The angry cadet

It is probably harder steering a diesel widecraft through space than most people think. The way I stop and start on a proverbial dime is so taken for granted as I push Golden Girl through her paces in the early morning blur.
So when my new passenger, Troll-Linda Prettimonster, was added to the route, I was a little surprised her stop was a set of coordinates and not a home portal, which is what is given for the other special needs space cadets. Instead of waiting patiently curbside on the first day, she was wandering in the travel path with her mother. I passed by her the first time as she looked more boy than girl and seemed to be moving not waiting for transport.
When she stomped down the ship’s gang plank and was vacuumed into the academy, I turned to Velma, asking if she felt Benny would act up in an attempt to impress the female version of his sullen, foul-mouthed self.
“She’s a dyke,” said Velma, using a prejorative word for cadets with something I think they call gender dysphoria. “They hang out with the boys not the girls.”
I didn’t ask how Velma could know the sexual orientation of someone we had both known for 15 minutes. I have learned not to ask Velma clarifying questions. Her word, whatever it is, is final.

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