Saturday, January 5, 2013

Re-Read: Chapter Thirty Nine- Worried

"You're my very favorite person in the known universe."

It has been a month since Wanda moved back in with Jamie and Jared. Jared, though not always at ease with Wanda's presence is always polite and Wanda and Melanie are both "sort of happy" with their current arrangement. On the other hand, Jamie is in a constant state of euphoria, taking to and about Melanie. While the first three weeks were relatively enjoyable, the fourth is a little lonely since both Jamie and Jared left on a raid and Melanie is not as talkative in their absence. 

Sitting alone at lunch, Wanda is a bit bothered when Ian joins her, going as far as not returning his greeting. Knowing her mind is on her AWAY roommates, Ian assures her that the pair will be back today. Wanda retorts that he said the same thing three days ago, two days ago, and the day before. Ian tries to reassure Wanda, telling her that it is not Jamie's first raid and he has Jared, Geoffrey, and Trudy looking after him. Ian acquiesces to her request when it is evident she no longer wants to discuss the the pair absence. Ian notices Wanda looking a little tired and she tells him sleep has been difficult to come by in her quiet cave. He offers to sleep in her room until Jared and Jamie return (and telling Melanie to calm down at the suggestion), but Wanda tells him there is no need since, as he just told her, they would be back later in the day. When they finish their lunch, Ian asks for help on a project and Wanda gladly offers her services. Taking her hand (something so commonplace Melanie barely reacts), Ian leads her to the eastern field, a grin planted on his face the entire time. Before turning the final corner, the sound of echoing voices and a sporadic thud, thud clues Wanda in on what exactly Ian has in mind for the afternoon. 

"Ian, I'm not in the mood."
"You said you had plenty of energy."
"To work. Not to play soccer."
"But Lily and Wes will be really disappointed. I promised them a game of two-on-two. They worked so hard this morning to free up the afternoon..." 
Wanda is hesitant to play when there is work to be done. Moving further onto the field, Lily and Wes greet the pair. After a little friendly banter and a few words of encouragement from Melanie, Wanda agrees to play with the others. Stretching, Wanda is pleased to see how well her leg and side have healed since the injury. On the other hand, her cheek is now marked by a scar the size of the palm of her hand, something that bothered Melanie more than her. 

Ian and Lily take the goals while Wes meets Wanda beside the ball and Melanie is pleased by the competition. As the game wore on, Wanda had to agree that playing felt good; stretching her muscles and the teamwork with Ian. Lily calls the game with Wanda and Ian in the lead with twenty-one points. More surprising than Wanda's ability to play are Wes and Lily's actions with each other. Lily reaches out to tickle Wes, but he catches her fingers and pulls her in for a kiss. Wes takes off to get more players with a little more fanfare, tossing the ball across the field and into the spring. When Ian moves to retrieve it, Lily turns to Wanda, who wonders how long they had been together. Lily tells Wanda that it is kind of her fault that the two are now together, or rather Wes' reaction to Wanda that took Lily by surprise and got her to see him in a new way. She claims he is too young for her, but that things like that no longer hold much weight. Ian returns as they continue to talk, telling Lily that Wes has been infatuated with her since his arrival to the caves. 

Wanda and Ian continue to play one-on-one as Lily looks on. After the first few goal, Melanie tells Wanda that Ian is letting them win and to tell him he is "playing like a girl" to fire up the competition. When her taunting does not work, Wanda tells him that if he wins, he can sleep in her room while the others are gone. This gets Ian's attention and it only takes him fifteen minutes to win. Ian jokingly tells Wanda he is ready for bed and Melanie's distaste reads on Wanda's face a wince. Lily is shocked when Ian directly addresses Melanie and curious when he tells her "Jared's Melanie objects to me."The three decide to go search for Wes since he has not returned with more players. As they walk through the tunnel, Wanda tells him how happy she is for Lily and Wes. Ian is happy too, or rather hopeful about his situation. He asks if he can kiss Wanda, but wonders if Melanie would allow it. Wanda considers, but Melanie definitely would not be happy with that course of action on Ian's part. 

Ian's disappointment is short lived as they head Wes shouting "They're back!" through the tunnel. Wanda sprints to the plaza where she finds Jamie standing with Trudy, who appear to be the only ones from the raid there. Jamie tells her the others are unloading and getting cleaned up and though she knew she could not go to the entrance, she longs to see Jared with her own eyes and know he is ok. Wanda finally notices Jamie's injury when Trudy tells her Jamie should be lying down; there is a hole in his jeans above his knees colored by blood. Wanda demands to know what happened and Jamie reluctantly tells her he tripped with a knife in his hand. When Wanda wonders why he did not stay in the hospital with Doc, Jamie turned to Trudy, searching for an answer. Trudy tells Wanda he will be more comfortable in his bed and Jamie hastily agrees. Wanda and Melanie are weary of the answer, detecting a false note in Trudy's voice, and noticing their eyes glancing back to the tunnel. Ian joins their group and also wonders where everyone else is. He is also told that there is more unloading, but this time Wanda clearly sees Trudy's eyes glance deliberately towards the southern tunnel. At this, Ian's expression hardens and rage quickly crosses his face. Wanda also notices Trudy catching her watching their silent exchange and Melanie tells her to distract the others. When they are back in their room, Melanie directs Wanda to keep her face down as she lies and tries to get rid of Ian. Wanda asks him to get them some food, which he agrees to, but emphasizes that he will only be gone a short time. With Ian out of the room, Wanda tells Jamie she forgot to tell Ian something and quickly leaves before he can ask anymore questions. 

The hall is clear as Wanda moves quickly to the plaza. Only a few people are there and no one pays any attention to Wanda as she slips into the southern tunnel and breaks into a sprint down the black corridor. Her instincts tell her that whatever is going on is the same as when Jared and the other returned from the previous raid. At that time, everyone was saddened by something, Doc fell into a drunken stupor, and no one would answer her questions. Wanda reminds herself that this is something she is not suppose to know about and something Ian believes she is better off not knowing about. As she moves further down the corridor, Wanda wonders if she really does want to know and Melanie assures her that she does. 
"Yes, you do. We both do."
"I'm frightened."
"Me, too."
I ran as quietly as I could down the dark tunnel. 

No comments:

Post a Comment