Thursday, July 18, 2013

A Rene C. Clayton Mystery Story: The Handsomest Threat

Chapter 7
The Handsomest Threat
(A Fake Excerpt)
     Wow.  A Cosmopolitan.  ("Cosmo" for short.)  Who knew you could marry vodka, cranberry,  lime juice and Tripe Sec into such a perfect union?
     A curly twist of lemon rind would have been gross sitting on a pile of garbage.  But, clinging to the side of a martini glass, unused and uneatable, was just too darned cute.  My newfound necatr came in a glass with a wide brim and thin stem, which I had a little difficulty balancing at first.  But, the faster I drank, the easier it got.  I'm not the classiest guy, but whoever decided that drinks needed to be served in distinct, dedicated glasses was onto something.  A tumbler made me feel rugged and male.  A beer stein made me wanna be crass and belchy.  But, a Martini glass made me feel pink and a little bit glamorous.  (Yes, I said "glamorous."  And, I also said "pink.")  No more Screwdrivers for me.  Any APE could make a Screwdriver.  But, a Cosmo?  That required the work of the gods!
     I was supposed to be working the room, ducking in and out of party conversations.  Picking up clues.  Keeping my suspects off balance with bits of subtle, yet probing subterfuge.  Digging for information without being obvious.  Instead of working their business, I was working the cocktails.  And, this cute little drink was going straight to my head.
     There was a man watching me.  He broke away from a group of minglers and crossed the room, his eyes glued to me.  A smile played at the corners of his mouth, his eyes looking me up and down.  Was it my imagination or did he just lick his lips?  I stopped mid-sip, my lips at the edge of the glass.  My eyes went wide and my lips went into a perfect blow-up doll "O."
     That was one good looking man.
     "I was thinking about our earlier conversation," he said.
     "And?"  I took a sip.  Damn, this was a good drink.  And, I think I looked cute sipping it.
     "Cute boys can get hurt, too."  He turned and walked away.
     'Cute?'  Wow.
     What the hell?  Did he just threaten me?