Camp Velaris ~ Chapter three
Being sent too a summer camp full of rich kids to work as a councillor is the worst thing ever, according to Feyre. At least until she meets a certain violet-eyed councillor and his friends.
I woke up to the sound of my alarm clock blaring next to me.
Groaning, I got up, my mind still foggy with exhaustion. It had been late when I’d finally gotten to bed. Preparing for a group of eight to thirteen year olds is harder than you think.
Neither of the two other occupants of the room seem to have been woken by the alarm clock. Mor was spread out on her bed snoring softly, while Amren was curled up like a cat, so still it was almost like she wasn’t breathing.
I had met her yesterday, when all the staff was setting up for the imminent arrival of campers the next day. She had appeared at the table I sat at with the other members of the Court of Dreams, wearing all black even though the heat was almost unbearable. The others had not been surprised at her sudden entrance, and I wondered if it was usual for Amren to just show up. She hadn’t acknowledged my place at the table, but, then again, she hadn’t really shown much surprise.
I thought back to the meal last night.
“So you two aren’t really councillors?” I had asked Cassian while simultaneously flipping through my information pack.
“Nope. Az and I are instructors for the sports stuff. We basically teach the kids what to do and keep them safe.” He had replied.
“What about you?” I asked Rhys, who was sitting to my right. “Are you an instructor?”
“I was. Until I slipped during a rock climbing session and fucked up my knee. I found I much preferred looking after the kids instead of teaching them.” Rhys told me.
“Yeah, and after that he decided he was too good enough for us lowly instructors.” Cassian had said with mock hurt. “Now he has a fancy lanyard and an official camp t-shirt.”
I had noticed that the councillors and the instructors were very… cliquey.
All the councillors were easily identifiable by their official/unofficial uniforms of shorts or jeans and a red Camp Velaris t shirt. Instructors also wore jeans, but with a dark blue t shirt. The two different groups sat apart, the councillors only sitting with fellow councillors and vice versa. I had realised with a jolt that we were one of the few groups with both in.
“Don’t be bitter, Cassian. You were offered a job as one. It’s not our fault that you’re so puffed up with your idiotic pride.” Quipped Amren from where she was sitting next to him on the opposite side of me. This was the first thing she had said since sitting down at the table.
Mor let out a snort of approval. At least, I thought she had. It was hard to tell with her head on the table, still suffering through a day long hangover. Azriel let out a smile of his own.
Cassian, who had thrown a vulgar gesture at Amren, turned to the man sitting on his other side.
“Like you weren’t offered one too.”
“I have no need to be a councillor.” Azriel replied, his voice soft and smooth.
Another snort from Mor.
We had sat at the table for another hour or so, until Mor had declared that if she didn’t move from this table in the next few seconds and get fresh air, she was almost certainly going to faint. I had retreated back to my room after that, and spent the rest of the night sifting through my HOW TO BE A GOOD LEADER information booklet, provided personally by Alis.
I shower in record time, then put on my Camp Velaris t shirt and a pair of jean shorts. After plaiting my hair, I step into the bedroom, where Amren’s bed is freshly made. With no sign of the occupant.
After waking up Mor, who didn’t seem to hear Amren leave either, judging by the fact it took me a few minutes to rouse her, I walked down to the cafeteria. Dotted around the room were bleary eyed staff, either because of remains of their hangovers or the 6am start. Probably both.
After buying my breakfast, I looked around the room to the table where we had sat last night. And the only person who was sitting there now was Rhys. Mor’s cousin. The person I was in no way crushing on. Not even a little.
I couldn’t even avoid him, as he had just caught my eye. Great.
Silently telling myself to be cool, I slid into the chair next to him.
“Good morning, Feyre darling.” He purred at me, his eyes showing no hint of wariness.
“God, how are you not tired?” I say to him, pushing my cereal around with my spoon.
“I’m used to early starts. Besides, you better start getting used to it. The kids aren’t even here yet. Wait till you have to deal with the sound of excited children first thing.”
“Ugh. I’m beginning to regret this job. I cannot function without my eight hours a night.”
“Well, you’re here. Which is more than can be said for the others.”
“Where are they, anyway?”
“Cassian and Azriel are most likely on their early morning run.”
“You didn’t join them?” He certainly looked like he did, if the abs you could see through his tight fitting shirt were anything to go by.
“I prefer different types of exercise, darling.” Rhys drawled.
And even though he probably wasn’t implying what I thought he was, my cheeks heated a little. And great, now I was thinking about sex. With him.
Fuck you, hormones.
After breakfast we walked towards the courtyard, gravitating to where all the other councillors seemed to be congregating. There were no instructors around.
