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Subject: {ASSM} Agent Jackson Parks: The Pearly Gates by Desdmona (M, solo, voy, violence)
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This story contains explicit scenes, some sexual, some violent. If you're  
offended by graphic violence, then I recommend you avoid this story.
 
Agent Jackson Parks is a new character I'm working on. This is the first in  
a series of stories.
 
*********************************************
Agent Jackson Parks: The Pearly Gates
Written by Desdmona
Edited by  Poison Ivan
 
 
 
At five minutes of five, the morning DJ topped off his radio
program  with a sleek number by Norah Jones. Her smoky sound
seeped through the chill  of the wee morning hours, filling
the interior of his '92 Accord. Agent  Jackson Parks kept the
car radio tuned so low that the rhythm was a  whisper,
Norah's voice like a memory in his mind. As the song  drifted
towards the end, Jackson turned off the radio, cupped his
hands  around the dashboard's lighter, and lit another
cigarette.
 
When he'd taken the last slow drag, he eased the car door
open and stood  out in the crisp, predawn air. Four weeks of
waiting and watching had left  him stiff and tired, and the
tiredness was deep in him - a lead-muscle,  saggy-nerve
weariness.
 
Jackson leaned against the hood of his faded maroon car,
waiting for a  sign that the neighborhood was alive. As if on
cue, through the sediment of  night, came the far-off sigh
and pant of a train. There'd been other times in  his life -
sitting through the lectures in Sociology 101, waiting in
line  at the DMV, or on the ship to the Persian Gulf - when
boredom jostled with  lassitude, leaving him bone-tired, but
this was different. There was no  definite end in sight. No
date that Jackson could stick a thumbtack on in his  mental
calendar. He was at the mercy of the Bureau. And the Bureau
was at  the mercy of a killer.
 
At eight, Jackson would be relieved by Agent Dixon who would
be relieved  in turn at four in the afternoon by Agent Prugh,
who would carry on until  midnight, when once again Jackson
Parks, with his thermos of coffee, a bundle  of sandwiches,
and a canister of Pringles, would begin the vigil that  had
begun to seem pointless. But no agent who'd been part of the
Bureau  for only two years could point out to the Special
Agent in Charge that this  assignment, in his measured
opinion, was fruitless. Patience was a quality  more valuable
than gold to the Bureau. Impatient agents didn't last  long,
and Jackson Parks had plans to be around a good long time.
 
So, night after night, Jackson followed his routine, kissing
the spent  twenty-eight nights goodbye and begrudging the
possible loss of the  twenty-eight nights to come. Each shift
adding another cumulative factor to  Jackson's deathly
weariness. A constant state of alertness took its  toll.
Adrenalin pumped through his blood, hard and fast, whenever
a car on  the road slowed, or an unfamiliar sound needed to
be investigated. But mostly  there was just hour after hour
of nothing.
 
All because the Bureau was gambling that Denver Jones would
return to  see the girl he had intended to marry. Libby
Doyle. Jackson wasn't a gambling  man, but he didn't figure
the odds to be too good. Denver Jones didn't strike  Jackson
as the monogamous type. The "Butcher" was most likely miles
away,  cozying up to some other skirt and sticking her with
his blade.
 
Jones had made a mistake: let a girl get away. The victim
was still  convalescing and would be the rest of her life.
Jones had cut her up pretty  bad in all the places that
counted. But she was a survivor. Even with the  some fifty
slices to her face and gut and groin, she'd crawled away
while  he was sleeping - and somehow took his driver's
license with her.
 
As dawn paled the eastern sky, the bedroom lights in the
tiny house that  Jackson had been watching, flipped on. He
checked his watch. Ms. Doyle was  like clockwork. Jackson
inched his way to the only tree around, a maple that  allowed
the yard to cling to the charade of a natural environment.
Its low  branches shielded him as Jackson leaned heavily
against the tree's trunk.  This was his favorite part of this
job. Libby Doyle slept in the nude and, at  night, didn't
bother to close her curtains. She moved about her bedroom  in
slow, graceful strides - like Norah's voice come to life -
making the  bed, fluffing the pillows, stretching her limbs
before finally, still nude,  making her way to the kitchen,
where the window was bigger. When she put on  the coffee and
reached for the eggs, Jackson could see her bare feet  as
well as her tousled black hair. The frying pan was kept in
an  under-the-counter cabinet. Each morning as she bent to
get the pan, Libby  Doyle proved that keeping her cunt shaved
bald was also part of her daily  routine.
 
