The investigator whirled.
"Right out there! They're here!"
"Who?" cried the investigator.
"The stripers! One just broke out there. Come on, let's get rigged up. We're liable to get fish here tonight."
"I wish I had seen that baby," said the investigator, "I've never seen one alive in the water."
"You're liable to see one tonight," said Tony, already busy with his gear. "I saw that one break sure as I'm standing here and he was some big!"
It was a lovely place to be. There was a wonderful island sunset and later on the surf sparkled in the moonlight. There was exhilaration in the casting alone, not unlike the satisfaction that comes from hitting a golf ball straight and far. The air was clean and bracing. The city was far away. The sand felt good underfoot. The thought of the fish that might be out there just beyond the breakers receded a little. It seemed abundantly clear now that if the striper did not choose to make his appearance this night, well, there always would be other nights. Everything at the moment was in its right and proper place.
"Well," said Tony Gaspar finally, with no trace of disappointment in his voice, "there'll be nothing doing here tonight. Let's head on back to town."