|Off The Cretan Track
Author: romanticheart01 PM
Sal and Nick work together on the Greek island of Crete. Nick has always been attracted to Sal but she only seems to see him as a friend. That is until he persuades her to go on an impromptu treck around the island in search of a priceless artefact.Rated: Fiction T - English - Humor/Suspense - Chapters: 47 - Words: 103,578 - Reviews: 33 - Favs: 13 - Follows: 17 - Updated: 11-05-12 - Published: 08-04-08 - id: 2554559
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
This story contains characters that appeared in my first story 'Welcome to Crete.' It is not necessary to read the first story to enjoy this one though.
Off The Cretan Track.
Sal peered into the bathroom mirror and patted some more powder foundation onto her nose and cheeks to cover up the sprinkling of freckles there that always frustrated her so much. She put down the powder puff and picked up her mascara, applying a thick coating of the makeup which made her lashes look longer and her eyes more piercing. She had always considered her eyes to be one of her most appealing features. They were such an unusual shade. Although they were predominantly dark blue, flashes of green could be seen in them at times depending on her mood. She stood back to assess the results of her labour.
"Sally Fitzroy-Smith, airport supervisor on the sunny island of Crete, almost ready for duty," she said to her reflection. She turned to glance out of the window briefly and then shrugged, swinging her head back to the mirror. "Sunny day, nothing different there, would love to go to the beach right now but alas, needed at airport shortly for touristic commitments. Time," she looked at her watch, "twelve fifteen, day...oh hell! Twelve fifteen! I'm late!" She grabbed her brush from off the sink and dashed for the door, pausing very briefly to shout to the mirror, "Still waiting for my Mr Mind-Shattering man by the way!"
In the bedroom she threw on her airport clothes as quickly as she possibly could and ran a brush through her shiny, auburn hair. When she had begun the summer season as airport supervisor that year she had decided to adopt a more classy, sophisticated look to fit the part; and she considered her new hair cut to be an addition to her transformation. She liked the fashionable, sexy bob that she now wore and it suited her lively, outgoing personality. She quickly surveyed the finished results, her smart, figure hugging, navy blue skirt, pale green blouse, which accentuated the colour in her eyes, her high heeled stiletto shoes and the blue and green neck tie which she hated wearing but which made her look the part all the same. Although her clothes, shoes and makeup all epitomised a classic airport staff member her freckles, eyes and hair betrayed the true Sal. She was anything but run of the mill, Sal was different, fun, and often quirky, but most of all Sal was unique.
"Hmm, not bad," she said to herself, backing away from the mirror but pausing for thought before she left the room. "Hold on, you may be starting to look too much like one of them." She pointed a chastising finger at herself in the mirror. "Tonight you are putting on the most outrageously sexy little dress and going wild in town." Narrowing her eyes at her new, reserved looking reflection she chuckled and stuck out her tongue to herself before grabbing her handbag and leaving for the airport.
She jumped into her bright yellow Chinquchento which was parked outside her apartment and turned the key in the ignition. The car shuddered for a moment and then fell silent.
"Oh no please, not now Bobby. Come on mate, work for me please!" she begged, stroking the steering wheel for a while before starting up the car again.
There were a few heart stopping moments when she thought that it was going to refuse to start before it hummed into life and she breathed a sigh of relief, pulling out into the road. She had spent what remained of her savings at the end of last summer to buy the car but now that she had been promoted she had contemplated on several occasions trading the car in for a more reliable model. Every time she thought about giving up her beloved Bobby however she pictured it being mangled and squashed into a metal cube, and so the car had remained in her possession and she had resigned herself to coaxing and cajoling it to start up every morning.
She turned onto the main highway, which ran alongside the east coast of the island to Heraklion airport, and put her foot to the floor. Reaching into her glovebox she pulled out a CD and slotted it into the CD player, turning the volume up full blast as she sped around the bends in the road which was cut into the mountainside. She made it to the outskirts of Heraklion in record time but was dismayed to find as she approached the airport that the road slowly became more and more congested, forcing her to slow the car down. She spent a frustrating ten minutes crawling towards the airport until eventually the road widened and split into several lanes, allowing more traffic to move past the busy town centre. At the last set of traffic lights before she could turn into the airport Sal stopped, waiting for the lights to turn green and glancing out of the window at the car next to her. Her eyes immediately came into direct contact with a cheeky pair of chocolate ones as the man in the adjacent car grinned and winked at her. She did a double take and laughed, blowing him a kiss and speeding off suddenly when the lights changed.
