A/N: The sudden summer sun has put me in a good mood, so I wrote up this silly little one shot while I procrastinate over everything else I'm supposed to be doing. I love the idea of family Catorade (As Sir Jori-Shipping Sikowitz suggests in Helen Back Again) so this is about as close as I'm going to get to writing it. I hope you enjoy!
"I told you we should've put her on a leash."
Jade was annoyed. No, she was beyond annoyed. She didn't want to go to this stupid carnival at the beach in the first place, but Tori and Cat had managed to guilt trip her into it using pouted lips, pitiful pleas and big, puppy dog eyes that could even melt her so-called ice heart. But now, somehow, between the ice cream stand the two had convinced Jade to stop at and the walk way that lead up to the beach, they had managed to lose Cat.
"Jade!" Tori scolded her girlfriend, rolling her eyes.
"What!" The other girl said defensively. "If she was on a leash, we wouldn't've lost her! Or, if someone hadn't insisted we let her tag along and had actually kept an eye on her like she was supposed to!"
"Oh." Tori stomped her foot and stopped in her tracks, folding her arms over her chest as she narrowed her eyes at the paler girl. "So this is my fault now?"
It took Jade a few seconds to realise Tori had stopped and when she did, she huffed loudly and span on her heel to face the pouting Latina. "I didn't say that."
"You meant it." Tori challenged, raising an eyebrow.
Jade sighed. It was far too hot for them to be arguing over something stupid, even the thin black dress she wore- topped off with a black sun hat and shades- was roasting her in this ungodly summer sun. She slouched back over to Tori- who had opted for a much more sensible blue tank top with jean short shorts- and gave her a quick peck on her infamous cheekbones, earning a tiny smile in response.
"I can't be bothered to argue." She stated, her way of apologising for things. "Now, come on. Let's go find Cat before they take her to the pound or something. I'm not paying to get her back."
"She's not a dog, Jade." Tori said, smiling nonetheless.
"Yeah, well, she's as good as." Jade affirmed, linking her fingers through Tori's so they could continue on their hunt. "Or a small child."
Tori didn't reply, she just let Jade drag her back in the direction they had come from, retracing their steps between the place they had realised the smaller girl was missing to the last place they could remember seeing her- the ice cream stand where she'd been busy stuffing her face with a waffle cone full of Tutti Fruitti. On their way, they had stopped only a couple of times whenever Tori's sandal would slip off her foot, but they still kept up their slow pace, turning their heads from side to side on the look out for the familiar shock of bright red hair, and occasionally calling Cat's name in hopes she would come running to them.
"Again, Vega? Really?" Jade growled as Tori began hopping on one foot, bending backwards slightly to try to keep her sandal in place. "Why couldn't you wear less annoying footwear!"
"I thought you didn't want to argue." Tori retorted, gripping the pale hand still entwined with hers tighter for support as she slipped her shoe on more securely.
"I said I couldn't be bothered, not that I couldn't criticise your choice in footwear."
Tori shook her head, regaining the use of both her feet before tugging Jade on. Their search continued in silence, save for the odd called of "CAT!" from either girl, until they reached the kiosk they had been aiming for, still with no clue as to where their red headed friend had gotten to.
"What if she's run off!" Tori blurted suddenly, sounding worried.
"I think it's pretty obvious that she has." Jade muttered.
"Or, what if she's been kidnapped!" The Latina gasped, ignoring Jade and going wide eyed with fear.
"Or what if she's been abducted by aliens who will take her back to her own planet? Or ran away to join the circus? Or went swimming and got eaten by a shark!" Jade cried in her mock-Tori voice, faking a huge, terrified gasp and clamping a hand over her mouth.
"I don't talk like that!" Tori automatically responded, swatting the paler girls arm. "And I'm serious, Jade. Cat could be in trouble."
"Relax, Vega. The girl goes walkabouts all the time. She'll turn up soon enough. Now, can we get away from this place? I'm still sick of ice cream after that whole Ke$ha thing."
Tori relented, allowing herself to be dragged a couple of yards away to a little hot dog cart where Jade sneered at two guys who were busy loading up their purchases with lashings of ketchup.
"How can you be so relaxed about this?" The tan girl asked once the boys had sensed Jade's dislike and scarpered off fast. She moved so she was stood in front of Jade, waving her arms in a dramatic fashion "Our friend, who we're supposed to be looking after, is missing and you're just standing here scaring people!"
Jade simply scowled in reply.
"You really want us to just stand here and do nothing?" Tori tried again, eager to go back to looking for their friend.
Jade let out a long, irritated sigh. Instead of responding further, she grabbed a napkin from the pile beside her, reached into her bag for a pen and turned her back on Tori, leaning against the cart to scribble away. The slightly shorter girl wandered curiously over, standing on her tip toes in an attempt to peer over Jade's shoulder to see what she was doing, but the dark hair girl shifted each time, blocking her view. After a minute or so, Jade straightened up again, taking a moment to admire what ever it was she'd been doing before walked over to the nearest tree. She took the gum she'd been chewing out of her mouth and stuck it to the bark, then tacked the thin napkin to it, stepping back with a grin.
"Happy now?" She asked, throwing an arm around Tori's shoulder when she walked over to inspect Jade's work. The girl had drawn up a surprising good likeness of Cat's face, especially for the little amount of time it had been drawn in, followed underneath by a short description.
"Lost: One small, red headed, slightly insane girl. Most likely with a face covered in Tutti Fruitti ice cream or some other sickly food substance. If found, please return to the whiny Latina girl and her extremely hot girlfriend." Tori read out loud. "Hey! I'm not whiny!"
