The Mysteries of Riverside Gardens

Chapter 11 : The grip is tightening.

The noose is tightening on the culprit in Andrews’ murder. The friends are getting closer and closer to the truth, but they are not …

Pills, Photo by Michael Carruth on Unsplash


Sue had been sitting in her car for over half an hour with the engine off. She was staring at the screen of her phone. A second text had arrived last night. The same text, “Did you think your secret would be buried with Andrews?” followed by “You have two weeks, $20,000 at the usual place.

Could this be the same blackmailer from three years ago? No way, she had found out that it was Andrews who was blackmailing her. Andrews was dead, buried, it couldn’t be him. Or had she been wrong all along? And if it wasn’t the same one, how did he know about the usual hiding place?

What was certain was that she definitely didn’t have that $20,000. The last few years she had had to drastically cut back on her little schemes, and then she had to pay for Pete’s medical expenses, who was getting hurt so often that health insurance companies didn’t want him around.

Well, she was on her way to the office. She started the car. She had to find a solution, there was no way she was going to pay that much money. Her only salvation was to find out who the blackmailer was and to stop him by all means… All means.

She thought back to that story about Bruce asking Frank to destroy a garden. This story was really not right. Could she trust Frank? The gardener seemed harmless, but he had been in prison. Would he have lied to her?

Generally, he did not support the pressure and in front of her, like a child taken in fault, he confessed all. But this time, she had doubts.

No, it didn’t fit. Bruce, jealous, decided to warn a potential lover of Rita. No, it didn’t make sense, Rita was not being courted. At least, not that she knew it. Let’s say that Rita was no longer a hottie, with her dozens of extra pounds, and her faded skin. No, if there was one in the couple who had to be jealous, it was Rita. Bruce had not been the most faithful of men in recent years …

She had to get to the bottom of this.

Once parked in front of the office, she grabbed her phone, and called Frank. He answered after three rings, with a weak voice. She did not leave him time to stammer and summoned him to go in her office as soon as he arrived. After a timid “Yes”, she hung up on him.

It was 6:30 am, Frank would not arrive before fifteen minutes. That left her time to set up her stratagem to extract the truth from the gardener’s mouth. She opened the office door, turned off the alarm, and gazed into this new interrogation room. Inspired by all the old spy movies she had watched with Pete, she placed a chair on each side of the table and placed her desk lamp facing one of them. It was necessary that Frank took fear, it was necessary that he felt cornered and that he confessed all.

Perhaps it was the moment for her to play the card of the prison. The biggest fear of Frank was to return there, it was necessary to make him believe that she had what to send him back there.

She heard the door of the reception opening, hold, Franck was more in advance than she would have thought. Fixing the handle, she placed herself in front of the door to raise the pressure in one second with his arrival.

Franck knocked timidly at the door. She summoned him to enter curtly. Franck’s eyes were evasive. They rested on Sue, then on the table and on the lamp, his pupils danced in their orbits. She noticed a shiver running through the little man, his gaze hardened. With a determined step, she approached him, he panicked, and with a movement of terror, threw his things on the floor and cowered on himself.

On the ground, among his bottles of energy drinks, his keys and his wallet, a dozen small pink pills. That was interesting…

With a maternal gesture, she caressed his back. Her fingernails were just touching the fabric, she was taking on herself not to show her feeling of disgust. With a softer voice than usual, she reassured him, she was there to help him. She did not want to hurt him at all. Here, if he sat down a little.

Frank got up, looking lost, and walked hesitantly towards the chair. Meanwhile, Sue picked up each of her belongings and lined them up on the table. In her hand, she still held the few pills. The gardener’s eyes were fixed on the table, he felt a crisis coming on, his breath was shorter, he was afraid. He moved his hand towards his inhaler, but a manicured finger with red varnish came to rest on it and pulled it away. He looked up with concern.

Sue smiled at him with an evil grin on her face. “If you want your inhaler, you’re going to have to be a good boy, Frank, and tell me where you got it,” she paused theatrically. Frank looked at her anxiously. She put down gently, one by one the fluorescent pink pills. The eyes of Franck rounded. “… these little “candies””.