"See ya later sexy Greek guy!" she shouted out of the window as she passed him.
At the airport she faced a buzz of activity by the outside desk as the reps crowded around Adam, the company manager who had been organising the coaches and transfers of the guests since early that morning.
"Sal, thank god! Sort this lot out for me will you? I have to go now, I said I'd meet Fay and she'll think I've forgotten her," a flustered Adam appealed to Sal.
"No problem but I thought this lot would have left on the coaches before now, hasn't the Gatwick flight landed yet?" she asked in confusion.
"Afraid not, there's a delay but you can get more details from the handler's office inside. Good luck," he said, leaving the situation in her capable hands.
Adam had been surprised at how quickly Sal had got to grips with the airport work, and when Fay had suggested that he promote her best friend to airport supervisor he had decided to give it a go. Sal hadn't let him down and it had given him more time to spend with the new love of his life, Fay.
Sal delegated work out to the reps that were standing around the desk and disappeared into the airport, heading for the office upstairs to find out more details about the delayed flight.
Nick Payton stepped onto the runway into the blazing Cretan sunshine and gave a whoop of delight.
Back at last, I love this place!
As he boarded the shuttle bus he took out is mobile phone to send a message to Jen, his girlfriend back in London who was going to join him at the end of the week.
I'm here and it's the best feeling ever! You had better hurry up and get here or I'll find someone else to enjoy the sunshine with!
He laughed light-heartedly but then hesitated after reading the message for a second time.
Oh damn, she's so bloody moody lately I'd better change that bit.
He looked down at his phone, wondering what to put instead.
To hell with it!
He deleted the whole message and decided to text her later.
I wonder if Adam will give me another job this year. Yeah, he will. He's not half bad for a bloody executive, business owner type! Could see if he can tear himself away from Fay for a bit to watch the football tonight in The Wheelhouse. Could even make it into a lads night out, yeah I could do with a good night out. Well even if Adam can't make it Sal's always up for a fun night on the town. Bloody hell she'd better still be here. Should have kept in touch with her really, it's just that...
Nick gave some thought as to why he hadn't contacted Sal over the winter that he had spent in London. If he was honest with himself Sal had begun to linger in his thoughts a little too much for his liking at the end of the last season that he was on the island and he had decided to put some distance between them, uncertain at the time if he would return to Crete at all. He had missed his life there however, the people he had met, his friends and also, he had to admit it, Sal.
He flashed his passport at the customs officer, retrieved his luggage after a long, frustrating wait and entered the busy airport building.
Right, let's see if I can hop on a transfer bus back to Agios Nikolaos. I really need to sort out a motor bike rental as soon as I can too. Can't wait to hit the open roads on a bike again! Hell, need to get some money together first though. Perhaps I'll see if I can get some transfer work while I'm at the desks. The sooner I get work, the sooner I can get myself that bike.
He made his way outside to the transfer desks and scanned the line of booths for number eight where he was hoping to see Adam. Unfortunately there was no sign of Adam though but desk number eight was surprisingly busy and crowded with reps.
Bloody hell, Adam must be doing well this year. He's taken on enough staff anyway!
At the desk he asked one of the girls if she knew where the boss was. The girl looked at him with a horrified expression and stuttered and stammered before nervously admitting that it was her first day at work and pointing him in the direction of another rep.
Hell, you'd have thought I had two heads or something the way she jumped and looked at me! Maybe I'm loosing my touch with women, seem to be scaring them off!
He tapped another rep on the shoulder and asked once more for the boss. The girl looked him up and down with interest and smiled.
Ah, that's better. Must still have what it takes!
"She's in the handler's office upstairs inside," the girl informed him.
He turned and dragged his suitcase back into the terminal building, hauling it up a set of stairs just beside the electric sliding doors.
'She?' Adam must have employed a new supervisor, and a woman too! He could have waited to give me the job!
