Lance Wilson stood by the luggage pick up area in the Faaa International Airport in Tahiti. Lance watched cautiously, as suitcases, and baggage rolled, and tumbled off of the luggage conveyer belt. As Lance spied his blue suitcase emerging from the luggage chute, the case began to circle around the conveyer. When the suitcase circled toward Lance, he reached out, and gingerly lifted the case up off of the belt. Sitting the suitcase upright on the airport floor, while balancing the case on its wheels, Lance paused as he bent over, reached in back of the suitcase, and raised the luggage pull arm.
During the flight Lance carried his camera on the plane. Before taking hold of the luggage pull arm, Lance carefully lifted the camera strap over his head, and drapedthe camera across his shoulder. After taking hold of the pull arm, Lance wheeled his suitcase, out of the airport terminal toward the taxi stand. Lance glanced up, and down the airport parking lot. In the distance, he saw a yellow taxi cab parked next to the curb. Lance quickly pulled, tugged, and dragged his suitcase across the sidewalk, while making his way over to the taxi. The cab driver quickly accepted his fare, picked up his bag, and placed the suitcase in trunk of the car. While getting into the back seat, Lance pulled the camera strap back over his head, and flung the camera over his arm.
It was early June on the French Polynesian Island of Tahiti. Lance was en route to his vacation home, planning for his summer holiday. Lance caught a red eye flight from Asia, and arrived in the glistening dawn, of a early Tahiti an morning. Lance Wilson, a freelance fashion photographer, spent most of his time traveling around the world. His flight had just returned from Asia, where he filmed the world renowned, Fashion Festival of Light. A runway extravaganza that featured models from every walk of life.
Lance was considered the best fashion photographer in the business. He worked only with the largest agencies, and Lance had taken more pictures, for fashion spreads, and filmed more fashion shows, than any of his freelance competitors. Along with his a curly blond hair, and lean firmly built physique, his bronze tanned complexion, accented his deep blue eyes. Lance spent most of his time filming outside, and prided himself, on keeping his tan all year round.
Lance spent the rest of the year traveling from one fashion event to the next. His lifestyle, clearly jet set. Lance usually flew first class, and stayed at the finest hotels. The Ritz in London. The Four Seasons in Australia, and the Otelinn in Caen. All of this, while photographing the world’s most beautiful, and exotic women. Travels that spanned the world. A lifestyle that most people could only dream of, or envy.
As the taxi cab drove Lance across the island, he leaned into the back seat, and closed his eyes. Lance loved the island of Tahiti. Tahiti was his home away from home. His true pleasure in life, was vacationing there every summer.
Most of the time spent just relaxing, and trying to clear his head. The island held many simple pleasures. Waking up in the morning, to the smell of Tahitian vanilla bean, which grew abundantly in the botanical garden. Eating fresh coconut, and banana. Swimming in the ocean that adjoined his property. Or just walking on the beach. Whenever Lance needed time away from the world, to reflect on his life, he traveled home to Tahiti.
Lance found it hard to believe, that just five years earlier, his wife Rose disappeared without a trace. Rose planned a day of shopping in the village, but she never returned home. In the darkest times Lance could remember, the police searched his house, and the surrounding grounds looking for Rose. The police questioned him for days, and days. After a few weeks, his wife’s car was located several miles outside of town. But Rose was no where to be found. For months after Rose disappeared, the police investigated, and Lance became the prime suspect. To make matters worse, Rose had disappeared, amidst scandals and rumors, that Lance was having an affair, with a young model, named Felisha Harwood.
Lance and Rose wedded, after meeting in Las Vegas during a photo shoot. Rose was one of the world’s top runway models, when Lance met her. They fell in love after a filming a photo session for Les Delle Magazine. Lance and Rose eloped, for a quick Nevada wedding, and then took the next week off as a honeymoon. Spending their honeymoon week together, dining out, sunning by the pool, and hitting the night spots. Lance believed he was truly happy. As a couple, Lance and Rose, always traveled together, and rarely spent time apart. But after only one year of marriage, Lance believed that Rose was having an affair. When Rose disappeared, Lance was almost certain; she had run off with a photographer named Ben Jasper.
Ben Jasper was a not so well know freelance photographer. Ben often competed with Lance for contracts, and magazine spreads. Lance was soon becoming a force to be reckoned with in the fashion world, and he truly believed, Ben harbored some resentment toward him, for his success.