Jackson had only meant to unzip his pants to let his penis
breathe. But  the morning-after-morning ritual had worn down
his resistance. He forgot  about his job, forgot where he
was, and ignored any ethical twinge that might  nag him. He
palmed the shaft of his cock, stroking as slow as Libby
Doyle  moved. By the time Miss Doyle walked back to the
bedroom and slipped into  pants and a sweatshirt, Jackson had
spilled his seed at the base of the  maple, the puddle
glistening like morning dew from a street lamp's  glow.
 
Her sweatshirt was well-worn with the words "Natural Born
Killer"  printed on its front. It was too large for her, and
Jackson suspected it once  belonged to Denver Jones, a
callous coincidence based on Jones's history. The  man had
killed a dozen people, with no particular motive in mind
except  cold-blooded malice. When Jackson thought of Libby
Doyle wearing Jones's  sweatshirt, an ugly anger thickened in
his gut. He recognized the potential  danger of this
attitude, but twenty-eight days of staking out the  same
house had drained the brooding out of him. He let the  anger
flare.
 
On the night watch, Jackson could think of taking Libby
Doyle, with her  ignorance and her naivety, and becoming a
Pygmalion. Her slim loveliness was  more than just an
attribute of youth. Jackson knew she worked at  keeping
herself beautiful. Prugh had shared with him her evening
ritual of  bathing, waxing, and pampering while candles
flickered throughout the house.  Libby Doyle would take
beauty to her grave. She seemed like a woman who  needed to
be taken care of, like decisions were hard to come by.
Jackson  was more of a share-the-lead kind of guy. But maybe
this once?
 
In the long nights, he had thought of her softly breathing
in sleep and  how her warm breath might escape from her
parted lips. He thought about her  ebony hair splayed over
the pillow and her naked body snuggled deep under  the
covers. She was three hundred feet away, and in four weeks
time, only  Jackson's professional restraint had kept him
huddled under the maple  branches instead of knocking on her
front door. So what if he shot a wad once  or twice? He was
confident enough to think if he'd wanted, he could have  been
sharing her bed, suckling those pert dark nipples and
tonguing her  smooth, rosy pussy.
 
Jackson Parks wasn't a bad guy. Though sometimes cocky, he
still had a  line in his mind separating right from wrong.
The frequency with which his  thoughts were turning to Libby
Doyle disturbed him. It was blatantly wrong  for an agent to
involve himself personally with any female in any case.  Even
if the female was the moll of a butcher and her involvement
in his  activities was questionable. But Jackson was still
just a man, with a man's  needs, and a man's lust.
 
Dixon and Prugh both made the usual expected jokes about  the
midnight-to-eight shift, and the obvious advantages
pertaining to the  hour. In the beginning, Jackson had
laughed in the expected way and hinted  broadly of the
mythical delights of such an assignment. But lately,  when
the jokes flared, Jackson's neck flushed and laughing with
them was  getting harder. Libby Doyle should have somebody to
protect her.
 
When she returned to the kitchen, the rising sun peeked over
the  horizon. She opened the back door and looked over toward
the small side road  where Jackson had parked his car. The
light behind her outlined her frame,  and the morning wind
teased the strands of her long, dark hair.
 
Jackson had rationalized a while ago that eating breakfast
with her  every morning didn't compromise any bureau
directives. They'd all agreed that  it would be impossible to
watch the girl day-after-day without tipping her  off. So his
conscience was clear, and breakfast had become a  morning
custom.
 
He strolled across the yard, pulling the magnum from his
shoulder  holster when he was forty feet from her door,
pointing it toward the ground.  She stepped aside, as usual,
ushering him into her house.
 
"Morning 007," she said with a look of amusement on her
face.
 
"Good Morning Miss Doyle," he answered, feeling a little bit
like a  five-year-old boy playing an absurd variation of cops
and robbers.
 
