Those Endless Summer Nights…
Some images are slightly NSFW
Summer, Year 6
Hayley is 26, Hollie is 25, Danielle is 20, Zoe is 20, Heath is 20, Rohan is 20, Matteo is 20, Fabian is 20
Saturday morning was bright and sunny as Zoe and Danielle made their way to the quad for the debate showdown. Zoe was determined to be victorious this time, after a crushing defeat during their more recent practice.
She got her wish. She absolutely decimated Danielle at the debate and felt exceptionally pleased with herself.
Danielle wondered if she should even have turned up, given that she’d broken up with Elliott only a few days previously. Maybe it hadn’t been such a good idea.
The audience stared in disbelief as Danielle stepped away from the podium. Her arguments had been appalling; even she couldn’t believe she’d presented them. The lack of effort was palpable and she was ashamed to have even stepped up in front of them all.
Thankfully, Matteo was on hand and pulled her into a consolation hug as she stepped away from the rest of the group.
Danielle suddenly really wanted a proper first kiss with Matteo. Her spur of the moment kiss hadn’t really counted in her eyes: it had been such a blur. Now she really wanted to make things a little more solid.
“Come on,” Matteo said. “It’s time to get changed and get back to the festival. They’ve got Hayley Bolton headlining tonight!
The second day of the Up The Amp Music Festival was underway. Hayley was singing her heart out for all to hear by the time Matteo and Danielle arrived back at the festival ground with the others. The atmosphere was thick with excitement.
As the afternoon faded into the evening, the crowd grew and Hayley smiled as she rounded out her set. The festival always held a sense of nostalgia for her; after all, it had been two years since she’d been photographed before her set, kissing Ryan and effectively ending her relationship with Raúl. In spite of the media storm that followed, she’d always enjoyed the vibe at the festival and it was wonderful to be invited back every year.
She was more used to the press now and knew how to answer their questions without giving too much away.
She gave several interviews in the aftermath of the show but declined to comment on the state of her relationship with Ryan. That was more private now.
She finished her interviews and posed for photographs with her fans, before signing autographs. Zoe was excited to get Hayley’s autograph; she never met a celebrity like Hayley before. Not properly and it was very exciting.
Soon, it was back to the grindstone and the regular routine. Heath was finishing up a live art club meeting and was actually feeling quite pleased with himself. His perspectives and proportions were a lot better than they used to be and he knew his lecturer would be delighted with the improvements in his skills.
Danielle was back to celebrating the school spirit with Matteo by spray painting the Quad. She’d begun to feel better in the aftermath of her split with Elliott and was enjoying herself.
Her old impish side shone through more now. She cackled every time she thought of her chess games with Fabian and the ease with which she was able to trick him and cheat. She was definitely having more fun now.
She had, however, lost a bit of focus with her studies. While she played games on her laptop, Heath and Fabian sat down and swotted up on their studies, their noses buried deep in their textbooks in the build-up to their final exams.
Zoe had also lost a bit of focus with her studies. She’d invited Rohan over to see her; she hadn’t been able to think of anything else all day and she was desperate to get him alone.
As always, Rohan was nervous when he arrived at the dorm but Zoe didn’t notice. As she made a grab for him, she didn’t noticed him trying to shy away, either.
Even when she got him into her dorm room, she never noticed the panicked look on his face. She had a way of managing to stop him from saying whatever it was he wanted to say. She wasn’t in the mood for talking tonight. Whatever Rohan had to say would have to wait.
Heath felt quite giddy when he found a text the following morning from Hollie. He’d been worrying ever since the festival about whether he’d read her signals right and when he saw her admitting she had a crush on him, he grinned. Quickly, he dialed her number to confirm their coffee date that afternoon.
Later that afternoon, he found himself sitting at a table outside Coastal, opposite Hollie. The conversation had been flowing freely and they’d so far had a lovely time.
When Heath suggested they go for a walk along the river, he decided it was time to kick it up a notch.
His first kiss was Hollie was even more incredible than he’d expected. There was something about her that made him forget everything else.
As the sun dipped below the skyline, Heath and Hollie lay on the grass, gazing at the stars above. Heath could quite happily have stayed their all night; he didn’t noticed the slight chill in the air as the temperature cooled. All he noticed was Hollie’s body heat as she lay cuddled up to him.
“It’s getting late,” Hollie said after a while. “My neighbour’s looking after the children tonight but I really should be getting back.”
“Okay.” Heath stood up and pulled Hollie up. “When can I see you again?”
Hollie smiled. “Very soon, I hope. I have to check my schedule; I’ve got a lot of papers to mark but I’ll ring you, okay?”
“Okay.” Heath smiled. “I’ll walk you to the station.”
As they talked and laughed, Heath found himself more and more drawn to Hollie. Was this what love felt like?
Final exam day arrived at long last and Danielle and Zoe began to regret their decision not to revise beforehand. Both felt extremely nervous as they minutes ticked away before their exams started.
By a miracle, they all left their exams quietly confident and were soon embroiled in a fierce water balloon fight to mark the end of the academic year.
It’d been a rollercoaster for them all and none of them were done yet.