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    Parker Owens
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A Fall Observation - 3. Party

My deep appreciation to AC Benus, whose insights made this story richer and better. This is the third and last chapter of our friends' day together. I hope you have a good time with them.

We piled back into our cars to head south, farther into the park. I wound up following Terry and Kaz's car. That part was easy enough.

"You know anything about where we're going?" David asked.

"No idea," I said gripping the steering wheel a little tighter. The road was proving trickier than I expected.

"Hope it isn't too big a hike. I'm a little tired."

I grinned, then cornered and braked hard.

"Whoa, Gary, drive much?" Twoey joked, as he and David were thrown together in the back seat.

"Sorry. The downhill curves and momentum really creep up on you."

A glance in my rearview caught Twoey giving David a quick kiss. Guess he wasn't complaining too much.

But the road could have been a real killer if we'd tried to take it any faster. The view to our right was probably spectacular. I really couldn't take time to concentrate. Maybe I'd come back in a BMW or a Miata someday.

Kaz's big boat of a car slowed in front of me, brake lights bright.

Another tight bend to the left, and suddenly a classic-looking yellow structure appeared. And a fountain.

"What's that?" Mel asked.

As if I knew.

"Glen Iris Inn." Twoey read the sign. "Food. Lodging."

"Looks beautiful." Mel sighed.

"Looks expensive," added David.

Twoey laughed. "Spoilsport. I was hoping you'd take me out to dinner here someday."

We drove past a parking lot for the inn, plus a stone building with I sign I didn't get a chance to read. Another turn signal from Kaz, and down more steep inclines. A wide grassy parkland opened to our left. A minute or two more, and the turn signal on Kaz's old car flashed. Parking again. Finally.

We gathered on the grass around Terry, who seemed to have some kind of map in her hand. "I think we go that way," she pointed. "There's a trail."

"We'll find it," Kaz said. "Let's go."

"He sounds confident," I heard David mutter as we moved off.

Kaz and Terry led the way, with Mel up with them. I wanted to talk swimming some more with Zander; David and Twoey trailed behind. I think Andy walked alone at the rear.

It didn't take us long to find a wide walkway. The gorge was visible through the trees to our left. And ahead, the roar of falling water. We ambled along the wide gravel pathway. This was hardly a hike, but maybe pretty much what David and Kaz needed. The falls boomed closer and closer with every step. And high over the river, beyond the falls, rose construction equipment, and a spidery network of ironworks.

"Looks like they're building a new railroad bridge," commented Zander. "Wonder what kind of design they're using?"

"Don't know. Wonder what the problem with the old one is?"

Zander shrugged.

A hazy mist rose from the cataract tumbling over the rocks ahead.

"Jeez, Zander, you ever want to go swimming in that?" I joked, pointing over the low stone wall at the side of the trail and into the roiling pool at the foot of the falls.

"I may be crazy, but I'm not suicidal."

"Yeah, but you could do it, right? It would be like swimming in one of those exercise pools."

"With undercurrents and who knows what kind of shit coming over the falls at you? No thanks, Gary. I'll leave it to you."

"But think of how good your strength and endurance would get," I persisted.

We entered the trees and strolled along under a canopy of colors. The rush of water from the gorge sounded stronger in our ears. The ground rose slowly, and we arrived at a spectacular lookout point, just at the crest of the falls. Several other people stood there, taking pictures; from this spot we could peer down into the depths of the narrow gorge, or watch the Genesee river sliding over the shale precipice to the pool below. And above us soared both the old rail bridge, and the beginnings of the new one that would replace it.

"Where does this trail go?" Twoey asked. He pointed to where stone steps led up and away from our vantage spot.

"It's supposed to lead us back to the road, I think," said Terry.

"You wanna see where it goes?"

"I wonder if we could get up to that bridge," Zander mused. "There would have to be a great view from there."

"I bet the trail gets us near to it," ventured Kaz. "Come on."

David frowned. "I'm not sure, it looks pretty old."

"Come on, where's the David sense of adventure?" I teased. "Unless you're too tired."

