London Tipton was usually a somewhat flighty girl. She could get interested in things very quickly, but also became bored easily. As a result, she had quite a list of hobbies that she'd started, but no longer indulged in.

However, every so often, something would really capture her interest. Fashion, for example. She'd became enthralled with wardrobe styles and trends at a young age and never grown tired of it. More recently, and very unexpectedly, she'd discovered that she enjoyed fencing. This was very surprising, as she'd only started the sport to get out of going to regular gym classes. On top of that, her first instructor had been a shameless womanizer who had temporarily caused some friction between London and her best friend Maddie.

But after that little incident had ended, London kept on with her fencing lessons...with a new teacher, of course. She still needed the school credit, after all. And she was rather talented at fencing. London enjoyed the fact that she was doing well at the sport.

It was only natural.


Cody Martin was usually a responsible boy. He always did his homework, he was a model employee at his part time-job, and he tried to help his Mom whenever he could. He was just that kind of guy.

His sense of responsibility extended even to his role as the producer of his friend London's web show. It was a goofy little program that really served no purpose other than to draw attention to the extorverted heiress...but Cody did his best to make the show run smoothly. As silly as it was, it did let him hone both his computer and organizational skills. And surely those talents would serve him well in the future.

Plus, spending time with London was fun. She was a fun girl. A somewhat wacky, occasionally annoying girl...but fun. So much so, that working on London's show became something that Cody looked forward to every week.

It was only natural.


Along with fashion and fencing, London's web show - Yay Me! Starring London Tipton - was another thing that she never got bored with. She enjoyed getting instant feedback from fans as the show was being broadcast. Cody did such a great job reading the messages to her as they came in.

Of course, Cody did so many great things for the show. London had found out early on that there was no way she could do a good program without him. Anything she asked for, he'd do. London appreciated that. So much so, that as they did more and more shows, she tried to be more considerate about some of the things she'd ask him to do. She stopped making demands and became more and more polite when making requests to him. She wasn't even aware she was changing her way of dealing with him. It was just happening.

Naturally.


To Cody, things just seemed to get better and better with London's show. He began to wonder if she'd like to increase the length of the program. He was more than willing to spend the extra time that would be needed to do that.

He was happy to spend time with her.

London had something else on her mind however.

"Cody, I need your help," she said to him one day after they'd finished the latest edition of her show.

"If Zack told you that aliens have replaced the ice machines with shapeshifting monsters again, he was kidding," Cody replied.

"That's not it," she answered, but then paused. "Thanks for telling me though. Now I can refill my ice bucket. Anyway, my problem is that Maddie is really busy lately and I don't have a fencing partner."

"I didn't know Maddie still fenced with you. I thought your lessons were just with you and your new instructor."

"Oh they are," London answered. "But I like to do one practice session a day by myself outside of my lessons. Maddie was doing that with me, but she doesn't have time anymore." The heiress pouted mometarily but then made a point to smile warmly at Cody. "Would you be my partner?"

Cody didn't answer right away. He didn't even know he wasn't answering right away. He was finding himself a bit lost in London's smile.

Her eyes sure do sparkle when she smiles, he thought.

"Cody?"

"Uh...London," he finally aswered. "I'd love to be your part...uh, I mean, I'd like to help you, but I don't know how to fence."

"I know. That's why I asked you," she replied brightly. "If I have to teach you how to fence, it'll make me go over the basics lessons more and more and that will make me better too." She clapped her hands excitedly at her plan.

"That sounds reasonable," said Cody. "Actually that's...very good thinking." He looked at London. "What gave you this idea?"

"It is a great idea, isn't it?" London said in a giddy tone. "I must be getting smarter hanging around you."

She leaned over and hugged Cody as she finished speaking. He smiled and blushed slightly.

It was meant to be a quick hug. The kind that London would give any friend when she was in a certain kind of bouncy, joyful mood.

But she didn't hurry to let go of this particular hug. She lingered for a bit with her arms wrapped around Cody.

He noticed that the hug lasted longer than he expected it to. But he made no complaint.

It felt natural.


To be continued?