Frank stammered, and began to rock back and forth, he was afraid. Sue’s voice kept threatening him, with such circumstances, he would surely end up back in jail. A man like him didn’t deserve prison, he deserved to be happy, and for that, he just had to tell her the whole truth.

After several minutes, Frank began to confess. She hadn’t even needed the lamp. Damn, she was almost disappointed. But the inhaler trick had been a stroke of genius.

So the pills were made by Bruce, who was probably in contact with Andrews. Perhaps Bruce was her blackmailer. Whatever the truth, the old mustachioed man wasn’t completely innocent in Andrews’ death. She was going to make his life hell. She was not to be toyed with in this way.


Susan escorted John to the door, on the way from the kitchen to the hallway, he left his hand on Susan’s lower back. It was a soft, warm, pleasant feeling. She hadn’t felt this way in over three years. She could feel her heart soar.

He kissed her forehead and then her lips, and left the house.

She remained for a moment still, and leaned against the door, replaying the images of the day before in her mind.

He had waited for a bouquet of flowers outside her door. When she had seen it, her heart had leapt. She had not had the heart to send him away, she had offered him to come in. He had followed her obediently into her little house.

After placing the bouquet in a vase, she invited him to sit down. Naturally, she offered him a drink. Each of them had sipped their glass of brandy face to face on the kitchen table. The discussion had been so natural, there had been no awkward silences, she had laughed. Yes, sometimes the voices were silent, but their eyes continued to confess a thousand and one things. John had been attentive, he had this unfathomable smile and his glance was more burning than ever.

The evening was progressing, and she did not want to see him leave, so she had invited him to dinner. She had apologized, it would not be a feast worthy of the prince he was. They had laughed about it. Arrived at the end of the improvised dinner, whereas Susan sat down again after having put two cups of coffee on the table, John stood up. The heart of the beautiful tightened, she had bored him, he was going to leave. But John had not left, he had gone around the table, and had leaned over her to kiss her.

Their lips had found each other, they had devoured each other. Everything in Susan had flared up again.

It hadn’t taken long for their bodies to get under the dunner. For people in their seventies, they had incredible energy. This time it had been even more beautiful than the first. Susan had felt a pleasure she hadn’t felt in several years.

This morning they had snuggled in each other’s arms and she had felt safe, good, in tune with life. Yes, for the first time in three years, she had felt less empty, she had felt a new desire. The old age had left her, she felt the soul of a young girl.

When after their frolic, they had lengthened in the bed which she had so many years to share with Rick, she had felt disturbed. Guilt had caught her a little off guard. But John was a man always attentive, he had felt her uneasiness. He had offered to her to leave if she wanted, while taking her in his arms. His embrace was strong, and his kiss on her neck finally convinced Susan to let him sleep here.

Rick was gone, and he would surely be happy if she spent the last years of her life with a man who was willing to love her.

That night, she fell asleep calmly, serene, the veils of the past gradually lifted, and gave way to a new light.

Susan, still leaning against the door, smiled and put her hands to her heart. A new light shone in her eyes. She almost skipped to the kitchen. The dishes were still in the sink. Her hands washed, brushed and rinsed. But her mind was following the curves of John’s body, remembering the pleasure, the excitement. She sighed.

The dishes were washed in no time. She looked up and saw Martha’s hunched figure in the street. It had been a while since she had seen her. She was about to offer her a coffee. The poor widow must have been devastated at the moment. The memory of her own grief came back to her mind, she was not sad about it. She smiled, her grief was over and John was no stranger to it.

With a spontaneous gesture, she opened the window and called out to Martha. The old lady turned around, looking surprised. “Martha, can I buy you a coffee?”. Martha’s shadow came closer, her smile seemed fake, she nodded and walked around the house. The memory of Paula a few years earlier came back to her mind. She cherished that moment, it hadn’t been a happy time, but their friendship had started that morning.

Maybe Martha could become her friend too… She doubted it, this woman had never inspired any sympathy. Andrews was her friend, but Martha had always seemed cold to her, she had always wondered what the sympathetic Andrews was doing with the old witch. She had always felt that they were a bad match, what was it that united them? How had a man like him ended up with such a cold woman? What was their history?