That got to him. "I'm not tired," he asserted.

"We don't have to go up." Twoey put a hand on David's arm.

He shook it off. "No, I'm fine. Really. Let's go."

We moved off up the trail. It narrowed, and it began climbing up the side of the high banks into the trees above. On our left, the river hurried past on its trip over the cataract. On our right, a wall of rocks and trees met our eyes.

"God, I wouldn't have wanted the job of building this trail," Twoey panted behind us.

"I wouldn't have minded," Zander laughed. "Looks like a cool design project."

"You probably wouldn't have been the one to lug all the rocks up to build all these walls and steps," Andy put in from somewhere back of Twoey.

And somebody must have hauled tons and tons of stones – for walls, for stone steps, for decorative touches nobody seems to have the patience to build anymore. Up, and up and up we went. I was beginning to think we ought to go back to the parking lot.

Finally, at the top of a long, long stone staircase, we came out at the road. Or at least, where the road would have been. We were greeted by one of those big construction fences, telling us we'd arrived at the bridge construction site. The road was littered with silent heavy equipment. It was Saturday; nobody would be working.

Our objective, the railroad bridge, was ahead, on the other side of the danger and warning signs.

"Maybe we won't be able to get up there after all." David's voice sounded flat.

But other hikers must have had the same ideas as I did. To my right, I spotted a gap in the fence. Not a big one, but the kind of gap some other enterprising park visitor might have made. Just large enough for a body to slip through. In fact, plenty of people seemed to have ignored all the signs, because a makeshift path seemed to lead on up the steep slope on the other side of the road.

"Come on, I think I see a way."

I was the first one through the fence, Zander following behind. Then Mel, Kaz and Terry, then Twoey, David and Andy. We scrambled up the dirt and rocks toward the railroad bridge. There must have been a forest here once, because the scree was littered with stumps and twigs.

And then we were there: a set of tracks led across the old narrow bridge to the far side of the gorge. There was a walkway, sort of, on one side of the track, and there were old rusty iron railings that might have ensured safety once upon a time.

I didn't hesitate.

The view from the trestle was spectacular. Far below us was the falls; farther downstream another, larger falls was in view, sending spray far into the air. On either side of the river, the trees spread out in a vast blanket of wild oranges and reds and golds. It looked like we could see forever – an endless rolling landscape stretching out to the horizon. Behind us, the new, half-finished bridge was taking shape. Definitely worth the hike.

We all stood there, lined up at the railing, gazing out at the unforgettable sight.

And then, we heard a loud sort of roaring overhead. Turning to look, we were treated to the display of a hot air balloon lazily floating over our heads.

It roared again. "It's burning gas, see that?" Zander pointed up at the visible blue-yellow flame. "I guess that's what heats the air inside again to get more lift."

The balloon was bright gold against the blue autumn sky, with some kind of red trim that was hard to make out. I know that I gaped at it for a long time as it sailed over the far bank.

"Hey, um, guys? Everyone?" Kaz interrupted my thoughts. I got a little woozy from looking up in the sky and then looking down into the gorge from the height of the bridge.

"What?"

"I think there might be a train coming."

"How do you know?" Mel asked.

"Thought I heard something. A horn."

And then I heard it, too. The unmistakable notes of a diesel railroad engine, moaning its message on the far side of the gorge. And not a long way away, either.

"Hell, we'd better get out of here," I said.

We all began to jog off the bridge. No point in seeing if pedestrians and locomotives could share that bridge. Not at that height, thanks. The long, almost musical sound of the oncoming train served as a reminder to hurry.

We got to the place where the path came out and started to scramble down.

Mel and Terry were in front of me; Kaz was at my side; and behind my shoulder, I heard Twoey ask two chilling words: "Where's David?"

We all slid to a stop.

"Where's Andy?" Zander echoed.

We swiveled our necks back to the bridge. There was David, silhouetted against the brilliant sky: running back onto the bridge.

The train's horn sounded again, just out of view.

"David!" Twoey screamed. He started to run back up the slope toward the track.

Zander was on his heels. Andy must have been up there, too.

