Ryker walked in just before the photo shoot began. It was her second one. She was still miffed with him but was glad to see him too. He looked very handsome dressed in all black. “How good of you to show up,” she said.
“After that telling off you gave me yesterday, I had to show up.”
“You deserved the telling off. I expected you to be here for my first photo shoot but instead you went to the beach.”
“All right. I should have been here but I needed to be alone for a while and the beach seemed like a good place.”
“Well, I hope you remembered to put on sunscreen.”
Good. Most men don’t usually put on any which I think is very foolish because it can lead to Melanoma which kills twice as many men as women.”
“Well, rest assured, I always make sure that I wear sunscreen whenever I’m outdoors for long or on the beach.”
“How come you’re dressed like that?”
“How am I dressed?”
“Like you’re going somewhere.”
“I’m going to the conference.”
“I thought the conference was only two days.”
“No. Today’s the last day.”
“Don’t you need me to be there?”
“No. You have a photo shoot, remember?”
“Who else is going to be there?”
“I don’t know.”
“If Marieme and Palila are there, please say hello to them for me.”
“Okay. Anything else?”
“I wonder if that redhead from France is going to be there too.”
“You mean Juliet?”
“How very interesting that you remembered her name.”
“Easy. I remembered by association. Romeo and Juliet.”
“Well, from the way she was acting around you, it was obvious that she would have liked you to be her Romeo.”
“Don’t be ridiculous, Shaelyn. She was just being friendly. That’s how the French are.”
“She seemed way too friendly to me.”
“What about Gilles? He’s French too. Don’t you find him very friendly?”
“Yes, but not nauseatingly so.”
Gilles joined them at that moment and after he shook hands with Ryker, he got to work. Shaelyn tried to focus on the shoot but she was acutely aware of her boss standing there in the shadows watching her. She was thankful for the break.
Ryker was talking to Gilles and then, he went over to her. “I have to leave now,” he said.
“When will you be back?”
“Around twelve-thirty, in time for us to have lunch.”
“All right.” At least they were going to have lunch together. While he was gone, she would probably go for a swim and then relax by the pool with the novel, The Smell of Victory.
“You’re doing great, by the way. Gilles is very pleased.”
“I’m happy to hear that.”
“Meet me in the lobby at twelve-thirty.”
“See you later.”
She watched him go. Gilles was ready. She picked up the two leaves again and stood still for him to take more photos.