The Ant Files: Summer Camp

When you're from a city like Cordonbridge, nothing stays hidden for very long.

It looks like K.C, P.H, P.H and S.W are stuck in the same cabin all summer. Here's hoping that the campsite stays intact until we've left.

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Welcome to Camp Briar; a pre-eleventh grade preparatory camp for all the hopeful teens attending Briarcrest Academy this fall. For those nature lovers who’ve come prepared to rough it out by Golden Lake this summer, sorry. The term ‘camp’ is used rather loosely here – this isn’t so much a camp as it is a long drawn out orientation course/ competition.

Wait what?

Yup, you heard right. This year saw so many hopefuls wanting to attend Briarcrest Academy in the fall that the faculty have decided to make us all fight for it. It would be cool, if it wasn’t for the fact that not even current students are guaranteed a place. But looking around, I don’t really see much competition.

Hang on a second… that redhead looks familiar. And she’s headed into the same cabin that a certain brunette was seen moving her luggage into, not too long ago.

Looks like this years hopeful newcomers aren’t just people who want a change of scenery after all. Let’s just hope that by the time summer’s over, the campsite is still intact.

 

***

 

Kris Covey put on her new Chanel sunglasses before stepping out of her car. She stopped for a moment to breathe in the scent of damp earth and leaves, her steel grey eyes taking in the tall trees and the big blue sky, before she was smothered by two small hurricanes.

 

“Kris! Oh my god, isn’t this great? Five weeks, no parents, we are gonna paaaarty…” Kris stepped back from her two best friends, Polly Effective who went to Briarcrest Academy with her, and Adrianna Michel, who attended Charity Moore School.

 

“I got my references and everything,” said Adrianna, holding up an envelope. “I took a peek. They’re pretty good, if I may say so myself.”

 

“I’ve been giving her all the scoop on who’s who and what’s what, and all the best places to go after school and whatnot. I mean, you I know you’re from Cordonbridge and all Ade, but you’re stuck in boarding school for the better part of the year. You have not lived in Cordonbridge yet.” Polly swept her straight blonde hair off her face and tied it back.

 

“Are we in the same cabin?” asked Kris, nodding at her chauffeur as he left. She straightened her navy blazer and Polly and Adrianna took a suitcase each.

 

“Nope. We got our welcome stuff already, Polly’s in Cabin 2B and I’m next to her in 3B. We have to go to the front desk.”

 

“Any idea who else is in your cabins then?” asked Kris as they walked to the reception area.

 

“I got Gigi Fairfax,” said Polly. “She glared at me when she came in, and dumped her suitcase on her bed and left.”

 

“Oooh,” winced Kris. Gigi Fairfax had been at school with them in eighth grade, but after a fight between her and Kris escalated into something poisonous, Gigi had left.

 

“Hi Adrianna,” said a tall blond man walking past with a leaflet in his hands. “Nice to see you here. I hope you’ve signed up for Lit. I’ve got some fun stuff prepared.”

 

“Sounds cool. I’ll see you in class,” smiled Adrianna. The man gave her a thumbs up and nodded at Polly and Kris.

 

“Who is he?” whispered Kris, as he walked away.

 

“Mr Lewinski. He teaches Lit at Charity Moore. Well, I guess he used to. Must’ve transferred.”

 

“Why, oh why do the most beautiful people have to be teachers? I don’t get it. I really don’t. It’s like the universe’s idea of a really mean joke.” Polly threw her hands up in the air.

 

And he’s married. So yeah, doubly off limits.”

 

“Come on Pol, I’m sure you’ll find a guy perfectly suited to you,” said Kris.

 

“Have no fear Polly, Mr Swan is in the house.” The girls turned around to see a tall boy with brown hair and a cheeky smile standing behind them with two other boys; his cousin Rex Bachelor, who looked almost exactly like him, and their friend Danny Ford, a blond boy with blue eyes. All three of them were wearing grey polo shirts.

 

“What are you, the three musketeers?” said Polly.

 

“Oh, no, no, this was an accident,” said Danny.

 

“Don’t deny it Ford,” said Rex. “We’ve got a connection.”

 

“Flaunt it sistah!” said Stabilo, posing with a vapid expression on his face.

 

“You are such a freak Stabilo,” said Polly, rolling her eyes. Adrianna giggled.

 

While the rest of them exchanged greetings, Kris walked up to the front desk, enjoying the sound her Manolo clogs were making on the hardwood floor. “Excuse me, I’m here to sign up. My name is Kristina Covey.”

 

“Oh hello darling, welcome to Prep Camp,” smiled the lady behind the desk. She was dressed in a green and white uniform and was a little too perky for Kris’ liking. “Just give me a second, I’ll be right back with your file.” She walked into the office behind her, humming to herself.

 

“Krissstinaaaaa…” hissed someone behind her ear. Kris yelped.

 

“Jesus Rex, don’t do that!” Rex laughed and hugged her.

 

“Nice to see you too. I like how you just ignored us back there. Something we did?”

 

“Well…” Kris looked at Stabilo, who was being introduced to Adrianna. Rex followed her gaze.

 

“Hey, he didn’t know. Still doesn’t know. Cut him some slack. He’s not telepathic.”

 

“I know. It just… you know…”

 

“I know.” Kris looked at Rex and managed a small smile.

 

“That’s my girl. If you ever feel like talking, you know, woman to man, I’m here.”

 

“Thanks.”

