IT BEGINS BUT NEVER ENDS

ISBN: 1 920699 104
Format: Paperback
Number of pages: 458
Genre: General Fiction

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From the legendary continent of Atlantis to the Great Barrier Reef, this is the story of Leeanne McIntyre and Gordon Stirling, two very different people who, against all odds, fall in love. The story transcends the confines of time and space and reveals Gordon’s special psychic and healing powers, whilst traversing Leeanne’s troubled path of broken marriages, bizarre sexual encounters and the search for herself. The lovers finally begin to draw together the pieces of their lives whilst living on the island of Santorini. What they find is incredible—danger, death and an alarming reality that connects the past to the present. Rich in scope and theme, this is a novel that cannot fail to enthrall and exhilarate the reader.

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CHAPTER NINE

             

            Late one afternoon, Arthur came running through the door excitedly waving some brochures in his hand.

            'We're off to the Greek Islands in September, darling,' he said.

            'Bridget and John have organised to charter a 34 metre yacht to sail the Greek Islands for two weeks.  The 'Odyssey' sleeps eight to ten, so we'll ask Paul and Linda, and maybe the Fergusons will come,' he added.

            'I've always dreamed of sailing the Greek Islands, I'm so excited Arthur,' replied Leeanne.

            September came before they knew it.  Helen, now twelve and Dean, now ten, would be left with their Nanna.

            'Bring us back some presents,' both children said, as they waved goodbye to their parents.

            Arriving in Athens, where they stayed for four days before boarding the 'Odyssey', the four couples stood in awe of the huge metropolis before them.  Thousands of cars, all blowing their horns, people yelling at taxis that didn't stop...the smell of roasted chestnuts and fresh donuts being sold on the sidewalks...this was the City,

            The ever present smell of pollution fumes hung low over Athens, and, behind all this, stood the ancient grandeur that was the mighty Acropolis.

            Arthur, Leeanne and their friends spent the days visiting museums, shopping at Monostiraki, eating souvlaki and Greek salad, washed down with endless bottles of retsina.

            Taking a deep breath and savouring the atmosphere, Leeanne said aloud, 'Oh my God, I love it here.'

             The blue, cloudless sky blended endlessly with the sea, as the eight friends boarded the magnificent 'Odyssey'.

            'Let me take your bag madam,' said the steward with sparkling brown eyes, to Leeanne, as he held out a helping hand.

            'Efaristo poli,' said Leeanne, proud of the few Greek words she had picked up.

            'Parakalo, you sound like a local, no trace of accent,' he smiled.

            The crew of the 'Odyssey' consisted of Captain Dimitri, the cook called Costa, steward Yannis, and deckhand George.

            They were into their fourth day of cruising, having visited the holy island of Tinos, the ancient ruins of Delos and the picturesque and fabulously colourful party island of Mykonos.

            Leeanne was sunbathing topless on the deck, a rich, golden tan forming on her curvaceous body...she had noticed a few times that George had been eyeing her hungrily.

            As she turned over to tan her back, George approached with a bottle of sun lotion in his hand.

            'A beautiful lady like you needs to be spoilt,' he said, sitting down beside her.  'Let me rub some lotion onto your back.'

            Leeanne was pleased with this attention...she quite fancied the young Greek with the muscular body and sexy brown eyes.

            With the hot summer sun burning down and the feeling of strong, sensual hands massaging her body, Leeanne started to feel waves of pleasure filling her whole being.  'This is ecstasy,' she thought.

            'You can do this anytime George,' swooned Leeanne, feeling a tingling vibration flow through her thighs.

            'Whatever your heart's desire, I would do for you madam.'

            'Please call me Leeanne, we all seem like one big family on this boat.'

            That evening, they dropped anchor at Paros.

            After a delicious dinner of freshly caught squid and mousaka and salad, it was Greek music under the stars.

            All of a sudden, Leeanne felt separate from all the people around her.  A strange feeling came over her, like she could see the people, yet she couldn't...there was no noise, except the gentle lapping of water on the boat.

            For the first time in her life, she felt totally alone, and, shivering at this eerie feeling, Leeanne decided to go to bed.

            All night long, she tossed and turned, feeling overheated from the hours in the sun, until finally, she went on deck to lay under the stars.  She felt much cooler there, and sleep came peacefully.

            Suddenly, Leeanne had a feeling of eyes looking down at her.

            George was standing beside her, gazing with desire at her firm, tanned breasts, peeping through a white lace camisole.

            Kneeling down beside her, he planted a moist hungry kiss on her eager lips.  Slowly slipping the camisole off, his lips travelled to her breasts, gently caressing the hard, pink nipples.

