His tall frame appears like a ghost out of the mist. She is startled, though she is expecting him. He has made no more sound than the rustling of leaves in the cool morning breeze. His face looks thinner than last time but no less handsome.
“I brought you chocolate,” she says.
He accepts the luxury, then, “Anything else?”
With Alex, business always comes first.
The papers crackle as she removes them from her breast pocket. She is glad to be rid of them. An eagle circles overhead as if the Führer himself is watching.
“Thank you” he says, always polite. “London thanks you.”
She smiles a half-smile, her head inclined.
“It’s not London I care about.”
For months she has resisted him; for duty, for the Fatherland. Falling in love can be deadly in this dangerous game. She holds her breath, willing his response. The eagle dives out of sight, hunting its prey.
Alex pulls her to him. He tastes of tobacco and mint. Lost in a sea of warmth and desire, her knees weaken. He eases her to the woodland floor, his kisses obliterating the ugliness of the war.
“Oh, Alex,” she sighs, “Take me back with you when this is all over!”
“Of course, darling,” he whispers, holding her close.
Later, from his safehouse, his communiqué reads:
“EAGLE TURNED. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED.”
When the Stormtroopers come they leave nothing behind but his lifeless corpse. Outside, hot tears stain Karla’s cheeks. For duty, for the Fatherland.