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SILHOUETTE
Somebody had told him, ‘It’s the best darn way to see the country,’ and in Dave’s own way it would be his personal adventure. So he bought himself a caravan, a 4x4 and hit the road. He could still sustain himself on the road with his laptop and cell phone, being in the I.T. business. But with all his dreams of the-great-out-doors and his personal adventure in solitude, never in his wildest dreams, did he ever imagine meeting her, Stephanie, Stevie, as she liked to be called. There he was in the middle of the Magaliesberg, sitting by his campfire, he had just had cheese and tomato jaffles for supper and was nursing his fourth beer, when a speck appeared on the horizon slowly coming towards him. The sun was almost completely gone just an opaque haze of orange and yellow colours still filled the sky as Dave sat up in his chair trying to see what the approaching figure was. When it was about five hundred meters off he could just make out by the silhouette that it was a person, female. She walked with a kind of determination, a sense of purpose as if she was walking away from something. She walked right up to where he was sitting and introduced herself, ‘Hi, I’m Stephanie but, people call me Stevie.’ ‘Hi,’ fumbling his words getting up, ‘I’m… I’m Dave,’ and reaches out his hand in greeting. She shakes his hand and he gestures for her to sit down as he fetches another chair from inside the caravan. He sits down next to her uncomfortably for a while, offering her a beer, which she accepts and then she starts telling him how she ended up here at his caravan in the middle of nowhere, walking. Apparently Stevie and her long-time boyfriend, Thomas, were having some problems and they thought they would take a small vacation out in the Magaliesberg, to try and patch things up. They were on their way to the chalet they had booked, when an argument broke out in the car. She told him to pull over and he did, she got out and he drove off, leaving her there. ‘The bastard drove off with all my stuff,’ she complains. ‘I though he’d calm down and come back for me, that was five hours ago and he still hasn’t. So I walked most of the day saw your fire and came over. That’s what happened to me today, I’m tired and sunburned, so I hope you don’t mind if I ask you for a place to sleep tonight, please?’ ‘Of course not,’ Dave responds. ‘It’s just me in this big caravan, there’s more than enough room.’ ‘Thanks a million Dave, you’re a life saver,’ she says, giving him her best smile. Dave allows his eyes to rove over the length of her, the white shirt she had on had gone a beige colour and was wet with perspiration, clinging to her body. She had on a tight pair of jeans and a pair of sandals, even dirty and tired she looked good. Dave found himself being attracted to her, the dark brown hair and hazel eyes turned him on, she was gorgeous. He couldn’t fathom why anyone would leave a marvellous looking creature like this on the side of the road, he concluded that the guy must have been crazy. ‘You must be hungry,’ he finally manages to get out. ‘Let me fix you something to eat.’ He gets up and goes inside and busily starts preparing more jaffles. Opening another beer for himself he takes another out for her while he toasts the jaffles over the fire. ‘Thank you,’ she says when he hands her the plate. ‘I know it’s not much but, it’s quick and it fills the gap,’ he says apologetically.

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‘No it’s fine, it’s perfect,’ she answers, before biting into the first of the jaffles. Dave smiles to himself, watching her eat then goes inside to make up one of the spare beds for her. He had just finished when she walks in with the empty paper plate and beer bottle in her hands, finding the bin she drops it in. Stevie thanks him again for his hospitality and then asks, ‘There a chance I could wash-up, I’m kind of dirty and sweaty?’ ‘Sure you could,’ Dave responds. ‘I don’t think there’s enough water for a shower though but I’ll boil some water and you could wash in the basin.’ ‘That’s fine, no problems here,’ Stevie says. Dave fills up a pot with water and puts it on the fire, he then shows her to the small bathroom in the caravan and gives her a clean towel and facecloth. He also gives her one of the extra toothbrushes he has with a bar of soap. He fills up the basin for her after the water had boiled, she thanks him and he leaves her there going to sit outside by the fire with a fresh beer and his laptop. He starts finishing off some of the work he had neglected the last few days, he could not connect to the net though since he had virtually no signal on his cell-phone. About fifteen minutes later Stevie comes outside, still busy drying her hair with the towel, a bucket, the one Dave had in the bathroom, in one hand, naked, only wearing her sandals. Dave almost fell of his chair when he looked up, she just smiled, not even trying to cover herself up. ‘That bastard Thomas has all my stuff, my clothes are filthy and needs to be washed, so that leaves me wearing this,’ she says to him. ‘I… I can lend you something to wear,’ Dave offers nervously. He tries not looking but he can’t help but stare at this naked beauty in front of him. ‘No that’s fine,’ she giggles sitting down next to him. ‘I’m actually very comfortable like this, I’ve been hot and bothered the whole day, now I can cool off. That’s off course if you don’t mind me walking around like this?’ ‘You’re asking a man if he’d mind sitting around with a beautiful woman, who happens to be naked, I don’t think so,’ and he starts laughing. Stevie laughs too. ‘Do you have any washing powder or something like that?’ she asks him. ‘Yes I have some inside,’ he answers. ‘But I think you’d best go fetch it yourself because, I don’t think it would be a good idea for me to get up right now,’ Dave says looking down at his crotch. Stevie laughs, finding his comment extremely funny. He tells her where to find everything and she goes to fetch it, joining him outside again where they talk, getting to know one another while she’s doing her washing. The moon had just come over the horizon, the stars were slowly filling the sky, and Dave put more wood on the fire as they sat, drinking beer and talking. Dave with his caravan out in the middle off nowhere, talking to this beautiful young woman, Stephanie, her naked under the stars. He rigged up a makeshift washing line so she could hang up her clothes when they were done, he then brought out a blanket and a bottle of whiskey. They lay down next to the fire and climb into it, soon they find themselves intoxicated. They talked some for about another hour, laughing, sharing and telling little stories. As the evening went on and it grew darker, and they grew more and more inebriated, most of their inhibition left them, carried of on the slight breeze that had picked up. The night was hot, humid, Stephanie finally convinced Dave to get undressed too and they lay

