Smell the Witch

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He woke slowly, letting the pain going on inside his skull take its own sweet time to register. The aromas of cigarette smoke and scotch hung in the air, while the smell of sweat clung to the sheets of the empty bed.  I can still smell the witch, Jerry thought grimly as the perfumes of last night swirled around him; it was the scent of the woman whose enchantments he could never seem to break free of. The late afternoon sunlight filtered through the blinds, as he sat up on the corner of the bed and held his head in his hands.  He groaned and began to rub his temples. It was like this every time.

Nights with her always started out full of excitement and promises and concluded with him falling into slumber in her embrace. When the sun came up, she would always be gone leaving him hung over and tangled in the sheets; drained of everything but anger, shame, and regret. He rose and staggered out into the kitchen, there was coffee waiting in the pot, the warmer still turned on.

He poured a cup and made a silent vow this would be the last time, he knew from experience that it was a futile gesture, but he felt compelled to swear it anyway. In a few days, or weeks, or whenever the whim would strike her, she would show up out of nowhere and he would fall under her spell again.

He stood there staring out the window of the cramped apartment, sipping from his mug, mulling his thoughts. She was trouble, a dangerous liability he needed to be free of. After all, he still had a job to do.

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This story was written in response to the Song Title Challenge hosted at If all else fails…use a hammer.
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