Dante sighed at her text. He want even asking that, but her response made it seem unlikely that she'd do him the favour.
"Haha, you should know by now that I don't like to imply things that I want. I wasn't asking you to come here, I was just saying that I know you wouldn't have the time for me if I came to see you." He sent the text and then picked up the handset of his landline. There was only really one school Rachel would be attending, so he found he number on the Internet and called to see if he could arrange something.
It took two hours of explanation and negotiation, but he agreed to donate a large amount of money if he was allowed to enrol. He was told that he could start the very next day and stay at the school as long as he needed to. Dante pulled his wardrobe open and began to pack; he'd explain it to his family over dinner that he was in contact with an old friend and was going to see her.
Dante played with his phone by flipping it open and shut, and wondered what the school would be like and if he could convince Rachel to come over and help him.
Rachel finished up with her last class and checked her phone as she headed for her detention. Shame filled her and she dreaded telling her father about it. He was under enough stress and she worried about his health which was failing fast.
The teacher took it fairly easy on Rachel since it was her first detention and instead of having to clean the library or lunch room she just had to clean the class room. "This is all Dante's fault!" She grumbled as she scrubbed at the desks with disinfectant. Hearing a noise behind her she glued on her smile and turned to see a couple of her friends. They had come to help her out.
Soon the classroom was filled with giggling girls as they scrubbed, vacuumed, and banged erasers for the fun of it.
Lolly was sitting in her usual spot out of the school gate patiently waiting for Rachel.
As soon as he had all his family members gathered in one place, Dante explained that he was going to visit somebody and they agreed that he could go. He knew they'd have said yes anyway. He chewed on his straw as he returned to his room with a bottle of Pepsi and wondered what it would be like when he started school the next day. He glanced at his watch and saw that his flight would be leaving soon - it was about ten hours long, so he had to catch it today if he was going to arrive for the next day.
He gathered his things up and got the servants to carry them, as they went in the lift to the ground floor. Dante was soon on his way to the airport - back in his home town, there was a small hotel that his family ran, and his uniform would be laid out on the bed for him. He checked to make sure he had his sleeping pills - sleeping on planes was difficult for him, so he always needed them.
Rachel thanked her friends once the room was clean then headed towards her house. Lolly sure was happy to see her and wagged her tail a lot as she walked alongside Rachel. "Sorry I am late Lolly, I had detention. What do you think the odds are the school did not tell my parents?" She hoped they were good.
Reaching the house Rachel saw that both her parents cars were gone, they must of had to go into work early. Since they were both nurses Rachel was used to that by now.
After grabbing a bite to eat Rachel did some homework then took Lolly with her for a run. Only on occasion did she like to run usually when she was venting anger, only way her parents knew when she was mad since it was not her nature to be anything but happy and smiling upon appearance.
Her phone had been oddly quiet and she was not sure if that bothered her more then hearing from Dante. Once she was home she took a shower and headed to bed early.
Dante slept through most of the plane ride, and arrived at the nearest big city at 4 am. He rested up in the hotel for a little while, then about an hour before classes were set to begin, he showered and put on his uniform, then made the forty five minute commute.
He arrived about ten minutes early, and went to his locker to shove his belongings in. With it being a short stay, he didn't have textbooks yet, if he would need them at all, so he just had a pencilcase and a thick book to write his notes in. He checked his schedule and saw that his - and Rachel's - first class was going to be English, and he was glad the principal had agreed to his odd request. He just hoped he'd have the chance to speak to Rachel and show her he'd changed before she figured out who he was.
Dante skipped homeroom because he wasn't entirely sure where it was, so he used that time to walk around and find his rooms for class. By the time the bell went for first period, he was at the opposite end of the school, so he turned around and began to head back, knowing he'd probably be late.
Rachel drug herself out of bed the next morning and saw she had no text messages from anyone. Slightly disheartened by it she pulled on her skirt and shirt, yesterday had been special today it was back to her uniform.
After brushing her hair and grabbing a bagel she whistled for Lolly and left for school. Since she was a few minutes late she skipped stopping at her locker and made it to her seat just before the bell rang. With color back in her face and her warm smile in place her friends assumed whatever had upset her yesterday was over with.
A few of the guys in class gave her an appreciative look, they never missed a chance to admire the girls in their skits especially Rachel with her runners legs. Unlike most the girls in the school Rachel was not stuck up and always smiling which made the guys just want her attention all the more.
Rachel was too busy passing up her 10 page essay on Theodore Roosevelt to notice the looks the guys were giving her.
Dante was right, and when he remembered where the class was, he walked in fifteen minutes late.
"Sorry I'm late, I'm new here..." he said. "The layout is so different to my old school so I keep confusing myself and getting lost." The teacher beckoned him closer to ask his name.
"Just call me Tay for now. My family has called me that for the past two years, so I prefer that."
