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Worse Than A Rubik's Cube

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This story is No. 2 in the series "The Puzzle of Daniel Osbourne". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: Richard is still trying to figure out the new computer teacher. Sequel to A New Player in Town.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Anita Blake > Oz-CenteredziliFR1312,6533355,31728 Mar 0928 Mar 09Yes
Disclaimer: I do not own Anita Blake or Buffy the Vampire Slayer characters

A/N: For Jedibuttercup who wanted a sequel to A New Player in Town for her birthday. I promised a 2000ish word count. Apparently my muse was in a giving mood.

Word Count: 2703


Richard glanced up at the knock on his door. He was getting his things together before his next class showed up, he still had a few moments before the bell rang. The door opened revealing the newest addition to the teaching staff and his own personal rubik's cube, Daniel Osbourne. He knew he seen some of the younger man's sides but there was more to uncover about him.


Oz walked into Richard's classroom and leaned against his desk. Richard raised an eyebrow at him. Although Oz had been here for a month, they had not spoken since Richard's initial warning. However that did not mean that Richard did not know about Daniel Osbourne. Oz was a great teacher. He had the patience of a saint when it came to misbehaving children. Although most of the kids in his classes flocked to him like groupies. Especially the girls when they discovered that Oz could play bass guitar exceedingly well. Oz was part of some sort of indie rock band that appeared to play at a different club each night. He and his band were always decked in head to toe in silver and black. He lived alone and didn’t seem to have many friends. He only got together with his band when they were playing. However he seemed to be gaining more friends from a source that Richard had not expected.


"Phone died." Oz shrugged. Richard gave him a confused look. "I don't remember Lindsay's number."


Richard resisted the urge to slap his forehead. That would be the source. He had Oz watched at all times when he wasn't at school. His threat had not been an idle one. He knew there was something supernatural about Oz. Despite what people have said so far. He had recruited four of the betas who had the time to stalk someone. But Lindsay had begged to help, she wanted to know what it was about Oz that made her not attack him. So Richard had allowed her to join that team as well. Somehow within three days Oz had identified all of his watchers, knew all their names, and even developed some sort of relationship with Lindsay. Richard pulled out his phone, "You know most people don't have their stalker's phone number." The bell rang signaling the end of class. The door banged open and a few of the girls walked in.


Oz shrugged, "Most people don't have stalkers. I reserve the right to be unique."


As a few more kids meandered into the classroom, Richard picked up a pen and wrote down the number on a piece of a paper. He tried to hand it to Oz but he was staring at the back of the classroom. There were three boys in the back standing around a girl's, Melissa Kelley, desk. One of the boys, Derrick Granger, seemed to be whispering something to her. Richard couldn't hear what he was saying to her but it couldn't have been good. Her head was down, her brown hair was blocking her face. She was about to break the pencil that she was holding in her hand. She dropped the pencil and tried to shut the notebook in front of her when Derrick laughed. Oz started to walk towards the back of the room at the same time another of the boys, Ian Hook, ripped out a page from Melissa's notebook.


"Please give that back." She whispered. Ian laughed before crumbling the piece of paper.


"Oh no." Oz whispered a second before every hair rose on the back of Richard's neck. "Mel-"


A shock wave emitted from the girl, the three boys were thrown back from her as she stood up. The door slammed shut and the window blinds were yanked down with enough force that they were almost pulled from the wall. Her head was still down, her hair still covering her face as she walked towards Ian. He had landed at Oz's feet.


Richard walked around his desk with his hands out to the side. This was not good, if she didn't regain control of her powers... He walked slowly and unthreateningly as possible. "Melissa," he said softly, "calm down."


"No." The word was whispered and barely audible. She finally lifted her head to stare Richard in the eyes. Hers were now pitch black.


'Shit.' Richard thought. She's lost control. He was flung back into the wall. He hit his head hard enough that he was pretty sure he cracked the wall. His eyes closed for a moment. He didn’t think he blacked out but he wasn’t too sure. All he knew was that he had a splitting headache.

Richard sat up slowly as he looked around the classroom. There were three boys in the back of the class. Derrick and the other boy that had been taunted Melissa were still cowering against the back walls. There were also five girls scattered among the first few rows. Oz was standing in front of the desk and a few feet from him was Melissa. He could not see Ian but he assumed he was in front of his desk. The door and windows were blacked out and most likely locked. He thought he could hear pounding on the door but it was muffled.


