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 Astronomy 101

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PostSubject: Astronomy 101   Thu Dec 25, 2014 7:04 am

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The air was still and calm, cool and quiet. There was no rain or clouds in the sky and the stars were faint crystals above. Calixo leaned over his narrow balcony that was attached to the large window in his office and gazed upward. The moon was in it's waxing crescent phase but still shone brilliantly. Hogwarts was perfectly positioned for star gazing: it was in a remote and nearly mountainous region far away from the ambient light of the cities that could otherwise erase the beautiful view. Even on a slightly cloudy night one could still see the flickering constellations through them. On this particular one they were so visible Calixo was able to spot Venus easily. His sullen, brown eyes drifted through the heavens one last time before he sighed to himself and returned to his office and as he did so the window doors closed themselves.

His office was inside a turret that clung to the Astronomy Tower and was accessed from halfway up the spiral staircase leading to the top. It was fairly spacious and stored a fireplace, a large oak desk, a bookshelf large enough for a few hundred books and scrolls, several stacks of medium trunks, and an ancient grandfather clock that had supposedly been placed there by Rowena Ravenclaw. Calixo was told she had scratched her name into the back of it with a broken quill but this seemed out of character and he never bothered to investigate but the idea still made him feel sentimental towards it. His brown eyes scanned the face of the mighty clock. Quarter to midnight. Midnight was when class started; the first of the term. He would never admit it but he was excited for a new crop of students.

The actual classroom was naturally at the top of the enormous tower. It was circular and spacious though there were no chairs or desks in the entire area. A narrow, guarded walkway circumferenced the tower though it was almost entirely open to the elements anyhow. Against one of the only solid, curved walls in the space was a wheeled chalkboard. In the center of the room was Calixo's dark wood lab desk and floating a dozen feet above that was a massive bronze Armillary Sphere that, by some ancient and powerful magic, turned itself eerily in mid-air. Class was about to begin.


Last edited by Calixo Lorr on Sat Dec 27, 2014 5:09 am; edited 1 time in total
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Ariel Wilde
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PostSubject: Re: Astronomy 101   Thu Dec 25, 2014 12:03 pm

Ariel felt pretty excited about Astronomy. She had never been all too interested in the stars and constellations, but she really enjoyed looking at them, so she figured it would be all right to know about them all. So, leaving the Gryffindor tower behind, she took the long way to the Astronomy tower. Which was really longer for her than it would be for the dungeoneers. Ariel grinned at herself. Dungeoneers. Sounded like a business. Well, the way some of them constantly bickered, she supposed that wasn't so far from the truth. But the Hufflepuffs were great. They really were. Ariel only knew Lyn and Oliver, and she'd heard a bit about a Phineas (even though what she knew about him wasn't that great), but the ones she met in the hallway always seemed to have a smile about them. So she generally liked Hufflepuffs.

She made her way down the Gryffindor stairs and through hallways and turning here and there. She loved that she knew the castle so well. Probably as well as any fifth year, but still, she loved that she did. She made it to the long stairs and ascended them. To say that she wasn't breathless when she got to the top of them, was to lie her bloody nose off. She found the classroom and was taken aback by it. It was very open. But that didn't bother her, it was the sphere that really caught her attention.

Ariel's eyes landed on the non-existing chairs, and she shrugged. It was a bit windy up her and she wished she'd brought her scarf. A frozen, blueish color painted her hair in the cold. After all, they were nearing on Halloween soon. She looked to the chalkboard and figured that was the way to face, so she put her backpack down and crossed her legs, sitting down on the floor. She was even early. Why would she choose to be early up here? Why didn't she bring her sca- Having opened her backpack, she saw her scarf lying inside. "YES!" she shouted victoriously and swung the scarf as many times as possible around her neck. Haha, now the wind could howl and she wouldn't care.

