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We'll be visiting Camp Mount Oakham on Mondays and Thursdays.

Chapter One - The Preparation 

Summer. It was the only season William Darcy dreaded, and it wasn’t because the weather turned humid, or because his sister Georgiana was out of school, and it certainly wasn’t because he would be spending it with his buddies: Rick, Charlie, and John. It was simply because of summer  camp. God, how he hated the commitment his Aunt Catherine made him stick to every year since he graduated high school: Camp counselor.


For the past nine years, she loved to remind him that it was at camp Mount Oakham that his now deceased parents met, and it was there that their story had continued until its tragic end eleven years ago.


“Come on Bingley; get in the damn car before Caroline takes the front seat. It’s bad enough she volunteered to spend her summer with us as a counselor, but now we have to drive her there as well. I’d rather have my chest hair waxed than spend the next two hours driving to the Poconos with your sister.”


Georgiana laughed from the back seat.  “Damn, she better not be my cabin counselor or I’m bailing and grabbing a cab all the way back to Philly.”


Charlie Bingley slid onto the Land Rover’s front passenger seat and watched as Caroline pulled her two Louis Vuitton suitcases behind her.  He found it amusing how she struggled down the walkway of their parents’ home, wearing four-inch Christian Louboutins and white, short shorts.  “Look on the bright side, Darce at least you don’t have to pay her like all the others. I guess you’re incentive enough.”


Caroline stopped in the middle of the walkway and glared at him, eyes shooting lightning bolts. “Ah … hello? Can you help me out here, Brother? My manicure is getting all messed up.” 


Like the good man he prided himself, he bolted from the car at her command and proceeded to throw her luggage in the hatch with none too little animosity.


Smoothly, Caroline who next slid into the front passenger seat Charlie had just vacated—much to Darcy’s irritation.


“Hi Willy, dahling.  I’m so glad we’ll be spending the summer together swimming and sun bathing, and sharing all those chilly nights by the camp fire together.” 


Georgiana and Darcy sat dumbstruck and void of words at the sight of Caroline’s unruly red hair and shiny red lips. He began to pound his head slowly against the steering wheel until a word formed.  He looked up, staring blankly at the end of the driveway.


“Caroline,” was all he could think to say. God this was going to be torture.  She’d been after him since they were kids, and the older and uglier she got, the more desperate her attempts became. She was one, revolting, high maintenance, self-absorbed woman.


Georgiana, the supreme teenage wise ass that she was becoming stepped into the fray about to unfold. “Ahh … Caroline, I thought you hated kids?  Why all of a sudden are you interested in volunteering for my aunt’s campground? I’m sure spending your summer at Camp Mount Oakham isn’t on the top of your priority list.”


“Georgie, dahling…” (She referred to everyone as dahling, which always made her appear even more ridiculous to the average person.)  “...  I loooove children, in spite of their boogers and spontaneous poop and loud squealing voices. After all, I loooove you.”


“In case you haven’t noticed Caroline, I stopped spontaneously pooping and squealing a long time ago.” 


Caroline turned from Georgiana, and Will could feel her heated gaze.  He was now driving 90 mph trying to get there as quickly as possible in order to end the pain inflicted upon him.


“Willy … what did you say I’ll be doing when we get there?”


“Your duties haven’t changed since yesterday when you asked me. Cabin counselor to the six year-old girls, swim instructor for all the girls, and kitchen clean up every Wednesday, and don’t call me Willy again or you’re walking the 130 miles with Louis strapped to your back.”


Caroline sighed. Darcy was her rich, fantasy man, and every time she pulled out her little toy, it was his face attached to its vibration. Tall, dark, and god-like handsome with a finely toned body. Yum. She licked her lips as she scanned his hard body in the driver’s seat. Drive me.  Her mission this summer had one purpose, and he was it.


One-hour later with her mouth open and neck tilting backward then rolling forward then backward, Caroline’s snores reverberated throughout the Land Rover. 


Charlie called out from the backseat, “Is that my sister making that noise?”


