Rule of Three #1
Prompt: Someone is killed or almost killed AND a relationship becomes complicated
Amia raised an eyebrow at the shopkeeper. “Inquisitive type.”
“Keep your distance.” He stood squarely facing her, arms crossed, eyes unblinking.
Garret Feston had aged. After thirty years she didn’t know what else she had expected, but the creases and folds and color of his well-worn body surprised her more than she liked to admit. And I, she thought, I haven’t aged a day. Aloud, she said, “Come, now, Garret. Is that a way to greet an old friend?” She slinked closer to him, her hips undulating, the light reflecting off the folds of her dress just so, articulating her assets, echoing the color of her eyes. Her charms dashed against his stoic figure.
“To business, then,” she said with a sigh, and slipped to one side, fingering a set of ribbons on display. “I would like to employ your services once again.”
“Now, now,” she tutted. “You haven’t even heard my proposal.”
“Garret,” she admonished.
“People who work for you end up dead, or worse.”
“You didn’t come out so bad last time, did you?”
“Now, I’d think most folks would file “murderer” under “or worse”.
“Don’t be melodramatic, Garret. You didn’t murder anyone.”
“As good as. So you can forget whatever scheme you’re planning on tangling me up in – not this time.”
Amia let her face fall into a mask of regret. “I’m afraid that this time you have no choice.”
Garret’s grim facade broke with a guttural laugh. “What can you do to me? I’m an old man. With no wife, and no children.”
“There is the boy.” She nodded to the far door where Neil had disappeared.
The old man twisted around in comprehension and stumbled to the stockroom’s door: no mess, no struggle, no Neil.
He turned back to Amia who let no smile of victory cross her face. “I knew you’d come to see it my way.” She pulled a small sheet of paper from a reticule hanging from her wrist. “The items should be easy enough for you to find. How much time do you need?”
Garret crossed the store and snagged the paper from her hand. He took a moment to look over the list. “Three days.”
“Make it two.”
“Make it possible. I’m on a schedule.” She turned to leave and glanced over her shoulder. “We’ll meet here at dusk, two days from now.”
Garret locked the door behind her, flipping his sign to “Closed”.