He went through the house as he had been taught at the
Academy - gun at  the ready, reflexes alert. It didn't take
long. The house was small with four  rooms, like little
boxes, all on one floor - kitchen, bedroom, living room,  and
bathroom - each meticulously clean. Dolls lived in bigger
homes. The  closets were organized, the floors shined, and no
dust particle touched a  single piece of furniture.
 
When Jackson came back into the kitchen, she had put the
coffee cups on  the table, taking, as usual, the mug with the
bleeding heart picture on its  side.
 
She stood at the stove, turning the eggs and waiting for the
toast to  pop. Without turning she said, "Find any crooks in
my house, Mr. Spy  Man?"
 
"Not today."
 
"You don't trust me much, do ya?"
 
"Of course I trust you, Libby. I just have to follow
orders."
 
"Ain't you got a mind of your own? she asked wearily. "It
gives me the  willies, you sneakin' around my house with your
gun out."
 
He tucked the magnum back in his holster and sat down in his
usual place  - his back to the wall. She brought over the two
plates loaded with eggs and  strips of thick-cut bacon. The
toast popped, and she mechanically buttered  each slice.
 
They ate in silence, and like every morning, she lowered her
face almost  to the plate, nearly shoveling each forkful into
her mouth. From another  woman it might have amused him, or
partially revolted him. In Libby, it  seemed pathetic. He'd
studied her graceful movements day after day. He knew  what
she was capable of. Her eating habits seemed more like a
girl playing  a part. And in the depths of her gray eyes, the
deadness, the nothingness  resting there, was just part of
the act. Libby Doyle needed someone to teach  her.
 
They finished breakfast, and he found the ten-dollar-bill in
his pocket.  He slipped it under the edge of the plate
without her seeing him do it. They  had never spoken of the
fee he had arbitrarily selected as proper for the  morning
breakfast, and he knew that she would not take the plate
away  until he left.
 
"When you all gonna give up?" she asked.
 
"When we get Jones."
 
"He's pretty smart, eh?"
 
"Maybe, but they all make mistakes sometime. We'll find him.
Maybe he'll  come back to be found."
 
She pulled out a cigarette and Jackson wished he carried a
lighter  instead of relying on the one in the car. She had a
way about her that made  him want to act like a gentleman. Or
at least, what he'd learned of gentleman  in old movies.
 
She sighed. "I might as well be in the slammer. At least
when Denver was  around I got to go dancing once in awhile.
Now the whole town skitters at the  sight of me. The women do-
si-do around me like I'm gonna slice open their  necks, and
the men eyeball me like I'm gonna give them AIDS.  And  it's
impossible to make new friends with you double-oh's tagging
along  with me, I'm like a cancer."
 
Jackson stared at her mouth, memorizing how her lips looked
when they  formed the word oh's. "Are you in love with Denver
Jones?" he suddenly  asked.
 
She answered quickly without registering any surprise. "Love
is a mighty  big word, Mr. Spy Man," she said. "Denver ain't
a fine catch, but he's the  card I was dealt."
 
"You didn't know anything about his _other_ activities,
Libby?"
 
She frowned. "You ask me that question about once a week. My
answer  ain't no different from what it was."
 
"It just doesn't make sense that he could kill that many
people and  still maintain a normal life."
 
"I told you he was smart."
 
"Maybe. But you keep this place spotless. How is it that he
didn't bring  home a mess, once or twice, and you not know
about it?"
 
She took another hit off her cigarette before smashing the
butt in the  ashtray. "I don't know," she said with the least
amount of conviction she'd  used all morning. "Didn't you
boys say he buried them in another  state?"
 
"The ones we know about. They didn't die easy, Libby."
 
"He was always wild-like," she said softly. "Even when he
was just a  kid."
 
"You were going to marry him," Jackson said, fighting the
anger that  rose in him again.
 
"Oh, I know what you mean. He'd give me a bad time for sure.
Other  women, boozing, or slam me around. But he only hit me
bad once." She gazed  off into the distance like she was
retracing a fond memory. "Damn, was I  messed up. Nineteen
stitches to my shoulder alone." She absently rubbed her  left
shoulder, pulling the oversized sweatshirt down and exposing
an ugly  scar that ran along her collarbone.
 
