It's been a while since I teased from this WIP, and I'm sure that any who read it then have forgotten what it was about. So in his past life, the MC Erik, was a gangster from the thirties and forties, and now he has to fight the inherent darkness inside him or risk losing the girl he loves. Chapter 1 is here. To update you, Erik has just thwarted two truck drivers from robbing the cafe where he hangs out, right before he decides to take a little from the drawer himself. Enjoy!
“What are you doing?”
I look up to see Jessica Hughes staring at my hand, perched as it is on a stack of five-dollar bills. I know this feeling. The dread, the sweat-inciting anxiety -- the panic. My hand twitches and shifts behind my back, searching for...but there’s nothing there to find. I feel a little foolish and bring my arm back to my side.
Jessica stares, eyes wide, innocent and gullible.
“I was um...fixing the cash register,” I say. “It gets jammed. Won’t close properly.”
She raises her eyebrow. Innocent? Yes. Gullible? I wish.
I take the drawer out completely and set it on the counter. Next, I look around for something to transform into a makeshift tool. Seeing little to aid my impromptu gig as Mr. Fix-it, I grab the pie spatula next to the dessert wheel. I slide it in the empty slot and pretend to poke around for whatever is blocking the drawer. Meanwhile, Jessica crosses her arms over her chest.
“Find anything?” she asks.
She’s laughing at me. I find this both infuriating and enchanting. She’s right to conclude that I’m up to no good. My reputation precedes me. And yet it doesn’t seem to convince her to stay away. For here she is, ten minutes before classes are over in the place where I always hang out. This game we’re playing - it has to stop. Flashback to English, second period. She looks, I look. She smiles, I smile. She bends her head down and pretends to be reading her assignment, I continue to gawk and catch hell for not paying attention in class. Cutesy stuff. Child’s play, and I don’t know why I do it. I’d like to blame these raging hormones everyone keeps talking about, but I don’t buy that. On a normal day, I’ve seen old men with less control than I. But Jessica is anything but normal. She often reduces me to a babbling idiot. Part of me wishes she would have come in just one minute later and then it would be over. Then she’d know exactly who I am, and she could go on with her life and I with mine. But she didn’t come in one minute later, and now I find myself cursing those dimwitted truck drivers for making the set up too easy.