Sittin’ by the seaside siftin’ sand…
The girl broke off to stretch her arms out in a deep yawn. Bond smiled to himself. He wetted his lips and took up the refrain:
“The water from her eyes could sail a boat, The hair on her 杭州洗浴24小时 head could tie a goat…”
The hands flew down and across her chest. The muscles of her behind bunched with tension. She was listening, her head, still hidden by the curtain of hair, cocked to one side.
Hesitantly she began again. The whistle trembled and died. At the first note of Bond’s echo, the girl whirled round. She didn’t cover her body with the two classical gestures. One hand flew downwards, but the other, instead of hiding her breasts, went up to her face, covering it below the eyes, now wide with fear. “Who’s that?” The words came out in a terrified whisper.
Bond got to his feet and stepped out through the sea-grape. He stopped on the edge of the grass. He held his hands open at his sides to show they were empty. He smiled cheerfully at her. “It’s only me. I’m another trespasser. Don’t be frightened.”
The girl dropped her hand down from her face. It went to the knife at her belt. Bond watched the fingers curl round the hilt. He looked up at her face. Now he realized why her hand had instinctively gone to it. It was a beautiful face, with wide-apart deep blue eyes under lashes paled by the sun. The mouth was wide and when she stopped pursing the lips with tension they would be full. It was a serious face and the jawline was determined-the face of a girl who fends for herself. And once, reflected Bond, she had failed to fend. For the nose was badly broken, smashed crooked like a boxer’s. Bond stiffened with revolt at what had happened to this supremely beautiful girl. No wonder this was her shame and not the beautiful firm breasts that now jutted towards him without concealment.
The eyes examined him fiercely. “Who are you? What are you doing here?” There was the slight lilt of a Jamaican accent. The voice was sharp and accustomed to being obeyed.
“I’m an Englishman. I’m interested in birds.”
“Oh,” the voice was doubtful.
The hand still rested on the knife. “How long have you been watching me? How did you get here?”
“Ten minutes, but no more answers until you tell me who you are.”
“I’m no one in particular. I come from Jamaica. I collect shells.”
“I came in a canoe. Did you?”
“Yes. Where is your canoe?”
“I’ve got a friend with me. We’ve hidden it in the mangroves.”
“There are no marks of a canoe landing.”
“We’re careful. We-covered them up. Not like you.” Bond gestured towards the rocks. “You ought to take more trouble. Did you use a sail? Right up to the reef?”
“Of course. Why not? I always do.”
“Then they’ll know you’re here. They’ve got radar.”
“They’ve never caught me yet.” The girl took her hand away from her knife. She reached up and stripped off the diving mask and stood swinging it. She seemed to think she had the measure of Bond. She said, with some of the sharpness-gone from her voice, “What’s your name?”
“Bond. James Bond. What’s yours?”
She reflected. “Rider.”
“What’s so funny about it?”
“Nothing. Honeychile Rider. It’s a pretty name.”
She unbent. “People call me ‘Honey’.”
“Well, I’m glad to meet you.”
The prosaic phrase seemed to remind her of her nakedness. She blushed. She said uncertainly, “I must get dressed.” She looked down at the scattered shells around her feet. She obviously wanted to pick them up. Perhaps she realized that the movement might be still more revealing than her present pose. She said sharply, “You’re not to touch those while I’m gone.”
Bond smiled at the childish challenge. “Don’t worry, I’ll look after them.”
The girl looked at him doubtfully and then turned and walked stiff-legged over to the rocks and disappeared behind them.
Bond walked the few steps down the beach and bent and picked up one of the shells. It was alive and the 杭州养生保健按摩 two halves were shut tight. It appeared to be some kind of a cockle, rather deeply ribbed and coloured a mauve-pink. Along both edges of the hinge, thin horns stood out, about half a dozen to each side. It didn’t seem to Bond a very distinguished shell. He replaced it carefully with the others.
He stood looking down at the shells and wondering. Was she really collecting them? It certainly looked like it. But what a risk to take to get them-the voyage over alone in the canoe and then back again. And she seemed to realize that this was a dangerous place. “They’ve never caught me yet.” What an extraordinary girl. Bond’s heart warmed and his senses stirred as he thought of her. Already, as he had found so often when people had deformities, he had almost forgotten her broken nose. It had somehow slipped away behind his memory of 杭州按摩服务安全么 her eyes and her mouth and her amazingly beautiful body. Her imperious attitude and her quality of attack were exciting. The way she had reached for her knife to defend herself! She’was like an animal whose cubs are threatened. Where did she live? Who were her parents? There was something uncared for about her-a dog that nobody wants to pet. Who was she?
Bond heard her footsteps riffling the sand. He turned to look at her. She was dressed almost in rags-a faded brown shirt with torn sleeves and a knee-length patched brown cotton skirt held in place by the leather belt with the knife. She had a canvas knapsack slung over one shoulder. She looked like a principal girl dressed as Man Friday.
She came up with him and at once went down on one knee and began picking up the live shells and stowing them in the knapsack.
Bond said, “Are 杭州最大洗浴休闲会所 those rare?”
She sat back on her haunches and looked up at him. She surveyed his face. Apparently she was satisfied. “You promise you won’t tell anybody? Swear?”
“I promise,” said Bond.
“Well then, yes, they are rare. Very. You can get five dollars for a perfect specimen. In Miami. That’s where I deal with. They’re called Venus Elegans-The Elegant Venus.” Her eyes sparkled up at him with excitement. “This morning I found what I wanted. The bed where they live,” she waved towards the sea. “You wouldn’t find it though,” she added with sudden carefulness. “It’s very deep and hidden away. I doubt if you could dive that deep. And anyway,” she looked happy, “I’m going to clear the whole bed today. You’d only get the imperfect ones if you came back here.”
Bond laughe’d. “I promise I won’t steal any. I really don’t know anything 杭州男士养生spa about shells. Cross my heart.”
She stood up, her work completed. “What about these birds of yours? What sort are they? Are they valuable too? I won’t tell either if you tell me. I only collect shells.”
“They’re called roseate spoonbills,” said Bond. “Sort of pink stork with a flat beak. Ever seen any?”
“Oh, those,” she said scornfully. “There used to be thousands of them here. But you won’t find many now. They scared them all away.” She sat down on the sand and put her arms round her knees, proud of her superior knowledge and now certain that she had nothing to fear from this man.