A new friendly face and an unpleasant old surprise.
Chapter 2; Old Enemies
“You’re gonna freak when you see who else is here, by the way,” said Jenna as the group climbed the hill that hid the rest of the island. A smile flashed briefly across Gerard’s face as he adjusted his bag (found a few meters along the beach with the other guy’s stuff) over his shoulder.
“Oh? Who else do we know?”
“No, I mean you are actually gonna freak, Gee. Not so much you guys,” Jenna nodded towards Mikey, Frank and Ray, “but I don’t think Gerard’s going to like it.”
“Why? Who’s here?” asked Frank. Jenna just smiled.
“You’ll see her soon enough. I don’t want to spoil the surprise,” she said, smirking.
The group of five continued through a small woods at the top of the hill until they emerged onto a paved road. A rather small village rested thirty feet below, quaint brick houses and log cabins stretching into the valley for barely a mile long. The road dipped down the side of the hill and split into three in the centre of the village; one that continued into steps up a much steeper hill, one that branched left for half a mile and finally reached a bridge that crossed the river into the forest on the other river bank, and one traveling right that spiraled even deeper into the valley where the houses were larger and the meadows greener.
“Wow,” said Mikey, raising his eyebrows. Jenna grinned.
“I love standing up here. I feel so important because you can see for so far. It’s actually father than it looks. I live up that hill over there,” she said, pointing towards the hill that the steps lead up to. “My parents had a farm, as you guys know, and so when I finished school I moved here to start my own.”
“That’s pretty cool. How far is it, exactly?”
“A mile to my house. Whole island’s about a few miles long.”
“Miles?! How the heck do you get around, I can’t see you guys having any cars,” complained Ray.
“Bikes and horses. Boat down the river. And walking.”
“I feel like I’ve just stepped back in time,” said Mikey, starting to make his way down the path towards the village.
“That is what this place feels like, it’s actually really cool. You know, there’s rumours of a witch actually living in the forest?”
“That’s pretty neat.”
“I’d love to meet her,” said Gerard.
“Because if witches exist, so do vampires, and then Gerard can finally be with his own kind,” said Frank, grinning. Gerard shoved him and he stumbled down the path. He then turned around and glared at Gerard before he and Mikey began to chase Gerard run-run-leap down the hill.
“So who are we going to see?” asked Ray as Jenna laughed at the three mad boys leaping = down the hill.
“Whoever we run into. You’d think those guys would be less mental, seeing how I’ve just found you washed up on the beach and all.”
“Yeah, they haven’t changed much.”
“I can tell,” laughed Jenna, and she smiled up at Ray. “I’ve missed you guys.”
“Hey, come here. We’ve missed you too,” said Ray, pulling Jenna into a hug.
“Hey, Gee! Watch it!” Mikey’s shout echoed up the hill and Jenna and Ray looked down just in time to see Gerard tripping over someone’s feet and falling flat on his face. He’d fallen in front of a girl curled up on a bench under a tree, and it was presumably her feet that he’d fallen over. Gerard got up, concern etched on his features as he went over to the shocked looking girl. She had choppy dark brown hair that fell just past her shoulders, she carried a small satchel with a number of notepads and coloured sharpies sticking out of it, and she held a copy of ‘Harry Potter And The Goblet of Fire’.
“Sorry, are you okay?” The girl shrugged and nodded, letting her choppy fringe fall over her eyes. Her pale face was slightly flushed.
“Guys, be careful! You okay, girl?” said Jenna. The girl smiled at her, pulled a notepad from her satchel and began to write. Ray raised his eyebrow questioningly at Jenna, who shook her head and mouthed ‘she doesn’t speak’.
Who’re are the new guys? asked the girl.
“This is Mikey, Frank, that nutter who tripped over you is Gerard, and this is Ray,” introduced Jenna. “Guys, Anna McLeod. Anna, I went to high school with these guys, and they have the mentality of toddlers so just be careful.”
“Hey, we’re not that bad!” complained Frank. Ray shook his head.
“No, really, they are mad,” he said. Anna smiled shyly and turned to a new page on her pad.
It’s okay. It’s doesn’t matter if you guys are slightly puerile, everyone on this island seems to be so, she wrote.
“Slightly whatile?” asked Frank.
“Puerile. It means immature,” said Ray. The other three guys turned to stare at him.
“How the hell do you know that, Princess Fro-Fro?” asked Mikey. Anna giggled silently.
“Yeah, due to that huge bush he has on his head. It’s where he keeps all his extra trivial knowledge, like an extra filing cabinet,” said Jenna.
“He’s been known to smuggle immigrants into the country using it,” said Gerard. Anna had a confused smile on her face, as if she didn’t know whether or not to laugh at that comment. Instead she drew her legs up from the ground and sat back into the shadows, swinging her hair back over her face.
“I’m gonna show these guys around the rest of the place. See you around, Anna,” said Jenna, smiling. Anna waved shyly at the guys and opened her book up again.
“She’s pretty cute. Why doesn’t she speak?” asked Ray as they continued to walk down the hill.
“I’m not quite sure, but she's been mute since she moved to this island. She had got vocal chords, she laughs sometimes, but she just doesn't speak.”
“I see,” said Ray, noticing that his other 3 friends were all staring at him. “What?”
“You just called her cute,” said Mikey.
“Ray Toro, the man who knows nothing about women, called a girl ‘cute’?” Frank put his hand over his mouth in mock shock.
