The air in the study hall was heavy, the slight smell of smoke from outside adding to the disgusting atmosphere.
Calister had a few books proped up in front if him, but honestly, he had lost interest in them a while ago. He had to wait another two hours until his next lesson started, too short to take the bus back him to his crappy apartment but too long to provide comfortable relaxation.
His table was empty while the other tables started to fill up, often occupied by big groups of students, loudly exchanging accounts of their days and laughing.
Calister had chosen a different major than most of his old friends and though he still saw them occasionally he hadn't really made any new friends.
Sighing, he closed the book he had pretended to read and stuffed into his bag. No use sitting here where in a matter of time he'd be forced to talk to people. He would rather enjoy the chilling air outside. Mabey he could find something interesting along the way.
He zipped up his battered backpack after stuffing his books inside and stood up, the chair loudly scrapping over the stone floor.
A few students turned their head to see where the noise had come from but quickly averted their eyes again. He enjoyed a questionable reputation amongs most of his classmates. After all he was antisocial yet strangly handsome.
Calister stuffed his brown locks that nearly reached his shoulders under his beanie and left the room, smiling ever so slightly as fresh air filled his lungs.
He let his legs choose the way, the music blasting through the headphone in his right ear keeping his mind running in circles. Did he still remember his homework?
He knew that he had a few pages left in his math exercise book but other than that his brain was blank. Didn't he write it down somewhere?
Still walking, he rummaged through the pockets of his jeans, but found only a broken pencil, a few coins and chewing gum wrappers.
Looking up he realised that he had already walked far, the school no longer in sight. He didn't exactly know where he was but he wasn't worried about getting lost.
The city was gigantic but ever section was divided by high walls, checkpoints and train tracks. If he was really lost, he could just as an orderly.
His craving for something warm to drink intensified and he turned his head, scanning the area for a coffee shop.
There was only one, cramped between an Info Center and what looked like a run down elementary school. The restauration programm had obviously not reached this part of the school district yet.
Calister would have preferred one of the pristine and cheap state issued coffee shops but the air was colder that he had anticipated and he was freezing through his windbreaker.
A small bell announced him as he opened the heavy door. The pungent smell of tea and spoiled milk hit his nose, strangely comforting. The soft wooden furniture seemed to perfectly fit ever part of the room and he stepped forward, shrugging his jacket off.
No one was standing behind the counter but he could hear steps moving around in the back. Unsure he looked back at the door but the glowing writting on the window declared 'open'.
While he took off his scarf and beanie he began reading the display above the counter. It looked like a chalkboard, only occasional glitches giving away its holographic nature.
A man suddenly emerged from the back of the shop, startling Calister. He was pretty, his features delicate and his skin pale, long white scars running over his eyes.
The colour of his eyes was unsettling, they were the papers blue Calister had ever seen, nearly blending in with the white of his eyes.
The man smiled in about his direction, only a but further right than where he was standing, revealing a row of straight white teeth.
"How may I help you?" He rested his fingertips on the fake wood of the counter and continued to smile, waiting for Calisters answer.
"A cup of coffee, please." His voice was breaking as he started to speak and he cursed under his breath. He was glad he wasn't one to blush easily, yet the heat still rushed to his cheek.
"Absolutely. Sit down, my college will bring you your drink." The beautiful man behind the counter lifted his hands and steadily walked to the coffee machine, his hands touching ever but of counter, machinery and wall on his way.
Calister sat down at a table near the counter and took out a book, though he didn't read a word of the chapter he was currently working at.
Instead he watched the man as he poured water into the machine. The soft whiring as it began to brew his coffee made him sleepy. There was no music playing, only the coffee machine, the low hum of cars passing by on the highway above and the mans steps on the wooden floor.
He was about to doze off, not that he would ever admit that, when the harsh noise of porcelain against hard wood starteled him. A young woman with ginger hair set down his coffee in front of him, her blue eyes sparkeling as she did so.
"Here ya are, enjoy it." She had a thick accent, one he couldn't place, but her voice was soft.
"Me name's Ardy, by the way!" She pointed at her name tag, a metal plag pinned to her shirt.
"Calister." He ignored her outstreched hand and wondered why the man handn't brought him his coffee. Ardy followed his line of sight and grinned.
"That's Reed. He's the only guy working, pity, really." Ardy sighed dramatically. Calister saw the man, Reed, look in his direction, or to be exact a piece of wall over his head.
"Pity he's blind as well." Ardy had returned to his table with a bag of sugar and a can of milk.
"Can't see a darn thing, poor sucker." Reed smiled at Calister from across the room.