“Oh my, Elle, that guy over there is fully checking you out.”
She didn’t have to look far to find him. Once again, he wore a small smile as if he had a secret he couldn’t tell. He stood closer to them this time. His tall, lean, broad-shouldered frame sent ripples of excitement over her skin. A good thing he was tall. She towered over the average man. What are you doing, Elle? It doesn’t matter how tall he is.
Putting on her indifferent face, she turned to Bianca. Encouraging her best friend wasn't always a good idea. They would be over there in a flash if Bianca got a sniff of a chance for an introduction or an opportunity not only to flirt but to force Elle onto some unsuspecting guy. Again, endearing but not always appreciated.
“Sorry, B, what did you say?”
“Go over and talk to him.”
“He’s cute in that his cheekbones could cut glass kind of way.”
“So?’ Elle didn’t want to admit she'd already taken note of his prominent well-defined cheekbones and jaw.
“Too late, he’s gone.”
Sure enough, when she peeked toward the spot where he’d been a moment before he’d vanished again. Once more, the niggle of disappointment reared its head. What is wrong with me? Elle shrugged. If she encouraged Bianca now, they would be weaving through the crowd before she could blink.
“So, have you picked your victim for tonight?” She teased with the hope of shifting Bianca’s attention.
“Ha, ha, very funny.” She poked out her tongue before returning to her usual verve. “There are far too many to choose from.” She grinned.
“Seriously, though, would you want to hook up with one of these guys? Don’t they go on ships for long periods of time?”
“I don’t want to marry one, Elle, just have some fun. It wouldn’t hurt you to get in some flirting practice.”
“I’m sure I’d be capable if I needed to.”
Bianca rolled her eyes and then resumed her perusal of the room. Shaking her head at her friend, she glanced around the room again. An involuntary reflex urged her to seek him out. After a couple of quick sweeps of the club, she didn’t spot him again. This bothered her far too much.
The song changed. She grabbed Bianca's arm. “Let's dance. I love this song.”
This time she dragged Bianca across the room to the dance floor. She got lost in the music, letting the rhythm guide her; everything else drifted away. After several songs they needed a drink, went to the bar, and then were fortunate to find the table they occupied earlier empty.
Again, without consciousness she swept the club, but couldn’t place him amongst the other broad-shouldered uniforms. The fact they wore the same short haircuts didn’t help. Controlling the urge to do another sweep she switched her attention to Bianca. Maybe her friend would launch into another long, one-sided conversation. She didn’t let Elle down. Yet even as she listened her eyes searched the room. What is wrong with me?
Bianca stopped mid-sentence, her mouth agape. As she went to follow the direction of Bianca’s stare, a deep voice sounded near her ear.
“Are you looking for me?”
Elle stifled a gasp and twirled around.
Close up, he took her breath away. Broad shoulders, the square cut of his jaw, and those icy-coloured eyes did things to her. Things she couldn't put a name to. She considered she wore the same expression as Bianca.
“No. Why would I be?” she said, feigning an indifference she didn’t feel. Her heart pounded a rapid beat that surely sounded over the music betraying her.
“What’s your name?” he asked with another half grin.
“What’s it to you?” Being fully aware of how rude and out of character she behaved didn't seem to help her string words together. Her jumbled mind and erratic heart ensured she couldn't think straight much less find the words. What made everything even more confusing—he was totally not her type.
“Elle!” She said with a frown, a rare occurrence. “I’m Bianca.”
Now she smiles.
“Nice to meet you, Bianca.”
In a flash, she came around the table next to Elle.
“This is Elle,” She said giving her a little shove.
“Yes, I caught that.”
This time his smile filled his face. It added a dimple to his cheeks. Rationality flew from her mind.
“I’m Alexander, Alex.”