“Of course you can’t fly! The broom can’t hold your weight!” he doubled over, slapping his knees at the hilarity. “You need a steel-reinforced broom for your double-wide butt!”
Fiona’s eyes burned with tears, and she blinked hard to keep them from spilling onto her round cheeks.
“Get out of here, or I’ll make you sorry,” Maizie hissed.
“What are you gonna do? If you use a spell on me, you’re gonna spend the weekend in detention,” he taunted.
“Leave her alone, loser.” Maizie’s hands balled into fists, and the irises of her eyes, normally green, flared red. Smoke began to curl from the ground around her feet. If he’d been smart, he would have been alarmed – but if there was one thing that Arty would never be called, it was smart.
“Why don’t you go barbecue something for your fat friend?” he began laughing again, so hard that he wheezed as he advanced towards them. “Barbecue…get it? Because you’re a fire witch and she’s fat?”
“Careful, Farty…you really don’t want to get on the wrong side of a fire elemental.” Maizie’s eyes were black as coal now.
Arty’s eyes flared wide with shock. “Don’t you dare call me that! You’re not fit to spit-shine my shoes! My mother paid for the whole music wing! You’re just a – just a – scholarship witch!” His eyes blazed with rage.
“Yes, she’s here because she has actual talent. Your family had to buy your way in,” Fiona snapped.
Artie turned back to Fiona, his pale face bunching in rage. “At least I don’t have to pay double tuition because I’m eating everything in the dining hall!”
Suddenly, Maizie’s fist lashed out, catching him in the nose with a sickening squish. He staggered back, a crimson spray spurting out, and howled in pain, clutching at his face as tears ran down his cheeks.
“I don’t need to use magic to teach a pussy like you a lesson,” Maizie sneered. Fiona gasped in admiration; Maizie came from a rough part of Twin River City, and her language could make a sailor blush when she was mad. Fiona lived for the days that Maizie got mad.
“I’ll get you thrown out! I’ll get you arrested! I’ll –“
“You’ll do nothing.” A tall blond sun god walked around the corner, and Fiona’s heart sank. Erik Bloodstone, the person that least she wanted to witness her humiliation, loomed over Arty.
He glanced at Maizie and Fiona, at the broom on the ground, and then back at Arty, who was holding his noise and blubbering noisily. “What’s going on here?” he demanded.
Although he was a student just like they were, Erik had a way of immediately taking over a situation, of commanding respect. It was in his blood. He came from a long line of Enforcers, powerful warlocks who patrolled the realm and defended it from threats ranging from dragon attacks, werewolf rabies outbreaks, black magic cults, and a host of other dangers.
His thick golden hair flowed over his shoulders, and his eyes were like chips of blue sky. Already at least six feet, at 14 years old, he towered over Arty by a good six inches, and his physique was that of a grown man, not a young teenager. His dark brows drew together as he surveyed the scene.
Fiona’s gaze dropped to the ground. Every time Erik came anywhere near her, she got stupid and tongue-tied, and blushed outrageously. He made her tingle in parts of her body that she was just becoming aware of.
It was ridiculous, really; never in a million years would a model of perfect male beauty like Erik be paired with a chubby, nerdy little bookworm like Fiona.