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Saryana Greenwood
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PostSubject: Re: Astronomy 101   Thu Dec 25, 2014 8:11 pm

Saryana couldn't wait for Astronomy! Last year they didn't have a teacher but this year... It would be awesome! She just hoped the this one wasn't grumpy like some of last years teachers. That would suck. A lot. But from what the girl had saw from him in the Great Hall, he seemed good. Yet again, you can't really understand what kind of person one was just from watching them - you had to talk. Like Saryana, she's just different with strangers. Not that it mattered. What was important is that the class is finally up for taking and will give the girl an even bigger chance for graduating well this year! And that was one thing important.

Because she was over-exited, she was basically running to the classroom. First, because it was her first such lesson! Astronomy! In her muggle school, she was best in Astrology. Although they surely weren't the same thing, she still was sure she'll rock this subject. Another reason for her hurry was that she wanted to come first to the classroom. Because than she could give an awesome first impression to her teacher and the chances of getting good grades grew. Because as her old teachers said, if a teacher likes you and you are between two grades, it's likely that you may get the higher one. And Saryana always tried to make sure that the teachers like her, by being active and such.

She walked into the room. But she wasn't first! Some girl with curly hair was before her. That sucked! Really, who does she think she was, coming before her? Okay, maybe Saryana is just taking things too seriously. She'll like through it. At least the girl was Gryffindor! She got that by the tie the other one wore. So their house would still get points if this teacher gave something for the first in class! Awesome! Than her mind was taken by something else in the room. A sphere! And not just any one, it seemed to be an Armillay Sphere! She had totally read about that! The girl watched as it turned. Amazing! Than the cold air got to her. Sighing, she quickly put on the jacket she had brought along. Good thing she took it with her!
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PostSubject: Re: Astronomy 101   Fri Dec 26, 2014 3:23 pm

Aoife had decided to start going to Astronomy again, more to make it look like she was studious and smart than because she was interested. Astronomy was one of those subjects which was filled with absolute crap. Stars were fixed luminous points in the night sky, large, remote incandescent bodies - she'd looked it up - and she was absolutely certain they weren't magical fortune telling wise men. And the other stuff, like star signs, were stupid as well. Whatever being a Cancer was, there was no way it would fit her personality. Stupid stupid stupid. But there was a new professor and she figured if he was anything like Leblanc or Wilcox, he might make the lesson fun and give her food. If not, at least she was trying to be a better person. By going to Astronomy.

Because she wanted to make some sort of good impression, she set off to class earlier than usual, knowing she'd come across the usual distractions on the way, ghosts and talkative portraits and the sudden inspiration to draw a sheep on the wall with her invisible ink pen from home. It all happened as usual, and because she had planned ahead, she arrived at the top of the tower quickly enough, being the third student in the room. The first thought she got was that this room was freezing. So she wrapped her robes around herself a little bit tighter, but not to much effect. If she was good at magic, she could cast some sort of wonderful spell, but unfortunately, when it came to spells, she was shit.

Shivering and yawning at the same time in a weird, wonderful shiver-yawn combination, because not only was she cold, she was super tired as well, she made her way over to Ariel. "Hello!" she beamed. "Your hair is blue." Aoife was more pointing it out to herself than the other girl. It was so awesome how Ariel could do that appearance thing. If the redhead would, she would totally take advantage of her abilities. It would be SO much easier to prove a point, like that time when she dyed her hair blue for a whole year, on a better, temporary basis. She glanced away, at the huge, weird golden thing in the room. Astronomy. Crazy. And then she saw the second-year nearby. Was she always in the Astronomy tower or something? Aoife waved.

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Arwen Pierce
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PostSubject: Re: Astronomy 101   Sat Dec 27, 2014 1:48 am

Tonight is the night. That was Arwen's decision. Tonight, she would fight her fears. Tonight, she was going back to the scary tower where her feet had gotten the best of her. But there was no way that anything bad would happen to her while a professor was present. No way. She'd have a spledid night with stargazing. Which was the reason for her taking the class at all. She had a strange fascination with the stars. She wanted to be able to read them like a Centaur would. She really loved the stars.

