Mean Girls


koshka_icon.gif mynama_icon.gif nora_icon.gif

Scene Title Mean Girls
Synopsis Not everyone is happy when it comes to chores.
Date January 23, 2011

Bannerman's Castle The Dining Hall

The dining hall of Bannerman Castle is used for many things. Mealtime, playtime, discussion, meetings. But today, as the sun makes it's slow ascent closer and closer to the noon mark, it's used chiefly for one thing:


Mynama stands next to a table, billowing out a sheet across the wide expanse of wood so that she can fold it neatly. There's already a stack of similar linens that are done, but from the looks of the basket at the teenager's feet, she's gone the better part of the work ahead of her.

Her hair is covered with a scarf that's tied at the nape of her neck, but a few coarse curls peak out over her forehead. She holds her lips firmly as she jerks the sheet into submission before dropping it with the others on the bench.
Elsewhere in the multipurpose room, toddlers play with what few toys they have, adding a domestic din to the space that makes Mynama's brows furrow.

Speaking of domestic duties, another of the castle's teenagers hasn't managed to escape from chores. Koshka shuffles out of the kitchens with a large bowl full of carrots, the orange roots heaped to near spilling from their container. As usual, the younger girl is kept in a hoodie, a knit cap helping to keep the heat in though she's neglected her jacket for further warmth.

With a glance toward the toddlers and their games, how wonderful it would be to be able to join in the simple playtimes again, Koshka heads for an empty place at the table. She drops her bowl just down from Mynama and her sheet-folding, several carrots spilling onto the table. She follows with a sigh, seating herself on the bench, a peeler produced from a pocket. "I'm going to be an expert at peeling one day."

Nora is not doing domestic duties today, but coming in for a cup of tea. She's been outside, that much is clear from the rosy complexion of nose and cheeks. Stepping carefully with hands out just slightly — no mummy walking — Nora tips her head, brows knit in what seems to be concentration. When she comes upon a Lighthouse kid standing in the middle of the room and not watching for her, she moves to the side, brushing a table lightly with fingertips, knee grazing its bench, before returning to the center of the aisle.

Her steps slow and come to a stop right in front of the table home to the mugs and hot water. She carefully begins to set about finding a tea packet — flavors, unfortunately, she can't tell, so she just takes whatever comes to her fingertips first, before carefully pouring hot water into the mug, one finger inside the cup to be sure she doesn't over flow. She winces just slightly as the heat burns the finger.

Mynama gives a commiserating sort of nod and smile to Koshka when the girl joins her at the tables with her carrots, but she pauses as she reaches for another sheet to fold, watching Nora curiously. "Hey," she whispers to Koshka with a hiss, "isn't that that blind girl?" While it isn't too hard to keep track of who's who on Polellpel Island, Mynama's interactions with the injured teen have been few. She could probably count them on Nora's burned finger.

"That sucks," Mynama says with a shake of her head as she grabs the next sheet, shaking it free from it's fellows. Even if Mynama hasn't had much direct contact with Nora, that doesn't mean that gossip hasn't made her aware of at least some of the girl's story. "Blind on top of homeless and stuck in the middle of nowhere. Jesus."

A random carrot is picked up, though Koshka looks over her shoulder and to Nora at the older girl's direction. "Yeah, she seems nice though," she counters with a small shrug. Turning back to her own task, the peeler is weilded against the carrot, long strings of orangey inedibleness draping onto the table. "Just don't call her 'some lady'. Or ask her to peel potatoes."

There's a slight sigh. She can't make out every word, but she can make out some of it, catching the word blind. Nora turns around, stirring sugar into her tea before raising it and taking a sip. "Blind, not deaf," she says loudly enough for a couple of the children scattered here and there to look up at her and then at one another, wondering what it is that Nora's on about.

"And yeah, it sucks, but I don't need your pity," she says coolly, cheeks flushing a little knowing that she is the center of attention for at least two sets of eyes she can't see back.

"Potatoes?" Mynama asks, but her line of questioning is cut off when Nora reveals that she does, in fact, have a working set of ears. If Mynama blushes, it isn't as though it shows on her dark face. But she does appear somewhat sheepish, if only for a moment. "It isn't pity," she's quick to defend. "Just…well, I'm glad I'm not you." The opposite of Schadenfraude, maybe.

