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Fourth Drink Instinct

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He sees her sitting at the counter, sullen, tired, and mentally beat up. She seems to be wrapped up in one long piece of cloth, too tight and revealing all the right places. She has the hourglass figure—skinny waist, jutting hips, an abundant chest. Her legs seem to go on forever, long and tan, and she is mind-boggling skinny. Just the way he likes.

He gets up and starts making his way, a wolf on the prowl. He licks his lips, about to pounce. "Hey there," he says—deceiving smile. "What are you doing here all by yourself?" Fake concern.

She looks up and manages a tiny smile. Her heart-shaped face is angelic, with big, soft brown eyes, a skinny nose, and full lips. But he can tell that she has been through something, her eyes sagging under dark circles. She looks as if she's been through a lifetime of pain.

"N-nothing," she replies, her voice cracking. "Just having a drink." She has a tiny voice, perfectly matching the rest of her.

He smiles back. "Hey Joe! A drink for the pretty girl here," he says to the bartender.

"Oh, no, that's okay," she says meekly, but the drink is already plunked down in front of her.

"Don't worry about it," he says back, almost kindly. He watches hungrily as she drinks. "So," he says, leaning forward, "what brings you here?" He figures he might as well try again.

She clears her throat, traces around the circle of water left by the beer bottle. He watches intensely. "Well, I—I came with my boyfriend, but he left." She looks like she's holding back tears.

He cautiously puts a hand on her back, which is surprisingly cold. He takes off his jacket and puts it around her shoulders.

"Thanks," she says, gives a reticent smile.

"No problem," he says. "So what happened?"

"He took--" she sighs. "I don't really want to talk about it."

"Oh, that's fine. Sorry for intruding." He motions to the bartender.

The girl looks up as another drink is placed in front of her. "I…I should really get going," she says hurriedly, grabbing her purse and standing shakily.

He panics and grabs her arm. She looks alarmed, and he tells himself to cool it. "Oh, I'm sorry," he says and lets go. "But please stay. I enjoy talking to you."

She looks caught, doesn't know what to do. "Okay, one more," she finally says and sits back down. She takes the drink and practically chugs it down.

He watches her long, smooth neck, and has to control himself not to stroke her. He clears his throat. "What kind of work do you do?"

She blinks and puts her hands on the counter to steady herself. "Uh…secretary," she says.

Ah, of course. "Really? Which company?"

"Dun…Dunder-Miffln." She takes another drink.

"Are you working your way through college?"

"Hmm…no, I…graduated," she slurs.

Yes. "Hey, I think you've had enough. Let me drive you home." He helps her stand up.

"Thank you, mister," she slurs.

No, thank you. He takes her outside. "Oo, it's cold out," he says and glances at her. Her eyes are half-closed.

"Yeah…" she says, stumbling along. He opens the passenger door for her and she gets in, almost hitting her head.

He stifles a laugh, trying so hard to conceal his glee and such good fortune this night. "Be careful." He goes around to the driver's seat. "Um, you can come get your car tomorrow. Where do you live?" He looks over at her, and she's snoring.

After a while of driving, he pulls into the driveway of a Ramada Inn. No one suspects a thing as he checks in and carries the girl in through the back. She is unsurprisingly light, and he feels as if he can break her at any moment. He drops her on the bed and smiles at his prize.

She squints as the sun hits her eyes. She groans and rubs her eyes, then suddenly realizes she doesn't know where she is. There's a sudden pain in her abdomen, and she sits up, her heart thumping.

She begins to cry.





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