All Fools' Day Foolerybysr71plt©
[For an earlier story in the NYPD vice detective Mike Kavanagh series, see "Inevitable Case."]
Mike Kavanagh stood at the French balcony window of his "seen better times" hotel on Canal Street, looking at the festival parade units forming below him, and then beyond to the western edge of the French Quarter. He was lucky to have found a residence hotel this near work that had smoking rooms, and he didn't mind the water damage to his ceiling thanks to Hurricane Katrina and not yet fixed. It made a $150 difference a day in what he was paying—or, rather, in what the New York Police Department was paying.
A Mummer's band was tuning up below his window. As he absentmindedly puffed on his cigarette and scratched his hairy belly and then his equally hairy balls, he was hoping that the band was, in fact, just tuning up and wouldn't carry that cacophony of sound into the French Quarter.
This was the second day of the city's three-day All Fools' Day Parade festival, clustered around April Fools' Day, and designed to augment the earlier-in-the-year Mardi Gras festivities that brought so much good business into New Orleans. This new attempt to bring cash into the city was much needed for the continuing recovery from Katrina, no matter that the festival usually would fall within what should be somber Lent and thus make blasphemy of the whole Mardi Gras concept.
He turned his head and looked at the bed. The sheets were tussled in a way that celebrated the wrestling match that had gone on already on the bed. The blond was young and small bodied, although perfectly proportioned. He had been plucked off the street late the previous night at the height of the parade and partying in the French quarter. He had followed Kavanagh around, yipping like a thirsty puppy and begging the hunky police detective to take him home and fuck him—so Kavanagh had obliged him to exhaustion.
The cutie had a pink, studded dog collar on his neck, bands of pink and blue feathers around his biceps and ankles, and a blue leather belt around his waist that had supported a pink loincloth, now detached from the back and fanned out under him over the pillow his belly was resting on. The pillow had served to roll his pert buttocks up toward the ceiling. He had rings on his fingers and toes, his normally bleach-blond hair was spiked and frosted with pink and blue, and his more-pretty-than-handsome face was lipsticked and mascaraed. The mascara had run in the heat of the previous night's battles. He had lost the battle—multiple times.
He lay there, stretched out on his belly, his eyes following Kavanagh around the room, panting softly as an indication he'd been exhausted and belabored. The belabored part might have had something to do with handle of the string of graduated beads projecting from his ass, that last, biggest bead not quite inside him.
Kavanagh stubbed out his cigarette on the window pane, dropped the stub to the floor in front of the window at the edge of where the carpet started, to join other stubs there, and walked over to stand next to the side of the bed. The blond reached out to palm Kavanagh's bare buttocks and to slide over imperceptively to enable him to open his mouth over the older man's erection. As the young man tried, unsuccessfully, to deep throat him, both of them listening for the clicking of the older man's Prince Albert cock ring on the blond's teeth, Kavanagh reached down and patted the last bead home. The young man jerked and moaned deeply, but he took the invasion. After determining that the young man could accommodate it, Kavanagh fisted the handle on the bead string and slowly pulled the string out of the young man's ass. The young man groaned and murmured, "You. I want you inside me again. Fuck me again, Daddy."
Pulling back on his hips to withdraw from the blond's mouth, Kavanagh reached over to the nightstand and picked up a Trojan Magnum condom packet. He split it open, dropped it on the floor by the bed to join three other empty packets and spent condoms, and, with the trembling help of the blond, who spent as much time fondling the shaft as sheathing it, with the "god, it's huge" comment Kavanagh was used to hearing, rolled the condom on his erection.
He climbed up on the bed and hovered his six-and-a-half feet of nearly solid muscle over the much smaller, lither blond, stiff arming his fists into the mattress on either side of the young man's feathered biceps. He slowly entered the young man's ass, which had been kept open to his demanding requirements by the beads after the cock's previous visitation, and, assuming a push-up position, started his morning exercise of mining the moaning young man's ass. The young man grunted and groaned, but he raised his buttocks to give Kavanagh deeper entry.
"Yes, Daddy, yes."
Later, $150 poorer and the young man gone, no doubt to return to his revelries on the street, Kavanagh showered, dressed in a wrinkled business suit, snapped his badge on his belt, and left to push himself through the ranks of the paraders already pouring in the streets. His goal was to part the sea of revelers to reach police headquarters in the French Quarter, where he was an exchange officer from the NYPD sent to help New Orleans establish a Vice Homicide unit.
