Chapter 16

Hearing the puff of snoring from across the room, Elphaba awoke with a smile on her face.

'That's becoming a regular thing lately. I think I could get use to this,' she thought to herself as she started to get up from bed.

Heading to her wardrobe she thought about the night before. She thought about how upset Galinda had been when she thought Elphaba had chosen Fiyero over her. She wasn't use to anyone expressing feelings that strongly about her, let alone because it would be that she chose to be with someone else. In her experience it was a relief when people didn't have to deal with her.

She began to wonder about the two other mysteries going on in her life. First, who was the creep sending her messages? Second, what was Galinda's surprise? She could hardly believe Galinda wasn't trying to get her to guess what it was more.

After making a quick survey of her bag for classes she decided she had everything she needed. Elphaba turned towards Galinda's desk hoping to see the mystery book out where she could take a closer look. She wouldn't snoop of course because snooping was wrong, a personal invasion, but maybe if it was close to the edge of the desk and happened to fall open onto the floor she would have to be a good roommate and girlfriend and pick it up. She had no such luck though as it had been moved at some point in the night.

She turned back towards her desk when she noticed the soft snores had stopped and the sounds of stirring and stretching replaced them.

"Good morning, my sweet. Have good dreams?" Elphaba asked of the blonde whose eyes were still shut but arms reaching over her head as the sheets shifted showing her white silk gown again. Memories of the previous night flashed in her mind as her hands could almost feel that silk dance under her fingers again.

"Good morning, Elphie! I had the best dreams. They starred a tall, dark and mysterious green girl who swept me off my feet. Literally, Elphie, we were riding through the clouds in the night sky. You had this gorgeous gown on that fit you just perfectly and I was holding you tight as we flew. "

Galinda swung her feet out from her bed and threw on her robe tying it up. She went over to Elphaba's desk where there was a pencil and a stack of papers. Galinda flipped one over and started to move the pencil over it.

Elphaba quirked an eyebrow at the girl's actions but moved over behind her silently. When she got close enough to see over the girl's shoulder she saw the outline of a dress starting to make its way across the page.

"Glin, what are you doing to the back of my research paper? It didn't really need illustrations and while actually very good, the dress doesn't really fit in with the rest of the project," Elphaba said with a slight smile watching the girl sketch so intently.

"Oh, Elphie, it's the gown you had on. It really was so perfect on you. Not a daily gown mind you but a dressy gown. Not a ball gown but still it was so grown up and so you. All these wonderful colors blended so seamlessly. Reds and purples, a little blue maybe and I think some silver or pearl accents. I want to try and get as much of it down as I can while I still remember it. And a cape, Elphie, you had a cape!" Galinda remarked getting more frantic in her movements on the paper.

"A cape? Really? Why would I need a cape? " Elphie asked, still amused with this morning's Galinda.

"I don't know, maybe you would get cold otherwise? We were up in the air and flying, Elphie. I suppose you would need some sort of protection from the elements, right?" Galinda commented not taking her focus away from the sheet.

"You know, that actually makes sense. Once you get passed that whole I can't fly thing," Elphaba said slightly jokingly.

"Hush, you mean thing. On the ground or in the air you will look beautiful in it. We could get it made sometime. My mommsie knows a wonderful tailor and with your tall figure he would love to get his hands on you."

At that Elphaba slowly backed away from the other girl. "As nice as that sounds, maybe we could work with people who keep their hands to themselves?"

"Oh, for Oz sake, Elphie, don't be silly. He wouldn't have any more interest in you than he would a mannequin. There, all finished. Clearly he would have to add his own flair. Some lace, maybe a little ribbon here and there," Galinda commented making a few notes on the page. "What do you think?"

She gave the page to Elphaba who examined the sketch and the notes on the side detailing some color schemes and suggested accents. "This is actually really good, Glin. Forgive me but I didn't know you could draw like this. It's very realistic. If you had used color pencils as well I could practically wear the page."

Galinda blushed a bit and stepped up to wrap her arms around Elphaba who was still looking at the paper in awe. "Thank you, Elphie. Sorry for ruining your research notes. And good morning again," Galinda said stretching on her toes to kiss Elphaba's cheek.

Elphaba brought the paper down, wrapped her arms around Galinda's waist and kissed the blonde head by her shoulder. "I think this was a much better use of the paper than my notes, honestly. Where did you learn to draw like this?"

"I've always been a doodler. I use to get so mad when my teachers would take my pencils away so I would listen to them more. I got to take a couple lessons before coming here that helped me with detailing my drawings. You know, add shading to the mole I put on the other mean teacher's face," Galinda laughed as she squeezed Elphaba before letting her go to start getting ready for classes.

"I am impressed. I can't believe I've never seen you do anything like this before. Do you draw often? Or other things than your mean teachers from days of old?"

Galinda laughed and pulled a uniform out of her wardrobe. "Well, it's funny you should mention that. I had kind of wanted to wait but now seems as perfect a time as any. Lift up the top left corner of my mattress," Galinda said as she made her way into the bathroom.

"Glin, I'm not an expert in these matters but I've heard rumors of the type of things people stuff under their mattresses. I'm not certain this is really the perfect time you ment…"

"Ha ha, very funny," Galinda said finishing buttoning her blouse on her way out of the bathroom. "You know, you have these moments where I swear you have spent more time with Averic and Fiyero than you would admit."

