Persuader by Susan Kuchinskas
He didn’t notice her until she got up to dance. She was big. You might say fat, if you were that kind of person. He wasn’t. Chalk it up to a lot of experience. And a disdain for cliché.
She wore ragged cutoff jeans and a t-shirt that said DANGEROUS in rhinestones. Cute. But she was more than cute, if a lot less than dangerous. She moved that big package like it was floating on the ocean, twerking it, rolling it. An unmistakable message. She wanted it. He wanted her.
It was what he did. Pick out a woman for the night. Take her back to whatever midrange Travelodge he was camping in. Screw her brains out. Then get a good night’s sleep—alone. Uber made the job a lot easier. Harder for them to cling and no excuse to hang around.
Sometimes they were up for it. Sometimes they needed persuasion, and he was always generous with the drinks. If they needed more coaxing, he kept a little bottle of persuader in his pocket.
This one would come easily. He knew it. Which was fine, because he wasn’t up to working hard for it tonight.
Dancing wasn’t his thing. He waited until she sat back down with her friends, two other women who were more attractive, if that was your thing. It wasn’t his. He liked them a little desperate. The wing-women would make it a bit harder to talk to her. But he was so good at this.
It worked like it always did. No illicit substances necessary, just three tequila sunrises. In his car on the way to the motel, he pushed up her skirt and pushed his hand between her legs. She spread, and her right hand found his hard-on. By the time they crashed through the door of his room, her panties were down around her ankles.
He traveled down this road so many times before that each move was instinctive. Right now, they were at a fork in it. If he didn’t manage expectations, there could be demands. He didn’t like demands. The thing was to maintain total control.
She broke away to slip her backpack off her shoulder, headed toward the dresser. He grabbed the pack, slung it to the floor and pushed her onto the bed.
The whole thing was a scramble. She seemed up for everything, so he kept pushing her. And she kept going there. In fact, she wasted him. So much that he had to take a minute, when it was all over, before he started the disengagement process.
She crawled to the foot of the bed and rummaged in her purse. Good. Maybe she was going to get out on her own. Then she climbed back on top of him. Again? She straddled him and he started to push her off, not too hard at first.
There was a knife. What the fuck? He thrashed, but the blade slashed. Blood spurted so fast his muscles turned to water.
He stared through dimming eyes, croaked out a word.
“Sorry,” she said, not sorry. “It’s what I do. Besides, it’s my birthday.”
About the author:
Susan Kuchinskas mixes genres with impunity from the San Francisco Bay Area. She’s the author of the science fiction/detective novels Chimera Catalyst and Singularity Syndrome.
5/23/2022 08:13:16 am
Very graphic throw back to the pulp era, meant for entertainment, and it certainly has that, with a twist at the end. It is what it is, as Tiger Woods has said many times about this or that aspect of a golf course, a story not to be judged by anything but what Susan attempted and pulled off well.
5/23/2022 11:25:11 am
I loved this. Clear, concise, interesting, and well-written. The last line was a kicker.
5/23/2022 03:01:18 pm
WOW this is very well done. I didn't see the ending and loved every minute of this short tale. Can not wait to read more of your work. Keep the small ones coming.
5/23/2022 06:07:47 pm
“It was what he did.”/“It’s what I do.” Reminds me of “The Most Dangerous Game.” And I fell into the trap, just like our less-than-lovable protagonist. As fellow commenter Heather Haven said, the last line was as unexpected and deft as the, er, climax.
5/24/2022 03:09:16 pm
The clever and skillful Kuchinskas author of the Finder sci-fi detective series (Chimera Catalyst and Singularity Syndrome) excels in many genres, formats and styles. In this short, short story she expertly sets us up and then twists the knife of surprise into our backs before we realize what happened.
5/26/2022 10:59:53 pm
Well done, SK!
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