Black Widow by David A. Volpe
Twelve stories below the crowded party, the ground sparkled under the street lamps as snowflakes delicately descended. She perused the apartment, intricately minding the art as if she were alone in a private gallery; paying no mind to the babbling silhouettes that surrounded her. One piece in particular especially held her gaze. She sat idly on the couch across from the painting of a black widow. She peered deeply into the vibrant red hourglass upon its back as if she were staring at her own reflection.
Breaking her trance, a blonde woman wearin thick rimmed glasses plops beside her and glances up at the spider. “Creepy right, here alone?”
“Beautiful actually…and yes,” she says, sipping her drink through her lipstick stained straw.
“A gorgeous girl like you, here without a man…now I’ve seen everything!”
She blushes. “You’re too kind, but I prefer it this way. It keeps me young.”
The woman threw her head back with laughter. “You can say that again! Mine drives me up the wall.” She combed back a handful of hair. “Sprouted another patch of gray this month alone!”
She chuckles through her pressed lips. “Which one is your husband?”
She points to him. He notices and waves to them with a friendly smirk.
She catches his lingering gaze and mischievously smiles back. “He’s handsome.”
The woman places a hand on her shoulder and laughs. “You can have him, honey! I have to use the restroom. I’ll be right back.”
She spotted his lustful stare amongst the sea of blurred faces as his wife retreated down the hallway. Her eyes call him over. She catches the scent of his immoral intentions through the thickness of clashing perfumes as he approached. “Hi, I’m Bill,” he says smoothly.
She noticed his outstretched hand had the pale impression of a missing wedding ring. “And I’m about to leave.” She enjoyed playing hard to get.
He pleads, “Come on, this party’s great. Look around, everyone’s having fun. Why so blue?”
She looks up at him, then around the room. “Do you ever notice the heaps of bullshit spewing from the mouths of people who never have anything of value to say? Its just noise bouncing between walls, overflowing at the brim with narcissists ear-raping us with their never-ending bitching or bragging.”
“Wow, are you always this pleasant?” He helps himself to the open seat adjacent to her and places a hand on her exposed leg. “Just messing, I know what you mean.”
“You know what I mean? So if I said that I wanted to escape, would you take my hand?”
“Escape to where?”
She stands to her feet as his eyes trailed the winding curves in her black skin fitting dress. “Would you like to find out?”
Of course, she didn’t have to ask twice. Her hips seductively swing as her heels glide through the maze of stiff bodies. Bill follows closely behind with their palms tightly clasped. She led him out the fire escape ascending to the frigid rooftop.
He crossed his arms and rubs his shoulders. “Aren’t you cold wearing that?”
She inhales slowly with closed eyes. “I love the smell of crisp winter air. Come sit…” she says, patting the empty spot beside her. Again, he follows suit.
“Whoa, don’t look down,” he laughs flirtatiously and scoots closer.
She peered out over the edge. “Doesn’t it feel like we’re sitting at the edge of the world? Up here the sky is blacker and the stars are brighter, nothing quite like it.”
The city’s busy buzz softened to a gentle whisper below their dangling feet, as ant-sized humans strolled the sidewalks. Her emerald eyes cut through him as she brushed the windblown hair from her face. “When you have two voices in your head pulling you in opposite directions, which do you listen to?” she asks.
Entranced by her intensity, he leans in. “It depends. What are they saying?” His shivering lips inch closer to hers.
Their noses touch as she reciprocates his advance. “One tells me to do it, the other tells me not to.”
His eyes shut as he prepared to taste the sweetness of her cherry lips. “Always listen to the one that’s saying, ‘Do it.'”
The instant their lips meet, she pulls away. “I always do…” She pushes him from the ledge and smiles as his betrayed stare falls farther from sight. She leaned forward and watched as he hurtled to the ground. The snowy pavement looked as if she dropped a red-paint filled balloon onto a blank canvas. His body glued to the sidewalk just waiting to stick to someone’s shoe.
She rose to her feet, brushed the snow from her dress, and climbed back down to the static of blended voices. One familiar voice cuts through the others as a hand gripped her shoulder. “Hey, have you seen my husband?”