If you haven’t read January 27 yet, you can do so here.

If you stumbled onto this post by accident and haven’t read any of the other stories, head over to this post to find out more about this project.

“You working today?” Jess scooped her hair into a high ponytail glancing at Poppy sprawled on the top bunk.
“Yeah. Thanks for that by the way.”

Jess shrugged. “Didn’t know she’d be sick so long. How is Adrienne anyway?”

Poppy fiddled with curtain hanging in front of her bunk. “I don’t know. I wanted to hate her, but you know, she’s actually really nice.”

“She does that.”

“I better go. I need to grab breakfast before I head up there.”

Poppy sighed. “I don’t know how you manage to do that. Get out of bed and look ready to go.”

“Years of practise baby.” Poppy laughed as she grabbed her key card and readied herself for the long trek up to Adrienne’s suite. In truth, she probably had plenty of time. Adrienne hadn’t requested a specific time for breakfast, if she was hungry she would have called already.

As she made her way upstairs, Poppy was thinking about what had set her on the path to being Adrienne’s steward in the first place. Cleo. A girl she’d met only a few times. Surely it wasn’t worth it? Though, getting on Adrienne’s good side could fast track her career with Cruiseify. That would be worth it. 

She was still pondering all of this when she bumped, quite literally, into the very person she’d been thinking about. Cleo. 

“I’m so sorry. I was in my own little world.”

“No, no,” Cleo insisted. “I wasn’t paying attention. Oh, it’s you. How have you been?”

Poppy smiled. “Great. How are you coming along with Tolkien?”

Cleo laughed. “You remembered?”

“Of course.”

“Well, it’s going pretty slowly. I keep getting caught up in all the great shore tours. The last few days have been great though.”

“You might be the only person on the ship willing to admit that.”

“I’ve never been good at going along with the crowd.”

The pair fell into a comfortable silence for a moment. Poppy took in the small woman before her, the way her lips curled up slightly, the scent of jasmine that lingered around her. Maybe she was worth it.

“I’ve missed you at the cafe. Nobody else does such a good milkshake.”

“Oh, I’m sorry. I’ve been temporarily reassigned. I’m sure I’ll be back soon.”

“Where are you hanging out? Maybe I could come visit?” Poppy laughed.

“Well, actually, I’m stewarding for the director.”

“Ooh, fancy.”

Poppy let out the breath she hadn’t realized she was holding. The little ember of jealousy in her gut reared back to life, stoked by even the briefest suggestion that Cleo might have been hanging out in Adrienne’s suite. Only, she realized she might not just be jealous of Cleo. Something about Adrienne had caught her attention. She hadn’t been lying when she told Jess she’s started to like Adrienne. Maybe a little too much.

“Speaking of, I should get going. She needs her breakfast.”

“Of course. Great to see you again Poppy.” Cleo smiled shyly before disappearing into the main dining room. Poppy ducked to the right and slipped in through the staff entrance. Of course she’d somehow develop a crush on one of the richest passengers on board and the director. Two of the only women she couldn’t have. As Poppy grabbed a plate of bacon and eggs for Adrienne, she decided that she just wasn’t cut out for love.

You can read January 29 here.

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