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Defiant tourists remain in Sousse, but there is no escape from Friday's horror

Tributes are placed in an upturned sun lounger in Sousse, Tunisia Credit: Reuters

On the sands of Sousse lies a simple shrine to those who won't be coming home. An upturned sun lounger now cradles the growing stream of flowers and tributes.

It is the incongruity of it all which overwhelms. Beneath blazing skies a terrible darkness has descended upon this Mediterranean shore. The little tourist road train rides along hopefully looking for passengers. But its seats are empty, for fun departed from these streets last Friday.

38 tourists were killed in Friday's attack, including at least 30 Britons Credit: Reuters

It passes a clinic where one British couple are preparing to be medivacced home. Radley Ruszkiewicz and his fiancé Kirsty Murray are still traumatised and in intense pain.

Kirsty was shot in both legs losing six pints of blood. Radley's legs were also struck by shrapnel.

Radley Ruszkiewicz and his fiancé Kirsty Murray are still traumatised and in intense pain Credit: ITV News

"It will make all the difference to be home because I'm still living with the trauma here. When I hear the foreign voices outside or the banging of doors it brings it all back. I need to be home," Radley said.

"I don't think I'd want to be here if I made it and she didn't and I'm sure she feels the same. I can't put any of this into words. It's just too horrific and devastating an experience."

Tourists comfot each other in the aftermath of the attack Credit: Reuters

Kirsty has a mixture of feelings.

"I'm in pain and so angry and sad but I'm just happy to be alive at the same time," she said.

The couple were on the first day of their holiday when the gunman struck. Now the ambulances carrying them to the airport overtake the empty tourist road train. Their holiday was never meant to end like this.

Watch: Injured Brits 'desperate' to get home

Tony and Christine Callaghan were both shot by the gunman. As they comfort each other in another hospital in the hours before they're medivacced home the trauma is never far away. In the silence Tony tenderly wipes away his wife's tears. He's just returned to the hotel to collect their belongings.

"It was like nothing had happened. It was a beautiful sunny day. There were half a dozen couples enjoying the sunshine swimming in the pool and I couldn't believe that 24 hours earlier we were under attack from a terrorist running for our lives," he tells me as he plays with the hotel's all-inclusive wrist band which he's still wearing next to the hospitals identity tag.

Floral tributes fill the beach in Sousse Credit: Reuters

The events of last Friday are constantly running through his head.

"I feel very guilty because I managed to get into a room but of course Chris was shot before she got into the room and fell to the floor there. I thought she was with me. I feel guilty that I wasn't with her when she was screaming for help."

In between the wincing pain, Christine manages a reassuring smile for Tony.

"I just want to get back home and see my children and grandchildren. They keep me going," she said. This couple's love and support for each other shines out through their ordeal.

A tribute on the beach in Sousse Credit: Reuters

Those tourists who remain here are determined not to be beaten. But as they relax taking in the beach and glistening seas before them what strikes me is that a holiday should surely be an escape from the world beyond with all its challenges.

In Sousse right now there is no escape - just the heartbreaking testimony of those who witnessed an act beyond comprehension. The little tourist road train's optimistic promise of fun feels so cruel.

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