held the moon in my hands

“It’s your birthday tomorrow,” you said.

“I know that,” I mumbled, too sleepy to wonder why you were pointing out such an obvious fact.

“Are you still refusing to let me buy you a present?”

“I don’t want anything.”

“You must want something.”

“Just you.”

“You have me.”

“Exactly.” I pulled the covers over my head to encourage you to shut up, but you pulled them back down.

“Why can’t I get you something? Everyone else gets to.”

“Give me the covers back.”

“Answer my question.”

“You suck. I’m cold.”

“Then answer quickly.”

I snuggled into your arms and sighed. “You’ve already given me more than I could have ever imagined possible.”

“Have I ever mentioned how cheesy you get when you’re tired?”

“Shut up.”

“It’s adorable.”

“Hmph. AS I WAS SAYING…”

“…Yes?”

“Um. What was I saying?”

“You were sa–”

“Oh, right. A birthday present seems petty and pointless compared to what you’ve already given me.”

“It doesn’t have to be,” you replied, your fingers twisting absently in my hair. “I’ll give you something special. Anything you want.”

“Anything?”

“Anything.”

“I want you to stop talking and let me sleep.”

“Hm. Anything but that.”

“Jesus. Fine, you want to get me something special? Get me the freeken’ moon, okay?”

I rolled over. There was beautiful silence for about thirty seconds. Then you suddenly got up and scooped me into your arms.

“AGH! What the hell are you doing?”

“Nothing. Go to sleep.”

“But I–”

“Shhh.”

I groaned irritably. You ignored me and carried me outside to your car. As you started driving, my sleepiness took over, and I curled up on the seat. I was dimly aware of you draping a blanket over me, and then I was out.

***

“Hey. Wake up, Beautiful. We’re here.”

“Mmph. Where’s here?” I asked. You unbuckled me and pulled me into your arms. It was too dark for me to clearly see your face, but I could sense your excitement.

“Can’t you tell?”

As my brain slowly started working again, I became aware of a rhythmic crashing sound, and a salty smell. A smile spread across my face. “The beach?”

“You got it.”

We climbed out of the car, and you grabbed a bag from the backseat. When we got close enough to the sea you pulled a picnic blanket and a bowl out of the bag, and spread the blanket on the sand.

“Stay,” you said, pointing.

I sat down, watching bemusedly as you filled the bowl up in the water. Walking carefully back, you sat down and began twisting the bowl this way and that until finally you were satisfied. You instructed me to take it, and I obliged, leaning forward curiously.

I peered into the bowl for a moment, and then let out a delighted laugh. Reflected in it was the moon, shimmering beautifully on the surface of the water.

“Thank you,” I whispered, unable to wipe the smile from my face. “It’s exactly what I wanted.”

“I thought it might be,” you answered. Then you looked at your watch and grinned.

“Happy birthday, Princess.”

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