Searching for Sheila Ch. 05bybeware©
What is found is lost, what was lost is found
I intended to sneak this in without comment. After all, it's been well over a year since I posted chapter 4, and I'm more than a little embarrassed by my procrastination. But I've recently received a handful of e-mails from readers who are still apparently interested in the story. I've also read recently in "Observations of a Picky Reader" by Barns10 that "Probably the worst thing as a reader is when you are reading a multi-part story and the author quits writing." Ouch! I get the point. So please allow me to humbly apologize to those of you who might still care about the outcome of this story. Here it is -- finally.
At precisely 3:25 in the afternoon Tobe Lanscott stepped into the lion's den. He was wearing a new gray pinstriped suit with a light blue shirt and dark blue tie, dark glasses, and an automatic under his left arm. He was nervous as hell.
He stood in the middle of the lobby of the Brunswick Hotel and let the room work him over a bit.
Its décor was made up of hard surfaces, bright geometric slices of plastic and fake stone masonry, with
thick, soft, muddy-colored carpeting and over-sized angular furniture which resembled a herd of large
stationary beasts grazing on the rugs. To Tobe, the room felt about as relaxing as a hockey game.
Trying to ignore the pounding in his chest, Tobe ambled over to the long mahogany check-in counter. A large portrait of Mr. Teal Maggard -- Pharaoh -- faced the lobby like Big Brother spying on the hotel's front entrance. For once Maggard's eyes were not hidden by dark glasses and Tobe was surprised by their bright youthfulness. But Maggard's smile was forced, hard and artificial. He practically had no neck, as if his large, bald head had been forced up through his shirt collar. A man in a maroon blazer with freshly manicured nails looked up from his computer and asked the obvious question. Tobe pointed to the picture and said,"I'd like to see Mr. Maggard."
The clerk cleared his throat. "Mr. Maggard does not reside here and he's not in the office at the moment. My understanding is that he's out of town for the foreseeable future. Would you like to see one of his associates?"
"I've already seen his associates. They weren't too helpful. No, I want to talk to Maggard himself.
And he'll want to talk to me. The name is Lanscott. Let him know I'm here."
"I just told you, sir - "
"I'll be sitting right over there." Tobe checked his watch. "If he's not here in, say, a half hour, tell him I'll be taking Mrs. Lanscott back home with me. If she means what I think she means to him, he'll
want to talk with me."
Tobe eased himself down into the lap of one of the beast-like chairs by the large front window. He
picked up a magazine and pretended to read, flipping the pages as his mind raced ahead.
I can still get out of this thing, he thought. I can walk out of here and never look back, cut my losses
with Sheila, file the goddamned divorce and get on with it. But, of course, there's Angel. What the hell is she to me? A one night stand, that's all. I owe her nothing. So what if she's been forced to go back
with her ex, that asshole Hoagly. That's no skin off my nose. Here I am, sitting in Pharaoh's backyard
with a gun tucked up under my arm, thinking I can pull this thing off. I'm in way over my head. Arnold's right, this plan of mine really sucks. No way am I going to get out of this safely hand-and-hand with Angel. Tobe tried to will himself out of the seat, out of the Brunswick Hotel, back on the highway to Ravensfiled, the thing with Sheila and Angel behind him, his self-respect intact - or not.
A large, black shiny SUV pulled to the curb across the street, The driver got out and looked right across the street through the hotel window, seemingly right into Tobe's eyes. He was Hoagly, Hogg, the cruel man who was holding Angel Dearsing in bondage. His passenger was, of course, Teal Maggard, Pharaoh, big and broad with a passive face half hidden by dark glasses. They sauntered across the street as if they were on a golf course.
Too late, Tobe thought, I've got to play this out. Then a wave of relief washed over him. He's bought it, the son of a bitch bought it. Tobe leaned back into the padded chair and tossed the magazine away. The gun under his arm now felt more comfortable. Well, he thought, here goes nothing. Maybe Tobe Lanscott was drawing on resources he really didn't have. He would soon find out. He crossed his legs and waited.
Four hours before, he was sitting with Arnold outside a coffee house several blocks from the
Brunswick on the opposite side of the street. Both were dressed in suits and ties and dark glasses. Brief cases were at their feet and guns under their arms.
Arnold said, " I feel like a goddamned insurance salesman."
Tobe nodded. "That's what you are, Arnold. My insurance."
