Noir: Lost Lambs and Leopards

Small talk dominated our conversation. There were questions, evasions and lies about the past ten years. At times, there were signs of the floozy Maryanne had been in the woman that sat before me; here a barely suppressed giggle, there her posture a bit too eager and direct, as though she was trapped inside the demeanor of a high society woman. No, not trapped—she was struggling to stay in character.

The waiter came and we ordered drinks.

“Maryanne, why did you ask me here tonight?”

“All in good time, Nick. Right now, I’d like to dance.”

I stood and offered her my hand. She took it and stood, and we walked onto the dance floor. I pulled her close and we danced to Someone To Watch Over Me. There was no conversation, but she occasionally sang quietly along with the song.

  I’m a little lamb who’s lost in the wood
  I know I could, always be good
  To one who’ll watch over me

In my line of work, one thing always rang true: leopards don’t change their spots.

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