(x) Days of Photography is a flash fiction/photography collaboration with Austin Andrews of Disposable Words. This is Day Seven.

Nobody notices the cat at his feet eating duck’s beak.

“Who the fuck?!”
The handful of customers in the restaurant turn their heads.
“Who the fuck?!”
His family at the table closest to the kitchen return to their dinner.
“Who the fuck!?”
He has a meat cleaver in hand. The ducks glisten on the hooks behind him.
“Who the fuck?!”
A man with a full head of grey hair stands up at his table and leaves.
“That’s who!”
A woman of same age and colour hair returns from the toilet.
“And you too!” He points to the door with his cleaver.
She follows his directions.

Our gentleman murderer’s taste for cigarettes has returned. He sits outside the restaurant and watches the entrance to the building opposite. A woman stands just off the entrance. She has been there for as long as he has been watching.

A young man with a clear garbage bag full of laundry comes up to the entrance and swipes a key card. She comes over and holds the door open for him; he gives her a circumspect smile. He could be the man I killed, he thinks. The thought confuses him.
She lets herself into the building.

He calls for the bill over his left shoulder, not taking his eye off the entrance, and smokes the cigarette as close to the butt as he can. It is his last.

He leaves the cat with the tip and walks out of the restaurant as the first suits of the lunch rush arrive.
Abuse comes from the kitchen; this time aimed at the front-of-house staff.
He can still hear the row from the other side of the street as he measures the height of the building: eight floors.
He remembers the haggard face of the woman, the way she took long blinks while waiting. This shouldn’t take too long, he thinks, and surprises himself by saying it out loud.

(to be continued)

Photo Copyright ©2008 Austin Andrews