This just gave me an idea………

She slipped down the steps from Metro Bir-Hakeim, and followed him under the shadowy arches along the Quai de Grenelle. She did not let her gaze slip for a moment. He stopped at the beginning of the steps.

His emormous tartan shorts flapped round his equally enormous knees, fighting with the even more furious tartan of his short sleeved shirt. The energetic breeze whipping along the Seine buffeted his pudgy arms, and jiggled the entire contents of a small camera store that were slung around his pink, yet non-existent neck. His wife struggled up the steps behind him. Possibly even larger, she was determined to make her mark in clinging cerise shorts, and what may have purported to be an orange boob tube, but in reality would have clothed several people several times over. These clashed perilously with her puce cheeks, and the lime-green plastic earrings.

"Not very big, Loubelle. Ain't what I thought at all. We got bigger water towers in Texas."
"Elmer, it ain't supposed to be big. It's supposed to be old, and full o' culture."
"Loubelle, old it is, look at it, ain't nothing but a pile of rust."

Maelle kept well back behind the shaddow of the latticed column, observing them carefully. As they edged towards the lift, she camouflaged herself in and amongst the flow of people. She slipped between the crowd like a black mist, slim, wraithlike, almost transparent.

As Loubelle and Elmer reached the next column, and the queue for the lift, Maelle was there again, listening, watching, waiting. She rather wished she wasn't. These people would have done well to keep their opinions to themselves.

"What makes it culture then, Loubelle? Just some pile of rusty girders made by some French guy with some fancy name and some fancy ideas. What kind of a name is Eyefell anyhow?"
"Because it's French. Because it's in Paris. That makes it art. The French do art."
"Do art? I ain't seen nothin' but junk since I been here. I told you we should have gone to Florida. Least we would've had fun and no junk."

As she listened from her hideaway, Maelle became more and more repulsed. Did these people have no idea of what they were like. She began to feel less and less for them, their humanity was lost under a morass of animality. They stood there, side by side like two fat pink pigs in a pen, supine, porcine. Even their voices had the quality of oinking inanities. She just needed to wait her time. They were careless.

"When's this darn lift gonna get down here, Lou? We ain't got all day, y'know."
"Elmer, this is a holiday. You ain't at the feed store now. It'll come when it comes."
"If it ain't here in two darn minutes, I'm gonna go back to that hotel and have me a burger. This French muck don't agree with my insides."

Maelle began to edge closer. Any moment now, the lift attendants would begin to announce the last trips of the day. The sky above the Seine was now pale on the horizon, and darkening blue above. She began to feel the pangs, they were getting ever stronger, convulsing her frail body with their inner movement. Soon, it had to be soon.

"Well, finally, I was getting to think they were on strike."
"Just five minutes more, honey, and I'll get you the biggest burger you ever saw."

Loubelle and Elmer were now almost at the front of the queue. Maelle slid forward imperceptibly, until she was standing just behind them. She could smell them now, their corn-fed scent. The hunger was becoming overwhelming. She needed to make it happen and now.

The lift attendant was stopping Loubelle and Elmer now.
"No, I regret Monsieur, we have too many persons on this lift. I will come back for you"

The lift moved onwards and upwards as Maelle stifled a smile.

"Darn French. Was he sayin' I was too big for his damn tiny French lift?"
"No Elmer honey, you're lovely just the way you are. I don't like no scrawny guys."

As Maelle watched the vast and rippling mass of Loubelle's cerise-encased behind and wobbling thighs, balanced precariously on her pin-like silver heels, and reflected that Elmer probably didn't like 'scrawny girls' either. The prey was getting closer. All to do now was watch and wait.

The lift came sliding down the inside of the column. It juddered to a noisy halt and opened to admit Elmer and Loubelle. Maelle noiselessly slid in behind them. With their vast bulk filling the tiny cabin, she was invisible to the lift attendant. It was all becoming almost unbearabale for her, unless the lift moved soon, it would be too late, the game would be over for her.

