This story contains sexually explicit scenes.
The cottage where Peter Schmidt was killed stood empty and was in bad need of repair. Shingles were missing from the roof, the gutter was full of the sludge from too many fallen leaves, and the paint job was anemic. But one look up and down the street, and Moe could see the house fit right in with the neighborhood blueprint. There wasn’t a single home that had felt a paintbrush in a decade.
The lawn might have been green a week ago, but since then a hundred pairs of feet had trampled the yard: flatfooters, newshounds, and curious onlookers. But no one was there now. It was just Moe and his memories. The light of day didn’t make the reminiscing any easier.
Moe did the whole circle around the house, pausing for a brief slant at the spot that bore his thumbprint. The bloodstain had turned brown like a cartoon mud puddle – flat and depthless – on pale cement. Moe flinched at the memory of the hot blade slicing into his gut. Not seeing it coming still rankled. Pure gut sense and a keen eye had always kept him alive and healthy. Moe worried that maybe he was getting old.
He stomped back around to the front of the house. The mailbox was empty. No name graced its faceplate. There was no chance he’d find a welcome mat in front of an unlocked door, so he chewed over the breaking and entering angle. As he considered the wisdom of committing a crime in broad daylight, a flash of light caught his eye. From across the road, at a rundown, muddy white house, drapes that had forgotten to meet in the middle suddenly jerked closed. Concrete jungles weren’t all bad. There was always a neighbor who saw something.
Moe made the trip across the street. He eyed the drapes and the crack still left between, but there was no light inside. The city-provided mailbox – one nail gone, the other loose – clung feebly to clapboard. Its gold-painted name, F. Thompson, was faded from a decade of neglect. A hard knock might have brought the whole façade crumbling down, but before Moe had balled his fist, a rusty hen in tattered chenille swung open the door. Her face had seen some years – exactly how many was hard to tell. Her housecoat came together like the drapes: agape down the middle. Bloomers and an over-crowded brassiere peeked through the split.
The old dame’s arm stretched slowly up the doorjamb, straining the threadbare belt of the robe. Her teeth clicked together like they needed revving up to speak “Who’re you?” she finally said.
“Moe to my friends. How about you?”
She cocked her head. The pose might have been coquettish back when the mailbox was new, back when F. Thompson was still brightly painted. “How can a lady be sure it’s safe to give her name?”
“Toots, you’re safe as money in a vault with me. I know when to be a gentleman.”
The woman’s eyes skimmed Moe like a slow massage, reaching every nook and cranny. She shifted her stance, and her belt gave up its battle. A small hump of belly lay exposed. “You’re my kind of gentleman, Moe. I’m Mrs. Thompson, but you can call me Opal.”
Moe avoided looking at her bare stomach by nodding toward the mailbox. “And F. Thompson would be your husband?”
Opal suddenly remembered her robe and sheepishly closed it again, tightening the belt. “That would be my late husband. Eight years gone. Blasted bank.”
Moe did some arithmetic and put some history two and two together. Thompson must have been one of those unlucky saps who lost it all during the bank scares. “That was a tough time for all of us,” Moe commiserated.
“We lost everything. All the banks went belly up in ‘32. Fred couldn’t handle it. The bank was his baby. Goddamned man. He was always too prideful for his own good.” She paused, looking past Moe, and then continued. “He took his revolver that had never even been loaded before, trotted in his bank as big as you please, stuck the barrel into his mouth, and pulled the trigger. If he’d waited just one more year, when Roosevelt took over ...” She shook her head and sighed, “One more year.” She got miffed then and tugged on the ties of her belt. “The banks were coming back. He might have recovered along with them. But not my Fred, no sirree. He splattered his useless brains all over his desk and left me here in this neighborhood where a person can’t go outside for fear of getting knifed or ... or worse.”
Too many men during the early thirties thought death was the only way out. Maybe it was. Who was Moe to say different? “You haven’t had it easy, Opal.”
“Yeah, well, that ain’t why you’re here.”
“You’re a smart cookie, Opal.” Moe nodded toward Schmidt’s cottage. “What I’m curious about is the goings on over there.”
Opal glanced down the street, first left and then right. “You the police?”
“No. A private dick.”
“Private dick, eh?” She slid her hand in the gap of her housecoat and scratched an itch at the base of her neck. “Maybe you’d like to come inside and sit for a spell?”
