Bird Lover and Bird Hater is the thirtieth chapter of Stranger in a Strange School.
As Basil roamed the halls during lunch period, he thought about everything. He simply couldn't help Brad against Lee and Tina. They were his friends, his first friends at A. Nigma. He just couldn't.
Finally, Basil met the eyes of Robin Raven on the Bird Watchers Club. Basil didn't like her. Any bird lover must have been insane! The feeling was mutual neither liked the other and ever since Murder had shown up, the two had a very bitter war of words.
"Well, well, if it isn't the bird hater!" Basil rolled his eyes. He hated Robin's voice. It wouldn't be so hard to hate her if she didn't look so attractive to him but then again ever since his disfigurement even the single browed Greta Hoffman looked attractive to him and once told Holger he was a lucky guy. "What are you gonna eat tonight? Chicken?" Basil shook his head. That was the best she could come up with?
"Ha!" Basil really wasn't in the mood for this. He had too much on his mind about how he was going to get out of being Brad's henchman. Instantly something came to him. "Why, Robin, there seems to be something on your shoulder." Basil placed a hand on Robin's shoulder. Robin didn't turn her head. Basil didn't care he slapped her face anyway. Robin starred at Basil in disbelief.
"That was a bit early wasn't it?" Basil's face looked depressed. "Usually you don't do that until I've dug my heel into your foot." Basil sighed.
"I'm just not in the mood for this today, Robin." Basil shook his head. "I've got a lot on my mind."
"I didn't think you had one, Basil." Basil looked at Robin with a sad look in his eyes. "Too soon?" Basil nodded. "Okay, you want to talk about it?"
"With a person who is part of a clique that wants to beat me to a pulp because Murder attacked them?" Robin nodded. "Not a chance!" Basil walked right past Robin. That was the end of that little conversation. As Basil roamed the halls he thought about everything since he had come to A. Nigma. He had been avoiding Brad because he didn't want a repeat of when he nearly drowned ten years ago. True Basil wanted to do the same to Brad but at the same time he was against revenge. He just didn't see it as being safe. Now he had ended up begging Brad for protection from the other students. Brad had plenty of influence and could use that to protect Basil but he was being roped into a revenge scheme against Lee and Tina. When Basil had started at A. Nigma he intended to have no friends, Lee and Tina were just persistent and brought him out of his shell. They were kind and would make a good couple if there weren't so many complications going on. He liked both of them, they were true friends but Basil had some guilt. When he tipped off Barrage, when he pushed Tina towards Murder and said "Sacrifices must be made." He guessed he was trying to prove that he was someone they could trust. Basil just couldn't understand why these things happened to him.
As Basil passed Barrage's office, he could hear Murder squawking inside. The door might have been closed but Basil was certain that Murder could sense his presence. He could hear Barrage inside, too. It sounded like there was a strange conversation going on between bird and cyborg.
What do you want?" Murder squawked again. "What do you want?" Basil rolled his eyes. Barrage had yelled that time. Murder squawked again. "Stop it!" Murder squawked again. "Stop it!" Murder didn't squawk again. Basil just shrugged and continued walking. As he walked away, he heard Murder squawking and the whole thing start over again. Basil sighed. He had hoped Barrage had strangled Murder or something. Then Basil started to pass Vice Principal Victoria's office. How could she have once dated Clarence? He was brutal she was not brutal but kind and just. Basil then stopped walking. How the heck did Barrage and Legendre know each other? How could Clarence and Victoria have once been a couple? How his mom know Lee's mom? Was the small world he lived in now even smaller? Why didn't he know anything about what was going on around him? Was he oblivious?
His thoughts were interrupted when his phone started ringing. Basil instantly took it out of his pocket and answered it. "Hello?"
"Basil? It's Cameron!" Basil winced. Cameron Walker. The guy who could not properly carry a pizza and believed that the people working at the pizzeria screwed up. The guy who when he had cold would put his feet into a pot on chicken soup. The guy who had tried to make friends with the Dragon when Clarence had released it and nearly got eaten! In other words, Cameron was a nut! "Basil, while waiting for you to pick up I closed my eye lids and now I can't see through them!"
"Oh yeah! Their manual!" Basil didn't shake his head. He didn't sigh. He just avoided looking at people directly. Cameron might have been one of his friends but it was torture talking to him. "So how are you, Basil."
"I kinda have a girlfriend." Basil briefly looked over at Brandy. She smiled at him and he smiled back.
"Women! You can't live with 'em, and yet they're everywhere!" That would have sounded sexist if it didn't come from the fact Cameron's dad had died some years ago, leaving only himself, his mom and his eight sisters. That just caused some irony because Cameron did live with women, nine of them!
"She's got a conflicted personality."
"Wow. The long boring stories you must have."
"This is the second day of us being together."
"By the second day I could hear my inner voice, too." Basil couldn't believe it! That was the forty-first time that Cameron had suddenly changed the subject. "I have no idea what it was saying, I don't speak Latin."
"Cameron… is there any particular reason you called or are you just trying to drive me insane with your babbling?"
"Well gee, I don't know." Basil rolled his eyes. "What's the difference?" Basil shook his head. How did he end up being friends with this nut? "Oh wait, I remember. I called to tell you that I want to make the world a better place. I want to give mankind the gift of electricity."
"We already have that!" Basil looked around. Everyone was starring at him. He hadn't realized that he had ended up yelling. Basil pointed at his phone. "Nutcase." Everyone nodded in understanding.
"Ah, then my work is done!" At the point Basil turned off his phone. That was enough of that! Cameron was a loud speaker and no doubt a lot of people had heard him. With the bag of ice still on his head he looked at a nearby clock. He then looked over at Brandy. He should tell her the truth. Tell her that he didn't feel the same way she did and that he intended to use her to get the protection of the jocks!
Horrible thoughts then came to his mind. Brandy would probably realize that it was him that sent that picture of her with snakes for hair and end up pouring face cream down his throat! Or worse! Green Apple Splat!
Basil walked away. He needed a breath of fresh air. As Basil stepped out of the school he got back to thinking about how he'd get out of being Brad's henchman. Despite how he seemed, Basil wasn't that tough. Brad probably wasn't either but he was the captain of the swim team so there was a chance he could be stronger than Basil. If the pain Basil was in was any indication Brad probably was stronger! But was he smarter? Could he outsmart Basil or could Basil outsmart him?
Then it hit Basil.
Brad was intending to have Basil take the fall for him. He intended to have Basil do all the work, get blamed for everything, get shunned by the entire school because Murder followed him just so he could watch Basil get beaten to a pulp by angry students.
What was he to do?