Nancy switched the radio off the second the first love song came on. At this time, she wanted to be lost in her own thoughts. Her husband did not say much; he seemed to be deep in thought as well. When they first set out, she had asked him where they where going, but he would not tell her. She felt too tired to argue at that point, and just was happy to be able to shut her eyes for a little while.
Maybe I'll get lucky, and we'll go out some place close to the mall, and I can shop while Dale does…whatever.
But Nancy's hope of that was crushed, once they passed by the shopping center. She sighed, and slid down in her seat. Dale was silent for a moment; but then spoke.
"We'll be there soon."
His voice had symphony in it, and for the first time, Nancy thought that maybe, just maybe he was being receptive to her.
Nancy looked to her husband then, as he fished his pack of cigarettes out of his pocket, selected one, took out a book of matches, broke one off, lit one, and then his cigarette. For the first time, Nancy thought about how manly her husband seemed. As much as she did not enjoy the second-hand smoke, there was something masculine about the way Dale could multi-task with his smokes and the thing was, he did not even know it. He just did it, because that was his way. Nancy felt her heart skip a beat, but only for a moment.
"I just wish you would tell me where what this is all about, Shug."
Her voice was softer than usual, with hints of sadness that seemed to have not been brought on the current situation; but rather the sadness had been in her for quite awhile. Dale then turned on the radio. It was then that she heard the lyric:
I can never fall in love again; I can never go back.
Nancy closed her eyes. John Redcorn and her had once made love to that song. She began to get sleepy, and she let the sleepiness take her, hoping she could find the answer in her dreams…
"Nancy. Nancy, wake up."
"Mmmm?" Nancy opened her eyes, and saw that they had stopped. Dale was now on the passenger side, gently shaking her arm.
"Well, we're here. How do you like it?"
Nancy looked around, as things began to come into focus again. She saw sand, some seagulls, and in the near distance, water. They had arrived at the lake.
Dale smiled at his wife, as he reached back, and grabbed a cooler out of the back, then climbed out of the van.
"Come on!" He exclaimed like a giddy child to his parents just arriving at Disneyworld.
Nancy, still a bit groggy, got out of the van and quite apprehensively followed him out towards the beach.
If we had gotten here a few hours earlier, I could have gotten some sun.
Nancy sighed. Why did her husband have to be so strange?
"Come on, Nancy! We just have to stay here until midnight. Then the invasion will be over, and we'll be safe as a bug in a rug. Except-I guess that's not really safe."
She stood back as he looked up to the skyline, seemingly looking for something.
He looked to her; and reached out to her. "I am just always looking out for you, my love."
Dale then led her to the dunes, and once there, he put the cooler down in the sand.
"Dunes where built by aliens, you know."
"No they weren't," was Nancy's reply, but Dale did not seem to hear, as he rummaged through the cooler, and pulled out a beer. Nancy noticed there was nothing in there for her.
"Shug, you can not drink on the beach."
"No? But there is nobody here, Nancy." He said whiningly, and he did not stop to open the can he was holding. At this point, Nancy was about to give up. She sat down in the sand, wanting to cry, but yet nothing came out. She looked out to the calm ocean, and several sea gulls where circling above, probably stragglers; that stayed behind from a busy day at the lake looking for perhaps one last piece of food.
Dale then sat down besides her. "Nancy? What's wrong?" He looked at her, behind his sunglasses. Although the sun had now gone down, she knew he would be leaving them on.
"It's-its just things are just not the way they use to be, Shug." She said sadly. "I guess-and it's hard for me to tell you this- I am feeling a little lonely."
Dale was silent for a moment, but then put his hand on her shoulder. This slightly surprised her; why she was not quite sure. Maybe it was because she did not expect her husband to understand why she was lonely. The truth was, she missed John Redcorn.
"I understand, Nancy."
She then looked to her husband now, with more surprise. He took a quick sip of his beer, and then continued.
"I haven't been spending enough time with my wife; the most beautiful, sweetest person in the whole universe."
She smiled now a little, her husband was clueless, to say the least, but she knew that he loved her.
"Let us make the most of our time out here-do you remember how we use to come here and make out when we first met?"
Nancy nodded. Although she did not want her husband to know, she truly drew a blank when he had just mentioned it. Was there a time where they had been to this lake before, and made out? Had it been that long ago? She wanted so much to remember.
Maybe now is the time to create new memories.
The wind blew through Nancy's hair then, and with that, she felt a little spark inside her, one that she thought was long gone, start to burn. As she shifted her weight in the sand to turn and face her husband, her blue sundress strap slipped down her shoulder. She did not attempt to fix it.
"Shug…" She wrapped her arms around him, and then began to kiss her husband more passionately than she ever had-or remembered. She felt him shake a little as she held him, and it made her, shake in turn, just the fact that she still had that effect on him.
"Ohhh, I think-I think I'll finish this beer later." Dale placed his can down, once she pulled a little away from him. And with that, it was Dale's turn to take Nancy into his arms, and to kiss her.
The sun was beginning to set as they both held on to each other. Nancy shivered a bit, as it was beginning to get a little cool, and Dale pulled her even closer. She leaned against him, and she could feel the warmth of his body.
"Oh, Dale-your so warm," she said softly. He said nothing, but smiled, and Nancy thought he had blushed a little bit. She once again leaned in to kiss him once again. She then whispered in his ear:
"Oh, Shug, you know, what you did today-it was fun. It was almost like you-kidnapped me." Nancy could feel herself getting weak in her knees upon saying the word "kidnapped."
"Um, Nancy, there's something you should know." Dale patted his front pocket for his cigarettes, but then reconsidered taking them out. "I-um, well-you see-there is no alien invasion."
"I just made that up as an excuse to get you out here. I know we haven't been really spending that much time together lately, and I just wanted a little excursion with you."
"Oh, Shug, I knew there was no-I mean, oh Shug."
Nancy embraced her husband, and kissed him on his cheek. Dale in turn, looked around them.
"Hey, you know there's no one around. Except maybe for that tourist family over there. So where were we?"
A few hours later, and Dale and Nancy where back in the van, heading back to Arlen. Nancy flipped on the radio; and heard there was a love song playing. She paused, and looked to her husband, and then without hesitation, turned it up a bit.