Chapter Three

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Chapter Three 

Scorpio: " someone from the past will make an appearance in your life, but confusion, vagueness, or misrepresentation can occur in your relationships, so beware of making commitments at this time. You're likely to see things much more clearly and realistically later on."  

Winter gulped the rest of her cocktail then spluttered into her napkin, coughing until her eyes watered. Her heart was racing at the sight of him again, so unchanged, so unaffected by all that had happened between them in the past. "Are you ok, Winter, do you want a glass of water?" Melody asked solicitously, patting Winter on the back. Regaining her equilibrium, Winter shook her head, afraid to look directly at Melody in case her eyes gave away the feelings in her soul. "I'm ok, I guess I just drank too fast." Winter replied, hoping her voice didn't sound as strangled as it felt. Melody returned her gaze to the stage, her brow furrowed in thought, it seemed like she was beginning to recognise Dan too. Winter stood up and pushed her chair away, "I'm just going to get some fresh air", she explained, hurrying off before Melody could ask what was going on. Outside, on the deck, Winter leant over the railing and gazed into the dark glittering depths of the sea. She let her thoughts spin out like a long satin ribbon, spooling in the brisk breeze. Why? Why now did she have to face reminders of her past? Why did her love for him never fade away? Again memories of their time together haunted her, secrets whispered to each other in the darkness, plans made for their futures, endearments muttered and the feeling that their souls were entwined .Winter took big gulps of air and breathed out slowly. Her knuckles were white from gripping the railings tightly and her heart beat was racing. How could he be here? The last time Winter had heard from him, he was a travel guide in Europe! Winter gritted her teeth and returned to the restaurant, knowing that sooner or later she would have to face him again. Winter took her seat again next to Melody and felt relieved that there was no time to talk as the music had been turned up and the dance floor was filling up.  

"C'mon Win, lets have a dance, I want to catch the eye of some young, single gay guy, I'm sure there has to be some on this cruise, although all I've seen at the moment is loved up couples!" Claude dragged her onto the dance floor and started gyrating his hips and waving his arms in the air. Winter reluctantly followed him and after letting go of her inhibitions, she joined in with his flamboyant style. From the corner of her eye, she saw Dan lurking in the shadows, his tiger-like eyes were narrowed jealously, yet his posture was relaxed as he leant against a pillar observing her movements, like a crocodile watching its prey. Winter's skin tingled, knowing that Dan was watching her, so she decided to give him something to worry about, that is if he still had feelings for her after all this time. During a slow song, Winter snuggled up to Claude, hip to hip, and wrapped her arms languorously around Claude's waist. Claude glimpsed the look of determination in her shadowy gaze and reluctantly played along, but Winter knew he would be expecting a lengthy explanation. Dan moved away from the pillar, and sauntered in her direction, at that time Winter felt her heel slide across the floor and she lost her grip on Claude, and ended up flat on her back on the dance floor. The lights illuminated her on the floor while the music remained as a throbbing heartbeat in the background. Groggily Winter sat up, parts of her chignon had come loose, so tendrils of ice-blonde hair haloed around her flushed face. Claude reached forward, his hands outstretched to help her up but Dan stepped in first, and pulled her up so quickly and with so much force that she fell against his warm, wide chest. "Winter, how I've missed you", he murmured with his lips up against her ear. Winter's heart was beating so loudly she wasn't sure if she had imagined the soft words he spoke. A crowd had started to gather around them, and as if realising that he was jeopardising his professionalism by holding her in his arms, he pushed her away from him "I'll let your husband take care of you, I'm sure you'd rather be in his arms!" His expression was stony as he stormed away. Winter was left standing on her own until Claude approached. "Are you ok, do you want me to walk you back to your cabin? "Who was he? He is delectable!! I loved those legs in the shorts", Claude asked, his words rushing into one another. 

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