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Setting Friday Free (A Buzby Beach Novel) Chapter 01


DW is a veteran, a father, a husband, and a teacher. He's published 9 YA/NA novels thus far. The story you're reading might be next.

Setting Friday Free


Whose house is it anyway?

Garrison Everett Kaylor arrived home from school after his first day as a college freshman loaded down with homework and reading assignments. Garrison lived alone in a house once owned by his grandparents. Now, it was his. He was also the only child to have blessed the union of Attorney Frederick Ross Kaylor and Doctor Andrea Lynn Armstrong. She dropped her married name after the divorce.

Garrison came home to find the house empty. His housekeeper only visited three mornings a week. The landscaper came once a week, as did the pool service.

Why Garrison lives alone.

The home Garrison arrived at after the first day of his freshman year had only been his home since a week after high school graduation. Before then, the home left to him by his paternal grandparents was vacant. Garrison called his mother's house in the gated community of Landfall near Wrightsville Beach home until he took over the house on Buzby Beach. His mother's dissatisfaction with the homeowners' association of that neighborhood led to her moving into a condominium on Wrightsville Beach.

Convincing Garrison move into the house his grandparents left him coincided with his mother’s decision to move. Garrison had seen the request coming. His mother's references to needing her personal space had increased as his high school graduation grew closer.

The move to the house with a walled yard on the South End of Buzby Beach didn't bother Garrison as much as his mother feared it would. She never understood how out of place he'd felt at the Catholic school his non-Catholic parents sent him to at the start of middle school. It wasn't that he was bullied or shunned. It was more like Garrison always felt different from his classmates.

One reason Garrison's mother didn't understand was that he never complained, got excellent grades, and stayed out of trouble. Garrison's teachers liked him. He was friendly with his classmates. Garrison just never overcame the feeling of being an outsider.

A swim seemed like just the thing

High school ended. Garrison moved to Buzby Beach. He spent his summer in the pool, at Buzby Amusements playing arcade games, or at the Yacht Club's private beach. Garrison was a legacy at the Yacht Club. His great-grandparents were charter members. They'd built the house, passed first to Garrison's grandparents, and then to him, along with a sizable investment portfolio. Neither Garrison nor anyone else had been able to touch until he was eighteen. His father had been skipped over for reasons Garrison was never made privy to. He only knew his father and father's parents had been estranged since long before Garrison was born.

Garrison started classes at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington the third week of August, on Wednesday the 21st, to be precise. He was admitted as an English major. Neither of his parents approved. Since neither was paying for his education, they hadn't much influence on his choice.

Upon arriving home and relieving himself of his school materials, Garrison decided a swim before beginning his homework was the very thing he needed to rejuvenate his academic motivation. His shirt, shorts, and underwear went into the laundry hamper. Possessing nothing more than a towel, Garrison stepped through the French doors and out onto the pool deck.

Until he heard the scream

The moment the young lady in the pool screamed, Garrison realized he was not as alone as he believed himself to be.

The young lady allowed her tanned legs to sink and began treading water even as she stopped screaming and started firing questions at the young man standing in shock on the pool deck.

"Who are you? What are you doing here? Why are you naked?"

Garrison quickly opened the towel and wrapped it around his waist before turning the questions back on the dark-haired young lady treading water in his pool.

"Seeing as we are at my house, and you are in my pool, I should be the one asking you those questions."

The young lady stared hard at Garrison with such dark brown eyes the boy could barely tell where the pupil ended and the iris began. He returned her stare while fighting heroically the keep his eyes on hers and not let them wander.

"If this is your house," the young lady argued, "what are you doing home so early?"

"I don't see what difference the time I get home to my own house makes. You’re trespassing in my pool.”

"Then, if you're on time," the young lady noted as she turned and started swimming to the far end of the pool, "I must be late."

Upon reaching the end of the pool, the young lady climbed out of the water and pulled on the sundress she left on the round umbrella-shaded table there.

Without so much as a look back, the young lady walked to what Garrison believed was a solid wall, pulled a lever, and disappeared through a hidden gate. By the time Garrison found his voice, she was long gone. The visions of her beauty, though, were etched in his mind forever.

The story continues in Chapter 02

© 2020 DW Davis


DW Davis (author) from Eastern NC on December 06, 2020:

Thank you, Meg.

Yes, it's been a while. I'm glad to be back.

DreamerMeg from Northern Ireland on December 06, 2020:

Ages since I saw you writing here. A great start to a story, as always. Look forward to reading more. Love secret doors (or gates)!

DW Davis (author) from Eastern NC on December 06, 2020:

Thank you, Liz. I hope you enjoy the rest of the story as more about this mysterious girl in Garrison's pool comes to light.

Liz Westwood from UK on December 05, 2020:

This is an intriguing introduction in a fantastic setting. There are a lot of questions that require answers in the following instalment. You have done a good job at hooking readers and grabbing their attention.

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