True Memoirs of A Liar 2: Sacrifice
Author: C Lawson

Chapter 4
Clever Girl pt.2

Before Alex and I had known that we were both heartbreakers, we were inseparable.  Alex never left my side and I never wanted to leave his.  One day Alex took me to the park we were both familiar with.  Alex laid out a picnic blanket and I looked up at the Virginia sky.  I sighed and interlocked my fingers behind my head as I laid down.  Alex leaned over me and smiled.  Then, I had called him Jacob.

            “What are you thinking?” he wondered. “You look so at peace.” I gave him a questioning stare. “So calm.  I want to know what you’re thinking about that’s making you so happy.”

            I breathed in deeply and closed my eyes.  I hummed a short, melodic lullaby to myself. “I want to forget.  Everything.  Everyone.  Even if it’s just for a little while.  I don’t want to remember any of my life before.” None of it, I whispered in my head, I want a new life with white picket fences and someone to love the real me for the real me.

            I walked into the restaurant and told the waiter my name.  He led me to a table in the back and took my order.  I had made sure to arrive early so that the Forrester Insurance Co. representative Mr. Bryson wouldn’t get the wrong impression about me.

            I leaned over to the side to rummage around in my briefcase.  Before I could sit back up, I heard someone clear their throat. “Good afternoon.” I knew that voice.  I sat straight up and somehow I had already gotten the knife in my hand and it was discreetly on the man’s stomach underneath the table. “My, that was fast,” he complimented. “Have I introduced myself? I am Mr. Stone.”

            The representative I was scheduled to meet was a Mr. Bryson.  This was not Mr. Bryson.  This was the man who had killed my best friend and escaped—was sitting right in front of me.  I dug the knife further into his stomach.  If I was any angrier, I would have stabbed him.  I hadn’t broken skin yet, but I’m fairly sure that he would have a need to see his tailor about a punctured shirt.

            “Now Ms. Jones, I have my men situated all around this restaurant.  The rest of the innocent… witnesses… can be taken care of.  You see, I don’t want to do that.  So just put the knife down.”

            I took a nice long look at him.  This Mr. Stone was a looker.  Except for a tiny jagged scar beside his right eye.  He had brown hair, streaked with thin wisps of gray.  His eyes were brown and his jawline was clearly masculine.  He was one of those men that even if you saw him twenty times you wouldn’t recognize him the next day.  He was too average.

            I retracted my knife from his stomach and set it back on the table.

            “Good girl.  Samuel tells me that you’re not exactly ready to accept my offer just yet.”

            “Oh? Is that what he told you?” I paused and gripped the knife again. “Because I specifically remember telling him that he could take your bullshit offer and shove it straight up your—”

            “Yes, I believe I remember now.  Such a mouth on you, you little viper,” he smiled.  It looked as if he was only seconds away from tousling my hair as if I were his own daughter.  Let him try.  I wondered how many fingers he would miss.

            I sat and glared at him.

            “I’m sorry to have to bring this up.  It must be painful.  Thomas was a—”

            “Don’t you dare think for one second that you know anything about Tommy.  Thomas Gray was five thousand times the man you’ll ever be,” I hissed, tightening my grip on the knife, catching the edge of it on my palm.  I felt the blade cut into my skin, but I didn’t feel any blood.

            I saw a waiter walk up to our table with my order.  I looked at his face and recognized Samuel.  I loosened my hold on the dinner knife.

            “Hello, miss,” Samuel said in a hushed voice.  I beamed in his direction. “Here you go.” He set the food on the table and looked me over quickly. “You look lovely today, miss.”

            “Thanks, Samuel.  I can’t say the same for you, though.  The penguin look just doesn’t suit you.” Samuel allowed himself a small smile before bustling back into the kitchen.

            “You like one of my men?” Mr. Stone’s eyebrows went up.

            “I’d like you to drop dead,” I retaliated.  I found that it wasn’t hard to be horrid to someone you despised. “What do you want me here for?” I wondered.

            “You can leave if you’d like,” Mr. Stone suggested.  I threw a quick glance at the entrance/exit. ‘Leave if I’d like’ my butt.  The exit was guarded by two goons.  I could see the black turtle neck underneath the tuxedo they each wore.  I looked back at Mr. Stone and he smiled. “Clever girl.”

            “Why do you keep underestimating me?” I wondered, re-gripping the knife harshly.  I could feel the blood now.

