Popular Spy Videos
If we leave London first thing tomorrow, Paris is the first place we can get to. We can be there by lunchtime."
That was how Gabe now found himself on board a train speeding beneath the English Channel, heading for Paris and more mysteries locked in classical works of art. He had not managed to get much sleep the night before, returning late to his flat and having to pack up a case for this morning's trip and then get up before sunrise to get to the station. He felt tired and a little grumpy and the pain in his head from being knocked out the day before was still feeling pretty sore.
"You know this mystery is thousands of years old," he complained, "I'm sure it could have waited a few more hours to be solved. Then we could have actually got a little sleep."
"Not been getting your beauty sleep, pretty boy?" Saphy teased, "That wouldn't please your vain goddess."
"Hmph," Gabe made a sulky noise, "My goddess? You're the one with her symbol inked into your skin."
"OK, OK," Saphy laughed, "That reminds me, I picked up a little something in the library you might like."
She opened her bag and pulled out a book. Gabe's heart skipped a beat as he took in the faded and torn cover, the golden haired goddess rising from the sea. It was Love's Children. His own copy had been lost years ago, when he was still a child. For a couple of years he had looked for the book whenever in a book shop but with little luck. After a while he had just given up and started to forget about it, right up until the events of the past week had thrown Venus and the legend of Hermaphroditus violently back into his thoughts. And now he had found it again, the book that had meant so much to him, now he could hold it in his hands, turn the pages and read the story he had once known by heart.
"Oh, thank you," Gabe said excitedly, genuinely thrilled to have the book in his possession once more, "This is amazing."
"It's just a book," Saphy responded, offhand, "And not a very popular one at that."
"That's what makes it so special," Gabe replied, "It's the best present I've had in years."
"Which is kind of tragic, when you put it like that," she said, "You've not had anything better than an ageing library book in all that time?"
"If it's a library book, won't somebody mind that you're taking it away?" he asked.
"It's sort of on a permanent loan."
"You mean you stole it?" he said, slightly aghast.
"I prefer to think of it as liberating the book, redistributing it where it will be better appreciated," she said, pouting a little like a sulky child, "Look, I thought you were pleased, but if you don't want to be accepting stolen goods I'll just have it back."
She snatched the book back off him, causing the flimsy cover to rip a little further. He blushed red with either embarrassment or irritation, it was hard to tell, and grabbed it back from her.
"No, I'll keep it," he said decisively, but the moment between them was gone, her touching gesture of finding the book that meant more to him than she really knew, and his genuine gratitude was buried beneath his shyness and her prickly temperament.
They sat there alongside each other, staring blankly forwards at the seatbacks in front of them as the darkness of the tunnel flashed by outside the window.