher, went on talking, but I stopped listening. Who the flip was Singmaster and why should I care about him?
"So, if our equation holds correct, our final answer will be…?" she trailed off, obviously looking for volunteers. When she noticed that no one was paying attention, she reverted back to her usual routine. Humiliate me. "Ms. Wolf?"
"Umm... false?" I guessed hopefully. Of course, she just HAD to call on me. But why? I have never expressed any interest in Algebra! Seriously, on my last test, one of the problems said 'Find X', so I circled X, thinking it was like 'Where's Waldo?'. Detention the next day was not fun.
"This wasn't a true or false question you imbecile," (Yes, I know what imbecile means!) she said as she stalked up to my desk. "If you continue to disrupt my class, I will have to be very harsh with you. Very harsh."
She looked very excited as she said that.
Strange. The bell rang and the class packed up. I hastily picked up my books and tried to hurry to the door before-
"Ms. Wolf. Stay behind a moment. I need to discuss something with you. Privately. The class laughed and the group of "populars" smirked. One of them, Willow Reid, mouthed the words "Dead meat" at me and giggled. She left with her friends, leaving me alone with an extremely scary teacher. Mrs. Lynch stalked over to the door, locked it, and pulled the shades down, doing that weird hop/shuffle thing she always did. She turned around to leer at me.
"Fool." She snarled.
"I'm sorry. I'll try harder." I rambled off the standard teacher apology, not knowing what I was apologizing for. Bringing too much happiness and joy to the classroom?
"You should not have been born. Your existence has caused a war between the gods. You must be punished." she barked.
"What?" I asked, kinda freaked out. "I thought corporal punishment was outlawed-"
"Silence. You will understand soon enough, weak one. Now die!" she charged at me, and something weird happened. Not like "Oh no, I lost a button". This was "Oh no, my Algebra teacher turned into a huge reptile and is trying the gnaw my face off!"
I barely had time to think before she raised her huge paw to strike me. For a brief instant, I had a clear view of her. What had been a frail, furious lady was now a monstrous, scaly, scarlet, horned, (other adjectives) lizard. And not the cute kind.
I felt her claws rip through my arm. Even thinking about moving my arm was making my vision go blurry with pain. All of a sudden, everything froze.
The door crashed down and two people charged in. It was Willow and her boyfriend Ward of all people!
"I'll get the dragon," Ward said in a powerful tone. Don't let the old-timey name fool you. Ward was the hottest guy in our school. He had a body any model would sell his soul for. Sorry, that's my inner girl acting up "You work your pony magic on Emily-"
Willow rolled her eyes. She really was quite the brat. "For the last time, I'm not a pony. I'm a satyr. SAY-TER. Jerkface."
Ward sighed and cracked his neck. "Don't make me freeze you in time too."
Willow snorted. "You wouldn't dare," she challenged. She suddenly stopped moving.
Ward grinned. "I guess I would." He pulled out a wickedly sharp looking sword and walked towards me. I started hyperventilating (slowly). With sword in hand, he smiled at me and casually stabbed the lizard (or, I guess it's a dragon) in the delicate underbelly.
Then the weirdest thing happened. The dragon exploded into dust. What the bedazzler?
Ward, looking completely at ease, strolled over to Mrs. Lynch's old desk and rifled through her drawers until he found what he was looking for. A red Sharpie. He pulled the cap off and walked over to Willow. I could practically hear her thoughts, "If you draw on me, so help you…" Ward raised the Sharpie, moved it to right in front of Willow's nose, and then chuckled and put the cap back on.
"Nah. You'd kill me later." He tossed the Sharpie behind him and snapped his fingers, and I realized that I could move again.
Willow rolled her eyes at him and grabbed my arm. She dragged me into Simmons Forest, against my will (not will-ow, ha ha). That's the forest that surrounds my school and it happens to be the second largest forest in Long Island, New York. I trudged along, keeping pace, until I saw my chance. Willow tripped over a stump, and I took off running.
Due to the fact that I was the fastest person in the ninth grade, I quickly left her behind. I knew that Willow couldn't catch me with that limp of hers. Only when I felt myself slowing down, did I remember Ward's stupid time stopping. By some miracle, I managed to keep moving. I heard a haunting tune drift through the air, like wind blowing through tree branches. I must be going insane, because it seemed like the weeds reached up and grabbed my legs. Oh wait. They actually did. With weeds wrapped around my body, I struggled to break free.
