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Aria Serial 7: An Old Acquaintance

Zve continued to wander the halls, her heart still racing, now confused as why she was possibly here. Gavin said only kids with powers end up here. So then, what’s mine? She thought back to that day at summer camp, how she somehow managed to float above the ground to avoid crashing. I can fly? Zve thought in disbelief. 

“Hey, nice to see you,” someone called out. Zve turned around and smiled. The camp counselor. Despite the oddity, it was a relief to see a familiar face. 

“Brian, right?” Zve asked. “I can’t believe you’re here!” He looked confused. “You were my camp counselor over the summer.”

“Oh right! I almost forgot I went by that name,” he realized. Zve raised an eyebrow. “My real name is Nick Lanthanum. I go by Brian when I’m scouting but it always takes me a moment to respond to it.” Nick said this with a small giggle. Zve felt annoyed that her brain would have to correct something else she believed for months. 

“Wait, you scout? Meaning you look for kids for powers?” Zve realized.

“That’s my summer job, pretty much. I got sick of staying on campus all summer so I decided to help find kids you like,” Nick said. 

“Kids like me?” 

“Kids who don’t know they powers,” Nick explained. “A lot of the kids who come here in early years of school are from families with powers who either know of the school or are alumni themselves. But that leaves out the kids who aren’t from a legacy family. That’s where scouts like me come in. We get jobs were we’ll be around kids and try to spot the ones who have powers.” 

“Like camp counselors,” Zve said. Nick nodded. “So, what did you see in me?”

“You can fly,” Nick replied simply. “It’s why you didn’t crash into the ground that day. It was a reflex.” 

“I’ve never seen any wings,” Zve quietly tried to reason. It was her last attempt to hold onto to some kind of normalcy. 

“From what I understand, they mostly pop out when needed or when you make them, although they won’t rip your clothes, so no need to worry about that. Some flyers say they can see them in their reflections,” Nick said. “I need to get going. If you have any more questions, you can come find me. I’m in room 603. Have a good day tomorrow,” 

Nick started to walk away. Zve decided to not even question the anomalies anymore. Although she started to piece together the few details Nick gave about himself.

“Hey, Nick,” Zve called. “Why are you here? Are you from a legacy family?”

Nick shuddered, as if someone had struck a nerve. Zve realized he probably wasn’t, and there was a painful story behind why he was at Aria.

“I don’t like to talk about it,” Nick whispered and continued walking away. 

Zve looked back at her shoes, and decided to go back to her room.

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