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there side by side out under the stars, naked and drunk. They finished the bottle and Dave got up to go to the toilet, Stevie sat up and watched him walk off. He returned moments later with beers in hand offering one to her, which she takes, twists the cap off and takes a big gulp. She was standing over by the fire, her nudity illuminated by its glow, she’d even kicked off the sandals. Dave stood there looking at her, finding himself being aroused by this sight. He sits down quickly trying to hide his excitement from her, but she had seen it already, finished the contents of her bottle in one big swig, drops the empty on the ground and walks over to him slowly, concentrating hard to keep her balance. With one hand throwing her hair back out of her eyes, she allows her hand to trail slowly down her nudity, resting it over her navel. ‘I can’t believe what a perfect gentleman you have been,’ she says, her words slurring a bit. ‘What do you mean?’ Dave asks. She comes to a halt in front of him, ‘I mean, here you have me,’ she answers. ‘A naked, hopefully attractive young woman. Who has recently being jilted by a boyfriend…’ ‘Actually a few hours ago, that would be very recently,’ he interrupts. ‘Sshh…’ she says. ‘Like I was saying, here you have me naked and under the stars of all places and you haven’t even attempted to make a move on me.’ ‘I didn’t think it would be prudent,’ Dave says. ‘Sshh… I’m talking here,’ she hushes him up. ‘Um, are you gay?’ ‘No I’m not,’ he answers indignant. ‘Well how much clearer can I get, this is an invitation, prove it.’ Setting his beer down on the ground next to him, Dave gets to his feet and takes her in his arms, pushing his nudity into hers. ‘Are you sure about this Stevie?’ he asks. She doesn’t answer him. ‘I mean… you know… we’ve just met.’ She silences him with a kiss, a hungry lustful kiss. He lay her down on the blanket near the fire and makes love to her, satisfying an urge he’s had since he met her only a few short hours ago. Spent, they fall asleep right there on the blanket, next to the fire, in each other’s arms. Morning, the sun is just peaking over the horizon, the breeze from the night before had slowly diminished to nil. Stephanie opens her, flinching when the sun’s rays fall on them, then slowly rises to her feet. Dave is still sleeping, she looks at him, a smile on his face, ‘Hope it’s a nice dream,’ she whispers to herself. ‘You’re ok Dave, you’re ok.’ When Dave wakes up it is nearly ten o’clock. His head is throbbing and he has an immense thirst, ‘Stevie… Stevie!’ he calls out. But she is not there, he finds when he comes to his senses, that her clothes were gone and so was she. He looked for her, he climb in his 4x4 and looked for her a few kilometres in each direction, but there was no sign of her, it was as if she had just disappeared into thin air. His mood was sullen when he got back to camp, he cleaned up made sure the fire was completely out, hook on his caravan and left. Back on the road, destination unknown but he drove, onward with the road wherever it may lead him. Dave could not get Stephanie, Stevie, off his mind, she had enchanted him, and in the short time he had known her he had sprouted deep affection for her. He could not call it

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love but he thought given time it probably would have developed into that. He had driven for about half an hour when he came to a roadblock, the police waved him aside and a uniformed policeman came over to him, Dave climbed out of his truck. ‘Good morning sir, I’d like to ask you a few questions,’ the policeman said. ‘Sure,’ Dave said. The policeman asked him things like where he was going, where he’s been and then he came to the point. They were looking for a young woman, named Stephanie Walters, asking him if he’d picked up any hitchhikers or seen a young woman, dark hair with hazel eyes wearing blue jeans and a white shirt. “Stevie.” He thought. Dave lied, he didn’t know why but he told them that he hadn’t seen her, they looked through his caravan and truck then told him he could go. He first found out why they were looking for her. The boyfriend Thomas, she did not walk away from him or he drive away from her, according to the police they had, had an argument and she shot him, after which she burnt the car with his deceased body in it and walked away. They’d been looking for her for two days. Dave could not believe that he had spent the night with a murderess, he could not believe that she could harm anyone. Dave could not believe that he had lied for her, too the police… ‘You’re ok Dave, you’re ok.’ Stevie thinks to herself climbing out from her hiding place. She was in the caravan, hiding in the storage compartment underneath one of the beds. The police had not really done a thorough search of the inside of the caravan, after all they had no reason to suspect Dave. She sits on the bed, in the caravan, looking out the front where Dave is driving his 4x4, a single tear escaping from her eye… Barely able to make out his silhouette. Fin… D. A. REID