Breaking the Line

We hugged the bus' tail the remaining miles to the International Terminal.

“If there is anything I can ever do for you...” I said.

“You have my card,” she said, flashing a smile that ill concealed the nerves behind it.

As the bus eased to a stop she edged around the left side.  Then I faced the chilly swimming pool moment; hesitation was my enemy, resolution my ally.  So when we were even with the nose I  resolutely slipped out of the car and took five long steps around the front to mingled with the exiting passengers.  I fought the urge to glance at Teresa driving off.  I was out of the illusory safety of her car, my little life boat, and back into potentially shark infested water.

Keeping within the center of the pack I entered the terminal.  My plan was simple: buy a ticket and get through security.  Once past the metal detectors I should be home free, so to speak.  Or so I hoped.

I tried not to peer about me anxiously, but I'm sure I appeared at least a trifle fretful.  And I had reason to be so once I reached the counter.  Purchasing a ticket under the suspicious eye of the deliberately slow and methodical ticketing agent gradually deprived me of my covering herd.  It seems that departing the country without luggage is an unusual activity and these days an unusual passenger is subject to scrutiny.  Fair enough, but couldn't the scrutiny wait until I'd reached the metal detector with its attendant armed guards nearby to deter my presumed assassin?





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