Hoist Up the Sloop

Another short story by justalizardking | Inspired by: Sloop John B by the Beach Boys

“You can never get tired of that view, can you?”

“Not at all. I could stay here for days.”

“How about a pawpsicle?”

“Yes, please!”

Nick, lathered in sunscreen and wearing an obnoxiously bright pair of swim trunks, hoisted his legs up from the water onto the sloop. Even though his legs were the only parts of his body submerged in the water, a warm breeze made him feel quite chilly already. The gentle waves made navigating the narrow corridors a little bit difficult, but not impossible. On the other side of the sails was the cooler that contained their treasury of frozen treats. Within thirty seconds or so, Nick traversed across the sloop.

Once he got to the cooler, which was fastened to the boat with straps, he helped himself to two of the three remaining pawpsicles that were stowed inside. However, there were two blue pawpsicles and one red. He knew he enjoyed red over blue, but what about Judy?

Which one would she prefer?

Nick played it safe and grabbed one of each flavour. Holding both of the treats in one hand, he closed the cooler and slowly made his way back to the stern, where the gentle waves splashed against the hull. The temperature was rather nice outside; as a matter of fact, even though it was only mid-morning, the baking sun began flirting with temperatures up to thirty-five degrees centigrade. Even for Sahara Square, these temperatures were slightly above average.

But being about a kilometer offshore from the blistering heat of Sahara Square, in the warm turquoise-teal waters of the bay counteracted the heat. That, and a stash of pawpsicles made impromptu by Nick early that morning. It couldn’t have been more perfect to rent one of the boats and spend a day at sea.

Within another minute or so, Nick returned with the frozen treats at hand. Judy was still focused on the city skyline, directly in front of her. Although the sloop was slowly drifting away from the city, the stern held a steady position by facing the city. Each skyscraper, borough, and bridge painted a fantastic picture; it inspired Judy to want to become an artist.

“Red or blue, Carrots? That’s all we have left.”

“Seriously? I thought you prepped five reds! They are all gone thus far?”

“Yes, ma’am. But the blue ones aren’t all bad! The fruit punch is almost as good as the cherry…” lied Nick.

“Uhm…I’ll take cherry.”

Although mildly upset, Nick complied. Fruit punch wasn’t his mojo either, but any flavour of a pawpsicle would taste good as long as his bunny was happy. Even if he somehow managed to prepare carrot pawpsicles that she would end up dismaying, he would eat one in front of her to make sure she would be happy. 

That was his job, after all. His second job, anyway - being a good boyfriend came a short while after becoming a police officer.

As the two guzzled down the quickly melting ice treats, they splashed their legs back into the water below them. No conversations were exchanged as they ate; just like the picnic only a little earlier, each other’s company was enough to satisfy their young love. Soaking in the sights of the city, side by side, was all they could ask for on a day like today.

Judy finished her pawpsicle first, flicking the stick at Nick, who was still licking the remnants of the frozen juice that were still stuck on his stick. The red wood bounced off his shoulder and hit his face, catching the fox off guard.

“Excuse me, madam. Am I of a problem?”

“Perhaps… Tell me Nick: Are these pawpsicle sticks redwood?”

Yes! Red wood. With a space in the middle,” he said while slowly reaching for the stick that was obscured from Judy’s view, “Wood that is red!”

Without warning, he hurled the wood back at her, followed by his very own bluewood pawpsicle stick.

That is, blue wood. Wood that is blue.

The sticks bounced off her face, one of them cascading towards her ears. Once getting over the initial shock, Judy formulated a new plan. 

“Do you know where the restrooms are in this thing? Downing two lemonades back-to-back isn’t a smart idea after all.”

Brushing off what could have been any suspicion, Nick pointed the way towards a small cubicle lodged inside of the sloop.

But Judy never went there. She began walking in that direction, waiting for the fox to not notice her whatsoever. After giving him about a two minutes’ grace period, she began to execute her revenge.

Judy hurled herself forward, using her powerful hind legs to her advantage. Without any warning at all, Nick felt two furry paws launched his partially-submerged body completely into the water of the bay. He went in with a splash, completely startled by the momentum shift.

Once he began treading water, realizing that he got served a cold dish of revenge, Nick looked up at the stern of the boat, where Judy was nearly on her knees from laughter. It almost sounded like she couldn’t breathe from the chuckles that left her body. Nick, who initially annoyed, warmed up to her kind and optimistic heart. He swam there, smiling at what he most definitely deserved, even if she started the horseplay.

“Alright, you got me! Now, could you hand me my tow-”

“CANNONBALL!” cried Judy as she jumped in right afterwards.

 The splash she created drenched Nick even further with heaping amounts of the warm saltwater. He could remember it slightly burning the insides of his nose, but the smell of the ocean would never get old for him.

Once the initial turbulent waters settled down the two focused their gazing on each other’s eyes, which were filled with nothing but joy, harmony, and love.

Ever so slowly, the two swam closer and closer together, almost by instinct. By the time they were in each others’ personal space, a passionate and powerful kiss was exchanged by their lips. It was deep, tasty, lovely; it was filled with joy, power, and energy- nothing that they had ever experienced before.

“When are we supposed to hoist up the sloop and head back?” asked Judy after they caught their breath.

Nick glanced at his waterproof watch.

“Uh, in fifteen minutes.”

“What happens if we don’t?”

“Extra hundred dollars per hour.”

“Awe, can’t we stay on the water for one more hour then? At least until one o’clock? We should make the most of our day off!”

After an initial contemplative thought with himself, Nick finally agreed.

“Alright, fine. One more hour, Carrots. But just remember that we are not made of money.”


“Aah, I love you, fuzzy bunny.”

“I love you too!”

The two kissed once again, embracing each other in their arms as they swam in the warm, tropical waters of Sahara Square.

Writing power half-hour! I wasn’t in the mood to continue writing some dark details of my main story, so I thought I would do a little improv for you guys to enjoy. Now, off to bed :3

@fourthdimension99 @nekomimiranger @thatzootopianfox @ryutolbx @notactualusername @pyrophoricitee, this one goes to you guys for being the best bunch of friends I could ever have, online or in real life! :)

Comic Mike Birbiglia on how he stopped procrastinating when he was writing the screenplay for his new movie, Don’t Think Twice

“I was procrastinating writing the movie. I had the movie in my head, but I wasn’t writing it. But I noticed this trend in my life which was that I was showing up to lunch meetings or business meetings, but I wasn’t showing up to meet myself. So I wrote a note next to my bed — this is so corny — but I wrote “Mike! You have an appointment at Café Pedlar at 7 a.m. with your mind!” It’s so corny, and I would show up! I never didn’t show up and I wrote this movie [in] spurts of essentially three hours, like I’d write from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. and the reason why I would do that is because I was essentially barely awake. Because I feel like that moment, at 7 to 10 a.m., you’re not afraid of the world yet.”

More from today’s Fresh Air interview with Birbiglia: 

Comic Mike Birbiglia On His Best Failure And The 3 Rules Of Improv

Bryan Bedder/Getty Images