Saturday 7:30 am
For the first time in almost a year you have to wake up early, you enjoy your weekends by sleeping until noon.
Unfortunately your calendar says today you have to, if you want to join your friends in this trip. You're kinda excited because you haven't been in a cruise ship and you love the idea of traveling with your friends like when you were in high school. It's going to be amazing so you get up, take a shower and dress up. You don't have time to have breakfast but it's ok you're not hungry anyway. You take your baggage and wait until the uber picks you up.
It's 9:45 am when you get to the terminal you can see Danny, Betty and Elsie there already so you go and greet your friends.
"hey guys how have you been?" You say and smile because you didn't realize how much you missed them and you're glad that after so much time you haven't lost the connection with them
"Hey Hollis! " Danny says and you can see her wide smile and her eyes light up
"Hey Laura! Gee you haven't change at all since last time we met" - Betty says and you blush a little because you don't really remember too much about the last time you saw each other and you're pretty sure it's because of all the alcohol you drank that night, maybe that's why everything is blurry when you try to recall what exactly you did and why you woke up naked in your backyard. Nope! It's better if you don't go there, you're here to enjoy this trip. Yeap! So move that memory on the back of you mind. Done it!
You think Betty just realized what you thought (or try to think) about, you can see that look in her eyes, the smugness look like she knows what happened but she wants you to ask her. But maybe later you're too sober for asking things that you know are going to get you embarrassed so you smile awkwardly and change the topic
"Soooo Elsie! What have you been doing?" - you ask desperately, you need to change the topic before you start blushing and Danny gives you the concerned look that you hate because it reminds you to your dad.
"Well I've been traveling around, you know one of the benefits of being a photographer" - Elsie says while she winks
"That's great" you said and then a silence for a minute, you try to get yourself busy by checking if you have your passport, your ID and some cash. Your going to miss your tardis mug, maybe you should've brought it after all you've had it since college you Sigh dramatically and kick yourself mentally because now you're thinking that you should've brought it.
"Jeez, this trip was supposed to be about having fun and meet your friends that you haven't seen for almost two years...who spit in your chocolate L?" - Laf says smiling and you almost forget about your thoughts until they talk about your chocolate but you tell yourself that you have to have fun so you jump and hug them hard
"Having some problems breathing here" they say and you stop hugging them and go to hug Perry
"Laura, darling how have you been? We haven't known anything from you in a long time. Is everything alright?" She asks
"Everything is fine, Perr. I was doing some research and I couldn't find time to call you guys sorry about that" - you apologize and you're sincere because from all the group Perry and Laf are your best friends, they were next to you when you came out to your parents, they were the ones who picked you up from that party the first time you got drunk and called your dad and told him you were gonna have a sleepover so that he wouldn't find out about your drunk condition but the most important reason why you love them both it's because they never left your side the day your mom passed away, they supported you when you didn't want to go on. You love them because they let you know that your mother wouldn't like you to be sad, she'd like you to be happy.
Perry has a clipboard with her and starts asking if you have what you need
" - Passports
- any ID
- Drink package
- Luggage (including toothpaste, toothbrush)
- Dresses for the welcome party and the formal night
- Casual clothes
- Night clothes
- First aid kit
- Flip flops..." - "I think we already got your email with all the requirements for this trip" Betty interrupts Perry and you're kinda glad she did because people are starting to get into the ship and for the first time you see it. It's a eighteenth decks ship and it's huge and you wonder how something so heavy can float. You gotta ask an officer about this.
"Hey guys! People are getting into the ship already. Let's go!" - you say and you can't hide your excitement
"Hell yeah! Let's go!!" Laf practically yell and you laugh because they look as excited as you are
"Honey, you just need to be sure that everything is alright-" Perr tries to stop them
"Seriously?" Elsie chimes in "I'm sure we don't miss anything, all of us read the mail you sent us...two months ago" she adds and you can see she just wants to be onboard already
"Well the ship ain’t going anywhere without us so we-" Perry starts saying but now it's time for Danny to interrupt her and you feel the frustration in Perry because no one lets her finish a sentence
"This paper says that the ship is sailing at 10:30 am and the cruise line is not responsible for passengers that couldn't make it because they already gave you the itinerary...so we should go now" Danny says picking her backpack up
"Yeah! We gotta go like right now" you say jumping and trying to get into the ship as soon as possible, Laf and Elsie are practically racing to see which one makes it first. At the end Elsie wins because Perry scolds Laf because you mustn't run in the terminal you can fall or make another person fall, they can do nothing but frown to Elsie who winks at them with a smug smile.
