Here is my new story, all. I hope you like it as much as 'A New Kind of Love' There will be more posted soon, And I promise to post faster and longer chapters.
"Alright quiet down. We have a new student joining us tomorrow. I have to give you all a warning since he is an infected." Mrs. Travers informed her class.
Mike rolled his eyes at his teacher. He knew she was bad, but she could have at least tried to keep the disgust out of her voice when she talked about an infected person.
Mike remembered when the disease was first discovered. The survival rate was very low. It caused massive fevers that would usually kill the person before it progressed any farther. The organs would shut down slowly. It was supposed to be excruciating.
That was before any of the changes happened. If you survived the fever and organ failure then came the mutations. Some were physically deformed. Growing odd limbs or losing some, sometimes things that didn't even belong on a human. Gills, wings, tails, you name it. Scientists had figured out that many times infected would take the appearance of animals they had spent time around, but not always. Sometimes it was completely random. Sometimes the mutations wouldn't form correctly and they would die from that. So the odds of surviving with a mutation that still allowed you to function was low.
But still possible. The ones that did survive the sickness and mutations were put in camps. The public was frightened by them. Some went through emotional changes that made them hostile, an empty shell of the person they had been. People started 'defending' themselves from the mutated survivors.
Defending meaning going after innocent people. He remembered the news reports of massacres against the infected. Soon they were all rounded up and put in the camps to keep them away from the public. For both their safety and the citizens.
It was only supposed to be temporary but it ended up lasting 13 years. Mike remembered his neighbor was infected when he was five. He remembered soldiers pulling her from her home and restraining her before throwing her into the back of a car to send her to a camp.
Those who were in the camps were treated poorly. Abused and fed things that farm animals wouldn't eat. He winced as he recalled an article he read for his Ethics class.
The camps were only shut down a couple months ago and people were still adjusting to the infected getting jobs and going to school, or out in public. Many people were still very hostile and cruel to them. Some infected could hardly get jobs because so many people wouldn't hire them. Public schools had to accept them or they could be sued but they made it obvious they were not welcome. Many infected decided to be home schooled or work from home. Rather than face the wrath of those who still hated them for no reason.
The bell rang interrupting Mikes thoughts.
"The homework is on the board. Its due at the beginning of class tomorrow." Mrs. Travers said before her students left quickly.
Glad to be out of school Mike headed towards football practice.
"Hey, so what do you think about that?" Mikes friend, Ethan, jogged up to him.
"What?" Mike asked.
"About an infected being here." Ethan said.
"I think he or she has as much a right to be here as any of us do." Mike glared at the ground.
"Seriously?" Ethan looked shocked at him.
"Yeah, Don't you?" Mike said shocked. He was surprised one of his friends would be so prejudiced against someone because they had the unfortunate luck of getting sick.
" Well, I mean come on dude look at them." Ethan laughed. Mike stopped walking and looked at him. He scoffed before continuing to walk.
"Your an ass." Mike said.
"What? Come on its not that big a deal." Ethan said catching up to Mike as he quickened his pace.
"No big deal? That's like hating me because I'm gay." Mike said.
"That's different." Ethan said.
"How so?" Mike asked
"Because its not your fault your gay you were born that way." Ethan said shrugging.
" And its their fault they got sick?" Mike said as he opened his gym locker to get dressed.
" Well no, but, I don't know I just don't want them hanging around me. What if I catch something?" Ethan shivered as he pulled on his jersey.
" Its not contagious and you know that." Mike glared.
"Well you never know right?" Ethan said.
"Whatever." Mike said before storming out of the locker room onto the field.
Mike sat down in his usual seat in Mrs. Travers class. He had to admit he was kind of excited about seeing the new kid. He had never actually seen a fully changed infected person before. His neighbor had only slightly green rough skin. He remembered her having a pet snake.
The bell rang and Mrs. Travers walked into the room. Still no sign of the new kid.
" Get out your homework and pass it up." She said as she sat at her desk to take roll.
Mike took out his homework and passed it to the girl sitting in front of him. He sat waiting, wondering where the new kid was. He sat up straight when a boy he had never seen walked into the room.
