Film Noir Smooth
Debbie rushed into the book club meeting and took the first available seat. The members were already chatting amongst themselves, and the room was abuzz with snippets of conversation. They quieted when Amelia called the meeting to order. Debbie glanced around the room, smiling at those who met her gaze. Then, her eyes fell on a handsome young man in a black fedora, whom she had never seen.
His eyes met hers, and she nodded a greeting. He smiled and tipped his hat.
Amelia finished giving the club announcements, and the book discussion began. Bewildered, Debbie wondered why Amelia had not asked the young man in the hat to introduce himself, but the members were already diving into the discussion in their usual chaotic and cheerful way. They were tearing the book apart.
Dividing her attention between the lively discussion and the young man, Debbie observed him through quick, surreptitious glances. Square-jawed and impressive, with dark features, the young man had an air of sensual mystery about him. He was film noir smooth.
Throughout the meeting, the young man kept catching her gaze, and spoke up several times, his voice booming over all others, but always directing his striking eyes at her. His piercing gaze made Debbie so self-conscious she found it difficult to follow the discussion, though she noticed he kept twirling a piece of paper between his fingers.
The meeting soon ended, and as the members filed out of the library’s conference room, Amelia caught up to Debbie.
“You were quiet today,” she said.
Debbie nodded, “I, uh, had nothing nice to say about the book.”
“Ha! No one did, it was pretty terrible,” Amelia giggled.
“Hey, do you know that new guy?”
Amelia looked puzzled, “who?”
“The guy in the fedora. I don’t know if he introduced himself before I arrived.”
“There was no new guy,” Amelia stated.
“Sure there was! He spoke a few times.”
“Yeah? What did he say?”
“Um…” Debbie racked her brain, but could not remember a single word the young man had uttered, “Are you sure you saw no one in a fedora?”
“I’m certain,” Amelia answered and nudged her, “maybe you dreamed of him.”
She winked, and wishing Debbie a good night, walked out the door.
Debbie paused, flabbergasted, and looked back at the conference room, but the motion detector had already turned off the lights and only a dark cavern stared back at her. Bewildered, she turned to leave, but felt something fluttering behind her ear. She swatted it away; a piece of paper floated to the ground. It read: “hello.”