Part I - Ascending
Brittany jumped as wind howled throughout the house again. A small whistle emitted from its point of entry, but the sound dissipated as quickly as the rushing air. A second gust outside slammed the beaten shutters into the window frame.
“Is it raining yet?” Charlene asked.
“No, it doesn’t rain – they’re just wind storms.” Paul answered.
“And this place is known for them?” Janie asked placing a hand on the small of Paul’s back.
“Quite. The guide book says it helped them in a few wars.”
“What war did we fight in Arles?” Brittany asked.
Paul took a deep breath. Alan’s taste in women had not improved much with age. “We did not fight the wars – the French did. And the wars to which they are referring are the Roman battles, I believe. “
Brittany looked at Paul blankly for a moment. Then she lifted her empty wine glass in Alan’s direction and shook it at him.
“Coming, darling.” Alan said in a mock falsetto, selecting one of the many open bottles.
Another flurry tore past the windows as a mysterious wafting intruder whipped around the interior.
“Seriously, why can’t we find where that’s coming from?” Thomas asked walking the periphery of the room again.