Everywhere Leo looked there were people in costume
, some holding
beverages, some not. There was laughter, banter, dancing in some clustered
groups, and a constant
buzz of music that was unfamiliar to him. Call him old-fashioned, but Leo had a soft spot
for oldies tunes
. Anything from the 1960s and before struck his fancy as opposed to this hip-hop, rap-n-tap, new-age gobbledygook. He held a pleasant expression though, knowing nothing ruined a party more than a – well – party-pooper. Leo’s positive aura paid off because a few people came up to talk to him. “Hey, who are you supposed to be, dude? Dracula?” a man in a banana suit vaguely gestured up and down Leo’s body.
“Do you see any fangs protruding?” Leo’s eyes crinkled behind his red masquerade mask
. “I am no blood-sucker, rest assured
. I am a fallen angel
.” He turned to the side, unnecessarily clutching his long cloak to show off the black-feathered wings that jutted out of the fabric of the cloak on his upper back. “Ah, well, it’s what I’m supposed
to be at least.” Leo grinned meekly.
“Would’ve never guessed, man.” The banana
man fanned him off, chuckled, and took a heaving gulp of his soda.
The lady who had come up with the banana man snickered. “It is
a vague costume.” Her costume was obvious to Leo; she was dressed up as Betty Boop
could tell that the hair was fake because a few hoops of brown hair
peeked out from the wig around her left temple; he didn’t point it out.
Leo smirked at the woman. “Where’s Popeye, Miss Boop?”
Before she could answer the banana man belched, the smell so potent Leo knew he had eaten lasagna at some point during the day. Betty Boop probably knew too; the mildly disgusted
expression was hardly hidden. There was a brief silence.
“Sorry,” the banana cleared
his throat. “’Er, s’cuse me, I mean,”
Betty and the Leo both told him in near unison
, “No, it’s
fine!” then looked at one another and grinned, then chuckled. Leo was starting to like this lady; she seemed like an applicable target to grab and take home.
“Would you like something to—” Leo’s beverage proposal to Betty Boop was cut off by a nearing voice
“Hey, what are you supposed to be?”
It was a female; Leo gathered without having to look. Her voice was low, smooth to his ears. She had an accent, sounded French to him.
“Excuse me?” she asked.
There was a gentle touch
on Leo’s arm; he looked over at the woman, eyes widening the tiniest bit. The first thing he noticed was her long blond hair
that was fluffed over her shoulders. Her eyes were blue, shadowed by purple makeup. Judging by the white toga and the white wings super-glued to the fabric on the back, she had to be—
“Well aren’t you a cute lil’ angel!” the banana man gestured at her with his cup, some of the soda almost spilling out.
The angel smiled at him. “Thank you.” Her gaze slowly traveled back to Leo, who hadn’t looked away from her. She stared back, said nothing.
Oh, right – she asked him a question. Leo finally responded
, “I’m supposed to be a fallen angel
pouty red lips
relaxed in a gentle smile. “It looks nice. You have the face for it.”
to smile. “I’ll take that as a compliment, thank you, Miss, uh…”
“Selena,” she straightened her stance a little bit
, as though she were proud to introduce herself. “And that is all you need to know, Mister, um…”
“Leo,” his pleasant expression did not falter. “And that is all you need to know.”
“Fair enough,” Selena gave Leo a look that he
interpreted as alluring. “Leo.”
Betty Boop rolled her lips. “Well it was nice to meet you! You were about to ask me something, Leo?” she grinned. It was a blatant attempt to divert his attention away from the angel and back to her, but hey, she was there first. It worked.
“Ah, yes, I was about to ask you if you wanted me to get you something to drink, but it appears that the banana man has gone ahead and gotten you one himself.” Leo looked over at the too-yellow banana man who was holding up a red-solo cup filled with soda.
Betty opened and closed her mouth but did not speak right away. “Oh, um…thanks.”
Leo found her attempt for his personal attention amusing. It was cute, but he was finding more intrigue in the angel next to him, who – with a glance – had not taken her eyes off of him. Interesting. Maybe there’s something on my face…
Leo causally reached up and rubbed the exposed half of his face. No...
“What are you thinking about?” Selena arched a brow. “You are lost in thought, Leo.”
