Tuesday, February 21, 2006

...Ain't Gold (Part Twenty-Five)

Now that Stretch was dead, all was right with the world. Richard and Nicole moved back to New York. He moved her into Scarsdale, a two-floor, five bedroom dollhouse. He told her she could do whatever she wished with it, as they would be moving again after the wedding. He had moved his girl out of harm's way and now it was time to enjoy life the way he had before.
There were small complications with that plan.
"He wants to see you."
"When?"
"Today."
"Hmm." Rich pouted and spun his recliner in a circle before halting himself with his foot. "When'd you hear that?"
"He called, told me he wanted to talk. He heard what happened to Stretch, wants ya'll to come to some sort of agreement."
"What exactly does that mean?"
Mookie held his hands out. "Rich, that's all I know, bro."
He nodded. "I'll be there."
When Mookie left the room, door shut behind him, Rich picked up his phone and dialed a few numbers.
"You know the deal, babe."
He heard a button pressed.
"I need you tonight. I'll see you in an hour."

"Richard. Richard Knightley. And Shadow. What a lovely surprise. It is wonderful to see you again."
A sound like a cat hiss left Shadow's throat and Rich held out his hand to hold her back. That was the most emotion he had ever seen from her. "We're here to talk. She's here with me."
Maxell was bigger and older than Rich, but not faster and according to Rich, not smarter. They both hated each other with deep seated passion and as the seconds ticked by they became more and more aware of it.
Maxell showed them into the parlor of his massive home and seated them across from him as he sat at the piano bench. He played a few keys from Beethoven, then became bored and moved to the sofa. Sofia, his latest fling, brought in a tray of Scotch, smiled prettily and left. Maxell offered and Rich accepted. Shadow remained motionless and silent, glaring at the man like he had done her carnal wrong.
"Why are we here?"
Maxell, ever the drama king, poured his glass and lifted it, breathing deeply. "Why are we here? A pointed question. Involving many answers. Some simple, some not so. Some more important, others less."
He had always been long winded. Rich shifted, setting his glass down on the table in front of him, ready to set in for the long haul.

"We are here because we are-were friends. Unil you betrayed me the worst kind of way."
"And how did I do that?"
Angry veins begn to show themselves in Maxell's forehead. "When you murdered my flesh and blood. Not only my only daughter, whom my wife died giving birth to, but my firstborn, and heir to all I own. Did you think you could cut me out as well and take what was mine?"
Well, that was the plan, Rich thought. "Why would I do that?"
Maxell slammed his hand on the sofa arm. "Don't-tempt me! You've always been jealius of me. You've always wanted what I have. And you would kill me to get it."
"I've known you for ten years. Why? What makes you think I had anything to do with this?"
"When I was ending Prage's sorry life, yours was the only name he seemed to remember."
"Irrelevant."
Maxell gave Rich a look that screamed I-am-about-to-jump-over-this-table-and-kick-your-ass. Rich politely shot one back that whispered, come-on-do-it-then. The two titans were locked in a power struggle that would only end in one of their deaths.
"I hear you've made plans."
"Have you?"
"Yes. Your fiancee, lovely looking girl. How is she these days?"
That struck a nerve inside Rich. "Why wouldn't she be fine?"
"Well, after one is mugged and assaulted in such a horrid manner I could only imagine she is carrying on with a great deal of stress. I even heard you had to move her out of the city." Maxell made a face of faux pity and sipped his scotch.
In just that short an amount of time Rich figured it out. Yes, it had been Stretch that caught Nikki in her hallway, but not of his own volition. Maxell had been pulling his strings. The simple fact that that kind of information was readily available to him made him nervous. But he played it off. Flashing an imperceptible glance at Shadow, he told her to get the hell out of here and find Nicole. Maxell knew what went on that night. If he knew the man as well as he thought he did, she was in grave danger.

2 Comments:

Blogger Greeneyedrican said...

More, more , more

10:33 AM  
Blogger PEPSI LOVER said...

you got me on pins and needles... dang...

10:44 AM  

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Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep. If I should die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take and may this song play all the way, through. And if it skip a beat, hit repeat, this the realest shit I ever wrote, this is me. If it skip a beat, hit repeat, This the realest shit I ever wrote, this is me. -Juelz Sanatana, This Is Me, What The Game's Been Missing