Let’s do another month of M’s prompts shall we. I used to do 101 words, hence the title but I am scrapping the restriction. They will still be a brief. This is a follow up to one I did yesterday which you can find here…
Marcus Henderson was a fragile man, and he had for many years enjoyed his ill health about as much as he was enjoying the second beer just put before him.
He nodded a thanks to the bar tender and pushed a handful of credits towards him. He didn’t really want the beer, and he didn’t want to be here, but somehow this is where he was and he had no idea why. He just needed to be anywhere but there.
The original young girl on the stage had been replaced by her more voluptuous colleague, an engineered model no doubt given the size of her assets, and she was making easy work of hoisting herself up and down the pole.
“You not thirsty Marcus honey” she asked in her warm southern drawl, her red lips lingering on the ‘M’ just a little too long. “You dont want it to get warm now.”
He pushed it away and readied himself as if to leave. He looked up slowly as he spoke.
“It was very nice to meet you Miss…” He paused.
“Call Me Jessica, Marcus. Very nice to meet you.”
“Likewise” he said shaking her hand and then quickly pulling away. “I must be going though” he added nervously “I have a dirigible to catch” and with that he rose from his stool, pulled his coat tight and with his briefcase clutched to his chest he headed towards the exit and the neon night beyond.
“Be safe now you hear” she said as he walked away and up a small flight of steps to the club door. She picked up movement from a dark corner and her eyes instinctively scanned the room and she watched two dark coated men rise and follow him as he left. “Fuck” she said finishing her drink. How did they know he was here? She needed to act, and she needed to act fast or everything was going to go south fast.
“Thank you sugar” she said to the barman, waiting a few moments and then made for the exit.
The fizz and hiss of Neon lit the night, high sided buildings adorned with luminous invites to whatever dark craving you might call normal. Across the road she spotted the two men weave between the street side vendors and the corporate nobodies that filled this part of time once night fell. Pockets full and empty lives they moved from joint to joint in search of something that would pass for entertainment.
Heels or not she wasn’t letting this one get away and she skipped between the traffic shortening the distance between herself and Marcus’ followers and tucked in behind a broad shouldered Colony Marine who seemed to be heading in the same direction. Billows of steam hissed from street vents and the calls and cries of the market traders fought with the buzz of the traffic as she passed endless shopfronts selling everything from trinkets to weapons and somewhere in between you’d find the off-world girls and occasionally boys for those with an appetite for something a little different and a wallet to match.
She pulled the collar of her leather jacket up around her ears and darted from behind the marine and down a small side alley. He had said he needed to catch a dirigible and given that there was only one zip station in the precinct that had a direct link to the airport she knew where he was going. More importantly, she knew how to get there faster.
She picked up her pace and winding through near dark allies she headed for the zip station. Here beyond the main strip and the glow of the neon hooded faces skulked in the shadows.
“What you after darling?” A tall thin man asked as she skirted the pools of water and garbage. He reached a hand towards her and her eyes flashed bright, the glow of electric blue cutting through the darkness.
“H-hey sorry” he stammered recoiling in fear “I’m not looking for no trouble” he continued and hurried inside a dark doorway.
Jessica never broke stride and as she heard the clang of the door closing she rounded a corner and found herself just one block from the zip station. She looked up feeling the first drops of rain beginning to fall, and there was a feint rumble of thunder in the distance.
They would have to come this way, and when they did she would be waiting.
Photo courtesy of pixabay