“I am curious as to why you are staring at me.” Leo answered casually. “That’s all.”
“Can’t a woman enjoy the view?” the angel arched a thinly-plucked brow, took a sip of the drink she had in her hand. “It is not every day we humans get to see fallen angels so close up.”
? You do know this is a costume party and that we humans
are only dressed up, yes?” Leo was pretty sure that was how it worked.
Selena rolled her lips, giving Betty and the banana man a glance before tugging Leo down to his ear was level with her mouth. “Oh come now,” she whispered. “You don’t lump yourself with them, now do you?”
Admittedly, Leo was confused. This woman spoke as though she knew something about him. It was enough to bring discomfort to him because those who learned about him were not supposed to live to possibly tell the tale of Leo Dorado. You’re overreacting; calm down.
Clearing his throat, he kept his voice low, mainly due to the fact that Selena had not let go of him. “What do you mean?” he met her gaze through his peripheral. She is hard to read.
Unfortunately, Selena ended the conversation there, let go of him, and sauntered away, her petite frame swaying a teensy bit with each step. What just happened?
Glancing at Betty and the banana man, he could tell from their expressions that they had the same unspoken question. Leo frowned and shrugged. He would’ve concluded that Miss Selena had to have been drunk except for the fact that she – like a few of the others – had soda instead of alcohol. She didn’t smell of it either; her perfume was clean and crisp and just strong enough to linger in his nasal cavity so he wouldn’t forget the scent. A strange feeling pressured his insides; his stomach felt funny. Sure, women hit on Leo all the time. He got complimented, talked to by smiling strangers, asked out on dates, and looked at with affection; he could always tell by a lady’s eyes if she fancied him more than the average Joe. Selena seemed different to him. She talked to him, gave him an affectionate look or two, but was not constant
in trying to keep his attention. She did not pine over him, did not try to childishly hoard him like Betty had, and did not answer his answer his question. In fact, she had deserted him, expecting him to…to what? Why would she do that? Leo’s eyes darted in Selena’s direction; her back was to him and she appeared to be chatting up another group. All eyes in that group were on her; she was leading the conversation, he could tell.
“Hey, you okay?” Betty frowned back at him, looking a bit concerned. Leo did not answer, being lost in his thoughts of this other woman. In the midst of the talking, Selena slipped a candle flick of a glance in Leo’s direction and he belatedly looked away, the candle flick feeling like an open flame against his reddened face. He felt a bit embarrassed to have been caught staring at her like that. Selena probably thought he—“Leo,” Betty shook his arm lightly. “Um, you okay?”
“Oh, yes!” Leo blinked rapidly and looked over at her. “My bad; I…I need some air. Excuse me.” He gave her a courteous nod and turned and stepped out on the front porch of the owner’s house, sighing. Honestly, Leo didn’t know who the house belonged to. It was a public block party and he didn’t want to pass up the opportunity to take someone home
. The more he thought about a target to nab, he thought about Selena. He didn’t know her, hadn’t taken her out, or even gotten her a drink. He couldn’t guess for the life of him how she would react to him behind closed (and locked) doors where no other eyes were on them. Selena was a mystery to Leo. I know who I want.
Resolve in mind, he turned and went back inside. As far as Leo saw, Selena wanted
to be taken home. No woman left herself so vague and expected a man not to be curious about her or want her. The corner of his lips twitched in a smirk. By the time he had gotten inside, Selena had broken off from the group she was conversing with and was on her own now, appearing to take a break from all of the socializing. Leo took his chance and strolled over, confident now. My turn, Miss Selena.
“You know it is rude to leave in the midst of a conversation.”
“Oh? I did not realize there was one still going.” Selena looked up at him, her head tilted slightly. “You are saying that because you are eager to speak with me, Leo.”
“…That is beside the point.” Leo huffed.
Selena rose a dainty red-nailed hand to her lips and giggled. “How cute; I’m flattered.”
Leo stood beside her as to not appear so confrontational – had to keep it casual. “As you should be. I didn’t think I would find any angels here tonight.”
“I came with the intention to try to bring the fallen back up to heaven.” Selena stated matter-of-factly.