Melissa was staring at Oz. Her voice trembled as she said. “Please move.” Richard wondered why she hadn’t thrown him into a wall as well. She looked almost like she was mesmerized. He saw Oz lean down, when he came back up he was smoothing out a piece of notebook paper. He carefully folded it before placing it gently into Melissa’s hand.

Richard held his breath. The first time a witch had had noticeable used magic in a classroom was three years ago. A fifteen year old girl, in Massachusetts, had walked into her school with the intent to kill three of the high school bullies and their star quarterback. She had ended up killing eight teenagers and one of the teachers. The girl was killed by members of the police as she passed a window. Three months later a ten year old boy in California lost control of his powers. He injured three teachers and killed another boy. The boy was taken down by a tranquilizer gun. The California courts convicted him of using witchcraft to harm others. The boy was tried as an adult and he has a life sentence. There have been sixteen more instances of witchcraft in schools and states have been enforcing harsher laws. Many states now passed the law that no witch may attend public school. Missouri has the death penalty for witches. They had just recently passed a new law. All witches will be tried as adults.


Melissa looked down at the paper in her hand. Then back up at Oz. Richard could not see the expression on Oz's face but he could see Melissa's, and he saw the moment she realized what had happened. "Oh my goddess." Her eyes started to lose their black color. “What have I done?”


Richard’s eyes widened, no adolescent witch had ever been able to regain control without the help of a seasoned witch. Is that what Oz was? Not a lycanthrope at all but a witch? He certainly had the patience of one.


Meanwhile Oz had moved closer to Melissa, and started whispering to her. "No one is hurt."


"I threw Derrick, Ian, and Joe away from me. And I slammed Mr. Zeeman into a wall!” Her voice squeaked. “If he wasn’t a—” She cut herself off.


‘She knows. She knows what I am and she’s not going to tell anyone.’ Richard realized.


“I just wanted my spell back. I didn’t mean to do it.” She began to mutter to herself. Her eyes still shifting between blue and black. “I had control. I did but Joe pulled my hair and I lost my focus. Missouri has the death penalty. We were going to move in three weeks. I just had to wait three weeks."


"You have not hurt anyone. It was an accident, and you were upset. You kept your control better than most others of your power and age. Especially when your own brand of spells are involved. The American law is wrong." Oz leaned in close. He whispered something that Richard was unable to hear from the back of the room.


"You promise?"


“Yes.”


Melissa took a deep breath. She breathed again. Her eyes reverted back to their original color. Richard could now hear the sounds coming from outside the classroom. He swore in his head. He could hear Anita outside the door, which meant that RPIT was probably here as well. ‘How the hell did they get here so fast?’He must have blacked out for a bit.


“Lower your wards.” Oz said. She nodded and the black faded from the exits.


Immediately the door was kicked in. “No!” Richard shouted. What the hell had Oz been thinking? Did he want to get Melissa killed? He saw the end of the rifle before he saw the man holding it. He moved to stop the man from shooting but he was too slow. Oz wasn’t. He spun himself and Melissa out of the way, leaving a dart to imbed itself into the wall. Richard stood in front of the officer to prevent him from firing again. The officer raised his gun to fire at Richard, so he punched him across the jaw. The officer went down.


“Sanders!” That was a voice that sounded familiar, he figured it was the man in charge.


“The situation is under control. The witch is not a threat and has regained control.” Richard growled. He tilted his head ever so slightly, coming from the corner of the room where Oz and Melissa were the sounds of buttons being pushed. He had left his phone on his desk.


“Stand down Richard. Let the police handle this.” Anita shouted from the corridor.


Richard waved a hand at the children. The eleven kids got up, some a bit more shaky than others, and quickly exited. He heard someone swearing loudly, before hearing the other officers moving the children into one of the nearby classrooms.


“Eleven. The witch is still in there.” Dolph and Anita stepped up on either side of the door frame. “Move aside Zeeman.”


When Richard didn’t immediately move, Anita hissed. “Move out the way Richard you’re not helping her by doing this. He's not going to kill her.”


“No you’re just going to shoot her. I can see how you could get the two confused.” Richard hissed right back at her. “Are you against witches now too? Where will you be when they make laws about necromancers?” Anita almost slapped him.


