A Mountain Adventure

Chapter Two: The Tension Mounts

Topaz' Narrative
Oooh brother. What on earth have we let ourselves in for now?
In all honesty I had no idea that having Sirena along on this trip would make Syl come out so catty. She can be stubborn as hell and snide into the bargain sometimes, but she's also one of the sweetest, most generous people I know, so why she can't just let the rivalry with Sirena go is beyond me. It's been a long time now since we were signed to rival companies and technical and literal foes in the music world. We made our peace long ago...at least, Copper, Nancy and I did. Syl's my best friend, but I hope she's not going to cause trouble just because she thinks she has the moral high ground this week.
It did seem at first though that she'd taken in Copper's message, and she didn't mention anything more about Sirena's being in the chalet...at least for a while, anyhow. When Copper offered to cook for the whole group she even offered her help, and Nancy coaxed Sirena out of her room to join the rest of us. I suppose it is a bit strange, if you think about it, to have Jewel and Sirena sharing a chalet. Fine, there may be peace now and Sirena and Nancy may have done music together, but there is still a whole 'past' to come to grips with, and I suppose it's that which bugs Syl the most. Looking at things from Sirena's point of view though, speaking as someone who's estranged from her mother, I guess I can understand a little why she went to the lengths that she did to get Phyllis to notice her. At the end of the day, we all need a mother to look up to.
Copper is a damn good cook, in case anyone didn't already know it, and even with the limited resources she managed to cook us all a decent hot meal, which we all needed after leaving the California heat for snowy Vermont, believe me. Harvey told us before we left that there was a general store about half a mile's drive down the mountain and I volunteered to go down there tomorrow to pick up some stuff for the rest of the week's needs. Since Copper and Nancy are novice skiers, they'll need more practice on the slopes!
Sirena didn't say much about her skiing. Actually, she didn't say much at all. She seemed distant and uncomfortable...I wonder if something was bugging her?

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"You know, Copper, if you weren't a drummer you could be a chef." Nancy remarked, setting down her fork. "I'm stuffed."
"Hey, I helped with the potatoes." Sylva pointed out, as Copper blushed.
"It's true, she did." She acknowledged. "I'm glad you liked it, though. There wasn't much to work with...tomorrow we'll have to shop."
"I'll go." Topaz grinned. "Syl can give you and Nancy your first ski lesson up on the slopes, then."
"Ooh, sounds scary." Copper pretended to look frightened, and Sylva laughed.
"It's not so hard, really, Copper. And you're in safe hands...Anna and I were skiing from when we were eight or nine and then we used to go all the time. I know what I'm doing."
"There's a first for everything." Nancy said dryly. Sylva just stuck out her tongue.
"What're your plans for tomorrow, Sirena?" Topaz cast the singer a friendly smile. Sirena looked startled, then she frowned.
"Dunno." She admitted. "I guess I'm gonna explore a little...get the idea of the area."
"Want to come help me stock up on supplies?" Topaz didn't know what possessed her to ask it, but something about the wistful, distant look in the older girl's eyes suggested that the singer was feeling left out of things. Sirena stared.
"You need her help?" Sylva raised an eyebrow.
"She didn't ask you, Sylvina." Sirena's tones were icy cold. She turned to Topaz, smiling. "Okay. I'll come. Two is quicker than one, right?"
"Yes." Topaz nodded her head, inwardly hoping she hadn't gotten herself into trouble, for Sylva's brows were knitted together in a petulant scowl. "And it helps also to have more than one opinion on the kind of food we buy. You're not vegetarian, are you?"
"No." Sirena shook her head. A wry smile touched her lips. "Growing up at the Foundation generally meant you eat what you were given when you were given it, or don't eat at all. I'm not fussy with my food."
"I am." Nancy admitted. "I always have been. But then, Topaz should know my tastes well enough by now."
"No fish, nothing too milky, no nut roasts..." Topaz listed them off with a laugh. "That covers it mainly, huh? But Nance, it might be a case of whatever we can find. We don't know how much this store has to offer, after all."
"Okay, I guess I can suffer a while." Nancy winked. "It's cool, Topaz. I can manage for a week on gross food if I have to."
"Well, if you make me cook, then that's what you'll get." Topaz grinned.
"Which is why we're getting Copper to cook." Sylva put in with a nonchalant shrug.
"I'm not cooking every day!" Copper exclaimed. She cast Sirena an interested look. "Sirena, do you cook?"
"Copper, I live in my own apartment with an eight month old baby to support. Of course I cook." Sirena responded, though her tone belied the confrontational nature of her words. "And sure, I'll cook one or two nights if people..." She sent Sylva a pointed look at this juncture, "Want me to."
"I'd rather starve than eat anything you make." Sylva flared up immediately, but Topaz put a hand on her arm.
"Syl, remember..." She said warningly. Sylva rolled her eyes.
"She began it!" She protested. Sirena laughed.
"You know, temper tantrums at the dinner table are a classic cry for attention." She said sweetly. "Michael tries it a lot."
"Don't you compare me to your stupid brat, and don't come the mother with me!" Sylva exclaimed, getting to her feet and ignoring Topaz's beseeching look. Sirena shrugged.
"Truth hurts." She said with a shrug. "And I wouldn't say Michael was the biggest brat around, would you?"
Sylva let out a cry of frustration, and she would've lunged for the singer had Topaz not realised what was on her mind and grabbed her arm, forcibly pulling her out of the dining room. Once the two girls were gone, shutting the door behind them, Copper sent Sirena a pleading look.
"Please, don't." She begged. "We have to live here too this week, and it's not going to be easy for any of us if you two are sniping. It's worse than Nancy and Syl - that's usually playful banter these days."
"Well, I'm sorry, Copper, but I'm not going to be spoken to like that from a jumped up spoiled brat like Sylva." Sirena shrugged. "You guys have to like her, you live with her and work with her. Me, well, I don't do either, and I don't like people easily. I say what I think...deal with it."
"Em, Copper's right." Nancy put in hesitantly. "Syl drives me mad sometimes too, but this week we are kinda too confined to argue like this every night. It's not good for any of us."
Sirena sighed, rubbing her temples.
"Guess not." She said quietly. "I can't say I'm sorry, I'm not sorry. She deserved what I gave her and more...damn her if she raises her hand to me I'll show her what kind of girl survives growing up my way. But...Oh hell, I don't know. Guess I'll try and give her a wide berth. Okay? That do you?"
"Yeah, guess it'll have to." Copper and Nancy exchanged looks. "If you go shopping with Topaz tomorrow that'll give you a break from each other. Surely you can't hate her that much?"
"Listen, Copper...Sylva is precisely the kind of girl I have no time for." Sirena fixed the drummer with an unreadable look. "She's prissy and spoiled and shallow and she's had everything in life bestowed upon her by her adoring Mommy and Daddy. And yes, I do hate her that much, probably quite as much as she loathes me. We're not compatible and I've no desire to make us be compatible...it'd require a concession on my part that really, I don't think she's worth making for."
She got to her feet. "I'm gonna go to my room and read...thanks for the dinner, Copper."
Then she was gone.
Copper let out her breath in a rush.
"Woo." She observed. "That was bitter."
"She;s wound up." Nancy said, her expression troubled. "That's old Sirena, Copper...the Emily we met that day outside Misfit Music when we began Jewel, when she pretty much swore her blood feud. Since Mike was born she's not been so fierce but, gee, I dunno. I think she meant what she said about roughing Syl up if Syl gives her due cause."
"Me too." Copper bit her lip. "That'd be one hell of a press scandal, if nothing else. We can't let it happen...we can't let them come to blows."
"So we have to make sure they're never alone together." Nancy decided. "Hell, how hard can that be?"
Along the corridor, unaware of the discussion in the diningroom, a sulky Sylvina was being well reprimanded by her bandmate along the same lines.
"I just dont get this with you." Topaz concluded. "You can be so sweet, Syl, and you've always been there for me when I've been upset or confused or whatever. I don't understand how you can be that nice Sylvina I've been best pals with almost from day one of my Jewel career, and then be the utter...well, I'm sorry to say it, but brat you were being in there! What did Copper say about being the better person?"
"She gets under my skin." Sylva muttered. "Look, I'm sorry I lost my temper, okay? But the witch deserved someone to put her in her place and I'm not gonna be spoken to like that by her of all people. She does it again and I'll slap her."
"And be splashed all over the gossip rags t'boot." Topaz said pointedly. Sylva sighed.
"Okay, okay. I get the point." She said irritably. Topaz eyed Sylva thoughtfully, then hugged her friend.
"Listen, you're my best pal." She told her with a smile. "And that isn't going to change. And before you say it, I know you're put out that I asked Sirena to come shop with me, but it's done now and it gets her out of your hair tomorrow, right?"
"I guess it does." Sylva sighed. "I'm sorry, Topaz. I hate that girl but I didn't mean to drag you into it."
"Well then, good." Topaz winked. "We'll say no more, okay? I'm gonna go fish out my reading book, then I'm going to take an early night I think. Tomorrow's gonna be a busy day!"

