Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Lady Wore Fur

Cassidy Sinclair leaned against her boss’s desk and took a deep drag on the cigarette he’d offered her when she came into his office that Friday afternoon.

“Is everything in order?” she asked, taking another drag before flicking the ash off the end of the cigarette. The room was dimly lit and felt a little stuffy. She knew the smoke wasn’t helping things, but in these instances, smoking was a necessity.

Her boss, a large man who was tall and muscular, sat there, watching her face. She felt nervous, as if she was on display. She was used to him watching her like this, but knowing the task that was at hand, she couldn’t help but squirming.

“You will call me at half past ten, and let me know the results. If I do not hear from you by then, I will assume you have failed, and you will be terminated. You will make sure that no one sees you, because I will deny any knowledge, and I will not come to your rescue. Is that understood?”

Nodding, Cassidy suddenly felt a numbing coldness throughout her body. She knew that Harold Schultz meant business. She had known this when she’d accepted the position. But the reality of it all was suddenly sinking in, and suddenly she wasn’t so sure she could go through with it now.

Stubbing out her cigarette in the heavy marble ashtray Harold kept on the corner of his desk, Cassidy nodded her understanding and consent, and then made her way out of his office, the heavy wooden door slamming shut behind her. Glancing back, she saw that Harold was standing in front of the door, his large outline visible through the frosted glass window, and she shuddered.

The night air felt colder than usual as Cassidy made her way from her little apartment to the club. Pulling her thick fur coat tighter, she glanced at the watch around her wrist. 9:45 p.m. She had very little time left to get the job done, so she knew she had to work quickly or it would be the last thing she ever did.

The doorman at the club let her through immediately. She knew that her immaculately styled hair and flawless makeup only helped to enhance her natural beauty, and she planned on using those aspects to help her accomplish what she had set out to do that night. Inside, she looked around and saw Harold talking to a man who was balding and was very short compared to the hulking form of her boss. She offered a discreet nod, and made her way to the bar area, where she ordered a martini, then quickly downed it.

“Hello boys,” she said to Harold and the man, giving a flirtatious grin to the man. She knew who he was, but he didn’t know that.

Harold offered a nod, but the man, already quite intoxicated, practically drooled as he returned her greeting. The three of them made small talk, Harold and Cassidy pretending not to know each other, before Cassidy complained that she was suddenly tired.

“I will walk you home; let me get my coat,” the man offered. Cassidy had learned his name was Eugene, and that he was a lawyer. Why Harold had chosen him, she didn’t know. Nodding her consent and offering a mysterious smile, Cassidy watched him walk away.

“Why are you here?” she hissed at Harold.

“I didn’t trust you. Lure him out back; I’ll meet you there,” he said, and with that he walked away, leaving her standing alone.

When Eugene returned, she told him she lived just around the corner, and together they walked out the back door. Reaching into her purse, she pulled out a gun, and took aim, firing off a shot.

Eugene stood silently at her side, while she looked down at Harold’s body sprawled before her, the blood pooling beneath him, before the two joined hands, turned, and walked away into the cold, dark night.

Harold might have paid her salary, but she loved Eugene and had for many years. Murdering him was not an option.