Are you ready for danger, Andy?
Andy Barquet has been saving his money for a long-awaited backpacking trip to the Mediterranean. He plans to visit locations his father saw when he was a young man in the Navy. Before he leaves Panama City, he rescues a young woman from the Gulf of Mexico in a potential drowning situation. He thinks he will never see her or her two shallow girlfriends again.
To his amazement, they board the same flight to Europe a few days later. Coincidentally, all of them plan to visit many of the same countries. As travelers sometimes do, they throw their lots in together. Andy is bewitched by Lucia’s white-blonde look and the attraction, though not instantaneous on her part, soon develops into physical passion between the two.
Andy is vexed by her lack of goals in life and how she is too easily led into dangerous situations by her careless friends, While in Tangiers, Andy finds out all too quickly how an impetuous act by Lucia puts both of them in peril.
Andy saw him outside before he entered the cave. He recognized him as one of a group of backpackers staying in the hostel from Cologne. Tall, blonde, blue-eyed they represented gorgeous specimens of the Germanic race, he thought. Before he could blink an eye, Lucia accepted and walked off with him. A second one of the bunch asked Helen to dance and she left also. That left him and Patricia sitting alone at the table. How he wished he asked Lucia to dance, but he lost his chance in the blinking of an eye. He didn't doubt that the German enjoyed upstaging him. No way would he ask Patricia to dance, her dislike for him felt almost palpable. He didn't really know why, since he never did anything to her that he knew of.
People now drank their bottles of cerveza and pitchers of sangria. The noise level reached higher now that alcohol consumption increased. Andy kept an eye on Lucia. Somehow he felt he should, though he wasn't a boyfriend, or even in her group. Once again, they just happened to be in the same place at the same time. She attempted to dance the flamenco with the German and wasn't doing too bad a job of it, he thought. The more she twirled and clapped her hands, the more he leered.
Across the club, Patricia now danced with the other German—Reinhold, Andy thought his name was. They danced hot and tight. It wasn’t really flamenco; it resembled a grope session of two bodies touching with no air between. They were oblivious to everyone around them.
He turned back and sipped from the bottle of water he brought with him. Helen, now returned, nursed her vodka with a puckered mouth. She took her eyes from her glass and looked toward the dance floor. Her look turned into a stare and Andy found himself following her line of vision.
The German plastered himself against Lucia. She looked uncomfortable and he looked drunk. She tried to pull away from him as the dancing grew faster and faster around them. He took her elbows and pulled her back towards him. Lucia pulled back again to no avail.
Andy jumped from his seat and pushed his way through gyrating and clapping couples. He shoved himself between Lucia and the German, shoving the man slightly in the chest in the process. He looked startled and backed up, almost tripping over a much shorter Spaniard behind him.
Lucia took Andy’s arm and followed him back to the table. He thought he detected a shiver in her he pulled a chair out for her to sit in.
“I thought you might be having a little trouble out there.”
“I think I could have handled myself.” Her words came out crisp as she straightened up in her chair.
“Do you really think so?” Helen slurred a bit.
“He just wanted to dance.” Lucia deliberately turned her chair towards the dance floor.
“I think he wanted to paw you.” Helen hit the table gleefully with her hand.
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