Love and Other Murders

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Chapter 45

She gets off the Euro Star at the Gare du Nord as ugly as a train station usually is. Nothing is perfect. This is Paris as well. Dragging her luggage and carry-all after her like stubborn poodles she feels as low as any other girl without a helping hand. The London-Paris journey was uneventful without a single man to chat her up and fall victim to her charms. To beat it she must find a plausible explanation for having missed the train and to endure a coexistence with her roommate. Even if she has no reason to hurry Magda decides against the indecorous public transport and hails a taxi in front of the station. So what? She has the right to spend her money as she likes! She opens the purse and counts her loot, more than enough to stay at a posh hotel and see what fate has in stake for her. Then she decided against it. There is Norton; there is Polland and Alex owes her for her London job. She steps out from the cab in front of her temporary home and, realizing there is no need to be rash and precipitate things, bounces the luggage up the ancient staircase. She unlocks the entrance door readying for attack, the best defense not only for a Klausewitz but also for a fair maiden like her.

“Anybody home?” She stops strategically by the entrance.

Getting no answer she advances to her room feeling let down by the lack of interest for the reason of her defection. Does she count so little? Was to get the compromising photos sacrificing her safety and having sex with an unattractive man all Alex needed her for?

She takes her cell phone out from the handbag and dials Elijah’s number.

“Hold on, Magda!”

Seething with rage she bangs the lid down. How dare he treat her like that, that moron, that underachiever, that despicable frog! He isn’t even interested why she stood him up! The persistent ringing of the phone incites her to take the call. Alex, sparing of words, makes a date with her in half an hour and signs off without awaiting her answer.

What now? Plagued with a nagging suspicion that the world may not be her oyster she opens the drinks cabinet and takes a big gulp of whiskey straight from the bottle. Why isn’t Polland looking for her desperately, calling her the very moment they got apart, unable to stay another minute without her? How is it possible he didn’t give her his business card but just a number of his cell phone scribbled on a piece of paper? She knows it is not strategic to call him first. Yet there are moments when a girl has to forget her pride. Though, wouldn’t it be in her best interest to contact Norton? But not before elaborating her strategy. Will she let her mother die and become an inconsolable orphan or keep her alive to use her declining health for her future departures? The ringing of the phone cuts into her guesswork.

“Magda, at last I am free to call you!” Polland’s voice is choking with emotion.

“How was the journey? Have you rebuked the men competing for your favors? It won’t take long to finish my research, be rich enough to give you the impossible and…”

The phone goes crash upon the carpet stamped down by Vincent’s feet.

“You fool! Weren’t you supposed to procure us with some hot photos and disappear without leaving trace? What else have you told him, Magda? Does he know where you live?”

“Calm down, Vince! Of course I haven’t told him a thing! But I thought it cool to give him my cell phone number not to make him suspicious of a foul play. Naughty boy! Aren’t you forgetting something? Like a welcome kiss?”

Clinging to him fiercely she presses her lips against his in an outbreak of passion. Meeting with a low resistance Magda is backing him towards the bed not neglecting to get out from her designer garb before he had ripped it off her. Nibbling at his earlobe after a grand finale she doesn’t give a fig about Polland.

“You look like the cat that swallowed the canary, my little Magda! Evidently the obese researcher has got some hidden extras! ” He squeezes her bottom, his jealousy blazing white.

“You hurt me, Vince! Stop it immediately, naughty boy!”

She smacks Vincent’s fingers mauling her nipples in a fierce attack of love-hate, slips down from him and curls against his back.

“That was a great fuck, Magda! Good to send you often on a job!” He pushes her off, gathers his clothes, disappears in the bathroom for a quick shower, and comes back fully dressed.

“Won’t you give me a good-bye kiss and a little word of thanks, Vince?”

“Why not, if it makes you happy!” He brushes her nipple with his tongue and, suppressing his urge to go further decides to honor his duty.

“As much as I hate to leave you, Magda, there is no other way. Elijah unearthed a new recruit, a Siberian gem brought to Paris by a model agency. She was targeted for the Japanese market, but the Japs found her not only too old in her sweet fifteen but also too tall for their ‘Hallo, Kitty’ trade mark. Alex asked me to test her and see if she will be good for us. Before he fell for Nathalie we used to do it together. Now it’s completely on me as he doubts Elijah’s competency. In case she satisfies me you’ll meet her to get her into the stride and iron out any teething problems. As I see, having sex with you was doing you a favor. You were starved to death after Polland’s diet. See you, honey pie. I’ll keep in touch. Do think about me and beware!” He says sententiously and bangs the door before she can scratch his eyes out.

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