“This is my stateroom?” Jacob turned in a circle, wondering how he was going to cram himself into this small a space.
“Isn’t it great?” Maryam asked. “This is probably the nicest yacht I’ve ever worked on.”
Jacob stopped and his jaw dropped. He realized with a single word he could offend this young lady, and he needed to be careful. “My brother helped design this boat.”
The yacht was a full 200 feet in length, had four decks above the waterline, two decks below, a helipad, two VIP suites in addition to the owner’s suite, a pool and jacuzzi, a movie theater, a massage parlor and beauty salon, a playroom, a bar, and a library.
“Wow, that’s so cool.” Maryam tucked a lock of hair behind her ear. “He must be really smart.”
Jacob was momentarily distracted by the unique flecks of brown and gold in her aquamarine eyes. They were unlike any he’d ever seen. He shook off his stupor and flopped onto his bed and tucked his hands behind his head. “How long has your father been a captain?”
“Longer than I’ve been alive,” she said, sitting on the chair by the desk.
Jacob noticed his iPad was already plugged in at a port and waiting for him. He sat up and realized many of his things were already in place. “Did you organize my room?”
“Is it not to your liking?” Maryam hopped up and straightened the chair, pushing it back under the desk. “I can move things however you want them.”
“No, no, everything’s fine, please sit back down.”
“Are you sure?” She kept one hand on the chair and didn’t return to her seat.
“What do you do for fun around here?” Jacob asked, changing tactics.
“I work here,” she said.
“Well, they have to give you a day off now and then, right? I mean, it’s like thirty days that we’ll be at sea, right? They can’t work you twenty-four-seven.”
“No, I mean, yes, I’ll get some time off,” Maryam said. “But not for the first few days. When the family comes aboard, it’s our job to make sure everything’s perfect for them.”
“Well… I’m family.” He batted his eyelashes playfully. “You can be tasked with making sure everything’s perfect for me.”
Maryam giggled and Jacob’s heartrate increased. How was he going to be stuck together with this girl without eventually kissing her? He’d already practically asked her out and they’d known each other less than twenty minutes. He was in trouble.
“Hey, little brother, how do you like your home away from home?” Liam came around the corner but halted in the doorway. “Ooh, I didn’t realize I was interrupting anything.”
“Oh, no, sir, I was just making sure Master Jacob had everything he needed.” Maryam tried to duck past Liam, but he was leaning against the doorframe, essentially blocking her way.
“I’ll bet you were.” Liam wiggled his eyebrows playfully.
“Liam, leave her alone,” Jacob said.
Liam dropped his arm and stepped out of the way, offering Maryam a wink.
“And, Maryam?” Jacob called before she could get too far out the door. She turned back with hesitancy. “Please just call me Jacob.”
“Yes, sir.” She nodded respectfully and slipped down the hall.
“My little brother,” Liam said. “You are going to have one enjoyable trip across the Atlantic.”
“Whatever…” Jacob couldn’t help his mouth pulling into a grin, suspecting his oldest brother was right.