“I wish that’s all it was. She’s left the hotel. I’ve put the flowers in her room and all her stuff was gone.”
“Her room? On the floor I’m staying on?”
“Yeah, why. What does it matter?”
“Curvy? Dark hair, gray eyes and about my height?”
“That’s her. She told Howard she’d gone to see friends.”
“There you are then.” Kris towed him across from the lift to his door. “Open this.”
In spite of his misery, Braam was amused. When did his sister-in-law get so bossy? He opened the door and stood back to let her precede him. Once they were in his suite, Kris filled the kettle and switched it on.
“I don’t know where to start,” he said honestly. “I went and bought flowers and then Howard said she was away for… Hold on, let me think.” He replayed the conversation he’d had with the doorman. “He said, as I best I can remember, that I’d missed her by minutes. Howard had gotten her a taxi and she’d said she wasn’t checking out, she was going to visit friends. And she agreed how lovely your news was.”
Kris handed him a cup of tea.
The fragrant scent made his tummy rumble. Maybe they’d heat their food up soon.
“My news?” Kris said. “Or did she think it was your news? Seeing that after I’d done my squeal and told the world about the babies, I could have sworn I saw her near the lifts. I noticed her because I think she was near Jack and I when he was doing his arm waving, fish bartering act in Sai Kung. We snickered about macho men.”
“Why would she think it was…? Ah, I see. Oh, fuck.”
Kris bit her lip. “Yeah. I said at the top of my voice that we were going to become parents. I didn’t say Jack and I, or that you were going to be an uncle. I was so damned excited, that I blurted it out without thinking. Now to anyone who doesn’t know Jack, or me, that could be a natural assumption to make. I’ve gone and messed things up, haven’t I?” She swiped at her eyes, grabbed a tissue from the box on the work surface and blew her nose.
As much as he wanted to disagree, there wasn’t much he could say. However, he tried. “We both did, I guess. I didn’t explain why I was canceling because I wanted to check with you two if it was okay to tell Deb. Then I was going to go back, explain and ask her to join us for a drink. But, if she overheard you, why on earth didn’t she confront me with what she’d heard? Ask me what the hell I was playing at? Why are you looking at me as if I have two heads?”
The pity and scorn mixed in Kris’ expression were enough to make his skin tighten in a not very pleasant way.
“Oh, come on, Braam. Think on. If you were a woman, who had thought she was on the verge of something special and discovered it looked like the guy wasn’t purely a lying, cheating bastard, but his wife was pregnant, you might want to cut his balls off. But you’d never confront him if there was a chance you were going to upset that pregnant woman. You’d wait and decide what to do. Maybe she’s gone to friends until she sorts her head out. Then she’ll come and confront you.”
All of a sudden Braam didn’t feel hungry anymore.
The flight was on time leaving and landed early. The hotel was all she could have asked for and more and her room was ready. Debra wandered round it aimlessly and unpacked the bare necessities. She wasn’t in Singapore for more than a few days and it wasn’t worth doing anything else. For the umpteenth time she asked herself why she’d left Hong Kong and not tried to speak to Braam alone.
Because it would crucify me. Oh, grow up.
She chastised herself.
It’s a two-faced cheating bloke and a holiday fling. That’s it. Build a bridge and get over it.
The problem was that saying it was one thing, believing it was another. Debra was hurting.
It’s happened to people before you, it’ll happen to people after. It’s life. It’s his poor wife I’m sorry for. Does she know she’s got a sleep-around rat for a husband?
Debra bit back a sob and bit her lip hard. Even after seeing and hearing the evidence, she still found it hard to equate Braam with a man who would cheat on anyone.
She brushed her hair and looked at herself in the mirror. What a mess. It was a wonder they hadn’t asked for a doctor’s certificate before they let her fly. She was gray under her tan, her eyes were dull and her usually shiny hair seemed lank. Debra shook her head.
“Enough already,” she said out loud. “No man’s worth more than a day of moping. I’ve got a city to discover again.”
With that motivational speech in mind, Debra took herself into the shower and by the time she emerged pink skinned and squeaky clean, she
in a much better mood. As she emerged from the hotel into the heat, she took a deep breath and smelled the mixture of cooking, seawater and hot air that spelled the tropics to her.