 

“Kristina? Here’s your file. You’re in Cabin 2A. The map is easy to follow, and there are signposts all over the campsite, so it shouldn’t be too hard. If you get lost, don’t be afraid to ask.”

 

“Oy, trust me, we’ve all been trying to get her to overcome that fear for years,” said Rex. Kris socked him on the arm. “Ow! Jeez, you hit hard.”

 

“I know.”

 

“What cabin did you get?” asked Polly as they approached.

 

“2A”

 

“Oh that’s right across mine.”

 

“I thought you guys requested a cabin together,” said Danny.

 

“Yeah, we did. Fat lot of good that did,” said Adrianna. “Come on Kris, let’s get going. I’m dying to explore, and you need to take your shoes off and change into something you can walk in.” Everyone looked at Kris’ feet.

 

“What? Come on, I like my Manolos.”

 

“Are you sure you weren’t born with them on?” asked Stabilo, and everyone laughed. “I bet you anything that her first words were ‘ Ma-no-lo Blah-nik’,” he said in a high-pitched voice. Kris made a face at him.

 

“Unlikely. Come on guys.” They started walking and Rex grabbed her hand.

 

“Hey. Once you’re done unpacking, there’s something I want to show you.”

 

“I’ll text you.”

 

“See you then.” The girls waved goodbye to the boys and began heading towards the cabins.

 

“What did you pack in this K.C?” asked Adrianna. “You know we get one weekend to go home right?”

 

“Yeah dude, we’re not required to build our own cabins. Feels like you’ve got bricks and cement in here.”

 

“Oh give me that,” said Kris and thrust her handbag into Polly’s chest. She took both suitcases from her friends. They took a few minutes to reach the girls cabins, calling out and waving to friends as they walked.

 

“There are so many people here,” said Polly. “No wonder they can’t take everyone in.”

 

“Yeah, apparently, Briarcrest is the place to be this year,” said Adrianna.

 

“Why?” said Polly and Kris in unison.

 

“Well, for some people, the revamped arts department is a huge attraction, and for others the fact that Briarcrest offers sure fire entry to the top science-y universities is definitely a plus point. Also, given that it’s really easy to get internships at big shot companies if you’re at Briarcrest and the fact that you’ve got the hottest people helps. Everyone wants to be associated with the best.”

 

“You sound like you ate one of our ads,” said Kris.

 

 

“Well, it doesn’t help if you could potentially get kicked out of a school you’ve been attending for the past two years just because someone better came along,” said Polly. Adrianna shrugged.

 

“C’est la vie, ma cherie. It’ll get better. This is your stop K.C. Why don’t you just leave your suitcase in there and come for a walk with us after this?”

 

“I told Rex that I’d see him after this, so maybe after that?”

 

“Okay. By the way, we’re going for dinner with the guys,” said Polly, hauling one of Kris’ suitcases up the steps with Adrianna. “You’re okay with Stabilo being there right? I mean, we can eat separately if you want.”

 

“No, it’s fine. I’m fine. I will be fine. It’s all good.” Polly and Adrianna looked at her.

 

“You know, it’s when you start babbling that we should be worried. Are you sure? Because I’m serious about the whole not eating with them bit.”

 

“I’m sure. Now you guys go do whatever. I’ll call you.”

 

“Kay.”

 

“Bye.” Kris waved at them and dragged her suitcases into the cabin. There was one other occupant in the four-man room, a blonde girl who was sitting cross-legged on her bed and texting someone. “Hey,” said Kris, stopping at the bed next to her.

 

“Hey,” said the girl. Kris lifted one of her suitcases onto the bed and opened it.

 

“I’m Kris, from Briarcrest. You?”

 

The blonde looked up. “Kris?” Kris turned around.

 

“Samara?”

 

“Kris!”

 

“Sam! Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god!” Both girls shrieked as they hugged each other and calmed down only when they threatened to fall off the bed. “Oh my god, Sam, it’s you, it’s really you! How’ve you been? I mean, it’s like you disappeared off the face of the earth! Oh my god, I can’t believe it’s you…”

 

Samara Wells grinned, her eyes twinkling in the way that was so familiar to Kris. “I was in Terra. I’m sorry I didn’t keep in touch, there’s an explanation for it, I swear, but I’ll tell you when we have time later. Please don’t be mad at me.”

 

“Of course I’m not gonna be mad! I missed you too much. So are you back now, or what?”

 

“Yeah, back for good in Cordonbridge, and if I don’t get into Briarcrest, then I’ll be going to Forest Hill.”

 

“Ew, really?”

 

“Yeah, it’s either that or Woodstock, and honestly…”

 

“Yeah, I get your point.” Kris got off Samara’s bed and went back to hers.

 

“Need any help unpacking?”

 

“Well, if you’re offering…” Samara laughed and unzipped Kris’ second suitcase.

 

“Jeez Kris, you do know that we get a weekend to go home, right?”

 

“That’s what Adrianna said. Remember her? Adrianna Michel from Charity Moore? She’s here too.”

 

“Oh yeah, she was friends with Desiree Camden, right? I heard about what happened, was it really as horrible as it seemed?”

 

“Well, deaths are never nice are they? I think that’s why Ade wants to move schools.”

 

“Yeah, I get that.”

 

As the two girls caught up and unpacked, the door opened and two girls walked in, one with short brown hair and a bright yellow suitcase, and another with red hair and very pale skin. Kris and Samara looked up and said hello before returning to their conversation. A split second later, they did a double take, only to find that the girls were staring at them too.

 

“Well,” said the redhead after a long pause. “This is gonna be interesting.”

 

 

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