Now she felt curious. Maybe she would discover a new Martha, and she would understand. There was a knock at the door, and she snapped out of her musings and went to open it for Martha.

The woman stood in front of the door, wearing a brand new outfit. Her parma dress had many ruffles on it, making the widow’s stunted figure look even more stunted. Martha had a proud smile on her face, her shopping cart was also new, a floral print on a black background, four wheels, she must have paid a lot for it. Susan remembered this model from last month’s catalog, it was worth several hundred dollars. It could be just another way to cope with grief. But in such a short time, it still seemed very strange.

Susan had not touched the inheritance, she had just kept enough to live on modestly and had put the rest aside for her children. So she was puzzled by this kind of spending behavior.

She called Martha in and offered her some tea. The woman nodded and didn’t wait to be invited to sit on the couch. Susan put down the cup of tea, she had chosen a bag at random. Yes, definitely, Martha would not become her friend. She regretted her invitation almost immediately.

Susan sat down on the couch and asked Martha how she was doing. Martha took a sip and smiled. She was fine, she was planning to go to Bali for two weeks starting the next day. How? She had found an organized tour for people over sixty, a stay in a five star hotel, all included. Oh yes, she was going to enjoy it.

Susan thought that no one would have thought that the hunchback was a widow. How could she be so happy after less than a month of mourning? She remembered that a month after Rick’s death, she was still devastated, she didn’t sleep at night, she had nothing but tearless sobs. Life had no meaning anymore, her only moments of “survival” were the glasses of wine she had with Paula, or afternoons with her grandchildren. It was only when she came into contact with those who were selfish enough not to feel pity, to laugh, that she could leave her role as a widow for a few minutes.

But Martha, it was something else, it was as if Andrews’ death did not make her feel hot or cold. Even worse, it was as if Andrews’ death had been a boon to Martha. Maybe they had misjudged the situation, maybe Bruce wasn’t the only one who had been acting strangely before Andrews’ death. What if it was his wife who had killed him?

She had to investigate. She would tell Paula, as soon as Martha left the house, she would run to the nymph’s house and tell her everything.

Suddenly, she had a flash of genius. As Martha was taking her leave, claiming she had to pack her suitcase, Susan spontaneously offered to come and water her plants while she was away. Martha was surprised at the attention, but nodded enthusiastically. She had a spare key on her person and handed it to Susan. It was as if the widow had expected such an offer.

Susan grabbed the keys and walked Martha to the door. The investigation continues, she thought. Besides, she had to hurry; she had an appointment with Paula at 10:00 a.m. for a summary of the Bruce and Rita situation. Last night, she had received a brief message from the mermaid “Bruce is not all white, not premeditated, we will have to protect Rita. Susan got a chill when she received the message, but she barely had time to read it before John had eaten her up with kisses and she had even forgotten the contents until this morning.

She jumped in the shower, put on a nice dress, she had the heart to make herself beautiful this morning, and put on a pair of sandals to go to Paula’s house.


Bruce watched Rita sleep with her eyes closed, she looked so peaceful this morning. It was the first time in decades of marriage that Rita did not get up before him to prepare breakfast. He did not feel anger or disapproval, it was an exceptional circumstance.

Last night, when he came home, he found Rita half-naked dancing on the sofa. On the kitchen table he had found fifty muffins, pancakes and several dozen brownies, but most of all two open bags of his little homemade pills. He instantly had a gagging heart, Rita had necessarily taken several pills to be in such a state. He had wanted to question her, but she had jumped from the sofa, catching him by the polo shirt, sticking to her, she had whispered words of love, then more naughty words. He hadn’t seen her like that for more than twenty years.

It was like finding the Rita of the beginnings, wild, delirious, warm and so generous. She had then kissed him full mouth and had pulled him towards the room. How long had it been since they had made love? He couldn’t remember, but it had been several years. Um maybe after that story with Paula. Yes it was, after his escapade at the nymph, Rita had shown him again attention sensually, a few months, then the daily life and his bad temper had ended their honeymoon …

But last night, it had exceeded all his expectations, she was like a young woman, she had left the light on, had not hidden her body under the covers, and had not been afraid to climb on him. Yes, last night, he had found the Rita he had fallen in love with, 54 years ago. A hell of a woman.

