I do not own any of the characters from the series Hogan's Heroes.

"Hey, LeBeau, when we get to France, I'd like to see the Eiffel Tower, and the Louvre and the Folies Bergère, but not necessarily in that order." (Carter, "Klink's Old Flame")

"Look, André, the war will be over any minute now. The Krauts can't hold on much longer...Soon as the shooting stops, you come to Paris with me. We'll drink wine in the cafés, and we'll eat fantastic food. We'll see the Eiffel Tower. Best part of all: girls! You'll have a marvellous time." (LeBeau, "Request Permission to Escape")

"I can't believe I finally made it," murmured Carter, almost under his breath.

LeBeau glanced at him, then went back to watching the light flickering among the new leaves on the trees which shaded the bookseller's booths along the revetment running between the road and the river. There was nowhere else in the world where the light had such bright clarity. It filled him with a kind of contentment; and the obvious pleasure Carter found in the gentle spring breeze, and the warmth of the sun, just made things perfect.

"Didn't I tell you, one day after the war, you'd come to Paris with me?" said LeBeau.

"Yeah, but I never thought I'd really get here." Carter took a mouthful of wine, then placed the glass back on the little cafe table, his fingers curled loosely around the stem. LeBeau had chosen a soft, semi-sweet red from Languedoc, and if Carter wasn't quite attuned to its subtleties, he still seemed to be enjoying it. After a few moments he went on. "I always kind of thought, when it was all over, I'd go back home, get my old job back, find a girl and, you know, go back to how it was before. Pretty stupid, huh?"

LeBeau cast his mind back to the old days at Stalag 13. "No, it wasn't stupid. Back at Stalag 13, whenever I couldn't sleep, I used to start thinking about what I'd do when I came back to Paris. I was going to live in the same appartement I had before the war, and go back to work at the hotel - only I was going to be the head chef, not just the pâtissier - I would get back together with Louise, or Suzanne, or Annette..."

"Well, that last bit was never gonna happen, was it?" Carter broke in. "I mean, not once you met Wilhelmina again."

"None of it was ever going to happen, André. It was nice to dream about it sometimes, but that was all it was - a dream." LeBeau gave a short laugh. "I never imagined I'd end up married to the most beautiful girl ever to come out of Amsterdam, and keeping a pension in Concarneau. Half the time I didn't even expect to survive the war. Some of those crazy assignments they sent us, I'm amazed any of us lived to tell the tale."

"Newkirk's writing his memoirs," remarked Carter, going off on a tangent as he so often did. "Well, he's started, anyway. He's started about seven times, but he always gives up. He figures nobody would ever believe a word of it, anyway."

"I'm surprised he has the time," said LeBeau. "Married, three children already, working for the BBC..."

Carter chuckled. "Who'd have guessed any of us would end up on television?"

"He'd be the one to do it," observed LeBeau. "He always loved being the centre of attention."

"You want to know something, Louis? Don't ever tell Newkirk I said it." Carter leaned forward, lowering his voice as if he thought Newkirk might be at the next table, eavesdropping. "The thing is, I didn't like London as much as I always thought I would. I mean, Newkirk was great, he took me everywhere I wanted to go. But it's too big, and it was so noisy and crowded, and I always felt like I was lost."

"Well, what else would you expect in a place like that?" LeBeau replied, his voice deepening with scorn. "Shepherd's Bush - Isle of Dogs - Elephant and Castle - what kind of place names are those? Anyway, they don't even have proper streets, just old goat tracks covered with bitumen to keep the rain out."

"It wasn't just that, Louis," said Carter, fidgeting a little.

"I know." LeBeau looked at him, but Carter's eyes were turned towards the long, cold stone façade of the Conciergerie, on the other side of the bridge. "But you like Paris, right?"

"I sure do," replied Carter with emphasis. "I like the food, and the wine, and the weather, and I really like the girls. You know that one I got talking to in the hotel lobby this morning, while I was waiting for you? Didn't she just have the prettiest voice?"

"I didn't notice," said LeBeau. "I have a wife now, André, I'm not supposed to look at pretty girls. But I think she liked you."

Carter blushed. "She was probably just being polite. She wouldn't be interested in me." He picked up his wine glass, not realising it was empty until it reached his lips.

"Here, let me." LeBeau filled both glasses. "We'll finish the bottle, then go down to the river, and take the bateau mouche to the Eiffel Tower."

"Oh, boy, this is going to be great," burbled Carter. "And it's the only thing left on my list that I haven't done. We did the Follies Burgers..."

"Folies Bergère," LeBeau put in.

"Yeah, that. And the Louvre...though I gotta be honest, Louis, I didn't get so much out of that. But at least I can say I went there. The Eiffel Tower, well, I've been looking forward to that since I don't know when. You can go all the way up to the top, right?"

"Not all the way, but pretty high. I've never been up there myself," said LeBeau. "Only tourists do that."

"Well, we're tourists, aren't we?"

"Oui, I guess." LeBeau laughed under his breath. "So if you want to go up..."

"I sure do," said Carter. "Boy, I bet you can see the whole of Paris from there. Maybe even further."

LeBeau's fingers tightened around the stem of his glass. "Maybe. We'll see."

For a minute or so they sat in silence. "Hey, LeBeau?" mumbled Carter at last.

"What is it, Carter?"

"Y-you're not upset about what I said, are you?"

"Of course not." LeBeau made an effort, and spoke cheerfully.

"Cause, you know, sometimes I just say things, and I don't think about how they're going to sound until I already said them. And by then it's too late, 'cause I already said it. Boy, I never learn, do I?"

He pushed his chair back slightly, and the grating of its legs against the pavement was followed by a clatter of wood against pavement, as the stick which was leaning against his leg fell over and rolled away. Instinctively, LeBeau started up to retrieve it.

"It's okay, I got it," said Carter.

LeBeau froze, then sat down again, shaking his head at the waiter who was hurrying forward to help; and they both watched in silence while Carter bent towards the ground, groping around under the next table until his fingers found what they were seeking. He straightened up, and breathed a sigh of relief. "You know what the good thing is about always losing things? You get real good at finding them again."

He sounded relaxed, but he didn't let go of the white stick, and his other hand shook as he felt for the wine glass in front of him. LeBeau's heart tightened in his chest. "To the left a bit," he said.

Carter smiled, the boyish, embarrassed half-grin his friends knew so well. Entirely by accident, he was facing directly towards LeBeau, and just for a moment it was almost possible to forget that those eyes saw nothing; that for Carter, the light had vanished in a single moment, just when his war was supposed to be over, as a last dark benediction from a defeated enemy.

"You okay, Louis?" he said.

"Sure." LeBeau's voice caught on the word, and he had to clear his throat before he continued. "Are you ready to go?"

"Boy, am I ever!" Carter's smile widened into a beam of pure joy. Nothing was going to spoil this for him.

The smile was reflected in LeBeau's eyes, and in spite of the lump in his throat, and the prickle in his eyes, he found himself catching Carter's eager excitement. He picked up his glass, and drained it.

"All right, then," he said. "Let's go and see the Eiffel Tower."


Wilhelmina is the "old lady" in LeBeau and the Little Old Lady (Season 3)

The Conciergerie, once a royal palace and later a prison, is on the Île de la Cité, in central Paris.