" Did I tell you I think this plan of yours sucks? "
" Then why are you here? "
" I dunno. I must be getting soft, as in soft-in-the- head. Maybe I'm beginning to like you. Maybe
I feel sorry for you. Maybe I want a little excitement. Maybe I just want to see how this all turns out.
Maybe I got a hard-on for the Maggard brothers. Maybe I have a death wish. Maybe all of the
" That's a lot of 'maybes'. But I'm glad you're in. There's no 'maybe' about that. "
Tobe got up for more coffee. Arnold grabbed his sleeve.
"Hold it, Lancelot. We got action."
A spotless white Cadillac with gold trim pulled up in front of the Brunswick. A man in a chauffeur's
uniform got out and stood on the curb, sucking on a cigarette.
"That's Hicks," Tobe said. "He's about your size, don't you think?"
"Sit down and shut up."
He sat and watched Sheila come out of the Brunswick. She was wearing a yellow dress which showed off her legs and bare shoulders. Her golden hair flounced down her back She nodded to Hicks and got in the back seat. Hicks stepped on the cigarette butt and got in behind the wheel.
"Okay, gumshoe. We're off," Arnold said.
For a frozen moment Tobe sat there trying to make a connection between the woman who had just got in the car - this woman who had attached herself to this hoodlum and his organization, this woman who now spread her sexual favors around as if they were so many thoughtless kisses - and the woman who had been his wife, the one he intended to build his life around. They seemed to be strangers to each other. And both strangers to him. He felt Arnold's fingers dig into his shoulder.
"Man, if you wanna make this thing work, you gotta move your ass -- now!"
Hicks was in no hurry and Arnold had no trouble keeping the white Caddy in sight.
"You're getting too close," Tobe cautioned.
"Relax, will ya?. We're practically invisible in this crate."
They were riding in a six year old slate-gray Honda that Tobe hoped wouldn't attract any attention.
"I think you're over confident, Arnold."
"Look who's talking about being over confident. Weren't you the one who came to town asking a
lot of questions, who let a cop get the drop on you, who walked blind into a trap, who got himself beat up and left in some goddamned manure field? Do me a favor, will ya? Take a nap or something. I'll wake you up if I need you."
Hicks pulled into a strip mall and parked in front of a hair salon with a pink facade. Arnold made an abrupt left turn and slid into a space across the street. They watched as Hicks got out and opened the door for Sheila. She had a few words with him. He nodded and she disappeared into the salon. Hicks
got back into the car. Almost immediately the front window slid down and cigarette smoke billowed out.
"This is no good," Arnold said.
"What's wrong? You said we could pull this off in broad daylight," Tobe said.
" Sure. But it's too crowded. And besides, it looks like the guy is just going to sit there and wait for your old lady. Let's hope that this is only their first stop."
Sheila was in the salon about an hour. When she emerged her long thick hair was a shade blonder.
Once again Hicks played the chauffeur. He backed up and took a right going north. When there was a break in the traffic, Arnold made a u-turn and followed.
The next stop was a shopping center -- the Carriage Mall -- out on Ohio Avenue. Hicks pulled up
to the multi-door entrance to a large department store -- Wellington's -- next door to a Victoria's Secret.
Shelia got out, checked her watch -- apparently telling Hicks when to return -- and disappeared through
a set of double doors.
"This looks more like it," Arnold commented as Hicks pulled away. The white Cadillac seemed to meander without destination for a while.
" He's made us, " Tobe said. "He knows we're on his tail and he's just playing with us. "
Arnold shook his head. " No. He knows where he's going all right. "
Finally Hicks pulled into the parking area of an almost deserted municipal park. He got out quickly,
throwing his cap and chauffeur's jacket on the front seat and then cutting through a picnic area to the back of a house at the far end of the park.
" What's that all about/ " Tobe asked.
" He's probably seeing some broad. She's probably married and he's taking no chances. I give him an hour. Unless this park gets real crowded in a hurry, this is where we'll take him."
"We should've taken him when he got out."
"Relax. Let the guy get his rocks off. He's going to be pretty uncomfortable for while."
"Getting a little soft, aren't you?"
It was less than an hour when they spotted Hicks at the other end of the park.
" An afternoon quickie," Arnold commented. " Get down. I'm going to have a few words with the gentleman."
" I think I should take it from here."
" He knows you. Let's don't blow it. Stay down and listen."
Arnold got out and Tobe flattened himself across the front seat. He soon heard Hick's approaching voice.
"Hey, buddy. Get your backside off the car. I just buffed it this morning."
