Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Oak Cliff Confidential: Chapter 2

  Click Here to start this story from the beginning.

  Sharon’s smile dimmed, but only a wee bit. “That sounds somewhat mysterious, Mr. Breen. Waiting a long time to meet me. Define long.”

  Hexom’s own smile altered as well, in an odd way that could signify either sexy intelligence or mental instability. “Years,” he said. “But hopefully we can eventually get to all those details. May I join you?”

  Sharon glanced at her watch. “Well, I should have been in the midst of a business meeting as we speak. One of my accountants should be sitting here now, ready to review yet another something or other where I have to sign things. You seem to present a much more interesting way to spend my time.”

  Hexom raised an eyebrow. “One of your accountants? How many do you need?”

  Sharon waved a hand of disinterest. “Too many. When you have exorbitant amounts of money just lying about, it’s rather extraordinary how many people it can take to keep things in order. Please sit.”

  He smoothly slid into the opposite booth in a controlled manner, rather than cloddishly heaving his bulk downward in the graceless plunk that seemed to be the rage with the uncoordinated masses. Sharon updated her mental review sheet of Hexom, although it was beginning to prove pointless. She had already decided that, if the opportunity arose, she would gladly have sex with him right here on the table without the least bit of shame or modesty. Not that she had ever experienced either.

  Her reverie was interrupted by the sudden appearance of the short waitress, she of the high-fiving and the lackadaisical attitude toward bettering her life. The despicable urchin practically shoved a plate of wonton chicken tacos at Sharon without even glancing her direction, then descended on Hexom with claws extended. “Good afternoon, sir, is there anything at all that I can possibly get you?” Then the little harlot, apparently considering herself on the menu, batted her eyelashes in what she assumed was a sultry manner, but rather gave the impression that she had a nervous condition.

  Sharon sighed inwardly. Wasn’t this always how things worked? If you’re a pretty man with a penis, the entire world will drop at your feet, proffering endless subservience. If you’re a gal with curves, you had to beg people for a glass of water. Sharon pondered the pros and cons of paying someone to stab the serving wench when she stepped outside for a smoke or a shot of heroin or whatever she did on her personal breaks.

  Hexom flipped through the menu half-heartedly, obviously not really looking at anything, then cast his eyes upon the wench, who immediately lit up and had a small orgasm. “I’m not quite sure what I’ll be having. Let’s start with some raspberry tea, shall we?”

  The wench turned and ran before he uttered the last word, knocking over a woman and her walker in her lunge toward the drink dispenser. The trampled woman laid there for a minute, then decided to just take a nap since she was already horizontal.

  Sharon slid the tacos to the center of the table. “Hexom, please have some, I ordered far too many.” (She had only requested one order, but this detail was unimportant in the bigger scope of things.)

  Hexom smiled regretfully. “They smell delicious, but I’m afraid I’ll have to pass. I’m trying desperately to watch the cholesterol.”

  Sharon paused, a grease-dripping taco just inches from her perfectly-lined lips. “What did you just say?”

  Hexom was uncertain where he had erred. “Are you troubled that I’m avoiding fried foods?”

  Sharon lowered the taco. “Oh my God! You’re gay!” she exclaimed.

  Hexom frowned. “I don’t think I follow…”

  “You ordered raspberry tea and you are aware of cholesterol. You can’t possibly be straight. Damn it.” Sharon hurled the taco to the floor in a pique of disappointment and rue.

  Hexom glanced at the sodden mass of fried grease. “You certainly have a very carefree spirit.”

  Sharon sighed. “I’m not any more carefree than anyone else. I just don’t hold things in. If you don’t speak your mind, it just gets internalized and your digestive system backs up. Watch this.”

  Sharon turned to the couple in the booth behind her, tapping the nearest woman on the shoulder. “Sweetie? That blouse? With that skirt? No. Go home and change.” Then Sharon flipped back around and faced Hexom. “See? Now I won’t need any fiber today.”

  Hexom cleared his throat. “So, it’s true. You DON’T have any boundaries. Just as they said.”

  Sharon’s eyes narrowed. “They? Who the hell is running around saying I don’t have any boundaries? The nerve.”

  Just then, Brandi the lackluster food bearer, arrived with the raspberry tea, a bowl of peanuts, the remote control for the TV, a coupon for a hot rock massage, and her phone number. She panted in Hexom’s direction. “Is there anything else you need?”

  Sharon grabbed her tiny hand. “Have you been talking about me? You and your trashy little friends?”

  Bambi’s eyes widened and she snatched her hand back. “Of course not! I’m afraid of you and I don’t want to die!” Lips quivering, she turned to Hexom for moral support and possible dating opportunities. “Please tell this lady that I didn’t do it!” Then she licked said lips. “I’ll do anything you say. I can play the piano with my tongue!”

  Sharon: “You’re on the wrong team, sister. Now go make nachos, I’m sure somebody around here will eventually want some.” Bambi turned and ran through the forest, not hearing the hunter’s gunfire in the distance.

  Sharon faced Hexom again. “Okay, now that the slut is otherwise occupied, do you mind telling me what this is all about?”

  Hexom took out a notebook from somewhere, which was really interesting since he hadn’t been carrying anything when he entered the restaurant. He flipped a few pages, seemed to ponder exactly how much to reveal, and then said “It all started three years ago, almost to the day, when I was having lunch in Kiest Park. Probably something involving asiago cheese, because I really invested in it at the time.”

  There was a small crash in the kitchen, followed by the sounds of someone either being fired or giving birth, both of which can result in separation anxiety.

  “Anway,” continued Hexom, “I was sitting at one end of that long memorial garden, wondering if they were ever going to clean that thing up, when a complete stranger walked my way and handed me this.” Hexom touched a small slip of paper in one of the notebook pockets, but did not remove it. He traced one edge of the rectangle, again seeming to consider his words.

  “Go on,” barked Sharon, because, as we’ve established, she is not a fan of waiting.

  Hexom smiled. “First, you must understand that I am in a very vexing position. There are certain rules, only some of which I can tell you, because the communication between you and I must be carefully controlled, or things could go terribly awry. You see, someone is trying to kill me, Miss Horizons, and I’d rather that not happen.”

  “Fair enough,” agreed Sharon. “But how am I involved in all of this?”

  Hexom tapped the slip of paper. “Because you were the first clue.”


  “And you know who the killer is going to be, even though that person doesn’t yet know they want to take my life.”

  Sharon just stared at Hexom. “You have completely lost me.”

  Hexom slid the piece of paper across the table. “Please read this, handed to me by the stranger at Kiest Park.”

  Sharon turned the slip over. “Sunset without bounds can set you free.”

  Hexom nodded at the writing. “That’s you.”

  “And how did you possibly come to that conclusion?”

  He smiled. “Where did you go to high school?”

  Sharon paused, then glanced back at the paper. “Sunset High School. On Jefferson Boulevard. But how does that mean that I‘m….”

Click Here to Read the Next Chapter.

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