The words had no sooner crossed Nick’s lips when, thanks be to god, there was a knock at the door. I gave Miss Jenny a moment to settle into hushed tones with whomever was on the other side of the door before moving into the organdy wing chair closest to Nick.
“I evidently didn’t get the memo on the value of foreplay as an interrogation tool.” I quipped sarcastically, as I purposely looked down my nose in displeasure.
“I know, I know.” Nick groveled uncomfortably. “I told you this one was a lulu. I gotta sneak in the back door with her. Make it a game, if I ever want to get anything out of her..”
“Well, I get the feeling your Miss Jenny is more likely to break out into a fan dance than shed any light on the whereabouts of the plates off her Lincoln- so wadda ya say, you keep her occupied,” I paused here, eyebrows raised for good measure, “while Maggie and I go have a look at the car. I highly doubt she will object to my excusing myself.”
I’d like to say I waited for his response, or at least long enough to see him squirm, but I didn’t. I grabbed my purse off the divan and hightailed it toward the door.
“I have extra suction cups,” Miss Jenny was whispering to whomever was on the other side of the door as I approached, “if he gives you any problem just..”
She swung around mid-sentence. “Where you goin’?”
“I thought I might leave the two of you alone for a bit. I’ve got my dog out in the car, so I’ll just go walk her while the two of you,” I glanced from her to Nick, then back at her, “well you know…”
With a wink and a smile, I brushed quickly past both Jenny and the latex clad whatever it was on the other side of the door, who in a tone that reeked of disbelief exclaimed,“Ugh! Did you see that?” As if I was the one wearing the rubber hood!
Maggie met me with an exaggerated level of exuberance, considering I had only been gone for ten minutes, and nearly leaped into my arms when I opened the door.
I let her do her little jig and have a quick pee on the tree lawn before the two of us headed up the drive toward the back of the house where I had heard Nick mention the Lincoln was parked.
I was not however, in any way prepared for what happened next.
Maggie, in her continued exhilaration was straining at the lead when we approached the rear of the house, and cut the sharp corner at a run before I realized I had any reason for concern. I was nearly airborne before the lead ripped from my hand and Maggie was off like a shot.
Not wanting to draw attention to the fact that I was prowling around in Miss Jenny’s backyard uninvited, I refrained from calling out after her, and hastened my pace, reaching the front corner of the garage about the time Maggie reached the Lincoln.
A long black car, better suited to use in a funeral procession than ‘car dates’ in the back yard of a suburban whore house, it was parked behind the garage, surrounded in knee deep grass and weeds. It was evident this vehicle had not been on the road for quite some time.
As I approached to get a closer look, hopefully even a glimpse inside, if the grimy buildup on the windows would allow, I noticed the grass in front of the vehicle had been trampled- directly in front of where the license plate was affixed. Was being the key word. The plate was exactly where it should have been.
I quickly ran around to the car to see if the rear plate was missing- Nope. It was there, too. Same trampled grass. What the? It was then that I noticed the license plates were sparking in the mid day sun. While the rest of the car was covered in a thick layer of dust and grime indicating it had been stationary for quite some time, the plates were gleaming.
Or were they? I asked myself as I withdrew the clever multi tool I never leave home without, some tissues and one of the plastic bags I carry with me at all times- in case Maggie has to go.
As I was crouched at the rear placing the last plate in the bag with my tissue covered fingers, Maggie flew past me and down the drive.
Tucking the plastic bag containing the license plates into the waistband of my jeans at the small of my back as I hurried to follow her, I was relived to hear Nick’s voice, and know that it was he, and not one of the other occupants of the house that had drawn her attention.
“I’m almost afraid to ask,” I overheard him say jokingly, as Maggie’s tags jingled with excitement over having found him in the drive, “but where the hells your mother?”
This is yet another installment of Maggie’s Story. The previous installments can be found by following the Maggie’s Story category header located at the bottom of the blogs home page.
The inspiration for this episode was found in the three phrasal prompts provided by the OLWG #38. The phrases were:
- I have extra suction cups
- a long black car
- ugh, did you see that