“Who would be calling me from Guatemala?” Aaron asked, holding up his cell phone in confusion.
“It’s probably a scammer or a telemarketer,” Hayden said. “Don’t answer it.”
“Let it go to voicemail,” Owen suggested. “If it’s important they’ll leave a message.”
“I don’t know… something tells me I should answer this.” Aaron held his finger over the screen of his phone.
“Then answer it,” Hayden said. The three oldest princes were hiding in the kitchen, having snuck away from the garden party in the backyard. Too many graduating teenagers, defiling their caps and gowns by pushing each other into the pool and playing volleyball in the sand, barefoot and drunk on life, thanks to Alex’s moving speech.
“Hello?” Aaron answered, the speakerphone turned on.
“Hola, este es Aaron?” a beautiful Latin-American girl’s voice asked.
“Yeah, this is Aaron, who’s this?” Aaron felt a shiver up his spine and sensed this call was going to change his life.
“Creo que eres mi primo,” the girl said.
“Do you speak English?” Aaron asked, then asked again in Spanish. “Habla usted Ingles?”
“Si! I’m sorry,” she said breathlessly. “I forget to speak.”
Aaron was intrigued but getting frustrated. “What is your name?”
“Felicia Cohen,” she said. “I think you are my cousin. Or… uh… how do you say? My father is a cousin to your mother.”
“Are you related to Nicholas Cohen?” Aaron asked.
“Si, Nicholas was my bisabuelo… er… uh… grandfather’s father.”
“He is our great-grandfather as well,” Aaron said. “I’m here with two of my brothers, Hayden and Owen. We’re on speaker phone.”
“Hi, Felicia,” Hayden said. “I’m Hayden.”
“And I’m Owen.”
“Hayden, Owen, Aaron… there is one more of you?”
“Augustus,” Aaron said. “He’s hanging out with his girlfriend and other friends. You’ll have to meet him later.”
“Oh! I would love to meet you!” Felicia sounded genuinely excited.
“How did you get my number?” Aaron asked. “How do you know us?”
“I saw you on television,” Felicia said. “When your king died. Puede el descansar en paz. Your mother was with you, and my padre saw her. They are cousins. My grandfather helped me get your numbers.”
“Why are you calling me specifically?” Aaron asked.
“You are my age,” Felicia said, as if that explained everything. “You are to be my primo especial.”
“Your special… cousin?” Aaron lifted his eyebrows at his brothers, wondering what the heck was going on.
“I want to see you,” Felicia said.
“Are you in the United States?”
“No! Nunca podria permitireme eso!” Felicia laughed.
“Could you please speak English?” Aaron asked.
“She said she couldn’t afford to come to America,” Hayden said, rolling his eyes. “You need to learn some Spanish.”
“Hey, I passed Spanish in high school,” Aaron said. “But that was a long time ago.”
“I want to see you on phone,” Felicia said.
“You wanna Facetime?” Aaron asked.
They took a few seconds to get the phones coordinated, and Aaron propped his iPhone on the counter so they could all see, then suddenly there she was, smiling at them from Central America.
Felicia was like a Mayan princess with her long, black hair, mysterious eyes, and colorful blouse. She reached her hand to the screen of the phone as if she could touch Aaron through the video. He had the strange desire to reach out to her as well.
“Hi, Felicia,” Aaron breathed her name reverently.
Felicia seemed to relax her shoulders and smiled peacefully. “Hola, Aaron.”
Hayden whispered. “Shall I ask dad to call in a favor and get us a private jet with a one-way ticket to Guatemala?”
“Si… por favor,” Aaron said, never taking his eyes off the intriguing woman. “Gracias.”