He wore a sleeveless shirt that was a pale gray. He was somewhat short. With black hair that looked very soft. He had a thin frame and his hips were narrow. He was actually beautiful. But none of these were the first thing Mike noticed.
The first thing he noticed were the large gray feathered wings that were folded neatly on his back. They ruffled slightly as he walked towards Mrs. Travers desk. He handed her a note that she glanced at before throwing it in the trash and standing.
"Class this is..." She trailed off. She hadn't read the name on the note. The boy looked up and Mike noticed the Bright orange eyes with the large pupils.
" Alex." He said in a light voice.
" Alex, have a seat anywhere." Mrs. Travers said looking him up and down before turning to write something down on the board.
Alex stood awkwardly in the front of the room for a moment. Several people with empty seats next to them looked away or made it seem they were busy writing. He saw Alex swallow nervously. Before they made eye contact.
Mike smiled and nodded his head at the empty seat to his right. Alex lips curved into a small smile. He walked to the isle until he reached the empty seat. Mike saw him flex his wings closer to his back before he sat. It looked uncomfortable with his wings pushing against the back of the chair. He had to lean forwards slightly to make room for them.
" Hey, I'm Mike." He said and held out a hand to Alex.
The smaller boy hesitated a second before putting his hand out there. It was then Mike noticed the pale hands had a very small patch of gray feathers near the wrist. He took the hand anyways and shook it. Alex smiled.
" Alex." He introduced himself again. This time specificity to Mike.
" Nice to meet you, And don't worry about Travers. Shes a bitch to everyone not just you." Mike whispered. Alex gave a small squawk that Mike assumed was a laugh.
" I'm just glad I could find someone who didn't want to set me on fire the first five minutes they met me." Alex blushed and looked down at his desk.
" ha, don't worry bout me. No fire setting here." Mike joked. Alex smiled before looking up at the board.
Mike and Alex had the next two classes together and the second one they had with Ethan. Mike was worried about how they would get along but was hoping Ethan could at least behave himself and not hurt Alex's feelings.
" Hey, look before we go in I wanna let you know we have this class with my friend Ethan." Mike stopped Alex before they stepped into the classroom.
"Ok?" Alex turned his head like he didn't understand. Mike saw a lot of bird features that were hard to find, like the way he turned his head.
"Well, I don't exactly know how hes going to react to you being.... well... uh..." Mike trailed off not knowing how Alex would react.
" Infected? Don't be freaked out to say the truth. And its fine I've had tons of different reactions I'm pretty much ready for anything he has to throw at me. Literally and figuratively." Alex gave a small smile.
" Ok." Mike said and smiled back.
They stepped into the room and Mike found his usual spot next to Ethan open and a seat in front of Mike open. Mike pointed and Alex turned to look. They headed over towards the seats and Mike saw Ethan give a scowl to Alex but Alex didn't seem phased by it.
" Hey, this is Alex." Mike said glaring at Ethan when Alex couldn't see.
" Hey." Ethan said shortly.
" Hi." Alex gave a warm smile.
'Don't be an ass' Mike mouthed towards Ethan. He rolled his eyes and glared at the back of Alex's head. They all turned and listened as their teacher started talking.
The bell rang signaling the end of class and the beginning of lunch.
" You wanna eat with us?" Mike asked as they packed their stuff into their backpacks.
" I don't know. I wouldn't wanna intrude." Alex said looking at Ethan who was making it obvious Alex wasn't welcome.
" See he doesn't want to intrude. Come on, I'm starving." Ethan grabbed Marks arm.
" Dude, don't be a dick." Mike glared at Ethan. " You wouldn't be intruding." He smiled at Alex.
" I don't know..." Alex still knew Ethan didn't want him there.
" Please?" Mike wasn't above begging.
"OK." Alex smiled and walked down the hallway.
They sat at Ethan and Mikes usual table. Mike pulled out his lunch and began eating the sandwich he had made that morning. Ethan was eating some cold pizza he had had for dinner the night before. Alex pulled out a small Ziploc bag filled with what looked like beef jerky.
" Do I want to know what that is?" Mike wrinkled his nose at the stuff.
Alex laughed. "Its rabbit. I have the stomach of a bird too." Alex said.
" So you cant eat anything other than a bunny?" Mike asked.
