Saturday, April 12, 2008

Halfpipe Romance by Kate Burns

"Snowboarding? Have you lost your mind, Molly?" The voice was scandalized-and loud-and she held the slim silver cell phone away from her ear and winced.

Lost my mind? Maybe.

"I don't think so but really, who can ever tell when they lose something like that?" Molly asked, grinning. She parted the row of basic black clothing in her tiny city apartment closet, searching for something even remotely snow-ish. "What the hell do you wear to go snowboarding, anyway?"

"Full body armor. That is, if you don't want to come home in a full-body cast," said Kaylee. "How would I know what to wear to slide down a hill on a board? I haven't done it before, either-remember? And honestly, it's one of those things that, along with a full-body waxing, skydiving and taking Chinese cooking lessons, I plan to never attempt. So really, what do I care what anyone wears to go snow-sliding."

"Snowboarding. How hard can it be?" Molly maneuvered a winter white wool sweater out from behind a stack of nearly-identical black silk turtlenecks. The white sweater had been a gift from her aunt two Christmases ago but had been worn only once since she was allergic to wool and the damn thing made her itchy. But still ... it was snowboard-ish. Sort of.

"Hard. It can be hard."

"That's what I'm hoping for," said Molly, putting the white sweater on the small pile of items that she intended to take along on the first romantic getaway with Seth. "Hard. Very hard. So hard that Seth won't even want to go near the snow, he'll be so busy making hot, steamy love with me. Snow? Who needs snow? All we need is each other, Kaylee. Nothing more."

"Still, what if he wants to go snowboarding, even if it's only once, for an hour. What'll you do then?"

"Oh, don't be such a pain in the butt! Don't you remember that time during our sophomore year when we spent spring break at the beach?"

"So?"

"Boogie boarding? Really, how much different could it be on the snow?"

Molly examined, and discarded, a pair of outrageously expensive designer jeans.

They make my ass look like I'm wearing an inflatable raft.

"You're kidding, right? That time in Daytona we rented that board and you sucked at boogie boarding. Or have you forgotten that little fact?"

Molly scowled at the phone before she answered. "Sucked? I didn't exactly suck, thank you very much. Damn, you're supposed to be my best friend, remember? You're not being very friendly about this, let me tell you."

There was silence from the phone for a long moment before Kaylee spoke. Her voice was calm and measured, as if she was speaking to a child or a mental patient. "It's because I'm your best friend that I can say these things. And really, saying you sucked was an understatement. You trashed that boogie board so badly that we had to pay for it when we tried to return it, remember? And you didn't manage to stay standing on the thing once. Not once! So listen, Moll, I don't think snowboarding is going to be your thing, either."

Seth is my thing-or at least he's going to be after this weekend. So I'm going snowboarding, no matter what anyone says. But first, I've got to go shopping.