This would be his vacation this year. Having a new crop of young, willing blonds to pick from would have to do in place of a real vacation, which he might have taken here anyway, having heard of all the young male pussy available in the city. That was his own vice; he had to have it constantly, and he had a thing for young, willowy blonds, especially ones who sold themselves for money and could open themselves enough to accommodate him.
* * * *
Kavanagh stopped for his usual coffee and bagel at the hole-in-the-wall coffee bar on Dauphine, just inside the French Quarter from his Canal Street hotel. He had found the place on his second morning in New Orleans and had continued going there for a quick breakfast and a less quick lunch ever since. He didn't know if it was the coffee or the waiter, Kyle, who usually served him, that went down easy. It could be either—or both.
Was that on purpose, he wondered as Kyle touched his hand when putting his coffee down and then brushed his arm as he pulled around the table to go back to the coffee bar. He and Kyle had been playing this bear and mouse game for over a week now. That's how Kavanagh had to think of it, him being this tall, husky, hairy beast and Kyle being that willowy blond type who made Kavanagh go hard. He was hard now, watching the slight roll of the young blond's pert butt as he returned to the coffee bar. Visions of laying the waiter on top of one of the tables went through Kavanagh's mind, and he castigated himself. He'd just dedicated a night to getting his rocks off four times with a rent-boy. Surely . . . But, no, it was his lot in life to be ever ready, especially for a sweet little blond trick.
Kyle on his back on the table, the palms of his hands pressing into Kavanagh's chest, burying his fingers in the matting of the hair there, an empty gesture of "no" when his eyes, even with the frightened deer look in them, were being so "yes, yes." Arching his back, the look in the eyes going wild, his mouth opening in a wide "Oh, shit" as he feels the stretching entry of the first couple of inches in what is going to be a very long, thick, and rough journey.
He was brought back to the present by the off-key sound of a rag-tag band going by on Dauphine, headed deeper into the French Quarter. Not yet 9:00 in the morning and day two of the All Fool's Day festival had already begun. Already this raucous festival was standing on Kavanagh's only nerve.
Kavanagh saw that he'd finished his coffee and bagel during his reverie and that, as usual, he was late getting into the station. There was a 9:30 status meeting to get to. There was sure to be business, especially now that the prostitutes were out in force on the street again for the festival. New Orleans needed what he had brought from New York—expertise in getting a Vice Homicide unit, separate from simply homicide, going. If any city needed it more than New York had, it would be New Orleans, especially during Mardi Gras and this new street parade festival.
Captain Monroe hadn't been a fool about that. He'd asked the NYPD for help and not a moment too soon, as Kavanagh learned when he got to the station.
Kyle held up the coffee pot and gave Kavanagh a quizzical look. Mike knew he didn't have time for another cup. He shrugged and shook his head "no," as he rose from the table and put his usual, plus a generous tip, money on the table. Kyle put the pot down and was at the door when Kavanagh exited, all smiles and a "Have a good day."
Yes, Kavanagh thought, he could have this young man's ass, if he wanted it. And of course he did. Kavanagh wanted it about three times an hour, and he wanted it from a bad boy blond, although Kyle didn't seem to be the bad boy type. He was blond and small and more pretty than handsome, though, which was three-quarters of Kavanagh's turn-on specifications. That was the irony of Mike Kavanagh specializing in vice homicide and the reason, perhaps, that he was so good at it. He could think like the perpetrators—because he was one himself.
There was something about him that was a sex magnet for young blonds who wanted to be manhandled. He didn't know what it was, other than being a big, handsome bear, with a nice smile, sensual lips, and the look of danger in his eyes. He didn't analyze it. He just enjoyed that it was in play, because it brought exactly the sweet-on-the surface but nasty-seeking underneath little pieces to him he enjoyed. It continued working as he entered the police station and walked up the stairs toward the space that had been set aside, next to the squad room for Homicide, presided over by Captain Leon Monroe. The captain was a real character and a native Cajun and a fixture in the New Orleans police department going back to the pre-Katrina corruption days. That's how eras were marked in New Orleans now—before and after Katrina.
