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Xarbala
Feb 13, 2011

Rolling Thunder: War to the Knife, Knife to the Hilt

Why? , that's why.

Same, I'm really enjoying the possibilities of the Markowitz Self-Own angle. Especially since he's the new guy on staff.

He totally didn't know what he was getting into when he took this job.

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jagadaishio
Jun 25, 2013

I don't care if it's ethical; I want a Mammoth Steak.


Butt Discussin posted:

I, too, vote for keeping Mr. Markowitz incompetent, in a "Was good in a completely different situation but now displays a complete inability to read the situation or adapt" kind of way. There should be an interesting reason for how he was able to stumble into this job, and rather than just having him killed, the rich students he annoys should do something like framing him for hitting someone close to him with a car, or something like that.

That's the Peter Principle in action. You get promoted to the level of your own incompetence.

numerrik posted:

It really seems like he’s just presenting Fuzzy with a series of arguments as to why she should be running the shadows after graduation.

The idea that the chosen book list this year - one by one - ends up making a really solid argument for class warfare, anarchy, and political resistance movements entirely by accident would be the best. "By the time I finished sophomore English lit, I'd really come around to the idea of doing mercenary work and corporate sabotage as a form of vigilante justice against the corrupt elite in a world gone wrong."

jagadaishio fucked around with this message at Jul 21, 2018 around 03:26

numerrik
Jul 15, 2009

Falcon Punch!


jagadaishio posted:



The idea that the chosen book list this year - one by one - ends up making a really solid argument for class warfare, anarchy, and political resistance movements entirely by accident would be the best. "By the time I finished sophomore English lit, I'd really come around to the idea of doing mercenary work and corporate sabotage as a form of vigilante justice against the corrupt elite in a world gone wrong."

I want this, are you listening, Ice?

E: VV Option B

numerrik fucked around with this message at Jul 21, 2018 around 03:53

Mr Apollo
Jan 1, 2013


Please, what is more realistic here? That Mr. Markowitz forgot to take in to account his audience when selecting this term's reading list, or that 'Mr. Markowitz' is, in fact, a carefully constructed cover identity used by a deniable asset backed by the UCAS as part of an anti-corp PSYOPS campaign.

Nothingtoseehere
Nov 11, 2010


Your all being too harsh on him - it's mkre likely he's just complacent - I have no doubt the school hires the best teachers, so he probably has a grand vision about changing corporate kids using The great gatsby and just believes it'll all work out fine.

Ice Phisherman
Apr 12, 2007

We'll always have our memories won't we? Those special memories that Iíll always treasure. You, writhing from the jellyfish sting, me, urinating on the wound.

Kenji, Oli, Jayvon and Mr. Peters

"Oh my gosh, who does your hair?" asked a freshman girl.

Oli glowered at her from her seat but said nothing. The freshman girl made an expansive gesture towards her newly dyed, bright pink hair.

"Your makeup is flawless, too" she continued, "I'm an expert when it comes to these things and I can tell you put it on yourself. Putting on makeup is a dying art and you do so much with so little. I applaud you."

Kenji walked into the art class to witness the backhanded compliments. His instincts about sharing a class with Oli had been correct. It wasn't possible to protect her in her normal classes. Not until he started to make inroads with the new crop of freshmen, but he could be here right now.

"Hello there," said Kenji, with his most winning smile, "I don't know you. I'm Kenji, what's your name?"

She was a blandly pretty human girl who had her hair done up into a Mohawk braid that ended in a pony tail in the back. The braid was dyed a violent purple while the shaved sides were bleached. She arched an eyebrow at Kenji and quirked a smile. Oli held very still and her face was impassive, even as the girl turned away.

"Clarissa," she said, "Hey, you're cute."

There were no desks, but tables that were meant for four students a piece. Kenji sat at the edge of this one.

"Well thanks. Now that we've been introduced I want you to be nice to my friend, Oli," he said, "I'd take it as a favor."

