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Authors: Natasha Stories

What We Search For

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What
We Search For

By

Natasha
Stories

Copyright 2014 by Natasha Stories

This book is protected
under the copyright laws of the United States of America. Any reproduction or
other unauthorized use of the material or artwork herein is prohibited.
This book is a work of fiction. Names,
characters, places, brands, media, and incidents are either the product of the
author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. All rights reserved.

Table of Contents

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

Chapter Twelve

Chapter
Thirteen

Chapter
Fourteen

Epilogue

Chapter One

To say my nerves were
getting the better of me is an understatement. I was sitting in row 15 seat C,
next to a complete stranger who was ignoring me entirely as my hands fumbled to
tighten the seatbelt. I could barely think straight.

The last few months of my
life were an absolute blur. Where it all started to go wrong was difficult to
determine, and to say it all went wrong might be overreacting, but living a
lifestyle of complacency had taken its toll. I was lonely.

I sat next to my
unsociable neighbor with a grin on my face that could have been mistaken as
maniacal, if someone were to notice. Since I’d made the decision to leave, the
months leading up to this moment had been a flurry of activity, from selling my
belongings to notifying work, and saying my farewells to family and friends. I
was leaving on a two year working VISA. Everything I owned was either stowed
away in the lower levels of the plane or was in my carry-on. Or I was wearing
it.

When I said goodbye to my
family I was itching to leave. An overwhelming sense of freedom had washed over
me. Now that I was on the plane it was a different story. My palms were sweaty
and I didn't know what to do with my hands.

Looking around the plane
didn't help, so I focused on the chair in-front of me and waited to take off. I
had never enjoyed flying and hadn't even left the country before this. As much
as I was excited, I was equally anxious about whether I had made the right
decision.

“Come on.” I muttered
impatiently. I wanted to be in the air already. The plane moved into position
and the crew ran their final checks. I looked away as they demonstrated the
safety briefing with their overly enthusiastic smiles. The plane came to a stop
at the start of the runway, the engines increased their power and the breaks
were released. We roared down the tarmac and into the air, as my stomach took
the ride of its life.

We finally leveled off and
I removed my white knuckles from the arms of my chair. Cabin crew roamed up and
down the aisles ensuring everyone had their tasteless coffees or biscuits in
short order.

Coming to a stop in-front
of me a beautiful hostess cast her gaze upon me. She had blond hair and brown
eyes and her smile lit up her entire face. Her figure was accentuated by her
uniform with her skirt hugging flowing hips, her blouse coming apart at the top
to show a hint of cleavage with a promise of more to come. Placing a hand on
the seat in front of me, she leaned over and asked the anti-social man next to
me if he would like a drink. His reply came as a muffled ‘no’ as he returned to
his own devices.

Turning back to me the
hostess was still leaning over and I couldn't help but throw a quick glance
down her top, thinking myself an idiot as I returned her smile awkwardly. I
could tell I'd been caught in the act, a knowing smile was plastered all over
her face.

Leaning towards her, I cut
her off as she started to speak. "Nothing for me thanks." I said.

“Okay, no problem. Let me
know if you’d like anything later though Hun,” she replied, standing up and
returning to her cart. I watched as she continued her way up the aisle, her
presence noted by nearly every man she passed.

The flight was a long one.
All the way to LA with a quick transfer to Calgary, Canada. I wasn’t sure if I
was lucky or not, but I knew I would be absolutely exhausted by the end.
Reaching into my carry on backpack I found my kindle and settled in for the
haul. Reading always seemed to calm my nerves, and thankfully it had the
desired effect.

Sixteen hours of flying,
and no sleep at all. My book mostly finished, I heard the captain indicate we
were close to our destination, and the crew should prepare for landing. I tried
to lean over my sleeping neighbor without waking him, and barely managed to see
out the window. A tired smile flicked across my face as the sprawling concrete
jungle of Los Angeles lay before me.

We finally set down and
after coming to a stop, I stood to disembark. Sighing from a mixture of
exhaustion and relief, the thought I still had another 3 hour flight to go
didn’t excite me.

Picking up my backpack I
stood in line as everyone attempted to get off of the plane at once. As I made
my way to the exit I met the eyes of the hostess I had spoken to and smiled at
her. "Thank you for traveling with us and I hope you enjoyed your flight."
She said returning my smile as I was the next to get off. “Thank you.” I
replied, as I stepped off of the plane.

Shouldering my bag I set
out to organize my luggage and continue on my merry way. Passing through
customs took longer than I would have liked. Nearly eighteen hours into my
journey, I had another wait before the flight was due so I checked in early.
Relieving myself of my luggage I found the nearest seat in which I could read
some more.

Lost in my book I heard a
crash and looked up to find the cause. A young woman had fallen over in front
of me. Jumping up I put my kindle on my chair and rushed over to help.
"Are you okay?" I asked.  Reaching in, I took her elbow and her
shoulder and eased her back to her feet.

"Thank you so much!
I’m really clumsy, but I’m fine." She said, as she brushed herself off.
Once she looked up our eyes met and my heart skipped a beat. She was gorgeous.

