The thick December air ripped through Eva Church’s black paper thin baby doll dress. She clutched her equally thin black shawl tighter around her skinny body to block it out. Such a poor choice in clothing tonight. Yet, Eva never thought about that. She only cared about looking sexy enough to attract a date. She needed another fix tonight. The need was that bad this time. The itch had grown out of control lately. No, it had been out of control for years. Eva, despite her last name, was a sex addict. She had been one since the mid-nineties. Maybe it was earlier than that, she didn’t know. Eva stopped keeping count years ago. At first, she would deny her condition. But now… she knew it was a problem.
The sharp cold wind pushed her to keep moving forward to her destination. The trip to the bar or club was always a walk of shame to her. It always led to her furthering her addict with some random stranger that she thought was cute after a few drinks. After the good old one-night stand, she always felt guilty in the morning. However, Eva just couldn’t stop. The reasons for her habits were lost a long time ago. All she could do was continue on with her downward spiral. She tried to force her fate out of her mind and keep walking to the Golden Star. “I need a cigarette!” Eva thought in misery. She reached inside her gold mini purse and dug around. Her luck seemed thinner than her attire tonight.
“Come on!” she mumbled as she dug faster and faster. “Don’t go missing on me now!” Eva desperately kept searching for her Camel cigarettes. In ten minutes among the condoms, her keys, birth control pills and patches, checkbook, pens, comb, stores amount of make-up, and mirror, Eva found her cigarettes. She breathed out in cold relief. Eva took out a fresh cigarette and put it in her mouth. Now for a light. The addict dug into her purse once again. The same frustration met her. The cold made her dig even faster.
“No please!” Eva whimpered to herself. “Don’t tell me I lost it again!” She searched even harder and faster. Frustration came over her mind. She hated losing her favorite pink lighter on “hunting nights” as she called them. That lighter was given to her by her first boyfriend. She couldn’t lose it tonight. Not now of all nights! Under her bright pink Blackberry, Eva managed to find her equally pink lighter. Another sea of relief came over her face.
“At least there are some small wonders left in the world!” she thought. The addict tried to light up her cigarette. Sadly, her luck jinxed her again. The lighter clicked empty with each flick. The faster she clicked it, the less success that she had. Eva only managed to get one spark that died out quickly. Nothing else followed after that.
“Damn it!” Eva cursed under her breath. “Damn it, damn it, damn it! Not now, damn it!” Eva kept trying to light her cigarette. Suddenly, she felt a warm flame right next to her pale make-up buried cheek. She slowly looked and saw a gentleman holding out a lit lighter as an offer. Eva looked at him in surprise.
“Need a light?” the gentleman nodded. He reached over and lit up the addict’s cancer stick. Eva sucked in the sweet toxic smoke. She breathed through her nostrils.
“Thank you!” she breathed out as she turned around to her savior. Oh, the Smiths’ song, “This Charming Man” fit him perfectly. He looked rather rich. His black dress suit must have come from Italy or France. His black hair looked neatly trimmed tonight. His deep black-gold framed glasses completed his look. Eva couldn’t help but to blush at him. “Well, hello there!” she greeted him more properly. The man looked her up and down oddly.
“You going to a party or something?” he asked. Eva shook her head.
“No, I’m just going to pick up a date,” she replied. Her new acquaintance raised an eyebrow at her.
“You a prostitute?” he asked.
“No!” Eva said quickly. “I just get lonely sometimes!” “All of the time…” she thought sheepishly. The man smiled at her out of sympathy.
“Fair enough,” he said. “Hey, are you heading to the bar?”
“Yes, why?” Eva asked. The man surprisingly took her by the arm. Eva looked at up and down in confusion. “Okay… What’s all of this?” she thought.
“Good thing,” her new acquaintance said. “Allow me to take you with me and then we can see where the night takes up, yes?” Eva looked on at a loss for words at first. She winced at him a little bit.
“Sure, I guess…” she mumbled at him. The man clinched her arm a little tighter.
“Very good!” he said. Then, he walked her straight to the bar down the road. Eva had a bad feeling about this, yet she tried her best to push that aside. After all, he was a man and seemed interested in her. Maybe they wouldn’t have to come to that and it would be over before she knew it. So, what’s the worst that could happen?
They came into the bar called the Golden Star. This was the place where lonely people tried to get “dates.” Many people found this bar tacky. For years, there has been an argument to tear it down for a building with a better use. Tonight, the Golden Star still stood. Eva and her gentleman friend sat at the bar. Charlie the bar tender looked at the thirty-something blonde sex addict.
“Eva!” the pudgy, bald bar tender greeted her. “Haven’t seen you in weeks! How have you been?” The sex addict lowered her head in shame. She hated when the people knew her name in this place. It only made things worse for her. Many times she told herself not to come back to this bar. But in the end…
“Yes Charlie,” she said. “I am back again.” Charlie grinned at the skinny blonde.