Leading with a small favor was small, but it was easier to get a positive response with the doling out of a small favor. He motioned to Oli, whose face finally broke and she glowered up at her bully. Clarissa's smile fell and she rolled her eyes. She didn't notice the glower at all, or pretended not to.

"What, are you some sort of chubby chaser?" she said, sarcastically, "You can do way better."

Kenji's smile was practiced, so it didn't diminish in the slightest. He was irked, but he didn't let it show.

"Last chance to be nice," said Kenji, "What do you say? Still want to have a good day?"

Clarissa wrinkled her nose and shot him a scathing look.

"Are you threatening me or something?" she asked.

Kenji's smile turned sharp as he showed his teeth.

"Me? No, I'm harmless," he lied.

"Whatever," she said, dismissively.

She walked away and Kenji looked over his shoulder at Oli.

"I'll be back in one second," he said.

"Don't worry about it," she said, quietly.

"Too late," he said, his tone chipper, "Already worrying."

He slipped off the table and looked around for someone he knew. Art was an elective and therefore a mixed class. He saw Skylar again, but that wouldn't do. He didn't like her. There were a few others faces he knew, but he didn't immediately notice any he could work with for this particular task. Then he smiled as he saw Sarah. She was one of Olisha's friends, a senior and like her friend, prone to being cruel for fun. There were still a few minutes before class started and the teacher hadn't walked in yet. He walked up to the redheaded elf who was talking to a friend. He sat down on her table in much the same fashion as he had at Oli's. There were proprieties, so he didn't interrupt her conversation, and waited to be addressed. She didn't make him wait long.

"Hey Ken," said Sarah, "I thought you would've been expelled by now."

She winked at him and he chuckled.

"I'm waiting to do that in a spectacular fashion. It wouldn't do to get expelled in any old way," he teased, "Staying out of trouble?"

"Hardly," she scoffed, "Looking for some. Today is boring."

The girl she was talking to rolled her eyes a little at the small sleight, but said nothing.

"Want to make it less boring?" he asked.

A wicked smile sliced across Sarah's face.

"I might entertain you for a minute, but only if you tell me about the puppy dog eyes," she said, "I'm curious."

Kenji almost didn't catch her meaning, but nodded appreciatively as he figured it out.

"Olisha told you about me and Dog?" he asked.

Sarah inspected her nails as she tried to appear casual.

"Yep, and the rumor is that your eyes change color," she said, "I know a lot about your body changes since you were pretending to be musicians for party tricks, but magic has a hard time changing eyes. Any truth to that?"

"If there is, you'll be the one I show them to on purpose," he flirted.

She scoffed lightly and her smile grew.

"Okay, what do you want? she asked, "You only flirt with me when you want something."

"Am I that transparent?" he joked.

"Crystal clear," she cooed, "I let you get away with it because you're fun."

He chuckled softly and grinned at her.

"Fair enough," he said, "Behind me there's this new freshman girl with purple and white hair. Want to give her a warm welcome? She bothered me when I was trying to be nice."

"Can't have that," she said, "I want to see those puppy dog eyes though, remember that you promised."

"I will," he said, "Thanks much."

Kenji went back to Oli's table and Sarah went to sit across from Clarissa. The glower on Oli's face changed to one of confusion.

"What did you do?" whispered Oli.

"Me?" asked Kenji, innocently, "I talked to a friend of mine and she wants to be friends with Clarissa. I just want everyone to be friends."

Clarissa shot Kenji a death glare and Sarah giggled evilly. It looked like Clarissa had overheard their conversation. Kenji's smile was positively cherubic.

"You know she can hear you," said Oli.

Kenji placed a hand to his chest and did his best, "Who, me?" impression.

"What? Of course she can hear me," teased Kenji, "I just wanted to find a new friend and mentor for one of the incoming freshman class. Everyone is going to be good friends. Right Sarah?"

Sarah smiled wolfishly at Kenji and nodded.

"Now Oli," said Kenji, "Anyone else you know in need of a friend?"

"No, it's fine," said Oli.

