Ariana jumped out of her bed the next morning when she heard a loud beeping noise over the loud-speaker. Everyone shot up in their beds and held their ears tightly. The noise was loud enough where they thought their ears would burst. Then, the noise stopped and a female computer-like voice came on:
"Attention all teams: report to the auditorium immediately for your orientation. Your new clothes are available in the locker with your name on it. The lockers are located at the back of your rooms. You may put your other clothes in the incinerator slot. You have fifteen minutes."
As soon as the message stopped, a big, burly man stormed into the room. All the faces turned sharply towards the door. His face looked stone solid, and Ariana didn't know what to expect. They all stood there and stared at him. After several long moments passed, he spoke in the same voice Ariana recognized as the one she'd heard the night before. "My name is Captain Steinblik. I am your leader for your long and painful test. I am merely here to watch you. I seldom offer help, if at all, and I am not here to solve the problems you will face. I have all authority to do what I want with you. I am not your care taker, I am your superior and I WILL be treated with respect no matter what the circumstance. If anyone even begins to question my authority they will be punished severely." Captain Steinblik stood and paused, still solid in his stance. "Now, you have thirteen minutes left to get ready, so I suggest you do so. If I do not see you in the auditorium in precisely thirteen minutes there will be sore consequences to your actions."
He then glared at Ariana and said, "And unless you would like to see what hell on Earth I can give you, I would get ready quickly."
Ariana gave Steinblik a look of sympathy that he couldn't threaten her better than that. Steinblik’s face turned red at my sarcastic gesture, and then a slow smile crept across his face. "Oh I'm going to have lots of fun with you," he said. Then he looked around at everyone else in the room and yelled, "Get going!" He then left the room and slammed the door.
Everyone in the room scrambled to get to their lockers to get their clothes on. Ariana wasn't really paying attention, trying to get over the slight homesickness she felt. She sighed as she got out of bed and turned towards the lockers. She began to take her new set of clothes out when she heard a familiar voice call to her. "Ariana! You can't just walk away without saying 'hello.' How dare you?!" A huge smile came to her face as she turned and saw her best friend's face. "Merric! I didn't know you were on my team! I didn't think we'd even see each other."
Merric smiled and laughed with her. He gave her a big hug and said, "But I'm not the only one here, you know." He stepped aside revealing Ariana's little group of friends. Marcellus stood there with his red hair and usual baggy clothes. His freckled face smiled at her as he stood there with his hands plunged into his pockets as usual. Then she saw Aiden with his curly black hair and sarcastic manner just waiting to make a joke. Kendra stood next to Aiden, her short stature painfully obvious. Her dark brown hair made her face look pale and she smiled weakly. Last of all was Sarina, and her bright smile outshined everyone else’s by a mile. Sarina giggled to herself and gave a quick wave. Tears slowly appeared in Ariana's eyes. She wouldn't be alone after all, and they could all help each other. She felt hope and courage spring into her body, and she laughed with excitement.
"Hey, this is all fun and everything, but I'm thinking we should get dressed if we don't want our heads on a plate," said Aiden. With that, they all got their clothes and went to their dressing rooms to change. Then they all headed towards the auditorium, running to make sure they were on time.