“No, it’s my front wheel, what do you think?”  Darcy said sarcastically, having reached the end of his already frayed rope. “Only that mouth could produce noise that horrible. I expect flames to shoot out any minute.”


“Ya know Darce, she has plans for that mouth.”  Charlie looked at Georgiana to make sure she was asleep. 


Cute, little, Georgie who possessed the most devious sisterly streak was such a good faker, as she snuggled into her hoodie pretending to be out like a light.


Darcy gripped the steering wheel.  “How did I ever get roped into agreeing with you to allow Caroline to come? It’s bad enough that my aunt makes me do this every year, but now I have to contend with Ms. Heat Miser stalking me in addition to the fact that I think my aunt hired Wickham back this year as cabin counselor for the thirteen-year-old boys. What the hell was she thinking?”


“It won’t be so bad, she’ll be so busy with the little ones, and you’ll be off hiking with the older kids, you’ll hardly see one another.  Besides, you and I both know she’ll never make it through Hell Week. Those kids are merciless.  They’re gonna destroy her that first week. She’ll be lucky if she doesn’t get her hair shaved off in the middle of the night, running her out of there screaming.”


Darcy beamed, his dimples flashing with enthusiasm, because the sight of her hair creeped him out.  “Is that a promise?”


“As for Wickham, just continue to beat his cabin’s stats in every relay and sport, and that will knock him down a peg or two. Besides, how can you even take him seriously, he thinks he’s ‘The Situation’ from Jersey Shore and wears flip-flops. No self-respecting man wears flip-flops in the woods.”


“You know that’s not the issue. He teaches those boys to play dirty. There’s no sportsmanship in that especially since they play against the girls. I’m telling you now, I am not going to take his shit this year. He’s going down.”


Look on the bright side, you know how to deal with both Caroline and Wickham. You’ve done it for years, albeit not at the same time. Count yourself lucky because I have to deal with the never-ending advances of your cousin Anne. She’s nice enough, but did you forget about last year when I found her naked in my sleeping bag? I’m pretty sure I told you that she actually handed me a condom when I found her.” Charlie shivered to make his point known.


“Are you one upping me?”  Darcy looked in the rearview mirror. “I have Billy Collins as my assistant this year. Aside from your horny sister, there is no torture greater than my aunt’s ex-Amish, sycophant puppy trying to lick my balls. The only one I want kissing my ass better be wearing a bikini.”


Georgiana moved a little, feigning restlessness as the direction of the men’s conversation turned to the more interesting.


Noticing her movements, Charlie lowered his voice.  “Speaking of bikinis, didn’t the camp get some new female cabin counselors for the girls?”


“Two sisters. Drexel University graduates.”  Darcy now shivered to make his point. “You know what that school puts out. Just what we need ... feminists,” he said sarcastically, scrunching his nose in distaste.


“Yeah, but Drexel has the most beautiful feminists.”


Caroline snorted awake and wiped the spittle from her chin with the back of her French manicured hand. “Did someone call me beautiful?”




“Jane, why are you taking your rollerblades to the mountains?”  Lizzy Bennet yelled out to her sister as she organized her supplies, backpack, and hiking clothes.  She went down her packing checklist on her iPad with precise order and detail.


“Because they match my blue denim shorts and red tank top.”  Jane smiled, tossing her straight, long, blonde hair over her shoulder.


Lizzy picked up the roller blades, rolled her eyes, and placed them back into the closet. “Please be serious. I want to make a good impression.  This is our first summer. Pleeeease don’t act the airhead that I know you are not. Miss I Have A 165 IQ But Pretend To Be A Ditsy Blonde.  It debases womanhood when you do that.”


“Relaaaaxxx …”  Jane massaged her sister’s shoulders; the twinkle in her eye tipped Lizzy off to mischief.


“I hear Charlotte’s brother John will be there …” her sister said waggling her eyebrows.