"Okay, you just let me know," said Kenji, sweetly, but loudly enough to be overheard, "By the way, I didn't see you at lunch."

Oli's brow furrowed at the sudden change in conversation now that the innuendo was gone.

"Oh!" exclaimed Oli, "I got caught up in my painting. If I don't work when I'm inspired it gets away from me."

"Okay," said Kenji, "Just remember to be social sometimes. It's good for you."

Oli sighed miserably and put her head against the table.

"I suck at being social," she complained.

"I can help with that if you want," he said, "Being social is great."

The look that Oli gave him was disbelieving.

"It's a skill," he said, lightly, "Well, okay, a set of skills, but useful ones. You learn them with practice."

Oli grunted and turned her face away. A few minutes later, Mr. Peters walked through the door. The alchemy and enchantment teacher was also the island's only art teacher as enchantment had some heavy crossover with art skills. As there were just over twenty students in this class, it was one of the school's largest and most popular classes. He went straight to his desk and waved to a few students, who waved back and one of them walked up to him to have a chat. Kenji noticed that many of these students were from his enchanting class and realized that Mr. Peters had mentioned that while art wasn't specifically required for enchanting, it was encouraged. Oli didn't seem chatty so he listened to Sarah as she delivered a taste of Clarissa's own medicine in the form of far more polished backhanded compliments and catty witticisms.

Moments before the bell rang, Jayvon hobbled through the door on his crutches. More than a few people stared at him. After all, he was the only dwarf on the island and being wounded was strange among people had access to both magical healing and some of the best mundane healing that money could buy. He looked around the room and most of the tables were occupied so he approached Kenji's table.

"Mind if I sit here?" he asked.

Kenji noticed that he didn't wait to lean his crutches against the table, though he didn't immediately sit down.

"By all means," said Kenji, "Oli?"

Oli lifted up her head from the table and looked to Kenji.

"What?" she asked.

Kenji made a gesture to Jayvon, who looked expectantly at her. Oli's chubby, pale cheeks turned a faint pink, though not for long.

"Oh, sure," she said, "Sorry to make you wait."

"No trouble," said Jayvon, gruffly.

With effort, Jayvon climbed into a seat that was meant for those of normal size and struggled with his backpack as Mr. Peters began to talk. His voice was quiet and soothing, so those who wished to hear him had to lean in.

"Hello everyone," he said, "I'm so very excited to see so many faces for art class this year, both new faces and returning faces. For those of you who don't know me, I'm Mr. Peters. I teach enchanting, alchemy and art. For those of you not in the know, we have a mixed class as many of my students from my enchanting class are encouraged to take my art class to further their studies in enchanting. However, I do my best to teach those who long for the joy of creation and artistic expression whether that's magical or mundane. To me, nurturing that urge is just as important as making magic."

His smile was open and genuine as he looked around at the tables filled with students.

"I do have to split my time, but many of my students from enchanting teach the others," he continued, "So today, I'd like a volunteer to show those from my enchanting class how to use a rock tumbler."

A broad shouldered older human teen with a shaved head raised his hand.

"Thank you Jeffrey," he said, "That's very good of you. I'm glad to see you back."

Mr. Peters nodded to Jeffrey, and the older teen with the shaved head nodded and smiled back.

"Now since that won't occupy the entire class I want everyone to pay attention. We're going to launch directly into painting," he said, "Now I suspect most of you have painted before, but if you haven't that's just fine by me. As long as you put forth your best effort and try to develop your skills, I'll be happy with the results. I'm going to demonstrate some techniques and..."

"Why don't...Argh," hissed Clarissa to Sarah.

What Clarissa said was only half heard by Kenji, but she sounded pissed.

"Miss Liman," said Mr. Peters, without skipping a beat, "Do you have something to share with the class?"

Clarissa's head swiveled around to meet Mr. Peters as her back was to him. After a pause, she answered.

"No," she said, sullenly.

The teacher's face didn't change at all. His face was serene.

