‘Ladies and gentlemen, as we start our descent, please make sure your seat backs and tray tables are in their full upright position…’
Arthur waves the Frommer’s Guide to Lucky Palms in front of Granny, waking her from her slumber.
‘Look, there’s a picture of our hotel! Listen: “The Love Motel is small and provides quiet accommodations with comfortable rooms. High Speed Internet, Spa and pool.” Sounds great.’
‘Oh, yes. Especially the Spa.’
Granny leans back in her seat, listening to Arthur continue reading from the guide book:
“Rest and relaxation is the name of the game in Lucky Palms! With ample parks, recreation locales, and a thriving culinary scene, you’ll find yourself on an oasis of green amid shifting sands. This desert enclave offers manicured gardens, modern estates, and cozy abodes nestled on the banks of a pristine lake. At the heart of town lies a mysterious well that is said to grant wishes to those who are pure of heart…”
He looks at Granny, ‘What will you wish for, Tara?’
‘If I tell you, it won’t work…’
The plane inclines steeply to the right and a sinking feeling in the stomach tells them they’ve started their descent. Granny slides the blinds open, looking out the porthole.
‘I think I can see the wishing well!’ Arthur points excitedly at a small speck that could be anything.
They are interrupted by a ping and the high speaker crackling to life,
‘Ladies and Gentlemen, we are about to begin our final descent to the LPI airport. Currently at LPI the weather is sunny, and the temperature 79 degrees Fahrenheit, that is about 26 degrees Centigrade. Local time is 11 am. We have certainly enjoyed having you on board today, we hope to see you again real soon, and thanks again for flying Simerican.’
While they are waiting for their luggage, Granny overhears Juan telling Lucky about the flight on his cell.
‘Yeah. Whiskey and… err… What did Missy call it again? Bruch… Brunch! B-R-U-N-C-H… Breakfast and lunch… Uh-huh… The Mile High Club? Nah. All the flight attendants were married or had boyfriends… With Missy? Have you seen the size of those WC??? … I thought so…Yep… Here goes! I can see our suitcase! Missy! There it is!’ He hollers, waving and pointing to a huge red plastic Samsonite. But it isn’t theirs…
Thirty minutes later, they’re standing alone at the luggage carousel – everyone on their flight has got their bags and left.
‘Maybe it’s just got stuck?’ Missy chirps hopefully. ‘It will probably pop out in a minute…’
Juan is seething, ‘That’s not goin’ to happen.’
‘Where is the personnel when you need them?’ Granny asks, searching the area for a uniform of some sorts.
Arthur taps Juan on the shoulder, ‘Better don’t waste time, let’s go and file a bag claim.’
With a last glare at the carousel, the Darer’s follow Granny and Arthur to the lost luggage counter, who directs them to the reservation desk for Simerican, who directs them to the claims office…
An hour later the paper work is finally done. They’ve been getting their share of run-around, but at least they know where the Darer’s suitcase is heading.
‘Isla Paradiso?’ Missy says incredulous. ‘I knew we should have spent our honeymoon there! It’s a sign!’
The helpful assistant at customer service hands them a map and a pack with miniature toiletries, telling them the suitcase will arrive tomorrow and that the malls are well known for their fancy shops.
Missy claps her hands. ‘Ooh. Shopping!’
‘I just want to get my worldly possessions back.’ Juan adds grumpily. ‘Especially my own toothbrush, not this fickle travel version…’
The taxi takes them to their hotel. Granny stares at the extravagant pink building. It’s a mixture of Art Deco and Las Vegas!
‘I love it!’ Missy claims. ‘Don’t y’all?’ She leans towards Granny and whispers, ‘Do you think there are Bandits in the lobby?’
‘Oh, no. Security is high!’ Granny answers.
‘I mean one-armed bandits, sister!’
‘Oh. Slot machines.’ Granny blushes. She’s definitely out of her element…
Arthur and Granny check in while the Darer’s wait outside.
‘One double and two single rooms. In the name of Arthur Moon. Or Fairview Heights’ Soccer Club. FHSS.’
The receptionist can’t find their reservations. As a matter of fact she doesn’t seem to know how to operate the computer at all, hammering the mouse against the counter and swearing under her breath.
She excuses herself, explaining she’s only working part-time and that her colleague never tidies up, ‘So that’s why I can’t find your reservation. And there are no single rooms in our motel, Sir. Only very spacious and comfortable double rooms. With automated King Size beds.’
