Sunday, January 12, 2014

The Old Man an the Stilettos

this is a short story i wrote for my creative writing class and i wanted it permanently on the interweb

The outlines of the pumps in his sloppy messenger bag were clearly visible. Suzette followed her co-worker out of the shop and into the evening bustle of Rue Jean Rey. Smacking her gum unconsciously, she kept her distance, but made sure not to lose sight of the crown that peeked through on the top of Gautier's dark hair. 
There had to be some explanation for this! He wasn't married, had no daughters, no nieces old enough for those shoes, and it was unlikely that he had a girlfriend. They approached the kind of complex that Gautier looked like he belonged in, and sure enough he started up the stairs. Suzette stopped just before reaching the stoop of his building and pretended to tie her shoe. Seconds after he entered, she followed.
Pausing at the base of a staircase, she listened to hear the jingle of keys. She still heard his footsteps. Suzette raced up the stairs ever so quietly. As she stepped off the landing at the third floor, she saw Gautier inserting his keys into the lock. Thinking on her toes, Suzette grabbed the wad of gum from her mouth, and, timing it ever so perfectly, walked past Gautier as he opened the door, cramming the enormous ball into the strike plate. She continued down the hall causally.
She heard the door shut, and turned back around. She had to know what he was doing with those shoes! It was strange enough that he worked for Christian Louboutin, but to steal the shoes….? She peaked through the small window in the middle of the door to his apartment. He was not in sight. Did she dare? She pushed the door. The gum had done its trick; the door opened effortlessly.
Suzette was struck by the design of Gautier's apartment. What taste! The Le Corbusier furniture, the oriental rugs; it looked like a spread from a magazine. Gautier’s bag was placed neatly on the lower shelf of a narrow table in the entryway, but the purple satin stilettos were missing from it... Suzette heard Gautier flip on the TV in the kitchen, buying her plenty of time. Her natural curiosity overtook her and she poked her freckled face into the front closet. 
Suzette’s eyes nearly popped out of her head. Lining the floor of his closet, surrounded with fluorescent up lighting and in immaculate order, were over twenty pairs of the famous red-soled Louboutin heels. 
The sound of a chair scooting back from the table in the kitchen! Suzette jumped into the shoe closet and watched. Unless her ears deceived her, it sounded like a woman in heels was clomping toward her over the oak floor. As Gautier came around the corner, she saw the last thing she expected to see. The balding, pudgy, sweat-stained, greasy guy that she had worked with for years was walking around his flat in a pair of $700 shoes with his pants rolled up to admire them! 
Gautier belched as he went into his bedroom. Suzette waited for a moment to be sure that she could get out of the closet and leave without him noticing. As she began to leave however, she saw a photo album and a Polaroid camera on the top shelf. Quietly she pulled them down. The album was full of nothing but page after page of Gautier’s legs wearing each pair of these shoes. He had to have more of the shoes stored somewhere- there were so many pairs. Suzette recognized some of the shoes from years ago. 
She bent down, looking at the beautiful footwear. There was a bow askew on one of the shoes. Another was missing a buckle. As Suzette scavenged, she realized that all of the shoes had some sort of flaw, but none of these mistakes were accidents. Gautier must have purposely marred the shoes so that he could take the imperfect ones home! She nearly laughed out loud. 

Figuring there were no more questions to ask in this closet, Suzette stepped out cautiously. Without the noise of the TV, she was aware of how loud every sound was. As she turned to leave again, an idea struck her. She stepped into one of her favorite pairs of zebra-stripped heels. Pulling out the Polaroid, she snapped a picture of her legs, wincing at the deafening volume of the camera’s shutter. Gautier hadn’t seemed to notice. Suzette slipped the photo into the album, and she slipped out the door, laughing to herself. 

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