Not a Hawk Anymore

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“Welcome to Seil University, we’re glad for you to join the Hawk family, Moe. Make sure to return next month on the fifth for orientation.” The advisor grinned.

“I’m glad I was able to transfer, it’s always been my dream” Moe said as she glanced at the Hawk statue in the center of the courtyard. It reminded her of all of the hard work she had put in to get here. It had been her dream school since she was in elementary, but senior year of high school she was devastated after being rejected. So she attended two years of community college, and with a perfect GPA made it over the hurdle.

“Congratulations you earned it!” The advisor patted her back.

“Thanks” Moe blushed.

“Bye!” The advisor waved.

“See ya!” Moe lifted her hand. “Phew!” she said to herself and whipped a cluster of sweat from her brow. It was a relief to be finished with registration. Reaching into her tote bag, she pulled out a green and blue t-shirt with a Hawk on it and snuggled it. This would be her official Friday shirt. With her strange habit of wearing her favorite shirt at the end of the week it made each day of the week seem to fly by faster.

* * *

At noon the next day, she stretched her long arms, leapt out of bed and spun around like the days she would dance ballet.

Just as she headed to shower with a bundle of clothing tucked under her frail arms, she noticed her t-shirt tossed on the bedpost looked different. She scratched her head.

“What?” She gasped and turned it over. The shirt still said Seil University, but the hawk was now a bear. “I know, I didn’t buy a bear shirt!” She fumed and marched out of her room downstairs.

Her father was on the couch with a newspaper and a cup of coffee.

“I can’t believe you!” She shouted. He looked up at her confused.

“Moe are you feeling alright?”

“No!” she cried, gripping the rail.

“What’s the matter?”

“Someone switched my spirit t-shirt for this ugly shirt.” She held it up.

“Let me see,” he offered, and she tossed it to him. He caught it, turned it over, and his brow rose.

“Ah, Moe…”

“What?” She crossed her arms.

“This is the same shirt you bought yesterday?”

“No, it clearly isn’t. The other one had the school mascot on it not that atrocious bear.”

“Have you been drinking again?” he asked.

“No!” She slapped her hand against her forehead.

“The school mascot is a bear. I remember when I went to Seil twenty-five years ago. I was a bear.”

“Ha, funny dad. You and mom always told Mandy and I that you two met there, and got married in your Hawk gear.”

“Definitely not!” a voice said. She turned to see her older sister Mandy, who was also visiting their parents for the summer behind her.

“You two? Now are in on this joke?”

“No, Moe there’s no “conspiracy” you just have an awful memory.” Mandy smirked. Moe turned away and marched past her sister up the staircase with tears brimming in her eyes.

The ding of a notification on her phone dried he tears. She checked it to see another message on Gmail from Seil University, and plopped down on the bed to read it. “Thanks for Visiting Seil University, welcome to bear country!”

There was no way. Everything changed over night. She opened her second drawer where all her letters from school were kept and dug through them frantically. All of them had a bear mascot in place of a hawk and welcomed her to the bear family. It was if something had alerted the past, and she let out a scream.

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