Author's Note: So guys, I hope you like this chapter since it seems a bit rushed ...
Welcome to Curacao
When the jet finally landed in Curacao and we managed to get into the airport, Henry handed me a pair of sunglasses. He said nothing except ‘put it on.’
I stuffed them on and let Henry wheel our luggage through the small airport. Once we finally got through the international flights exit, I knew why Henry had wanted me to wear sunglasses.
A large crowd of paparazzi were waiting, and once they saw us, they tried their best to get close. It was annoying. I hadn’t seen them in ages. They were snapping pictures, recording videos and shouting questions such as ‘Henry please comment on the issue of your father being in jail!’ and ‘Lainie, is it true you are only with Henry for his money?!’
Even though I couldn’t see his expression, I sensed Henry had wanted to punch the person who had asked that. We escaped the paparazzi as we headed downstairs via the elevator. Once we reached the elevator, the three of us were relieved.
“Do you think I could stop by the ladies downstairs?” I asked. I had drunk a lot of water on the way here, which maybe wasn’t such a good idea.
Steve seemed to be weighing their options. It was weird looking at him now, knowing he actually loved a woman. “Alright, but be quick. I’ll wait for you outside.” He then turned to Henry, who had been leaning casually against the wall of the elevator, looking bored. “Henry, you go ahead into the limo waiting for us outside. Oh, and take our luggage too.”
Steve gave him a grin and Henry shrugged as if it was no big deal. Once we reached the bottom floor of the airport, we headed our separate ways. Steve escorted me to the ladies room in case I got caught up with paparazzi. And I really had no idea how to handle them. All I’ve been taught is ‘ignore them.’
But of course, literally he didn’t escort me into the ladies. He just waited around the corner, sitting on a bench.
As I walked into the toilets, my eyes widened as I realised there was a man standing by the basin. A man! Oh my god.
He must be a rapist … or a perv. My heart was beating double time now. His eyes met mine through the mirror, which meant I was doomed. He had spotted me. I shakily pointed a finger at him (like a warning) and prepared to scream for Steve but his eyes widened and he rushed forward to cover my mouth with his hand. I screamed against his mouth and struggled out of his firm grip. Oh my god! He’s going to rape me and kill me and feed my body to the sharks! I managed to get one of my hands out of his grasp and threw a hard punch at his stomach. He grunted and staggered back a bit. That was all I needed - a moment of weakness.
I slammed him against the wall and kneed him in his privates. He groaned and fell to the floor.
“That’s what you get rapist!” I hissed. But wow, was he a handsome one. What a waste.
I spun around and jogged back outside to report the guy who deserved to go to jail, but due to my clumsiness, I bumped into a man. “Oh sorry,” I apologised.
The man gave me a funny look. “Did you just come out of the men’s?” He asked, bemused.
“No, the ladies,” I answered. To prove my point, I pointed up at the sign above the door …which indicated the men’s.
I felt my face burn. Great. I had mistaken an innocent guy for a rapist and beat him up. The man chuckled and continued his way down the corridor. I rushed back inside to apologise for my stupidness. He was slowly getting up from the floor, flinching from the pain. He looked up, saw my apologetic expression and figured that I had made a mistake.
“Here to throw a punch at my face too?” He asked wryly.
I shook my head. “I’m so sorry … I neverrealisedthiswasthemensroom.”
His eyes, which were a jade green, twinkled. “I’m sorry, I didn’t quite catch that.”
I scowled. “You know what I mean.”
A hint of a smile played on his lips. I briefly wondered why he was here in Curacao. A vacation most likely. I looked at him, I mean really looked at him. Yep, definitely a vacation. I could imagine him at the sunshine-filled beach hitting the waves. With his messy blonde locks, half hidden underneath his cap, and sun kissed skin, he seemed like a surfer.
“Apology accepted,” He said. “I’m … Keith.”
“Oh … I’m Lainie.”
“Nice to meet you Lainie,” Keith said, a grin tugging his mouth. But then his eyes assessed me. “But I swear I’ve seen you from somewhere.”