I saw David's form stop on the bridge. Suddenly, he ducked down out of our view.

The diesel locomotive emerged from the trees on the opposite bank, a blazing orange juggernaut, approaching the rickety old bridge at a sedate pace. Its horn blared again, threatening impending disaster, advancing on David. Andy's location in all this was a mystery.

That is, until I saw two heads bob up above the railing.

Again, the railroad horn shouted out its merciless warning.

But now, ahead of the orange monster, sprinted David and Andy, neck and neck, down the track toward safety.

They made it with maybe five seconds to spare.

We met them there, Zander and Twoey arriving first, at the end of the bridge. The long train of railcars squealed and squeaked past.

Andy was about to say something to David when he was grabbed in a fierce hug by Zander. Twoey just about tackled David to the ground.

"Are you okay?" I heard him yell over the din of the passing freight. Then they were kissing. I didn’t blame them.

When I glanced over at Zander, he and Andy were doing the same.

Kaz put a hand on my shoulder. "Come on, let's get away from this."

We made our way more slowly down the dirt path to the roadway and sightseeing trail.

"So what happened?" Terry asked.

"My foot slipped off the walkway. My shoe got stuck in a gap. I couldn't get out." Andy explained. "David tried to help me get it out, but it wouldn't budge. We finally just untied it and left it there."

I looked down. No wonder Andy was hobbling along. He was missing a shoe.

Zander wrapped an arm around Andy. Twoey and David were walking some distance ahead of us, hand in hand. It had been a close call. I reached out for Mel.

