Sage Saunders, Daisy Saunders, and Jennifer Knight are all looking forward to graduating college. Will Jennifer’s secret find its way to Daisy before then?
“I think we should go on a cruise,” Daisy suggested. “I like cruises.”
“Those are a bit expensive for a bunch of barely making it college kids,” Sage replied, shaking her head. “We need something simpler.”
Jennifer shrugged, “we’ve got a few months, we’ll think of something.”
It was a few weeks before the girls managed to decide on something–the outdoors. They were all looking for some way to celebrate the end of their four years together. They didn’t just want a party, they wanted something bigger–a vacation!
“Sage wants to go camping, what do you say?”
Daisy made a face, “I guess I could. But we’re bringing bug spray… lots of it.”
So, camping they went. The great outdoors, the forested unknown–okay, so it wasn’t so much unknown, especially considering they’d started logging already, but that’s what the brochure said! Sage and Jennifer immediately tried out their skills with an axe while Daisy stood by the sidelines.
“I’m going to nail this,” Sage said confidently, holding her axe in a perfect stance.
“That’s kind of scary,” Jennifer said, lifting her own axe up. She looked at Daisy, “are you sure you don’t want to try?”
“No, that’s all right. Throwing sharp, pointy things isn’t exactly my cup of tea.”
Daisy and Jennifer found the sauna while Sage went out to look for what she called “some hot locals”. The two were comfortably quiet for awhile until finally, Daisy spoke.
“Have you thought about what you’re doing after you graduate?” She paused, thoughtful for a minute. “I don’t have a clue. It’s almost as if the closer we get, the blanker my mind gets. I had all these grand ideas and now? Nothing. It seems hollow somehow.”
“To be honest, I haven’t thought about it at all,” Jennifer replied leaning forward. “Kit kind of scrambled everything up. Now, instead of going home, I’m on my own. I mean, I’m sure if I needed to go home, my family would welcome me… but I don’t want to. I guess I’ll just get an apartment in Aperture, find a job, figure everything out as it comes.”
“Yeah, I thought I wanted to go with Sage, back home… but now? I’m not so sure. I don’t know if there’s a place for me there.”
“That’s silly, Daisy. You know Sage will always have room for you.”
Daisy laughed, “sure, until she actually finds this illusive hot guy she’s searching for.
“I can’t believe you convinced me to do this,” Jennifer mumbled, swatting at a wayward mosquito. “Sleeping under the stars is for woodland creatures and crazy people.”
“Aw, c’mon! It’ll be fun,” Sage said excitedly. “I’ve never slept in a tent before.”
Daisy frowned, “see? This is why I didn’t want to come camping. Now I’m going to get sick.”
“You won’t get sick if you bundle up. Just make sure you have a nice, warm blanket.”
“She wouldn’t get sick if we could just stay in a hotel,” Jennifer added, making a face. “My back is going to kill me after this dirt nap.”
“You guys are no fun! This is camping, the great outdoors, the–”
“Yeah, yeah, we read it in the brochure!” Daisy and Jennifer interrupted together, waving her off with a dismissive hand.
After the disastrous night in the tent, the three spent the rest of their vacation beneath the safety of a hotel roof. They spent the entire day lounging in its simple luxuries, too sore and tired from their night beneath the stars–a night when it hailed, of all things–to bother going to see the sights. The next day, rejuvenated and livened, they went to the logging yard and tried their luck with some old school log rolling.
Neither Jennifer or Daisy had wanted to play Sage, given her skills with all things athletic, so it was left to them to battle it out. Sage worried from the sidelines while Jennifer playfully taunted her opponent. Surprisingly, Daisy won each time.
Before they knew it, the vacation was on its last evening and they were all thoroughly exhausted. Between hiking, checking out the local sights, and Sage’s need to find someone attractive and single, the girls were run ragged. Unfortunately for Sage, there had been no men that struck her fancy.
“I’m beginning to think there aren’t any decent guys anywhere.”
“I think you need to focus on hitting the books, anyway. You need to graduate!” Daisy lectured.
Sage sulked, “the only reason I even came to college was to find some hot guy! Now I’m still single and we’re going back home. This sucks.” She looked at Jennifer, “you’ve got it easy. There’s plenty of great girls around.”
Jennifer tried not to choke on her water, “yeah, lucky me.”
Sage was the first one back to the hotel. She wasted no time going to her room and crashing out. Tomorrow was going to be a long day of traveling and prepping for those final exams. Jennifer walked with Daisy to her room, which was just before Jennifer’s. She stopped Daisy at her door.
“I need to talk to you.”
“What’s wrong?” Daisy asked, genuinely curious. “You’re not mad at Sage, are you? She didn’t mean–”
“No, I’m not mad at Sage. There’s something I kind of need to tell you…”
Daisy was shocked, to say the least. After that, she was embarrassed. Not because Jennifer was a girl, but because no one had really told Daisy anything like that before. She felt suddenly shy and awkward. What was she supposed to say? She’d never dated or anything, but had always assumed that… well, she liked boys.
“You don’t have to say anything,” Jennifer said. “I just wanted you to know. Don’t feel like you have to do anything about it. We’re friends first.”
“I’m just… I don’t know, I guess, I just always thought…”
“It’s okay. I’ll see you in the morning.”
Things were understandably awkward when they got back. Sage could sense it, but thought it best not to ask at this particular moment. They put all their remaining energy into cramming for exams. It wasn’t until they were over and graduation approached that they had a moment to relax. Daisy laid outside, staring up at the stars. Jennifer joined her.
“I probably shouldn’t have said anything, I’ve made us awkward.”
“No, it isn’t that,” Daisy replied, still staring up at the sky. “It’s just… I don’t know what I am or what I… like. I never dated or did anything that would give me an indication. I just always assumed. Now I’m just confused.”
“Don’t be,” Daisy said, crawling to her feet. She brushed herself off.
“I just need to figure it out and… I don’t want to mess up our friendship if it’s, well, not that,” Daisy continued with a sigh.
“It’s not an instantaneous thing. It won’t come jumping out of the dark at you. Whatever you feel or whatever it is that’s inside you is there and has always been there. You can’t change it.”
“I know, but I’ve never even tried to figure it out. I guess now’s the time.”
Jennifer laughed, “seriously delayed, too. Oh well. Come on, let’s go inside, it’s getting cold.”
Note from Mao: Jennifer and Daisy have three bolts without my interference. Unfortunately, while Jennifer spins up wants for Daisy, Daisy has yet to spin up any romantic wants for Jennifer. That doesn’t keep her from heart-farting all over the place or flirting, though. Sigh. She needs to make up her mind!
And with that, round twenty-six is over… woohoo!