Jump to the first story
The bus hit a larger than ever rut in the road, and Yuma’s head bounced twice off the window.
“Damn!” She laughed out loud and looked around. Half of the gay couple had fallen from his perch on the edge of the seat. The English single birds were clutching each other. Yuma turned back to the scene out her window, but it had changed. She craned her neck to see the bus stop. No bus stop. No Eirik. Even the village had vanished.
She sighed, a bit disoriented, gazing out the window as the bus picked up speed taking her back to the resort. A flash of metal danced across the chrome on the back of the seat in front of her; the sun broke free from the clouds for the first time since she’d landed in Mexico.
~ * ~
The sunlight soaked her with warmth when she descended the steps down to the white, silky sands of the beach. She wore the yellow swimsuit she paid too much for but clutched the oversized towel around her against the chill of the ocean breeze. Sunbathers were sparse and a choice of lounge chairs available. Choosing one facing the aqua waves, she sat on the edge, huddled under the towel and listened for revenants floating on the ocean breezes. If Eirik were beside her…she closed her eyes and pictured the word ocean.
“You won’t get much sun like that, but you’re probably warmer than I am.”
She opened her eyes to the voice. A man about her age, golden hair reflecting rays of sun, had reclined on the lounger beside her.
“The sun is luscious, but the air is still a bit chilly for me.” She smiled and shivered as a draft of salty air tickled her exposed calves.
In spite of his relaxed position, goose bumps prickled his muscled arms. “Yeah, I kind of had a warm beach vacation in mind myself. Then again, this beats the snow I left behind in Minneapolis. White sand trumps white snow for me this holiday.” He laughed. “You took the Tulum tour this morning, didn’t you?”
“I did. How did you know?”
“I saw you get on the bus.” His hands fidgeted on the arms of the lounger. “Are you alone?”
“Yep, that’s me. Alone.” And she didn’t mind at all.
“So am I.” His blue eyes sparkled like the sun on the ocean. “We’re fellow adventure seekers.”
Her heart thumped. “Funny you say that.” She swung her legs around to the side to face him.
“Someone called me that earlier today.” Under the towel she pinched herself. Ouch. “I’m of the mind that adventure seekers have a strong lust for life.”
“And funny you should say that.”
“Someone used those same words to me earlier today.” He heaved his bronze shoulders off the lounger and sat on the edge, his knees coming into contact with hers. “Do you believe in coincidence?”
“No.” She stared into his face. Moments passed. A seagull sang overhead. A woman called to her daughter who’d gone too close to the water.
“Would you like to take a walk, see what the breeze blows our way?”
“Yes.” She stood, unfurled one of her arms and smiled. “I think it’s actually warming up.”
His glance registered the yellow swimsuit, and she was happy she’d paid too much. He stood, stepped closer and his eyes looked inside her. “My name is Egill.”
“Egill? Is that…Norse?”
“How did you know?” A seagull repeated his call overhead.
She laughed. “Oh, lucky guess.” She glanced at the gull, floating on the air current overhead. Or riding on the shoulders of a revenant. “My name is Yuma.”
“As unusual a name as mine. I bet your name has a story behind it.”
They strolled away from the loungers. “Of sorts. But if I tell you, you’ll have to help me fill some blank pages of my story.”
“I can do that.”
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