Title: An Afternoon in the Garden
Pairing: Gelphie, although not really. Just Galinda and Elphaba in a sort of friend-ish sense.
“But everyone else is busy!” Galinda sighed, exasperated.
“I don’t understand why you won’t just go by yourself,” Elphaba replied, glancing at her roommate while she turned the page.
“And I don’t understand why you’re so set on staying inside! You could just as easily read outside in the garden!”
That wasn’t exactly true. There was something about Galinda that Elphaba found wholly distracting. It irked her that she seemed powerless when it came to reasoning with the other girl. She wasn’t used to this.
“Fine,” she relented, finally, shutting her book and getting to her feet.
Galinda grinned, pleased with herself for winning this little argument. Truthfully, she hadn’t asked anyone else to study with her in the garden. She had, as of late, become entirely…bored with her friends. And she suspected they (or at the very least, Pfannee) were becoming bored with her as well. It had come to Galinda’s attention that their conversations usually wound up on Elphaba, and it was usually her own doing. She found the green girl more and more intriguing as time went on.
“Galinda!” Elphaba said, staring at the blonde, who had been staring off into space for a good two minutes.
Blushing, Galinda ducked her head and busied herself with gathering her things. That was another thing. Lately, she’d caught herself daydreaming like this, almost incessantly about Elphaba. She shook her head, blonde curls bouncing, and followed Elphaba out of Crage Hall.
They settled on a blanket in the grass at the edge of the garden, in a silence that was not altogether uncomfortable.
Elphaba removed a book from her bag and opened it, but didn’t read. She kept glancing up at Galinda, whose legs were tucked under her and whose hair seemed to literally glow in the sunlight.
“So tell me, Miss Elphaba, what are you reading? Surely, your homework has been done for weeks,” Galinda began, not taking her eyes off the parchment before her.
“A book on Animal History,” Elphaba replied, surprised that Galinda was actually making conversation that wasn’t about herself.
“I admire you, you know.” Galinda finally looked up from her work and met Elphaba’s gaze steadily. “You’re so dedicated.”
“You’re dedicated as well,” Elphaba countered, unsure of how to react to the compliment.
“To buildings,” Galinda pointed out, smiling. “A lot of good that’ll do.”
Elphaba laughed, leaning back on her hands.
“The plight of the animals won’t be altered by my dedication, however strong.”
The blonde seemed to consider this.
“I don’t know. Look at the Wizard. He’s only one man, and look at everything he’s done.”
“You’re comparing me to the Wizard?”
Shrugging, Galinda opened her fan and waved it lazily.
“He was just a man before all of the…politics.”
“I can hardly believe that he was ever “just a man”,” Elphaba insisted.
“Maybe not,” Galinda relented. “But you’re not just some girl, either.”
Elphaba blinked, attempting to decipher the other girl’s words.
“What I mean, Elphaba, is that your dedication and your sorcery skills already set you apart.”
“My sorcery is hardly the reason that I’m ‘set apart’ as you so kindly put it.”
“Come off it,” Galinda admonished, still smiling.
There was a glint in her eye Elphaba had never seen, and for once, it seemed the other girl was speaking her mind without focusing on propriety.
“Galinda, you cannot honestly tell me that my single-mindedness and magic abilities are the first things you noticed,” she challenged.
“Honestly, Elphie, despite your…unusual colouring, I was more intimidated by your intensity.”
Elphaba was stunned, although she wasn’t entirely convinced.
“You don’t generally giggle and poke fun at people you find intimidating.”
“That was a bit childish, wasn’t it? But that’s what I mean! That’s how young girls act, usually, isn’t it?”
“You’re not normal, Galinda,” Elphaba informed her.
Galinda looked mildly offended.
“What do you mean?”
“Well, you’re here now, with me, aren’t you?”
After a brief pause, Galinda huffed.
“And if you were a ‘usual young girl’, you’d be with ShennShenn and Pfannee and Milla deciding how best to ruin my non-existent reputation, rather than out in the garden studying with me.”
“There is a difference,” Elphaba pointed out, “between being ‘normal’ and pretending to be.”
“It is hotter out here than I thought. Studying inside is a better idea. I’ll see you at supper,” Galinda said abruptly, gathering her things and departing in the general direction of the library.
Elphaba sighed and lay back on the blanket, studying the sky. Galinda could be so…aggravating. But at the same time, Elphaba found herself unable to let go.
Halfway across the grounds, Galinda paused to sit on a bench and gather her thoughts. She was similarly perplexed by her own reaction to Elphaba. Why had her roommates comment upset her so?
And then the answer struck her, and as much as she wanted to dismiss it, she couldn’t, because as usual, Elphaba was absolutely right.