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do it like a brother (do it like a dude)

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There are many surprises in store for Anna Popplewell at the premiere of The Silver Chair. After all, it's been quite a long time since she's seen some of the Narnia cast and crew, and there are a few things that have changed. The main thing is how much older the younger ones look—she's amazed by the maturity of Skandar, now in his early twenties and his third year at Cambridge, and Will Poulter is nineteen and looks almost completely different to the last time she saw him.

And as for Georgie—there are almost too many things about Georgie to take in at once. Firstly, Anna's always been suspicious that Georgie might grow an inch or two whenever she's not looking, but tonight Georgie's not even wearing heels (and Anna is) and she still seems to tower over her. It's overwhelming.

Another thing that startles her is that Georgie is wearing a suit. She looks so different that Anna almost doesn't recognise her at first. Gone are the brightly-coloured mini dresses and the lacy ball gowns, the strappy flats and four-inch heels. And it doesn't look like a women's suit, either. It looks like the suits that the boys are wearing, only better—those loose black trousers on her long long legs, a shiny skinny black tie, a crisp white shirt and braces, with a perfectly-matched black jacket effortlessly slung over the top. Her shoes are patent leather black brogues, and they too look more like something a man would wear. A classic black trilby hat covers all of her hair, makes it look much shorter.

When Anna gets a little closer, she's surprised at how flat Georgie's chest is, sure that in recent years it's been larger each time she's seen her. She flushes with the realisation that she actually notices these things, and tries to stop staring, turning back to the cameras in front of her. She rests a hand on her hip, smiling, posing in her sleeveless little satin number that now feels incredibly girly. She can't help but keep shooting little glances at Georgie beside her, though, watching the way Georgie straightens her hat and slips her hands in her pockets. Last time around, her sudden tallness made her seem a little bit gangly, but now she's so elegant.

"Together, together!" calls a photographer, and others join in, gesturing frantically for the girls to stand beside each other.

Georgie turns, apparently only just noticing Anna's presence, and her face splits into a giant grin.

"Anna!" she yells, beckoning madly, and Anna finds herself blushing a little bit again as she totters over in her heels.

"Hey, you," she says, and Georgie pulls her close, sliding an arm around Anna and curling her hand on her waist.

Anna goes to do the same, but it feels awkward, she has to reach up, and so she rests her hand against Georgie's hip instead, feeling the smooth fabric of her suit against her fingers. She's just come from posing for pictures with Will, and it's a little unnerving how similar this feels. Georgie is more slender, less broad-set perhaps, but she holds Anna in much the same way as Will does, self-assured and strong.

"How've you been?" Georgie asks, speaking through her teeth as she tries to keep smiling, which makes Anna giggle.

"Good," she laughs, trying to look at her, sidelong, "I've been good. You?"

"Yep," Georgie says, and then waits a beat before looking away from the cameras, turning to Anna.

Anna turns too, on instinct, and Georgie's hands slide down to Anna's hips as she holds her at arm's length. "You look good," she says, looking her up and down. And Anna's sure this must have happened before, sure that at other functions Georgie has admired her dresses, complimented her on her hairstyle, asked if she can borrow her shoes. But right now, with Georgie's eyes raking down her body, it feels a hell of a lot different.

"Th-thank you," she stammers, and why is she blushing so much tonight? It's not like her. "You look good too." It seems silly not to acknowledge Georgie's choice of outfit, but she's not sure why. "Different," she settles for, in the end.

Georgie shrugs. Her hands slip from Anna's hips, and Anna could swear she can still feel their warmth. "Don't see why the boys are the only ones who can wear suits," she says, and then adds, "I tried to get Ben to wear a dress, but he wasn't having any of it."

She sounds so incredibly Georgie in that moment that Anna bursts out laughing, and it adds to a strange combination of feelings. She's relieved to be reminded of who Georgie is, to remember her at all the stages Anna has known her, so that it becomes easier to reconcile all those little Georgies with this gorgeous seventeen-year-old girl standing before her in a suit.

But just as quickly as recognition comes, it's whisked away again, as Georgie spots Ben a few feet away and sprints off to him, calling "Catch up in a bit, yeah?" as she goes. When she reaches him, Anna sees that they are very nearly the same height, and their silhouettes in the bright flashes of the cameras are disconcertingly similar.

**

"Georgie looks interesting," Anna says in hushed tones to Skandar as they sit down in the theatre.

"Yeah," says Skandar thoughtfully, and then—always one to cut to the chase—adds, "she kind of looks like a lesbian."

"Skandar!"

"What? She does!"

Anna finds herself blushing again, and she doesn't even know why. Her face feels hot. She's thankful that they're in the dark. "You can't just say someone 'looks like a lesbian'," she hisses, "there isn't one specific way that all lesbians look."

"Okay, okay." Anna can't see him all that clearly, but she's pretty sure he's rolling his eyes. "But come on. She's never had a boyfriend...she wears a lot of plaid...now she's wearing suits..."

"That's very weak evidence, Skandar Keynes," Anna replies.

"What are you two murmuring about?" whispers Will P., leaning over on Skandar's other side.

"Nothing," says Anna—not particularly subtly, she'll admit—at the same time as Skandar says, "Georgie's gayness."

"Georgie's what?" Will P. looks startled, and, Anna thinks (though she doesn't like to make assumptions) somewhat dismayed.

"Are you talking about Georgie's gayness?" comes Ben's voice, suddenly, from Anna's right.

"Shh!" Anna hisses. "She'll hear you."

"Who'll hear what?"

Georgie is leaning forward around Ben, grinning and looking curious. There's an awkward silence, and then—

"These opening credits are lovely," says Will, obliviously, from Georgie's other side. Anna sees Georgie patting his thigh, still grinning.

The film starts.

**

There are seven of them, now, which makes the limo ride to the afterparty just a little bit more of a tight squeeze than Anna's used to. Anna assumes that's why she's feeling the way she is, anyway, as Georgie clambers in and ends up almost sitting on top of her.

