"Your father and I are planning to spend the weekend at the resort. Would you and Goby keep an eye on your siblings?"
"Pop! I might have plans for the weekend." I noticed the word 'might'. So she probably doesn't have any yet. Perhaps a little cash?
"It's worth 100 simoleons."
"To share with Goby?" Monica did not sound very impressed with that idea.
I had thought 100 wasn't a bad offer for both of them. Well, it is a whole weekend. I suppose I can up the amount. "100 simoleons each, but you better do a good job of it. Both of you," I told Monica.
"Okay Pop. I'll do it." I smiled. Nothing like cash to motive a teen.
I left Jericho to check on the facilities while I went to let them know we'd arrived.
"Do you have a reservation, sir?"
"I'm Sam Grant, one of the owners. I believe you were expecting us for the weekend?"
"I'm sorry that I didn't recognise you, Mr Grant. You've been booked into our best accommodation for the weekend."
"Yes sir. We hadn't had anyone book it when your request came through so it's all yours." She handed me a set of keys. "It's the room at the end of the pier. You can't miss it."
"How about food?"
"The resort has a full array of buffet tables, the meals are all included in the price for our guests. Feel free to help yourself at any time." She smiled brightly. "After all sir, you pay for all of it."
But they'd been installed badly, there was no way any kid was going to be riding on those middle ones. We'd have to get someone in to spread them out more, so all of them can be used.
Fire walking - now is that a wise thing for a Strider to do? Fire and water are usually not a good mix.
"You did, Jer. You did."
"Is there room in there for a friend?"
"Maybe, Jericho. I might just make some room for you," I told him.
Yeah, well, that didn't last long. He just laughed and slid in beside me. "You aren't nearly big enough to need this whole tub to yourself. And I'd like to get a bit wet after that fire walk."
"What possessed you to do that?"
"It's not dangerous, Sammy. It looks like it should be but as long as you keep a steady stride, it's fine."
I went in for a big smooch. Jericho didn't seem to mind the idea at all.
"Oh, Sam. Want to know something else you can do in a hot tub?"
"Better than smooching?"
He chuckled. "I think you'll like it."
I have to admit that his idea was far better than just smooching.
Fortunately, the resort doesn't have many guests at the moment and the ones that are around don't have any children.
We'd installed a cool bar that was along one edge of the swimming pool. I checked the supplies and found a short recipe list of the most commonly requested drinks. Since I had no guests waiting for a drink, I tried to memorise as much of the list as I could.
"Jericho? What on earth are you wearing?" What do you say when you find your partner, swimming fully dressed in a suit you don't even recognise and clown makeup? What?
"Just a second, Sam. Let me get closer."
"Hey, bartender, could you mix me a drink?"
If Jericho wanted to play strangers at the bar, well, I can manage that. "Sure thing, buddy, what will you have?"
"The strongest thing you can make. Maybe make it a double, my day recently went seriously downhill."
"So, buddy, this is a resort. You should be on holidays. How come you're having a bad day?"
"I want that drink first."
"Right you are. This will take a couple of minutes."
It didn't work well. Guess my boss is going to have to dock my wages for a few broken pieces of glass. At least it wasn't the booze bottles. Those things are expensive.
Jericho took a sip and spit half of it back out. "That's awful. I should ask for my money back."
"Sorry, buddy. It's my first night on the job. I haven't learned very much yet."
"Your boss needs to spring for you to go to bartending school. That was the worst drink."
"Enough play, Jer. Now give, what the hell is that outfit?"
"I don't know, Sam. I really don't. But I can't take it off. I heard this voice
'For 24 hours you will be,
A tragedy for all to see,
For one day you are bound
To go around as the Tragic Clown'
You saw me dive into the pool. I was sure that I could shed this when I transformed to full Strider. But it didn't work."
"This is going to last a day?"
"I'm afraid so, Sam. I just hope that it does only last for a day."
Then we retired to our room. My first impression was, "This is the luxury room? The best room of the resort?"
Well, it is isolated, which is a plus. It has its own little deck and chairs to watch the sea. The sliding doors opening toward the sea are good.
But the rest of this room could use a serious upgrade. It's way too much on the 'cheap and cheerful' side of things. We could charge some serious money if the furniture and fittings were better.
"That sounds like fun, Jer."
"Jer, I tried. Honestly, I tried. But your outfit."
"Bad?" asked Jericho quietly.
"It's horrible. Think of it from my point of view. I'm trying to make out with a clown. It's really freaky. You seriously can't take off even just the makeup?"
"It didn't come off when I was wet and it won't come off now that I'm dry. Sammy, I don't want to be like this."
"I know, love. But until you get back to normal, I'm not sure I can cope."
"At least if the curse is true, I'll be back to normal before the kids see me."
"Goddess, I hope so. I can't imagine how much you'd freak Anemone or Seahorse this way." Goby and Monica might cope a little better since they are older. But the little ones might freak entirely.
"Can I take your photo?"
This tragic clown thing is disturbing for all of us. Sammy can get nude but Jericho is just kind of stuck. Actually, I could try using MasterController to switch his outfit but I'm afraid that if I did that, he might not go back to normal properly.
The poor babies.