The drone of groaning girls awoke Pepper the next morning and she knew that it would be followed by the dreadful sound of Miss Hannigan's voice. The woman never failed to make the girls lives miserable. It was hopeless to even try taking her down again.
Pepper yawned, rubbing her tired eyes as she slipped into her work cloths. She scanned the room for Kate, who looked just as tired as she did, but a little more optimistic. Kate had always had a brighter outlook on things. Pepper couldn't, though. She couldn't help but to see the bad things in life.
"Good morning, Pepper." Kate said, striding over to her. Pepper gave her a curt nod in response, unsure of what to say to her. She wasn't sure why, but after their song the night before, she was seeing Kate in a whole new light. She felt such a good vibe about her. They had definitely bonded. Was that really all it took to make Pepper feel better? A little song? Music really could do wonders.
"So….Wanna help me with the mopping?" Kate asked, "I know your hands must be so sore from last night's scrubbing. Mopping is loads easier."
"Um, okay, sure…I guess." Pepper shrugged carelessly.
"Great!" Kate smiled. The two headed over to the mopping buckets that were already prepared thanks to a fellow girl named Sheila.
"I heard that Margret might get adopted." Kate said as she began to mop.
"Oh, good for her." Pepper responded sarcastically. She hated hearing about those who were more fortunate enough to actually get adopted.
"Oh, come on. It's great news!"
"So, she's a cute little girl that has hope for a good future. Why rub it in?" Pepper dunked her mop in the soapy water, drowning it along with the remains of her decent mood.
"You have hope for a future." Kate reminded her, "Why do you always assume that nobody would want to adopt you?"
Pepper had only heard Miss Hannigan shout the cold fact to her for her entire existence. That was why. Besides, she wasn't an idiot. She knew that she wasn't wanted and would never be. Her attitude killed any chance of that.
"I haven't been adopted yet, have I?" Pepper asked in a careless tone as she mopped the floor. Kate sighed and gave her a small smile.
"Well, I'm sure you will someday." She replied. "The sun will come out…"
"No. Don't start singing that ruddy song. I'm not in the mood."
Kate simply giggled a little and playfully got a handful of the soppy water in her hand and flicked it in Pepper's direction. Pepper was astounded and a little confused at first. Why would she do that? Oh, right, she was playing. Pepper wasn't used to jokes or games. She and Kate were the eldest in the group home, so they had to act somewhat civilized.
"Oh how grown up." Pepper said with annoyance, but she couldn't fight the grin forming onto her face.
After finishing the mopping, the two stuck together with the other chores as well. Day after day, they stood by one another's sides. Pepper was becoming so used to the positive company that Kate provided for her that now it would seem completely foreign to her if she didn't have the girl around. She wondered if Kate enjoyed being around her as much. She seemed to.
The singing was more common around the orphanage, as well. Some of the younger girls heard Pepper and Kate's harmonic tones chiming together and began to sing a few of their own. Little to say, Miss Hannigan was not pleased in the slightest.