But these stairs were killing her. Not because she was getting tired, and not because she knew she was only halfway. But because, with every step she took, she was getting closer to the humongous tower. And she really was not looking forward to it. Every step was like a blow to her head, making it spin and feel much lighter. She didn't know if she could actually go through with this. But she would try. She would definitely try her very best. She was gonna get through the class, no matter what, even if she barfed. She was not going to give up. No way. Nuh-uh. No chance.

However, as her foot reached the classroom with no chairs and only one wall, she turned around and sprinted down a few steps, before somehow managing to stop herself. She had to get up there. She couldn't be this afraid of stuff anymore. She had to learn how to deal with her fears. Otherwise, how was she going to be able to become an international consultant, if she couldn't even face heights. She certainly wouldn't be able to talk to people without a stutter if she couldn't face the Astronomy tower.

So she turned around again and climbed the last steps. She saw three other people there. One of which was Aoife. The evil girl who had insulted her and accused her of being a spy for her sister. As if Arwen cared about a stupid love thing. It was pathetic. This thing between Aoife and Seren, a thing called Hunter, was stupid. And it was the only thing she could ever think of that made Seren seem human to her. Normally, Seren was like a humanoid deity or something that really shone brilliance, but this did pull her back to the earth. Much higher up than Arwen herself, of course, but still human.

Arwen decided not to sit by those girls not sitting far from each other, and in stead looked at the younger Gryffindor. However, Arwen didn't walk up to people, so she just sat down, doing her best not to squirm at the wind, and keep her tears at bay. Because she could really just sit down and cry at the height she was on. Then her eyes saw the Armillary Sphere and she grinned. Somehow that made her feel better. Astronomy was amazing.

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PostSubject: Re: Astronomy 101   Sat Dec 27, 2014 7:01 am

"Blimey, where did I put it?" Calixo said out loud to himself in a burst of impatience. He glanced at the clock which read ten-of. Calixo was a stickler for time and only detested being unprepared even more. Retracing his steps from only an hour before, he made his way over to his desk and flipped up a few pieces of parchment. Relief flooded him as he found what he was looking for- five dark blue marbles. He had thought he lost his marbles. After pocketing them quickly, he took a long stride to a cloak hanger and selected a thick one threaded for cold weather and an oversized black fur collar. He looked over at a small chest that sat on his desk and gave an abrupt hand gesture and the chest sprung straight up into the air and hovered slowly towards him. His brown eyes scanned the room once over and the door in front of him creaked open. He stepped into the quiet staircase and with another wave of his hand the door locked behind him.

Calixo climbed the spiral staircase quickly and his cloak billowed behind him. His heightened hearing could already pick up slight chatter among the students above. Someone mentioned blue hair. Metamorphmagi, Animagi, the like; the school was filled with diversity and it was one of the things that he loved about it. Durmstrang, the Nordic institute, actively excluded muggleborns. Beauxbatons had a history of accepting students of wealthy families. Hogwarts had previously employed a werewolf Professor of Defense Against the Dark Arts and now employed a vampire Astronomy Professor. Calixo knew the risks associated with his hiring and he was greatful to the Headmistress for taking them on his behalf. Of course, none of the students were directly informed about it. Nor were their parents. He supposed if asked directly, he could always just say he was Norwegian...

Calixo's gaunt figure ascended the steps and rose into the drafty room. He quickly sized the group up and frowned slightly. "Good evening." His voice was soft and quiet as if he were only a foot away from them instead of several. He strode to the desk in the center and withdrew a parchment from his cloak. The class roster listed several more students than he saw present and he decided to give them a bit longer before beginning his lecture. In the meantime he noted that several students seemed to feel the chill of the tower. His predecessor to the subject had provided hot drinks for the students but that was not his style. Nor would he play any instruments for them. To accommodate their comfort, Calixo reached his hand into his pocket and withdrew the five marbles from inside. He mumbled an incantation and each one began to glow a cold blue light, rose into the air, and drifted to separate sections of the room. Suddenly the space began to warm as each of them dissolved into floating wisps of blue fire. Ignis Fatuus spirits, as they were called, were the perfect solution and also damningly expensive. Instead of torches, which would render star gazing impossible, the blue light was dull enough to not effect the practice while still acting as mini heat lamps.
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PostSubject: Re: Astronomy 101   Sat Dec 27, 2014 5:50 pm

