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| Category: || Romance Fiction |
Posted:|| September 29, 2020 Views: 40|
Chapter 9 of the book An Evening in Paris
PIerre's life changes direction
"An Evening in Paris chapter9"
by Cass Carlton
Inge fixed Jim with an amused expression and shook her head. She glanced across at Pierre and smiled reassuringly at him.
"It's alright," she explained,"whenever he has an anaesthetic he becomes very fond and chivalrous. It would be a mistake to take him seriously."
Placing her hand on Jim's arm she addressed him sympathetically.
"You need a couple of days to recover yourself, Mon cher. Soon you will be home with Margo and Alysse. They will call Henri in to lift you and put you to bed. All will be well.
Jim nodded docilely and sat with his eyes closed, his tanned face pale.
Inge glanced at Jean-Luc who was already heaving himself out of his chair. He hefted Jim easily onto his shoulder while Pierre took the other side of Jim's lanky form and helped him walk up the passage to the front door.
A car stood at the curb. As they came out of the front door of the house, the back door opened and two large young men came forward to take Jim into their care.
One was very tall and seemed to be on close terms with the older man.
He wrapped his arms around Jim and led him to the car.
For a moment Jim demurred and insisted on turning back to Pierre and Inge.
He drew the young man to stand in front of him.
"This," he announced, "is William, my son." Inge smiled up at him and Pierre offered a hand to shake. The young man turned to his father.
"You've been playing rough again, Papa. What will Alysse say when she sees you with a bandage?" Jim gave a watery grin and shrugged.
"Your wife will forgive me. If you ask her to that is." he added.
The second young man spoke quietly to Inge. " He has lost some blood and needs to go home to bed for a few days. He has been given a sleeping tablet which will knock him out in about," he looked at his watch, " twenty minutes. So don't keep him up a minute more than you have to."
He chivalrously took her hand and kissed it.
"Bon Nuit, Mam'selle," he murmured "make sure he isn't disturbed. All he needs is sleep and peace and quiet for a few days."
Inge nodded. She recognized the young man as a doctor from a nearby hospital, who hunched himself into his anorak against the cold night air and walked away, whistling.
Inge had been an occasional guest to Jim's home in a small chateau once owned by Alysse Wilson's family on the outskirts of Paris.
His daughter-in-law Alysse had been gifted the chateau on the day she married William or Guillaume as he was called by the members of Alysse's family.
It was a pretty place with extensive gardens, a coach house and tall, stained glass windows.
Some of the furniture was centuries old and the bed in Jim's room was a four poster with rich, brown, brocade curtains.
He didn't live alone. A household of several off shoots of Alysse's family numbering nine people in all included William's two children Anton and Marie Margaret.
It was a happy home where four generations lived very comfortably.
Jim's bedroom was on the second floor, overlooking the drive and commanding a view of the rose garden out the front.
. It had a secret door which enabled him to come and go unobserved. He had yet to use it.
It was also fitted with a very sophisticated alarm system, so Jim would be quite safe from harm while he slept away the effects of this disasterous encounter.
Inge thought of the people in that household quietly busying around him and knew he would be well looked after.
Jean-Luc pulled his collar up around his ears and with a gruff "Bon Nuit" took his leave, the little monkey disappearing into the front of his jacket.
As the car vanished into the night Inge fixed Pierre with a smiling gaze and a question.
"What now Mon Ami?"
Pierre had spent some time mulling over that same question and had already made his decision.
His head was still whirling with the events that had taken place since he landed at Orly Airport a few short hours ago.
He wasn't going to return to his old, humdrum existence after all that had happened.
His friend Alphonse had died defending something he believed in.
Like it or not Pierre was a part of that, with the poetry he had translated used to make codes and ciphers to protect the people Alphonse had recruited.
Suddenly he remembered the little book of poetry he still carried in his pocket. He took it out and placed it in Inge's hands.
She looked at it blindly for a moment and then burst into tears.
"Oh, Pierre," she sobbed, "do you really mean to stay? With us? The Network? Your life will never be the same. Are you sure?"
"Quite sure," he said, "never been so sure of anything in my life."
Then he took her in his arms and kissed her. She responded enthusiastically, wrapping her arms around him and clinging closely to his chest. He looked into her drowned, blue eyes and said softly, ' You're beautiful when you're sad."
She spoke quietly, although her heart was beating so loudly she was sure he could hear it .
"I am not sad, my dear, I am joyful that you want to remain with us. To be one of us----"
Pierre stopped her with another kiss and said firmly,
"Look at us. Standing on the curbside as if we have no homes to go to. And," he added, "I am hungry. Where can we go to get something to eat?"
Maxine's", she answered promptly. "You can have anything you want there.
A snack or a cup of coffee or a three course meal. Any time, day or night." He pulled her close to him again and kissed her slowly and with a warmth that excited her. He saw the pulse start in her throat and smiled.
"Maxine's it is then," he said, waving to a passing taxi .
As they settled into the cab for the short trip to the restaurant, Inge cuddled close to Pierre.
They were both aware of a powerful, mutual attraction and neither were in the mood to deny their feelings.
Maxine's was a quiet little place with booths and unobtrusive lighting for those who wished
to remain un-noticed. Omelettes from Maxine's were said to be the best in Paris, so they both chose an omelette for supper and enjoyed them to the full.
With the remainder of the wine in their glasses, they sat talking quietly of the day's events.
There was much to consider, although the changes in Pierre's life needed to be as seamless and unobtrusive as possible.
He decided to give his notice in to the Museum, citing .his translations as taking more and more of his time. Then he would be free to travel and conduct Network matters with much less difficulty.
His apartment in Paris would become his home and not just a pied a terre.
He thought about the lovely place he had purchased several of years ago and realized he felt homesick for it. He had a vision in his mind of the sun coming up and touching the trees outside the windows.
Then he had even clearer image of Inge in the big bed, her golden hair across the pillows, her eyes closed in sleep,
"It grows late, Pierre, we need to get some rest too," she said, as if aware of his thoughts.
He nodded and sent the waiter to ring for a taxi. While they waited, they heard a love song being played on a radio somewhere, and Pierre took up the chorus and sang it softly to Inge.
He had a pleasant tenor voice that covered the range of the tune well, and at the song's end she applauded , standing on tip toe to place a kiss on his lips.
The taxi arrived and they drove the short distance to Pierre's apartment.
He looked up at the elegant portico of the building and gave a small sigh of pleasure.
Inge looked out of the cab window and saw a graceful two storey house surrounded by extensive gardens.
"Where are we?' she asked although she didn't really mind where they were provided they were together.
Pierre felt his heart quicken as he sought for an answer to Inge's question.
Finally he thought of what to say.
He stood on the pavement and flung his arm backwards towards the house.
" Home," he said with a catch in his voice. "This is my home now. Do you want to-- that is will you?---" He looked at Inge helplessly as his old habits of shyness and inability to speak threatened him once more.Suddenly he swept her up in his arms ad carried her to the door. The key turned in the lock as if it was yesterday he had been there last and they stood together in the hallway.
Inge wrapped her arms around him and held him close.
"Home?" she said with a query in her voice. "Whose home Pierre?"
"Mine," he said softly into her hair. "and yours too if you wish it."
"Home," she repeated. "Home sweet home."
"Inge", he whispered, "stay with me tonight."
"Yes here. The bed is made and there's breakfast in the refrigerator."
Inge's heart turned over at the thought of waking in the morning after a night in Pierre's arms.
She wound her arms around his neck and offered her lips to his.
"Home." she said in his ear. "Home at last."
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