Just a tiny tease


Hey all, it’s been a while since I updated so, I thought I’d post this to keep things flowing. Hope you enjoy this tiny teaser

3:24am. Plenty of time, with plenty of money.

If stress was an unwelcome addition to Meiko’s life, relief was a very welcome addition. The kind of sweet relief that comes from knowing that your problems are solved, and solved beyond the minimum of solvability. A weighty bag in her purse confirmed the future—the House would be safe, and they’d actually have a bit of profit from tonight’s mayhem. Whatever anger and panic she felt earlier was almost a distant memory, sinking fast below the horizon as she left it behind…

Of course, relief can be just as much of a distraction as panic, which is why she didn’t notice Mallory until she had walked past him.

He was busy mopping up a bit of the mess left behind by a particularly satisfied customer, who had chosen to return his beer on the sidewalk rather than take it home with him. The odor of the mess only struck Meiko at the moment she noticed he was doing this.

“Mallory, we’re done,” she reminded him. “You don’t have to play wage slave anymore, you know…”

“I know,” Mallory spoke, mopping away with abandon. “But I’d hate to leave a mess like this for Mr. Nakago’s next wave of staff to deal with the next day…”

“Huh. I’d figured you went back to Ryo’s, anyway…”

“What? No way, I’m going with you to get the House back,” he explained, rinsing out the mop via a yank of his bucket’s handle. “I mean… this is all my fault. If I went back to sleep while you’re off dealing with the towing company, it’d be kinda selfish of me. …ummmm…”

“Ummmm?”

“I’m kinda surprised you’re not, uh, more angry at me,” he said, unsure if saying it was a good idea in the first place. “I mean, sure, you were pretty upset when you found out, but… and maybe it was just you focusing on work instead of on what happened, but… I mean, I’d understand if—”

“Whatever.”

“Whatever?”

“Whatever,” Meiko repeated. “We came out of this better than we went into. And… I guess you wouldn’t have known about the rights management fees, so I can hardly blame you. And besides, look at you now… you’re mopping up the contents of… what is that, anyway, urine or vomit? I can’t even tell.”

“I think it’s both…”

“Anyway, you’re above and beyond the call of duty,” Meiko continued, while keeping her eyes off the puddle of unidentifiable yuck. “Most guys I know would try to duck out of responsibility, avoid doing anything to correct matters. Go and sleep it off, like you said. Except you’ve been working your ass off all night, without losing your trademark smile. So… whatever. I don’t feel angry. Do you think I should I still be angry?”

“Er, no? Yes? I don’t know. I’m not exactly a good judge of these things…”

“Then I’ll choose not to be angry,” she decided. “I’m too tired to be angry, even if I wanted to be.”

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