A paragraph from a scene titled, Do Right. The setting is a fictional locale – Ardua Pier- where things happen
Truth lies in a dream.
The dull blast of a horn signaled a ship entering port. He listened as waves lapped against the pylons. The high-pitched sound of a woman’s laughter rang from the neighbouring sugar factory. From a warehouse loft, somewhere high above the hillside, a violin’s music serenaded the stars.
Life is ever-changing, he thought, like the sea: calm and smooth, violent and rough. He yearned for a moment between struggle and triumph, a respite.
The hum of a car’s finely tuned engine interrupted his thoughts. He shivered and turned. Shielding his eyes from the glare of headlights, he watched as Rummy’s Cadillac inched closer to the bridge on the pier.
Birdie unsnapped the clasp of her sequined clutch, reached within the satin folds and pulled out an ebony compact and a tube of lipstick. She appeared oblivious to his insults and her surroundings. Her mister had forgotten her, therefore, she’d remind him.
Snapping open the compact case, she gazed at her reflection in the mirror. With stealth precision she traced the outline of her lips, plump with colour. Slowly her steady grasp creamed the center of her lips. As a final touch, she removed a tissue from her clutch and softly kissed it.
Taking one last glance into the mirror, she paused. Satisfied, she clicked the compact shut and returned the items to her clutch. The clasp snapped. She turned and pecked a faint scarlet kiss on Annie’s tender cheek. Birdie might as well have fired a bullet through the floor. The silence at the table was deafening.
The boss growled, “Shouldn’t you go for a walk or something?”
Birdie shook her head and motioned toward the bottle. “Pour me another, Roy,” she murmured.
Roy met her gaze; she winked back. He didn’t understand the boss. Birdie was a class act, easy on the eyes, even owned her own business: a sausage factory. No one knew how she’d ended up in that line of work. It seemed profitable. She was clear title on a home nestled within the west side of the city and a good looker. The boss is a fool, he thought and took a drink. As the bourbon went down and warmed his soul, he knew this: Miss Birdie lit up his dark.