Quirked Eyebrows and Fluttering Hands
I intend to become a better writer, using strong verbs, making a little game out of it. Today’s strong word are sanction, abolish, signal, dismiss, threaten, expose, presume, typify, preclude, strengthen
Tammy tugged down her jacket and assumed her I-am-your-friendly-guide smile. “Hello. My name is Tammy, and I will be your guide this afternoon.” The tourists, some who clearly spoke no English gathered around, already taking pictures. “Please feel free to ask me questions as we go. By sanction of the Chateau, the Count permits pictures. However,” she paused, finger up, until she had everyone’s attention. “Touch nothing.” She smiled. Most echoed her smile.
She led the way to the courtyard. Since the Count had abolished all motorized conveyances, especially the Segways, the crowds had gotten smaller. No one wanted to walk anymore. She knew further declines in attendance could signal the demise of the Chateau tourist trade.
His Excellency had already dismissed two guides, Carla and Shannon. While Tammy liked them, she felt personally threatened. He rewarded his favorites. Girls talked. She feared she was not one of them. She heard things. She feared his friendship and all it meant.
Blinking, Tammy brought herself back to the group. Her job depended on their good will. She pointed out the great portico and the towering columns where Johnny Depp and Matt Damon once fenced before a camera. She was often asked to tell what went on behind the scenes, to expose the rumored love affair between Johnny Depp and Emmanuelle Chriqui.
While Tammy never presumed to guess, Johnny typified virility, reckless abandon, and boyish trust. On the other hand, Emmanuelle was always warm, sweet, and so wise. Tammy could picture the deft evasion of his advances, always cautious, precluding a career ending affair.
Tammy ushered her charges down the steps, past the famous Iron Gate. The cameras were out. Acting on impulse, Tammy allowed herself to become part of the scenery, captured forever, or as long as digital images last. Glancing up, she saw the Count, eyebrow raised. His expression strengthened her fear. Not only had she broken the rules, He had seen it.
Putting on her best smile, she saw her guests to the door. She asked everyone to use the touch screens to rate their visit. She hoped they enjoyed their tour. They were welcome to press the thumbs up or the thumbs down. With a deep curtsey, she lowered her head and held her pose. The visitors filed past. Holding her breath, Tammy listened to their comments. After the last one passed, she straightened, and closed the door.