"Miss Liman, I do you the courtesy of using your name when addressing you," said Mr. Peters, "I ask that you show courtesy in return. In the future, please use my name when addressing me and hold any conversations until after I'm done speaking. Do you understand?"

A few emotions flickered across Clarissa's face: Indignation, wounded pride, anger and frustration. Everyone in class was staring at her though and soon she buckled under that pressure.

"Sorry, Mr. Peters," she said, quietly.

There were a few quiet chuckles and giggles from the students, including one from Oli, Kenji noticed. Mr. Peters nodded to her.

"Thank you, kindly," he said, "Now, back on topic. I'm going to demonstrate those brush strokes. Our subjects will be simple objects, but that's just for today and tomorrow. Weather permitting, we'll go outside and we can look for subject matter in nature. After I'm done with my demonstration my enchanting students will go to the rock tumbler and Jeffrey will demonstrate how to polish rocks. By this time next week you'll have a shiny, polished stone to use in a project or maybe to take home to admire or give to a friend."

Kenji felt like this was all pretty corny, but the class was relaxing. For the next hour and fifteen minutes he watched Mr. Peters demonstrate how to paint, he learned how to smooth rocks in a rock tumbler and then he painted a picture of a vase. The last of his stress melted away as he, Oli and Jayvon worked at their table. They chatted rarely as they were all focused on their work. Jayvon often dropped his brush and would occasionally swear, but art was otherwise soothing. Kenji could forget his troubles in creation. At least for a time.

VanSandman
Feb 16, 2011


If incompetent-literature-teacherís next book is a Scrooge McDuck graphic novel, he could be trying to show different views of the rich in literature.

Dr Subterfuge
Aug 31, 2005


I want surprisingly incompetent teacher to be surprisingly competent somehow, too. Yeah, Perter Principle, but he was hired for a reason. Like, in spite of everything, he manages to make a pretty big impression on Fuzzy or something.

VanSandman
Feb 16, 2011


Dr Subterfuge posted:

I want surprisingly incompetent teacher to be surprisingly competent somehow, too. Yeah, Perter Principle, but he was hired for a reason. Like, in spite of everything, he manages to make a pretty big impression on Fuzzy or something.

Or incompetent for a reason - a last minute hire, a secret idealogue, or just too ambitious for his position - heís teaching not-magic at a magic school. Heís far more replaceable than other teachers.

Xarbala
Feb 13, 2011

Rolling Thunder: War to the Knife, Knife to the Hilt

Why? , that's why.

Dr Subterfuge posted:

I want surprisingly incompetent teacher to be surprisingly competent somehow, too. Yeah, Perter Principle, but he was hired for a reason. Like, in spite of everything, he manages to make a pretty big impression on Fuzzy or something.

This sounds good to me too.

Ice Phisherman
Apr 12, 2007

We'll always have our memories won't we? Those special memories that Iíll always treasure. You, writhing from the jellyfish sting, me, urinating on the wound.

Sasha, Marcus and Coach Bolt - Tuesday, July 23, 2075 - Afternoon - Blake Island

Sasha's thin arms shook as she struggled to squeeze another push-up out of her out of shape body.

"I said ten, Oliver," drawled Coach Bolt, "You've given me six. Straighten out your back."

She'd actually done ten, but the form that Fuzzy drilled her on had fallen apart after six, so Coach Bolt had repeated the number six, four more times. With an effort of will, Sasha straightened out her back and tried.

"Just six, huh?" said Coach Bolt, "Well, that's something. Everyone on your backs. Crunches, go!"

The four older students who'd been through this class before did as they were told without hesitation, followed by a small chorus of "Yes coach." The four newer, out of shape students, Sasha included, struggled to ready themselves, though some struggled more than others.

"Lift your knees, keep your toes pointed, Denicolo," he barked, "Hands behind your head. You're exercising your core, not your neck."

Sasha managed a full fifteen before her stomach began to tremble. After some sharp words from Coach Bolt, she managed another five.

