Cross Country Ch. 03byVentureV©
Here comes the cross country trip! Thank you all for your comments and feedback too. Please provide your email address if you are reviewing or asking a question as well • I'd enjoy keeping in touch with people who are interested in my writing.
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The outskirts of Melbourne passed in a blur as Sebastian sat in the Land Cruiser with his forehead pressed against the window. It had been an early start and they were approaching the Western Freeway after only half an hour of driving, the traffic still light enough on that Friday morning that Nicky didn't have to stop very often at all.
Nicky was planning on staying in Adelaide overnight, followed by another four days to get across the Nullarbor Plain to Perth, and she had mapped out the route carefully before leaving. Provided that they made good time, the three siblings would probably spend Saturday in Adelaide tomorrow to look around as it was supposed to be a very beautiful city, particularly in comparison with Melbourne which was dirty and sprawling.
Sebastian was exhausted after his late night and had barely woken up enough to drag himself out to the car that morning. Sasha was also silent, her breathing indicating that she had gone back to sleep shortly after leaving. He remained awake, answering Nicky's questions with as few words as possible. Her favourite CD, James Blunt, was playing softly on the sound system and the air conditioner was circulating cool air through the cabin. The sun was sitting just over the horizon now, but even before sunrise the day had felt balmy.
"Did you remember the car charger for your laptop Seb?" Nicky asked, her head nodding along to James Blunt's crooning.
"Yeah, thanks for that." He answered, smiling at the back of her head. Nicky had brought home an adaptor for his new computer yesterday, one that plugged into the cigarette lighter in the car. It was the sort of thoughtful gesture that most people remembered about his eldest sister. He was glad that she had thought of it because he wanted to teach himself to build a website on this trip and had downloaded a few free programs to start learning.
Nicky smiled at him in the rear view mirror and they drove on in silence for a while. After another half hour of driving, she exited the freeway and pulled into a roadside McDonalds.
"Who's up for breakfast?" Nicky asked as she parked outside the restaurant and turned off the engine.
Sasha stirred slightly, but didn't answer.
"Yeah, sounds good." Sebastian answered.
He opened the door of the Land Cruiser and climbed out, stretching in the early morning sunlight. He then rapped on the window of the front passenger seat, right next to Sasha's sleeping face that was pressed flat against the glass. Sasha opened her eyes with a start and looked around confused. She sat up and Sebastian opened her door.
"Wakey wakey." He smiled at her in amusement. A glistening trail of drool ran from the corner of one mouth and red patch of skin marred her face where she had been pressed up against the window. He wondered at how girls could look great even when they first woke up. Usually, when he first awoke, his own countenance was enough to frighten small children.
Sasha waved a hand at him and rubbed her face vigorously, her eyes slowly coming into focus.
"Where are we?" She asked as Nicky closed the driver's door on the other side.
"Bacchus Marsh." Sebastian told her. "We're grabbing some Maccas for breakfast."
"Oh ok." Sasha slid her legs around on the leather seat to climb out of the car and Sebastian looked away as her short, flowing skirt exposed her white knickers briefly. He headed for the front door, hearing the car door slam behind him, and walked into the yellow and red restaurant that seemed to be made almost entirely of plastic. They placed their orders and the girls went to sit down while Sebastian waited for the tray of bacon and egg muffins, coffee and hash browns.
He couldn't get Sasha out of his mind. All morning he had watched the side of her face from the back seat, marvelling at her pure, innocent beauty. He knew it wasn't right to think about his own sister sexually, and that side of things seemed to be settling down thankfully, but another part of him yearned to look at her, to talk to her and to generally be in her company. Sebastian felt as if his sister was fast becoming an obsession for him. His dreams last night had been filled with Sasha, not in a sexual sense, but rather a loving one. The dreams were more about spending time with her, cuddling her, smelling her soft dark hair and enjoying her presence.
Sebastian glanced over at the table while he waited and smiled slightly at the sight of her. Sasha still wasn't fully awake and she was leaning forward with her head resting on her arms. She wore a loose sleeveless top of a pale lime green, a white summery skirt that came to mid thigh and open shoes that were covered in bright sparkling diamantes. Nicky looked up and smiled at him briefly as she tried, with little success it seemed, to engage her sister in conversation.