“Maybe I would at that.”
Opal led the way through a front room piled high with dozens, if not hundreds, of cardboard boxes, so many that Moe’s shoulders touched cardboard on either side. The boxes were heavy and didn’t give as he inched his way behind Opal. There was no light except what the cracked curtains offered, and the pillars of cardboard blocked most of that. Another path veered off toward the picture window, but Moe followed Opal until they reached a kitchen. The boxes ended where the two rooms met. It was like walking out of a bunker.
The kitchen walls were yellow, maybe from paint, maybe from age. A four-seater table, littered with newspaper clippings and a pair of scissors that had done the snip work, took up most of the space. Laced doilies hung over the backs of the chairs in limp moons as someone’s idea of decoration. Old grease and tobacco blessed the room like a priest’s thurible.
Moe hesitated at the room’s edge, waiting for Opal’s cue. Her housecoat worked its way open again. Opal didn’t seem to mind. Her bloomers were threadbare and hung loosely around doughy hips. When she sat, her heavy bosom nearly rested on the table. She pointed to one of the chairs. “Have a seat.”
Moe did as she asked, barely avoiding knocking a doily to the floor. The room was warm, the air stagnant. Moe tried to breathe without inhaling too deeply. “Some setup you got here, Opal,” he said. “What’s in the boxes?”
Opal sat back from the table and crossed her legs. Her robe opened wider, but she let it go. “Newspapers,” she said. “I have proof of everything that’s gone on around here for years. In this neighborhood, a lady in my position can’t be too careful.”
“What exactly is your position?”
“Ain’t it obvious? A single woman all alone.”
Times were tough. Crime was at an all time high. People were scared and angry about the possibility of war. But stacking the living room with cardboard boxes – ceiling high, filled with newspaper clippings – seemed an unusual safety measure. But Moe was learning Opal Thompson was an unusual bird. She wasn’t bad to look at. Once upon a time, she might have been pretty, back when she was the belle of the banker society. Her eyes were wide-set and still had a bit of sheen to them. Their color was somewhere between blue and brown. Her nose would have been her worst feature – big and fleshy – but the years had let the rest of her face catch up and match its plumpness. Her lipstick tried to make an upper lip that wasn’t there. And Moe couldn’t remember when he’d seen a pair of melons as big as Opal’s. He’d seen a lot younger women who looked a lot worse.
“I take it you don’t do much walking around the block,” Moe said.
Opal scooted back on her chair and chuckled. “That murder wasn’t the first one ‘round here, only the most recent,” she said. “I’m comfy enough right in my own home.”
Moe glanced around the kitchen. His first impression had been one of muck, but on closer inspection he realized the counters were clean. There weren’t any dishes stacked high in the sink, or garbage spilling out from the can. In fact, the only thing out of its place was the clippings on the table. Cooking smells must have buried themselves into the cardboard and the doilies. Otherwise the place was every bit as clean as his own joint.
“Ever get out long enough to share recipes with your most recent neighborhood tragedy?”
Opal shook her head. Her bobbed salt and pepper hair was sprayed in place and didn’t move. “Mr. Schmidt kept to himself. He was gone most days and came home late most nights.”
“But you knew his name?”
Opal shifted in her seat, uncrossing her legs and hooking her feet around the legs of her chair. Her chunky thighs blocked much of the view of her crotch, but Moe was still treated to a peep show of pubic hair poking out along the sides.
“Paddy, the boy who delivers groceries, comes in and sits with me on occasion.” Opal raised her arm and patted the back of her hair. Her massive tits fought gravity not to drop. “Paddy likes to talk,” she said with a wink.
Moe imagined a fourteen-year-old boy, who had probably never seen more skin than his mother’s, being face-to-face with Opal in all her glory. The boy probably snooped out things to tell her. It’s what Moe would have done at fourteen. Seeing any female, even an Opal twenty years past her prime, would be enough to get a rise in the Levis.
“Paddy tell you anything else about Schmidt?”
Opal added to the wrinkles in her brow by scrunching up her face. “I’m trying to remember, honey.” She slid her fingers through the San Andreas Fault line of her breasts and gave one of her tits a squeeze. A puckered nipple poked at her thin housecoat. Her voice turned raspy. “You got anything that might jog my memory a little?”
Moe reached into his pocket, pulled out a couple of bills, and tossed them on the table. “Maybe Lincoln and his buddy can help,” he said.
