Given a moment Wilson would have considered this new room carefully. He would have noted the swirling ivy pattern on the filigree curtains that were drawn over the window that faced Iron Lane, the small table that sat in front of the window supporting a white ceramic bowl filled half way with random coins and detritus of living. He would have been impressed by the thick woven rug on the floor with its blend of colors shifting through reds, yellows, and oranges. He would have been appreciative of the large wooden wardrobe carved in a gothic style from dark mahogany. And he would have been envious of the large four post bed wrapped in a thick red plush comforter, and loaded down on the one end with no less than six pillows. He would have been particularly struck by the contrast to the rooms across the way in Tooth’s old apartment, it was as if the two rooms did not belong in the same building. All of this would have gone through his mind, if he had not been more immediately distracted and concerned with the woman lying naked on the bed, a towel wrapped around her hair, apparently fresh from a bath, presumably in the room beyond the door at the other end of the bedroom.

She had her back to him as he entered the room but quickly rolled over to face him, a look of shock and surprise flashing across her face. When she saw him she sat bolt upright and went to cover herself as much as possible with one arm, the other reaching to grab a pillow as she let out a quick gasp of surprise. He thought he pillow was meant to provide further cover, but she held it over her head threatening to throw it at him. Finally he was able to overcome the surprise and tear his eyes away. He backed out of the door quickly, spun around so his back was on the wall outside and held his arm up, to show surrender.

“I’m so so sorry”, he cried out. “I had no idea.”

“Who are you and what are you doing in my apartment?” she demanded. “How did you even get in?”

“My name is Wilson, mam, Wilson Pool? I’m very sorry about that, I was under the impression that this was a part of my apartment. I have a key, see?” he implored, he had dropped the key on the floor when he spun around, so he quickly picked it up to show her, still firmly not looking in her direction.

“Your apartment?” she asked. “There must be some kind of mistake. Hold on a moment, let me get dressed and we’ll go talk to Tooth, he’s got to be downstairs in the shop. But if I find out you were just trying to rob me you’ll have another thing coming!”

“You don’t know?” he asked, quietly, concerned.

“Know what?” she responded.

“Please get dressed, miss, and join me next door. I’m afraid I have some bad news for you.”


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