Karina, the Math Wiz: Part Two
“Mrs. Yimps?” a red Mynci asked. Her teacher spun around and smiled, seeing Karina.
“Yes, Karina. What is it?”
“It’s just... well... I think I am going to enter the Math-tath-alon next Friday.”
Hearing Karina’s response, her teacher beamed. “I’m glad you want to,” she began, “I’ve always had such confidence in you. And I’ve always been so proud. Very few teachers get the opportunity to teach one who really grasps the concepts of their class and is eager in learning more. Not only can you grasp mathematical concepts, but you are just a genius!”
The Mynci, whose cheeks were even redder than usual, modestly grinned. “I just hope it’s fun,” she said as she took her seat. She gave Graphie, her sister, the thumbs up and received a wink back in response.
Happily, she took out her pencil and notebook and prepared for the day’s lesson. She turned the page in her notebook, wrote in the top corner “Karina364” and waited. In a few minutes, Mrs. Yimps stood up and greeted the class.
“Good morning, good morning. How are you all? I am so sorry to have kept you so long, I was merely working on some paperwork. Before we begin the lesson, I would just like to announce some fabulous news. Our very own math wiz, Karina, has decided to compete in the Math-tath-alon next Friday. You are all welcomed to come and show your support for her as she competes for the grand prize of 50,000 Neopoints.”
“Show support... for her?” Karina heard someone behind her mumble. “Yeah right. Like I would show support for that nerd.” She heard a giggle, and reluctantly turned around to see a Wocky and an Aisha gossiping behind her.
Not in the mood, she turned back around and pretended not to have heard them. It worked fairly well, though she wondered to herself, “Am I really that nerdy?”
Luckily, those thoughts were driven out of Karina’s head as Mrs. Yimps began the lesson. She eagerly grasped her pencil and waited to take notes. Several other students, who were obviously not as interested in math as she was, groaned and chose not to take notes. Karina, on the other hand, eagerly scribbled down everything Mrs. Yimps wrote on the blackboard.
As class came to an end, Mrs. Yimps stopped writing and brought the lesson to a close. “Now, I’m going to be nice and lighten your load a bit, so no official homework tonight. But, you are going to have a very hard quiz in two days, and I suggest you use my generosity to your advantage and study,” she said firmly, but in her usual, friendly tone. “I am warning you. Those of you who put studying off to the last minute will not be passing this quiz.”
Mrs. Yimps returned to her desk with seconds before the bell rang. All the students eagerly left to get to their next class in time. Karina bade her teacher goodbye as she headed off to history.
As she arrived in the cold history classroom, she waved to Mr. Gwindle. Although Karina’s specialty was math, she was a popular favorite amongst all her teachers. The Tonu waved, still finishing up paperwork before class.
The Mynci happily found her seat and unpacked her things. All of a sudden, she felt a tap on the shoulder. She spun around slowly, hoping it wasn’t another gossiper just calling her a nerd. To her delight, it didn’t seem to be a gossiper, because the pet behind her smiled.
She was a green Eyrie, with deep, green eyes, soft fur, and a warm smile. “Hi,” she mumbled quietly. Karina smiled. “You’re Karina, aren’t you?”
“Yup,” Karina replied, nodding. “How did you know?” Karina eyed the Eyrie suspiciously.
“Oh, silly me. I’m sorry I didn’t explain. My name is Emerald; you can call me Em. I just moved here. Started classes yesterday! I have Mrs. Yimps for math, too. Of course, she told me all about you. After all, I deserved to know about my competition.”
Karina froze. “What? Competition?”
“Silly me again! Sorry, I forgot to tell you! I’m in the Math-tath-alon too.”
Karina’s eyes widened. “Wow. Good luck, I guess,” she replied, nervously. The thought hadn’t even crossed her mind that she would have a lot of competition.
“Boy, I’m going to need it! You’re the best from what I’ve heard. No way I’m beating you. But I’m happy with second; there’s still a 25,000 Neopoint prize! And anyway, being in the contest with you is a good enough prize.”
Hearing this, Karina smiled. She felt a little more reassured. “But, Em, what do you mean being in the contest with me is a good enough prize?”