She looked at the cash and shrugged. “Dead presidents don’t tickle me like they used to.” She inched her hand over her belly and slipped it beneath her bloomers. “I was hoping for something with a heartbeat.”
Moe wasn’t fourteen anymore, and he’d seen enough flesh in his life to become choosy. Sticking his Johnson into something close to twice its age was charity work Moe couldn’t get excited about, especially when he remembered the hot box he’d been in last – ahh, Mona Dale. But he was willing to negotiate.
“Maybe I’ll just ask Paddy.”
“Seeing that I’ve already told you everything Paddy knows, I’m betting now you’d like to know what I know.” She thrummed her fingers, and her knuckles rolled under the flimsy cotton like a wave.
Moe had run across broads like Opal in the past – they yearn to get nasty but want to pretend when it happens it wasn’t their choice. He knew how to make it happen, and he didn’t mind taking the blame, especially if it meant she’d give him some answers.
In one quick motion, he scooted his chair back and stood up closer than an arm’s length from Opal. She jerked but kept her hand deep in her drawers until Moe grabbed at the fragile material and yanked. The bloomers ripped apart like tissue paper. Opal’s hands flew to the back of the chair, leaving her front vulnerable to whatever Moe might do. If she wasn’t so excited, she might have been frightened.
He pulled the belt from her robe and secured her wrists to the chair. Opal didn’t bother struggling to free her hands. She must have been saving her energy to fight her heavy breathing. When both wrists were tied, Moe reached for the scissors lying on the table. The first look of real fear made its way across Opal’s face, but it faded into flushed anticipation when Moe eased the sharp blades into her cleavage and snipped open her brassiere. Her Borden’s flopped out and showed a couple of areolas as big around as a pancake.
“How’s your memory now, Opal?”
“Oh, my,” she panted. “Yes. Ask me what you want to know.” Her voice had stuck to low and raspy.
“How long did Schmidt live there?”
She pulled at her wrists, but got nowhere “As best as I can recall, less than a year,” she whispered. A blotchy flush worked its way up over her chest and neck.
Moe turned the scissors around and clutched the sharp end. Using the handles, he flicked at Opal’s nipples, running the cool metal back and forth until both nipples contracted. “Did he live alone?”
Opal shuddered and her nipples tightened into hard knots. “Alone, yes.”
Opal nodded, but she didn’t say anymore.
Moe tossed the scissors back on the table then slipped his hands under Opal’s knees and pulled her hips to the edge of her chair. He chucked the remnants of her bloomers. Her legs fell open, and Moe knelt between them, bringing him to perfect eye level with Opal’s pussy. A light mix of gray and brown hair covered her slit. “You want to tell me more about those visitors?”
Her hips writhed, and her thighs quivered. She swallowed hard. “There was a woman,” she puffed. “Maybe she killed him. It was her night to be there.”
“She was a regular?”
Opal nodded. “Once a week.”
Moe leaned in close. He could smell dusting powder. Little balls of it had congealed with her wetness and clung to her sparse pubic hair. He blew them away. “Got a name for the dame?”
“My, oh my. No, I-I just saw her.”
“Young, fancy, with short, dark hair.”
“What else you got?”
Opal spread her legs as far as she could get them. Her fat labia clung together, but a small slit worked its way open. A dab of creamy cum pearled at the split. “Another woman, but that was a while ago.”
“How long ago? What did she look like?”
“I-I don’t remember.”
With his finger, Moe swept up the pearl of cum and smeared it on Opal’s nipple, rubbing and smudging until it was sticky. He reached for more cum for the other nipple, but held his fingers just outside her pussy. “Coming back to you, yet, Opal?”
Opal wriggled, trying to push her crotch to Moe’s fingers, but Moe kept his hand inches away.
“Her name was Danja. She was blond. Almost white blond, and as young as the brunette.”
Moe let her squirm until she touched his fingers. He rested his fingertips against the lips of her pussy. “How long ago?”
“Four months, more or less.”
“What happened to her?”
Opal didn’t answer, not until Moe pushed his fingers into her mossy doughnut and held them perfectly still.
Her words rushed out of her in manic excitement. “Danja was there all the time. She might have lived there, she was there so much. Then one day a flashy limousine pulled up. The driver went up to the door and escorted Danja to the car. I haven’t seen her since.”
