Friday, June 1, 2012
The sun had just started to set over Moon Bay Beach, California, as Jordyn Hamilton padded barefoot up the wooden, sand-covered steps from the sandy beach into the backyard of her beach house. With her surfboard tucked snugly under her arm, she pushed open the gate and stepped onto the lush, thick green grass, the blades feeling soft between her sand-covered toes.
She took a deep breath, inhaling the salty fragrance carried over by the coastal breeze. The tides were picking up, and the waves were crashing harder against the shore. Jordyn smiled as she took one last look at the sun as it dipped beneath the horizon of the Pacific Ocean, her second home. It was the end of a perfect summer day, but only the first of many to come, and she was so ready for the best summer of her life.
Jordyn dropped off her surfboard in the backyard shed with the rest of her and her brothers’ recreational equipment. She stepped up to the outside shower, stripped out of her wet suit to give way to her hot pink bikini, and rinsed the sand and salt off of her.
Jordyn got herself cleaned up and wrapped in a beach towel before walking into her kitchen, where she found her mother, Zara, in front of the stove, working on dinner.
Zara turned around at the sound of the sliding glass door opening and closing. She was dressed, still in her yoga clothes, tight, grey cotton pants, and a simple white t-shirt, her white-blond hair hanging down in the same just-walked-off-the-beach waves Jordyn had.
She smiled. “Hey. You finally came in, huh? Thought maybe the ocean washed you away.”
“Yeah,” Jordyn sighed. “The waves were amazing today.” She walked over to glance at what her mother was cooking. It was Jordyn’s favorite, Swedish pancakes. “Mm. Pannkakors? What’s the occasion?”
Zara only cooked traditional Swedish meals on Mondays, so pannkakors was a surprise to come home to tonight. And it was Jordyn’s favorite. Unusual even for a Friday night.
Jordyn studied her mother. Zara smiled, but she looked uneasy nevertheless. “No occasion. I know you and your brothers love these, so I decided to treat you all.”
No, that was far too suspicious.
“What’s wrong?” Jordyn asked in a panic.
“Nothing,” Zara said quickly. “It’s nothing. I just wanted to treat my kids to their favorite dinner on their last day of school. It’s a little celebration.”
Jordyn wasn’t sure she was bought completely, but she nodded and smiled nevertheless. But she wondered, still, as she headed up the stairs to her room. Pannkakors on a Friday night, last day of school or not, was a little suspicious.
Jordyn reached the top of the steps, and heard Eminem blasting from behind her older brother, Ty’s, closed bedroom door. Across the hall, her younger brother, Logan’s, door was open. She peaked in as she walked by and saw the thirteen-year-old lounged out in his game chair, playing a Tony Hawk video game.
“Hey,” Jordyn called to him. “Logan, you missed some awesome waves today.”
Logan paused his game and turned to look at his sister with regret. “Don’t remind me. My room’s clean, now, see? Spotless. I’ll be in the water first thing tomorrow morning.”
Jordyn chuckled and glanced around his bedroom. Their mother had informed Logan the night before he wasn’t leaving the house until his room was clean. Sure enough, it was clean, now. Impressively so, too. It was a typical thirteen-year-old California boy’s bedroom, the light-blue painted walls covered in surfing, skateboarding, and rock band posters. His dresser was filled with trophies from surfing and skateboarding competitions, and then there were the baseball and basketball ones on his chest of drawers.
But Jordyn had to admit, she was a little jealous of the set up her little brother had.
Mainly, she wished she had his energy.
Jordyn was headed back out of Logan’s room when she heard Ty’s door open.
“Where were you today?” she asked him.
“Uh, Courtney’s,” Ty answered reluctantly.
Courtney was the name of the perky private school cheerleader that had taken a liking to Ty a couple of months ago. She’d come to dinner a few times, and Jordyn determined quickly that she didn’t like the girl. She was clingy, she always spoke like someone was pinching her nose, and she was obsessed with manicures, hair appointments and shopping.
Nothing against Ty, but Jordyn never quite saw why Courtney was dating a skater/surfer/football player who lived about a halfway normal life compared to the extravagant, spoiled Courtney. Not to mention, Ty was a public schooler at that. Courtney’s type liked boys with the collars on their Lacoste polos turned up, their hair gel and spiked, and who drove Lamborghinis and Ferraris paid for by the rich daddies and trust funds in the hundred thousands. Ty was popular at Reed High School, no doubt. He was cute, Jordyn guessed, and a football star, but he didn’t drive a Lamborghini, he drove a 1970 Mustang he was gradually restoring with the help of their father, and he worked for his money; it wasn’t handed to him like the boys she was used to.
Once, Jordyn remembered Holly Daniels, a popular girl in her grade, commenting on how hot—gross!--Ty was. He could have had any cute, normal girl at Reed High, and here he was chasing after plastic Courtney.
“You don’t sound too happy,” Jordyn commented.
“Yeah, well, we broke up.”
It took a lot to fight the smile that wanted to cross Jordyn’s face. “Oh,” she said. “Uhm, sorry?”
He looked at her for a moment, then chuckled. “No, you’re not. But it’s OK. She was a superficial, spoiled brat. Not my type at all.”
“I could have told you that weeks ago—”
“Yeah, yeah,” Ty interrupted.
“Like I’m really going to share the details of my love life with my little sister,” he teased.
“Little? Can I remind you I’m only 20 months younger than you?”
He smiled, and ruffled her hair. “Key word is younger, little sister.”
Jordyn rolled her eyes. “Better get ready for dinner. We’re having pannkakors.”
“I know. See you downstairs.” Then he turned and disappeared back into his bedroom.
Jordyn followed suit, walking into her own room, eager to get into the shower and wash the ocean and sand off of her, and hopefully enjoy some of her mother’s delicious pannkakors without a stigma attached to them.