: CRIMEUCOPIA: CARELESS
LOVE, an anthology from Murderess Ink Press (a UK-based publisher),
featues my short story "The Driver," which has been nominated for a
In this anthology, "Fifteen writers tell us about
affairs of the heart some with humour, some with a darker intent, and
others that are never quite exactly what they seem. Is it all about
manipulation? Can there be more than one agenda? And does Love really conquer
all, even when its supposedly blind? Or maybe Love is just an old Devil,
looking for mischief? In the spirit of the Murderous Ink Press motto: You never
know what you like until you read it."
* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *
by Wil A. Emerson
The woman with the
red-brown hair, in a black shiny trench coat to ward off the misty rain, hid
her face behind wide, dark sunglasses even though clouds lingered overhead. She
slid across the cordovan leather seat of my limo without saying a word. Her
sigh, or was it a groan, was audible as she dug into her red, brown and black
I walked around to
the drivers door, sat in my designated place and adjusted the mirrors.
First the sides and then the rear view. No hurry, an old habit. By the time
Id eased into the traffic lane, the woman had thrown her stiletto heels
into the tote and applied a menthol-type ointment to one foot, then the other.
After the ritual, about the time Id gone three blocks, she put on a pair
of dark brown, orthopedic style shoes. The kind she wouldnt be caught
dead in if cameras were near. Id seen enough television shots to know her
style; more so, know the attention derived from how she presented herself.
Youthful, indestructible, always in those suggestive, sexual charged high
heels. A woman with power. Everything centered on image.
Hot and Spicy, so
said the foot ointment label. Red, yellow and white label catches attention,
too. I didnt have a total view of the tube and wasnt about to ask
if I guessed the right brand. I liked being right. Forever observant, not one
to miss small or large innuendoes about a persons life, persona.
At the next light,
I used my handkerchief to dab my nose, than a quick blow. Soft, not to be
gross. The stuff she used made my nostrils drip like a water faucet. Great if
you had sinus issues. A friend suggested I take an antihistamine on the day I
drove for her but I was concerned about side effects. Groggy or not? Would it
show up in the blood test I submitted to each month? A requirement for the job:
no drugs. Monthly tests to prove it. Over the counter, essential or not, I
didnt take chances. I liked my job. Liked it immensely on bonus days.
Order CRIMEUCOPIA: CARELESS LOVE