Okay, I've had to re-write all 3000 words I had because my hard-drive died and I'm using my parents laptop for 30 minutes a day. (No time for spell check! Sorry!)
The team stumbled downstairs the next morning, disorientated and tired. Connor, the ever clumsy one, walked straight into the kitchen table as Abby fell backwards onto one of the sofas. Connor decided to not attempt breakfast and slid into one of the seats at the table, head in his arms. He and Abby had stayed up well past the storm last night and had awoken in a mass of entangled limbs and the duvet.
Jess and Becker were the next downstairs, Jess still flushed from waking up in Becker's arms. The Captain seemed to be in a relatively good mood, especially at the news that Connor had walked into the kitchen table. Jess slouched into the corner of the other sofa, swinging her legs up beside her. No sooner had she settled herself, Becker flopped onto the sofa next to her, resting his head in her lap.
Matt and Emily were the last downstairs, Emily slipping from the last step and Matt jumping forwards to catch her. They were both a little stiff from their contortionist act last night, supplying Connor with a sufficient amount of jokes for the next few days. "Okay, maybe we should lay off the water parks for a while." Matt suggested, helping Emily into a stool by the counter.
"How about Sea World?" Jess suggested and Matt rolled his eyes at her.
"I was being serious."
"So am I. Sea World has a few roller-coasters but is mainly a sort of Zoo." she reached for the guidebook on the table flicking through until she found the page she was looking for. "Dolphins, Killer Whales, Polar Bears, Penguins, Fish, Sharks, Manta Rays, Manatees and more."
"Fine." Connor sighed. "But I'm not getting fed to Shamu!"
"There's 'Stingray Lagoon' to the left." Jess informed the team once they'd made it through bag check. Once again, Jess had located, and taken charge of, the map. "You're able to feed and touch them." Jess didn't wait for the others to reply, just started walking. Becker and the others followed without hesitation.
"I'm not keen of feeding them." Connor muttered, looking a little pale at the thought of handling raw fish.
"Don't worry, Con." Abby laughed. "It's optional." Matt and Becker were sent to collect the fish whilst the others congregated around the pale orange wall. Abby immediately dunked her hand in the cold water, stroking the first ray to swim past her. "They feel kinda slimy!" she laughed, grabbing a fish from the box Becker had handed her. She held it between her index and middle finger, the fish facing up and her hands on the bottom of the pool. It only took a few seconds for a ray too swim over her hand, scooping up the fish. Abby grinned. "C'mon Con! Your turn!"
Emily took less persuasion than Connor and Matt took even less than Emily. Becker, unsurprisingly, wasn't phased by the rays or the fish. Even Jess managed to hold a fish but refused to do it again when one of the rays tried to eat her fingers as well as the fish. In the end, Abby admitted defeat and the team were forced to head to the Alligators and Manatee rescue. "They're all slimy!" Connor was still trying to defend himself as a youngish woman approached them, a smile plastered on her face.
"Is that the Stingrays?" the smiled, coming to a halt in front of the team. She reminded the team of an older, ginger and American version of Jess. "I'm creeped out by them too. Bronwen Jones. But everyone calls me Bronnie." she smiled, holding out her hand for Connor to shake. In the other hand, she held a baby alligator. "You're from England?"
"Yep." Connor grinned, popping the 'p'. "We all are." he added hastily as Abby elbowed him in the ribs. He quickly introduced the others before Bronnie introduced them to the Alligator in her arms.
"This is Amiri. He's five months old and our third baby born this year." she smiled proudly, indicating for them to stroke him. "His jaws are taped shut so he wont snap at you."
"You're a reptile girl?" Abby guessed and Bronnie grinned.
"Can't stand arachnids or insects and I don't have the patience to work with avians. You cant handle the rays, orcas or dolphins and I've always been hooked on Alligators and Crocodiles. Anyway, I hope you have a nice day!" Bronnie pushed past the team to greet another family behind the team and they took their chance to escape into the happy worker.
"Bet she wont be like that in two years time." Becker smirked and Jess slapped his arm.
The team followed a carpeted corridor into a large, semi-circled room with the curved wall made completely out of glass and providing an under-water view of the manatees. One manatee was swimming towards them, swimming up the glass, rolling back onto its front again and then repeating the motion. Abby instructed Becker to take photos, making a mental note to nose through the pictures at a later date. "Aren't they beautiful?" Jess smiled, appearing at Abby's shoulder. The blonde glanced at her friend, surprised at a comment from a girl afraid of most large creatures.
"You like them?"
"I love them! I love elephants, whales and dolphins and manatees are like a weird mixture of all three!"
"So, if a manatee came through an anomaly you'd be there?"
"Totally!" Jess laughed, spotting Matt bending to press a kiss to Emily's lips. "Stay like that!" she demanded the couple, swiping the camera from Becker's hands and snapping a photo. "Aw!" Jess grinned happily and Matt and Emily took this as permission to part.
