The Eastbank Killer – A Serial Novella
Attorney Donna Bosque finds her life turned upside down when an attractive associate at her firm becomes convinced the Eastbank Killer, who has been terrifying Portland, is directly linked to their law firm.
Donna woke slowly, her body stretching to remembered pleasure. She let her eyes drift open. Merington lay beside her, her dark hair tousled, her lipstick smeared, one breast outlined by a tattoo of a Celtic vine. She was more beautiful than anything or anyone Donna could remember. Donna closed her eyes and let sleep take her again. She did not want to think about the inevitable day, the files piling up, Jerry Pesher screaming down the hall at the interns.
She jolted awake a second time when Merington’s alarm went off. Eight thirty. Half an hour before Merington was expected at the office, an hour and a half after Donna usually arrived.
Merington silenced the alarm and rolled into Donna’s embrace.
“We have to get up,” Donna whispered. “It’s 8:30.”
“Let’s not.” Merington wrapped her arms around Donna’s arms and held them close to her chest. “Everyone will think you’re in court.”
“What about you?”
Donna could feel Merington shrug. She was about to tell Merington that they could not just skip work. They weren’t kids. This wasn’t homeroom.
The window in Merington’s bedroom was covered in a filmy green curtain that let in a muted view of the city’s high-rises. Donna felt reckless lying naked beneath so many windows. She also felt like she had come to a crossroad in her life. She could be the woman who hurried into the office, torn between the shame of wearing yesterday’s suit and the greater shame of wearing Merington’s clothes. Or she could be the woman who drifted back to sleep with Astrid Merington in her arms. She could be the woman who ordered breakfast delivered to the flat. She could be the woman who finished the bottle of red wine with her lover before noon.
“Fuck Pesher,” Donna said.
Merington laughed. Donna thought she heard surprise – or perhaps it was relief – in that laugh.
The bedside clocked ticked onto 9 AM. Donna fell back asleep.
The first time Merington’s cell phone rang, they both ignored it. The second time, Merington reached for it, glanced at it, and tapped a long text onto the screen, then dropped it back in the drawer beside her bed.
“Office. I told them I was sick. Told them to tell you that when you got back from court.” She winked. “Coffee?”
In the bedside table, the phone vibrated, like a caged animal.
“Stay here,” Donna said, pulling Merington on top of her.
Their bodies fit together instantly, as though the warmth of the bed had melted their edges and now they blended. Donna felt liquid. They rocked together.
The phone fell silent and then rattled to life again.
“Bastards,” Merington said, her eyes closing. Pleasure or anticipation etched a worried line in her brow. Her breath quickened. “Oh, God!” She pressed her hips into Donna’s thigh, fast and urgent.
Donna pulled her closer, moving her hips to meet Merington’s.
“I feel like a teenager,” Merington gasped. “I’m going to come…if you don’t slow down…I…”
Donna could not believe that this was her life. Merington was so lovely. The pleasure of watching her giving in to orgasm was even greater than the pleasure between Donna’s own legs.
She did not hear the phone buzzing in the drawer. She did not hear the sirens on the street below. She did not hear the bang of a nearby construction site. She could not remember Jerry Pesher or the law firm or the lurid news of the Eastbank Killer or Portland or anything from her previous life.
Merington rose up on her elbows, her head thrown back. She cried out. Donna’s own cried mixed with hers.
And everything about the world was perfect…until Donna’s breath slowed and Merington dropped on top of her, and Donna realized the banging was not a construction site. It was the door.
A woman’s voice called through the wall, “Portland Police. Open up!”
Next installment: Feb. 6, 2013.
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