Finally you get into the ship you didn't know the security there were so strict it's like the airport you can't get any alcohol beverage (but you think this is because they want you to buy the drinks from the bar of the ship) after they have checked your luggage, they took a picture of you and gave you a card so now that is you ID on this ship and you can pay almost everything with that card, they ask you to let your passport in your stateroom and only take it with you when you go off the ship.
You're happy all your friends and you are in the same deck "Aloha" which is the 10 floor the accommodation steward introduces herself as Mellanipe but she says you can call her "Mel" she gives you her page number so if you need anything you can page her and she'll get it for you.
"Holy crap! There's a chocolate on my pillow" - Laf says "I'm feeling like a boss" they start laughing and you see Betty rolling her eyes maybe it's not new for her she's the face of an important news channel so she must've been in a lot of cruise lines vacations
You smile at Laf and say: " wow that's nice I'll get to my room and leave my luggage"
"I'll go with you" - Danny says and you get a little annoyed because you think she's trying to get overprotective again, you sigh and she hears it " my stateroom is in that direction too so we can go together" she adds
"Yeah? Ok then let's go" you say and you're not sure if you buy that statement or not
"We'll meet in the sail away party then" Perry says
"Yes" - you say while everyone else just nods
You can’t believe you're traveling in a cruise ship, you smile at yourself and start unpacking but then you see the bathroom and you see a bath. "Holy Hufflepuff are those aromatics salts" you yell.
It's almost 1:00 pm and you can't be in your room anymore the journalist in you wants to go and see what's going on at this time on the ship so you have the map of the ship that Perry gave you in order that you don't get lost because well it's a huge ship so you read it and you go to the atrium (which is midship decks 5, 6 and 7). Deck 5 (Piazza) is where the international cafe is, you wanted to buy chocolate but you buy an iced coffee at the end. There's a little stage, that according to the barista Ell, is where the champagne waterfall is gonna be placed tomorrow at the captain welcome party, some piano concerts and as you're going to Mexico they're gonna be a group of Mariachi which is awesome, you always wanted to learn Spanish but it was complicated for you to understand with all those rules and verbs and times you Sigh just to remember.
Anyway Ell advices you to go to the sail away party. You thank her and go up one floor.
So now you are in deck 6 (Fiesta) there are the shops which are closed right now, the security guard tells you that they cannot be opened until you're literally 50 miles from shore and it's because as the shops are free taxes that's the requirement by law. There's nothing else to see so you go to deck 7 (Promenade) and you're kinda amazed by it. Promenade deck is where there're the Steakhouse bar, it's classy and there's a ballroom and you meet the bar supervisor Monica, you tell her this is the first time you're in a ship and as you're excited you start asking questions. "So how is working in a ship? Do you get well paid? Sorry that is not a good question. Where do you guys sleep? Do you have the same staterooms as we have? Can you go on shore when we're on port? Do you live alone or you share your cabins?" You breath and when you're about to keep asking you see Monica rolling her eyes and suddenly you get that maybe this is not the first time someone asks her all these questions. You're about to apologize but then she shows you a polite smile, take a deep breath and says "working on the ship is amazing I love traveling, getting to know people and learning others cultures" she moves her head close to you but doesn't invade your personal space and adds "and I get paid for this" you smile - "paid is good if you love what you do, we live on decks 2,3,4 and 5 depends of your department for example I live in deck 4 we don't have the same cabins as the passengers have, actually they’re smaller, we can go on shore if we're not IPM and we do share cabins, cabins are for 2 people from the same department you know people from the bar in one block, the same as people from restaurant or accommodation" she says almost breathless and you kinda notice that she said all these trying to imitate the way you talked which would make you feel insulted but the way she talks shows you her charisma and you just smile and then you ask "so what IPM means?"
