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Spiritual Bond

Spiritual Bond

Alastair King looked down at his Breitling watch, relieved to see that it was nearly time for her to arrive. He hated being late and this being his first visit to Mallorca, he’d decided to leave a bit earlier from his hotel, worried about getting lost. It turned out to be ridiculously easy to find the fine dining restaurant and so he’d been sitting here for half an hour, waiting to meet Carmen Vazquez. Idly looking online for things to do in Mallorca last night, he’d come across a website that intrigued him. They would arrange a meeting between the customer and a Spanish artist, who in exchange for a meal, and the hope that the meeting may lead to a commission of their work, would talk to them about the art they created. Alastair had scrolled through the art on offer and had been mesmerised by one particular pencil drawing, a portrait that had an ethereal quality about it that seemed to speak to him on a deep emotional level and might just be perfect for the castle.

 Clicking on the image, the artist’s biography had popped up and he had been surprised to see a gorgeous, young face smiling back at him, a 28 year old woman. Hence the meeting today with Carmen. He looked toward the door when he noticed movement there and was impressed when he saw that her picture did not actually do her justice. He’d strongly suspected a lot of photo-shopping had been involved with the image, but she was truly breathtaking. Tall and slim, a waterfall of midnight black hair cascading down her back, huge dark eyes and honey toned skin. She was dressed with casual elegance, skinny jeans with a cream silk shirt and high heeled black boots. All eyes swivelled to follow her progress through the restaurant. Alastair hoped that this was not some empty-headed beauty, hoping to snare a rich husband. He met many beautiful women, almost daily, but he was looking forward to a discussion of substance, with a real artist who saw all the beauty and pain and suffering the world held. He stood up and shook her hand, formally introducing himself, “Ms Vazquez? Thank you so much for meeting me. My name is Alastair.” Carmen took the proffered hand, with one glance taking in the handsome, well-dressed man in front of her. She knew he was 39 from his online bio, but there had been no accompanying picture.

Wavy auburn hair, neatly cut and the side parting leaving it flopping to the left, light green eyes with astonishingly long lashes and under a wide, full mouth, he actually had a cleft chin! He was pale, like most Scots and very tall and muscular under his suit. “Please, call me Carmen,” she invited warmly, as he pulled out her chair. After confirming with her, he ordered a bottle of sparkling water, neither enjoying drinking during the day. “What brings you to Mallorca?” Carmen asked conversationally. “Honestly? Boredom mostly. I am also looking for art to decorate my castle and decided to travel through Europe, looking for fresh perspectives and unknown talents,” a self-deprecating smile flashed, “and also hoping to banish the aforementioned boredom.” Carmen gave a tiny cough, her hand covering her mouth to hide the impish smile, “Your castle?” she asked merrily, suspecting he was trying to seduce her with lies. Alastair raised his eyes, “I understand that must sound ridiculous, but yes, my castle. I inherited it a few years ago and after doing some repairs and offering tours, it turned into quite the tourist attraction.

Somehow your drawing feels like it’s trying to draw me back into the past, very much how I feel when I walk through the castle, as though the past is just barely hidden behind a veil, waiting to welcome me.” Alastair stared at Carmen seriously, “Is all your work like that and where does your inspiration come from?” Carmen pulled out her phone and while unlocking it replied, “I have some more photos on here. I would have preferred to show you my portfolio, but it is big and heavy and not so easy to take along when going to lunch,” she smiled at him charmingly as she handed over the phone. Her inner dialogue was very different though, if she told him where she got her inspiration from, he would think she was crazy. Alastair’s eyes widened as he scrolled through the pictures, this was absolutely amazing work. “These all seem to be from different time periods, but I don’t recognise any of the subjects, so it can’t be important figures from history?” he sounded perplexed. Throwing caution to the wind, Carmen confessed, “I don’t expect you to believe me, but spirits appear to me. They tell me about their lives and how they died and then I sketch it for them.” Alistair raised his eyebrows, “You realise that I’m a Scotsman with a castle right? Of course I believe that spirits still move among us. I can’t talk to them, but I certainly do believe in them and occasionally feel their presence.” Carmen sighed in relief and taking his hand in hers, her eyes widened in shock for a moment when they touched, a spirit sighing in her ear, This is the man you will spend the rest of your life with, but she shook that off before she responded passionately, “Gracias, I’m so used to people looking at me like I’m loca if I tell them that.” Alastair leaned forward earnestly, “Please, come with me to Scotland and stay at the castle, then draw what the previous inhabitants show you.” Carmen grinned widely, “Si, I would love to.”

When they were married eight months later at the castle, the walls already adorned with many of Carmen’s works and a book about to be published about her communing with spirits and bringing their words back to life with her art, Carmen was truly happy. She had known she would end up with Alastair, but the success she had found was just as important to her and she couldn’t wait to see what more life had in store.