Seeming to sense where I was looking, Rhys said to me “They’re probably helping set up the different activity areas. You know, the ropes and stuff.”
I certainly didn’t, but I nodded anyway.
“Come on, we’re over here.” Rhys says and he grabs my hand- the touch sending a spark of electricity through me, and led me to the far end of the courtyard, where a bored looking Amren was already waiting, wearing not the Camp Velaris shirt, but a silver-grey crop top with matching pants.
She gave us a nod of acknowledgement and then continued to pick at her nails. A dismissal of sort.
“This is our meet up point. We come back here first thing in the morning, at lunch, dinner and then after night activities.” Rhys tells me, leaning back against the brick wall of one of the buildings behind him.
“Our meet up point?” I reply.
“Well, the Night Court’s.”
I had read about the different groups, or ‘courts’ in the information pack last night. There were seven; day, night, dawn, summer, spring, autumn and winter. Each court had about ten children in, who were then split in to two different groups. Ours being the Court of Dreams.
Mor arrives next, and she’s somehow turned her red shirt into something not completely horrible. Her high waisted shorts show off her long, golden legs. She gets a few looks from the other members of staff.
“Where are the guys?” She asks Rhys as she mirrors his position against the wall.
“Setting up. The campers will be arriving anytime…” The sound of cars causes even Amren to look up from her nails. “Now.” Rhys finishes.
I had never seen so many fancy cars in my life.
Soon the parking lot was filled up with shining cars and parents hugging their children goodbye. A few of the kids were crying, mainly the younger ones, and clinging on to their parents legs. Poor things.
Alis had appeared, and was now leading the over eager children to the centre of the courtyard. A difficult feat, considering the majority of them were attempting to get to the lake. And the jet skis.
The children who came here regularly were obvious; they were the ones saying hi and hugging their favourite councillors. Mainly Rhys and Mor.
When, about half an hour later, all the parents had finally left, and the kids were now sitting in a large huddle on the grass, Alis stepped to the front of the group.
“To those of you who have been here before, welcome back to Camp Velaris! And to those who are here for the first time, I hope you enjoy yourselves here very much. First things first, you will be put into your groups. These are the people who you will spend most of your time with. These will be your best friends- and teammates- for the two months you will spend here. Your councillors will explain everything to you.” Alis tells them.
After explaining to the newbies about the different courts, Alis says, “Now for the part you’ve all been waiting for! Which court you’ll be in!”
Reading from her clipboard, Alis rattles out the names of the children in the different courts; Spring, then Summer, then Autumn, Winter, Day, Dawn and finally Night.”
After what seemed like forever, all the kids were sorted into their groups. Our Court of Dreams had their five members while the other five went into the other team within the Night Court.
“The Court of Nightmares.” Rhys and Mor had jokingly called it.
After introducing ourselves to the kids and explaining the rules and where to go and what the different buildings were, The Night Court headed off to our first activity; teambuilding. Court of Dreams Vs The Court of Nightmares.
As this was a ‘Full group Activity’, Alis had informed us that the Councillors had to play as well. It was great for Rhys, who seemed like he would be the best at this sort of stuff, but not so great for me, who did not have an athletic bone in her body. Well, maybe except for Archery. Jumping and climbing over obstacles was beyond me.
In my defence, I took this job to help and teach the kids, not to be running and jumping beside them.
Since there were only two councillors on the other team, Rhys had to join them.
And, sure, I wanted our team to win. But I kinda wanted to wipe the smirk off Rhys’ face more.
After explaining the rules, the game began.
The rules were simple; each team member has to complete the obstacle course without touching the floor. Two mats were given to each team to pass to each other. If they touch the ground, they have to start again. It was made more difficult by the obstacles; everyone had to get over a vaulting horse and over benches. The first team to get to the end without touching the floor.
Well, you would think so.
I had never thought of myself as a competitive person, but as Rhys’ team was doing much better than us, that side of me came out. We were about three metres away from the finish when Rhys’ team won. The kids were cheering. Rhys looked as happy as them.
It certainly didn’t help when we were leading the kids back to the cafeteria for lunch that Rhys began singing quietly to himself, and to me, “Anything you can do I can do better.”
“Prick.” I whispered to him, trying not to let the kids hear. The ones on my team were now cheered up considerably now we were taking them to lunch.
“Don’t be jealous, Feyre darling. We can’t all be as talented as me.” Rhys purred back.
“We’ll see about that.“ I got an idea. “We have archery after lunch. First one to get three arrows in the centre wins.”
He pretended to consider it for a moment. “Deal. But don’t be too upset when you lose.”
I only rolled my eyes before walking back to the front of the group to walk with Mor.
And as I walked, I could feel his gaze burning into my back.