6.10: Near Dawn

Goliath and Elisa returned to the estate roughly an hour or so before the sun was due to rise. Famished from their exertions, they ate with Fox, Adam and several other members of the New Orleans Clan; Martha and her helpers made for them all a hearty dinner/breakfast of Eggs Pontchartrain (English muffins topped with bacon, fried oysters, poached eggs and tasso Hollandaise sauce), pain perdue (New Orleans-style French toast), grillades (spicy-sauced veal escallopes) and grits.

"Ohhh, if this keeps up, I'm going to need to buy a larger size pair of jeans," Elisa moaned contentedly as she sopped up one last bite of pain perdue before pushing her chair back from the table.

"No, you won't," Goliath assured her. "I'll make sure you get plenty of exercise…"

By the time Elisa's blush had faded, the honking horn outside heralded the return of the delivery truck from New Orleans, returning with the courting youngsters and their escorts. They went out to greet their clan members, and found everyone in good spirits; Broadway was disappointed that the night was almost over so soon, but Angela assured him that they would have fun the next night as well.

Now that their second honeymoon was over, Goliath decided to perch with the rest of the clan, in their places of honor in the midst of the New Orleans Clan. Elisa gave him a good-morning kiss, then stepped back with a fond smile as the sun peeked over the horizon and her husband turned to stone with the others.

Still smiling, Elisa went back down the stairs from the roof, thinking that all in all this really was a wonderful vacation… but her smile faded when she saw Fox at the base of the stairs, her cell phone in one hand and her face grim. "What's wrong?"

Fox said slowly, "I just called David, to wish him a good morning. There's more bad news, back home…"

THE END, for the moment