"Are you sure Mithian wanted me to go to her party?" Elena asks Vivian for what must be the nineteenth time this week.
Vivian sighs, only for about the twelfth. She can totally be patient sometimes, especially where her best friend's concerned. "Yes, Elena," she says. "She was very explict in her request."
"But why would she want me there?" Elena looks honestly bemused, and that's the only reason Vivian doesn't shake her, doesn't say maybe because she's had a stupidly massive crush on you for two years? Vivian is such a good friend.
"Is it that hard to believe she likes you?" she says, except, yeah, it kind of really is, because there was that whole period of Elena's life before she met Vivian when she didn't have any friends at all, when people made fun of her for her hair and the way she dressed and her unfortunate tendency to fall flat on her face sometimes and made her believe no one could ever like her. Vivian tries not to think about this period of Elena's life; it makes her want to stab the pointy end of her shoes into people's throats. "Come on," she says quickly, grabbing Elena by the arm, "the shops close in an hour and we haven't got Mithian a present yet."
Mithian's expression, when she opens the door and finds the both of them standing there, is simultaneously hilarious and utterly pathetic. Vivian made Elena wear her nicest dress - "It's a sleepover, Vivian, what's the point?" - and make-up that didn't look like a six-year-old playing with face paint and she looks so good Vivian would probably sleep with her if she were into girls and it wouldn't make Mithian cry and/or come after her with her bow and arrow.
"Elena," Mithian says, grinning helplessly at her, "I'm so glad you came!"
"Happy birthday," Vivian says loudly, thrusting their joint present at her, and Mithian blushes. Whether it's because of the way she was staring at Vivian's best friend or her pointed lack of acknowledgement of Vivian's existence, Vivian isn't sure.
"Thanks, Vivian," Mithian says, and ushers them both inside. Vivian doesn't roll her eyes, but it's not without concerted effort.
It's a pretty small party, honestly, just them, Gwen, Morgana and Freya. (Mithian's popular enough; nobody dislikes her, but there aren't many people who actively like her. People are stupid, Vivian realised this a long time ago.)
They grab a shitload of food from the kitchen and haul it upstairs to Mithian's room where they've got their stuff set up for sleeping later. After some deliberation between typical sleepover-type films, they put on Clueless and laugh about how 90s it is and how different it'd be if it were set today.
"It would basically be Mean Girls," Morgana concludes, "but with more pseudo-incest."
Gwen laughs. "And you'd know all about pseudo-incest, wouldn't you?"
Morgana elbows her, muttering something that makes Gwen bite her lip in a valiant attempt to hold in her giggles, but Vivian isn't one to let things like that go forgotten.
She leans forward, says, "Oh really?"
Morgana glares at her. Vivian used to be kind of scared of her, before they joined the debating club at the same time and Vivian saw that rage channelled into other things. Now she mostly just thinks she's awesome, not that she'd ever say that out loud.
"I'm not talking about it," Morgana says, shooting a glare in Gwen's direction.
"Fine," Vivian says, grabbing an aerosol can from Mithian's side table. "I propose we play truth or dare. Morgana can start!"
"Firstly," Morgana says, "that isn't how it works. You're supposed to spin it."
Vivian spins the can; it lands on Morgana, of course, because rigging these things is a piece of cake.
"Secondly," Morgana says acidly, "I pick dare."
Vivian shrugs. "I dare you to tell me about you and Arthur."
"That's cheating," Morgana says, "don't you know anything about this game?"
"Vivian," Elena says quietly, "let it go, yeah?"
Vivian points a finger in Morgana's direction, but she doesn't push any further. She's not that cruel. She dares Morgana to eat an entire tub of Ben and Jerry's in under a minute instead, and Morgana smiles meanly in response.
"Sure," she says, and picks up a spoon.
Fifty three seconds later, everyone except Gwen is gaping at Morgana.
"How did you do that," Vivian says slowly. Morgana smirks, wiping a smear of ice cream from the corner of her lips.
"I have a lot of practice putting things in my mouth," she says, and leans forward to spin. She gets Freya, who picks truth. Morgana's smirk turns wicked and she says, "Is it true Merlin cries when he comes?"
Freya goes a shade of red not previously known by humankind. Gwen elbows Morgana in the ribs, but it doesn't stop Morgana smirking.
"Sometimes," she says eventually, not looking any of them in the eye, and Morgana cackles. Cheeks still burning, Freya spins the aerosol can and it lands on Mithian.
"Dare," Mithian says, which, okay, Vivian wouldn't have expected that, but she supposes it makes sense.
"Kiss the prettiest girl in the room," Freya says, and, wow, Vivian definitely wouldn't have expected that. Freya's smile is mischievous, though, and there was that one Chemistry lesson Vivian spent bemoaning Elena and Mithian's stupid faces, so Vivian thinks she really probably should have.
Mithian bites her lip. Very, very deliberately, she gets up and walks over to Elena. Elena's eyes go so wide.
"Hi," she says, a little breathless.
"Hey," Mithian says shyly, like she's scared, like she doesn't know that Elena talks about her all the time with fucking hearts in her eyes, like she doesn't know that Elena's been wanting this nearly as long as Mithian has, and kisses her.
Freya and Gwen cheer. Morgana catcalls. Vivian says, "Finally, thank the lord, can we have cake now?"