I was growing to be convinced that Vanessa is a cruel, morbid bitch, keeping me drunk to satisfy her curiosity and watch a sore loser die. I felt less like she was my lover and more like she was simply funding a sick social experiment. There could be no other explanation. Whenever I thought I ran the bottles dry in the apartment she appeared with fresh whiskey, and although I deeply needed the drink it was getting suspicious.
So I watched her clean the apartment through untrusting eyes day after day, wondering why she didn't just plunge a knife deep in my belly while I slept. But there was nothing I could do about it. If I instigated a fight she just deflected the attacks, and whatever I wanted she gave without complaint. Come to think of it, it was unclear which of us was living with the monster.
I also started stealing money from her. I'm not sure why, because she gave it away like a miser dying of cancer and trying to buy his way into heaven. I think I just wanted to find the end of her seemingly infinite pocketbook. Where did the money come from? I assumed it must be some inheritance, since she never mentioned ever having a job in her life and didn't seem to have the mind for business. I knew she had kids, but never so much as saw a picture of them, let alone heard their names mentioned. For a man with so much miserable history behind him I sure found a gal that was even more mysterious than me.
I always jumped when there was a knock at the door, probably because I had no friends to bring pleasant news, and many enemies eager to settle unremembered scores from drunken antics. It was the mailman, weary from walking up the steps to my apartment. He had a letter that he needed a signature for, something too important to leave in the mailbox downstairs, and when I offered to sign he pulled away. The letter was for Vanessa. She took the man's pen, showed her ID and wrote her name for him. When the door closed she was looking very pale and started her pathetic sobbing. She was passionate as hell, and could unleash hell when she was in the mood, but could turn on the waterworks just as suddenly. And when she read the header on the envelope she immediately folded it in half and stashed it in her purse. I knew better than to pry, but goddamn, I wanted to read that letter. If not to gain an understanding of this stranger I was living with, then to gain some leverage over her. As it was all the power was on her side, and I dangled like a drunken marionette from the strings tied to her fingers.
"Let's go out" she said. "I want to go drinking and dancing tonight, down at the parody club!" The thought lit her up and she went into the bedroom to gather up all her dresses, holding them up to her chest in the mirror one by one. I didn't argue. A night out would do me some good, and I hadn't gotten drunk in public since I was arrested.
Vanessa was stripped down to her underwear, trying on a series of dresses and asking my opinion. I always told her she looked great, and caught myself staring at her ass while she looked in the mirror. I wan't lying, you know. She always looked fantastic, even when she had that freshly fucked look on her early in the morning. I excused myself and went to the kitchen to pour a drink and start the night off. While I was sipping my drink I looked over at her purse, the unguarded envelope peeking out of the top. It was bothering me... how did they get this address?