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Author’s Note: This story includes a degree of male/female sex. It also includes a lot of unholy acts which some people may find disturbing. Please accept my apologies in advance and read on, bearing in mind that the battle of good against evil is relentless.
And that good will always prevail.
The Thames was by no means the biggest river in the world but, as it snaked its way through London, it was majestic, wide and strong. It was also a good way to get rid of things. For countless centuries it had been used as the city’s main drain. How many billions of chamber pots had been emptied into it, how many tens of millions of tons of industrial waste?
One more piece of garbage wouldn’t go amiss.
The unremarkable panel van was nearing its destination. For a while it travelled parallel to the river at a distance of maybe a hundred yards. Then it took a left into what could only be described as an alley between boarded-up buildings. Moving slowly it headed towards the water, its occupants silent.
The alleyway was in an undesirable part of town. A mile or so away real estate was ranked amongst the most expensive in the world. Here there wasn’t a price because nobody wanted to buy.
Under the tyres the road surface changed as smooth tarmac gave way to old cobbles. And they were very old, nothing like the smart ones found in touristy areas. No, these were uneven and out of line. A lot of them had been crushed or crumbled, some were missing altogether.
The driver grimaced as he steered the van through heaps of trash, trying to avoid the larger potholes. The Mayor might very well claim otherwise, but it was hard to believe that any repairs had been made here since the Luftwaffe paid their last overnight visit, sixty-odd years ago.
‘Your turn,’ he said as he pulled up and killed the lights. As if his accomplice didn’t know whose turn it was.
For perhaps ten minutes they sat there in the van, doing and saying nothing, listening to the tick of the cooling engine. They were parked in the very end of the alley. The cobbles continued for ten yards but on an incline, leading down and into the river itself. Once upon a time the locals would have used that incline to launch some shitty little boat. But not nowadays; nowadays nobody ever came here.
The loneliness of the place was why they were there, obviously.
Unromantic as he was, the driver admired the moonlight on the water. This was a wide stretch on a bend. The opposite bank had to be two hundred yards away. Chances of being observed from over there were zero.
And the silence was deafening. Not that a city the size of London could ever be silent at any time of day or night. Even now, after two in the morning, there was a buzz in the air. It was tricky to describe but there nevertheless: the intangible background sound of millions of people rutting, fighting, singing and even sleeping.
Yes, it was intangible but as much there as the sun and the tides.
Talking about tides . . .
Chances of being observed from north of the river were zero too. There was a locked-up timber yard to their right and fuck all to their left, apart from exposed waste land. And even the hardiest of rough-sleepers shunned that waste land. The wind coming off the river was bitter, whatever the time of year.
Nobody in his right mind would pass a thousand sheltered doorways to doss there.
Not with any prospect of surviving the night, anyway.
‘Okay,’ he finally said, ‘let’s do it.’
While his accomplice quietly opened the back of the van the driver covered the alleyway. CCTV round these parts was non-existent. The only way they could get caught in the act was by the unlikely event of someone coming down the cobbles. And he wasn’t about to let that happen, unlikely or not.
Behind him he could sense his accomplice hefting the garbage onto his shoulder and fireman’s lifting it down to the moonlit Thames.
It was two minutes of a job, no more.
Lack of CCTV, lack of witnesses, a seriously strong undertow . . .
What could possibly go wrong?
(Friday 28th May 2010)
Mary Rose Archer grinned at herself in the mirror. She was aged twenty-nine and still had the face of a mischievous sixteen-year-old. The rest of her wasn’t bad, either. That awful red hair she’d had as a child had become a Titian auburn that most girls would die for. Her eyes were as green as jade and her figure . . .
Well, her figure was that of a twenty-year-old.
‘So give it back,’ she said aloud, laughing along with her reflection.
As if she would! She worked very hard to keep her body beautiful; very hard indeed. And her efforts paid off. She could favourably compare the results against just about everyone she ever met.
Apart from Hev, of course, and she was a sneaky cheat. Okay, she exercised, but eating and drinking all the wrong things made no difference to her. By rights she should be spotty and fat, but not her. Oh no, she was perfect canlı bahis in every way. It wasn’t fair. Nobody should be allowed to go out and about looking even half as sexy as Hev.
Well, not unless they were as readily available as she was.
