I know you’ve waited a long time for this with still a little longer to go before you’ll finally learn the outcome of the cliffhanger of the century— so I thought I would throw you a bone (mostly to keep me out of the doghouse with all of you hee hee)
The Dominion of Brothers Series Book 8: SEDUCING HIS THIEF
by Talon P.S.
FIVE SOURCE SECURITY COMPLEX
Paris was just getting to the office late in the afternoon and was about to ignore Marcus as he had every day but stopped mid stride when he saw Bill venturing out from the back door coming from the gun shop.
“Bill?” Paris turned to him as it was strange; Bill never came up front.
“Any of you gents have the password for Mr. Gentry’s computer?” Bill looked to them both.
“What for?” Paris asked with a tone of more mistrust than he’d intended.
“Follow me and I’ll show you.” He waved Paris to come with him.
They went back into the shop and Bill stepped behind the counter. “The shop has needs, bills and finances, which need to go into the computer, or the shop can’t work.” Bill explained like he was some drill sergeant’s tour guide.
Paris closed his eyes and sucked in a heavy breath. He was stretched too thin when he wasn’t even here at all. His heart and mind were at the hospital with Diesel. Each morning he followed the same routine, like a coalmine mule. Visited Deez to let him know how much he loved him and needed him to come back, then he came into the office like an empty clone— did the minimum needed so he could get back to his lover. He swallowed anxiously fearing this day or the next would be the time he went back only to find the hospital bed emptied and the sheets stripped off to be changed and made for the next patient.
“You know it might be best to close the shop for a bit,” Paris finally suggested, not waging he had it in him to take on more responsibility that would drain more of him away from the place he wanted to be.
Bill bulked up at the suggestion. “Can’t do that. This shop has obligations it must honor.” He sounded like a soldier who’d been told to give up. Such things were not acceptable to him.
Paris was still far too drained to feel it with him. “What obligations?”
“Starting this week, and onward, of the following sixty days, damn near ever NYPD in Queens will be coming in here for their gun and target evaluations. City has already contracted the needed blocks of time.” He pointed to the calendar with an adamant finger. “That’s what all the blue blocks up there are for.”
Paris rolled his eyes. Not at Bill, but that he’d forgotten about them. “Can we source the evaluations out to another nearby gun range?” Paris looked for alternatives. “Because we can’t.”
“No,” Bill affirmed mildly, “But it’s not pending on Mr. Gendry’s presence. We just let them have the gun range to themselves five hours a day, three days week for the next sixty days. They’ll have their own men in here for the grading.”
“Okay, so what’s the problem that you need to get into the main computer?”
“I need to order more ammo and pay the bills.”
“So do it. You’re authorized for that. I’ll gladly second anything if you’re in doubt.”
“Can’t.” He opened the safe under the counter, revealing a stack of white nightly deposit bags. “Money can’t go to the bank until the register receipts are entered into the computer. That’s nine days of sales income right there that hasn’t gone into the bank acct. So, I doubt there is enough in the primary expense account to cover the amount of ammo and target sheets we’re gonna need for these boys.”
Paris let out a heavy sigh. He thought he had everything covered only to be told he’d overlooked the biggest miss. “Alright, Bill. Give me a second to do some things upstairs then I’ll be back to tally the accts. Close that for now.” He pointed at the safe, felling uncomfortable with so much money sitting in one spot. “You armed?”
“Always.” Bill pointed to the rifle under the counter, then to the 9mm Rudger tucked behind his back.
Paris nodded. He still didn’t like guns, but for now, he felt safer having a few of them surrounding him. “I may, however, just hire Marcus to transport the deposits once I’m finished.”
“I won’t argue with you on that one.” Bill agreed with a nod. “Will there be anything else I can do?
“Yes, I know Diesel had made a partial order that was to be set aside for the evaluations. The rest was on back order; so maybe call to check up on that. And if you would please, take the calls, so I don’t have to be interrupted.”
“You bet, sir. Now, if you’ll excuse me, best get our orders in ready for your approval.”
“Thank you, Bill.”
Paris climbed the stairs, haunted by the memories, a blow job on this step and some power fucking on this one— and an argument on that one. He made the landing, passing through the ghosts of them locked in a heated, hungry kiss that almost sent them busting through the handrail to the floor ten feet down.
How had mouse ever survived a hurtling jump that great?
How had any of them survived what followed after that day?
He pulled the door open and stepped into the long office hall, where he paused to just collect himself.
He felt guilty. Coming here and playing office boy— going on with his life while his love was still struggling with life in a hospital as John Doe. He had no right to be here, did he? This wasn’t his world, it was Diesel’s and if Diesel wasn’t coming back, why was he here?
“Stop,” a voice called out towards him.
Paris’s flashed his eyes open and he turned finding Marcus at his desk in his office looking directly out at him.
“Don’t beat yourself up, Paris,” Marcus went on. “We all want to be there with him, but we also can’t let our lives unravel. So, we try to balance the two. We share the load so you can have more time with him.”
Paris only stared at him.
“And he will wake up,” Marcus told him as if he believed it.
He better or I’m out of a home and family, Paris thought and started off without responding. Deep down he knew Marcus meant well, but he was still angry with them for making decisions without his say so about what they thought he should do and about shuffling Kat off to be watched over by a stranger. And he’d yet exchanged a single word with any of them since.