As she talked, Moe worked his fingers inside of her, swirling them around, slipping deeper and pulling out, sliding up and down, spreading her hot goo all around.
“How’d you get her name?”
“Paddy told me.”
Moe yanked his fingers out of her pussy. “So, I could have gotten all this information from Paddy.”
“Wait, Wait. Please don’t stop. I can tell you something that Paddy wouldn’t know.”
“Not sure I can trust you now, doll.”
She was breathing hard, her tits rising like fresh-baked bread. She kept squirming, rotating her hips and forcing her creamy drippings to saturate her mound. “I know the license plate of the car,” she bellowed.
Sometimes a man could get a lucky break. For Moe, this was one of those times. A license plate would lead to a name. And a name always led to something more.
“Well now, maybe we can make a deal.” Moe slipped his fingers through the fissure of her labia. He pushed deep enough that two fingers slid easily inside her canal. With the pad of his thumb, he found her button and rubbed.
Opal gyrated her hips and shoved against Moe’s driving fingers. Her body bounced. Her flesh jiggled. Her swaying breasts brushed Moe’s face.
Moe stopped thrusting but left his fingers in place. “The license plate, Opal?”
She gasped out, “Please, please. Don’t stop.”
“Up to you, doll. You know what it takes to get it started again.”
“You’re sure that’s the number?”
Opal had closed her eyes. Her mouth was open, sucking in air. “Yes, I’m sure,” she said between breaths. “1-6-5-9 the number of Rembrandt’s self portrait.”
Opal was obviously a little deeper than Moe had given her credit for. He had no way of knowing if the number was actually the number of the Rembrandt, but it was just odd enough to be right.
Moe rewarded her with some serious finger-action. He added a third finger to the in-and-out, and Opal nearly came up off the chair. When her tit neared his cheek, he opened his mouth and latched onto her swollen nipple, first sucking and then clamping down in a hard bite.
“Oh, that feels too good. Too good.” Opal’s entire body went rigid. Except for her cunny – heavy paroxysms fought against Moe’s fingers, convulsing around them, gripping and releasing. Again and again. A squirt of jism tickled the soft skin between his digits.
Opal’s orgasm lasted a good long time, and Moe didn’t hurry her. He waited until the last tremor rumbled through her and her whimpering had melted into purring. Only then did he pull his fingers out.
Opal slumped in the chair. Tiny wisps of hair lay matted in sweat along her forehead. Her mouth was slack, but her eyes were wide-open and staring at Moe.
“I was right, Moe,” she slurred. “You’re my kind of gentleman.”
Moe released the chenille belt from around Opal’s wrists. Her hands were cold and her fingers were shaky. Moe rubbed to get some heat to them and give her a chance to recover. “You’re my kind of lady, Opal.”
Opal grunted. “I’m no lady, and we both know it!”
“Depends on whose Webster’s we’re looking at. In my book, you fit the definition just fine.”
Moe lifted the robe up and over Opal’s shoulders and helped her close it. When she stood, she seemed a little taller, a little younger. Or maybe Moe imagined it.
Opal told Moe that the cops had been around asking questions, but she didn’t find them to be as obliging as Moe had been. She’d never told them about the blonde or the limousine.
“In this neighborhood it ain’t easy to get information. The citizens have a closed-mouth policy when it comes to giving out facts and figures. But I like you, Moe. Anything else you want to know? About Mr. Schmidt, I mean?”
“Is there anything else?”
She looked him square in the eye and winked, “Not that I can remember, but if I think of something, I’ll call you.”
Moe handed her one of his cards. “You do that, Opal.”
Moe stopped off at Joe’s diner. He put in a call to Sammy, his source at the license bureau. Sammy was a nervous fellow, and he sometimes needed a little coaxing – along with cold, hard cash – to give out information. But he always came through. It would take a couple of hours for Sammy to track down the plate. He promised to call Moe later at Moe’s place.
Moe ordered his usual – a cup of java and a roast beef sandwich – and headed to the john. Normally, Moe didn’t bother washing the leftover smell of sex from his hands. He liked the reminder. But after Opal Thompson, it seemed wrong. She wasn’t a classy dame, but she was all right. Besides Moe didn’t want a reminder of what it was like to be old and alone.
Rough Cut originally appeared in Ruthie’s Club http://www.ruthiesclub.com/
Copyright © 2004 by Desdmona.