Juan is at the concierge desk wondering what exactly happened to Ms. Nicola, his thoughts of curiosity are interrupted by the concierge phone ringing.
“You have reached the Sapphire tower, Juan speaking, Good evening,” he answers.
“Juan, soy Pablo, why aren’t you answering your phone,” says Pablo on the other end of the line. Juan realizes that he has left his mobile on silent ever since he went over to Anna’s apartment.
Looking at his mobile, he finds several missed calls from all three of his daughters, some messages from them and one from Anna. Strange enough he opens the voice message from Anna first.
Outside the bar, Pablo is at a payphone speaking to Juan, he is about to tell him about Anna, when he is interrupted by a tap on his shoulder.
“I’ll call you back”, says Pablo , he puts the phone down as he turns around to face Anna.
Juan looks at the phone and shrugs his shoulder before placing it down and proceeding to listen to Anna’s voice mail. She starts out uneasy, scared and he wonders if something bad is happening to her as she records this. Her message is about her past, how she came to be who she is. The message is shocking but at the same time very sad, but it doesn’t begin to prepare him for what the end will be like.
“ I am tired of this life, it has been days, weeks, months and years of endless abuse and humiliation, you cannot even begin to imagine some of the things that these so called clients ask me to do when they have paid for my services. It has been 6 years and I am exactly where I started , with nothing to show for it except for bruises and the money that I was able to send back to my family. My father’s debt is now cleared but there is no way I can go back to my family in Moscow, but there is also no way I can continue to live this life. I am still indebted to Salvatore for him having sorted out my legal residency papers and US passport application, I am not leaving this life anytime soon unless I do it my own way. The last few weeks with you have been the best I have ever had and I want them to be the last memories I carry with me before I leave. Thank you and I love you.”
Pablo listens as Anna tells him everything about her past, he feels sorry for her, she weeps and sobs as she explains to him some of the hardest times she has ever had to endure. Not sure what to do to console her, it turns out it he can do nothing, suddenly without any notice; Anna pulls out a small gun and shoots herself in the temple at the left side of her head.
Her lifeless body drops down onto the cold concrete pavement as Pablo stares in shock, within minutes passer bys have gathered around the scene and sirens can be heard in the distance.
Juan stands up and walks around the lobby, thinking about Anna’s life and her message, he steps out to breathe in some fresh air and is stunned to see several police cars with their sirens loud and bright speed past him, not far behind them is a speeding Ambulance with even louder sirens.
Caroline is standing at her window in her bedroom watching the cars pass by below , she spots 2 police cars and an Ambulance with their lights shining red and blue and their sirens blowing loudly in the dead of the night speeding on the street below.
She thinks of Nicola and how an ambulance and some police cars must have speeded to reach her when word of her assault was dispatched to them. She sighs as she walks over to her bed and sits down, just then her phone rings and it is Randy.
“Hey babes,”he says, “Sorry I was caught up with work,”he lies.
“it’s allright,”she says, “Nicola’s nurse is an angel, such a comfort,” she adds.
“So what are you doing?” he asks walking down the street from Sonya’s building he feels a certain craving, the weather was getting colder and he craved a little more of the warmth Caroline had shown her earlier that afternoon.
“Every one is sleeping.Nicola is in and out of it, because of the meds she is taking and Michelle has gone to sleep.”she answers.
“Can I come see you?”, he asks as he turns around to see if that Hispanic guy is still at the building,something about him. He shrugs it off and says, “ I miss you, I just wanna hold you.”
She blushes as she thinks of the love making session they had that afternoon. “Come over, I will let you in. Nicola won’t be getting up and Michelle, well she is just the nurse and my business really shouldn’t be her business.”
“Great, I’ll be there in 15 mins,” he says as he gets into a cab he has just stopped and directs the driver to Sapphire tower.
He reaches there and walks up to Juan, who has just got off the phone with Caroline who had informed him that she would be receiving a guest by the name of Randy and that he should let him up.
As Randy walks up to him Juan asks him to sign the visitor log, he write down his name and shows him his ID card – Brandon Jeffries.
He lets him into the elevator and walks back to his desk to find that Ms. Emily and her cousin Josh, have returned from an evening from outside. With them is another gentleman, “You know the drill, you need to sign in every one who comes through,” says Juan. A drunk Emily proceeds to log in their guest’s name when her heart stops when she sees a copy of Brandon’s ID on the table near the log book and on it she recognizes his name and signature as she quickly glances at which apartment he is visiting.
Strange enough she sobers up and doesn’t react as wildly as she normally would. They log in and head up to their apartment.After Josh and their cousin Peter have settled in to bed, she excuses herself to go downstairs in the pretence that she forgot to pick up a couriered parcel that Juan had received on her behalf.
She gets into the elevator and quickly presses the button to Caroline and Nicola’s apartment floor.She gets out, her heart beating wildly and her breath unsteady. She walks over and she rings the bell.
Having stealthily snuck in Randy into her bedroom, they are on her bed kissing and caressing when they hear the door bell. Caroline jumps up and rushes to open the door with Randy right behind her. She opens the door to find a disheveled looking blonde girl at the door. Randy looks over from behind Caroline’s shoulder only to be greeted by a pair of hands coming for his neck in a bid to strangle him while the words “You fucking Bastard” ring out loudly in the silent apartment.
Ahmet is at a bar attending the opening of a new bar partially owned by his business partner Salvatore. Even though he was his partner, he did not approve of some of his other businesses, he looks over at Salvatore’s table full of whores and so called business men and is disgusted at this line of business.
He thinks about the lifestyle these dirty people lead when he thinks of the wrong path that he was about to go down earlier that day with Miguel.
Walking into the master bedroom, he could hear the shower running and he can not resist his urges, his pants grow tight as his boner grows bigger. Standing at the door way, the showers turns off and Miguel comes out rubbing a towel around his ears while he holds on tight to the one wrapped around his waist. He looks up to see Ahmet with a strange look in his eyes, something so different about him, he doesn’t recognize Ahmet with this look in his eyes but he does recognize the feeling growing stronger in his heart – fear.
Fighting his urges and the demons inside Ahmet looks at Miguel’s thin body standing half naked in front of him. Apart of him wants to pick him turn him around and lay him on the bed, the other part wants to kick him out.
“is everything okay” asks Miguel as he stops drying his chest with the towel that was drying his ears. He comes closer to Ahmet and places a hand on his arm. Ahmet flips he pushes Miguel away, he throws Miguel’s clothes on him and screams at him to get dressed and quickly and get out.
“Hurry up, wear your clothes quickly,”he shouts. A frightened Miguel rushes and stumbles as he puts on his clothes item by item. Ahmet has moved to the kitchen and is screaming and cursing in Turkish “I don’t want to see you here, get out, get dressed and get out,”his voice sounds like an angry beast. Miguel hears glasses , plates and eggs breaking as he quickly puts on his t shirt back wards and with an unbuckled pair of pants, he rushes out past the kitchen and out the door. He runs out of the building and onto the street , he doesn’t know how long and where he was running to until he turns a corner and bumps into a woman.
His thoughts are interrupted when he finds that most of the people from the bar have moved to the outside of the club. It sounds like a crowd has gathered and he can see the lights of police cars outside, he walks out to find that nearby a large crowd has formed and yellow tape has been put up to keep the people away from something. He pushes through the crowds to the front to see what the problem was.
