MEET THE FBI
The FBI man seems young to be following me. Can this handsome man with thick brown hair be on my case? He looks like a college student. I wonder if he is still in training like Clarice Starling in Silence of the Lambs. Stopping near him, I grab a Stephen King book of my own and flip open the cover. I can pretend to read too.
“You’re new,” I say, turning pages and giving him a sideways glance.
“I arrived in Vegas last week if that’s what you mean.” He sounds even younger than he looks.
“Vegas can be a dangerous city. You best be careful. A lot of shady characters running around preying on tourists.”
His head turns to me and our eyes meet, brown intensity digging into my soul. What does he see? Does he have any aptitude for this job?
“I’ll keep that in mind. Thanks for the tip,” he says, putting the book on the shelf. Taking a pad from a suit pocket, he appears ready to write. “Do you mind if I ask you a few questions?”
Here? Can he be serious? Nobody pays any attention to us and a thought pops in my mind. How many of these customers are props paid by this agent man trying to ask me questions? “This is highly unusual,” I say, continuing the charade of reading the book I’m holding.
“Is it? I want to ask about your novel. How are sales?” he asks.
What? I turn over my shoulder looking for George. Did he have it right? Is this man with the FBI? George appears at my side holding a coffee. Always there when I need him. “This man wants to know about sales of my book, George. How many copies have we sold?”
“Sales have been quite modest. 29 copies of your book have been purchased to be exact.”
“And one guy at Barnes and Noble bought ten copies,” I say.
He writes for a moment in silence before meeting my gaze. “Yes, I wanted to ask you about that next. Can you tell me what happened at the frat house? It closed this week under mysterious circumstances.”
Taking a deep breath, I remind myself not to rush an answer. Sipping the coffee George gave me I phrase my response in my mind before I speak. “Perhaps my book scared them all into fleeing the city. I can see why a certain type of man wouldn’t want to live in a place with a serial killer on the loose.”
I smile at him and take another sip of coffee. He makes a note and taps the pen against the notebook as if deciding to ask any more questions. “What type of man might that be, Ella?”
I smile again at his question. Does he think this disturbs me? Looking into his eyes, I lean closer to him. I want to be sure he hears me.
“What type of man you ask?” I put my mouth close to his ear. “Any fucking man I meet.”