Instructions: Read the short story and once you’re done (scroll to the end of the story) VOTE on whether this story should be turned into a novel or novella. And if you don’t think the author should keep going, we have a choice for that too.
“The Dangers of a Stranger”
A Complex Predicament
“Well, that’s the most creative pickup line I’ve had in a while.” “Excuse me?” Nathan said with a confused look. “Did you not just send me a drink with a rather interesting confession of being an agent? Are you my knight in shining armor?” I asked with a smirk.
I took in the sight of him fully, now that I was a bit closer. He smelled divine and looked good enough to make mine for the night.
His face tightened and he looked so serious it shook me for a moment.
“Listen, I know this may be strange, and introducing myself in a spot like this may not have been the most professional way. However, I needed to reach you before it was too late.”
My gut told me he wasn’t lying and I took the seat next to him.
“Okay,” I said, slightly unprepared for what he was about to tell me.
“My name is Nathan Crafton and I’m an agent with the FBI. I’m sure you’re familiar with the show, Criminal Minds. Well, consider me a profiler. And my team has been watching you closely for the past two years. We believe the serial killer Max Stanton may be after you.”
“You’ve gotta be fuckin with me right?”, I stuttered, still trying to gather my thoughts about what he just told me.
“Please don’t. Just give me a moment. Are we safe here?”
He nodded his head yes and I sighed in relief. What the fuck is going on? I thought to myself, this can’t be real. My life was already stressful enough. Between having a shitty boss and just recently breaking up with my longtime lover, life was kicking my ass.
Paranoia hit me and I suddenly began to question if I should even trust this man.
“How can I know for sure you’re being truthful?”, I asked in a low tone.
He slid a phone over to me and unblocked the screen.
“Here’s your profile and all the details I can personally give you about myself and my team.”
I scanned the documents on the phone and my heart began to race.
“Where is this guy? Why me?”
“Well Celeste, that’s why I’ve been instructed to follow you closely. He was last spotted Tuesday afternoon behind your office. He was seen with an unknown device and we can’t be sure if he’s planted a bomb or any other means to cause you harm.”
“Okay, but that still doesn’t explain, why me?”
“That’s what we’re trying to figure out. Based on his profile, you don’t fit the type of victim he normally goes after. We don’t what made him change his pattern.” Nathan scanned the room, making sure they were still in the clear.
“Okay, so what’s the plan? Cause y’all can’t expect me to go back home after this.”
He went quiet for a second. “Is there anything from your home that you drastically need?” he asked. “If I could get my laptop and tablet, I’ll be straight. I can buy the things I need once I get somewhere safe.”
I told him, while thinking to myself, thank goodness I have a remote position. I sighed. “Ain’t this a bitch,” I mumbled. I took the rest of my drink down and tried to keep my emotions in check.
“Look, I came out tonight to destress, not this bullshit. So before reality kicks my ass one more time, can I at least have one dance. I feel like you owe me one since you came in here being the bearer of bad news.” He chuckled a bit and took my hand, “It’ll be my pleasure.” I could’ve sworn I saw him wink but it could’ve just been the lights.
Just as we stepped into the floor, the music slowed down and one of my favorite R&B cuts started playing. Nathan took me by surprise and pulled me in close, with his hand resting right above my ass. I ain’t gone lie, it felt good to be in his arms. Despite him being the feds, the nigga was fine and the scent of his cologne was doing something to me.
Or it could’ve been the drinks. Either way, I wasn’t going to ruin this moment. I hummed the song softly, laying my head on his chest as the dj moved on to the next slow jam. I couldn’t help myself and took a good look into his eyes. And I kissed him. But he didn’t stop me. The shit felt too surreal.
Not I’m about to go into hiding from a whole psycho and God gone play in my face by sending this fine ass man to protect me. I’m sure he was probably breaking all kinds of rules just by being this close to me, so I know a kiss was going too far.
The song ended and we pulled away from each other, slightly shying away from what we’d just done.
If you would’ve bet me this morning that I’d be kissing a stranger in a bar before the night was over, I would’ve laughed in your face. Yet here I was. I grabbed his hand and told him I was ready. He nodded and we walked out of the bar and into the night, not sure of what was to come.
Nathan walked me to his 2026 all-black Cadillac with the blackout tint and custom matte black rims. I was impressed. The car hadn’t even hit the market yet so I knew he must’ve had some deep ties.
Well, this nigga is the feds, don’t get too caught up on a cute face. I got into the car quickly, still paranoid about making it to my house. I felt like I needed to constantly look over my shoulder.
Just as I was moving to glance back at the car behind us, Nathan grabbed my hand. “Hey, I’m going to need you to stay calm okay?” “I hear you, but it’s a whole serial killer after me.
My anxiety is through the roof. Spare me the, ‘it’s going to be okay’ spiel.” He gave me a slight nod and pulled his hand away.
We made it to my place twenty minutes later and I wasn’t the least but surprised that Nathan already knew the way without me telling him.
For two fucking years I’ve been being watched.
They had detailed pictures of the inside and outside of my home. My work schedule, when I went to the gym. Everything.
And here I was oblivious to the danger right in front of me.
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