Here's the next chapter, enjoy!

Disclaimer: I don't own Les Mis or Wicked

Things had changed indeed, for when Eponine walked into History class, nobody pointed, nobody laughed. They had accepted Eponine for the simple reason that she was accepted by Galinda. Galinda had lent Eponine a white blouse and a black skirt, both of which suited Eponine rather well, as well as some black flats that sparkled. Galinda had also done her hair and make up for her. Eponine wasn't used to having a friend other than Marius. And Marius had definitely never squealed over which shoes she should wear. Needless to say, it would take some getting used to. Not that she didn't like it; it was a rather nice change and she welcomed it. Eponine had never been a girly girl, she'd never had nice clothing, and her hair had never been so neat in her life! She actually felt pretty for once in her life, and normal too. As long as Galinda was her friend, nobody would taunt her. Even without Galinda by her side as she walked into the classroom (Galinda had decided to skip), Eponine was treated like a human being, and not some monster.

Eponine looked around the classroom and saw an empty seat next to Marius. She went over and sat down.

"Hello Monsieur." she said with a slight smile. She tossed her hair over her shoulder, just as Galinda had taught her to do. Marius turned to look at her and, when he did, he did a double-take.

"Eponine... you... you've been Galinda-fied." he said with a laugh. Eponine smiled and flipped her hair again. "You don't have to do that, you know." he said just as Doctor Dillamond walked into the room.

"Hello class, I've just come to say that this is my last day here at Shiz University, I am no longer permitted to teach. But I thank you for sharing your enthusiasm, and your essays, no matter how feebly structured." he told the class. Eponine's eyes widened. Fantine rushed into the room.

"Oh Doctor Dillamond, I've just heard... I'm so sorry!" she said. Eponine stood up.

"Madame Morrible, there must be something we can do!"

"Mademoiselle Eponine, they can stop me from teaching, but they can never stop me from speaking out." Doctor Dillamond told her. A man in a white lab coat walked in.

"Come on, goat." he snapped, grabbing Doctor Dillamond by the arm. A couple more men came in and helped him to drag Doctor Dillamond away.

"They are not telling you the whole story! Remember that, class! Remember that!" Doctor Dillamond told them before being dragged out.

"Doctor Dillamond!" Eponine called out. She moved as if to follow after him, but Fantine grabbed her by her shoulder, holding her back. Eponine looked around at the class. Everyone was just sitting there, too shocked to move or to speak. "Well?" Eponine said, "Are you all just going to sit there in silence?"

"Mademoiselle Eponine, there is nothing we can do." Fantine said. "Now please take your seat." Eponine sighed and walked back to her seat. Marius looked at her as she sat down, but she refused to meet his gaze. A man walked into the room, carrying an object covered in a white sheet. Eponine glanced at him and then back down. There was something about him that she did not like.

"Good afternoon students! I am your new teacher, Professor Corbeau." he announced.

"I don't like him." Eponine mumbled quietly, so only Marius could hear.

"You just met him." Marius replied.

"I still don't like him."

"Every day, throughout all corners of our great France, one hears the silence of progress." He placed the object on his desk and pulled the sheet off. "This, for example, is called a cage." Inside the cage was a small Lion cub that cowered in fear. "This remarkable invention keeps the animal from roaming free and is actually for the animal's own good."

"If it's for his own good then why is he trembling like that?" Eponine demanded of the teacher. The teacher looked at the tiny cub and noticed its shaking.

"Well, uh, he's just excited to be here." he hit the cage hard. The Lion cub jumped. "A benefit of caging a lion at such a young age is that he will never learn to speak." Eponine gasped. Some of the students got up to inch closer to the cage. "That's right, come closer!" Professor Corbeau encouraged. Eponine and Marius stood, but did not move closer.

"This is an outrage!" Eponine exclaimed. "Can you imagine a world where Animals are kept in cages? Where they never learn to speak?" she said to Marius. "We have to stop him! What should we do?"

"I don't know." Marius admitted.

"Well someone has to... do something!" She exclaimed. Suddenly the students and Professor Corbeau began to move uncontrollably. Sparks were flying everywhere. Marius' eyes widened.

"What's happening?" he asked Eponine. Eponine looked just as surprised as he did. She hadn't meant to do anything.

"I... I just got mad... and..." she didn't really have an explanation.

"Alright well, don't move... and don't get mad at me..." Marius said. He walked to the desk, avoiding the students who continued to spasm, and he grabbed the Lion's cage. "Let's go!" Eponine followed Marius out of the classroom. "How did you do that?" Marius asked her as they walked, clearly talking about the students and teacher who were undoubtedly still moving uncontrollably.

"I don't know... I can't control it... It just happens." She looked at the poor Lion cub, who continued to tremble. "Poor little thing! We can't just put him down anywhere,"

"I know, 'Ponine."

"We need to find somewhere safe to set him free."

"I know, 'Ponine." Marius repeated.

"Sorry..." Eponine said quietly, very aware that she was now blushing.

"Don't be, it's fine." he replied, smiling at her. She felt her blush deepen. She looked again at the small Lion cub.

"He's terrified... I didn't mean to..."

"'Ponine, what exactly did you mean to do?" he asked softly. And then he added, "And why was I the only one you didn't do it to?" Eponine struggled for words. Then she noticed a cut on his face. It was fairly shallow, but was still bleeding. She hesitantly reached out and touched the cut gently.

"You're bleeding..." she said quietly. Marius placed his hand over top of hers. "It must have scratched you..." She found herself getting lost in his bright green eyes. Marius, in return, seemed to be getting lost in her hazel eyes, almost as if he was noticing something about her that he had never noticed before. Then, neither really realising what was happening, they both started to lean in. Their lips almost met, but then Marius seemed to remember the Lion cub. More importantly, he had remembered Galinda. His eyes not leaving Eponine's, he spoke as if in a daze,

"Yeah or maybe it scratched me..." Then he pulled away. "I... I should get the cub to safety." he said before hurrying off. Eponine frowned as she watched him walk away from her. He was never mine to lose. He loves Galinda, not me. Never me. She had to remind herself, but she couldn't stop herself from softly whispering his name as he disappeared from view,

"Marius..."

I'm so sorry that it took me so long to post this. I had writer's block for the longest time, but I decided that today I would sit down and write this chapter. Next chapter there will be the mash-up I made of I'm Not That Girl and On My Own. Please review!