Upon the rising of the first light of dawn we awoke. We packed up our few belongings and prepared to depart, I dutifully doled out the daily rations of mints, and she patted around the wispy stalks for her keys. We drove for a ways, and stumbled upon a seemingly ordinary lot leading to a seemingly ordinary trail.
Something compelled us to seek refuge from the heat in the shadowy glen, despite there seeming to be little reason to stop. I packed a few things to bring with us, (“Don’t forget my Palmer’s!”) and we set off. We walked for a ways, amicably discussing nothing and everything as always. After a little while we stumbled upon a break in the trail, and, being the ever adventurous wanderers, took the chance to explore.
The off shoot led us to an old dam, many parts of it having washed away in the years since its construction, and the water now flowed freely over its lip, but a dam none the less, if only in title. A babbling river ran over it and through it and all around it, in some places shallow, some places deep, some places rocky, some places sandy. We glanced at each other, each of us grinning wildly at our mad luck on this sun-scorched day. There were a few locals gathered around the water, but none gave us so much as a second glance. We tore off some of our heavier clothes, I retained a bathing suit and sandals, she retained merely a two piece. I glanced at the water, worrying momentarily for what hidden perils might lie beneath their surface, but as always, concern didn’t last long when we were together. She has an aura around her that makes a man take a risk. To take a leap. A jump into the blind, dirt choked depths of the dam. Danger embraced, we struck off into the water.
It was murky. Chilly. And a little bit slimy. The coolness of the water bit into our skin as we sunk down into the deep as one. She grinned at me, her jovial expression failing to hide the shiver as the cool of the water set in. We would laugh at that later. We spent a few hours there, in both conversative manners and in our well rehearsed, comfortable quiet that we had grown to enjoy. We walked across the riverbed, exploring the nooks and crannies of the ancient structure, discovering fish and stones of interesting hues and origins.
The wind whispered across the surface, but we paid it no heed. The humidity of the day had started to give way to a dark and roiling sky, but we paid it no heed. The air, once hot to the touch, and turned cool and fickle, but we paid it no heed. When the locals fled, we paid them no heed.
When the first rumble of thunder struck, we paid it heed. The growling giant echoed across the sky, and I watched her slender frame give a sudden jump in the water, the glint of mischief and un-restrained curiosity in her eyes momentarily gave way to fear.
"We need to go in."
For speed’s sake I hauled her onto my back. She protested at first, but with the next rumble of thunder meekly swung an arm around my neck and asked me, in a quiet yet strong voice I had witnessed only once before, to hurry up. For five minutes we raced the storm to reach the shore, with each roil of thunder her arm tightening around my shoulders a little more, her head cradling itself a little farther into my neck.
We finally reached the shore, and hand in hand sprinted for her car, hearing the rain chasing us down the path. We ran, sprinting to out run the devil himself. It seemed to last forever, the clouds roiling and snarling across the sky, the lightning licked at our peripheral vision. We slid around a corner, our ride coming into view. With a last heave we flung ourselves into the car. Within seconds a sheet of rain slammed into the car. We lay panting in the now rain-soaked seats of the vehicle for minutes. With a heave I turned onto my side, and stared at her. She did the same, those bold bright eyes locked with mine.
We burst out laughing. We laughed and laughed as the maelstrom raged around us. I bend down and put on a new pair of shorts. She cracked a can of her favorite drink, and slurped deeply from it. It was time to move on.