"Okay, take a seat."
As Dante moved to the back of the room, he looked over at the students to try to identify which one could be Rachel. He looked at the very skinniest girls first, but they couldn't be her because they didn't have her face. When he finally recognised her, he moved in and took the free desk to her right, and rested his elbows on it and put his head in his hands.
He hadn't worn a uniform like this one before. The one at his usual school was all black, white and red, and the style was different. He began to pull at the sleeves of his blazer, wondering if they'd get in the way all day.
Rachel barley looked at the new kid and was too adsorbed in her thinking about Dante to stop and wonder why on earth the school would let someone in so late in the year.
The teacher collected the papers on the presidents and then proceeded on with the lecture. Rachel barley heard any words of it. She took a few notes, English was easy for her and not something she usually had to study hard for.
The bell rang and she gathered up her pile of books. She had a bunch since she had not stopped at her locker this morning. The new kid was already far from her mind.
When the bell rang, Dante gathered his few things and just followed Rachel to the next classroom. He'd be in the same one anyway, but when he noticed the huge pile of things she was carrying, he picked up his pace until he was alongside her.
"Do you need some help with those?" he asked her, and took this chance to take a good look. As a kid he'd thought she was kind of nice-looking, but now he saw she'd really grown up beautiful.
Rachel was busy balancing all her books when someone walked up next to her. Hearing him ofter to carry some of her books made her smile get a little bigger. "That is really nice of you... ah Tay was it?" People just moved past them since she had stopped moving. Juggling the books a little bit she handed him a couple.
"I made the mistake of oversleeping this morning and did not have time to go to my locker before class. Mr. James is not the nicest person to people who are late to his class." She indicated a hall. "My locker is just over their if you are sure you do not mind. Oh how rude of me not to tell you my name when you are kind enough to help me with my books, I am Rachel."
Dante took the books she held out and held them in the crook of his elbow.
"Nice to meet you, Rachel. I guess I'm lucky then, he probably didn't tear my head off because I'm new and I have an excuse. I bet it'll wear off soon though... I give it a week before I start getting yelled at." Because he'd been living in another country for years now, he had picked up the slightest trace of an accent, something that he kind of liked. He thought it made his voice sound better, and there was less chance of Rachel figuring it out until he told her.
Dante looked at the front of his own book, knowing his next class was also hers. "Oh where's room B7? I'm in there next but I didn't get a chance to look for it this morning."
Rachel heard a trace of accent in Tay's voice but could not place it. It intrigued her but she did not want to offend him by asking about it. They had reached her locker when he mentioned B7. "What a coincidence, B7 is the class I am in next. I can take you right to it if you would like. Least I can do since you helped me with my books."
She got her locked up and set a couple of her books on the shelf before getting the ones Tay had back. On the open door was a picture of two young children. One a girl and one a boy. Both were smiling, in swimsuits, and in front of a pool.
Grabbing a notebook, calculator, and math book Rachel turned to Tay. "Do you need to go to your locker before heading to class?" She had noticed he only had a notebook and pen.
Dante looked at the picture, but only got a glance before she spoke and drew his attention again.
"Oh, thanks. And nah, I don't have any textbooks at the moment so I just have a notebook and my pencilcase for now. Depending on how long I'm here, I might get them. I've been to a couple of different schools now and I might not be here long enough to really need the books."
In the past few years, Dante had been to about three schools because his family liked to move around between the hotels they owned, but for the past five years, he had been in the same place for stability and his family planned to shift again once he graduated.
Rachel shut her locker. "Alright then this way to B7." The moment he had said that he might not be around for long she had sort of distanced herself from him already. No sense in losing what might be another good friend.
Navigating through the hallways Rachel made sure that Tay stayed next to her. She still had Dante on her mind and knew she was not the best of company at the moment.
Before they could make it to the class a boy popped out in front of Rachel. Cringing her smile faded a lot until it was barely there. "Hello Mark this is Tay. Do you need something?" Mark ignored Tay completely and went on about how Rachel could have the privilege of dating him.
Utterly disgusted with him she just shook her head she went around him and continued on to the classroom. "Sorry about that, he wont take no from me." The next class was math. "I take it you enjoy math, not many people are in calculus."
Dante glared at Mark the whole time he went on about how he wanted Rachel to date him. He was about to snap and yell at him when Rachel just walked by and ignored him anyway.
"What the hell...? That was a tad stalker-ish, eh?" he commented, as they kept walking. "Privilege of dating him? Sounds like someone's up on their high horse..." Dante cringed as he remembered he'd once said to Rachel that being his friend was a privilege.
"But you seem to get along well with most people here. I usually try not to make friends at school because I never know how long I'll be staying, but maybe I'll make an exception this time, because you're nice to me so far," he said with a smile. "Oh, by the way, who was in that picture in your locker? Your little siblings?"