            “You’re but one little child.  A female at that.  How much trouble could you cause? Besides, you’re not that clever.” I surveyed the room.  My eyes traveled over hordes of people sitting at various tables.  And I noticed something.  Did he really think I wouldn’t figure it out?  He was always underestimating me.

            “If I make a scene, you’re going to kill all the innocent people in here,” I clarified.

            “Yes.  So I would advise you to keep calm,” he told me, confident that he had the upper hand.  I took my fork and speared a broccoli and brought it to my lips.  Mr. Stone watched me and I chewed my food carefully.  But I didn’t swallow it.  I spit it back out into my napkin. “Is everything alright?”

            “You tried to drug me,” I said matter-of-factly.  But that didn’t really faze me.

            “Why do you think that?” Mr. Stone asked in a creepy tone.  Mr. Stone was super-creepy.  Like one of those characters in a fifties horror film, who’re perfectly civilized, but have a certain ‘stay back’ air about them.  I was surprised I wasn’t taking out my anger on him.  I was shaking with rage.

            “You glazed everything on my plate with an Australian sedative,” I told him.  When he gave me a questioning look, I kept silent.  He knew exactly what he had done, and I hated to explain myself.  I had spent two years running.  But I had also used that time to make myself stronger; physically, mentally, and emotionally.

            Emotionally, I hardened myself against everything and everybody, pining away for Alex and hating him at the same time.  I isolated myself from absolutely everything around me except for my rabbit.  Whiskers had died right after Tommy did, which did nothing to lift my spirits.

            Mentally, I taught myself three new languages, practiced my accents in the languages I had already learned, and read up on philosophy.  I threw away my Tanner Ryan books, spitting in the trash can after them.  I basically had done mental sit-ups every day for two years.  Until I’d found Alex.

            And physically, I did push-ups, sit-ups, pull-ups, boxing, karate, and I ran everyday.  But what I bet Mr. Stone didn’t know was that I had spent a considerable amount of time building up immunities to various poisons and drugs.  Of course, I’d had to study them by book first.  And the only ingredients that are tasteless, and the only ingredients to poison that aren’t bitter in taste are made or harvested in Australia.  But they are also extremely thick, like a second layer of food.  Easy play to call.

            “Clever girl,” Mr. Stone repeated when he realized I wasn’t going to give anything away.

            “Trust me, I haven’t even started yet,” I informed him slyly.  I waited, pushing the plate away from me in a deliberate manner, so one of the waiters would see and I could talk to them.

            Samuel almost immediately waltzed out and over to our table.

            “Hello again, miss,” Samuel addressed me pleasantly with a large smile.

            “Samuel, would it be alright with you if I asked you a question?” I wondered.  Samuel threw a quick look over to Mr. Stone and then nodded to me. “Would you mind if I was your boss from now on?”

            “Of course not, miss.  I’d look forward to it, miss,” Samuel insisted fervently.  I thanked him for his time and watched him take my food away.  He smiled at me again when he saw that I hadn’t eaten anything.

            “Are you accepting my offer?” Mr. Stone asked, surprised beyond description. “You weren’t joking when you said you hadn’t even started.  You won’t believe the things I could teach—”

            With a deft flick of my wrist I had the miniature pistol I had stashed under the strap of my right shoe in my hand.  I was on the table in less than a second.  All eyes were on me.

            “Not what I meant when I said it,” I told Mr. Stone.  He looked stunned… and what was that hidden in his eyes?  Hurt?  Oh please!  Hurt?  Seriously?

            I aimed the gun at Mr. Stone and glared at him.

            Someone burst out of the kitchen door with a gun in hand.  I rolled my eyes and quickly as I could, which was pretty quickly, I had removed the tiny sheathing dagger from the sole of my left shoe and thrown it at the man.

            It hit his hand and pinned it to the kitchen door.  I suspected it was a little painful because the man wouldn’t stop screaming.  In a second every person in the restaurant was up and pointing a gun straight at me.

            “It looks like I’m the only one who wants to kill Mr. Stone here,” I noted. “Well, hey!  I want to join the fun.” And I turned the gun on myself. “Honestly I don’t see what’s so fun about aiming a gun at me.  I like this prospect much better—” I told no one in particular and re-aimed my pistol at Mr. Stone. “Yeah, see, this really makes me happy.”

            “You are such a clever little girl, aren’t you?” Mr. Stone laughed to himself.  I shrugged and cocked back the hammer.


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