“You know that will-”
“No it fucking won’t,” I snap, leaving the withered old prune of a woman showing the whole bus-stop her knackered teeth. Eighty-four, arthritic and clean for fifty odd years. She was lucky, had a girlfriend who dragged her out of the crack house and to a hospital before the heroin overdose could kill her. Didn’t mean I wanted her telling me that the fags were going to do me in. It would be like me telling her that the number thirty-eight would have her on her back next week and no amount of emergency response would get her heart going again. Except in her case I’d be right and people tend to be a bit touchy when you tell them the deadlines on its way.
“Sorry,” I tell her. “Job’s starting to get to me.”
The ‘o’ shape of her mouth is now some puckered version of what once was a pretty impressive scowl. Still is to a certain degree, but you get use that after a hundred years or so.
“Humph,” she says, and that’s it. I suppose she doesn’t think I’m worth the time, or the energy. She’d have taken a swing twenty years ago, the sixty-year old with brass knuckles in her pocket.
“I really am sorry,” I say. “It was uncalled for, I shouldn’t have said that.”
She nods. It’s surprising how easy it can be to turn someone around with only a few words.
“I’m D,” I tell her. “Don’t ask what it’s short for, the whole back-story would take well too long to explain.”
I stick out a hand which she takes. Tough grip for an old bird, but like I said, brass knuckles in the right-hand coat pocket.
“I know your sort,” she says. “Don’t think I don’t know what you’re doing here.”
I grin at that, they’re always trying to pin you into some box or another. “I thought I was waiting for the bus,” I tell her, putting a little pull into drawing my hand back. She kept it wrapped in hers.
“Not wearing that face you’re not. Normally your kind are a bit smarter. You must be new, or at perhaps you just thought my brain would have rotted away enough for me not to recognise an old face?”
“Old face?” I ask. You’re told that if one recognises you that the best thing to do is act innocent. But that can be a problem when your whole face has a tendency to light up the colour of tomato soup on those rare occasions when have reason to panic.
“D? I don’t need to ask what it’s short for,” she tells me. “I’ve been dodging you since that night fifty-three years ago. I hear your kind don’t like to be proven wrong.”
Dear Daily Prompt,
Have a short story instead of my answer.
Let me know what you think, this looks like one that I might come back to and flesh out a bit more