As the lights began to go down in Brooklyn, so did the energy levels the two thirty-something parents had after being in the sun all day with drinks and food making them feel as if they should be retiring with everyone else for the evening, faces they loved going their separate ways for the evening. The Fourth of July had become a staple holiday for her, even as an Australian. Since she had been in New York she had been partaking in the festivities, partying, swimming, dancing, twirling around with sparklers, it was always fun being decked out in the colors of a foreign land, celebrating independence and wishing the death of Donald Trump, naturally. Still feeling loose with a dizzy head, Rose was hanging onto Ezra the way she did whenever she was even slightly buzzed, and overly affectionate drunk, whining and groaning whenever he moved to try and do something else, a sight that made his mother smile whenever she saw them like this, and for all of their friends to roll their eyes whenever the both of them acted this way. Usually it was Ezra who would be trying to coax her into showing that side of herself in public. Who knew all it would take was a little Grey Goose and some sour mix? After all was said and done and Rose figured they would be turning in, Ezra had other plans for them.
On the roof Ezra had taken lights and created a tiny world of their own, one that made her laugh and poke at his ribs when he showed it to her. It was unexpected and sweet and the best way to end the night. Curled up on the couch, Rose discarded and kicked off her flip flops below them, her legs tucked under her body while her shoulder rested directly against him, the rest of her side aligned with his to make it so that there was no gap or sliver of light able to get between them, her hands habitually touching exposed pieces of skin; his forearms, wrists, his palms, searching for any outlet of having skin on skin while they waited for the fireworks to begin. It was the perfect setup, she thought to herself, pulling the blanket up and over them, a cozy feeling lingering in the air while the smallest gust of July wind hurried past. Her eyes quickly took to his, no words were said, seeing that no words were needed, and she puckered her lips together, greedy for a kiss. Without asking for one, she kept her lips puckered until she made a smacking noise and then presented a smile, hinting at what she was interested in receiving.
The contrast between last year and this year was expansive, seeing that July of 2015 was long before they had the keys to this home inside their hands, they wouldn't have them in their possession until later on in the fall when the leaves were turning shades or orange and a marigold yellow, the heat tapering off from the wicked summer. Here they were, though, nestled together on the rooftop, fully furnished, with dog toys and plush animals from Rocco, traces of their life as a family now, with an assortment of plants, tables, and the candles and lights Ezra supplied tonight, all of which made her feel like the night couldn't go any better than it had been. It made her forget about the could have's and should have's, the plans they were originally supposed to put into motion, the ones they would have to find another excuse to utilize (and luckily Fire Island didn't need much of an excuse to travel to other than glorious weather and a reason to escape the city for a few days).
She wanted to stop him as he began relaying details about how today could have gone. She should have kissed him to shut him up, but instead she only breathed in the night air, humming against her lips while she nodded to his words. She felt bad for taking it so hard when she thought he had forgotten the plans, she felt bad that they still could have gone and it would have been a good time without all of the mess and debris that came along with her getting up in arms over everything. Everything he had done for her? Rose didn't deserve it. She had been a brat, a supreme one in her eyes, so as he finished stringing his words together, she cut him off. "Today was great," she said proudly, firmly too. "I mean that. You can't tell me otherwise. Everyone had a good time, even Roc who shit himself when CT was holding him, I think that it was about as good as today could have gotten. Really." Of course there were apologies brewing up too, but he was already trying to get in another word, typical of Ezra, something that made her smile whenever they were having moments like this, but drove her crazy whenever they were fighting.
He wasn't trying to speak for the sake of speaking or telling her that he was sorry for how tonight didn't turn out. Her eyes lazily remained on his, her head on his shoulder now as they listened to kids yelling in the street, smaller firecrackers serving as the soundtrack until he cleared his throat and presented her with something that filled her eyes with fucking tears from the minute the timer went off. Her body pushed back against the couch, her legs falling down, the blanket at their ankles now while her hands came up to cover her mouth that was open wide. "What did you do," she said in a muffled voice between her fingers that still smelled like sour mix. She repeated his name, standing up now, getting a better look at the words, her eyes glossy as she started to laugh, shifting from holding back tears, and allowing tears to stumble down her cheeks; she was truly the world's biggest sap sometimes. "How did you --- what did you. I don't even know what to say? What can I possibly say to this?" Rotating her body on her heel, she moved forward, a knee resting on the empty space she was sitting in next to him, half sprawled in his lap with her other leg, her arms around him as she kissed him hard, her lips darting for his, parting and closing in no particular way, tasting him and thanking him while her heart continued to thrum inside her chest louder than any words could ever be.
She would have continued to kiss him if they hadn't been interrupted by the first shot of light in the air, the test firework, the signal that the rest would begin. Thankful it was dark and he couldn't see how puffy and red her eyes were, she thanked him, and kissed him some more, coiling herself around him like a snake without letting him get comfortable in another position, not bothering to reach for the blanket. "Your fireworks were okay," she added in, watched a burst of white and red in the formation of a circle with stars shooting in the middle, loud cracks in the sky enough to cause Vincent to howl below them as he paced around the kitchen seeking safety, all while Rose licked her popsicle and then dragged it along his cheek, lapping up the sugar residue with her tongue while her eyes averted toward the sky, watching shapes appear amongst the black backdrop.