Chapter 1: Arrival

It was a typical seeming day at Bayville High, just six months after the attack of Apocalypse. With teenagers going into the school, there was the usual crush of the entering crowd at the main doors. A pretty redheaded girl of fifteen with plenty of freckles nervously entered the school for the first time. The girl walked into the school aware of being the "New Girl". Dressed in a short blue denim skirt and a yellow cotton blouse with a flower motif, as well as stylish sneakers, Megan wore her straight naturally reddish-orange hair in a long braid that came to her mid-back. Wearing her backpack Megan entered the school obviously new and lost.

The new girl's thoughts were interrupted by a cheerful "Like, hi there! You must be new here. I'm Kitty." The redhead looked at the other girl and smiled gratefully "Yes. Um. Hi. I'm Megan. Megan O'Hare. My family just moved here from Massachusetts."

Kitty smiled at the new girl and asked "Well, do you need, like, any help?" Megan said "Oh yeah. All that I can get, please." Kitty laughed at the humor of the new girl. "Well, I'll do what I can. Here, I'll get you to the office, so you can totally get set up with the Principle. Come on, it's, like, right this way." Megan smiled back and said "Thanks, Kitty. I could use a friend. Or two. Or ten for that matter!" Kitty said "I totally know what you mean. I love your outfit! Where did you get it?" Megan looked very proud and said "Actually, I made this myself. Well, with my Mom's sewing machine. But I did all the work. I designed each part. I measured, cut, and sewed it all. I even bought the fabric with my babysitting money!" Kitty was impressed and let it show "Like, wow! It's really great! You should make stuff for other girls! I know that I'd buy an outfit from you!" Megan was about to reply when a tall, still handsome-looking African-American man came around the corner and asked "Miss Pryde? Where are you going?"

Kitty looked at the High School's senior History Teacher, and answered "Mr. Matthews! I was just taking this new girl, like, to the Office. She's new. Her name is Megan."

Mr. Matthews had a great deal more tolerance for Mutants, as his own father had marched on Washington in the sixties for Equal Rights. Setting Kitty at ease Mr. Matthews held up a hand and said "It's OK, Kitty. I'll take her from here. Greetings, Miss. I am Mr. Mathews. I teach both World and U.S. History. Are you a freshman?" Megan shook her head 'no' and said "Um. No, Sir. I am registering as a Sophomore." Mr. Matthews nodded and asked "What is your last name, Megan?"

Megan answered as they both entered the Office "O'Hare, Sir. Megan O'Hare. My Dad is a cop. He got offered a promotion to go to, I mean come to Bayville, Sir."

Mr. Mathews nodded and let the Office Staff take care of the new girl "Good luck, Miss O'Hare. Oh and, welcome to Bayville."

The middle aged woman behind the desk smiled at the girl and asked "May I help you, dear?" Megan nodded happily and held out the manilla folder the school system needed for Megan's transfer. "Here you are, Mrs...McClusky!" Megan had simply read the name-plate on the woman's desk, and smiled warmly at the nice-seeming lady.

Taking the girl's paperwork in hand, Mrs. McClusky said "Sit, sit, sit. No need to stand for me." Looking around the room as she waited, Megan noticed a strange looking boy across the room in from of the Principal's Office, He was dressed in ratty clothes and had pasty looking skin. His hair looked dirty, and the way sat in the chair, looked odd. Looking back at the new girl the boy spoke up "Yo. What up, chica? You mus' be new here. Welcome to Mutant Town."

Before Megan could respond, the door to the Principle's Office open up and the boy was waived inside by the Principle herself. As the door closed, Mrs. McClusky smiled at Megan and said "Here you go, sweety. This is your schedule for this Term. If you have a real problem with it, come back here, or ask the Guidance Councilor. That would be Mrs. Danvers. OK, honey?" Megan nodded and said "thank you, Mrs. McClusky." Mrs. McClusky said "Just follow Todd here and he will get you to class."

Hurrying out with the boy who had been in the Principal's Office. "Here we are. This is Todd Tolansky. He will show you to your class. turning to Todd Mr. Tolansky? I expect you to behave yourself. this probation has just started."

Todd nodded nervously and said "It's all good, Principle Mason. I'll just take her to class, no problem. Turning to Megan OK, we got Mr. Matthews for Home Room and First Period; U.S. History."

Megan sat in the only seat left, the one to the right of Todd, and in front of this huge bald kid. To her left, a cute kid sat with dark hair. He was making eyes at a very pretty,darker-skinned girl to Megan's right. This girl made eyes right back at the boy. While watching this display, Megan failed to notice that her name was called. Todd rapped his knuckles on Megan's desk and she startled "W-what?"

"Yo. The teacher wants you to go to the front of the class and introduce yourself." said Todd. Megan looked up and saw the teacher, Mr. Matthews looking expectantly at her. Blushing Mehan got up and walked to the front of the class. Mr. Matthews quietly asked her "Is everything ok?" Megan nodded a 'yes' and Mr. Matthews said "Well. Class we have a new student this Term. She will now introduce herself. Miss O'Hare?"

Megan steeled herself and addressed the classroom "Good morning. My name is Megan O'Hare. I'm originally from Massachusetts, Attleboro, to be exact. My Mom and Dad moved us here because of his job. My little brother, Jake is only in Junior High right now. I don't have any other siblings. I, um, am a Sophomore. I'm fifteen and a half, and I'm an Aries, and I design my own clothes. I designed, and sewed together the outfit I'm wearing right now." Megan was gratified to see that the girls were giving her approving looks for her outfit. She also noticed the interested looks from many of the boys. At a nod from Mr. Matthews, Megan returned to her seat.

