Hôtel Plaza Athénée – Paris, France
Undetected, the translucent bubble carrying the little red suitcase arrived at the hotel. Aisla unlatched the suitcase and stepped out into the lobby. This ingenious device teleported easily and without any disturbance in the new surroundings what-so-ever. It always left her astounded as none of the people in the area seemed to notice she’d just suddenly appeared. It was as if she’d arrived like every other tourist checking in.
Closing the suitcase and smoothing down her shirt and pants, Ailsa walked towards the reception area and checked in with the front desk. She smiled at the attendant and put down her suitcase. “Bonjour, Monsieur, Parlez-vous Anglais?”
“Yes, Madame. I speak English,” the man behind the desk said, smiling and nodding.
“Oh, wonderful! Thank you for making it easier for me. I’m still learning the language.”
“Are you checking in today?”
“Yes, please. Ailsa Craig.”
“Oh, like the island in Scotland?”
Ailsa flashed a broad but surprised smile. “Yes! Most people don’t know that! My parents decided to name me that as I was conceived on that island when they were on holiday.”
“Ah, that must have been before they closed it?”
Nodding in agreement, she said, “They’d heard it was going to be closed to visitors soon and wanted to visit the sights before it was too late. Mom and Dad packed a picnic lunch, brought some wine, hung out at the old castle, and good times transported them into each other’s arms!” Ailsa laughed, telling the story she’d heard so often before as sweetly as possible.
The attendant laughed with her and, with a wink, said, “Well, it sounds like they had an enchanting time and brought home a wonderful keepsake!”
“As per your instructions, we have a table reserved for you tonight in the restaurant at 6:30 this evening. Here is your key. You will be staying in Room 304. Is there anything else I can help you with?”
“Please, could you tell me what time the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower open to the public? Also, do you have a transit map for the Paris Metro?”
“Yes, of course. Here’s the map, and the sights are both open at 9 AM.”
“Wonderful! I thank you so much for the information! Au revoir”
“Enjoy your stay, Ms. Craig!”
Aisla turned and headed towards the elevator. The door opened just as she arrived to ring the bell for one. She pressed the third-floor button and looked forward to getting settled in the room. A big, deep breath and a long sigh out escaped her throat. She was beginning to relax now.
After a luxurious bubble bath, she showered off all the soap and wrapped herself in a plush white towel. Aisla fixed her make-up, blew dry her hair, and brushed it all into place. The cute black dress laid out on the bed, just waiting to be stepped into. After a small spritz of hairspray, then checking herself out in the mirror, she decided she liked what she saw. Her hunger beckoned, though; it was time to eat.
Opening the door of her room, Aisla couldn’t help but say, “Hello, Paris! Are you ready for me?”
TO BE CONTINUED ON WEDNESDAY…