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"What other one?" he asked, innocuously.

"Don't be coy with me, Jake Murphy!" she exclaimed, indignantly. "You know perfectly well that there's two tents in Dad's garage!"

"Oh, that tent," Jake hesitated. "Abby, I thought we could share one, instead."

"'Share one'?" she repeated incredulously.

"I brought two sleeping bags," he quickly pointed out. "It's not what you're thinking, Abby-- honestly, it isn't. If you're uncomfortable with the situation, I can go get the other tent right now. I only thought that since we were going to sleep in our day clothes and in separate sleeping bags, that it wouldn't be an issue."

"You always sleep in day clothes," she reminded him with a patient sigh.

"I know," he smiled, "but you don't."

"I'll only agree to this on one condition," she slowly conceded. "I reserve the right to kick you out of the tent any time I want to-- no questions asked."

"Okay," smiled Jake.

With a small groan, Abby returned to her fishing spot on the dock and soon discovered that he had followed her, as usual.

"Would you like to try a cast or two?" she offered. Jake quickly backed away and shook his head. "Come on," she coaxed, "I agreed to the tent. You owe me, Jake."

"I suppose, if you're going to put it that way," sighed Jake, reluctantly accepting Abby's fly rod. "I'm no good at this," he muttered, after executing a very awkward cast.

"That's because you're fighting the rod," explained Abby, in her knowing instructor voice. "Here, hold your wrist like this." Abby guided the fly rod while Jake held on to it, feeling the gentle motion that was so essential to good fly casting. "It's all in the timing," she explained. Jake looked up at her, and for a moment, their eyes locked. An alarm went off in Abby's head, and she quickly let go of the rod. "Please," she begged, lowering her eyes from his, "don't look at me like that."

"Thank you for the lesson," breathed Jake, soberly placing the fly rod back into her hands. "I think I've had enough fishing for one day."

"You'd better put up that other tent," sighed Abby.

With a sad nod, Jake went back for the second tent in the Johanneses' garage. Now Abby didn't feel like fishing, either. She picked up the one smallmouth bass she had managed to catch, and carefully cleaned it in the shallow water where Jake couldn't see it. By the time she returned to the fire, Jake had put up the second tent.

"I'm sorry, Abby," he said, apologetically. "I'm not trying to make this hard on you. You've been extremely patient with me-- more than I deserve."

Abby wanted to say something, but the words stuck in her throat. Instead, she turned to the gutted smallmouth and unceremoniously dropped it into the frying pan, letting it sizzle and sputter over the open fire.

"Could I ask you something?" wondered Jake, as the smell of seasoned fish began to fill the cool evening air. Abby sat down on a large piece of nearby driftwood and stared at the fire. "Do you remember," he asked, sitting down beside her, "how Dr. Jacoby said that we should always be honest and frank with each other about the deal we made?"

"I remember," she replied quietly.

"And that neither of us should act without the other's consent?" he added.
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