Frisky Friday Flash Fiction
Another week in the books! How was yours? Mine wasn’t too bad.
I am more than ready to head to sunny California. Yes, we lived out there for roughly fifteen years. And yes, I did my fair share of complaining while there. But here’s the thing. When you spend that much time in one place, it becomes home. In Cali, I discovered my love for painting. I actually took a weekly class in acrylics. I was also pretty darn successful as a Girl Scout leader (had two troops!). Long story short, I learned to love living out there. But the work climate changed, and we had to leave. Now we have a shot at a sequel. Hopefully, it’ll be an award-winning performance!
Speaking of performances…
Have you read Fighting for the Best: the TKO Love Series, Book 3?
And now for the next installment of Deception…
It took me the better part of an hour to decide on the right outfit. The detective’s sister met me as the plain Jane Librarian. I couldn’t show up looking like Tammy the Hooker.
A glance in the mirror told me I made the right decision—a knee-length black pencil skirt, a round-collar white blouse buttoned all the way up, and a simple black pullover. The black flats perfected the drab uniform. I tucked a strand of red hair beneath my ear and adjusted the horn-rimmed glasses.
Marissa said she was making lasagna for dinner. I hated pasta. It added unnecessary pounds, and most people overcooked the noodles.
Supposedly the detective was bringing the wine. I picked up a tiramisu from a bakery over in North Hollywood. It was the perfect dessert. The sister would think I was sweet for thinking of the dish while the act would impress her brother.
Even if I played my cards correctly, the man would be a lot more than impressed. He might even find me interesting.
When I arrived at Marissa’s, there was another car—a late model, gray compact—in the driveway. There was nothing special about the vehicle. I pulled up to the curb, closed the door, and then remembered the bottle of wine. Maybe it was a sign telling me to take my ass home.
My sister met me at the front door. “Took you long enough.”
I held up the bottle. “Hey, I had to buy wine.”
She took it and smiled. “You didn’t go to Trader Joe’s. I’m impressed.”
“Whose cheap ride in the…” I swallowed my words when I saw the redhead standing in the doorway.
Mary smiled as she leaned against the jamb. “Calvin, right?”
My face heated. “Sorry about that.”
“No problem. The car is cheap, but it gets me around.” She tilted her head to one side. “It’s good seeing you again.”
“Same.” Changing the subject, I looked over Marissa’s shoulder. “Dinner ready?”
“It is. Table’s set too. Just waiting for you.”
“Let me wash up then.” I headed down the hallway and turned right into the bathroom.
Closing the door, I leaned against the surface. Marissa said nothing about her dinner guest being my new neighbor. How would she have known?
I quickly washed my hands, drew in a deep breath, and tried not to think about the woman.
Half an hour later, my impression of Miss Mary Jenkins had changed. She was sweet, much like the dessert she brought, but she had depth too. Mary seemed to be well-educated and had her head on straight. The woman had no delusions about Hollywood.
“My goal is primary education. I’m working on my doctorate at UCLA.”
“Interesting,” said Marissa. “What do you plan on doing afterward?”
“Working with autistic children,” she mumbled.
I asked, “Why autistic kids?”
“Siblings,” Mary replied tightly, like she didn’t want to discuss it. So I didn’t press.
But I couldn’t help but think like a detective. Miss Mary Jenkins seemed a little too perfect. She claimed to have purchased the tiramisu with me in mind. How was that possible when she didn’t know me?
At the end of the night, I was a gentleman and walked her to outside. “Be careful going home.”
She smiled coyly. “Always.”
While I watched her drive off, my sister joined me. “So what do you think?”
“Can you stop being a cop for half a second? Mary is a nice girl.”
Nice. Maybe too nice.
“Did she say what she did for a living?”
Marissa tapped her chin with her forefinger. “Actually, the subject never came up. Why?”
I wrinkled my nose. “No reason.”
My sister was one to see the good in everyone. On the other hand, I saw both sides of the coin. In my experience, most times, the flip side was rusty and dark. If I dug beneath the surface, I found out that the coin was only masquerading. Hiding something altogether different.
I hoped that wasn’t the case with Miss Mary Jenkins.
That’s it for this week! Have a great weekend!