"Any particular reason?" Matt asked, raising an eyebrow. He glanced over Jess' shoulder and raised his other eyebrow.
"Because it's adorable and I felt like it." Jess replied, handing the camera back to Becker.
"What about Abby and Connor?" Emily asked, nodding towards the engaged couple that had equal looks of amusement, curiosity and shock on their faces. They started backing away but the looks on Jess' and Emily's faces made them turn and press their lips to each others whilst Emily managed to take the photo.
"Jess and Becker now." Connor smiled angelically, watching Jess realise that she was going to be embarrassed again. Becker had obviously seen the look on both Connor and Jess' faces as he reached for Jess' hand, turning her around to face him.
"Don't you want to kiss me?" He asked teasingly and she grinned, wrapping her arms around his neck and pressing her lips to his. The kiss only lasted a few seconds but it still put the fact that Jess was dating Becker into perspective and it left both of them with a blush on their faces.
"No. Uh huh. No way. Hell no." Connor said, holding up his hands and backing away from the entrance to 'Kraken.'
"I'll get on it if you do." Jess muttered, appearing at Connor's shoulder with a look of pure horror on her face.
"My answer is still NO." Connor replied firmly, crossing his arms across his chest as Matt and Emily crossed the entrance and began making their way to the back of the queue. Abby rolled her eyes and followed the pair, dragging Becker behind her.
"You know, if we just got on, there'd be no problem." Jess mused but Connor shook his head, as ever defiant.
Thirty Minutes Later...
"Changed my mind!" Connor cried as the coaster rolled out of the station and began to climb the turquoise track up a hill. To his right Jess was nodding frantically, one hand gripping the shoulder bars so tight her knuckles were white and the other with a death grip on Becker's hand. Both of Connor's own hands were practically super-glued to the bars and Abby had linked her arm through his. Behind the zoologist and technician were Emily and Matt, both looking a little nervous.
"Too late to back out now!" Abby said cheerfully and Connor clamped his eyes shut. "Just relax!"
The coaster dropped ever so slightly and turned before plunging down a steep drop that shot straight into a loop on the other side. Connor clamped his eyes shut and held his breath. Jess' hair was whipped back from her face and she let out a shrill cry that dogs many miles away could probably hear. The cart did a quick banked turn and a miniature cork-screw before rolling upwards again into another loop and slowing down on a flat piece of track.
"Is the worst part over?" Connor asked threw clenched teeth and clamped eyes.
"I don't know." Jess replied shakily, her eyes glued open.
The track dropped and curved steeply before looping once more and momentarily dropping underground. The coaster returned to ground level, rolling into the station. Connor managed to peel his hands off the shoulder bars and pry his eyes open and Jess managed to get her left hand free but refused to drop Becker's hand.
"N-no more coasters." Connor stammered, gripping Abby's arm tightly.
"I agree." Jess nodded, fishing the map out of her bag. "Um, how about the Penguin Encounter?"
"Penguins!" Connor exclaimed. "Great! Everybody loves penguins! Pingu Penga Penguins!" Connor chattered hurriedly, running towards the designated building and pulling Abby after him.
"Great." Becker muttered. "Connor's gone nuts."
"How did you talk me into this?" Jess asked in a small voice as she was strapped into her seat on 'Manta'. "I mean, seriously. This is worse than Kraken!"
"You'll be fine, Jess." Becker smiled, reaching over to take his girlfriend's hand.
Becker and Jess were sat in the front row next to a father and son. Connor and Abby were in the second row and Matt and Emily in the third.
With no warning at all, the seats fell forwards so the team were laying on their fronts and Connor could be heard muttering 'I want to get off' over and over again. "I'll chew through the restraints!" Connor warned. "I really, really will!" Connor's complaints were cut off as the Ray themed car rolled out of the station and began to climb the accent.
"Becker?" Jess asked as they neared the top.
"Yes Jess?" Becker sighed in response.
"I hate you. I meant it too. I really, really hate y- ARGH!" Jess' insult was ruined as the cart plunged downwards, eliciting a scream from her.
The track curved upwards until the team were travelling along on their backs through a loop and then returning to their front for a cork-screw. Jess' hair was battered by the wind and she dropped Becker's hand to get a tighter grip on the shoulder bars. The Manta took another cork-screw before levelling out and slowing down, preparing for the next drop. This one wasn't as steep and took them over a small pool of water before sending them past a waterfall and into another cork-screw. This time, when the coaster levelled and slowed, it rolled into the station. "I really hate you." Jess muttered as the carts straightened up again and the team were let out.
"I think we established that." Becker laughed, heading for the exit. "Would an ice-cream make it up to you?"
Okay, sorry it's so short! Who's got any funny/silly ideas for the story? I already have a few but suggestions are always welcome!