Shirley Jones – A Short Story

     The story of Shirley Jones is a 1920’s noir style story that colors the black and white feel of the mob and gang overture that ruled the time. Margaret is a new detective that went rogue after being denied crucial access to case information. This story beings after she discovers that her cover, Shirley Jones, is more like her true personality than she first thought. The piece does not end at the end of this cut, but it is the end of the main climax.

Noir City

Shirley Jones

by: Miles Bednarski

     Rain slowly falls on the streets of New York. Automobiles wreak havoc on the roads while the streets stand still with the silent cry of violence. A covered figure ducks into the alleyway, while not a moment later, a feminine shadow follows behind him.

     “Honey, in all my years I haven’t seen anyone as pitiful as you…”

     The dark figure finds himself cornered in the alleyway. As he turns around to see who is following him. He sees her illuminated by the passing beasts. The rain now beating heavily on the scene, he slips and falls into a puddle.

     “You have nowhere left to run. Shame, a fellow like you is quite a catch ‘round here.”

      The figure she dominates crawls backwards on his hands and knees. Helpless, he’s backed up against the flawless brick wall.

     “Please,” he pleads. “I had no idea! It won’t happen again!”

     “Well,” she pronounces. The tips of golden hair now damp from the rain, “you are a fool, I’ve no time for fools.”

     “Mercy! I’ll do anything,” he begs. Now curled, tears shed from his face.

     The rain hardly gives in. Now beating down, the man sits cold and surrendered.

     “You know where he is, don’t you?” she smirks, flawlessly tipping her hat to the side while she reaches into her back pocket. The man pops his head back up in submission and pauses to respond:

     “Mr. Wayworth doesn’t like visitors…” he squeals and quickly ducks back down as he realizes these are his final breaths.

     “We are practically related, me and him.” She charges, “we are both willing to slit a few throats to get where we want… And all for a little information..? Is it really too much to ask for? Hmm?”

     “N-n-no ma’am, I don’t kn-n-now where he is” he stutters.
Before he can continue Shirley quickly stiffens and as a third passing vehicle goes by, she points the guy between his eyes. Moments later the rumble of thunder overcomes the encounter.

     “Come again?” Shirley questions.

     “I-I-I don’t know where he is, b-b-but I know people who do…”

     “Strange, it seems no man can ever give me what I want… No matter, tell me what you know before I change my mind about leaving you be…”

     “His right hand man,” he shouts “Louie, runs the front desk of the Sa Mort building…”

     “Well, I’d love to stick around and chat, but I won’t get any work done standing here.”

     The man, still curled, lets out a shutter and a sigh of relief. He was the first man to survive a confrontation by Shirley Jones, at the cost of crucial information. She was out on a mission and prepared to ignite fury upon anyone in her way.

+   +   +   +   +

     “Hello, and welcome to the Sa Mort building. How can I help you at this hour?” a large man greets the drenched body in the doorway.

     “Hello dear,” it answers, “I’m looking for a big, strong man to help me…”

     “Uhhhhh,” the man pauses, “Come again?”

     The figure comes closer, the sound of 3 inch heels distinctly click atop the ceramic floor.

     “Maybe you can help me… I’m looking for-”

     She pauses, her burning blue eyes staring down man’s startled, helpless expression. Leaning over the table, she breathes into his ears:

     “Charles Wayworth.”

     The man looks utterly surprised then realizes who the figure is. Before he is able to call for help, he feels the wet, metal touch of a revolver against his upper torso.

     “I have no intention of leaving you alone sweetie. Not until I get what I came here for.”

     Without hesitation, and just the flip of a switch, an elevator to the left of the counter opens. Louie quickly responds over an intercom:

     “Sir, your ten o’clock is here.”

      With every passing second for someone to respond, Shirley locks the gun tighter and tighter upon the man’s chest, ready to fire at any chance she is given. What was only seconds lasted an eternity. Not a moment too soon, static is heard from the other end and a voice barks, barely comprehendible, from the other side.

     “Bring them in, and be quick about it.”

     “It was a pleasure doing business with you.”

     She kicks the man backwards and flaunts into the elevator. There is no stopping this Shirley Jones, she delivers justice her own way. Her burning passion rose with the height of the elevator, her uncontrollable rage was soothed by a gentle ding of the metal machine. She said her silent goodbyes, for this could be her terminal affair.

+   +   +   +   +

      The elevator opened to the top story of the Sa Mort Building, New York. The time: barely past ten o’clock. Her fluorescent red lipstick was combat ready. Shirley Jones knew she was ready to strike. She walks into her bosses office, the rain drapes itself close to the window, the shades drawn so little light of the night escapes the outerworld. A tall, dark chair in the room swivels from side to side. A man from within it responds:

    “You’re late.”

    “Darling, there’s always time for me.”

     The figure swivels around and leans forward from his chair, making a fluent gesture to the name on the desk: Charles Wayworth. He slowly opens his desk, taking out a singular folder and handing it to Shirley. She glances at it and responds promptly:

     “What is this?”

     “You tell me,” he responds.

     She carefully picks up the folder, bent on one end. As reaches into it, she takes out three pieces of paper, all of which are labeled, “Certificate of Birth.”

     “What do they mean to you?” he asks frigidly.

     “I don’t know who you’re talking about.”

     He slowly takes a pen from the ink jar, knocking it over. A small pool of ink spills over the desk and onto some paperwork. As Charles attempts to manage the chaos, slowly, Shirley reaches for her back pocket.

     “Honey, don’t make me do this.”

     As the two suddenly find themselves at a pause, a flash of lightning illuminates the room for a moment. A moment was all she needed.

     “Darling, didn’t mommy ever tell you not to play with guns?”

     “No, but my friend Tommy here has something to say.”

     “Is this really what you want, sweetie?”

     “What choice do I have? You don’t seem to listen to reason.”

     “Reason? Honey, he’s my date tonight,” she breathes, “and I plan on attending.”

     The rain continued to pour on the city. Darkness seemed to drench the horizon further than any man could see. The moon was barely visible behind musky clouds overhead. Only one noise was heard that night. Some will say it was nature, the sound of lightning. Others will claim someone ran red. Red with blood. Nobody knows. The only claim to the event was a black car leaving the building past midnight, the hour of death.

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