“Today’s session was fantastic, Lorcan!” The woman purred. “I feel like it really relieved my tension.”
“Glad to hear that,” Lorcan said politely. “The next class I have planned will be quite similar, so you might want to join us, um…”
“Destiny,” The woman smiled flirtatiously. “The name is Destiny. And I’ll definitely make sure to come along for the next class. I do like a good workout, especially when it involves stretching.” She winked.
“Right.” Lorcan shifted uncomfortably. “That’s nice. I’ll see you next time.”
Lorcan couldn’t get away fast enough.
Destiny didn’t seem quite done with him, pondering her next move, but as soon as Lorcan escaped the exchange, it left his mind completely.
He smiled to himself, watching Sera finishing up her routine.
“The class is over,” he said to her gently. “Are you trying to score brownie points with the instructor? You do remember that’s just me, right?” He joked.
Sera turned around with a grin. “Well, the instructor seemed pretty busy with all of admirers.” She giggled. “It’s no secret all the ladies come here for you.”
Lorcan laughed it off, shaking his head. “It’s good to see you, Sera. Did you have a nice Snowflake Day with your family?”
“I did, thanks,” she replied. “We should catch up! You wanna go for a walk around the grounds?”
“Sure, sounds good.” He smiled.
“Let me grab my coat!”
“How was the big Bloomer gathering then?”
“Crazy. Manic. Crowded.” Sera laughed. “It was really great, actually. We don’t all get together as a family enough. And all the little kids were too adorable, even though they’re a handful…”
“Hallie brought all the orphans along, didn’t she?” Lorcan asked. “That must have been nice for them.”
“I hope they had a good time,” Sera nodded. “It was too hard to keep track of everyone! I don’t know how Hallie does it… Anyway, how was your Snowflake Day? I missed you over the break.” She blurted out before she could stop herself.
“I missed you too.” He agreed.
Sera’s heart skipped a beat. “You did?”
“Of course.” Lorcan seemed to feel he’d covered all on that subject matter. “But you haven’t really told me all that much about your family’s festivities…”
Sera stopped in her tracks.
“You’re doing it again!”
Lorcan looked at her, confused. “Doing what?”
“Changing the subject! You haven’t said a single thing about your holiday!” Sera pointed out. “You really don’t like talking about yourself, do you?”
“There’s not really that much to say.” Lorcan shrugged. “I didn’t do anything special.”
“I’m sure that’s not true,” Sera objected. “Didn’t you see your family?”
“I don’t exactly have a family.” Lorcan said hesitantly. “Don’t look at me like that, Sera…”
“And here I go yapping about my family,” Sera scolded herself. “I’m sorry! I can’t believe you were alone on Snowflake Day! You should have said something… you could have joined us! With so many extended family members, one person wouldn’t have made a difference…”
“It’s alright, really.” Lorcan shook his head. “I’ve never really celebrated Snowflake Day. Yours sounds lovely, of course. But don’t feel bad for me. It’s not a big deal.”
“I still wish you’d said something.” Sera insisted. “Nobody should be alone that time of the year.”
“Don’t worry, it was just another day to me. You know what I do celebrate?” Lorcan asked, trying to make her feel better.
“The new year. Rebirth. Circle of nature. Every year, in the spring, I like to go to Granite Falls, just when everything in the wild starts to wake up after the long winter slumber. It feels cleansing. Like a fresh start.”
“But… you go alone?”
“Nothing wrong with that. I enjoy solitude. Gives you space to think.”
“Right.” Sera muttered. She was invading his personal space, wasn’t she? “Well I guess I’ll… head back in.”
“Oh.” Lorcan seemed to contemplate something for a moment. “Seraphina… Would you like to come with me? To Granite Falls?”
That took a turn, Sera thought. “You want me to go with you?”
“I do.” He didn’t sound too sure. Sera wondered who he was trying to persuade, was it her or was it himself?
“Listen, Lorcan, I didn’t mean to force my way in.” She told him. “I remember how you talked about Granite Falls back when we were at the cemetery on Day of the Dead. How the first time you went there gave you a whole new outlook on the world. Obviously this is something very personal to you.”
“It is,” he agreed. “That’s why I’d like to share it with you.”
This was not what Seraphina was expecting. “I’m honoured.” She managed. “Right. I’ll, uh, go check if everything is ok in the sauna.”
She dashed off. She needed a moment to compose herself.
Lorcan didn’t move for a while. She was coming with him. Was it a mistake? It probably was. It definitely was. But… a hopeful smile found its way to Lorcan’s face regardless.