On the day Addie visited Santiago, Vincent’s cousin at Los Angeles, she couldn’t believe the things he said to her.
“You came all the way to tell me that Vincent Alejandro my cousin has been arrested?” He asked, exhaling the acrid smell of cigarette from his mouth.
He was dressed in a neatly ironed jean and polo, and his gold color hair was scattered and scanty. He didn’t look like Vincent in anyway, he obviously looked like someone who had inhaled lots of cocaine.
There were 12 girls seated around him, dressed in just panties and brassieres. All Caucasians.
“You think I am here to make a fuss about this?” Addie asked with anger in her face.
“Damn you black bitch!” Santiago exclaimed, “just because Vincent fucked your ass and gave you money doesn’t mean you should talk to me like we are the same. I set him up. He will die in jail and never come back to rant around with his money. I will take all his damn money and fuck all his women. Get the fuck outta here.”
Addie stormed out of the door angrily. She couldn’t understand why Vincent’s cousin would set him up that way. When she went back to California, she didn’t know what to say to Ida about what was going on in her life.
The next morning, she left for the California state prisons Corcoran to see Vincent. But she wasn’t allowed to see him.
As she stepped out of the prison premises, a black woman in prisons uniform walked hastily behind her. “Hello?” She called out.
Addie paused. “You weren’t allowed to see someone. Who was that?”
“My boss, Vincent Alejandro.”
“ oh no! He has been transferred. He is going to be killed in few days.”
“Why?” Addie’s heart fell.
“Deep thing. So deep.”
“Did he kill people?” She asked in a shaky tone.
“Maybe.” The woman shrugged and walked away. Addie wished she didn’t talk to the woman, she had ruined her day and everything about her was absolutely not normal anymore. She cried home again, wondering if Vincent, whom she had made love to, kissed so passionately and was secretly in love with would die by hanging. Is it true that he killed people? And if Santiago really set him up for arrest, then whatever he was going to be killed for wasn’t true. Santiago was the devil behind all these, the day she visits Vincent’s mother, she would tell her what Santiago did before she gives her the money her son saved for her.
“Is everything okay?” Ida asked as soon as Addie opened the door.
She nodded and smiled, but inwardly her heart was breaking. The man who drove her silently crazy was going to die just like that and nobody was going to do anything about it. She didn’t have the powers. No bribe would save him.
She walked quietly into her room and wept in there silently. She wrote letters and mails to all the prisons in California, but she was told nobody called Vincent Alejandro was in prison.
For one month, she didn’t go to work. She either went shopping or laid on her bed, reading tabloids.
One morning came, Addie realized that her job was gone, and tiny desk tucked into a corner of her bedroom was piled high with bills and her check book balance was a stunningly low $34.43.Especially since she had started putting all her money in a fixed savings.
Ida just walked in and went straight to her room. Dressed in a red and white air-hostess uniform.
She searched through the papers on the table and widened her eyes.
“Wait a minute, you have money Addie, why haven’t you paid the bills? I paid for last month?” She asked, her eyes widened.
Addie sighed. “Fixed all my money, didn’t even know that I won’t be working anymore.” She said.
“What do you mean? A whole club shut down, and the owner jailed or,” she rolled her eyes, “hanged, isn’t that enough to just start hunting for another job? “
“Please, please! I will pay the bills Ida. Don’t talk to me in that manner. I will pay.” Addie said worriedly.
That evening, Ida made a special dinner. Addie was shocked to see a birthday cake, bottles of wine and bowls of grilled turkey, fried Basmati rice and grilled potatoes.
“Whose birthday?” Addie asked, shocked at the beautiful setting on the table.
“Tag’s birthday is today. I am surprising him.” Ida said as she lighted the salted caramel and Blueberry Scone scented candle.