He didn’t use to like it, the forceful explosions of colorful flames were but yet another science phenomenon coinciding with human standards of beauty. What’s so exciting about polluting the world with smog and noise and litters of food wrappers and cans and frightened pets running astray?

But, this year is different.

As he found himself perched upon a blanket too colorful for his usual palette surrounded by a crowd too plentiful for his preference, he didn’t notice the two extremities, but a third: the head resting at his shoulder was too heavy, too casual, too smitten. And when he protested, the lazy voice merely pointed out that no one would see much in the dark before resuming the light nap as they continued to wait for the spectacle.

“We could’ve seen the fireworks perfectly fine from the window,” He wasn’t letting this go, the purpose of pointlessly subjecting themselves to the torment of impending traffic was beyond lost to him.

“But, you hardly go out besides for work,” A purr, a smile; he could not help but smile, too, despite his irritations. “The festive air is a nice change of pace.”

He wanted to point out the third red baseball hat he read today and his dislike for jingoes, but thought better and allowed himself to indulge in the weight that has now invaded a good half of him, found its usual place in his arm, “What’s the point of bringing cushions if you are just going to sit on me, anyway?”

The pretense of innocence that pouted at him made him chuckle, “I just thought you would feel less left out if I brought my cushion, too.”

As though attuned to a natural pause of their conversation, an announcement shushed then riled up the crowd, dimming the stadium lights as cheap speakers paid their patriotic dues in sacrificing their short lifespans in blasting one ‘Murica songs to another at a volume not meant to be so. Soon enough, the ink black skies above them erupted into blinding hues, and as the masses around them “ooh”ed and “ahh”ed he already picked out a set pattern and wished that there were more colors than flashes of blue, white, red, green or a rare treat of purple.

“I am bored,” Hair tickled his neck, someone had decided to lean back and deliver this shared message.

“It’s been less than five minutes,” He was merely being informative.

“Oh,” The pang of disappointment was too obvious despite a denial for an offer to go home. “We’ve waited for so long.”

So they watched, traced the thin lines of sparks before each dull bloom of sounds and fury and colors. The culmination was but a combination of the fireworks released in the past twenty minutes.

“They could’ve done that in the beginning,” A bubble of laughter at the babbling sky in its maelstrom of smog and dying sparks; he agree, all was too messy, too loud for his taste.

But still, despite his habitual cynicism the only extremity that he cared for was that his arm rested too naturally around that waist, and the lips curled by a smile more splendid than any exploding skies that came up to greet his was too perfect.


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