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Conscience

“Nothing says good morning, Monday, like a cup of boiling hot cocoa with crunchy marshmallows.” Joshua spoke between gentle slurps. He sat on an ice-cold concrete bench wrapped in layers of coats and sweaters, accessorized by a scarf and tie.

Lucy examined Joshua’s perpetual scowl for any hint of humor. Steam drifted off the cup warming his hands. She rewrapped her scarf for the hundredth time and resumed pacing in an attempt to keep warm.

“Joshua, I never know when you’re being serious.”

He sipped his cocoa audibly crunching down on a marshmallow and almost managed a smile, but reverted back to pure scowl as his gaze fell on the concrete chess tables across the park. The tables started filling this time of the morning, and stayed somewhat full most daylight hours.

“Our murderer is here.”

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Mesmerist

He leaned in, intruding on her personal space in a familiar way she only allowed her mentor. Lucy felt his words as heated breath on one ear more than she heard them.

“Be evasive.”

His lips and breath withdrew, leaving her questioning his intensions. They stood on an empty tube platform. No cars. Above, concrete and countless feet of dirt. Below, rails in a six-foot deep pit.

She put a hand on her stomach to settle it.

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