The Light Behind the World
Chapter 5: Orientation

Copyright© 2010 by Sea-Life

Monday afternoon featured a glorious forty minutes at the rock and gem counter with Ginny Parkin and a couple small handfuls of rock samples from the ledge. It happily eased the burden of my appointment at the clinic, which was long, annoying, uncomfortable and at several points even mildly painful. The Doctor in particular felt it was particularly appropriate to pick this visit to explore with me the wonders of puberty and growth spurts and hormones and emotions. I endured an x-ray, blood tests and I did finally get to pee in a cup for someone, as I knew I would.

I had a provisional clean bill of health. But mom informed me in her best Dr. Mom impression, that if any problems showed up when the tests came back, we would be heading back, and in the meantime she was keeping a close eye on me, and I was to 'be good'. I smiled and nodded and said 'Yes Mom' at the appropriate places, and then headed off to Parkin's Sporting Goods while she went shopping.

Of course Ginny had heard, through the miraculous Angel's Camp Gossip Wire - patent-pending, void where prohibited by kindness — about my fainting spell, and showed me a blush-inducing amount of concern. I was definitely glad to hear her concern for my well being and told her so.

"I appreciate the concern Ginny, thanks!"

"Well Of course Davey, you're my best customer!"

"But I've never actually bought anything from you Ginny." I countered without thinking.

"Oh!" she said. She blushed

I blushed again. Life was good.

That bit of rewarding awkwardness aside, we spent a good half hour talking about rocks, gems, minerals and because you have to talk about finding gold if you live in Calaveras County, California, we talked about finding gold. We agreed it wasn't likely, and that tourists who came around dreaming of it were being silly, and then spent another ten minutes talking about what we'd do with our wealth if we struck it rich.

That forty minute interlude started a boy-girl friendship that certainly did not meet the definition of a boyfriend-girlfriend relationship. I think Ginny and I both were finding boy-girl attractions more interesting, but neither of us was what you would call a case of runaway hormones, and at twelve going on thirteen we weren't really looking for the kind of relationship that would become important to us in only a few years. What it did do was give me a rock hunting companion, and fellow adventurer for the rest of that summer as well as for several more years into our teens. I took a small amount of teasing from some of my friends, but I was a bit of a loner to begin with, and every one of them would've killed to be in my place, so it wasn't too bad.

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