“Hello.” Thin lips parted to reveal yellowed dentures.
The poodle growled.
Sweat oozed from my pores.
The old man sniffed the air. “Oh, that’s quite an interesting smell. What is that? Tar, paint and… cake or something?” He tilted his head, sniffed again. “I don’t think I’ve ever smelled that combination before.”
Schi moved into action. “Please exit the elevator. This is an emergency.”
“Oh, certainly.” The poodle growled again. “Hush up, Fluffy. I know this isn’t our floor but we have to concede to the emergency.”
Noticed the cane in his free hand.
Knocking against the compartment.
Swung it side to side as he left the elevator.
Stopped beside me.
“Oh my, do you have a bird?” Hands fished a handkerchief from his back pocket as the dark glasses stared at us.
I hated when I couldn’t see the eyes.
“No sir.” I avoided brushing against him; pushed Les into the elevator.
The old man sneezed three quick times. “Someone must have something with down in it. I only get like this around feathers. But,” head tilted toward the sky, “it’s too hot for down.” Glasses rotated back in our direction. “Why would you be wearing down in this hot weather?”
TMI which could mean FUBAR for us later.
Time to get the hell out of here.
“Have a great night, sir.” Schi pushed at the button; eyes went wide as Les groaned and shifted on the gurney.
Old school cocked his head; listened as the doors moved to close. I took a step forward;
prepared to slap a hand or stick out of the way if necessary.
It wasn’t. But we had a new problem: Les was waking up.
My shoulders were in knots; a headache pushed at my temples.
Les coughed, pulled at the restraints, lifted his head.
Once he figured out the deal, he’d yell out for help.
Goddammit, if one of us is gonna be tense, it’s gonna be you.
I leaned forward, grabbed a handful of hair, and spoke into his ear. “Slave, I’m ten times worse than your mistress ever was. I’ll slice off your dick and hand-fuck you up the ass with it if you so much as flex another muscle or make another sound. Try me.” I scraped his cheek with the shank for good measure. Drew blood, which I didn’t mean to do, but what was done, was done.
Les stilled but I wasn’t taking any chances at this point. I stuffed the blindfold into his mouth; pulled the sheet up higher to his cheeks.
The elevator finally reached the lobby. Schi pointed toward the front exit but I stopped her; motioned toward the rear. She didn’t challenge me, just shifted gears and moved like that growling poodle was nipping at her heels.
We encountered no one between the building and the van. We slid the gurney inside and I positioned myself alongside Les for the ride. Schi threw the crosses and strip inside, closed the door and pulled out onto the street.
Seven minutes twelve seconds.
Too damn close for comfort.
This last leg of the scenario was six minutes top. I watched the landscape change from pristine clean upscale to marginal and further down, seedy as hell. Too seedy if you asked me. But Barbie demanded the entire degradation process, so here we were. Close enough to a bad area to degrade but hopefully not rough enough to get him maimed or killed before the cavalry arrived.
Schi stopped beside a school playground, left the motor running and opened the rear doors.
The cool air roused Les. “W—where are we?”
“This is your stop, baby.”
I removed the sheet, stifled a laugh as I looked over his rear again, untied the hands. Making sure no traffic moved along the street, I slid the gurney half out the door. Schi tilted it; allowed Les to crumple into the wet grass. His legs were pulled from beneath him and straightened; gave him that drunk, splayed out effect for the hell of it.
We pulled up to the bank of pay phones at a service station three blocks over.
“This is 9-1-1. What is your emergency?” The voice was crisp and professional.
“There is a man exposing himself by the Harrison School playground. He’s got on a white Halloween costume but I can see his…his penis sticking out.” Schi’s voice was a half-octave higher than normal.
“We’ll have an officer check it out. What is your—”
Schi replaced the headset; pulled back onto the street.
Flashing lights met us in less than a minute.
I imagined Les’ degradation process was gonna be everything Barbie thought it would be.
Our job complete, we high-fived before Schi began a very, very bad imitation of I’m A Woman, W-O-M-A-N.
Schi pulled off the scrunchie; let the air flow through her hair as she drove home. Another job down, another bit of cash to collect. She rolled her shoulders, let some of the pent-up tension of the night release from her cells.
What was up with Mo?
She’d looked stressed as hell before the scenario but had been fine earlier. And the changing of the script: Don’t use the rear elevator then do use the rear exit.
One thing Schi knew about Mo was this: She never deviated from an uncompromised scenario plan. It was a rule damn near carved in stone.
But she had tonight for no apparent reason Schi could discern. They’d gotten in and out on time and completed the assignment without an obvious hitch.
Schi replayed Mo’s actions over in her head. They’d grown close over the few years they’d known each other; became real friends in every sense of the word. She felt they were close enough that Mo could talk about anything bothering her…but apparently that wasn’t the case.
Her mind travels were interrupted as she spotted the midnight blue Dodge Charger in her driveway.
The shit just got knee deep.
Flash irritation rose within her. This was not the time or the place. All she wanted was a hot bath in her Jacuzzi tub, a glass of Hennessey and sleep. Alone.
She pulled her Lexus beside the car; watched as the slim figure exited the Charger. Cut the engine as a finger tapped on the window, opened the door.
Arms spread wide. “Surprise!”
Surprise was right. Her home was her sanctuary; one that required a specific invitation for entry. This show up unannounced high school stuff didn’t work in her world. Still she hugged the body to her, knowing one touch was dangerous as hell but could think of no quick and plausible reason not to.
“Yes, this is definitely a surprise. What are you doing here?”
A smile parted the succulent lips. “I could lie and say I was in the neighborhood, but the truth is…I wanted to see you. No, I needed to see you. It’s been too long, lover.” Hands squeezed her waist.
“Yeah, it has been a minute.”
“Two months, ten days, fourteen hours and,” —a wristwatch was consulted— “six minutes and some seconds. Nobody’s counting, though.” The body snuggled closer; a leg inserted between Schi’s, trapping her against the car. “Surely you’ve missed me.”
Schi’s loins heated at the contact.
The Devil knows our weaknesses.
And in a moment of weakness, Schi had entertained Judy Molhon. A client. And Judge Greg Molhon’s ex-wife.
Mo would have a coronary after she shit bricks if she found out about this.
Schi let her hands tangle in the thick mane; knew she should walk away but the feel and smell of the soft skin held her captive as she remembered.
Ain’t no loving as good as taboo loving. Having a fling with Judy Molhon and her ex-
husband was as taboo as it got.
Maroon lips parted. “Show me.”
Schi licked the upper lip then the lower, hands cupping and squeezing the healthy breasts. Fingers found the nipples; pulled at the distended tissue through the shirt. Judy’s eyes glazed; pelvis tilted into Schi’s. Schi bunched the front of the slacks; pulled the material taut. Judy mewed.
Once I’ve hit it…I can always hit it.
Schi pushed the body from her, grasped the hand. “Follow me.”
Changing of plans could lead to good things, too.