“We missed you!” the bar tender said. Eva kept her face down to the bar. “Why? Why do I always end up back here? Why? Why? Why?” She shuddered all of at the humiliation. Charlie looked over at her gentleman friend.
“Eva, who is this nice man with you?” he asked. The addict slowly looked up.
“Huh?” she asked, confused. She looked over to her left at her gentleman friend. “Oh,” she said. The gentleman lightly cleared his throat.
“My name is Wally Sanford,” he said. “I am on a business trip here in Dayton, Ohio.” Charlie looked at him impressed.
“Wow!” he said. “Well done to you!” Wally nodded at him.
“Thank you,” he said. Eva waved her hand in the air.
“Anyway,” she cut in. “Can you just get us our drinks so that we can leave now?” Charlie quickly came back to reality.
“Oh right!” he said. “What would you like?”
“The usual,” Eva mumbled in discomfort.
“Just a brandy for me,” Wally answered.
“Coming up,” Charlie replied. Then he headed to the back to get the drinks. Eva lowered her head and sighed again. She began to hate this night already. However, she looked up for a small moment. She noticed a missing poster against the back wall. The missing person in question was a fifteen-year-old girl named Jasmine Kent. She had been missing for three weeks now. Eva focused on that poster for the longest time. She had heard on the news that this might turn into a homicide case now. Jasmine’s parents ruled out the possibly of their missing daughter of being a runaway. Jasmine was a good girl—straight A’s, virgin, steady boyfriend, polite, choir girl, and great friends. Eva stared on at the smiling girl’s picture. Reminded her of herself somehow…
Charlie came back with the couple’s drinks. “Here you are,” he said. “Sorry to keep you waiting.”
“It’s okay,” Wally said. He got his drink and took a sip. Eva slowly took her drink as she kept her eyes glued to the missing poster.
“Charlie,” she said. “They still haven’t found that girl yet?” Her “date” found up for a bit when she asked that question. The bar tender shook his head.
“No,” he said. “They might declare it a homicide soon.” Wally slowly looked away some.
“What do you think happened to Jasmine?” Eva asked. “You think she was kidnapped by a pedophile?” Charlie shrugged as he washed a used glass.
“Seems that way,” he said. “She fits a creep’s type. I don’t understand why those sick-minded bastards like them that young! I mean, leave the kids alone, okay? Let them grow up some and they show them a good time!” Eva looked away feeling bad for hearing that. She began what started her addiction from the beginning. Why wouldn’t her mother believe her about her boyfriend? Just… why?
“Yeah…” Eva mumbled in discomfort. Charles realized his insensitive error.
“I’m sorry, Eva,” he said in a low voice. The addict just nodded.
“It’s okay…” she mumbled. Both began to remember it was the anniversary of that night… Wally slammed down his brandy.
“Okay!” he said aloud. “Look at the time! We better get going, dear!” He lightly took Eva by her wrist. The addict looked up confused.
“But I haven’t finished my drink!” she spoke up.
“You’ll manage!” Wally said through gritted teeth. “Now let’s go!” He pulled her up to her feet and they walked out of the bar. Charlie watched on confused. “Okay…” he thought. Then, he just went right back to work. Wally and Eva hurried into the night at the street. Wally haled them a taxi. They climbed in right away. The whole thing, Eva rode in confusion and excitement. On the one hand, it was great that a guy was in such a rush to get her to his motel room or wherever they were goes just get into her panties. On the other hand, something just didn’t feel right here… Why wouldn’t just feeling go away? It was as if her conscience was really loud tonight. She couldn’t explain why.
The taxi pulled up at the Princess Motel. Eva looked out the taxi window. The motel looked like the Norman Bates Motel in the Hitchcock film, Psycho. Not many lights were not on. Eva tried to stomach her paranoia. Wally paid the driver and get out. Eva got out reluctantly. They walked into the motel. Eva looked around the lobby. Pitch black all around them. No one was at the front desk. The addict turned to Wally.
“Where is everyone?” she asked.
“Asleep for the night,” he said without turning around. “This motel is owned by a young man and his ill mother. So, they go to bed early.” Eva nodded a bit uneasily. Yet, she didn’t try to run away. He probably wouldn’t let her. They walked down the hall to room 111. Wally reached into his pocket and pulled out his key. He unlocked the door and pushed it open. The couple quietly walked inside. Eva sat down on the bed. Wally stood in front of her. The addict looked round the darkened room. The only light available was from the full moon outside. So far, the room looked normal. Eva began to relax a little bit. Maybe this won’t be so bad. Wally walked over to the window and drew the curtains closed. He turned back to his date.