She takes her hat off, plucks out a few hairpins and suddenly her gorgeous auburn hair is cascading over her shoulders in loose shiny waves. She runs her fingers through it, shaking her head, and then turns and grins at Anna. Anna is—quite frankly—dazzled.

"This is cosy," Georgie says, laughing.

"Where's the champagne?" Skandar asks, and Anna turns to look at him, but she can still feel Georgie smiling at her.

"Here!" Will calls, passing him a huge bottle.

Even after a good minute or so of Skandar fiddling with the wire around the cork, though, he doesn't seem to have gotten anywhere.

"Pathetic," Will tuts, grabbing it back. He strains and pulls at the cork, the others watching in anticipation, but still no progress.

"Oh my god," Georgie groans eventually, "give it here."

And to everyone's surprise, the baby of the gang is yanking the cork free almost immediately with a quick jerk of her wrist, a pop bursting out and champagne spilling across the floor.

"I loosened it for you," Will mutters, mostly to himself, holding out his glass reluctantly.

Georgie's now the only one of them who's still unable to drink legally, but while they always used to feel a little bit naughty for giving her a small glass of bubbly at the premieres, now it hardly seems to matter. She sips at the champagne just as comfortably as the rest of them.

"You okay?" she murmurs to Anna, licking her lips.

They turn a corner, and she slides closer.

"Yeah, yeah," Anna replies, but even to her own ears she sounds flustered. She takes a gulp of her own champagne.

Maybe, she thinks hopefully, this is just a momentary lapse in her sanity. Maybe once they're out of this small enclosed space, she'll be able to stop having these feelings and all will be right with the world again.

**

This turns out not to be the case. At all.

The afterparty seems to intensify her feelings—whatever these feelings are—as she watches Georgie drink (mostly Ben's beer), and dance (mostly with other girls), and then take breaks from dancing by sitting down in a very stereotypically masculine way with her legs open, and all the while she's wearing that suit, and whenever she comes into view Anna can't take her eyes off her.

She can't do much of anything, actually, spending the first half of the night slumped next to Skandar and complaining at him. After a while, Will comes over, and Anna is suspicious of the timing of this—Skandar was just texting surreptitiously a moment ago, and she has the feeling he was sending an S.O.S. for someone to take over as Anna's shoulder to panic on.

"Anna's having a sexuality crisis," Skandar informs Will. "She wants some girl-on-girl action."

Will frowns in bemusement, and then there's a sudden flash of realisation across his face. He looks back at the crowd behind him, spotting Georgie and pointing at her, looking between her and Anna several times. Then, for good measure, he exclaims, "With Georgie?"

He sits down on Skandar's other side, and looks at him, wide-eyed, waiting for elaboration.

But Skandar just shrugs. "She's wearing a suit. You know how it is when women wear suits." Anna can't tell if he's serious.

"Really, though, Anna?" Will asks. "I mean—it's Georgie."

"No. Yes. No...maybe," Anna stammers. "I don't know," she wails pathetically.

"But it's Georgie," Will stresses.

"I knowww," Anna groans, cradling her head in her hands. "Don't remind me."

"Don't you think she might be up for it?" she hears Skandar asking Will.

"I don't know," is Will's indignant response. "I don't want to think about it." He pauses for a moment—clearly thinking about it. "She has been dancing all night with—thingy, you know, the girl who plays Jill."

Skandar laughs. "You're so rude. You could at least make an effort."

"Hang on," Anna interrupts, sitting up straight again. "She has?"

"Yeah, let's get back to the real issue at hand," Skandar snorts into his champagne, "Anna's desperate struggle against her oncoming gayness."

"I say give in to it," Will says, reaching across her for Skandar's champagne glass and taking a sip, ignoring Skandar's half-hearted protests. "It's more fun that way."

"Is this really just because of The Suit?" Skandar asks. (Anna has begun to think of it with capital letters.)

"The Suit has evil, sexuality-warping powers," Anna replies helplessly.

"Tilda is wearing a suit," Will points out, "do you have massively inappropriate feelings for her tonight too?"

Anna has no time to explain the intricate—and probably not immediately obvious—differences between the two suits, and all the ways in which Will clearly doesn't understand, because at that moment she spots Georgie making her way through the crowd towards them. Anna gulps. "Give me that," she hisses, grabbing the champagne glass from Will's hand and draining it in one.

Will shakes his head in disbelief. "I still can't believe you're getting like this over Georgie," he mutters. "She's like our little sister."

"Oh, ew, don't say that," Anna groans. Skandar laughs. "In fact, don't say anything, she's coming over here."

"Hey," says Georgie, arriving in front of the three of them and hooking her thumbs through her braces in a way that makes Anna find it difficult to focus on the conversation that follows.

"Got tired of dancing with Jill?" Will asks, smirking a little.

Georgie looks at him, tilts her head on one side and frowns. "Yeah, actually."

"Well, maybe there's someone else who'd like to take her place," Skandar says, not at all subtly, even going so far as to nudge Anna with his elbow.

"Oh, really?" Georgie is grinning.

Anna feels like her body is folding in on itself. She hasn't felt like this since she was about fourteen, with a crush on that popular guy at school. One time he asked if he could copy her Geography notes, and she just went beet-red and practically crumpled into a ball. Everybody teased her for weeks. This is just like that.

Which is ridiculous.

"Sure," she says, trying to get a grasp on the situation. "Sure, I mean, if you want to."

"It would be my pleasure," says Georgie, and actually bows, ducking her head cutely and taking off her hat with a little flourish. Like a gentleman.

But she's not a gentleman. She's a seventeen year old girl, and Anna is in her mid-twenties. She's Georgie. This is absurd, and wrong, and—

Georgie is holding out her hand. Anna blushes—or maybe she's been blushing ever since Georgie showed up—and takes it, trying not to shiver at the way Georgie grasps her hand, firm and confident, leading her across the dance floor. The song that's playing is quite upbeat and poppy—Anna thinks it might possibly be by Rihanna, but she's not very good at keeping up with the charts. But of course, as soon as they come to a stop in the middle of the dance floor, the song ends, and another much slower one begins.