Nicky, he noticed, was also wearing a sleeveless top in a similar shade of green with long khaki shorts, joggers and white ankle socks. Sebastian was noticing Nicky more and more too, comparing her simple, wholesome beauty with Sasha's more exotic and definitely more petite beauty. They were both gorgeous girls who were healthy, slim and good-natured and he felt incredibly lucky to be spending time with them on this trip. Sebastian dragged his eyes away from them with a soft sigh. He wondered if this was normal for guys who had attractive sisters. Probably not, he supposed. Most siblings he knew tended to merely be annoying to each other.
Their order was announced and a young Indian girl smiled at him as she pushed the tray across the counter. He smiled back vaguely and picked up the tray, taking it over to their table.
The three siblings ate quickly and Sasha seemed nearly conscious by the end of the meal. The two girls sipped their coffee slowly while Sebastian emptied his orange juice in short gulps. Nicky was chatting away about the trip ahead and telling them more about the route she intended to take. Tracy had provided a generous allowance for meals, accommodation and petrol and they intended to enjoy the trip thoroughly.
Nicky's phone rang and she fussed around in her handbag to find it.
"Oh, hi Mum!" She said excitedly as she answered. "Yes, we're already on the way. We're at Bacchus Marsh having breakfast."
Sebastian gathered their rubbish and piled it on the tray as Nicky talked, then walked over and dumped it all into the square trash counter through a hinged flap. He returned to the table and took the phone that Nicky offered to him.
"Hi Mum." Sebastian said.
"Hi honey," she answered, her voice sounding tired. "Nicky said everything seems to be going well. Are you enjoying yourself?"
"No, not yet," he laughed, "We've only just started and Sasha and I have barely woken up."
"Well I hope you do. Make sure you help Nicky out ok? She's got a lot of driving ahead so try to make it a bit easier on her if you can."
"Will do Mum." Sebastian answered. "How is everything there?"
"Not too bad." His mother answered with a sigh. "I've got to meet with the funeral home today and we're planning it for Friday. Nicky said you should all be here by next Wednesday."
"Ok." Sebastian stifled a yawn. "Well I hope it goes ok."
"Thanks honey. Does Sasha want a word?"
"Hang on, I'll ask her." Sebastian looked over and raised his eyebrows questioningly at his twin sister. She nodded and held out her hand. "Here she is. Bye Mum." He handed the phone to Sasha who spoke briefly, interrupted by the occasional yawn, before she hung up the phone.
After a quick visit to the toilet, they all piled into the car and drove back out to rejoin the freeway.
Sebastian opened his laptop in the back seat, listening absently as his sisters talked animatedly in the front. He booted up the computer and started following the tutorials on screen. An hour after breakfast, a question asked by Nicky caught his attention and he listened intently for Sasha's answer.
"No, there's no one." Sasha said. "Not that a few haven't tried, but they all seem so immature and stupid."
"What about Evan?" Nicky asked her, glancing sideways at her sister. "He was cute and I thought you were dating him on and off."
"We started out dating," Sasha answered with a laugh, "but Evan's actually gay. I was the first person he had told apparently and he hasn't come out to his family yet. The dates are more of a cover story for him and we're good friends."
Sebastian felt a shock at his sister's words. Evan Trentham was gay? Wow… Evan was a typical sports nut who had been in the school's top football team for three years and was every girl's dream guy. He grinned to himself as the girls continued their conversation.
"What about you Nicky? Any sexy artists at uni?" Sasha asked.
"Nah!" Nicky laughed. "There was one guy who I might have been interested in, but he's been going out with the same girl since high school so I don't think he's on the market."
"What about girls?" Sasha grinned sideways at her sister and Sebastian looked down quickly at his computer.
"Sasha!" Nicky yelled, looking back at her brother in the rear view mirror.
"Don't mind me." Sebastian told them, laughing. "I'm not listening."
They joked and laughed for a while, the twins teasing their older sister, and eventually Sasha started telling jokes. They got worse and worse, sometimes crude, sometimes stupid, and soon they were all struggling to breathe from laughing too much.
A few more hours passed with the countryside barely changing. It was really quite a boring drive, Sebastian realised. The scenery was one big stretch of low bushes across an endless, flat landscape that was occasionally interrupted by small towns and fields. They passed through Ballarat, stopped at Ararat for a snack and another toilet break and continued through to Horsham. At lunch time they crossed the border between Victoria and South Australia, stopping at a roadhouse in Bordertown for hot dogs and chips before continuing on towards Adelaide.
