American Red

The publication of his memoir, Soft Lights and Swells: Surfing Night Tides coincided with his death by rogue wave. It was optioned by Lion’s Gate, dropped in on the bestseller list at #8. With their instant millions, his son and daughter, who couldn’t have been more different, bought a vineyard and stayed drunk all the time. Soft Lighting’s Riptide Red and Night Ride Chardonnay were judged swillable by surfers who couldn’t tell about wine but remembered the real Night Surfer well. The son and daughter raked it in despite themselves. They’d lucked out with their vintner. Lovers lined up; they multiplied. One of the grandchildren died by sharkbite. He got “Owen’s Vintage.” The place was a mint. They dropped like flies and did great, branched out into real estate at the perfect time. Their agent knew he’d drawn the Golden Ticket. The family name meant charity and tragedy. Politics were inevitable. They could afford the military training and the dinners. Everyone loved their sunsets and wood beams. They’d been demanding with their chefs. The scandals refused to stay in house: sex, drugs and children. At least the matriarchal daughter suffered with class, regardless of why. Their charities swelled to bursting. They’d lucked out with their accounting firm. A child was born who wanted none of it. That was the least of their concerns.

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