Long hair flying, tight shirts clinging, a gaggle of 13-year-old girls run down the gleaming stone tile floors and fling themselves into the arms of two girls they just saw at school two hours ago.
This is different, though. This is the Mall. And it is a new Mall, and they've never seen one another here before.
"Eek!" say the two new arrivals, pointing at the canvas Urban Outfitters tote bags some of the others are carrying. "Did you get those for free?"
"Yeah, you buy stuff and they just give it to you!"
Eek! The two new girls whip around and start running down the hall.
The other five, eighth-graders at Longfellow Middle School in Falls Church, stroll on.
They came straight here after school to explore the new 320,000-square-foot wing of Tysons Corner Center, which opened yesterday to a line of people stretching out the door. Some high-schoolers skipped school to come early, but the Longfellow girls waited until after school and got here as soon as their parents would drive them.
Hanging out at the mall, is, after all, a suburban teenage passion. And this is new. And the first day.
The elevator lifts them from the second level, away from the Gap, Hollister Co. and Abercrombie & Fitch, to check out the third level, home of a food court and an AMC movie theater with the second-biggest screens in the country.
Liz Velander, 13, declares that the theater, with its wall-to-wall carpeting and groovy lettering, "kinda looks like the '70s a little," based on an MTV show she saw depicting that decade. Christine Tran, 13, wonders aloud whether the theater has "those IMAX seats, like the ones that rise."
Mindy Rogers, 13, who has iron-straight brown hair and a handbag decorated with hearts, crosses her arms.
"Can we go shopping?" she asks irritably. " 'Cause I'm here to buy stuff, and you guys are like . . . " She shrugs dismissively to indicate their lack of focus.
A lot of kids at the mall are "like . . . "
Compared with other shopping centers, "It's pretty much the same thing," Natty Montoya, a 17-year-old senior at McLean High School, says while eating sesame chicken in the food court with his friends. "But we wanted to come see the new mall because it's" -- he pauses -- "new."
Even on a crisp, early fall afternoon, when the air outside is perfect?
Going to the mall is "a thing to do," he explains. "It's kind of a default, like if you have nothing else to do."
"And guys like to come because they're hungry," his friend Allie Mak, 17, says as she watches the boys wolf down their chicken.
As the afternoon progresses, more teenagers file into the mall, fingering long-sleeved polo shirts at Hollister, riffling through leather belts at Old Navy, stroking pink mohair scarves at Free People, passing from stores booming out techno music to stores playing easy-listening tracks from the early 1980s.
No mall can make everyone happy. Two girls in black express regret that there is no Hot Topic, which they describe as "kind of a goth-emo-rocker" store. A blond boy in a surfer shirt yearns for roller coasters, "like in California," or a big pole to slide down.
But most of the visitors from high schools and middle schools declare it "pretty awesome."
And on opening day, it is the place to be, whether for looking around or for serious shopping.
At Hollister, a dim, cavelike store made up of a series of small rooms, Mindy Rogers buys two T-shirts and Ashleigh Hum, 13, buys a maroon polo. As they pay, they spot a certain "sevvie" -- a seventh-grade boy -- considered to be "really cute for a little guy."
When they announce the sighting to those who missed it, they are met with shrieks of agony. "Meanwhile, we were in Abercrombie looking at nothing," one girl groans.
A decision is made to go to Victoria's Secret. With its dark rooms, pink lights and big-haired, mostly naked mannequins, it's hard to miss, but the girls hurry through that part, looking a little uncomfortable.
"Eeew!" Liz says. "Victoria's Secret is scary!"
"A little inappropriate," Jordan Hansen, 13, sniffs as they pass a thong lined with black feathers.
But in the back room, they find what they are seeking. Cute pajamas! An overstuffed armchair with pink polka dots! A big, pink polka-dot dog!
Oooh! Don't you want that chair for your room?