Annie: Floating Along

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Annie: Floating Along

My sister’s life-changing good-bye to High School

Author’s note: This is my entry for the 2022 Summer Lovin’ contest. It could easily fit in First Time, Exhibitionist and Voyeur, Humor and Satire or Erotic Couplings, but it is in Incest and Taboo because the main protagonists are sister and brother. It’s meant as a light look at certain Rites of Passage and I hope you enjoy it. Regardless of any contest, voting and constructive criticisms are how I learn how better to please you, the Reader.


“Aw, nuts!”

“What’s the matter?” I called to her. I had heard Annie’s exclamation all the way from the front of the house. And I was near the back door.

“First Kerry can’t make it, because of some stupid, last minute work crisis, and now Joel can’t!” she called back. I heard her walking my direction, so I just waited. She started in again as she cleared the corner. “Some stupid Navy thing… looks like we’re going to have to scrub the trip.”

I shared her disappointment, but I don’t think I was as emotionally invested as she was.

“It’s been a year for bummers,” I agreed. “Mom’s stroke and Dad’s cancer messed up a lot of things.”

“Yeah, but at least Mom’s doing well with rehab. They’re saying it’ll take a while, but she should get most of the use of her right side back.”

“She’s doing pretty good as it is,” I agreed. “And Dad’s surgery appears successful. No sign of a recurrence. So maybe not so bad. And they both told you to go ahead with whatever graduation present you wanted. I’m surprised you picked canoeing the river instead of, like, a trip to Europe or something.”

“Europe would be strange without family around,” she pointed out. “And there’s no way any of you guys could take a few weeks to go traipsing around England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales with me, which is what I would have picked. But a week on the river with the four of us would have been comfortable and familiar and happy… and now that’s in the shitter, too.”

Like I said, I shared her disappointment. Every year, since before I was born, our family took a summer camping trip for about a week. There ended up being six of us, total — my Mom and Dad, my older sister Kerry, me, my younger brother Joel and my younger sister Annie. We did a bunch of different kinds of camping, but the one everyone liked the most was a lazy river float, and our favorite river was a section of the Agate, upriver from the more popular touristy stretches. We’d take two cars with two canoes, three people and gear in each.

We’d drive to the put-in point, drop the canoes and gear, then we kids would set up camp while Mom and Dad took the cars to the pull-out point, leaving one, and coming back in the other. If their timing was good, they’d get back to a campsite already set up and dinner in the making.

This year, for her high school graduation present, Annie had chosen to do the float with the four of us kids, but without our parents because of their medical issues. All four of us kids had agreed that it would be really nice to spend a week with each other. It was getting iffy as to when we might be able to do it again.

Kerry, my older sister, was 27 and was working at an architectural firm. I was 24, half a year and a thesis away from finishing my Master’s in Computer Science. Joel, my younger brother was 21 and in the NROTC program and heading into his Senior year. Annie, of course, was youngest at 18 and had just finished high school. With Mom and Dad’s health problems, and with us kids getting busy with our lives, opportunities to vacation together were diminishing.

“Brian…” Annie had dropped into a thoughtful look.

“Yeah?” I had learned to be a bit wary of that look.

“What do you think about going anyway? Just the two of us?”

I thought about it for a moment. I loved Annie, sure. She was my sister. But more importantly, I liked her. She was fun to be around, and I definitely liked seeing her happy. Living at home, she’d been more directly affected by our parents’ health problems than the rest of us. Kind of a heavy load for a Senior in high school. And going on this trip, even if it was just the two of us, would make her happy. That was about all it took.

“Sure,” I told her. “We can do that. Take one canoe for the two of us. And instead of taking two cars, I’ll borrow the van and put my bike in it. We can use that to run between put-in and pull-out.”

“I’m not driving that deathtrap,” she told me. “You want to die in some kind of motorcycle accident? Fine. I’m not.” The deathtrap she was referring to was my YZ125 dirt bike.

“You won’t have to,” I reassured her. “When we get there, we go to pull-out first, chain the bike to a tree and take the van up to put-in. When we pull out, I’ll take the bike back up to get the van and bring it down while you stay with the canoe. Problem solved.”

“Okay,” she faux-groused, then broke into a big smile. “So we’re on for a week from now.”

“Yep,” Didim Escort I agreed. “A week and two days.”