Anna recognises it as the song that played over the closing credits of The Silver Chair, and everybody else does too, a few people cheering and others sort of nodding in solemn recognition, holding their dancing partners close. Georgie smiles at Anna, and slides her hands around Anna's hips, pulling her closer. Anna laughs, surprised, but puts her hands on Georgie's shoulders anyway, a little awkwardly. Georgie's smile turns into a smirk, and Anna's heart pounds. Surely, surely she's not imagining this. That's definitely a smirk. She shoots an anxious look behind her through the crowd, to see Will and Skandar looking back at her, amused.

They start to sway to the music, hardly moving really, and it's so intimate and Anna feels so small, looking up at Georgie like this. It's weird—she's used to looking down at Georgie, seeing a little girl by her side. Their eyes meet, and Anna flushes, glancing behind her once again, avoiding Georgie's gaze. She's surprised—and irritated—to see that Will and Skandar have now gotten up and are holding each other too, imitating Anna and Georgie and gazing longingly into each other's eyes. Anna makes a face at them as Will pretends to swoon. She wants to give them the finger, but she really doesn't want to move her hands from Georgie's shoulders, so she just turns back, simultaneously amused and fuming.

Georgie has seen them too, and is chuckling. She pulls Anna closer, holding her, and Anna licks her lips anxiously, worried that they're being watched, wondering if people can tell this is more than just two friends dancing casually, that there's something going on here, sparking like electricity between the two of them. Her eyes are darting around the room, but Georgie's are fixed—on her. Intense. Dark, shadowed by the brim of her hat. She almost looks predatory, and oh god, Anna can't cope with that, not in any way at all, and before she knows what she's doing she's fleeing, pulling free from Georgie's embrace and rushing off across the dance floor, pushing past Will and Skandar and just panicking.

Will chases after her and manages to coax her back out of the toilets, but by this time she's mortified by her over-reaction, and her heart rate only slows down after a good few minutes of him holding her and rocking her gently back and forth (ostensibly slow dancing, despite the fact that the music's tempo has sped up by now).

"You need to get a hold of yourself," Will whispers to her when she's calmed down a bit.

"I have a hold of myself," Anna replies, mumbling into his jacket, "total hold, very secure, in control."

"That's such a lie," Will scoffs. "Whenever she looks at you, you go all woobly."

"That's not a word, William."

"It's the only word appropriate for what happens to you," he shrugs.

At that moment, Georgie looks over at them. Anna goes all woobly. Will might have a point.

"I just really—I don't know," Anna says. She's getting a bit whiny, but she doesn't care. "I have all these feelings all of a sudden."

"She's Georgie. She's seventeen. And a girl." Will pauses. "Not that I have a problem with you being with a girl. Or a seventeen year old, I suppose. But it's Georgie."

"I know, okay? It's weirder for me," Anna says, a little snappily. "I didn't ask to feel this way. If anything, it's her fault, for being so dashing and gentlemanly all night."

"Dashing and gentlemanly?"

"Shut up. I don't know. She's making my brain go all—" Anna flounders.

"Woobly," Will supplies.

"Yes." Anna sighs. "That."

She glances back over at Georgie again, who is now dancing with Ben. They're doing a sort of tango that in no way even attempts to correspond to the beat of the music playing, and Ben is wearing Georgie's hat at a rather jaunty angle as she spins him around on the dance floor.

"What am I supposed to do?" Anna whines. "I just ran away from her for no apparent reason. She's going to think I'm so weird."

"Pull yourself together!" Will commands. "You're not fourteen and she's not Tom Cowling and there are no Geography notes in sight."

Anna narrows her eyes at him suspiciously. "When did I tell you that story?"

"That's not the point," Will says, sighing in exasperation. "The point is that you need to stop worrying that she's going to think you're weird. It's Georgie."

And as much as Anna wishes people would stop saying that, Will has a point and it's kind of reassuring.

"You should probably go apologise," is Skandar's advice, his voice joining the conversation suddenly, and Anna lifts her head up off Will's chest and glances round. She sees that Skandar is dancing with Tilda beside them, in a way that can really only be described as awkward. Bless him.

"Yeah," Anna agrees, a little embarrassed about discussing this in detail now that Tilda's here.

"You could ask her if she would dance with you again," Tilda offers, in a way that suggests she knows exactly what's going on.

"Skandar," Anna sighs in frustration.

"I didn't do anything!" Skandar cries indignantly, and Anna realises that it is Tilda after all, with her uncanny way of knowing exactly what every single person in the room is up to at any given time, and usually their deeply personal feelings on the matter as well.

"Anyway, I think that's a good idea," Skandar adds.

"It's your turn to be dashing and gentlemanly," says Tilda, and Anna blushes, realising how long they must have been listening for.

"Oh, this is so embarrassing," she whinges, but disengages from Will anyway and looks out across the floor, trying to spot Georgie.

She and Ben are in an entirely different place now, apparently having danced their crazy way all the way around the room. They are now dancing in a rather different, and not entirely unobscene way. Anna sighs, straightens out her dress, runs her fingers through her hair and sets out towards them. She pauses, then, feeling eyes on her back, and turns around.

Sure enough, Will, Skandar, and Tilda are all standing staring at her intently.

"Well, you don't have to watch," she wails, shooing them with her hands, which she's pretty sure is completely ineffective.

She's not sure what the implications are of asking to dance with Georgie when she's dancing like this, but she's made her decision now. She approaches them. Ben abruptly puts a stop to his gyrating movements, and Georgie looks at Anna from behind a curtain of her hair, which is draped over her face messily from the way she's been flinging it around. She's slightly out of breath and pink in the cheeks, and Anna thinks she probably shouldn't find that as immensely attractive as she does.

She suddenly realises that the two of them are looking at her expectantly.

"Um," she says meekly, "may I cut in?"

