Riana was swimming across the length of the pool just under the water’s surface. A shadowy haze above told her she was no longer alone. She broke through the surface of the water just as Stacey was descending the steps into the pool. “Hey you,” she said.
“Hey,” said Riana, wringing water from her hair. “I thought you’d be at work.”
“No, they gave me the day off today. They rearrange everyone’s schedules now and then, and they just switched James to second shift.”
“I’ll still be on first shift.”
“Think he’ll like second shift?”
“He’s not too happy about it.”
“Guess I can’t blame him. You won’t get to see each other as much.”
“Well, I never thought I’d say this,” Stacey began, “but I guess it just makes me even happier to have you around.”
Riana smiled, although she was unsure of what to make of the new arrangement. She liked the idea of seeing more of Stacey. Alone. But she also didn’t want this to be an opportunity for things to become complicated either. She didn’t want to come between her and James and she didn’t want Stacey to become a pest either. “You might enjoy having some space for once. After all, how often is it that both he and Emma are gone?”
“Oh, I’ll enjoy it, alright. But your company is also welcomed at times, too.”
Riana gazed at Stacey and smiled. “Wow, we’ve certainly come a long way, haven’t we?”
Stacey’s smile faded and her look became serious. “I guess we have. I was wrong about you, Riana. Plain and simple. You’re a good person.”
Riana smiled again. “I try.”
“So, what have you been up to today?”
“The usual. I cleaned up a bit, went out for groceries, entered sweeps, and now I’ll probably spend most of the day relaxing and hanging on the web.”
“Yeah, I have a few sites I visit regularly.”
Stacey swam a few laps, then passed Riana who was now sitting on the top step of the pool. She kissed her on her way out of the pool, then picked up the towel that was on the nearest lounge chair and dried herself off.
Riana got out of the pool and dried off with her own towel.
Stacey wrapped hers around her and said, “Well, I’d invite you in for lunch or something, but I’ve got some things I gotta get done, so I’ll see you some other time, okay?”
Riana nodded, stepped up to Stacey, kissed her, then retreated to the guesthouse. She watched a smiling Stacey enter her own house as she closed the door and locked it. It had to be locked at all times. Stacey still had a habit of barging in on her.