‘Don’t you have a paper log?’ Arthur asks.
‘A what? A paper log? Oh, of course. A paper log…’
She bends down and rummages through the shelves. Finally she rises, putting a heavy book on the counter, pushing her cup of coffee and spilling the hot liquid all over the keyboard.
‘Oh, no…’ she dabs at the keyboard with the hem of her skirt. ‘Ahem…’ With a moist finger she trails the entries – from 1997.
‘Ahem. I don’t think you’ll find us there-’ Arthur squints at her name tag, ‘Miss Kravitz. We booked in October. This year.’
‘Oh.’ She looks blankly at them.
‘Maybe you could call your superior?’
‘Err… Yes. Of course. Such a good idea!’
After a quick phone call to the manager, everything is cleared and they get their codes.
‘There’s an extra bed in your room. Have a nice day, I’m at your service if you need anything. Which you won’t, as everything is taken care of. I hope.’
She puts away the log, sending the computer screen crashing to the floor…
The motel consists of several small cabins surrounding a little garden with beautiful flowers and a pink (!) marble fountain. Juan is peeking through the glass door to one of the rooms.
‘You can see everything… If there ain’t no TV tonight, I reckon we can pull one of these fancy couches outside and pick our show, hehe…’
‘Juan! Not so loud,’ Missy admonishes. ‘My sister and Arthur might overhear you. They are coming our way.’
Arthur distributes the codes, ‘Keep them somewhere safe, there are no keys. You are in cabin 24 and we’re next to you it seems – 25.’
‘Let’s freshen up and meet in an hour…’
‘Ooh! What beautiful flowers!’ Missy gushes at the sight of the enormous flower basket on the bed.
Juan plops down next to it, bouncing up and down. ‘Wow… It’s a water mattress, Missy. I just hope I don’t get seasick!’
The flower basket rocks precariously.
‘Watch out! We don’t want water on the bed as well! When shall we go shopping, Juan? I need to change out of these warm clothes or I’ll have a heat stroke!’
‘Turn up the AC.’
‘I can’t bring the AC with me outside, can I?’
Juan shrugs, ‘The suitcase arrives tomorrow.’
Missy sighs, ‘You’re such a cheapskate, bless your soul…’ But she won’t let that detail spoil her good mood. She checks the bathroom, it’s small but nicely stocked with miniature shower gels and shampoos. And they smell good too. And what are all those brochures on the chest of drawers…
‘Look, Juan!’ Missy waves a plastic card in front of her husband.
He takes it and holds it at arm’s length, squinting, ‘What does it say? “Maid. Please have this room made up soon as possible”???’
‘Oups! I meant the other side!’
‘Err… “Please don’t disturb”… Hehehe…’
‘Well. I’ll just pop over to see if my sister has brought anything that fits me. Cheerio!’
‘Wait a minute. Why did you show me that thingamajig if we ain’t goin to use it? Ain’t you think we could have a little… nap… first?’ He wiggles his eyebrow(s) suggestively…
‘Honey. I need to change, and as you said: no shopping… I don’t even have a nightgown!’
Juan moves over to make place next to him.
‘A nightie then. You can buy yourself a nightie.’ he says hopefully, patting the bed…
‘But she said there were two single beds!’ Arthur scratches his head.
‘She said an extra bed.’
Arthur looks around the room, even under the huge waterbed. ‘I can’t see anything that resembles an extra bed!’
‘Don’t worry, Arthur. Let’s call reception… There’s probably been a mistake.’
Enora Kravitz takes the complaint and tells them she’ll be right over. Arthur sits down on the couch and switches on the TV while Granny restlessly walks around the spacious room, taking in the decorations.
‘Right over, she said?’
‘It’s been almost 20 minutes, Arthur. We can see the reception from here.’
A knock on the door and Missy peeks in. ‘I hope I don’t disturb you lovebirds!’
She doesn’t wait for an answer, but barges right in.
‘I thought I would have a look at your outfits, Granny. I might borrow something – just until our suitcase arrives!’
Arthur turns off the TV, ‘I’ll just head over to reception, then.’
Missy delves through Granny’s new dresses, and quickly decides on an apricot sundress with matching hat.
‘I really like this outfit! I might even keep it, this color suits me better anyway!’ She turns this way and that, checking herself out in the mirror, ‘Have you brought shoes that goes with it?’
‘I’m sure I did.’ Granny rummages in her suitcase and hands over a pair of sandals.