* * * * *

[Day 1 – Friday]

Technically, I wasn’t home for the summer. I was living and working at school year-round. But knowing about Annie’s planned graduation present, I’d take my three weeks of vacation to bracket her intended dates and was now spending my time at my parents’ house. Which made it easy to coordinate efforts with Annie.

The time went by fairly quickly, but Annie and I were old hands at planning and packing for a canoe trip. We figured we’d stay overnight at the put-in the first night, then strike camp, lock the van and get on the river in the morning. We’d make camp every afternoon and leave again in the morning. We planned on four days on the river, then an extra two at the pull-out. Each of the places we planned to camp was primitive, but did have a potable water well with a pump, except for the Peters’ place, which actually had a cistern and showers. Normal dehydrated trail rations would do, and we’d keep the creature comforts to a minimum. On the other hand, inflatable mattresses were considered a necessity. We had one of the family’s 3-person pop-up dome tents and an extra tarp for a dining fly if we needed it.

There wouldn’t be any portages, so we didn’t have to be overly concerned about weight, but we did want to be reasonable, regardless. Previous experience recommended a full first aid kit, plus sunblock and all the usual accoutrements. Annie and I were both caffeine junkies, so Resume Human Form Potion, a.k.a. instant coffee, was mandatory. Those kinds of considerations drove our planning and by Friday noon of the day of the trip, we were set.

Our parents had come out to see us off and wish us well. We’d already gotten texts from Kerry and Joel sending their regrets and giving us best wishes for a relaxing float. One last check that we had everything and we were off. It was about a four hour drive to get to the river, with a pit stop along the way, and Annie filled it with an eclectic mix of music, from rock to jazz to classical — all courtesy of her phone and the van’s Bluetooth stereo system.

We chitchatted about trivia — mostly how the last year had gone, and what we remembered of the river from previous trips, and what we were looking forward to, especially with her starting college in the Fall. At one point, she took advantage of the fact that I was the one driving to snooze a bit. At the pit stop, she broke out some junk food for snacking, claiming it was the last of Civilization we’d be seeing for a whole week!

The drive went smoothly with no nasty surprises and by around 4pm, we were pulling into the State Park whose beach we’d be launching from in the morning. The park and the river didn’t require use permits, but it was customary to contribute to the upkeep of the campsites, so we stopped at the Ranger Station, let them know our plans for the trip, and left a hefty donation. We also picked up a bundle of dry firewood, which we then put in a waterproof duffel secured to the canoe. It was for backup emergency use only.

We got the canoe unloaded and camp set up, then I parked the van in the Ranger Station lot, rejoining Annie in time to help do dinner. Like we’d done it hundreds of times before, it went off like clockwork. Fed and refreshed, we sat in front of our tent, looking out on the river and drinking in the tranquility.

“There doesn’t seem to be very many people out this time,” Annie observed, looking around.

“There aren’t,” I agreed. “But I’m not going to bitch. Dad figured this float out a long time ago precisely to avoid the annoying crowds. I don’t think much has changed.”

“Just us,” Annie murmured. I thought about that for a minute.

“Yeah, we’ve changed,” I had to conceded. “It just doesn’t seem like it. I’m sitting here enjoying a peaceful night with one of my best friends… as she’s always been. Only thing I have to remember is, you’re leaving for school soon.”

“So are you,” she pointed out. “The first time you left, I was massively depressed. Like someone had cut my heart out or something. I don’t think I felt it as strongly when Kerrie left, before you. I was only, like, nine. With you, I was a lot more aware of what was going on.”

“To point out the obvious,” I told her, “growing up is a bitch.” She just gave me a Well, duh! look. “You couldn’t pay me enough to go through puberty and adolescence again,” I added. “But you seem to have come out alright.”

“Gee, thanks!” she chided me with a shoulder bump. “Such a ringing endorsement!”

“C’mon, Annie… you’re smart and you’re pretty… beautiful, actually… really sexy, if I’m being honest,” I told her. “Some guy you meet at school is going to be a very lucky man.”

“I don’t know if I’m ready to get into college guys, yet,” she told me quietly, looking out at the river gliding past.

“Okay, some girl you meet at college,” I amended.

“I Didim Escort Bayan didn’t mean it like that!” she protested, turning to look at me. “I’m not going girl-crazy, either!”