"Is that what Teal Maggard pays you for? Maybe that's all you're good for."
"And who in the fuck are you? You don't look like no cop."
"Smart guy. Doke says you're a smart guy."
"Oh, I get it. You're Doke's errand boy. I heard he got out. If he's smart, he'll lay low for a while."
"You're Hicks, right? Doke would like to talk to ya. It's about your future. He'd like to improve it for you."
"Nothin' doin'. I like it right where I'm at. Now get the fuck off the car and be on your way, errand boy."
Tobe heard the sounds of a scuffle and the smack of something hard against bone. He raised his head in time to see Hicks collapse in Arnold's arms.
"Gimme a hand with this asshole, will ya?"
Arnold retrieved the keys from one of Hicks' pockets and the two of them dragged the unconscious man to the rear of the Cadillac.
"What did you use on him?"
"Just a little 'ol sap."
"You hit him hard enough. I don't see any blood."
"Well, that's the trick, put'em away without making a mess."
The trunk popped open and they placed Hicks inside in a fetal position.
"He's not going to suffocate in there, is he?" Tobe said.
"Now who's getting soft. He won't be in there that long."
Arnold slammed the trunk and reached in the back seat of the Cadillac for Hicks' chauffeur uniform.
"Now for the hard part," he said.
Arnold took his time getting back to the Carriage Mall with Tobe following behind him in the Honda. Arnold circled the mall, finally stopping in the delivery area where Tobe slid onto the floor of the back seats. Arnold parked in a spot not far from the entrance Sheila had used.
"I hope you're not thinking of using that sap on her," Tobe said.
"That's up to her. And here she comes."
Tobe peered over the passenger seat as Sheila approached. Arnold got out and knelt on the ground as if to tie his shoe.
"You're late1" she bawled at him. She opened the back door, threw her bags on the seat, swung herself in and said "What the fuck?!"
Tobe yanked her in on top of him, slapped a width of tape across her mouth and with some effort, cuffed her wrists behind her. He looked into her eyes, now wide with hatred.
"Don't worry, Sheila. No one's going to hurt you and you'll be back with Pharaoh before the end of the day. Just relax."
Surprisingly she did just that. Sheila still cooperated when Arnold returned to the rear of the mall and tobe stretched out on the back seat of the Honda.
"All right, smart guy, " Arnold said. ".No one's around. Get her outta here and do what you have to do. If I don't hear from you in say an hour, I'm going to assume you're dead. That's when I split."
"What about Hicks?"
" I made arrangements. Get going."
He made it to the factory gate in a half hour. Sheila, bound and gagged on the back seat,, made no sound. Tobe clipped off the lock and walked Sheila through the dim, soundless rooms, mounting the steps to Pharaoh's mock-medieval play room. He soon had her suspended from the ceiling like the woman in the picture downstairs. Sheila did not resist and Tobe removed the tape. She spit in his face and tried to kick him, her body jerking in midair.
"You son of a bitch!" Sheila screamed. "What the fuck are you doing to me?"
Tobe smiled, taking out a handkerchief and wiping his face. He wanted to appear totally relaxed even though Sheila's anger was beginning to excite him.
"Why are you doing this? Why did you kidnap me?"
"I want to get lover-boy's attention. He'll talk to me now."
" He'll kill you, you mean. And I won't shed a tear."
"I wouldn't expect you would, but nobody's getting killed. In a few hours you'll be back to the slut life to seem to love so much and I'll be out of town and out of your life forever."
"You had a chance to get away, a chance I gave you. Pharaoh wanted you dead, but thanks to me you got off with just a little roughing-up."
"Is that what you'd call it?"
"Why didn't you get out?"
"I was all set. Then somebody made a mistake, a big mistake. I'm going to turn that mistake around."
"I don't know what the hell you're talking about?"
"You wouldn't. But you will in a little while."
"What are you going to do with me?'
Tobe's face turned grim.
"A couple things come to mind. What do you want me to do with you?"
" Look, Tobe. I don't have any hard feelings. You were just wrong for me, and if you'll be honest, I was wrong for you."
" Baby, you got that right."
"You want something from me/ Like what I give my lovers? You want to fuck me while I'm all tied up? Is that what you want? How about a blow job? Go ahead. Pull down your pants and let's see what you got. I can hardly remember. I bet you can't even get it up for me."