After the love, she had gone back to the kitchen, she had taken a pill without him having time to dissuade her. After the death of Andrews, he was afraid that these cursed pills could kill somebody. Granted, he had re-dosed them, but Rita was fragile. Yet as he watched her juggle the roast beef, the muffins she covered with frosting and an impromptu dance, she seemed stronger than ever.

They had ended up dancing in the living room like a couple of teenagers, slow dancing, rocking out to their era. The evening had been memorable. A real moment of happiness. Now he could easily imagine himself on the road, with his Rita by his side. It would not be long to leave, Sue was beginning to suspect something, and he did not want to end his life alone in a prison cell.

He caressed Rita’s hair, gave her a kiss on the forehead and left the room on tiptoe. When he got to the kitchen, he looked everywhere for the coffee capsules, grunted when he saw the old-fashioned espresso machine and decided that this morning’s coffee would be superfluous. He had found the toast after several attempts to open the cupboards, then placed it in the toaster. The damn toast came out charred after five minutes, he grunted, then remembered that there was a whole load of muffins left in the oven. He gobbled up two on the spot and stuffed three in his pockets to eat on the way.

As he drove away, Bruce whistled, he would be able to finish the van quietly today, they would load it up bit by bit, then say goodbye to Riverside Garden and finally leave for the week. That was perfect. He smiled, the adventure would begin soon. He and Rita, like Bonnie and Clyde, crossing the unexplored territories of Australia. He sighed with happiness.

Caught in his thoughts, he saw at the last moment Frank throwing himself against the window of his car. He barely had time to slow down. The sound of Frank’s body hitting the bodywork was muffled. Bruce stopped dead in his tracks and immediately looked in his rearview mirror. The gardener was on the ground. Bruce’s heart raced, as long as he wasn’t hurt. He hurriedly opened the car door and rushed to the little man’s body.

There was not a drop of blood on the horizon, Frank looked stunned, but he seemed to be in shape to get up. Bruce grabbed him and sat him in the back of his car. The gardener sighed, he had been scared. The old man grumbled at him, it wasn’t right to throw himself on his car like that. What was the big deal, he couldn’t wait for Bruce to be stopped to talk to him. Frank suddenly seemed to remember the reason for his madness. He turned pale, and began to babble nonsensical words.

His old friend was used to Frank’s incoherence, he took him by the shoulders and tried to calm him down. He had to calm down, everything was going to be fine. “We have to leave, go far away. I’m sorry,” Frank sobbed. Bruce frowned, he suspected that Frank would not be able to handle Sue’s doubts. He grabbed Frank and turned him toward him. “How long?”. Franck lowered his head and said in a breath, “The pills, she knows… everything… now.”

Bruce lost what little color he had left. He had to hurry. He slammed the car door on Frank, who looked at him in amazement through the window. He got back behind the wheel and drove the last few yards to the van at full speed.

The van would have to be finished right away. Frank watched him park and got out of the car. He had no choice, Bruce didn’t seem to mind. He was just in a terrible anxiety, escaping from prison, and if there was one thing Frank could understand, it was that.

When Bruce told him to create as much damage as possible until he left to create a diversion, Frank nodded. A water leak, a small fire, Franck had the choice, but he owed him that.

Yes, it was necessary to gain time to be able to leave in all serenity. Well, serenity was a big word, but let’s say with a van in working order and enough provisions for three days of road. No goodbyes, no final touches, the journey would begin in less than two hours.

Bruce took Frank in his arms and patted him on the back. “You’re a good guy Frank, you did the best you could. Just remember, always stay on the right side. Take that last bag and try to put it to good use. I’m going to miss you, buddy,” Bruce finished in a final hug, then pushed Frank, who ran off, turning to wave at Bruce.

This one he wasn’t about to forget. Maybe Frank had run to his doom, or maybe it was for the best. Disappearing forever in a few minutes, he had never liked goodbyes.


The gardener ran as fast as he could. He passed the open workshop, where the two apprentice gardeners were sipping coffee while waiting for him. Sorry, he didn’t have time, he had one last sabotage to do. The fire was too risky and would send him directly to jail, if discovered. Sue’s words came back to his mind. Could she really send him to jail?