"Side crunches," ordered Coach Bolt, "Marcus, demonstrate how for the new meat since they seem to be having problems with their crunches."

Sasha knew Marcus. He'd been briefly sucked into the orbit of her father by way of a traded favor through her girlfriend, Fuzzy. He was six foot six, lithely built without an ounce of fat showing on his body, with short, light brown brown hair and light brown eyes. Though Sasha wasn't interested in men, she knew how other girls whispered about him. He was a clean cut, blandly handsome type of guy whose looks were attractive without being striking of threatening. The sort of person that her parents had tried to fix her up with before she'd come out to them as a lesbian. In fact, the only distinguishing feature about him that wasn't bland were his full sleeve tattoos, intricate and black on pale skin. He, like everyone else, wore a grey workout uniform with the Blake Island insignia on it, and he was at the head of the class as he ran them through how to work their obliques.

The young man who'd once courted her family for favors tried his best to conceal his anger and embarrassment. He was good at it, Sasha knew. She didn't know the full extent of his power set, but control of his body and emotions were among them. So while it was normally hard to read his emotions with her astral sight, the strength of his feelings were plain to see. While the rest of the students looked at her with a mix of distorted reds with disgust and anger, only he felt embarrassment, his aura was a red tinged with pink. Coach Bolt's emotions were less complicated. A simple orange of someone at a task. These were Sasha's thoughts as she exercised muscles she barely knew she had.

As close as everyone was to the hard packed earth that served as their training ground, those emotions were hard to make out. Layers upon layers of emotions were mingled with the very earth from days long gone that concealed them. The black of frustration, anguish fear and pain were mixed with the whites of triumph, elation and joy. If she stared hard enough, she could see the faded emotions of years gone by, all compacted by that orange of work, and faintly, ever so faintly, she could detected both approval and disapproval in the orange. It was all so compact, like sediment, and this class was adding yet a new layer. These were the thoughts she used to distract herself from the aches and pains.

"On the bars!" bellowed Coach Bolt, "Pullups, go!"

Another chorus of "Yes coach" bellowed out from the older students, and the newer students, herself included, echoed belatedly. Of the eight students, she could tell which ones were repeats and which weren't. Besides simply being in shape, the return students knew what to expect. Their emotions were simple and their auras were bright orange as they went about their tasks, though tinged more white with pride than black with pain, though that was there. The auras of the new students, herself included, were almost all black from pain and frustration. Though some of the new students were dealing with their pain, one of the others, a senior elven boy with shaggy, blond hair, whose named she was pretty sure was Douglas, looked like he was getting his rear end kicked as hard as her. Or at least that's what his aura was telling her. Neither of them could manage a single pull-up. Coach Bolt blew on his silver whistle and began to run in place.

"We're going on a run!" he yelled, "Everyone move! Marcus, you knew the way! Go!"

Without question, he lead and responded with "Yes Coach", as did everyone else. It didn't take long to get how this class worked. Sasha was suddenly glad that she'd gotten Fuzzy to take her on morning runs and hoped that she wouldn't be run so hard that she'd throw up again. She followed and they ran one of the better marked trails that was almost completely devoid of rocks and roots, though it was hilly, which Sasha wasn't used to. In under a minute, Sasha began to tire and she migrated to the back of the class with Douglas. Coach Bolt brought up the rear.

"You two can still drop it and go find some nice, soft class with a book to stick your nose in! " he shouted from behind, "Either of you feel like that?"

"No coach!" shouted Douglas.

Sasha actually did want that, but that wasn't why she was here.

"No!" she shouted.

"When you talk to me, you call me Coach!" barked Coach Bolt.

"No, Coach!" she called out.

"So you want to stay in my class?!" he exclaimed.

"Yes Coach!" yelled Sasha.

Douglas tried to turn around to speak, but tripped from lack of attention. Sasha tried to reach out, but she saw magic gather around him. Then she saw Douglas briefly tumbled through midair before he was set back on the ground. She slowed down to look.

