Warm Heart, Cold Snow

“Hey, mister, you looking for a date?”

The old man paused and turned slowly. A young woman lurked in the alleyway, keeping warm by the steam rising from a sewer grate. She was underdressed for the first snow of winter in calf high shiny boots and a short skirt.

He approached slowly, most of his face shadowed by the heavy hood of his furred winter coat.

“What is it you seek from me young lady?”

“I just thought you looked lonely, wandering around in the winter, like maybe you could use a friend. I can be a very, very good friend, know what I mean?”

One eye glinted in the hood’s shadow.

“How old are you?”

“Twenty.”

“Closer to fifteen, I’d judge. You don’t seem a much practiced doxy.”

“What?”

“You’re a runaway, aren’t you? From whence do you flee?”

“Not important. Look mister, don’t you have any money, are we going on a date or what?”

He pressed a single large, golden coin into her hand.

“Run, child. Home to your mother and buy whatever comfort remains, for the Fimbulwinter is upon us all.”

Two ravens descended and perched on his shoulders. A wolf howl echoed far away.

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200 words. Inspired by this week’s Sunday Photo Fiction prompt:

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