Shawn thought he had never accomplished something that meant as much to him as his company, yet looking at his accidental wife and thinking about her working with him in the mansion starting on Monday would either be eventful or dreadful. He got to where he could make out the form of the mountain above them and smirked. He rushed up the hillside of the window, keeping a distance view of the road and his car shadows, as a smile formed on his lips as he realized that there were tendrils of smoke curling from the distant lodge. The moonless skies were a bit brighter with so many stars appearing and storms slowly disappearing.
He poked the sleeping form of Catherine.
“Miss Brown?” he demanded loudly. She rolled over and yawn. “What? Is it morning?” “Nope!” “Then why did you wake me up?” “I’m bored.” He said, and smirked, that it was quite possibly the most beautiful shock he had ever seen. He awakened her to have some food. He found in the cupboard some noodles and some spam. She opened her luminous crystal eyes wide, and blinked. She sat up. “Did you just wake me up, Mr. Richmond, because you are f*****g bored?”
“Yes and no!”
“I thought this was a nightmare,” she stammered. He looked at her incredulously.
“Does this look like a nightmare, this handsome specimen of a human being?” he countered.
“I didn’t know. Tell me your handsomeness?” She mocked as she thought. Did he just wake her up for that reason? Later, she noted to herself that she would kill the man.
“Come on Miss Brown, it appears that the storm is.”
“Mr. Richmond, this is my first time hiking this mountain. Your stupid GPS in the car told us that there was a lodge at the top and yes, I’m tired. Now that you’ve awakened my nap. What on earth was on your mind?”
He just laughed. As he laughed, Catherine began to take him in. He was indeed so handsome and so hot. No question about it. He was a sandy blonde with deep, sparkling blue-green eyes.
“Number one, this is not our cottage. Number two, we are both stuck and I’m cold, and we are only quarters of the way up the shortcut and are on the opposite side of where we would like to be and lastly, I made a noodle and open some spam if you are hungry.” he muttered in his deep voice and smirked. Slowly she sat up and yawned again. She stood in front of him. “Food?” she asked. “Yes. Hungry? You can call me your savior. I can hear your tummy rumbling over a mile away, ” he said.
“And you are…?” “Miss Brown, I did not put poison if that is what you are asking.”
“Good, not that it matters, because I am going to eat anything. I am sorry to have confused your cavalry for being a jerk. I’ll be out of there in a minute,” she murmured and took the blanket with her as she continued, “…is the s-storm that b-bad now?” She began to move toward her now-dry outerwear. The first step made her twist her ankle, made her scream out involuntarily and stumble on Shawn. He reached out to catch her. He caught her just before she hit the floor. He lifted her back to her feet.
“What the… are you alright?” he asked.
“No, for f**k sake. It b****y hurts,” she growled. She began to limp painfully over to her clothes.
“Hey, woman! Slowly, don’t put too much pressure on it. Stay in bed,” he growled, “the storm isn’t that bad, but we can’t risk walking back to the car with that foot. Let me see,” he helped her sit in the bed and took her foot.
“Ouch! That hurt.” “Oops! This is not good. It’s swelling now. It’s getting pink. You obviously cannot walk without a lot of pain, and it will be too dark in a matter of minutes under the oncoming storm. ” He added a white lie. He wouldn’t let her walk in the seven feet of snow with that foot.
“B****y hell, stop touching… It hurts.”
He put her down on the bed and disappeared into the bathroom, coming back with some bandages and tape. “Here I found it in the bathroom. This will do for now.” He knelt at her feet and took the sock off her right foot. He began to probe it gently with his fingers. When he hit the injured spot, he heard her draw in a sharp breath.
“Yes, you’ve definitely sprained this,” he said, wrapping the bandage around her ankle. “Then let me search for some clothing to dress it up. Maybe the owner has more first aid kits.” He stepped into the cupboards one by one and rampaged through their contents, yet found none. “Nothing… this little towel will do.” He tears it into long strips and dresses it around Catherine’s foot.
