Chapter Fourteen

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Dear Diary,

I didn’t know what I should do. Go up to him? Keep walking as though I hadn’t noticed he was there? The dog sped right up to him and started yapping and jumping up to his face. He hadn’t seen me. He was cuddling the dog and laughing, his fair hair reflecting light from the sun.

I opted for pretending I didn’t know he was there. I fixed my eyes on the sea and started to stroll, following the line of the breaking waves. I got very interested in the sand beneath my feet, anything to stop me from turning to look at him. He was quite a way off and I thought maybe he wouldn’t see me or if he did, he wouldn’t recognize who I was.

After a few minutes I heard a call from the distance. I slowed my pace, took a deep breath and turned around.

‘Hey!’ he shouted.

I looked back at him.

‘It’s you!’ he said, grabbing his crutches and scrambling to his feet.

The dog headed straight towards me like a bullet.

‘Hey!’ he said again, moving across the sand on his crutches.

I bent down to greet the dog. As it jumped up onto my knees I felt it’s bony body beneath the wiry hair. It was so excited I nearly fell back onto the sand and had to put my hands behind me to prevent an embarrassing disaster. Stay cool Amber, I kept saying to myself. Just stay cool.

‘Ha ha! Alvin, steady on there boy!’ he said, still progressing towards me.

‘Alvin,’ I said to the dog, patting his back.

The dog settled down a little, sat down onto his little bum in front of me, looking up with a steady gaze.

‘He likes you,’ called the guy, getting closer all the time.

I looked up and smiled. He was clinging onto his crutches, dragging along his left leg that was covered in plaster up to his ankle. He paused for a second to look at me and smiled. His eyes reminded me of the rock pools. He shook his head, laughing.

‘These bloody crutches. They are getting me into a lot of trouble!’ he said.

I let out a small laugh and looked back down at the dog, unsure what to say. Finally he reached where I was, right next to the waves crashing onto the sand. The dog stayed in front of me.

‘You’re the girl from last night, right?’ he said. ‘The girl whose gig I ruined?’

‘You didn’t ruin it,’ I said. ‘You just caused some complications.’

‘Oh, that’s too polite,’ he said. ‘Far too polite.’

His eyes shone and his hair blew across his face with the wind. I couldn't help how wide his shoulders were, how tall and beautiful he was.

‘I’m Farley,’ he said. ‘Pleased to meet you.’

He reached out his right hand and the crutch fell onto the sand. He bent down to pick it up, mumbling to himself, then sort of perched it under his elbow as he reached out his hand again. I reached out my own hand and shook it, noticing how warm his skin was to my touch.

‘I’m Amber. Amber Harwood,’ I said.

‘Amber,’ he said. ‘What a beautiful name.’


‘What are you doing here?’ he said, looking at me with curiosity.

‘Just taking a walk,’ I said. ‘I love the beach.’

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