Ariel barely managed to turn her head with her scarf wrapped so many times around her neck to see another Gryffindor walk into the classroom. She tried to smile, but she really wasn't sure if the girl would see it at all. She wondered briefly if she should say something, but didn't have the time to land on a decision before Aoife showed up and said hello. And that her hair was blue. Ariel grinned and nodded. "Yes," she said, craning her neck a bit, to get her chin out of the scarf. "I am cold. Ish. Not so much anymore."

Ariel watched on as Aoife gave a wave at the girl who she didn't know who was. Probably a second year. Maybe even a first year. But she looked older than a firstie. But sometimes Ariel's judgment of age was off, so she wouldn't bet on it. For all Ariel knew, the girl could be a third year. She looked back at Aoife and smiled again. "It is cold though, isn't it?" she mumbled. And then a Ravenclaw showed up. Ariel noticed how she didn't look any of them in their eyes, but she seemed scared and cold and seemed to try very hard not to look angrily at Aoife for some reason. "You know her? Or rather, them?" Ariel asked in a shushed voice, so only Aoife would hear.

The steps sounding made Ariel look to the steps again, and this time, a completely unfamiliar guy walked up. Grown up. The professor. She was surprised at the way he looked. Sort of like ... non-human but still very human. It was weird. But Ariel, who had gotten very sick of people staring at her due to her veelaness, decided not to stare at the professor in wonder, because he was probably sick of it as well. She didn't know what he was, but it was something interesting. And if he wanted to share, then he would. Until then, Ariel just beamed at him. "Good evening, professor," she said back, suddenly feeling really excited about the lesson she was about to take.

Ariel watched mesmerized at the blue bulbs took a space around the tower and started glowing a blue, small flame. The warmth instantly recognized in Ariel's mind, and she sighed relieved. She had definitely been wrong to assume that the scarf would be enough to warm her up. But the lights definitely were, and she let her hair shift from the cold blue to a warm blonde, in other words; her usual colour. She grinned at Aoife as she started twirling the scarf around her head again, letting it hang around her shoulders. She hoped the class would start soon, because she really thought it might be brilliant.

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Derek Lawrence
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PostSubject: Re: Astronomy 101   Sun Dec 28, 2014 4:16 pm

Derek had never completely mastered that strange alarm clock spell. But usually he managed to wake up at the right time anyway, because he was used to getting up at exactly seven o'clock in the morning. Only, Astronomy completely messed up the system. So because he wanted to sleep for a couple of hours before midnight, he couldn't be certain he'd make it on time, so he had to cast the spell in the hope that for once, it would work. It didn't. Luckily, he was awoken at about two minutes to twelve by the sound of talking outside the dormitory. So he threw his uniform, scarf and hat on and ran as fast as he could down from the Ravenclaw Tower, across the castle and up the Astronomy Tower.

He was completely out of breath when he got into the classroom, but it was worth it, because as far as he could see, the class hadn't started yet. He hadn't got enough breath left to greet the professor, so he attempted to smile at the man. The huge Armillary Sphere in the room caught his eye and he ended up just staring at it for a while, slightly in awe of the total awesomeness! And then he saw the little blue marble things, which he quickly identified as Ignis Fatuus spirits. Astronomy stuff was cool. It wasn't his favourite subject of all time, but there was plenty of interesting stuff to learn about, and amazing things to see.

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Victoria Campero
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PostSubject: Re: Astronomy 101   Sun Dec 28, 2014 9:27 pm

Victoria stared at her class schedule for this term and sighed with unhapiness. How many times did she have to ask - no, beg - her head of house for afternoon classes. But she had obviously ignored her request as her schedule was yet again filled with mostly morning classes. Charms at eight in the morning. Ugh. She was going to skip that. Transfiguration at ten - still too early. Her eyes scanned the sheet of paper and her lips streched out in a wide smile when she finally spotted something that agreed with her. Astronomy 101, the Astronomy Tower, Midnight.

