Lucien sat on the edge of his desk. Jean stood in front of him, sponging blood off a gash above his eye.

"It's disgraceful, Lucien. A man of your standing getting into fight, in a bar no less."

Lucien clenched his jaw. "He made a threat."

"Really? And you're not man enough to ignore an idle threat from some drunk in a bar?"

"He threatened to harm you."

Jean stopped what she was doing and stared at him. Lucien dropped his gaze and looked at the floor. Unconsciously he lifted a hand toward the wound on his head.

"Don't do that," Jean said softly. She reached up and took his hand, bringing it to her lips instead.


Jean cleaned up the last of the dishes as Lucien stood at the kitchen table scanning the headlines of the morning's paper.

"Lucien before I forget, I have a doctor's appointment this morning, lunch may be a little late."

"A doctor's appointment?" Lucien sounded surprised. "I thought I was your doctor."

"No, you're my," Jean gestured in his general direction, "Something else. Dr. King is my doctor. It's just a routine check-up."

"Well, I could handle any tests and do the check-up for you."

"Thank you Lucien but Dr. King has been my doctor for twenty years and I am quite happy with the way things are."

Lucien sounded affronted. "You don't trust my medical knowledge?"

Jean gave him a cold look. "It's not your medical knowledge I don't trust."

With one last pointed look, Jean turned and left the room. Gazing after her, Lucien's eyes fell to admire just how appealing she looked in that fitted skirt as she walked away.

Lucien shouted so she could hear him in the next room, "I see your point!"

Three: An Empty Room

Lucien and Jean sat together in the living room in companionable silence. Lucien sat on the couch thumbing through a newspaper. Jean was in a nearby chair, knitting. After a few minutes, Jean picked up her handiwork and placed it back into her sewing basket.

"I think I'm going to head to bed early. Good night, Lucien."

Absorbed in a story, Lucien barely glanced up. "Good night, Jean."

A few minutes later Lucien rolled his eyes and dropped the newspaper. He had almost forgotten. He had run into one of the ladies in Jean's sewing circle. She had asked him to tell her that the meeting scheduled for tomorrow morning had been cancelled. He needed to tell her before she went to sleep.

Lucien trotted up the stairs to Jean's room. A light was on and the door was ajar. He gave a cursory knock and walked in, but no one was there. He glanced down the hall into the bathroom. It was empty. He stood in the middle of Jean's bedroom, baffled. He called her name, wondering if she was somehow hiding in some corner that he couldn't see but got no response. He wondered how she could have gone to bed and then disappeared. She definitely left the sitting room.

Suddenly, a thought hit him like a bolt of lightning. His eyes grew wide. Then, without a second thought, he turned on his heels and ran towards his bedroom at full speed.