‘Don’t you think we could change the welcome presents? Juan is allergic to flowers, and you’ll never eat all those fruits anyway.’
Granny sighs. ‘I’m sure Arthur won’t mind…’
‘I won’t mind what?’ Arthur peeks in.
‘Changing the fruit against flowers.’
Arthur looks at Granny, ‘If you don’t mind, I don’t neither.’
‘Well. That’s settled then.’ Missy plops a grape into her mouth, ‘Could you help me carry the fruit over to our room?’
Arthur picks up the heavy fruit bowl. ‘Miss Kravitz will be right over, Tara. And I’ll be right back!’
Enora Kravitz shows up just before Arthur and Juan brings in the flower basket. Granny is explaining hers and Arthur’s dilemma, and Juan decides to help her, and also get some personal information concerning the King size waterbed…
Impassively the receptionist stands in the crossfire of the clients, all talking at the same time. Granny isn’t even sure she has listened at all.
Mumbling about curious people coming to the Love Motel to have separate beds, she exits. Juan follows her out, asking about the mechanism of the waterbed…
‘Gawddaimmit woman! What in the friggin’ hell have you done to my pants!?!’ Juan peeks out of the little bathroom.
‘Oh, do you like them?’
‘Do I frigging like them!?!’
‘As we won’t get our suitcase back before tomorrow and Arthur isn’t your size and you said “No shopping”… I just cut off your pants while you showered! It’s too hot outside for pants anyway – everybody’s wearing shorts!’
She looks him over as he seething steps out of the bathroom. ‘I think they look good. Maybe I should sew the new curtains myself… Oh, and Arthur called. He’s waiting for you to check out the facilities. Can I have a shower now?’
Juan doesn’t answer. Grumbling, he just exits, slamming the door for good measure.
Together with Arthur they walk over to the swimming pool. Or what will become a swimming pool sometime in the future.
‘Maybe we should come back in a couple of months.’ Arthur jokes.
‘Yeah. Then you won’t need no extra bed.’ Juan nudges Arthur and winks.
‘I guess you’re right…’
‘Yeah…’ Both men sigh.
‘At least the brochure wasn’t lying about the distance from the motel… Well… Let’s take the bus into town and visit.’
‘I saw a bus stop over there.’ Juan gestures behind him.
Arthur decides to have a word with the receptionist, while Juan picks up his wife and Granny.
‘Moon. Arthur Moon. I wanted to-’
‘Oh, yes. Mr. Moon. The extra bed! We’re working on it.’
‘In fact it’s not about the bed. It’s about the swimming pool.’
‘I see… Well, it’s not quite finished yet.’
‘That’s a euphemism.’
‘No, sir. It’s the syndicate. There are new regulations about pool depth and while it’s not settled, all work on swimming pools in Lucky Palms is delayed. It should have been finished two months ago.’
Arthur shakes his head, but he knows how complicated the administrations can be… Thanking her he exits.
A young man on his way in holds the door for Arthur. The receptionist straightens up, rearranging the counter.
‘Mr. Lestat! We didn’t expect you back so soon!’
‘I bet you didn’t,’ he grumbles. ‘I left for a fortnight with Betty and you’ve succeeded in turning this place upside down!’
Aha! The manager! Arthur thinks, retracing his steps. ‘Mr. Lestat. I’m sorry to interrupt you but maybe you can help me with a rather urgent matter. My name is Arthur Moon, and-’
Mr. Lestat shakes his hand with a warm smile. ‘Mr. Moon. The winner of Fairview’s Soccer lottery and who’s in desperate need of an extra bed?’
‘The same.’ Arthur chuckles.
‘Isn’t one of the cabins getting vacated tomorrow morning, Miss Kravitz?’
‘Err… I’ll check, Mr. Lestat… Indeed. Cabin number three.’
‘We’ll move your belongings first thing in the morning, Sir.’
‘Err… Straight away? You mean I’ll have my own room tomorrow night?’
‘Yes. Isn’t that what you wanted in the first place? Two single rooms.’
‘Yes. That was the plan…’
‘Well, I’m sorry there aren’t any single rooms in our motel, and we were overbooked-’ he looks meaningfully at Miss Kravitz ‘-when you arrived, Sir. But now we’re able to accommodate you according to your reservation.’
Arthur realizes he doesn’t want to spend time away from Granny. Even if that means he has to sleep on the couch…
‘Well. I don’t think it will be necessary with a new room. I would really prefer an extra bed…’
The hotel manager rubs his chin, giving Arthur a knowing look. ‘As you like. We’ll try our best to find you an extra bed…’
‘Could you recommend something nice to visit this afternoon? Apart from the casinos, we’re saving them for tonight.’
