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Astronomy or Astrology

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He looked next to him.

She was everything he was not; careless, a huge eater, a chaotic storm of emotion.

He scooped up sand absentmindedly, creating an hourglass in his hands as it drained away. She watched. The low din of laughter from the crystal shore called for her.

What am I doing here?

She scooped up sand too and watched the grains peeter out through her cupped palms. He watched. The cool silence of solitude from his hotel room beckoned him.

Yet there they were, the awkward chickens that they are, sitting between two worlds in an uncomfortable compromise under the shade of the palm trees. Playing with sand.

"... What's that book?"

She pointed towards the book beside him. He blinked.

"It's… just a book on astronomy," he muttered in reply.

"Astronomy, is it? I know some astronomy! Um, let's see, oh right! The closest star to us is called… um, P-Proxima Centauri!" she exclaimed proudly, a goofy grin dancing on her face.

"Hmm, close but not quite close enough, I'm afraid, Ms. Astronomer," he teased.

"What?! That's not it? Then what is it then, what is it?" She leaned forward scandalously, peering into his face as though she could find the answer written in his eyes.

The breath seemed to have been sucked out of his lungs like a candle in a prison. His stupid face began to blaze into a burning blush as her lips were only a peck away. Before he could stop himself, he murmured, "The closest star to us is you since you're my sun, you idiot..."

Shhhh… Sea foam gathered at the boundary of the sea and the waves receded to their motherly ocean. Fluffs of clouds speckled the sky, the sea just a shifting mirror of it. Her clear eyes shone more than the most polished pearls, her strange breath a mix between rice and tropical fruit. Suddenly she was aware of her rather indecent posture and outfit, but before she could move away he scuttled backward frantically, such that would make any crab proud.

"I, er, ugh this is just so, I-I'm sorry, that must have been so awkward," he rushed through, stumbling over the apology. "I-I-I think I should go now." He almost jumped to his feet in haste.

"I… I was happy that you said that."

He turned around. She was pointedly sitting in the opposite direction, her ears burning with embarrassment. A rough sea breeze tousled her hair, sweeping it. God, she was beautiful.

She scooped up another handful of sand. "But... I'm not a sun. All I do, everything, hurts someone. I… I don't deserve that compliment. The sun warms the world while all I do is hurt it."

"... That's like walking and thinking of every blade of grass you've stepped on."

She looked behind her. He was now fully facing her.

"You can't live without hurting people because that means that you've never loved anyone. Hurting people isn't good but it's inevitable; stop beating yourself up over it. What's happened has happened and you can't change time. Guilt is only worth reflection."

She looked back down into her hands and gave a soft smile.

"Thanks Mamura… I'm sorry for always bothering you like this. " He shook his head. "To me, Mamura is like… the Earth. Even when you receive harsh rays of light, you can always make something good come out of it. You aren't a fire nor ice but you're perfect just as you."

She grinned at him impishly, looking rather smug at her analogy, and he laughed. "I might not mind staying for a bit longer then," he conceded with a smile and sat back down beside her.