Yes, she could, of course, she was like a wicked witch, she had much more power. But, but destroying a garden, well… it didn’t seem to. He didn’t know anymore, he stopped running. Where was he going? He wanted to stay true to Bruce, but he was scared. Yes, he was terrified. A solution, he had to find a solution.

He sat down against the wall of a house and scratched his head. What could attract Sue’s attention, without attracting the police… Hmm… The wildcat! But yes! That was it, he was going to bring back the wildcat. Damn, the wildcat hadn’t been heard from in over a month. While thinking, he began to make wounded cat calls. “Meow meow grrrrr meow grrr pssssttt”. it almost sounded like something, he started again.

He was inhabited by the wildcat. Oh, but maybe the wildcat had just been reincarnated into him. A new energy was flowing through him. I am the cat, I will eat mice. And he began to laugh, then to feign. With difficulty, he got up from his sitting position and began to walk on his hands and feet, an improvised four-legged movement. He redoubled his cries and began to waddle awkwardly from garden to garden.

He hit several flowerpots in his path. He continued to cross a dozen gardens, knocking over two fountains, three garden gnomes and five potted plants. Suddenly, as he was crossing Bruce and Rita’s garden, he hit a ladder. In a second, he came to his senses. Oh no more wildcat, no more, he stood up. Wow, he had gone crazy, possessed. He looked around confused, hoping that no one had seen him.

His haggard eyes went around the garden, nothing nobody. Only this ladder, he looked up and found Sue perched at the top of the ladder, staring at him in anguish. It was the first time he had seen fear and embarrassment in her eyes. What was she doing here?

Sue perched, it was like a game. He couldn’t look away from the stilettos hanging in the air. Why was Sue on a ladder? What a funny idea! Maybe Sue finally knew where the wildcat was. Ohhh, or Sue was the wildcat… Frank shook his head, he was going crazy. Maybe he shouldn’t have taken four capsules at once.

He laughed when he realized that he could see Sue’s burgundy lace and cotton panties. It was embarrassing, but he couldn’t look away. His laughter grew louder and louder, Sue ordered him to be quiet. “Frank, that’s enough now!”, to throw him a furious look, she turned around. In her gesture, she dropped a small plastic object.

Franck, always hilarious, picked it up. He contemplated it with curiosity. But, but… It was a camera! A hidden camera! They were going to be on television? Oh yes, that would be great! How proud Vicky would be! Besides, he loved hidden cameras, it always put him in a good mood, how funny it was all those people who were trapped.

Oh but, wait, how had he been tricked? Was it because he had looked at Sue’s panties? Oh no, Vicky couldn’t see that. He started fiddling with the camera to try to erase the tape. “Frank, don’t touch that.”. With a sudden gesture, Sue tried to climb down, her heel caught on one of the bars, she tipped backwards.

Franck observed the vertiginous fall of his boss. Maybe Sue wasn’t a witch after all, he thought to himself as she crashed to the ground. Witches can fly. The gardener stood there, looking at Sue’s disjointed figure in the middle of the lawn. He felt like he was dreaming. Eventually, the plaintive cry of his boss pierced his eardrums, and he realized the situation.

“Oh, oh…” he stammered. He had to call an ambulance. He approached the body on the ground. “Everything… Everything… okay?” he asked, paralyzed. The only answer he got was a grunt of pain. Sue’s eyes were even darker than usual. He took a few steps back.

Injured animals are the most dangerous. Yes, yes, he knew about wounded animals and he knew. It was best to keep a distance. “An ambulance, by God, Frank.” managed to articulate Sue with a grunt. “Oh yeah, yeah, right,” the confused gardener replied.

Obviously an ambulance, um, he didn’t know the number… He thought, no it didn’t come back to him. Uh, Vicky knew, he had to call Vicky and she would tell him. He reached into his pocket for his phone, but he couldn’t find it. He felt in his other pockets… Nothing. Oops. Oh, that was bad luck. He must have dropped his phone in his rush.

“Don’t move,” he said to Sue before disappearing into thin air.