He reaches right in time to see the coroner cover the face of a blonde curly haired woman who lay there clearly dead. He puts a hand on his mouth when he realizes that it was one of Salvatore’s girls – Anna.
Juan is working his shift at the concierge when he sees an ambulance pull up to the building’s entrance, he rushes out to help and he finds Ms. Caroline helping Ms. Nicola out of the back of the car into a wheel chair. They are being assisted by a nurse and a paramedic.
Nicola was allowed to leave the hospital earlier than expected as she had miraculously been able to recover and heal quickly. The doctor felt that being in the comfort of her own home and own bed with a professional nurse to look after her was probably the best thing for her.
While Celia lays asleep in her bed, Sonya is sitting in Miguel’s bed rubbing his shoulders as he rocks back and forth. Even though it is quite cold, he seems to be shivering. Allegra walks in with a cup of hot chocolate and another blanket for her younger brother. Fearing the worst Sonya tries to get Miguel to open his mouth, if not tell them what happened but at least to drink the warm milk in front of him.
Brandon watches as Sonya nurtures and caresses her younger brother’s head soothing him, his heart melts as he is amazed at how kind and affectionate she is. Having bumped into them infront of her building, he helped them up and stayed to make sure things were allright, sitting on a chair in Miguel’s room, he looks at the two sisters and thinks of his own family, his selfish alcohol addicted parents, his neglected siblings and finally his dead sister.
After trying her best to get him to calm down and speak to them, Sonya lays Miguel’s sleepy head onto his pillow to sleep. She ushers Allegra and Brandon to step out of the room. Allegra is worried, “ What do you think happened to him?,” she asks her older sister with sad worried eyes. Sonya doesn’t want to upset her younger sister even more than she already is, “ I think …”she starts, “I think that he is just scared, maybe some bullies frightened him,” she smiles uneasily before she adds, “ he doesn’t seem to me bruised or hurt, when I changed him into his pyjamas, I didn’t see anything of that sort.”
The girls look at each other, both of them thinking the same thing, the only thought that could come to their mind, the possibility that their younger brother has been molested and assaulted.
Pablo is sitting at a table of the new bar in the neighbourhood, not entirely upscale but it was a notch above the usual drunk houses that truck drivers and unemployed people dropped down in. Looking over at the VIP table where the owner of the new bar, a very good looking Italian man is sitting discussing some sort of business with some Colombians, he catches a glimpse of one of the tightly dressed girls sitting at this table of pimps. For Pablo knew very well what type of activities funded bars like this and areas like this. The freckles on her arms, the big curly blonde hair , he moves a little to the left and then to the right to try and catch a glimpse of this familiar individual, she seemed to be closely affiliated with the Italian guy. He gulps down his beer and decides to walk on over to certify his susoicions. He’s very close to the table and the Italian man looks over at him, clearly drunk and in a joyous mood. He points at all the girls around him and asks Pablo “You see something you like? In clebration of this grand opening, you can have any one of these lovely ladies for the whole night and only half the price.” He smiles gloriously at his companions who raise their glasses in agrrement. Up until this moment the blonde girl’s back was to Pablo, she turns around to see who this lucky man is who can have any of the girls at the table for half the price and the full night. Her small blue eyes grow large with shock as she recognizes Pablo as Juan’s garage colleague and his best friend. She excuses herself to go to the bathroom and bumps into the table knocking over some glasses.
She rushes past Pablo as he stands there utterly shocked and disgusted.
Along with the help from the nurse, a blonde Australian woman by the name of Michelle Salter, Caroline has managed to settle Nicola into her bed. Sitting together in the living room, the ladies begin to chat and become acquainted with one another since they will be spending quite a lot of time together during the next few months caring for Nicola.
Caroline at once feels at ease with Michelle, with her unruly blonde hair and mesmerizing kind blue eyes, she was easy tot alk to and an even better listener.
They joke about the difference between their home countries England and Australia while discussin the similarities in their expatriate lives here in the United States. Caroline receives a text message and she blushes as she reads it.
Looking over at Caroline, she thinks back to the man who used to make her smile like that. She remembered that last week like as if it was yesterday, when in fact 5 years have now passed since Michelle left Sydney for good. Ryan, her significant other was not as lucky. Having met when they were relatively young in a Foster home, being abandoned by their families made them all the more close. Sydney’s very own Bonni and Clyde.They started out small, stealing , vandalizing, cheating, after been kept apart for a while, Ryan in juvenile detention and Michelle was moved to another town and adopted by a family that managed to tame her, she even managed to finish school and graduate from nursing school. She was on the right path in life until that night when she ran into Ryan at the hospital where she interned. Seeing him brought back the passion and lust for the wild side of life. They quickly reconnected moving in together and spending their days fighting and making up, for their relationship was highly volatile. One day Ryan came to Michelle with an idea that was meant to change their life, only it changed it for the worst.
The big master plan was that Michelle would work as a nurse caring for rich old people who had no next of kin to look after them, Ryan would investigate and conjure up all their financial assets and finally have one of his crooked lawyer friends draft up fake wills. Wills that Michelle would get the patients to sign after they were severely drugged by her.Not soon after she would also drug them with a new drug , currently trending on the blackmarket, it cause heart attach or stroke like symptoms in old people, leaving the coroner to rule their cause of death as either one or the other.
Through their schemes they managed to make a lot of money, without having any one raise an eye brow in doubt, until one patient’s estranged grand daughter started sniffing around based on the fact that the lawyer who drafted up her will, was not the family lawyer that she was used to.In investigating the lawyer, police unearthed Ryans other dealings alerting the couple. Michelle managed to secure papers to leave the country for the US and from there she was able to co ordinate with some of her old friends to certify and verify her past employments and character reference checks, for she had been sleeping with most of the influential doctors in every hospital she had worked in. She had no morals but she had great charisma.In a matter of one short week, their lives turned upside down, last she had heard of Ryan was that he was arrested and was serving time in jail for fraud, black market dealings, stealing and for violating his parole.
She managed to resume her medical practice as a nurse in the US, reminiscing about her days as a nurse back in Sydney she suddenly realizes that Caroline is staring at her. “Would you like some tea Michelle,” she repeats one more time. “wow, where were you?” she asks.
“The same place you were when you received that text from the man who makes you smile like that” she smiles as she answers Caroline.
“ He has a way of doing that my Randy,” she says shyly as she shows Michelle a picture of randy on her phone. Looking at the picture, Michelle looks in horror as she remembers where she had seen that face before.
