Less than an hour later, I stepped out of the bathroom. I’d changed into the one pair of jeans that I’d packed and unbuttoned one more button on my shirt. The collar of the white undershirt I wore peaked out underneath.
She’d cleaned up and changed from our flight first after instructing me what she’d like ordered from room service. I spotted her standing on the balcony as soon as I opened the door. The edges of her cardigan whipped in the wind. Her elbows rested on the railing. The curves of her hips are clad in dark denim. She looked over her shoulder when I slid the glass door open and stepped out to join her.
Saltwater air mingled with her–it wasn’t sweet, but something earthy. I couldn’t put my finger on it. I leaned on the railing next to her and looked out. The last dregs of the Sun’s rays reached for the stars in the sky.
My eyes flicked to Serena and the world was made pale by her beauty. The blood in my veins heated at the sight of her.
“What are ye thinkin’ abou’?” I asked.
She looked back at me and breathed in, her breasts pressed against the neckline of her shirt. “Work”
I gestured to the horizon. “When all of this is here, yer thinkin’ abou’ work?”
“Don’t judge me.”
“I’m not.” I held my hands out in defense. “I’ve always admired your mind.”
She blinked. “You have?”
“Of course. You’re brilliant.”
Her lips pursed and lifted on one side—my gaze lingered a little too long. I found myself leaning closer and it might have been hopeful thinking, but I swear she leaned towards me. I felt her magnetic pull it grew stronger the nearer she got.
A knock on the door to the hallway severed whatever strings were tying together. We pulled apart.
“I’ll get it.” I pushed off the railing and moved to the open door.
The waiter laid out the food on the table for two. There was even a single red rose placed in the center.
Throughout dinner, we talked about tommorrow’s meeting, which was more of a cocktail party—formulating a strategy that played to our strengths. There were fleeting glances, but nothing as tangible as the unexpected moment on the balcony.
Deeply disappointed, I accepted that it was likely a figment of my imagination.
Serena was sitting criss-cross-apple-sauce on the bed when I stepped out of the bathroom ready for bed. A pair of black-rimmed glasses perched on her face, staring down at the client metrics. Her face glistened from her face cream, her hair still braided down to the middle of her back. I’d never seen it down before, it was always in a braid or a smooth twist at the back of her head. I wanted to take the elastic out of the bottom and shake those dark waves free. Run the strands through my fingers.
Did she like her hair pulled? Would she ask for that? Would she demand it?
It was gonna be a long fucken night.
Correction, two nights.