|Blue eyes, dimples, and a hot surfer's body means trouble, right? There's only one way for Katie to find out...|
Part of my motivation for sharing this story comes from the fact that I'll be traveling to Honolulu myself in two short weeks.
pauses to hyperventilate
I might be a little bit excited. Or a lot. (!) At any rate, I worked things out so that you'll be reading the big finale as I'm heading to the airport, which means there are two installments after this one. Thank you SO much for coming along for the ride. If you'd like to catch up before reading this section, here are the links to Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5 ...
Losing seventy pounds was sure something to celebrate, but at the same time it created problems Katie never expected to deal with. Like, what to do when the hot-bodied surfer, Jack, turned out to be the DJ at her roommate's favorite dance club. Katie was positive he had ‘Trouble’ stamped on his butt. Didn't he?
Last week Jack offered Katie a ride home from the club, and she agreed, though she might be a bit worried about his intentions.
Before long, the Shorebird closed its doors for the night. When Jack and I walked out of the DJ booth, the bartender was holding a bottle of scotch. He asked Jack if he’d like the regular. After glancing at me, Jack declined. I could feel the eyes of every employee following us as we walked out of the club.
With his hand at the small of my back, he led me to a black Camaro convertible parked in the building’s garage. Its worn leather interior was clean enough. The stereo looked like the newest thing in the car. While I waited, he unlatched the roof so we could ride with the top down.
He had a car phone locked in his glove box. It was a cream-colored rectangle about the size of a Princess phone. Placing it on a cradle between the two front bucket seats, he plugged the phone’s cord into the cigarette lighter. Almost immediately it rang.
“Dawg,” Jack said when he picked it up, dragging the ‘aw’ vowel out for several beats. “Yeah, man, I can set you up. Later. I’m busy right now.”
To give him some privacy, I looked out the window at a couple of the waitresses who’d come into the garage to get their cars.
“I got something to do. Look, I’ll call you back.” Another pause. “Ah, don’t be like that, man. I’ll call you.” He hung up, shaking his head. “Kalani’s got the munchies.”
I tipped my knees in his direction and shifted in my seat so I could watch him drive. We pulled out of the garage onto Kalakaua Avenue. The breeze from the moving car flipped my curled bangs around, lifting them and letting air get at the sweaty bits along my hairline. “How long have you lived here?”
“Since eighty-seven, courtesy of Uncle Sam. Finished my last tour right before the Gulf War and decided not to re-up.”
“Do you only work at the club?” I watched him while he answered. Up close I could see his skin was weathered and the planes in his face were hard. He’d be the kind of man who got better looking as he got older.
“There and at King’s Hawaiian, the bread company. I got a four-am-till-noon shift Monday to Thursday, packing and hauling bread to supermarkets. It’s good. Keeps me in shape and I have the afternoons free.”
“I love Hawaiian sweet bread.”
“Lucky you met me, then.” His tone of voice suggested there might be even more reasons I was lucky.
I laughed as the streetlights flashed by, trying to guess how badly a sweet roll would mess with my diet. “You work a lot.”
“Don’t want to sit around bored.” He tilted his head as he pulled out into traffic, then he looked over at me and winked. “Since you’re pretty and I want to impress you, you should know I’ve applied to UH for next fall. Uncle Sam got me here, and now he’s going to pay for my college education.”
“Wow. What are you going to study?”
“Well, this is the place to study international business, you know, since we’re so close to Japan, China, and places like that. I might major in Public Policy with a focus on Asia.”
“Really?” I tried not to sound too surprised. International business was absolutely the last thing I’d expected to hear from a guy I’d thought of as a beach bum.
“Actually I’m making things up right now, ‘cause I figure you’re the type of girl who’ll give it up for a smart guy. If you were some other type of girl, I’d tell you how much weed I sell or how much money I make. You know, gotta fit the customer.”
I just stared at him, unsure of whether to laugh because he was joking or hop out and find a cab home.
“Got ya, didn’t I?” He flashed his gleaming eyes in my direction. “Actually, I am going back to school and I might well study Public Policy.”
“That’d be cool.”
“And I hope maybe someday you’ll give it up.”
Damn, he was cute, but I wasn’t giving anything up yet. “I should probably get home now.”
“Nope. I’m in the mood for a detour.”
My heart raced. I didn’t want to find out the hard way that Mr. Trouble really was his name. “Where?”
“This’ll do.” We were on Kalakaua Avenue, heading towards Diamond Head right near Kuhio Beach. He pulled over into one of the parallel parking spots along the side of the road.
“I told you the ride was going to cost you, didn’t I?” His grin was all tease.
“No.” Something fluttered in my belly, oscillating between excitement and fear.
“C’mon. I want to put my feet in the water.”
I hesitated. “It’s pretty late.”
“So sleep in tomorrow morning, and anyway, it’s not late unless you get home after sunrise.”
And what happens after sunrise, young man? More importantly, what happens between now and then? Jump HERE to find out...