Authors: Carolyn McCray
Tags: #General Fiction
“Well, you were happy once…”
* * *
Evie felt herself sway to the side. She snapped awake again, making sure she had her trusty knife in her hand. The other men were taunting Clyde as he dragged himself back to his cell.
“Guess they’re not going to call you ‘Buck the Fuck’ anymore,” Back chuckled.
“’Doe the Fuck,’” Door offered.
“Or wait. Wait, “Andrew said. “Bambi the…” he made a hand motion. “You know.” Yes, unfortunately, Evie knew firsthand what Andrew meant.
“Yeah,” Door said to Andrew. “Your ability to strike terror into the hearts of women just evaporated.”
Despite the men’s banter, Evie had to catch herself again from falling over. Darion rose from the cot.
“Here, sit,” he said.
Evie snapped her metal fragment back up, pointing it at him.
“Look,” he said. “You’re barely able to stand.”
“Giving me the cot isn’t going to make me anymore ‘
Darion shrugged. “Perhaps not, but after enough chivalrous acts? We’ll see.”
The only thing that Darion was right about was that she needed to rest. She couldn’t stand next to the door all night. Her body just wouldn’t obey. So she kept her metal fragment at the ready as she crossed the cell. She went to sit down, but Darion put a hand on her arm.
“No, you’ve got to—”
Evie jerked out from under his touch, taking a step back. Only then did she realize that Esau had been lying in wait. He grabbed at her ankle, pulling her leg toward the bars that divided the cell.
She kicked and flailed, but for such a scrawny guy, he had a grip of steel.
“Yes, a classic Esau snatch and grab!” Andrew announced as Esau opened his mouth wide, looking ready to take a huge bite out of her leg.
“Do it!” Back yelled. “Take a chunk!”
And he might have, had Darion not hauled back and kicked Esau right in the face. The older man groaned, scrambling back from the bars, clutching his now broken nose. Blood gushed from his left nostril.
“Oh, a classic Darion, out-of-the-blue comeback!”
Evie found herself in Darion’s arms, their bodies pressed together.
“Sorry, I was just trying to warn you…”
Was the self-admitted murderer actually being tender? Still, she couldn’t trust him. She raised her metal fragment and pushed back from him.
“Look, I don’t lean against the wall just to perfect my James Dean act.”
He guided her down onto the cot, exactly where he had been sitting. “This is the only spot in the cell where you are safe from ‘unauthorized’ contact.”
A sob escaped. Evie clutched her chest, trying to keep the rest of them in check. She couldn’t fall apart. Not now. Not ever. But it was looking more and more hopeless.
“I’m not going to last long, am I?” she asked Darion.
He shrugged. “Don’t feel bad. Women seldom do.”
* * *
Jake sipped at a glass of remarkably light Merlot. Evie knew how to pick her wines. He flipped to the back of the photo album to find her birth certificate.
“So you really are twenty-nine.”
There were also college transcripts and diplomas. Interspersed were pictures of Evie playing softball, and a stunning picture of her smiling her way through glee club.
He looked to the hamster, who was lazily running on his wheel. “So why aren’t you in any of these?” he asked. “Hmm? Have you come on the scene lately?”
As a matter of fact, there weren’t a whole lot of pictures after college graduation. There was a wedding invitation, but no wedding announcement. Interesting.
“Or has she got a guy on the side that neither one of us knows about?”
Jake took another slow, long sip of the tasty red wine as he leaned back against the sectional.
* * *
Back watched as the bitch shook as she sat on Darion’s cot. Guess it wasn’t quite the haven, the salvation she thought it was going to be. Darion was all super cool, sitting on the floor next to the cot, all gentlemanly. Right.
His gaze never wandered far from the chick’s rack, though. Darion might be all evolved and all, but he was still packing a set of balls. But right now, he just liked seeing the broad quiver.
“Your nipples are dark, aren’t they?” Back asked.
“I don’t know,” Door commented. “I take her for a pinky.”
The puta put her fingers in her ears, but that just meant Back was getting warmed up.
“Nah, they’re dark. And hard. Especially after I squeeze them between—”
Darion suddenly stood up.
“That’s enough of amateur porn hour.”
“You know, fuck you and your pseudo sympathy. You want to fuck her as bad as we do.”
Darion frowned that fucking superior frown of his. “Ever so eloquent.”
