Richie laughed as he watched Noah lose balance on his surfboard and fell into the water.
They had been trying to surf for a while now but neither of them had stayed on their surfboard long enough to count it as real surfing.
Noah grabbed his board and swam over to Richie.
"This sucks." He complained.
"Why? It's fun." Richie disagreed.
"But I keep falling off the board."
"Everyone on the beach is probably laughing."
"What does that matter?" Richie asked.
"I don't want to be laughed at, makes me feel like an idiot."
"Were you having fun trying to surf?"
Noah shrugged. "Sorta, I guess."
"So what does it matter what other people think? Come on, I'll go with you."
Richie grabbed his own board and started swimming into the ocean, making sure Noah was following.
"Ready to try again?" He climbed on top of his board, sitting astride it.
"Yeah sure." Noah agreed and climbed onto his own board, standing up.
Richie followed his example and tried to keep his balanced as a wave caught them.
He watched Noah who was ahead of him, he was still on the wave. It amazed him but it seemed like Noah had finally done it. The closer to the shore Noah got, the happier Richie was, misplacing his foot, he fell into the water but surfaced right in time to see Noah get all the way to the shore. He cheered, making everyone look at him.
"That was great." He said when he caught up with Noah.
"Yeah." Noah agreed, a bright smile on his face.
"Wanna go again?" Richie asked, sure Noah finally had found the fun in it.
Noah shrugged again. "Not really."
"Wanna go back to the house and read your book?"
"Yes." Noah answered a lot happier.
"So what is your book about?" Richie asked as they got out of the water.
Noah started explaining the whole series he was reading and had been reading for years. Their way home wasn't long enough to finish his explanation but when they walked into the house, he stopped talking.
Richie went to put their beach stuff away before he noticed Noah's silent retreat to the living room. Sarah and Daniel were watching tv and as a good husband, he kissed his wife.
Sarah shrugged. "He won't sleep. I still think it his cold. I don't get why the doctor didn't prescribe anything. He obviously needs it."
He didn't know an answer. "He'll get better but yes, we should have been able to at least give him something to help him sleep. If it gets any worse we can find a doctor here."
Sarah hugged her little boy. "Just want him to get better."
After a while, Richie turned back to Noah. "Then what happened?"
The story Noah was telling him had caught his intrest. Not so much that he would read the seven books but now he wanted to know how it would end. The story was incredible, it had everything a good story needed. Love, drama, action, mystery and fantasy.
"What do you mean?" Noah asked confused. They hadn't talked since they got home.
"The books, what else happens."
"Oh. I don't know."
Richie frowned, knowing Sarah was listening. "How don't you know? You read the books."
"You really want to know?"
"Yes, so what happens next?"
Noah was still confused, nobody asked him about his book. Sometimes his mom and grandmother did but no one really cared. Richie was looking at him, waiting. Did he really care? What did that even matter? He got to talk about his books. Thinking back to where he had let off, he continued to tell the story until the pages he still had to read.
"The rest I still have to read." He confessed.
"Go read," Richie urged him, "I want to know what happens."
Noah took Richie's tease as serious and went upstairs right away.
"Got something to talk about?" Sarah asked after Noah had left.
"I had no idea what incredible stories are in his head." Richie was truly amazed. "Whoever wrote that is a genius."
Sarah chuckled. "You know he's not that social." She reminded him. "And speaking of genius authors, you write amazing songs, try singing one for your son so he can sleep." She moved Daniel from her lap to her husband's.
Richie stood up, holding his son close so Daniel laid his head on his shoulder. Combining Sarah's way of calming him down by soft dancing motions and his singing, he finally got Daniel to sleep.
"Finally." Sarah sighed relieved.
Richie sat down again, sitting close to her. "Every time I hold him, he's heavier or bigger. I can't believe he's almost sitting on his own now."
"Does it make you think back of Ava too?" Sarah asked. She often did the same with her sons.
"Yeah but Ava was a bit later. She was all chubby and cute though. Do you compare Daniel to Noah and Caleb?" He asked back.
"Noah." Sarah said determined. "They have a lot in common. Caleb was like Ava, bit later. Noah sat at 6 months, crawled at 8 and walked at 10. Daniel is just as fast now."
There were a lot more things that resembled Daniel to Noah and just as excited as Noah with his books, she told Richie about baby Noah. Who, just like Daniel, cried whenever a stranger held him and hated the transition to solid foods. Not to forget that the smallest change in routine, habits or surroundings could upset him too. Daniel wasn't even 6 months old but he already knew he wasn't at home now. The first night at the beach house had proven that.
An hour later Noah came back to the living room. "Finished the book." Without waiting for Richie's agreement, he told him the end of the book, including every detail he could think of and not minding when he had to refer to what he had explained earlier.