            Pulling away, Leeanne whispered breathlessly, 'We can't do this, what if someone comes on deck?'

            'Tomorrow, we go waterskiing at a deserted part of the island,' said George.  'If you get an opportunity, swim around to the small rocky beach to the left of where we anchor.'

            All morning, Leeanne was aching with the anticipation of the pleasure that lay ahead.

            Finally, after a long lunch she swam to the rocky beach, while everyone else slept.  She was surprised to find her desire disappearing, and in it's place was that eerie feeling of loneliness.

            As she walked up the pebbly beach, George suddenly appeared from behind a large rock.

            They didn't speak, just kissed gently and lay down on the white pebbles, the sun caressing the new nakedness of their bodies.

Leeanne closed her eyes and felt the soft wet tongue sliding over her belly, licking droplets of salt water from her body – then she remembered Hubert.

Rolling over onto her stomach, she said gently, 'Please leave me alone, I want you to go, George.  I'm sorry, I'm so sorry.'

As she swam back to the boat, Leeanne cried uncontrollably; they were not tears for Hubert, they were tears for herself.

The next day was spent at Naxos, where Leeanne hardly spoke to anyone and spent most of her time playing with her worry beads and looking out to sea.

'Tomorrow, we arrive at the magic island of Santorini,' said the captain. 'This island is like no other island on earth, in fact, it is not part of the earth's crust, it is the caldera of a huge volcano. 

We cannot drop anchor as the depth is almost bottomless, so we must berth.'

Leeanne was fascinated and that night asked Captain Dimitri more about the strange island of Santorini.

'The island has had many upheavals and catastrophes of such magnitude, it is a wonder there is anything left today,' said Dimitri.

'It has changed shape many times of the years, after all the volcanic eruptions.  It was first called Strongyle, which means round one, then called Santa Erini.  We also have the popular belief that it was once part of the lost continent of Atlantis,' he continued.

'Atlantis,' said Leeanne in surprise, 'that's only a myth, I don't believe such a place even existed.'

'Plato believed it, and there is increasing evidence today to back it up and most Greeks think so too,' said Dimitri.

'Well,' she said, with a smile on her face, 'tomorrow will certainly be an exciting day.'

That morning, as they sailed towards Santorini, Arthur turned to Leeanne, 'What's up honey? You've been very quiet the last day and now you seem in a world of your own.'

'I don't know Arthur, maybe I just don't have anything to talk about anymore,' she said, staring out to sea. 'I'm happy, I love the islands and I'm having a fantastic time,' she added.

Leeanne was sitting alone up close to the bow, when the Odyssey turned to enter the beginning of the caldera that was Santorini.  Huge imposing cliffs of burnt orange, black and brown, crawled skyward with whitewashed houses and blue domed churches nestled on top, like icing on a cake.

The white buildings against a cloudless blue sky was postcard perfect – the raw savageness of the volcanic cliffs was spellbinding.

Taking in all this beauty, Leeanne breathed deeply.  Following the rocky caldera, her eyes settled on the deep blue water and held the water, all around, the deep, deep, blue water.

Her heart skipped a beat, the hairs on her arms stood upright and a cold dread filled her body.

Feeling her forehead, Leeanne realized she was sweating profusely, yet she felt cold, like being in stunned shock.  Tears streamed down her cheeks, and a dryness filled her throat.  Try as she may, she could not take her eyes from the sea.

             Behind her, the sound of voices and the clicking of cameras. 'I know this sea! I know this sea.' Leeanne said to herself.

             'Snap out of it darling, have a glass of champagne,' said Arthur, putting his arm around her. 'They say we have to ride donkeys up that steep track to get to the top of the town, it sounds like fun.'

The town of Thira lay approximately seven hundred feet up the steep caldera.  From where the Odyssey berthed, a cable car was also a means of getting to the top; unfortunately, it only ran for limited hours.

Exploring the endless tiny cobblestone streets filled with interesting shops and bars and magnificent churches, kept Leeanne's mind from the unnerving experience she had had whilst sailing into Santorini.

Standing high on an overhanging balcony, filled with local wine, the merry Australians felt like they were in heaven.

'I've never seen a place like this,' said Bridget to Arthur, as the sun was slowly setting on the still azure sea. 'Photographers come from all over the world to capture the Santorini sunset,' she said.

As the rich colours of the spectacular sunset finally died, Bridget said to everyone, 'Why don't we all stay up here tonight, rent a room, go to a bouzouki club and wake early to see the sunrise?'

Suddenly Leeanne dropped her drink, her hands were shaking, and, holding her head, she said, 'I feel sick, sorry.'

'Must be too much wine,' said Arthur, cleaning up the glass.

