Monday August 28, 2017
“I’ll see you after you get out of school sweetheart,” Rocky said to Izzy. They were sitting in front of her school. It was Izzy’s first day back to school since the day she was cubnapped. Izzy sat in the front seat staring down at the floor in silence. Cubs and teens were talking loudly as they walked by the vehicle heading into the large school building. He sat there patiently while thoughts ran through her mind. Only she knew what those thoughts were, good, bad, mixed. She looked up and over at her dad, tears dripped from her face. She closed her eyes and shook her head.
“I. I. I can’t do this daddy. Everyone knows what happened to me. I’ll be made fun of. Called a whore or slut. I don’t want to,” she said.
“No one will do that. They’re all your friends. I’m sure Fang would beat up the fur that said anything though,” he replied and smiled warmly at her.
“Fang is a goofball wolf,” she replied with a chuckle.
“There’s a smile,” he replied.
“I’m scared daddy,” she replied.
“Don’t be afraid or scared. You’re able to see the counselor at anytime. All of your teachers know this. They cannot stop you from going if you need to. There’s nothing to be scared of sweetheart,” he replied. Izzy looked up at smiled at her dad. She knew that he was right but still was fearful of what others would think her now.
Izzy waved before she stepped into the front door of the school. With an exhale she headed into the cafeteria and sat down to wait for the bell to start the day. She took a seat away from everyone else. She could feel the stares of some when all of suddenly the table bumped and moved. She looked over with widened eyes.
“Izzy?” A female voice asked. Izzy looked back down at the table and nodded her head. She knew who it was or she thought she did, she couldn’t remember the lionesses name.
“You do remember me right? We sat next to each other in Mrs. Aubin’s English class,” the lioness stated.
“Umm … Akri, right?” Izzy asked quietly.
“Yeah. I’m so happy to see you back. I missed you a lot,” Akri replied. Izzy looked up at the lioness who was smiling at her. Izzy forced a smile back.
“Did. Did you need anything?” Izzy asked.
“I saw you and couldn’t believe it was you. I just had to come and say hi,” Akri replied.
“Th-Thank you Akri. It’s nice to see you again too,” Izzy replied.
“I don’t know everything that happened, but if you need someone to talk to, I’m here for you Izzy,” Akri said.
“Thank you,” Izzy replied then stared at the table again.
Izzy walked into her third period class, Earth Science, and sat down near the back of the room. After the bell rung the teacher sat at her desk doing roll call.
“Isabella Dawn,” the teacher called out and waited for a reply. After five seconds she called out Izzy’s name once again. Izzy sat there staring at the white board in silence oblivious to the roll call until she was pushed on her arm. She shook her head and looked over at the wolf next to her. It was Fang Wolfe.
“Izzy’s here ma’am,” Fang spoke up.
“S-sorry here,” Izzy finally replied as she looked down at her desk.
“It’s nice to have you back Ms. Dawn,” the teacher replied only to be returned with silence. The teacher was the science teacher in elementary school. She wanted to further her teaching career by teaching High School Earth Science.
“Izzy, are you okay?” Fang asked quietly. Izzy shook her head no in reply and looked over at him.
“I keep getting stared at Fang. I’m uncomfortable,” she replied.
“I’m here for you if you need help with anything, okay?” Fang replied. She turned her gaze back to her desk.
After class ended Izzy stood up and headed for the door.
“Isabella Dawn, I’d like to talk to you please,” her teacher spoke up. Izzy sighed then turned around and headed to the teachers desk just ten feet away from the door.
“Yes ma’am?” Izzy said.
“I’m happy to see you back. I really am,” the gazelle stated. Izzy forced a smile and nodded back in reply.
“If you need anything just ask okay?” The teacher said.
“Okay,” Izzy replied.
“I, umm, I …” the teacher was cut off my Izzy, “I. I should get going lunch has started, sorry,” Izzy said then rushed out of the room.