"I think I need a shower," stated Kaz, making an obvious point. "Let's head back to campus."

~~~ ~~~ ~~~

The State University of New York College at Geneseo isn't a huge place – not like SUNY Binghamton or UB, for example – but they were good hosts. They had Kaz, Terry, Zander and Andy all staying in a four-room dorm suite. Two of the suite mates were runners, and the third was Glenn, a tall, friendly brown haired sophomorer whose major included Sports Event Management.

"Glad to meet you, Gary," he said, shaking my hand. "If you don't mind finding a spot on the floor tonight, I can get spare sleeping pads and blankets for all of you."

The common room for the suite looked big enough.

"No problem. It's just really nice of you to help us out."

"So, how do you know Kaz?"

"We met today. We watched the race with his friends here."

"Cool." He finished typing something into his phone. "I can find some meal tickets for you guys, too. How many of you were there?"

"Um, four. Me and Mel," I said, pointing, "my friend Twoey over there, and his boyfriend David, who's in the shower."

Glenn nodded. "Fine. No problem."

"Why are you doing all this?"

"Hey, the University thinks this is a good way to attract candidates. After all this hospitality, you gotta apply, right?"

"Sure. I'll do it as soon as we get back home," I laughed.

"Good. Then Geneseo will have gotten its money's worth for the race and the dinner. And you get the pleasure of the after party."

"I'm looking forward to that." Mel sidled up to us. "Have you seen Terry?"

"I think she went with Zander and Andy. Said something about getting new shoes."

But we were all together again for the evening dinner. They had a huge buffet, and our group sat around a big table. Kaz and David and the other eight top finishers went up on a stage and got awarded medals and were applauded. Mel and Twoey competed for loudest whistle.

After it was all over, we drifted back to the dorm, where Glenn had thoughtfully invited some of his friends over – not a recruiting event at all – for an after party. As a party, it was pretty tame, though there was beer. But Kaz was staying away from it, because he didn’t want to violate any recruiting rules. I thought it was cool to be talking with college guys, who really treated us as equals, not snotty younger children.

Zander, tall cup in hand, was in some deep conversation in a corner with a bearded guy – looked like they could have been talking about art – while I left Twoey in the suite kitchen listening to a political debate. I didn't think he was going to sit on the sidelines for long. Kaz and Terry were laughing with a random friend of Glenn's.

Someone had music on, and a couple of people tried to dance, but the place was pretty packed.

I felt an arm slip into mine. "Hey, you wanna go get some air?" I smiled at Mel's voice in my ear. She wanted more than air.

We slipped out the door into the stairwell. Mel kissed me, and I was happy to return it. Hell, David, Twoey, Zander and Andy had been at it all day. Why not us?

"We're too much in the way here," Mel whispered. "Let's move up the stairs."

The landing just above was a perfect spot: poorly lighted, and out of the way of most foot traffic to the suite. At least, nobody seemed interested in coming our way.

We sat close in the semidarkness.

"You okay?" Mel asked without any warning.

"Sure. I'm fine."

"You don't seem fine. You seem kind of, I don't know – down. On edge. Like you're watching everything." She stroked the back of my head.

I sighed. Mel and I have been together for two years. She's figured a lot of me out. "Yeah. You're right." I leaned my head against hers, put my arm around her shoulders.

"And so?" Her question hung there in the air.

"I'm just getting depressed by everything. Life is moving too fast. This time next year, everyone and everything I know will be history – David, Twoey, Sam, Nels, you, me, all of us - it's going to be over."

"Us, too?"

I shook my head. "Shit. Sorry, Mel. I didn't mean…" We'd talked about whether there was going to be a long term us before. I didn't want to go there. I started again. "It's just that who knows how things are going to turn out? I just don't want to watch it all disappear."

"Things will work out."

"And David's just stewing today. I can't do anything about it – I have to ask Twoey. And Twoey doesn't know what's going on either. I don't want to lose my best friend – not to himself, not to Twoey, not to anything."

Mel kissed me on the cheek, and I relaxed a little from my rant. "We're growing up. Change is gonna happen."

"I know."

"And as long as you take care of the people you love, they're going to be a part of you."

I blinked. Since when did Mel get to be so smart?

Her hand rested on the back of my neck. "And I think I like taking care of you, too, Gary Galli," she whispered just before she kissed me.

How much time passed while we made out, I couldn't say. But I remember coming up for air, and hearing the suite door open and close.

A few moments later, I heard David's voice. "Hi, Ginny, it's me. Yeah, your other son."

There was a pause.

"You got the text that we're staying at Geneseo overnight? And it's okay with you?"

Another silence.

"Yes, we'll be fine. We're being hosted in a suite…. Yeah, college students…. No, nobody's doing any of that stuff."

I hope Twoey's mom was talking about marijuana or something like that. I'd already had a couple of beers.

"It went okay. I placed top ten," David continued.

More time passed. Ginny must have had a lot to say.

"Don't worry. I will. And…love you, too, Ginny."

