By Edith Maxwell
Copyright 2013 Edith Maxwell
Cover by Stanzalone Design, http://stanzalonedesign.weebly.com/
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This story was first published as “Obake for Lance” in Riptide by Level Best Books (2004).
Elise saw Lance’s yellow hat weaving toward her above the crowd of Japanese commuters. He slouched up to her on the subway platform, evoking a skinny young Humphrey Bogart. “Hey, good looking, where you headed?”
“Lance? What are you doing here?”
His hat was pushed back on his brow, and his lips clamped a cigarette in the corner of his mouth. He stretched his arm out to the wall and leaned against it so the two of them were enclosed in a private space, so the hundreds of people who milled behind them seemed far away. His face was near hers – they were both almost six feet tall - and his wide mouth quivered with intensity as it always did. The skin at his temples was so delicate it showed tiny blue veins; the hair that escaped his hat was blond enough to look white.