Wordcount: 472 words
Summary: More description of the Academy and May settling into her new life.
NOTE: This is the first draft of a story, so it will most likely contain plot holes, retcons, and other inconsistencies. I’ll come back and fix things once the story (or arc) is complete!
Welcome to the Academy
The dorms are split out by gender, long narrow houses build of artful woven tree limbs and stone masonry. They were dark, no point in putting windows where all they’d do was sleep. There were two central chimneys that provided heat and light, but they’d be too hot to use soon enough. There were niches in the wall for oil lanterns and she figured those would come out of storage in the next month or so. The forest was always cooler than the hills, a combination of the constant shade and the artful use of geothermal venting from the warrens.
The food hall was similar to the tavern where May had worked and occasionally they got kitchen duties that she adored. She learned to trade time in the kitchen for other more appealing chores– although the trainers made sure that everyone did everything at least once a month. Once the army was on the move they’d all need to know how to do these without instruction.
The classrooms were primarily open-air benching, although there were sometimes held inside in the horse rings or under temporary tents. Thanks to the thick foliage there were areas where the rains did not come down as hard so they would retreat there. For the worst storms, they retreated to the horse arenas, although that rarely happened. The rains tended to come at night as well.
The unusual rains that had been happening in two beaches and pine reach were slowly making their way to oak grove, but much slower than had been expected. It was as if the trees were acting as a sort of buffer.
They were issued new clothes, she had not expected that they’d have to wear them all the time, she had figured they were work uniforms only. But they had them put their normal clothing in storage. They were allowed to keep some ornamentation, but they ended up with regulation hairstyles and a limited set of allowed jewelry. It made everyone look too similar for her liking and she remembered the first time she had seen Aaron after he went to the city. He’d seemed like another person– although the feeling did not last long since it vanished as soon as he started talking.
It was odd though, knowing that Aaron was here somewhere. She’d wondered how fast the news of who she was would reach him. Her identify was not as interesting as Baron’s lawbreaking so she figured it would be a day or two before he came by,.
She was not going to seek him out– there was too much that she was still adjusting to. Her future was dead, but it had died the instant the golden had chosen her. Now her future was uncertain and she thought that was better than the alternative.