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Bitter Paradise

Bitter Paradise

A Dr. Zol Szabo Medical Mystery
edition:Paperback
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Excerpt

 

Max watched Hosam end the call and scowl into some dark, forbidding place. It was like he was staring into a black hole – Monocerotis or maybe CygnusX-1 – in a far-away section of the Universe. Behind him, the dusky red spatters on the front door looked almost dry, but the splotches on the picture window still glistened.

 

“What did he say?” Max called from his chair at the back of the shop. “Is he…” His voice cracked on him like a frog’s stupid croak. Being fourteen, that happened a lot. “Is he coming?”

 

Hosam seemed incapable of hearing, his mind somewhere in the next galaxy. But his thumb was in this one, and it was stroking his thick black moustache. His comb and scissors were here too, poking from the pocket of his blood-soaked apron.

 

“Hosam?”

 

The front-desk phone was still tight in his fist, and there was no missing Marwan's blood clotted on the keypad. A moment later, Hosam jerked his head like he was tumbling out of a bad dream three thousand lightyears away. Steadying himself against the desk, he put down the phone and rubbed the back of his neck, staining it with more of Marwan’s blood. Hosam’s deep-set eyes, usually a light greyish-blue, were as dark as the muzzles on a pair of Stormtrooper E-11 Blasters set to fire.

 

Finally, he blinked. “Yes, Max. Your father, he says he is coming.”

 

“Right now?”

 

Inshallah.”

 

Inshallah, that was for sure. Even though Max and his dad never went to church, he hoped God or Allah was pulling hard on whatever strings it took to get Dad there fast.

 

Max pressed the facecloth against his forehead. Hosam had given it to him a few minutes earlier after he’d examined the gash and said Max was going to need stitches. For now, Hosam said, Max should keep pressure on the wound. Hosam also said he’d have to cut Max’s hair another day. Travis’s turn in Hosam’s chair had finished seconds before the incident, so his low fade was already done. The two boys were now sitting side by side in the chairs where clients normally waited for their barber to call them. Today had turned out to be anything but normal.

 

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An Irish Country Family

An Irish Country Family

An Irish Country Novel
edition:Hardcover
tagged : medical
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An Irish Country Cottage

An Irish Country Cottage

An Irish Country Novel
edition:Paperback
also available: Hardcover
tagged : medical
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