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  • "I love this beach, it's my favorite."
    "You say that about every new beach."
    "I've been here before, you know."
    "You have? When?"
    "A couple of years ago."
    "Before I moved here?"

    (Silence. Waves, like slow breathing.)

    "Were you here with him?"

    (Silence. The surf overturning, like a sleepy giant.)

    "Why didn't you come over last summer, when I invited you?"
    "You didn't invite me."
    "Sure I did. Of course I did."
    "No. She did."

    (Breakers hitting the shore with determination, stones rolling like marbles across the sand.)

    "So you stayed away to punish me, then?"
    "Maybe. Or maybe I just wanted to give you a time-out."
    "A time-out? What for?"
    "For the sake of our friendship. Or your relationship."
    "Don't be silly!"

    (He grabs my shoulders, his mouth opens, as if he's about to say something, but nothing comes. I look into his eyes and they're the same colour as the ocean, as if the sea-water sloshing around his ankles has seeped into his body, flooded him, as if the seawall is about to burst.)


    (Sometimes we talk, but sometimes we look into each other's eyes and realize that some things should remain unspoken.)

    He walks into the water, barefoot, his calves are pale. They make him look vulnerable, as if tanned legs would somehow signify that he was invincible. I'm stupid, I'm a fool and a coward, I speak when I ought to stay quiet, I bite my tongue when I ought to speak up. By every wave, my feet sink deeper into the wet sand. I want to say something, talk to him, beg forgiveness, or I want to punch him in the face, I'm not sure. He turns and looks and me. I smile at him, hesitantly, and he smiles back at me, grabs my hand, pulls me in for a quick hug, then we keep walking.


    Sometimes we talk. Sometimes we just walk on.
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