This diary entry is part 21 of 25 in Lily's diary dated 29 - November 2023

Hi! It’s me! Lily!!!

We’re in Amarillo now, on the way back.

Last night after I wrote the post, I did what I said I wanted to do, and went outside and looked at the stars.  The campfire was still lit, but it was very low, and it was just the right about of light.  The kettle still had some water in it, so I put it on the fire and made some hot chocolate.

While I was drinking it, Jack came out and sat next to me.  We just sat there for a bit looking at the stars.

I looked at him for the first time in a long while.  I mean really looked at him.  The fire was lighting his face dimly, and, well, not gonna lie.  He was pretty hot.  And looked a little pensive.

“Penny for your thoughts,” I said.

“They’re worth at least a dime,” he said.

“We’ll split the difference – a nickel.”

He chuckled and was quiet for a bit.

“I guess this wasn’t really a good trip for you,” he said, a little sadness in his voice.

“No!”, I said.. then again, a little quieter, “No.  It…  was better than I expected.”

“But you got sick,” he said.  “You didn’t get to do anything through most of it.  Everyone went hiking, and you were sick.”

I sighed.  “I got to spend time with you,” I said softly.  “You took care of me.  I…  I don’t like being sick but it was…  perfect.”

He sighed.  “You shouldn’t have to be sick to spend time together.”

“Maybe not,” I said, “But we do what we can.  It’s not like we’re married and living together.  We both have our own lives.”

“I…  wish we didn’t, sometimes.”  His arm snaked around me and I leaned into him.  “I like taking care of you.”

I sighed, and a tear leaked out.  I couldn’t help it.  I sniffled a bit and a coyote howled in the distance.  The stars were bright, the air was cold, and Jack was warm.  It…  was a perfect night.

But eventually we went to sleep, and the sun came up, and we ran around putting the tents in the car and making sure we had everything cleaned up, and then we made a final trip to the bathroom and were on the road.  It was a pretty uneventful trip.  Grace kept jabbering about how much fun she had and making up little songs about the grand canyon.  Everyone else was pretty sleepy though.  For lunch we stopped at a fast food place and had, well, fast food, and it was delicious.  Grace got an ice cream cone and it was gone pretty fast.

When we got to our room, everyone wanted a shower, and now everyone’s asleep.  I’m going to be asleep too, shortly.  I miss my family and my friends.  I don’t think I’ll miss the grand canyon.  But…  I’ll miss Jack taking care of me.  A lot.  I’ll miss that a lot.  He’s told me he loves me.  We’ve spent a lot of fun times together.  We’ve done some stuff together that was… very enjoyable.  But…  this was the first time I knew.  When they do wedding vows, they say “in sickness and in health”, and…  we’re not married yet.  We’re not even engaged.  But…  it’s not the good times that test a relationship, is it?

Love you all!!! ❤️

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