Vintage – By Patricia McCowan
Flash Fiction / April 12, 2009

Christine spots the suit towards the back of the dusky shop. No, the suit spots her. She has escaped her desk at the brokerage for an illicit lunch hour. She has taken a long walk away from the towers, found a street of little brick buildings and grime. Now, inside, Christine makes sure her cell is off, checks over her shoulder. Just the burgundy-haired girl at the counter, idly flipping through an old Life magazine. Christine stands in place, prolongs the moment, describes to herself what’s caught her: Size Eight Ladies’ Tailored Grey Suit, 1930’s. Severe, sombre. Her breathing slows, the musky smell of the place like a tranquilizer. She goes to it. She reaches out and pulls the garment towards her, strokes the pleasurably raspy fabric of the jacket and matching skirt. The sensation catching on her nerves like tiny hooks. She narrows her eyes, pauses like a swimmer on a sun-heated dock, then slides her hand inside the skirt. Lined, she knew it would be lined. The old silk a thin barrier against the scratchy wool. She splays her fingers against it. Maybe she could have it. Maybe she has to have it. She could buy it and…