Madeleine always found Cassiopeia first.
Her eyes knew where to go. To the right, over her shoulder. And there, dangling just above the eastern horizon, was the familiar zigzag of five bright stars. The queen on her throne.
From there, her eyes tracked northwest to Cepheus, the upside-down pentagon. Another step northwest to Draco. She followed the dragon’s curving tail of stars to its head—a squashed square—then hopped east to Lyra. She picked out Vega, shining boldly in the southwest corner of Lyra’s glittering rhombus. She drew a line from Vega to Deneb to Altair. The three stars of the Summer Triangle.
That brought her high overhead, to what she’d driven so far to see. The Milky Way, in all its summer glory. Bright, hazy, complex. The clearest view she’d had in years. She wrapped her arms around herself and opened her eyes as wide as she could, trying to take it all in at once.
You’re wrong, Drew.