Arkar waited. The sky, his namesake, spread gray and calm above him.
Sometimes it took Dachen a little longer to make it. No matter.
Long breaths passed. A dog barked in the distance. Children laughed, and Arkar thought of the first time he’d met Dachen. They were but boys themselves then. Dachen had just come to live with his grandparents, who lived downstream from Arkan’s childhood home. The old folk enfolded the young orphan. “Our great joy, he is, true to his name.”
Dachen was as gregarious as Arkar was shy. They balanced each other. Then and since.
A pat sounded and Arkar lifted his pole in welcome. Dachen neared and expertly swiveled his boat to face Arkar’s.
“Twelve fish today,” Dachen’s face shone. He accepted a cup from Arkar. “Two big ones here for your wife.”
Arkar smiled his thanks. For the fish. For his friend. “Tea time?”