"Miss Marks, would you please help me take care of these bodies later tonight?" Mr. Todd asked later that day.
"Of course," I replied. "But may I ask, what do you usually do with the bodies?"
He smirked, "Burn 'em."
I rolled my eyes, "You couldn't think of anything better?"
He crossed his arms, and looked a little hurt, "What's your idea then?"
I sat in his barbering chair for a few moments and thought. After five minutes I still had nothing. Finally I shrugged my shoulders, and tried to go back to work.
Mr. Todd put his hand on top of mine to stop me from mopping up the fresh blood. "So, you have no clue what else we could do with the bodies?"
I shook my head, and continued with my work.
Mr. Todd continued, "Well, I think that as punishment for trying to better your boss and failing, that you should work with Mrs. Lovett for the rest of the day. Or, at least until you come up with a different solution."
I glared at him, "You wouldn't."
He smirked, "Yes, yes I would, love, and you can't stop me."
I sighed, "No, I can't...". I smiled devilishly, "But you can't stop me either."
He grabbed the back of my neck, and put his razor to my throat, as a warning, "Let's not forget that I have a certain advantage."
I laughed, "I'm not scared of you, Mr. Todd. If you remember, last time, it was I that bested you and your razor."
He narrowed his eyes, "Just watch yourself, Miss Marks."
I continued to smile at him, "Whatever you say, sir." With that I ran from his shoppe, down to Mrs. Lovett's.
After a few hours of working in the meat pie emporium, Mr. Todd came down to get some lunch.
I gave him a sandwich, and some ale. As I was popping a meat pie into the oven, a idea struck.
"Seems a downright shame."
"Shame?" Mr. Todd questioned.
"Seems an awful waste." I paused and looked over to him, "Such a nice plump fram, what's his name has... had... has. Nor it can't be traced. Business needs a lift, debts to be erased. It could be a tad thrift, as a gift, if you get my drift."
I looked at Mr. Todd, who was not paying attention, "Seems an awful waste. With the price of meat, what it is, when you get it, if you get it."
"Ah!" Todd interjected
I rolled my eyes, and smiled, "Good you got it. Take for instance Mrs. Mooney and her pie shop. Business never better using only using pussycats and toast. Now a pussy's good for maybe six or seven at the most. And I'm sure they can't compare as far as taste."
Mr. Todd up, and have me his best charming, yet devilish smile, "Miss Marks, what a charming notion, eminently practical, yet appropriate as always. Miss Marks, how I've lived without you all these years I'll never now! How delectable, also undetectable, how choice, how rare!"
I smiled at him as we both ignored Mrs. Lovett's rambling about how many people we would have.
"Pies!" I joined him.
"For what's the sound of the world out there?"
"What Mr. Todd, what Mr. Todd, what is that sound?" I replied.
"Those crunching noises pervading the air!?"
I narrowed my eyes, "Yes Mr. Todd, yes Mr. Todd, yes all around."
He smiled out at the world, "Its man devouring man, my dear."
I joined him, not able to help myself, "And who are we to deny it in here!"
Mr. Todd grabbed my shoulder, and turned me towards the kitchen, "These are desperate times, Miss Marks, and desperate measures are called for."
I grabbed a meat pie from the oven underneath the counter, "Here we are, hot out of the oven."
Todd grimaced at the sight of the pie, "What is that?"
I smiled, "It's priest. Have a little priest."
"Is it really good?"
"Sir, it's too good, at least.Then again, they don't commit sins of the flesh, so it's pretty fresh." I replied.
"Awful lot of fat."
I crossed my arms, "Only where it sat."
"Haven't you got poet, or something like that?"
I sneered at the thought, "No, you see the trouble with poet is, how do you know it's deceased? Try the priest. Lawyer's rather nice."
"If it's for a price," Todd smirked.
"Order something else, though, to follow, since no one should swallow it twice."
"Anything that's lean?" Todd asked.
"Well, then, if you're British and loyal, you might enjoy Royal Marine. Anyway, it's clean. Though, of course, it tastes of wherever it's been."
"Is that squire on the fire?"
"Mercy no, sir, look closer, you'll notice it's grocer." Mrs. Lovett interjected.
"Looks thicker. More like vicar." Mr. Todd argued.
"No, it has to be grocer-it's green." Mrs. Lovett corrected.
Mr. Todd wrapped his arm around my waist, "The history of the world, my love-"
"Save a lot of graves, do a lot of relatives favors..." Mrs. Lovett tried to grab Mr. T's attention.
Todd turned to face me, "-is those below serving those up above."
"Everybody shaves, so there should be plenty of flavours..."
"How gratifying for once to know-" Todd grabbed my hands.
I joined him with a smile upon my face, "-that those above will serve those down below!"