” Babes, you know how i love you and I’m always telling my friends and family about you, well while you were making coffee jut now, my friend Tyrone, who works at the police station texted me .Since i’ve mentioned you several times to him, i’ve spoken to him about your work and who you you live with, he just asked me if the crime involving a woman by the name of Nicola Lyndon had something to do with you.I called him and he gave me the details of what the police have found out so far, they say that people had witnessed a black guy walk after Nicola when she got up to take a short cut through the alley,” he pauses and walks over to Caroline, holding her in his arms, “thats how i know babes, its only because i care and every one who knows i care about you cares too.” Caroline has never felt so safe and important to any man in her life as she does at this moment in Randy’s arms. He promises Caroline that he’ll be back as soon as he finishes running an errand he had and that he would spend the night with her to keep her safe.He quickly rushes out and quickly dials Sonya’s number.Over at the family apartment, Sonya’s mobile rings in her bag, with the name Brandon lighting up.She and Allegra are in her mother’s room, calming her down and putting her to sleep by giving one of her sleeping pills.Unable to even imagine that their mother was just high off of some weed, they imagine the worst, that she was starting to go crazy and whatever she had suffered from before has brought on this psychotic relapse. Allegra retires to her room to speak to Salvatore on the phone, while Sonya picks up her bag as she heads back to work, She has hardly walked a few steps from the exit of her building when she turns a corner and is bumped into by a boy who seemed to be running so fast you would think he was fleeing for ! his life, it was Miguel, his face was as white as paper and there was a look of absolute terror in his eyes.He hugs Sonya tightly and she hugs I’m back, he begins to cry and she tries to calm him down as she knows that the more you ask a person what’s wrong, the more likely they are to break out into floods of tears she holds him for a while in his arms, before they walk back in to the building. As they reach the door of their building’s entrance, Brandon arrives as well.”Sonya, i’ve come to walk you to work like i always do,”he says but he immediately understands that today there will be no such walk as Sonya holds on to her little brother with all her might. He helps the two walk on into the building, as Miguel is clearly exhausted , he must have run 10 blocks non stop in this cold weather, his t shirt was on backwards and his belt unbuckled. Sonya feared the worst.
Maria is on the phone with Dylan, when her second line beeps, she looks at the name and it is Sonya. She quickly answers, “Hi Sonya? whats up? she says cheerfully,” she begins to apologize for leaving so abruptly the other night at dinner when she realizes that Sonya is breathing heavily on the other end.”Whats wrong?” she asks “Whats wrong Sonya?’ she asks again,this time with fear and panic in her voice.”Can you please come home?” says Sonya finally,” I’ve tried to call Dad, but he isn’t answering.Just please come home Maria”she pleads. Without telling Ashely that she is leaving Maria picks up her bag and keys and rushes off out to catch a cab home.
Meanwhile over at Anna’s apartment, Anna is giving Juan the massage of his life, once again he has skipped out on going home before going to work at the concierge to spend time with Anna.”Anna?,” he asks ,”Yes Juan,”she answers.
“Who is that man in the picture with you?” She stops rubbing his back but quickly resumes not to let Juan know that this man in the picture sends shudders down her spine.”That is my boss” she finally answers. “What is it that you do exactly,”asks Juan, turning around from his stomach onto his back. Anna looks into his kind soft eyes and for a moment she considers telling him the truth, surely he would understand, he knows what it is like to be an immigrant in America, trying to find the best way to make money…even if it was illegal.
She thinks twice, before she answers, I’m in the sex industry”. Juan is stunned, for a few seconds he says nothing and then she laughs and says”We import sex toys from Russia and items that are used to enhance pleasure during intimate encounters.I didn’t want to tell you at first as i thought you might judge me, but believe it or not there is quite a large market for that type of thing here in the USA.” She smiles at him and watches for his reaction, if he can accept this then maybe some day soon she can tell him the real truth.
He smiles and sits up, leaning her body close, he says “well they surely have hired the best person to the job, you really are sexy,”he says to her. She smiles uneasily as they embrace in a hug that is followed by another hour of passionate love making. By the time he has dressed up and left to go to his shift at the concierge Juan hasn’t even thought to look at his mobile.
While Anna, looks at hers to find a message from Salvatore on hers, “I have a client entertainment event tonight, wear something sexy, there is a new bar opening in town and the men that go there are the type that can afford you.” She reads the address and tosses her phone on to the side, she starts to cry as she remembers how she ended up in this situation in the first place.
She stands up and walks over to the bathroom to start getting ready, looking into her sad eyes in the mirror she begins to recollect her life before coming to America. She was a smart and ambitious girl, always getting top grades at school and always involved in sports and other extra curricular activities. Her main area of interest was helping the sick and she had always wanted to become a nurse.
She graduated high school and did her A levels by the age of 18 years old and she got a partial scholarship to go to Medical school to study to be a nurse. Soon after she started, her father’s alcohol and tourism business started to fail, but no one told her, they did not want her to worry about money while she was studying. She was the eldest of her parents’ children and a lot of hope lay on her. She had a younger brother and younger sister who were still in middle school.
Failing to make ends meet and to support his family, Anna’s father made a decision that he would come to regret until the end of his days and a decision that Anna would have to pay for dearly.
Desperate with his situation, her father went to a man who lent money to the needy , taking advantage of their desperation and charging them way too much interest. Unfortunately Anna’s father was growing old while his kids were still young, Anna who had heard from her mother about what was stressing her parents decided to try and help. She went to meet with Mr. Vladimir, who was in a meeting with a very handsome Italian man in his favourite restaurant when Anna came to see him.
She interrupts this meeting to plead with Mr. Vladimir to release her father from the impossible amount that the interest on the loan he gave him had garnered. Mr. Vladimir and says in Russian that her father should have never taken a loan he was not able to repay. She explains to him that he did it for her and his family to help support them during the harsh cold winters and the dwindling economy.
Mr. Vladimir is about to ask his people to send her away when the handsome Italian man whispers something into his ear. Smiling at this suggestion, Mr. Vladimir asks his men to wait before throwing her out.
“Would you like to help your father out of his debt to me?” he asks her.
She wipes away a tear as she bravely says that she would do anything to help her parents.
“Mr. Salvatore here runs a very lucrative business in America,” begins Mr. Vladimir, “he helps many young girls like you to help their parents dig themselves out of the holes that they get themselves in to when they borrow money from me.”
Salvatore looks down at Anna and tries to give her a kind smile, “You will be well taken care of and within 2 to 3 years you will be back here and your father will be debt free, you will even have some extra money to take care of your family” he says.
Not sure, what type of ‘help’ it was that this Salvatore was offering her, Anna was too desperate to turn it down. Later that evening she sat her parents down as she lied to them about a full paid scholarship to the US that she had gotten at university. Utterly thrilled but at the same time nervous to have their daughter move so far away from them, her parents were very proud. That night Anna slept with a very heavy heart, in another bed on the other side of the house her mother too had a heavy heart, only she did not know why exactly that was.
After arriving in the US, Anna could not have expected a worse form of help, starting out as a high end escort to wealthy old men, she quickly became used and abused and reduced to a mere prostitute, available to any one who could afford her.
Years have gone by and every time she spoke to her parents she told them she had to stay on because her American papers were being processed and she couldn’t leave, that could not have been any further from the truth. The truth was, due the strange and illegal conditions that she had entered the country, the process of legalizing her stay was taking even longer. As far as her father’s debt and the extra money to be made was concerned, Salvatore always managed to justify the lack of money brought in by Anna and the reason why it wasn’t adding up to settle the debt. It has now been 6 years and day by day Anna was dying just a little bit more inside.
“Come in Jeremiah,” says Celia as she walks past Allegra who is standing in shock at the door, still shocked to see the guest they have just received. She walks the guest in to the living room and offers him a seat, all the while Allegra is dumbfounded. But her questions are answered when Jeremiah, offers Celia a plastic bag with some herbs and spices. Delighted Celia smiles and beams with happiness, “ now I can finally try to make that Indian dish I have been meaning to all week. You really need to stop working at the bodega and open your very own shop, you seem to be able to find and provide more ingredients than that place ever could .I knew when I came to your place this morning that I wouldn’t be disappointed”. She gives him a hug and Allegra realizes that he is just a kind young man helping a middle aged woman with her creativity in the kitchen. Satisfied with this explanation “Well mom, I’m gonna go do some homework”, says Allegra, “nice to meet you Jeremiah, she says and smiles before she disappears into her room”.
