I spent that summer in Paris drinking….not studying!”-- Shannon Rutherford

The house music was pure techno acid. The club was crowded this night, even for a weekend, with euro-hip wannabes, dirty rich princesses spending their inheritances, and ex-patriot punks, looking for the next cheap thrill! Out on the dance floor, Shannon Rutherford’s hair reflected a multitude of colors under the flashing neon strobes. Her dance partner was some dude from Denmark. She didn’t remember his name, if she even knew it in the first place!

“I’m bored!” Shannon said. “Then let’s split!” Denmark dude answered, “go to my place. Its nearby!” “How near?” Shannon asked skeptically. “Just past Percado Street!” Denmark replied. “Too far!” Shannon cried, “my place is closer!” Denmark dude realized he was loosing control of the situation. “Aw, I don’t know,” he said, “hey, I’ve got pepper sticks at my place! 100% pure!” Shannon laughed, “If you want to continue partying tonight, you’ll come with me!”

She left the dance floor and stumbled towards an exit. Denmark followed her out onto the street and into the hot, humid Paris night. Shannon locked her arm around his and together they walked north towards her apartment. They were both still too drunk and still too pre-occupied to notice the black sedan that was slowly following them. As they passed an alleyway, the rear door of the sedan flew open and three thugs, dressed in black, quickly surrounded them! But before she could scream and he could react, Shannon was gagged, drugged, and dragged into the backseat of the waiting sedan, while Denmark was tazered! His plans for a “romantic” evening suddenly dashed!

The sedan peeled away into the night with Shannon in tow! Several hours later, she awoke with a splitting headache. Finding herself on a leather couch, she tried to get up but her legs were still too weak. She looked around to see she was in some type of office. Suddenly, the office door swung open. In walked a tall man with a pock-marked face and deadly intense eyes! “Who are you?!” Shannon angrily asked, “why have you kidnapped me?! You want money?! My father will give you money!! Have you contacted my family?!” Pock-mark crookedly smiled, “Contacted your family?! Of course we have contacted your family! Your family is working with us!” “What??!!” Shannon shockingly replied.

Just then, someone else walked in. Shannon couldn’t see who it was, due to pock-mark blocking her view. Pock turned and addressed the figure. “Here she is, sir!” he said, “if you need me, I’ll be right outside!” Pock then exited the room. Shannon could now see who was standing before her. She gasped! “Boone! What are you doing here?! What in the hell is going on??!!”

“I’ve come for you, Shannon!” Boone replied, “I’ve been instructed to take you back home with me. We’re leaving tonight!” “And who instructed you?!” Shannon sarcastically asked, “your mother?!” “Yes,” Boone replied. “YOUR MOTHER IS A BITCH!!” Shannon screamed, “I’m gonna tell my father what you and her are doing to me!” “Your father is also in on this,” Boone said, “and he’s not very happy with you either!” “I don’t know what you're talking about,” Shannon replied, looking away.

“Of course you know, Shannon,” Boone said, “we all know! You’ve been spending money right and left over here! You haven’t attended any of your classes in at least a month! You’re out every night conning guys into thinking you like them, just to get dinners, drinks, money, and lavish gifts!” “So you hired some goons to follow me and snatch me away?” Shannon angrily asked. “No,” Boone answered, “we didn’t hire anybody. These “goons”, as you call them, are private detectives hired by someone else to track you down. They contacted us trying to locate you and told us what you were up to.” “Then who did hire them?” Shannon asked. “Why Shannon, don’t you know?!” Boone asked, “it was your husband!” Shannon, once again, looked away. “You remember him, don’t you?’ Boone said, “the older gentleman you married in London a month ago? The one you ditched during your honeymoon?! The one your father and my mother made a deal with to keep him from pressing charges and putting you in jail!” “So what is the deal?” Shannon softly asked. Boone turned back, opened the door, and a thin, older man, in a gray suit entered carrying some papers.

“The deal is,” Boone explained, “that I fly here to Paris to take you back home. But first, you sign these papers annulling your sham of a marriage.” Shannon laughed, “I’ll contact the American embassy! Report I’ve been forced against my will! That I was kidnapped! Then you all will be the ones in trouble!” “I hardly think so, Shannon,” Boone replied, “my mother went to school with the American ambassador! If you report any of this to any authorities, your husband will proceed to press charges and you will be convicted as the con woman you are and spend the next 20 to 30 years in a French jail! So you will sign these documents and you will leave with me tonight!”

Shannon sighed, as she signed. The man left with the documents. “What’s wrong, Boone?” Shannon flirtatiously asked, “didn’t I sleep with you enough over the years?” “Shut up, Shannon!” Boone irritatingly replied. “You know, Boone,” Shannon said, as they exited the office, “when I turn 21 my trust fund will kick in. When that happens, I’ll never need anything from anyone ever again!” “Yeah, sure Shannon,” Boone wearily replied, “you’ll never need anyone again!” The End. Next Story: “Down in Swan Station”

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