A Treasure of New Orleans |
by William C. Blome

The big, dark girl—the one whose skin was as soft as its promise (and many, many a time that’s not the case, Elton said to himself)—had moved from stripping in the pale scarlet light on stage to toweling down on a barstool and lighting up a pencil-like cheroot in the equally dim but colorless light about the bar. She now squinted at a newspaper, studying yesterday’s closing stock prices, but it had been in the half-way zone between stage and bar that she had slowly brushed past Elton and had gone cryptic on him by not asking for a tip for her dancing, not asking him where he was from and what was his name, not introducing herself and shaking his hand, but rather, by eagerly and clearly confiding that she was a treasure of New Orleans, not just because of her luscious person, but also by the irony that as a girl, she had once swallowed a fair-size garnet off her mother’s nightstand, and that as recently as last April, her HMO physician had verified the stone was still within her and had never passed.

 William C. Blome is a writer of short fiction and poetry. He beds down nightly in-between Baltimore and Washington, DC, and he is an MA graduate of the Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars.His work has previously seen the light of day in such fine little mags as Amarillo Bay, Prism International, Taj Mahal Review, Pure Francis, This, Salted Feathers and The California Quarterly.