Leo grinned. “They aren’t meant to come back.”
“With the right adjustments I believe I can make it happen, ah…” she leaned over and looked at his back. “Your wings are crooked, by the way.”
“I never was a crafty fellow.” Leo admitted. “So I am not surprised.”
you good at?” Selena slid over behind him, set her drink down on a decorative table, and readjusted the wings as she spoke.
Leo let her, cleared his throat. “Human anatomy and physiology.”
Selena looked amused though he couldn’t see it. “Oh? If I didn’t know any better I would think you were coming onto me with that statement, Mister Leo.”
Leo snorted. “You sure know how to flatter yourself, don’t you?”
Selena slid her fingers down his cloaked back a few inches before she stepped over in front of him, pretending to look offended. “Are you saying that I am not pretty?”
“Not at all,” Leo gave her a pleasant smile. “I only told you my favored subjects of study. You misinterpret my intentions.” You would misinterpret me anyways.
“But if you want my input on your personal appearance I would be willing to admit that you are beautiful.”
Selena gave a nod. “Why thank you. I…suppose—” she sighed loudly. “—that you aren’t bad-looking yourself.”
Now it was Leo’s turn to look offended. “Not bad-looking, hmm?” Well, I never. Leo considered himself the most
This was insulting. “I think I rank a bit higher than ‘not bad-looking’, Miss Selena!”
Grinning, now, Selena leaned on a hip and folded her arms. “How can I properly judge while you wear this costume?”
It took him a second, but the message clicked in Leo’s head and he grinned back. “I dare not remove my cloak. This is a costume party after all and it would go against the grain to not be wearing a costume.”
Selena pursed her lips and twitched her shoulder in a dismissive manner. “So we’ll leave.” Her eyes flickered up and down Leo’s body. “If that is okay with you.”
Leo couldn’t believe his ears. This woman was practically throwing herself at him; he didn’t even have to try! This seemed too good to be true. He didn’t mind of course because he really, really
wanted this one. “Fine with me. You give me a destination and we will go there.”
“Your home sounds conventional.” Her face reddened lightly. “Unless the distance is too far, then…” Falling right into my hands. Unbelievable.
Leo restrained a grin that was eager to surface. “No, that is fine! I will take you home whenever you wish, okay?”
Selena’s eyes crinkled with her grin. “Very well. After you, then.”
The ride to Leo’s house was quiet except for the radio droning on about the rainy weather. It was difficult to make out any details as they rolled up the driveway. The windshield-wipers and headlights gave a choppy image of trees framing the driveway and the details of the house were but a flicker – the glimpse of a white wrap-around porch and a shut garage door were given. Leo was quick to turn the ignition off. He stepped out of the car first, getting barraged by the fleeting rain.
Hurrying over to the passenger side, Leo took off his cloak and held it up. “Here, this ought to help you stay dry!”
“Merci!” Selena hurried underneath the cloak and Leo wrapped it around her, placed a hand against her lower back, and rushed up to the front door with her. It took a little pocket-fishing before Leo could reel out his keys and unlock the door. Inside, Leo shut and locked the door. Selena lowered the drenched cloak from her face. “My, the weather is horrible.”
“Yes it is.” Leo blew out a sigh and extended an arm out to take the cloak; Selena handed it over. He hung it on the coat rack to dry, water dripping off of the black wings. Looking over at her, he asked. “Would you like anything to drink before I go dry off a little bit?”
“No, thank you.” She gave a nod. “You go ahead. I’ll hang around here until then.”
Leo strolled off to a bathroom down the hall and retrieved a towel from the cabinet, patted down his hair
and his left cheek, his neck, and his arms. Staring at himself in the mirror, he thought… Go time.
In truth, he was both very excited as well as curious. Leo was eager to break Selena down and wondered how she would react once she realized that her life was no longer in her hands, but his own. Leo licked his lips in anticipation and pulled back some drawers in front of the sink, grabbed a dirty old brown rag along with a steak knife, then shut the pull-out drawers, stuffed both objects into their own respectively deep pockets, and made sure his black T-shirt covered them nicely. Quietly leaving the bathroom, Leo crept down the hall to a different room, a closet. He searched and searched but couldn’t find the right chemicals he was looking for that would knock his little angel out. There are towels under the couch in the living room and rope under the coffee table in front of it…she is not very strong judging by appearance so she shouldn’t be too difficult to restrain.
