Love and Crime in Rome

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 6 (v.1)

Submitted: September 10, 2014

Reads: 115

Comments: 1

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Submitted: September 10, 2014

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Finally, after what seemed to be over an hour, the car went through a wrought iron gate and pulled into the circular, stone paved driveway of a large villa outside of the city. They stopped at the door and the men dragged her out of the back seat.

The scared girl saw lavish, Italian-styled gardens surrounding a large, white house with a flight of broad stone steps leading up to wide double doors at the top. There were several other vehicles in the driveway, and she was led into the echoing marble-floored foyer of the house.

The man in the pink shirt gestured towards the elaborately carved spiral staircase in front of them. “Put her into his bedroom for now,” he said over his shoulder as he walked quickly out of the foyer, his highly polished shoes tapping loudly on the mosaic tile.

Evangeline said nothing as the shorter of the two men in the ugly suits pushed her up the stairs with a large, sweaty hand on her shoulder. She hoped that he wasn’t leaving a mark on the back of her blouse.

Upstairs she was led along a thick colourful carpet and past several large wooden doors, to the far end of the wide hallway. The man opened the last door and thrust her firmly inside the room. She turned back just as the heavy door was slammed in her face.

Even though Evangeline heard the door lock, she tried the shiny silver handle anyway; of course without success. She was overwhelmed by panic and the adrenaline was making her clumsy. She almost fell when her sandaled foot caught in her long skirt as the raced to the heavily curtained windows on the far side of the large bedroom.

Far below she could see manicured classical gardens set out in geometric patterns, punctuated by tall, thin evergreens of a type she didn’t know, and a pool at the back of the house; all surrounded by a high stone wall edged in sharp glass. The window was not locked but it was too high to consider climbing out that way. She remembered reading a novel about a movie star in Palm Springs who was kidnapped and tried to free herself by bed sheet ropes. The heroine had slipped and died with a cracked skull on the rocks below. “Stop thinking of morbid things”, she shouted in her head. “Try to focus”.

She examined all of the large windows and then the lavish bathroom, full of glass and white ceramic fixtures and a dark wood paneled vanity, and the ensuite dressing room beside it, lined floor to ceiling with closed closets and open shelving filled with clothes, and then searched everywhere for a phone but there wasn’t one. She would have to wait for another opportunity. She sat down on the long, chocolate brown couch in front of the empty fireplace in the sitting area of the bedroom with her chin on her hands and tried to think.

Right away she suspected that Niki was somehow involved in this. These seemed like the type of guys he would know. She doubted every kind thought she had ever had of him, and berated herself for not listening to everyone’s suspicions at the first. Had she been led astray by her enjoyment of nice meals? She wasn’t sure if she was feeling more afraid or more embarrassed at her stupidity. She comforted herself by imagining kindly Vitali saying I told you so.

Her curiosity tugged at her. She had noticed right away that the apartment she was in was filled with masculine items. The metal tray on the massive wood dresser next to the large bed was filled with several rings and piles of change and cuff links, and the bathroom was stocked with male toiletries. Was this Niki’s room? Did he live in this house? Perhaps there was a way to find out.

She walked purposefully over the thick cream wall to wall carpet into the dressing room and yanked open the custom closet doors. Row upon row of suit pants and jackets, all in a size to fit someone as large as Niki, were lined up neatly on every rack, and beautiful dress shirts in all colours filled most of the drawers. She found other closets full of coats and jackets, socks and underwear, shoes for every activity, belts and pocket handkerchiefs and ties. Finally, in the last closet she found casual jeans, t-shirts, and the three shirts she had made for Niki two weeks ago.

Worried she was going crazy, she picked up one of the cream coloured linen shirts to examine it and saw Vitali’s blue custom label inside with his scrawling capital V.  She was just folding it up again in a daze when she heard the door click open in the other room.

She was overwhelmed with a wave of panic, and momentarily thought of hiding, but rejected it immediately. She didn’t know what was happening, but her dignity wouldn’t allow her to be caught cowering in a closet, no matter who it was. She straightened her spine and turned towards the open door of the dressing room, the shirt still clutched forgotten in her hand.


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