A few feet away, the river ran past the hotel, with tour boats and ferries crisscrossing past her. Debra turned toward the harbor to reacquaint herself with the Merlion, the half mermaid, half lion statue that was the symbol of Singapore. It was several years since she’d visited and the skyline was considerably changed. It had been one of the places she’d not visited on her year away. Some cities had to be missed out and Singapore was one of them. However, it seemed she found herself here after all. Watching children laughing and running round the statue and its tiny ‘baby’, Debra was so glad she’d managed a visit, even if it was for all the wrong reasons. She’d enjoy her stay, head back to Hong Kong in time for her flight to the UK and reflect on her holiday romance. Then she’d decide what the next phase of her life would be.
First, though, she’d take a wander up the quayside toward a coffee shop she remembered and sit and watch the world go by.
The shops and the office buildings were a mixture of old and new and Debra took her time as she remembered an old traditional restaurant then saw a new skyscraper a few streets away. Sandwiched in between a bar and a shuttered shop front, a narrow staircase led toward ‘massages’ and she remembered her husband’s amusement at the names of some of the businesses. She stood still for a moment, closed her eyes and let the essence of Singapore sink into her. If Hong Kong was her favorite city in the world, Singapore came a close second.
The sound of a cycle bell made her move in a hurry. A man pushing a handcart hurried past her, ringing the bell furiously. He smiled and nodded and Debra grinned back. Innovation was definitely the key.
Not far ahead, the river curved in an elegant arc with a wide bridge over it. Debra crossed halfway over the bridge and turned to look back down the river in the direction she had walked from. From here you got a whole new perspective of all the new buildings that dotted along the harbor and the coast.
Over on Sentosa Island, buildings seemed to have sprung up like a rash and Debra stared. One logo on a building either on the island or nearby looked awfully familiar. It was too far away to see clearly, but she’d bet her hard sought after happy mood it said Channing.
Damn, blast and bugger. I will not let it bother me
. She turned her back and resolutely walked toward her destination. She wouldn’t think about the fact it would be in her vision when she retraced her steps. A good cup of coffee and a snack and she could ignore it.
To her surprise, she did exactly that. A few hours later, as she sat by the infinity pool on the third floor of the hotel and looked out over the river, Debra acknowledged that leaving and putting space between her and Braam had been the right thing to do. Maybe one day she’d email him via the hotel and say… She chortled inwardly. Say what? Hi, remember me? I’m the woman you screwed when your wife was pregnant. Or maybe ‘one of the women…’
No more of that.
Debra took out the what’s-on leaflet she’d picked up from her room and scanned the pages. Maybe she’d get the cable car over to Sentosa Island from Mount Faber and do the whole tourist and man-made beach experience for a day. And if she saw a Channing hotel, she would ignore it.
With her mind made up, Debra went for a lazy swim. The pool area was empty except for a couple who sat at the other end of the water, each reading a book, sipping wine and nibbling on a plate of snacks.
By the time she’d hung over the infinity pool edge and watched the ferries stopping down below, Debra was ready for something to eat herself. She got out, wrapped herself in her robe, stretched out on her sun lounger and read the poolside menu.
As if he was a mind reader, a waiter appeared and within ten minutes she was eating samosas and sipping her own glass of wine. She opened her eReader and pulled up a thriller about St Andrews she’d begun to read on the plane from Hong Kong.
As the afternoon wore on, clouds that grew steadily thicker obscured the sun. A breeze teased the bushes that were dotted around the area and the pool boy immediately started to close and secure the sun umbrellas.
“Storm coming in,” he said. “Won’t last long, but I reckon it’ll be heavy. You’ll be glad you’re back at the hotel.”
Debra took the hint and gathered up her things. Even before she’d reached the door to go inside, he’d lifted the mattress and stored it under cover. By the time she reached her room, the rain was rattling the windows of the executive floor lounge and the quayside was a sea of colorful umbrellas. Several had already been blown inside out.
Debra shivered, even though she wasn’t cold, and opened her door.