Once the door is shut, Celia turns to Jeremiah and she smiles, as once again she gives him a hug and thanks him for the herbs, lately smoking weed is the only thing that has been keeping me from taking those pills,” she smiles at him as she places a hand on his face. She hugs him tightly and he kisses her on her forehead, i should get going, i seen da way ya daughter was looking at me when she opened da door.
I’ll see ya tomorrow, to teach you how to ‘use’ those herbs in a new dish, he does the quote unquote sign with his hands. She blows him a kiss as he walks out of the apartment, walking to her bedroom, she takes out on of her boxes and puts in the new bag of weed in it. As she sits on her bed, she thinks back to this early morning when Juan dashed into the house, straight to the showers and hopped into bed ,without even saying a word. Celia had thought that it maybe due to some rough time at work, but there was glow to his face, a happiness to his movement that could not possibly have been there if he had gone through a bad day at work. She stops and thinks for a moment and wonders “Could he be smoking weed too ?”
Maria walks into Ashley’s room with a tray with some tea , Ashley and Heidi suddenly grow silent. Maria is not happy that her best friend has chosen to side with a materialistic girl who clearly didn’t care for her.The girls sit quietly for a few minutes before Heidi excuses herself to get up and leave.
As soon as she is out of the door, Maria walks back into Ashley’s room and she tells Ashley that she had over heard everything. Ashamed Ashley puts her head down in shame and begins to cry. Trying to console, her Maria says something that Ashley does not like and Ashley reacts in a way that Maria never expected.
“I can’t do that, opening a case, pressing charges, testifying, giving statements, i don’t want to go through all that,” screams Ashley.
“If you don’t then this will happen to another girl and another.” says Maria, hoping her friend would understand why she should press charges against these disgusting men.
“It’s my fault , i should never have gone to see him alone, i was greedy” answers Ashley.
Maria can not believe her ears, how can Ashley blame herself for being assaulted. She stares at her friend with tears in her eyes but Ashley can not even look back into Maria’s eyes not because she was ashamed of her lack of courage to press charges against Walter but because she was ashamed of the fact that she believe that these designer bags and jewellery were worth this type of humiliation.
Sonya comes home for her lunch break and is happy to find both her mother and Allegra are at home, lately she hardly gets to see any one, everyone always seems to be busy doing something. Her mother is in an unexpectedly good mood, singing and dancing while cleaning the dishes, Allegra was on the couch with what seemed to be a very expensive new mobile phone. Sonya puts her bag on the coffee table and sits beside Allegra, who looks up and smiles at her.”Thats quite a phone there, where did you get it from?” she asks her younger sister. Having thought of everything, Allegra answers that lately she had been doing hair and make up for people at events and she has been being paid quite well.”I have got so many nice stuff , at yard sales, even though they are used they still look new, shoes, dresses, phones, “she lifts up her mobile and points it out as she lies to her sister. Not one to doubt any one, Sonya smiles and squeezes her sister’s hand,”I’m so proud of you, such an entrepreneur! Tu sera la proximal J.Lo in no time”, she says and they both laugh.
“I guess its only us girls,” says Celia as she puts the pot of chicken soup on the table. The three women take their seat , close their eyes and are just about to say grace, when suddenly they start hearing a humming sound. It grows intense and louder, Sonya opens one eye and it is met by both of Allegra’s eyes wide with shock. Strange enough, Alegra was not looking at Sonya, she was looking straight ahead at her mother, looking at her mother Sonya was surprised to find her holding the spoon like a micro phone in one hand and humming to the bowl of soup in front of her.
Pablo spends the whole afternoon listening to Juan talk about his new lady love, how she feels, how he feels, how she makes him feel, how he wants to feel, how he needs to feel. He sits down on a stool as he starts to feel dizzy with ‘feelings’. But Juan is so happy, he smiles as he listens absently to his friend, it has been so long since he has seen his friend so care free about money and the struggle.” You know a bunch of us guys are going to a new bar that’s just opened up here in Brooklyn, you should come?” he invites his friend.”No no señor,i missed my shift at the concierge last night, i need to work back to back shifts, i want to save up and get something nice for Anna.” Pablo could not believe what he was hearing, is it possible that Juan was smoking weed?
Ahmet and Miguel are busy in the kitchen, preparing some round type of bread, which Ahmet calls chapati, he tells it is a common indian bread.They also boil potatoes, grind them with fish, dip in in egg yolks then in breadcrumbs and fry them, this is called katlessi, a swahili dish common on the island of zanzibar. After they are done with their cooking, they eat together while watching some tv. Miguel asks Ahmet if he can take a shower before he goes home as he smells of fried fish ,eggs and flour. Ahmet proceeds to show him the toilet and he hands him a towel. He goes back to the living room and the Tv but somehow he can not concentrate, he slowly stands up, listening to the shower water running, he proceeds to go towards the master bathroom where Miguel is showering.
Sonya could hardly concentrate on her work the whole day, she kept thinking of Emily and what she had been through with Brandon. Immediately after Emily left, Sonya checks her mobile to find a recently sent message from Brandon, saying that he won’t be able to make it for lunch. She thinks about this sudden change, only a few minutes before Emily came to the shop Sonya was on the phone with Brandon, talking about where they should meet for lunch and now he suddenly is busy, with barely a reason for his cancellation of their lunch.
Over at the garage, Juan is working away on a light blue VW family van. His colleague Pablo is watching him with the utmost curiosity.
“Juan, mi amigo, you told me you came home late last night and here you are working like a fresh horse. There is something different about you today. Qu’esta passando contigo, Juanito,?” he says teasing at his friend.
Juan , pauses from his knocking and screwing and looks up from behind the hood of the van. He wipes his hands with the grey cloth that hangs in one of the side pockets of his greasy over alls. He smiles and says, “ Pablito, last night I have passed the most amazing time I have ever had in more than 10” years. He breathes in a large gush of air deeply and lets it all out.
“Do you remember that woman, Anna who came a few weeks ago with the Lexus?”
“Si,” says Pablo while concentrating on screwing a part of an engine back in place.
“I am not sure quite what to call it, but last night…I spent the night with her” says Juan with a smile on his face as he remembers how soft Anna’s breasts had felt on his lips the previous night.
Pablo is not sure quite what to say, he stands very still for a few moments as he tries to absorb what he has just heard from his close friend. Of all the friends he has, Juan was the one man who was most unlikely to cheat on his wife. For the past 20 something years, he has never even heard Juan speak of another woman in any type of way which would imply that he would be interested in some one other than his wife. Many times, beautiful women with amazing bodies have passed by the garage and Juan has never even glanced their way.
Pablo really did nothing to say, even though not a very faithful man himself, he was very surprised at what Juan had just told me, but even more at the fact that he did not even feel guilty about it.
Helping her mother prepare lunch, Allegra could not help but notice the change in her mother’s attitude; it was almost as if she was high from a buzz. She was singing as she sliced and diced the vegetables, yapping away to Allegra about Aguadilla and stories of her childhood.
