A PIG IN A POKE

As soon as Briana Jeffries woke up she knew her AC had broken down. Her townhouse was like a sauna. She called the landlord to report the malfunction, then got ready for work. Stepping outside, she was enveloped in a cloud of oppressive heat. 

Briana’s townhouse didn’t have a garage – only street parking was available. Slipping off her suit jacket, she adjusted her shoulder bag and began walking to her car. With every step she took, a bead of sweat rippled down her neck and back until her blouse clung to her drenched body. She cursed her high heels and pantyhose but the real estate agency where she worked demanded appropriate attire at all times. 

I really should switch to McConnell Realty. They’re much more casual than Dalton & Banks” she thought as she got into her car and switched on the AC. Sure, the commission she earned was great but she wasn’t truly happy. And dealing with that smarmy, perpetually tanned Joe del Vecchio was nauseating.

First on the agenda was the Monday meeting, then Briana’s client at 10:30. With six houses to show, it was going to be a long day. As soon as she entered the office, Joe was all over her. “Looking hot, Briana. Nice lipstick. Looks all pouty. I’m gonna call you BJ. Know what that means?” She always hated her initials.

What a dick. The only reason Joe was tolerated at the agency was the older female clients adored him and he could charm the panties off them – and probably did if it meant making a sale. Ignoring him, Briana sat at the mahogany table between two colleagues. 

Attention!” Charlotte Dalton announced. “We have a large number of retired couples today who want to see penthouses. Briana and Joe, I want you working together.” Briana sighed in exasperation, already defeated knowing she’d be with Joe all day. Joe grinned and winked across the big conference table, chewing on his pen.

“What a Neanderthal” Briana thought. 

By day’s end Briana was sick of Joe and couldn’t wait to be rid of him but he insisted on walking her to her car. “Let’s get a drink, moisten that luscious BJ mouth”. Involuntarily Briana licked her lips;  Joe leaned in for a kiss as Briana slid into her car. 

“Stop it, Joe! I just want to go home, take a shower and go to bed.” She immediately regretted her choice of words. Joe bent down and whispered in Briana’s ear. “You read my mind, baby”, his fingers playing with the delicate chain that dangled between Briana’s breasts. She pushed his hand away and drove off, nearly knocking him off his feet. It was at that moment she decided that was her last day at Dalton & Banks. 

Arriving back at home, Briana was thrilled to find the AC working and the house delightfully cool. Locking the door, she kicked off her shoes, peeled off her damp clothes and headed for the bathroom. Closing the door, Briana stepped into the shower and stood under the cool water, relaxing, unthinking.  She was just so grateful to be home.

Funny how your mind plays tricks on you sometimes. Eyes closed, Briana thought she heard a noise outside the bathroom. She stood still, listening; nothing. Reaching for the shampoo, Brianna thought she heard a noise again. She listened intently; this time she was sure. SOMEONE WAS IN HER HOUSE!!

Instinct kicked in and Briana lunged from the shower to lock the bathroom door just as Joe del Vecchio burst in, knocking her backwards into the shower. Briana’s head slammed into the tiles; blood tricked down her face and into her eyes. As she began losing consciousness, she slid down the shower wall and barely made out the image of Joe running from her bathroom. She fell face down onto the shower floor, blood swirling down the drain. Clutched in her hand was Joe’s monogrammed pocket square.

Briana was right. That was her last day at Dalton & Banks. 

NAR © 2019

Reposted for Fandango’s Story Starter #79