Z woke with a start. Enormous eyes blinked at her from close quarters, silver-bright with reflected moonshine and wide as a bug's. She choked on a breath, scrambling up against her headboard and throwing out her hands in self protection.
There was a thump as Pete fell off the bed, her nasal giggles briefly interrupted by sounds of pain before she started laughing again.
Z pulled all her blankets up to her neck and twisted to peer over the side of her bed, still sleep-confused. Her heart rate was juddering and not sure whether the half-dreamed danger was over.
Pete lifted the hand mirror she was holding, giggling harder. It glittered in the moonlight. "Dude, you. Dude," she said.
"Oh my god." Z slumped back. There were scrambling noises and a moment later Pete dropped herself back onto Z's bed, ankles digging into Z's thighs. She smiled big and sloppy.
Z pulled her scattered nerves together and gave her a stormy look. "It's fucking ... like three in the morning," she rasped.
Pete shrugged one shoulder. "Four."
Z narrowed her eyes. She pulled her legs out from under Pete, tucking them up to her chin, tugging the blankets higher so that she was regarding her roommate over a barricade of blanket. "You're a fucking menace, Wentz. That was terrifying."
Pete nodded, her solemn look almost passing for sincere in the uncertain moonlight. "Mirrors, dude," she agreed. "You know the story about how they steal your soul? What I want to know is, how do you tell? Maybe my soul was stolen, like, back in the fifth grade, and I just thought I was growing up."
Z swiped her hand over her eyes, rubbing away gritty sleep. "I'm not wearing any makeup," she complained. "Of course I was terrified. Give me that." She reached out and snatched away the mirror. She gave it a hard look, then widened her eyes to give herself the bug look she'd woken up to. "I'm taking away your mirror licence till you can use them responsibly, young lady," she mumbled. "And you jerk, you never grew up. Obviously you must have lost your soul."
Pete grinned, oddly sweet, and Z was reminded of that Peter Pan obsession of Pete's. She supposed that had come out as an accidental compliment. She supposed the Peter Pan complex was why Pete thought it was an awesome idea to wake people up at godawful o'clock when they had a midterm the next day, and traumatise them with weirdness.
"Why?" Z demanded, plaintive.
Pete stretched out her legs, leaning forward to rest her arms on her knees. "I was thinking," she said simply. "About how I'd like to wake up to your face every morning for the rest of my life."
Z's eyes stung, awkward sleep-confused emotion. She blinked, hard. They'd only been sharing a room for seven months, but Pete could get to Z in a way almost nobody could, as if her maze of defences was nothing at all, or Pete was twisty enough that she could get in by walking straight.
Pete pulled her knees up a bit and rested her cheek on them. She wasn't smiling now, just regarding Z steadily, her lashes a black smudge against her cheeks. "And then I thought how selfish that would be, when you never got to do it at all." She smiled, white in the darkness.
"Oh my god," Z breathed after a moment. "You complete jerk. Oh my god."
Pete's grin was blinding.