"You want to stay in my class, eyes forward, keep running!" he shouted, "Next time I let you fall, Denicolo!"

"Yes Coach!" exclaimed Douglas.

So Sasha ran and so did everyone else. What felt like hours later, the run finally ended. She hadn't thrown up and the new meds were certainly working to help her control her panic attacks. She was still drenched with sweat, doubled over with her hands on her knees, but as she looked at Douglas, she was glad she wasn't the only person who was out of shape in the class. She saw his aura grow sharp and red with anger and indignation as he noticed her stare.

"Don't you dare compare yourself to me," he snarled.

Sasha looked away. That had hurt, but her aches and pains helped distract her. On reflex, entirely unwilling to experience aches and pains, she summoned up a healing spell. She concentrated, thought about the formula and just as she ran her magic through the formula, the spell was dispelled as roughly as one might take a sledgehammer to fine china. Sasha gasped at the suddenness of it and she froze in place.

"There's always one," drawled Coach Bolt.

Sasha looked up from her position, bent double, as the other students that were covered in differing amounts of sweat looked at her with their unkind expressions and angry auras. Coach Bolt bent down to meet her at eye level, but kept his voice raised to talk to the class.

"Oliver, pain is a teacher," said Coach Bolt, "You're not going to work around it. You're going to work through it and with it. You'll learn to use it. All of you will. Pain is going to be a constant companion in combat magic. If you fall down and didn't break or tear something, you get back up. If it's too hard then you can still apply for a gym class. Plus in a very real way, you will deny yourself the ability to grow stronger. When you strain your muscles, they tear and build themselves back up harder and stronger than before. If you use magic, that doesn't happen. Your muscles go right back to where they were and you deny yourself any chance at strength. Every single one of you is going to heal the old fashioned way. You let your bodies do that for you, take some aspirin, ice down the worst parts and suck it up. If you get cut then you grit your teeth and rub some dirt in it. If I catch a whiff of healing magic for anything less than broken bones or lacerations I'll wash you out. Oliver, ten push-ups. Go."

Sasha grit her teeth as her wounded pride roared to be heard. A year ago she would have walked away, buried her nose in the proverbial book and relied on her bodyguards to protect her. Then she remembered all of a sudden that Beef and Duncan were gone. What she had left was a girlfriend who wanted to take their place. That was something she wouldn't allow. This class was full of lessons that she needed to know. So she swallowed her pride and despite her aching body, she got down to her hands and knees, did her best to maintain her posture and began her first push-up.

"Everyone else, do the same," said Coach Bolt.

"Yes coach," was what the older students said, and the new students belatedly echoed.

"And Oliver, when I give you an order, you say yes Coach," said Coach Bolt.

Sasha squeezed her eyes shut hard to keep from crying.

"Yes Coach," she said, through gritted teeth.

This time, despite her aching body, she did her ten. The sweat that poured down her face hid her tears.

Deadmeat5150
Nov 21, 2005

OLD MAN YELLS AT CLAN


For Markowitz, a wise old fart once told me, "There aren't many things more pitiful than a man educated past his own intelligence." I think he looks good on paper, but in practice he is seriously lacking. But he makes s connection with a student, Fuzzy, and learns how to be a better teacher. He came with a goal and an idea, to Gatsby the hell put of thesr spoiled corporate brats. Instead he'll find the true meaning of being an educator.

Brought to you by the Hallmark Channel.

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Dr Subterfuge
Aug 31, 2005


Deadmeat5150 posted:

For Markowitz, a wise old fart once told me, "There aren't many things more pitiful than a man educated past his own intelligence." I think he looks good on paper, but in practice he is seriously lacking. But he makes s connection with a student, Fuzzy, and learns how to be a better teacher. He came with a goal and an idea, to Gatsby the hell put of thesr spoiled corporate brats. Instead he'll find the true meaning of being an educator.

Brought to you by the Hallmark Channel.

I wasn't envisioning it being so Hallmark-y. I just don't want him to be a complete fuckup

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