“You ever wish we’d never gone through with it, Carol?” Caris lay on the bed, staring absent-mindedly at the 75-inch TV on the wall, across from their bed. Carol lay on his bare chest, watching Family Feud with him.
“Which of the its do you mean, baby?”
“The it that’s now becoming a thorn in our flesh.”
Carol turned to him. “You were spared the agony of the details, man. All you did was wait with me. What exactly did you go through with?”
“Wow, Carol. You’re gonna lay there and tell that to my face like I didn’t lose something that day?”
Carol sat up, still facing him. “Mr. Benton, were you called to the police station earlier this week? Did you have to fend off unusual questions from one of the most respected officers in the country? Did you have to listen to the IGP tell you that the national attention to the case is so high that he cannot intervene? Do they even know what your involvement in any of this is?”
Caris just stared at the TV while Carol lay back down. She wasn’t actually mad at him, but he was the only target available for her frustrations.
Caris turned the TV off and looked at her. “Carol, I’m a great punching bag, but do well to remember that I’m your sparring partner, not your opponent.”
Carol backed down. “I’m sorry, my love. I’m just terribly frustrated.”
“I know, baby. Did the police guy ask about the signature?”
“Yup. He seems to think something’s off about it, but he can’t figure out what.”
“Well, if my guy did his job right, we should be fine.”
“What do you mean?”
“Just wait for it, baby. Meanwhile, I’ll call Karla. We need a foreign contact for the plan I’ve come up with.”
“Karla? You sure she’s not seething from the deal we just did with her? I know I would if I sold 50% of a company just for a ride to an orgasm.”
Caris frowned. “Correction: an epic ride to an epic orgasm. We’re that good, Carol.”
“Yes, we are.” Carol gave him that very familiar look. She turned around, gently pushed him back down, and then said right to his face, “Now, I’m not saying I want anything. But, if my husband just happens to give me an epic ride to an epic orgasm, I will have to oblige.” Caris shook his head and spun her around and she laughed and gave him the view between her legs.
TEN YEARS AGO
Carol ran out of the bedroom, her heart racing, and her mind in shock. She’d known that Bishop Charles would be an extremely difficult target, but he proved way tougher than she’d thought.
She’d picked Trista, an old friend and a girl she’d worked with a few times, as her partner for the mission. Trista was bad, but her type was powerful men. She liked to be bossed around, and she’d been an old favorite of his son’s, Parker. Trista was the daughter of an imam and had made it her mission to corrupt any religious leader she could get close to, so this challenge excited her. But she was already out of the gate by the time Carol finally fled through the front door. They’d been trying so hard to seduce the Bishop and they’d been failing, but his wife walked in unexpectedly and the sight was enough to convince her.
First, she threw her shoes, then she started throwing anything in sight, then she shouted something about a gun. At that point, it was over. They didn’t even need the bodycams; Carol overheard the woman calling the Archbishop right as she was getting to the door.
Once they were away from the house and Trista had left in her cab, Carol called Kane. “Boss, it’s done…Yes, Tuesday at ten is good…Thank you, boss.” Now, time to put her plan in motion.
“Tembo, I’m cashing in that favor. If you come through, I’ll give you a payday that will set you up for life. Meet me at Lexie’s Bar in two hours and let’s talk.”
She hung up, and then went to the last person she needed to speak with, the only person who could make this work. She wasn’t going to wait for him to introduce her to his dad; she couldn’t bear the potential embarrassment she’d have to go through if the man figured out what she did for a living. She’d trusted that he’d handle it, but now it was taking too long. Time to end this, once and for all.
She dialed the number. “Caris, you home? … Great, I’m coming over. … No, just a really good day today. Imma come pick you up, then we’ll go to Ziba’s lounge, and then we’ll spend the night at my favorite lodge. … You sure you want to pass this up for an all-night, darling? The clothes I’m wearing right now are sheer, silky, and easily ripped. … There’s my boy. I’m on my way. Meet me out front.” This man, what a pervert! And she loved every bit of it. She hoped dearly that he’d understand her actions once she’d done it.
Karla sat on Caris after he’d just finished turning her into a feral tigress, barely breathing as she stared at him in awe. Caris lay back and looked at her chest, still wondering how she had firm breasts at that age. Kids really do a number on women.
“Caris damn Benton! You are my kryptonite. No one ever hustles me in any deal and succeeds but you somehow did. You better thank God I’m a dick addict.”
“Karla Beest, no one like you, woman.”
“The way you just cracked my back and blew me out, oh my god! How do you know how to do all that! You have to teach me all that sometime, you know.”
“I’ll give you all the notes and lessons you want if you can help me out with a little something.”
Karla leaned down and fed him, an indication she wasn’t quite done with him yet. She pulled back up. “You know the terms, what’s your need?”
Caris smiled. He only needed one night with her, but he’d booked the hotel for two nights because Karla tended to be gluttonous, something he counted on using in his favor. “I know you have secret locations scattered around the world as a contingency, in case government trouble ever shows up at your office.”
“That may or may not be true.”
“I need you to disappear Carol and I to one of those places.”
“Oh? Did she really end Glazer’s life?”
“No, but the national attention means none of our friends in key places would touch the case, and the officer is already being extra.”
“It’s going to take more than our terms to do this one, Caris.”
“Even if it means you get unlimited access to this dick? Carol and I do enjoy taking care of you, and you know that there’s no one like us. No one.”
“Hmm. Let’s see. How about we leave that as a pleasure thing and not a business thing? If I do this for you, I’m gonna need 10% of your steel holdings and 5% of your cocoa. Oh, and you give me back 10% of my company.”
“Karla, you know you don’t have to worry about control of your company, right? We never intend to challenge you for any of it.”
While Karla fed him again, she said “No one ever intends to challenge the boss from the start, but temptation is one tough bitch to resist. Just like my breasts; they started off on my chest, but they couldn’t resist your mouth.” She pressed them against his face, then she pulled back. “I’m a drug addict who’s also a sex addict, Caris. I will do just about anything for drugs or sex, even sell control of my company.”
Caris sat up. He’d known this was who she was, but he always thought she was just a nympho, not an addict. “Oh man, that’s why you offered that deal like it was nothing.”
Caris felt bad. He’d much prefer to finesse a freak than an addict; one of them had control and the other didn’t.
Karla continued, “I’ve quietly been in and out of rehab and thankfully, I can control my drug urges. While I don’t have to control my sexual urges, I can at least stop them from controlling me. Which is why I don’t want to put our trysts on the table. I genuinely love you and Carol. What you do to me… I just don’t want to think about checks while I’m being mind-blown.”
Caris looked at her as he thought about her terms. He and Carol wouldn’t lose anything by giving those shares away. They already had more than enough money to last three lifetimes. If that was the price of freedom, it was even too low. He shifted Karla’s hips towards him and pushed her down.
“Oh, you made up your mind already?”
“I don’t like leaving our favorite lay raw about a deal she made with us before. I’ll take your new deal. Now, take this tongue.”
Karla laughed as Caris went to work on her. “We’ll work out the details after…ooooh!”
Lawd, this is some real freaky stuff! Anyways, they’re looking to get out of the country. Is it gonna work?