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The Unexpected

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You never expect it, you’ve come to notice. Though by all means, you should. For all your irritation at Scout’s jokes about your… preferences, you have to admit- to yourself, of course, not him- that he isn’t that far off mark.

You’re filling out some paperwork, making note of places and people damaged in your investigations this past week. Routine legal stuff, really. But you find your concentration slipping as you detail the victims of your outburst. A tall man, thin and lanky. Greying hair cut short around a long, haggard face. Your fingers begin to hesitate as your mind recreates the scene, as present as it was in the moment. That face inches away from your own, the visceral crunch of bone and the screams of a wounded man, the way he gripped his face and dropped…

Pulling yourself back, you return to your work. Location of the incident. It wasn’t too far from the corner Main street and Hyacinth. Third alley down to the west. Old brickwork common to the area, chewed up with age, coated in a chipping layer of greyed paint. The contrast of the blood against it, deep red and dripping, trailed behind the man’s fingers as he staggered away, bracing himself on the wall. The harsh breaths he took as you advanced on him echo in your ears, stammered pleas that fell to wailing as he met your eyes, read your intentions for him-

You startle, coming back to the present. You feel a sudden urge to look around, to confirm that you’re alone. But the notion is foolish, and you quash it immediately. You’re at home, there’s no one to catch you coming out of your little reverie. But slowly, you become aware of the heat settling in your stomach, a quiet but insistent drive worming its way into the back of your mind, and you swear under your breath. You save the document and push your chair back with a resigned sigh, heading toward your bathroom.

You run the shower while you undress, folding and stacking your clothes on the shelf. The water heats up slowly, and in the meantime, you let your hands wander.