Georgie's face lights up. She holds out her hand. "Of course you may," she grins.

Anna isn't even sure if Ben looks put-out by this, because she's too distracted by Georgie's lovely smile, and then by being wrapped in Georgie's arms, and then by her own panicked recollection that she is not a terribly good dancer. Fortunately, Georgie is taking the lead again, and she finds herself just slipping into it, comfortable and easy. Like it always used to be, giggling and dancing around together, only now she's not spinning little Georgie around under her arm, but being spun around herself, and dipped, and those sparks are back and Anna's sure Georgie can feel them too, and—well, maybe it's not much like it used to be at all.

Eventually, she grows tired, her feet aching, and she asks if they can take a break.

"Sure," Georgie grins. "Just don't disappear again."

Anna blushes—for the fifty millionth time that night—and finds herself actually skipping, foot pain be damned, over to Will, Ben, and Skandar, who are sitting at the bar.

"Having fun?" Ben asks as Anna slides into a stool. He raises his eyebrows and gives her a dirty little smirk that makes it very clear that he knows more than she thought he did.

"I was trying to keep this a secret," Anna laments. "You lot are impossible."

"Hey, I didn't tell him anything," Will says.

"Me neither," adds Skandar.

"They didn't exactly have to," Ben says gently, "I mean, all night you've been looking at her like you're Homer Simpson and she's a doughnut."

"I have not, Ben! Ew!" Anna protests.

Ben shrugs. "I didn't have time to come up with a better analogy." Then he stage-whispers, "Also, it's true," to Will and Skandar.

Anna scowls at him. "I'm not," she says firmly, "a lesbian."

"Well, I think she is, so at least one of you will know what you're doing," Ben says off-handedly, and takes a casual swig of his beer.

"I knew it!" cries Skandar triumphantly, as Anna and Will both gawk at Ben.

"She is?" they exclaim in unison.

Ben frowns at them, looking like he's concentrating very hard on something. "Is she?" he asks.

Anna throws her hands up in exasperation. "I don't know, you just said she was!"

"Ah," Ben says, "I said I think. I didn't confirm anything for sure." He looks at her as if together, they've just managed to get to the bottom of a deep mystery. "That's where the confusion lies."

"The confusion," says Anna helplessly, "lies everywhere. You can hardly move for confusion."

"If it helps," Ben says brightly, "I'm pretty sure she is. She came out to me a while ago."

For a long, long moment, there is silence. Anna, Will, and Skandar simply stare at him. Will is frowning. Anna is open-mouthed. Skandar is grinning.

"She..." says Anna, very slowly, "...what?"

"Hang on," Will chimes in, sounding hurt, "why did she tell you first? That's not fair, we've known her longer."

"That's not the point," Anna says, shushing him. "Ben, are you serious?"

"Uh huh," Ben nods. He takes another leisurely swill of beer, and then seems to notice that all three of them are staring at him, waiting. "Sorry, I didn't think it was a big deal. I thought you all knew."

Anna has no idea what to say to this, so settles for hitting him. Repeatedly.

"I'm pretty sure if someone explicitly tells you something," says Skandar, "you can confirm it, and not just say you think it's true."

Ben shrugs, and then winces as one of Anna's flailing arms hits him particularly hard.

"Anna," says Will gently, as if trying to coax a violent animal from its den, "stop attacking Ben."

Anna obeys him, but mostly just because her arms are starting to hurt.

"So," says Skandar with a yawn—apparently losing interest in the topic of Georgie's sexual preference, "it's getting late. I'm gonna head up to bed."

"Sounds good to me," Will says, and the two of them get to their feet. Ben does the same, and Anna starts to feel slightly panicky again.

"Wait, no," she says, "you can't just leave!"

"You don't want to be left alone with her?" Ben asks.

"No, I just—I don't know. Maybe."

Just then, Georgie sidles up to them. "Are you guys all going up to bed?"

"Yeah," says Will, "and you should too, missy, or you'll make us all look like a bunch of old Grandads."

Georgie rolls her eyes. "All right, fine," she sighs, and then shoots a look at Anna. "Are you going too?" She almost sounds hopeful. All Anna can manage is a nod. "Where's Will?" Georgie asks, then.

"Um, here," Will says, gesturing to himself.

"Not you, you idiot."

"I know, I know," Will teases. "He's with Jill." He laughs. "Ha. Will and Jill."

"You do know that's not her actual name, right?" Georgie asks.

"Ooh, somebody's defensive of her."

"No, we're just startled by your lack of tact," Skandar retorts, taking Will by the arm and dragging him off.

Georgie shrugs, and reaches for Ben's beer from the bar, shaking it at Ben questioningly. He nods, and she brings it to her lips, and Anna has no idea what anybody says for the next thirty seconds because she's so fixated on Georgie's lips wrapped around the rim of the bottle, and the way her throat works as she swallows. It's only when the empty bottle is being put back down on the bar and Ben and Georgie are suddenly moving that Anna is brought out of her trance, collecting herself and following the two of them out.

They chat in the lift, and it seems like old times again—even more so without the newer actors around. But then when they reach their floor, Georgie slings a casual arm around Anna's shoulder as they walk down the corridor, and Anna feels tingly and excited and young, and it all seems so strange and new that she's not sure how to cope with it. By the time she's worked up the courage to put her own arm around Georgie's hips, they've already reached the first of their hotel rooms—Georgie's and Anna's, across the hall from each other.

They all stop, hang around, chattering some more, and Anna has to admit she's the one holding the boys back, keeping the conversation going whenever it seems to wind down. She is nervous about being left alone with Georgie, especially in an empty hotel corridor. She's nervous about what might happen, and, she realises, she's worried that she might freak out and just go to her own room and call it a night, and nothing at all will happen. Because she definitely wants something to happen.

Then, interrupting Anna's internal monologue, Ben says, "Let's leave these girls alone, shall we?" with a smirk that makes her want to hit him again.

Will hesitates, clearly still not entirely on board with this—whatever this is. But Skandar is tugging at his sleeve, and he relents, goes along after Ben who is already further down the corridor.

