A 21 year old lounge singer, dreams big... and just sometimes, those dreams come true. But at what price?
Cannes, South France
October 23rd 1925
A sudden rush of air blew in the open window of the bedroom. She pulled her nightgown closer around herself. It was a pretty night sky, with hundreds of stars that seemed to blink brighter than any other night recently. And the ambient sounds of Cannes soothed her. The rolling sea and the gentle hum of pedestrian traffic. She led her head against the wall and closed her eyes. This was the last time.
Finally, she would be free.
A squat woman in a blue dress and white frilly tabard paced down the third floor corridor of the hotel, pushing her cart of cleaning materials in front of her. She stopped outside room 317, and, noticing that the mornings newspaper was still outside the door, knocked twice.
“Bonjour! Femme de ménage!” she called. There was no reply. She checked her watch; 10.09 am. She shrugged and pulled a huge ring of keys from her tabard pocket. After finding the right one, the woman slipped it into the door, but found it pushed open before she had even turned the key.
“Bonjour?” she called again with caution, “… ‘Allo?” Going further into the room, she noticed the open window. The thin curtains were blowing in the morning sea breeze. The bed hadn’t been slept in and there were still clothes on the chair by the dresser.
“Non, non, non bien,” the maid muttered when she noticed the tiny droplets of blood by the window as she backed out the room and hurried to fetch the manager.