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“Oh, Henri! I thought you had no idea! Of course I’ll go to New York with you!” And with that the two embraced and shared a deep, lingering kiss that only hinted at the secret passion that had been burning in each of them for so long.
When they finally broke their lip-lock long enough to breathe, Emma exclaimed “I just need to notify my parole officer and grab a few things and we can leave right away!”
“Emma, I’m so happy right now and I know we’ll be so…what was that, mon cheri? Parole Officer?” Henri’s confusion was evident as he tried to decide if he had heard correctly. Emma had already grabbed his hand, though, and quickly pulled him running out the door and the two were on their way.
Emma lived just a few blocks from the store and Henri eventually got her to slow down to a walk long enough to explain the reasons and conditions of her parole. “I did two years in the clink for human slave trafficking out of the Phillipines. I really don’t know what the big deal was. It’s not like we didn’t feed the people and we only beat them when they tried to make noise from the ship’s hold during Coast Guard inspections. I’m supposed to tell my PO if I’m leaving the county, but that stuff’s such a drag. Let’s just go right now and disappear into the big city!”
“Emma,” Henri gasped, trying to catch his breath, “I had no idea you were a slave trader and convicted felon!” Realizing he did not know Emma as well as he thought he did, he nervously stammered, “Um, I just remembered my mother is sick and I should probably go see her in Montreal and, really, this is not a good time for me to go to New York. And everyone knows that Quebecois are horrible dancers anyway.”
Emma’s eyes suddenly took on a look of controlled fury and she stopped Henri as he began to turn around. “Henri,” she said, grabbing a fistful of his pressed buttoned-up white shirt, “I don’t like it when people go back on their promises.” With her free hand, she spiked the unopened package of orange Hostess cupcakes into the sidewalk. “Are you changing your mind, Henri? I’d hate to think what I might do with my collections of vintage but operational belt sanders and antique cheese graters if I got angry, Henri.”
With that, Emma’s hand that had formerly been occupied by the cupcakes shot out with vicious precision and grabbed Henri by the crotch with sufficient force to cause one lone tear to immediately collect in the corner of Henri’s left eye.
“Well, Henri? You said you love me. Are we going to New York?”
Through the pain and fear, a barely audible answer squeaked from between Henri’s lips: “Yes, my dear.”
Just then, a Greyhound bus bound for New York pulled up to the curb and swung open its door.
If you think Henri should turn and run for his life, click here.
If you think Henri should follow the hand that's pulling him by the crotch onto the bus, click here.