A Lover’s Touch

A Lovers Touch Bookcover

Forward

 

The man in the faded green, late model sedan watched the woman carry the baby to a luxury SUV. She was already pregnant again even though the one she strapped in still used a rear facing car seat. She kissed the baby; he knew was a girl from all the pink, before getting in the car herself. He started his own car and pulled out behind her as soon as she got to the stop sign at the end of the street.

Manny had been in town a week. He’d watched her comings and goings. He knew that she shared the house with two men, a house keeper and her husband who on occasion drove the three around town. He had been shocked when he found out that the three of them lived as a family. One woman to two men. He found it hard to believe the two willing to play nice, especially since they were both so independently wealthy. Powerful men seemed less likely to share, or at least that’s what Manny would have thought. Money is often times accompanied by arrogance. But he’d watched the three and damned if it didn’t seem that each man was more than willing to divide their time around the woman.

She was hot he had to give her that. The long, wavy, dark hair and perfect little body left a man’s dick hard. Hell, he thought he’d share if it meant he could get a piece of that ass. He shifted in his seat and rubbed the beginnings of a troublesome erection as he signaled to turn into the mall.

Manny found a parking space not too far from her and followed her up the escalator and then to one of the few high end stores in the small mall. Ordinarily she went to work with her men but today he’d watched them leave without her. As he declined a sample of the latest smell good for men he walked pass the woman as she stopped to admire a pair of shoes and set up shop at the watch counter as she was approached by a sales person. She declined the offer for help and went on to the baby department.

He followed her until she left the mall. Her next stop was to a doctor’s office that could have been for her or the baby she carried and finally she went to her office. She visited with her men and came out about an hour later. He followed her back to the house but drove past as she pulled into the driveway and went to the hotel he’d been staying in for the last week.

Throwing the keys and the keycard on the dresser he sat down at the small round table in the corner. The top was littered with newspaper clippings and photographs. The story was old. Felix De La Cruz, local big-shot contractor missing. Before his disappearance he had been tried and convicted of the brutal assault and rape of Elaina Porter-Dubois, partner of Malachi Porter and Christian Dubois.

Manny picked up a second newspaper article. It was printed shortly after the birth of the woman’s daughter. The announcement named Malachi Porter as the father. A month after her birth the man had opened a new playground and youth center named after his daughter. Elizabeth Katherine Porter-Dubois Center for Excellence, arrogance at its fullest is what Manny thought as he put the newspaper down. At last his hands found the envelope that held the letters his brother had sent him.

His brother had been hired for a job. Felix De La Cruz was Jiovanni Hernandez and back in Mexico Jiovanni was not to be fucked with. Even as a young kid he had been ruthless when he came to the states it turned out he was heartless as well. Manny could care less about the man Jiovanni had murdered in order to take a new identity; it was the helpless children that didn’t sit well with him. Those little girls didn’t deserve to die. While the rest of this small city wondered what happened to Felix or Jiovanni or whatever in the hell they called him, Manny hoped that he was dead. He deserved no less for spilling innocent blood.

Sliding one of the letters free of an envelope and reading it for the thousandth time Manny saw red. His little brother had been in over his head. He’d told him so when Jose called and told him who he was working for. Manny had insisted that Jose live with him when he’d called and told him what he suspected Felix was going to do to the woman when he got his hands on her. He’d begged him when he heard about the little torture shack that Jose picked the lock on. There were some things money should not buy. Then Jose disappeared.

Funny how his last job had brought the two together after so many years apart, not so funny that his brother was missing and likely dead.  When Manny’s repeated attempts to get in touch with his brother failed he went on the hunt to track him down.  By the time he’d arrived at the last place he knew his brother to be, De La Cruz had made an attempt on the woman’s life and no one had seen him since. He’d discovered that two unidentified men had perished in a fire on property that De La Cruz owned.  Manny had the location of the place Jose had stayed and made a visit. The burnt remains of the wood cabin and the gutted left over’s of the concrete structure gave little clues of what had happened, he hadn’t really thought they would after so much time. Manny searched the area thoroughly for graves first shallow ones and then deeper ones. Nothing. And then he’d seen one John Chambers. Just one photo, not even fully in the frame but he knew then who had killed his brother.

Manuel Santoya was no different from John Chambers. The two killed for a living and John Chambers had killed Manny’s boss a few years back. At the time he didn’t know the man’s name but he would never forget his face. Manny had been tracking him as he stalked his boss. Not expecting the man to use poison and never figuring out how he slipped it to the boss. After asking around it didn’t take long for Manny to piece together that John was clearly some sort of protection brought in. He’d left shortly after everything went down which only cemented the idea in Manny’s head. Folks said he seemed like an old friend but Manny knew he was hired help regardless of how they treated him. A hired gun that had killed his brother and Manny meant to have revenge. Chambers had left and that was fine with him. He had three aces in the hole to get his ass back here. Manny had plans on killing John Chambers and all he had to do was to get his hands on one of the three to lure him in.

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