"After what's happened," Jackson asked, "if you had the
chance to go  with him, would you?"
 
"I'd be a nut to, wouldn't I?"
 
"But you would, wouldn't you?"
 
"I might."
 
The anger bubbled over. He shoved his chair back and stood
up. "You'll  find the ten bucks under the plate."
 
She flushed a crimson that made her eyes seem lighter. "No
need to leave  that," she said. "I got no need for hand-
outs."
 
"I was paying for the company, like any john would do."
 
His anger didn't fade entirely until he was back at the car,
and then he  was ashamed for what he'd said. She wasn't a
common whore, and Jackson had no  right to treat her like
one. She'd known Denver Jones all of her short life.  The
reports said he'd raised her from age ten. No one was sure
when Jones  had started bedding her. He was still all she
had, and Libby Doyle, according  to all reports, needed a
caretaker. From what Jackson had seen, she was doing  okay
all by herself.
 
Still, he could kick himself for being so heartless. Libby
Doyle  deserved better. Some Pygmalion he was. He couldn't
make a stick figure out  of Play-doh, let alone a perfect
woman out of ivory. Things certainly  wouldn't be the same
between her and Jackson now.
 
Agent Dixon showed up a little before eight and Jackson
Parks drove back  to his rented room and went to bed.
 
He was up at five in the afternoon, had another breakfast
and flipped  through the cable channels looking for something
decent to watch. At eleven,  he finished his lunch, made up a
tuna sandwich, brewed some coffee, grabbed a  bag of corn
chips, and went out to relieve a bored and sleepy  Paul
Prugh.
 
"Anything?" Jackson asked.
 
"Nada," Prugh said as he screwed on the lid to _his_
thermos. "Funny  though," he added, "she stayed in the shower
an extra half hour tonight and  skipped dinner."
 
The long night hours went by without incident. Jackson
imagined Libby  Doyle, deliberately slipping into a flannel
gown after her long shower,  refusing to be nude and scooting
underneath her blanket. Maybe she was  regretting missing
dinner. Or maybe she just wanted to feel warm.
 
In the morning, her curtains were pulled tight. She didn't
come to the  back door. He waited longer than usual and then
went over.
 
"I need to search the house." He sounded gruffer than he'd
meant  to.
 
She stepped aside without a word. As before, the house was
empty.
 
He went back into the kitchen. "Do I get breakfast this
morning,  Libby?"
 
"I can sell you coffee, eggs and bacon for ten bucks, if you
want it,  but I won't be joining you."
 
"I'm sorry I acted like I did yesterday, Libby."
 
Her dead gray eyes flickered to his left and then back to
him. "You were  mean, 007."
 
"I had a reason."
 
"Yeah? What reason?"
 
"You said you might go away with _him_. Libby, I know it
isn't right,  but I care about you." Jackson had practiced
this speech all night, trying to  think of the perfect thing
to say. He hadn't expected her reaction.
 
She moved a half step closer and lifted her eyes to look up
at him. A  spark of life danced into their gray depths just
as her warm breath caressed  his chin. When he bent to kiss
her, she didn't blink or close those eyes.  Jackson felt
compelled to keep his eyes open, too. From his periphery  he
saw her hand hang tentatively in the air above his bicep, as
if she  wasn't sure she could touch him, and then fall
lightly against his arm. Her  fingertips flitted along his
muscle like flapping butterfly wings. He pressed  his lips to
hers just as lightly, and then with more need. Her hard  lips
softened with his urging, and her mouth opened. As his
tongue slid  into the warmth of her mouth, his eyes
instinctively closed and serious want  trickled from his lips
to his groin. He slipped his hand around her waist,  touching
the heavy "Natural Born Killer" sweatshirt, and for a
moment, he  remembered his job. But the moment passed when
her hand slid off his arm and  lighted on his waist. He
flattened his palm against the small of her back and  nudged
her closer. Her long, lithe frame fit perfectly against his
beefier  one. She relaxed against him, and Jackson
strengthened his hold. She smelled  of strawberries - fresh
from the patch and sprinkled with sugar. She tasted  just as
sweet. His other hand wound its way through her silky mane
of  hair. He wished she'd worn it down instead of pulled
back. He'd dreamed of  that hair a million times. The
ponytail loosened as his fingers weaved  between the strands.
 
