Short Fiction Spotlight: The Dame at My Doorstep: Part One

Short Fiction Spotlight

These streets I look down upon are cold and mean. The people I deal with daily are the same. Just throw in a side of extra jealous and malice for good measure. I tend to never ask why these things are the way they are. I learned a long time ago to never ask.

A knock at the door turns me away from the window and my thoughts. I ignore the knocking that has become more persistent and check my reflection in the mirror to ensure I look presentable to my mystery guest. My eyes are bloodshot from lack of sleep, my complexion is a bit off-color, and my hair could do with a good cutting. I may look a bit rubbery around the edges, but I can still chase after a perp if the situation ever calls for it. I straighten my tie before I go to the door that looks like it is about to be busted into.

I want to yell at the person at my door as I open it. However, the sight I see trembling in my doorway causes me to stop dead in my tracks and my voice to momentarily disappear. I never caught her name the first time. I guess you could say I was too distracted by her icy blue eyes that seemed to pierce me deeply. Little did I know that she would have an equally frigid disposition.

Mild annoyance crept into her voice as she told me again that her name was Ilsa Munroe and that I should pay better attention. She was still trembling as I stepped out of the way and offered her a seat on the chaise lounge. Closing the door and walking over to the bar, I did the gentlemanly thing and asked if she wanted a drink. Replying with an edged “No,” I made a drink for myself and leaned against my desk facing Ms. Munroe. I spoke calmly to her, asking her to please tell me her story as to why she came to my office.

I sipped my drink as she recounted her tale to me. Her ex-boyfriend, a guy by the name of Eddie Malone, who could be a bit rough-handed with her, and he had come around the night before looking for trouble. Ilsa did not want to have anything to do with him anymore. She said she came away unscathed this time; the last time was not too pretty. There was a bruise across her left cheek that looked fresh.

She finished her story and now was asking for a drink. After what I had just heard as to what kind of a low life this Malone kid was, I needed a second one myself. From what I could gather that Malone was a real piece of work; and that was putting it nicely. Ilsa sipped at her drink and set the glass on the floor next to her. I set mine on the desk and rubbed my stubble covered chin.

Ilsa had come to me wanting me to find Eddie. According to her, he had skipped prison a few times and no one could get the drop on him. For some reason she liked my reputation for catching bums like Eddie and “taking care of them” – her own words by the way. I told her I didn’t do what she thought I did. That she had me confused with someone else.

“Why do you think I’m the man for the job?” I asked her, crossing my arms.

“Because I have read about you, Mr. Kelt. I know what you can do. I’ve been keeping track of you.” She crossed her arms too and watched me. Those eyes of hers seemed to X-Ray me.

“What do you think I can do then, Miss Munroe?” I was getting a little unsettled. Part of me feared for what she was going to say. I didn’t think my past extra-curricular activities had been publicized.

“You have killed before.” Her voice became a whisper. “I am impressed by what you do.” Her eyes seem to light up at that. She was one strange broad.

I didn’t say anything to that. The truth of the matter was I used to do those things. When I was younger, I had my own personal brand of justice. But that was a different time. Not hearing any of it, Ilsa handed me part of my fee – $250 of the total $500 – up front and told me to expect the rest once Eddie Malone had been collared. Ilsa Munroe left my office and I had a nagging suspicion that I would be seeing her again sooner than initially anticipated.

Check back for Part II! What did you think? Please leave your response in the comments.

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About Brandon Rieckhoff 15 Articles
Brandon is a recent graduate of Cornerstone University; having earned his BA in Humanities. He fancies himself a big geek/nerd. He’s into, among many other things: comic books (Marvel/DC/Image, mostly), Doctor Who, a little bit of Pokemon (he’s not too familiar with current generations!), reading (he cites Ernie Cline, Raymond Chandler, and Jane Austen being among his favorite authors), gaming (League of Legends, Skyrim, Assassin’s Creed, and Pokemon: White being among his favorites), watching a myriad of film genres (his favorite film currently is Big Hero 6), and listening to music (his music tastes are as varied as his other hobbies; that is to say: widely!). He has been loving his time here at TGI and cannot wait to see what is in store for him in the future!

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