Sheila's taunt brought on a rage inside him and he gave into it instantly. Later he would tell himself that he couldn't help it. The strong commitment he had made to this unworthy woman, the sleepless nights, the worry and anxiety, the trips to the cops, the excuses he had made for himself and her -- all of that came together and boiled inside him. He slapped her and slapped her again. He grabbed a handful of her golden hair and backed his fist to his shoulder.
" Go ahead and hit me. Is that a substitute for the hard-on you can't get? If you leave a mark on me, you're a dead man."
Tobe loosened the ropes and brought Sheila to her knees, her hands still cuffed behind her back. He ripped open the front of her dress and yanked her skimpy bra down so that her over-sized tits, those large, firm marvels of surgical procedure, were fully exposed. The sight of Sheila on her knees before him hardened him quickly. He opened his slacks and, with one hand behind her head, brought Sheila's scarlet mouth to his waiting cock. He viciously shoved it in past her lips.
" Take it, you fucking bitch. Take it all."
Sheila did not hesitate initiating a forceful sucking action. Her eyes were wide with excitement and her throat emitted sounds of pleasure. My god, Tobe thought, she's enjoying this, she really wants this.
He gave into it as well, pounding his hips into Sheila's face. When he felt the ejaculation coming on, he did not check it, but held her head in place while he fed his cock deeper down her throat. Sheila didn't gag or try to pull away when he exploded. He kept pumping his cock into her mouth watching her eyes close as if experiencing an orgasm in her throat. Only traces of his cum appeared on Sheila's face. The rest of it she swallowed whole and she held his cock with teeth and lips until he slowly glided out. She looked up ay him smiling.
"Oh, Tobe. What we've missed, you and I. We can still have it. Pharaoh likes me to fuck and suck other men. And I love doing both for him. We could do this as much as we wanted if you'd just be sensible and be willing to share me. Why don't you untie me? We could go back to town and tell Pharaoh that everything's going to be all right. He'll let bygones be bygones for me. He could set you up. You could be making more money than you've ever made. Untie me, Tobe. Please. We could go back to the hotel right now and fuck each others' brains out. I want you. I want your cock inside me again."
He couldn't listen anymore. He re-taped her mouth and pulled the ropes up until her toes brushed the floor. Then he turned and left, leaving Sheila swinging gently, making sounds like a wounded animal. I'll hate myself later, he thought. Right now I've got to deal with Pharaoh.
They came right at him, crossing the Brunswick lobby, Hogg looking grim, his jaw locked in place.
But Pharaoh appeared totally relaxed, his face below the dark glasses carrying a sly humor. Tobe got to his feet, his lips forming a forced smile. The men nodded to each other, but neither extended his hand.
"Mr. Lanscott. You must have brass balls. Or you're a very stupid man."
"There's always that possibility," Tobe said matter-of-factly, raising his hands. " I assume you want to pat me down."
Hogg stepped forward with his hands out.
" I don't think that'll be necessary," his boss said quietly. " I can see that Mr. Lanscott is carrying, and perhaps he can see that we are, too. Let's just have a friendly little meeting, shall we?"
Pharaoh took off his shades and sat down in one of the big chairs opposite Tobe. It fit him like a throne. Hogg stood behind his boss, his eyes not making contact with Tobe's. Pharaoh flicked a bit of imaginary lint from a well-creased pants leg. Like his brother, Doke, Teal Maggard was fastidious about his appearance.
"Usually when Mr. Hoagly and his associates persuade someone to leave town, they stay gone."
"Perhaps Mr. Hoagly isn't as persuasive as you think he is."
The lobby was nearly empty and no one was sitting close to them. They kept their voices low.
"Oh, I admit Mr. Hoagly has his failings. But he has his finer points as well."
"Really? Name one."
"Loyalty, Mr. Lanscott. In particular, loyalty to me. I put a lot of stock in loyalty."
"I know you'll understand when I tell you I don't share your enthusiasm for Mr. Hoagly. You see, I saw him recently in a video. He was fucking my wife up her ass. You might say I found it a little disturbing for a short time. As I recall she was also sucking your cock during the same performance. So I'm not exactly a big fan of yours either, Mr. Maggard."
"Is that why you're here, because you're upset with us?"
"Oh, I've gotten over all that. Sheila's a big girl now. She can fuck and suck you and Mr. Hoagly all she wants. No, I'm here to offer you a business proposition."
"Really," Maggard commented drily. "And what would that be?"
"It pains me to have to tell you that, as a businessman, you made two rather glaring mistakes recently."
"First, you sent Mr. Hoagly and his friends to get me out of town when I'd already made up my mind to leave your fair city."