As I stand at the top of the water slide, my stomach starts to squeeze into a nervous knot. I guess I never realized I was afraid of heights. I lean against the rail and my eyes observe the great distance between myself and the hard ground below me.
Evan brings me into his arms, kissing the top of my head and wrapping me into one of his warm hugs.
“You’re gonna love it, Stells. I promise. It’s almost our turn. You want to go first? Or do you want me to?”
I bite my lip and give Evan a frightened look. He chuckles under his breath and squeezes me tighter.
“God, you’re so cute. Ok how about this. I’ll go down first. That way, when it’s your turn, I’ll already be waiting for you at the bottom. Sound good?”
I nod my head a single time. The lifeguard on the platform shouts for the next person and Evan breaks his hold from me. His athletic body positions himself in the narrow tube. He crosses his arms over his chest and looks back at me once more. He flashes me a toothy smile and then brings his attention forward.
His body creeps forward until I see it zoom down the tube. My palms begin to sweat. I feel like it’s only been seconds when the life guard turns to me and says, ‘Next.’
My feet fumble their way up to the edge of the ride. The lifeguard shoots me an impatient look. My right foot steps into the gushing water and I feel my body start to shake. The lifeguard opens his mouth to probably say something along the lines of ‘hurry the hell up,’ but when his eyes meet mine, he stops himself.
He lowers his sun glasses down the bridge of his nose. A sly grin stretches across his face and his eyes devour the length of my body.
“Nervous?” he asks, taking a step closer to me. “Or are you just standing around in hopes that I’ll hit on you? Because if it’s the second option sexy lady, you don’t have to wait much longer…”
His question puts a frown on my face, and thankfully, is enough for me to forget about how nervous I am about the ride. I swallow down my sarcastic reply and pacify my disgust with a roll of my eyes.
I give myself a starting push and then cross my arms over my chest. My body moves slowly at first, the gushing water behind me not helping my progress. But once I move over the first ‘hump’ of the ride, my body lunges forward.
My stomach feels like it’s somewhere near my esophagus and I hold my breath the entire time, not knowing when to expect an onslaught of water. My body travels through twists and turns, my muscles strained with stress.
My body chutes out of the last turn and I fall several feet before I am engulfed with water. I kick my legs and arms until I reach the surface of the water. My lungs feel like they’re going to explode as I let out a long-overdue mouthful of air. I gasp for breath as I kick my way to the side of the pool.
As promised, Evan is there waiting for me. His strong arms help me out of the pool and he embraces me once again.
“I was afraid you’d never come down,” Evan whispers into my ear.
“Why? I didn’t take that long, did I?”
“Not at all,” Evan says with a grin. “But I saw how nervous you were up there. I’m proud of you for going through with it.”
I show off a triumphant smile.
“And see? It wasn’t so bad was it?”
With his question my smile falters and Evan lets out a bellowing laugh.
“Ok, ok, Stells. Now more rides. Let’s just go soak up a little bit more sun and then we can head to dinner. Sound like a plan?”
I slip my hand into Evan’s, intertwining my fingers with his.
“It sounds perfect,” I confirm. “Absolutely perfect.”
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