“Okay…” I backpedaled. “You’re going to find out, though, there’s a whole different social scene when you’re living on your own and responsible for your own decisions. No parental unit interference. And temptation comes in all kinds of flavors.”

“So I’ve been told,” she answered. “By Mom, Dad, Kerrie and Joel. You’re the last one to get on the bandwagon.” The edge to her voice surprised me a little.

“I’m not getting on, or off, any kind of wagon,” I told her. “You’re going to live your life the way you choose. I’ll help you if I can, but only if you ask. You’ll make your own mistakes and have your own triumphs. I won’t interfere. Although, I do love you and I will cheer you on when things go right.”

She turned and looked at me for a long moment before she told me, “I’m damned glad I’ve got you for a brother.”

“So am I,” I smiled, then got serious for a moment. “I know you’re eighteen. I was going to fix a nightcap before we turn in. I’m I out of line to offer you one, too?”

“Mom and Dad have let me have an occasional drink since I was sixteen,” she told me. “As long as it was infrequent and at home, where I would be safe. Out here with you is pretty safe, so I don’t think you’re out of line. But I don’t think I want one tonight. Thanks, anyway.” She turned back to looking out over the river.

I was about to get up and go make said drink when she turned back to me. “One of the reasons I wanted to go on this trip is because ever since I was little, it’s been a peaceful place to think. To sort out problems and shit. Thank you for coming along with me and making this possible.”

“No problem,” I told her and resumed getting up and going to make my drink. By the time I got back with my rum and cranapple juice, she hadn’t moved. She was just sitting still, watching the water drift by. We sat there in silence for a while before she broke it.

“Brian, is it going to bother you if I bounce ideas off of you?” she asked. “And fair warning, some of what bounces around in my head is pretty weird shit.”

“I don’t mind if you vent,” I told her. “I don’t think there’s anything we can’t talk about. I may not agree with what you’re thinking, but I’m not going to put you down for thinking it.”

“Thank you,” she half-smiled. “Please remember you said that.”

“Not a problem,” I told her, raising my cup in a mock toast, then falling back into silence as I sipped my drink and watched the river be lazy. Eventually, I drained my cup and stood up.

“I’m going to turn in,” I told her. “It’s been a long day and we want to be up early tomorrow. Who’s doing breakfast?”

“Flip you for it,” she told me, digging a quarter out of her shorts. “Call it,” she told me and tossed the coin. She let it fall between us as I called “Heads!” When it came to rest in the dirt, it was Tails.

“I win, you cook,” she told me. “You pick the menu. I’ll be there in a few minutes.”

I nodded my agreement as she picked up her quarter, and I headed for the tent. Both sleeping bags were already set up and our extra gear made a little wall down the center. I decided a trip to the latrine was in order, so took care of that bit of business. I met Annie coming to the latrine as I headed back and she assured me she’d be right along. I was out of my clothes and getting settled when she got back.

From time immemorial — actually, ever since I was allowed to — I’ve slept naked. Pajamas and such just feel too confining. Even gym trunks and a t-shirt bugs me. And I’m not the only one. Everybody in our family prefers nude and we’d grown up with that being the norm. Naked just wasn’t a big deal. It started to be, when Annie started stripping off for bed.

I mentioned before that she was sexy. I’d just forgotten how sexy. As her crop-top came off and she shimmied out of her jeans shorts, I was reminded. Big time.

The last couple of years, I hadn’t been around home much. In fact, make that three years, because I stayed at school for Summer Session between my Junior and Senior years at college, was home only briefly after graduation, and then I’d been pretty heads down at school since, working on my Master’s. Consequently, I hadn’t really noticed the transformation of fifteen-year-old Annie to eighteen-year-old Annie. Now, a very red-blooded, intact part of me was noticing.

Annie was a strawberry blonde, worn long, to her waist, sometimes loose, sometimes in a braid, mostly in a ponytail. Her normally fair skin was sporting a bit of a tan and the overall effect was beautiful. Add to that her naturally turquoise eyes and she was headed for stunning. She downplayed it, mostly, with no makeup and simple clothes. When the clothes came off, though, she definitely made stunning.

