Edwina's New Quarry by Rachel Smith

Edwina strutted down the sidewalk amidst a gentle whirlpool of silver-lined snowflakes, her lips wet in anticipation. Three years it had taken! She’d almost given up, having subjected herself to his wafer-thin skin and rheumy gaze for so long, but the loyalty to his brats had finally waned along with his mind. The sharp edges of reason sanded down to smooth unrecognisable contours. 

He would sign the new will today and hopefully the winter would finish him off. Surely, he couldn’t hold on much— 

Something hard smacked into her shoulder, pitching her forwards. Her shoe caught on an uneven paving slab and she screamed. Oncoming traffic loomed into view when a thick hand suddenly gripped her arm and yanked her back to safety. 

“Phew! That was close!” a man’s voice said, “I am sorry, Miss. Are you alright?” Edwina spun around to face this… this barbarian! 

“You could have killed me!” 

The man gaped, “Hey, now. That’s a bit strong. I just—” 

Edwina, out of habit, assessed the man’s status in one sweeping glance and kept the surprise from her face. He was rich. Very rich, handsome… and her practically a widow! “You pushed me into the road!” she wailed, bringing the back of her trembling hand to her forehead. 

“Don’t be ridiculous! I barely touched you!” 

“I’m sorry,” she said, swooning, “That was a silly thing to say. I must be in shock. Please forgive me.” She produced her calling card and slipped it into his breast pocket, making sure to linger just long enough, “Call me sometime if you would like to… bump into me again.” Satisfied with his wide-eyed expression, she whirled, flashed a killer smile over her shoulder and stepped out into the road. 

She never saw the bus coming. 

Published in Issue #20

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