Two Months at the Lake with Strangers and Old Friends
Night was here, and her mother was packing for their short walk back to the lake house.
"Rory! Get away from those rocks. They're wet and slippery and you'll fall and hit your head or something."
Or something. It was always something. Rory gave her mother a thumbs up and climbed over the rocks back to safer ground.
Daddy never warned her about anything. He was never scared she was going to hit her head and bleed all over the rocks and die. They dove and swam in the lake and he called Rory his little brave fish. He was so cool. Daddy wasn't ever coming back. She overheard her mother telling somebody that at Target.
Rory wandered to the short pier and sat at its edge, scanning the lake for his boat. He could come back. He could come back tonight. Daddy was always changing his mind about things. That drove her mom crazy. With a polite nod, the woman in front of them at Starbucks that day agreed it would drive her crazy, too.
Washed in moonlight made pale by the gathering clouds, her mother looked less tired, less sad, less lonely tonight. Two months at the lake with strangers and old friends made their other life seem unnecessary. Still, Rory wondered what Daddy was doing back at the apartment, if he was thinking about them.
Rory jumped from the pier to help her mother gather their things. They'd brought their entire lives to the lake's sandy edge.
[Fringes blogs at sarcasticfringe.com where chocolate chip cookies and Mike's Hard Lemonade are freely available to those who ask nicely.]