Nicky was happy to be making good time and thought they would get into Adelaide around 4 or 5 o'clock that afternoon. Traffic was a little heavier than they expected and they regularly had to wait for a few kilometres before overtaking massive trucks that were pulling three or four huge trailers. Shortly after passing through Keith in South Australia, the siblings found themselves behind a long line of five or six of the enormous trucks, unable to overtake safely and their speed was reduced to 70 kilometres per hour.
Sasha sighed in irritation as Nicky tried again and again to overtake the line of trucks before pulling back into her own lane to avoid a head on collision.
"Why don't we stop for a longer break somewhere?" Sasha asked.
"Not yet." Nicky answered, easing the car over slightly to look ahead and then pulling back once more. "We can have a relaxing day tomorrow though ok?"
"Yeah alright." Sasha sighed.
Sebastian opened his mouth to propose another toilet break but cut off as the truck ahead of them shuddered and swerved back and forward slightly. A black shape seemed to jump up from the road ahead of them and fell just in front of the Land Cruiser before a solid thump struck the car. Nicky gave a yell as she struggled to keep the large 4WD in her own lane, bumps and scraping noises sounding beneath their feet and she eased over to the shoulder of the road carefully, the steering wheel shuddering in her hands.
"What the hell was that?" Sebastian asked, his heart pounding.
"I think it was a truck tyre, or part of one." Sasha answered, looking over her shoulder. Torn and shredded tyres had been regular sights along the side of the road.
"It sounded like more than that." Sebastian told her, unbuckling his seatbelt.
They all climbed out of the car and walked around it slowly. Seeing nothing, Sebastian crouched down and looked beneath the car. He reached out and pulled on an unusually large flap of shredded rubber that he could see hanging from the undercarriage. It didn't budge. He pulled harder, straining, and it came free suddenly in his hands, accompanied by a metallic snapping sound. A thin stream of liquid was dribbling from the undercarriage and he stared at it in alarm.
"Um, I think we might have a problem here guys." Sebastian told his sisters, standing up again. He tossed the flat panel of rubber onto the ground and met their stares. "Something's leaking under there."
"Well, let's see if we can get to a garage at the next town so they can look at it." Nicky told them.
They climbed back into the car but after less than 100 metres Nicky pulled over once more, the steering wheel shuddering harder than before.
"I think we need to call roadside assistance." She announced, reaching for her phone. The twins sighed and Sebastian leaned back on the chair, closing his eyes in annoyance.
Almost an hour later, the roadside assistance truck pulled up and, after an extensive inspection of the undercarriage, the mechanic told them it would need to be towed.
"It looks like the transmission is damaged and it's leaking pretty badly." He told Sebastian. He was a fat man, sweating profusely in the oppressive heat and had struggled to get beneath the car. Sebastian and the girls had exchange quiet giggles at his grunting efforts and the girls had turned away every time he bent over to expose half of his ass.
"Where to?" Sebastian asked.
"Probably just back up the road a bit to Keith." He answered, scratching himself openly. "My garage is there and I can have a closer look when I lift her up a bit."
Sebastian nodded and the man rang for a tow truck to come out and pick them up. Another hour passed before the tow truck arrived and the Land Cruiser was hoisted up and secured in place. The tow truck driver offered to drop them at a motel in Keith before taking their car on to the garage. Nicky had the mechanic's phone number and business card, so she agreed readily and soon they were standing outside the reception area of a small motel with their suitcases.
Nicky went in to enquire about a couple of rooms for the night. Sebastian would have one to himself while the girls shared.
"Oh, I'm sorry love." The stout receptionist told her. "We only have one room available because half of the rooms are being renovated at the moment and the rest are full. The good news is that the available room has already been finished so it's quite new and comfortable. The beds are big and we've put flat screen televisions in too."
The receptionist seemed quite proud of their new renovations, but Nicky felt sure Sebastian would be uncomfortable having to share a room with his sisters.
"Is there somewhere else that would have two rooms?" Nicky asked.
"Afraid not dear." The lady told her. "We're the only motel in town. There is another one up the road a bit."
"Oh ok, how far is that?" Nicky sighed with relief.
"About 70 kilometres."
"Argh." Nicky closed her eyes for a second. "Ok, we'll take the room."
After filling out the paperwork and paying for a night's accommodation, she went out and told Sasha and Sebastian about the shared room.
