C2 2

Alexi is one of those men—who wear command like a shroud about their person.

‘’My debt … came to you I presume? ’’ The words cut like glass in my aching throat, even though I should be grateful I am not at the bottom of the river right now, and for having him swoop in and save me from certain death at Tyler’s hands. I owe him fifty grand because of that stupid whore taking off with everything I had, trusting the wrong mousy little bitch and letting myself get distracted, but Alexi Carrero has a reputation that precedes him in the underworld.

He’s the stuff nightmares are made of, and I literally just became something he owns. It’s a hard pill to swallow. Head of his mafia family, operating under the guise of businessman, but anyone worth their weight in cocaine in this world knows that he’s the New York go to man if you want to conduct any business in this city at all. Without his blessing and greasing of palms you may as well get out of Dodge.

He swooped in and saved my bacon from mere street runners, and now I owe the main man himself my life on a fucking platter. It couldn't get any worse than that. He is not someone who needs to beat women half to death to chase up a drug debt; he is someone who will just drop you in the ocean, wearing metal boots, for not paying up in time and not even break a sweat over it.

I am a family favour, Alexi’s new problem.

Well done Camilla … did yourself a right good turn with this stupid fuck up. What the hell is he going to do with an ex-hooker who pushes drugs and sex for a living, and currently has nothing but the dirty clothes they took from me to her name? I have no value to a millionaire crook that has a whole city at his fingertips. Fifty grand is not easy to earn when your skills mean nothing to a man like him.

‘’My cousin offered to clear it on your behalf … fifty G. I refused, on account of the fact you won’t learn anything if people sweep in and fix all your mistakes so easily, and I am a huge believer in personal growth. Sophie is someone I care about, and I will honour that affection by taking you on. Don’t get me wrong, Miss Walters, you will pay off the debt and I aim to make you work for it. I have plans for someone with your entrepreneurial skill set.’’ He sounds almost smug, self-assured, and I really wish I could at least see his face.

This is complete torture, and my heart is pounding through my chest in a bid to escape my rib cage. I'm almost faint, not just from my physical discomfort either and I do not think I am going to like this guy or this deal. Gut instinct inkling at it.

‘‘What skill set exactly do you think I have?’’ I almost whisper it, showing my nervousness plainly, realising I am breaking all my own rules in how to deal with men and their intimidation acts. The thing is, this one is no act and I have no desire to push any sort of power angle right now. I am literally at his mercy for my own survival.

‘‘You are known for your ability to connect girls, parties, and product. You have a reputation as the go-to girl for anyone who has tastes and money to burn on fun; a name that had even reached my ears. I have a club in need of that kind of input and now I have you, it appears I was played a profitable hand.’’

I’m not sure I like the way he keeps referring to me as his property, even if he does own my soul for debt. I also hate that when he talks it’s completely controlled and steady as though discussing the weather and not a sordid plan of my future. It’s completely unnerving me.

‘‘You want your club to operate the same way my little outfit did?’’ I would laugh if it wasn’t so damn ridiculous, but I can tell he isn’t joking. He’s clever in a wolf-like kind of way and I can see the angle he hopes to play and what advantage he has in this, but I have never run a club or know anything about bars or booze sales. He’s insane if he thinks he can make me work off that much money in some sleazy strip bar. My blood runs cold at the thought of what exactly this offer will entail.

I don’t do sex for money anymore and I won’t go back to that means of survival at any cost. I would rather go take my chances with the fish and concrete boots than be made to fuck for hire again.

‘‘I think your talents and allure will give my club the edge and class I have been looking for, while still operating to my clientele’s tastes. It’s an exclusive bar, closed door policy with memberships and you’ll have accommodation above … I have an apartment on the top floor I rarely use, and it seems you need a home.’’ He’s annoyingly polite in his dialect, well-spoken and precise.

How the hell does he know so much about me? A few hours ago, I was not even on his radar and yet now he seems to know I have literally nowhere to live, on top of how I have been supporting myself for the last two years. I know better than to ask questions in this business and I can only assume he did his homework on me the second I became his baggage.

Men with money and means! It’s scary to know what a man with cash can dig up in no time at all.

‘’I need to try and collect my belongings from the place I skipped out on a few weeks back, I owe them money.’’

Libre Baskerville
Gentium Book Basic
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