Mynama shakes the sheet over the table so that it catches the air and floats gently to the table, then leans over to smooth it out before folding it somewhat carefully. "But you being blind doesn't mean you get to skip out and have a tea party when everyone else has to work." That's far from fair, and Mynama's a proponent of equal rights in every sense of the word. "So what happened? You leave Osh-Kosh over here to peel a whole pile by herself so you could go be blind someplace?"

The peeler slows, then stops all together, as Koshka listens unobtrusively to the exchange between Nora and Mynama. If it can be called an exchange. Blue eyes lift from the pile of rooty foods, darting first to Nora and then back to the other girl. It looks as though the youngest of the three teenagers might like to interject something, the muscles about her jaw working, though no words are actually formed. Instead, the chore remains temporarily forgotten, Koshka's hands paused though eyes move between the two older girls.

The words from Mynama earn a snort from the blind girl, and she shakes her head. "Spare me from the ignorant fools of the world," she says with a lift of her eyes toward the ceiling.

"I've done plenty of chores, blind or not. Including going on a boat and chopping river ice to go retrieve some new island resident, and being attacked by fucking birds," she says, cheeks flushing. "And I volunteered to go on vaccine raids, because, yes, even though I'm blind, I do plan on helping out wherever and whenever I can."

Her sightless eyes narrow, and she begins to move toward the door again, tea cup carefully held so as not to spill. "Sorry if all that isn't as useful as peeling potatoes and folding laundry," Nora adds, chin held high, the tone a little artificially lofty.

"Oh, totally," Mynama counters with a roll of her eyes as she drops the next sheet on the "done" pile. "Because that's really the best use of resources. Send a chick who can't see to go do the really important stuff. I'm not buyin' it, sweetie." With a short huff of breath, Mynama snags a new sheet from the pile, her fingers more like ragged claws for that moment. She looks over at Koshka, one corner of her mouth twisted into a disbelieving smirk as she shakes her head in a 'can you believe this shit' sort of gesture.

Koshka doesn't miss the smirk from Mynama, and she glances toward Nora regardless of the woman's seeing abilities. Another moment of silence is what intially responds to the whole exchange, the girl still trying to find something to say. Anything really. Just as her work begins to slowly resume over the carrot peeling, she stops again and looks at Nora. "Wait. Are they needing people to help with that vaccine thing?"

Nora's eyes narrow and she turns to tip her head in Mynama's direction. "You don't know what you're talking about," she says through clenched teeth. "And don't fucking call me 'sweetie' if you wanna keep your no-doubt pretty face all in the right configuration, got it?"

"Oh, man, Nora's gonna fight," crows one Lance, tugging Paul over to watch. Nora shakes her head. closing her eyes as if weary.

Her head tips toward Koshka. "I don't know. It's not like, a thing that's planned yet, I don't think. Tell Eileen if you're interested." Surprisingly, perhaps, she doesn't tell Koshka that she's too young — but then again, all she has to go by is the younger girl's voice.

Her chin moves back in Mynama's direction. "You? Don't talk shit about what you don't know shit about, all right?"

Suprised by the pseudo-abandonment by Koshka, Mynama's eyes narrow even further as she snaps her head first to the younger girl, then to the older one. But she just shakes her head, mumbling to herself in something not-English as she continues her work, undoubtedly making conjectures about the various reasons why Nora would either actually go one such a mission or else why she would lie about it.

Koshka directs a Look at Lance and Paul, bidding the boys to abstain from antagonizing anything further, though her own thoughts are touching on like subjects. Nora does seem like she could come off as a scrapper, maybe she should prompt her about practicing as well. No, right. We're not fighting. Breaking the carrot stick in half, she offers a piece to the two boys, though her attention is focused mainly on the two older girls.

"Language," Koshka ventures to remind everyone, her voice a little hesitant. Then she pushes on with further attempts to change the subject. "So, what kind of soup do you think they'll be making tonight? With all the carrots and potatoes, probably another veggie something or other that they flower up with a name to make people eat it."

"Save the lecture," Nora tosses to Koshka when she's reprimanded for swearing. "Paul and Lance use worse words than I do. You also might want to count your panties. I am pretty sure I heard the two of them talking about a very successful panty raid, and the names Koshka and Mynama came up."

Apparently Nora knows their voices, whether they know her well or not. And at her words, Lance's eyes widen, and Paul suddenly disappears through the floor, once again abandoning his friend to the wrath of the targets of his pranks.

