|Strangers That Pass in The Night
Author: TL22 PM
Life did not turn out as expected for Rory Gilmore. She wasn't unhappy but she wasn't happy either. In a small city on Cape Breton Island she meets a boat captain named Pacey Witter who is in transit also. In this story Pacey and Rory are in their mid thirties.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Humor - Pacey W. & Rory G. - Chapters: 8 - Words: 27,230 - Reviews: 18 - Favs: 3 - Follows: 4 - Updated: 08-11-12 - Published: 06-24-12 - id: 8252483
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
The night was miserable; a late fall night that could not make up its mind whether to snow or rain. The wind was coming out of the northeast, straight from the Artic. Pacey Witter was sitting at the bar of the Sydney Delta Hotel. He and two crew members were delivering a sailing yacht from Oslo Norway to Miami. Pacey was growing concerned over the rising wind and seas. When he checked the Navtex, he knew he needed to find a safe harbour for a few days. He wanted to go to Halifax NS but as the waves and wind increased, he chose Sydney Nova Scotia; a city of thirty one thousand on the island of Cape Breton. Pacey decided that they all could use a few days off the boat so he retained a room for the three of them at the hotel.
Pacey twirled the Famous Grouse scotch in his rocks glass. Good scotch you could drink just with ice and cheap scotch you needed water. This was good scotch. The ice cubes made a tinkling sound as they banged against the glass.
He loved the sea but in his wildest dreams he never thought he would wind up delivering yachts.
She tried political reporting and then tried the foreign correspondent route, but eventually realization came that she did not have the personality for those jobs. Rory had always wanted to travel and finally she found her niche as a travel writer. One rainy Tuesday afternoon her editor at the New York Times decided to send her to Sydney Nova Scotia to do a travel piece on the out of way city. She reminded him that he was sending her away over Thanksgiving. Her editor calmly stated that Thanksgiving in Canada was the second Monday in October; thus she would not be missing anything.
On her schedule was visiting several arts and crafts events. It was Thanksgiving eve in her country, but in Canada in the Wednesday before the fourth Thursday in November meant nothing.
Still Rory was lonely She had received Thanksgiving invites from her mother and also her best friend in college. Reluctantly she had to turn them down for her assignment. Not wanting to stay in her room alone the writer decided to patronize the bar. Bars were not normally her venue but the thought of spending the whole evening in her room was unbearable. So forsaking room service seemed like a good idea.
Rory Gilmore walked into bistro of the Sydney Delta Hotel There were a few couples sprinkled among the tables. She saw two older ladies having a martini at the bar and some guy about her age staring into his glass. Rory decided to sit in the middle of them. Three seats on either side was her buffer.
As soon as she took her seat the bartender; a slim blonde girl with a long ponytail appeared from nowhere and asked her what she wanted.
Rory thought for a few moments. She was staying at the hotel and did not have to drive. Her usual drink of white did not suit her mood. The martinis the older ladies were having looked inviting. "Vodka Martini please."
As the bartender, Jane, she deduced by her name tag, busied herself making the drink. Roy took advantage of the lull and glanced over at dark haired man to her left. His drink was empty, but he was patiently waiting for the bartender to notice him. He glanced at her and turned away. Rory removed a paperback from her purse and started reading, barely noticing when her drink was set in front of her. Absent mindedly she would take a sip of her potent drink and realized if she was going to have more than a couple of these she needed to eat,
When the girl sat to his right it took him from his thoughts. She was a pretty brunette with very blue eyes. Pacey caught her quick glance at him but she promptly turned away and started reading a book. Pacey chuckled to himself. Tomorrow was Thanksgiving back home, but not here. At the rate he was drinking scotch he would be blotto a lot sooner than he wanted. His thoughts drifted back to another time and place. It seemed like a lifetime since he was in Capeside. At one time he expected to live his whole life in Capeside. Who knows, he may have become a cop like his father and brother. Then his thoughts drifted back to the girl who opened his eyes to the world beyond Capeside. Pacey chugged the rest of his scotch and looked for the bartender. Jane was in a conversation with the girl who had ordered the martini. Pacey waved his glass in the air and said "One more Jane."
The bartender turned and smiled at him and put up one finger to indicate she would be right with him. As Jane started to walk away the brunette put her hand on her arm to stop her. The brunette was now facing him and to Pacey's surprise spoke with a slight New England accent. She asked Jane if she was sure there was no turkey on the menu. "She is American." Pacey said under his breath. He wondered what she was doing in Sydney.
The girl briefly met his eyes and turned away and picked up her book again. Pacey took this opportunity to check her out. He wasn't really looking for a pickup; just something he did out of habit.