" In Port Manning" she says " you know that when we're on shore passengers got off on tours or by themselves. But some passengers stay that's why some crew are required to stay too so that in a case of an emergency the crew can help" she tells you
You're relieved that they thought about this " is it the same people who stay?" The question slips your lips before you realized
"No, we rotate. For example today I'm IPM so I can't get off the ship until next port" Monica says
"This is pretty interesting" you say and you kinda curious about how interesting is working on a ship "well it's time for me to meet my friends upstairs" you say to her "I'll see you later! I'm coming back with my friends" you wave your hand to her and she does the same "nice to meet you" she says
It's almost sail away party time so to take the elevator and go direct to deck 14 (Riviera) according to your map there're 3 bars, the ice cream bar, the pizzeria, the grill and the horizon buffet. As you took a the midship elevator you're in front of Calypso bar which is also a cafe bar, you'll come back later for a coffee, first you wanna find the others. After walking around for 5 minutes you see Betty in a really small swimsuit, she's swimming in the pool and you can see Perry applying some sun block to Laf who is smiling with heart eyes to her, they look so much in love together, you hope you find someone who can look at you the same. You wave at them when they see you, you're making your way to them and suddenly you feel something bumps you hard and you don't have stability, in fact you can't feel the floor anymore and you see yourself breathing water and you curse yourself for that because you feel your lungs burn but as you fell by surprise you didn't have the time to get air and now you're feeling dizzy, you can hear Perry's voice yelling and when you think you can feel the bottom of the pool you feel soft warm arms around your chest and you feel someone pulling you up, you try to open your eyes but you feel them heavy. You start coughing trying to get some air but there's still water in your lungs. You feel hands on your chest trying to make you stay still "don't move cutie! Trying to help you here" - a raspy voice says and even though you're desperate for getting the water out of your body you stay still.
You feel a hand touching your chin trying to open your mouth and the other plugging your nostrils, soft lips touching yours is what you feel next, air getting into your lungs making you coughing instantly and throwing up all the water you've drank. Finally you can breath so you take a deep breath and smile to the person who practically save your life. You try to get up but you hear Perry's voice "do not get up yet darling you need some rest"
"She's right L" Laf adds you decide they're right so instead of getting up you open your eyes and then you see her. The first thing that catches your attention is black wet hair that shines under the sun, you see her eyes, she has dark brown eyes that are deep like she's seeing your soul and you feel your cheeks getting warm just by the way she's looking at you. You try to avoid her eyes now so you lower your gaze and you see perfect lips parted trying to get air probably because she just gave you CPR or because she got into the water to get you and you know it requires strength although you're short. Then those lips got close and a smirk is shown up, you've just been caught staring her lips. You're blushing now
"Gosh Hollis are you alright you're getting red" you hear Betty's voice and it's not helping you that other people see you're blushing
"Y-yeah I'm fine" you can't help your stuttering but now you're nervous because this beautiful girl is looking at you and you can't think anything to say to her except
"It-it's nice to have you here" you see her arching and eyebrow " I- I mean it's nice you were here because you save and maybe if you weren't I should've got drowned and this would've been my first and last cruise. So yeah thank you for saving me" and you regret so much start talking because now you feel breathless and that doesn't help you in this air- needing situation
"I'm glad you're ok cupcake!" She says with a sultry voice then she gets closer to your ear "It's a pleasure to save a girl if my reward is kissing a beautiful girl" she almost purrs in your ear and you didn't think you could get redder.
"Karnstein, can I have a word with you...now" there's a voice you don't recognize and you hear the Greek goddess next to you sighs, she gets up without looking away from you. Then She winks at you and turns around.
