Twilight belongs to S. Meyer, not me. I'm just having fun with her characters.
WitFit Prompt: Whistle
We'd made it.
The shuttle bus ride from the Calgary International airport into the Banff National Park was breathtaking. Staring out over the giant mountain peaks and deep cascading valleys I couldn't help but think that I'd be doing dad proud. It stung my heart that he wasn't here to do this with me, but having my best friend as a partner was the next best thing.
"I still have to get some of these things, k?" Rose whispered across the aisle to me. To my surprise, the bus was packed solid, so we were stuck sharing seats with strangers. "Think we can do that tomorrow?" she asked, leafing through the pages of information we'd been sent from Highline Adventures months ago.
"I'm on to you, Hale" I groaned. She laughed.
I knew "forgetting" things was Rose's way of dragging me out shopping. If there was a purpose, she knew I'd bend. Part of the agreement we had when we planned this trip was that we'd indulge in a few days of sightseeing and relaxation before we began our trek. While my mind was set on the mountains, Rose's at the moment was set on the world renowned shopping in the quaint Banff town site.
"I bought an extra trail whistle so don't worry about that, and lots of those synthetic socks." I yawned out with a stretch. As excited as I was to explore the area, after our trip I was mostly excited for a hot shower and a comfy bed.
I needed this trip. Rose needed this trip. For me it was closure, a way to keep a memory alive. For her it was empowerment – a way to prove to herself just how truly strong she could be. We worked hard, we saved hard and we had prepped hard. The fact that it was right in front of us was equally terrifying and exhilarating.
The bus came to a stop in front of large backlit sign with the words, "Highline Mountain Lodge" showcased boldly to the left of a heavy set of wooden doors. Wooden beams, natural rock and stone covered the front face of the hotel. It looked exactly as it did in the brochures, and exactly as I had imagined it would.
As the bus came to a stop a tall, thin man with shaggy blond hair hopped onboard.
"I'd like to personally welcome those of you staying with us" he began addressing us all, clasping his hands in front of him. "We've been family owned and operated for 30 plus years and pride ourselves on Canadian hospitality. My name is Jasper, and my wife Alice will get you all checked in. Please let me know if there is anything we can do to make your stay more comfortable. Embry and Quill are waiting outside the bus to help you with your bags."
As quick as he appeared, he disappeared. Rose and I followed the other ten or so guests off the bus and towards the front doors. The lobby smelled faintly like fireplace and cinnamon, which was quickly explained as I noticed a massive floor to ceiling rock hearth with a roaring fire inside. We waited our turn in line for the front desk, the line moving swiftly.
"Welcome, girls!" a petite brunette with a radiant smile called out from behind the desk, shuffling through papers. "Which one of you is Bella?" she asked staring at me as if she already knew.
"Hi – I am. I think we spoke on the phone?" I replied, extending my hand. Her grip was much firmer than I expected.
"I thought so. You look like a Bella" she grinned. "I'm Alice, and we did! Check in will be quick – let me grab your Visa, and the boys here will bring your bags to your room."
She was right – checking in was effortless. Alice talked about the rainy weather, and went on about how the forecast in the mountains could never really be trusted, and how it would probably all be clear in a day or two. This was good news for us.
She handed us complimentary bus passes, along with two key cards marked with 14 in thick black ink.
"Are you girls planning on eating this evening?" she asked, drumming her fingers along the desk beside her keyboard. She appeared to have tons of energy - was the type that never sat still. "Jasper and I had a reservation at the Grizzly House for tonight but can't make it. It's a fun spot, if you like fondue. Would you want to go in our place?"
Rose looked at me and shrugged. I was up for a little exploration, and fondue sounded alright.
"Sure, but we'll need some time to get cleaned up first if that's ok?" I asked. In our sweats and hoodies we were in no shape to head into any licensed establishment.
"Of course! The reservation isn't til seven, so you've got two hours. It's pretty casual, so don't worry about getting all fancy."
"Thank you so much" Rose added. "They're right about you Canadians being so friendly!"
Alice chuckled, "Yeah, we're a welcoming bunch around here. Some of the locals get a bit territorial, but tourism keeps this whole town in business, so yeah – we aim to please!" she replied a little too enthusiastically. "Anyway I'd better not hold you up. Have a great time tonight, ladies. If you need anything, I'm here all night. Enjoy your suite!"
A/N This is something I'm trying as a way to break out of my writing slump and challenge myself creatively. I'm hoping to update daily using WitFit prompts as my guide. Some chapters will be longer, some will be shorter – it'll be a journey either way. I will not be using a beta for this story. The idea is to light the fire under my butt with this process and get back to my other stories as soon as my brain and my life allow. Now that all of that is out of the way, thank you so much for reading! Let me know what you think! xoxo