The main breakfast hall on the campus was open to all who attended classes, both civilian and air cadets. It wasn’t unusual for members of House Falcon to intermingle with members of House Ocelot, House Fennec or House Lynx; and you could still tell the difference between them. While the main houses of the campus all wore their cadet uniforms complete with house colours and stripe ranks on the shoulders, the members of House Falcon wore shirt and ties with dress slacks and had a small cloak. While House Falcon members associated with any and all other houses, it seemed that they felt more comfortable with House Ocelot.
Also a usual happenstance was the slightly late arrival of House Falcon members to the breakfast hall. House Ocelot was often there first along with members of one or two other houses. But there was one member of House Falcon who managed to beat the rest of her house. Claudia Whitefur, a happy and perky Vulpine named for her fur covering which was pure white. Smaller than many others, she was actually much younger, having advanced her education due to her intelligence. Many thought this would be a detriment to her social skills, but she proved that was not the case at all.
On this morning, like many other mornings, she happily skipped into the hall and took a seat at one of the long tables where members of House Ocelot and House Falcon had gathered to begin the day. There was many in both houses that she recognized; Aria Sharpspeer, Clarfax Billings, Hardy Maynard and Jada Hawkspur of House Ocelot, and Robert Quickfoot had all gathered for the morning meal and to chat among themselves. It appeared as though Clarfax and Robert were both pouring over a few books as they ate, getting in some final study before the morning lecture. Hardy was finishing brushing Clarfax’s tail, chastising him for his lack of grooming etiquette. Robert, a rather short and stout Felanus with tan and grey fur, was reading over his books diligently. The world seemed lost to him as he poured over theories on astrophysics.
“Good morning, everyone,” Claudia said cheerily as she took her seat across from the others. She looked around the hall for a moment, as though looking for someone “I was hoping Left-tenant Felix would be about, I had something I was going to tell her regarding the upcoming rough ball semi final match.”
“Captain Marr came and requested Senia,” Jada informed her. “He actually asked that we mention that she was looking for you as well.”
“Oh!” Claudia said with surprise. It wasn’t often that the Captain asked for her, though not surprising considering she was the student head of House Falcon. “Did she say what it was about?”
“No, she didn’t,” Hardy replied as she shook her head. “She asked that you meet her and the other House leaders in the faculty lounge.”
“I best get going, then,” she said with her usual smile and trotted off happily toward the faculty lounge.
“You know, her happy attitude can be infectious at times,” Aria mentioned once Claudia had skipped out of the breakfast hall. “I don’t mind positive, infectious attitudes.”
“Too bad she wasn’t a little older,” Hardy said as she filled up a glass with orange juice. “She might make a good pilot.”
“Doubt that,” Clarfax spoke up as he looked up from his book. “Claudia wants to be a marine biologist. Has no interest in military matters or even piloting a deep space vessel.”
“She did mention she’d like to travel to the other star systems,” Robert added. “But only to study marine life. She really likes fish, for some reason.”
“You two know a great deal about her, it seems,” Aria said as she finished her morning waffle.
“Well, she is in every single one of our science classes,” Robert replied. “And, she’s also my house leader, so, there is that.”
“She’s also infectiously cheerful,” Clarfax added with a nod. “Which is something we need with what’s happened lately.” He took out a pocket watch and looked at the time. “Oh, blimey. We best get going,” he said as he gathered up his books. Robert looked up at the large clock on the wall and quickly followed suit, both lads moving as though they were going to be late.
“You’ve still got twenty minutes,” Jada remarked as the others watched the pair.
“Five minute walk across the yard,” Robert explained as though he’d calculated this all out previously. “Ten minutes to get through the facility to the lecture room. And thirty seconds to find a good seat.” The other three just stared in disbelief, that someone would actually calculate all of that. “If we hurry, we can shave some time off the ten minutes.”
“Right then,” Hardy said as she finished her juice and gathered her things. “Best lead the boys across the yard, then.” The other two chuckled lightly at the comment, then moved to join Clarfax and Robert. “Just hope Senia and Claudia aren’t late.”