I rolled my eyes. “Don’t tell me it’s a pick up line.”
Keith surprised me by laughing. “No,” he answered, sincerity in his eyes. “I just really think I’ve seen you from somewhere …”
That was when I realised I was kind of well-known - known as Henry Parker’s fiancée. And as friendly as Keith seemed, him recognizing me as the future Mrs Parker might stir trouble. So I did the sensible thing and said goodbye. “So I better go and umm … do my thing.”
Oh great. Smooth, real smooth Lainie. I mentally slapped myself for not thinking of a witty goodbye, or even a flirty one to say to this gorgeous guy.
Keith looked puzzled for a second, and then laughed. “Oh right! I’ll leave you to it.”
I awkwardly waved and walked out of the men’s and into the ladies.
When I finished doing my business, I reached Steve who jumped wildly when I tapped him on the shoulder. “Well you took long,” he said, as we started heading outside.
I sighed. “Long story short, I thought a guy was a rapist, attacked him, and then found out I was just in the wrong room."
Steve shook his head and laughed, as we went through those revolving doors which led outside. “You’re incredible.”
“Why thank you,” I said with a laugh.
As I slid into the limo which had been waiting for us, I could see paparazzi trying to find us. Lucky we made it in time.
It was a fifteen minute drive to the hotel, which was located a few minutes from the beach. Curacao was such a little, beautiful place. I couldn’t wait to get out and explore some new places and see the filming process of Henry’s new film.
I then turned to Henry and frowned. He had been uncharacteristically quiet ever since the tickle fight, which worried me a little. What was wrong with him?
I then shook my head and tried not to dwell on Henry’s erratic behaviour too much.
* * *
Royal Crystal Hotel was spread across an impressive two hundred acres of land, five minutes from the lovely seaside. I smiled as I looked out of the white paned window. Out two suites (one for Steve and one for Henry and I) were on the second highest level of the hotel – level 34.
We had a few hours to settle in, but at six we were heading to meet the director of the movie Henry was filming – Peter Crosswire. And I think the other important cast members too. All I had done was check out the pool and our suite.
“What are you doing?”
I jumped violently and nearly slipped on the polished cherry wood floor. I turned to find Henry on the far side of the suite lying lazily on the king sized mahogany bed.
Finally he spoke! Henry was alive!
“I was just admiring the view,” I answered, walking cautiously over to him. Every step I took though felt like I was on a balance beam, mainly due to what Henry’s eyes were doing to me. I felt entranced. His eyes were focusing on my own, intense but pained and a little bit scared. I had no idea what caused him the pain or the fear though and I wanted to find out. Finally, I reached him and sat down on the bed next to his lying figure.
“What’s wrong?” I asked, tilting my head to the side. After telling me his secrets back at Newport, I felt like he could confide me with anything. Well I was wrong.
After a few seconds, he sighed. “Nothing,” was all he said, which made me irritated.
“There must be something going on,” I whispered. “Is it Arianne? April? Are you worried about them? We could call them …”
Henry gulped and shook his head. “No … it’s not them.”
“Well what is it?” I asked, my eyebrows furrowing. I then spotted his hand, near my own. Tentatively, my hand inched closer to his. But when my fingers touched his, he drew his hand back quickly.
“Please Lainie … just don’t,” he said, his voice a little broken.
My eyes widened. What? He didn’t want me to listen to his problems? To care? “Don’t what?” I asked, feeling my voice rise a little bit.
“You don’t understand do you?”
I could feel my frustration and impatience rising. “Yes I don’t understand! Help me to understand! Why have you been so quiet since we had that tickle fight?!”
Henry looked at me, taking in my angry expression and my clenching fists. “Lainie … what I’m doing now is for the best.”
What? What was he doing? How could it be for the best? What was he on about? “What’s for the best?!” I nearly yelled.
Henry sat up and ran a hand through my hair. I jumped. Sparks flew from my hair to my head and all the way down to my toes. “You should get dressed. It’s nearly six,” Henry murmured.
