“Buy you a drink?”


“Oh, come on, it’s Friday, go a little nuts.”

“Well, okay… Whiskey, neat.”

He whistled through his teeth. “My kinda lady. Two neat whiskies, Jerry.”

Jerry poured silently and went back to wiping a glass. The bar was still mostly deserted, except for a few regulars and the girl. Small talk, jobs, city, hating phonies; opening moves, sorties. Her glass was empty, his was still half full.



“Oh, come on, it’s Friday, go a little nuts.”

Jerry poured again, into both glasses, making a big show of topping off his glass. He winked at the bartender, who might have been smiling, just slightly. More jokes, her laughter a little loose around the edges, and they leaned more and more into each other. More drinks which she drank and he sipped at, and he whispered into her ear and she laughed and shoved at him playfully and he put his hand on her thigh and she nodded, dizzily. They left the bar together, kissed wetly while she put on her coat.

“Why do you help him like that?” It was one of the regulars, an old lush poised on his stool, glowering at his beer.

“Ah, she’s a big girl,” said Jerry. “If she didn’t want anything to happen she coulda just said no. If she didn’t want anything to happen, she coulda just stopped drinking his drinks.”

The regular shook his head. “Someday he’s going to pick the wrong girl and somebody’ll scream bloody murder.”


In his apartment he got undressed, his hands steady, his vision focused. He turned around with the confident, easy smile of a cat and leaned against the doorway. “Ah, little darlin’, you don’t even know what you’ve got yourself into.”

“No,” she whispered, and he laughed. “It’s you, it’s you.”

And when he leaned into her her mouth was suddenly very full of teeth and her arms were unbreakable around his back.

He screamed, but only the tenant downstairs heard; screamed, and she only banged on the ceiling with a broom. “Goddamn predator,” she said, and put her pillow over her head.