"So, what does she want?" Johnny asked. I quickly folded the note
when I realized he was looking over my shoulder, trying to read it
too. I turned around.
"What do you mean?"
"Well, it is a note from Maggie, isn't it? I saw here name at the bottom of the paper." Johnny started to grin. "Seems you made quite an impression on her."
"Oh, it's probably nothing" I said to Johnny, while I tried to concentrate on what to do now. Picture's flashed behind my eyes. Pictures of the stripper on stage. And every time the earrings seemd to be the centre of all these flashes. What was wrong with these earrings? "Concentrate, Brad. Concentrate" I kept telling myself.
"Nothing? This gorgeous lady wants to see you, or at least that's what I think, and you call that nothing?"
I slowly started walking back inside again, towards the door of the
men's room. Johnny followed. What was wrong with those damn
earrings? Did I see them before? I tried to concentrate even harder.
My head was screaming. Pictures were flashing. Yes, I had seen them
before... but where? Then a thought started to take form. I was
starting to remember where I had seen these earrings before. Johnny
looked at me with this look in his eyes that said "What the hell is
wrong with you?"
"Well, ok, maybe it isn't nothing," I 'explained' to Johnny, "It's just that I wonder what this woman would want from with me. That's all".
Johnny laughed out loud. "Hey, I can think of a couple of reasons why *I* would want to see *HER*!". I managed to produce a smile, in spite of my anxiety, which soothed Johnny a bit.
After all this wasn't going to be as easy as I thought.
A face popped into my mind. It was a face that looked vaguely familiar... it was the face of an old woman. Damn. Who was this old nut?
"Well, I suppose you don't want me around when you go see this
Maggie-woman. At least I wouldn't really dig it if any of my friends
were looking over my shoulder if I were, well you know, trying to
make out." Johnny showed me his smile again.
"You know, I really appreciate that" I said to Johnny.
All of a sudden an adrenalin rush - I knew where I had seen the old bitches face - it was one of the old farts I knew from my former "Meals On Wheels"-job . Oh damn, what was her name again? It started to come back to me now. It was this old lady that had like four or five cats - bloody animals. Bette - yes, that's right! Bette it was! Bette something. Were these her earrings? And if so, how did they end up with Maggie Mounds?
Johnny must have seen something on my face, because he looked at me in a peculiar way. The fact I remembered where I had seen the earrings before made me feel euphorious. I genuinly smiled and laughed out loud. Johnny started to laugh with me and everything seemed to be right again. Johnny's face had cleared and he seemed to have forgotten the whole thing instantly. We said goodbye to one another and decided to get back together soon. Then Johnny left Bries, leaving me alone with the needle which would undoubtfully lead me through all this.
So, what to do next? Of course - go upstairs and take the life of this woman. Maybe have some fun with her first. And I would have to find out some other things, like the "earring-connection" and the question behind her note. With these thought my legs started to tremble a bit out of pure anxiety.
I headed back towards the exit, took the elevator and got onto the seventh floor. I started walking down the hallway. 815. . . 816. . . 817. . . 818. I stood there just for a second, trying to calm myself down a little. My head was screaming - temples pounding. I pressed my hands against my temples, trying to calm down the adrenalin rush. After a couple of seconds, I started to feel a bit more relaxed, so I decided to knock at the door.
"Yes?" A warm, yet powerful and compelling voice.
"Maggie Mounds?" I asked. The door opened, showing Maggie wearing a bathrobe and holding a slightly flattened cig in her right hand. I quickly glanced down the room, which appeared to be empty. "Maggie Mounds?" I asked again.
"Taylor," she said, "Maggie Taylor. Mounds is just my artist name. Come on in. We have important matters to discuss." She walked back into the room.
"You're quite right" I thought, and followed her, closing the door behind me.