Her decision to register for Astronomy was largely influenced by the fact that classes were most commonly held at night. Which meant no more missed alarms and early mornings. She wasn't all that passion about stars and constalations, but she didn't mind the subject either. It was fairly more interesting than Herbology at any rate. And the last professor was alright, she thought, remembering the hot chocolate that was served during almost every class. If the new addition to the faculty was nearly as considerate, then she would enjoy Astronomy indeed!

Pulling on a large blue sweather and a black skirt, Victoria gathered her things and headed towards the Astronomy Tower. She pulled her Ravenclaw scarf tightly around her neck, trying to avoid the chill that had flooded the castle. Climbing up the many stairs that swirled upwards, she noted the time and hurried her step. She didn't want to be late on the first day. Upon entering the room, she glanced at the group of students that were sitting on the floor. Of course, no chairs.

Recognizing Ariel and Aoife, she smiled and sat down next to them. "Hey", she greeted them quickly until her attention turned to the professor. He seemed... different. Mesmerized by what she saw, Victoria leaned towards Aoife. "Are they allowed to be.... You know... This pretty?", she whispered, not knowing what other word to use. The new professor was handsome indeed, but uncommonly so. His face almost looked unhuman. Her glanced turned to the Gryffindor girl, waiting to see if she had thought the same.

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Saryana Greenwood
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PostSubject: Re: Astronomy 101   Mon Dec 29, 2014 11:36 am

Saryana watched as more and more people entered the classroom. This will be awesome! After her, two more girls entered before the professor did. She quickly greeted him. Man, he looked... Interesting. She watched to see why he seemed a little unusual. Was he some magical creature? Maybe! Hogwarts did have a werewolf before! Remus Lupin, one of Harry Potter's teacher. Rumored to be the bestone ever, even! So she wouldn't be surprised if he also was one. Maybe a vampire or veela? Or he is just from another county. Although aren't most creatures actually not in England? Ugh, so much to research over! Maybe it would be like with Remus and some teacher won't like him and give hints... No, unlikely.

Now did the girl noticed that others have entered. It seemed that for now it will be three on three - Gryffindors and Ravenclaws where all three for each. But they all where in a class above her. Without one girl. She was Ravenclaw. Saryana remembered her from last year's sorting. Shrugging, she walked over to her than sat next to her. "Hey, I'm Saryana Greenwood. " she smiled at her and held her hand out. Always a good start. Always.

Than something amazing happened. The teacher let out balls. No, not balls. The girl felt stupid for thinking of hat in the first place. They were spirits. "Ignis Fatuus ..." she muttered under her breath. Maybe the girl next to her heard her. That would be good, she'll know how smart she is. And if one thing was important, it was to have a kind on you head. And books! Books are also needed! Oh, this will be an awesome Astronomy lesson! She just knew it!
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PostSubject: Re: Astronomy 101   Tue Dec 30, 2014 5:27 pm

The will-o-wisps Calixo had summoned into the room were serving their purpose and each continued to give off a radiant heat. Particularly the cold didn't bother Calixo nor did most weather conditions. His skin was essentially dead anyway, he surmised, as were things like nerve endings and synapses. It didn't hurt when he stubbed his toe, for example, or if he got a mild burn. In a sense he was only magically animated; necromanced back to life by his own being. Vampirism was a complex thing- one that few people, including himself, did not fully understand. That said, the idea of being a reanimated corpse still bothered him to the core. It was a chilling idea to begin with, but to live with that idea in the back of his head daily was nothing short of haunting. He swallowed nervously and caught himself staring blankly at one of the blue hovering flames.

He looked around the room and noticed during his trance that a few more students had arrived. Returning to his desk, he once again checked the roster. Though he was still several students short but they would have to catch up if they arrived late. He turned to the side of the room containing those gathered and behind him the chalkboard rolled until it was standing next to his figure. The blue spirits gave off a haunted glow to the space and instead of milk his skin shown eerily like a Hogwarts ghost. He felt like he was telling them scary stories.

