(Remember Agrefena from the dream? Well she’s back!)
First Draft alternate beginning 2
Suddenly there was dim light and soft jazz illuminating the mahogany paneled lounge. Suited men and women sat talking business swirling ice and amber liquor in crystal tumblers. On center table, a blue art glass bowl mounded with snow cooling six vodka glasses.
Thomas looked up from the vodka at a Russian beauty so hot he feared the vodka would ignite as it passed her lips. Pulling a glass from the snow mound he downed it. “Your turn Agrafena.” He said pushing the glass upside down into the mound.
Smiling, she tossed her silky black hair back reached for a glass tilting it just enough so the viscous booze slid oyster-like over her lips—eyes closed—savoring as she swallowed. His eyes stroked the descent of her cleavage down the plunge of her black dress. Quickly the ascent of his glance met with her ice colored eyes as she pushed the empty glass upside down into the mound. “Good vodka.” She sighed in a viscous Russian accent.
“What should we drink to?” Thomas asked smiling. Looking upward she paused, licking her lips and smiling back, “My body. . .” she whispered dipping two fingers into the icy vodka and slipping them into her mouth “. . . let’s drink to my body.”
“My hand will not tremble.” He replied plucking a second glass from the ice. “Your body.” Lifting the glass he drank tossing his head back. Agrafena pulled a glass from the ice, raising it, “My body.” She said pouring the vodka slowly into her mouth. Her face was cool glowing ecstasy as she swallowed, and he fixed on her eyes. She drinks like porno. He thought. Her tongue made a slow orbit around the empty glass’s rim, and she pushed it into the snow. His heart began to race.
“Darling, I have bottle in room, why don’t we have drink up there?” She asked. “I’d love to.” He said choking a bit on the words. Cooly he stood, pulling a thick roll of bills from his pocket, he peeled off a hundred dollar bill laying it on the table. She looked up smiling taking his offered hand. She stood, and they walked across the room to the elevator. As they walked he noticed that every man in the bar was staring at her. This isn’t right . . . he thought, . . .my wife. But as she walked her curvy sway iced his scruple colder than the vodka.
They stepped into the open elevator, and the promise of ascent. The doors closed, and she bent pressing the sixth floor button. She rose turning, and kissed him deeply. His hands moved up her waist . . . “Not yet love, wait for room.” She whispered. The elevator doors opened, and they stepped into the hall in front of her room. She fumbled with the key while he kissed her neck.
Opening the door, she led him into the room his mouth still attached to her neck. She turned and they kissed. He ran his fingers up her bare arms. Her skin danced to his stroke, and he slipped the straps of her dress over her shoulders.
“Mmm, I like. . .” her eyes flashed approval, “. . . but what about drink?”
“Forget it.” He whispered into her ear.
“Darling, third drink makes me naughty girl.” She smiled pushing him away.
“Now go get ice in hall for drinks. Take bucket.”
She handed him the ice bucket and pushed him toward the door. “Go quickly! My need is great for you!”
He grabbed the bucket and stepped into the hall. He ran toward the ice machine at its end. Naughty? I can’t argue with naughty. He thought pushing the ice machine button over and over. “Come on . . . Come on . . . her desire is great!” He said impatiently. The bucket full he ran back to the room. Pausing at the door he composed himself, then stepped in. Agrafena was standing before him in a pool of ice blue light. She had removed her dress and wore only a black push-up bra and thong. In her hands were two empty glasses. “My God!” He gasped in his native Czech, stunned by her erotic symmetry. “What took you?” She said smiling placing the glasses on the table. She took the ice bucket from him, but as she did he seized her waist pulling her against him.
“Slowdown . . .slowdown, We have all night for the pleasure.” Agrafena said pushing him away. “Go in bathroom. Get towel. Take off shirt and tie. I will pour drinks.” Reluctantly releasing the death-grip on her waist he stepped into the bathroom. Looking into the mirror he removed his shirt and tie throwing them on the floor. Good thing I’ve been working out. He thought searching for flaws and the signs of age. Not bad . . . not bad at all. He removed his shoes and socks kicking them under the basin. He carefully arranged the towel over his shoulders concealing his naked torso, and stepped into the room.
Agrafena stood waiting holding a vodka on the rocks in each hand. “Finally love . . .” holding up the two glasses next to her ice colored eyes. She stepped up to Thomas handing him one. “What should we drink to? He asked taking the glass from her. “Your body.” She replied, toasting him while brushing her breasts against his naked torso. She downed her drink with no foreplay this time. Thomas followed and they set their empty glasses on the table. “Bitter . . .” he said “. . . not as good as in the bar.” He felt warm and reckless inside as he pulled her into him. Her skin glowed and was hot against his. He bent to kiss her lips. She stopped him with her hand. “No my love kiss my neck first. It drives me crazy.” She said in perfect Czech. Obeying he kissed her neck pulling her bra strap off her shoulder with his teeth. “Yes love just like that.” She moaned her approval again in Czech.
As he moved to the other shoulder he felt dizzy. He tried to mouth the other strap but could not. He straightened. “Vodka’s going to my head.” He slurred swaying trying to grab her bra strap with his hand. “I can’t . . .ge . . .get it.” Eyeing him coldly she pushed back. “She keeps moving. Must remove bra! I am not drunk, just dizzy. Give me a . . .just give me.” Suddenly, the room filled with fluorescent light as she took a full step away from him. Her expression clinical. “Not back! . . .not back!. . .no! . . . I mus . . . I mus . . . have it!” She smiled pulling her bra strap up over her shoulder. “Closure my darling.” She said in a thick Russian accent, and everything went blacker than her push-up bra.
Thomas opened his eyes. His head was burning pain. The angry fluorescent light hurt his eyes. He could not feel his lower body. His stinging eyes shifting rapidly side-to-side desperately trying to orient himself. He first found his hands. They were cold, wet, and the fingernails were blue. Waves of cold pain hit his consciousness. He was submerged in an ice bath in the tub. He struggled to sit up but could not. Looking down the water and ice were pink, and a large bloody gauze bandage was duct taped to his torso. The sharp ice bit into his skin. An intravenous tube was duct tapped to his arm. Fear and dread overcame him, and he begin to panic. He looked around desperately focusing on the chair. On the seat was a cell phone, a syringe, and a note duct taped to the back. It read.
You are dying my love.
Sorry but business before pleasure.
You are donor match, so some doctor friends and I remove part of your liver.
It will be sold to rich client who needs transplant.
It is too bad, I would have been naughty girl for you . . .but instead I am naughty rich girl!
If you try to get up you will be dead before you walk out of bathroom.
Dial 911 on cell phone. You are in St. Elijah Hotel, sixth floor, first room.
If pain comes stick morphine syringe in tube and press. You won’t feel pain after.
Agrafena signed her name with his blood. Rage and frustration suddenly welled up within him. He fumbled for the cell phone with his numb hands. He tried to think what excuse he could tell his wife. “I didn’t even sleep with her and she took my liver!” NOOOOO! He screamed.
Thomas sat up in bed gasping in a sweat clutching his cell phone. The sun was just piercing the room. That dream again. Always at the end of a project. He thought swinging his feet on to the floor.