Slip Alley XI

The strangler on the train
had titian hair,
Greta was certain
his beard was ginger,
she saw him clearly in the light.
He was of a solid build
looked like he’d been
working out and
had a Celtic tattoo sleeve.

Ollie raises an eyebrow,
takes a long sip of Scotch
and orders Greta a martini.

He leans forward
looking straight into
Greta’s violet melancholy eyes,
he tells her he smells danger.

He asks her about the numbers
on the slip of paper
found in the carriage
with the corpse.
The date doesn’t match
the night Jane Doe died.
There was another victim,
male, shot in this very alley
on that date. There could be
a connection. And did
the strangler see her watching?

Did he see her face?

Greta’s eyes sparkle,
she lets one tear  fall
from her right eye.
It tracks a course through
the silt of her makeup
and drips off her chin.

Ollie scratches his left eyebrow
and hands her his clean
white handkerchief.

He escorts Greta to a cab
at the corner of the alley.
He implores her to take great care
handing her his card.


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