A New Term Begins
School open again the first week of January, the start of a new term killed any festive spirit anyone had left. And a letter given to Robin, John and Allan in their home room that cold January morning made they all groan.
"I've forgotten about this stupid team building thing" said Allan reading the note again. "An afternoon with the Black Knights – why do they think this would work? We're not lame primary school kids anymore." Allan groan again "I think I rather had a handful of after school detentions...Heck I rather come here at the weekend."
"I agree," said John glumly. The idea of this team building only happen after a fight that broke out between the outlaws and the Black Knight. A fight that broke out because of what happen to Roy. This team building thing was a pointless project of the school. A project that John was sure was going to be pointless.
Robin looked at the short note. "It's one afternoon," he said "It can't be that bad."
Allan and John both looked at Robin with surprised "I thought you would be more against this." Said Allan "Have something more colourful to say about it.
"I don't like it," said Robin at once – he dropped his voice a little – he looked across the room where Guy was. "But my dad is a copper remember? He told me this is a new government idea to get on top of gang related things before they get out of hand. He's concerns about the fight…So, I got to keep my head down for a while – just to keep my dad off my back."
"We are hardly a gang," said John
"Maybe not," said Robin "But Dad doesn't see it that way." Robin sat up straighter in his chair and deepen his voice. "Robin," he said mimicking his father voice "You have not seen what I have – You don't know what I know. If you do you may behaviour differently. For once in your live Robin – stay out of trouble."
Allan laughed a little "At least your dad cares."
"So," said John thoughtfully "They just want to test this idea out on us?"
Allan shrugged a little. "I don't think the teachers know what they got themselves into," he said. He had a feeling that the team building would end up in a fight.
They left they form room and waited for Much, Djaq and Will to get out of there. As normal they were let out of the classroom later then them. "Did you get the note as well?" Robin asked
Much nodded his head as they started to walk to assembly "Me and Will did – Djaq didn't. I bet it was because she's a girl."
"I got detention instead," said Djaq at once – stopping Much mid rant "And it wasn't like I didn't question it either."
"Still – it is completely sexist." Said Much at once
"I agree," said Djaq
"And you only got one afternoon detention." Said Much carry on his rant "How is that fair? Is that because you are a girl or because you are smarter than us?" They walked in the assembly hall and fell silent. Now wasn't the time to talk. No doubt this conversation would carry on another day.
After a long boring assembly, the outlaws had to slit up into they different lessons. Much had an enjoyable first lesson back. He was paired with Evie for food technology. He had a feeling that Evie might like him a little – but he didn't want to ask in case she didn't feel the same way. That would be embarrassing and Much would never show his face at the school again.
At break Much was still good mood. He had a good first lesson back and Evie even laughed at one of the jokes. "Stop smiling," said Allan after a few minutes obviously he didn't have a good first lesson back. "You look too happy first day back. What's wrong with you?"
"Nothing is wrong with me." Said Much "More to the point what's wrong with you…you've been a bad mood all day."
"Only since I got the note about the team building." Snapped back Allan "Kind of puts a downer on the day."
"Will," come the voice of Luke Scarlett – the outlaws all turn, Luke looked serious "I want to talk." Will nodded his head and walked down the corridor with his brother by him side and they disappeared out of a fire door and out of sight.
"Oh – Will and Lukey had an argument this morning," put in Allan to explain Luke strange attuite.
"Really?" asked Much forgetting what he was talking to Allan about in the first place – he couldn't remember the last time the Scarlett brother had a disagreement. He thought about this morning before the first bell. They were both pretty grumpy that morning – but that was pretty common. "What about?"
Allan shook his head. "Don't know - they stopped arguing when I reach them. But they will get over whatever it is soon – they always do," Will come back just before the end of break bell rang – in a worst mood than before. But no one wanted to question it. And before long they were back to their lessons.
At lunch Robin was in an edger mood. "We need to start training for the football again." He said "We have our next match on the 15th – against Dark Matter."
"The year elevens ruby players?" asked Much "They like twice your size."
"Little John's bigger." Said Robin as it was nothing to worry about. "And bigger normally means slower – no offence John….So…." Robin was going to say meet after school – but it was pretty dark by home time he brushed that idea off. "Saturday?" He looked around at his friends.
"Sure why not," said Allan and Will nodded his head.
"I have to talk to my parents," said Djaq "We might be having visitors over….But I will text you late when I know…. should be free for half the day at least."
"I'll be there," said John
Robin then looked at Much. "Can you be the gollie?"
Much closed his eyes for a moment –a whole day playing football wasn't he's idea of fun. But spending the whole day by himself sound even less fun. "Alright," he said "But if it rains I'm going home – I am not catching a cold because of all of you."
"Will," Luke was back again – more upbeat than he had been that break.
"Can I go to Benedict's after school today?" asked Luke talking fast "Ben said I could have tea and sleep there to tonight…...please, I know it's a school night and everything... but please, Will!"
"I'm not dad," said Will at once.
