Jake has a Yamaha 212X jet boat he bought right after he closed his first medical malpractice case. It’s one of the nicest boats on the market, and he likes to make sure that everyone knows it. Especially women. That’s Jake for you, though.
We get on the boat a little after 1:00 p.m. with the intention of water skiing on the bay for a few hours before hitting the bar later that night. You always do better with the women if you have a few water sports stories to tell.
Jake, myself, and Trey, Jake’s buddy from the office, get geared up. Jake likes to leave his wetsuit half-zipped in case we came across any boats full of women, as did Trey. Having never been water skiing before, I decided to zip mine all the way up. You never know.
Trey volunteered to go first and give me a few pointers on how to get up on my skis without falling.
“Once you’re up, it’s pretty easy. It’s all about finding balance.” He assured me as he lowered himself into the water, giving Jake the thumbs up to pick up speed.
Trey was a natural. He spent 30 minutes out on the water without falling once unless it was to do a fancy flip into the water off one of the trick ramps that had just been set up in the bay.
“See,” He said, as he pulled himself back into the boat, “nothing to it.”
Trey made it look so easy, and I had never done this before. I was bound to fall at some point. My goal was to make sure I didn’t give them anything to make fun of me for later.
To my surprise, I got up relatively easy and was able to keep my balance. With Trey’s instruction, I was even able to do some wake crossing and a few small jumps. My confidence was ballooning. I pointed to a ramp that was coming up. Jake hesitated for a second but decided that either way, he was going to get to see something he would remember forever.
I approached the ramp, and the second the front of my ski hit the ramp, I regretted my decision. My confidence fled from my body like a woman in a horror movie, and I did a somersault over the front of the ramp and went headfirst into the water.
For a second, there was nothing. Then, all at once, I realized that I was laying flat in the water, staring up at a picturesque blue sky. It was cloudy just a few moments ago, but now the sky is crystal clear. I push my butt into the water so I can maneuver into a seated position when I feel something brush up against the back of my legs.
I froze, terror wracking my body as I frantically scanned the water for Jake and his boat. No one was anywhere near me. I pulled out the small knife Trey gave me in case the line got caught around anything while I was on the skis and prepared to defend myself.
I turned around, only to come face to face with the most beautiful and breathtaking woman I have ever seen in my entire life. Her skin was soft and smooth as porcelain; her eyes were as green as the ocean in Bermuda and as deep as the water of the Mariana Trench. Her hair was thick and black with streaks of emerald green and, although she was wet, it seemed to move with the curves of her face, making her look almost animated.
She gracefully tread water in front of me, slowly waving her arms back and forth, never taking her eyes off mine.
“Who are you?” I asked idiotically, not knowing what to say next.
She tilted her head slightly to the side, looking at me with a curiosity I couldn’t recognize. That’s when I realized that she wasn’t kicking her feet at all. She didn’t have any feet. Her beautiful porcelain body dove right into a long, green fishtail.
I rubbed my eyes, not believing what I was seeing. But when I opened them, she was still there, staring back at me with her ocean green eyes.
“Mariana.” Was all she said.
“Mariana. You are beautiful.” I know. I’m an idiot.
She smiled slightly at me and moved closer, brushing her hands against my chest. Suddenly, we were kissing with the passion of every romantic comedy ending you can think of. It is pure bliss. It is magic. It is –
“Dude, what are you doing?” I could hear Jake’s voice over the roar of his boat engine.
I ignore him. Can’t he see that I am making out with a goddess?
“Rob, dude, what is wrong with you?” I could hear Jake chastising me again.
Suddenly, my head is throbbing. It’s pounding so hard, and I am starting to see the fuzzy fog of an overcast day. I feel myself being hauled up into the boat, but I refuse to let go of Mariana. I just hope the guys don’t freak out on her.
Instead, they try to pull her away from me as they lay me down on the boat. I roll to my side, and briefly take notice of the red-tinted water that has surrounded me on the floor of the boat.
“You took a nasty fall, man. We need to take you to the hospital.” This time it was Trey, trying to make sure I didn’t move around too much.
“Where is Mariana?” I asked in a forced whisper. Why was I talking so funny?
“Rob, the boat’s name is Mariana. You’re on board Mariana. The skis you were making out with are not Mariana.” Jake said, sounding both annoyed and worried.
“Let’s get him to the hospital. I think he has a concussion.” Trey said, encouraging Jake to pick up speed heading back to the dock.
So, that’s how I got this beautiful bandage on my head, and that’s why Jake and Trey keep laughing every time they talk about Jake’s boat – Mariana. So much for not giving them anything to make fun of me for.