Just after Lance and Rose’s first year of marriage, things began to change. Rose wasn’t the same woman Lance married. Things came to a breaking point, coincidently, when Rose and Felisha Harwood, were both featured models, in a runway performance in New York City.
Ben began showing up at fashion events, while making outward advances toward Rose. Word gets around in the fashion world, and soon people began to speculate. Lance was sure; Ben and Rose had begun an affair. Lance truly believed in his heart, that Rose was going to leave him.
As Lance reflected on his past, the strength of his troubles, began to overwhelm his soul. But, like a promise of comfort, shining through the darkness, a still calm quieted his spirit. As Lance thought fondly, and recalled the day Felisha Harwood, became his friend.
At the end of the New York fashion event, Lance stood alone, in the lobby of the Ocean Theater, waiting for Rose. Lance noticed, Felisha Harwood talking on her cell phone, further down the hallway. Lance had taken many pictures of Felisha, but until that moment, he’d never noticed, the true beauty she held inside. Lance gazed at Felisha from a distance. Her long blond hair feathered, and bounced across her shoulders, while she stood talking on her cell phone. As Felisha glanced over toward Lance, her green eyes beamed through him, with shimmering light.
Felisha continued to walk up the hallway toward Lance, while chatting fervently, on the other line, with who knows who. Her beauty, shined a warmth through Lance, like he had never felt. When Felisha finished her phone call, she slapped her cell phone closed, and stopped directly in front of Lance.
“Wonderful performance tonight Miss Harwood” Lance said politely.
“Thank you Lance. Please call me Felisha” she asserted.
Felisha fumbled through her purse, and found one of her business cards. Gently, she handed the card to Lance, while shyly asking Lance, to contact her, if he ever needed additional models, for future events. After a few moments Felisha bid Lance good night. Then Felisha quietly stepped out into the glaring neon street lights, and night life, of New York City bound in steps, for her hotel.
From that day on, Felisha made a point of chatting with Lance, at every fashion show. Leaving Lance with warm, and loving feelings for Felisha, like he’d never experienced before.
Lance waited for several hours in the lobby of the Ocean Theater for Rose. But Rose never showed up. Eventually Lance went back to their hotel room, to wait for her. Lance was worried, and a little frightened, about what might have happened to her.
At midnight, when Lance was just about to phone the authorities, Rose stumbled through their hotel room door drunk. Rose looked mysteriously into Lance’s eyes, hanging her head down in mock shame. Within just a few moments, she giggled, kicked off her shoes, and fell into an easy chair. Lance was so angry; he didn’t know what to do or what to think. Lance questioned Rose for hours, about where she’d been. But Rose sat in the chair, only, continuing to apologize, for the next several hours. For Lance, that night, was the beginning of the end of their marriage.
Lance found himself contacting Felisha, and burdening her with his problems. But, Felisha didn’t mind. If Lance ever needed an ear to bend, Felisha would gratefully lend him hers. As time went on, Rose became prone to disappearing. Rose would sometimes show up late for fashion events, or sometimes not even show up at all.
The most vivid memory Lance had of Rose, was the day she left him. Maybe it was a premonition. Or maybe, it was the way Rose looked at him, before she left the house. Rose said, she was going to the village to shop. As she walked to the door, Rose turned around, and peered back at him. Lance could remember the expression on her face, so blank, and so hollow. Without a word Rose turned, and walked out of the front door. That was the last time Lance ever saw her. It was the same story he told to the detective’s, but Lance was sure, the detectives didn’t believe him.
Once a year when Lance took his summer vacations on the Island, Detective Chilton Edwards always made a point of reminding him, that the case was still open, and still unsolved.
The taxi cab turned onto Circle Drive, drove around the circular driveway, and parked in front of his house. In the back seat, Lance picked up his camera, and slung it over his arm. Then he quickly opened the back door, and got out of the cab. As the cab driver opened his driver’s side door, he walked toward the back of the car. Once the cab driver retrieved Lance’s suitcase from the trunk, he sat the suitcase on the front lawn. Lance handed the cab driver the fare for the ride. Then Lance watched, as the cabby got back into the taxi, and drove off up the drive.