Elphaba chuckled as she watched Galinda tuck in her blouse and straighten her skirt. She then saw the blonde make her way over to her bed, reaching under the mattress as she had instructed Elphaba to do. She pulled out the mystery book from the hiding spot. She brought it over to the other side of the room as Galinda motioned for Elphaba to sit on her bed, handing her the book.

Elphaba toyed with the cover a bit before opening it to reveal a world of buildings, people, landscapes and other objects.

"Tada," Galinda said in a small voice as Elphaba flipped through the black, white and shades of gray world her girlfriend had presented her with. "It's not much but something I've never shared with anyone else. I figured you might appreciate it since my newer projects have been some of those buildings I read about. Well, not the whole buildings but parts I found interesting about them."

Elphaba was amazed to say the least. She had never really been one to focus on the world of art. She could appreciate what she saw on museum walls on outings with Nessarose and Nanny but this was a completely different situation. Before she saw flat pictures made for analyzing and critiquing as Nanny would and Nessa followed suit. Here was the world as Galinda saw it. Be it a world without much color but it didn't lack in vibrancy and detail. And the artist wasn't some recluse or travelling vagabond she would never meet, it was a sweet, almost timid girl right now who was glancing back and forth between Elphaba's face and the pictures she was looking at.

"These are breathtaking, Galinda, truly breathtaking. I think I like your drawings of some of these people more than I like the actual people," Elphaba said as she flipped through different portrait sketches.

Galinda grew a smile and chuckled a bit. "Thank you, Elphie. Coming from you though, I don't know if that is really a challenge to do seeing as you didn't care for some of these people until recently and some you could probably still do without. But this was your surprise. A little bit of me just for you."

If Elphaba was speechless before she was dumbfounded now. Not only had Galinda's words struck a chord in her, she had reached a particular drawing of a girl sitting in a lounge chair reading a book in front of a fireplace. The girl was familiar as Elphaba had seen her every day in the mirror. Elphaba cleared the sudden block she had in her throat and holding in the tears she felt pooling up. "Take for example this girl," Elphaba said motioning the page to Galinda. "You show her way prettier than she actually is. You missed the scowl and the furrowed eyebrows right here. And I think one of those moles you talked about earlier could go right here."

Elphaba had successfully lightened the mood in the room as Galinda out right laughed at this as she reached out to slap Elphaba's leg, rolling her eyes. "You don't get make to comments like that about that girl, Elphie. I happen to think she is beautiful and I'll have you know she is taking me out on a marvelous date this Friday. I am prepared to be swept off my feet. Maybe just figuratively this time."

Elphaba looked back down at the drawing of her again. "That's a lot of pressure, I kind of feel sorry for this girl now."

Galinda rose from the bed motioning for book which Elphaba closed and handed back to her. Taking the book and putting it on her desk she returned to the green girl taking her hands into hers. "You don't have to worry about anything, Elphie. The fact that it will be you and me makes it just right already. No pressure, okay?"

Elphaba stood, looking down into the bright blue eyes. She hadn't really felt pressured until she really thought about what she was doing. She, Elphaba Throbb, resident book worm, sarcastic queen of snide, girl of no importance what so ever was taking Galinda Upland of the Upper Uplands, resident popularity queen, beauty both inside and out on a date.

Galinda saw the fear streak across Elphaba's eyes. She squeezed Elphaba's hands. "Stop. Whatever you're thinking about, stop. " She smiled up at her future date. "Really, Elphie, we don't have to do anything outrageous or extravagant. I just want to spend time with you, alone, off campus. I want that funny, quick witted, intelligent beyond all imagination, confident in herself girl to spend time with. And if some hand holding, quick kisses and maybe a dance are involved I won't say no to that either."

"You know, I think you're the one who knows just what to say sometimes," Elphaba says as she lets out a deep breath she found she had been holding. "Thank you. Thank you for everything this morning. I still can't believe those drawings, Glin. I want to see more if I may."

"You have my permission to peruse at your leisure. No more hiding under the bed. While I'm not up to sharing with others quite yet, I am willing to share with you. I trust you and would love to hear what you think on some of them," Galinda said.

"I would be honored," Elphaba said, giving Galinda a quick hug. "And thank you for the future dress I suppose."

"And cape, Elphie. Don't forget the cape," Galinda said hugging her back and turning to grab her bag, gathering her books.

Elphaba turned to grab her bag as well. "Ah yes, the cape. No, no, I wouldn't forget that. Mustn't get cold during flight."

"Of course not, it ruins the whole experience," Galinda said going along with the teasing knowing there was no real bite to it. "Will I see you tonight after classes? You should have lunch with Jocalyn since you two will share the same lunch after your lab."

"I suppose so. I mean about the lunch. We will have to see how the day goes. She may be sick of me by then or vice versa. But dinner we can do. Assuming you aren't sick of me either."

Galinda shook her head and rolled her eyes as they made their way to the door to start their day outside the four walls of their room. As they headed out and Galinda locked the door behind them she said, "You are incorrigible, Elphie. Speaking of which, just what did you think I would have under my mattress?"

The other girls in the hallway looked on in amazement as they had never seen their green classmate smile let alone laugh as hard as they just heard through the hall.