This was originally supposed to be a very short story. As I wrote it, the characters came to life and informed me that they had a longer story to tell. This is my attempt at telling their story. I plan on rewriting, then add to it, supplying a new chapter each week. Let me know what you think. And I mean that; be honest with me. Please take into account this is a first draft you're seeing. There are likely to be mistakes that I don't see when I read through it myself. :)
“What can I get you, Miss?”
“A glass of your best whiskey, please.”
“Here you go, Miss. Enjoy.”
“Thank you.” Tawny lifted the glass up to her lips and let the liquid slide down her throat. A smile came across her lips and her eyes closed as the rich liquor settled in her stomach. Her family and friends called her stingy. Tawny considered herself smart. She saw no reason to spend money on things that weren’t necessary. As long as she had everything she needed, she was happy. On special occasions, like tonight, she treated herself to her favorite alcohol.
“I doubt you’ll have any competition drinking that.”
Tawny turned on her stool and found a woman sitting behind her. “Excuse me?”
“Whiskey, not many people here will order that.”
“Do you make a point of visiting every bar and keeping tabs on what people drink?”
“Yes, whiskey is a passion of mine.”
“Good for you.” Tawny finished the last of her drink and walked away from the bar, leaving her empty glass there. She was still surprised at herself for coming here tonight. This wasn’t her usual scene, and no where near the class of people she usually associated with. These people were starched tuxes and black evening gowns. She was barefoot in a meadow with a book in her hand. No matter the differences, she was here for a reason.
“I just wish I knew what that reason was,” Tawny said as she stepped out on the balcony.
“You’re here to meet Aphrodite.”
Tawny spun on the toes of her shoes and glanced over at the dark corner of the balcony. She couldn’t see who had spoken, but they had used the one word that would let Tawny know they were here to see her.
“You just don’t realize you’ve already met her.” Sonya stepped out of the darkness toward Tawny. “I didn’t get a chance to introduce myself before you took off. I’m Sonya.”
The woman from the bar moved toward Tawny like she was walking on air. Her shoes didn’t make a sound on the travertine tiled balcony. The dress she wore hugged every curve and oozed sex appeal. Her hips danced from side to side as she continued to move toward Tawny. The tight midriff of the bustiere led up to luscious cleavage that was tightly contained. A string of pearls at the base of her neck gave a reason for everyone’s eyes to travel up the lines of her neck. For those that were brave enough to continue the journey, they were met by bright blue eyes that were impossible to read. The blond hair that lay wrapped on her head like a sculpture was the last of the reasons for her code name, Aphrodite.
“You’re the woman from the bar.” Tawny was a little awestruck at the situation she was in. She had spoken to the woman at the bar, but she’d paid little attention to her. All she remembered was a comment on her drink. The same women before her now looked like a high society knockout that would have men down on their knees worshiping her. Instead, she was hiding on a balcony. “I’m Tawny.”
“You do?” Tawny knew it wasn’t hard to find information on her. She shared almost everything online for all of her fans. This woman didn’t look like the type that usually reads her books.
“Yes, I researched you before our meeting tonight. You need to be more careful. It only took me three minutes to find your home address. Of course, not everyone is as talented as I am.” Sonya stopped in front of Tawny and held out another glass of whiskey. A shaky hand came up in front her her and wrapped around the glass. “You don’t have to be nervous. I’m here to help you.”
“With what?” Tawny took a drink of the whiskey and hoped it would help her get her nerves under control. She didn’t know why, but Sonya made her nervous.
“I can find the person that’s harassing you. From what I was told, someone hacked your computer and has been releasing your unpublished stories. They’ve also been stalking you, haven’t they.”
“Yes,” Tawny whispered. “They know where I live.” Tawny lifted her glass and downed the last of the liquid. She set the glass on a small table at the side of the balcony and walked over to the edge to look down at the street below her. “How did you know?”
“I’ve been watching your place.”
“What?” Tawny spun around to face Sonya, but lost her balance as she turned. If it hadn’t been for Sonya grabbing her waist, she would have fallen.
“I’ve only been watching for the last two days to see if anyone has been spying on you.” Sonya kept her hands around Tawny’s waist to make sure she was okay. When Tawny continued to shake in front of her, Sonya left her hands where they were.
“You can’t do that,” Tawny said as she shook her head at Sonya. “You can’t sit out there and spy on me. I won’t have it.” Tawny pushed Sonya’s hands away from her and turned to go back inside. Before she could walk across the balcony, Sonya moved around her and pulled the doors closed. She stood in front of the glass panes and stared at Tawny.
“Do you know what would have happened if I’d seen someone spying or sneaking around your home? They would either be arrested or dead. That’s what I do. I wasn’t there to watch you or harm you. My job is to protect you and help you find out who’s after you. Simpson said you wanted the best, and that’s me.”
“You know Simpson?” Tawny backed away from Sonya until she was at the edge of the balcony again. Her hands went behind her and grabbed onto the rail.