You try to get up again and now it's Danny who chimes in saying "OMG Hollis what the heck happened? Are you alright? Do you want me to carry you to you cabin?" You Hear the concern in her voice you Sigh
"I'm ok Danny! It's just I think I slipped or something and I fell into the pool but now I'm alright" you try to assure everyone that you're fine
"Actually some kids bump you when they were running to the ice cream bar, Frosh" Laf says
"Really, kids?" You ask and you don't believe those little bastards did this to you. You get up first unsteady and then you can get your back straighten and look where Karnstein, the beautiful girl with the black silky hair went. She's talking to an officer in white uniform you can see two stripes on her shoulder and even though you can't hear what they're talking about you can see this officer has an air of authority and you feel it too because now she's staring to where you are, you try to look to any other place but where they are after a moment your eyes go back to where they are and you see how the beautiful girl who saved you is going who knows where and you can see she's upset about something, you don't know why but you start walking where the officer is, you wanna say thank you again to the beautiful girl. So you approach to the officer and ask.
"Hey officer, could I ask you where the girl who saved me went? It's just I wanna say “thank you” to her" you say as soon as you're close Mattie, you just read her name tag and she's the bar manager.
"Good afternoon miss, I assure you she knows you're thanked for what she did. I sent her back to her cabin to change her clothes I'm pretty sure it wouldn't be healthy if she starts her shift with a soaked uniform" Mattie says dryly
"Oh!" It's your only answer and when you see Mattie rolling her heels so that she can go
"So she works in the bar department? Can you tell me which bar she works? I'd like to talk to her...later of course I need to change my clothes too" you giggle and Mattie just arches an eyebrow and that reminds you to the Greek goddess with the black hair. You clear your throat "at least can you tell me her name?" You ask politely and put your best puppy's eyes
"Karnstein, Carmilla Karnstein" Mattie says and you smile, it's a beautiful name for a beautiful woman. "And she works...?" You push a little and Mattie frowns "she will be bartending in the Mermaids bar which is in the Riviera deck" she deadpans.
"Thank you, thank you, thank you!" You say "I really appreciate this"
"Uhum, Laura dear I think we should get going to your cabin you need to change your clothes before you get the flu and spend this trip in isolation" Perry says
"Excuse me what? Isolation? For just the flu ha!" You think it's a joke
"Actually as they're more than three thousand people on this ship any virus could become an epidemic that is why we're careful with those things" Mattie chimes in "well I hope you are ok miss and I hope you enjoy this trip with your friends" she says with a tight smile
"Oh thank you Mattie" you say and she's taken back probably because she thought you didn't read her name tag. She smiles again and excuses herself
So you're back in your cabin with Perry who insisted to be with you just in case “you feel indisposed”. You change your clothes, now you're wearing a white dress with sunflowers, you weren't sure to wear swimsuit not after what just happened upstairs but then you thought you're not gonna feel bad about just one little incident. Besides for some reason you want Carmilla to see you in swimsuit you don't know why, maybe it's because of the way she talked to you earlier in that sultry raspy voice that made you have goosebumps.
"Are you ready to go dear?" Perry ask you "I think you're having temperature you're getting red" she says and you smacks your head mentally because your own body's betraying you. "I don't think so Perry it's just that it's so hot in here you know" you say "well let's get going the party is starting in 15 minutes" you add and pray to the universe Perry forgets about your red cheeks. "Oh yeah! Probably Lafontaine is already drinking they said they would like to try the drink of the day" Perry comments
"Really? We can’t get any alcoholic drink until we're sailing? I mean really?" The first thing you hear as soon as you get to the Mermaids bar is Laf asking the bartender in a disbelieving voice
"I already told you buddy...twice" you recognized that voice you've heard it before but without that annoying tone. You get closer and it's her, it's Carmilla.
