part one is here.
We went to a hole in the wall diner. I ordered a soy latte (and got a black coffee with powdered milk for my trouble). He got a burger with extra onions. He hadn’t answered my question yet and I was becoming impatient. Now wasn’t the time for burgers. I’d barely glanced at the black sludge masquerading as coffee.
There was a dead guy a few blocks away and here we were eating burgers. Or rather, he was eating burgers. I was waiting for an answer.
I waited until he was about to take his first bite and I asked, “So, who am I?”
He smiled before he put the burger down and wiped off non-existent grease from his mouth with a white napkin. I waited for an answer but he just looked at me..
Brown eyes carefully assessing me like I was a painting that needed to be appraised.
“Do you need me to put my question in writing?”
My tone was somewhat abrupt, but could anyone blame me? The one person that had all of the answers I suddenly needed was being coy.
It was maddening.
When the silence grew, I slammed my fist down on the table in anger. The people around didn’t even flinch.
His eyes widened with surprise but he didn’t seem surprised.
“I can’t tell you who you are.”
There was something in the way he said it. The can’t instead of won’t.
Still I had to ask why.
“You’re asking the wrong question,” he says before he bit into his burger for real this time. A glob of grease dripped onto the plate and I watched on in horror. I might not have known him but I knew he was an absolute moron.
Suddenly, it dawned on me.
“Who are you?” I asked him.
This time he put the burger down and pushed the plate away.
“I’m someone you know,” he told me in a sincere tone. “I was assigned to watch over you just in case something like this happened.”
I found myself growing annoyed again. I was tired of the vague answers to my reasonable questions. My life had changed in the space of two hours and all I was left with was someone that deflected even better than Clinton ever had.
“Did I work for the government?” I asked. I saw his throat tense, watched the muscles contort as he swallowed. I was getting warmer, I knew that much.
He grabbed the glass of Coke that he’d ordered and took a large gulp. “I can’t answer that.”
I rolled my eyes and thought of all of the countless police procedurals I’d watched in the past month. One phrase stuck out.
“Is it classified information?”
He grimaced and shook his head. “It’s we might die if I tell you information. Do you have a death wish or do you want to live?”
I glared at him. “I want to know who I am, jackass.”
I was expecting him to snap at me or lose his temper but he smiled. There was something in his eyes that made me pause. The warmth there. He cared about me in some capacity. I blinked and there was a flicker of a memory.
We were sitting in the dark, beer bottles in hand as we looked up at the night sky.
His voice brought me back to the present.
“You’ll find out in time. Just…trust me, okay? I know that you’re probably scared and anxious but neither of us win if anything happens to you, so just trust that I’m doing what’s best.”
The protective note in his tone confirmed that we’d had some kind of relationship. I couldn’t determine if it was a working or personal one, but I trusted him.
Deep down in my gut, I knew that he wouldn’t betray me.
I just wasn’t sure if he was going to keep me alive.
I currently have a nasty bout of writer’s block so I thought I’d work on this for a bit. I hope it doesn’t suck too much. 😝