First Day of English 201
by Prof. Clotho

Clotho strode to the front of the room, noticing those already seated and those still standing near the back of the room chatting.

"Welcome class!" She turned around and planted her papers loudly on the desk. "Everyone have their paperwork? Add/Drop ends Friday remember.

"Now, this is Grammar 201. If you haven't had Grammar 101 and 102, sorry, but you can't be here. See me after class.

"If you've had both 101 and 102, great. We'll go more into declensions and diagrammatiks this term. Those subjunctive clauses? We'll make 'em our best friends! Indirect pronoun references? We'll master 'em. And the deep secrets of the paragraph? We'll explode them."

She picked up the stack of copies and set a section of them at the front of each row, noting two students that continued to remain standing until the person ahead in the row actually waved the last copy at them and they took it. 'Hmmm,' Clotho thought, absorbing the darkly handsome looks of the male and the sunbright but severe looks of the blonde female. 'Troublemakers?' "These are your Syllabi. Any questions?"

A lanky male in the back of the room raised a hand, his armor clanking discordantly.


"Name's Joxer the Mighty, Ma'am."

"Yes, well, Joxer. Unless you're from a place called Mighty, we don't use titles here. What's your last name?"

"Um. Well, that doesn't have to do with my question."

"It does if you want an answer."

"Oh. Okay. I'll have to get one and then get back to you."

"Good. Good. Let's move on. Any more questions?"

"The textbooks were all sold out in the bookstore."

Clotho looked around. "Who said that?"

"I did." A small stature blonde, in a knee-length tanned leather skirt and pea green halter top, slips out of her seat and stands, clasping an Zaphod Beeblebrox Organizer to her chest.

"And your name?" She scanned the rollbook while waiting for response.

"Gabrielle Poteidaia."

"You are not."

"Who said that?"

"I did," came a deeply feminine bass reply. A tall well-tanned woman, with long ebony black hair, and attired in leather and brass chiton-style armor, stood up, directly in front of the smaller stature teacher.

Otherwise unfazed, but quietly, Clotho asked, "Who are you?"

"I'm Xena. And that --" she pointed to the blonde who spoke earlier "is Hope."

"Xena?" I asked.


"It doesn't say you've taken your prerequisites." Clotho put down the roll sheet, and pointed out reasonably. "Having Pre-Mycenean Grammar progression through 401 is not enough to be taking this class."

"Professor Clotho, ma'am?"

Clotho turned to Xena's right where the small quiet voice came from. "Yes?"

"It's all right. I'll tutor her."

"Through two semesters worth of English Grammar?"

"She's a quick study. She picked up through graduate level Chinese in less than a day."

"Really?" Clotho let her gaze scan up Xena, who stood quietly, but the sharp blue gaze was not on her. It was on the small blonde at her side. "I'll expect to test her on Monday, then."

"Yes, ma'am." The blonde gestured to Xena and the tall brunette slipped back into her seat.

"What's your name?" Clotho asked Xena's defender before she too could sit.

"Gabrielle... Poteidaia."

Clotho smiled at the young woman and looked back at the blonde Hope, noticing their physical similarities. "Twins, eh? Like to play pranks."

"Gabrielle doesn't play pranks." This came, in low register from Xena.

"Thank you for clearing that up, Xena," Clotho walked away from the desks and up to the chalkboard. "Let's see how much everyone remembers from 102... Quiz." The chalk scratched across the surface as she wrote out five s