Izzy, Fang and Vapor sat at the cafeteria table eating, Izzy being quiet and withdrawn. Fang and Vapor sat there eating and trying to get her to talk. She finished her lunch and left to dump the remaining out in a trashcan. She returned and sat down.
“I feel like that others are looking at or thinking of me differently now. It just doesn’t feel the same anymore,” Izzy said quietly.
“No one is judging you Izzy,” Fang replied.
“You saw everyone stare at me in Earth Science,” she replied.
“Because you didn’t speak up after Mrs. Moens said your name,” he replied.
“I didn’t hear her. I’m really tired today. Drogo kept me wake last night,” she replied.
“Cubs are like that,” Vapor replied.
“I don’t see how you two do it … with three cubs. Just, I love them but damn I just can’t get any sleep,” Izzy replied.
“It’s not easy, not at least for the first few years,” Vapor replied.
“That’s not what I wanted to hear Vapor,” Izzy stated and stared at Vapor.
“I know but it’s the truth. Anyway, no one is thinking badly of you. And if they are, what do they know? They’re assholes if they do, just forget about them,” Vapor replied.
“That Great Dane Dalmatian over there has been staring at me since I sat down,” Izzy said after a few moments of silence. Fang and Vapor turned their heads just in time to see the dog quickly look down at his tray.
“Him? He’s harmless as far as I know. He moved here during the summer before last school year. I don’t recall his name though,” Fang replied.
“It’s annoying,” Izzy replied then glared at the dog after he looked back over in her direction.
Izzy sat in her last class for the day as other students walked in. She looked up and over to her left only to see a smiling dalmatian dog sitting next to her. She exhaled and sighed but turned her attention back to staring at her desk.
“I’m Garrett,” he said. She looked over at him and just stared emotionless. After a few seconds he motioned with his paw in sign language which confused her.
“What?” She asked.
“I thought you might have been deaf. I did sign language saying my name,” he replied.
“Oh,” she replied. He went to speak again but the teacher called for the class start. Half way through he looked back over at her.
“You’re pretty quiet Isabella,” Garrett said quietly as the teacher spoke at the front. She looked over at him still with an emotionless expression. He made a goofy smile that showed off his teeth and curled his nose causing her to smile and chuckle slightly. She quickly recovered herself and went back staring at her desk that was covered with paper’s and information about the class year.
“Sorry if I’m weirding you out, just let me know. I just want to be your friend,” he said.
“I … Thanks,” Izzy replied.
The bell rung signaling the end of the school day. Izzy grabbed her bag and headed out. As she reached the end of the hallway Garret rushed up to her.
“Are you okay Izzy?” He asked.
“I’m fine,” she replied.
“I don’t want to be pushy but I’d really like to be your friend. But I can tell I’m rubbing you the wrong way or weirding you out. I’ll leave you alone,” he said. After a few seconds of silence he stopped walking to let Izzy continue on her own.
“How was school?” Rocky asked.
“I just want to go home please,” Izzy said then looked to the backseat. Both Hanna and Drogo sat in their car seats. She leaned back and stroked their faces.
“I love you both,” she said then turned back around. Rocky checked his mirrors before pulling out of the parking spot and then out on the road.
“Did you enjoy being back in school?” Rocky asked.
“I guess so,” she replied.
“You don’t sound too sure,” he replied.
“Dad, I haven’t been to school in three years. I just have to readjust. Stop asking please,” she replied.
“I’m just… okay sweetheart,” he replied.
“Sorry daddy, it’s just been a long day. Drogo kept me awake last night,” she replied after a few minutes of silence.
“Sorry sweetie, I know it can be difficult and tiring to raise a cub,” he replied then rubbed her head.
She sat there staring out the window as the tree line moved by as her father drove down the road.
“Izzy, I know that you’re probably tired of hearing it, but I’m here if you need to talk about anything. Please don’t pent anything up. You know it’s not good for you, your pups or me,” he said.
“I know daddy,” she replied.
“I love you sweetie,” he replied.
“Love you to daddy,” she replied. She looked over at him and smiled.