Though all the girls were nine (well, Bebe was ten now) they always seemed to find new ways to act older.
This was the exact reason Wendy now sat in Tweek Bros Coffee with her friends, a drink in front of her which didn't taste that good, but that had cost a quarter of her weekly allowance. Hot chocolate would taste better, but it was seen as childish. It was common knowledge that something was wrong with the actual coffee from Tweek Bros- just look at what it had done to their son. Wendy didn't know exactly whose idea it was to come here, but lattes seemed like something career women in movies and TV would drink, so that's what all the girls ordered.
Maybe career women had didn't have taste buds. At least fictional ones.
Wendy and her friends sat in a cluster of chairs. Spread out on the table among cups and plates of sweets, were various fashion magazines that left Wendy worried. Sex tips for the bedroom, and the announcement that long layered hair (a pair of scissors had never touched Wendy's hair all her life) and warm colors were in for fall. But maybe Wendy had her own doubting morals about femininity, since if she glanced down she knew her purple jacket coordinated with a color palette of black hair, pale skin and blue eyes.
Cool palette. She was the ice princess. No joke, the compact in her purse was named Ice Princess. It was a semi nice, politically correct term for bitch. Maybe it suited her.
Labels she might have picked up didn't bother Wendy; not anymore. Neither did knowledge of fashion, since it was a silly interest. She was far more worried fashion was all her friends had been discussing lately. But she'd play along and pretend, as a smart realistic career woman.
She bypassed all the magazines and grabbed for a newspaper, opening it up to analyze the articles and trying to block out her friend's conversations and prevent her own distaste from becoming visible.
"And so I think we should all start wearing red lipstick to school." Red was explaining.
"Ah, my mom still won't let me wear any make up. Says I'm too young." Annie said, looking down and taking another drink of her latte.
"Silly, you put it on before school and wash it off when you get home. Nobody's moms allow them to wear makeup, except Bebe's." Heidi smirked, elbowing Annie in the side.
"That's because of my mom's job. But Wendy's mom also lets her wear makeup, right, Wendy?" Bebe asked, looking at her best friend.
Wendy peeked over the paper, reaching for an intellectual subject. "Did you know, they're awarding the Nobel prizes out right now?"
"What does that have to do with anything?" Red asked.
"I don't know." Wendy's cheeks colored as she put the paper back up. "I wanted to change the subject. Discuss what was going on in the world."
"Oh, did you hear Lancôme makeup will now be available at the mall in South Park? That's news, it's from France." Heidi spoke up as the other girls nodded in agreement.
"That's not what I meant." Wendy grumbled from behind the newspaper.
"You don't need to make up excuses to talk about your boyfriend and his friends." Red said with a little laugh.
"What do you mean? I wasn't going for that." Wendy sighed as she let the paper slip down into her lap.
"Well your boyfriend's on the front page of the paper." Annie pointed out.
Wendy whipped back to the front page of the paper. A photograph of Stan and his friends covered in spaghetti from a recent botched adventure in Italy. "Well look at that." She sighed.
"The only thing more fun to talk about than fashion is boys." Red spoke up. "You should check out this guy. He's hot I swear, I just need to find a better picture." Red quickly started browsing through her phone.
"You're awfully lucky to be dating a boy like Stan." Annie said quietly before taking another deep drink from her coffee cup.
"I guess." Wendy shrugged. "But that wasn't the point either. This is another reminder of how we're stuck here in this town, drinking these terrible drinks and wasting our youth and intellect when there is so much going on in the world."
The other girls sat in silence looking just at her. Maybe Wendy's ice princess stigma would bite her in the ass once again, or worse, her makeup compact would open in her purse and spill all over her belongings. The latter would be a major problem to her friends.
Finally Bebe spoke up, pushing her plate away from her."Well, that's why you're important to this group, Wendy. You're here to remind us of stuff like this."
"What are you saying? You're happy here doing nothing?" Wendy said.
"I wouldn't say happy, I have to keep myself in check. But you're there to guide us into a better direction." Bebe said smoothly, gathering the magazines into a neat pile.
"She's right. You're always the one to point out causes and important stuff." Red smiled as she put her phone back in her purse.
"It's probably the reason you're the only one who can date anyone from that group of boys." Annie said before looking away again.
"But one question; you really don't like your coffee?" Heidi asked.
"No I don't. I think it's gross. I'm not sure why I ordered it." Wendy sighed, placing the newspaper next to her hardly touched coffee.
Bebe also pushed her cup away next to her plate. "You know, I thought I was the only one who wasn't enjoying it. Glad you pointed it out, Wendy."
"God, I drank practically the whole thing! I thought everyone else liked it." Annie gagged as indeed, her coffee cup was the only one empty.
Wendy shook her head sympathetically. "I'm sorry. You girls want to order a round of hot chocolate, instead?"
"Yeah, isn't hot chocolate from Switzerland?" Red asked, as she started to gather the cups on the tray they had come on.
"Isn't that where the Nobel prizes are handed out?" Bebe said as she got up and grabbed her purse.
"Actually they're handed out in Sweden. I'd normally hold back from saying that, no one wants to hear know-it-all stuff." Wendy said, helping Red gather the cups.
"I always want to hear it, I promise." Bebe said as she put her hand briefly on Wendy's shoulder, before she headed off to the counter to make their order.
Wendy sat back and sighed. She knew speaking up was always the right thing to do. Genuine appreciation from her friends warmed her in a far more pleasant way than hot drinks, the false look of blush from makeup or embarrassment ever would.
Ice Princess was a silly color scheme after all.
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