Allegra listened to her mother’s incessant stories while she juiced away the oranges, all the while thinking whether or not to ask her mother about the Jamaican man. She was just about to do so when she is interrupted by the doorbell. She walks over to open it and facing her on the other side is the very same man she was just about to inquire about.
After school Miguel was going to have lunch with Ahmet, Ahmet had told Miguel that he would pick him and take him to his apartment where he would show him to make a few dishes, since Miguel was very interested in Ahmet ‘s profession not only as a restaurateur but also as a chef.
Excited to spend the afternoon learning something different, all thoughts of homosexuality and the different types of relationships that exist between people were gone from his mind. Ahmet was very excited o finally have Miguel over at his home, even if it was under the pretense of teaching him how to cook. His apartment was a cosy 2 bedroom about 20 mins west drive from Miguel’s school.
Once at his apartment, Ahmet quickly makes sure that Miguel is comfortable offering him some hot chocolate and cookies while switching on the tv and trying to make him feel at home. Taking off his jacket and placing his bag pack on the floor, Miguel looks around at Ahmet’s living room.It is of a medium size with lots of furniture, most, as Miguel would have guessed, are ornaments and small decorations that Ahmet had collected from his trips throughout Iran and Dubai and all of them items that reminded him of home.
The apartment, just like the restaurant, had a very middle eastern feel to it. It was cozy, and Miguel liked it.
“So? are you ready?’ , asks Ahmet as he comes out of the kitchen wearing a chef’s hat and apron and holding a smaller version of the two in his hand.
Miguel sips the last of his hot chocolate and stuffs the last of a cookie into his mouth, he stands up and walks over to Ahmet, who slowly turns him around and puts the apron over his head and begins to tie it at the back.
He places the chef’s hat on Miguel’s head and soon enough the two are in the kitchen, washing their hands and getting ready to make a meal.
“What are we going to make today?”, asks Miguel, looking around at the ingredients placed on the kitchen counter, eggs, breadcrumbs, salt, fish, flour , vegetable ghee, oil and pepper.
“Well, dostum, i wanted to do something completely different and so, no middle eastern food today.” Miguel looks at him confused as he never thought that Ahmet knew any other type of cooking.
Seeing the confused look on the boy’s face, he gives out a hearty laugh and continues to explain, “today we are going to make a few dishes from the island of Zanzibar.”
“Whoa!” says Miguel as he thinks of the all the stuff he has heard about Zanzibar.”How do you know how to make it?,” he asks.
“Well when i was living and working in Dubai, there was a servant maid from Zanzibar, very pretty young thing, hardly 20 years old,” says Ahmet as he begins to recollect memories of his beloved Fatima.
Tuma, as they used to call her, was a young girl with a shapely figure,she had chocolate brown skin and even browner shimmering eyes. Her eye lashes were thick and long, curving at the ends, covering her lazy big eyes that were in contrast in size to her small round button nose.
Truly a beautiful girl to look at, her most attractive attribute was her smile, she had the most perfect supple lips and the straightest brightest teeth that Ahmet had ever seen. Apart from helping with the cleaning and house chores, she also aided the main cook in the kitchen. The cook was another zanzibar woman but of indian decent and she cared fro Fatima like her own daughter, for they had come together from zanzibar to serve in Mr. Abdullah’s household. Many times, Fatima wold sneak in Ahmet into the smaller back kitchen and the two would spend hours cooking and reminiscing about their homelands while the house hold slept.
His recollection is interrupted by Miguel dropping an egg on the floor, Ahmet looks a him as he bends over to clean the mess, facing Miguel’s rear end a bead os sweat trickles down the side on Ahmet’s forehead.
Over at Caroline and Nicola’s apartment, Caroline is just finishing washing the dishes while Randy towel dries them and places them on the shelf. He had stayed over for lunch to comfort Caroline and they had ordered in some take out.
He moves in closer to her and hugs her from behind, smelling her hair and holding her tight, Caroline moans as she put her are around his ,”Thank you for being here,”she says.He kisses her on her cheek and says “where else would i be?”
She turns around and the next kiss turns into a love making session that lasts an hour and a half.Vulnerable as she was Caroline, hesitates with a thought and a question in her mind. She gets up from the bed, puts on a sleeping robe and walks over to the kitchen.
From which she calls out to Randy saying “You know Nicola comes back in a few days time, it would be really nice f you came over and helped me settle her in,”she says as she puts on the coffee machine to make some coffee.
Previously relaxed, Randy suddenly sits up straight with a tensed jerk to his movement.He puts on his pants and walks in to the kitchen, rubbing his head with his hand, “i don’t think it’s the best time to introduce me to her,”he says.”Given the circumstance and all, specially since she was raped by a black guy…. she might feel a certain way, me , being black and all,” he stops when he sees the terrified look on Caroline’s face. She had stopped what she was doing and staring straight into Randy’s eyes with absolute fear on her pale face, she says “How did you know he was black?”.
Maria is about to lay the table for lunch, when once again she is interrupted by the door bell. This time she is truly surprised to find Heidi on the other side.
“Hi Heidi, come in” she says.
“Hi Maria,” Heidi smiles as kisses her on both her cheeks.
She walks in and looks around for Ashley as she says, “I was out for lunch and I heard Ashley wasn’t well so I thought, I’d come over and see her.”
Maria looks suspiciously at Heidi, if any one knew what happened to Ahsley it was probably Heidi, since lately they have been spending quite some time together and technically it was Heidi who introduced Ashley to this Walter guy. She relaxes her suspicion as she reads concern on Heidi’s face, unfortunately it was concern for her own self rather than for Ashley.
She shows Heidi into Ashley’s room and Heidi is surprised how worn out Ashley looks fearing the worst, she holds back her curiosity for the details and asks Ashely how she is feeling.
Sensing that the two would rather be alone, Maria walks out with the excuse that she will be making some tea. She closes the door behind her .
“Awww Ashley,” Heidi says with genuine concern in his voice, “what happened?,” she asks.
“I told you not to go without me,” she looks over at the bruises on Ashley’s arms and the swollen lip.
Ashley finally speaks, “I should have listened to you,” she says but I thought it would be okay, it was fine the first few times we went together. I thought we’d have a nice dinner, some wine and at the end of the day I might get something nice.”
She begins to sob as she recalls the evening.
“But one of my favorite things in the whole world, Cuban girls with nice plump round brown popka,” he slips his hand, that had been resting on her lap all through out dinner, on to her ass for a very firm side squeeze.’
Ashley lifts his hand of her ass, but he holds it tight bruising her. Trying to hold her cool but clearly frightened , not to mentioned a the strength this old man has just exhibited, she tells him to let go of her.
“You are hurting me,” she says.
“Then let my hand stay where it is comfortable,” he says with a mean grin on his face , “now let us finish our desert,” he says, laying one hand on his bare thigh and the other on the dessert.
Ashley begins to panic, “I’d like to go home now,” she squeaks with fear.
This upsets him, “You were not ready to go home just a few moments ago, were you?” he asks.
With that he violently starts to rub his rough old hands on her thighs, squeezing them in the process.
Ashley tries to get up, but he stands up before her and places his old round body in front of her face, with both his hands he grabs her bare arms tightly, he positions his cock in front of her and begins to rub it on her breasts through his pants.
Ashley is terrified and tries to scream, unfortunately this private dining room seems to be sound proof.
