“Andrew, would you please jump on the trampoline with me?” asked Elise.
Looking up from his comic, Andrew saw his nine year old sister wearing a floral one piece swimsuit, a homemade tutu, a cat’s ears headband and swimming goggles. The fourteen year old rolled his eyes towards the ceiling.
“Please, Andrew. You can make me bounce really, really high so that I can almost touch the leaves on the tree. Please.” The tugging at his elbow persisted until he caved.
“OK. Just five minutes.”
“Yay!” said the aeroplaning Elise flying out the door.
Andrew shoved himself away from the pulling power of the couch and followed the contrails of taffeta. Elise skipped across the yard and scrambled up the plastic steps and onto the trampoline. Happy squeals proceeded each bounce and squeak of the springs.
Climbing onto the mat Andrew found a rhythm with Elise.
“Bounce me higher. Higher, Andrew.”
Timing his landing to effect the “double bounce,” Andrew launched Elise into the air. She flapped her arms, with a smile as wide as the ocean as taffeta and tulle mimicked her arms. Laughter sprang from her little lungs. Andrew was caught up in the moment, laughing with Elise as he tried to bounce her higher and higher.
On a downward trajectory, Andrew glanced over the fence into the neighbour’s yard. He caught the briefest glimpse of half naked flesh and swimsuit material. With each jump Andrew focused on the attraction on the other side of the fence.
Stretched out in the sun was Katie,the eighteen year old neighbour, laying on her stomach on a towel, her face turned away. Beside her was a book turned face down and headphones trailing from under the book to her ears.
Bounce. Andrew turned to the figure over the fence. Each jump was a snapshot filed away in his adolescent mind, filed under “Best Moments Ever” and “Facebook Status Updates.”
Bounce. The bow tying the bikini.
Bounce. The curvature of her buttocks.
Bounce. The dappled sunlight on her calves.
Bounce. Like a flick book cartoon Andrew watched her reach around and pull the string on her top. He tried to adjust the timing of his bounce, hoping to catch a glimpse of side boob. Testosterone hopes faded as she settled into her worship of the sun.
“What’cha looking at?” asked Elise, breaking Andrew’s mental youtube sensation.
“Nothing,” said Andrew, loosing momentum. “I’ve gotta go inside.”
“Were you looking at Katie?”
“Yes you were. I can see her over the fence. And she’s a bit nudie.”
Andrew’s legs collapsed under him, bringing him to a shuddering halt on the trampoline mat. And out of sight of Katie Next Door. With great haste he slunk away towards the house, fearing detection.
“Hi Katie. Andrew was just looking at you over the fence while he was jumping on the trampoline with me. I think he liked seeing you without many clothes on.”