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Hell Or High Water

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"Marc- ah- Marco?" 

I exhaled through my nose as my name was called. She'd said it wrong. 

They always say it wrong. 

"It's Mar-so." 

The leather seats of the Cadillac sunk beneath my legs as i got into the back seat and forced a smile. Duff warned me the new driver was chatty but i didnt want any of that right now. I was too tired for all of it.

She gave an expression like a lightbulb had gone off in her head "OH! Mar-sooooooo!"

I winced, wishing Duff had just driven me himself as always. But he was a supervisor now and not a driver. Good for him. Less than great for me. 

I didnt want to go to the conference if i were honest. I'd been to a million of them and i wasn't any closer to the goal. Cheif Pedroza just didn't like me- without her reccomendation the whole thing was pointless. No matter how prestigious my degree, no matter how long I'd trained in Hostage Negotiations i would never get a position on the Crisis Team without a mark from Pedroza. 

The thoughts that whirred in my head tore me apart as the new driver pulled away from the curb to leave me at the airport. 

The Phoenix International Airport sign may as well have said Welcome To Hell. 

I took a deep breath, straightened the bag on my shoulder and walked into the busy airport.

My name is Juliette Marceaux.

I died on a Tuesday at six thirty PM on a flight to Texas.

Where i went after wasn't exactly Heaven.

But it damn sure wasn't Hell either.