"Carm-Carmilla" the name slips your lips without permission and you feel her eyes on you now. You meet them and you feel something twist in your stomach, something you haven't felt before and you smile like an idiot when her eyes soften. "Hey" she said "someone here is asking for my name...I guess" and there it is that smirk again. It's infuriating but hot at the same time, how's that even possible? "Well I wanted to know who was the girl who saved me...that- that's all" and you hate yourself for stuttering but you are not able to sound sure about your statement maybe because it was an excuse to know her, you can't deny there's something about her that pulls you to her like a magnet you could feel it because it's the first time in years your heart skips a beat. Now you avoid her gaze and you take a look at her attire she's wearing a white shirt with green stripes at her shoulders And turquoise short shorts that make you see those long pale legs oh crap you feel your cheeks blushing again you stop staring (again) and turn to Laf who is looking at you with a shit- eaten- grin smile and you know they caught you staring at her so you clear your throat and ask "and why can't we order something with alcohol before sailing? It's not supposed to be the 'sail away party'"
"Well cutie that is because before sailing there's gonna be a drill, we do it every turn around day which is every time a cruise is starting. In case you don't know anything about it, there's gonna be an announcement telling you to go to your cabin and collect your life jacket so that we'll teach you how to use it" she winks at you.
"You're gonna teach us how to wear a life jacket?" You say
"That's awesome" Laf squeals
"Great so we're not having drinks until then" Betty groan
"Well I don't care about drinks if someone like Carmilla here is gonna teach me how to wear a life jacket. Would you help me to wear it if I ask you to?" Elsie says and you roll your eyes because she's not subtle at all and yeah Carmilla is beautiful and yes she's sexy and she makes you think in not so PG-13 things but Elsie really?
"Of course I'll help you sweetie" Carmilla answer and you hear Elsie squealing and Carmilla smirk at her. There's a tug in stomach when you see this, you don't like that feeling maybe is something you ate, yeah that's it.
"A very good afternoon ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the Sapphire Princess. The last group of passengers are getting into the gangway so we would be able to sail in a few minutes. In ten minutes time we're having an emergency drill so that passengers would know where to go and what to do in case of a real emergency. As soon as you hear the sound of the ships bells, you should go to your staterooms, collect your life jacket and proceed to your muster station. The muster stations are located in the sixth and seventh decks Fiesta and Promenade decks and they're divided in letters. The letter of your muster station is in your stateroom key. This is the captain speaking and I wish you an amazing trip, welcome on board again...attention stairway guides and muster personnel you must be in position in 5 minutes time"
"Soooo it is true we have to go back to our cabins" Laf says
"Wait you thought I was lying" Carmilla says while she's rolling her eyes.
"Of course I thought you were lying or at least making fun of us" they answer back instantly
"Gotta say I didn't believe you either" Betty says.You're about to interrupt this conversation just because you don't like the way they talk to Carmilla
"Well then I gotta go to take my life jacket I hope I find you in my muster station Carmilla" Elsie says
"Looking forward to it" she answers
You clenched your jaw because Elsie is really getting on your nerves and you don't know why, you just met this woman but you can't help it. You sigh
"Hey creampuff you're ok?" Carmilla ask you but you're upset because she's flirting with Elsie
"I have a name you know!" You bite back almost groaning
"Really? Who knows" she deadpans and you realized you didn't even introduce yourself and when you're gonna say your name-
"Sorry guys but I gotta go to my muster station" Carmilla says as she's taking a bright light green baseball cap and put it on her head. Then she takes a life jacket from under the bar and she's gone as soon as she's gone there's a guy in her place and probably he's just there to watch the bar until the drill is done.
"Laura, honey let's go" Perry calls you out of your thoughts
"Yeah.right.let's.go" you say
"Is something wrong Hollis?" Danny says "you're a little off since the incident in the pool" she adds and she's right but you just deny everything.
"Yeah. I'm. Alright. Why?" You don't sound so sure and you hate it.
"Ok? So let's go now" she says
You find out that even though your friends and you have your staterooms in the same deck you belong to different muster stations. For instance Perry and Laf belong to muster station "D" which according to the map is the Explorer's bar. Danny, Elsie and Betty belong to the station station "E" which is the Steakhouse restaurant and you belong to station "F" that is the Club Fusion's bar so now you and three hundred more passengers are waiting in that lounge in order to learn what to do in an emergency.
"Attention stairway guides and muster personnel you now can relocate to your positions in Your muster station" you hear the officer in charge talking by the speakers of the ship.