"Hey." David had been joined by another voice. Who was that? I shifted my position next to Mel to see a little better in the dim light.

"Hi. What's up, Andy?"

Oh. Mystery solved.

"I wanted to…I didn't really get a chance to say…to say thank you. For what you did."

"It's okay. No problem." David's guarded voice was back.

"No, I'm serious. If you hadn't come back for me, I'd be dead. And my…husband…would have been heartbroken."

"I've been looking at that ring on your hand all afternoon." David's voice wavered. "You're really married to Zander? No shit?"

"Yeah. We got married this past April."

"You're not kidding, are you?"

"No." Andy stood there, looking awkward.

"How'd that happen?"

"I met Zander in school, and I fell in love with him."

"Just that simple?"

"No," Andy sighed. "It's a long story. Too long. But Zander's parents were really supportive. I live with them now."

"Um, wow. That's intense." David was thinking about something. I could hear that in his voice, too. "You wanna sit down for a sec?"

"Sure. Okay."

Mel started to move, but I shushed her. I wanted to hear this. Maybe, just maybe, I’d get a peek inside David's brain.

"Can I ask you a question?" Andy spoke into the semidarkness.

"Go ahead."

"Do you believe in visions? Like angels and that?"

David hesitated. "Yeah. I do."

"Because while I was trying to get unstuck on the bridge, I kept hearing this voice, telling me 'Wait for David, wait for David, wait for David.' And I caught a glimpse – just a glimpse – of this – I don't know – a blond angel at my side. Weird, right?"

David didn't say anything.

"I mean, the last thing I should have been thinking about is angels and stuff at a moment like that. But I did see it. Him."

One word fell into the silence behind Andy's pondering.

"Danny."

What? Danny? Our Danny?

"You saw Danny."

"Who's Danny?"

"He was a friend. He was murdered by his own dad. And he's an angel. At least he is now. I don't know. But when I tried to…off myself…he was there. He…helped."

"I'm sorry."

"Sorry Danny helped me?"

"No. Sorry that I brought up painful memories." Now Andy's voice was hushed. "You tried to kill yourself?"

"I'm past that now."

"You sure about that?"

David laughed a mirthless chuckle. "No, you're right. I'm not. Not completely. Sometimes, like today, it's hard to forget. But I'm working on it."

Today? What about today had David thinking that messed up crap again?

"So what made you want to…you know…do it?" Andy asked.

"I was abused – molested – as a kid. It was a teacher from church and school who did it. And then I was scared about coming out. Loving Twoey. Thought all my friends would…." David left the sentence hanging. "Anyway, it was bringing all kinds of shit to the surface. I had a lot of trouble dealing with it."

Andy kept his silence. He'd been doing a lot of that; I kind of think he must be a good listener.

"And then today, there was Gary and Mel, and Kaz was telling me all about Terry – and then I met you and Zander, too. I mean, fuck, you two seem so happy, and I keep hearing this voice in my head telling me all I'll do is tear everyone down, you know?"

Oh, David. The shit you had to go through. I wanted to hug him right then.

But Andy beat me to it. He wrapped David up in a tight embrace.

When he released David, Andy spoke in a quiet voice. "I know what it's like."

"The hell you do," David said. I knew that tone. David was waiting to pounce.

"I mean, I came close. Almost did it, too. I was ready to jump off a bridge a little over a year ago."

"Yeah? How'd that happen?"

"My uncle raped me when I was eight. My dad tore me down and beat on me for eight years afterwards. I finally…ran away. One day I just kind of gave up."

Now it was David's turn to be silent.

Poor David. Poor Andy. Poor all of us. I felt a kind of sadness and anger burning inside. Doesn't anybody get it that when you hurt one man, you hurt everyone connected to him? That the pain spreads out like ripples on a pond?

"Geez, Andy. I'm sorry."

I heard Mel try to suppress a sniff.

"Don't be. Like you said, we're both mostly past it. But I was thinking about the irony, you know? How I survived all that only to get smushed by a freight train."

"But you weren't. Smushed, I mean."

"Thanks to you."

There was quiet.

"Andy? Can I kiss you?"

David, David, what the hell are you doing?

Andy nodded, wide eyed. David leaned close, and planted a very soft kiss on Andy's forehead, another on his nose, and a third on Andy's lips.

In that kiss, I realized how strong David was. How in spite of the lingering pain he suffered from, he could still offer this – kindness, some understanding, hope, maybe. And I realized then that if heartache could fan out from one person, so could love.

"We're gonna be okay, Andy," David said, as much to himself, I think, as to the boy he just kissed.

Just then the door to the suite opened. Zander walked out, followed by Twoey.

"There you guys are. We've been looking all over for you."

Twoey walked over to David and kissed him; Andy got up and hugged Zander.

"We're lucky guys, aren't we, David?" Andy called out.

"Yeah. I think we are."

Thank you for taking the time to read this. If you feel a comment of any kind coming on, rant or rave, please do leave one here.

Copyright © 2017 Parker Owens; All Rights Reserved.
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Chapter Comments



Eventually I have to get over my intimidation over its more than 100 chapter length and read Tooey…

 

 

This story was another reminder of why I miss reading about Andy, Zander, and their family and friends. But Andy and Zander will probably be sighted by a couple birdwatchers before we get a dedicated story about A & Z again. Hopefully, they won’t get bumped by another major story (as much as I’ve enjoyed Predator and Aquinas) first!  ;-)