She’d been lucky with her room, which had a balcony overlooking the river and enough of a roof to allow her to open the doors and look out at the wet and windswept scene without getting wet or windswept. She made a cup of tea and drank it as the clouds scudded past.
Half an hour later she admitted defeat and stretched out on the bed. Last night’s lack of sleep had caught up with her. There was time for a nap before cocktails in the lounge.
To be on the safe side, she set her alarm and closed her eyes.
* * * *
The soft stroke up and down her arm made Debra purr with pleasure. She wriggled and he laughed softly before he blew gently in her ear, nipped the lobe with his teeth and kissed the soft skin of her nape.
Debra moaned. That erotic nip and suck made her pussy damp and her inner muscles contract.
He moved his head so she could see the wicked gleam in his blue eyes. “Oh, and tell me who else do you think I’d let touch you like this?” He traced a vein up her arm. “And like this?” His head moved to her midriff and he sucked the tiny indent of her belly button. It tickled and Debra squirmed and giggled. The sound echoed around her head.
“You like that?” His breath teased her skin. “How about this?” He took hold of one hard nipple and rolled it between his fingers.
“Oh yes.” She pushed into his hand. His fingers tightened then moved away. The loss of the erotic touch made her whimper.
“Impatient are we? I like that.” He bent his head and licked her clit. It was as well his hand was flat on her belly, or Debra would have arched up enough to make a tunnel for a freight train to pass through.
“Now let me see. Oh my, wet for me, ready for me, come for me?” His words reverberated across her pussy, before he licked her sensitive skin once more.
The tingles and stings of pleasure skittered over her skin and into her soul. Her body was on fire as Braam moved across the bed until he lay between her legs. The hairs on his arms tickled her and his scent teased her. She drank it all in and let him fill her senses.
All the while, he played with her nipples as well as keeping up a steady lick and nip to her clit and the opening of her channel. When his tongue inched inside her, Debra bit her lips to hold back her climax. She was oh so wet and wanted to fall over the edge into sensations. However, she wanted Braam with her, in her, so they flew together. Debra dug her heels into the mattress and tried to lift her hips.
Braam wasn’t cooperative. Instead the pressure of his lips on her pussy and clit increased and the flick and tease inside her became faster.
He pinched her nipples hard and for a brief second lifted his head.
“This is all for you, love. Come for me now.”
The next swipe of his tongue was all she needed. Debra shook with the intensity of emotions that rolled through her like lava. A rainbow of sparks and stars danced behind her eyelids and her skin stung almost to the point of pain as her climax rippled and bounced over her into her and the world stopped. Nothing mattered except his touch and her reaction.
Debra cried. Tears of happiness that Braam was with her. Tears of sorrow that he hadn’t come at the same time as her.
, she thought as she slowly came back to reality.
It’ll be his turn to come, my turn to take him there.
Braam moved away and with an inward smirk she rolled after him.
“My turn now. My turn to make you moan and groan and scream as you come for me.” She reached out and felt something soft and cool.
Linen, not flesh. He was wearing too many clothes. Then she had a thought. Not seconds before he’d been naked. His flesh had caressed her as he’d made her come. Something was wrong here.
A loud buzz shot into her brain like a bullet.
The bump as she hit the floor, tangled in a sheet, woke her up with a jolt. Debra blinked. Where was she? No Braam and no familiar room. However, her body was damp, her pussy throbbed and her thighs were coated with her arousal.
Damn and blast. Had it all been a dream? As she woke up properly and remembered where she was and why, Debra switched off the alarm and could have cried.
* * * *
“Mum, when are you going to snap out of whatever snit you’re in and looking like you’re expecting a Glasgow kiss instead of a sticky grandson one?” Lena MacLeod, Debra’s married daughter, wiped the kitchen table down and pointed to the chair beside it. “Sit and spill the beans. Who’s got you like this?”
“A what? Who’d want to head thump me? No one’s going to give me a Glasgow kiss, love.” Debra pulled out a wet wipe and rubbed it over the chubby toddler who sat in his high chair next to her. “Just all jelly baby, ice cream gooey ones, eh, Markus?” Debra kissed the boy who waved his hands.