Nights Worth Camping
Chapter One: Getting There Is Half The Fun
A/n: Alright, this is going to be a big one, guys. My beta Tina (Sparkling Mist), who also holds the title of best-friend-in-the-world, and I have been working on this since last summer. That's right; this fic is a year in the making so far, so we really hope that you can get through it without falling down. Whether you collapse from laughter or disgust is up to you, though we'd really like the laughing better. Italic author notes are RenaYumi and Bold ones are Sparkling Mist. R&R and Enjoy!
"I will turn this car around!" Yumi yelled at Odd, looking in the rearview mirror. Ulrich clutched the arm rests in the front passenger seat.
"Uh Yumes? Watch the road before you get us all killed. Uh please." Yumi glared once more at Odd before turning her eyes back to the dirt road.
"Remind me again why I agreed to come with you on a trip to the middle of nowhere?" Sam asked from the back of Yumi's father's black Envoy.
"Uhm because you love me?" Odd answered with a devilish grin.
"Right," Sam sighed. Aelita stared out the window in wonder, taking in her surroundings.
"I think I see a bear!" She squeed excitedly, pointing out the window.
"That's a stump, Aelita," Jeremie said dryly.
"Wow, that's the third 'bear' she's seen since we got in the car," Odd snickered. Sam smacked him in the head.
"I was being nice! At least I didn't mention the mountain lions," he defended. Jeremie glared.
"Cat, stump, what's the difference? Yumi, watch out for that squirrel!" Ulrich screeched, grabbing the 'we're-all-gonna-die' bar. Yumi rolled her eyes, not even coming close to the furry little animal.
"Four hours, in a car, with the five of you. What was I on when I agreed to drive?"
"You agreed to drive because you're the only one with a license," Jeremie reminded her.
"And! If you didn't, you'd be sitting next to me," Odd laughed wildly.
"Good point," Yumi muttered.
"Feeling unloved," Sam pouted playfully.
"Aww, there's enough of me to share," Odd wrapped an arm around Sam's shoulders.
"Barely," Ulrich snickered.
Four hours and two 'bears' later, the gang reached their camp site.
"Here we are!" Yumi shouted gleefully.
"And here would be…?" Sam asked skeptically.
"In the middle of nowhere," Jeremie muttered, "With no computers, no electricity, and no internet."
"Don't forget indoor plumbing," Ulrich said, helping the matter.
"What do we do first?" Aelita asked, pulling her bag from the back of the Envoy.
"Tents!" Odd cheered.
"We only have four tents," Yumi reminded him.
"That's ok, I'll share with Sam," he said with an evil glint in his eye.
"Try again," Yumi patted him on the head. Sam pouted.
"We'll flip coins to see who shares," Jeremie said, pulling a quarter from his pocket. "Two of the guys have to share and two of the girls have to share. Heads or tails Aelita?" Aelita stared at him blankly.
"Uh tails?" she guessed. It was heads.
"You're sharing. Heads or tails Sam?" he asked again.
"Heads," she said confidently. It was tails.
"Yumi gets her own and Aelita and Sam share." He tossed the coin to Yumi.
"Heads or tails?" she asked Ulrich.
"Heads," he yawned. It was heads.
"Ulrich gets his own, Odd and Jer share," Yumi said pocketing the coin. Jeremie opened his mouth to protest, but shut it again as the girl smiled sweetly at him.
"Okay, you guys set up the tents and we'll make lunch," Yumi instructed. The guys saluted and went to work.
"So who knows how to set up a tent?" Jeremie asked. Odd shrugged, grabbing one of the bags.
"I've been camping a few times - it's easy." He dumped the contents onto the grass and snatched up one of the stakes. "Now where does this go?" he asked, scratching his head.
"I thought you said you've been camping," Ulrich asked grabbing another tent.
"In a camper," Odd responded. Ulrich rolled his eyes and unrolled the tent. Twenty minutes later, Ulrich and Jeremie had three of the tents set up. Odd had skillfully managed to get himself wrapped in the tarp with one end of the rope tied to a stake in the ground, and the other end tied around his ankle.
"Great job, Odd," Ulrich goaded. Fifteen minutes and one almost-fist-fight later, the tents were finally set up in a circle around the fire pit.
"Let's go see what the girls have concocted for lunch," chuckled Odd. As the guys approached the picnic table, they stared wide-eyed at the brownish blobs on their plates.
"What the hell is that?" Ulrich asked, poking the gooey mass with his chopsticks.
"It's a traditional Japanese dish," Yumi answered. "My mom is making me practice my cooking, deal with it."
"I think it's alive," Jeremie muttered while examining his blob. "Yea, I believe it just moved."
"Aww, please just try it," Yumi pouted.
"Do we have to?" Odd whined.
"Here, I'll try it first," Aelita offered. She scooped a bit of the mush into her mouth. Her eyes lit up in delight as she hurried to eat some more. "So good!" she mumbled through her full mouth. Yumi sat with her mouth wide opened.
"I can't believe you actually ate it!" she said, astounded.
