He sat in the coffee shop, drinking tea and eating scones. He contemplated how the previous night transpired.
People on the street went about, probably to work, school, maybe from a lover's bed, to whatever awaited them that morning. An older Black man was sipping coffee and looking out as well and the warmth of brewing coffee/tea and baking were welcome comfort from the dull Spring cold.
'Guileless, the world goes on', he thought. Just as the night before, he sojourned about seeking a bit of the past as he delivered the future.
People going to the theater, to the store, to get a spot of drink, meeting and greeting for dinner. While he played cat and mouse. Quiet, soft footsteps, in and out of the streetlights.
To start, she was dressed as a Naval officer, at a recruitment stand in the lower lobby of his hotel. Cute. Inevitably, nearby were the guys who were going to try and make his life difficult.
Back up the escalator, through the lobby and down the front steps, shadows following.
Then the streets of DC laid out, like a maze toy thrown by a peckish child. Into the night.
He fingered the throwaway gun and hoped he didn't need to use it. So small but too much bang for the buck near the hotel, even with a supressor.
As he thought, he passed a street worker, finishing his rounds. An innocent who could be caught up in this little intrigue. Or was he?
He kept his eye on the worker and ducked into a liquor store.
The clerk eyed him warily seeing something he wished wasn't seen.
He calmly took his time and bought a half pint of whiskey, a good brace against the cold later.
All the time he monitored the street. The worker went on and his 'fans' swept past the store.
He exited and crossed the street in the other direction.
'Dance of the toreadors', he thought.
He made for Dupont Circle. Quiet, deserted, not like the last time he was there. Another story, another time.
Cutting through, he saw the two trailing ahead. He cut to the side.
Dark, deserted, the nightlife elsewhere. No cover here save for the side streets.
He made a beeline for a hotel. Hide in plain sight.
People bustling, what a contrast to the cold dark night.
He asked the concierge directions to his own hotel. Then he left the well lit cordial hubbub, undetected.
His shadows just couldn't get a fix on him. Crowds, dar, light, he blended in and simply blocked their 'radar'.
In his room, there was a message from her. 'Sorry, wrong room', delivered with just a hint of amusement. He smiled and secured himself as he slept on another floor.
'The delivery was made to the place that never was.' His signal. Delivered to ears that did not hear.
Certainly the eyes never saw........
He finished his meager breakfast and left, smiling at the old Black man. The man , in return smiled and looked again to the street, the people.
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