Wuxiaworld > Brutal Journey of an Unfortunate Female Heroine > 50 Geniuses Aren“t that Uncommon

50 Geniuses Aren“t that Uncommon

A bell tolled, marking the beginning of the eighth hour. Lydis and the other eleven kids were brought into a small room on the left side of the main auditorium's stage. They lined up in the order of who spun the wheel first. Conny, Haji, Erin, Zack, Delara, Luden, Seradina, Ayla, Winter, Elise, Calvin, and finally Lydis. After exiting from the passageway there was a different person there to greet them. They were led to the room and told to wait for their call.

On one side of the room Delara's face was still swollen. Her blood no longer dribbling out from her mouth. Seradina was still next to Delara holding a warm cloth and clean swabs for Delara's mouth. The person who led then there had left them for Delara like they had seen everything in the room.

Lydis eyed the door. If the higher ups of the academy really had cameras in the room, surely they would have footage of her and the medallion. Lydis lifted her sleeve slightly to look at the tattoo. It changed noticeably.

The snake head was no longer at her wrist head but now it was pointed up towards her arm. It's body slowly slithering up her arm. Lydis poked at the snake's eyes but all she felt was her warm skin.

Ten minutes later and they heard their cue.

"Students! Stand in recognition of this year's twelve earthly animals!" The twelve of them lined up and walked out in order.

Outside, the cheers were ear splitting. High pitched cheers and whistles, it was hard to believe that there were only about one thousand kids there. It sounded like a few thousand more.

Conny, the dragon bearer, held his head up high. This, this was the fame and recognition befitting someone like him. Everyone else behind him walked with pride as well. Even the girl on the screen before had told them that they were special and the elites of their class. At the back, Lydis brought up the rear. She didn't stand with her chest puffed up, but she didn't slouch either. Her straight back and even strides showed discipline with both hands behind her.

Dressed in black and purple, the twelve of them did indeed look a bit imposing and cool. Each had a unique outfit befitting their animals and that uniqueness was what brought out the cheers. Calm and cool looking, the kids below couldn't help but feel electrified by them.

"And now from the right side, we have the twelve heavenly signs!" Stunned, Lydis's group stared at the right side. From the right came a group of thirteen kids. Dressed in white and purple, they looked a bit more like knights. Steady, disciplined marching filled the auditorium. Leading the thirteen was a hard-faced boy. His cold eyes swept over the crowd of kids, landing on the twelve opposite from him. Seeing their questioning faces he smirked a little.

Lydis pondered why the announcer had said 'twelve heavenly signs' when there was clearly thirteen kids on the right side. The announcer took this silence to introduce all of them.

"On the left, the twelve earthly animals, the Zodiacs!" The announcer went to Conny and started down the row. "Conny the Dragon! Haji the Rat! Erin the Dog! Zack the Goat! Delara the Rabbit! Luden the Tiger! Seradina the Pig! Ayla the Monkey! Winter the Ox! Elise the Horse! Calvin the Rooster! Lydis the Snake!" The kids cheered again. The announcer walked back to the center of the stage and moved on to the other twelve.

"On the right, the twelve heavenly animals, the Horoscopes!" He started at the cold faced boy. "Javier the Leo! Oura the Taurus! Sydney the Libra! Gunner the Scorpio! Bianca the Cancer! Bennox and Owen the Gemini! Dylan the Virgo! Minerva the Aquarius! Illya the Sagittarius! Senri the Aries! Hayden the Pisces! Tuen the Capricorn!"

Lydis's ears twitched at hearing familiar names. Bianca, Bennox and Owen. She scanned the line for their faces but being so far apart, there was only so much she could do without sticking out.

The announcer went on.

"These, boys and girls, are the elites of your class! Remember their faces well, they are the leaders for your generation!" Kids shouted and whistled. Lydis could see that some eyes showed true admiration while others showed distaste and even competitiveness. Had they missed something important. When the cheering had died down a bit above each group a huge flag was rolled down from the ceiling.