“No!”  Lizzy blurted as she stuck out her pinky. “Absolutely not, been there and been put through way too much for such a small … matter. If only he’d get the hint that we’re over. I dread spending the next four weeks running from his apologies and his small *ahem*. Besides, I’m going for the kids and my thesis, not a summer fling and certainly not one with wee-little, two-timing Lucas.”

“Well, I for one am going solely to have a summer romance before I leave for London in the fall. Screw the kids.”  Jane laughed at her own joke because she truly loved kids, and was delighted to be the cabin counselor to the ten and eleven year old girls.  “Is Charlotte meeting us at the campground?”

“Oh, didn’t I tell you? She’s driving up with a new conquest. Let’s see … what was the nickname of this one?”  Lizzy pondered while tapping on her chin. “He’s just out of the military -something about the size of his gun and it being a lethal weapon … I forget ... I can’t keep up with her. Anyway, he’s the nephew of Mrs. deBourgh, the campground’s director, and a friend of wee-little John’s.  He’s one of the counselors too.”

From the corner of her eye, Lizzy noticed Jane covertly stuff something yellow into her backpack. “Jane I saw you.”

Jane looked to the ceiling.  “Saw me what?”


“Saw you put my bikini in my backpack.”


“So what if I did?”


“I’m not going to wear it.”


“Fifty bucks says you do.”


“You’re on.”


Ever diligent, Lizzy studied another checklist as Jane applied nude lip-gloss in the mirror.  “You know, Janie, while I was reviewing the activities list of the camp I notice that every sport and relay held are boys against girls competitions. Why do you suppose that is?”


Jane pursed her lips then popped them open with a small noise. “Maybe the director has issues. In my experience that could be a classic sign of repressed anger at the male species probably triggered by rejection or domination, which has resulted in a passive-aggressive demonstration of her camouflaged feminist psyche.”


Lizzy laughed.  “So what you’re really saying is that Mrs. deBourgh probably needs a good lay?”




Lizzy looked up from her iPad. “Why’s dad sending Lydia with us? She’s beyond both of our professional experience, and a camp like Mount Oakham isn’t really suited for her.”

“I suppose with Aunt and Uncle there, Dad thinks that they’ll keep an eye on her, maybe be able to reel her behavior in. You know he’s such a softie with her.”

“And we’re any different? She just needs love and understanding.  She’s been subconsciously reaching out for attention since Mom died. Look, we all have our issues. You have an addiction to lipstick and ice cream, and I have my weekly shot of Jose Cuervo Tequila.”

“Yes and Lydia thinks she’s Snooki from Jersey Shore. That’s a whole lot worse than sucking down the worm from Jose on occasion.”

The door to the apartment flung open wide, banging on the wall as Lydia, the youngest sister of the three, breezed in like a hurricane. At sixteen, she already had the language of a sailor and the body of a Rembrandt not to mention an ego and attitude large enough to land her on her favorite reality TV show. Smacking her gum like a cow chewing its cud, she sauntered into Lizzy’s bedroom.

“What’s shakin’ sistas?” Lydia greeted with black-dyed hair, black cats-eyeliner, and black-painted fingernails to match.

Jane looked her baby sister over. “You look like Elvira, not a very summery look for camp. Thank God you’re not in my cabin ’cause I’d make you wear pink gingham.”

“Screw you.”

“Lydia!”  Lizzy yelled.  “Just so you know… sista ... I am your cabin counselor, and your ass is mine this summer.”

“Yeah, yeah, yeah … screw you, too.”  She rolled her eyes and gave Lizzy the finger.

“Lydia!” both sisters yelled at the same time as Lydia looked in the mirror and pulled the front of her shirt down lower to expose her full cleavage.

Lizzy tapped her forehead gently against the doorframe in frustration.  Pack the tequila, don’t forget to pack the tequila, I’m gonna need the tequila.


**All Rights Reserved, Cat Gardiner, 2012 - Exclusive fanfiction story for Vanity & Pride Press members summer fun reading pleasure, not for review on Goodreads or sharing. Thank you for respecting that. :)

Sounds as though this summer is going to be exciting already. Can you just imagine the trouble that Lydia is going to cause?