The last rays of light of the sun sinking below the sea paints the clouds a brilliant pink, and their color is reflected on the water below, fuschia on teal. Dylan's board breaks the pattern as she skims over the waves, leaving a trail of white in her wake.
Nighttime is the best time for windsurfing, after the sailors, tourists and fishers have gone back to land, leaving the ocean for those who prefer to take their fun under the moonlight.
Dylan glides effortlessly over the water, her body shifting in response to the waves as her mind busies itself with other thoughts. Tomorrow night is the prom, and it will be her first real date with Luther. A little thrill rises up her spine when she thinks about him, her face grows warm when she remembers his smile. She actually looks forward to being in class now, anticipating the glances they will exchange, the way he looks when their eyes meet, the feel of his hand in hers as they walk to their classes together.
Before she goes to bed, Dylan pens a little to note to him, in response to the one he passed to her that afternoon in biology class. She thinks about calling him, but it is far past midnight now, and he's probably asleep, like everyone in her house is, even Biscuit.
Her mother has told her that even as a toddler, Dylan was a night owl, and they were never able to get her to sleep before dawn. That hasn't changed, and Dylan still finds it difficult to lay still in bed when the night air calls to her. So instead of calling Luther, she writes down all the inconsequential chatter she would have spoken into her note, knowing that it doesn't matter what they say, it's the thrill of their fingers touching when they pass their folder paper between them, the excitement of seeing the other's words and knowing they share the same desire.
Kai and Dylan head off to the prom together the next evening, both to meet their dates at the school, both too nervous about the event to speak to each other. For Dylan, it is the anticipation that silences her, wondering what their first dance together will be like, and if they will kiss. For Kai, it's his usual discomfort of being in a crowd, amplified by his concern over Alejandro whose anxieties are more pronounced than his own. Maybe he shouldn't have pushed Alex to do this, he worries.
The prom for Kai was better than he anticipated and not as bad as he imagined. Alejandro was put off by the crowds, and they spent most of their evenings seated alone together outside of the decorated gym, away from the music and the dancing, just sitting together, holding hands, talking, kissing. It was not much different than if they had not gone to prom and had instead just spent the evening alone together, but Kai counts it as a success just because they did enjoy themselves together in their own way. And, they got a cute prom photo as a souvenir as a bonus.
Only Dylan was surprised by the fact that she had crowned Prom Queen. The youngest, prettiest girl in high school had been launched into a popularity that she didn't expect or truly want, and she accepted her crown with reluctant grace, wanting only to be alone with Luther. Everyone pressed her for her time and attention, and far too many boys wanted to cut in on her dances with Luther, making the evening not quite as magnificent as her imaginings, but the moments where she did have Luther to herself were perfect, and before it was over, they had made p;ans for a date the next night where they could truly spend their time together.
They chose the boardwalk for their first date after the prom, as it was the perfect place to be on a Friday evening when you are young and falling in love.
No couple has ever been able to resist the love tester's challenge, hoping to have their feelings confirmed by an unbiased machine.
"Oh, we broke it," Dylan laughs as the Love Tester declares its passion sensors are overloaded.
"I guess we are too much for it to handle."
The couple grabs a bite at the cantina, and Dylan learns that hamburgers are Luther's favorite food.
She's not surprised to learn that Luther shares her dislike of being cooped up inside the classroom all day, and that like her, he loves being outdoors. He's not as inclined to be as physically active as she is; he doesn't surf or get into sports, but she is pleased to learn he loves fishing as much as she does, and that he's even more skilled at it than she is.
Despite not being much of a sportsman, Luther accepts Dylan's challenge to play a round of hoops with her.
And he doesn't mind at all when she beats him handily, her score more than double his own.
"You didn't hold back, did you?" she accuses.
"No, I'm really that bad at sports," he laughs, "But I'm good at video games. And I could write you a song. I've been working on one, actually, but it's not finished yet. And I don't have my guitar here to play it for you..."
"That's sweet, Luther," Dylan smiles, "You don't have to impress me, anyway. I'm already falling for you."
"I've already fallen," Luther answers, sweeping her into his arms and dipping her.
They've kissed a few times already, small, quick kisses stolen between classes. This kiss is different, deep and lasting. Dylan wraps her arms around his neck, holding on, pulling him close, never wanting this to end.
The next morning, Saturday morning, Dylan gets a call from her friend Clark, now a teen, inviting her to meet him at the Island Jewel Park on the main island. Though she would have preferred spending the day with Luther, they hadn't made plans to meet this early, and Dylan would have felt bad about neglecting her friend, so she accepted his invitation.
"I had the best time last night with Luther," she gushes happily to her friend when she meets him in the park, "He's the most amazing guy..."
Clark's expression as he listens to Dylan is less than enthusiastic. "I heard you went to prom with him, but I didn't believe it was true," he sighs.
"What? Why not?" Dylan asks
"Because you were supposed to be my girlfriend!" Clark answers, "But instead of waiting for mer like you were supposed to, you just ran off with the first guy to ask you out!"
"Hang on a sec," Dylan stops his tirade, "I did not just go out with the first guy who asked. Everett Dregg and Everado Ichtaca both tried asking me out before I even talked to Luther. And, anyway, even if I did, what makes you think I was 'supposed' to be your girlfriend?"
"Because we were best friends, Dyl. You promised that day on the boardwalk that you wouldn't forget me when you started high school. But you completely ditched me for Luther!"
"I didn't forget you," Dylan protests, "And I didn't ditch you either. I'm here, aren't I?"
"Yeah, you're here, and all you want to do is talk about Luther. I can't believe you picked him over me! But of course you'd go for the 'bad boy' instead of the guy who knows you better than anyone else," Clark retorts.
"Clark, it's not like that at all. First, Luther isn't some 'bad boy' stereotype..."
"I've heard he rings people's doorbells and runs off," Clark accuses.
Dylan rolls her eyes, "So he pulls pranks sometimes. He's not a criminal or a bully. And anyway, that's not the point. I'm with Luther because I'm attracted to him and he is to me. We have a good time together."
"We could have good times together!"
"We had fun together when we were kids. And I'd like to keep being friends with you, Clark, But you have to accept that it's not romantic. I have feelings for Luther that I just don't have for you or any other boy. He's my boyfriend."
"You never gave me a chance. It's just not fair."
Dylan sighs, "I wasn't holding a contest, Clark. I went out with Luther because I like him. It would have been the same if you aged up at the same time as me. I'm sorry that you want it to be more than that, Clark. I really am. But, even if Luther weren't in the picture, I just don't have those feelings for you."