Ward came running up and said, "Seriously? After we just saved your life? We're trying to help you! If it wasn't for us, you'd be dragon food! Do you know how tiring stopping time is? It's like stopping a semi-truck that's going 80 miles an hour! And how-"
Willow came clopping up. From the waist up she looked almost normal. Her American Eagle shirt was rumpled, but not torn, and her ponytail had twigs in it. But instead of jeans and tennis shoes, she had-
"Stop yelling at her Ward! How would you like it if two strangers kidnapped you?" Ward tried to interrupt, but she silenced him with a look. "It's time she knew the truth."
Questions were burning in my mind, but the weeds were still around my mouth, so I couldn't say anything. Who, or what, were these people and what did they want with me?
"Look, Emily," she said kindly, "there's something you need to understand. The Greek gods and goddesses? Yeah, they're real. Zeus, Hades, and Apollo are all real gods. The titans are real and so are the monsters. The scratch on your arm is proof of that. Now, if you promise not to run away again, I'll let you go. Ward and I are very tired from the fight and chasing you. So, do you agree?" She raised an eyebrow, like she honestly expected me to answer. I did my best to grunt in what I hoped was an agreeable manner. Willow nodded and the weeds fell away. I coughed and slowly got to my feet. Trying to bite back the tide of questions anxious to be asked, I looked at Willow. She looked at Ward, obviously hoping that he would help explain. Ward, however, sat down and leaned against a tree. His very posture said "Hey, you wanted to tell her. Leave me out of it."
Willow sighed and opened her backpack, which had mysteriously appeared. She pulled out a Ziploc baggie which had some weird golden cubes. Handing one to me, she closed and sealed the baggie, putting it back in her backpack.
"Ummmm…thanks?" What was I supposed to do with it?
"Eat it." I put it in my mouth and strength filled my limbs. Not only that, it tasted delicious, like a warm chocolate brownie straight from the oven. It even made my arm feel better! Willow sat down on a mossy rock. It occurred to me that I could probably get away, but I had too many questions. I sat down on a nearby stump.
"Where are we going?" I asked.
"Camp Half-blood," she replied.
"Camp What?" I was sure I heard her wrong. "What's a half blood?"
"A Half-blood is the kid of a god and a mortal. Camp Half-blood is the only safe place for kids like us." She said all this and yawned again. I decided to wait until morning to ask her any questions. She might fall asleep talking.
I guessed that it was about 10:00. The moon was full, and just looking at it filled me with energy. I always had trouble falling asleep outside, so I looked around. Ward looked so peaceful, just sleeping. Willow's worry lines disappeared and she was snoring slightly. Her arms were crossed and so were her, I forced myself to think the word, hooves. Yep, you heard me. Hooves. From the waist down, she had a pair of horse's hooves. I made a mental note not to make any My Little Pony references around her. Sliding down onto the ground, I looked at the stars. Suddenly, something clicked. I was going to Camp Half-Blood. That must mean I'm a half-blood. I'm part Olympian!
I had a really weird dream that night.
In my dream, there was a silver doe with glittering fur in a meadow surrounded by a thick, green forest. There were a lot of birds and other things in the meadow, too. I saw an owl, an eagle, a column of fire, and a peacock. It's kinda like a safari. But every one wasn't all chummy-chummy. The birds in particular were vicious. They were mocking the doe. All of them were trying to attack her, so it didn't really seem like a fair fight. But every time the birds flew at the doe, golden arrows would appear out of nowhere and hold them off. Then, when the column of fire tried to advance, a pure white horse galloped up and shot water at the fire. The peacock tried to attack again, but grapevines grew around it and forced the peacock back. A beautiful lady and a biker were watching all this take place from the clouds, and they were laughing. My dream ended with the sound of their laughter.
AN2: Yes, I went back and redid this. Yes, it still moves fast. No, I'm not going to change that. Review if you like, review if you don't. I'm planning on going back and re-editing the next 2 chapters, so be patient. Thanks, and gods bless!