Tuesday, May 30, 2017

#FreeDailyThriller - Lust, Money & Murder - Book 10, "Black Widow" - Part 52

* * *
Half an hour later, Luna was finding a parking space behind The Fairy Godfather. According to the online adult dating directory, this gay bar had a reputation for catering to the BDSM crowd, and from what she glimpsed from all the tricked out motorcycles parked in the back, the information was correct.
Before she climbed out of her car, she put on a long face and flipped down the visor to check herself in the mirror.
Luna Faye was not a natural actress. Unlike Elaine, who seemed to have the ability to change her outer personality at will, Luna’s natural character was much more rigid and less fluid. While working at the FBI, she had only participated in undercover operations in a limited way, mostly one-shot jobs, such as posing as the slutty girlfriend of a drug dealer who was attempting to buy a large quantity of meth to distribute. She had never played a role that lasted longer than a few days, nor had she ever been the lead agent on an undercover assignment, only a tag-along who wore a wire or served in some other evidence-gathering capacity.
To tap into some of her inner pain, she thought of Jade, the handsome young man who had moved in next door when she and her mom had lived in Redding, California. Jade had gotten her to lose weight and into working out and training in martial arts, and she’d developed a heart-wrenching crush on him. Even all these years later, when she thought about that tender time in her life, and about how devastated she’d felt when she’d found out Jade had a much older and more beautiful girlfriend, it was gut-wrenching.
After reliving the Jade memory for about sixty seconds, the dejected look on the face looking back through the mirror seemed genuine enough.
She climbed out of the car.