He left his suitcase outside the office door and peered into the room. His eyes widened at what he saw. A woman with her back to him, bending over the desk and jotting something down on a piece of paper. The tight skirt she was wearing clung invitingly to her figure and revealed a shapely pair of tanned legs beneath it.
Mmmm, I may forgive Adam after all for employing her! Sexy lady!
His jaw dropped in shock however when the woman stood up and turned slightly to speak to a man sitting at the other end of the room.
"So do you think it will be delayed any more than this now? Or has the plane left the UK already?"
"Sal?" Nick said in amazement. "Is that you?"
Sal swung around to see Nick leaning against the doorframe, his face a picture of shocked surprise.
"Nick!" she grinned. "Oh my god! You're back!"
"You look completely different Sal! You look fantastic!" he said, running his eyes over her.
She frowned. "Only just got back and already you're insulting me! Hell I must have looked bloody awful before then."
"Just as much of a drama queen as ever, come here you crazy woman," he replied, holding out his arms.
She tutted but then her face broke out into a smile and she ran to him, jumping into his arms with a squeal of delight.
"I can't believe you're back!" she laughed as he spun her around.
"Yep," he put her down and took a closer look at her. "I like the new hairstyle, very sexy Sal. It suits you." He laughed then. "However..."
She gave him a suspicious look.
"It's not working you know."
"What's not working ?" she asked in confusion.
"Your attempts to cover up these," he grinned, gesturing to the freckles on her face.
She narrowed her eyes at him. "I don't know what you mean."
He chuckled. "Sure. You can't fool me you know Sal, I know you too well. You may have poshed yourself up but you're still the same old Sal underneath."
She huffed and stuck her tongue out at him before moving back to the desk to the sound of his amused laugh.
"Want some advice?" he asked.
She collected a pile of papers together off the desk and glanced over her shoulder at him. "No but I'm sure that you're going to give me some anyway."
"Leave the freckles alone, they look cute," he smiled.
She sighed and smiled back at him. "So, how did you know that I'd be up here then?"
"I didn't, it was a complete surprise. Came looking for the supervisor to ask for some transfer work and found you in the job!"
She gave him a smug look and turned to lean back against the desk, holding the papers in front of her.
"Yep, started last month as airport supervisor for Adam."
"I'm impressed," he said, watching her.
She jumped up then and grabbed her bag to pull out her mobile phone. "Hold on a sec."
Dialling a number she waited impatiently for someone to pick up.
"There you are! Do you think that you could answer the phone a little quicker next time! Listen the plane isn't due in for at least another hour so if things are sorted out down there you can tell the girls to go for a break...but make sure that you are all back in forty five minutes at the latest," she added firmly, hanging up.
"So Nicholas, you'd like a job with us would you?" she said formally.
He shook his head at her.
What's she up to?
"Yes please Miss," he came back politely.
"Hmmm," she pretended to look thoughtful, chewing on the end of a pen. "We may have a vacancy. And you're in luck..."
His face lit up.
"I just have enough time to conduct an interview for the position," she finished, grinning at the way his expression changed.
Ooooh, she's a cheeky one!
"Interview...of course. Go ahead," he said, calling her bluff.
She sat down behind the desk and gestured for him to do the same. "Please, take a seat."
He smiled sarcastically and sat down. Riffling through the paperwork she was holding she found a piece of paper and took hold of her pen, letting the nib hover above the paper.
"Name?" she asked, trying to keep a straight face.
"You know my name cheeky!" he replied incredulously.
She nodded and jotted something down.
"Age?" she grinned.
"Oh no you don't, you don't get to know my age. I'm youthful in outlook but experienced in almost all areas," he said, leaving her to wonder if he was only referring to work at that point.
She looked impressed but continued the questioning. "References?"
He smiled slowly. "Well as I recall a certain transfer rep I used to know assured me that I was the best transfer rep in the world. I think that's a good enough reference don't you?"
She growled at him. "Hmm, I think that the said transfer rep must have been blackmailed into admitting that!"
He shook his head. "Not blackailed, just honest enough to admit the truth."
She growled again and threw the pen at him. "Okay, okay Mr Smug, you can have the job."
He laughed and she laughed with him.