'I'm going to catch the cable car down, I just want to have a shower and go to bed,' said Leeanne, her face very pale and drawn.

When Leeanne approached the Odyssey, the captain and Yannis were coming down the gangway after telling George to keep a good eye on the boat, and that they were having a drink in the bar at the end of the port.

All this conversation was in Greek, yet, she understood perfectly.

Helping her come aboard, George had a wide smile on his handsome face while Leeanne looked straight past him and said, 'Ime Kourasmeni' (I'm tired.)

After a warm shower and a cup of hot coffee, Leeanne felt much better.

Unable to sleep and feeling the eerie loneliness creeping up on her again, she sat on the deck and looked at the stars.

'Astari mou,' said George, as he sat beside her.

'My star,' replied Leeanne.

'You surprise me everyday with your Greek words.  I notice you reading the Greek phrase book, you really are interested, aren't you Leeanne?'

'Yes, I want to learn the language.  I love Greece, but Santorini is different.  I've felt strange ever since we've arrived…it's almost as if this island knows my thoughts.  I feel very uncomfortable here, George.'

'Most people see Santorini from the outside, some see it from within.  Santorini has been destroyed and born again…it is unique and alone.  All our emotions come together here.  This is the place to find yourself and to look at your life,' said George with gentle understanding in his voice.

'Pou ise astari mou?' said Leeanne, gazing into the night. 'Where are you, my star?'

'That means you are searching for your love,' replied George.

Putting a caring arm around her, he whispered. 'Come and lay down inside on the lounge, I will give you a nice back massage; it will make you feel better.'

George dimmed the lights and spread a towel on the lounge.

'Now, let me spoil you – just relax.'

As she slipped out of her blue silk dress, George's heart skipped a beat as he beheld her beautiful nakedness.  Slowly, he poured little droplets of oil on to her skin – strong hands worked into her soft, suntanned flesh.

Purring in contentment, Leeanne drifted away and thought, One day, I'm going to come back and live in Greece…one day.

She was so relaxed that she hardly noticed George was now naked.  Gently, he turned her over – slowly, softly massaging her neck, down her arms, putting more drops of oil on her full, ripe breasts. Down over her belly, coming to rest on her maiden part, then continuing down the inside of her legs, slowly, spreading them apart, then to her feet and caressing each toe.

Sensual pleasure flowed through her body and her heart started to beat faster as his lips touched hers and she felt the hard, warm sensation of his manhood enter her pleasure dome.

They moved together in rapturous harmony, their bodies pulsing in urgency until finally, their waves of ecstasy exploded in unity.

Waking up next morning, Leeanne felt wonderful, her head was clear and her mind was bright.  As she came out of her cabin, she almost bumped into Costa.

'Signormi Costa, kalimera, ti kanete?'

Costa spoke no English, and answered, 'Kala esi?'

'I feel marvellous Costa, what's for breakfast?'

Realizing the reason for the quizzical look on his face, Leeanne laughingly said, 'Ti ina to priono?

Captain Dimitri was busy checking the boat, George and Yannis were making preparations for sailing, when the hungover guests finally appeared on the jetty.

'Boy, did we rage last night,' said Arthur to Leeanne. 'I know we'll pay for it today, probably all be seasick.'

'Well darling, I feel fantastic and I can't wait to explore the next island,' said Leeanne with a wide smile.

Leaving Santorini was different from arriving for Leeanne.  This day, all her feelings were good and positive, as George and Yannis hoisted the sails; the clear white sails billowed against the red volcanic cliffs, the clear blue skies and the sun beaming down on the shimmering Aegean Sea.

One last look at Santorini, she thought, with a tingle of sadness in her heart.  I haven't explored you yet, but I'll be back again soon.

On the journey back to Athens, Leeanne and George never had an opportunity to be alone, not that they tried hard to arrange it.  The times that they sat together were taken up with conversations on Greek history and stories of mythology with Leeanne finding herself totally enthralled with everything that was ancient Greece.

After calling in to the islands of Serifos, Kythnos and Hydra, the Odyssey was now on the home run to the port of Kalamaki.

Standing on the deck, playing with her worry beads, Leeanne thought, 'I don't want to leave here, I don't want to go home, I want to stay in Greece.'

Yannie Parios was singing over the ship's speaker system, as they sailed by the huge temple of Poseidon on Cape Sounion.

George came and sat beside Leeanne, noticing tears rolling down her cheeks.  He held her hand gently and said,  'Greece has touched you like it does so many people….always remember it with love and happiness.'

'I've had a wonderful holiday George,' she smiled. But I feel such a heavy sadness in my heart, almost like it's breaking, I feel like I'm leaving my soul behind.'

'I understand Leeanne, but you'll return, I know  you'll come back.'