As easily as she'd leaned into him, she pulled back,
breaking the kiss.  Her eyes were glossy, her lips moist and
swollen. Libby Doyle looked alive  for the first time in four
weeks.
 
"This ain't right," she whispered.
 
"Why? Because of my job?" Jackson asked.
 
"It just ain't right," she said a little louder, a little
more  forcefully.
 
"We're adults, Libby. I want you. I think you want me.
That's what's  right. Anything else we can deal with later."
 
She glanced away and when she looked back, her eyes had gone
dead again  - flat and gray. In that instant, Jackson felt
the rise of instinct at the  back of his neck, but his
reactions were sluggish. He twisted away, reaching  for his
magnum.
 
"I wouldn't try that, Sonny Boy," a man quietly said. The
Colt in the  man's hand was aimed at Jackson's belt buckle.
"Thanks Libby, baby, you did  great."
 
Jackson chanced a quick look at Libby. Her ashen hand,
fluttering at her  neck, looked like a lost dove.
 
"Get his gun, Libs."
 
Libby reached into Jackson's jacket. Instead of going
straight for the  gun, her fingers climbed up his chest and
crab-walked over to his holster.  Jackson couldn't control
the shiver, but he could ignore it.  He tried  to calculate
the aim of Denver Jones's pistol. Jackson might be able  to
swing away and grab Libby as cover, but instinct told him
Jones might  bat an eye, but he'd still shoot her if it meant
saving his own skin. Jackson  couldn't take that chance.
 
"Hurry it up, Libby. We ain't got all day. Marshall Dillon
here's relief  will be showing up in a couple of hours."
Denver Jones cackled like a rooster  in brassy defiance of
daybreak. "You boys sure are punctual. A man could set  his
watch by your comings and goings."
 
Jackson shrugged as Libby pulled the magnum from its
holster. She  dangled it away from her with two fingers
pinched around the trigger.
 
"Put the damn thing on the table, Libs before you shoot me
with  it."
 
She dropped the gun on the kitchen table and clenched her
eyes shut as  if waiting for the explosion. The only sound
was the muffled thud of metal  against a clothed wood table.
 
"Now, back up real slow against the wall, mister. Hands way
up. That's  right. Get me a wad of some cloth, Libby. Make it
thick, like a towel or  something."
 
Denver Jones wore an Armani suit, but the knees were stained
with dirt  and a button was missing from the jacket. His
dingy, white shirt was opened  at the collar. His neck sagged
like a man of sixty instead of forty. He was  taller than
Jackson, but his slump kept him from meeting that height.
His  belly pouched over his slacks hiding the snap of his
fly.  Black  eyebrows came together over the bridge of his
nose, and his face was dusted  with a few days growth of
beard. When he smirked, his surprisingly white  teeth
sparkled.
 
"A cop," Jones said, "trying to fuck my woman!" He cackled
again. "You  ain't very smart, mister. Where'd they get you
from? The K-Mart  Academy?"
 
"Laugh it up while you can, Denver. The way I see it, your
laughing days  are numbered." Jackson spoke with the
confidence only agents from the Bureau  possessed.
 
"I ain't the one with a gun pointed at my gut. You are."
 
"You can kill me, but there are hundreds more, just like me,
waiting to  connect up with you."
 
Denver Jones must have seen the truth in that because his
smirk  disappeared. "Hurry up, Libby," he yelled over his
shoulder, and then focused  on Jackson once again. "You
beagles couldn't find a pile of shit unless your  foot
stepped in it," he said. "You didn't find me before, and you
won't  find the two of us later."
 
Libby came back into the kitchen with a white towel draped
across her  arm like she was waitressing. "You want me to cut
it up, Denver? Or maybe  find some rope?" she asked.
 
"No. Give it here. I want to wad it around the end of this
pistol. The  damn thing makes too much noise." He grabbed the
towel and wrapped it around  the pistol, never taking his
eyes off of Jackson. "You want to see me shoot  him, Libby?"
 
"Huh?"
 
"Stand over there, far away from him in case this gets
messy."
 