Lance looked across the grounds of his home. The palm trees swayed in the breeze, as he walked up to the front door. As Lance pulled the house keys out of his pocket, Dennis his house attendant appeared, opening the door to greet him. Dennis reached out, taking Lance’s suitcase from him. As Lance swung his camera over his arm, he followed Dennis through the door, and into the house.
Dennis, a man of Tahitian descent, carried his heritage with pride, bashfully sporting his curly sandy brown hair, hazel eyes, and large muscular shoulders, with warmth, and integrity. Lance met Dennis after buying his house in Tahiti. Dennis worked for the previous owner, and was familiar with the landscape, and upkeep of the house. Dennis was there, every step of the way for Lance, when his wife Rose disappeared. Throughout Lance’s times of trouble, Dennis became his right hand, and his best friend.
Lance went into the kitchen, and poured himself a glass of orange juice. Picking up the glass, he quickly went up the stairs toward the den. He had a lot of planning to do. Lance had to make sure all of the arrangements, for the IMG Fashion event, would be ready on time. He had no time to waste.
Flight 802 flew through the afternoon sky, en route to the Island of Tahiti. Felisha Harwood and Nancy Daniels, sat in first class, enjoying glasses of champagne, while reading the latest fashion magazines. Glaring off of the wing of the transcontinental air bus, the sun reflected into Felishia’s passenger window. The two fashion models were on their way, to spend their summer holiday with Lance Wilson. Lance had managed to land a big contract with the IMG Modeling Agency. At the end of the summer, he would be shooting their next fashion spread, from his island home.
The IMG summer spread was turning out to be the fashion event of the season. Models, photographers, and agents from around the world, would all be in attendance. Felisha leaned back in her seat, and thought about Lance. After his wife Rose vanished, Felisha became one of his closest friend’s. Felisha visited with Lance every summer, and Lance and Felisha, both hoped, and planned to marry one day, in the near future.
Over the past five years, Nancy Daniels had become one of the world’s top models Nancy hated to say so, but she had the typical stage mother. Her mother never stopped taking her to auditions, pageants, and beauty contests. Which Nancy usually won hands down. Her short curly crop of brown hair framed her face, and fell just above her shoulders in length. Nancy was blessed with naturally curly hair that shined in silky deep brown ringlets. Put that together with her deep brown, dove shaped eyes, and Nancy had a lot to offer the fashion world.
A male flight attendant appeared in the aisle of the plane, wheeling the beverage cart. Felisha and Nancy both smiled at each other, while the attendant refilled their champagne glasses. In a toast to happiness, the two women clanked their champagne glasses together in mirth. Then together Nancy and Felisha, gingerly sipped their champagne.
Just as Nancy glanced toward the front of the plane, she saw a handsome gentleman walked through the aisle. As he passed by Nancy, the man’s arm nudged her elbow, spilling her champagne, over her blouse. Nancy looked up to find Chad Derby, smiling down at her. Chad, a freelance photographer for IMG, was also en route to Tahiti.
“Chad. Is that you” Nancy said.
“Sure. Nancy how are you? Sorry about your drink” Chad said sincerely.
“Oh that’s okay Chad. Are you going to be at the IMG Fashion Event?” Nancy asked
“I’ve got my invitation right here” Chad replied
“It’s going to be the fashion coo of the season” Felisha exclaimed, as she beamed with excitement.
Felisha bent over in her seat, reaching inside her portfolio case. As she fished through the pockets, trying to locate one of her business cards, Felisha knocked her pillow over onto Chad’s shoes. Chad bent over, picked up the pillow, and held it against his chest, within his arms.
After much fumbling, Felisha pulled out one of her business cards, and took out a pen. She jotted Lance’s phone number on the back of the card, and extended the card, in her hand to Chad. Chad released the pillow from his embrace, and handed the pillow back to Felisha. Felisha quickly took the pillow, and shyly bundled it between her arms, while Chad looked curiously, at the phone number, on the back of the business card.
“I’ll be staying at the Tahiti Intercontinental “ Chad explained.
“Give us a call. We still have time to get out, and enjoy ourselves, before the event” Felisha continued.
“I will. Nice to see you Nancy” Chad said.
Nancy smiled while looking warmly up at Chad. Then Nancy got out of her seat, to try, and find a flight attendant. Chad stayed for a few moments, chatting with Felisha, about the IMG event.