"Welcome to Astronomy. I am Professor Calixo Lorr. For context, I have many... years... of experience in this particular subject. I am also an alumni of Hogwarts, having been in Ravenclaw House when I was your age."
In the nineteenth century he thought to himself, smirking. "You can keep you wands in your rooms- we will rarely need them here." In fact, Calixo didn't even know where his wand was. Proficiency in wandless magic was much more convenient than many wizards probably realized. A result of this very practice, the chalk began to write everything he was saying on the board next to him and it disappeared by itself to make room for additional text when the board was full. "Together we will use magic and science alike to search the stars and research them. By the end of this term you will be able to identify and investigate brand new stars and solar systems on your own. Perhaps even name them yourself." He smiled at them warmly. "This is one of the few subjects in Hogwarts where crossover knowledge is similar to or identical to muggle knowledge. Practice is irrelevant here. Things just are. You will find that science is unchanging. Memorizing is essential to success. "

He strode to one of the openings on the tower and wove a hand in a flamboyant manner. He spoke an incantation quickly and repetitively, growing louder and louder each time. There was urgency in his voice until what he summoned finally appeared. A large oval had materialized before them, facing out towards the sky. Instead of the same, distant view of the stars from the tower, inside of the oval was an entire solar system, like Calixo had opened up a portal and if one entered they would be floating before it.

Calixo glanced at the view and back at them. "Complex magic exists here. Well beyond the reaches of any of your skill level. For now at least. You see, muggles study the stars as wizards do but their research his hindered by their own innovation. Technology is hindered by current technology and that is why, most ironically, magic makes technology irrelevant to our world. We don't necessarily need expansive telescopes to see what lies beyond our own system or even galaxy. Astronomy's past is littered with wizards and muggle scientists alike. Galileo, Copernicus, and Kepler were all wizards although in their ancient days spells like this convexing charm-" he indicated to the oval next to him- "did not exist. Muggles like Brahe and Hubble have their own respectable contributions as well to this field of study." The chalkboard in the room was still busy notating the information the Professor was giving. He indicated to the viewing oval again. "This is the solar system we will be studying first. It's star is Alpha Centauri, third brightest in the night's sky and a member of the Centaurus Constellation. It is also the closest to our Sun. Are there any questions so far?" Calixo's deep brown eyes scanned the room. He had a habit of spitting out information quickly.
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Jessica Kim
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PostSubject: Re: Astronomy 101   Sat Jan 24, 2015 11:29 am

Jessica knew she was late for Astronomy lesson. She had just began to read and was so into book that she forget about the class totally. When she realized she is late for lesson. She liked that lesson, she had read books about that lesson but never really went into the lesson. Now when she had chance to learn it she was late for lesson. It wasn't great way to start her fourth school year. Girl sighed.

She ran so fast as she could to Astronomy tower. She walked into the classroom. Before girl entered she did take deep breath to catch her breath again there. She couldn't speak well at all when she was breathing heavily. And coming here from her common room was very long way up to here. She soon opened the door slowly and walked in. She really saw that lesson was already started. She did take one more time deep breath, pressed her book towards her chest with her crossed handa on chest.

"Hello," she said there now to professor and smiled a little bit. "I'm so sorry that I'm late for lesson," she added there now. She reallt was sorry about it. She saw there few familiar faces and few not so familiar. "It won't never happen again," she added thee now even. She was now sure to be careful with time and be on time for lessons or bit earlier even. She didn't wanna miss lessons for sure. She knew that would take house points away from her house and she didn't like that idea at all. So she had no other choice than attend.

She hoped that teacher won't be very mad at her for being late there today. She tried to catch up on what they werw talking there now but it was bit hard. She saw weird object middle of classeoom. She couldn't tell by now what it was at all. Her memory couldn't remember it right now. She had so hard time to consindrate right now. Girl was still thinking what professor thinks of her now being late for lesson in first lesson in this year. Girl looked at others students. She was also very sorry to disturb them here with being late for this lesson.

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