Can you believe it? 100 hundred different, and original pieces of fiction. Some said it could not be done- Thanks Mom- others didn't even notice- Thanks world. But, here it is, the 100th story, and much like the last episode of Seinfeld it is not Earth-Shatterin, nor horrible- it just is. Much like Winnie the Pooh, oh that bear of little brain, the stories arrive in the Wu Wei from this uncarved block that is my brain. Jesus, who writes this stuff? So, what now? Well, the stories will continue to arrive at 2:04pm Monday to Friday, but the first 100 will now be put into a fancy little Kindle book for easy reading in the bathroom... or on the train. Working Title: "Short stories are are the new novels."
He could feel the broken rib from where she had kicked him off her, which was fine, Manny figured, since the shiner she was going to get under that right eye of hers would be tough to hide. Course, she was good at hiding, wasn’t she? Played him. Yeah. He remembered the oppressive rain beating down on him through the broken telephone booth roof when she called him two Thursdays ago; an Omen he was too blind to see. Her silky voice made even the worst day disappear, even more than the whiskey. The way she said his name, was like God inviting him through the gates of Heaven. He knew her story of her husband was in some way hinky- yet he came running. He always did.
Looking back now, as he watched her pick up his revolver, he could see all the red flags; the secrets, the lies, the strange men. But when you’re in love- yeah, Joe had fallen for her, would have killed more than just that poor sap of a husband of hers just to have one more night in her bed- when you’re in love, you get stupid. Joe knew what attributes and skill she had, and used them well: Find a man, use your wiles to suck the life from him, move on.
She levelled the gun at Manny, “You done good, Manny. Real good. Maybe I could have fallen for you.” She paused, “Doubtful, but you never know; Bees can fly, can’t they.”
Manny inched his way up the wall so he was sitting. “You win Joe, now what? You gonna kill me? You ever kill someone, Joe?”
Pulling back the hammer, she said, “Killing someone who’s already dead to you is easy.”
Manny says, “Love to have one last cigarette, before you finish me.” She motioned with the gun to say he could. Manny carefully slipped a hand in his pocket and pulled out his cigarette case, thumbed a Lucky Strike and set it against his lip. Lit it. The euphoria of the drag was like falling off a building, but that could be the thrill of his inevitable death.
He says, “I gotta know, Joe, do you love him, you love this new guy?”
Joe took a step towards Manny, moving the barrel of the gun from his head to his chest. And just before she fired, she said, “No- I don’t love him, Manny- I just like him more than you.”