“You do realize that’s what most people consider a sundress, right?” Daniel crossed his arms as he stood near the doorway under the canopy. “Are you sure you picked the right day to wear it?”
I held my hands under the edge of the roof as water dripped off, filling them, then flinging water in his face. “Come on, a little water never hurt anyone.”
He wiped his face and hid a smile. “This is what you call a little water? You’ve been our there two minutes and you’re already soaked.”
I jumped between puddles. “Okay, so it’s pouring. All the more fun!” I waved him out. “Rain dancing?”
He shook his head and back toward the open door. “No, thank you. I’d rather not risk getting struck by lightning.”
I tried to splash him again by jumping in a larger puddle, but he dodged the water. “It feels good! Come on, five minutes?”
“You mean long enough to get drenched and catch pneumonia? I’m good.”
I tried to wring out my dripping hair, throwing it back over my shoulders as the sheets of rain resoaked it. “So you’ll dance on frozen water but chicken out in the rain? Explain how that makes sense.”
He edged out towards the end of the canopy, letting water drip into his cupped hands. “For one thing, you wear appropriate clothing.” He flung the water my way. “And you don’t walk away a dripping mess.”
I giggled as I ran my fingers through my tangled hair. “That’s what towels and dry outfits are for. Next argument?”
“How about the fact that I don’t want to?” He stuck his tongue out.
“Ah, but you forget, I didn’t want to skate at first.” I offered my arm. “It’s only fair.”
Daniel hung his head. “I like this shirt, Ria.”
I dragged him out as the thunder boomed. “I promise, water won’t ruin your nice shirt.” I rolled my eyes and smirked as I did some more puddle hopping.
“I detect a bit of sarcasm. I’ll have you know this is my favorite shirt.” He tried to smooth out the flannel to make his point, but the shirt stuck to him.
I arched a brow. “This is my favorite dress, but you don’t hear me complaining, do you?” I took his hands in mine. “Now can you at least try to enjoy it?”
I led him through a series of steps following puddles that’d formed on the patio. With each flash of lightning, we spun. We danced to the chorus of thunder and pounding rain. I let go and found a larger puddle running across the width of the street, going through steps to move the water with me in a veil. Daniel stood back and watched, surrendering a grin before he joined me. He exaggerated a bow and offered his arm. I curtseyed and we danced a bit of a waltz before moving out the way to wave to a passing car. We doubled over laughing as they passed us, exchanging looks. Another driver returned our waves, smiling and shaking his head as he slowed to roll through the waterlogged street. We returned to our dance after wringing out our rain-weighted clothes. Daniel shook his head as he watched his clothes drip in the downpour.
“You can’t tell me you’re not having fun.”
His lips turned up. “Okay, okay you got me. This is better than I thought.”
I flinched as thunder and lightning worked together to form an angry chorus. “I wish we had better music.”
“We’ll remember that for next time.” He stole the silver flower crown off my head, sprinting towards the canopy for cover.
I ran after him, leaving a water veil in my wake, and I tried to snatch it out of his hands only to have him back himself into the house.
“Come on, I feel like my clothes put on ten pounds.” He moved to shut the door behind me as I stepped inside.
“Buzz kill.” I swiped the crown from him, wringing my hair out over the sink as I dripped onto the kitchen floor.
“You won’t be saying that after I warm you up with some hot chocolate.” He made a trip to the closet, grabbing three towels. “Here, stand on this before we flood the kitchen.” He laid a towel out and maneuvered it with his feet to mop up the puddle I created.
I grabbed a towel from him, drying my arms and legs before wrapping it around the bottom of my aqua sundress. “Very funny. You better be making it yourself, no cheating.”
He tossed the towel at me after he dried his hair, working to peel his shirt off. “Okay, I’ll slave over a hot stove this time.” He grinned as I threw a clean t-shirt and a pair of sweat pants at him.
“You can get your own underwear. I call the bathroom.” I retrieved one of his flannel shirts from the closet as he edged into the bedroom to get a pair of boxers.
“So bossy. Here.” He handed me a pair of shorts and random, mismatched undergarments from the dresser.
“Such a gentleman.” I pecked him on the cheek before hustling to the bathroom, clothes in hand. “Still have to wait your turn.” I laughed as I shut the door.
I heard the drenched clothes flip on the hard kitchen floor as he changed. I worked my way out of my aqua second skin, using the towel dry off as I peeled it away. I changed shook my head as I slipped into a black bra and red underwear. I slipped his flannel shirt on before shimmying into the blue shorts he’d given me. I lifted my hair out from under the back of his green flannel shirt before gathering the pile of sopping clothes in my arms. When I stepped out of the bathroom, Daniel turned away from the stove with a smirk.
“What took you so long?”
“I’d like to see you try and peel out of a dress. A lot harder than it sounds.”
He chuckled before turning back to the hot chocolate he stirred in the sauce pan. “I’ll leave that to you and just let you borrow my shirts.”
I scoffed before going to the laundry room to dump the drenched clothes and towels into the washer, starting the laundry. When I came back, Daniel sat at the table with two steaming cups of hot chocolate set.
“How can I ever thank you for slaving away like that?” I rolled my eyes as he took the first sip. “Hey, where’s my-” My eyes flicked up to the top of his head.
He raised his eyebrows. “What I think it looks good. You get my shirt, I get your crown. About time someone stole your throne.”
I held up my cup. “This better be worth it.” I grasped it both hands, breathing in the steam before I took a sip, licking the line of chocolate from my top lip.
“Better remember this and music for next time, Daniel.” I took another gulp, hiding a grin.
He leaned in and kissed my forehead. “It’s a date.”