With all her strength, she manages to get up and him off her, but this turns out to be more of a wrong move than a right one as he pushes her towards the wall, standing behind her pinning her face to the wall, he continues his dry sex gyration on her behind . His movements are done with such force that at some point as her face rubs against the wall her lower lip is bruised and begins to swell.
He holds her both arms behind her back with one arm and with the other he starts to feel between her legs and thighs, squeezing and touching them roughly, leaving behind scores of bruise marks.
Feeling his heavily alcohol intoxicated breath as he kisses and licks her face and neck, she is almost about to be sick. His gyrations grow more and more violent until at least he reaches his orgasm. As his body relaxes, Ashley takes the opportunity to make a run through the door behind her, she finds herself on the street, she continues to run as far as she can before she finds a pay phone and calls Maria.
Listening from behind the closed door, Maria’s jaw drops in horror at what she has just heard. Why didn’t Ashley just listen to her? She should have stayed home with her that night, she should have tried to convince her not to go, she thinks to herself.
Heidi puts hand on Ashley’s lap , “I’m so sorry Ashley,” she says, “that’s just horrible”.
The she asks the question behind the real reason why she came over.
“Will you be pressing any charges against Walter?” she asks as she remembers Salvatore’s words “I don’t want any drama ruining my business!”
Sitting quietly in a corner in the book shop, Sonya listens quietly as the blonde girl, who she has come to know as Emily, tells her of her relationship with Brandon.
“ It was about a year ago when I met him,” she starts, “I had just finished University and was starting my own life in Manhattan. I was out with a few friends to watch a basketball match that my cousin Josh was playing in, he was one of the guys playing on the opposite team and the moment we locked eyes our hearts connected or so I thought. We were together for about 6 months, I was doing an internship in a law firm over at the avenues of the Americas and he was studying, I think.”
She stops for a moment, trying to hold back the hurt tears in her eyes, “ I don’t even know if anything he ever said to me was true, he told me he was from Albany and that he had moved over to pursue his studies in NYC, the first few months were amazing, he was so attentive, always calling, always asking about me, always coming to see me and walking me to the places I needed to go to.”
“Needless to say he was my first and he knew this, after a few times, I had gotten pregnant, being a devout Christian, I did not want to abort the baby,” she pauses as the painful memory of that uncomfortable abortion comes to her mind.
“He convinced me that he loved me, but that we were still young and we had our whole lives ahead of us to get married and have kids. He told me that one week end, he would take me to Albany to meet his family, that he had told them all about me.”
She thinks as she recalls those lazy afternoons they’d spend together in her apartment at Sapphire tower, how she’d lay in his arms and they would talk about their lives. “He told me had two sisters and 2 brothers, all younger than him, his mother was a teacher at the local school in their town and his father was a doctor at the local hospital.”
“ I wouldn’t be surprised if I found out that he didn’t even know who his father was, that dirty bastard,” she hisses angrily.
Sonya can barely believe what she is hearing, her sweet chocolate Brandon with the dimples and sexy eyes was , as Emily had said, a bastard.
“ He convinced me to get the abortion, after that he was so distant so cold, I couldn’t believe this was the same guy who just a few days ago was talking about a whole life ahead of to have kids. Several times, he’d disappear for a whole day and come back with an excuse or the other.”
“Worse off, I have seen him receiving messages on his phone and he tries to conceal them, he clearly was seeing other women”. “I’d get so upset and turned to alcohol, luckily my cousin josh came to live with me and has made sure i don’t get drunk, the more drunk I get, the more upset I get and the more I drink, the more upset I get.”
“Finally, he just disappeared, no calls, no messages, no anything, like I meant nothing to him, like I never even existed,” she breaks down and cries, Sonya comforts her.
Little does she know that she too would need comforting of her own.
Standing at the door, through the glass Brandon, watches as Emily and Sonya talk, he curses under his breath and quickly turns to walk away.
Caroline is sitting at home watching TV, she has just hung up with Doctor Stanford, who has informed her that in a week’s time Nicola will be ready to come home and that they have arranged for a live in nurse to come and assist them.
She is about to go to her room to get a book to read, when the door bell rings, she walks over to open it and is relieved to find Randy at the door, “I’m so sorry baby, “ he says as he leans in to hug her. She tries to resist at first but gives into this warm masculine feeling, after all she really did need this hug.
He tells her that he was at the hospital with his Aunt, she had a stroke and he couldn’t leave her side until his older sister came from Boston.
“I really missed you babes, I wanted to call, but I was just in so much shock and everything was happening so fast, My aunt Nina from Boston was so emotional, I couldn’t leave her either.”
“ Is everything fine now?”, she asks , putting aside her own feelings.
“yea, yea, it s better, thank God,” he answers, “What happened to you?”
Caroline tells him everything that happened to Nicola and she sobs as she gives him the details.
“What kind of cruel monster would do such a thing?,” she cries into his chest as he hugs her, holding her, he looks over at a smiling Nicola holding her poodle framed on the wall facing him, he smiles as he thinks of the agony Nicola had been through that , Caroline has just described to him.
At school Miguel is at a sexual education class, all the boys and girls are giggling at the pictures that the teacher is showing on the projector. Miguel smirks as he thinks how ironic that even though they are laughing, at least half the kids in the room are already engaging in these activities.
As he thinks of these specific kids, his attention is drawn back to the class when the teacher begins to talk about liberal sexual relations.
“Even though there are some people who frown and are opposed to same sex relationships, this is a free country and let’s not forget that at one point in time, inter racial relationships and immigrants were frowned upon as well,” says the teacher, clearly a homosexual herself, dressed in baggy jeans, sneakers, a blazer, a man’s shirt with short blonde hair gel’d back, she hardly had an ounce of make up on.
Miguel starts to think about what she had said about being liberal, he thinks of Ahmet and what a good friend he has been to him, could he be a homosexual? Surely there is no reason why a man of his age would want to be friends with a boy of Miguel’s age, he ponders at this for a moment and realizes that the problem may not be that Ahmet is a homosexual, what if he was a pedophile?
Maria has spent the whole night trying to understand what has happened to Ashley, helping her take a shower she has found bruises on her thighs and arms, she also had a swollen lower lip.
Try as she may to get Ashely to say a word of what happened, she could not. Ashely was in a state, for at least an hour after they got back to their apartment, she had cried incessantly, after that it was sniffles and silent tears rolling down her face, it was almost 6 am, when after several hopeless attempts to console and try to figure out what has happened to her friend, Ashley finally feel asleep on the couch and Maria right beside her.
Both girls are awoken in the morning by a ring at the doorbell. Looking at her watch it was almost 10 am, Thank God it was a day off for Maria and as for Ashley, it would just have to be one too.
She walks over to the door and is surprised to see a middle aged middle eastern man with a big nose and big blue eyes when she looks through the keyhole. She opens the door and the man introduces himself as a colleague of an acquaintance of Mr. Walter, he proceeds to say, “ your friend had left in a hurry from Mr. Walter’s presence and since it was through my colleague Mr. Salvatore that Mr. Walter was acquainted with Ms. Ashley, we would like to return her bag, her coat, her phone and whatever else she had left behind at the restaurant yesterday”.
Maria thanks the man and closes the door; she walks over to Ashley who becomes upset once again when she sees the items that remind her of what a horrible night she had experienced the previous evening.