Briefly toying with the idea of a hint of eye-shadow Mary Rose passed. Unlike most redheads her skin tanned easily. And she worked as hard on her tan as she did on her body. Winter, spring, summer or fall, makeup was wasted on her.
Besides, she didn’t want to seem like a tart, did she?
Not on the night of her very first orgy.
And wasn’t Hev going to be agog about that when she found out?
Tomorrow, she promised herself. I’ll phone tomorrow to make her jealous as heck.
Mary Rose giggled. She was an up-and-coming lawyer with an office “in the City”, working some quite crazy hours and playing hard in her free time to compensate. Leastways that was the theory. In reality she hadn’t been getting a lot of free time.
Come to that, she hadn’t been getting a lot of sex either. Most of her recent “playing” had been of the solitary variety.
And she was usually too tired even for that!
But not tonight; tonight she was as rested and ready as ever. She’d had an early night last night and, after a relatively stress-free morning, she’d taken the afternoon off and treated herself to a massage, manicure, pedicure and sauna.
Indulgent or not, she’d certainly readied herself for the pleasures to come.
A whole night mixing with a crowd of strangers on a no inhibitions, no regrets sort of a basis. Wasn’t that utterly wicked!
Still giggling, she examined herself for nerves. Okay, so she was fluttery inside, but with anticipation, not apprehension. No, make that lots and lots of anticipation. Youthful appearance aside, she was a big girl now; she knew everything that went on behind closed doors. Why shouldn’t she be thrilled at the prospect?
Not that she was being totally reckless. Although she didn’t know who she’d be partying with, she had the venue’s address written on a legal pad in her office.
She had written down Bruno’s name and address, too, on the same page. More to the point, he knew that she’d written it all down. If anyone tried to white slave her he’d be first person arrested.
Taking the precaution didn’t mean she really expected to be abducted, it just meant she didn’t know very much about Bruno, even after “seeing” him for nearly six months. She was unsure what exactly he did, but he was apparently “doing things” in the City.
There again, so was half the population of London. If Reggie Kray was still around, no doubt he would say something along the same lines.
“I’m ducking and diving, mate . . . in the City.”
Mary Rose balanced her lack of knowledge about Bruno with the positives. He was early thirties, very strong and good-looking, like an Italian film star. He was good in bed. He also drove a state-of-the-art Ferrari and every maître d’ in town welcomed him with open arms.
What was there not to like!
And who cared about his gold wedding band? She had asked on several occasions, getting the same answer each time. He’d split from his wife three years ago, childless. She’d moved on but the bastard ring had a mind of its own. One of these days he’d drop by Hatton Garden and have the sodding thing sawn off, once and for all.
Mary Rose hoped he meant his ring rather than his finger. She rather liked his fingers.
But hey, she’d asked the appropriate question and got the appropriate response.
A girl could only do so much, no?
For a moment she debated calling Hev before instead of after. Hev had once jumped in a bath with a whole rugby team, so a bit of an orgy wouldn’t particularly shock her. On the contrary, the mention of a bit of an orgy would get her juices flowing.
Maybe they could even snatch a quickie, courtesy of British Telecom.
While she was carefully considering the pros and cons her buzzer went. Bruno had arrived, no doubt double parked outside, wanting her to join him.
Wanting her to go to a party and fuck other guys.
Whatever the rights and wrongs, Mary Rose was cool with the concept. She’d grown to like Bruno and trusted him to a degree, but she had no intention of being stuck with him forever. Limited free time or nay, the last six months hadn’t been exactly experiment-free on her part. Probably hadn’t been on his, either.
So what the heck! Bring it on!!
‘How’s the big case going?’ Bruno wondered as he drove them towards St John’s Wood.
Mary Rose smiled. While she would happily gossip about her work colleagues she wouldn’t usually discuss clients or cases. Her big one was, however, high profile. Everyone knew about it and her part in the proceedings had been reported in the media. There was no denying she was involved.
She wanted to be involved, as well. The client, who she still thought of as “Miss X”, starred in a prime-time TV soap opera. Half the adult UK watched bahis siteleri her four times a week, falling in and out of love as she met and discarded new lovers, regularly urging her on when she had a catfight outside the local pub and laughing at all her witty put-downs.
