“But enough about me! I want to know what brings Jimmy Valadares back to Z-town,” he said, sipping his champagne.
“There was a murder earlier tonight — a reporter from the Dusk Diary. We found her body a stone’s throw from the Bone Gate. Forensics confirmed that a zombie did it,” I said, studying his face.
“Since when does the police care about murders in Zombietown?” he asked nonchalantly.
“She had connections to the Gorgon family.”
“I see,” he said, sipping again his champagne and letting nothing register on his face.
“My captain sent me here to investigate the case. I knew that a reporter in Zombietown would, sooner or later, come here to talk to you. So, did she?”
“Hmm, I don’t recall. It’s all a bit vague…”
“Her name was Medea Boid,” I offered.
“Oh! Snakes on her head?” he asked and I nodded. “Yes, yes. She came by earlier this evening. Asked some crazy questions about a conspiracy. She had a very active imagination.”
“Conspiracy? What kind of conspiracy?” I asked, intrigued.
“I don’t know. As soon as I realized she was wasting my time, I finished our interview. You know the Dusk Diary is not exactly respectable.”
I tried extracting more information out of him, but failed. He had already given me everything he intended to. To stay any longer would only waste my time. I stood up.
“What? Leaving already, Jimmy? Are you sure you don’t want to stay for the show?” he said. As if on cue, the lights dimmed and a spotlight turned on above the stage. The curtains drew apart. I stood paralyzed. Lenore. Bathed in bright white light, like an angel. The same cascading fiery hair and fair green-tinged skin. In a tight, long black dress that revealed she had lost none of her charms. She started singing “Someone to Wither for Me.”
I felt confident that I was over her. After all, she had chosen to stay instead of leaving with me, fifteen years ago. She had chosen to remain among that which I most despised. I accused her of having a misplaced sense of loyalty and she retorted that I had a very “well placed sense of shame.” I had left then and had never looked back. Until that moment, that is. Or was it? There was only one way to find out. Besides, I could also pump her for information.