Cameron was sitting in his bedroom with the headset on so he wouldn’t hear his parents fighting again. Playing video games was his way to escape the reality of his family falling apart right in front of his eyes.
Becca and Dale weren’t able to have a normal conversation anymore. Becca was always angry. Not at Dale or Cameron. She was angry at herself and at life itself.
When Dale tried to comfort her and hold his wife, she would refuse and pushed him away. This was going on for months. It’s been almost a year since Caitlin passed away and things weren’t getting any better, they were getting worse.
I give up, Dale thought to himself one night after they fought again, I can’t do this anymore.
Dale rang the doorbell of Kirsten’s house. She was the only person he trusted, the person he called after their fights, the person he went to for comfort.
“Sorry for showing up like that. I had to leave the house.”
“It’s alright. Another fight?”
Dale nodded sadly.
“I know what will cheer you up, come on,” Kirsten grabbed her car keys and closed the front door.
They spent two hours on the rides in a local amusement park. Dale allowed himself to let everything go for one night and enjoy the ride. Kirsten helped him find the long lost feeling of happiness.
It was around 2 am when they found themselves on a little island in the middle of Sierra river.
“This is my favorite spot in the city,” Kirsten said while she was tying the boat rope to the pier, “it’s so quiet here.”
“This is gorgeous,” Dale looked around, enjoying the views of the city on one side and the sandy hills on the other, “how do you even know about this place.”
“My grandpa showed me, he used to go fishing here.” Kirsten lit a fire in the stone fire pit, “he brought this here too. Not many people know about this spot.”
“Is he still alive? Your grandpa?”
“No, he passed away five years ago. Cancer,” the girl said sadly and quickly changed the subject, “let’s go swimming.”
“I’m good, I don’t have a bating suit. But you go ahead.”
“Ok, princess,” she teased and took off all her clothes. Obviously she didn’t have her bathing suit either, but that didn’t stop her.
Dale wanted to look away but he couldn’t help himself. He was staring at her naked body surrounded by the clear water reflecting the stars. It was a magical moment. For a second he forgot about loosing his beloved daughter and basically loosing his wife as well.
The splash of water she threw at him brought him back to reality. They were sitting by the fire and chatting about nothing and everything until the sun started to rise.
“I guess we should go,” Kirsten said when she noticed the first morning sunlight, “I have to be at the restaurant this afternoon.”
“Thank you for tonight,” Dale held her hands, “I didn’t think I could ever feel this way again.”
“You can. You just have to let yourself.”
He knew what he was doing was wrong but he got carried away and kissed her on her lips. Kirsten pulled away and placed her hands on his cheeks.
“Not like this, Dale, I can’t be the reason you leave your wife. Take some time to think about what’s best for you and for Cameron.I will wait.”