Some time in the Winter of 2017
The door slammed shut behind Sergeant Shadwell. Wildly he stomped on the doormat to free his shoes from the snow that clung to them – and to let out his frustration about the icy weather. The cold and the still falling flakes of snow had ruined his Wednesday patrol. How was he supposed to check the visitors in the park for witches among them when there were no visitors in the park?
With an annoyed huff, he walked up the stairs and unlocked his apartment door. He frowned when the door on the opposite side did not open. No Majorie to greet him and ask if he was alright?
Yes, well, all the better. The less time spend with that wicked woman, the better. He shook of the feeling that might have been disappointment if he had any reason to be disappointed. Which he had not!
After getting rid of his damp coat and the wet boots, he righted the rest of his attire while glancing through the milk glass of his entrance door. For no specific reason of course. Just the instinct of an old warrior to be ever alert. Yes, that was it.
Grabbing today’s newspaper, he walked over to his old armchair and was just about to sit down, when he noticed a thermos on the small side table. A note was leaning against it.
I saw you go out into the cold. It’s admirable how dedicated to your work you are. I made tea for your return. Relax a little. M
Shadwell did his best to fight down the strange feeling that threatened to spread in his chest. To distract himself, he shook his head and fretted about the silly woman.
“Relax,” he scoffed. “That sin frayed Jezebel knows nothing. There is no rest for a witchfinder for evil won’t rest either.”
With a huff he let himself fall into his armchair and grabbed the sugar pot next to the thermos. A familiar laughter from outside interrupted him. So he left the newspaper and the tea to get up and step to the window.
There, in the small shared garden behind the house she stood: Majorie Potts aka Madame Tracy aka the Whore next door, talking to a neighbour.
Shadwell swallowed and really really wanted to turn away from the window, but somehow couldn’t.
He tried not to notice how close-fitting the pants Majorie wore were. He tried not to notice how the tight jacket hugged her hips and breasts. He tried not to notice how low the neckline ran. He tried not to notice the winter sun catching in her fire red locks.
After a while of definitely not staring, he let out an annoyed growl.
He stomped towards his coat rack and grabbed an old grey cardigan. With the woollen piece in hand he hurried to the back door and outside.
At the sound of the door opening, Majorie turned her head and smiled at him.
“Mr. Shadwell,” she greeted in her silken voice. “Are you back yet? Did you have any succ…”
“For Heaven’s sake, Jezebel,” Shadwell exclaimed while throwing the way too large jacket over her. “There’s no man in this city who hasn’t seen all this. No need to catch a cold while advertising.”
For a moment Majorie stared at him in surprise. But then a grateful smile formed on her delicate features.
“Oh, Mr. Shadwell,” she purred. “How thoughtful of you! Thank you!”
“Aye,” he said. “Don’t need ye to ruin this house’s reputation any more than ye already do.”
“You know,” she said sweetly. “There may be one or another man who has not seen everything yet…”
Shadwell huffed and, ignoring the mischievous twinkle in her deep blue eyes as well as the flustered neighbour, he returned into the house.
Grumbling, he sank into his armchair and finally allowed the warmth of the tea to spread in his chest.
It was only the tea, of course.