“I have just been through a massive emotional trauma, I am allowed to be unnatural for a while!” said Ray, flushing crimson.
“And how many girlfriends have you had, Frank?” countered Jenna. He also went red.
“Um... since you left? Well...”
“None. Just like the rest of us,” said Gerard. Jenna laughed.
“I feel like I’m back in high school, you guys are still all exactly the same. Still swap comic books?”
“Still always on your xbox?”
“Still play Pokemon together?”
“Now come on, who doesn’t do that?” Jenna laughed at Mikey’s indignant expression; he loved Pokemon.
“So yeah, pretty much nothing has changed with us guys,” said Ray. By this time they had reached the base of the hill and were nearing the centre of the village. Gerard turned round and started walking back wards to look up at the hill they had just descended.
“Gerard, look out-” Gerard heard Mikey’s warning just a second too late as he collided with someone else.
“Oh shit, I’m so... Dana?” Gerard scrambled to his feet and stared down at the girl he had just knocked over. Jenna cringed and stared at her feet.
“When I said you wouldn’t like who else was here, I meant it,” she said.
“Still haven’t grown out of being a cunt then, have you Gerard?” said the girl, glaring. Gerard’s face rearranged into an ugly sneer.
“Dana Farelly.” The girl got to her feet and drew herself to her full height, nearly taller than Gerard himself. Her black hair had grown out from when Gerard had last seen the girl, nearly reaching her waist. In addition to her lip ring, she also had her septum pierced.
“Nice to see you still have no spacial awareness. Perhaps if you removed that stupid black mess you call hair you could actually see where you’re going.”
“It’s lovely to see you too, Dana. The septum’s new, I didn’t realise you were aspiring to become a door knocker,” said Gerard. Dana’s emerald green eyes flashed.
“Hey, guys, guys, you don’t need to bite each other’s heads off right away,” said Mikey, hastening to separate the glaring boy and girl before they did any actual damage. Dana stepped back and flashed an approximation of a smile at Mikey.
“If you say so. How are you guys?” she asked, nodding towards him, Ray and Frank.
“Okay, I guess.”
“Nearly drowning in the middle of a storm, waking up to find Gerard’s old school enemy, yeah, we’re pretty good,” said Mikey. Again, Dana almost smiled. She’d always been more tolerant of Mikey than the other boys.
“Well, I’m going to take these guys to the inn, I just...” Jenna winced slightly as Dana turned her gaze towards her. “See you.”
“Goodbye, Dana,” said Gerard, staring at the raven-haired girl.
“Shall be seeing you soon, Gerard,” she replied acidly, sweeping past them and stepping hard on Gerard’s foot as she did so.
“Lovely girl. So nice to see her again,” said Ray lightly. Gerard was still glowering.
“She still scares me. Most of the island thinks she’s a bitch. Poor Anna’s terrified of her, and she’s always mocking Abbie.”
“Oh, she lives on the beach, you’ll see her later. You realize it’s getting dark? It’s seriously late, you need somewhere to stay.”
“This is really... odd and nice and everything, Jenna, but we lost all our money on the ship, we can’t exactly stay in an inn...” said Ray.
“It’s cool, I’m friendly with the innkeeper, I’m sure he’ll let you off for a night. Unless you were intending to stay here for longer?” she asked.
“Well, I don’t know...” said Frank.
“We could stay a while?” suggested Mikey. “The whole idea of going away on a trip was to see the world, find somewhere else to live. This place is cool.”
“Yeah, the people seem pretty neat,” said Ray, his mind disappearing to the shy, brown-haired girl who was sitting on her bench under the tree on the hill.
“They do, don’t they,” said Gerard bitterly.
“Dana is only one of two bad people here, the rest are lovely, Gee,” said Jenna.
“Oh great, there’s two of her?!”
“Gerard, calm down!” said Frank. “I can’t exactly see why she hates you and not the rest of us. Why don’t you give her another chance?”
“Hmm,” grunted Gerard, folding his arms. Jenna rolled her eyes.
“Look, I’ll bluff it for you guys to stay at the inn for free tonight, but by tomorrow you better have made up your minds. There’s empty houses here that aren’t even owned by anyone, and there are always jobs that need doing, so you can settle down here if you like,” she said. Gerard’s face softened a little.
The four boys had split into two rooms, each with two large single beds, a wardrobe, a television, a two-seater sofa and a connecting bathroom. A fire crackled merrily in an old brick fireplace next to a pile of logs, skewers and, oddly enough, a large packet of marshmallows. Gerard grinned as he dumped what he had left of his luggage onto the foot of his bed. Having spent the last day soaked from head to foot and covered in sand, it was nice to finally regain some humanity.
“Feels like we’ve stepped back in time, doesn’t it?” asked Frank, stepping out of the bathroom with pyjamas pants on, a clean set conveniently found in ‘his half’ of the wardrobe. “They’ve even got candle holders and lanterns.” Gerard nodded and rummaged in the drawers beneath his bed, pulling out a pair of freshly pressed boxers and a shirt with a triumphant ‘aha!’
“It does. But I’m not complaining,” he said as he moved towards the bathroom.
As he stepped out he saw that Frank was already curled up under the duvet and the fire had dimmed to a pretty red glow. Gerard fell asleep as soon as his head hit the pillow.
There you go guys, Chapter 2. Whaddya think of the new characters? The rest of you will be introduced by the next chapter. Please Rate and Review, I hope you liked it. The more people like it, the sooner I may update :D And as I said, keep your eyes peeled for my next set of auditions.