Thursday, July 13, 2017

Vile Villains from 99 Problems by Dellani

Portia Bledsoe has just come into an inheritance from a great-uncle she barely knew. He left her his home in Florida, as well as enough money to fix it up. She meets Wood Cirroco when her neighbor, Carl (his uncle) introduces them. Wood is a contractor, which she badly needs. When his mother finds out they are dating, she insists upon meeting Portia. Wood's ex-wife caused a lot of trouble and Carlotta wants to make sure he's not repeating his mistake.

We had a wonderful lunch, laughing and enjoying one another's company. I think Carlotta and I were a little tipsy by the time we started home. She sat in the back seat with me, while Carl drove back to his house. I wondered how we'd get her home, because it was quite obvious she couldn't drive herself. I needn't have worried. We got to his house and Wood got the keys to Carl's truck. He and I followed Carl to his mother's house in Ormond Beach. Once she was safely tucked away, Carl rode back with us.
"I want ice cream," Wood said as we passed the Dairy Queen. He pulled over and parked in the lot. I waited for him to open my door and help me out. I was just tipsy enough not to trust my own legs. I clutched his arm as we walked up to the window to order.
Carl walked me to a nearby table and Wood waited for the treats. He seemed to know many of the people, and they all greeted him in a friendly fashion. All except for one man. He was slightly older than Wood, bulky, mean looking. His blond hair was cut in a faux hawk, with mutton chop sideburns. He wore a frown and sported a gold hoop earring on the right ear. He'd arrived shortly after we had and stayed on the edge of the parking lot, not approaching the building. Instead, he stood by his truck door, arms and legs crossed, glowering.
"Isn't that what's his face?" Carl asked when Wood arrived with our treats. He nodded at the blond man.
"Tall, blond and ugly?" Wood flashed a look in that direction. "Yeah."
"Who?" I asked, somewhat worried about the man's presence.
"Monique's retard brother," Wood replied, deliberately raising his voice so the other man could hear.
Unfortunately, the other patrons at the DQ heard as well. Wood didn't seem to care. The blond man shifted slightly, his frown deepening.
"He thinks he's subtle, following me around. What he doesn't realize is, I don't care!" Wood yelled in the other man's direction. "You're violating the restraining order," he hurled at the other man. "You're not supposed to be within five hundred yards. You're less than two hundred. Sorry," he said to all the other customers. "But some people can't seem to figure out when they aren't wanted." He stood, walking over to the truck.
Monique's brother walked on a parallel track, shadowing his movements. He was less than a hundred yards away, muttering and flexing. Wood ignored him and climbed in the truck. I started to follow, but Carl grabbed my arm, telling me to stay put. The brother stood across from the truck, hands in fists, shoulders rounded. He looked like an angry bull, ready to charge.
Wood's phone appeared out the window. I could see him getting a video of the man. He said something that made the other man rush the truck. Furious, he slammed his fist on the hood. Wood continued filming it.
Moments later, two police cars pulled up. I recognized one of them as Joel McMurtry who had arrived the day that we found Hezikiah's body. He and the other officer looked so much alike, I knew they had to be brothers. They approached the truck and the blond monster spun around. He rushed Joel, who zapped him with a taser. The big man fell, body jerking uncontrollably. They moved in and cuffed him. Joel and the other cop lifted the brother to his feet and shoved him in the back of Joel's cruiser. Once he was locked in there, Wood got out of the truck and walked over to greet them.
Everyone at the restaurant stared, wondering what they'd just witnessed. Wood excused himself from the police officers and went to the restaurant. He spoke to the manager and handed him something.
"Blizzards for everyone, courtesy of Mr. Cirocco!"
© 2017 Dellani Oakes


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