A short story for The Writer's Cramp Contest.
|I walk into my favorite Italian restaurant. I like to food, plus I know the owner. I helped him on a few cases in the past. One, involved his daughter, but that is a story for some other time. As I walk in, he comes up to me for a chat.
"Ahh, the great detective, how's it going? Been a long time since you stopped by. When was it, the wine tasting incident? So terrible that was, all that wine, and all that blood," said the owner.
"Yes, that was an unfortunate situation, but good wine nonetheless. So, how is your daughter?"
"She is fine, she is fine. I am still grateful for your help with that," said the owner.
"Anytime," I replied.
"So, how is everything?" said the owner.
"Business is business. In fact, my last case reminded me about the time involving the bus boy, and thought about stopping by again. For old time sack."
"Oh, yes, I still remember him. So young, so young. But enough of the past. Come I will show you to your table."
I walk with the owner to my table, the one I sit at the most. It is way in the back and has a good view of the whole place and I like it for that. In my kind of work, can't be too careful. I have made too many enemies. I sit and the owner hands me a menu and then the waiter shows up.
"What can I get you to drink?"
"I will have a bourbon on the rocks."
As I wait for my drink, I open the menu to see what I might want to eat. That is when I realize something was under the table, so I look down, and it was a shoe. A single high heeled shoe, blue with straps. I called the owner.
"Yes, is there something wrong?" said the owner.
"I found a shoe under the table, have any idea where it might have come from?"
"A shoe? Just one?"
"Yes, just one. Do you remember who was here early, that it might belong to?"
"No, I cannot. I was in the back for the past few hours. Maybe they came in during that time? But, how or why would someone just leave with just one shoe?"
"I don't know. What about the waiter, maybe he would remember?"
"He just took over the new shift, about a half an hour ago. Perhaps the one before might. I can ask him tomorrow, when he comes in. In the meantime, I will take it for safe keeping, just in case someone comes back for it, I guess. One shoe?" said the owner.
He walks away with it and has a puzzled look on his face. I too am puzzled, but decide to leave it be, and continue to look at the menu. I might have the chicken parmigiana, I said to myself.Â I mean just one shoe? I can maybe understand both, but one? I shake my hand and continue reading the menu. I haven't had spaghetti and meatballs in a while. How can somebody walk off without realizing they're missing a shoe? And, a high heeled one too? The lasagna is so good, I think I will have that. I sighed as I put the menu down, and the waiter comes over.
"Here is your drink, have you decided what you will have?"
"Yes, I will have..." I paused thinking about the shoe. "I will have the...the lasagna."
"Very well," said the waiter.
After he left, I continued to think about the shoe and who it might belong too. The shoe was defiantly something that one would wear on like a special occasion. After about a few more minutes thinking about the shoe, in walks a gorgeous woman, wearing an elegantly blue dress. She looks straight at my direction and heads to my table.
"Hi, you wouldn't happen to have seen a shoe, on the floor, have you?"
"I have and gave it to the owner."
"Oh, thank goodness, I thought I would never find it."
"If you want, I can get the owner to bring it to you? Also, just wondering, how did you lose it in the first place?"
"No, that is fine. I have to go soon, and watch a concert," she replied.
She then pulls a pen out of her purse and writes down something on a paper napkin.
"You could just drop it off at my place, later, when you get a chance. And maybe I will tell you how I lost it," she said in a soft voice.
She walks away and out the door. After about seven minutes later, the waiter shows up with my food. I wave for the owner and he comes over.
"Is there something you need?" he said.
"Yea, the shoe and a box for my food," I replied.