During their weeklong captivity, the black designer sunglasses had been perched atop one of her kitchen counters. They had seemed like a trophy to her — on shameless display. Or maybe even the head of an enemy. Or better yet, a villainous hostage helplessly awaiting his fate. How fun! In fact, they even looked as if they were custom-made for such a person — a miscreant. They were curved like a scythe, and the tint of the lenses was so noxious it could easily conceal the eyes of whoever wore them.
As she ate dinner at the table, prodding at her food with a fork, or read her newly purchased vampire anthology on the couch, she’d look up at them and stare sadistically, smugly. They were hers to do with what she pleased and when she pleased. She could be as cruel and as reckless as she wanted with them. They were expensive, too, which made their imminent demise all the more delicious. But who knows how long it would take her to arbitrate their fate?
She entertained various courses of action. She was an artist, so maybe she’d splash red oil paint all over them, since red and black always made for such a striking combination, and then return them to him. Or else take a nasty old sledge hammer to them and pound away outside on her patio until the pieces were small enough to create a mosaic of some sort. Or maybe she would crush them under the spiky heels of her knee-high black stiletto boots — the ones that she never wore.
The day after the incident, after she had finished with her sobbing and swearing, she had considered merely tossing the glasses into one of the Dumpsters at her apartment complex and getting on with other things, but that would have been too lenient. Besides, what if they had fallen out accidentally when the sanitation service came, and someone had subsequently picked them up and claimed them as his own?
Still deliberating, she had decided spontaneously one night to toss them into her bag as she headed out to meet her girlfriends at a small club known for its tapas. Perhaps if she was feeling brazen enough, she’d pull over on a road shoulder on the freeway and toss them into the torrent of traffic, ideally in the path of a tractor-trailer.
She ordered a few items from the tapas menu when she got to the club. In addition to the food, she finished two mango orange margaritas along with half of a key lime mojito. She danced several times with her friends, as well as with a couple of guys who had hit on her, including this one guy who had just arrived in the U.S. from Spain. He had bought her the mojito and then pulled her out onto the dance floor after she took a couple of sips.
She felt his body close, his warmth radiating onto her skin, and then he pressed up snugly against her while the DJ spun big-beat tracks. Giggling and trying to talk over the music, she pulled the sunglasses from her bag and slid them onto his face as they moved to the rhythm. He leaned in to kiss her, and she didn’t resist.
Afterward, he smiled and shown his teeth, which were a bit crooked but made his mouth interesting and attractive. But she couldn’t make out his eyes, only the reflections of some of the low-lit track lighting and table candles inside of the club. Her heart raced almost as if she were in a panic when she realized how much he resembled an anonymous invader.
At the end of the evening, she kissed him goodnight and took the sunglasses back, placing them carefully into her bag. Then she asked for his number and sent him a text before taking off in her car.
Cassandra Keenan writes poetry and short fiction and also is a visual artist and professional journalist. She lives in Las Vegas, Nev., with her cat and blogs at oopsadreamzy.wordpress.com.