"His blood's gonna get on everything in my kitchen?"
 
"Probably. I might have shot him clean-like in the head, but
I seen him  wanking off underneath the maple yesterday
morning while he was peeking  through your window. Any man
using _my_ woman deserves to suffer a little  more."
 
Color - scarlet red - rushed up over Libby's neck and face.
She glanced  at Jackson and then dropped her gaze to the
floor.
 
"Don't tell me you like the idea of him watching you, Libs."
 
"No, no.I"
 
"Forget it baby, I know I ain't took care of your needs in a
while.  Daddy knows you got an itch. We'll get to that later
when we kiss this  hell-hole goodbye."
 
The scarlet drained from Libby's face as her hand fluttered
again at her  throat. "Do we have to leave a mess, Denver?"
she asked. "We just painted  this room in April. Remember?"
 
"Oh, I remember. We fucked right there on that table whilst
we waited  for the first coat to dry. You always were a
tiger, baby." Denver stared at  Jackson. "I can see why you'd
want her. She's got a great set of titties,  don't she? And
that pearly gate of hers, all shaven and clean, just like  I
like it. It is still clean, ain't it Libby?"
 
Libby refused to look up. She only nodded.
 
"Give us a look-see, Libby. I ain't seen it in awhile, and
this poor  sucker might as well get one last peek at what
he'll be missing." When Jones  cackled this time, it sounded
wet, like a man with a mouth full of  spit.
 
"No, Denver, please."
 
"Do it, honey, or daddy might start ruminating over how much
his little  girl seemed to like kissin' the copper here." He
spoke quietly, but the  sinister undertow of his words pulled
at Jackson's gut.
 
Libby didn't hesitate. She yanked down her pants and spread
her  legs.
 
"Mm-mm. Ain't nothing like a shaved pussy. Pull your
flappers apart,  Libby, so's I can see the pink."
 
Like a stringed marionette, she reached with both hands and
spread her  labia. Pearlescent beads of moisture clung to her
inner folds. Jackson knew  he should have looked away, saved
her dignity, but he couldn't help himself.  He stared at her
pink pussy and wondered, was she wet because of Denver?  Or
was she wet because of the kiss she had shared with Jackson?
His cock  twitched in his pants.
 
"I'll get me a taste of that real soon, Libby, but for now,
that's  enough," Denver said in that cool, low voice.
 
Sweat dribbled down Jackson's ribs. His mouth was dry and a
low hum  buzzed in his ears. Some of it was genuine fear.
More of it was anger and  frustration that he'd been taken so
easily. He looked at Libby. She'd pulled  her pants back up
and stood with her hands crossed over her chest.
 
"Do you have to kill him in the kitchen, Denver?"
 
"You got no more use for this shack, baby. If you don't want
to watch  then go in the next room. We got to get a move on."
 
"They'll never give up if you kill me, Jones. The Bureau
takes care of  their own debts," Jackson said, despising the
tremble that crept into his  voice.
 
"They don't scare me, especially not after seeing how easy
coming back  here was." Jones tightened the towel around the
barrel of the gun and  steadied his aim.
 
"Denver," Libby said. "Wait a minute. Let me get my stuff
together  before you kill him. It'll make noise, and I don't
want to run for it without  my things."
 
"Forget it baby, I'll buy you all new things. Where we're
going, all  you'll need is a swimsuit, anyways."
 
"After we get married?"
 
Denver Jones frowned. "Baby, there ain't time for weddings.
You'll get  the new stuff anyway."
 
"I'll hurry, I promise. Don't shoot him yet. I want to see
it, Denver.  I've never seen a man get shot before." She
smiled, but the smile didn't  reach her eyes. She tipped up
on her toes and kissed Denver on his scruffy  cheek before
hurrying off toward her bedroom.
 
"Make it fast, baby," Denver growled.
 
Denver stood, whistling an old Charlie Pride tune, the
muzzle, shrouded  in the white towel, steady as a boulder.
Jackson made his plan, the best plan  he could come up with.
The magnum was still on the table - a clumsy mistake.  Two
steps and Jackson would have it in his hand. He just needed
to watch  Denver's eyes. They might flick over to Libby when
she came back into the  kitchen. If they did, Jackson would
throw himself to the left and snatch the  magnum as he fell.
He'd get at least one good shot.
 