Walking away from the apartment, Ahmet could not help but notice how familiar Maria looked, those facial features, he was sure he had seen them some where before. He thinks of the man Anna had brought to his coffee shop the other day and thinks how Maria looked so much like him. He shrugs the idea off as he thinks of the racial prejudice, “it’s like saying all middle eastern people look the same,” he says loudly to himself and smiles as he thinks that it was probably that they were both Latino that his mind drew a comparison.
Sonya is at the book shop bright and early, Brandon had passed by and walked her to work just like he had promised he always would, sharing a cup of coffee with her on their way as they chatted about life.
She smiles as she types in reference codes and number sin to her pc, remembering the warm feeling of Brandon’s arms around her shoulder, she looks up and is startled to find a tall slim blonde girl with hazel eyes standing infront of her.
“is he your boy friend?”, the blonde girls asks her.
“you know he is the worst bastard you will ever meet” , she continues to say with pure disgust in her voice.
Over at the HR department at the law firm where Maria and Ashely works, Heidi is surprised when she receives an email from Maria’s department requesting her to enter a day off on to the system for Ashley .She is curious to know what might have happened to her as she had sounded absolutely allright the night before, she walks out of her cubicle are and towards an empty office to call and check up on Ashley.
She is just about to dial Ashley’s number when her phone rings in her hand, looking down at the number she fears the worse.
“Hello,” she says.
“Hi Salvatore, no I wasn’t out with Walter or the other guy yesterday,” she says into the phone.
“Ashely?”, she asks, “ She’s just a friend I have brought along to the dinners a couple of times. Benjamin had asked if I had a friend for his friend Walter and I said yes.”
“I know I didn’t tell you, but look at it this way that’s extra money in your pocket through a girl you don’t even have to deal with. No Salvatore, I am not trying to start my own side business.”
“I wouldn’t try to cheat you into making more money,” she says.
“Don’t forget when I first found you on the street with that other girl Anna, you had nothing but the tattered clothes on your back and I am not even asking you to sell your body,” Salvatore speaks sternly into the phone, trying not to alert Alegra who is taking a long bubble bath in the bathroom behind him.
“ You are a high end escort for me , I got you a job in a law firm and turned you whole life around, all I ask of you is to escort these rich men on evenings to entertain them, I don’t need any drama ruining my reputation and the reputation of the business I am running”.
With that he abruptly hangs up on Heidi, just in time to see Alegra walk out of the bathroom, a lazy smile on her face, she walks towards Salvatore as she rubs her wet hair dry.
“ Had a nice bath?,” he asks.
“The best,” she says as she places a kiss on his cheek.
“ I need to dress up and go home, I am going to tell my parents that I left school early because of the exam I stayed over at Tiffany’s to study for, the exam is over and that’s why I came home early,” she says with a smile to him.
“My little devil,” he says impressed, “You thought of everything.”
She looks over at the room and specifically at the bed and the reminiscent of last night, “No…YOY thought of everything,” she says to him. With that she proceeds to dress and minutes later , a black SUV pulls up at her building, she is about to get out when she spots her mother walk out of the neighbouring building and walking towards their own. Moments later a light skinned Rastafarian man walks too, Alegra is about to disregard this as a coincidence when Celia turns around, having been called by the man, she smiles and waves good bye to him before she walks into their building.
Not knowing quite what to think, she bids farewell to Salvatore’s driver and minutes later she catches up to her mother at the elevator. Celia is startled as first she didn’t expect any one as she didn’t see any one behind her and second Alegra was supposed to be at school.
“Where are you coming from, mama?” she asks her mother, looking at her eyes for any sign of deception.
“Where are YOU coming from, mija?,” she asks her daughter ,her mind running wild with ideas wondering if Alegra had seen that she had just come from Jeremiah’s building.
Sitting on her bed, Celia is getting ready to get to sleep, as she lays down and pulls the covers over her, she thinks of the day she has had. She thinks of Jeremiah and she begins to imagine what it would have been like if their paths had crossed earlier. Slightly guilty that such thoughts even cross her mind, she shakes them off as she looks at a picture of her family in a frame on the side table.
She smiles as she remembers how excited she was when she first held Maria in her arms at the hospital or the first time the family went out of state to spend a day in New Jersey, how excited they had been singing and laughing in Juan’s truck. Looking back at it now, the truck , even though a second hand car, was still in very good shape, it looked brand new and to celebrate the new addition to their family, they had decided on a trip out of state. Her happiness dies as she remembers how much the trip cost in terms of fuel and meals at diners for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
She smiles a sad smile as she thinks of the night they came home, after tucking the kids in bed, she sat with her husband discussing the days events and how he lied to her when she asked about how much money he had spent out of what they had saved up, trying to give her a re assuring smile when she could see it in his eyes that behind that smile was a feeling of pain.
She starts to drift off into a sleep and with the sleep comes a dream. She is awakening on a very soft bed, she can hear the sound of waves through the open window, there is a cool breeze and sun light it shining in through the curtains as they flutter in the breeze. She looks around, not sure of where she is, could she be back in Aguadilla, she asks herself. Before she can find out, she smells a delicious aroma of spices, herbs and chicken coming from somewhere in side the house. She gets up and walks towards the smell, passing through the most comfortably furnished rooms in this little cottage like house. As she reaches the kitchen, Jeremiah is standing preparing some sort of salad – shirtless only in a pair of Khaki shorts, his toned back and shoulders shining beautifully from the sun shine that is lighting the kitchen through the window. Celia has the sudden urge to approach him and hug his body from behind, how good would that feel she thinks to herself, she almost does it, when Jeremiah turns and around and his pearly white teeth flash her the biggest smile ever.
“Good morning my love, you have slept even more than Sleeping Beauty – but then again you are more beautiful than Sleeping Beauty,” he says to her as he leans in to give her a hug and a kiss on her forehead.
Very confused, Celia looks around the house, nothing looks familiar, through a peak in the window she can see the deep blue sea with its waves and people enjoying the beautiful warm sun.
“Where am I?” she asks Jeremiah.
“c’mon now, you don’t know!” he says surprised, “we in da land of da Rastafarians…..we in Jamaica,” he continues to say.
Her heart drops, “ my children, my husband, where are they?” she asks.
“Don’t ya rememba, ya left dem to come enjoy dis jamaican life wid me.”
Celia gets up suddenly in a heap of sweet, she looks at the clock it is 5:30 in the morning, at that moment her eyes meet Juan’s who is stealthily creeping into the bedroom.
He stops and the two stare at each other, not knowing quite what to say.
Over at Salvatore’s penthouse Alegra is slowly waking up, the Egyptian cotton sheets feel like heaven beneath her. She smiles as she reminisces about the previous night.
After his phone call to this Walter guy, Salvatore whisked Alegra up in his arms and walked into the bedroom, her arms held tightly around his shoulder, aaah his shoulders how firm and strong they felt just as strong as his arms strongly pressed beneath her butt.
He lay her on the bed, she sat up at once, her cheeks turning a crimson color. “Salvatore, I want to tell you something, “ she starts. “Shhh I already know,” he says as he places a finger on her lower lip and traces an imaginary line along it.
“I will be gentle,” he says , as he slowly lays her on her back on the bed. Even though the sheets are the most comfortable she has ever laid in, she couldn’t help but feel very tensed. He is right above her now, looking straight into her eyes as she looks back with a mixture o fear and excitement, he caresses her face with his right hand and proceeds to kiss her cheeks, her neck, her collar bone, she starts to relax when the tension returns when she feels his hands on her breasts. He lays his body over hers and for a moment she feels pinned down and nervous, when the most amazing feeling comes over her, while her mind was busy worrying about what will happen, he had managed to slip down her dress and his wet tongue was now making circles on her right nipple . it was as if some one had switched her mind off, she could not think or feel anything but the sudden need of an explosion from the tingly feeling below and between her legs.