Rita woke up with an intense headache. She turned over, no trace of Bruce. Her memories of the day before were a little hazy. She remembered taking several pills, a few glasses of whiskey. Her mouth was pasty, and she was thirstier than ever.

She rolled onto her side and struggled to her feet. It took her several seconds to realize that she was completely naked. Oh God, now the memories were coming back to her. Ooh La La, the night had been epic with her Bruce. It had been intense, and she had almost found that urge again. It was crazy, she hadn’t had that much desire for her mustachioed man in years. Maybe even before the kids were born… It was so strange, she almost craved him again this morning.

But where was Bruce when he was needed… She grabbed the sheet, and rolled herself in it. The sheet was almost too small, too bad, her husband hadn’t seemed to complain about her shapes last night. With a theatrical gesture, she decided to get rid of the cloth. Naked as a worm, she went to the bathroom. Her reflection seemed to return to her the image of a woman ten years younger. She sparkled with that ancestral beauty secret… love…

This day was going to be wonderful. She had to tell Paula and Susan. Paula would be proud, for sure. This morning, she was wavering between intense fatigue and enthusiasm that was reaching new heights. Soon she would be hitting the road with her lover and husband, and the passion seemed to have returned in an evening. The lies, the secrets, she did not care. Yes, they would leave all the asperities of their couple of these last years here.

She had a crazy desire to reinvent her couple, no it was not too late. On the contrary… Today, they had nothing more to lose, nothing more to prove. She took a deep breath of fresh air, she felt happy and she wanted it to continue. Still scantily clad, she went to the kitchen. When she saw the charred toast, she started to laugh. She couldn’t stop herself. Ah, that… That was her Bruce, so good at DIY but unable to toast a slice of sandwich bread.

She smiled, they were perfect for each other, they complemented each other. It was the first time in a long time that Bruce hadn’t had his coffee and toast ready. Even on their adventure on the road, she would be happy to take care of her man.

Um, she was hungry, so she grabbed four muffins from the oven and enjoyed them slowly, naked on one of the kitchen chairs. Suddenly, she felt incredibly exhausted. Maybe a cup of coffee would wake her up… unless… On the counter, the two pink pill bags had not changed place. After all… Yesterday, it hadn’t hurt her. And then, it would be just today. Yes, after on the road, she would stop.

And then, it was time to say goodbye to this bedroom in a slightly more whimsical way… This morning she had naughty ideas that she had been repressing for decades. Yes, she was going to show her Bruce that his Rita had not disappeared and that she was more fit than ever. She laughed again. With a small jump, she threw herself on the bag and swallowed five of the pills as she would have swallowed Dragibus.

After a few minutes, she felt the fatigue dissipate and a crazy energy come over her. It was so good, she felt almost invincible. She started to tidy up the kitchen, and to clean everything. Then she started to pack the suitcases, she didn’t stop, her gestures were quick and precise. They would only take what was necessary.

As she finished emptying her dresser, she saw in front of the house, the dozens of figurines lined up on the lawn. Suddenly, she understood the ridiculousness of the situation, she understood Bruce’s incomprehension, his disappointment. I promise you, she was going to be a young woman again in her head.

As she was making the bed, she saw Susan’s silhouette hovering over the asphalt. She hadn’t seen her friend look this stunning in years. Would Susan have also tasted the pleasures of love?

She was about to throw herself at the front door, when in a last gasp of consciousness, she realized that she still hadn’t put on a single piece of clothing. She grabbed a blue dress from her suitcase, and decided not to wear any underwear. Bruce would not believe it.

Susan was already knocking on the door. Rita ran. She couldn’t remember running like that since she was a little girl. Oh, she couldn’t wait to tell Susan all about it. When she saw her in the doorway, she hugged her warmly. “But how beautiful you are my Susan! You have a lover, that’s for sure! Oh I want you to tell me everything, everything, everything. Rita’s speech rate was unusual, and her gestures hurried, she pulled Susan inside and almost threw her on the sofa.

Susan was surprised, but the two friends began a lively discussion. They both felt like they were seventeen years old and reliving their first love. Tongues were wagging, details were being shared and dissected. They laughed a lot, and didn’t realize how much time had passed.

