"Are you going to be on your best behavior?" asked Mort as he rang Juliet's doorbell. Little Marissa stood there with her backpack, bouncing up and down, very excited.
"Yes," she said with a smile. The door opened and Juliet looked down at her and smiled.
"Hey Marissa! Lizzie's in the living room. C'mon in." Marissa ran on in, her backpack bouncing behind her. Juliet chuckled and looked over at Mort. "Well if it isn't Mr. Mom," she said smiling. Mort smiled and ran a hand through his hair.
"Very funny," he muttered. "I'm glad you could take her for the night. I could use the break"
"Anytime," she said. "Want to come in"
"That's alright, I think she wants me to go anyway. If she misbehaves don't hesitate to throw her out the window." She chuckled and shook her head.
"And about that dinner we agreed on"
"Oh, right," he said, turning on the charm.
"If you find a babysitter on thursday, it's a plan." He nodded.
"Right... but I don't know any baby sitters"
"Leave it to me then," she said. "I have connections"
"You're sure people will just agree to it, especially if they know it's for me"
"Not if they think it's for me," said Juliet.
"Ah!" he said, catching on. "Thursday it is then"
She smiled and nodded. "Good deal"
"Mooort!" came a wail and he looked over at Marissa who came running over.
"What is it, hon"
"I forgot Cindy at home! We've got to go back and get her!" She was acting like it was a life or death situation, and Juliet looked at Mort questioningly.
"Cindy?" she asked.
"Her doll," he answered. "She can't sleep without it"
"C'mon! We gots to go!" she wailed.
"You know what, I'll go back and get her. You stay here and go have some fun. Okay"
"Will you bring her super fast"
"Faster than Superman," he said. She nodded, seeming a little glum and muttered, "Okay"
"I'll see you in five minutes then," he said to Juliet. She smiled and nodded and let him go.
"Where are you?" growled Mort as he dug around Marissa's room. It was already a mess and he was going crazy just trying to find a doll.
"The thing 'bout lil' kids it they don' know how teh keep their rooms clean, do they"
Mort, who was halfway under Marissa's bed looked up, smacking his head on the bottom of her bed.
"Ow! Dammit!" he growled, and crawled out. "What the hell do you want?" Shooter stood in front of him, holding a piece of paper.
"I've read a lot of your stories, Mr. Rainey. This one's a masterpiece." Mort made a face.
"What is it?" he asked darkly.
"It's a surprise endin', one I didn't even see coming. That lil' girl's in for a treat." Mort felt his blood freeze in his veins and he looked at him nervously.
"How does it end?" he asked, fear in his voice.
"Well, I'm thinkin' I'll leave that for you to find out. You see, the best kind of endin' is the kind that sneaks up on you. Catches you completely by surprise"
"How does it end!" he shouted and charged at him. All at once Shooter disappeared and Mort's head met with the wall.
He shouted a chain of obscenities, and rubbed over the instand bruise on his head. Groaning, he sat on the floor, motionless for a long time until he wasn't so dazed and got to his feet. "Dammit!" he growled and walked out of the room, carrying the doll with him.
"Are you okay, you got a large bruise on your head," said Juliet when he came back.
"Oh, it's nothing. Just found out the hard way my big head won't fit under her bed, that's all"
"Cindy!" cried Marissa as she ran up and snatched her doll from him. "Thankyou"
"You're welcome," he said, smiling and ruffling her hair. "Is that everything?" he asked.
"I think so," she said and he smiled.
"Can you give Mort a kiss goodbye?" he asked and she kissed him on the cheek and ran off. "Nice big sloppy one," he muttered, rubbing his face. Juliet laughed and he grinned.
"So thursday, then," he said.
"See you later then"
"Bye." He left and she watched as he drove away. "What have I gotten myself into?" she muttered, then turned around, shaking her head and going back to the girls.
(A/N: Tah-dah! Yes, it was short, yes it was weird, but at least it's here! The next two weeks might be a little slow for me because I have Regents exams and finals and all that great crap so I'll see what I can do. It feels great to be back!)