A Scene from The Kingsford Gallery
Continuing from the story of Jon Seaborn and Sophia Collins from the novella in progress with the working title: “A Postcard from Chamonix”. They are in Paris and always a chase. This follows the two scenes I posted on this blog: The Near Escape
and A Scene on the train which introduces the Drunkard Conductor on the train to Paris. The characters come to life and I have an encounter with them in a cafe bookstore: The Most Peculiar Cafe.
Before the two discover the mysterious Kingston Gallery, our main characters, Jon Seaborn and Sophia Collins, narrowly escape Jack Crawford’s gun slinging bullets. The couple slip out of a top floor window down a fire escape onto an alley and run through the Parisian streets. As they make it to a crowded market, they slow the pace down to a brisk walk. It is there they discover “The Kingsford Gallery”.
Through the adventure and mystery of the Kingsford gallery, a futuristic 5G self driving car is introduced to the story. Equipped with a navigational screen with GPS on the windshield. And just in the knick of time. The two characters have found a mind-blowing means to a quick get away from the dastardly demise.
The Kingsford Gallery
Jon keeps looking over his shoulder as he and Sophia continue through the crowd on the street. Jon is being protective of Sophia and is making sure they have truly escaped the likes of Jack Crawford. Jon finally takes a pause and looks over at Sophia and says to her,
“I think we got away. I don’t see anyone anymore.”
“Thank God!” Sophia says as she takes a deep breath. “Look over there to the right. At that Gallery. The Kingsford Gallery.” She whispers to herself.
She looks at the package and hastily written in pencil, it reads, Kingsford Gal.
“Look Jon! Look what’s written on it! Now I know what this means!”
Jon takes a long look at it, raises his eyebrows and says “Let’s go in!. There’s something to this gallery and this damn package.” He slips the package into his leather satchel [Fag Bag].
The couple walk in the Gallery. As the door opens a bell rings as to announce the arrival of each guest. They slowly walk in and start exploring right away. A man appears from behind a desk. A short, stout, older man with a salt and pepper moustache and goatee. To get the couples attention he delivers a greeting with his loud boisterous voice, “Hello there! And Welcome to the Kingsford Gallery”
They both swiftly turn and see this nice man with his arms out wide and a smile that went up his cheeks.
“Well Hello there back” Sophia says. She then inquisitively asks, “Do you own this lovely gallery? I’m fascinated already” And she continues to look around.
“Yes, I am the owner, Louis Paul Raphael is my name, and before me, my father was the owner and before him my grandfather was the owner. Ho Ha ha ha!” As he proudly laughs and pats his belly. “This gallery was opened just before World War II. And they knew that a war was about to break so they built it with a few special characteristics”
Louis invites the couple for a tour of the gallery. They went from room to room as Louis delivers the historical value and sentiment of each painting, each sculpture and each rare antique. He describes how the gallery was built with hidden rooms and during World War II the gallery was used as a safe house for the French Resistance and used to store smuggled weapons which as history states, would help liberate Paris.
Klaus Appears Again, Drunk!
The three are interrupted from discussion as the bell rings and they realize someone has entered the gallery front door. Jon peaks through the doorway and notices “it’s Kalus, the drunkard train conductor” also friends with Jack Crawford, Jon does a double take as Klaus is sloppily in disguise of what looks like “Napoleon Bonaparte?” Jon leans back and whispers to Sophia that Klaus has showed up in a strange disguise and has probably been following them. She becomes a little nervous and giggles when she sees the silly disguise and trying to steady himself by the desk. She quickly composes herself and warns Louis of the possible danger. She tells Louis of the package they are carrying. She asks him if he would hold it for her. She promises to compensate him and will tell him everything later.
Before he could answer, Louis reaches for a book on a shelf, pulls it out and suddenly there is a loud yell and bang to the ground. It was a trap door! Klaus fell about a half story below and it looks as though his beloved bottle of whiskey has perished in the fall. He is now trapped below the floor without any whiskey. Louis agrees to hold the package and the couple quickly make a dash for the door.
Paradise by the dashboard lights! Not exactly paradise.
On the run again, Jon and Sophia are making their way down the crowded street. A car pulls up alongside and the window rolls down.
The driver yells out, “get in! Do you want my help or what? Now get in!”
Jon looks in the car and sees it’s Victor, the Mariachi player from Spain. They met in London, the same night Jon met Sophia. Victor stops the car and they get in. Sophia climbs in back and Jon is up front with Victor and they take off. Jon looks around the car and asks “What the hec kind of car is this?”
Sophia looks out the back window and frantically screams, “it’s Jack Crawford! He’s behind us on a motorcycle and he’s catching up!” Jon looks and then yells to Victor, “hit the gas, Crawford is catching up!” Victor slams his foot down on the gas. The car makes a putt, a plop and a bang. It then makes a jerky back and forth move. As the three rattle in the car, Jon yells to Victor, “What’s going on with this car?!” Victor tells Jon to relax. “This car is different. Hold on let me show you.”
He then hits a switch on the dashboard. A lady’s voice is heard “5G is now engaged” The car jolts forward, their heads hit the seats and now racing through the Paris streets. Crawford fades back as the car is now moving at high speeds. The windshield becomes a GPS chart. They are heading down the street right for a bridge that is closed and barricaded. Faster and faster they go and heading straight towards the barricade.
Jon yells at Victor, “Stop! You’re going to get us killed!” Jon closes his eyes and braces. At that very moment the car lifts up off the ground into the air and they begin to hover over the city.
Jon looks at Victor and the two men begin to laugh. Sophia looks back and down and watches as Crawford crashes into the bridge barricade. As Jon is laughing, he turns on the radio and Meatloaf comes on singing “Paradise by the Dashboard Lights”! Once again they escape from Crawford.