The tank was barren after a long night of set up. He knew a few places to go find the perfect pieces for his project. She had gone willingly, knowing that they would skip their late class. It was a chance for both of them to explore, which reminded them of their fleeting childhood. It had been a search to find a mystical place. She never found it in the suburbs from which she came. He claimed he had, with the promise of one day taking her there.
The first place they wandered was short lived and carried a few rocks that seemed to be fragmented in an artful way. He wanted to test her strength, asking her to attempt lifting one that he had carried up from the river side. It was a meager attempt on her part, her hands had been browned by the wet sand still seeping from the small boulder he’d chosen. She felt a twinge of pain in her thumb from where she’d cut her it that weekend making him apple pie.
“There is a place I am going to take you that doesn’t look like where we are from,” He claimed as they filed into her car. Excitement grew as they bounced over the large potholes of the park’s lot.
The place he took her was filled with houses that were gorgeous for a starter home. They both beamed over what it would be like to live there. Once they passed the neighborhood, they pulled into a dog park that also was attached to a Frisbee golf course. He claimed that going through the course would lead them to the other side of the river where they had previously seen better drift wood for his fish tank.
The woods were beautiful. She thought to herself how amazing it would have been to find a place like it when she was younger. A fallen tree had sparked a memory of one that she was fond of in her old neighborhood. He decided her recollection was the proper time to urinate beside her, asking her to watch for potential Frisbee golf players.
They didn’t find anything more than a few Frisbee discs that had been lost in the tall grass of the forest. She had found a shell and what looked like a grape vine and attached them together. “You should put these in the shadow boxes you have.” She said, already knowing what he’d say.
“Eh, nah.” He responded right on cue.
“Well what should I do with it then?” She asked, torn between collecting its beauty or leaving it for another to stumble upon. He helped her decide they had no place for it so, she placed it on the trail back to the car. Maybe someone else would find something to do with it.
Once they reached the car, both exhausted and ready to go home, they shared a glance and smiled.