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The jeep was Abby's prized possession, (except for her favorite fly rod, of course). Two years ago, for her sixteenth birthday, her parents and Terry had chipped in, bringing her savings to the amount she needed to buy a car. John had wanted a more practical vehicle for his daughter-- something more domestic. But Abby knew what she wanted. This jeep could go anywhere she wanted to be, all the while hauling a canoe. What more could she ask for?

"Abby!" called her mother's voice. "The marina called! They want you down there right away!"

"Okay, Mom!" she called back, reinserting the dipstick into the transmission under the hood.

Abby hurried inside to change. She worked part-time as a translator at the marina, translating for Japanese tourists, as well as French speaking Canadians, who had come down from Canada to do some fishing.

At the marina, the general manager led her to a small family of French-Canadians who needed a translator.

"Bonjour!" greeted Abby. "Je suis votre traductrice."

She spent the day helping them understand their guide, and watched bemused as their fly casting instructor tried to teach the father how to properly cast a fly. It was a few minutes after five o' clock in the late afternoon, when Abby started her drive back home. When she saw Jake walking home from work, she decided to act like a friend and offer him a lift. After tooting her horn twice, Abby pulled up alongside him.

"Want a ride home?" she asked, pleasantly.

"No!" he replied, gruffly.

Abby shrugged, and drove off. She glanced in the rear view mirror, and shook her head.

"He doesn't seem fragile, to me!" she thought to herself.

Early Saturday afternoon, Abby and Terry went fishing to catch some bass and pike for the cookout. Abby took up her favorite place on the shoreline, while Terry went further down the beach to try the fish there. It was a beautiful, clear summer day-- perfect for a day out of doors. This large stretch of beach was private property, having been in Izumi's family for several generations. The only ones allowed on it were friends, and those fortunate enough to be invited. Because of this, no matter how far into tourist season it was, the Johanneses and their guests could always enjoy an undisturbed time on the waterfront.

John busily set up the large copper basin firepit on the beach, near to the picnic table, while his wife was in the kitchen, preparing the hamburger patties and hot dogs that he would later grill over the firepit.

Terry quit fishing after landing one smallmouth bass, while Abby, who enjoyed the pastime more than he, carefully played her line, expertly flicking her fly from spot to spot on the water, testing each location for fish activity.

While Abby fished, John went to the little yellow house, and knocked on Jake's front door.

"Yes?" said Jake, opening the door a crack.

"We're going to have a cookout this afternoon, and you're invited," said John.

Jake hesitated. Sensing that he was searching for an excuse not to come, John continued,

"My friend, Terry, is back from Hong Kong-- that's him sitting near the picnic table, and my daughter, Abigail, is fishing for our lunch. I'd like very much for you to meet them."

John was his landlord, and Jake wasn't about to risk losing a place to stay, simply because he was more comfortable remaining behind closed doors. Reluctantly, he followed John to where Terry was watching Abby fly fish.

"Terry," introduced John, "this is Jake."

Terry looked up with a friendly smile and shook hands with their new neighbor. From Jake's reluctance to shake his hand, and by the nervous way he had of extricating it as soon as possible from the other person's grasp, Terry could understand why John didn't think he would last very long outside of prison walls. There was a marked look of distrust on Jake's face and posturing, as if he expected danger at any time, and at any moment.

Even now, as they listened to John talk about charcoal, Terry noticed the young man nervously look about himself, as one who knew he didn't fit into his surroundings. Jake drew his fingers to his mouth, as if holding a cigarette, and then, upon realizing that he wasn't smoking, quickly stuffed them back into his faded jean pockets, all the while searching for a way to escape John and Terry. Then Jake saw Abby, standing on the shore, rhythmically casting her fly line back and forth, creating graceful lines against the clear horizon.
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