"Hey," says Skandar, "don't do anything we wouldn't do," and he winks, and then he's gone, hurrying off after Will and Ben.

"I don't—I don't know what that was about," Anna says, flustered, and Georgie giggles.

"Oh, really?"

Anna swallows nervously, glances down the corridor again at the boys' retreating backs. It seems very quiet now that they've gone. "Yeah, they're, um—they're being weird tonight." Her voice sounds incredibly shaky, it's embarrassing. "Probably...too much to drink, you know." She tries a laugh. It sounds ridiculous. She puts the back of her hand to her forehead, feels its heat and tries to get a hold of herself.

"Have you had too much to drink?" Georgie asks, teasingly, ducking her head to try and get Anna to look her in the eye.

"N-no," Anna stammers. "I just—"

"Good," Georgie interrupts. "Because, you know, I wouldn't want to feel like I was taking advantage of you or anything."

Anna opens her mouth, realises she has no response to this, and closes it again. She goes through this process a few times before realising that she probably somewhat resembles a fish, which isn't particularly sexy. And before she has a chance to wonder when she started worrying about looking sexy in front of Georgie, she's being tugged forward, Georgie's hands on her waist.

"It's cute of you to act like this is a surprise," Georgie says, smoothing her hands down silky fabric to Anna's hips, "but I think we can admit at this point that neither of us have been very subtle tonight."

And then just like that she's kissing her, pulling her in close and pressing their lips together, soft and gentle. She draws back a little way, tilts her head on one side and studies Anna's face, and Anna watches as her lips slowly curl into a smile, and then as the smile breaks into a big toothy grin.

"Okay?" Georgie asks.

Anna grins back, overwhelmed. "Yeah," she says, and Georgie leans in again, and suddenly Anna finds herself being spun round and shoved up against the wall, and she lets out a little cry of surprise into Georgie's mouth. Georgie smiles against her lips and then flicks out her tongue, and this time the kiss is much more frantic, needy, messy, and it comes as much more of a relief than Anna thinks perhaps it should. She throws her arms around Georgie's neck, lets Georgie push ever closer until they're almost grinding into each other against the wall.

God, it's been a long time since she's been kissed like this. And she almost forgets, for a second, that it's Georgie—that it's a girl—kissing her, because it's no different to being kissed by a man, it's not softer like she thought it might be, and Georgie's definitely not being gentle. Plus, she kisses her like she knows exactly what she's doing, and for some reason that turns Anna on, makes her go pliant in Georgie's arms and relax into it, letting her take the lead.

When she feels Georgie's hand slipping around to her arse, Anna jolts in surprise, and then Georgie's groping her, like a horny teenage boy, and Anna's enjoying it, and how are these things that are actually happening? Her dress crinkles in Georgie's hands as Georgie paws at her, hand reaching up to her chest now, cupping her breast and squeezing, and Anna gasps into Georgie's mouth, half-surprise and half-excitement.

"In. Room. Now." Georgie's voice is practically a growl, and Anna finds herself slightly dazed when the younger girl pulls away to unlock her hotel room door.

She follows her into the room—slightly wobblily—and barely has a chance to glance around before she's being thrown backwards on the bed, Georgie crawling on top of her and kissing her again before she's even caught her breath.

"You know," Anna says, when Georgie decides to give her lips a break and is kissing her neck instead, sucking and nibbling at the tender skin, "I could have a boyfriend." Georgie says nothing, but she can feel her smile. "You didn't even ask if I had a boyfriend."

"Maybe I don't care if you have a boyfriend," Georgie replies, and as if to prove her point, begins unzipping Anna's dress.

Anna's heart pounds. She can't help but wonder what they're going to do—sure, she knows how lesbian sex works, but she's never really thought about it in detail and now here it is, about to happen to her, and she's not sure what to expect. It's not often she feels out of her depth, or inexperienced, but she thinks it might be as exciting as it is scary.

"Relax," says Georgie, getting the zip undone and then shoving the fabric down over Anna's breasts, and Anna bites her lip as she sees Georgie looking, just looking and admiring, for a long moment.

And then she's ducking down over her and pressing a kiss between Anna's breasts, licking right down to where the dress is bunched up around her waist before bringing her mouth to Anna's nipples, nibbling in a way that sends flashes of heat down between Anna's legs. She squirms beneath her, shudders when Georgie bites down a little harder. She can't get over the fact that Georgie seems to know exactly what she's doing. Who's she been doing this with? It's one thing to do it with Anna, but she's so young—

"I have the feeling you're not relaxing," Georgie says, almost drawling, "are you okay?"

"Yeah, oh, completely," Anna replies. "I've just—I've never done this before."

"Well, I have," says Georgie. "So at least one of us knows what we're doing," she adds with a smirk, and Anna wonders if perhaps she and Ben have been spending too much time together lately.

But then Georgie is sliding further down Anna's body, coming to rest in between her legs and easing up the skirt of her dress, and Anna is distracted.

"Did you really have to wear tights tonight?" Georgie pouts. "It's not the easiest of access."

Anna wishes Georgie would stop saying things like that. Except that actually, she doesn't. At all. "That wasn't what was on my mind when I got dressed today," she says.

"Were they expensive?" Georgie asks.

"No..." Anna replies, wondering where she's going with this.

"Would you mind terribly if you couldn't wear them again?"

"No..."

And then Georgie, satisfied, is hooking her little finger into the tiny hole in the fabric that Anna knew was there, at the top of her thigh, and tearing them open at the crotch. Anna is a little bit too stunned by this to react right away.

"Did you just—?" she manages eventually.

"Yeah," Georgie replies, and then suddenly there is a warm, firm hand between her legs, fingers pressing against the damp cotton of Anna's knickers, and all further thoughts go out of Anna's mind.

