Amanda stepped off the boat daintily. She struggled to hold on to the bag that she held with her left hand, while she held on, a little too tightly, onto the arm of the Resort staff that had stepped up to help her after the small luxury craft, the Mintere, had docked on the sands of the Rushel beach.
She let go of the man’s arm and looked around her. The beach resort was just exactly as advertised. Pleased, she smiled to herself and accepted the glass of fresh juice handed to her by one of the many Resort hands. It tasted like mangoes, passion fruit, and pineapples. She shrugged and took another sip of the sweet drink.
She was guided to the reception area while the Resort hands coordinated her luggage from the boat. She worried they would forget something. But she shook off her worry. She was shown to her room; a beautiful, picturesque room that overlooked the lake.
After she took note of all her bags and heaved a sigh of relief, she peeled off her clothes and walked leisurely into the spacious bathroom. She admired her body in the bathroom mirror, a small smile played on her lips as she remembered something amusing.
This vacation was Zzu’s idea. Amanda’s tenacious best friend. Worried that Amanda was becoming misanthropic, her friend booked her a vacation and literally threw her out the door of the apartment they shared.
Still thinking about Zzu, Amanda stepped into the shower and turned on the water. She adjusted the temperature to a soothing heat and stood under it. She moaned with relief as the hot water touched her, and cascaded down her smooth caramel skin.
Dare was in a bad mood. He had been dour and uncooperative since they left Mombasa earlier in the day. He did not understand why he had to chase a client across cities just to get a juicy contract.
His two traveling companions avoided him because of his foul mood. They were in high spirits compared to Dare. They had been elated when their supervisor had briefed them about the trip. Who wouldn’t be excited about a weekend on the beach frolicking with the wealthy and drinking endless cocktails? They generally left him alone throughout the trip and he loved it.
When the small craft docked on the beach, the beauty of the Resort made him roll his eyes. Of course, another place for bored people. He stepped off the boat without paying attention to where he was going, and he missed a step. He almost fell flat on his face, but for the Resort staff that saw it about to happen and put out a hand to steady him. His two companions fought hard to keep a straight face.
He matched to the Reception area to get his keys, leaving his colleagues to run after him.
“Chill out man!” Kanu called out.
“It's hot out here, just trying to move fast enough not to get dehydrated”
“Seriously? You do know moving so fast is what gets you dehydrated faster?” Kanu continued, incredulous. He could not understand Dare’s mood. What was so bad about a few days in a luxury resort?
“What is your problem man?”
Dare slowed his steps and finally stopped and turned around reluctantly. His conscience pricked him and he knew his companions were right. He could not understand the restlessness and irritation he felt lately.
“Hey, guys! I’m sorry! My head is in a different place” He said contritely
“Just take it easy. It can’t be that bad? Just try to have fun, this is an opportunity to get some days off and get paid for it” His second companion Kola said scanning the buildings in front of them, while he covered the distance between them, and gave Dare a reassuring pat on the back.
They continued the short walk to the reception together and Kanu turned to wink at Dare when a pretty ebony girl approached them carrying a tray of cold cocktails. Dare managed a mirthless laugh and accepted a glass of the cold liquid that was being handed over to him by the smiling girl.
Amanda woke up with a start. The room was dim and a soft breeze blew the gauzy curtains playfully, giving the room a calm eerie feel. She started to remember where she was, and she smiled slowly and stretched her frame. She turned to look at her watch on the nightstand. The time read 6:45 pm. She frowned and scrambled out of bed to look for her phone.
She found the phone in her purse and the time on the screen displayed 6:46 pm. She could not believe that she had been sleeping since 2 pm when she had fallen into the comfy bed after a long hot shower. She felt well-rested and refreshed already. Looks like this vacation was a good idea after all. She decided to get dressed and go down for dinner.
Dare went through his third drink and watched his two colleagues engaged in an animated conversation. They had come down to the bar an hour earlier after they had washed off the travel stains. They had made contact with the client an hour after arrival and he had agreed to have dinner with the trio by 7 pm.
While watching the door and thinking about how the weather had turned cold, he saw her walk-in……