Connor shouted at Lara as she rushed up the beach, but she was too far away to hear him.
He watched her squeeze into the backseat of the Corvette with Tommy, with Nina and Paul in the front. The door slammed, and the car kicked up gravel as it peeled out of the parking lot.
Connor stood alone, shivering in the waist-deep water.
Andy swam over to him.
“Uh, yeah, cuz you were a dick.”
“But I apologized.“
“Don’t matter. She’s gotta cool off.”
“That’s on you, man.”
Connor turned on him. “Go away.”
Andy shrugged and paddled off.
Connor was alone again.
The bonfire continued on the beach. The crowd gathered around it, staying warm. He watched their shadows dance.
He couldn’t go back to shore. Everyone had heard what he’d said. Of course, Lara was pissed.
He leaned back in the water and stared at the sky. This far out, the town lights didn’t obstruct the view. The stars were endless, and the northern lights rippled and shimmered over them.
Nothing he could do but wait. If she returned, he needed to apologize again. He’d been a dick and had to own up to it. But if she didn’t, and she ended up disappearing with Tommy—
He closed his eyes, and a flash of her with Tommy burned his imagination. It hurt. He opened his eyes and stared back at the sky, the memory still there.
So many stars shining at the center of millions of galaxies. Cutting through all of them, a satellite racing along its orbit. Then another, crisscrossing the other way. Thousands of kilometres apart. They’d never meet as long as they stayed on their trajectories.
Connor stared back at the bonfire. Everyone around it was talking. Or maybe they weren’t. Didn’t matter. Let them say their shit. None of it mattered.
No use staying out here. He waded towards shore for his dry clothes and a cold beer. He’d grab a spot by the fire and warm up. He’d stick around until the sun rose.
Maybe she’d come back. And if not, he’d see what the morning would bring.
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