My Kind of Town

Don Chapman

His favorite bikini

>> Off the Big Island

"What about my friend Paul?" Sonya Chan said as the yacht cleared the bay at Kona and motored into the open sea. "Where is he?"

"You were close to him?" the old man said in that hoarse whisper.

"He's just a guy I used to know, from when I used to come on this boat. I hadn't seen him in years until the night that... You do know Paul?"

"I know many things, and it is time now for you to stop asking questions."

"How far until I can see Daren?"

"A matter of hours."

"Is he alright? I've missed him so much!"

Sonya seemed so sincere, he began to doubt that she had conspired with the two crewmen from this boat who tried to kill him so one of them could have Sonya and Daren's Lotto winnings. It was all he could do not to touch her, to hold her, to love her.

"OK, well, since we have a ways to go, I brought a swimsuit along. I'm to change below."

Once she was in the cabin, Sonya was amazed that she hadn't recognized the boat before. But it had a different name now, and the pink sails and the pink life rings were stowed away. Now it all came back -- all the parties and the one time she'd been invited to spend the night for a private photo session with the Pet Shop publisher.

Mostly what she remembered was the publisher's body odor. She didn't like it. He was fit, handsome enough, wittier than he needed to be to get what he wanted, and a millionaire. And the way he touched her -- during the private photo session and after -- was technically good. But something about the way he smelled turned her off. Did it come from his diet? His soul? Whatever, her feelings were not hurt when she didn't get a return invitation. Besides, she'd heard that's the way it usually went.

Sonya changed into a pink bikini, Daren's favorite, grabbed a pink towel from the head. She checked the refrigerator, saw an open wine bottle. She grabbed it and two glasses, headed back up to the deck.

"Care for a drink... um, what's your name?"

He took a glass, sipped. Who was he now that Daren Guy was officially dead? Better question, how could he resist Sonya when she stood there in his favorite bikini looking so good?

The sound of an airplane jarred him back to more important matters. Flying into the sun, a Coast Guard plane looking for a boat with pink sails, and here was Sonya in a pink suit spreading out a pink towel.

"Quick, get below! And take the towel!" he barked, not in that whisper, but in a young man's voice. And as she descended the steps, Sonya suddenly knew the truth, she thought.

See the Columnists section for some past articles.

Don Chapman is editor of MidWeek. His serialized novel runs daily in the Star-Bulletin. He can be e-mailed at


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