The deer looks up when you arrive, but when it sees that you don't have any snacks it goes back to the grass. It flicks its tail at you disapprovingly.\n\n[[back|clearing]]
Some of them are even real constellations. Others... Well, you're pretty sure nobody ever navigated by the drunken moose.\n\n[[back|stars]]
Quack. Quackquackquack.\n\nQuack.\n\n[[back|woods]]\n\n
Shhhh. Burbleburbleburble.\n\nShhhh. Burbleburbleburble. \n\nShhhh. Burbleburbleburble.\n\n[[Shhhh.|Hammock]]
You follow the foot prints up the beach to a marshy area full of horse tails and other marshy sorts of things. Dragonflies lazy buzz around, the sunlight glittering off their wings. There is a board walk that leads over the marsh and into the [[woods]].\n\n
On the way into the woods, the marshy bit turns into a pond. There are [[ducks]] tooling around looking for whatever it is that ducks [[eat]] when there are no tourists throwing bread at them.\n\nPast the marsh, a path leads [[deeper]] into the woods.
That must be the cats way of saying "Happy Birthday!" Fuzzy little jerks.\n\n[[back|door]]
Nice, cheerful songbirds. Not the screeching sky rats also known as seagulls.\n\n[[back|Hammock]]
Carefully. Very, very, carefully.\n\n[[back|door]]
Deeper in the woods you find a clearing. There are wild flowers growing everywhere, and on the edge of the clearing a [[deer]] is nibbling on the grass.\n\nThrough the trees on the far side of the clearing you see a [[cabin]].
If you stand with your back to the fire and wait for your eyes to adjust, you can see a million tiny stars twinkling cheerfully in the sky. \n\nEven with the party going on, it's peaceful. People are talking quietly and pointing out [[constellations]] to each other.\n\nEventually, it gets chilly and everyone heads back inside for [[cake]].
Calm
The cabin is small but cozy looking, with sunny yellow curtains in the windows and overgrown pots of flowers by the [[door]].
Surprise! The cabin is full of all your friends. They must have snuck onto the island early while you were out wandering. Everyone crowds around to hug you and wish you a happy birthday. CC gets first dibs, of course.\n\nThere's a banner that says "Happy Birthday!" strung up, and silly hats, and a huge cake (how did they bring a cake here on a [[boat]]?). \n\nOff to the side is a pile of presents. It looks like something with tiny sharp teeth [[chewed]] on the corner of one of them.\n\nFrom the back [[yard]], someone calls "I've got the fire going, it's weenie time!"
The paths winds through the woods, past a small stream, around some rocks, and over a small hill. The golden late afternoon sunlight slants in through the trees, making everything look warm and welcoming. \n\nAt the end of the path you see a [[clearing]].
Mmmm, mystery punch. May or may not contain moonshine.\n\n[[back|yard]]
The small boat you took to the island bumps gently against the dock. In the boat is your [[cooler]].\n\nAlong the beach near the dock are small webbed [[foot prints|boardwalk]].
What do ducks eat anyway? According to about.com they eat all sorts of stuff:\n\nSmall fish and fish eggs\nSnails, worms and mollusks\nSmall crustaceans\nGrass and weeds\nAlgae and aquatic plants and roots\nFrogs, salamanders and other amphibians\nAquatic and land insects\nSeeds and grain\nSmall berries, fruits and nuts\n\nThe more you know...\n\n[[back|woods]]
In no time at all you have a [[drink]], a hotdog that's only slightly burnt, and a comfy seat near the fire with your sweetie. \n\nWhile you all eat, drink, and be merry, the sun sets over the water, turning the sea red and gold. By the time everyone is finished eating, the [[stars]] have come out.\n\n
There is enough food in your cooler to last you until tomorrow morning when your friends arrive. They'll be bringing more food in a bigger <html><a target="_blank" href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R7yfISlGLNU">boat</a></html>.\n\nFor now, you kick your shoes off and dangle your feet off the dock while you eat a sandwich. Maybe later you'll start a fire and roast a couple hot dogs.\n\n[[back|dock]]
Once you get the wrapping paper off, you have to fight your way through a ridiculous amount of tape. Someone wanted to very sure this present made it across the country in one piece.\n\nEventually, you get through the tape. And then dig through all the packing peanuts to find a... What on earth is this [[thing|loop]]?
You can hear waves rushing against the beach nearby. In the distance, there are [[birds]] singing. \n\nYou wake up from your nap in a hammock strung between two trees. The afternoon sunlight filters through the leaves overhead. \n\nDown at the beach there is a [[dock]].
The pieces are far from even, but they're delicious! Once the cake is demolished, it's time for presents. \n\nIn the pile is all kinds of great stuff - concert tickets, a nice bottle of wine, a new game. There's even one from your sister. Because she's a weirdo, it's wrapped in Christmas paper. Something in the box slides around when you shake it. Can you guess what's [[inside]]?\n
Mel Reams
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