Mr. Todd gave Mrs. Lovett a look of disgust as she set a meat pie on the counter, "What is that?"
Mrs. Lovett sighed, "It's fop. Finest in the shop. Or we have some shepherd's pie peppered with actual shepherd on top. And I've just begun. Here's a politician-so oily it's served with a doily- have one?"
Todd picked up the revolting pie, "Put it on a bun. You never know if it's going to run."
Mrs. Lovett crossed her arms, "Try the friar. Fried, it's drier."
Todd shook his head, "No, the clergy is really too coarse and too mealy."
Mrs. Lovett rolled her eyes, "Then actor- it's compacter."
"Oh but always arrives overdone." Mr. Todd put a cleaver to Mrs. Lovett's neck, with a look of pure anger in his eyes. "I'll come again when you have Judge on the menu."
Mr. Todd began to waltz with me around the dining room, "Have charity toward the world, my pet-"
His warm hands burned against my ice cold ones, "Yes, yes, I know, my love-"
He smiled his wicked smile, and continued to dance with me, "We'll take the customers that we can get."
I continued to look into his dark brown, almost black eyes, "High-born and low, my love."
He looked into my eyes, and I couldn't help but wonder what he saw in them, "We'll not discriminate great from small. No, we'll serve anyone- meaning anyone-"
I followed his lead, "We'll serve anyone-"
He joined me at the end with his devilishly charming smile, "And to anyone at all!"
We ended our duet at the front window, both with smiles of revenge upon our faces.
I soon as I ate lunch I went back up to Mr. Todd's shoppe.
"Now that you're back up here, Miss Marks, I expect you to show the utmost respect towards me. That means no trying to best me, no matter how tempting it may be." Mr. Todd scowled at me mockingly.
I nodded my head and smirked, "Yes, sir."
We worked for hours, shaving some, killing others. While Mr. Todd did the shaving, I was in charge of pampering the clients with rum, gin, and conversations about how I thought they were good looking.
After the last customer "left" the shoppe Mr. Todd sat in his barbering chair, and I followed suit by sitting on the trunk where Pirelli once was.
After a few moments of silence I broke it, "Mr. T.?"
"What?" he said quietly.
I wrung my hands, "Can you trim my hair for me?"
He shot me a quizzical look, "Why?"
I shrugged my shoulders, "I usually do it, but I always mess up, and leave two strands of hair longer than the rest. Now that I personally know a barber, it only makes sense..." I trailed off due to the expression on his face.
He considered the request, and sighed, "Alright."
I took his seat in the barber chair, and waited for him to start cutting.
I heard water filling the china basin that was on the vanity behind the chair.
I turned around to look at him, "What are you doing?"
He rolled his eyes, "What you asked me to, pet."
I shook my head, "It's just a trim, why do you need to wash my hair?"
He scoffed, "You really need to learn the ways of the barber. Even if it is just a trim, I need your hair to be clean, and brushed to get it as straight as possible. The straighter the hair, the better the cut. That is why you don't like it when you are done trimming your hair."
"Oh," was all I could say.
Mr. Todd pulled the chair back against the vanity, he poured hot water over my head, and began to massage my head while working in soap. He refilled the pitcher he was using about three times before all of the soap was out of my hair. Even after my hair was rinsed he continued to massage my scalp, humming a soft tune, almost making me fall asleep.
He broke the quiet with a small request, "Miss Marks, I need you to lift your head up."
I complied, but kept my eyes closed. Mr. Todd began to hum again, and this time I joined him.
"Miss Marks, why do you want your hair cut?" Mr. Todd asked suddenly.
I furrowed my eyebrows, curious to why he would ask, "I don't like split ends."
"Mr.Todd, is something bothering you?" I asked, resisting the urge to turn to look at him.
"Nothin' to worry yourself, dear," he said quietly.
I rolled my eyes, "That's a big yes."
"Do you want your hair trimmed, or not?" He growled.
I sighed, and vowed to return to the problem later, "Yes, sir."
As he worked on my hair I thought about what I knew about the man, and tried to figure out what was bothering him so much.
Finally, Sweeney finished my hair and told me to turn around to look at it.
I did as I was told and let my emerald green eyes scan my curly, blonde tresses. "It looks amazing... thank you..."
I waited a few moments before speaking again, "Mr. Todd... will you please... tell me what is wrong?"
He groaned, and ran his hands over his face, "If you really must know. You have almost the same hair ad Lucy, and before I cut it, it was the same length."
My heart swelled with compassion. I, again, wanted to take all of his hurt and sorrow away, yet I know there was no way to.
Instead I settled for, "I'm sorry."
He looked at me, brushed my hair from my eyes, and said, "You'd be the first."
I stepped forward, and hugged the man that I understood all too well. Afterwards I went to my room, determined to find a way to make Sweeney Todd a little bit happier.