He looked down to Evie, who looked up, tears in her eyes. A fucking Waltons' moment. Well, Back knew how to take care of that.
“You want to fuck her.”
“Yeah, fuck her,” Door took up the call.
“Fuck her,” Back repeated, pumping his fist up and down. This might get good after all. Even Clyde joined in.
The chick started sobbing, again. Jesus, what a cry baby.
“That’s right, bitch. You’ll be doing a lot of that when I—”
Out of nowhere, a shaving blade flew through the air, slicing Back’s cheek. Okay, not out of nowhere, but from Darion’s cell.
“Fuck!” Back yelled. That stung like a bitch.
Darion stood there looking so damned smug. He sat down next to the broad again, seeming satisfied with his little trick. Back touched his cheek, pulling back blood.
“Oh!” Andrew shouted. “We are seeing Darion in true form tonight!”
“That was the last of your stash, prick,” Back said, referring to the box of blades that Darion had gotten a hold of a month ago. “Don’t think we haven’t been counting.” He pointed a finger at the sanctimonious douche. “Tomorrow, Darion. Tomorrow we settle this!”
* * *
Andrew chuckled—you know, as long as Back was locked up. “Dude, that’s what you say before every death match.”
Evie hugged her knees to her chest as the lights lowered for sleep. Andrew loved this time of day. All the destruction was over with and it was time to go nighty-night.
Even Esau’s constant prayers sounded comforting. He wanted God to keep his soul if anything happened in the night, which around here, it might very well happen.
“What’s tomorrow?” Evie whispered.
Darion shook his head. “You don’t want to know.”
Oh how Andrew wanted to tell her, though. There was so much to tell. So many stories of past death matches. But, clearly, Darion didn’t want her to have an aneurism before the morning, so Andrew kept his mouth shut.
Esau finished up his prayer. “Into your hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit. Hail Mary. Amen.”
“Amen,” Andrew and everyone else repeated. And yes, that even included Darion. He tried to act all tough, but deep down he was human as any of them.
“Sweet dreams,” Andrew commented as he lay back onto his cot, closing his eyes, ready for sleep.
Jake jerked awake. What the hell had happened? Sunlight streamed in through the blinds. He sat up on the couch only to have the photo album fall from his chest.
His phone vibrated on the glass coffee table, playing the theme to Mortal Kombat. His hand groped around until he grabbed it, running a hand over his stubbly cheeks.
Anyone calling this early did not deserve a civil tone.
“Dude, you are the one who told me to call you as soon as I had any results,” Brad said from the other side of the line.
“And?” Jake asked half-heartedly.
“Well, your Evelyn… Um, Montgomery, is the one that bled in that alley.”
That got Jake’s eyes open. Only then did he realize he wasn’t in his apartment, but hers.
“What?” Brad asked.
Jake surveyed his surroundings. Empty Merlot bottle on the table. Hamster in the corner. Photo album on the floor. Yep, this was Evelyn’s apartment all right.
“Nothing,” Jake said.
“Dude, that was so
a nothing kind of ‘oh shit.’”
Jake knew Brad. He would not let this go. He was like the office TMZ. If there was a scandal, he would find it. Best to be as honest as possible and hope Brad just didn’t find the information juicy enough to pursue.
“Oh, I just woke up in a strange woman’s apartment.”
“Finally!” Brad exclaimed. “So I take it that you hooked up with that Candace chick from the internet dating site?”
Jake shook his head, more to clear it than thinking that Brad could see him. “No. No. Just someone I met last night. You don’t know her. Hell, even
don’t know her.”
“He shoots and he scores!” Brad said, laughing.
“Yeah, a three pointer, that’s me.”
Brad seemed satisfied with that and moved on. “So, did Ms. Montgomery come home last night?”
Okay, he had moved on to a sensitive topic. Jake needed to move this conversation onto more stable ground.
“Anything on the tire tracks from the crime scene?”
“Oh, just the kidnapper’s perennial favorite. A van. I’m going to go out on a limb and say
van. Paneled. My bet? No back or side windows.”
That wouldn’t be a bad bet. “Anything else?” Jake asked.
“Well, your girl has moved around a lot.
Jake picked up the photo album and flipped to the one of Evie out on a picnic with her family.
“Where do her parents live?”