"It does have an ensuite though," Nicky finished, "so I'm sure it will be ok."
The twins nodded and they walked over to the closest block of rooms, finally arriving at Room 11. Nicky turned the key and they followed her in. They came to a halt just inside the door, staring at the lone queen-sized bed.
"Oh for goodness sake." Nicky said, looking around.
"Don't worry about it Nicky." Sebastian told her. "I can sleep on the floor."
"No way." Sasha spoke up hurriedly. "That's not fair. Don't they have fold up beds or something?"
A quick phone call to reception confirmed that they did not have any fold up beds.
"We can all fit on there well enough." Sasha said finally, and Nicky nodded in reply.
Sebastian swallowed and nodded, his face reddening. Nicky disappeared into the bathroom to freshen up a little and he exchanged a long look with Sasha.
"Does it bother you?" He asked her, feeling himself redden further.
"Nah." Sasha smiled at him. "We used to sleep together when we were younger sometimes, remember?"
Sebastian did remember, but that was nearly 10 years ago now. The rest of the afternoon passed slowly as they all lay on the bed and watched television together. It was indeed a comfortable bed and there was a good foot or more of room between them. Not nearly enough by any means, but it shouldn't be too bad. Sebastian was nervous about sleeping in such close proximity to his sisters. He found his mind returning to the events of the last two days and soon he was struggling to think of anything else.
They ordered room service, a veritable feast of steak, salmon, salad, chips and chocolate mud cake which they ate while sitting in a triangle on the bed. Sasha found a fairly recent movie on TV and they ate as they watched, all three of them yawning occasionally.
Eventually Nicky announced that she wanted some sleep and the others agreed. Nicky took one side and Sebastian the other, with Sasha in the middle since she was the smallest.
Sebastian waited while his sisters showered one at a time, grateful for the exhaustion of the day's trip and hoping he would be able to get some sleep. Nicky came out of the bathroom dressed in a t-shirt and shorts. She crawled under the covers on her side and closed her eyes almost immediately as Sasha went into the bathroom to wash. By the time Sasha emerged, Nicky appeared to be asleep and Sebastian was struggling to keep his eyes open.
They opened easily enough though when he saw Sasha and noticed her bedtime attire. Sasha wore a nightie of soft t-shirt material that barely came to her upper thighs. Her pale slender legs looked very long under the short nightie and her small breasts formed points under the clinging material.
Sebastian looked away quickly and gathered his toiletries before hurrying into the bathroom. Oh god, how was he supposed to sleep beside her while she was dressed like that? He tried to focus his thoughts elsewhere as he showered and brushed his teeth but by the time he was finished, he was half erect and his heart was pounding.
Sebastian dressed in loose boxer shorts and a plain t-shirt and quietly opened the door, peering at the bed in the centre of the room. Nicky was clearly asleep, her mouth open and a soft snore accompanying the rise and fall of her breathing. Sasha was facing away from her toward Sebastian's side of the bed and he watched her face carefully as he walked around the bed. Sasha's eyes opened briefly and she smiled at him and lifted the sheet up, holding it back for him.
"Come on." Sasha whispered, "Let's get to sleep."
Sebastian nodded and gingerly climbed into bed beside her, averting his eyes from the edge of her nightie which had ridden up slightly to reveal her small white underwear. The skin of her legs looked incredibly smooth and silky. He rolled onto his side, facing away from her and settled the blanket over himself, then tried to relax. He reached out and switched off the light, pitching the room into darkness.
Heat seemed to radiate from Sasha's body behind Sebastian and he lay there for a long time before he started to doze off. He could feel Sasha's breath tickling the back of his neck and he tried not to move at all in case he brushed up against her. Despite the torture of her closeness though, Sebastian eventually fell asleep some two hours later.
A rocking sensation roused Sebastian and he opened his eyes in the darkness, struggling to orient himself and remember where he was. An herbal scent filled his nostrils and something tickled his lips. Hair, he thought. Sebastian remembered where he was, and suddenly became aware of the heat of another body snuggled along the front of his own. He realised that he had rolled over in the night and was now spooning with Sasha, her small bottom pressed back into him and his arm wrapped loosely around her middle. Heart pounding, Sebastian lifted his arm gingerly and started to ease back from his sister but she groaned suddenly and grabbed his hand. Tucking his hand back around her, Sasha wriggled back into him even more and settled into a steady rhythm of breathing once more.