William Doonan

I write books and stories.

The Mummies of Blogspace9: Chapter Thirty-Five

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July 22, 2011
Madrid, Spain
Samples http://www.greatbigLeon.blogspace9.ex

Just landed in Madrid, Bruce, my brother.  Hang tight.  I’ll be in Seville in three hours.   I know how to find you.

Let’s be clear about something.  All I want is Kim.  I’m coming for her.  And hey, the flight was nice.  But I didn’t fly first class.  I traded in that ticket for two coach flights.  I brought a friend.  You’re going to like him.

July 22, 2011
Seville, Spain
Hanson http://www.historyismine.blogspace9.ex

Mass was ending at the cathedral, so it was easy for me to slip into the crowd.  We had exchanged clothes, Cuellar and I, and I smelled like a urine-soaked corpse.  I got a few evil looks from good Catholics, but that’s all.  I don’t think anyone recognized me.

I recognized Laney instantly.  I knelt at a pew and bowed my head in some semblance of prayer, but I couldn’t take my eyes off her.  She was standing in front of that giant sarcophagus, the magnificent tomb of Christopher Columbus.  Even now, some pilot light of love refuses to be extinguished.  What can I say?  I miss her.

She frowned when Cuellar approached, but she left with him, followed semi-discreetly by three guys who looked like cops.

I’m not sure why I trusted Vasco Cuellar.  He was almost certainly insane, not without reason.  But I knew he would do as I requested, and lead Lane around the city until he was sure they weren’t followed.  Then he’d take her to Corte Ingles, the  department store, and buy her a change of clothes.  She’d change in front of him so he’d be sure she didn’t have any wires or tracking devices.  Sorry for that, Laney, but there was no other way.

I was my usual table behind the bar at Duplex, the bistro next to my apartment.  I drank two beers and ate three plates of tapas, and I was starting in on a plate of cheese croquets when she arrived.  Cuellar told her where to find me.

“I don’t know if I like you with a ponytail,” she said.  “Is that even your hair?”

“Some of it.”  I kissed her on the cheek.  “Sorry for the run-around, but I had to make sure that your goons weren’t going to be joining us.  I like your tracksuit.”

She sat, and I ordered her a glass of wine.  “You look good, Laney.  Just there, you coming in through the door, it reminded me of that party in New Haven when we met.  A girl like you going for a guy like me, it seemed too good to be true.”

“What’s her name?”

“Excuse me?”

“The girl, what’s her name?  I have a right to know, even after all this.  Cheating is the worst.”

I shook my head.  “No, it’s not.  But for what it’s worth, her name is Naya.”

“A one time thing, or is this still going on.”

I looked down.  Despite everything, I felt guilty.  “It’s still going on.”

“I see.”

“My turn.  So this was all a big set-up from the start?”

“Yes.”

“You and Cyrus needed me on the project, so you screwed me and screwed with my head and brought me onboard because I was the best historical researcher currently working on sixteenth-century Peru.  I was your best chance of finding the gold.”

“That’s right.”

“To old times,” I said, when her wine came.  We toasted.  “What’s in it for you?  What did the good Grand Inquisitor/Sopay offer you in return?”

She ate one of my cheese croquettes.  “You know, the kind of things that are hard to refuse; eternity and great wealth.  I grew up poor, Bruce.”  She reached for my hand.  “I was always going to tell you.  We could still finish this together.”

“Right.  So it started out as a scam, but then you grew to love me.”

She drank more of her wine.  “No, Bruce, I never grew to love you.  There’s nothing that appealing about you.  And I can honestly say that I tried.”

I didn’t know what to say.

“So no, we can’t still be together.  Besides, you cheated on me.”

“I did.  And it was really great.”

“But we can still finish this together.  You know where that gold is.  Tell me.  Give me the book.  I get what I want, and you get a pile of money.  Then go do whatever thing you want.”

“And if I say no, you hunt me for eternity, call your cop buddies, all of whom work for that Sopay.”

“Something like that.”  She motioned to the bar girl for more wine. “Bruce, honestly, I am fond of you.  And I would like to see you live through the night, but that’s not going to be possible unless you do as I say.  You have no idea what my friends are capable of.”

“I have friends too, Laney.”

“I know.  Sacromonte has been good to you, but he’ll be dead before morning.  And Cuellar, well aside from being dead, is a barely-sentient creepy troll.  And that was just mean having me undress in front of him.  He was actually drooling.  It was disgusting.”

“You misjudged me,” I said.

She shook her head.  “I don’t think so.  Half the men in this bar are giving me the eye, and each one of them is thinking the same thing – what is she doing with that loser.  So when I get up in thirty seconds and give one of them a great big kiss, and ask to borrow his phone, he’s going to smile.  And Bruce, if I make that call, you’re going to die.  So be smart.”

A girl came over with her wine, my girl.  She was lovely, I can’t even begin to describe just how lovely.

“I’d like you to meet Naya,” I told Laney.  “I’ve told her a lot about you.”

Laney looked confused.  That confusion turned to horror when Naya grabbed hold of her wrist.

“I told her that you had exceptionally good taste, but she said she’d have to find out for herself.  Goodbye, Laney.”

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Written by williamdoonan

July 14, 2012 at 6:13 pm

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