The Beach Experience, Part One.

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She had come to Spain to get away from all the trouble back at home. She had been here a month and had made friends with most of the people. There was always going to be a few rivalries but they were tolerable, for the moment. She never expected this to happen.
She went over it once more in her head. It started…on the beach, yeah that’s right. They were on the beach, everyone, having a bonfire. She kept drifting off, letting her mind wander. As she gazed out over the sea she said, more to herself than anyone else, “I want to go sailing.”
“Sailing???” Jo scoffed. He was never her type but she had been lonely. He turned to her, called her a stuck up whore and left. She was gob smacked! What right did he have to say that?? She looked around the fire. Nobody had even flicked an eyelid, except for one. He was opposite her, staring back through the flames, a soft pitying smile on his chiselled face. She wasn’t quite sure if his hair was long and blond or if the fire was playing a trick on her eyes. She looked away back to the sea, the one place she felt home. The sky was a deep blue and the stars shone around the ring of light created by the fire. Occasional sparks attempted to join them in the sky but winked out before they got there. He sat down next to her. She continued to stare out over the water. “That’s my home” she whispered.
“What? The sea??” His accent was light but it was definitely there and not like the others.
“No, not the sea. Across the sea. I wish I could just sail away and forget. Don’t you?”
“Well…no, not really. I like it here.” they chatted about nothing and everything for a while until the fire died down and everyone was packing up. They stood up, shook the sand from their clothes and followed the procession through the forest, back to the site.
Jo was in front of them bragging to one of his friends about how he had gotten rid of her. Her jaw and fists were clenched tight and she was shaking from trying not to hit him. She knew that if she snapped she wouldn’t stop and she would lose her job for certain. They emerged from the trees into the pale moonlight and Em felt a hand on her elbow, steer her away from the group. They entered a caravan and he sat her down on the couch. She could control herself no longer and burst into tears.
“Hey, hey, now! No need to cry! Why are you crying anyway?” He took out two glasses from the cupboard n poured out cider and cassis. She took a deep breath and apologised “I’m sorry, I just…it was…nothing.”
He sat down beside her. She told him everything. How she was lonely, how Jo had been there at the time, how she was homesick for the sea and no one understood. How badly she wanted to go sailing. He stopped her there and said “I’ll take you on a boat. When are you next free?” She didn’t understand, why was he being so nice to her? Was he really serious? What was he after??
They talked well into the early hours of the morning until she looked at her watch and realised that she had to go to work in four hours. He stood up, stretched, took her hand and said “Why don’t you sleep here for the night? No point waking up your roommates at this hour.” They got into the bed, both fully dressed. She couldn’t sleep. He was fast asleep but she couldn’t get comfortable. Something felt wrong. She got up and took the sleeping bag from the end of the bed and slept on the couch.
They both woke up at half 8 and ate breakfast then she headed off to work with his words still in her ears, “I’ll see you Tuesday for your boat ride. Come round anytime before if you want to talk.”

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