Yes it is that time of year again, the time that lovers buy each other chocolates and flowers, go out for a meal and sip wine into the small hours and generally revel in how loved up they feel. Well, not for everyone. Want a bit of romance in your reading? Believe it or not, I have written something with a slight smidgen of cupid’s arrow. I don’t expect to make a habit of it and the story still has its roots firmly planted in sci fi.
It is the story of a dinner date, of a couple who have been matched on a mutual love of travel. But there’s one snag… they have very different ideas about what travel means.
If you hate Valentine’s Day and prefer your romance less fluffy and more along the lines of evil spirits trapped in a machine then there’s plenty of horror on offer. Nazi Super Soldiers, a post-apocalyptic Scottish community trapped in the highlands or a medieval Christmas are all present in this one neat little package. It’s less than £2!
‘Yes! That’s really part of the appeal of travelling for me – not knowing where it will take you.’
The main courses arrived then. They complimented the aesthetic of each other’s choices and politely began to eat.
After a few mouthfuls she put down her fork, dabbed her mouth with the napkin and reignited conversation. ‘I’ve decided what my favourite place is. Have you ever heard of Prassonissi beach?’ she asked.
‘Sorry, no.’ He shook his head. ‘Where is it?’
‘It is the southern tip of the Greek island of Rhodes. The island is on the border of two seas which is cool in itself. What I love so much is that the seas couldn’t be more different. To the south is the warm blue Med which is calm – very serene. You could sit in the sea for hours reading a book and a wave would never surprise you. To the north is the Aegean which is green and choppy. You couldn’t swim in that, at least not very far. When you stand on the beach at high tide-‘
‘Sorry, they approach from different directions?’
She beamed. ‘Yes! And the effect is amazing. The water swirls, creating vortexes. It is so hypnotic to watch them clash, swirl around and mix together.’ She became more excitable at seeing his impressed smile. ‘The coolest part is that you can stand with one leg in each sea and feel it swirling beneath you. It is a funny feeling. And of course the temperatures vary because the med is warm and the Aegean because of its motion is cooler. You must experience it.’
‘Sounds amazing!’ he said with genuine awe. ‘I can’t imagine the effect but it sounds like nothing else I’ve experienced.’
‘I’m going to Macchu Picchu next,’ she beamed. ‘Next week some time, that’ll mean I’ve visited every South American country.’
He frowned. ‘They don’t let people up there – they haven’t done for about twenty years or more.’
‘We don’t need to let people up there.’ There was a pause before the penny dropped. ‘Oh you meant actual travelling, didn’t you?’