“I’m going to take a shower,” he said. “You just sit here and wait for me, okay?” Eva nodded quickly. Wally smiled at her as if he was plotting something diabolical for her.
“Good,” he said. “I’ll be right back.” The man walked to his bathroom and started up the water. Eva looked around the room again, smiling. She could feel the bitter memories slowly leaving her mind. “I can get through this night just fine!” Eva thought. “Maybe I can stomach all of this!” But then, the darkness crept back into her mind. She looked on the mirror and saw Jasmine’s photo taped to the frame of mirror. She looked like a sexy little school girl. Jasmine looked like a pin-up in the photo with her arms behind her head. Her cleavage was in plain view. Eva really became worried. “That’s Jasmine!” she thought in a panic. The addict looked at the closed bathroom door nervously. She had just come to an isolated motel with a pedophilic-murder. Panic filled her soul. The addict began to remember that faithful night back in ’94. Her mom’s boyfriend and she were staying alone in the house during a thunderstorm. She couldn’t sleep and he was just drunk. Eva wished that she had shut the door back then. Maybe things would have turned out differently then...
Eva’s mind treaded back and forth between that night and Jasmine’s assumed fate. “Oh no!” she thought. “I’m in a room with a pedophile! What should I do?!?” She thought about phoning the police. But what proof did she have? Only a photograph. That could have just be left here by the killer. But what if Wally was Jasmine’s rapist and killer? And what was he going to do to her once he got out of the shower? Eva knew that she had to get out here. But where could she go? Who would believe her? She was a “hoe” as the public saw her. However, Eva had to do something or else she would join Jasmine in the world of missing persons.
She came back to earth when she heard the water cut off. Eva looked up in frozen terror. Wally came out of the bathroom and stood in the doorway. He noticed the worried look on his date’s face.
“What’s wrong, Eva?” he asked. The woman stared at him with a ghost white face.
“You killed her!” she yelped. Wally looked at her slightly confused at first.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he said. Eva didn’t believe him for one second.
“LIAR!!!” she screamed. “You killed Jasmine Kent! You raped her and killed her! You have her picture on the mirror right there!” Wally glared at her coldly.
“So she stayed with me for a couple of nights! So what?” he challenged. “She was the one who approached me for a ride. We came back here when the weather got worse. Jasmine told me that she was running away from home to become a model. I took a couple of pictures of her because she asked me to help with her portfolio. She let me keep one of her pictures.” Eva still didn’t believe.
“LIAR!!!” she screamed again. Wally slowly became angry.
“Believe what you will, that’s what happened!” he snapped.
“Then, where is she now?!?” Eva yelled as she panted.
“I don’t know!” Wally snapped. “On a bus to LA somewhere, I don’t know!”
“LIAR!!!” the addict screamed out, now trembling all over. “She would never do any of that! Jasmine’s a good kid! Everyone knows that! Her parents even said so! You kidnapped, raped, and killed her. I just know it! You must have cut up the body somehow and disposed of it! Pedophile!” Wally glared at his date sharply.
“Call the police if you dare!” he barked. Eva stared at him in fear. She could barely move at all. Her body didn’t seem to let her do so. Wally smirked at her coldly.
“Stupid cowardly bitch!” he growled. Eva’s mind completely disappeared into the past. Instead of Wally, she saw her mom’s boyfriend about to have his way with her again. She herself was that young clueless, defenseless twelve-year-old girl back in that time. It was that summer night in ’94 all over again.
“MONSTER!!!” Eva screamed. She took off her kitten heel and threw it at the man. The heel grazed Wally in the face. Now, he was even more pissed.
“BITCH!!!” he yelled. “You’ll pay for that!!! Come here!!!” Eva watched on in fear as he began charging towards her on the bed. She screamed in terror. A couple of hours later, a police officer came by room 111. Some neighbors in the motel were woken up by the screams and loud noises coming from the room and called the officer over. He knocked on the door.
“Coming!” Wally said as he walked over to the door. When he opened it wide, Eva took off running with her body badly beaten and her clothes torn to shreds. The officer looked on confused.
“What’s with her?” he asked. Wally shrugged at him.
“Dunno,” he said. “I invited her over last night. Things got weird and she just ran away just now. Care to come in, officer?”
“Sure,” the cop said. Then, he walked inside. Wally shut the door behind them.
“Say, have you ever heard that old song about how a man murders his wife for cheating on him and flees to Mexico?” the man asked as a tired Eva walked door the abandoned road in the early morning hours, looking for a ride. “The name and the artist escape me at the moment, but it is a good song.”
“Maybe,” the cop said. “I might know what you’re talking about.”
“Really?” Wally asked. “Tell me all about it.”
Hey Joe, Where You Gonna Run to Now?