[Wasn’t satisfied with how I ended my last post, so I’m giving it another shot]
Annie heard the sound of a car door closing in the crisp winter air. They’re home, Annie said, motioning down the fire road in the direction of the Johnson’s house.
Double-J continued walking, scrunch-scrunch, turned his head in Annie’s direction, said Look, if you and Bernie — then stopped when he didn’t see her beside him. He turned fully around, saw Annie had stopped, stood still, looking at him.
I’m sorry I hit you she said.
Double-J nodded. Annie could not see his face, but thought she saw in the dark outline of his posture a feeling she had never seen in Double-J, not in all the years they had known each other, not through all their hours of fencing together, not even in that brief time a year earlier when they had been dating. For the first time, Double-J seemed regretful.
A cold wind swept acorss the fire road, bare tree limbs shaking in the background, and that feelign of regret — at least that’s what it seemed to her — disappeared, replaced with his usual aura of confidence. That’s OK he said. Things — happen.
Annie walked up to him, spread her arms to embrace him — then stopped as she saw Double-J silently raise his hand, turning back and resuming his walk towards the Johnson’s home.
They walked side by side, . . . [the rest of Chapter 4.3Y resumes here and continues to its end]