"Well, if Aelita likes it…" Jeremie said as he took the smallest bite. Odd and Ulrich followed his example. All of a sudden, their faces paled and they ran behind the nearest tree.
"What was in that?" Odd asked, panting.
"You don't wanna know," Yumi answered. Sam waved a pack of hotdogs behind Yumi's head. The boys grinned.
"Now that I can stomach," Odd laughed. "I'll eat anything!" He looked back at the blob. "Almost, anything," he said wincing. Yumi stuck out her tongue in a childish manner.
"We need a fire," Sam said digging in the supplies for a mini grin. Odd's face lit up. "Which we will make," she said killing his hopeful look.
After lunch the gang unloaded the car. (A/n finally) Well, actually, the girls set up the fire pit while the boys were assigned the task of carrying the bags from the car to the camp site.
"I have an awesome idea!" Odd squeed.
"Great," Ulrich moaned sarcastically, "another brilliant idea courtesy of Odd Della-Robbia."
"But it'll be fun!" he whined.
"Oh, like the time we swam in the river? 'Cause that was so much fun," Sam said while plopping down on the grass.
"How was I supposed to know the water was only 20 degrees? Anyway, let's play capture the flag!"
"That's a great idea! What's capture the flag?" Aelita asked enthusiastically.
"It's a game. With teams. You hide a flag. You find a flag. You win. The end," Ulrich explained dryly.
"Girls against guys!" Sam cheered.
"That's great, but what are we going to use for flags?" Jeremie asked. Yumi and Sam exchanged devious looks.
"To make it interesting, you have to make your own flag." Sam said with an impish grin. The guys exchanged looks of confusion before agreeing.
"Alright!" Aelita said excitedly. "Now, what are we gonna use for a flag?"
"I can't believe that's what we're using for the flag!" said a very red-faced Aelita. Yumi stuffed the pink 'object' under a canoe by the lake.
"Imagine their faces when they find it," Sam smirked. Yumi shot up form the ground.
"No, imagine Jeremie's face when they find it!" If it was possible, Aelita's face turned a deeper shade of crimson.
"Why me?" Aelita moaned.
"Because it's pink," Yumi stated simply.
"And lacey!" Sam added.scenescenescenechange
"They'll never find it!" Odd shouted gleefully as he jumped down from the tree.
"Are you sure this is a good idea?" Jeremie asked skeptically.
"They never said how to hide it," he answered evilly, "so its fair game the way I see it."
"Fair as in they'll never be able to get it down?" Ulrich interjected.
"Yup!" Odd said happily as he brushed leaves off his purple pants. (A/N really flipping sexy purple pants)
"Let's just find them so we can start the game," Jeremie grumbled.
The guys walked back to the campsite where the girls were already waiting.
"It's about time," Yumi chided. "Any who, this is the center line. Cross it without the flag and you'll die an extremely painful death." As she spoke these semi-threatening words, she drew a line in the dirt wither her foot. Aelita stared at her.
"She's kidding," Sam yawned.
"Oh, I knew that!" Aelita defended quickly, blushing again.
"Go!" Yumi shouted without warning as she ran past the guys. Aelita and Sam followed.
"Hey, no fair!" Odd yelled after them.
"Who cares about fair? This is war!" Sam cackled over her back as the three girls disappeared into the woods.
"Our flag is green, what color is yours?" Ulrich shouted at the top of his lungs into the trees. An echo of 'pink' reached the boys' ears.
"They said it was green, right?" Aelita asked.
"For the hundredth time, yes!" Sam growled. They had been searching for almost an hour and there was still no sign of the other team's flag. Aelita folded her arms across her chest and leaned against a random tree. Looking up, she gasped and pointed.
"There it is!" Sam and Yumi looked to where the pink-haired girl was pointing to reveal one of Odd's green bandanas high up in the tree. (A/N yes, Odd has a bandana, because who doesn't have a bandana when they go camping?)
"Aelita, you're amazing!" Yumi squealed as she enveloped her friend in a fierce bear hug.
"Can't! Breathe!" the girl gasped. Yumi released her and Aelita took a few deep breaths.
"Wait, who's gonna go get it?" Sam asked. The three girls looked at each other.
"Not it!" Sam and Aelita chorused. Yumi stared at them dumbfounded, her mouth hanging slightly open. The effect was her looking like a goldfish. A very surprised goldfish.
"You… I… Th – that's not fair!" She finally managed to say.
"Who cares about fair? This is war!" Aelita mocked. Yumi's face flushed.
"You're going to pay for this," hissed the irritated girl. She stood under the tree and gazed up at its height. "They just had to pick the tallest tree in the whole damn forest, didn't they?" She grumbled.
"Get climbing," Sam ordered with a smirk.
"Whatever." As she looked up the tree's trunk, she spied a branch that looked reachable. Yumi backed up a couple of feet and took a running-jump at the tree. Her fingertips just brushed the branch. She ended up on the leaf-strewn forest floor flat on her back. "I am going to kill those three."