I was outraged. So he wasn’t going to give me an answer?! Before I could say another word, he had gotten off the bed and was walking out the door. “I’ll meet you in the lobby,” he called.
I chucked his pillow on the floor. What was with him?! Why wouldn’t he answer my questions?! Was he scared? Groaning, I went to get dressed quickly and headed down to the lobby.
Steve and Henry were sitting on the baby blue sofa by the fountain. When they spotted me, they got up and we all headed out. Steve somehow had got us a limo again. Or maybe it was our personal limo our something. We had a good time chatting in the car, but mostly it was just Steve and I talking. Henry just made little comments here and there.
Whenever he looked my way (which was rarely), I would shoot him a look of evil. Quite pathetic really, but I really felt like doing it. We arrived at some fancy seafood restaurant by the beach. The restaurant was very open and smelled of the salty beach, which made it nice.
The three of us turned in the direction of the booming voice. A wealthy man, (you could tell by his suit) about Steve’s age came forward towards us, grinning.
“Hey Peter,” Steve said, clapping the man on the back.
“Hello Steve! It’s nice to see you!” Peter exclaimed. He then turned to Henry and his smile became even wider. “And my my, Henry! I haven’t seen you in years! You look just perfect for the part of Cade.”
Henry gave Peter a polite smile. “It’s great to see you again, Peter. Thank you for the compliment.”
Peter then turned to me and took my hand and kissed it. That freaked me out a bit. “And this must be the lovely Miss Watson?”
I nodded. “Just Lainie.”
“Enchanté! Come now, you must meet everyone else!”
I took my seat between Henry and a woman dressed in all white. She introduced herself to me as Leonie, the film producer of the movie. Apparently, a film producer is someone in charge of managing the expenses, organization and decisions of a movie. She makes all the decisions, so she was like the big boss. For me, it was kind of scary sitting next to the ‘big boss.’ She had laughed at that and assured me that she wasn’t a bully.
Our first course arrived to which Peter scowled. “Hudson’s not here yet,” he said, looking at his watch.
“Maybe he got caught up in traffic?” Leonie offered.
“There’s hardly any traffic in Curacao,” a girl said. I looked up at her and my eyes widened. She was actually an actress I knew, mostly because of my mother. My mother admires her looks and acting – Veronica Pierce. She was around the same age as me, with long dark tresses, creamy skin, perfect full lips and a curvy body which could kill.
Seeing her in real life made me envious, just a little. She was stunning and I felt like complete trash next to her. What made me feel even worse was that she was looking Henry up and down. Even if Henry was my fake fiancé, I felt slightly … possessive? I didn’t know what was up with me. As she stared at Henry with something like interest and possessiveness in her eyes, I turned to him and laid my left hand on his chest - my left hand, which held my engagement ring.
I saw her eyes flash to me and I tried to stifle a laugh. They were piercing through me, as if telling me to back away. Back away? Henry was engaged! This was too funny. I wiggled my left hand at her.
She eyed my ring with disdain, and then her lips turned into an angelic smile. “You must be Henry,” she purred, stretching out a hand so he could shake it.
After eyeing her hand, he shook it slowly. “And you are?”
This made Veronica flinch slightly, but her smiling face didn’t falter. “Veronica Pierce, your co-star. We’ll have a lot of fun, I can tell.”
I bit the inside of my cheek at this while Henry raised an eyebrow. “I’m sure we will.”
My heart somehow fell into my stomach at his comment. I looked up to find Veronica looking smug and trying to engage in a conversation with Henry.
As I started to eat, Peter’s voice suddenly called out, “Hudson! You’re here!”
Everyone from the table looked up to see the second most important character in the movie. I remembered that this guy was supposed to be Henry’s workmate.
As I met the eyes of Hudson, I froze. He seemed surprised to see me too, but then smiled, as if I being here was the reason to everything. “Lainie,” he said.
After composing myself, I grinned back. “Hey Keith.”