She had an athletic body, about 5’6″ tall and maybe 120 lbs. with firm Escort Didim but noticeable curves. Her breasts weren’t very large — maybe a handful — but her coral pink areolae and nipples stood out. Pert is a term I think applies. She shaved everything below her neck, and when she bent over to get something from her pack, her labia were the same kind of darker pink, with the inner ones showing out a bit, fluted, like an orchid. Whether I wanted to or not, I started getting hard.

Something in me decided that was tacky, so I slid into my bag and turned on my side to hide the tenting. I decided to feign nonchalance.

“Let me know when you want lights out, okay?” I asked. The one lantern we had on was closer to me than her.

“Any time is fine,” she told me as sat cross-legged on her bag, facing me, and started brushing out her hair. Now I was really getting hard. Full frontal beauty on full display three feet from me. I tried to make sure I was looking at her face. “I’m just going to finish brushing and then climb in. It’s your job to set your alarm, Breakfast Boy.” She was smiling at me, and I knew she was teasing, but there was something different to her voice. Some kind of edge or something.

I decided to let it go. I reached over and killed the light, then settled in. In the dark, I was less worried about my hardon being obvious. Annie finished up as I was setting the alarm on my phone and she crawled in shortly after.

“Good night, Brian,” she told me softly. “I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you coming along for me. I love you.”

“Love you, too, Sis,” I told her. “I need the downtime just as much. Couldn’t ask for better company. Good night.”

We fell quiet after that, and for my part, I was asleep within minutes.

* * * * *

[Day 2 – Saturday]

Six a.m. came sooner than I thought, but the growing light and noisy birds made waking up and getting going easier.

First stop was to fire up the two-burner Coleman stove and start coffee water. Second was a quick dash to the latrine before coming back and getting breakfast started. I decided to splurge, since lunch would be light. A couple of “Breakfast Skillet” pouches with hash browns, sausage, veggies and scrambled eggs, paired with some instant apple-cinnamon oatmeal, and the required coffee made a great start to the day. It was made even better when Annie emerged from the tent, still pulling a wrap on her beautifully naked body as she walked over to check out the fruits of my labors.

“I’ll be back,” she told me as she turned for the latrines. “Coffee, please. Sweet. Very sweet.”

I had her breakfast ready by the time she got back. We synched up on how to strike camp over breakfast, then executed the plan. Everything that couldn’t get wet, like phones and wallets and such, went in waterproof pouches secured to the thwarts. Everything else was bundled and lashed between the gunwales so that if we tipped, nothing would go floating free except me, Annie and the paddles.

She changed into a bikini with her light wrap over it, while I went for trunks and a t-shirt. We both took the time to apply sunscreen liberally. It was a slightly hazy day, but that wasn’t going to stop the sun. We were packed up and pushing off by about 7:30. Getting out into the current and letting the shoreline slip by was exhilarating. Away from the trees, there was a slight breeze on the river and it felt great. I had taken the stern and was only occasionally doing course corrections. Annie would lend a paddle from time to time if necessary. Otherwise, we were just floating down the river, not a care in the world.

Talking wasn’t required. We could be alone with our thoughts, together. Once we slipped away from the campsite, we literally didn’t see another person on the river. We did see a bunch of wildlife.

We saw several hawks and egrets, a bunch of ducks and geese and even a huge heron. And a bunch of other birds, of course. We saw some deer coming out of the woods to drink and some river otters playing. There were fish of various sizes swimming along around us and we may have seen a black bear lumbering away into the woods. All four days would be like this, and it really was humbling to be a small part of a much bigger world.

The sun was definitely burning away the haze and by the time we got to around noon, the sky was bright and clear. We picked a spot where there was a rock outcropping and put in, so we could make up a light lunch. We grabbed our food and scrambled up the slope and out onto the top of the flat slab jutting out over the river. There was no sign of civilization, save for us.

We kept lunch simple: powdered juice mix with bottled water, a shared bag of trail mix with nuts and dried fruits, some cut up venison sausage… simple, nutritious, tasty. Everything we needed.

“It’s getting pretty warm out,” Annie told me as we packed up lunch. “What do you think about catching some sun?” I looked around the rocky flat.

“Doesn’t look very comfortable up here,” I told her. “You might do better in the canoe. We can shift a couple of things and you’d have plenty of room to stretch out. I’m not really into tanning at the moment, but you can, if you want. I don’t need you to paddle very much, anyway.”

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