by Amy

Anne Marie surfs to forget.

She surfs because she needs the prize money, because her sister's a mess, because she has no other choice.

She surfs because otherwise she might die.

You don't surf that much anymore. You just watch her.

Logic says that few people have a chance of really succeeding. Logic says that more than one out of three girls is just pushing your luck. So you don't push. Surfing is fun for you, but it's not your main goal in life.

Surfing isn't kissing under the stars, isn't skin glowing with sweat and pride, isn't the taste of salt water mixing with the taste of her.

She won't let you do that anymore.

Lena teases you about it. "You really bought that bullshit, didn't you? You really thought you'd get the happy ending."

"Fuck you."

Lena barely pauses for air. "You call her your girl, you think it'll mean something?"

"Lena, fuck off."

"I'm not criticizing. I'm just observing. I mean, if Anne Marie looked at me that way-"

"Lena, I swear to God-"

"But you had to know it wouldn't last. No one wants a hot dyke on the cover of Surfing Magazine."

Penny's nicer about it. "She's not a dyke, Lena. She's a lesbian. Well, actually, now she's not. She's just normal." She backtracks as tactfully as possible. "Not that you're not normal, Eden. Just that-"

"I get it, Penny. Your sister's straight."

Penny grins apologetically. "Exactly! I mean-"

"But she's not straight. She just wants everyone to think she is."

"Deny, deny, deny," teases Lena. "Just because you want to believe that she'll let your tongue touch her precious-"

"Lena, shut the fuck up!"

Lena shrugs. "If you want to stay hung up over Anne Marie-"

"I'm not hung up! God, you're such a stupid bitch!"

"Hey, minor ears, Eden!" she says, pointing to Penny.

"Fuck you, Lena," Penny says before turning to you. "Anne Marie really loved you."

Try to smile. "Yeah, I know."

"Maybe she still does."


"He's just a guy, Eden."

Just a guy, touching her, teasing her, tasting her, loving her.

Just a guy whose callous fingers tangle with her own, whose rough tongue lifts the fresh seawater from her skin, who can wake up in the middle of the night and stare at the pale flesh below him or the moon above.

"Just a guy," you agree.

She still surfs sometimes. When she wants to.

Some days you wake up early and sneak out just to watch a single figure framed against the rising sun, her hair sprinkled with salt and gold, waves crashing against strong tan skin.

She's not yours anymore.

But she could be.


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