“We don’t have time for your lover’s spat.” Dolph grunted. “Move or I will—” He paused as his phone rang. He answered it while glaring at Richard. “Dolph. … Yes sir, all the kids are out of the classroom. ... Yes. ... Yes. ... In a few moments… Yes." He snapped his cell shut and shoved it back into his pocket. "Move aside Zeeman or I will arrest you for aiding a witch."


Richard cursed inside his head. He had thought Oz had called someone. Melissa did not deserve what the law would do to her. She lost control of her powers, yes. But she had gained her control back just as quickly. And for someone at her age to lose control it was amazing that she hadn't done more damage.


"Zee-"


"Hey who's in charge here?"


Both Anita and Dolph turned around, behind them were two women. A brunette and a red, both very attractive. The one who had spoken, the brunette, was likely in her 30's. The other woman looked a few years older. She shoved past everyone to get into the classroom. "Hey what do you think you're doing?" Dolph shouted at her.


"Melissa Kelley?" She called softly. Oz stood up first and after a moment so did Melissa. She was hiding behind her teacher. The woman ignored Oz. She held out her hand. “My name is Willow.”


The other woman shoved a piece a paper into Dolph's chest. "I believe you're the head honcho here. Melissa Kelley will be coming with us."


Dolph looked at the paper, "Bullshit! That kid is American. She will be tried by the American law."


The woman leaned in closer, "No she won't."


Richard turned back when he felt a wave a magic come from the classroom. Melissa had taken Willow’s hand. They were both glowing a brilliant white. Dolph had his gun out and trained on the woman. The brown haired woman moved past Anita and Dolph. She put a hand on the red head's shoulder and Melissa's. "Let's get out of here."


"You aren't going—”


The three women disappeared in a flash a of white light. Dolph pulled out his phone and started ranting as soon as he dialed a number. “What the hell is the ISWC?”


Richard glanced over at Anita. She had the slightest smile on her face. When she saw that he noticed she glared at him. Maybe she preferred this outcome as well.


Oz had walked over to the doorway. "Why does the floor have to look so hard?”


That caused Anita and Dolph to look at him. Richard gave Oz a confused look as well, until Oz fell to the floor. Richard turned the younger man over. His sleeve was ripped and his arm was bleeding. The tranq dart must have nicked him. Richard lifted the smaller man up in a fireman's carry.


"Where do you think you're going?" Dolph paused in his ranting into his phone.


"Faculty lounge." Richard grunted as if Oz actually was heavy.


"Don't leave the school grounds. Greenly." Dolph shouted the last name. An officer stepped away from the wall. Dolph nodded his head at Richard.


Richard rolled his eyes and moved quickly past. The hallway was filled with police officers. He could see teachers still teaching to children inside the other classrooms, though many of them kept glancing to the door.


When he reached the lounge, it was thankfully empty barring Greenly who had followed him. He laid Oz down on the closest couch. He stared at the younger man with thoughts swirling in his head. He knew Oz wasn’t human but he had assumed that he was a werewolf. A werewolf could have easily moved Melissa out of the way. But what if he wasn’t? What if he was a witch? He had only ever heard of witches talking younger witches down. His pack could use a vagamor. But then again he had never seen Oz use a spell. And he didn’t smell like a witch. Richard looked down at the blood on his shirt. The younger man did not smell like anything Richard knew. ‘What the heck was this kid?’


"So what's the ISWC?"


Richard looked at the door. Anita and a detective, Zebrowski, stood in the doorway. Richard shrugged, "I don't know. The insane short women company?"


"Hey Blake maybe they're hiring." Zebrowski grunted as Anita smacked him in the stomach.


"Nobody seems to know who they are or if they do they're not talking. However they seem to have immunity and can apparently declare American citizens to be in this case... British." Anita shut the door. "Dolph is not happy. I tried to reason with him but I think you and the ... teacher... student teacher... kid?"


Richard crossed his arms. "Dolph will what? Put us in jail?"


"No she managed to talk him out of that. But don't expect to get out of here anytime soon." Zebrowski knelt down next to Oz. "What's his name?"


"Daniel Osbourne."


"What is he?"


Many words and phrases ran through Richard's head. From 'possibly human' to 'hell if I know'. So he went with the only one he was sure of.


"The computer teacher."

The End

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