“He has nothing to do with this, and we won’t mention his name again. I was told that you needed help. Since the police won’t do anything, I said I would.” Sonya pushed away from the glass panes and walked over to Tawny. “If you don’t want my help, just say so. I have plenty of other jobs I can be out on that don’t require me to dress up like a Barbie doll.”
“You’re beautiful.” Tawny was surprised at her own words. Even though they were true, she’d never said words like that to another woman. Of course, she’d never seen another woman like Sonya before tonight.
“This isn’t me. The only reason I’m here is to meet you. It’s better if no one knows I’m helping you. By meeting here, we can keep it a secret.”
When the door of the balcony started to slide open, Tawny glanced around and saw a waiter on the other side. Sonya moved to the corner of the balcony with her back to the doors. Tawny moved over in front of her and stood there with her hands on her hips.
“Are you alright, Miss? These doors aren’t supposed to be closed.” The waiter slid the doors open and stepped outside.
“I’m fine, yes. I’m afraid I had some bad news to deliver to a friend of mine. I closed the doors behind us so we could have just a moment of privacy while I spoke to her. If you would close the doors when you go back in, I’ll make sure they’re open when we’re done.” Tawny continued to stand there until the man nodded to her and stepped back inside. The doors slid closed behind him.
“That was some quick thinking.” Sonya turned around and found Tawny right in front of her with her back still to her. As she turned, Sonya let her eyes take in the tight black dress that Tawny wore.
“I’m a writer. There’s plenty of random sentences in my head that I can use in a situation like that.” Tawny turned to find Sonya’s eyes sliding up her body. She knew that look because plenty of men had looked at her the same way for years. This was the first time a woman had checked her out with that same look of passion. The steely eyes from earlier were gone, and Tawny could read every thought Sonya had by looking at her eyes.
“Do you want me to help you?”
Sonya looked up and met the green of Tawny’s eyes. “Would you like me to help you find out who’s been harassing you?”
“Yes, I’ve not been able to write a thing. I’m afraid to go anywhere, so I just stay in my home for days at a time. They could be watching my every move.”
“They’re not, at least from what I’ve found so far. The outside of your home is clean, and there’s no sign of anyone being on your wireless signal except for that initial hack. You’re system was rather weak, but I’ve already changed the settings and made it harder for anyone to get on your network. I don’t know about the inside of your home. I’d have to check it before I could say for sure that no one has been watching you.” Sonya kept her eyes up where they belonged as she spoke to Tawny. As soon as she stopped talking, her eyes fell away from Tawny’s green eyes and back down to her curvy waist.
“Could you look at my eyes when you speak to me, not at my body?” The nerve of this young woman was starting to get to Tawny. She’d never met a woman that was more blatant about what she wanted. Tawny could see the yearning in Sonya’s eyes. Part of her felt pleased that she could still draw people’s eyes like that, but the other part of her thought it was very impolite.
“I’ll be at your house in an hour.” Sonya slipped past Tawny and stepped inside to disappear into the crowd.
It had taken Tawny almost forty five minutes to get home. A group of people had stood outside of the hotel with her as they waited for their vehicles to be brought around front. By the time her car pulled up, she’d been standing their twenty minutes. The trip home left her a little over ten minutes to get changed before Sonya got there. She left the dress pooled on the floor as she stepped over in front of her dresser. As she slid the stockings down her legs, a smile spread across her lips. If Sonya had known what Tawny was wearing under her dress, that yearning in her eyes would have doubled.
One thing Tawny loved to do when she was having trouble developing a character was to get dressed up in the naughtiest clothes she could find and go out for a night of fun. She had a variety of clothing stashed in her closet where no one would ever find it. After slipping into an appropriate outfit for her character, she’d go out to different clubs and flirt her way through all the men. She never had sex with any of them, only used them for her inner vixen. When she arrived home after such a night, her mind would be full of lust-filled scenes of raw, carnal sex. Her fingers would fly over the keys as she wrote her female lead taking up some of the offers she had received.
Tawny laid her silk stockings on the dresser and added the black garter belt after it had been removed. On the top of the pile landed her black, crotchless panties. She slipped on a pair of shorts and was pulling a T-shirt out of her closet when the doorbell rang.
“Shit.” Tawny pulled the shirt over her head and headed for the front door. She had just pulled her long, strawberry blond hair out of her shirt when she opened the door.
Sonya tried to keep calm as Tawny opened the door, but inside, Tawny’s beauty caused her to gasp in shock. Even out of her dress, Tawny was one of the most beautiful women Sonya had ever seen. Her hair was the color of royalty. In the right outfit, she could stand beside the royal family of England and blend in perfectly. Sonya wanted so badly to see if her hair was as silky as it looked. Her light alabaster skin and light freckles were adorable and made Sonya want to run her fingers across it.
“Come in.” Tawny stepped aside and let Sonya enter her home.