Mr. Lestat searches in a drawer, handing over a glossy brochure and some tickets. ‘Here you are, Sir. To pardon us for the absence of swimming pool and all inconvenience we’ve caused you…’
Arthur joins the others at the bus stop, a huge smile on his lips. ‘I just talked to the manager. He was most helpful. He recommended a nice place where to view the whole city, and we got tickets for the bus. And a surprise!’
‘That’s excellent news!’
‘What number shall we take?’
Juan studies the map, ‘If we just stay on it, I reckon it’ll take us around the whole town and beyont…’
‘I feel bad about the receptionist. I heard him fire her as I left.’
Granny squeezes his hand. ‘Don’t feel bad, Arthur. This motel business could fall apart if he can’t trust the employees to take care of the clients correctly.’
Their first stop is at The Blooming Cactus Bistro which is said to have the best view in town. They feed coins into the telescopes and admire the view.
Granny puts her eye to the visor and gasps. The view is incredible. She pans down a little… Now what is that? A cave?
‘Eek!’ Granny yelps and takes a step back.
‘What happened, Tara? Are you all right?’ Arthur leaves his telescope and hurries over to Granny, a worried frown on his face.
‘Oh, my. I thought I saw a monster!’ She laughs nervously, ‘But it was only an insect on the glass! How stupid of me.’
They both laugh.
‘Look over there, Tara.’
Arthur gently guides the telescope, ‘Can you see the two specks high up there, to your right?’
‘Err… Yeah! Now I see them… Bald eagles! So close you think you could touch them… They are beautiful… I’m so glad the Congress voted for a bald eagle to become our national symbol and not a turkey!’
‘Yeah. Could you imagine all those tough guys tattoo a turkey and the flag to their biceps?’
Granny giggles, ‘Or the turkey looking fiercely down on all the courts of law in the country?’
Now they both laugh. ’
‘Did you know they have 7,000 feathers? The eagles, not the turkeys.’
‘Nooo… How did you know that?’
‘It’s written here, in the brochure.’
Juan leans back and asks, ‘If you two are done with the fun facts, shan’t we go n’ have a look at the “surprise”?’
Missy claps her hands and rises so fast her handbag falls from her lap…
A half hour later they’re installed at a table at the Perfect Paradise Pool complex. Missy sports a new bathing suit and Juan a smile. He had forgotten his wallet at the hotel, so Granny paid for it.
‘Have y’all fixed drinks?’ Juan pulls out a chair and sits down. .
‘I’d like one with an umbrella!’ Missy chirps.
‘Are they better?’ Juan looks at his wife who nods enthusiastically.
Arthur searches the crowd with his eyes, ‘Where’s Tara?’
‘She ran into an old friend of ours, Eli Vokoban.’ Missy turns her attention towards her husband, ‘You might remember him, he was at our wedding, honey.’
‘You mean the old guy, married to that young chick who called him sugar daddy?’
‘Lina Lancaster. Except they aren’t married. And he’s your age.’ Missy points out.
‘Yeah, I can see him beyont. Chattin up your sister.’ Juan nods with his chin.
Arthur turns on his seat right in time to see Eli whisper something in Granny’s ear… He clears his throat and turns back to the others.
‘What would you like to drink?’
‘Just a Bud’s.’
‘A Jack and ginger! Or something fancy… a Mojito! Or maybe a Piña Colada… Whatever, as long as it has an umbrella!’
Arthur brings the drinks, ‘To Love Motel!’ They clink their glasses…
‘Aquafitness! Follow me!’ A young man in Baywatch shorts stops at their table. ‘Have you signed up for Aquafitness?’
The three of them shake their heads.
‘Maybe you could help us with the parasol?’ Missy asks lewdly, ogling his six-pack.
‘Ah, there you are.’ Granny leans over Arthur with a hand on his shoulder. ‘I just talked to Eli, he advised us to use the Jacuzzis now. If we wait too long they’ll be crowded.’
They head over to a whirlpool in a secluded corner, far from the noisy area around the main pool…
Arthur tries to settle in the whirlpool but he floats up again, kicking a black woman’s legs.
‘I reckon we can switch.’ Juan offers.
‘No, you can not!’ Missy puts her hands on his shoulders and firmly pushes him down on his seat, using him for support to get into the swirling water.
