wolf: n. a man who habitually pursues women

In a shocking injustice, my entry to the Flash Fiction contest sponsored by Wolfsword Press and the Chicago Literary Hall of Fame did not win nor was even among the finalists. So I am presenting it here for your enjoyment.

The rules of the contest were to write a story that features a wolf (or a Wolfe) of 100 to 250 words (including the title).

Unwelcomed Guest

“Javelina BotellĂ­n? Officer Shoat, El Paso Police. Can we talk?”

Leena opened the screen door flashing a broken smile over a whiskered chin. She wore a hokey, woolen pork pie hat, and held a spherical iron pot and a wooden spoon. “Merry Christmas, Officer. Try some chili.” The spoon was in Shoat’s mouth before she could refuse. “It’s from a barbacoa de cabeza I made for la Nochebuena.”

Shoat could see the whole interior of the practical, one-room cinder block house: Small gas stove in the fireplace, antique butter churn filled with apples, Brad Pitt and Jason Statham on TV (muted). Eartha Kitt was singing “Santa Baby”.

“You filed a complaint against Carlos Bailey?”

Leena turned to drop the spoon into an oil can labeled “Finest of the Fine”. “Complaint?! C.L. murdered my ex-sister-in-law and her sister. Outside my window at night he makes sucking sounds and whistles.”

“He had alibis.”

“So that’s all, huh? Know why? When you find a crime, you make a borlote to get a confession. But if you can’t solve it right off, you give up. If you had said ‘I’ll spend just 20 minutes a day—no more than that—on this case’, then today it wouldn’t be the case you couldn’t close. It’d be the case you’re working on.”

Shoat’s face shrugged. “Anyway, his father Vernon says he hasn’t been home or at work all week. Do you know if he went back to Mexico?”

“I don’t see him doing that.”


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