THE CUPID CAPER
A Finley Goodhart Crime Caper
But I was assuming a lot. This was all shot-in-the-dark guesswork. In my earlier hustles, I banked on human emotion. Namely greed, but pride and vanity, too. To understand what emotion to play to, I had to quickly size up my mark and appeal to their inner vice.
How do you size up an organization? I didn’t even know what they were getting out of their own scam.
In the evenings, I stuck to country bar hustling. Appearing like I wasn’t doing anything unusual. Just in case anyone had an eyeball on me. I half expected to see Lex. Half hoped. Hung out in the bars longer than I should. Waiting. But not waiting.
He didn’t show.
“Y’all planning on sleeping here?” Jello had asked the second night. “Or hoping someone’s coming for you?”
“Don’t know what you’re talking about, Jello.” I yawned. “And don’t see why’d you care, as long as I’m drinking your swill.”
“Nursing’s more like it.” Jello shook his head. “You kicked him to the curb how many times now? A man’s got his pride. You’re cute enough, but it’s not like you’ve got the kind of beauty to make a man forget he has a pair. What’d you expect, Fin? ”
“I never know what to expect with Lex,” I snapped. “That’s the problem.”
When I returned to the motel, I popped open Penny’s laptop. The screen remained blank. Again. Just like the other times I’d opened it that week. Baiting Lex with interesting Google searches.
I lay on the bed, watching YouTube videos from the APA World Pool Championship. Wouldn’t let myself think about Lex. Or his funny expressions he’d play up to make me laugh. How he liked to cook for me. Especially late at night like this. Sometimes he’d press against my back. Wrap his arms around my waist. Whisper all my favorite foods in different accents. Then I’d turn in his arms…
I wasn’t thinking about him.
THE CUPID CAPER, A Finley Goodhart Crime Caper, by Larissa Reinhart
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