Edited by droughtquake
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Loving it.  It was good Andy and David talked; they do have a lot in common and could help each other,.  

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What a chapter to read on such an amazing day. It shows just how much you deserve your exalted status. To keep your voice and pay homage to another ...  It had me in tears by the end. Thank you, my friend. :hug:

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Wow that was quite intense on those railroad tracks there for a minute.  No lie Parker, this was but a tease of the futures of all the characters involved.  Though interestingly enough, both you and SD already gave us glimpses of the future for what comes later for these guys.  So we do know what's in store for them down the road. Thanks for finishing and sharing this.  I loved it.

Edited by spikey582
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I'm adding my kudos for a wonderful ending.  I previously had fell in love with each of these characters and their engaging stories.  This story was a great way to have them meet and interact.  

 

However, the part I liked best is this closing where you captured that moment that so many have experienced where one becomes aware that you are at a transition point where you can't and won't be able to go "home" again and where the pathway to the future that you have been so eagerly pursuing seems less alluring than the safety of what you have in that moment.  Your words portrayed that bittersweet moment so well.  Thank you! 

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3 hours ago, droughtquake said:

Eventually I have to get over my intimidation over its more than 100 chapter length and read Tooey…

 

 

This story was another reminder of why I miss reading about Andy, Zander, and their family and friends. But Andy and Zander will probably be sighted by a couple birdwatchers before we get a dedicated story about A & Z again. Hopefully, they won’t get bumped by another major story (as much as I’ve enjoyed Predator and Aquinas) first!  ;-)

 

I miss them, too - enough to have written this short visit. Thanks so much for reading this story, and for your thoughts. Don't let 100 chapters scare you - you'll get swept up in it and binge-read before you know it!

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3 hours ago, avidreadr said:

Loving it.  It was good Andy and David talked; they do have a lot in common and could help each other,.  

 

Thanks for your kind words - thinking how David and Andy would talk was really difficult. There is plenty of crumpled scrap paper in the trash...hope you think it came out right.

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2 hours ago, JayT said:

Reading this was great. It got me thinking about our Skinny and I don't want to be a downer.....just want to say-Skinny we love you and miss you thank you for sharing your stories with us. And, to you Parker, thanks for bringing a little bit of Skinny back to us...you did an amazing job

 I am glad that this small story brought our friend back to you. It did the same for me, and in the end, it was a very good thing. I miss him, too. Thanks for reading this story!

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1 hour ago, northie said:

What a chapter to read on such an amazing day. It shows just how much you deserve your exalted status. To keep your voice and pay homage to another ...  It had me in tears by the end. Thank you, my friend. :hug:

 

Very glad you enjoyed this chapter; it took a very long time to form and complete. The final conversation in the stairwell went through dozens of drafts and drafts-of-drafts. I hope it was true to the voices of these characters; if you think so, then I will have succeeded for both myself and Skinny. And I choked up, too. Thank you so much for reading this!

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56 minutes ago, spikey582 said:

Wow that was quite intense on those railroad tracks there for a minute.  No lie Parker, this was but a tease of the futures of all the characters involved.  Though interestingly enough, both you and SD already gave us glimpses of the future for what comes later for these guys.  So we do know what's in store for them down the road. Thanks for finishing and sharing this.  I loved it.

 

It was a bit of a tease, but as you say, SD told us a little of what Twoey and David would do in their future lives. And I think that they, like Andy and Zander, would have made vows to one another. That bridge is probably taken down now - the deconstruction was going on all summer, and the new one will probably have a fierce fence to keep out pedestrians - but that old railroad trestle had to have one more adventure before it left this world. If you search for Letchworth State Park, or walk around it on a mapping app, you can see a lot of where the action takes place in this story...so we can all share it.

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45 minutes ago, donaldbirwin said:

I'm adding my kudos for a wonderful ending.  I previously had fell in love with each of these characters and their engaging stories.  This story was a great way to have them meet and interact.  

 