Will rolled his eyes and turn to his brother "Okay," he said "This once – but you're doing the washing this week remember. You're not getting out of that."
Luke nodded his head. "Thanks." He said then he paused for a moment. "What will you tell dad?"
"That you're at Ben doing homework – needed to use the computer," he said "Need me to drop anything off after my paper round?"
Luke nodded his head "Yeah my toothbrush, that kind of thing. See ya later." Then he was off again no doubt going to find Ben.
Allan turned to Will "I thought you two were arguing. Didn't see you make up."
"We are just having a disagreement," said Will somewhat vaguely "And it may be better for us to spend some time apart."
"Disagreement about what?"
"Doesn't matter." Said Will
"If it doesn't matter then you can tell me." Pressed Allan wanting to know,
"I said it doesn't matter." Said Will shortly,
Allan eyes narrowed by didn't press him anyone. More because Isabella some marching towards him and slapped his hard in the face. Everyone looked in shook. Isabella always went after Robin and pay the others little attention. "You're the worst kisser ever," she yelled and stormed away.
"You kissed Isabella?" asked Much "She the girl you kissed at Christmas? What the hell?" Allan look like a deer caught in the headlights and for once in his life didn't speak. "Wow – you would kiss almost anything – She's crazy….and Gisborne's sister….."
"You think I don't know that." snapped Allan rubbing his cheek - he looked more embarrassed than anything.
"Gisborne is going to kill you when he finds out." Added Much
"How did that even happen?" asked Will
"It doesn't matter," said Allan
Much scoff a little. "Why do people used the phase it doesn't matter? When people use it it normally means something matters."
When the Lunch bell sounded the outlaws all brace themselves for an afternoon with the black knights. They waited outside of the empty classrooms. Sheriff and Gisborne were already there and glared at them.
"This is all your fault," said Gisborne
"Hardly," said Robin his eyes narrowing "If you lot weren't all jackass's then we wouldn't have any problems."
"You're not as clever as you think you are," shot back Gisborne
"Clever than you – but that's not hard is it."
Much pulled Robin back before they could be another fight. "Not now, Robin," he mumble just as the deputy head teacher appeared in the corridor walking towards them.
The teacher unlock the door and let them all inside. At once they sat down. Outlaws on one side and Black Knights on the other. The teacher closed the door and looked at them, "You all know why you are here," he said. Some nodded but most stay stilled. "Fighting is a unsuitable way to solve problems."
"Would you go the army and tell them that?" asked one of the Black knights
"Wars destroy lives." Said the teacher "Everyone suffers and suffer for a long time. I could give you a whole history lesson if you want….. but that's not the objective here today." He looked at them all before walking around the room handing out a plain piece of paper. "I want all of you to write down what is important to you…. I want you to think carefully…think about the people and places in your life that are important."
"Why sir?" asked Allan
"Sometimes Mr A 'dale it befit to be a little reflective…." Said the teacher. Once everyone had done that the teacher spoke again. "Okay – now write about what you want in a years time – then in five years time. When you done that folder it up and put it in your pocket…save it for later."
After that they were all mix up in to four groups and made to do projects like make a tower with marshmallow and dry spaghetti. The deputy head seem to know more about them and the drama that they all thought. He made sure Robin and Gisborne were never in the same group, the black guard who made the comment about Roy was away from John as possible. And made sure Will and Sheriff were in different group due to the situation with their fathers.
They nearly made it to the end before Gisborne and Allan started to argue. The teacher stepped in quickly. "Instead of fighting – lets talk this out,"
"Ah sir – they nothing to say." Said Allan at once "Me and his sister kissed over the holidays… it was consensual and she was willing and everything…. That it just one kiss….and he just found out…. It has nothing to do with him….he can't control what his sister dose."
"I don't want my sister to go near a scrum bag like him," said Gisborne
The deputy head send everyone else out while he talked with Allan and Gisborne. Not wanting to spend any more time near each other the outlaws and Black Knight went their separate ways.
"I have a question," said Djaq as they walked out of the school gates at the end of the day. "Who had broken they new years revolution already?"
"I had an argument with Luke," said Will "And dad…."
"And Much had been complaining all day." put in John
"Excuse me – but everyone been complaining – we had an afternoon working with the Black Knights. I think I am allowed some complaining….."
"I think it's too early to fail my revolution just yet," said Allan in a sing –a – song voice.
"You can start again with a revolution any time." Said Djaq specking to Will and Much "It can be a hiccup."
"No one can make Much stop complaining," laughed Robin, he turn to Allan "So - what going to happen with you and Gisborne?"
Allan shrugged a little "Nothing," he said "Gisborne can not control what his sister doses. What happen - happen between us two. The teacher went on and on about how stupid half our fights have been about. And how pointless it all is...blah, blah, blah..."
"Hopefully things will be slightly better." said Djaq "Even if the only reason will be not to repeat the afternoon."
"I think it will take more than one lousy afternoon to sort out our differences." said Much "It might be less trouble for a few weeks - but it will start up again - you mark my words..."