The Wolf Ticket

"I will not be lost ‒ I will always be looking for you."

In the closing days of World War II, Pascale, a translator in the U.S. Women's Army Corps, impulsively rescues a Polish refugee. The refugee is wary as a wolf and, as Pascale instinctively knows, is a woman in disguise beneath her men's clothes.

Bound by a troubled spiritual kinship, both make promises they are determined to keep despite the chaos of war. Separated, they search for each other across war-torn Europe, hindered, helped, and manipulated by those they encounter —

Lucia, an Army nurse devoted to her own pleasure
Nell, a famous war correspondent with a subversive agenda
Sibylle, a French prostitute and former Nazi collaborator
Corinne, a blueblooded WAC officer with her own reasons for bending military rules —

until the two are brought together again, only to find themselves facing a final test of courage.

New updated edition will be available in early 2022.

Chapter One Begins

Pascale looked at the last refugee standing on the platform. The rest of the crowd had been shuffled away by the soldiers. Only this one had somehow remained, wistfully assessing the train as it idled and steamed. Pascale had seen thousands like him, gaunt, hardened, bleak. She glanced at the letter in her lap, a friend from home who had not been able to resist telling her the latest news, then wiped the window to look out again at the lone boy.

    He was probably from Poland, judging by his shock of blond hair, his high cheekbones. Typical wreckage of war, stranded now in the closing gap between the Red Army and Allied advances.

    A squadron of Dakotas roared overhead toward the American air force base south of town. The refugee looked instinctively for cover as their engines shook the sky. Pascale stared. Something about him reminded her of the faces back home, of her mother's sister, the same look of wariness in a strange land. Pascale was surprised that his desperation could touch her. She had thought her heart numbed by the pain of too many refugees too lost, too needy, too bereft for any help she could give.

    The train's whistle blew. The general must be settled in his suite. Steam billowed across the platform. The refugee leaned forward, fists clenched, and his eyes met hers through the window. Pascale knew, in a heartbeat knew, and was on her feet, out the compartment, wrenching open the carriage door, shouting "Come!" over the locomotive's grunting chuff. "Kommen! Przychoc!"

    He looked at her outstretched hand.

    Pascale gestured. "Przychoc!"

    His eyes lit up; he started across the platform. The train began to roll and he quickened. The train was faster. Pascale braced herself on the handrail and leaned out. He ran full tilt for her, greatcoat streaming behind him. Pascale's hand touched his, gripped his sleeve. His fist closed around the handrail and he heaved himself on board, was on the step gasping, pressed against her for a second as he slipped, regained his footing, and now Pascale did know. The train shot free of the platform.

    As it gathered speed, the bombed town rushing past them, Pascale found that she was holding onto the refugee's lapel like a police officer onto a ruffian. "Come inside," she told her in Polish.

    The refugee stumbled up the steps. Pascale closed the outside door, the woman's breath rasping in the quiet, and took her to the compartment. The woman looked around as if at a palace.