Hurricane KissesBy: Krista Lakes
A Billionaire Love Story
Too my wonderful editor, Mel. With out u, my commas wood all be in the wrong spots. I think this buk is rite now, thanks!
I looked up from my book and took in a big breath of fresh sea air. This was what a vacation was supposed to look like. White sand turned into pale blue water that slowly darkened as it stretched out toward the horizon. A tiny sailboat floated across the view, its yellow sails bright and cheerful against the sky. Behind me, green palms fluttered in the warm breeze.
I took a sip of the latest concoction from the bar and then set it down in the sand beside me. It was sweet with some sort of fruit juice and had a giant paper umbrella sticking out of the top. I closed my eyes, letting the warm sun shine down on me for a moment before starting the next chapter. This was so much better than my normal Novembers in Chicago. A girl could get used to tropical vacations like this.
I heard the soft sound of feet on sand and I turned to see two of my favorite people walking toward me. I grinned and sat up on the edge of my lounge chair and waved to my best friend and her son. Maddy walked slowly, trying, and from the irritated look on her face, failing to keep sand out of the walking boot wrapped around her foot. Tyler, her eleven-year-old son, grinned and hurried over, leaving his mother behind.
“Hi, Aunt Olivia,” he greeted me enthusiastically as he stopped next to my chair. I couldn't help but smile back at him. It was the first time in weeks that I had seen him legitimately happy. He was having a rough time making friends in a new school and transitioning to a single-parent household. I had hoped bringing him on vacation would help raise his spirits, and judging by the grin on his face, it was working.
“Hey, Tyler,” I replied. I loved that he called me Aunt even though we weren't really related. His mother and I worked closely together, and he had decided I deserved the aunt moniker the first day we met. I didn't have any siblings, so the possibility of me being a real aunt anytime soon was zilch. I loved Tyler like he was my own. “You having fun?”
“This resort is amazing. Did you know there's a free bowling alley? And pizza is served all day?” Tyler ran a clumsy hand through his disheveled brown hair and grinned. His arms were too long for his body since he was in the middle of yet another growth spurt. “We're still on for jet-skis in an hour, right?”
“Of course! I promised, didn't I?” I responded, scooting over on my lounge chair to make space for Maddy. She sat down gratefully, stretching the awkward black cast out in front of her.
“I really appreciate you taking him, Liv,” Maddy said once Tyler finished making an overzealous gesture of excitement. “I feel awful that I can't do it. Stupid ice.”
She glared down at the boot as if the inanimate object could feel shame. She had slipped on some ice outside our office two days before the trip and had broken her foot. The doctor had given her a walking boot, so at least she was slightly more mobile and able to enjoy our trip. She was being a good sport about it, but she was obviously not terribly comfortable.
“Maddy, you know I'm more than happy to do it. I just wish you could come with us!” I put my hand on her shoulder and she shrugged. I winked at Tyler and told his mother, “I promise to do as many dangerous things as possible. I'm expecting broken bones, but we'll have a great time.”
Maddy shot me a dirty look and Tyler laughed.
“I know where you sleep,” she threatened. “And I know all the things that scare you.”
I laughed. Maddy was only joking. Well, mostly joking. She was very protective of her son, especially since the divorce. I had no doubt that if I brought him back injured, I would have matching injuries within the hour.
“Can we go over to the jet-skis now?” Tyler asked, his eyes dancing with excitement. “I already have my swimsuit on and I'm ready.”
“I have to go check my email first. And change.” I answered. Tyler frowned and I held up my hands to block his accusing look. “Hey, someone has to work to get us these lavish vacations.”
“Fine.” Tyler crossed his arms and tried to pout, but he was still too eager about the upcoming jet-ski adventure to make it convincing.