Miss X had married a celebrity DJ a few months after she’d made her first soap appearance. That is to say he was a DJ who’d become a major celebrity, not a celebrity who spun a few discs on the side. Their wedding had been a glitzy showbiz spectacular. Tens of thousands of complete strangers had sent them presents, a lot of them ridiculously expensive, and thousands more had turned up outside the church.
Following the script, Miss X had almost immediately got pregnant. By a combination of clever editing and her determination, she hadn’t missed appearing in a single episode all the way up to the day she gave birth to twin girls. Then she took a week off.
And then she’d been back, business as usual, slim and sexy, not at all motherly or stretch-marked but with everyone knowing what she’d just been through.
Cue thousands more presents. If she’d needed the money she could have opened a babywear shop big enough to rival Mothercare.
Then, after seven years of idyllic family life, it happened.
“I knew from the very first second,” she told Mary Rose during their opening lawyer/client conference. ‘I had found my soulmate. I actually heard the final piece of the jigsaw of my life click into place. And thank God, she felt exactly the same.”
Yes, she’d fallen for another woman, hook, line and sinker.
The DJ was renowned for erratic behaviour and acted predictably. At first, using his prime-time radio show as a platform, he appealed to her to come back. His life was meaningless without her. He would do anything for things to be as they were. Why oh why had she forsaken him?
That approach lasted two or three days. Then he got nasty. Dropping the appeals he called Miss X a heartless, unfaithful slut. According to him, the new love of her life was a scheming lesbian cow; one who was chasing money and reflected glory.
And didn’t he want the world to know about it!
Miss X’s problem was that her real character was totally different the character she played on TV. Off-screen she was a very private person. While the DJ would gladly rant and rave to whole rooms full of reporters, she always declined to comment. Consequently the media was filled with offensive quotes from him and utter silence from her.
Talk about freedom of the press! By sticking to direct quotes the media had a field day with no liability attached. And, by sitting back and taking it, Miss X let them do their worse.
On it went, on until finally, after the umpteenth headline reading “THAT LESBIAN W***E TWO-TIMED ME FOR FIVE YEARS”, she’d had enough. By then even she had to accept it was time to shut the DJ up.
Mary Rose had been delighted when her firm’s senior partner asked her to represent Miss X. As well as it being her big break she had never much liked the DJ. His behaviour was cheesing everyone off, up to and including his employers.
If there’d been an award for Prick of the Year he’d have walked it.
Given free reign Mary Rose would have cheerfully sued the asshole for every last penny, and he had a whole lot of pennies. Sadly, Miss X just wanted him to leave her alone.
“It’s over,” she said. “I never wanted the publicity he lives and breathes for. I only ever did all that red carpet crap because my agent said I had to. I’d have stayed home with the girls if it was up to me.”
If nothing else, Miss X was sincere. For years she and her DJ had played second fiddle only to Posh and Becks. A magazine cover was not complete without a snap of her emerging from a luxury motor, into a storm of flashlights, all teeth and tits . . . and no doubt hating every moment of it.
Bugger the colossal damages, Mary Rose had decided. Just give the girl the simple solution that she wants. She deserves it far more than most.
So an appropriate action was professionally prepared. The DJ quickly responded with an action of his own, revealing his true nature by demanding custody of the twins.
Out of nowhere, just like that.
Additionally, in what Mary Rose considered to be a very poorly written document, he asked the court to place the girls in care if an immediate decision could not be taken. As an alternative he suggested the court may see fit to allow Miss X custody of one twin and him custody of the other.
The fucking bastard didn’t even specify which twin he wanted. Clearly either would do.
Most annoying of all, as reason for his demand, he asserted Miss X and her “friend” were “adversely influencing his daughters’ sexuality”, and deliberately so, at that.
“They’ll be having unnatural sex at an unnaturally early age,” he alleged.
By then the twins were six years old and far too young to be involved in legal arguments. But, although Mary Rose didn’t believe the DJ’s allegations bahis şirketleri for one second, she did think they were entitled to have opinions.
God forbid, but they might be uncomfortable with their new living arrangements. They may even want out.
Tentatively, she asked if she could speak to them privately, on a one-to-one basis.
Miss X agreed immediately. “It’ll have to be private but both at once,” she’d said. “They’re both bright as buttons but they do everything together.”
