The shores responded in song to the waves.
She bit her lip. “What?” her father asked.
“It’s off beat.”
He squinted. Her father needed glasses, but he refused to admit it. “Since when?”
She shrugged and looked out at the waves.
“I thought the waves caused the song, not the other way around.”
Her mouth worked around nothing. She had no words. It was true. The beat of the waves caused the song. So if it was off… where was the music coming from?
The beach was peaceful, the red grains drying out under the sun.
Emily was too, zonked out under her umbrella for who knew how long. She could feel as though the burn might start, it was time to reapply the sunscreen. Waking up more fully, she reached for her drink. Still tangy, but no longer cool enough to be refreshing. Emily sighed and began to apply the cream.
Then Harriette came up. “I can’t touch you now, go away.”
The dalmatian was not as wet as she had expected, even more spots on his legs, as if they were freckles. Harriette pushed against her, incautious of the sunscreen.
“Harri, no. Stop it.”
Harriette pressed her nose against the side of Emily’s face, then determined she didn’t want to lick her greasy skin and lay down, rolling onto her back. Emily frowned.
However, the dog didn’t care about that and waited. Selfish, Emily decided, as she continued to cover her unprotected skin. Harriette’s patience eventually changed her mind. “You better wash off in the ocean, girl.”
Wiping as much of the cream off of her hand onto her legs, she rubbed Harriette’s belly.
All in all, an average day.
On their day off, they went to the beach. James wore swim trunks and Mercedes a t-shirt and shorts. “I’m going to learn how to surf!” James announced.
“Since when?” Mercedes asked, bringing up a parasol to block the sun and the drool of the long necked dinosaur that stood nearby and stared out over the ocean.
That said, he ran off to find a surfboard at one of the many vendors that were set up right above where the tide came in, getting their wares wet. James bought a surfboard from the guy who also sold tennis rackets and light bulbs. Mercedes set her towel out far away from the family of gnomes that were discussing how to make a better profit here than the leprechauns down the way. Putting on her sunglasses and propping up her parasol, she made herself comfortable. A bear settled nearby, but he was the quiet sort, so Mercedes didn’t begrudge him as a neighbor.
She looked up at where James was standing in the water, on a wave and still perfectly balanced. She tilted her sunglasses down her nose a little and noted the vacationing penguins holding him up. “Nice, James!” she responded, settling her shades back over her eyes.
Then the whale sent all playing in the water flying. Mercedes repositioned her parasol and opened a book.