“Well, don’t laugh, but when Mrs. Yimps told me about you...”
“I look up to you. You’re just the kind of person I always wanted to be. You’re smart, you’re pretty, and everyone likes you. I’m just honored to be your friend.
Karina was absolutely beaming by now. She grinned at Em, very happy with her new friend. For a moment, Karina wondered why she was kissing up so much, but she shook the thought off. Em was just a nice Eyrie who was glad to have her as a friend.
She was about to reply to Em, when Mr. Gwindle began his lesson.
“Oh, talk to you later!” Emerald said, spotting Mr. Gwindle.
“Alright,” Karina said, very pleased with this new companion.
“We’re going to Pizzaroo!” squealed Snow Angel. “I love Pizzaroo! Don’t you just love pizza?” Karina angrily looked up at her energetic sister.
“Yes, I love pizza. But, sis, do me a favor and be quiet. I have a math quiz in two days, and Mrs. Yimps said that it’s going to be very hard. I have to study.”
Graphie, who had just entered the room with Cutie, snarled at her sister. “Come on, Karina. Don’t be a party pooper! We finally convince Christine to go out to a fast food restaurant - on a school night, mind you - and you wimp out!”
Karina shot and angry look at her sister. “Graphie,” she said, frustrated. “You know as well as I do that we have to study.”
“No, we don’t!”
Karina rolled her eyes. “Yes, we do.”
“No, we don’t!”
“Yes, WE DO!”
“No, we don’t!”
“Graphie, for the last time, YES, WE DO!”
Graphie stepped back from Karina, who seemed to be in a bad mood. “Sorry. I didn’t mean to interrupt the math wiz from her study session. I was just doing the nice, sisterly thing to do and offering that she come with her loving family to dinner.”
Sighing, Karina nodded. “Fine, play the guilt trick on me!” Graphie winked at her two other siblings, pleased that her plan had worked. “But promise me that you’ll let me study as long as I want tomorrow. I need to get a good grade on my quiz.”
“If you insist. I need a good grade more than you do, though,” Graphie said. Not wanting to push it, she shut her mouth.
“Come on, Christine is waiting!” Cutie said, pointing to the door. Reluctantly, Karina shut her study books and followed her siblings and owner to Pizzaroo.
“How was your day?” Christine asked as the Blumaroo at Pizzaroo handed her a tasty slice of pizza.
Christine’s pets, who were all gobbling down their dinners, didn’t reply. The brown haired girl just chuckled, as she waited for a response.
“Fine,” Snow Angel said, quickly returning to her pepperoni pizza.
“Good,” Graphie mumbled, dripping pizza sauce on everyone.
“Nice,” Cutie said with a giggle.
Christine glared at her three pets that were all too hungry to talk with her. Her eyes spotted Karina, who wasn’t gulping down her food in one bite. “What about you, Karina?”
“Well, I told Mrs. Yimps I was doing the Math-tath-alon. In Science, Mr. Paul handed back my project, I got an A. And oh yeah, I made a new friend.”
Her siblings looked up at stopped eating. They all glanced at her, surprised that Karina had a new friend they hadn’t heard about.
After politely wiping her mouth with a napkin, Graphie angrily questioned her sister. “Who’s this new friend. And why haven’t we heard about them?”
“Oh, it’s nothing like that,” Karina insisted, a little embarrassed. “I just met her in history, and I forgot to tell you.”
Feeling a little less angry as she heard this, Snow Angel shrugged. “What’s she like?” she asked as she returned to her pizza.
“Really nice, from what I’ve seen of her. She’s in the Math-tath-alon, too. And she totally looks up to me. She thinks I’m really cool.”
Cutie let out a loud giggle. “She looks up to you and thinks you’re cool? What is she, a preschooler? How old is she?” Karina glared at her.
She felt a little insulted, and turned away from Cutie. “She’s just as old as you and me, thank you very much!” she said, defending Em. “Her name is Em and she just moved. And I’m starting to think she’s a better friend than any of you.”
“Don’t feel like that; your siblings are just joking,” Christine reassured her. “Right, guys?” She shot her three other pets a glare and they nodded.
“I wish I had stayed home and studied,” she mumbled.
To be continued...