However, the part I liked best is this closing where you captured that moment that so many have experienced where one becomes aware that you are at a transition point where you can't and won't be able to go "home" again and where the pathway to the future that you have been so eagerly pursuing seems less alluring than the safety of what you have in that moment.  Your words portrayed that bittersweet moment so well.  Thank you! 

 

I am very, very glad of your comment. It is a kind of refrain we encounter in our lives over and over again, and an important one, too. How we approach milestones and decisions determines a great deal of whatever happens after those life events take place. Thank you so much for reading this, and I am delighted you enjoyed it.

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I like where you left us. In a magic world Andy and David would be beyond the past and everything would be rosy. But this isn't a magic world and so they still carry the hurt and doubt. But now both realize they're okay with themselves. Thank you Parker for finishing this. I'm certain it was not easy but it is a beautiful tribute. Namasté.

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20 minutes ago, dughlas said:

I like where you left us. In a magic world Andy and David would be beyond the past and everything would be rosy. But this isn't a magic world and so they still carry the hurt and doubt. But now both realize they're okay with themselves. Thank you Parker for finishing this. I'm certain it was not easy but it is a beautiful tribute. Namasté.

 Thank you, my brother. You have it exactly right. Their healing will take a long time, but it seems as if the love of their other halves will help wholeness to develop. And the story is tribute both to Skinny, and to the characters we both created. Thanks so much for reading this, and for your kind and generous comments.

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It was so great to visit with David, Twoey and company again.  Since we lost SD I've felt the additional loss of the people in his world that we'll never see again--but you've done an excellent job of letting us have these final moments with them once more.

I think, in a way, that Skinny's ghost can rest a little easier now--and so can the rest of us who shared his thoughts and dreams.

:hug:

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Thanks for a great story, I love this park and have camped there many times. You sure did justice to the beauty of it.

I must have missed something some of the comments talk about missing Skinny did he pass away?

Thanks

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2 hours ago, ColumbusGuy said:

It was so great to visit with David, Twoey and company again.  Since we lost SD I've felt the additional loss of the people in his world that we'll never see again--but you've done an excellent job of letting us have these final moments with them once more.

I think, in a way, that Skinny's ghost can rest a little easier now--and so can the rest of us who shared his thoughts and dreams.

:hug:

 

Thank you so much for reading this story, and for your kind comments. These moments with our friends were hard to write, but very fulfilling. Skinny's voice must have been channeled, as I knew when it finally felt right. I hope he can rest easy, even as he inspires us all. Thanks again.

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1 hour ago, a1957513 said:

Thanks for a great story, I love this park and have camped there many times. You sure did justice to the beauty of it.

I must have missed something some of the comments talk about missing Skinny did he pass away?

Thanks

 Thank you very, very much for your comments. I am glad you can directly relate to the setting. I have spent many lovely fall days there, too. Alas, our friend Skinny passed away earlier this year. This story was meant to be a collaboration between the two of us; he asked me to finish it, using the notes we'd made.

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5 hours ago, Lux Apollo said:

:)

 

I don't really habe it in me to write a comment today, but that was lovely.

That in itself is a most marvelous comment. Thank you. 

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4 hours ago, booklove said:

Thank you so much. Like real Life. Always a little sad, always hope.

 

Yes, life is often an alloy, not pure metal. Better if the mixture is heavier on hope than hurt, though. I think Andy and David have both found hope. Thanks.

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You did it Parker.. you weaved the lives of these YA together and made me love them even more especially knowing now, that their past won't wholly define them.  As sad difficult as it must have been,  you also managed to give us a little bit of SkinnyD.. It was beautiful. I can only imagine what the collaboration could have been, but I am grateful for this.. 

 

Well done, and thank you.. 

Edited by Defiance19
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2 hours ago, Defiance19 said:

You did it Parker.. you weaved the lives of these YA together and made me love them even more especially knowing now, that their past won't wholly define them.  As sad difficult as it must have been,  you also managed to give us a little bit of SkinnyD.. It was beautiful. I can only imagine what the collaboration could have been, but I am grateful for this.. 

 

Well done, and thank you.. 

 

No, I thank you,  dear Def. These characters abide in me and all who read about them. And through them we hear echoes of Skinny's voice. I hope I was faithful to it. The past is unwinding for David and Andy, even as their futures gather up joy. I am glad these few chapters were happy ones. 

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