Maryse and I stayed up late talking that night. She confided how worried she was about Dufus. How he'd become secretive and uncommunicative since February 1st. "He's even taken to wearing a trench coat and fedora," she said. "It's like he's hiding from something."
I admitted that I, too, had become rather paranoid in the past week. "It's just this thing with Nicky. For some reason, she keeps wanting us to do this writing challenge. We try to get out of doing it, but she's so freakin' persistent!"
Maryse was shocked to hear how Nicky had been tracking my movements. Just as I was about to reveal what I'd discovered in what I now call "The Dufus Papers", there was a crashing and banging in the front entryway.
It was Dufus, looking much the worse for wear. His eyes were bloodshot and he reeked of stale beer and whiskey.
"So she's after you too, eh?" he said when he saw me. "How long do you plan to hide out here?"
"Dufus, don't pester her", said Maryse. "She's had a rough day and she doesn't need you hounding her."
At which point, Dufus tripped and fell onto the couch. Henry jumped up next to him and proceeded to lick the pretzel crumbs out of Dufus's beard.
As Dufus attempted to fend off The Infernal Spawn of Evil, he grumbled, "All I'm sayin' is fish and house guests both start to stink after three days. Hint, hint!"
I gathered I had three days before I had to move on.
To be continued...
That Spooky Invisible Hand
19 hours ago