[Please note that sexually explicit elements of the scene were scrubbed]
“Two women were found dead last week,” Clara said.
Clara hopped lightly from one foot to the other so her toes would stay warm. Snow covered the ground, while more fell lazily from the sky in the form of large snowflakes. This could have been a romantic winter’s eve if she were not busy working.
A couple passed by on the opposite side of the street. While the gentleman paid her little heed, the well-dressed flapper at his side leered at her. Even from that distance the tattoo on Clara’s leg was visible and around here that was a symbol for women who were from the wrong side of the tracks.
Clara had been working this particular corner for the past three weeks. In that time there had been eight deaths involving prostitutes. All of them had been killed without a single witness coming forward. In itself that was odd since the deaths all occurred in heavily trafficked areas.
The city had done their best to keep things under wrap, namely by clamping down on the prostitutes. The local intelligencia also kept it out of the news, even that nagging tidbit about the women being drained of blood. Worse still, their fates did not lend any sympathy from the constabulary; around here an impure lifestyle meant they deserved a death to match.
Every victim had certain commonalities, all were ladies of the night, dark haired and young. Lastly every one of them had a tattoo on their leg although the latter might have been a red herring.
“Fortunately I can have it removed when I’m done,” Clara thought.
In the distance, she saw a set of glowing headlights coming down the street. Cars were getting to be more common now, especially in big cities. The snow today would make driving treacherous, these vehicles were tricky to control since there was no traction.
Fortunately this was a newer model, long hood with side mounted spare tyres, a hard top and running boards. There was a single occupant inside who sported leather gloves and a white scarf. Funny how some people were unable to break from tradition.
The car slowed as it approached, Clara saw how he was sizing her up. This was not the first time that she had been approached in this matter, so she opened up her coat to let him have a peek. While the cold air rushed in she shivered, an effect that somehow got his attention.
“The spider is checking its web for flies,” Clara thought.
The man obviously had money, how else could he own an imported car of this sophistication? That may have been a disarming trait for some, but Clara suspected the killer was wealthy. For the most part they were all affluent and drawn to power.
The man pulled up to the curb and rolled down his window. This was the part Clara dreaded, feeling like a piece of meat. She wore a simple dress that left little to the imagination and did much to draw the eyes to her ample bust, but he showed no interest. Instead, he focused on her eyes and then lingered on her tattooed leg.
“Hiya handsome,” Clara said mimicking the accent of the local street urchins.
“How much,” the man asked.
“Starts at two bits for a dry bob honey,” Clara said.
The man never batted an eye at the price, since he could easily afford the going rates at an exclusive brothel. While Clara was attractive, she was hardly unique in that aspect, so her prices had to be competitive to not arouse suspicion.
The man smiled before he said, “I’ll pull up over there.”
“Whatever ya say honey,” Clara said and winked.
While this gentleman drove off fifty feet, Clara made her way towards the alley and noticed how his car had no frost in the windows. Despite that clue, all she could think about was how cold her feet were, and how divine it was to start walking again.
From her purse she pulled out a lipstick applicator and applied a fresh coat. A moment later, she dabbed a bit of holy water on her lips, a trick that worked well in the past, but prayed it would not be needed.
Once she got to the alley, Clara saw the gentleman standing by a series of refuse bins. Inside she heard the band playing, which meant no one would notice errant moans, grunts or gunshots.
Clara played her part and placed the purse she carried within arm’s reach. She then sat on a bin and hiked up her dress to reveal that she had no knickers. For a moment his eyes glanced at her inviting muff before he licked his lips.
For all the pomp and circumstance this man had shown while driving that car, he displayed none of that now. The buttons to his trousers were undone in a flash which caused them to drop effortlessly around his patent leather shoes.
Clara would have helped him, but he was too fast for her. Before she knew it, his hands were on her thighs forcing her legs apart while his member hovered just an inch away.
“Take it easy handsome, we got all the time—,” Clara said.
Clearly this man was not in a mood to listen… …All the while her hand slid ever closer to her purse, and the derringer concealed within.
“This is a powerful one,” Clara thought.
He had to be, being oblivious to her aura of faith required nothing less. It also explained why he was still enjoying the ride…
…Clara opened her eyes just enough to watch him clench his jaw. The act should have been pure rapture…
Clara grabbed a hold of her derringer and drew it out… …she squeezed on the first trigger of her weapon.
The muted shot still echoed through the alley, but the music inside drowned out the noise. The man fell face first into the snow and gave her a view of that gaping hole through the back of his skull.
She sighed in relief that her precaution of applying holy water in all the right places had been an unmitigated success. With her weapon trained Clara got back on her feet and closed up her coat. She was chilled to the bone and looked forward to a warm bath at a reputable hotel. With this threat neutralised, she had no need to stay at the local dive.
“At least he has a car,” Clara said.
The hunter then fired another well-aimed shot at the base of his spine, which ensured he would stay down until morning. Now all she had to do was get him into the boot of his car.
“All work and no play,” Clara said.
Disclaimer: This chapter is currently in development. There are likely typos, errors, omissions, inconsistencies and so forth. Please do not treat this as a polished and completed work!