Mentions: @VitoftheVoid @ScoundrelQueen @EchoicChamber @LorelleQuips @Akayaofthemoon
It was a pleasant morning on the school's track and Ray was delighting in a long run. After his stint in a Council appointed rehab clinic he had been perturbed by the amount of weight he gained in such a short time. Without the drugs and the day to day life of War itself to keep him trim (and often times hideously malnourished) he had packed the pounds on in no time.
So with all the extra time on his hands, no longer fighting and hardly able to hold down a full-time job he had turned to fitness with a voracious appetite. It was like he had grown so used to pain that he didn't even know he was pushing himself too hard until he puked.
These days however, he had learned his limits and only probed them gently. He maintained a good physique through cardio and endurance lifting, and he was happy enough for that.
Besides, there was just something so calming about feeling the cool morning air rush by him as the music in his ears (some obnoxiously loud Death Metal group) gave him a beat to run to. Each step fell in time with the pounding rhythm of the music and made him push ever onward.
It was also a good time to reflect upon his last few weeks of lessons.
They had gone surprisingly well. Though that was to be expected when his expectations were as low as they had been. Despite his mismatched and rather motley classes, nobody had yet done anything out of line. Though judging by the glances some of his more affluent students stole when they thought he wasn't looking they were none too happy about being told what to do by some lower class ex-junkie like Ray. Others were just seemingly disinterested.
He had begun his lessons with theory to gauge how much knowledge the students had brought with them. A week of that and then he went practical. First showing them a basic Defense ward against physical blows, the kind of shield that would deflect concussive force or bludgeoning attacks, but not so much a piercing strike such as a bullet or blade. He simulated the effect with a Pitching Machine, hurling tennis balls. A few students were left with bruises (to their bodies and egos), but most picked it up with little effort.
Still, it was only a matter of time until someone stepped out of line. His Defense class was tough, because it had to be. You didn't learn to defend yourself by being mollycoddled. His Toxin Production class would include nothing at all on how to make anything psychotropic even though he knew very well how to do that.
After all is said and done, his students were still kids, forever thinking they were more grown up than they actually were. It was their nature to push boundaries and be upsetting. The challenge for Ray was understanding how far to let them go before reigning them back in.
He finished his run and took a moment to catch his breath.
It wasn't just the students that were challenging him, but some of the Professors as well. Most of them were fine, easy to get along with and not the type to probe at anything personal. Every now and then a Professor would be asked to help out on a lesson. Professor Madison had come in to a few of his Toxin Production lessons already, lending his expertise and sunny demeanor.
Ray still clashed with Professors Kovalenko and Byrne. He highly doubted Maeve would ask for his help in one of her Combat classes...unless it was just to beat the snot out of him in front of her class. Strangely enough Ray and Professor Spire got along just fine, despite him carrying around a very dark reputation. Perhaps there was some kind of kinship in being misfits, however their relationship remained respectfully professional.
He had been most drawn to Professor Odyssia Leventis, finding her to be as kind and easy going as Professor Lovette. He often found himself gravitating towards her without even realizing it, though only to make idle chit-chat.
He made his way inside to take a shower and then head to the cafeteria his some mid-morning food. He walked in wearing casual clothes, a t-shirt, sneakers and blue jeans, and holding a bottle of water which he took long refreshing draws from.
He noticed one of his students - Isaiah Parrish - already there. Ray served himself up a meal and walked by the boy.
"Morning Mister Parrish," he said affably enough, "Good work on Friday's lesson. You're really getting to grips with the material."