It was Bruce who interrupted them. The front door opened violently, he shouted Rita’s name several times, before realizing she was with Susan on the couch.

“We have to go, Rita.” shouted Bruce. At his wife’s lack of movement, he added firmly, “Now!” Rita stood up, walked over to him, hugged him, kissed him. He was surely exaggerating. “Now! I’ll explain later, there’s no time. Say goodbye to Susan, and let’s go. The van is parked in front of the house. Come on.”. He closed the suitcases of the room and carried them into the van.

Rita had hardly moved, and she watched her husband’s ride with amazement. Susan joined her, and wished her in a small voice a good trip. They hugged each other for a long time. It was not the farewell she had imagined. A tear rolled down Rita’s cheek. She would have loved to continue their teenage babble.

“What about Paula? I wanted to say goodbye to Paula.” Rita asked as she looked at her friend Susan. “She’s nowhere to be found, I had an appointment with her this morning, but she wasn’t home… Nothing to worry about, it’s Paula…”. Rita sketched a smile. She kissed Susan’s cheek one last time, and jumped into the van, whose engine Bruce was already revving up.

As they left the house, Susan heard a loud noise in the garden.


What time was it? Paula opened her eyes with difficulty, her eyelids seemed to be stuck. Strange, she had not removed her makeup last night. She tried to bring her hand to her face, but… Finally, something hindered her gestures, the light dazzled her, she blinked several times, to notice that two pairs of handcuffs attached her two hands to the bars of the bed.

Hm, her memories of the night before were still hazy, but it would seem that the night had been epic. Attached to a bed, who was the rascal who had such good ideas… Her irises made the turn of the room, the decoration was awful, she was definitely not at home. But at whose house?

Wait, but she still has her clothes on, that’s really strange though. Who would be twisted enough to tie her up without even undressing her first. It was much less convenient now to take off her blouse.

Just as Paula was beginning to realize that the situation might not be the most favorable, the door opened. First she saw the breakfast tray. Well, if her kidnapper, because maybe that’s what it was, had tied her up there, he seemed to be paying attention to her well-being. As she stared at the tray, she recognized those hands in a thousand, those beautiful, powerful hands.

James Court. They were the hands of James Court. Hmm, interesting. A confused memory came back to her mind. She remembered now, the investigation… The metal frog, and the figure of James Court grabbing the metal object and his beautiful piercing eyes. Oh yes, she remembered his arms whose prominent veins had excited her immediately. His deep voice had summoned her to enter, then the memories became blurred.

She looked up and discovered the worried expression on her neighbor’s face. “Are you okay this morning?” he asked in a suave voice. Finally, she found it suave, and he was so handsome. Torrid, even. He approached with hushed steps. He deposited the tray on the coffee table and approached the bed.

Paula planted her inflamed glance in the eyes of James. If it was her who was tied up, she was not going to be long the prey of the exchange. She counted well to eat it quite raw.

Without letting the handsome of the glance, she said to him of a lascivious voice, “Do not be shy my cute, come here… closer still… Thank you for the breakfast… but you know, I would prefer that it is… you…”. She smiled at him as a lioness would smile at a zebra before gulping it down. But the effect was not the one expected, James shook his head, annoyed. There she went again.

“You are not here for that… Madam

-Paula, please…
-You’re not here for… I don’t know what reasons.
-Then why did you tie me up, you little rascal. “

James Court was completely baffled by the old nymph’s attitude. He had never had to deal with such an enterprising woman. It was not any more of the rentre dedans, it was almost of the verbal rape. He caught his breath, remain calm.

“So you don’t remember anything?

-So, it was that memorable?
-Nothing of nothing…
-I’ll have to warm up my memory…”
Paula tried while gesticulating to undo his pants, with her feet she tried to reach the crotch of Mister Court, without success. He made his shy of a blow…

“The frog, do you still remember?

-Ah yes, I remember you caught it on the fly, and I followed you… inside…”

Everything she said had that 80’s erotic movie tone, she could have shown him the funeral home catalog, with that voice everything sounded incredibly sensual and sexual. He wasn’t going to get caught in the clutches of such a panther, but unconsciously, this voice made a desire rise in him. Physically, he felt his body was almost convinced already.

