I was in the bathtub of an elegant bathroom. Golden rays of sunlight poured in through the textured glass. The air smelled of cinnamon and butter, fresh and sweet. I inhaled the air more deeply, feeling the satisfaction of absolute comfort. But then I realized...
My clothes were wet and soggy and I smelled of salt. My heart pounded against my sternum.
How did I get here? I thought.
The thought of appearing in a bathtub after being thrown to the sea was ridiculous and a complete nonsense. But how did I get here? I'm sure we both wanted to know the answer.
I got up from the bathtub and staggered to the oaken door. I placed my hand on the brass doorknob before I heard incoherent tapping. I listened for a while, only before I realized that the tapping were actually footsteps. I scrambled away in panic, but the door flew open, and a man stepped in.
I must say, he was a good-looking man. He seemed to be in his early forties, but he still managed to look masculine and firm. He wore a gentleman's suit and had light blond hair the color of honey with a few streaks of gray. He had blue eyes like aquamarine and he had a cleanly trimmed beard. His face was angular and handsome, but what really caught my attention was the aura that radiated from him. By just looking at him, I could sense years of experience and abundance in wisdom.
"You okay?" he said. "You look like a wet cat."
I stumbled backwards. "I'm sorry, sir. I didn't mean to show up in your house--"
"It's okay," he said, glancing over his shoulder. "I guess I'll give you a little tour. Come with me."
He gave me a towel and introduced himself as "John," a quite common name. And I gladly introduced myself, though when he heard my name, his expression turned into anguish and worry, but he hid it with a forced smile.
"Okay, you seriously need some dry clothes," he said at last after a few minutes of indecision. "Wait here just for a little while."
So he gave me his clothes, a simple shirt and pants, which somehow fitted me, though I got the feeling he was slightly bigger than me.
His house was the most amazing thing I had ever seen. Its staircase and floor was made of marble. It had a garden with fountains and a dining room with chandelier lamps made from crystal. His bedroom was half as big as Fred's work-house.
"Ah, I see that you're pretty impressed with my mansion," he said. "But that's not my right to boast. Come on here, lad. I'll teach you something."
But my mind had lost interest in his mansion and its interiors. I was now thinking about my strange encounter with my attacker last night, and my strange savior that had saved my "life."
"Why am I here?" I asked. "And how did I get here?"
John hesitated. Our footsteps echoed in the wide hallway.
"Perhaps you would tell me what happened last night?" he asked back at me.
I sighed, and I told him everything, including my strange arrival in his bathroom.
John stifled a laugh when I mentioned the part of my appearance in the bathtub.
"What is it?" I demanded.
"You're full of curiosity," he said, "always raring with the spirit of discovery. Now, forget the 'bathtub' part, it's not important, but would you mind telling me who attacked you?"
"I don't know," I admitted, "he tried to kill me by strangling me, until someone knocked both of us off our feet."
John nodded, his eyes filled with concern and his expression solemn. We had stopped in front of a large mahogany double door. We entered the room, and my heart almost skipped a beat.
It was full of weapons. Guns lined the wall to my left while swords and daggers were neatly lined to my right. Before me was something like a huge canon that could be very useful in the Civil War, which was still raging.
"No way," I said, stepping back. "Nope. I'm not going to touch those stuffs."
"Oh, don't worry," John said, chuckling as he plucked off a pistol from the wall. He calmly polished the weapon's muzzle and reloaded it with ease.
"Wha-what are you doing?" I stammered.
"There's nothing to be afraid of, Nick," he said. "I'm not going to hurt you, but we're going to do some real business."
"What kind of business?" I demanded.
He slipped the pistol into his pocket and looked at me, forcing me to stare back at his blue eyes which shimmered like clear water.
"We have to meet our clients first."