She took the matchbook from her purse and looked at the name and phone number, and closed her eyes, briefly thinking about the man in the tux. The son of a bitch, she thought with a smile.
So he changed his phone number. Wanted her to call him. Well, he could go screw himself.
The wind briefly wrapped the curtain around her before she brushed it away.
She went back to her desk and put the matchbook book down.
Then she noticed that her laptop was on. The screen was lowered but she could see the light from the screen between the cover and the keyboard. She thought she’d hibernated the machine when she’d finished the review.
She reached over and lifted the screen. There was a letter on the screen which began: “Dear Raymond…”
And the fear choked her.
Before she could react she felt a warm breath on the nape of her neck. A plastic bag whished as it snapped over her head.
The opening was twisted tight.
The bag became a deadly trap.
A strong arm pinned both her arms to her sides and lifted her off the floor. Her screams were muffled by the bag, her muscular legs flailing helplessly as she fought for a breath.
She was frantic, staring out across the Park through the gauzy container. Her attempts to breathe merely sucked the plastic into her mouth and popped it back again.
Just one breath, she thought.
But it was denied. The strong arm jerked hard on her abdomen, emptying her lungs.
The struggle lasted four minutes before she went limp.
Her killer was relentless, holding her in the vice, waiting until the lovely dancer certainly was dead.
The plastic bag was pulled off her head. Her chin fell to her chest. The killer moved the free hand and fondled her tight breast, moved down between her legs and then, in one swift move, lifted and shoved her lifeless body through the door.
She flipped over the balcony, plunged fifteen floors, and splattered on the sidewalk below.
While she was still falling, well-manicured fingers Melinda never saw finished typing the artfully ambivalent email that would be accepted as a suicide note.