‘I’m just sayin…’
‘Nice for you.’
Granny giggles, sliding into place next to Arthur, struggling to sit down on her seat.
Arthur changes position, causing him to kick the woman’s legs again.
‘I’m awfully sorry. I never thought you’d have to struggle so much just to lounge peacefully!’
‘Don’t worry… I’m Kadia King.’ They shake hands, ‘Might as well know who you’re kicking!’ she chuckles.
After introducing themselves, they all settle back, trying to relax.
‘Isn’t it wonderful?’
‘Yes. Perfect…’ She’s so beautiful… I can’t believe she’s here with me… ‘It’s a good thing they didn’t have an extra bed!’ he blurts out.
‘Arthur! How can you say so?’
‘I just mean, if we had got an extra bed, and if the pool was built, we wouldn’t have been right here, right now.’
‘Oh.’ Granny feels stupid.
Arthur puts his arm behind her and Granny scoots closer. She sighs contently. ‘This is paradise… I’m so glad you won this trip…’
‘Yeah, me too…So what did your friend say?’
‘Eli? He told me the baby was born!’
‘Baby? Was there a pregnant lady at the wedding?’
‘Yes. Lina. But she wasn’t far gone, you could hardly see the baby bump.’
‘I wouldn’t have noticed if she was carrying twins,’ he says, ‘I only had eyes for you…’
Granny chuckles and blushes a little. ‘Anyway, the baby wasn’t due until January, so he’s still in neonatal care at the Sun Health Hospital…’
Missy sighs. Arthur is so romantic and tender, pulling out chairs and complimenting my sister… While my man is-
‘Stop ogling, Juan!’ she hisses without moving her lips.
‘Would you mind if I join you?’ A statuesque blonde have appeared at the side of the Jacuzzi.
‘Yes. We would.’ Missy answers without looking at her.
Juan sighs when the woman walks away. He had had such an incredible view…
They don’t stay in the Jacuzzi for very long. With all the people passing by every two minutes, asking to join them, they decide to move over to the main pool instead.
Granny and Missy tan on air mattresses while the men have a drink by the poolside, talking about fly fishing and golf… Eli joins them, proposing to go check out the famous wishing well.
‘I’ll let you of at the botanical garden, it’s not far from the hospital. Lina will be thrilled to meet you again…’
The wishing well is crowded, as usual. It was the main tourist attraction long before the first casino was built, and now it has become a must for the numerous players to come here wishing for luck before they hit the tables or slot machines.
Eli has passed some time with his son and wife at the hospital, while his friends visited the Botanical Garden. He has cajoled Lina into coming with him to the wishing well to make a wish for their son, but she doesn’t want to join the crowd. She feels so fat and ugly since she gave birth.
‘Selfie! Smile, Juan! 1, 2, 3 – flea’s knees!’
Missy waves Lina and Eli over, ‘I’m so happy to see you again, Lina! Congratulations to the baby, but I didn’t know you were expecting again?’
Lina just looks at Missy and with a sob she runs away, Eli following in her wake.
‘Oups! Bless her heart. Did I say something wrong?’
‘Nah. Pregnant women…’
‘Someone really should talk to her. Poor girl has no fashion sense at all. She’s dressed like a $10 Bridgeport whore, God love her… Do you think we can leave soon? I’m really hungry, Juan.’
Eli catches up with a sobbing Lina.
‘I want to go home, Eli. I told you I’m too fat and ugly!’
‘You are not. You’ll soon recover your flat stomach… And you can’t leave now, you haven’t even said hi to Tara and Arthur yet.’
‘I don’t care, I’ll see them tomorrow… I’ll never be skinny like that girl in purple again…’ She burrows her face on Eli’s shoulder. ‘Please, take me home…’
Missy and Juan watch them leave. ‘So moody… must be the hormones, God bless her.’
Arthur and Granny have not even noticed the mini drama, occupied as they are to make their wishes…
Granny closes her eyes, kisses the coin and throws it…
… straight into one of the fountain outlets! Arthur laughs at Granny’s astounded expression.
‘I’ll definitely bring you along next time the summer festival comes to town,’ he jokes. ‘I’ve always wanted one of those man-sized fluffy Teddy bears on my bed.’
‘But you can only have one wish,’ Granny wails.
‘I don’t think that one counts, as the fountain swallowed it. Here, make another. Or the same.’