" No, I can eat rabbit,grouse, ducks, insects, lemmings, and some small mammals. But do any of those sound more appetizing then 'bunnies'?" Alex smiled.
" Duck?" Mike pointed out.
" I eat duck too, sometimes. It is creepy eating something that looks a lot like you though." Alex laughed.
"Touche." Mike winced.
"What the hell are you anyways?" Ethan asked. Joining in the conversation. Mike was about to smack him and tell him to stop being an asshole but Alex didn't seem bothered.
" I'm a Northern Goshawk." Alex said and took another bite of the jerky.
" I'm no bird expert but I don't think those are common household pets. Are you one of the ones that get the random mutations?" Mike asked.
" No, My dad worked at an Endangered species park." A lot of the time he was working with Goshawks. I remember him coming home with feathers all over him all the time so I wasn't surprised when I sprouted a few myself." Alex laughed and flexed his wings.
" That's kind of cool. At least you didn't get talons right? My neighbor got stuck with a snake." Mike winced.
" That's gotta suck. One of my friends at the camp was a fish. They had to keep him in a huge glass tank because his lungs didn't work anymore. And I'm definatly thankful for being talonless. Can't imagine what that would be like. I have enough trouble with my wings." Alex said.
" Whoa, you were in the camps?" Mike asked surprised.
" Yeah, I was 6 when they put us in the camps, My dad was too but....He didn't survive the change." Alex looked sad.
" I'm sorry I didn't mean to..." Mike trailed off.
" Its OK. He died awhile ago." Alex said and gave a small smile.
" What was he?" Ethan asked.
" Dude-" Mike began before Alex cut him off.
" Its OK. The fever killed him. He didn't get any mutations before he died." Alex said.
Ethan just grunted and turned back to his pizza.
The bell rang and they stood and threw their trash away before walking to their next class.
Mike had P.E. Next but Alex didn't have to take P.E. Since the school thought it would 'disturb' the other students. So he went to a separate class like a study hall. The class after P.E. They didn't have together but Mike had it with Ethan. He sat down at his normal spot.
"Hey." Mike said as he put his backpack on the floor.
" What was up with that?" Ethan turned and looked at him.
"What?" Mike asked.
"You know what. Inviting bird-boy to eat with us." Ethan said.
" I don't have a problem with him being infected. I'm the only friend hes got here I'm not going to tell him to piss off because my other friend is a prejudice asshole." Mike growled.
" Whatever." Ethan said before turning back to the front of the room.
" If you've got a problem with him then you can hang out with someone else. If not then be nicer to him." Mike said.
" Whatever, you just want to fuck him." Ethan sneered.
" What? No I don't." Mike frowned at Ethan and turned to the front of the class. Ethan turned to face Mike now.
" You so do. You just want a tight piece of ass and don't care if you get rabies in the process." Ethan rolled his eyes.
" Shut your fucking mouth. Alex is a nice guy and I'm not going to let you talk about him like that." Mike clenched his fists on his desk. They itched to punch Ethan's sneer off his face.
" Whatever dude." Ethan turned back to the front of the room.
School ended and Mike was climbing into the car his dad let him borrow.
" Mike!." He turned when he heard his name being called and saw Alex running towards him.
His wings spread back slightly as he ran. He jumped over a parking block and and flapped his large wings a couple of times giving him slightly more lift. It occurred to Mike then that he didn't know if Alex could actually fly.
" Hey, I was hoping to catch you before you left." Alex said as he finally reached Mike.
" I'm glad you did. Hey I just realized I never asked, can you actually fly?" Mike asked.
"What? Oh, no. But I can hover a bit, not very long though." Alex shrugged.
"Still cool." Mike smiled.
" Ha, thanks. So I was wondering if maybe this weekend you wanted to hang out. We could go see a movie or something." Alex asked blushing slightly. He ruffled his feathers. Mike noticed he did that when he got nervous.
" Sure sounds like fun." Mike smiled.
" Really? Cool, here's my number." Alex said and handed him a slip of paper with his phone number on it.
" I'll call you." Mike put the number in his pocket and watched Alex walk away.
'Goddamn he has the cutest ass.' Mike thought to himself. He got in the car and drove towards home.