Daily Flash Fiction Challenge 3: Conference Nookie

This is the third in a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing from 2nd December 2012 until the 1st December 2013. It’s intent is to keep me writing throughout the year, and not just in November. you can find out more about the challenge here.

Conference Nookie by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 4th December 2012

Word count: 1,000

Warning: Very mild sexual content

The story:

Claire surveyed the wreckage that was her life. It had been two weeks since Michael had left her, she had taken it hard. He was meant to be the mythical one, they had been engaged, but apparently the feeling turned out to be not mutual. He left her, though not it appeared for anyone else. At least she hadn’t bought the dress yet, she thought.

She didn’t know what she was meant to do now though, other than work. So she threw her self into her job. She was currently at a conference in Buffalo, New York, and tomorrow she would fly back to Europe ready for the follow up conference in Dortmund.

She packs up her things ready for the next day then headed downstairs to the wind down reception for the North American Trade Expo.

She stuck to the bar, ordering just soft drinks, the conference was coming to an end, but she still needed her wits about her. The reception was reasonably busy. As she sipped her lemonade she surveyed the crowd.

There were several regulars in the crowd, people of interest. Professor Reynolds who was trying to drum up interest in his new automated production theories. Klaus Nowell the Anglo-German industrialist rumoured to be involved all manner of seedy enterprises.

She thought to herself that it wouldn’t be a complete waste of her time to get to know these two, there were certainly both attractive prospects. Though they weren’t why she was here.

“Hello there,” a man behind her said breaking her reverie. “You look lonely,” he hoisted himself up on a bar stool one over from her.

She prepared to shoot him down, expecting another middle aged, middle of the road, middle managing salesman trying it on with every woman without a ring. Grown men with the oafish belief in conference nookie.

She turned to face him and was pleasantly surprised to discover he was in his thirties rather than forties or fifties, his suit was tailored and in trend, and he wore cufflinks, not your typical salesman and just the man she was looking for.

“Hi there,” she said flashing her warmest smile.

“Can I get you another drink?” he asked, “If you don’t mind my asking, that is.”

“I don’t mind, but I’m fine all the same,” she said.

“My apologies, I was so dazzled by your beauty I didn’t notice your drink was full,” he said with a self depreciating smile, that told her he was having fun, rather than going for the usual chat up lines the clumsy oafs tried. His voice was Hispanic, so much so it sounded just slightly effected.

“Ah, your tongue is too sweet for my tastes,” she said rejecting him with a smile.

“I jest,” he said emphatically, “My name is Montoya Rafael, and it’s my pleasure to meet miss…” his voice trailed off an opportunity to introduce herself.

She declined the opportunity, choosing to leave him dangling a bit longer, “How do you know I’m a miss?”

“Well I assumed,” he said blustered.

“Know what they Americans say about ‘assume’?”

“No?”

“That it makes an ass out of you and me,” she laughed. He looked perplexed and then laughed anyway. “My name’s Holly Smith,” she extended her hand.

He accepted her hand, in a typically cliché fashion brushed her knuckles with her lips. “Charmed,” he said when he was looking into her eyes.

Despite herself, she felt a chill run through.

For the next hour they got to talking, at first she channeled the conversation into business, and their successes and failures at the conference. Gradually she allowed him to lead the conversation into their likes and dislikes.

As things ran the course, and he getting heavier and heavier inebriated, (while she maintained her constant supply of soft drinks), he invited her up to his room. There was not a shadow of doubt in his mind what was about to happen, so she played hard to get. Dragged it out longer, made him work for it, and to feel he had accomplished something when finally she consented.

“Oh okay,” she said slurring her words a little.

“Come,” he urged, as he helped her down from the bar stool.

They kissed, and got frisky on the elevator up to his room, and then they broke their activity as he struggled with his keycard to get the door open. Eventually they were inside.

“I need to freshen up,” she said, gesturing with her handbag.

“That way,” he pointed to the en suite, “Though you seem plenty fresh to me.” He headed further into the hotel suite laughing.

In the bathroom Claire quickly applied her lipstick, and for good measure did her blush as well. She unded the top button of her blouse and stepped out.

He was over in a flash, sweeping her off her feet and carrying her to the bed. They kissed passionately, and then suddenly he collapsed unconcious above her. She rolled him off, annoyed.

“That’s enough Romeo,” she said. Then putting a pair of gloves on she went about taking his wallet, his phone, (with battery and sim card removed), his cufflinks, (which she placed in a  thick antistatic bag), then she went through his luggage, checking for anything of value. Finding nothing, but being unsure of hidden compartments, she decided to take the luggage. She left the room, pulling the suit case, and carrying the shoulder bag. She headed to the lift, and went down to the ground floor.

“One to check out please,” she told the receptionist.

“I’m afriad you’ve missed check out,” the receptionist said boredly.

“Oh it’s okay, bill me for the other night, someone else is paying,” Claire said. “Room eight eleven.”

“Thank you ma’am,” the receptionist said printing off a bill, “Can you sign here please.”

“Of course,” she said, and calmly forged her target’s signature, and handed over the key.

She left the hotel, reaching for her phone to send one message, “Turkey has been obtained.”


 I fancied something a little different today, after two fantasy pieces. So I went with spies. Kept it simple, brief contact job to steal something, (though it’s never actually disclosed what). To be fair, in 1,000 words there’s a lot that’s not disclosed. A second conference in Europe? Was that to get this target, or is that for yet another target?

I honestly don’t know, I just wrote without thought of a plan. I was going to let it be the most dull spy story ever, and just have her sat at the bar analysing people, but I wimped in the end and gave her something to do. You can’t have a story that doesn’t achieve anything, or at least have a character trying to achieve something. It’s a law, right?

I didn’t want to reveal taht it was a spy story too early on, wanted that to be a surprise, make you wonder where it was going. I may have given the game away, but for a 1,000 word story, I tried my best.

Hope you enjoy.

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