Alex sits down at the bar as she is not prepared to pay more for her cup of coffee on the terrace. The waiter puts the coffee in front of her together with a pain au chocolat. She likes this place, it is a perfect spot to stakes out potential marks. She rummages through her purse for her wallet. She takes it out to pay when she discovers an origami flower.
She scans her surroundings and can hit herself over the head when she discovers him…
She has been sloppy but on the other hand, he is the best.
She smiles at him and he takes it as a sign that he can approach her.
“Hi Alex.” He takes her hand in his and kisses it.
“Long time no see, Neal. What do you want?”
“Who says I want something?” Neal smiles one of his brilliant smiles.
“Everybody wants something.”
“True words. At the moment? I just want a cup of coffee with a gorgeous woman. Garçon! Un café au lait s’il vous plait.”
“What are you doing in Paris?”
“Mozzie told me about this place where you can macarons. So I am here to try them out. Relax Alex, I’m on a holiday.”
“I should have known Mozzie was involved. So what are you planning? A little early Christmas gift shopping at The Louvre?”
“I like to think I am more creative than that.”
“You are right, I´m sorry.”
“No, like I said, nothing incriminating, just taking a break. I have to go, but will you accompany me to the Opera tomorrow night?”
“What is playing?”
“Mozart. OK, If you take me out to dinner afterwards.”
“Deal.” He gets up and kisses her goodbye.
When Neal is gone, she calls the waiter to pay.
“The gentleman already paid mademoiselle.”
* * *
The next evening, Neal waits for her in the lobby.
“You look stunning.”
“Well thank you Mister Caffrey, you look dashing yourself.” Alex states with a small bow of her head.
Neal puts his hand in the small of her back to escort her to his car. Her dress hugs her body and she knows she looks gorgeous. She is aware of the warmth of Neal´s hand on her back.
When they walk up to the Opera house, all eyes are on them. They do look the part, a young successful couple. She is still wondering what con Neal is pulling, but decides to enjoy the moment. Neal is as gentleman like as can be and Alex graceful as ever.
The play is wonderful and afterwards Neal has made reservations at Pong, the restaurant has a view on Pont Neuf. He orders them Boeuf Wagyu with sauce épicée and legumes sautés. The sommelier suggests a Gevrey-Chambertin les Marchais and Neal agrees.
The food and wine are excellent and Neal is the perfect date. Some doubt keeps nagging at the back of Alex´s mind, but she pushes it away and decides to enjoy the evening for what it is, old friends having a lovely evening.
They enjoy some dessert and coffee before the leave the restaurant.
“What do you want to do?” Neal asks.
“Why don´t we stroll along the banks of the Seine?”
“How romantic.” Neal smiles, his eyes sparkling.
They start strolling, chatting and laughing. And when Alex gets chilly, Neal drapes his tuxedo jacket across her shoulders. He walk back to the car and he drives her back to her hotel.
She expects and secretly hopes that he will make a move, but he kisses her cheek and thanks her for a lovely evening, before leaving the hotel.
* * *
The next morning, Alex enjoys a few minutes just staying in bed thinking about her date with Neal. He had been the perfect date and she had truly enjoyed the evening. He sure knows how to treat a lady.
She takes a quick shower and decides to have breakfast on the go before visiting a smaller museum, when the telephone in the room rings.
“There is a gentleman waiting for you in the lobby, miss Hunter.”
“Tell him I will be right down.” She smiles and quickly finishes getting dressed. Maybe she can get Neal to take her to the museum.
When she enters the lobby, her smile fades, the man waiting for her is not Neal Caffrey. She wants to walk past him, but he blocks her exit.
“Miss Hunter, my name is Special agent Peter Burke, I have some questions concerning a Neal Caffrey…”