Georgie leans back down over her and rubs her like that, strokes her through the fabric, until Anna is desperate, bucking her hips up off the bed and rolling them, grinding against Georgie's hand. It's been a pretty long time since someone's touched her there, she realises, and she's not even ashamed of her own neediness, just focusing on how badly she wants to feel skin against skin and Georgie's fingers inside her.

Georgie is smiling against Anna's neck, her other hand stroking Anna's breast, teasing the nipple back and forth between thumb and forefinger. Eventually, she relents, fumbling to get her hand inside Anna's knickers, and then Anna feels it—Georgie's fingertips, against her clit in an instant, rubbing in sure little circles that Anna's hips echo as she gasps out loud. And then Georgie's fingers slide lower, and she eases one inside, slick and slow. She starts to thrust it, gaining speed, and Anna hears her own heart pounding in her ears. This is Georgie. Georgie, Georgie, Georgie.

"Yeah?"

Oh. Anna did not realise she was saying that out loud.

"Nothing, no, don't stop," she whimpers, and Georgie grins, pushes another finger inside of her and brings the heel of her hand over Anna's clit, presses it there as she works at her with her fingers.

She seems to do it just the way Anna does it to herself, like she somehow knows, and Anna wonders if girls are just generally better at this because they have the same equipment, or if it's just Georgie. Either way, she may never have a boyfriend again. She's coming in mere minutes, thrusting her hips up to meet Georgie's hand and going still like that, whole body taut. Then she's slumping back, weak and breathless.

"Good?" Georgie asks, looking somewhat proud of herself.

"So good," Anna confirms, waving her arms around vaguely. "Like...I can't even think of the words."

"I will take that as a compliment," Georgie grins. Her hand is still inside Anna's knickers. "Can I take these off?"

Anna's not sure she's ready to go again just yet, but she nods and lays back as Georgie undresses her, starting with her shoes and then peeling down her torn tights and wet knickers, smoothing her hands over the bare skin of Anna's legs when she's done. Anna still feels pretty dishevelled, now only wearing her dress which is both pushed up and pulled down. Georgie seems to have the same thought, settling down beside her and reaching for it. Anna sits up, and the two of them pull it over her head together, and that's when Anna realises that now she is entirely naked while Georgie is still entirely clothed. And that's pretty weird. But—well, she can't quite imagine undressing Georgie, not the way Georgie just undressed her, all subtle confidence and like she really, really wanted to see Anna naked.

Not that Anna doesn't want to see Georgie naked. She's just not sure if she can be the one to make that happen. And then what if Georgie expects her to do something more—again, not an idea she's entirely opposed to, but also not something she's sure she can do.

She realises that throughout this train of thought, she's been gazing somewhat wistfully at Georgie, who is now smiling fondly at her.

"Do you want more?" Georgie asks.

Anna looks at her. "Are you serious? Why is that even a question?"

Georgie laughs. "I thought you might be too tired," she replies with a shrug, and then says, "hang on," and hops off the bed suddenly.

"Nooo, where are you going?" Anna whines, which is probably a little shameless.

"Just a second," Georgie shushes her, and Anna sees her grab something from her open suitcase before disappearing into the bathroom.

She doesn't shut the door, but ducks around the corner so Anna can't see her. Anna throws herself back down on the bed, face-first into a pillow, with a sigh of frustration. A moment later she hears a gentle creak of floorboards, but by the time she's lifted up her head, Georgie is clambering back onto the bed, crawling up over Anna's legs and leaving trails of kisses up the sensitive skin of the back of her thigh. Anna squirms. She can feel that Georgie is naked, or at least more naked than she was before.

"Well," she says, "hello again. What was that abou—"

And then she feels something against her thigh that is definitely not Georgie's mouth, or her fingers for that matter. And then she feels Georgie parting her legs a little, and she feels it there, just gently stroking at her, a soft, slick something, firm and rounded where it rubs against her. She lets out a sigh, and her hips lift up almost automatically. She cranes her head round, and sees Georgie kneeling there behind her wearing nothing but some frayed white bandages wrapped tightly over her breasts and a black harness slung low on her hips.

Anna realises that what's touching her between her legs right now is what's sticking out of that harness, and says "oh," in a small voice.

She's not sure why, but she's a little nervous again all of a sudden. She's never—obviously, she thinks—done this. And maybe it's no different whether it's a real penis or a fake one, but at least guys have had penises all their lives and know what to do with them. Georgie, however, is a seventeen year old girl, a rather clumsy one at that, and Anna's not sure she wants her poking large phallic things in delicate places.

Then again, she was unbelievable with her fingers. Perhaps Anna's underestimating her.

"It's okay," Georgie murmurs.

She doesn't add, I've done this before, but it's heavily implied. After all, Anna realises, why would she own a strap-on dildo and bring it places in her suitcase if she didn't have a fairly large amount of experience? It's still a completely mind-mangling thought as far as Anna's concerned, but right now it's kind of comforting, too.

"You okay?" Georgie asks, then, her voice soft and concerned, at Anna's silence. She runs her hand down Anna's back, making her shiver.

"Y-yeah," Anna replies shakily.

"Sorry if this is going too fast," Georgie says. She drops her voice. "I just...I really want to fuck you."

Anna grins at that, shaking her head in disbelief and embarrassment, burying her face in the pillow again for a moment. She can't believe Georgie just said that. To her. She also can't quite believe her own reaction to it. The dildo is still gently pressing against her, and she feels herself pulsing against it. God, she wants it inside her. She wants Georgie to fuck her.

She wonders how to articulate this. "Thssokywvme," she goes with, in the end, momentarily forgetting that her face is still covered in pillow.

Georgie laughs. "Pardon?"

Anna lifts her head up and tries to get her face to return to a more normal colour. "That's okay with me," she repeats.

"Oh," says Georgie, and Anna can hear the smile in her voice as she reaches around Anna's hips and hitches them up. "Oh, good."