“Thank you. May I set this down here?” Sonya pulled her bag off of her shoulder, but held it until Tawny told her it was alright. The bag had anything she might need while she was here. She’d rather have everything with her if she needed it instead of finding a situation that she couldn’t deal with. So the bag went with her almost everywhere.
“Can I get you something to drink?”
“That would be nice, thank you.” Sonya followed Tawny into the kitchen where she got them both a glass of white wine.
“How about you show me around your home. It’s very nice.” When Tawny opened her mouth and started to question her, Sonya brought a finger up to her lips to silence her. Tawny nodded to her and turned to lead her out of the kitchen.
“I’d love to show you around. I’ve got quite a collection of things scattered around here. I’m afraid I don’t know how to let go of anything.” Tawny led Sonya back out to the front room.
“I look forward to seeing everything.” There was one thing Sonya wanted to see more than anything, but she wouldn’t admit it to anyone, even herself.
They started in the living room, where they walked every wall. The watch Sonya wore was capable of alerting her to any bugs or recorders. The only thing it did was flash a small red light that was built into the face of the watch. As they walked the last wall, it went off.
On the wall was a shelf that held glass figurines with an old brass clock in the middle. Sonya tried to keep her watch out of Tawny’s sight, but she wasn’t able to. When Tawny started to speak, Sonya silenced her with only a look. As she reached up to the shelf, the red light got brighter.
“They’re nothing special. My grandmother gave them to me years ago. Like I said, I keep almost everything.” When Sonya reach down for Tawny's hand, she took it willingly.
They walked through the entire house with only the two bedrooms left. As they toured the spare bedroom, which was also Tawny’s office, Sonya’s watch lit up again. She was close enough to be alerted to it, but was unable to pinpoint exactly where the bug was. As she looked around the room, she saw a faint light coming from inside a large clock on the wall by the bed. The light told Sonya that it wasn’t just a voice recorder, but a video recorder that was sending the video wirelessly.
“Is there a certain time of day you usually write or just when the mood strikes you?” Sonya looked across the room the direction the recorder was facing and had a clear view of Tawny’s desk and computer.
“The mood? You think my writing is a mood thing? I’ll have you know I’m one of the top indie authors in the country, and the first one to get an offer from a major publishing company. I didn’t see a need for them since I had done all the work on my own and still succeeded. When I told them no, they offered me a job. Now, not only am I a writer, but also a representative for LLS Publishing.” Tawny stood there and watched Sonya move toward her. She stopped right in front of Tawny and took her hand.
“LLS?” With her back turned to the camera, Sonya mouthed to Tawny where the camera was. Tawny started to look up, but Sonya spoke again. “What does LLS stand for?”
“Love, lust, sex. All of their books revolve around one or all of those things, no matter what the genre.” Tawny followed Sonya out of the spare bedroom and across the hall into her room. She stood at the door and watched as Sonya walked around the room and looked at everything. When she stepped in front of Tawny’s dresser and ran her fingers along the top, it was obvious what she was looking at.
“How often do you go out dressed like this?” Sonya asked as she slid a finger in the leg of Tawny’s panties.
“That’s none of your business.” Tawny started to move forward to get her panties away from Sonya, but Sonya moved first. She flipped the panties up in her hand and moved toward Tawny with a purpose. When she got to the doorway, she pulled Tawny in and closed the bedroom door behind her. She stepped forward until Tawny was against the door.
“If I’m going to help you, I need to know everything about you. Not only will I know everything you do and everywhere you go, I’ll need to know every intimate detail of your personal life. The person doing this could be a simple fan who’s obsessed with you, but it could also be some guy you picked up at a bar for a quick lay. If these are any indication, the guys you sleep with could be some very strong-willed men.” Sonya stood there with one hand against the door by Tawny’s head and the other gripped around the black lace panties.
“I don’t sleep with them. I only do it for my stories.” Tawny reached up to remove the panties from Sonya’s hand, but she pulled away before Tawny could get them.
“Do you actually think that’s okay? You walk into bars dressed like this and flirt your way through every man in there. Then, you come home to your stories where you write down all of your fantasies. Do you really think you can do that and someone not be affected by it?” Sonya brought the lace panties up and teased them down Tawny’s throat. Her hand continued down between the nipples that were hardening under Tawny’s shirt.
“You can’t mess with people’s heads like that and not affect someone in a negative way. Maybe some man you flirted with in a bar was at the end of his rope. You gave him a small amount of hope as you sat there coming onto him. Once you had your story and walked away, that was a fuck you to a man who went home and shot himself.” Sonya dropped her hand as she looked up at Tawny. Tears flowed down her cheeks at Sonya’s harsh words. When Sonya pushed off the door and turned away, Tawny opened the door and walked out.
“Dammit,” Sonya said as she threw the panties back on the dresser. She hadn’t meant to upset Tawny, only get her to realize the dangerous game she’d been playing. There was a term for what Tawny did, and it wasn’t a nice one. Sonya grabbed her glass of wine and went to find Tawny.