The beauty and fragrance of the garden around the cottage filled her with enchantment. Bold vibrant colours, a plethora of aromas, an appealing old world cottage – the setting bewitched her as her eyes roamed from one delight to the next. Behind the cottage down a slight embankment sat a beautiful pristine lake that simply beckoned with it’s twinkling untouched waters.
She’d looked forward to seeing the cottage she’d inherited and she wasn’t disappointed. Uncle Seth had promised her the cottage when she was a child but she hadn’t really expected this as there were other relatives he could have left it to but she was beyond delighted it was hers.
A personal getaway she could enjoy forever, far from the hustle and bustle that had become her life. A secret place no one knew about to enjoy in solitude and hopefully recharge her batteries gain perspective and most of all relax in. Peace at last she thought.
After unpacking, she wandered through the rooms, all well appointed if older with the original charm intact. A sudden noise invaded her serenity. Hurrying to the window she looked outside and saw a man approaching in a small boat. A neighbour?
Dawning a sweater she hustled outside to watch as he docked his boat at the miniature dock. As he straightened she caught her first real glimpse of him, tall well build, strong if the muscles were any indication.
He obviously hadn’t expected her for momentary surprise lit his face. Striding toward her he asked, “Friend or foe?”
“Is there a line in the sand?” Shannon asked a perplexed smile upon her face.
“Guess that depends.”
“Whether you believe the stories or not.”
“Haven’t heard any stories so it would be difficult to make an informed decision.”
“Ah. Well, I wasn’t sure you’d arrived. I’d heard rumours, thought I’d check it out for myself.”
“Coffee’s perking if you’d care for some.”
They headed into the kitchen and she poured two cups before retracing her steps, the cabin suddenly feeling confined by his presence, to sit outside on the porch swing leaving him to stand or sit on the railing.
Perhaps her getaway wouldn’t be as serene and peaceful as she’d anticipated. What was this about and who was the stranger? Why had he really ventured into her world?