And when Anna manages to look behind her, she sees Georgie's pale little fingers wrapping themselves around the base of the dildo, and then guiding it, and she feels it pushing inside her, feels her own body giving way to it, letting Georgie inside. Georgie's hands are spread out over her hips, and she pulls her back towards her, draws her the rest of the way onto the dildo. She feels it every inch of the way, hot and firm and filling her quickly. It feels so good, makes her realise how empty she felt a moment ago.

She realises she's been holding her breath only when she lets it out, shakily. Georgie's hand runs across the small of her back, all the way up to the nape of her neck where it smoothes her hair out of the way. She leans down over Anna, and Anna finds herself instinctively rising up to meet her. Georgie smiles against the crook of her neck, kisses her shoulder.

"Good?" she whispers.

Anna can feel the slightly scratchy texture of Georgie's bandages against her back, along with the hot skin of her stomach quivering slightly. She turns her head, kisses her, lifting herself up onto her hands and knees a little unsteadily. Georgie straightens up again, pulls her hips back just a little and then rocks forward again, and Anna feels the shift inside her, moans quietly. Georgie draws back again, this time pulling all the way back out, and Anna aches at the absence as Georgie runs the dildo over the cleft of her arse before sliding it back inside her again.

And that's when she starts to really fuck her, thrusting back and forth, quick and shallow at first with her hands braced on Anna's arse, watching it bounce against her own hips with each movement. And then she goes deeper, 'til Anna can feel it through every part of her, and she hears herself moaning openly, scrunching up the duvet in her fists and dropping her head down, hair falling loose from its ponytail and hanging down around her face.

Georgie's hand slides along her hip and under her body, stroking across her stomach and then down through the hair between her legs, finding her clit and holding two fingers against it, letting Anna push herself up against them with each thrust. Georgie leans down over her, other hand creeping around to Anna's tits where they sway with each movement. She rolls her hips in a tight circle, and Anna hears her let out a tiny, breathless whimper, and realises that this is getting her off, too, like she can really feel Anna's tightness around her cock, and while Anna knows it's probably some part of the harness rubbing against her clit, she can't help but think, again, how similar this is to having sex with a guy.

This becomes even more obvious when Georgie starts fucking her harder, pounding into her until Anna can't hold herself up any longer and finds herself with her cheek pressed against the bed, chest flat against the mattress and arse in the air as Georgie straightens up and keeps going, keeping a tight grip on Anna's hips to keep the angle right. She's amazing, Anna realises. She's really skilled at this—she knows just when to slow down a little and let Anna catch her breath, and when Anna wants it fast and hard and unrelenting. And she doesn't act like Anna's clit doesn't exist. She's better than a guy.

Flushed and smiling, Anna smoothes her sweaty hair out of her face and tries to lift herself up.

"You wanna be on your back?" Georgie asks, breathlessly, her hips still pumping away, and it's like she's reading Anna's mind or something.

It's even better like that—Georgie above her, on top of her. Anna has her arms draped over Georgie's shoulders, her legs wrapped around Georgie's waist, Georgie deep inside her—Georgie everywhere, and it's so, so good. They connect in just the right way, reaching a perfect rhythm so that Anna is moving along with her, hips bucking up and grinding against her, and Anna knows Georgie must be close too because she's bright-cheeked and panting, eyes closed. But she never seems to take her mind of Anna's pleasure, bringing her closer and closer to the edge and then, suddenly, with her fingers snaked down between their bodies and pressed firmly to Anna's clit, throwing her over, and Anna's body judders and quakes beneath Georgie as she comes. Hard.

Georgie keeps rocking against her slowly for a little while, and at first Anna can't tell if it's just because she's bringing Anna down gently or because she still hasn't come yet. But then Georgie's groaning, low and deep, her bottom lip caught between her teeth as she goes still and then shudders, eyes closed in bliss, and Anna gazes up at her, captivated.

She recovers quickly, almost seeming a little embarrassed for the first time in the night, and pulls out of Anna and sits up, wiping the sweat from her brow with the back of her hand. Then, almost hurriedly, she's unbuckling the harness and pulling it off, and Anna can see the way her chest is heaving under the binding.

"Is that painful?" she hears herself asking suddenly.

"What?" Georgie asks, a little sharply.

Anna hesitates, wondering if maybe she shouldn't have asked, but she waves her hand at her own chest in response.

"Oh," Georgie says. "Not really. I don't do it all the time."

"I did it for a play once," Anna says, "when I was in drag. It killed."

"Yeah, well, you have more there than me," Georgie retorts, grinning, and Anna feels relieved.

Georgie crawls back up the bed, snuggling up to Anna like—well, like she always used to, and she suddenly seems young and vulnerable, and it reminds Anna once again of all the little Georgies she remembers. But then Georgie is reaching out and caressing Anna's bare breast, thumb stroking almost absentmindedly over her nipple, and joking, "Not that I'm complaining about that."

She sits up again, reaching for the clasp on her binding and beginning to unwind the bandages. "I don't sleep like this," she says by way of explanation, but Anna can tell she must be a little sore because there are slight red marks where the bandages have been pressing into her skin. That sort of thing's probably not designed for rigorous activity.

Anna watches as the bandages thin and eventually Georgie's breasts are exposed, small and a little bit uneven, like they might still be growing. They're pale and perky, nipples slightly upturned and with a little mole above one of them. They're strangely nice to look at, Anna thinks, for breasts, and this thought alarms her a little. It probably shouldn't, seeing as she just had sex with a girl, but all of this is so new to her. It's strange to think that she might be a little bit gay.

"What?" Georgie catches her staring.

"Nothing," Anna says, embarrassed, "they're just...I like them."

"You know, I think you might be a little bit gay," Georgie says, tilting her head on one side.

Anna laughs. "You know, I think you might be right," she says. "Am I staying here tonight?"

"Um, duh," Georgie replies, getting up and disappearing into the bathroom with the strap-on. Anna feels a little less strange, this time, when she admires Georgie's lithe body, her long legs and her cute little arse.

And later, when they're curled up naked in bed together, skin against skin, Anna thinks that perhaps it doesn't feel strange at all anymore.