Echoing, and resounding over the intercom, the Pilot announced, the plane would soon be landing in Tahiti. Chad looked up at the loud speaker, intently lending his ear, as the Pilot made his announcement. Chad excused himself, and began walking back, toward the front of the plane to his seat. The Pilot gave everyone instructions, to take their seats, and fasten their seat belts. As Chad made his way back through the aisle, he bounced, and bobbled against the seats, as the plane began to dip, and descend toward Tahiti. When Chad finally reached his seat, he sat down, and buckled himself in.
Felisha turned, and gazed out of the air plane window. With all of her heart, she couldn’t wait to see Lance. It had been several months since she’d last seen him, and she longed to be his arms. Being apart from Lance was difficult. Lance, and Felisha both traveled constantly, and rarely got to see one another, as much as they liked. As Felisha laid her head back on a pillow, she watched the many clouds, that dotted the crystal blue ocean like skyline. A warm and comforting feeling settled into her senses, making Felisha smile. She was going to be able to see Lance every day, for the next few months. Her next major fashion event wasn’t scheduled until early October.
Felisha knew, Lance’s life on the Island had been arduous. After his wife disappeared, the Island had given him the cold shoulder. The IMG Fashion Event, was just what Lance needed, to get his life back on track. When Nancy got back to her seat, Felishia looked as if she was in another world.
“Are you okay Felisha?” Nancy asked.
“Yeahh Great. Uhm.. Everything is just going to be perfect” Felisha said as she smiled, and closed her eyes.
“What do you think of Chad?” Nancy inquired.
“ He looks like a model himself. You both have the same polished look. Brown hair, and deep brown eyes” Felisha insisted.
After Lance climbed the stairs, and went into the den, he turned on his computer. As he logged onto the internet, Lance surfed the web, to his IMG Fashion Quest website, and downloaded a list of his RSVP’s. Lance read through the list. Twenty of the world’s top models were invited, and all twenty had accepted their invitations. Lance had extended a total of forty invitations to agencies, photographers, and models alike. After counting the confirmations, Lance noticed two extra invitations, were accepted and printed out. Lance quickly double checked the names on his list. Forty guests had replied, and accepted. Just a computer glitch he thought. Lance knew, his Fashion Quest site, was set up on a secure server. The extra two invitations were probably just a fluke.
As Lance sat at his desk, he picked up the telephone, and called the Tropic Island Caterers, reaching Tia Rowe the owner. Lance explained, he would be entertaining during the last week in August, and he required her catering services. His vision for the event, included a different motif for each day, and cost would be no object. Tia recommended full catering service for each day, while agreeing to make arrangements, for each party to have a different theme. As Tia gratefully accepted the job, she hung up the telephone, and began planning, for the week long event.
Most of the invited guests, confirmed their hotel reservations, at the Intercontinental Tahiti Hotel. Lance only planned to have two guests in the house for the summer, Felisha, and her friend Nancy Daniels. After hanging up the telephone, Lance remembered Felisha and Nancy’s plane, was scheduled to land in one hour. Quickly, Lance jaunted out into the hallway, in front of the den, and called out to Dennis in the house. Dennis swiftly made his way halfway up the stairs, to find Lance standing in the upstairs hallway.
“Dennis. I just spoke with Tia Rowe. She’ll be catering the IMG event. Felisha and Nancy, should
be landing at the airport soon. Can you go, and get them?” Lance asked.
“Sure. I’ll head over there now” Dennis replied.
Dennis made his way down the stairs, passing through the living room, and stopping in the kitchen. As Dennis picked up the keys to the SUV, he headed over toward the back door. After Dennis walked around the circular driveway, he opened the car door, and got into the SUV.
The botanical garden surrounding the house was alive with the sounds of crickets, and birds, happily singing, and chirping. While Lance watched from the upstairs window, as Dennis started the car engine, and drove off up Circle drive.
Lance walked through the upstairs hallway, and down the staircase. Pausing, Lance looked around the house. Everything was just as he’d left it. The living room held two black leather sofas that faced each other, from opposite sides, of a highly polished, maple wood finished room. In the middle of the room sat a large oval glass coffee table. The table suspended itself on four gold legs, that decoratively knobbed into smooth gold plates, on the exterior upper surface of the glass. On top of the table sat a flat round crystal vase full of tropical flowers.
