Chapter 1 – Extract 6 from The Paradise Induction!
Chris scanned the plane again.
He caught sight of a guy picking his nose and scratching his groin; an individual who was clearly using the vicious distraction to indulge his habits.
Chris threw his hearing across to a couple – a man whose eyes had dark shadows underneath and a woman whose forehead vein was showing. “Sure,” replied the man; the age forty-eight flashed in Chris’ mind. He could have been older, but good genes must have maintained his youthful visage.
“You’ve got to be healthy,” said the petite, tanned blond woman who appeared considerably younger, but gave the impression that stress was ageing her. “Think about Eric. He’s your partner. Same age as you and keeping himself fit and strong. You better play when we get there. You promised.”
Chris smiled and continued to listen.
“I will,” said the man who breathed a sigh of submission.
“Good, good, it’s important,” she replied with words so quick, it was as if they were trying to escape her mouth. “Remember what the doctor said about your heart. You need to make sure you’re getting plenty of exercise. You’ve always liked tennis, haven’t you?”
More of a statement than a question, Chris thought. He moved his gaze across to another individual on the opposite side of the plane, whose pale skin was almost green.
The man had one of his hands grasping his side, rubbing his ribs, then moving toward his stomach and darting back again to his ribs. He kept his head down and quickly looked to his right then back at his screen. He blinked rapidly, then looked up to his right as if something caught his interest. There was nothing above him, but the plane’s overhead lights and air conditioning. The man touched his face, rubbing his chin and lips, then his eyes dashed back and forth. Chris could just about see that the man’s forehead was shining. The sickly looking guy shook his head and wiped his mouth again.
Chris’ eyes widened.
It was him.
He was the one making this plane a toxic waste hazard.
Chris smiled. Poor guy. How embarrassing.