While his tongue was busy upstairs his left hand was feeling its way softly past her belly button and on to the insides of her soft thighs, she squirms as she feels the sensation grow more and more unbearable.
He feels her body tensing up again and he moves his tongue and lips on to her stomach, where once again his wet tongue makes circles in her belly button, she giggles and he feels her body relax again.
But not for long as he moves lower still, kissing her hips and licking the insides of both her thighs, involuntarily she moans and he swiftly removes her underwear. She grips on to the sheets with her finger nails as he spreads her legs and his tongue does the thing it did to her nipples and belly button but this time it is ten times more intense and pleasurable. It feels as if she is about to burst, like as if she is suffering from a fever that is so intoxicating that even though she knows the best thing is to release it, the feeling of tension it gives her is just too good to let go.
He tongue continues to tease and torment her clitoris and her muscles in her thighs begin to tension until she can not take it anymore. Her release is intense and long lasting that seconds later she still feels the tingly feeling haunting her. Satisfied with his achievement, he proceed to kiss her lower ab, working his way up to her lips, passing by her stomach and breasts on the way.
She smiles at him and he leans into kiss her on the side of her neck, she can feel how hard he is, right at her lower half is his lower half, he continues to kiss her neck and once again she feels the tingly feeling and the tension in her legs build up again, this time, she knows what to do she slowly parts her thighs and he is now in between them she puts her arms around his neck and he numbs her mind and intensifies her senses with his sensual kisses on her lips, her neck and the erotic movements of his tongue searching for hers in her mouth.
It feels like her legs are numb and she can’t control them, but at the same time it feels as if they are sensitive to even the slightest touch. Finally with out any warning, she find herself climaxing again from the erotic rubbing of his manhood on her clit and the sensual kisses he places on her neck.
This time the orgasm is received by an intruder, painful at first, the intrusion is aided by a few rocking movements from the intruder himself, back and forth he slowly rocks, all the while still kissing and caressing her neck, a few moments later a breakthrough occurs and the movements become stronger, a feeling of pain mixed with sexual sensation captivate Alegra’s body and as her breasts move in union to the rhythm of Salvatore’s intense rocking movements, the two find each other at the end in a climax so intense that both their bodies are shaking for several seconds later, Salvatore collapses on to the side of the bed and Alegra turns over to lay her head on his chest, his heartbeats are slowly slowing down and he caresses Alegra’s hair as regains a steady heartbeat.
Her reminiscing is quickly interrupted by the star of her memories, he has brought her breakfast in bed, he places it on the table , he is taken aback when he turns around to find her standing infront of him, and gliding her hand through his pyjama pants on to his manhood. She was addicted and she wanted more.
Sitting on a park bench somewhere between the book shop and her home, Sonya waits silently as she listens to Brandon explain where he has been the past few days when he had disappeared from her.
“ I was doing a delivery and this racist woman verbally attacks me for using the same elevator as her as opposed to the service lifts”, he continues to tell her of his incident, “I didn’t even do anything but wish her a good day.” “Well she starts to yell out for help, implying that I had assaulted her, before i know it I am arrested by 2 uniforms and taken into a holding facility downtown.” He looks at her with the most hurt eyes she has ever seen. Not able to control the sympathy she feels for this man before her, she hugs him tightly both in sympathy as well as to keep herself warm, as the weather had started to get even colder .
Relieved that her boyfriend was once again in her arms, she starts to tell him what she had been up to lately, she even informs him that she has decided to go pursue her studies, even if it is just a diploma .
Listening to her speak, he realizes for the first time how much this timid girl has changed from when he first used to see her walking to work, she seemed more confident, more lively and even more attractive midway between her sentence Sonya is surprised to find that Brandon has firmly placed his lips on hers and his tongue parting her lips frantically in search of hers, she gives into this sudden sensation and returns the embrace with the same, if not, stronger intensity.
When their lips finally do part, she looks at him with a shy smile on her face while he looks at her beautiful face , taking in everything from her hazel eyes to her full red lips and her nose, now so red, Brandon was not sure if it was from the kiss she had just experienced or the cold.
Getting ready to leave their rendezvous at the park bench, Brandon takes out his phone from his pocket to find 10 missed calls and 3 messages. He opens the most recent one, it reads :-
“ where are you? I really need to talk to you!”
He quickly deletes the messages and looks over at Sonya who has just finished getting up from the seat and arranging her jacket, he smiles at her and she smiles back as they walk hand in hand back to her building.
Over at Sapphire tower, Caroline is home alone , walking around in the living room with her phone in her hand, she has sent Randy 3 messages and called him 10 times, why the hell wasn’t he answering, she really needed to speak to some one , overwhelmed with grief at the incident that had shook her world , she just could not stand to be alone tonight.
Sitting in one of the most luxurious dining rooms she has ever seen, even on TV, Alegra is enjoying one of the best meals she has ever tasted, even better than the home made pepperoni pizza that her mother was so famous for. Sipping the smoothest wine surrounded by the sweetest smelling lavender candles, this setting was exactly how she always envisioned her first time.
Moments later she is another room and sitting on Salvatore’s lap , facing an electronic fire place, he plays with her hair as he plants soft kisses on her cheeks and nibbles on her ears. Giggling shyly at how ticklish it feels and how aroused it was making her, she uses the arm she has placed around his shoulder to caress his hair. Looking into his beautiful eyes and admiring his dimples as he smiles at her, she realizes that she might just be in love with him.
Aware of the effect he has on her, the hand he was resting around her waist moves lower on to her ample butt, rubbing it and squeezing it while he daringly put his right hand first on her face , then rubbing her arm and finally resting it on her breast , all the while continuing to place kisses and nibbles on her cheeks and ear.
They sit like this for a few minutes, when they are suddenly interrupted by Salvatore’s mobile phone ringing loudly, he sighs and without lifting her off him, he gets up , bends over and picks up the phone that was laying on a table near by. Sitting back down into the same position he was in just moments ago, with Alegra on his lap, he finally answers the phone.
“ Hello, yes Ahmet, calm down”, he says into the telephone sternly, “so what if she brought some one into your restaurant today, She is not working , it might just be her friend,” he answers , looking very annoyed at this intrusion.
Alegra can hear that the man on the other end of the phone call was quite upset, he also had a middle eastern accent.
“Look, let us not use filthy names to describe my employees and their friends or customers; let’s not forget how you opened up that joint in the first place and the details of our agreement – You allow me to conduct my business there and bring my customers and I help you maintain the place,” and with that Salvatore hangs up the telephone and smiles at Alegra, “just business as usual?,” she asks…Placing a kiss as he slowly says it, “Yes *kiss* Business *kiss* as *kiss* usual * a long kiss*.
Alegra giggles at this romantic rhythm of kissing and is just about to say something when his phone rings again, this time Salvatore is more serious as he answers the call.
“Hi Walter, how are you?”
“What? She did what? Who is she? What is her name? I don’t have any one under that name working for me,” he says surprisingly, “ and you say her name is just Ashley?” he asks.