“Sorry,” Brad said. “They died in a car accident back in ‘04.”
Jake flipped to the picture where Evie’s engagement ring was prominent.
“Husband?” Jake asked.
“Nope,” Brad responded. “No marriage licenses or birth records under her name.”
“No one to miss her,” Jake said.
Jake shook off his melancholy and flipped through more pictures. “She was engaged once,” Jake explained. “I believe, back in Baltimore. Could you track him down?”
“Dude, I’m off in fifteen minutes.”
“Well, if you want the number for Miss Easy from last night, you better get moving.”
That got Brad motivated. “On it,” he said, just before he clicked his phone off.
Jake shut his phone, gathered a few photos from the album, and rose to leave. Unfortunately, the movement also stirred his body odor. Not a pleasant experience. He sniffed under his arms. How long had it been since he showered?
He glanced up the steps to Evie’s bedroom. There was a master bath off the bedroom equipped with a claw-footed tub. It looked long enough that even Jake could stretch out in it.
Looking over to the hamster, Jake asked, “Herbie, don’t think she’d mind if I used her shower, do you?”
The hamster responded by rubbing his face with his little white paws, then twitching his whiskers.
“Me either,” Jake said, bounding up the stairs.
* * *
Darion sat pulling strips of cloth from a blanket as Evie slept beside him. Her ample bosom rose and fell in a nice steady pattern. It was almost hypnotizing. Then she started awake, her metal fragment at the ready.
“Not feeling all that ‘grateful’. Got it.”
The rest of the men were busy chanting, “Bacon, bacon, bacon.”
“What’s happening?” Evie asked.
Andrew had been wound up all morning, eager to play with his new friend, so Darion let him field this one.
“Traditionally, whenever we get ‘fresh meat,’ bacon is served.”
“It’s quite the event,” Door confirmed.
“You mean, someone is coming in?” Evie asked.
“Don’t get too excited,” Darion said. “It’s just Igor.”
The metal door screeched open as a food cart was rolled in by Igor. The guy had a limp, nearly dragging his left leg, a lazy eye, and a bald head. You could see why even though no one knew his name, everyone called him Igor. You could see the disappointment on Evie face.
“I warned you…”
Still, she cried out, “Help!”
As the mute man wheeled the cart forward, the fragrance of bacon filled the room. Then the wheels caught on something—Clyde’s something— and stopped.
“Ha!” Door chuckled. “Clyde, looks like we’re having sausage, instead!
Igor ignored everything around him. Instead, he tried to trudge ahead, but the flesh in the wheels wouldn’t allow him to. He bent over and grabbed the offending appendage and pulled it out. The phallus hung limp in his hand. He then tossed the penis into the small trash bucket on the cart.
“Oh!” Andrew cried out. “That had to hurt!”
“Help me!” Evie screamed. Clearly, she wasn’t exactly getting the picture here.
“He’s deaf,” Papa said.
“Or just really, really, really stupid,” Back added.
Esau began his prayer. “God is great. God is good.”
Evie shook the bars. “Please, please. You’ve got to help me!”
Igor completely ignored her and passed out trays of bacon to the other men. Per usual, Igor would wait for the men to back away, then shove a tray in. The men would wait until he went to the next cell before descending on their food tray.
Evie shoved her arm through the bars, trying to get Igor’s attention. “Please, just let me out.”
Instead of moving closer, though, Igor moved away from Darion’s cell.
“You have to give him room,” Andrew explained. “Or he won’t give you your bacon.”
“Please, please, please,” Evie begged. “Just unlock the door.”
Instead, though, he fed Clyde. The large man crawled over to his tray, wrapping one arm around it to protect it as he shoved bacon into his mouth.
“Bitch, once I get my strength back, you’d better watch yourself. Not even Darion can save you.”
Well, Darion would disagree, but the shape Clyde was in? He might as well let the hick have his fantasy.
“Please,” Evie begged, her voice going up an octave. “You’ve got to help me.”
Actually, Igor didn’t have to do anything, as he rounded up the empty trays and headed back out the door.
“Don’t leave!” Evie screamed. “Please. Don’t!”
* * *
Igor paused at the door. Had her plea worked? The odd man turned on his heel. For the first time since her abduction, Evie felt hope swell. However, he did not come over to her. Instead, he milled around in the mid-section of the cart.