That's how almost everything was divided in New Orleans.
He was met on the landing before his floor by Brent, a flighty and flouncy young blond, the unit's research clerk.
"Good, you're here," Brent said, giving Kavanagh an "I could eat you alive" look. "I came looking for you. Captain Monroe is about to start the morning briefing. Wanted to get off an early start. I can get you a cup of coffee—or do anything else for you you want." Brent flirted with all the men, but he laid the innuendo on thick for Kavanagh.
It was a bald offer. Brent wasn't subtle. He wanted the big, beautiful brute who was the rough-life cop from up north, New York City, to fuck him. He had done everything but lie on Kavanagh's desk and open his legs. Brent had cased out this visitor real well. He even knew from moments in the locker room after workouts in the station gym that Kavanagh was hairy in ways very sensual to Brent and, more important, was horse hung and PA pierced. He had to be a serious player. No one puts a PA in their cock head who isn't happy to use it.
Kavanagh knew it was a bald offer. It was a bit too bald for him, and Brent had two things that weren't going for him. He was too easy for a guy not looking to be paid for it and he was a work colleague. Kavanagh drew the line at doing it with anyone he had to work with it. Sex and the office just didn't mix. Nothing but grief could ensue from that.
Brent did have a very nice ass, though, begging to have a hard cock slipped into its crack. Kavanagh followed Brent up the stairs, Brent provocatively jutting out his butt and shaking it. Yes, Kavanagh had the urge to run his hand—and more—up into the crevice between the two orbs, but he resisted. Not in the office.
* * * *
"It's a shame," Marco, the heavy-set Italian cop said, as he passed the photos on around the table at the morning meeting.
"Sure is," Mike Kavanagh agreed, as he passed them on to Felix, Marco's muscled-up black sidekick. Somehow Kavanagh didn't think they were talking about the same shame, although he was sorry the two were dead. To him it was a shame that they were wasted, both of the disemboweled bodies shown in the photo being young blonds. He couldn't really tell what their faces were like, though, as both had been painted up in clown faces. From the way they were dressed—or almost dressed—he surmised they'd been plucked off the streets they were working at night, maybe out of the All Fools' Day parades.
"Just what we need in the city just now—a serial killer; a Jack the Ripper," Felix said, as he handed the photos back to Captain Monroe at the head of the table. Both of the cops—Marco and Felix—who were the beginning of the New Orleans Vice Homicide unit, were young, in their upper twenties. They were sort of a beauty and the beast pairing, Marco bordering on fat slob and Felix being very much aware of his cut body, but they had come over from Homicide together and worked well as a team. Monroe was the old hand of the unit, commanding both Homicide and this new subset of that section. Tall, bulky, kept from being obese by being nearing middle-age body-builder muscular, he was a bald former Marine. He also was a survivor in the New Orleans police department of old, which meant that he went along to get along and could be bought. He also was hard as nails.
At the moment he was glaring at Felix and leaning on Brent, who was sitting at the wall away from the table and taking notes. "I don't want to hear anything about serial killers at this point, Felix. And I don't want to hear any reporters quoting unnamed sources on that either. And you, Brent. Hey, faggot, wake up and take notes—but not anything about serial killers, you hear?"
"Yes, Captain," Brent murmured, obviously stung by the name calling. No one else around the table took notice, though, as Brent obviously was a flaming faggot and no one would win with Monroe by calling out his bigotry.
It was the captain's obvious distain and prejudice, though, that kept Kavanagh's cards very close to his chest on that point. His own chief back at the NYPD knew about him—and used Kavanagh's expertise in that realm mercilessly—but he hadn't, to Kavanagh's understanding, passed that special skill of Kavanagh's on to the New Orleans' police. All that Captain Monroe knew was that Kavanagh's unit in New York had a phenomenal case closing rate and that Kavanagh was the star of the unit.
"What do you think?" Monroe said, turning to Kavanagh.
"Tell me what we know about them. Any links? Where were they found? The method of kill and the clown faces do seem to link them. What else is there?"
"They weren't found in the same place in town, although both in alleys," Marco said. "This one, Steve Parin, was found in the Garden District. And this one, Tye Brandon, near the docks in Faubourg Marigny, so on opposite ends of the French Quarter, but both near the river and both in prostitute pickup areas."