Lance walked toward the back of the room, resting his hand on a gleaming maple finished bar, accented with two bar stools, sitting out in front. The area in back of the bar, held a large oval mirror. Encircling the top arch of the mirror, were dimly lit globe lights that spanned across the top edge of the back wall. A large round carpet filled the expanse of the living room. Dark blue in color, and delicately accented with abstract patterns, circles, and triangles crested in gold, abstractly swirled in eclectic patterns, throughout the rug, while on either side of both sofas, sat black leather reclining chairs, each chair sitting next to a side table, and lamp.
Lance took a moment to clear his head, and unwind. Soon afterward, Lance walked out of the living room, and out onto the screened in porch, which overlooked the front yard, and a circular driveway.
A warm breeze wafted through the porch screens, lifting the bamboo veranda shades up, and down. A wicker sofa decorated with large pink, white, and blue floral patterns, matched the padded cushions, atop the chairs, that sat in front of a large rectangular wicker table. There upon the table, Dennis left him a pitcher of lemonade and a plate of freshly baked, coconut cookies from the bakery. Lance picked up the pitcher, and poured himself a glass of lemonade. As he held the glass, Lance looked out over his front yard.
The land held its own architectural beauty. Thin palm trees fluttered, at the end of the neatly trimmed lawn. Behind the palms, a private beach, extended to the ocean, which held sparkling crystal blue water. Lance planned to take pictures of the models on this landscape. And he hoped, the IMG Executives would be impressed. The late summer sunsets, against the vast ocean, would lend a warm and majestic backdrop, for his tropical island review.
Like a dark cloud, obscuring the sun on a beautiful day, an eerie chill ran through Lance’s body. He felt the hair on his arms ripple, as wave of intense fear, jolted through his senses. Lance looked in every direction around the grounds, but saw nothing. He’d only felt this way once before. On the day his wife Rose disappeared. Lance glanced past his driveway, and then up the drive that lead to his house. Word gets around quickly Lance thought. There, coming into view, was a black sedan, slowly proceeding down the road. Lance stepped out from the porch and onto the driveway, to meet Detective Chilton Edwards at his car. Chilton left the car engine running, and tilted his head out of the window as Lance pressed, and leaned on the sedan with both arms. Lance looked Chilton Edwards straight in the eyes, with solid assurance.
“Lance. Here for your summer holiday?” Chilton asked.
“Yes I am. I’ll also be having, a number of visitors here, toward the end of the summer. I am planning
a fashion event, in late August” Lance affirmed.
“Well... We still have no new information on your wife Rose’s disappearance. It’s the strangest thing, five years... and nothing” Chilton said
Chilton glared at Lance with his cold, steely blue eyes. Chilton was a native Tahiti an, and a man with twenty years of experience, as a detective. A seasoned veteran, and an icon on the island. Chilton stood almost six feet tall, and wore his short, dark wavy hair, slicked back. Chilton’s hair glistened, as if wet in the sunlight. While his deep blue eyes stood in stealth, against a canvas, of his deep bronze complexion. Chilton’s face held strength, and wisdom. But inside, his heart grew cold, when tempered, or afflicted with adversity.
“You will get all of the permits you need for this event? Right Lance” Detective Edward’s said.
“I’m going to the village to secure them tomorrow” Lance replied.
“Good day Lance.” Chilton replied.
As Lance stepped away from the car, the black sedan circled around the driveway, and sped back up the drive.
Lance went back into the house and up the stairs to the den. Picking up a marker, Lance circled the next day on the calendar. Jotting down the word permits, and quickly dropped the marker on the desk with a thud. Lance began to feel afraid. Although he wasn’t sure why. But, he sensed within, that something was coming. Circling around him. Engulfing Lance in a circle of fear.
As Dennis arrived at the airport, Flight 802 had already landed, and was taxing down the runway. Dennis made his way into the airport terminal, and waited patiently, in the luggage pick up area. Once Felisha and Nancy exited the plane, they quickly cleared the security checkpoint. As Felisha and Nancy walked through the airport terminal, carrying their make up cases, they wheeled their suitcases, behind them by the luggage arms.
“There’s Dennis” Felisha commented.
Felisha waved her hand at Dennis to get his attention. As Dennis caught sight of Felisha, he stepped right over to greet them.
