“It’s so peaceful out here,” I said to my son and looked around. The water gently rocking our small green boat.
“Yea,” Emmett sighed and threw the fishing rod into the lake.
“So how is Melissa, you miss her?”
“Dad, we’re just friends.”
“You can miss your friend, you know. Hell look at Em and Caroline,” I laughed, “besides, me and your mother were friend before we fell in love.”
“Ugh, I know,” he rolled his eyes, “you told us a hundred times.”
I nodded quietly. Emmett is a closed book. It is very hard to get through with him. Actually the best conversations usually happen right here, on this boat, but the older he gets, the harder it is to get anything out of him.
“Oh, you have a fish,” I pointed at the rod moving in the water. Even though I knew we will set it free, I enjoyed watching my son winning the battle.
“Alright, ladies,” I tied up the boat with Emmett’s help, “we didn’t catch a fish for dinner so what do you think about pizza?”
“Did you ever catch one?” Dakota laughed.
“Maybe, maybe not,” I smiled at my son.
It was our secret we always let the fish go. Since he was a little boy he couldn’t kill a fly. It would break his heart if we ate his catch. He decided to be a vegetarian when he was twelve because he couldn’t stand the fact animals are dying so people can eat them.
“Not,” Emmalee said, mocking us, and started packing her stuff from the dock, where she was sunbathing with Dakota. It feels like that’s all they are doing this summer.
“Very funny, smart mouth. Go put on some clothes if you want to join us for dinner.”
My daughter smirked and walked away. Sometimes I wonder where did my little girl go. Just the other day she would do anything to sleep in our bedroom and these days she stays locked in hers. Before we know it she will start dating, have sex, get married in the better version or have her heart broken in the worse.
On the other side of the lake was a cute little pizzeria, owned by a local family and they make the best pizza I’ve ever eaten. When we found this place eight years ago, we knew this is going to be our spot and there was not a single weekend or vacation we spent at the cabin without eating here.
“One large pepperoni, one small…”
“veggie pizza and four cokes,” the woman behind the counter finished my order with a smile, “twenty six fifty.”
I watched my dad to place the order at the counter, put the change he got back in the tip jar, as he always does, and then join us at our table.
After a little while they called his name and dad with Emmett’s help brought the food over.
“So,” dad started, “not a bad summer so far, huh guys?”
By guys he obviously meant me and my brother. I don’t think Emmett really cared, it’s not like he would be doing anything great in Hillside anyway, but I really missed my friends. The cabin is awesome, you can’t really beat a lake in the backyard, but hanging out with my parents and my younger brother is not my ideal summer.
I just shrugged and took a bite of my pizza. The melted cheese kept stretching so I had to pull the slice far away from my face. When it finally ripped, it was all over my face.
My father laughed, and as I was wiping the cheese and pizza sauce off of my cheeks and chin, I noticed that he is not the only one amused by my eating.
He was just standing there, arms folded on his chest, his smile from ear to ear. Kevin.
Oh no, I stopped in the middle and stared at him, I must look ridiculous!
Could he catch me in a more embarrassing moment?! To make me even more uncomfortable, he walked over to our table, not caring that I am here with my whole family.
“Hi,” he raised his hand in a wave, “Emmalee, right?”
I couldn’t speak. I just stared. At him, my father, my mother, back at him. It felt like eternity before someone spoke again and that someone was my dad.
“And you are?”
“Oh sorry, I’m’ Kevin,” he stretched his arm to shake his hand which my dad didn’t accept, “Emmalee and I met the other day on your dock.”
“On my dock, huh? And what were you doing on my dock, Kevin?”
“I wasn’t really on you dock, sir. I was just riding my water scooter when I saw your daughter.”
“Hmm,” my father nodded, unimpressed, “so you saw my daughter in a bikini and thought you’d introduce yourself.”
“Well, yea,” he smiled, “she seems cool, so I was thinking that maybe I would ask her out, if you don’t mind.”
“Well that’s not really up to me, is it, Kevin,” my dad looked at me and I nodded quickly, assuring him that I am interested. I stood up and was ready to walk out.
“Have her home by ten o’clock, prince Charming.”
“Will do, sir.”
It was a beautiful summer evening. Kevin took me to the park across from the lake beach. I couldn’t believe how brave it was to ask me out in front of my father. Especially when my father didn’t make it easy for him with all the questions an refusing to shake his hand upon introduction.
“So how is your summer going so far? Is it your first time in New Lakeshire?”
“No,” I shook my head and sat on one of the swings, “we’ve been coming here since I was like eight years old. This is the first year I’m here all summer without my friend, though.”
“Well then, it’s a good thing you have a new friend now,” he looked at me with the sweetest smile on his face.
Why is he making me so nervous? I’ve hang out with boys before, but non of them made me feel like this!
Thankfully after a while, I finally relaxed and we had a great time together. His parents own a cabin just a few streets from ours and it turns out he’s been spending all his summers here as well. He told me he made some good friends over the years and wants me to meet them. I guess that means this is not our last date.
Before we knew it, it was almost time of my curfew.
“I should take you home,” he stood up from the bench where we were sitting and offered me a hand, “I don’t want your dad to hate me more than he already does.”
I chuckled, “he doesn’t hate you.”
“I hate that guy,” Trevor was pacing through the room like a maniac, “I knew I shouldn’t trust him. Look at the clock.”
“Baby, they still have seven minutes,” I tried to calm him down. It was hard for him to see his baby girl is growing up.
“They’re not gonna be here, I know it.”
“Yes, they will. Hey,” I blocked his way and put my hands on his upper arms, “our daughter is sixteen and she is going to date. Either Kevin or some other guy so you have to make your peace with it.”
My husband sighed, defeated, “I hate that.”
“I know,” I nodded and smiled softly.
“They’re back,” he looked towards the door and marched over there.
“Do not open the door, Trevor,” I warned him.
Surprisingly he did as I said and put his ear on the door instead.
“Don’t listen,” I whispered and even though I tried to fight it, I joined him.
“I had a great time tonight,” the boy behind the door said to my daughter.
“Me too,” Emmalee said and there was a long pause. This is the part where they should kiss but instead she said loudly, “my parents are listening behind the door so I should probably go now.”
Me and Trevor looked at each other, panicking, and jumped away from the door. A few seconds later our daughter entered the house and looked at us with her eyebrows raised.
“How was your date, honey?” I tried.
“It would be better if you two weren’t spying on us.”
“Right,” she scoffed and walked away, leaving me and Trevor standing there, like a couple of idiots.
I waited till the all the lights i n the house turned off and then I found a few small rocks to get Emmalee’s attention. I wasn’t sure which bedroom was hers but she told me it had a door leading to a balcony so I took a pick. It’s either gonna be hers, or her parents’. What could go wrong, right?
After a few throws, one of the rooms lit up. Let’s pray it’s her, who walks out of that sliding door.
“Kevin?” she whispered, confused, “what are you still doing here?”
“I forgot something.”
“Come down and I’ll tell you.”
“My parents are sleeping right next door to my bedroom.”
“Be quiet then.”
She shook her head and laughed, so beautiful in the moonlight, “wait in the pergola. I’ll be right down.”
Couple minutes later, she joined me in the pergola, wearing shorts and a cute white t-shirt.
“So, what did you forget?”
I stood up from the comfortable hanging chair and put my arms around her waist, “this.”