The ride to the top seemed like eternity for Maelle, edging, edging ever higher and nearer her goal. The little capsule appeared to have gone into slow motion as it inched up the inside of the curved column. The moon was slowly emerging, and Maelle could feel it all beginning. the sensation was shooting along her spine, down to the tips of her fingers, to the very tips of her toes. In a moment it would be too late, too obvious, too dangerous.

"Loubelle honey, this darn lift ain't strong enough to carry a kitten. How much longer it gonna take?"
"Elmer, you just be patient."

Patient, patient, thought Maelle, trying desparately to control herself. The clunk of the lift told her that they had finally arrived at the summit. She looked around, more anxious by the second. It was deserted. The clunk of lift doors told her that the other was on its way down, and they were alone. Perfect.

Maelle's head shot back as the moon emerged full and bright from behind the cloud. She felt the rush as her very bones shifted within her body. She felt the claws tear through her flesh, sleek, powerful. The teeth were pushing forward, long, sharp, deadly. Her clothes lay on the floor, she no longer had need for them with the rough grey fur that clothed her from head to toe.Her breathing was deep, and her body shook in a final juddering arc as she took her final vulpine form. She was ready.

Stealthily now, she padded delicately on vicious velvet paws, closer, closer. The urge was getting pleasurably stronger and stronger. Now she could smell Elmer and Loubelle and they were irresistable. Irresistable in that they had absolutely no idea what what was about to happen to them.

She paced round the central cupola, nearer, nearer. They were leaning on the balustrade.
She pounced, feeling the rush that always came with the thrill of the kill, slicing, slashing, frenzied now. She was a whirlwind of teeth, claws, and fury. The blood flew as the screams rang out over the still dark waters of the Seine, for there was no-one there to hear them. Then there was silence.

Jacques Chirac stared lamely across his croissant at Bernadette. After what he had just heard he no longer had the heart to eat it. First the Mairie de Paris on the telephone, informing him of an outrage at the Eiffel Tower. Someone had reported seeing two large pink balloons attached to the radio mast at the top, from an early morning train on Line 6 .

The cleaners had however found something rather more gruesome. The completely savaged and hoisted bodies of Mr and Mrs Elmer Hackensack, of Waco,Texas, U.S.A. They had been hauled up like animal carcasses from the abbatoir for all the world to see. Then the call from the CIA, regarding possible Al-Quaeda involvement in the outrage. Then an hour with George Bush, who had taken this as personally as if Jacques and Bernadette had spent the night arranging it for his personal displeasure. As if nightly car-burning and riots weren't enough for a man to cope with. Now some idiot had even reported that there were wol paw-prints at the cene. Whatever next? He left the room as he slowly felt even his coffee ride up his throat.

The next morning as she sipped her coffee in the Cafe Bir-Hakeim, Maelle read the scandalous headlines on the front of Liberation. Le Monde was similarly outraged, though with a slightly different political argument. There were conspiracy-theory links playing on TF1 to the most tenuous of organisations. People had even tried to link them to the riots in the suburbs. The Quai de Grenelle was closed from the Rue du Docteur Finlay, by the Cafe Bir-Hakeim through to the Pont de l'Iena. There was standstill on the other side of the river, and the police had taken over the Trocadero as emergency headquarters.

Maelle had a healthy appetite. The more she had to eat, the better, and unlike most of her kind, she liked a varied diet. Her latest decision had been to sample international cuisine. With her special gifts, no need for tedious cookbooks either. Just grab yourself a human take-away. What better place than Paris for this? Here you could find hors d'oeuvres of any taste- or colour, or nationality. The tourist capital of the world.

Maelle smiled at the enormous young German stuffing andouilette after andouilette at the bar. His belt would have been large enough to encircle a shire horse, yet it struggled to hold his sail-like trousers somewhere around his enormous stomach. He was stuggling already against his many chins to get the sausage in his mouth. He looked at Maelle, folded his copy of Die Welt and shyly came to sit across from her, speaking in his halting heavily-accented French. Some sightsee their way around the world, some eat their way round the world.

But some are eaten.


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