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“I drew a map so we can get home or maybe come back here in the summer, but I’m not sure how to draw a path to get to moonlight. So, tonight, these stars can shine as our halos and the pine trees watch over like guardian angels, protecting a perfect love between twilight and all a lifetime of yearning.”
The summer sky always looks brighter when the taste of burnt burgers and iced tea is in your mouth. It sort of ties together with the way July should be; carefree and warm, kind of like a hug from a really close friend.
I could only faintly hear my radio now, as the sound leaked through my open window. It was on one of the classic radio channels that my dad usually listened to when he went swimming on Sunday mornings. It wasn’t a channel I listened to often, but today was just one of those days. One of those days when the grass seems greener and everything means so much more; including life itself.
“Leah there’s someone here to see you.”
I slid my dark purple sunglasses down to see my mother standing at my open window. She wasn’t surprised to see me up on the roof, because it had become my usual place since the end of school. To me summer represented freedom, and that included the freedom of the outdoors.
She opened the window wider, motioning with her hand for me to come back in.
“I’m not sure, he didn’t say his name.”
I climbed back in, clicking the old radio off on my desk before heading downstairs to see who it was. I knew who I wanted it to be but I wasn’t sure it would be just that person.
Two summers ago, when I was fourteen, I had this friend named Adrien who was renting a cottage next to ours by the lake. Though I wasn’t usually the kind of person to make friends easily, ever since sixth grade when I accidently killed the class pet. But Adrien was different. He was the first boy I had ever met who liked spending summer nights staring up at the stars and counting the sparkle in the life they emanated. He was the first boy who had shared my view on the world, and believed that those stars created imaginary halos above the world, and that whenever somebody upset one of the stars, part of their halo would burn out.
These are the memories that were floating through my head as I headed downstairs in the den. But to my dismay, the boy that had been waiting all this time to see me wasn’t Adrien.
It was one of our neighbors from down the street, complaining about the dent I put in their mailbox the other day when I was riding my bike to the store.
After offering to pay for the damages done to the mailbox, though it would’ve been easy enough just to hammer it out, I returned to my roof for the rest of the afternoon.
Night fell, and I stayed on the roof until way past supper time, admiring the stars that I had once admired with Adrien.
I grabbed a thin blanket from back in my room and I slept there on the roof all night long, absorbing the elegance of the night. 16
Until I heard the quiet roll of a tiny rock, as it fell next to me. I opened my eyes for a second but noticed nothing wrong, and immediately closed my eyes again and went to sleep.
But then I heard more tiny rocks falling next to me. It sounded as if the sun were exploding into bits and pieces
“I won’t be awake much longer, Leah. C’mon I know you’re up there.”
My eyes opened wide, sitting up slowly without falling off the roof. It was almost impossible to see but not impossible to detect the person’s voice.
“Adrien?” I called down from the roof, holding my hand above my eyes to see him better. But the moonlight wasn’t strong enough yet, and I could just barely make out his silouette.
He didn’t answer, but began singing the song he had sang to me that summer when we had met, by The Spill Canvas, a band we had both grown to love.
“Now I feel your name, coursing through my veins.
You shine so bright it's insane, you put the sun to shame.”
In that moment I threw away any misconceptions I had about the summer, because this summer was going to be a mirror of perfection. This summer might even be better than the previous summers before, because the stars were back in my cloudless sky, and they were sparkling with all the strength of the heavens.