Wednesday Story Day – AKA – Hump Day


It is Wednesday Story Day again, and last week we started a new story. Larry Dunfee, a police detective, went into a fortune-telling establishment in China town. There he met the owner, a fascinating lady by the name of Micki Lee. (of course). Micki told Larry some things that she read in the newspaper and yet could read on his face he was troubled.  Larry asked if he was wasting his time and she invited him to chat. Let’s go back and see what the chat is all about.


“So, what is the scam all about?”

“Do you think it’s a scam, Larry?”

“I suppose. You didn’t tell me one thing that wasn’t in the newspaper. By the way, you know my name. What’s yours.”

“Ah. Please forgive my miserable manners. Lee. My name is Micki Lee.”

“Micki? That’s unusual.”

“Would you prefer Mei-Xiu?”

“Oh, I get it. Americanized.”

“You are very quick, Larry.”

“I’ll overlook the sarcasm. What would you like to chat about?”

“Now that is interesting, Larry. I would think you have a whole boatload of things to chat about.”

“What do you mean?”

“Look at you. Your suit is rumpled, you haven’t had a shave for a few days, your hair looks like you combed it with a fork from the diner, and I’ll just bet you gargled with bourbon this morning.”

“How did you know about the fork and bourbon?”

“Stick to the subject, Mr. Dunfee. You are in deep yogurt and need a friend.”

“And I suppose you are just that friend? A bunco artist living in the back of a shop in Chinatown.”

“I think you have described the situation very well.”

“Oh, come on. This is not some detective show on TV. I’m not going to sit here and spill my guts to a perfect stranger. Besides most of the stuff bothering me is highly confidential.”

“I get all that, Larry but let me ask you a couple of questions.”

“Okay. Do you have any water?”

“Sure. You want some tea?”

“Ask the questions, and then I’ll let you know. Right now I’m thinking a bottle of water with the seal unbroken.”

“Suit yourself. Okay, question one. How far from here is your office?”

“Um. Maybe 20 blocks.”

“Second question. What brought you here?”

“Well, I ah—”

“You have no idea, do you?”

“Is that your third question?”

“Here’s the last question. How did I know you were thinking of quitting the department?”

“You said something about my face.”

“It’s deeper than that, Larry.”

“How deep?”

“I think you are in some danger and I think you were brought to my doorstep by someone very close to you.”

“I have no one close. My wife died a year ago.”

“A year ago today.”

“Could I get a cup of black tea, please? Make it strong.”


  1. Guess he’s taking her seriously now. 😁

    1. At least he is willing to drink the tea.

  2. Oh, I’m going to enjoy this one!

    1. I hope so, Keith. I’m thinking paranormal mystery.

      1. I’m not normally into paranormal (vampires, zombies and the like) but I do seem to be developing a penchant for spacial and temporal anomalies (for which, as for so many things, I blame the late and much lamented Douglas Adams).

    2. “There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovers exactly what the Universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable. There is another theory which states that this has already happened…” Douglas Adams
      Keith, I think John is about to take us on that kind of ride!

  3. Gwen Plano · · Reply

    Yep, I’m hooked. Micki’s got my attention. And, the photo is incredibly sweet. Twiggy or a look-alike? Have a great day, John.

    1. I made my own meme on Canva. That is Twiggy.

      1. Gwen Plano · ·

        😊 precious photo.

  4. Not such a bunco artist now eh Larry?

    1. Yeah, Larry. You better take back those words. Thank you, David.

  5. “Deep yogurt” lol! You and Twiggy have me hooked, John. Happy Wednesday!

    1. Thank you, Jill. 😀

  6. This installment provided a great hook, John. I’m sure we’re all waiting to hear what comes next. 🙂 — Suzanne

    1. Thanks, Suzanne. Should be interesting. 😀

  7. “a bottle of water with the seal unbroken.” I think he was on the right track here. I’m hooked, John, but Larry has some issues, and I don’t think I have the insight the lady serving the tea does. I guess that’s why I’ll buckle-up and stick around.

    A year ago today…

    1. Yes. A year ago today. Cinch it a little, Dan. The curves may be at high speed. Thanks.

      1. It’s not my first John Howell rodeo. I’m belted in nice and tight.

      2. Hands inside the car.

  8. Nice hooks stating to drag me in.

    1. “Great White circles the bait.”

  9. I like the early rapport between these two characters. And that ending–I have a feeling we’re going to learn a lot more in the next segment!

    1. I think you may be right. Thanks, Mae.

  10. Ooh, she’s GOOD!! Either she’s got a knack for fortune-telling or she’s working with someone else who knows Larry well. Keep us guessing, John!

  11. John, “Deep yogurt” huh? LOL. I’m in love with this paranormal mystery already. Larry’s change of tune at the end is fabulous. Woo-hoo for chapter two! Can’t wait for three. Hugs!

    1. PS: I love twiggy starring in her own meme!

  12. Oh, I absolutely LOVE the way this story is heading. Totally hooked already!

    1. Thank you, Jan. Glad you are hooked.

  13. She is smart that Micky Lee :)) from the water to the tea in a couple of seconds 😂

    1. Ha haha. Might be more than smart. 😀

  14. Goodness. Nothing good comes after a scene like this one. My stomach just flipped.

  15. Micki made him a believer with that last shot.

    I think this is the beginning of a beautifully quirky relationship. I already love the back and forth between these two. The fork and bourbon was my favorite.

    And thank you for bringing bunco into play. As a detective series fan- books, shows- from way back, it just never gets old.

    Peace and black tea . . strong

  16. Reblogged this on DSM Publications and commented:
    Check out this short story from John Howell via this post from his Fiction Favorites blog.

    1. Thank you, Don 🙂

      1. You’re welcome.

  17. Micki seems more intuitive than I thought.

    1. She would like us to believe she is just crafty. There is more there. Thanks, Teri.

  18. Oh, I love this, John. She is good, and he has baggage and history. Brought to her door by someone else? Yes, a winner.

    1. Thank you, Jennie.

      1. You’re welcome, John.

  19. D.L Finn, Author · · Reply

    It is interesting to see her win him over so quickly and to go from bottled unsealed water to a cup of tea. Can’t wait to see what’s in store for Larry!

    1. I have great hopes for this one, Denise. We shall see. 😀 Thank you for your contined support.

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