25: Organic Annoyance

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The next day, Jia and I were back in town to get the last-minute supplies for our guests. It was a trivial task, but with Toby back on the island with preparations that still needed to be completed, someone had to do it. I was never the shopping type, but with the smile on Jia's face, it seemed that she was.

Maybe I could pawn a few of my stops to her.

"So I was wondering if you'd be willing to take on a few of the things on my list, because I have several places that I need to go that aren't on the list," I said.

The warmth of the sun was cooled by the morning ocean breeze, and it flipped Jia's hair over her face.

"I wish that I could, but I'm a little—" She pushed her hair out of her face. "I have a lot of shit I need to get done."

"Oh, then don't worry about it. I just have to get some flies for Racecar and Blue, since they're starting to turn a little yellow. I'm worried about their nutrition intake, so I thought I'd buy them some carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus."

Jia smiled. "What a thoughtful plant parent you are."

"Logan would kill me if I let his Racecar die," I said as Jia stole a glance at her phone.

I had no idea where everything was in town, so some directions would help us find our way in a timely fashion. The faster we finished up our errands, the faster we could get on the boat. Although humans were suited for land, life began in the ocean, and that was where I belonged.

I waited for her to pull up Google Maps or something of the like as we continued down the sidewalks of Bar Harbor. We passed an ice cream shop, and if it weren't eight in the morning, I would have asked if we could get some. Instead, coffee seemed like a more logical choice.

Jia looked up at me. "Do you want coffee?"

Before I could form a rational thought, my mouth fell open. "Did you just read my mind?"

That was impossible, of course, unless it somehow wasn't. I had to ask for scientific purposes.

She nodded. "Yep. I'm a mind reader. It's one of my many talents, including, but not limited to, yoga, photography, and snake charming."

"I don't think I've ever seen you do any yoga."

"Ah, fuck, you caught me." She laughed.

I laughed too. Even though we were about as similar as whales and sharks, she brought an interesting, fiery light to every conversation. I wanted to be more like her.

"Oh, look. Coffee shop," Jia said.

We opened up the door, and inside was a quaint resort away from the tourist lifestyle. Dirt smudges contaminated the dark tiled flooring underneath us, and the smell of espresso filled the air. It was a different kind of espresso than I was used to, though. It smelled like a reward for waking up rather than a punishment for letting life run ahead without a leash.

All coffee brewed with 100% organic water, a sign read, and I took a second glance at it. There wasn't any carbon in H2O, and it wasn't grown, so either it was a gimmick to raise the price, or I was missing something.

There was only one person waiting, so Jia and I took our spot right behind him.

"Do you know what organic water means?" I asked.

She shrugged. "No pesticides or run-off, probably."

"To me, it just makes it sound like it's alive, which technically, it's filled with all sorts of living stuff, but—" I said, but I trailed off when Jia's attention fell elsewhere.

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