“Stop with your innuendo Paula, and let me tell you.” he said in a firm voice. But Paula only remembered one thing, he remembered her first name. James Court now knew her first name…

He decided to ignore the ecstatic expression on Paula’s face and continue his story.

“So yesterday, I don’t know why you threw that damn metal frog against the back door several times. I caught it…

-You caught it admirably, you mean,” interrupted Paula. “

James cleared his throat. He huffed, he could feel that the game was not about to be won.

“Yes, I got it back and invited you in. Well, I did push you in. You followed me rather obediently, surprisingly enough for a burglar…

-I know how to be docile, when I have to,” Paula whispered. James raised his eyes to the sky, that announced itself more than complicated.
We settled down in the living room, continued James, whereas Paula did not cease looking at him with her feline eyes, and I did not even have time to question you on the reason of this “burglary”, that you literally threw yourself on me. It was no longer flirting but an attempted rape. I pushed you away several times…
-But you succumbed, normal,” Paula cut in.
-No! No! No! You were impossible. I just wanted to talk to you and you went completely crazy. A gremlins after midnight, out of control. You literally threw yourself at me. I had no choice.
-And you liked that?
-But damn it, nothing happened. You’re impossible! I had no choice but to knock you out. Here, sorry.
-Knock me out? Are you the submissive type? You know, I can adapt… Sir…
-For the last time, Paula, I have no desire to have sex with you.
-You’re missing out. “Paula frowned.
A shiver ran through her. The situation was completely out of her control. She did not want to play anymore, this time. The cuffs were starting to hurt, or maybe it had been hurting for longer, but the excitement had overtaken the pain.

“Can you untie me?

-Only if you promise to be still!
-Don’t exaggerate… I’m not a wild animal either.
-Uh… hesitated James Court, yesterday you threw yourself at me, you scratched me. When you pushed yourself away, your head hit the lamp and you lost consciousness. I’m sorry.
-Oh… all right. But why tie me up?
-I felt so guilty. I laid you down on the sofa, dressed, in all honor,” he clarified in front of Paula’s greedy look.
-I watched over you for a long time. And I fell asleep. It is you who awoke me. You were on me, to almost lick my face…
-I recognize myself there,” says Paula, laughing.
-Anyway, I thought this might be the best way to get information out of you.
-To get me information? Says the beautiful one by frowning.
In your sleep, you stammered several words, “Bruce”, “drug”, “murder”, that seemed to me more than interesting.
-Are you investigating this too?
I-nvestigating what?” bounced James instantly.
-Nothing. Then why the handcuffs?
-I took you to the room, thinking that I would have the upper hand and that I could use my charm to get information out of you. But it was without counting on…
-My ardor, says Paula in a proud voice.
-Yes, if you like. Your ardor. I tried to coax you, to make you promise to tell me the whole truth, if I gave you a beautiful night of love. But you wanted the night of love first. You attacked me, you bit my neck, you even hit me when I refused.
-Don’t exaggerate…
-I got scared. I grabbed the lamp and hit you on the head. Then I tied you up. With you, you never know what can happen when you wake up. “
Paula looked at him with a new intensity, he really didn’t know who what could happen when she woke up. An unpleasant memory came back to her, she chased it. She was now more than attentive.

“Continue, said Paula calmly, James was surprised, the tone of Paula had changed. He continued.

-I’m really sorry, I’m not used to being violent towards women…
-There’s only one way to make it up to you,” said Paula in a sensual voice. To know it dangerous, like that, she forgot the pain, the handcuffs and this unpleasant sensation of déjà vu.
“I have a wife Paula, answered James immediately. But the beautiful one did not let herself be demoralized.
-And where is she? I don’t see her…
-This is not my house.”
Paula was surprised but almost relieved. This decoration was really to vomit, that reassured her on the tastes of this dear Mister Court.

“So, if this is not your house, what are we doing here.”. Paula’s tone of voice was a mix between curiosity and that perverse desire that never left her.

“Cover.” He then pulled out his badge. “Police.” Paula gasped. If for a moment, the desire burned the bottom of her panties, it took over. Hopefully Rita and Bruce had time to get away.

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