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Chapter 2

Copyright 2001 Walt Wentz & Joshua Quagmire

A couple of hours later I was still hunched over those bills, pondering the breath of beauty that had come into my life, and vanished again.
I had been in this business long enough to know that beautiful young dames are always trouble. But at the moment I felt like trouble. Hell, I ate kittens like her for breakfast. Sometimes for lunch too, occasionally a light after-dinner snack— I’m not picky.

My initial lust had subsided enough to look at this thing analytically. Why would a classy dame like that come to a dump like this? Well, she'd told me. “They,” whoever they were, were looking for Sham. They had a confidential matter for him.

Then why had they sent this lovely little doofus to negotiate the deal? Even in my besotted state, I had to admit the girl wasn't any Einstein. That sweet glow in her beautiful blue eyes was probably just the sun shining into her shell-pink ears. But with a body like that, who needed a brain … Aaaargh! Get hold of yourself, Vikki girl, concentrate!

We have been getting on like a house afire, even joking a little despite the fact that I wasn’t Sham, but a statuesque redheaded vixen with a dynamite bod if I say so myself, a steel-trap mind and the morals of a mink with its tail on fire.

But when I had finally tried to get down to business she’d gone spooky on me. Her little carefully rehearsed pitch had been thrown off the rails, and she panicked and did a scoot. That meant the kid wasn't really there to do business. She'd been sent to get Sham wrapped up and distracted-- Sham’s a sucker for a skirt-- while some other play went on.

I was ready and eager to be distracted, but I wasn't in her instructions.

Something smelled funny about this-- and it wasn’t just the haunting ghost of her perfume lingering in the tired air. I brought the two bills up under my long nose and took a deep, slow whiff. Kitten in Heat, one of my favorite scents. Seventy-five clams an ounce. There was money in this somewhere.

At the moment I wasn’t interested in money …

As Sham’s agent, I rationalized, I was obligated to take his cases...

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