* * *
There were a few men scattered around the tables and the bar, drinking and chatting, some of them wearing only leather vests, revealing too much skin and chest hair. A DJ was spinning techno dance music on a raised platform, and two sweaty, buffed go-go boys in gilded cages were gyrating to the beat.
Trying to hold the dejected look on her face, Luna kept her head down and walked straight to a vacant section of the bar. She knew her outfit would attract a lot of attention, because it was sorely out of place here.
“Gimme a bourbon, please, straight-up,” she said, and she settled herself on a stool. Even the bartender was wearing a black leather vest with silver chains hanging from it, with a matching leather biker cap.
She sensed several onlookers exchanging tentative glances between themselves, wondering who would go after the “fresh meat.”
It was only a matter of seconds before a man sidled up to her at the bar, but he did not sit down on the stool. There was a drink in his hand and she noticed a tattoo of a snake on the inside of his forearm.
“Hello, there,” the man said, in a friendly tone. “Buy ya another drink?”
“No thanks,” Luna muttered, as the bartender set her glass in front of her. She picked it up and took a small sip, staring miserably into space.
Out of the corner of her eye, she saw her new companion smile sympathetically. He was in his late forties or early fifties, dressed in a leather vest with no shirt underneath, showing a chest that was also tattooed.
“Looks like you’ve had a bad day.”
Luna let out a short chuckle. “Try a bad lifetime, dude.”
“Ouch!” he said, in a surprised tone. He sipped from his glass, looking her up and down, and then sat down on the neighboring stool. “Maybe I can cheer you up? I hope you don’t mind, but I clocked you as a tranny...”
Now Luna looked over at him. “Yeah, so?”
He shrugged, but there was lustful excitement in his eyes, and he glanced down at the bulge in her crotch. “My name’s Gibson, by the way. My first name, not my last name.”
“Carl. It was Carla before.”
“Carl, nice to meet you!” He didn’t offer to shake hands. “Welcome to my life. I’m sure I can cheer you up.”
“Well, Gibson, there’s only one person in the world who can cheer me up, and he’s long gone.”
“Who’s that?”
“You wouldn’t know him. He used to come to this place, back in the day.”
“I might know him,” Gibson said. “I know everybody who comes in here, been a regular here ever since I, well, came out, long time ago.”
Luna glanced over at him. This was promising. “Really?”
Luna hesitated, then said, “His name is Lonnie Hendrix.”
Gibson frowned, thinking, then shook his head. “Don’t know him, have to admit. Are you sure he hung out here? What did he look like?”
“He used other names, the cheating bastard.” Luna sniffled. “I just thought if I could see him one more time...”
The man glanced down at her crotch again. “Was this before...”
“Yeah,” Luna muttered.
“I hope you’re not going to tell me you did it for him...”
Luna didn’t answer.
Gibson smiled, and he casually placed his hand on her thigh. She felt like slapping it away, but she let it stay there.
“What other names did your long lost lover go by?”
“I don’t know,” she said, but she reached into her jacket pocket and pulled out her wallet. She opened it, withdrew the photo of Lonnie Hendrix, which she had touched up on her computer so that it would not look like a police mug shot, and gazed at it mournfully. She swallowed hard, then handed it to Gibson.
He let out a groan. “Lawrence Kavanaugh? Ha! I remember him, he used to perform here. Had this Arab dance act, with those different colored veils...I forget what he called himself.”
“Florence of Arabia?”
“Yeah!” Gibson said, slapping the top of the bar. “Florence of Arabia! What a crazy act that was...but hot, too, really hot.” The smile faded. “Don’t tell me you fell for him, too?”
Luna frowned defensively. “What do you mean, ‘too’?”
“He’s just...” Gibson looked disgustedly at the photo. “He’s nothing but a con artist, uses people right and left without even thinking about it, takes their money, their presents, whatever he can get out of ’em. I don’t think he’s even really gay or even bi. He’s been with a lot of women...”
Gibson shut his mouth when he saw tears in Luna’s eyes. “I mean, you know, he was promiscuous, couldn’t commit to one person, that’s all.” Gibson’s hand moved a little further up and to the inside of Luna’s thigh, his fingers warm through the thin fabric of her trousers, and glanced at her crotch again.
Luna said, “Oh yeah, I know all about his fooling around—I always get stuck with those cheaters for some damn reason.”
“Look, you need to forget about him,” Gibson said, and handed the photo back to her. “Trust me, he’s not worth it.” Gibson hesitated, his voice now trembling with sexual excitement. “I’m sure I can cheer you up, if you give me a chance. We could go over to my place and—”
“Nobody can replace Lonnie,” Luna repeated. “Nobody. There’s no one like him. I’m sure if I could talk to him again, just one more time...”
“Well, I heard he left town and maybe—” his hand moved even farther up her leg “—if we went to my place and relaxed, you know, I could remember where he went.”
She glanced pathetically at the row of bottles along the bar, forcing more tears. “You’re awfully cruel. If you tell me where he went maybe I’ll go home with you.”
Gibson considered this for only a second. “Atlanta. I heard he went to Atlanta.”
Luna turned and looked at him, wiping her eyes. “Are you sure?”
“You don’t believe me?” Before Luna could answer, he called out to the bartender, who was standing at the far end, handing someone a drink. “Marlon, come down here a sec, will ya?”
The bartender sauntered over.
“Remember old Florence of Arabia?”
Marlon’s face lit up, and he chuckled. “Yeah.”
“Where’d he go after he left here?”
The bartender thought about it as he wiped up a wet spot on the bar in front of Luna. “Atlanta. We got a postcard from him, I remember, was up on the bulletin board for a while.” He looked curiously at Luna. “Why, who’s askin’?”
“It’s a private matter,” Gibson said, as if he and his new friend Carl were already tight. “Thanks.”
Marlon shrugged and moved away.
“See?” Gibson said. “What’d I tell ya?” He smiled. “So now that I kept my promise...”
His hand suddenly grabbed hold of the bulge in Luna’s trousers.
In an automatic reflex, Luna’s right arm snapped out at full force. Her fist whacked the man hard across the face, so hard it knocked him off his bar stool, and he tumbled onto the wooden floor.
“Hey!” he screamed, jumping back up to his feet, holding his hand to his face. “What’d you do that for?”
Now everyone in the bar was staring at them.
Luna saw a huge black guy that she hadn’t noticed before striding towards them. A plain clothed security guard, no doubt. She guessed he was about six foot six, three hundred pounds, mostly muscle.
“What’s the problem, Gibson?” he said in a bass voice, his muscles bulging under his T-shirt, which was black, too.
“That bitch or bastard or whatever she is—she hit me!”
Luna said, “Look, he grabbed my—”
“You’re no tranny!” Gibson yelled. “Your pants are stuffed!”
“Get out,” the security guard said to Luna, motioning to the door with his thumb. Apparently he sided with the regular customer by default.
“Fine,” Luna said, and she turned and slid off her stool.
The guard pushed her in the back as she moved towards the door.
“Don’t touch me,” she said over her shoulder.
“Shut up,” the guard said.
She was tempted to pull out her badge and shove it in his face, but of course she couldn’t do that.
The guard pushed her again, so hard she nearly tripped over her own feet. Luna told herself to simply leave.
Just as she reached the door, the guard pushed her a third time.
She whirled around and drove her knee into his groin. When he bent forward, she smashed the palm of her hand into his jaw so hard that when he landed on his back, he was out cold.
She hesitated, her eyes shifting from Marlon to Gibson and to the other men who had followed them, her highly trained body ready to respond to the slightest movement and take each and every one of them down.
They all just stood there stunned, mouths hanging open.
The guard started groaning and opened his eyes, staring at the ceiling, dazed.
She straightened her hat, looking down at him. “Prick,” she muttered, and went out the door.

* * *
When Luna climbed back into the rental car, she scowled at her refection in the sun visor mirror. She muttered, “That went well, Carl. Maybe next time you can completely blow your cover.”
She started the engine and pulled out of the parking lot.
At least she had found out where Lonnie Hendrix had gone next.

Next Part =>

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