Flight Dreams

“You might not want to do that,” Emma says.

Drin looks at her, and then at the skateboard in his fist. “What? This? What’s wrong with giving Dance a decent board?”

She gives a long, slow smile, and turns back to her desk. “You remember I said he’s absolutely fearless?”

“And I believe you.”

She shakes her head, writing notes in her phone log. “Just take him to a skatepark and see what happens. Come to think, I wonder what he’ll do with bungee jumping? Or skydiving?”

Drin sits down on his own chair, and continues to stare at her.

When she’s finished writing her notes, she turns to him, reaches out, takes his hands gently, and says, “I know, those are expensive hobbies, so I don’t encourage you to–”

“You’re serious,” Drin says.

“Oh yes. Have you seen him use the high dive?”

person mid-leap off high dive b/w photo
Leaping

“About gave me a heart attack the first time,” Drin says reminiscently.

“Me too,” Emma agrees, eyes crinkling as she smiles up into his face. “I think I’ve told you a few stories about it already, but really, that first summer, I took off three weeks from work, first time ever, and I went driving Dance around to cheap old amusement parks. We spent that whole time going to visit roller coasters. Every one I could afford to drive to. I ate so much cotton candy and hot dogs, you wouldn’t believe. He likes to try to stand up, on the older ones, and hold out his arms. Gave the attendants heart attacks!”

Drin makes a face. “Given his reflexes, he’s probably fine doing that, but– and you didn’t even try to stop him, did you, you wicked thing, you? My God, woman, you’re such a rowdy, I had no idea.”

“That, lovey, is why I’m warning you about the skateboard. You might have to set some rules, just to avoid giving you that heart attack all over again. But I think you get what he needs much better than I do. Dance is like a little kid on stuff like this. He wants to fly.” She lifts both hands wide, fingers spread.

“So we should get him flying lessons,” Drin says. He knows he sounds a little impatient.

“No, not in a machine. Ask him. He’ll tell you that’s not good enough.”

partly draped young man with long hair
But what kind of wings

At Shura’s diner, reunited after the weekend apart, Drin has a sunburnt, wind-blown look to him, and Dance is languid, relaxed. Of course he’s been very well-loved indeed, given Drin’s undivided attention for several days in a row, and it shows in the way he touches Drin, but the calm is new. By now, they all know that lovemaking like that usually energizes Dance, gives him ideas, makes him want to fix things and dig up his garden and whistle while he’s cooking. He gets so excited about things that it’s very cute.

“What was the big secret adventure present?” she asks.

Drin has got freckled by sun deeply enough that his teeth look white against his skin. “Hang gliding lessons.”

She clasps her hands together, gives a little shout of laughter. “Perfect!”

Dance gives her a sidelong glance, smiling, and leans into Drin beside him, and sighs. “It was very good. Our husband is so sneaky.”

parasails at Torry Pines gliderport
parasailors at Torrey Pines gliderport
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