With a black background, inked in purple, the twelve earthly animals were drawn on, each displaying their fierceness and expertise. All in a coiling circle, each animal looked connected to one another. On the side, big bold letters stuck out, 'Zodiac', it read.

Above the other group of thirteen, with a white background and inked in purple as well, were the twelve heavenly signs. Unlike the Zodiac's coiling circle, the twelve sign were spread out in a diamond shape, each sign having their stars hidden in their picture. Exploding from the center the signs all surrounded on word written vertically, 'Horoscopes'.

Lydis looked at the crowd, all head were upturned staring at the massive, majestic flags on stage.

"Now that this part is done go over there to reconfirm your ID and get your uniforms!" The announcer pointed to the far right side of the auditorium and the whole wall slid open, folding in on itself, it revealed the other half of the auditorium. Ten lines were marked with dashes on the floor and railings. Kids scrambled to be first, often tripping over each other and stepping on fallen hands, legs, and arms. The announcer turned back to the kids on stage.

"You twenty-five kids are the first in three years to finally complete both groups in the same year. It used to be common every year but for the past three the Zodiacs remained just one person short." He closed his eyes in grief just thinking about it. "But, I'm glad to see that this year both are here."

In the Horoscopes one boy raised his hand. The announcer turned to look at him.

"Yes Hayden?"

"What did you mean by 'first to complete both groups'? Are you saying that each year only one was completed?"

"Yes, but, it was always the Zodiacs. Even the same animal was missing each year. We really thought that the system was broken but Central said nothing was wrong."

"Which animal?" The announcer looked a bit hesitant but a small figure behind him intervened.

"It was always the snake." All eyes turned to the small figure. Dressed in black and purple it looked like she was part of the Zodiacs but something about her was different. The announcer whipped around and rested his eyes on the small figure.

"Good morning." She smiled and tipped her military cap at the announcer.

"From my uniform you can already see that I'm part of the Zodiacs, but I was in the batch before the three-year absence." The kids stared at her skeptically. Her features didn't really match a possible fourteen-year-old. She was short for her age but still taller than the rest of the new kids by about half a foot. Under her black military cap vibrant neon green hair stuck out in curls. Her dark black eyes looked misplaced on her pale face and rosy lips. Dressed in a sleeveless overcoat that reached her knees, it just made her look smaller. On both hands she wore fingerless black gloves. Her overcoat was buttoned all the way up her neck.

Smiling, the girl waited a little while for her words to sink in.

"Before you ask any questions, know that I am your senior. Any rude comments or such will not be tolerated, understand?" The kids all nodded their head in unison. They couldn't quite tell why but saying no felt like a really bad idea. "Good. I am a fourth year here and also someone's mentor. I won't say who yet. My name is Nae Solis. Hopefully, you guys will be half as great as my generation." She walked to the Zodiac's side and stopped in front of Conny.

"So this is your dragon?" Conny nodded stiffly and found it weird how Nae had worded it. What did she mean by 'your dragon'? Was he not the leader? Shouldn't it be 'the' dragon. Nae scoffed slightly after observing Conny and moved on to stand in front of Lydis. A flash of light flickered in her dark eyes. Her mouth curled into a slight smile.

"I like you. You're, different, from these kids. You're the snake right?" Conny gnashed his teeth together so hard, Haji shot him a questioning glance. This person, Nae, had said 'the snake', not 'your'. Maybe he was over thinking things but that marked twice in which Lydis had had things changed when spoken to. Maybe it was a slip of the tongue. Conny balled his hands to fists, glaring at Lydis.

Lydis pulled her head back from Nae's face.

"I'm the snake. Did you need something?" Lydis kept her cold indifferent tone as she spoke. Nae leaned in further.

"Me? No, I was just looking at something interesting." Nae shrugged her shoulders and moved on up the line. She stopped in front of Zack.

Zack was sweating profusely. His hands felt clammy. Resisting the urge to rub away the sweat on his new uniform, Zack prayed internally that Nae or whatever didn't shake his hand or anything like it.

"So, this is my mentee…" Nae sized up Zack and sighed.

"W-what do you mean?" Zack was feeling nervous now. He didn't understand why she had stopped in front of him. 'Mentee'? What was that?

