Friday night we had a bonfire. It was a beautiful night. We still have August weather but the ocean air was still cool, so we built up the fire. Everyone got drunker than I expected them to, considering we were leaving the next day, but even Lana got white girl wasted. She and Neal danced in the sand beers raised, hair flying, looking all the world like best friends, no tension in the world.
I was sitting on a log watching and Rook came and sat beside me. He must have been drunk or something, because he started talking to me, like actually.
“You ever been on a mission like this?” he asked.
I shook my head.
“Me neither,” he said. “Knock says Lana doesn’t ask for assistance often. She likes to keep her missions inside the Palefish circle. But Endymion and Icarus aren’t here.”
“Who are Endymion and Icarus?” I asked and he smirked.
“That’s hard to explain,” he said. “They’re Lana’s… muscle, I guess.”
I laughed and PUT ON A CHEESY MAFIA VOICE AND SAID, “we all betta watch out or we’ll be swimmin with the fishes.”
Please end it. Literally I wish I was swimming with the fishes.
Rook might have laughed I don’t totally remember I sorta blacked it out. He said, “I mean you’re not wrong exactly. You don’t fuck with Lana’s clan.”
And listen I could have made more mafia references. A sports reference would have been embarrassing, but survivable. Coulda said something about Capulets and Montagues and that woulda been embarrassing but at least woulda given him the impression that I can read. And what did I say instead?
Witness my humiliation:
“Lana’s clan? God what is this warrior cats?”
WARRIOR CATS? WHAT SHILOH????? How did that even ??????? HOW??? I didn’t even READ them, MADELYN did!!!!
But Rook just took it in stride???? Like literally no comment, absolutely unsurprised.
“I mean that’s not a horrible comparison,” he said. WHICH, if you’re keeping up, suggests that he is familiar with the warrior cat mythos, which is too much for me to properly process right now.
“You’ll see,” he went on. “Everyone has their own loyalties and expertise. Sometimes people get out of control.” He shrugged. “Sometimes Lana has to step in. Sometimes she has to send muscle.”
And then, abruptly he added, “are you coming tomorrow?”
I glared across the fire at Neal and Jasper who were doing some kind of flailing drunken jig. “Bet on it,” I grumbled.
Rook shifted to better look at me. “We might die,” he said, watching my face to see what I’d do.
“God I hope so,” I said, because I was still thinking about warrior cats, and he laughed and offered his beer for me to clink.
The end of the night starts to get a little bit fuzzy, but I can tell you this for certain: I slept on the damn ferry.
I’m not super clear how I came to the conclusion that I should break into the ferry, I had been nervous drinking all night which never goes well for me, but one way or another I got into the main little deck area and feel asleep under a life jacket on one of the booths.
I woke up to Julian saying,
“You think she’s coming?” He was talking about me.
Neal snorted. “I’m more surprised she’s not already here waiting for us, I swear that girl has a damn death wish.”
“Yeah she’s dangerously like you that way,” Julian replied, and I rolled onto my back, yawned theatrically, and said,
“Good morning boys.”
Which the Hawthornes did their best not to reward with attention, but with only mixed results because I could see them both stifling laughter.
We’ve been driving for two days. We’re a little caravan, trekking across the country. I know that something is waiting for us when we get to that little town. I know I should feel… something.
I’m sure I will eventually. The weird thing about having crippling anxiety is that when it occasionally gives you a moment of respite you feel absolutely invincible aha hahahahaha.
We listen to loud music all day. We drive with the windows down. The Hawthornes are in the highest spirits I’ve ever seen them in — we’re on our way to check out a weird mysterious fog no one has ever seen before. Neal’s practically panting out the window like a dog.
I don’t know what’s out there. I can’t wait to find out.