“Hi, beautiful —
hope you‟re not too tied up to talk to me,” he murmured,
favoring her with a schoolboy grin. Crouching beside her, he unwrapped thephone cord. She spit the cloth out of her mouth, gagging momentarily.
“Who are you, junior G
Man?” she asked sarcastically.
“Hey, I‟m Captain Midnight, doll —
out protecting god fearing citizens,
saving widows and orphans, rescuing damsels in distress.”
He locked eyes with her, flashing a warm smile. Bending down, he studiedthe knotted stockings binding her arms and legs together like a rodeo calf. Thestockings were taut silk cords, creasing her flesh as they held her forearms andthighs together. One thing he was sure of: no Boy Scout would have tied thatgreat granny of a knot.
“Listen, Midnight —
you here to look or to help?”
Startled, he studied her face. Did he know this woman? Had he seen herbefore? What was it that made her seem so familiar? Or, was it just wishful
“Wouldn‟t want me to ruin this fine pair of stockings, would you, doll?” he
asked, his fingers probing the silken knot.
“Very thoughtful, Midnight, but gangrene is setting in! When they have tocut off my legs I‟m not gonna have much use for these stockings.”
“Then you won‟t mind if I take them as a souvenir,” he said, using his fingers
to unsnarl the knot.
“My legs? You lookin‟ for body parts, go dig up a grave,” she said with deep,
throaty laugh.Startled, he laughed too, and then he realized: it was her voice, where had heheard it before? There was something about that sick sense of humor he foundvery appealing. She had a wry, knowing smile, too, he noticed as he loosened theknot.