As they drove to the mountain, Pam mostly listened as Lennox talked, telling her about the island and pointing out various features while reminiscing about his youth there.
"Any Sasquatch sightings?" she asked as they rounded a curve.
"Nah, I don't think the big guy can swim, never made it out here." He glanced over with a grin as he shifted the car into a lower gear to take the hill.
They continue to climb for a couple miles until they reached a vista point that overlooked the bay. Lennox pulled in and shut off the car.
"Here, let's have a look. This used to be one of my favorite spots to come to when I needed to get away and think."
Pam started to open her door.
"Hang on, hang on," Lennox said and got out, jogging around the car to open the door for her.
The view was breathtaking, overlooking the bay and the western side of the island. Pam glanced up and down the coast, shielding her eyes with her hand from the sun that was coming and going as the clouds broke up, drifting north.
"I can see the attraction," she said. "So how did you get into acting?"
Lennox gave a crooked smile. "It's kind of stupid. I moved to L.A. with a buddy, mostly for the hell of it, thinking I needed to get out of this place. I tagged along with him to an audition one day but when we showed up, they weren't interested in him and asked me to audition. I got the part, and he and I never spoke again."
"Wow, that's terrible."
"Yes and no. He was kind of a loser. There wasn't much he wouldn't do to make a buck, legal or not. Getting that part and getting away from him probably kept me from getting killed in a drug deal. I've told the story so many times now, sorry if you've already heard it."
"I don't really read the tabloids or pay much attention to those magazines that hound celebrities to death. Any idea what became your friend?"
"Last I knew he was selling used cars."
"I bet the tabloids loved that story."
"More the late-night talk shows. My agent told me to play it up, make it sound like I was some thug-turned-heartthrob, said women like the bad boy type." He looked at her. "How about it? Do you like the bad boys?"
Pam felt herself blush, and cleared her throat a little. She sensed he was teasing and decided to play along. "I guess it depends on what kind of 'bad'."
He smiled. "Maybe I'll have to renew my street cred."
"Just don't get shot on my account."
With a laugh he reached to put his arm around her, but the wind came up and in another moment they were standing in a downpour. They ran the few steps back to the car, and Lennox let her in before running around to the driver's side and sliding in himself.
"Ok, time to go. Just as well we didn't go hiking after all," he said. He started the car, backed out of the turnaround, and headed back down the way they'd come.
They drove to a restaurant at the opposite end of town from the art gallery where they had lunch while they warmed up and dried off. He asked about Pam's plans, how she'd ended up coming up to the island, and she gave him an abbreviated version of her own story.
"Not exactly life in the fast lane," she said.
"Think you'll ever move back there?"
"That is the plan, but I hope to have a job lined up before I do."
He nodded. "You look like you belong there, not here."
Uncertain what that was supposed to mean, she said, "I don't know about that."
"I just mean you're too pretty to hide out up here. You look like someone who enjoys the finer things in life."
"Ok, I'm not sure how to take that."
He gave a little laugh. "I'm sorry, I meant it as a compliment. I just think you'll get bored up here. It's fine for a while, but it can get monotonous if you're used to a faster pace."
She said nothing but feared he was right. Life had been busy since she'd been up there with all there was to learn about the gallery and the art world, and then dealing with the expansion and reopening. Once the dust settled from all that it did seem like life here would be much slower.
After they finished lunch, Lennox dropped her off at her aunt's house and said, "I'll be tied up with family stuff for the next few days, but maybe we can get together again before I head back to L.A.?"
"Sure, I'd like that."
And this time he did put his arm around her, standing in the shelter of the front porch, where he kissed her on the mouth, gently at first, then with a little more passion as she responded.
"That was nice," he said softly.
"Yeah," was all she managed in return.
"What do you mean, you're dating Lennox Medcalf?" Trudy was fairly screaming into the phone at Pam.
"Ok, calm down, I didn't say I was dating him, I said we went to lunch." In her mind's eye, she imagined Trudy about to faint onto her couch.
"All the time you lived in Los Angeles you didn't meet anyone. Then you move to the frozen north and play kissy-face with THE celebrity every woman in America would give her eyeteeth to get near. I'm coming up, you have to introduce me."
Pam laughed. "I don't know if I'll see him again or not. He said he's busy now with family, and who knows? He may leave after that. I can't guarantee I'll have a chance to introduce you."
"Well when are you coming back here? Maybe when you're both back here you can find time to introduce me to him."
"Trudy, relax. I'm sure he'll forget all about me once he leaves the island and gets back to the glitz and glamour there."
"I need a drink. You're unbelievable. How do you do it? You go to the farthest reaches of civilization and find Mr. Right."
Pam rolled her eyes. She was beginning to regret telling Trudy anything about Lennox. Their frequent phone calls had mostly consisted of Trudy bemoaning her loneliness since Pam had left and she'd broken things off with Ron. Pam had only hoped to divert Trudy from the usual with her little bit of excitement, but she was afraid she'd made things worse.
"Hang on, I didn't say he's Mr. Right. If anything he's Mr. Hollywood, and I doubt he's giving any thought to settling down with anyone." Who would? she thought. He had everything going for him, and if he was the playboy Aunt Carol seemed to think he was, she figured she was just someone to amuse himself with while he was there on the island.
"Anyway, I have an interview at a firm down there in about a week. I was wondering if I could stay with you for a couple days while I'm there?" she said, trying to turn the conversation.
"Of course you can, you don't even have to ask."
"Thanks. Listen I need to go but I'll call you tomorrow and give you my flight info and all."
At first she hadn't been going to mention the job interview and that she was going to be in Los Angeles. Once she was down there again Trudy would no doubt try to persuade her to stay. She wondered if Lennox had a friend she could fix Trudy up with.
YOU ARE READING
A World AwayRomance
Pam Nelson's life in Los Angeles is unraveling. Out of work, out of money, she agrees to model for her best friend Trudy's boyfriend, Ron. But Ron has more on his mind than photography with Pam. Following a disastrous meeting with him, she decides t...