camp anawanna
august 24, 2021 — jasmine lakshmi & bastian wildes

Supervising a bunch of teenagers sneak out into the woods to get somewhere on the spectrum of tipsy to wasted off a giant bottle of champagne probably wasn't anywhere near the top of a list that would get him Counselor of the Week, but Bastian figured he wasn't bound to get that accolade anyway. At least they were being supervised? Better than if they were out there on their own, drunkenly wandering off with no one to physically carry them back to the group. And he wasn't the only staff member walking that fine line of enabling, which helped.

"How many do you think are gonna puke before they get back to camp?" he asked, leaning up against a tree near Jasmine, grinning over at her. "Gotta be at least two, right?"

Jasmine knew she wouldn't win Counselor of the Week either but at least she was having a little fun with it. When she had been the same age, which really wasn't that long ago, she had been like them. It was fun to sneak around and feel so adult, even if she had been the furthest thing from it. Now, she could look back on that time and laugh, which is what she did at Bastian's question. She gave a little smirk and shrugged her shoulders. "At least two. All of them will be feeling it tomorrow regardless."

She took another sip of the champagne and leaned against the tree herself. She had been pacing herself throughout this little evening because she was still in charge here. If something happened, she didn't want to be so impaired she couldn't help. Having Bastien there was a plus, in more ways than one. She turned to face him with an arched eyebrow. "You didn't want to get in on the spin the bottle action?"

Bastian huffed out a laugh, watching the campers a long moment before turning his attention back to the woman he was next to, taking a long sip from his cup. "Does it make me a sadist if I'm looking forward to their misery?" he mused, grin widening a bit. "I mean, knowing what it was like at that age, going balls out then having to deal with the next morning... they're gonna have some regrets."

Not that he thought they deserved a punishment for breaking the rules, sneaking out and drinking. But hey, there were consequences to everything. Being young and dumb meant hangovers. And based on the games they'd chosen to play, likely remorse. Maybe. "Oh hell no," he replied, actually laughing. "That's a lawsuit waiting to happen. I don't want to kiss drunk children, thanks. You're abstaining too, smart."

"Not at all. I'm looking forward to their misery too. We all went through it and now I can be on the outskirts and laugh." She let out a small giggle and took a sip from her drink. The hurt they were in all for would be a rude, rude awakening but Jasmine also knew that she experienced once, forgot about it, then did it all again. It was a vicious cycle and she wasn't sure if she had even learned her lesson properly.

She stopped herself from another sip and shrugged her shoulders. "I'm good. Like you said, lawsuit waiting to happen. I don't think I'd look too good in orange." She did a little twirl before settling back into the tree. It wasn't like she was in anything special, shorts, a tank top, cute tennis shoes, but she was proving a point. "Plus, I never go younger. Always older. I don't think these kids could handle me properly."

It was a rite of passage, most everyone went through it. Bastian didn't often feel old but standing there watching the campers causing a ruckus, tipsy and having the time of their little teenage lives, he did. And he was okay with that, because he didn't want to go through that experience again. He'd already been there, done that, got the t-shirt, and now he could drink like a fish and be just fine. Or, at least, stay in bed until he felt like getting up. That was another perk of being an adult. There were so few of them, he'd take what he could get.

He watched her appreciatively as she twirled, lifting his cup in a little toast before taking another sip. "You'd probably look good in any color, but let's avoid the orange jumpsuit just in case. They're all crazed little horndogs, they can't handle anything they think they can." He grinned at her over the rim of his drink. "Always older, huh? How old are you again?"

Jasmine had a wicked little smile at his compliment and sipped on her drink before shrugging her shoulders. "I'm 20... which isn't that much older than some of them, I guess." She was still in college so she obviously knew how to party. Champagne in the middle of the woods with drunken kisses and a game of truth or dare? It wasn't her idea of a good time. She longed to be an adult, to be out in the world on her own. As an only child she had been a little coddled but it also made her independent. She could handle herself, which she had proved time and time again.

She was also smart as hell and mature for her age, which helped. "I'll be 21 soon." Technically she shouldn't be drinking but college parties taught her well and she wasn't going to pretend like she hadn't gotten completely blackout wasted before. "If we were in a European country, I'd be of drinking age. I'd like to think I'm refined like that." She shrugged her shoulders and cocked her head to the side. "How old are you? And don't say old enough to know better."

It really was mind blowing that so many of the other staff were college aged kids. But maybe Bastian didn't have the most conventional view of what the early twenties were like. His had been a goddamn blur, one more reason for him not to judge underage drinking. Let them have fun, he and Jasmine were there to make sure they didn't accidentally hurt themselves too bad, it was fine.

