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Flynn was furious. ―Well, I thought we could have a civil discourse about an
important historical topic, but I can see you are only interested in hurling ad hominem
attacks and making sophomoric jokes. This debate is over.‖ Flynn stormed off the stage,
leaving the producer scrambling to figure out how to fill the last five minutes of the
show. The M.C. started talking about how good debates often stir people‘s emotions,
especially when the topic is so vital to our everyday lives, and other filler material until
the producer was able to cut to commercial. John Morse shrugged his shoulders, packed
up his sketch pad and briefcase and walked off the set to talk to the producer.
―Hey, Professor, good stuff, but next time, can you tone it down on calling people
liars and fakers? Now I have to find five minutes of Nostradamus filler for the end of the
show. And next time, press your jacket, it looks a little rumpled.‖
Morse felt bad about the last crack about Flynn‘s name, but the ignorance of some
people really irritated him sometimes. It was nearly 10 p.m. Satisfied with his
performance, he left the building and headed for the parking lot. He looked at his Seiko
wristwatch. He had just enough time to get home and kiss the kids good night.
As he crossed the parking lot, his cell phone rang.
―Monsieur Morse?‖
―I am calling from France. It is urgent that I speak with you.‖
Morse put his phone on his ear, beeped the lock open on his Audi, and hopped in the
front seat.
―Who is this and how did you get my number?‖
Pardonnez-mois, monsieur. My name is Father Jacques Du Bois, Pastor of
L‘Eglise-St. Michel. I called your house tonight and your daughter Zoey was kind
enough to give me your cell phone. We have made a most unusual discovery in Salon.‖
―Salon-de-Provence? Where Nostradamus lived?‖
Oui, Professor Morse. Earlier this week, an underground vault was discovered
beneath the Eglise-St. Michel. We believe the vault may have long lost artifacts from
Nostradamus himself.‖
―Is this a practical joke? Are you serious?‖
―I assure you I am most serious, Professor. We have not attempted to gain access to
the vault until we called you. I can send you my credentials by e-mail to your computer,
so that you can verify I am who I say I am.‖
―Really? Interesting. A lost vault? Why summon me?‖
―It is not I who has summoned you, Monsieur Morse. It is Nostradamus himself.‖