After a full day in school, Megan was tired as she got off the bus at her new home. Taking her backpack, full of new school books and homework, she walked to her new home and got out her key, only to find the door opening as her little brother, Jake was on his way out.

"Hey! Where are you going, Jake?" asked Megan. "Out! The guys a t school are gonna have a bike race around the corner from here1 Bye. See ya!" answered Jake as he took off on his bike. Megan shook her head and thought to herself 'Nothing really changes.' Once inside Megan went to the refrigerator and began looking for a snack. Seeing the freezer section was well stocked with meats, Megan took out a burger pattie and defrosted it in the microwave. Once it was defrosted, Megan took it out and was thinking of how to cook it, when she noticed how *GOOD* it smelled as it was. Without knowing why, Megan took a bite out of the uncooked meat pattie. Relishing the warm raw taste, Megan devoured the whole pattie in moments and began looking at the freezer when she realized what she had just done!

"Oh my God! What the heck am I doing?! Raw meat is dangerous to eat!" Almost panicking, Megan sat down at the kitchen table and wondered what had possessed her to do that. "I'm not even really that hungry…" As if to say otherwise, her stomach growled in need! Determined to not pig-out, but to dull the aching hunger that began to gnaw at her, Megan went into the freezer and took out another burger pattie, and defrosted that one as well.

As soon as it was done, Megan took it out of the microwave and held it in trembling hands. "God, what's wrong with me?" she moaned. Megan looked at the clock and saw that her Mom was due back in an hour and a half, with her Dad expected back half an hour after that. Then dinner would be served about fifteen or twenty minutes after that! The delay was to allow Dad time to clean up and get to the table with everyone else. Megan was so hungry! She was hungry right now!Unable to resist anymore Megan devoured the meat pattie with the blood dripping down her chin, like an animal consuming her prey!

After this, Megan ran to her room and locked the door behind her, grateful that Dad allowed her a lock to keep her brother out while sleeping or changing. Throwing herself upon the pink frilled bed, Megan cuddled her old stuffed toy, 'Mr. Fluffy' a plush rabbit, and began to cry at the stressful weirdness that her life had just become. First she had to leave all of her childhood friends behind, move to another city (in another State!) and now she was having this terrible urge to eat raw meat like an animal! It was a bit much for this previously sheltered girl of fifteen and a half.

After a while, she ran out of tears. Sitting up, Megan heard her little brother, Jake playing his video games, loudly, as usual. With the electronic explosions and beeps to mask her crying, Megan hoped that her crying had gone undetected. Going to the bathroom across the hall from her room meant that there was little chance of anyone seeing her with tear-smeared makeup.

Repairing her makeup, Megan looked at herself in the mirror and again asked herself, silently 'What's wrong with me? Will that uncooked meat make me sick? Why did I do that?' These questions occupied her as she finished fixing her makeup.

The dinner at the O'Hare's began normally, as Megan was determined to pretend that nothing had happened after she got home. The smell of Mom's cooking normally made her so happy, but now, as she looked at her favorite vegetable medley, Megan had to suppress a gag. 'It must be the uncooked meat!' Megan thought with horror. 'I am going to be sick from this, and I'll have to explain why to everyone! Oh God, no! Please, no! Don't let me be sick!' Looking at concern for his daughter, Mike O'Hare, now of the Bayville PD, asked her "Sweety? You look a bit green. What's wrong, Meg?" Megan's Mom, Elaine O'Hare looked at Megan as well. "Baby? did the school food turn out that badly?"

Megan seized upon this potential excuse and just nodded. "May I please be excused?" Her Dad said, with concern "Of course. Go up to your room and lay down for a bit. Your Mom will check on you after dinner, sweety." That was all Megan needed to escape this embarrassing scene. As she got away from the smell of the dinner, she began to feel better. For the thousandth time, Megan silently asked herself 'Why? What's wrong with me? Why do I feel sick at my favorite veggie dish, but I crave the steak? Am I sick, or is it hormonal? What the heck!?"

It was just as she had calmed down that Megan's Mom, still a lovely redhead herself, came in and asked "Baby? What's wrong honey? Was it the school's cafeteria food? It wasn't your Mom's cooking was it?" gently teased Mrs. O'Hare. Megan looked better but was still laying down on the bed, holding Mr. Fluffy again.

Megan took a chance, as she trusted her Mom, even with the embarrassing things in her life, like hormonal issues and all those pesky boy questions. "Mom? I did something kinda dumb, and I have no idea why…"

Mrs. O'Hare looked at Megan and said "OK, Baby. Just a second." Then Mrs. O'Hare got up, and turned on her daughter's music system to mask the conversation from Jake's potential eavesdropping ears. "Go ahead, Meg. I'm listening, not judging. OK?"

Relieved that once again megan's trust in her Mom was well placed, Megan blurted out "I ate some raw hamburger meat when I got home, but I felt fine until I got to the table for dinner." Concerned for her little girl, Mrs. O'Hare felt Megan's forehead and sat back relieved that there was no fever. "How do you feel now, Megan?" asked her Mom.

"Actually, I just feel hungry, Mom. Weirded out, but hungry. My stomach isn't queasy like I'm gonna be sick, now. I just have a craving for that big juicy steak !"

"Well, Meg, I'll go get a plate of it for you, but I will be with you the whole time, in case the raw food you ate earlier causes a problem for you. Got it?" said Mrs. O'Hare.