With no neighbors this made Leo’s hobby easier and lot more fun because there simply weren’t any disturbances, just the way he liked it. Shutting the closet door, Leo made his way down the hall, ruffling his dark, wavy hair, a hand in his pocket. Selena was sitting on the couch in the living room and he was happy to see that she was making this so easy. She had a compact mirror out, checking what Leo assumed was her makeup
, which wasn’t smudged at all. As he neared her she lowered the compact and held it with her hands on her lap. You aren’t carrying a purse so where did you withdraw that?
Leo didn’t ask but the thought still lingered. Maybe she kept it in her bra?
He knew of some women that liked to stuff their money or cellular devices in there.
Selena was looking at him, set the compact on the table. “I turned on the lamp if that’s okay.”
Leo fanned her off in a careless gesture. “Fine by me – needed some light anyways.” It wasn’t a very good light; the lamp was puny and the light bulb needed to be changed. He could tell because it occasionally flickered. Without saying anything else, he held out a hand to her and she took it without question. Leo’s hands slid down her small frame and he guided her to lie down on the coffee table; she was fully compliant. He almost reached for the knife but mentally smacked himself and thought, Not yet…
Selena was staring up at him, looked amused. “You still have your mask on.”
“And you still have your whole costume
on.” Leo shot back.
that.” She shot back just as quickly. Leo complied, fully aware that Selena was watching his every move.
He made her sit back up and fumbled with the angel wings; they were glued to her costume, but… Not for long.
As he worked on the white feathery wings, Selena lifted her hands up to Leo’s masquerade mask. The first wing was forced away with a jerk, the fabric of her toga ripping from the sudden motion; Selena didn’t appear fazed, was focused on his face. Her fingers grasped the rim of the mask just as he grabbed the second wing. Leo tossed the wing on the floor and placed his other hand against the hole in her clothing where the wing used to be and pulled her closer, tightening his jaw before yanking the other wing away from the toga. There were two gaping holes in her costume now; the wing joined the other on the wooden floor. At the same time, Selena pulled off his masquerade mask and tossed it on the floor. They gazed at one another and kissed. Make it feel real to her.
At this point Leo was sure that he had her, that she wouldn’t be able to help herself anymore. It worked the same way for all the other women in the past. The thought of another success made him feel giddy inside. Somehow they wound up on the floor, squirming and writhing, eager to touch one another. Leo let one hand drift away under the table and blindly fumble for the rope, grab it, and slide it out.
Grabbing a hold of one of her wrists, he pinned it above her head, her other wrist being placed there next. So far so good…
Since Selena’s wrists were tiny Leo was able to hold them both down in one hand without any problem. He begun winding the rope around the hand he used to hold her down. Selena pulled away, mumbled, “What are you doing?”
Leo smiled at her. “Pardon my…tastes.” By the slight surprise in her eyes he could tell that she was a little surprised.
with a smile. “I don’t mind.”
Oh, if only she knew. Leo didn’t rush to tie her since she apparently enjoyed the sort of thing. Surely you won’t stay like this for long…
While Selena was making this surprisingly easy, he did want to see her beg for her life at some point. Tugging on the knotted rope, Leo made sure it was and tight. I can impale her limbs to this floor if she tries to flee.
He noted having felt a few extra knives under that table while he was searching for the rope. Leo kissed her again, attempted to distract her from what he was taking out of his front pocket. He still kept a firm grasp on her wrists just in case she realized this was nothing close to a saucy night session. Bringing the toothy knife to her throat, he felt her whole body tense and then Leo himself tensed because he thought, Is this it?
Does she understand now? Was she going to be afraid now?
No she was not. Selena surprised him yet again by relaxing to him, smiling against his lips, giggling, and then pulling a hair away and mumbling with a grin. “That tickles!” What the hell...
Did she know what exactly was tickling her? Leo furrowed his brows and slid the knife up to her cheek where he knew she would be able to see it. “Still tickle, Miss Selena?”
