Melonie opened the cottage curtains by the bed so that the bright light of a harvest moon shone full upon their naked bodies. Then she raised herself on one elbow.
"So, tell me all about her," she said.
"About who?" Hunter asked.
"You know very well. And about the ship that sank a lot and about the almost lawyer ... but mostly about this Lorraine who wasn't."
"I see." Hunter nodded in recognition. "You want me to talk about the first murder case I was involved in."
"Every last detail. As the woman you're going to marry, I should be spared nothing."
"But I haven't exactly made up my mind about marriage," Hunter protested.
"But I have ... and marriage is a fifty-fifty thing. So my fifty wins. Go on. Who's this Lorraine who wasn't?"
"It's a rather long story..."
"We'll treat it as a bedtime story. You tell me some of it when we go to bed, then kiss me good night."
"When has that ever stopped at a kiss?" Hunter scoffed.
"All the more reason to be dramatic in your telling. Keep me awake for the Good-Night-Kiss-and-Whatever-May-Follow."
"Why don't we just go straight into the Whatever?"
"Because you promised me a bedtime story." Melonie pouted prettily.
Hunter shrugged. He knew he wasn't going to win. And so did she.
Besides, losing to Melonie had such nice rewards.
"Very well, as Polonius in Hamlet would say, 'Perpend ... '"