Chapter One: War Cries
Chapter Two: The Tension Mounts
Chapter Three: A Shopping Trip
Chapter Four: On The Slopes
Chapter Five: Catastrophe!
Chapter Six: Buried
Chapter Seven: Back At The Lodge
Chapter Eight: A Surprising Conversation
Chapter Nine: Rescue Mission
Chapter Ten: A Glimmer Of Hope
Chapter Eleven:  LAX

Copper, Nancy, Sylva, Anna, Blade, Raesha, Sirena, Topaz, Aaron, Sophie, Justin, Elliot, Rosita Madeleine, Marissa, Luca, Stefana, Clay, Luis and any other characters in this fiction which do not appear in the animated Jem series are copyrighted to me (E.A Woolley) as of January 2002 <unless otherwise specified> and are not to be reproduced without permission ANYWHERE. Jetta, Pizzazz, Stormer, Roxy, Raya and all other original Jem characters are the copyright of Hasbro Inc, Sunbow, Christy Marx and the other writers of the Jem series. The future world of Pizzazz, Raya, Jetta, Roxy, Stormer, Clash, Synergy, the fate of Jem and her memorial are all copyrighted to me. The future world of Kimber and Shana is copyrighted jointly to myself and Gemma Dawn.
The concept of 'Jewel' is entirely my own, and any apparent link with any fictional or actual person or persons of this name is entirely coincidental. Equally the characters in this fiction are not based on any real life individual.
The concept behind the future world of Danse, Aja and Craig, the idea behind Jerrica's futureworld and the split of the Holograms is copyrighted to Gemma Dawn, whose Teenangel Outsiders fiction is directly twinned with Just a Dream. The character Sammi and any of the other Teenangel Outsider characters mentioned in this fiction are entirely copyright to Gemma Dawn and appear here only with her permission.
Pay her page a visit!

The concept of RayzaBlade is copyrighted to my sister Elena...^_^ (Yeah, blame her!)