Fiction: Days off (532 words)

15 Oct

No one had knocked on Maggie’s door in about five and half days. That was a bittersweet fact.  On the one side—that gave Maggie the peaceful alone time that she always longed for, as well as the chance to get a lot of her to-do list crossed off.

But—it always meant that something was looming.  It never seemed to be a casual visit from Danny to break these days of solitude. It was six people injured in a plan gone wrong, or a nest of something or other threatening to kill a whole town, or Kelsey’d gotten herself kidnapped again and someone had to figure out a plan to get her back.  It was always enough stress and panic to more than make up for the days of rest.

As she hit five days and nineteen hours since her last visit from anyone, Maggie began to get properly jumpy. The refrigerator compressor kicked in and Maggie dropped her mug, breaking it on the floor and spilling coffee all over.  She was muttering to herself about being ridiculous and looking for a towel to clean everything up when the phone rang and she hit her head on a shelf in the linen closet.

“I’m too old for this,” Maggie muttered, rubbing the back of her head with one hand and reaching out for the phone with the other.  “What?” She snapped into the receiver.

“Hey, Maggie, It’s Barty.” Maggie rolled through her mental rolodex: Bartholomew Micrada, low-level white hat witch.  Nicknamed: Simpson.

“Hey, Simpson,” Maggie threw the dishcloth down on the spilled coffee, “What can I do for you?”

“Just wondering if you’d seen or heard from Daniel recently. He was supposed to be helping me out with a project but he missed our appointment and seems to be out of contact.”

“Uh no. I haven’t, but you know how Danny gets sometimes—a little twisted in the timeline.  But I’m sure he’ll show up with a hundred excuses soon.  I’ll send him your way when I hear from him again.”

“Cool. Thanks, Maggie.” Maggie hit end on the phone as she knelt down to clean the coffee spill again, but she’d barely touched the dishcloth again when the phone started ringing again. Two calls in five minutes wasn’t just unlikely, it was damned unprecedented.

“Hello?” Maggie answered, praying it was Danny on the other end of the line.

No luck.  “Maggie, good you’re there. It’s Elena.”  Hunter, teamed with sister Lois, code-named “El and L.” “Lo and I were just wondering if you knew where Daniel Peterson was.  We need his help with a job but he’s not answering any of his usual contacts.”

Maggie’s front doorbell rang, so she told El to hold on and made her way to front door. She found Jase and Genny there, smiling as if they were supposed to be there.  At Maggie’s blank expression, Genny took the lead. “You weren’t expecting us?”

“Should I have been?”

“Daniel said he was going to call you—to get a briefing prepared for us.”

“When was that?”

“About a week ago. He never called you?”

“No, but you guys should probably come in any way.  I think we have a problem.”

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Posted by on October 15, 2014 in Maggie's Stories


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