Evangeline’s Mansion Mystery

Hello and welcome to the 2020 Blogging from A to Z April Challenge! I’m writing one new meet-cute per day as part of my “Sacramento Love” theme. Read along as couples find themselves falling for folks in lucky locations across California’s capital city. In this time of social distancing, there’s no need to fear a little fictional fun, so get your romance fix here and enjoy!

P.S. Today’s story was inspired by Writer’s Block Coffee, who really are donating 100% of their sales today to Feeding America! They’re aiming to raise $1,000 for the hunger charity, so if you need to stock up on coffee (or just want to try something new), today’s the day.

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“Are you Evangeline?”

“No, I’m Cynthia, but I get that a lot. How can I help you?”

“I’m actually just curious… who’s the ‘Evangeline’ that the store is named after?”

“Hard to say for sure, but legend has it that she was one of the original owner’s mistresses.”

“Do you mean the original owner had more than one mistress, or that there was more than one original owner?”

“The former.”

“Got it. Go on.”

“Well, Mistress Evangeline had a bit in common with Jolene – you know the song? – in that she managed to capture the heart of quite a number of fellows about town, and the wives of these fellows were none too pleased with her. Unfortunately for them, Mistress Evangeline also tangled with dark spirits, or so the story goes.”

Here Cynthia pauses to lick her ruby red lips, and her interrogator, Sam, silently observes this, adding the image to his memory for later use.

“Mistress Evangeline apparently conjured a few spooks, if you believe the wives’ tales, and bedeviled the husbands to do her bidding. They eventually ran her out of town with their pitchforks and torches, according to their accounts.”

“But you think something different happened?”

Cynthia wiggles her pointer finger with the black lacquered nail, motioning for Sam to lean in closer. He complies.

“I think she figured her gold rush days were over, and she lit out for better opportunities. After all, if she was really a denizen of the dark side, she knew these hussies were coming for her, and she had a exit strategy.”

“Makes sense,” Sam nods, wondering if Cynthia – dressed all in black – considers herself a witchy woman or just uses the persona to sell goth geegaws at work.

“So that’s the story of Evangeline. Hellraiser, harlot, harassed…”

“You forgot hokum.”

“Did I?” Cynthia gives him a flirtatious wink.

“Maybe not,” he demurs. “So… would you mind showing me a few costumes?”

“Your wish is my command.” And with a snap of her fingers, they’re off.

Don’t miss a magical moment!

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