“Yes it does.” She brushed her nose against his. “I would never have thought to use a knife in such a manner.”
Was she human? Of course she’s human; she’s just one of those kinky women, that’s all. Leo had little experience with these kinds of women, but knew universally that every woman had a limit no matter what kind of woman they were.
“Am I supposed to be scared, Leo?” Selena looked amused.
Leo stared at her.
“You would like that wouldn’t you?” she whispered, expression unfaltering. What…
A sharp metal sound echoed in the room; Leo flinched. He looked over his shoulder where he had heard it, then jumped when he felt something pierce his left butt cheek. The knife stumbled from his hand and Selena shoved him off her before he could do anything about it. Leo was on his back, then his right side because the other one was in too much pain. Selena kicked the steak knife away with her heel and maneuvered her bound wrists to fish something out of her bra. Leo couldn’t tell what it was but he saw the culprit of his butt pain; there was a short, blunt blade jutting out of the tip of Selena’s left high heel. Closer inspection revealed that there was a small horizontal lever on the side. It wouldn’t have worked had he wore black jeans but he opted for black dress pants instead, thought it made his costume look nicer. Damn…
As Leo worked on standing back up, Selena had gotten something out of her bosom and ran at him, kicking and stabbing him in the stomach with her heel. Leo growled in pain, grabbed her left ankle, and yanked her down to the floor. Selena fell, knocked her other heel against the floor, and made the blunt blade shoot out of that one. Before Leo could grab it she had shot her heel firmly against his groin and effectively impaled him. He howled in pain, his whole body going rigid. “Oh my god—” he growled out the words, reaching down to hold himself as Selena yanked her heel back and squirmed away from her attacker. Leo writhed on the floor. The pain was red hot and excruciating. It felt like he was being stabbed a million times every second; the pain bubbled like popping lava and left unpleasant tingles everywhere else.
Selena got on her haunches and pushed herself into an upright position. “You should count yourself lucky, Mister Dorado. I did not come as armed as I would have liked to but I didn’t want to stick out.”
Leo shivered, banged his head against the wooden floor, and then looked over at her. “Who…the hell are you?”
Selena leaned on a hip. “I told you before, my name is Selena, and that's all you
need to know~"
Leo was having trouble concentrating. Never before had he experienced such pain. His left glute, stomach, and groin all sang in a uniform painful choir.
Selena strolled over and kicked Dorado onto his back. “Mm, nope. Doesn’t look like I’ll be bringing this one back to heaven.” She teased with a wink. “Not this
Leo met her gaze as she held something up and pointed it at his face. What she had taken out of her bosom earlier turned out to be pepper spray; he grinned wryly. You are ‘no’ angel, Miss Selena…
The rain had decided to let up by the time Selena left. The spray ought to last a good twenty minutes. He may not die if the paramedics arrive fast enough for him.
She had left an anonymous call and gave the address for them to go get Leo. Selena didn’t think Leo would be taken in because he had created a false identity for himself and it all looked authentic, records and all. She didn’t know how he came to get such things and didn’t know why he had given her his real name, but she supposed that it didn’t matter. She had gotten what she wanted out of Leo and that was all she cared about. She had an encounter with a wanted man and got away unscathed save for the light rope burn on her wrists; the blades in her heels made short work of that rope. He lures his targets away from public settings, likes to tie them down so they can’t get away, starts with the knife-play, and…
And she assumed it all went downhill from there. Selena would have stayed longer if she hadn’t felt like he was about to put a jagged knife hole into her. It was exciting, but she had her boundaries. It was a long walk up the driveway. Selena made sure to get into town before getting on a bus. While a ride from her partner would’ve been quicker and more convenient, she didn’t want to give away Leo’s location, just in case.
Selena was new to the Seattle Police Department, and having knowledge of Leo Dorado would likely give her a big boost early in. I’m not about to share my findings.
She didn’t want them to apprehend Leo yet; he was much too fun to play with. What got her was the fact that Leo was not in Seattle – he was all the way over in South Carolina! Selena and her partner had been sent over because some eyewitnesses had spotted a man that was similar to the one that they were after. As far as she saw, there was no Leo Dorado here. Your secret is safe with me…
Selena smirked to herself. For now.