Chapter 2.22 – Drinks

Bebe, Yuki, and David mourn the loss of Julian with a private funeral on the beach where he passed.
chap2-22a
Yuki takes the loss especially hard. She unloads her regret that she had never really been close to her father. For the first time in her life, she expresses her belief that Julian avoided her because of his guilt. Yuki has known all along that she was the product of an affair between him and Pauline Wan. While Bebe never spoke of any ill will, Yuki felt the awkwardness of the situation between her and Julian. Bebe had raised, taught, and nurtured Yuki into her teens as if she were her own daughter; and the resulting deep respect and love she holds for her “mother” goes beyond the ability of words to describe.
chap2-22b
Bebe tells her children that she has set aside the land below their home as a private cemetery for future Barimen generations. She can think of no better place for Julian to rest than on the beach where he and David had spent so much of their time fishing. Besides, she could not bear to leave him in Sunset Valley’s bleak graveyard across town. For that matter, she could not imagine having to be placed there herself. Yuki flashes Bebe a scolding glance at the mention of her own passing.
chap2-22c
After paying respects to Julian, they begin walk up the gentle slope to the house. Bebe stops and asks David about his plans for continuing his grandmother’s legacy. He admits that after giving so much of himself to both Ciara and Kacey, he wonders what he has left to give another woman. She smiles and tells him that he would be surprised how effortlessly love can be given; when it is given to the right person.
chap2-22d
David ponders Bebe’s words over the next couple of days. His relationship with Kacey was not effortless. He loved spending time with her, he loved he way she made him feel, and he loved many of the little things that made her irresistible. But it all came at a price. Rather than filling the void Ciara left behind, he feels even more drained now than when he returned from his visit to France.
chap2-22g
David realizes that he could use some fun without strings attached. Sunset Valley does not offer much in the way of entertainment, so David makes plans to go with Bebe to the museum for a local painter’s art show. She had given David the phone number for Maria Sanchez, a talented young artist she thought David may like. David calls her after work and talks with her into the wee hours of the morning. Before hanging up, they decide to meet each other at the show.
chap2-22f
They hit it off well, and she tells him about her love for painting. She does most of the talking during that time, showing him some of the more prized peices in the museum and the story behind them. David is impressed by her vast knowledge of local artists, and does a great job of feigning interest. He is thrilled when she finally suggests they go out for drinks.
chap2-22h
They order a late dinner, which she sends back twice before it is perfect, and talk about Bebe’s paintings. Having had a few beverages, she begins to ask about David and whether he’s seeing anybody. Talking about Ciara or Kacey would be an instant kill for the evening, so David tells her that lately, he’s been married to his work. And shifts the subject to his job as a resident in the ER.
chap2-22i
As the night continues on, both David and Maria consume quite a bit of nectar. David suspects that they are both having the same thoughts about what happens next. She mentions that it is getting late and would like to be getting home, shyly suggesting that it would be a shame to end the night alone. David is ready to go without hesitation, but something distracts him. They had been sitting at the table for a couple hours, an he just now realizes it is exactly where he kissed Ciara for the first time.
chap2-22j
The excitement that had been building in anticipation of going home with Maria is suddenly gone. All his mind can conjure is how beautiful Ciara was the night of their first real date. He is snapped out of his daydream and into sobriety when the on-call pager begins to ring. There is an emergency at the hospital, and he is needed immediately to help with a surgery. David apologizes and gives Maria a friendly hug.
 chap2-22k
David races off to work, silently thankful for the very timely interruption.
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