"Like you, I was also chosen as the Goat bearer in my year. As per tradition, the fourth years are supposed to mentor the first years until they get to their second year. The second and third years are for them to expand on their own unique style. In your fourth year you'll also mentor the first years. As a fifth year, it'll be your last year here, you'll undergo extensive training to the point of going into actual combat on missions." Zack nodded his head absent minded. He was still stuck on her being his mentor. "Y'know, I was sure we wouldn't get to be a mentor for anyone but as luck would have it, fate wouldn't want the greatest generation of Zodiacs to not leave behind mentees." Nae chuckled and slung one arm over Zack's shoulder's.

"Wa-!!" Nae pulled his head in a headlock and knuckle rubbed his head.

"This year will really be fun! I can't wait for the others to get back, they'll be so excited to find out that they're actually mentors! Mentors!" Nae's smile then was full of relief and happiness. She was truly happy to have the chance to be like the mentor before her. It had been her school dream.

As Nae continued to tease Zack Lydis took this chance to scan the Horoscopes again. Now that their line wasn't as organized and a bit more slack she could see Owen an Bennox. Sandwiched together, Bennox had various bandages on his face and Owen had some on his hands as well. Did they fight? Lydis wanted to walk over and ask them out of curiosity but suddenly a tall youth dressed in white appeared in front of Lydis.

He was dressed in the Horoscope's colors. Blond hair his hid ruby like eyes. Although he was only fourteen, he stood well over a foot than the rest. Leaning in, the boy stared at Lydis. His eyes fixed on hers.

"You. Smell. Clean." The tall boy handed Lydis a small spray bottle. Unfazed, Lydis took the small spritz bottle.

"I thank senior for his concern." Lydis turned the bottle over and saw that the label read, 'stench remover'. Without hesitating, Lydis spritzed her body twice. Furrowing his brows, the boy brought out his own bottle and began to spritz Lydis's back and her hair. Moving like a tornado around Lydis, the boy became a blur of spritzing and moving. He finally stopped when the bottle ran dry. Lydis placed her bottle into one of her pockets.

Once again, the tall boy leaned in.

"*sniff* "Better. Clean. Good."

"Thank you senior." He nodded and walked to the other side towards the Horoscopes. Nae had inched closer to Lydis, Zack passed out foaming in her arms.

"Wow, never thought I'd see him talk to a new person voluntarily." Lydis turned to face Nae.

"Senior, who was that just now?"

"He's in the same generation as me but a Horoscope. Jedd Veruion, the Libra. A clean freak fits him more though. I've only been on a few collaboration missions with the Horoscopes but every time he would wear this altered gas mask and spray things to clean them. Even after our mission was done he made everyone stop and clean ourselves before going back to the academy. Even our shoes, using sanitized swabs to clean in between every crack, it almost drove me crazy." Nae shook her head at the memory. "More importantly, he talked to you first, without a reason. Usually he's quiet unless ordered or someone else initiates it. Even then he'll only speak when he wants to."

Lydis looked at Jedd and back at the bottle he had given her. Did she really stink that much? He even used a whole bottle on her, what smelled so bad? As she was wondering this she saw a familiar group of people clustered together in one line, a familiar outline in the middle. Dressed in rags and smelling of the slums itself, Lydis' couldn't help but glance at Jedd to see what he would do. As expected, he already had on his altered gas mask. His hands were twitching at his sides, wanting to get out his sprays and spray the slum kids or save it for desperate times.

One side of Lydis's mouth curved up a little as Jedd caved and expertly took out two large containers, one in each hand. He leaped into the crowd of kids and began spraying like a madman. Kids were angry at first but that quickly disappeared when they saw that it was a tall boy dressed in white, signifying that he was a part of the Horoscopes.

On the opposite side from Lydis, Bennox squeezed his pants in his hands. He had finally seen Lydis again but not under the circumstances he wanted. Once again, he chest felt like it was being twisted by cruel hands. Looking at Lydis was unbearable yet intoxicating. Just like at the dorms, he was lucky to have followed Lydis again.