Who doesn't love a leprechaun? Happy St. Pat's, enjoy . . .
Sunday afternoon and the bar was empty. Audrey sighed as she sipped her wine, tucked into a window booth overlooking the antique shops on Royal Street. She wished Declan hadn’t left so soon.
A glint of gold caught her eye and she peered around the dusty drapes. Was that an earring in the corner? Something green moved just out of sight and she turned suddenly to see a small, fat hand poised over her wineglass.
“Hey!” Audrey snapped and grabbed the arm of a tiny man wearing a soiled emerald jacket and a sour expression.
“Damnit!” The little man cursed as he slumped into the seat opposite her. He had a whiskery red face with untidy eyebrows and sharp, yellow teeth.
“Who are you – and what’s in my drink?” Audrey demanded, looking into her glass, where a suspicious powdery substance left a filmy white trail.
“Just call me Frank.” He growled in a nasally Brooklyn accent.
“And my drink?” Audrey pressed.
Frank shrugged. “Hey, my lucky charms ain’t what they used to be.”
“You’re a leprechaun?” Audrey looked skeptical.
“Well, I ain’t Santa.” Frank snorted. Wiggling a scruffy brow, he rasped, “Wanna ride my rainbow?”
Audrey shuddered. “I’ll pass.”
Frank scowled. “Your loss, girlie. Not all my parts are pint-sized.” He leaned over the table. “That ain’t what I want, though.”
“Then what do you want?” Audrey asked.
“I’m . . . hungry.” Frank looked at Audrey with wet, rum-tinged eyes.
She shoved a silver bowl of snack mix across the table. “Help yourself.”
Frank shook his head. “I’m an Atkins man, girlie. Meat only.” He licked his lips and stared longingly into the v-neck of her sweater. “Tastes just like chicken.”
“Whoa!” Audrey grabbed her purse to her chest.
Frank’s rubbery lips curved in an unconvincing smile. “Aw, don’t be that way. Just a taste?”
“No!” Audrey hugged her bag tighter.
“How ‘bout a toe,” Frank pleaded, “you got ten, you won’t miss one.”
“No!” Audrey shoved her feet under the chair rung.
“Come on!” Frank moaned, his nails scraping the table. “I’ll give you a pot of gold for your pinkie.”
Audrey scooted to the edge of the chair, eyeing Frank’s greedy fingers.
“Don’t make me beg, girlie.”
But Audrey wouldn’t budge.
“Bitch!” Frank hissed. Suddenly he was beneath the table, sinking his sharp teeth into Audrey’s ankle.
“Ow!” She cried, feeling Frank bite down harder, scraping bone. Blood spurted onto her jeans as Frank’s strong, fat arms tugged on her legs. Panicked, she smashed her wineglass over Frank’s head and he shrieked, relaxing his grasp.
“Let go, you little troll!” Audrey kicked him hard and he rolled into the dark space beneath the piano while she ran out the door.
Under the piano, Frank the leprechaun sat up slowly, rubbing his jaw. He picked a strand of Audrey’s flesh from between his pointy teeth and pocketed a gold earring from the floor. Straightening his vest, he grimaced.
“Next time I pick a fucking blonde.”
Like Audrey? Want to see her kick some flesh-eating scavenger tail? Click here to read the first chapter of my book, The Getaway Girls: A New Orleans Tale of Monsters, Mayhem and Moms for free!