The dirt felt good under my fingernails.
Cleansing, somehow. Washing me of my sins.
Not that I thought it was a sin…
I giggled at the idea of “sin.”
She would be here soon. I couldn’t savor the moment much longer.
There would be another opportunity soon. There was no shortages for my line of work.
piled the dirt.
Only a little hill…
Just big enough.
The night was clear. The almost-full moon shone through the trees. Not bright enough to sting but enough to cast finger-shadows on the ground.
Standing up, I brushed my hands off on my special dress.
The black one which hugged my otherworldly curves.
Walking up through my back garden, I saw the headlights pull into the drive. My feet moved faster, wanting to meet my next client at the door.
They got a little skittish, the humans. Which is fair enough, I guess. I think I remember being scared… maybe.
All I know is fear smells delectable.
I was at the door before she made it to the door bell. My sisters stirred, smelling her presence but they knew the rules. Paying clients were off limits. If they wanted a place to sleep in the light hours, that is.
She jumped as I opened the door and I couldn’t help but smile.
The fear on humans is like chocolate chips on a cookie, the cookie is delicious with out them but if you could choose between chocolate chip or no chocolate chip…
I directed the woman to the lounge room, a single red lamp glowed on a coffee table, mostly for her benefit, not ours. We could see just fine in the dark.
“Do you have the photos?” I asked as she seated herself across from me.
My sisters stalked around us, in the shadows, and I could see it on her face… she could sense them.
Hairs on the back of her neck tingling, some instinctive reflex lost to evolution.
Fight or flight.
With a trembling hand, she handed me the two photographs I had asked for in the text message.
One of a boy, barely a man. At least that is what his face was trying to tell you.
Smile on sweet lips, worn like a holster.
Hair neat and swept to one side, petals on a carnivorous plant.
I knew a predator when I saw one.
We recognise our own. Except this one was all human.
“He … it happened at the address on the back,” said the woman.
I looked her over. Grey regrowth showing at her roots, chasing chestnut hair. She was dressed in tracksuit pants and jumper but her posture said she normally wore suits.
I flipped the photo to check out the address.
I knew the club.
It was funny how they all seemed to hang out at the same places. Like feeding at a watering hole.
Lions prowling around a herd of trusting gazelle.
“May… I ask… what did you want the other photo for?” she asked.
Worn on her face.
I flicked the pic of the predator onto the table in the circle of red lamp light and looked at the other picture.
I slapped the photo face down on the coffee table.
“I like to see what they are paying for,” I lied. “Detective Morris gave you my number?”
The woman nodded.
“He has rich folks, huh? This… monster,” I said gesturing to man in the red light.
She nodded again.
I knew the look. I had seen it too many times.
The broken up, worn to the bone sort of grief.
I held out my hand. I didn’t have to ask. She knew what I was after.
She handed me a stack of money which I didn’t count. I never did. People paid what they thought to be fair. Or what they could afford.
Hey. We were still getting a free meal out of it.