Chapter 15 - It Won't Be Long

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"I don't care if you're the ruddy Duke of Edinburgh, registered guests only."

The two girls in front of Marisol turned away dejectedly. "I'm Paul McCartney's sister," one of them called over her shoulder. "He's going to have your job."

"He's welcome to it," the officer said, lifting his hat and wiping his brow. "That and four bobs might get him a cuppa."

The police had formed a line around the front entrance of the manor hotel where the Beatles were staying. No one could get in without a hotel key or permission from Beatles' management.

Marisol didn't even bother trying to get through. The police had heard it all by now. She'd simply have to drive back down the hill and try to reach Neil from a phone box.

Two men in crisp suits were pulling camera equipment from the trunk of a car parked next to hers. "What's the manager's name?" she heard one of them ask. "Brian Epstein," the other answered. "Another rock 'n' roll Jew." Laughter.

She froze. American accents, and here to see about the Beatles? She set her bag down and dawdled by the back of the car, hoping to hear them say something else. The American press had zero interest in the Beatles as far as she knew.

The keys jangled as she opened the trunk. The nearest man glanced her way. "Hello there, young lady." He nodded at the tiny overnight bag at her feet. "Need a hand with that?"

Oh why not. "Thank you, sir." She waited while he adjusted the camera straps around his neck and lifted her small bag into the trunk. He straightened and met her eyes.  Tall, rugged, perfectly chiseled jawline, cigarette dangling from perfect lips. He nodded at her, closed the trunk and started to step away.

"Pardon me," she said quickly. "Are you American?"

"Yes ma'am. We're based out of New York."

"I'm from California myself. Are you here on assignment?"

"Life Magazine." He squinted at her, and then to her amazement, he added, "You're not one of the Hemingway girls by any chance?"

Marisol blinked in surprise. "Well, yes...He was my grandfather."

The photographer tossed the cigarette on the ground and stepped on it, then stuck out his hand. "Mark Spencer. I'm a friend of Nick's. Flew with him out of Mather."

"Oh, wow, small world. I'm Marisol, Margo's sister. You know Nick's stationed here now?"

"I heard something about that. I'd look him up if I had more time. Tell him Mark Spencer said hello."

"I will." Marisol smiled at him, trying to think how she could keep him talking. She was dying to know what they were doing here but didn't want them to wonder what she was doing here. The other photographer was busy counting rolls of film in a small leather bag and writing something in a notebook.

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