“How are you Felisha” Dennis said
“Just fine Dennis. This is my friend Nancy Daniels. Nancy this is Dennis. He works for Lance at the
house” Felisha explained.
“Nice to meet you Dennis” Nancy said shyly.
“Let me help you with your luggage. My car is parked out front” Dennis exhorted.
Dennis took hold of their luggage handles, and began to wheel the suitcases toward the exit. And Nancy, and Felisha followed Dennis out of the airport terminal, and over to the SUV.
As Dennis opened the back hatch, and packed the suitcases inside, Felisha walked around to the front passenger seat, and got in. Then Nancy got into the back seat, and shut the door. Dennis secured, and closed the back hatch on the SUV, climbed into the driver’s side seat, and closed the door. After starting the engine, Dennis pulled out of the airport parking lot.
Nancy sat in the back seat, gazing out of the car window. She’d never been to the island of Tahiti before. The French Polynesian Island, held its own culture, and shined like a new world. It’s beauty teeming with deep green hute, and mupe trees. Palm trees, summit ferns, and temple flowers bloomed, and flourished along the road side, cascading in swift motion, like a paradise, through the windows of the car, in Nancy’s eyes.
As Dennis pulled onto Circle drive, and proceeded toward the house, Nancy did a double take. Before her, a huge mansion loomed in the distance, holding two stately pillars out in front. The house had many windows, and a enclosed and attached porch, sat to the left side. Acres of land surrounded the house. To Nancy’s right, she could see a beach that connected to a vast ocean, completely accented with palm trees. To her left was a floral botanical garden filled with tropical plants. Coconut and banana trees were clustered with bunches of summit fern. Tahitian gardenia, hibiscus, and Polynesian vanilla plants, lined the underside of the botanical garden, and also decorated the far entrance to the drive. While in front of the house, a circular driveway, presented the palatial mansion, which appeared to be about three stories high.
Dennis drove the SUV around the circular driveway, and parked the car, in front of the house. As Lance walked out of the front door, he waited on the landing,.above the steps. Felisha opened the car door, jumped out, and ran to meet Lance. Lance welcomed her with open arms, as he hugged Felisha so tightly, she could barely move. After a few moments Felisha stepped back from his embrace, and held his hand. Nancy shyly walked over toward the front landing, and sat her make up case down on the lawn. As she did, Nancy smiled at them both.
“Lance, this is Nancy Daniels. Nancy this is Lance Wilson” Felisha said proudly.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you Lance. You have a magnificent home” Nancy said humbly.
“The pleasure is mine Nancy. I’ve heard your one of the best models in the world. I look forward
to working with you this summer. Please come in” Lance said.
Lance opened the front door, while holding the door open for Felisha and Nancy to enter. Nancy gently bent over, and picked up her make up case from the front lawn. Then Nancy followed Felisha and Lance into the house.
Dennis removed the suitcases from the SUV, and wheeled them into the house through the back entrance. Lance took Nancy’s make up case from her hand, placing it on a table in the foyer. Then Lance walked the women into the living room, and offered them a seat. Dennis appeared in the living room, as he passed through the kitchen. In front of him, Dennis wheeled their suitcases. After carrying the suitcases up the stairs, Dennis placed them in the guest rooms. As Felisha and Nancy, flopped onto the couch together, breathing a sigh of relief. Lance proceeded over to the bar, and poured them glasses of Pi not Blanc.
“So tell us about the IMG event Lance. How are the plans coming along?” Felisha asked
“I’ve arranged for the other models to arrive on the island in one month. You’ll all need to get
fitted, and rehearse prior to the event. I booked the caterer today, and I’m planning a different entertainment theme, for each evening. I hope you girls; can help me come up with some good ideas”
Lance explained, as he leaned with his back against the bar, grasping his hands together in front of himself, proudly.
“We’d be glad to” Nancy and Felisha replied.
After a few minutes, Dennis came down the stairs, and popped his head into the living room.
“Any ideas what you would like for Dinner?” Dennis asked.
“Surprise us” Felisha, and Nancy replied.
“Dennis. Why don’t you show Nancy to her room? I need to speak with Felisha for a moment” Lance suggested.
“That would be great. I would like to freshen up before dinner” Nancy insisted.