"I'm not whiny!" Jade repeated, earning another light slap to the forearm and another mumble of Tori denying she spoke in such a way. "Just relax, Tori. Cat will turn up soon, she always does. Besides, without her around, maybe things can get a little more interesting now."
She let her hand slip quickly down the tan girls back until it reached her butt, which Jade gave a quick squeeze. Tori immediately jumped at the action, blushing furiously as she her eyes darted around, making sure no one had seen.
"Don't do that!" She hissed at Jade, who was stifling her laughter behind her hand.
"I thought you liked it." The tattooed girl smirked, waggling her eyebrows suggestively.
Tori's face turned a brighter shade of red. "I- you- that's not the point!" She spluttered in a whisper, causing Jade to snigger some more. "Can you not just be serious for a second? I really think we should at least try to find Cat."
Jade's smile instantly dropped, but before she could refused, Tori had clasped their hands together once again and towed her off on another walk around the small carnival, this time towards the rides.
"God! First the two of you bring me out to this stupid place when I specifically told you I didn't want to go." Jade grumbled as she dragged her feet a little behind her girlfriend. "Then one of you goes and gets herself lost and I'm stuck with the one who worries far too much, on some pointless search party mission!"
"And you called me whiny." Tori shot back, glancing over her shoulder with her own smirk. She turned around to face Jade, now walking backwards towards a crowd of people. "What if I was the one who got lost? Would you and Cat start some 'pointless search party mission', or would you be soaking up the sun on the beach instead? Hmm?"
Jade hesitated. "It would be an entirely different situation." She concluded.
"Well, I'd like to think you can function well enough on your own so you don't accidentally wander off by yourself."
Tori smiled. "I'm going to take that as a compliment."
"Good. 'Cause that's the best you're going to get."
Tori rolled her eyes and turned back around. The crowd ahead was getting thicker the closer they got to the rides. Small children we running around with cotton candy sticks in hand, squealing excitedly as they raced from one ride to another followed by, or else dragging along, irritated parents, who were complaining about the price of everything. They searched all the rides they knew were Cat's favourites, hoping to catch her on one of them, even stopping to ask the people manning each one if they had seen the little red head or not- at least, Tori did.
It didn't take long before Jade was getting irritated by the loud swarms of people and Tori had to physically pull her away before she could start yelling at a little boy who had accidentally run into her, getting some of his sticky toffee apple on her dress. By now, it was growing dark and Tori's concern had gone more into panic mode, which only served to annoy her girlfriend even more.
"She's probably eaten too much and fallen asleep somewhere!" Jade moaned as they walked back towards the carnival entrance. "Can't we just go back to the car and wait for her there?"
Tori sighed, finally giving up. "Alright. But if she doesn't show up soon, I- Oof!"
The brunette's sentence was effectively cut off when she was suddenly tackled around the waist and squeezed far too tightly. "Tori! Jade! I found you! Oh my God, I thought I'd lost you forever! Why did you leave me! I said I was going to get another ice cream but when I came back you had gone and-"
"CAT! Shut UP!" Jade hollered over the top of her friend's mile a minute rambling. She grabbed the shorter girls arm and tore it none too kindly away from her girlfriend. "Where the hell have you been! We've been looking all over for you!"
"I've been looking for you." The red head pouted.
"We've been marching up and down the damn carnival for hours!" Jade exaggerated angrily. "Why couldn't you just stay in one place!"
"I'm sorry!" Cat cried back.
Tori quickly stepped forward, tucking an arm around Cat's shoulder when she saw the girl's lower lip begin to wobble. "Easy, Jade. She's here now. Why don't we just go back to the car, yeah?"
Jade grunted in response and stalked away, leaving the other two to catch up with her. As they made their way back, Cat piped up once again.
"Hey, instead of looking all over, why didn't you just call me?" She asked, taking her pear shaped cell phone out of her pocket.
Tori and Jade came to an abrupt halt, each glancing at each other before the latter let out a groan of despair and the former hung her head, neither having thought of such a simple idea.
"Wait, Cat?" Jade asked, being the first to recover. "Why didn't you call us?"
"My battery died." She replied with a smile.
"So- so if we did call you, you couldn't answer anyway?" Tori said, as Jade turned to dramatically beat her head against the nearest tree.
"Oh." Cat's brow furrowed for a moment. "I guess not."
"Can we please just go back to the car!" Jade's whine was muffled by the bark she had pressed her face too.
Tori's response was immediately cut off by a sudden gasp from Cat, who rushed forward to where Jade was and leaned over to pick something up off the ground. She studied the flimsy bit of paper for a moment before she gasped again and turned it around for the other two girls to see.
"Look!" She exclaimed. "Someone's lost! We should help find them!"
Both Tori and Jade's faces broke out into identical smirks as they recognised the sign being the one Jade had drawn up earlier. Cat tilted her in confusion at their amusement.
"Come on, little one." Tori grinned, taking the napkin and throwing it in the trash before hooking her arm through Cat's and doing the same to Jade. "Let's just get you home."
"Kay kay!" The smallest girl beamed. "Oh, and Jade?" The pale girl made a small noise to show she was listening. "You've got something on you head."
Tori let out a shout of laughter as Jade, confused, reached up to find the chewing gum she'd used to stick the sign up now attached to her forehead. Disgusted, she quickly picked it off and flicked it in the direction of the youngest Vega, who just ducked out of the way in time.
"It's not funny." She sulked, which only made the other two laugh even harder all the way back to the car.