Alina's beautiful face disappeared behind the silver elevator doors and Noah finally let go of the breath he had been holding in. It's hard to believe he had only met Alina that day, he felt as though she was a long lost friend that he hadn't seen in many years.
Having spent most of the last ten years of his life in Miami, Noah was accustomed to women of a certain...variety. They were mainly party girls who ordered low calorie drinks and sunbathed in tiny gold bikinis. Alina was so...different. She was clearly shy, but smart. Her smile was genuine and the wrinkle and tiny head tilt she gave him several times that day made his heart beat faster. Plus, she was hot. He knew she didn't think so, but there was something insanely attractive about her milky smooth skin and soft, curvy body. He wanted to get to know every corner of her gorgeous curves.
Noah didn't have any problem finding and dating women. He was an attractive bartender and unlike many of the other men in Miami, he didn't need to flaunt his qualities. He was funny, assertive, and kind, and he had taken advantage of how attractive women had found him, but Alina was different. He kind of liked that she didn't swoon over him right away and that there were more layers to her. He didn't just want to sleep with her (though he wouldn't mind that at all), but he wanted to get to know her too. He wanted to make her smile and laugh.
Noah couldn't keep his mind off her the whole way home and all the things he wanted to do to with her. Finally he rounded the corner and made his way to his small apartment in an older stucco building. After stripping down to his boxers, he laid on the covers of his bed as it was too hot to get under the blankets. He reached for his phone and sent a new text to Alina.
Alina awoke around 7am the next day. She saw Noah's late night text and instantly grinned. It was going to be a good day. Then she remembered that Noah was working today and the chances of seeing him were slim and her heart dropped slightly.
Alina threw on a light sundress and put her hair half up. She grabbed her sunglasses and purse and met her Mom and Josie downstairs for breakfast. Over breakfast, they decided they'd have a relaxing pool day.
They had a lovely afternoon enjoying the Miami sun and taking frequent dips in the clear, blue pool. Alina was playing rummy with Josie when her phone buzzed.
Hello beautiful, how are you?
Alina smiled, then started typing.
I'm good, we're just having a pool day. How are you? You should come join us!
I would love to, but I am getting ready for work. I just wanted to say have a good day and I can't wait to see you again.
Alina's heart skipped a beat. Thinking of Noah - handsome, stoic, confident Noah that could probably get any girl he wanted saying he couldn't wait to see her again was...exciting.
"Is that your boooooyyyyfriend?" Josie said with a giant grin on her face. Alina's mom put her magazine down and looked up. Alina blushed.
"Shush you, or maybe we can talk about the boy you punched in the face last year?" Alina said triumphantly. Josie went red and crossed her arms. Last year a boy in her class tried to kiss her and Josie was so taken aback she punched him right in the nose. All the kids in school gave her a hard time for it. Thirteen year olds could be cruel.
"So you and Noah have fun yesterday?" Alina's mom asked, picking up her magazine again and trying to sound casual. Alina rolled her eyes but couldn't stop the smile that lit up her face.
"I just think it's good to have a little fun on vacation, and I think he's a good candidate," she said.
"Why is that?" Alina asked, trying not to sound too desperate for information about Noah.
"Noah's a good kid, he had to...grow up a lot," Alina's mom responded. Alina sat up and looked at her mom.
"What do you mean?" Alina asked. Alina's mom sighed and put her magazine down again.
"I've known John for a long time, even though you all hadn't met him yet, we've kept in touch for many years. I...probably shouldn't tell you this but Noah has only lived with John since he was Josie's age."
"How come?" Alina asked. She was surprised, Noah and John seemed so close.
"Well...technically, Noah is an orphan." Alina's forehead wrinkled.
"I thought John was his dad?"
"John is his dad but only because he was married to Noah's mom. They got divorced when Noah was very young and Noah lived with her. Then when he was 12, she died. His real father had died several years earlier so Noah was placed with John. He raised him like he was his own."
Alina was shocked. Noah seemed so kind and friendly, she had no idea his gorgeous blue eyes hid so much pain.
"That's SO sad," Josie said.
It was. Suddenly Alina's heart ached for Noah.
After an early dinner, Alina's mom and Josie decided to go explore the downtown area while Alina went back to her room. Alina tried to read for a bit but ended up taking a nap. After she woke up, she showered off the sunscreen and sweat from sunbathing and put on a fresh, airy, sage green dress. She put in simple dangling earrings and her favorite sterling silver turtle necklace that her mom had given her when she was accepted to the Marine Biology program. Finally, she put on some simple make-up and strappy sandals before heading out the door.
Outside the hotel, Alina hailed a cab and gave them the address for Sam's Bayfront Bar & Grille.