The informal interview took place in Miss X’s kitchen, an enormous Magnet affair with black granite worktops and every conceivable appliance; forty grand’s worth at least. Sitting around a corner of a massive oak table, positioned so they were facing each other, armed with three glasses of orange juice, Mary Rose began.
“Do you understand your daddy is upset?”
“Daddy’s upsetting me,” Lizzie replied. “He wants to put us in an orphanage.”
“No it’s even worse,” said Jane, “he wants to split us up.”
The two girls were holding hands and looking wretched. That is to say they were tiny mirror images of their mother. Even on the verge of tears they looked divine. Surprised by a maternal pang, Mary Rose went on.
“Do you know who I am?”
“You’re Mummy’s hero,” said Lizzie.
“You’re going to save us from Daddy,” Jane agreed.
“Do you know that there aren’t any orphanages anymore? Not like in Oliver Twist.”
“Daddy says there are. Daddy says it’s not him who wants to split us up; it’s Mummy’s fault. But we don’t believe him. Do we?”
“No,” Lizzie endorsed. “He fibs to us.”
After half an hour of gentle probing Mary Rose was convinced right was on her side. The twins both understood that “Auntie” was in love with their mummy and didn’t mind. Auntie was nice, even if she did kiss and cuddle a lot with Mummy. And they had no intention of kissing and cuddling with anyone themselves, not ever . . . apart from (shy giggles) just maybe Liam out of One Direction.
Summarizing all that in a few words Mary Rose told Bruno there was a prelim hearing on Monday.
‘Will it go your way?’
She laughed. ‘I should say that those girls will only ever be taken away over my dead body. But I don’t need to. I know the judge and I know that idiot DJ has been digging himself into a hole. I intend to ask him one or two leading questions and then let him keep digging. By the time he’s done he’ll be six feet under.’
‘You sound very confident.’
‘I am. And if all else fails I’m going play a recording I made when I was talking to the twins. Do you know what Jane said?’
‘She’s one of his daughters. She’d been very brave but suddenly she was sobbing her little heart out. “Why does Daddy want to hurt us all?” she asked me.’
‘What did you say to that?’
‘I dodged it. But I won’t dodge it on Monday. If I have to I’ll tell the judge that Daddy is a heartless so-and-so who just wants to lash out. But I won’t need to tell her. She’ll know that better than I do. There is no chance of her asking me to tone it down. I’m more likely to have to restrain her.’
‘I’ll be rooting for you,’ Bruno said.
‘Thanks and much appreciated. But not needed. I’m looking forward to kicking that bastard’s ass.’
Ten minutes later and they were nearly there.
‘I’m amazed how relaxed you are,’ Bruno said. ‘Tonight’s a big step.’
I’m banking on you getting me home safely,’ Mary Rose replied. ‘And you know that I left a note on my desk. If I’m not back in the office before eight on Monday, you’ll have Sweeny Todd knocking on your door.’
He glanced at her, smiling as always, one thick black eyebrow arched up in a quizzical way.
He looked good enough to eat, and didn’t he know it.
‘We’re reaching the point of no return,’ he said calmly. ‘If you’re going to back out, now is the time.’
Mary Rose did actually consider, but only for a moment. She’d been Hev’s closest friend and fiercest rival in their years together at The Manor School for Young Ladies. It was fair to say they had brought out the very best in each other and, occasionally, the very worst.
Hev would see tonight as an opportunity, not a challenge.
She would never back out.
No way, José.
‘I’m up for it,’ said Mary Rose. ‘And I’m horny as hell. Bet I’m more uninhibited than you.’
Bruno chuckled softly and told her to look in the glove compartment. She did and found a black mask that would have looked good on Catwoman.
‘Bloody hell,’ she said, impressed.
‘I told you it’s a . . . Well, it’s a masked occasion. Anything goes and nobody knows.’ Bruno chuckled some more. ‘Mine is in there as well.’
Mary Rose fished out something the Lone Ranger might have worn and compared it with hers.
‘It’s nowhere near as good as mine. Are mine real diamonds?’
‘They are very expensive fakes,’ he replied, ‘so whatever you do, don’t lose them.’
‘It’s really going to happen, isn’t it?’
‘Yes,’ he replied, turning into a leafy road lined with massive Victorian houses. ‘Unless you opt out in the next ten seconds, it really is.’
Mary Rose put on her mask.
‘I don’t want out,’ she said boldly. ‘Let’s go for it.’
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