Writers Notes – For those who may not know, I haven’t written in so long as I was on my honeymoon. Today we jump back into Appaloosa Plains and our legacy founder Scarlett who is still trying to get used to her new life which is a far cry from the busy, bustling city of Bridgeport.
Sitting in the back of a cab, Scarlett twisted her hands in her lap. She felt nervous. Her destination was the town centre. Scarlett planned to try to get to know Appaloosa Plains, maybe she would be able to get an idea of where she could find employment. Mostly though Scarlett just wanted away from her lot. Staring at her wall and meagre belongings was starting to make her feel very depressed.
Scarlett told the driver to let her off outside the gym. From here she knew there was other local amenities she could walk too. Her choice of the gym wasn’t because she had turned into a gym addict; if truth be told Scarlett had never set foot in a gym in her life. But Scarlett figured a gym would have something she didn’t have and the one thing she badly needed: a shower! Not caring if anyone noticed that Scarlett walked through the work out area, once she was under the hot steamy water Scarlett started to feel a lot better. Not having had a shower in a few days had left her feeling disgusting and grungy. It was amazing what she had taken for granted previously.
Stepping out the shower and drying herself off, Scarlett exited the shower room. As she wandered slowly through the work out area, Scarlett stopped to look around. The gym was actually nice. There was no bad smell that she had always imagined a gym would have, it was scrupulously clean and the music tinkling softly in the back ground was quite pleasant. Stopping to examine the table football, Scarlett’s eye was drawn to the man behind it on the treadmill and she couldn’t help but stare.
The man had longish brown hair and a thick beard. His bulging, tattooed biceps suggested he was no stranger to the gym. Turning, he saw Scarlett staring at him and gave her a wave.
“Hi there,” The stranger said, stepping off the treadmill. “Are you new here? I haven’t seen you here before” Scarlett just nodded. She seemed to have lost control of her vocal chords.
The man was continuing to wait on a response. Scarlett managed to say “I’ve just moved in, well not here of course but near here, well not too near but close enough” Scarlett was babbling and she knew it. What the hell was wrong with her? She was never tongue-tied around guys. She knew she was blushing. This guy or Mr Muscle as Scarlett had named him in her head must think she was a complete idiot.
Mr Muscle tactfully didn’t pick up on Scarlett’s uncomfortable behaviour. “You going to work out?” He asked, gesturing to the treadmill behind him. Scarlett shook her head. How was she supposed to explain to a total stranger, (a very cute total stranger at that) that she had only come to the gym to the shower because she didn’t have one of her own? She couldn’t. Mr Muscle would think she was crazy.
“I was just looking around,” Scarlett said. “Getting used to the town”
Urggh. She sounded like a teenager. Mr Muscle didn’t appear perturbed at the fact he was speaking to a girl having trouble forming a sentence. “If you ever need a tour guide, maybe I can help,” he said with a smile. “I can’t have you getting lost” Mr Muscle added with a wink.
Was he flirting with her? Scarlett couldn’t be sure. “Tt-that would be nice” Scarlett stammered. Mentally kicking herself. She was acting like such an idiot. Mr Muscle probably just felt sorry for her.
“Benjamin Schmdt” Mr Muscle said, extending his hand to Scarlett.
“Scarlett,” She said, jumping a little as she felt his skin touching hers. “Scarlett Braverman that is” she added lamely.
“Nice to meet you,” Benjamin said. “Do you want to go and get a coffee?”
Once Scarlett was seated at a little table with her hands wrapped around a steaming cup of coffee, she was starting to feel a little more relaxed. At least Benjamin wouldn’t see her knee nervously jittering under the table. Benjamin was easy to talk to. He asked her lots of questions about herself without making Scarlett feel that he was being nosy and Scarlett felt relieved that there was at least one nice person in Appaloosa Plains. Benjamin had lived here all his life and she found out he worked in an office which had surprised her giving his trim physique. She hoped it wasn’t too obvious that her eyes kept drifting back to his muscled arms.
When their coffees were finished Benjamin stood up and announced he had to hit the treadmill. “Come up with me, theres something I want to show you,” He said with a smile. “Sure, lead the way” Scarlett replied. It wasn’t like she had anything better to do. Following him up the stairs, Benjamin lead her to the treadmill he had been using earlier. It was next to a large window, maybe Benjamin was trying to show her something out the window? “What do you have to show me?” Scarlett asked puzzled.
“This,” Benjamin responded. Leaning over he softly gave her a kiss on the lips.
Whoah. This had taken her by surprise. To her even greater surprise Scarlett found herself responding to Benjamin’s kiss. The kiss had become much more passionate.
Breaking apart, they both stared at each other smiling. “Well that was unexpected,” Scarlett said. “Call it a welcome gift,” Benjamin replied with a cheeky smile.
He stepped on to the treadmill and turned it on. “Give me a call Scarlett when you want a tour of the town”
“Maybe I will” Scarlett responded. She couldn’t help but smile.
Walking away Scarlett couldn’t help but wonder where that kiss came from. She hadn’t expected that. Guys weren’t high on Scarlett’s priorities. It was just a kiss though, a pretty good kiss at that. As she headed towards the library, Scarlett had a spring in her step. Maybe life in Appaloosa Plains wouldn’t be so bad after all.