I met Lilith and Abbott’s parents at breakfast the next morning. Lilith’s Mom was the most hyper energetic woman I have met in my entire life.
“Welcome, welcome. You must be Astrid. It is so good to finally meet you! Lilith and Abbott couldn’t stop talking about you” she said with a big smile on her face. Her hair was dirty blonde and her eyes were brown. She looked very young and very pretty.
“I’m sorry for the weird question but are you their Mom because you look really young,” I said to her and it sounded even weirder than it did in my head. The woman laughed it off though.
“Aren’t you nice! I like you already. And yes. Yes, I am.”
She smiled and motioned me to sit down at the table. Only her, Lilith and I were in the dining room.
“Here,” Lilith passed me the toast and I took it.
“So, what did you say?” I asked Lilith. “When you talked about me to your Mom, I mean.”
Lilith shrugged but replied after she swallowed a huge chunk of food. “Only that I have the best roommate ever.” She winked and her eyebrows did that awesome thing where they moved down a little.
“I know, right? I can totally relate.” I replied as her mom came back from wherever she went. I didn’t even notice she was gone.
“So, I was thinking about going shopping and showing you around a little. Are you in?” Lilith asked.
“Sure, as long as I’m buying food,” I told Lilith. She always paid for my coffee so I always had to find a way to repay her.
“It’s a deal then.” Lilith smiled and then turned to her mom. “Is it okay if we go out, Mom?”
“Sure, but be back before sunset. We’re going to set up a fireplace. And take your phone with you. I want to be able to reach you in case anything happens.”
“Okay, thanks,” Lilith quickly responded. After we ate, Lilith and I said goodbye to her Mom.
“Have fun you two!” Mrs. Arwen called after us when we walked out the door.
“I hope you’re ready for some walking because there’s a lot for you to see here,” Lilith said with excitement. “To be honest, I don’t even know where to begin. I’ve never had a friend with me so be patient.”
“Lead the way,” I said to Lilith. The nature was so beautiful. At some point, we were walking along the beach and saw some divers. The water was clear blue and the weather was really warm. I felt like it was summer already.
Lilith showed me the park, where she told me a story of how Abbott fell off a tree while climbing.
“That’s probably the reason why he’s such an idiot. You know, he fell on his head.” Lilith made a joke and I laughed.
“I don’t think Abbott’s that bad,” I said to Lilith.
“He’s not. I just like to make fun of him because he’s my adorkable brother.”
“I know how you feel. I like to make fun of Connor sometimes, too. It’s just how brothers and sisters are.”
“Yeah.” Lilith said to me. “But Connor’s really hot though.”
“Lilith!” I exclaimed. “Gross.” We laughed together.
“Oh come on, you know it’s true. He and Delilah make a really cute couple.”
“They do. But then again, Abbott isn’t that bad either. I bet it gets annoying when girls chase after him.”
“It does. There was this one time where this girl followed him to the guy’s bathroom just so she could talk to him in private. He was really creeped out as he wasn’t used to girls being that forward.”
A couple of surfer boys went passed us. I was glad they couldn’t hear what we were talking about, but they were most definitely checking us out.
“Abbott can be such a player sometimes,” I laughed. “Do you know that he accidentally sent me a sext once? It was meant for someone else. I wouldn’t let it go for a week.”
“Seriously? Why didn’t you tell me about it?” Lilith raised an eyebrow.
“He gave me fifty bucks to be quiet until the end of school year. Which is obviously over now.”
“I can’t believe you kept this from me,” she feigned hurt. “I thought we don’t keep secrets from each other.”
“Don’t be such a drama queen,” I teased. I knew she wasn’t really upset with me. There was a glint in her eyes that gave her real emotions away. Not that Lilith wasn’t a good actress, I just knew her well enough these days to read her moods easily.
She laughed and then motioned me to follow her. “Come on,” she dragged me to the open market. Small business owners awaited us there and I couldn’t actually comprehend how colorful the place around us was. I stopped to look at these beautiful handmade summer dresses.
“Oh my Josh freaking Hutcherson! I just saw the perfect dress for you to wear tonight.” Lilith took my arm and pulled me inside the boutique.
Half an hour later, she had five dresses picked out for her to buy and I had three. They weren’t even expensive. But Lilith didn’t think that would be enough. She dragged us to a local salon for mani-pedis and facial treatments.
Just as we were leaving the salon, we bumped into someone who appeared to have recognized Lilith.
“Lilith, darling,“hHe said, kissing each cheek. “It’s been so long since I had seen you. And who is your friend here?”
“Hello Bernardo. This is my friend Astrid.”
“Nice to meet you, Astrid. I’m Bernardo Sevalli,” he said, kissing my hand.
He was young but not young enough for Lilith to have any sort of romantic past with him. He looked to be in his mid-20s but his hair screamed 90s vibe, as did his clothes.
“Hello,” I said sweetly.
“He’s one of the most famous photographers in Europe. He used to work with my mum. His works were featured in multiple magazines and he’s the best photographer you’ll ever meet.” Lilith smiled.
“Oh dear girl, how you flatter me,” Bernardo said somewhat with an Italian accent.
“I’m only speaking the truth,” Lilith said.
“Listen,” Bernardo said. “There’s this campaign going on for one of my friends Donald Parsley and we’re looking for fresh models. You girls should come and see if it’s something you might enjoy doing.”
Getting such a blunt invitation did seem a bit fishy to me but I trusted that Lilith wouldn’t get me in too much trouble.
“It could be fun,” she said. “And we’re here to have fun, right?”
I nodded and turned to Bernardo.
“Sure, but know that we’re not professional models.”
“Oh darling, don’t you worry about that. All you have to do is look fabulous, which you both already do.”
We exchanged numbers and he said he would text us the time and location for tomorrow’s shoot.
I was a bit nervous and wouldn’t normally say yes to anything like that. But Lilith was right. We were here to have fun and nobody at home had to know we did this harmless campaign. It’s not like they’d actually consider using our pictures. I mean, I was no model. Unlike Lilith who looked stunning every moment of every day.
When we went our separate ways, Lilith and I giggled like two giddy children and went to the beach where we spent most of our day tanning and hanging out with the guys.
This truly was one memorable year.