Bastill’s officers began unlocking the gates. Because of the feud, Allegro had long ago divided into tribes. Each tribe ran their section of the village and island. Each tribe entered community events by their door.
The buzzer growled. Allegro High School posted another win in the final minutes. The Allegro Bleachers erupted in wild celebration for one minute. Then the tribes remembered they hated each other and the jubilance disappeared.
“You want to grab something to eat?” Melissa asked in the parking lot. “Where is your car?”
“At home. I was in a walking mood.”
Melissa shook her head. “The chances you take.” She pushed the remote open button. “Hop in. I’m taking you home.”
“I can walk.”
“It was safer to walk in Queens after dark than here on this island. Get in the darn car.”
“Yes. Ma’am." Melissa hadn't grown up on the island. She didn't understand the feud. "You know, come to think of it, food sounds good.”
“Which tribe has access to Benny’s tonight?”
“I believe the Cowboys. Let me check my app.” Amber opened the Allegro Tribe App on her smartphone. “Yeah, Cowboys have Benny’s tonight. Swingers have Basie's; Poppers have The Hut.”
Not being a native, Melissa didn’t belong to any tribe. Amber was born and raised in Allegro and technically was part of the Swinger’s tribe, but because her family operated The Crystal Ballroom she had diplomatic status that allowed her to move freely through the island.
Melissa parked facing the rocky shore on the west side of Allegro. A light caught Amber’s eye as she exited the car. It fell from hill-high to water-level. “Melissa, did you see that?”
Melissa zapped the door lock. “See what?”
“A falling light on the rocks.”
“Probably just kids playing with a laser. C’mon the aroma. I’m now starved.”
Her arm wrapped through Amber’s dragging her backward towards Benny’s. Blake Shelton’s voice sifted through the night. And in front of her walking towards the western shore, the man with the trombone glowed.
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