Chapter 12



“We should move quickly,” said Cameron.  He led Marie and Nicole into the parking lot behind La Sirène Bleue.  “We can go back to the hotel and plan our next steps from there.”

From a tall pole, two halide lamps rained down on the almost vacant lot.  Cameron peered into the far shadowy corners.  He saw no signs of life.  If the three young men were waiting for them, they were on the main street in front of the club.

“This way,” said Cameron.  He lifted his hand toward the side street that ran along parking lot.  “We can circle around the block.”

The three passed the few cars in the rear of the parking lot and were stepping onto the sidewalk when a concussion lifted them into the air and thrust them forward.  For a split second, thunder surrounded them and then silence.  Bright yellow light flooded the dark side street.  Cameron scrambled to find and shield the two bodies on the curb.  Nicole squeezed her head between her hands, her eyes pinched closed.  Marie was yelling something at Nicole that Cameron could not immediately make out.  A ringing came into his ears and he began to hear Marie’s pleas, at first muted then, as quickly as sound had escaped him, he could here what she was yelling, “Nicole!  Are you ok?  Are you ok?”

Cameron brought himself up to his knees and ran his eyes across each of the women, head to toe.  They were ok.  The corner of the building had shielded them from the worst of the blast.

Marie wrapped her arms around Nicole.  “Nicole, ouvrez vos yeux, ouvrez vos yeux!  Open your eyes, let me see you!”

Nicole did open her eyes, leaving her hands on the sides of her head.  “What happened?” asked Nicole, “Everything was so loud, then no sound.”

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