Kate leaned over the small kitchen table and anxiously tapped her holster. She didn’t trust the man called Erich Reinhardt and she didn’t enjoy being a guest in his home. The others might have been taken in by his little-old-man demeanor, but all she saw was a German, and the last Germans she met had been firing fifty caliber shells in her direction.
It was Dr. Scott who had insisted that they come here. After refueling in Rio, she had flown them for a day and a night across over the Atlantic. (This one’s for you, Ms. Earhart, Kate thought as she caught sight of Africa on the horizon.) They touched down in Egypt and then turned north, crossing into Austrian airspace by night. Throughout the flight, Dr. Scott had assured them that Reinhardt was trustworthy because he, like Professor Scrumtumbler, was a member of the Order of Prometheus. But he was also a member of the Thule Society, and Kate wasn’t ready to trust anyone who had willingly joined that fuehrer-hailing pack of academics and thugs.
Reggie and Clem were currently reclined on the old man’s couches, happily snoring away their supper of bratwurst and home-brewed hefeweizen. They didn’t seem to think that Reinhardt’s nationality was an important detail, which blinded them to the possibility that if this little old man could be a double agent working against the Thules, he could just as easily be a triple agent working for them.
Kate sniffed her portion of the dessert strudel. She had eaten dinner, but only after seeing her host take a bite of each item. Reinhardt had retired with Dr. Scott immediately after serving the strudel, so she had not witnessed him sample it. For all she knew, it was laced with knock-out poison, and that’s why Reggie and Clem were sleeping so soundly right now. Then again, a long flight and a large meal would put anyone to sleep, so maybe it was on the level.
She leaned in and sniffed the dessert. It smelled sweet and delicious and she was tempted to take a bite. Just to test it. Just to see if the strawberry jam was as scrumptious as it seemed. But then she reminded herself that this was the confection of her enemy.
It might as well be sauerkraut, she thought as she pushed the plate away from her.