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Nurse Ruby disappears to Irian Jaya after an engagement gone sour and finds happiness in her work there.
Till Casper comes on the scene. Tall, good-looking, and annoyingly confident his mere presence destroys her hard won peace and serenity.
Casper falls in love and pursues her. Ruby resists.
Ruby looked. She saw the approaching flash in the sky before she heard it. Soon it took shape. The plane was going slowly, not in a straight line, but weaving its way towards the island.
“It looks as if it’s searching for something,” Dirk commented.
“They might be searching for us. I was afraid of that when I couldn’t call in last night or this morning. Hopefully we can assure them we’re all right when they fly over, so they won’t touch down and not waste any more of their time.” Steadily the plane zigzagged closer. Then it must have spotted the group on the beach, because it nosed down and flew straight at them. Now how to tell the pilot they were fine? Ruby wondered. She gave a thumbs-up sign, not really expecting it to do any good. It didn’t. The amphibian plane circled, obviously taking a good look at the beached canoe with its mangled outrigger. It circled again, flew out to sea, turned, and prepared to land.
Ruby shook her head wildly, dancing up and down and windmilling with her arms for the plane to move on, muttering all the time, “We’re okay, don’t waste your time. Just go back to base,” but the pilot didn’t see, or didn’t understand her frantic gestures and continued on his chosen course. The familiar tearing sound of the floats touching the water, followed by a quick adjustment to counteract the side-wind, then the plane came taxiing toward the shore.
“We’re fine,” called Ruby as soon as the door opened. “We’ll be on our way soon. No need to worry.”
Casper stepped out onto the float. The usual big grin was missing, a frown taking its place. “What happened to you lot? Why didn’t you call in last night?” It almost sounded like a bark.
“The radio transmitter got drenched and now it refuses to work. I’m sorry to have added this problem to your heavy schedule,” Ruby explained.
For goodness sake, the man looked as if it was all her fault.
Resentful as she had been of the beaming smile before, she now wanted it to flash out so she would stop feeling guilty. She managed to hold back a comment on his tone of voice, identifying the worry that caused it.
Casper threw out an anchor and went inside the plane. Ruby could hear him talking on the radio.
Good, now everybody would know they were safe.
She knew only too well that people the length and width of the country would have been alerted the night before. All would have been praying valiantly for protection and safety for the missing group.
Closing down the transmitter, Casper came out again and, without a moment’s hesitation, jumped off the plane and waded to the shore. “Let’s have a look at that thing,” he said, and marched over to the radio, still baking in the sun. He quickly spotted the source of trouble. “The batteries have leaked. They really don’t like to be submerged in water, you know,” he said, pointing out two little spots of brown. He took new batteries out of the watertight tin with tools he had on him and replaced the ruined ones. “That should solve the problem.”
Now that his grin was back in place Ruby found she could do without it after all.
The conceited so and so, she fumed inwardly, did he have to gloat?
Casper turned on the radio. Nothing happened.
Ruby giggled. That should teach him!
But Casper wasn’t fazed.
“So it needs some more work,” he shrugged, and continued to take some bits and pieces out of the radio, commenting on them as he went along. It was all totally lost on Ruby who didn’t even try to understand. Impatiently she shrugged.
“Look, I don’t know the first thing about the technical side of it. You might as well save your breath.”
Naomi Holland lived in beautiful New Zealand. Her study looked out over the Kaipara Harbour with its ever-changing tidal scene and abundant bird life.
As a teacher and mother of five she always made up stories. She started writing when all her children were at school.
Book Publisher: Wings e Press
No. of Pages: 253
Paper Weight (lb): 10.6
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