Agnes lived in the French Quarter of New Orleans. She had come to Louisiana by way of Seattle peddling her skills as an actress to land her a job serving drunken men more drinks. Her red flowing hair fell softly on her shoulders. Her perfectly tanned legs seemed to run on forever only stopping to accentuate the black skirt she wore. Slim and petite she moved gracefully like a panther in the snow. If she had been born with the ability to see the future rather than look breath taking in a mini skirt she may have never shown up to work on Friday night.
Benny’s Gin and Jazz was bustling as normal with a full house taking in the sights of long legs and tall glasses as the local jazz band played on the stage. For a hole in the wall bar the place had a sophisticated atmosphere much like a porn director who read Shakespeare. Although the outside of the building like the surrounding area was tattered and ragged, the inside boasted almost new furnishings with shiny new bar stools to boot. Smoke filled the room echoing the fog that consumed the alleys outside and gave the stunning waitresses a mysterious aura as they glided about the bar.
Agnes made her rounds carrying drink after drink to the capacity crowd fighting off drunken advances and the occasional groping. As she returned to the bar a tall well defined man flagged her attention and ordered a glass of Bourbon. “Tough night,” he murmured as she attempted to take some of the weight off of her feet by leaning on a nearby bar stool. She smiled, sat his drink on the bar and ran off in the other direction to beckoning hands. When she returned the man was no longer there but had left a twenty dollar bill as tip.
By 4am the club was finally winding down and Agnes was able to leave. She grabbed her coat and purse from the back room and prepared to walk the four blocks to her nearby flat. The street once cramped and full of noise now only had a few intoxicated stragglers attempting to remember where they’d left their car. Agnes made a beeline for her apartment cutting through one of the alleyways in a path she had taken hundreds of times. The tap of her heels on the cobbled streets outpaced most thoroughbred racehorses. After working these parts for three years she knew the dark streets were no place for a woman.
She rounded 36th and Walsh and could see the outside lights to her apartment. “Hello sexy lady” a voice whispered from behind her, so close she wasn’t sure if she’d said it herself. The hair on the back of her neck stood up and she whipped around while at the same time taking the can of pepper spray from her purse. The streets behind her remained empty. Maybe it was the wind she thought as she turned back around and began a slight jog towards the door. She reached her apartment and quickly unlocked it and stepped inside. She slammed the door behind her and bolted it shut then let out a sigh of relief resting her head on her hand still covering the lock.
From the shadows he could clearly see Agnes' face illuminated by the moonlight beaming through the window. She looked frantic and out of breath. He gazed intently at her studying his pray like a hunter. She turned her back to him as she leaned on the door giving him the perfect opportunity to attack. He stepped out of the shadows silently his feet seeming to float over the floor. But he didn’t strike. He wanted to look in her eyes once more; he wanted to see his quarry face to face.
Agnes slowly turned and sat her purse on the table then began to make her way towards the bedroom. She stopped abruptly and all the color left her face. Her fingertips went ice cold and fear made it impossible to move. Stepping out of the shadows ahead appeared a tall man clad in all black. As he moved closer Agnes tried to move her feet to run or let out a yell but was unable to. She simply stood motionless as the mystery man in black neared.
They now stood face to face and Agnes could make out the distinct smell of Bourbon as the man stared down upon here. “Welcome home Agnes,” he projected loudly in an all too familiar voice. Still unable to move she simply stared back into his face trying to regain her senses. “Help,” she was able to mutter in a tone not much more than a whisper. “Help,” she said again this time more audible.He calmly pressed his index fingers to her lips. “Shh, there is no help.”