Jackson heard Libby's quick footsteps. She appeared in the
kitchen  doorway, almost ethereal-looking. She lifted a
pistol and the full blast at  short range caught Denver Jones
in the back of his skull. Denver's eyes  widened in surprise,
just before they quit moving altogether. He stumbled  forward
and fell, crashing to the floor, his face smashing against
the  worn-woven rug.
 
Jackson jumped, almost too late, to get his foot out of the
way of the  falling body. He was stunned. Moments ago, she'd
acted as if she was scared  to death to touch Jackson's gun,
and now she'd, almost expertly, held a  pistol and calmly
took Denver Jones's life.
 
Libby Doyle laid her pistol neatly next to Jones's Colt,
facing both  barrels in the same direction - away from Denver
Jones.
 
Using a kitchen knife, Jackson bent and picked up the guns,
slipping the  dull blade of the knife through the triggers to
avoid messing up the prints.  There was no doubt that Jones
was dead. Blood pooled in his opened eyes,  changing the
whites to crimson.  Libby knelt beside the body. She  clasped
Denver's dead hand to her chest and sat back on her heels. A
low  sad tune spilled from someplace deep inside her.
 
"You really did love him," Jackson said.
 
"I loved my old Denver. The one I used to know. This wasn't
him."
 
"Why'd you kill him, Libby? Because he was going to kill
me?"
 
She turned her head slowly and looked at the wall behind
Jackson. Her  eyes were distant, and her voice reedy. "You
see that white wall? Last April,  I wanted to fix this place
up. We'd been here almost two whole months. A  record for me
and Denver.  He bought the paint, and we painted it.  And
just like Denver said, whilst we were waiting, we fucked on
that  table." She glanced at the wooden legs and the
checkerboard cloth of the  kitchen table. "Only it wasn't
like fucking that time. At least, not the  fucking Denver and
I was used to. That time he used the cleaned paint brush.  He
dipped the brush into water, pretending it was paint. He
called me his  Mona Lisa and brushed the water all over my
body. I was so wet, dripping from  water and my own cream. He
brushed my pussy like he was painting a  masterpiece - long
strokes and little short dabs. `Now this is art,' he  said.
 
"When he climbed up on me, he swirled the soft bristles over
my titties,  gentle-like. He pushed his pecker inside of me,
and jammed the bristles  harder against my nipples. When we
was finished, he painted my belly with his  soft lollipop. I
expected Denver to shove the paint brush up inside me,  but
instead he said, `We should get married,' and I believed
him. We was  gonna live here, you know."
 
She still coddled Denver's lifeless hand against her chest.
Black, curly  hair poked from under his shirt sleeve and
drifted up over his colorless  knuckles. A Rolex knockoff
showed the time to be six-twenty-two. The last  half-hour had
seemed like an eternity.
 
"You didn't want my blood to mess up the wall?"
 
"It didn't mean nothing to him, not a damn thing."
 
Jackson shifted uneasily. "Well, no matter why you did it, I
owe you."  But she wasn't listening. She'd started that
toneless crooning again, a  forgotten lullaby.
 
He walked toward the counter, her feathery words stopping
him. "Did you  say something Miss Doyle?"
 
"I can buy a new rug, can't I, 007? But the walls, they
would never have  been the same."
 
He reached for the phone, careful not to disturb her
canister set lined  neatly against the wall - flour, sugar,
tea, and coffee all spaced evenly  apart. The cordless phone
stuck in its cradle and he had to rock it to  release it.
He'd work out the details of his phrasing later, when he
wrote  his report, but for now he needed to tell Dixon that
Jones was dead. He  dialed the number. The low rings reminded
him of a lifeguard's whistle at the  county pool. He hated
when things weren't what they seemed.
 
"Yeah?" the sleepy voice said.
 
"This is Parks," he said. "I've got news."
 
"What's up, Jackson?"
 
"No need to bring a lunch when you come today, Dixon. The
long wait is  over."
 
 
- end -
 
This story originally appeared at Ruthie's Club: 
_http://www.ruthiesclub.com_ (http://www.ruthiesclub.com) 
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