I didn't hear him come in, but I could smell him. My male roommate had moved out about a month earlier, and my female roommate was at work. I was working at my piece-of-shit 286 computer in the 2nd-floor bedroom of our shared apartment. But I hadn't typed anything in a while, because I was tired, just staring at the monochrome screen.
It was the smell of cheap pomade, like tres flores, or maybe it was his aftershave. But the hot day wafted his smell up the narrow stairs to where I was sitting. There was no one who should have been there who could have smelled like that. It was cheap, overheated, masculine, and it was in my apartment.
I unfolded the black lock blade that I always carried back then, set it next to the keyboard, and said aloud "that's a very interesting cologne you're wearing," and resumed typing.
I could not understand why my hands weren't shaking.
With a click, I heard him leave. Probably through the front door. I figure it was one of the apartment handymen, letting himself into what he thought was an empty apartment for a quick look for something to rob. The apartment complex was huge, and our building was on the edge, overlooking a hill, with an empty building between us and the rest of the complex (the empty building was getting recarpeted that summer).
Or maybe he had come for my roommate.