"Fall asleep..." she echoed, watching him quite like she might have watched a bug crawling on the wall, "Leslie Ida that is the dumbest story I've ever heard, that is so dumb it would have taken an...an Irishman to make it up!"
Duke made an obvious whimper of indignation as he pawed at the ground lightly. The hound's involvement in the conversation was simply because of the fact that he had been ignored for more than sixty seconds at one time. Leslie patted him on the side of the head, but maintained eye contact with the cook that stood directly in front of him with an intense look in her eye.
"Look who's talking," she said wiping at a tear with the back of her hand as she was shaken by another semi-hysterical giggle, "here you are comin' up in the world and you've not got any shoes. What's in your head, Lez?"
"Oh, you know me, Molly. Just going through life by the seat of my pants."
As his old friend went through to recount what happened in the time after his departure from Boston, something suddenly came to mind. While he was so preoccupied with figuring out his own life after stepping off the train, he never considered what happened to the Pitters. It wasn't like he could have included When her tears began to flow, Leslie could feel himself growing red as the awkward moment could very well be seen by the rest of the crew.
They were only an hour into the flight and he already looked like he was bullying the chef to tears.
"At least you're not dead and I guess that's not nothin'."
A chuckle finally escaped Leslie. His gaze passed across the room and we was sure that he wanted to spend the rest of the night going over every minute of each other's lives that they had missed. Events that he had never thought to put down on paper and simply send to the last address that he knew she had- for all he knew, her parents were still tending to the same apartment he climbed the fire escape of so many years ago.
"Listen, Moll," The Lieutenant started, clearing his throat slightly. "My shift to navigate for the night's about to start- we should be getting to Giza tomorrow and I don't want anything to get us off track. Maybe after you get breakfast done for this little army in the morning we could go to the observation deck and talk. I'm sure a lot's happened to both of us that we could find out for hours."
Leslie extended his hand, which barely brushed against Molly's wrist. He wasn't sure if it would be crossing boundaries after all these years and he sure as hell still wasn't sure if she was going to clock him in the jaw. "I'm sorry, Peach Pitt. Really."
With that, he exited the common room and headed to the front of the ship; Duke trotting lazily at his side.
Far away from the crew floating aboard the Exodus, along the west bank of the Nile river, there was a rather large tent with two men sitting inside. The state of well-being between these two men were vastly different. The first sat at a wooden table for one with a silver dish piled high with delicious, exotic food. Silver, steaming clouds extended to the canvas ceiling, making a division down the center of the room. The other man was tied to the opposite chair whimpering with his head rolling back and forth on his shoulders in pain.
The first man was Nikkos Flauros, who took no notice of the man sitting in pain across from him. Instead, the only noise was the sound he made picking at the food with his grubby, bandaged covered fingers, eating it unceremoniously like a ravenous animal. His hair was long, unkempt and covered in dried mud with a beard to match. Even slouched over a meal, the man was imposing and had seen his fair share of fights in the past.
"I've learned much from you today. At first, you thought my questions were ignorant, with the threats of physical harm as empty as the urn sitting in front of you." Nikkos broke the silence in the voice so low and gravely that it was fitting for the personification of a mountain. "But I believe once we extracted the first tooth, you began to understand the dire importance of what I have to ask you."
Nikkos took a sip of wine and threw the half-full cup across the room as if it didn't matter. It was sour anyway. He stood and for the first time, Nik was visible as a massive man well over six feet tall. There was a moment of silence, which was broken by the second man's muffled plea for mercy in slurred Arabic.
"I don't think you remember the question, so should we review the information so far?" Nik crossed the wide tent to a small wooden tool box, only to continue to speak as he rifled through the supplies. "Your name is Abi. You live outside Giza with your wife and three children. An American contacted you to supply a landing strip for his crew in the next few days. Fortunately, it only took two broken fingers for you to let me in on the time of arrival."
Abi shouted for help from anyone outside the tent, which he had attempted multiple times that evening with no help to arrive as of yet. Nikkos crossed the room and stood behind the wounded man's chair before stooping down to be level with the hands that were tied roughly behind the wooden seat. Abi whimpered and kicked his feet as Nikkos clamped a pair of pliers to the thumb of his left hand. It was obvious what was coming.
No warning. No hesitation. No mercy. With a quick, forceful tug of the pliers, Abi's thumb was relieved of its fingernail as his screams bled into the night. Nikkos did the same to three more fingernails before hesitating to step in front of the man he had been torturing for hours.
"The location. Give it to me." He said in a low growl, pulling some hair aside only to place a streak of blood across his cheek. "No amount of money for grain that Belaford gave you is worth your life."
Abi trembled in the chair; as white as a ghost and only seconds from fainting from shock. Although his lips were moving, Nikkos couldn't hear the words that were escaping his lips. He leaned forward, a grim smile spreading across his face as information flowed like water from the tap. He needed to know every move of the Belaford's treasure hunting crew if this hunt was going to go as smoothly as possible. Unfortunately for the Exodus, Nikkos Flauros was one step closer to his goal...