Mynama isn't one to waste time on smaller children, even if they are treacherous boys. But close quarters have her on edge, and she sighs something near a growl as she moves her gaze to watch the accused, daring them with the question of truth for the span of a few breaths. She saves her further scathing remarks for later. Or an unsuspecting tree up to the sort of eveil that will get a knife thrown at it.

"Watery bullshit," Mynama offers to Koshka, not minding her language at all. "Hey, Nora. The next time you're out, mind picking up something worth eating? That'd be swell."

A hurt look is directed at Nora, not that it can be seen, and while Koshka might be tempted to retort, she keeps from speaking up again. Her eyes dart to the younger kids again before she turns to focus on the carrots. Scrape, scrape, scrape. Her hand works over the root to take off the skins. Seems like one of those times where it's best now to just stay out.

The tea cup is set down with a clatter and a bit of a splash on the table nearby, and Nora strides back to the table the two girls sit at. "I don't now what your problem is, Mynama, but I think we can probably do better than implying things about one another, all right? Now, I know you don't know what you're talking about, when it comes to me, but I don't now what it is you think you do know. If you'd be willing to share? I'm all fucking ears."

She jerks a chin in Koshka's direction, though it's a bit off since the girl's been quiet, which means that Nora's lost her bearing a bit. "If I offended you by leaving you with a pile of potatoes in the bast when I cut myself, I apologize profusely. Next time I'll be sure to bleed all over everyone's dinner."

"I don't buy into the whole 'special treatment' shit is all," Mynama says with a thin air of nonchalance, behind which her teeth grit and her jaw tightens, despite the shrug of her shoulders and her continued attention on the task at hand. "Maybe I am ignorant, but I've got a real hard time seeing how someone as damaged as you gets to prance around while everyone else works and then run off-island to do whatever the fuck it is you do while we all try not to freeze to death. Sorry, Nora, but I guess I'm just too stupid to wrap my head around that."

With a heavy sigh, Mynama places the next sheet on the pile with a bit more force, before she looks to Koshka, offering the girl a slightly apologetic look.

"I wasn't offended," Koshka says to the carrots, quietly and with an air that she had but hadn't been listening. "You could've lost your finger or something, caught the rot that attacks the potatoes." Which would've been worse than bloody potatoes, the potatoes could be rinsed anyway. "I wasn't even upset about the potatoes."

"Okay," Nora murmurs, the soft tone for Koshka, apologetic. "I didn't think you were. And I'm sorry Lance and Paul are perverts." Lance has disappeared, since the attention is no longer on him and he could sneak off without being heard, presumably to find Paul and beat the sneaky phaser up for abandoning him.


But Mynama doesn't get any apologies. "Special treatment? Fuck you, Mynama. You don't know me if you think I want special treatment. You don't know shit. And I'd show you just how damaged I'm not except it wouldn't be a fair fight, and you'd only turn it around to make me look like the bad guy for breaking your fucking face."

Nora's words are vitriolic, but something glitters in her eyes before she spins around to once more make her retreat.

Mynama bristles at Nora's attack, but there's a bittersweet sense of pride when the older girl is the one who backs down by moving away. "Getting beat up by a blind girl isn't high on my to-do list," she grumbles with a wry smirk, bending to pick up the stack of sheets and hug them to her chest. It's large enough now to be transferred to a closet somewhere, for people to retrieve for bedding. And while not exactly a retreat, it's a good enough reason to get out of the dining hall and breathe.

But as she passes Koshka, Mynama pauses. "When I finish, I'll grab a peeler from the kitchen and help you get through the rest of them," she promises, her tone significantly softer and laced with supplication.

"I'll come up with a way to get Lance and Paul back," Koshka says quietly. "You shouldn't apologize for the little pervs." Once again her eyes flick toward the oldest of the three then back again to the carrots. "You can help with that, if you want."

When Mynama approaches, Koshka turns a little wary. Her eyes lift to the girl, hands slow over the tending of veggies, but then she nods to the offer. "And you can help get Paul and Lance back, too." Maybe if she can get Mynama and Nora working together, some of the tension will be alleviated.

But Nora isn't listening, or doesn't give an indication of hearing. She hurries away, shoulders hitching just slightly as she rounds the corner of the door to the hallway that will lead away from the dining hall, away from scathing remarks.

Her best friends are all adults. She acts like an adult. But sometimes…

Sometimes, even the strongest of girls is just a girl.

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