He hands her another coin, and Granny repeats the gestures. Closing her eyes, concentrating, kissing the coin and tossing it – much less forcefully. The coin breaks the surface of the water and comes to lay on the glimmering mat of money that is covering the bottom of the well.
Granny waves to Missy. ‘It’s your turn! Doesn’t Juan want to make a wish?’
‘You know he doesn’t like throwing away his money… Well. I don’t mind! I’m going to wish we’ll get rich!’
‘Shhh… Don’t tell or it won’t happen!’
They stop for shrimp cocktails and drinks at “Drinks at Diamondback”.
‘All this fancy food… I long for a rare steak…’ Arthur mutters.
‘Yeah. I have a hankerin’ for a cheeseburger with fries on the side and coleslaw!’ Juan adds.
Missy takes a seat. ‘I saw a steakhouse on the way here. Let’s call this the hors d’œuvre and take the main course there. I’m starving!’
‘That’s my gal!’ Juan lights up.
After a hearty dinner, they hitch back up to the viewing point just in time for the magnificent Sunset…
‘If we win enough money, I’d like a house like the ones over there.’
‘Yeah. With a pool…’
‘Excuse me,sir. Ma’am. A photo souvenir to bring back to Hickoryville?’
‘Bugger off. We ain’t need no pictures.’ Juan waves the annoying photographer off.
The itinerant tourist photographer gives Juan a finger behind his back and approaches Granny and Arthur.
‘Why can’t we take a picture?’
‘Why should we?’
‘Because it could be nice to have a glossy photo to show Athan when we get back!’
‘He’s too little. He’d probably chew it up. I saw he had teeth.’
‘Of course he has teeth. He’s about a year old after all.’
‘Uh-huh. Arthur can give us one of the pictures he’s taken if you want one soo much.’
‘Yeah… I miss Athan. Don’t you?’
Missy sighs. She knows he’ll come around… One day…
Granny and Arthur have posed for the photographer and are waiting for the picture to develop. Granny thinks that her sister seems happy after all, with her Juan.
‘I think we should do things together more often. With my sister and Juan. You seem to get along rather well.’
‘I’d rather spend more time with you alone…’ He looks deeply into her eyes.
‘Here you are! That’ll be 10$.’
Granny backs away, a little flustered. They had almost kissed, and she regrets the magic moment were gone…
‘Maybe we should leave. It’s getting dark…’
Granny looks longingly at the new moon. She would like to stay, but she can see her sister and Juan getting up from the park bench.
‘Let’s go make a fortune!’’ Juan rubs his hands.
‘Here, can you take the picture in your bag?’
Their fingers touch when he hands her the photo and she draws her breath. Something has definitely changed between her and Arthur tonight…
After the romantic sunset, they hit the slot machines. They lose more than they win though. Around midnight they call it quits and take a cab back to the hotel – only to discover that Missy has left the key code in their room!
‘You said I should keep it somewhere safe, Arthur! And the safe in the cupboard seems to be the safest place in the room! You’re even supposed to leave your jewellery there!’
‘Safe, yes! But somewhere accessible! I’m sure you don’t even have the code to the safe memorized!’
‘Because there’s a code? Lucky I don’t have any jewelry to put in there…’ she says to herself.
Arthur starts to say something, but Granny puts a soothing hand on his arm. ‘I’m sure Juan can go back to the reception and get a new code.’
‘Yeah. Come Missy.’ The Darer’s vanishes in the dark.
‘Your sister can really be aggravating sometimes!’
‘You tell me…’
Still no extra bed. But Arthur doesn’t mind sleeping on the couch. He lies awake, listening to Granny’s steady breathing, until he falls asleep himself…
Juan discover his copy of the key code in his shirt pocket and they promptly backtrack to their room.
Missy changes into the new nightie she bought at the shop at the pool. Or rather, that Granny paid.
‘Do you love me, Juan?’ she calls from the bathroom.
‘So why do you never say it? Come on, be romantic… Like Arthur.’
‘Uhm… I love you more than a hog loves slop!’
‘What!?!’ Missy steps out of the tiny bathroom, ‘I think you could do better than that…’
His eyes pops open wide. ‘Holy Mother of God! Ain’t that a sight for sore eyes.’
‘You might be a hog, Juan Darer, but this-’ She gestures at her body, ‘-ain’t no slop!’
‘Well, I’ll a swaney!’ he gulps.
‘Hmm…’ She advances towards the waterbed with an exaggerated swag, ‘It might be a good idea to let me have access to your credit card more often…’
Part II – End of Chapter 33