"You seem like you're refined like that," he replied, considering her a moment. He definitely wouldn't have guessed she was twenty, she seemed too smart and responsible to be so young. "Oh, I'm definitely old enough to know better." Smirking, he gave her a wink before adding: "Thirty-seven."

"I knew you were going to say that!" It came out of her mouth quicker than she would have liked but she had heard it before. There had been so many college parties, other older men that tried to flirt with Jasmine and she wasn't going to say that she didn't like the attention. Oh no, far from it. She relished in it, even. "You don't look thirty-seven, though." She added a wink right back to him for good measure before she very playfully bounced against his shoulder.

"I would say that I'm more of an old soul. I've always felt like that. The expectations from myself made me grow up faster than some of my peers." She looked off into the distance and smiled to herself, biting her bottom lip. "I mean, I still know how to have fun so I'm not a complete stick in the mud. I get that sense from you too."

"I sure as fuck hope I don't look thirty-seven!" Bastian laughed, bringing his hand up to rub over his jaw. He also didn't feel that old, it was kind of a mind fuck every time he remember that he was. He definitely felt closer to thirty than forty, but that wasn't the truth. But he appreciated the confirmation from Jasmine, it was nice to hear from someone who probably wasn't simply trying to appease him. She had no reason to.

"If I seem like any kind of stick in the mud, I'm going to have to seriously reconsider my life. I think I'm a young soul, is that a thing?" Some of the kids probably considered him a stick in the mud, purely based on him trying to keep them alive on the ropes course, but what did they know? "What kind of expectations?"

If he did look it, she would have told him. That was just the way her mind worked. Jasmine could be blunt to a fault, one of her many bad qualities, but it wasn't the case here. She laughed and shook her head at his reaction, though, it was certainly one for the record books. "I think you can be a young soul. It's all about a mindset, I think. Maybe we somehow meet in the middle?" She shrugged her shoulders with a little grin in his direction, lips pursed together.

Then she thought long and hard about his question before she spoke. "My expectations for myself are that I'm one of the best at what I do. I have the highest expectations for myself because I know that I can achieve great things and look good doing it." She stopped and took another sip of her drink, though now she was running woefully low on her own supply. It was no matter, she knew she probably needed to stop soon anyway. "To be the best, you have to put in the work." She was finished with her drink now and set the cup down, placing her hands on her hips. "I know what I want and I'm not afraid to go out and take it."

"I could see that. We meet in the middle." Because he still had trouble believing she was twenty. Not that Jasmine seemed old, but she seemed older. Mature, old soul, all of that was true. So between that and him feeling and acting younger than he actually was, somehow they were closer than they were apart.

He watched her as she spoke, considering what she was saying. There was another factor in her seeming more than her young age, because she expected so much, believed in herself so much, it was a mindset he didn't have personal experience with. Her little pose at the end made him smile a bit, a genuine smile for once. "Hell yeah, go get it," he said, downing the rest of his drink. "Confidence is sexy as fuck, go knock everyone out of your way and be the best."

His smile made her smile a little brighter and she bit down on her bottom lip for a second. She glanced over at the campers, still fully immersed in spin the bottle or truth or dare, she didn't really know what was happening. Whatever it was they were doing, they couldn't care about the two enabling counselors that were over in the trees. The trees, nature, plants, they were all what she knew best and she felt comfortable there. Her confidence was something she was proud of because she knew who she was, faults and all.

She stepped forward to break the gap between them, took his now empty cup from him and set it on the ground next to her own. She took one step closer to him and placed a kiss on his lips, her own lips still tasting like champagne. It was q quick kiss and she pulled back with her head tilted and licked around her lips before biting her bottom lip again. "I'm always the best, don't you ever forget it." Her voice was low and she smiled briefly before she turned around to walk away.

The sound of the campers so nearby was enough to keep him from doing what he actually wanted, which was to keep her close, see how much champagne he could taste on her tongue too, maybe press her up against that tree they'd been leaning on while they talked. Damn kids. Bastian's smile grew as he watched her bite her bottom lip, his tongue darting out to trace over his own, getting that one last lingering taste she'd left there. Tonight wasn't good for it, not with all those drunk kids tumbling around them, but the week wasn't over and there was plenty of time to see what might happen.

"Wouldn't dream of it," he replied with a grin, settling back into leaning against the tree, shamelessly watching her as she walked away.

Jasmine wasn't sure what she was expecting from all of this but she wanted to be chased. The sound of the kids, laughing at their own games, was enough for her to know now wasn't the time or the place for it. She stopped and turned around and popped her head to the side. "That means I'll take a rain check from you." She gave him another wink and went to turn around again, calling out to him when as she walked back toward the campers. "Grab those cups, I won't accept any litter out here." She wasn't going to turn around and look at him, she figured he would be dutiful enough to grab everything. She got what she wanted and there would be more to come.