"So, maybe both rent-boys?" Kavanagh said. "And both small, young, and blond. There's that in common." He looked at the photos with a particular private feeling of loss. Both dead before he could use them. They both were what he gravitated to, used, and then tossed away, with no complaints from any of them. "Day jobs either of them?"
"Yes, and this is where they diverge," Marco said. "Brandon was a street vender, selling hot dogs in the French Quarter. Low life with just a room near the docks. Parin was just a mail clerk, but he was living with a sugar daddy in the Garden District. So, two different worlds, really."
"A sugar daddy? And he is who and has what as an alibi? And does he buy hot dogs on the street?"
Monroe cleared his throat. "There's nothing there. The man wasn't even in town during the first kill, and it's not an avenue for us to pursue. Don't put anything on that in your notes, sweet cheeks," Monroe turned to Brent, who was shrinking in his seat.
"Yes, sir, no, sir," he answered.
So, Kavanagh thought, City Hall has already ruled on that. Monroe's checked out the sugar daddy but is going to keep a lid on that one for someone. Well, OK, it's not my department.
"We're sure both were men of the night?" Kavanagh asked.
"That's what my sources all said about Parin," Marco answered.
"Confirmed about Brandon too," Felix added.
"Where was this Parin a mail clerk?" Kavanagh asked.
"The Fifth Federal Circuit Court of Appeals, the F. Edwards Herbert Federal Building on South Maestri Place, in the French Quarter," Marco answered, reading from his notes.
"And where does this vendor's cart park?" Kavanagh asked.
It was time for Felix to look at his notes and respond. "Also on South Maestri Place," he said.
No one said anything for a moment or two; they just shared looks around. That was a link.
"Well, I think it's just possible that we have here what you don't want us to name yet, Captain," the guest detective said. Beyond that, he also had a premonition that this sugar daddy they also couldn't talk about just might be some big wig at the Fifth Federal Circuit Court of Appeals. Maybe yet another example of not doing your business at and near where you work.
"Shit," Monroe said. "And with a festival on and young blond prostitutes pouring out on the streets at night."
"Pity," Kavanagh then said, taking another look at the photos—and knowing that his "pity" was for a different reason than that of the other detectives. "And the disemboweling. Nasty stuff."
"Someone who hates queers?" Marco offered, visibly avoiding looking at Monroe.
"Or who loves them to death," Kavanagh said.
They all heard the gagging sound, but all of the men at the table studiously avoided looking at Brent, as the small, young, obviously "I put out for demanding men" blond quickly departed from the room.
"Fuckin' faggot," Monroe said under his breath—but not far enough under his breath for the word not to resonate through the room.
It was yet another reason, though, that Kavanagh could smell a "who cares?" cover up in the offing.
* * * *
That day was both frustrating and challenging for Kavanagh, not least of all because he'd forgotten what day it was—which was sort of dumb, he decided, considering all of the parading and Tom foolery that was going on around him.
The frustration was because Kavanagh was just a consultant here. A juicy case had just come up—one where time could be of the essence. The two young men hadn't died the same night. There had been four days between when the medical examiner had said they'd been disemboweled. It just had taken longer to find the body of Brandon near the rougher side of the city, near the Faubourg Marigny docks, than that of Parin in the more gentile Garden District. If this, indeed, was a serial killer—and when Kavanagh thought that thought, he looked around to make sure that Leon Monroe wasn't there to read he thoughts—they, or rather, the New Orleans cops, may not have more than a day or two before the killer would strike again.
Marco and Felix were just sitting at their desks, shooting the bull, for an hour after the morning meeting. Every once in a while they looked over at Kavanagh and grinned—to an irritating extent. The NYPD consultant wanted to tell them to get off their tails and go out and find the killer of the type of lay Kavanagh enjoyed. But, of course, he couldn't do that. They didn't work for him; Kavanagh was just a consultant here.
Shortly before noon, Kavanagh found out why they were hanging around. He reached down to open the bottom drawer of his desk, to find that the handle was missing. Then, when he opened the top drawer, a bunch of balloon snakes jumped out at him, almost giving him a coronary.
Marco's and Felix' grins turned into guffaws. Felix chanted out, "Hey, Mikey, Mikey, Mikey," which was punctuated by Marco's "April Fool, big guy."