You're sitting next to the bar in a very tall chair and you see her, Holy Hufflepuff! How can anyone be sexy wearing a life jacket? She takes off the life jacket and put it on the floor. She's asking some passengers not to wear theirs not before the personnel show you how to. OMG you feel like you're the creepy guy who stairs beautiful girls, you sigh loudly and she turns around to face you, your eyes meet again and you see a small smile in her lips before turning into a smirk.
"Well, well, well cupcake you're in my muster station! Lucky me, I guess" she winks and you blush
"Laura...My name is Laura" you say
"Laura" she repeats, you don't find it endearing and you are a little regret because you miss the sugary nicknames - "well sweetheart it's nice to meet you" she lower her voice a tone and you find it so sexy. Then an officer starts explaining about the emergency signals and where the life boats are situated, you just stare at Carmilla you eyes go down on her body, she has this pale skin and some curls at the end of her hair that you just realized are lovely in that ponytail. You fix your look in her face again and see that smirk and again you feel the heat getting to your face because you're busted. She caught you staring again.
"Ladies and gentlemen now the muster personnel and the stairway guides are going to show you how to wear a life jacket" the officer says
"First put the life jacket around your shoulders and tight the stripe as much as you can" and while he's speaking you see Carmilla doing every step at the same time "There's a flashlight in your life jacket which is on the left side and it'll start flashing as soon as it touches water" she points the little flashlight and shows it in three different direction so that all the people around her can see it. "There's a whistle in your life jacket which is in your right side" she points the right side of the life jacket and when she locks her gaze in your eyes you see a small smile in her lips and you smile too.
"Now we're going to show how to jump over board and this can only be a request from the captain and captain only" the officer says in series tone "First put your left hand on the right side of the life jacket, this is to prevent the life jacket could harm you at the moment you get into the water, cover your mouth and nose with the other hand so that water is not getting in your lungs when you jump. Look straight and take one step forward. Do not jump. I repeat do not jump" you see Carmilla mimics everything and she's adorable.
"Once again ladies and gentlemen we welcome you in the Sapphire princess. Now we're about to start the sail away party in the fourteenth and fifteenth decks, the cruise director and the cruise staff are waiting for you to celebrate the beginning of this cruise. Also you can enjoy the drinks from the bars, the drink of the day is Mucho Mango. In the name of the Sapphire princess crew we wish you enjoy the time in this trip"
And that's how the drill ends and you gotta go back to your cabin to put your life jacket in it's place and go meet your friends after that.
"Hope to see you upstairs cupcake" you feel the goosebumps in your whole body when you listen to that raspy voice really close to you so you turn around and catch Carmilla's dark eyes checking you up and down. "Hey" really Hollis? She says something and the only thing you are able to say is hey?
"Hey" she replies with that sexy smirk in those red lips, "gosh you're so sexy" you blurt out and your eyes wide at the statement, she laughs and it's really crowded everyone tries to get to the elevators so you're stuck with her next to you. Then you see something in her eyes, you're not sure what it is and for a second you think she's trying to say something to you but she changes her mind and says "well buttercup see you later" and suddenly she opens an “only crew” door and disappears behind it.
There's a very load music and a British man introducing himself as the cruise director while the cruise staff are asking the other passengers to go and dance with them.
"Jeez Laura where have you been?" You hear Danny and you turn around and see her next to you, Elsie is flirting with a girl from the cruise staff for some reason that doesn't surprise you, Betty is at the bar talking to the bartender who you recognize as Monica from the wheelhouse you go there and say hello to her "Hey Mon! I thought you were at the wheelhouse bar?"
You ask "well we rotate our locations to where gets busy for example now there're a lot of people because of the sail away party so a couple of bartender from other bars come here and help" she says and that makes sense it.
