What’s Your Sign?

Sunday Scribblings # 66

Aquarius:  loyal, inquisitive, generous, ambitious, eccentric, moody, erratic, aloof.  So, she thought, that makes him either a selfless humanitarian or a sociopath.

“What’s your sign?”  It was such a silly thing to have done.  She had never been the kind to hit on a guy in a bar.  But, then again, since moving to the city, she had done a lot of things she had never thought she’d do.  She saw him across the crowded room and a voice in her head told her to go for it.  She just wished she had come up with a better opening.  She was surprised when he smiled and answered her.  She liked his smile, she decided.  He had good teeth.

From there, the conversation continued in fits and starts.  She was nervous, but eventually, he put her at ease.

“Hey, listen,” he said after about an hour. “I know a sushi place around the corner.  They’re open late, and they make a mean dragon roll.  Why don’t we continue talking there?  Have you ever had sushi before?”

“No,” she repled.

“Well, this will be an experience, won’t it?”

She let him do most of the talking at dinner.  He was funny and charming, and he had a nice laugh.  He talked about how much he hated his job, but loved living in D.C.  He asked about her, but she deflected most of his questions.  When he asked her where she worked, she just told him that she had just lost her job because the hours didn’t work for her anymore.  He paid, and she thanked him for the delicious meal, though she hadn’t eaten that much.  After dinner, he suggested a walk on the National Mall.  It was only a few blocks away.  She agreed.

“It’s completely different at night, isn’t it?” he said, “but it’s still beautiful.”

It was beautiful.  The Reflecting Pool splashed the light of the full moon onto the trees lining the Mall, giving them a soft, almost supernatural glow.  He told her ten interesting facts about the Washington Monument and told another joke or two.  He made her laugh, but then he startled her when he grabbed her wrist, and leaned in close, so that he could whisper in her ear.

“You know, my apartment’s not far from here,” he said. “Why don’t you come by for one more drink?”

She hesitated.  She couldn’t believe that she was thinking about doing what she was in fact thinking about doing.  She couldn’t possibly.  She had only met him, but she had  never had such an amazing evening before.  The possibility of more evenings like it excited her.

He unlocked the door his apartment and pushed it open.

“Go right in,” he said. “It’s not much, but I’ve done what I can.”

The scene inside would have taken her breath away, if she had any breath.  One entire wall was covered in swords.  There was a Japanese katana blade, what appeared to be a medieval broadsword, and a curved Turkish scimitar.  No fewer than three crossbows adorned another wall.  The shock was just setting in when she heard a strange noise behind her.  She turned around to see him holding a neon orange pressurized water gun.  It must have been lying on the table just inside the door.

“You shouldn’t have let me touch your wrist,” he said.  “No pulse.  And, I know the gun looks stupid.  I’m sorry it’s not more dignified, but it is filled with Holy Water, and it will finish you off just the same.”

He was an aquarius:  ambitious, eccentric, moody, erratic, aloof.  Unfortunately for her, that made him a selfless humanitarian.

20 thoughts on “What’s Your Sign?

  1. Jon July 2, 2007 / 9:47 am

    Hi!! Loved your tale:) Keep em coming. Jon

  2. boliyou July 4, 2007 / 6:23 am

    Awesome! What a great twist at the end!

  3. lili July 6, 2007 / 11:28 am

    Bravo! Wonderful short story, great sense for story line, an easy read and a treat.

  4. Peculiar July 20, 2007 / 1:59 pm

    Really nice. You should write more often.

  5. Heather S. Ingemar August 20, 2007 / 6:08 pm

    Bravo!

  6. whypaisley August 31, 2007 / 3:38 am

    that was wonderful… i loved it… i had no clue till he said something… and then it all became so clear… excellent!!!1

  7. Suse August 31, 2007 / 11:02 am

    I had a suspicion when she said the hours didn’t work for her anymore — but was still surprised by the ending. Love it!

  8. sathe923 September 1, 2007 / 5:56 pm

    i liked your story. you managed to keep it in until the end. =) keep it up.

  9. Paul September 2, 2007 / 9:22 pm

    Really clever story and a great read.

  10. Jo September 6, 2007 / 9:07 am

    Really enjoyed this story……loved the twist.

  11. Write Stuff September 6, 2007 / 4:41 pm

    Hi Matthew!

    I counted your story at 608 words. Good work! Good luck in the contest and thanks for entering!

    Karen

  12. patois September 7, 2007 / 2:48 pm

    I had no suspicions. I was completely caught unaware. And that made it all the more thrilling. Great tale.

  13. ann September 7, 2007 / 3:17 pm

    bravo bravo… a great read

  14. Mardougrrl September 7, 2007 / 7:35 pm

    It’s not often a “Gotcha” ending works, but I think this one did.

  15. rebecca April 17, 2008 / 11:54 am

    matthew,

    if these are your “inane ramblings” that you post in order for them to not spill over into the novel that you are writing….then I say, keep it coming! you write so well…so creative and so intriguing….i, for one, cannot wait for your novel to come to fruition…you’ve won a fan.

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