Shining intelligent grey
eyes met mine. Her lips glistened and parted ever so slightly. She had defined
cheek bones with a hint of a blush, and long wavy brown hair.

She cocked her head as the
silence extended a little too long. "I'm glad you're okay. Here let me
help you with that." I said, as I set to correcting her toppled luggage,
"Going on holiday?" I asked, returning my attention to her.

"No I've actually
just returned from one. I'm heading home." She replied with a smile,
"My name's Amanda by the way, and you are?" She asked as she grasped
her luggage handle with one hand and extended her other.

"Nice to meet you Amanda.
I’m James. I just arrived from Australia." I replied, grasping her hand as
I milked my accent with each word. She took hold of my hand and shook it
easily.

"I thought so! Your
accent is hard to miss. Thanks for helping me!" Amanda said gratefully, her
smile still holding me in place, "So. What are you doing in LA?"

"I'm actually just
passing through and heading up to Canada." I replied.

"That sounds great. I
hope you have an amazing time.” She said with a smile, “I’ve always wanted to
go to Canada.”

“It’s weird. I didn’t
really consider it until this year.” I responded slowly, “All of a sudden I had
to escape. So here I am!”

“That’s great though.
Sometimes those snap decisions turn out to be the best.” Amanda replied.

“That’s what I was
thinking too.” I said, smiling. Amanda reached over and touched my hand gently.
Her touch was warm and sent sparks through my arm.

“I wish you all the best
James! Thanks again for helping me. It was so embarrassing!” She said, looking
away.

“Glad I could help! It was
a pleasure to meet you Amanda.” I replied. “Hopefully you’ll recover from your
fall.” I added with a grin. Laughing, Amanda reached for her luggage once more.

“I appreciate your
concern.” She replied, with a smile of her own, “I better get going. My parents
are here to pick me up. It was nice to meet you too James! Have fun in Canada!”

“Thanks Amanda. Take care,
and try not to trip over the floor on your way to the car.” I said, poking fun
as she turned away.

“I won’t promise
anything!” She called over her shoulder, as she walked away, waving goodbye.

Watching her go was
strange as I had just met this girl, but for some reason my heart sank. I
wanted to talk to her more to get to know her. It was a strange sensation for
such a short meeting, and one I had never felt before.

Returning to my chair I
continued to read until my flight was called, and I was on board in short
order. Everything ran as smoothly as expected and the flight had no delays. The
flight itself hardly bothered me, as I used the time recalling my encounter
with Amanda. I played it over and over in my head bringing a smile to my lips.

Landing in Canada was a
nice experience, and true to what I'd heard everyone I dealt with was very
polite. Finding my bags I walked slowly to the exit of the airport, and looked
around trying to figure out my next move. After extensive hours of research
back home, I had chosen Banff to be my destination. Finding my way to the bus
terminal, I got my ticket and was on the bus in short order.

Sitting on the bus I waited
as the remaining passengers took their seats. A man I put around my own age
walked up the isle and took the seat next to me. “Hey man.” He said as he
settled in. His voice was thick with a British accent.

“Hey. How are you mate?” I
replied.

“Amazing! Just arrived in
Canada. Making my way up to Banff for who knows how long. How ‘bout you?” He
asked.

“Exactly the same for me.”
I replied happily, turning to look at my neighbor more easily. He was fairly
well built and above average height with a friendly face.

“Ha! Already making
friends and we’re only on the bus. Nice to meet you! I’m Chris.” He said
extending his hand happily.

“Chris. Nice to meet you
mate, I’m James.” I replied, shaking his hand. “What brought you to Canada?”

“Honestly? I was bored.”
Chris replied seriously, scratching his head as he did. “You?”

“Exactly the same. Tired
of my job, and tired of my nine to five lifestyle.” I replied.

“Probably going to be a
whole lot of that going around I guess.” Chris said, looking out the window for
a moment.

“Yeah I’d imagine as
much.” I said, as I followed his gaze. The bus closed its doors and we were on
our way.

My first experience with
snow was as magical as I'd always thought it would be. I watched through the
windows of the bus and looked on with wonder as snowflakes began to fall.
“Never seen snow before.” I said to Chris, my mouth slightly agape.

“Really? How’s your first
impression?” He asked.

“Can I say magical and
beautiful without getting judged?” I said, still looking out the window. Chris
laughed and I noticed him shaking his head from the corner of my eye.

“We’ll let it slide this
once.” He said with a grin.

All of the surroundings
changed as we made our way up into the mountains. Frozen lakes and snow covered
pines, and white as far as the eye could see. One of the biggest smiles creased
my face as I looked out upon the landscape. In that moment I was genuinely
happy. “You alright?” Chris asked.

“Yeah, it’s crazy. All my
life I’ve wanted to see snow.” I replied happily. A satisfied smile crossing my
face. “It’s even better than I had hoped.”

Soon enough we arrived in
Banff. Chris and I got our first taste of the beautiful town. Stepping from the
bus, the crunch of our feet made me giggle as I kicked up snow, and we ventured
down the street.

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