“There, it would take us another thirty to forty minutes to go back to our car. Why don’t we stay here for the night, rest, and then go in the morning, it is still eight oclock.” “How about the owner?” She sighed and moved her feet slowly back to the bed. “It hurts! I just made a rookie mistake, so I’m going to correct it by thanking you. I appreciate your help.” She said, picking up her coat. “But we need to go now. We can’t stay here any longer.” She started to walk back to the table to put it with the rest of her stuff when she stepped down heavily on her injured ankle. Shawn saw her bite her lip to keep from crying, but he thought he saw a tear slide out of the corner of her eye.
“Okay, that does it. You’re staving here.” He went over to her and lifted her into his arms. She began to protest. “Don’t move. I don’t care if the owner comes. I’m going to buy this b****y mountain and this cabin if I need to keep you from walking out into that storm outside. You can’t walk and that’s final.”
“Mr. Richmond, put me down. I’m fine,” she said, struggling. “You are not OK. That sprain is not to be taken lightly.” “How would you know?” she inquired waspishly. He brightened at her. “My grandfather knows and specialises in sports medicine, and I was his sidekick,” he explained. This shut her up and she let his large, veined hands finish wrapping her ankle. He bandaged it with her clothing securely and replaced her socks.
“Thank you,” she said. He stood.
“No problem. The problem now is that I am hungry and I bet you are too. Let’s eat the noodles and the spam.” He said it with a broad smile. She allowed herself a tiny smile, flashing her white teeth. He could feel her warming up to him a little. Maybe she would start to calm down and accept some help.
“I am so hungry,” she acknowledged.
“Good. Why don’t you stay here in bed and let me get it,” he suggested. Catherine nodded. Shawn got up and turned it on and she slid gingerly back under the covers.
Minutes later, he had set all the food on the table and poured some hot chocolate frother over it with melted marshmallows.
He touched her shoulder.
“Catherine? Dinner is ready,” he mumbled in a silent voice. She muttered and rolled over to face him. She opened her eyes and inhaled the wonderful smells.
“Oh, chocolate. Thanks,” she said as she pushed off the covers, and Shawn helped her to her feet, hanging onto his arm. He supported her and assisted her to her chair, which he brought out for her. She smiled her thanks and he went to his end of the table. They began to help themselves to the small feast.
“I can’t believe this is actually happening,” she muttered, jerking her head. “This was supposed to be the most perfect, uneventful trip and relaxing holiday. And now I am stuck here in the mountains with you,” she grumbled. She noticed his mood shifted to a dark look and she added shortly, “No offense, I thought we will be there at the island soon and sipping margaritas and me …well, kicking my brother’s b***s.
He brightened. “Don’t worry, I had hiked a little before, and decided to tackle this mountain, which was not the smartest move I could have made,” he said. She grinned. “Oh, really?” Wow, the man knows how to… Nevermind, maybe she just heard him wrong, and why does it feel like she was seeing the other side of Mr. Richmond? This kind of cool-amazing side? “You must not have the greatest sense of direction with his sleet,” she said, trying to be sensitive. He laughed at her “Oh, so Miss Brown trying to make me feel better?” “Take it, Mr. Richmond, while it lasts tonight.” Both laughed. “I got it. Actually, you’re being diplomatic here. I never could read maps well, even with those
stupid GPSs, but I am a perfectionist. I thought I could take the shortcut on this little mountain with no problem. I figured, hey, I’m a f*****g billionaire and snow is no big deal.
The mountain is only a little over a mile high. No sweat. And look where it got us.” “You really right, being a billionaire would make you.”
“Shut up, Miss Brown, you are laughing at me at my expense.” He smirked. He watched her like a rainbow under the rain. She was glowing, and he liked it when she was at ease.
“Haha! I am not laughing.” She couldn’t help but smirk.
“Well, the owner is not here yet, so we are welcome to stay here until the storm clears, which may be a while. I’m no stranger to the couch, and I kind of prefer it to the bed, so we’ll be okay.
“I honestly do appreciate you helping me, and I apologize for s******g up your holiday.” she said between mouthfuls.