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27.09.2014

Serena and the Knights of St. John (Part 8)

Before Count Manducas was able to answer, his wife turned to Serena again, "That's settled then. We live just a little further down the street. Anybody can show you the way. We'll be expecting you as soon as you're ready. You'll have friends to say goodbye to."

With that, Count and Countess Manducas nodded to the Knight Captain, turned and walked away.

"Hey!" Jerome exclaimed. "That's a piece of luck. The Manducas live not far away from the 'Auberge de Provence' where I stay together with the other Knights from my chamber of the Order. We'll be able to see quite a lot of each other." Jerome stopped and blushed. "If you want to, that is," he added quickly.

Serena didn't have much to settle before leaving the galley but there were a few people to say goodbye to. They all congratulated her on her new job. Apparently, everybody knew and liked the Manducas family.
It was harder than expected to find the Count's house. After all, Birgu was a new place to Serena. Two or three times, she had to stop and ask for directions. At last, she saw the Grandmaster's Palace ahead and hurried up. Suddenly, somebody grabbed her hard by her arm. Serena gave a soft cry and looked at her aggressor. It was Paul.
"Merhaba," he greeted her in Turkish. "Do you have a message for me?"

"Pardon?" Serena asked in the same language.

"Nobody would've survived that explosion they talked about unless they were meant to. I'm the one you're looking for. What's the message? When are they coming?"

"I don't know what you mean?" Serena said, this time in Maltese. "Let go or I'll scream."

Paul did so but nodded in a shrewd way. "I understand, dearest. We'll talk some more later."

And with those strange words, he was gone.
(To be continued)

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