The brunette was sensibly dressed for the weather. Her attire was almost elegant in its simplicity, a charcoal gray tailored business suit, with a white sweater. Pacey could tell by the way her slacks met her boots that this suit was carefully tailored. The girl had common sense also. She was not wearing boots with a spiked heel but normal boots more suited for walking around in the local weather. This was a girl who was practical and from her clothes not poor. Jane set his drink before him and Pacey broke his stare. "Thank you let's make the next drink a beer Ok?"
"No problem Mr. Witter". Jane then looked over at the brunette who was engrossed in her book and back at Pacey. She smiled and shook her head.
Rory couldn't concentrate on her book. She missed her family. Tomorrow was Thanksgiving she did not care what her boss at the New York Times said or the county of Canada who albeit had the same holiday, but in a different month. Why couldn't the two countries get together and pick a mutual day. As soon as the thought crossed her mind she realized how ridiculous it was.
To her right she heard some noise and the two martini drinking ladies were leaving. She wondered if they lived here or were staying in the hotel. Rory could have sworn she felt eyes on her. Furtively she glanced at the man to her left. He was looking at her. Not a leering look, more of a curious look. He turned to the bartender when she arrived with his drink. Rory realized that she and the stranger were the only two people sitting at the bar. It almost seemed ridiculous to sit here and ignore each other. Rory wondered what he did for a living. Oh well she wasn't about to walk over and start talking to him. She had been alone for a while, but picking up guys in a bar was not something she would do. Rory thought back to the boys she had dated. Each one was different and they were in her past. When she left Stars Hollow, she never again saw the three boys she dated. Rory had a few relationships since then but nothing seemed to work out and here she was over thirty and single. Her grandmother was mortified. Rory chuckled at the thought of her grandmother lecturing her.
There was one boy in her past that came to mind when she felt lonely. Sometimes she thought she missed him. That thought was ridiculous also. She hadn't seen him in years.
Pacey looked over at the brunette again. She had put her book down and seemed lost in thought. I wonder why she is here, he thought to himself. Pacey glanced at his watch. It was still early, only 5 30 PM. Early, but the sun had set an hour ago. He wondered what his two crewmembers were up to. They were in their early twenties and hanging around a guy like him who was on the north side of thirty did not appeal to them.
Again Pacey glanced over at the girl. Again she seemed engrossed in her book. "This is nuts." Pacey mumbled. The two of them were in a virtually empty hotel lounge and it seemed they were doing their best to ignore each other. All she could do is say no Pacey thought. If she does, I'll just crawl back into my drink and say good try.
The tree stools separating them almost looked like a wide road. Well if he wanted to talk to her; he needed to cross that road. Hesitantly the boat captain stood up. He took four steps and stopped beside her. If she had noticed he was there; she showed no indication of it.
Pacey cleared his throat. "Um excuse me."
After a few seconds the girl turned and looked at him. Pacey took in the bluest eyes he had ever seen and realized that the girl was a lot closer to him in age than he first thought. Barely noticeable were the smile lines at the corners of her mouth and eyes. He no longer thought she was twenty three, but you had to look real close to see that.
"Yes, may I help you?"
Rory came back from her thoughts of her past but before she picked up her book she snuck a look at the man to her left. She knew that he had glanced at her several times. Her innate radar told her that. She wondered if he would come over and speak to her. Did she want him to come over and speak to her? The man to her left was casually dressed in jeans and a brown sweater. A heavy pea coat was casually thrown over the stool next to him. Inanely she wondered what he would do with the coat if the bar filled up. With a sigh she went back to her book, The Audience of Chairs, written by Joan Clark. The story takes place in Cape Breton Island and Halifax.
Rory felt a presence beside her and "Um excuse me."
She turned and it was the man. He was taller than she expected and seemed very well put together. "May I help you?" She uttered before she knew it.
"Yes, my name is Pacey Witter and do you mind if I join you? It seems silly for both of us to be sitting here staring into the mirror across the bar."
"I wasn't staring into a mirror I was reading." Rory then fell silent.
She looked at him standing there. It seemed as if he had nothing else to say. Rory wondered if he was going to speak or just walk away. Suddenly he spoke. "You sound as if you are from New England. I am also.
Rory was looking at him thinking over what she should do next. He looked friendly; why not. "Ok Mr. Witter you may join me.
Pacey slid into the chair next to hers. "Please call me Pacey. Mr. Witter sounds a little formal. And what is your name?
"Rory, Rory Gilmore."
Pacey extended his hand "Nice to meet you."