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The Last Airport

Page 2

Vacen Taylor

‘Anna, come and look at this,’ Dave called. He was reaching into a cardboard box on a table when she walked in. In one hand he held a piece of notepaper and in the other was a little pink dress. 

‘What’s the note say?’

‘Do not touch.’

‘Put the dress back.’

‘Someone must be staying here.’ Dave pointed to a swag on the floor, and on the other side of the wall sat an old, shabby two-seater lounge chair.

‘Gidday.’ The voice startled them. Dave fumbled his attempt to return the dress and dropped it onto the table. The tall man walked in, keys jangling from his belt and blue bucket in his hand. His almost black eyes sat deep and cold in their sockets. The shadows below them sat heavily on a tapestry of aged dry skin. He closed the door behind him. ‘Keeps the flies out.’ He walked up to the table, retrieved the dress and placed it back into the box. Then he took the note from Dave’s hand and returned it too.

‘Can’t you read?’

‘Sorry,’ Dave said.

The man wiped his hand on his dirty shirt and pushed it out towards Dave. ‘Mr Jack Last is my name, and catching feral animals is my game.’ They shook hands. ‘You can call me, Mr Last. On account that I’m always the last man standing out here.’ Mr Last lifted an old blue bucket and pulled out two dead rabbits. Their cold, lifeless eyes glared at Anna. ‘I have dinner here if you’re interested.’

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