“Lex, are you wearing a one piece or a bikini?” Alyssa called out from the bathroom of their hotel room, staring at herself critically in the mirror as she held both options in her hand. She raised her arm and smiled, pleased with how her spray tan was holding up, before cocking her ear and listening to see if Alexa had responded to her question. All she heard was the muted sound of music and excited voices.
“She must be in the other room with Sonia and Bridget,” Alyssa thought. “God I hope they’re not making drinks, I’m already buzzed off the Margarita they gave us while we waited to check in. They really know how to make you feel welcome in Mexico.” She waited a beat more, and decided on the bikini.
“I’ll save the one-piece for after a couple nights of resort food,” she said with a grin, happy with how skinny she looked. The only thing she had eaten today was an airport muffin, purchased six hours ago before they had all boarded their early-morning flight. She had been looking forward to this vacation for months, ever since Sonia had found an incredible Groupon deal for an all-inclusive resort getaway in Puerto Vallarta, and now that it was finally here, she didn’t want to waste any time not soaking up the sun.
It had taken them just under an hour via shuttle to get from the airport to the resort, and in that time they had planned out their first day. “Oh god. Are massages included in the deal? Mama needs a massage.” Alexa had said, rolling her shoulders and wincing. “Noooo” came a chorus of voices from the other seats. “Let’s get some sun!” Bridget yelled, to shouted agreements from the others. Unbeknownst to them, the shuttle driver pressed his fingers to his temple and counted down the minutes until he could take a smoke break. “Here’s what I’m thinking,” Bridget continued. “We’re going to get to the resort at around 11. Let’s get checked in and everything and then head to the pool. I saw they have a swim up bar and if I can get drunk and tan at the same time, I have everything I need.” With that, their plans were solidified. Alexa had whined for a few more minutes about her sore neck, before coming around to the idea of drinking Mai Tais while sitting in warm water. Their schedule had been set.
Alyssa finished getting dressed in a high-neck top, matching bottoms, and a translucent cover up. She completed the look with retro circle sunglasses. Taking one last look at herself in the mirror, she drained what was left of her check-in margarita, and walked into the adjoining room.
“Heyy girls.” She crooned over the sound of Drake playing from a portable speaker. She smiled, seeing that they were wearing bikinis. Clearly, great minds think alike. “You guys ready?” She continued. “Let’s get this vacation started!”
* * * *
“And here you go, ladies, three Bahama Mamas and one Piña Colada,” said the bartender with a smile, setting four plastic cups in front of them, each filled to the brim with artificial flavoring, blended ice, and a healthy amount of cheap rum.
“Grown up Spring Breaaaak!” The girls cheered as they raised their glasses before taking a sip. “Wow,” Sonia said as she exhaled. “Our bartender has a heavy pour.” Alyssa nodded in silent agreement, remembering how long it had been since she had eaten. She looked at Bridget, who caught her eye and leaned in before whispering conspiratorially to the group. “I don’t know if this is just the check-in margarita speaking, but I think there’s a group of hot guys that just walked in. Don’t all look – ”
She was cut off as the other three girls immediately looked up, with various levels of subtlety, to see the four guys that had just entered the pool. They were all sporting beards, a mix of hats and visors, and deep sunburns. Two of them had had Latin text tattooed on their chests, and one boasted some kind of military-looking insignia inked on his shoulder. Alyssa turned back to Bridget, who, reading her expression, offered a whispered explanation.
“Ok, I know they’re douchebags, but they’re vacation hot, ok? It’s not like I’m planning on dating them,” she said with fake exasperation. “I know you and Eric are, like, the cutest couple ever, but I’m sure you remember what being single is like.”
Alyssa laughed along with the other two girls. She raised her palms placatingly. “Hey, I remember. I guess I’m just the mom of the group now that I’m the only non-single one.”
As she spoke casually, however, her mind was racing. The mention of Eric had reminded her that she had promised to text him as soon as they arrived at the hotel, but in her haste to get changed and get to the pool, she had completely forgotten. “Shit, he’s probably worried,” she thought. “Should I go back up to the room to check my phone?” With a subconscious shake of her head, she dismissed that idea. “No way. I’m already in the pool with my friends. I’ll text him later. I’m on vacation, he’ll understand. And if he gets annoyed, whatever, he should know I’ll be too busy to talk most of the trip. It’s fine.”
Mind made up, she looked back at her girls while taking a hearty sip of her drink. They were looking over her shoulder, however, and a second later she realized why.
“Hey ladies,” said a deep voice behind her. She turned around to see the tallest of the bearded guys leaning against the bar in a manner that was clearly intentionally displaying his abs. “My friends and I were wondering if you’d like to come drink with us at our table? Not to brag, but we get everything for free at this bar.” He finished with a cocky grin.
Alyssa returned his smile. She was on vacation, and the last thing she wanted to do was be the wet blanket who couldn’t have fun because she had a boyfriend. Plus, she prided herself on being a great wing woman, and she couldn’t let Bridget down. “Oh wow, big spenders,” she said, turning around to gauge the expression on her friends faces. Mentally confirming that they were all on the same page, she turned back to the guy and continued. “Sure, we’ll come bring the party over to your table.”