Dennis smiled a generous smile toward Nancy, as he motioned for her, by waving his arm. Dennis picked up Nancy’s make up case from the table in the foyer, then together, Dennis and Nancy, walked up the stairs, and to her room. Felisha gazed softly over at Lance. It had been months, since she last saw Lance, and he appeared to have a lot on his mind.
“What is it Lance?” Felisha asked.
Lance walked over to the couch. Sitting down next to Felisha, he firmly took her by the hand, as Lance placed her hand in his.
“Detective Edwards stopped by today. I had a strange feeling right before arrived. And I still feel that something just isn’t right. I was on my IMG Event website today. All forty of the guests who were invited to the event, have accepted, and confirmed their invitations. My site says that forty two invitations were printed” Lance explained.
“Maybe there was some sort of glitch in the software” Felisha replied.
“That was my first thought. But something doesn’t add up. It’s a secure site. There shouldn’t be any hitches in the program” Lance explained further.
“Are you concerned Lance?” Felisha asked.
“A little. I have to go to the village tomorrow, to secure permits for the event. I think I’m going to ask for security services, for the week as well” Lance decided.
Felisha looked puzzled. She’d visited the island every summer, for the past four years. Felisha had always enjoyed her visits, and had never once felt afraid. Lance looked away from Felisha, with is mind focused on Ben Jasper. Feeling insecure, Lance lowered his head, in a feeling of helplessness. As Lance slowly lifted up his head, he looked at Felisha lovingly. Lance continued to rub her hand in his, in genuine warmth, as he reached deep within himself, to find some self confidence.
“It’s just an uneasy feeling I have. I don’t know. But, I think we should be prepared. This
is my first major fashion event. I think we should air on the side of caution” Lance said sincerely.
Felisha kissed Lance on the forehead. She’d come to trust his judgment over the years, but maybe this time, he was overreacting. While still forbearing and holding onto, the pureness within her heart and soul, Felisha’s innocent spirit, wouldn’t allow her, to think of the worst possible scenario.
“You worry too much Lance. This event will be the hit of the season. Your getting a new circle of friends. Your right. Security sounds like a good idea. I’m going upstairs to freshen up. I’ll see you at dinner” Felisha agreed.
As Felisha lifted herself up off the couch, she went upstairs to her room. Lance leaned back on the leather couch, and sipped his wine. Could the two extra invitations be a glitch? Or could Ben and Rose, be planning to show up at his event? Lance wasn’t sure. But, he knew the best thing to do, was to inform the authorities, and obtain some security.
Dennis appeared in the doorway, and walked into the living room. Lance began to explain, the website problem to Dennis. Making Dennis aware, they might have some uninvited guests, at his fashion event. Lance handed a copy of the guest list to Dennis. Every guest was listed with their name, profession and the hotel, where they’d be staying on the island. Dennis looked over the list, and carefully looked back at Lance. Dennis agreed, informing the authorities, and getting security for the event, was the smartest thing to do. After solemnly leaving the living room, Dennis went into the kitchen, to prepare dinner.
Lance put his wine glass down on the coffee table, and treaded up the stairs to the den. As he sat down at his desk, Lance turned on his computer. After logging onto the web, Lance surfed the web, to the freelance fashion photographer information website. Lance typed in the name Ben Jasper. Ben’s last known fashion spread was five years before. Ben hadn’t worked in the industry, in the past five years.
In a whirlwind of thought, Lance leaned back in his chair, and pressed the search button backward on the web browser. Watching as the screen orbed, and faded to the previous web page, in a circular phasing pattern, that spanned across the screen. The pattern on the screen startled Lance, and made him think. Felisha said, he, would be getting a new circle of friends. From what Lance could remember about Ben Jasper, he most certainly, needed to get security for the event. Ben was an in your face, abusive, and loud person. Ben would say anything, to any person, at any time. Maybe Ben had moved on, but Lance wasn’t about to take any chances. Lance logged off of his web search, and shut down his computer.
A wave of fear rushed through Lance, causing him to lean his face, into the palms of his hands. If Ben and Rose did show up, it would be the end of his living nightmare. But, at what cost? Lance would have forty professional colleagues, coming to his home, at the end of the summer. If something went wrong, it would mean the end of his career. That was last thing he would let happen. Lance was sure of it. He would go to the authorities the next day, and request security, for his fashion event.