"So what's in today's drink?" Betty chime in "Mucho Mango, which is coconut rum, Bacardi rum, sugar syrup and mango juice" Mon says. "OMG that would be lovely for Laura she loves sugary things" Betty answers and yeah she's right that sounds delightful "I'd love one of those please" you ask Mon and she starts preparing it "I'd like a jack/coke in a tall glass please" Betty ask as you start looking around so that maybe you can see a dark hair near by but nope she's nowhere. "Are you by any chance looking for someone" you hear Laf and when you look at them you see a giant grin "Who. Me. Haha" you try to sound relaxed but you fail and the grin in Laf's face gets wider "Maybe the beauty who saved your life earlier" now it's Elsie who teases you. "Of course not! I'm just waiting for my drink here" your tone is a little bit higher than you expected "Eh, Laura your drink has been there for almost 5 minutes and Monica here is waiting for your card so that she can charge it" Betty says and you Sigh "I'm really sorry Mon i didn't mean you to wait for so long, I didn't realized so much time has passed. There you have my card-" you start rumbling "it's ok don't worry about that" Monica says and you mouth a thank you to her when she give your card back, you sign the check and put her tip inside the folder she gave you.
"And I mean I know it's my first cruise trip and probably that's why I got so excited but I do really want to have party without any of them asking me if I'm alright. I mean probably they treat me like a child because of my height. I don't know I just hate when they do this" you slurred "And now that I almost drowned in the pool earlier they're all like 'are you ok Hollis?' Or 'Laura, honey is everything alright' or 'so you like Carmilla since the first time you saw her or you like her when she kissed you'-"
"Wait! Carmilla as Carmilla Karnstein, the bartender kissed YOU? A passenger. She really did that even though it's totally against the rules of the company?" Monica is shocked and you gulp "well she didn't kiss me, she was doing CPR to me she was the one who took me out of the pool when I fell-"
"WAIT!" Monica says again and after she realizes some people have turn to look at her, she lowers her voice "Carmilla Karnstein got into the water and saved you?" She asks you "wow I never thought this day would come" she adds
"What do you mean?" Well now you're curious by her reaction and the way she talks about Carmilla. "Well Carmilla is not an active person, she usually does her job pretty good but if there's a way to avoid doing something she would take it" Mon tells you "I mean she's not a bad person actually we get along very well. She, her Cabin mate and I usually go to shore together and they're so funny when they start bickering for little things, I laugh so much by the faces they make when I say they're like a twenty year marriage" she starts laughing when she remembers this and you felt like someone just threw you a bucket with cold water. "She. Has. A. Girlfriend?" The tone in your voice makes Mon stop laughing and stares you like she wants to read what you're thinking and maybe, just maybe she sees the interest in Carmilla is not just about thanking her for saving you.
"Carmilla and Ell? Ha!" She snorts "I don't think so Laura they're best friends just that" she adds
"How can you be so sure? I mean you just said they're like a couple" wait a minute are you jealous of her? How it's that even possible? You know Ell is a beautiful woman, with her blond hair and those deep blue eyes of course Carmilla and her are more than best friends, gee they are like models and probably they're the perfect couple, they'll have the perfect family, the perfect house and the perfect dog. Ok Laura calm down! What's happening? Why do you feel so dirty? Maybe it's because Carmilla has this beautiful, sweet woman and she was flirting with you, how can she do that to her? When I see her again I'm gonna-
"I'm sure because Ell is my girlfriend and It would be a little uncomfortable for me if they were you know a real couple" Mon says smiling
"Wait! Ell is your girlfriend?" You ask
"Yeah, I'm sure she is my girlfriend" she says dryly "she's been my girlfriend for the last two contracts now...that would be more than a year" and she smiles just to think about it
"Oh" the word escapes from your mouth
"Ok darling I think that's all for tonight. According to the bars rules I cannot give you more drinks for a while now. May I get you a glass of water?" Mon sounds so formal and calmed that you nod instantly
"I think I get going now. Need to rest it's been a long day" you say before you try to get up from the chair and now you feel the alcohol going direct to you legs which are trembling "Miss Hollis, are you ok there?" You know this voice where did you hear it? Where? "Miss Hollis would you like a glass of water?" This person asks "Monica, how many cocktails did you let miss Hollis drink?" She talks to the bartender
"Three mucho Mangos" Monica answers "that's all Mattie, you know how stick to the rules I am" she says. And there's the answer it's Mattie the bar manager "well in that case I'd call the purser desk to get in touch with your party so that they can pick you up and take you to your cabin or would you like me to call security and they can escort you to your cabin?" Mattie asks you and you automatically know that this is not the first time she's been in this kinda situations.
