Wil A. Emerson WHo, Where, How, When

Wil A. Emerson: Who, Where, How, When

Excerpt from
"The Driver"

A short story from Wil A. Emerson


Cover: Crimeucopia: Careless Love: 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 Derringer Award.

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 it’s 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."

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The Driver
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 tote bag.

       I walked around to the driver’s 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 I’d 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 I’d gone three blocks, she put on a pair of dark brown, orthopedic style shoes. The kind she wouldn’t be caught dead in if cameras were near. I’d 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 didn’t have a total view of the tube and wasn’t 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 person’s 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 didn’t take chances. I liked my job. Liked it immensely on bonus days.



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Woman standing in front of a low marble wall


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