City Lounge: Berlin (Book Three, Chapter Four: Night on the Beach)

Chapter Four: Night on the Beach:

I used to go to the beach when I was a kid. My parents had friends out near the coast of California. We would go up and visit them during the summer. I would play in the water and splash around. Dad and I would always run from the waves when the tide came in. Those beach trips stopped when my parents and I moved further east to take care of grandpa. Then, school came along and ate up my life. Come to think of it, the fun stopped when I moved east. This might be my chance to get it back in Berlin.

I got my chance one evening after work. I hadn’t even gotten unlocked my door when my phone rang.

“Hello?” I asked.

“Emily!” a familiar voice shouted on the other line. I winced as I held the phone away from my ear.

“Stephanie?” I asked.

“Hi there,” she said.

“How are you?” I asked.

“Good. You busy right now?”

“No… Why?”

“We’re going out to the beach tonight.”

A confused look washed over my face. “What do you mean by ‘we’re’?”

“You, Sebastian, my troupe, and myself. It’s just a little night party on the beach.”

I wrinkled my nose. “Why?”

“Why what?”

“Why are you going to beach at night?”

“Why not? Are you in or not?”

When was the last time I went to the beach? Years? Going to the beach at night sounds rather interesting. I pushed my bangs out of my eyes.

“Sure,” I said.

“Excellent!” Stephanie said. “I will pick you up at seven.” I could picture her twirling around with the phone in her hand. I kind smiled to myself.

“Sure,” I said again.

“Love you!” my old friend said. I looked at my phone as she hung up. Usually, I would stressed out because I have work tomorrow. Plus, it’s autumn. Who goes to the beach in the fall? But, this all sounded interesting. I shoved my phone into my pocket and walked into the apartment.

———-

Around seven o’clock, I heard a knock on my door.

“Coming!” I said. I hurried over and looked out the peek hole. Stephanie stood outside, waving. I opened the door.

“Ready to go?” she asked.

“I guess so,” I said. She grabbed me by the hand.

“Let’s go!” Stephanie said. She pulled me along with her.

“Whoa!” I said. “Slow down! At least let me lock up!” I managed to try grab onto the door and lock up behind me. Stephanie resumed pulling me along.

———-

We took a taxi down to the beach. I turned to Stephanie in the backseat.

“Which beach are we going to?” I asked.

“Waldbad Templin,” she said. I tilted my head.

“Is it still open?” I asked. Stephanie smiled as she looked around.

“Our leader knows the main owner of the beach and managed to have it rented out to us all night,” she whispered. I gave her a strange look.

“How?” I asked. Stephanie tapped the side of her nose. I sat back in my chair. The streetlights passed over us as we drove by. The taxi the pulled up at the entrance. Stephanie paid the driver. We waved as he drove away. To my pleasant surprise, Sebastian was waiting for us at the gate.

“Ladies!” he said. “It’s so good to see you again.” I ran over and hugged him wildly.

“Whoa!” my love shouted. I looked up at him, smiling.

“I missed you,” I said. Sebastian smiled as he patted me on the head.

“What are you talking about?” he asked. “You saw me last night.” I turned my head, blushing.

“Oh… yeah…” I mumbled. I turned my head when I heard whistling behind me. Stephanie had a curious look on her face.

“What happened last night?” she asked. I frantically shook my head.

“Nothing!” I shouted. “Nothing happened!” Stephanie tried not to laugh.

“If you say so,” she said. She looked up at my boyfriend. “Is everyone here?”

“Yes,” Sebastian said.

“Excellent, excellent,” she said. “Just in time.” Sebastian took my hand as he led Stephanie and me through the gates. There were about thirteen people total. I saw a small lit grill on in the sand. One guy was playing a guitar as he saw on a bright red beach towel. Despite it being October, it felt kind of warm. Stephanie stepped forward and held out her arms.

“We’re here!” she said. The people on the beach looked up at us.

“Hi…” I said. A bald man with muscles leapt to her feet. His dark blue sleeves were rolled up. His jeans were covered in sand.

“Welcome to the party,” he said. He spoke with a Californian accent. His eyes fixed on me. “Are you Stephanie’s friend?”

“Yes,” I said. “My name’s Emily.” The big bald man broke into a huge smile. He reminded me of a grizzly bear with pearly white teeth.

“The name’s Garth,” he said. “I am the leader of this troupe. Come and meet the others.” I looked on the other people on the beach with their eyes on me. There had to have been about four more women and the rest were men. One woman with crazy red hair waved at me.

“Yo,” she said. I waved at her with my eyebrow raised.

“Hi,” I said. Stephanie clapped her hands together.

“Let’s get this party started!” she said.

“Yeah!” her troupe shouted with their fists in the arm. They are all chill people. Maybe a little bit rowdy after some drinks, but they are good people. The woman with wild red hair sat across from me at the grill. She held a cigarette between her skinny fingers.

“Your hair is so pretty,” she said. “Where do you get it done?”

“A small shop called Little Lauren’s,” I said. The woman took a smoke of her cigarette.

“Nice,” she said. “I might have to go and check them out sometime.”

“Yeah… Um… What is your name again?” I asked.

“Meg,” she said. “Stephanie talks about you all of the time.” I raised my eyebrow.

“Does she?” I asked.

“Oh yes,” Meg said. “Says that you are her best friend and never has anything bad to say about you.”

“Is that right?” I asked.

“Yes,” she said.

“Wow,” I said. I looked down at the glowing grill in front of us.

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