A Series Of Fortunate Events, Part 1

(by Kalithanatos, 10 February 2010)


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A Series of Fortunate Events
by Kalithanatos

CHAPTER ONE

Katrina Sime opened the door to her hotel room, threw her luggage down and
collapsed onto the bed. The bus trip to the city had taken longer than
anticipated due to road works and she was exhausted from carrying her cases
from the bus depot to the hotel. This was the first time in her eighteen
years she had ever been away from home on her own and the city already seemed
pretty daunting to her. She thought about the next five days living in a
hotel room and could feel the tears welling up in her eyes, overwhelmed at
the situation.

Katrina had left school only a few weeks ago and although she achieved decent
grades, she never really fancied the prospect of university. Instead, she
immediately started looking for work and found a bank that was hiring. She
applied for a position and a few days later had an interview at her local
branch a few miles from home. Katrina was a very nervous girl by nature, but
she was also very charming and intelligent and this helped her secure the
job. However, when she received her letter of offer a couple of days later,
she found that her training was to take place at the bank's head office in
the city, and also that the post might not necessarily be for her local
branch. This was news to Katrina, who thought that this might at least have
been mentioned in the ad or at the interview and she had seriously considered
not accepting the position and looking instead for another job locally. As
usual it was her mother, Rose, who came to the rescue, telling Katrina that
this was too good an opportunity to miss and that she should go for it all
guns blazing. Rose and Katrina had lived together since Katrina's father,
Mitch, had died in a car accident when she was a baby. Rose had brought
Katrina up on her own, balancing her career and being a mother admirably and
making Katrina the bright, energetic young woman she was turning out to be.

After Rose's words of encouragement, Katrina finally accepted the position
and so it was she found herself on a warm Sunday evening in June in a tiny,
smelly hotel room in the big city.

Katrina took a few minutes to gather herself, then set about making the room
her home for the next five days. The first thing was to get rid of the smell.
Rose had bought Katrina some scented candles for the trip, knowing from
experience how foul some hotel rooms could be. Rose also gave Katrina the
emergency lighter they kept in the house in case of power cuts since neither
of the two women smoked and Katrina would need some way of lighting the
candles. After mastering the lighter and igniting the candles, Katrina
unpacked her cases into the wardrobe and then, as the night was still
relatively young, decided to go for a stroll. As she exited the hotel she
walked past four women ranging from her own age up to their mid-twenties.
They were at a table under the enclosed smoking area of the bar and had a
selection of alcoholic drinks and overflowing ashtrays in front of them. They
all seemed to be having a great time. Katrina smiled as she walked past them,
acknowledging that at least someone was having fun!

Katrina walked around the local area for an hour, taking in some of the
sights and getting an idea of the geography of the city before returning to
the hotel. As she passed the bar on the way to the entrance, she noticed the
same four women drinking and smoking and generally having a ball.  She was
glad she wasn't a drinker since she did not fancy turning up for the first
day of her new job with a hangover.


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