**

When Anna wakes, her sleepy eyes take a moment to focus, but when they do she's greeted by the sight of Georgie wiggling into some skinny jeans, the thick elastic waistband of a pair of boxers visible around her hips. She's topless, small breasts jiggling a little as she moves. When she sees that Anna's awake, her face softens and she grins, tucking stray strands of hair behind her ear and coming over to the bed, jeans still undone and boxers rumpled at her open fly.

"Morning," she says, ducking down to kiss Anna on the forehead. "Sleeping Beauty."

Anna blushes. It is too early in the morning to be blushing, but she does it anyway. "Morning," she says, and rolls over to find that she's actually a little bit sore, and she's surprised to find she's not entirely unhappy about that fact.

"Ben texted saying most of them are downstairs having breakfast already," Georgie says, pulling on a simple white vest-top and a red plaid shirt over the top. "You should get dressed."

"Can't I just stay in bed?" Anna moans, kicking at the sheets around her. "I'm sleepy."

Georgie smirks. "Did I tire you out?"

Anna smiles back at her coyly. "Maybe." She remembers something. "And my clothes are all in my roooom," she groans.

Georgie rolls her eyes. "Okay, you drama queen, I'll go get your suitcase. Where's your keycard?"

Anna sits up. "Wait, really?"

"Sure. I'm dressed."

Anna tilts her head on one side, and speaks before she's entirely aware of what she's saying. "I love you."

Georgie pauses, a sort of bemused smile on her face. She comes up to the bed again, kisses Anna on the lips this time, apparently unconcerned about Anna's morning breath. "I love you too," she says, and tries to run her fingers through Anna's hair. This poses a problem, because Anna's hair can really only be prefixed by the word 'sex' at this moment in time. It is incredibly tangled, and Georgie's fingers very nearly get irretrievably stuck.

Eventually, though, she manages to regain the use of her right hand, and disappears into the corridor with Anna's purse—which, all dainty with little diamonds on it, looks completely absurd over Georgie's shoulder. Anna heaves herself out of bed and goes and looks in the mirror. Her reflection stares back at her, with its jaw dropped open. Her hair seriously looks like a bird's nest. Her make-up, which she did not take off last night, is smeared around her eyes in greyish smudges. Her neck bears one very obvious purplish hickey, and several paler pinkish marks lead all the way down to her breasts. She thinks one of her nipples might have bite marks in it, and there are also faint marks on her hips.

A strange mix of horrified and impressed, she decides to have a shower.

Georgie is back long before she's done—mostly because it's taking a hell of a lot of wrestling with a comb to get her hair back to its usual state—and she sits on the bed, and the two of them chat over the noise of the shower. They don't mention the exchange of the three little words. Anna thinks maybe it's not necessary to—after all, they've said it to each other countless times before. Granted, she's never said it after Georgie's fucked her senseless, so this situation is probably a little different, but it doesn't seem to matter.

Anna had planned to wear a dress today—just a casual cotton one, pale blue—but it feels suddenly very fancy and feminine compared to Georgie's outfit. But when she pulls it out of her suitcase, Georgie says, "Oh, that's nice," and so Anna drops her towel and puts it on.

There's no awkwardness being naked in front of her, she finds, maybe because they always used to share hotel rooms when they were younger, and changed in front of each other like it was nothing. And now that Georgie's been up close and personal with Anna's naked body, it seems to matter even less. It's nice, Anna realises. She's only had a few boyfriends, but she always felt a little bit awkward getting dressed after spending the night with them, feeling their eyes on her and wondering if they were judging her body. But, while Georgie is watching, she's also telling Anna some strange rambling story involving Will P. and clothespins, so it's really a lot more relaxed and comfortable.

They head downstairs, and Anna starts to get a little bit nervous about seeing everybody again. It all seemed so surreal last night, like she was in some sort of lesbian daze, and when she thinks of the way she and the boys (and Tilda, she remembers) were talking about it, she feels a bit embarrassed. They're obviously going to know something went on, and even the people who weren't completely in the loop still saw the two girls dancing and are going to see them turn up for breakfast together looking extremely fucked-out.

But when they enter the room, Georgie takes Anna's hand, giving it a squeeze, and Anna squeezes back, suddenly reassured. Yeah, so maybe everybody knows, but maybe she shouldn't really care. After all, she's with friends.

Ben won't stop grinning in a slightly insane way at her all the way through breakfast, though. His eyes are knowing and his grin is cheeky, and Anna has to restrain herself from hitting him. Again.

"Somebody looks satisfied," he says eventually, when Georgie leaves to go get some more juice. He's wearing Georgie's hat again. Anna thinks he may have stolen it.

"I don't know what you're talking about," Anna replies.

"Sleep well?" asks Skandar innocently, showing up and slipping into a seat with a bowl of cereal.

"Yeah, thanks," Anna says. "I was pretty tired out."

"Oh, I bet you were," Ben snickers, and Skandar smirks at her.

"Am I missing something?" asks Will P. from further down the table.

Anna groans. "Oh, please let's not do this."

"Bet that's not what you were saying last night," Ben chuckles to himself, and Skandar nearly chokes on his cereal laughing.

"Oh, come on," he says to a very sombre Will, elbowing him in the ribs. "It's funny."

"I can't," says Will from beside Anna, looking scandalised and also somewhat put off his breakfast. Anna uses this to her advantage, and nicks some of his bacon. "It's Georgie."

"I think we've all established that," Anna says with a sigh.

"Bet you were screaming her name all last night though—" Ben starts, and then is suddenly silenced by Georgie's hand clamped over his mouth as she reappears behind him.

"Quiet, you," she says sharply, sitting down across from Anna. "There are ladies present."

"Speaking of ladies," says Will, and then drops his voice to an exaggerated whisper, "Jill's giving you the stink-eye."

Anna shrugs. She feels a little bit proud of this. "Let her," she replies, and helps herself to one of Will's waffles.

"Yeah," grins Georgie, reaching across the table and taking Anna's hand again. Their fingers intertwine. "Let her."