• No one was really there for the Last Day, the Day the Earth Stopped, no one who’s alive anyway. Sure, there have been tales, legends, but each side has a different story. The SunSide describes huge cities of millions of people on small islands, all in mass panic, screaming and running in circles. NightShade abandoned the war-stories of panic and defeat, they like to tell the stories of how the kings and queens and emperors of many lands came together to form the great countries of Twila Penninsula and Midna, old stories of Europe and Asia fading to legend, as believable as the fairy-tales of New York City. But it’s in places like this, this island separate from Twila, now known as the Night Kingdom, where we all dream of what it’s like in the SunSide, bright and fun, and engulfed in light, with places like Argentina and the old State country, Dizz Land and most of all the sunset. Oh, the sunset. The sun caresses the ocean waves, painting long, translucent clouds bright pink, coloring everything golden. I’d only seen a sunset once in my life, from a plane window and it only lasted five minutes but, boy was it amazing.
    I was pulled out of my reverie of bright red skies when the door knocked and I opened it to the perpetual summer night.
    “Oh, hey, Owen,” I said to my boyfriend, “C’mon in!” I stood aside and closed the door behind him. “So, you’re coming for cake and stuff tomorrow, right?”
    “Actually, Ginny, I have some… plans”
    Other plans?! It’s my birthday, there are no other plans!
    “But- um…” he pulled from his coat-pocket a silvery jewelry box.
    I blinked back a few tears welling up in my eyes as I pulled open the top, I didn’t care if it wasn’t my birthday yet, he’d have to be there when I opened his gift.
    Sitting in the foamy fluff were two thick slips of paper, tickets actually.
    “Two tickets-?”
    “Me and you…”
    I looked closer at the date. These were for tomorrow!
    “Owen! This is what you meant by other plans! Oh, I was so worried you meant-!”
    “That I wasn’t going to be there? Ginny, I wouldn’t miss it for the world.”
    “‘Royal Sunset Cruises’” I read aloud, “Is this the ship that goes out to the strip?”
    “Yeah, that’s the one!”
    I jumped up and squealed, throwing my arms around him.

    It took me forever that next morning to decide what to wear, which dress? Finally I found myself in a blue-gray gown with white and black flowers. Just as I finished with my mascara, Owen came to pick me up, his lanky body accentuated by the tight suit
    “Hey, Ginny. I got these for you” he told me softly, holding out a bouquet of roses, “Happy Birthday!”
    “You’re so sweet Owen” I said, reaching up to give him a peck on the cheek.
    “C’mon” he waved, blushing, “I convinced my dad to let me borrow the convertible”
    We were pretty much silent on the way to the harbor, and in the silence I noticed something, the night seemed even duller now, the sky empty of stars and the ugly streetlight’s sick glow felt repetitive and boring. I was going to see the sunset and that’s all that mattered.
    It was already gray and twilight when we parked in the harbor and held hands as we walked up the gangplank. We boarded the ship and I leaned on the bar at the edge, looking down spitefully at the black water as the ship pulled away, rushing to see the light ahead once more. Owen behind me pulled his arm around my shoulders and I leaned my head to his chest
    “Thank you, so, so much, Owen, I love you”
    “I love you too, he whispered softly into my hair, kissing the top of my head.
    Suddenly the gray broke way to the sun, the glorious sun, filling the whole sky with its golden light, the clouds catching it’s pink rays, the sunken star tracing a glowing path along the waves, calling you, pulling the whole ship, now showing true colors not ruined by the darkness to its warmth and world of sunlight. I looked around the rest of the ship, the other astonished people reveling in the gold. There were many other couples here, a few younger and a lot of older people in sparkling dresses and stunning suits. To my right was a cluster of the elderly and sick, raising their withered arms to the sky in hope. I looked up at Owen, his eyes sparkling and a stray teardrop rolling down his cheek and it was only then when I felt my own tears in my eyes. He then looked down at me, and I slowly collapsed into his kiss. It was just perfect, today was just perfect. We pulled away and I looked back over the water, the sun slinking back under the waves, hiding shyly from the retreating ship, allowing the darkness to seep back into the perfect sky, turning it back into the bare and boring night.