"I'll call one of my friend they'll pick me up" you say and you hate it because you're slurring "can I-would you mind telling me where the nearest phone is?" You ask "there's one here you can borrow it" Monica tells you and you love she's so polite and formal so you thank her and try to remember which is Laf's cabin number they're the only one who doesn't treat you like a child. Okay it's ringing and you see Monica's asking something to Mattie with wide eyes, Mattie laughs and it's the first time since you get here you see her so free. The only thing you thought she did was smirking then she recovers her composure and answers- "Hello?" You hear Laf's sleepy voice you didn't think they were sleeping and actually you don't even know what time it is "hey Laf it's Laura I'm in the mermaids bar and well I got a little tipsy and I need someone to pick me up" you sigh "can you please come and save me? And please! Please don't let anyone else know about it I don't want anyone starts treating me like a toddler" you beg
"Of course I ain't saying anything to the others...been there in 5 minutes I'll say Perry I'm taking a walk to the open deck which isn't entirely a lie" they tell you "just wait for me there frosh" they ask you
"Ok. Awesome. Bye" you said before hang up.
Monica starts to close the bar and ok that means you're the last person in the bar.
"I'm sorry I didn't let you close the bar earlier probably you're tired it's been a long day and-" you say and Monica smiles "oh don't worry Laura, the bar closes at 12:30 and it's 12:45 so" she trails off "Yeah but I'm really sorry I didn't realized it's too late" you confess
"Do not worry miss Hollis, I can assure you there's not problem and Monica didn't have any problem in staying a little longer" Mattie tells you
"That's true!" Monica says
"Hey frosh?" You hear you friend calling you, turn around and there they are "Oh Laf thanks god! Thank you so much for coming" you start walking to them then you stop and turn to face Monica and Mattie wave a hand to them "good night and thank you for everything Mon...good night Mattie thank you too" you say and start walking again now you only wanna get to your cabin and sleep.
"Sooo you didn't find your mystery bartender again? For a moment I thought you were with her when you said you were at the Mermaid's bar" Laf says smiling they haven't drop the topic since they saw the look in your face when you told them you ran into Carmilla in the drill.
"No, I was with Mon actually" ok Hollis you gotta sound more secure next time you talk about this. "Hey do you know that in the name tag besides the name obviously and the position, it is also the nationality too" you change the topic because you don't wanna talk about the girl with black beautiful hair "for example Mon is from Canada like us and Mattie is from Morocco, she speaks English pretty well don't you think?" You see Laf knows you're trying to change- "I think that there must be a requirement for them to speak English well, Perr and I meet a guy from South Africa who works in the accommodation department Theodore but he told us to call him just Theo. Seems to be a nice guy" they say.
You two take the elevator and Laf is telling you about how Perry spent 15 minutes applying an extra layer of sunblock, that's so Perry you think, she's like the mom of the group and even though you hate it sometimes that is part of who she is. "Thanks for doing this Laf I really appreciate it. I know if I would've called Danny she would patronize me, the same Betty and probably Elsie wouldn't even answer the phone probably because she's in the nightclub drinking...and I can't talk about Perry-" you say
"It's ok L! I know sometimes they like to control you-" they tell you
"Sometimes?" You can't avoid sound sarcastic because it's true they look at you like a lost child you Sigh you're too tired for this. Let's hope tomorrow will be a better day,
"Sorry I didn't mean it...I think I'm really tired thanks again Laf. Goodnight!" You hug them "Goodnight L, see you tomorrow at breakfast?" They ask
"Of course see you in the morning" you say while opening the door. You fall on your bed and you don't even wanna go and brush your teeth but you do it anyway, change your pajamas and finally fall asleep.