I’m whistling when I show up to work the next day because I still can’t believe what I did. It was unbelievable to pull the candlesticks out of my sweetest spots in the women’s lounge before stashing them in my locker. Then, I had every intention of going home once my shift was done to find a reputable pawn shop, but I didn’t get around to it. Instead, I ended up having more fun with the candlesticks in the privacy of my bedroom. Yes, that’s right. I couldn’t resist and spread my legs wide, my toes pointing at opposite corners of the room while pounding myself in both holes with the two silver implements. It’s so wrong, but if I clean them off good, I’m sure no one will know.
But now, it’s afternoon and I need to get to work. My short skirt gets me a lot of attention with its flouncy hem, as well as the sweet crop top riding up just above it. But even more, I know it’s the bounce in my step and the sparkle to my eye that’s drawing appreciative looks. It was wonderful with those two candlesticks last night, and seriously, I’m thinking of keeping them for long-term use because they were so good.
Finally, I arrive at the Club Z compound. It’s a huge granite building, stately and imposing. It doesn’t appear to be a den of sin because they don’t want to advertise what they do. Instead, it looks like any other building in Manhattan, with a small gated courtyard and a uniformed doorman out front.
“Good afternoon, Miss Hass,” the doorman says while swinging open the double doors.
“Hi Miller,” I say in a cheery voice. I’m just about to move on, when he stops me.
“Miss Hass, Nicole requested to see you first thing upstairs after your arrival.”
I pause, spinning on my toes with a confused look.
“Did she say what about?”
Miller merely inclines his head.
“No ma’am. But she asked me to let you know.”
My stomach sinks because Nicole is my manager at Club Z and getting called to her office is either very good, or very bad. What does she want to talk about? I know I had to find a sub last week for one of my shifts, but it worked. Estee filled in for me, so no harm, no foul.
Still, my palms sweat as I walk to the elevator. “This is going to be a good visit,” I tell myself under my breath. “You have nothing to be worried about.” Another young woman happening by shoots me an odd look for talking to myself, but I ignore her and clench my fists.
The elevator ride up to Nicole’s office feels like it takes twenty-five years, even though it’s really only a few seconds. When I step out, it’s into another plush hallway, with sconces on the walls and deep pile carpeting.
Taking a deep breath, I stand in front of my manager’s door and then knock.
“Come,” her voice sounds, clear as a bell. Oh shit. She must be waiting for me. Foreboding fills my heart, but I slap a smile on my face nonetheless.
“Hey Nicole,” I greet in a chirpy voice while poking my head in. “How are you?”
“Thank you for coming, Taylor,” she gestures. “Please, come in and take a seat.”
It’s only when I step fully into the office do I realize that there are two men standing on the far side of the room. That’s when my heart really drops because there are only two people these men could be: Casper and Clay Richmond, the owners of Club Z. They’re unmistakable because they’re identical twins, but also because they’re insanely gorgeous with full heads of black hair, penetrating blue eyes, and athletic builds. At the moment, they’re standing casually, like nothing’s the matter.
“Oh hi,” I stammer while sinking into a chair. “Um, hi, I’m Taylor.” This feels like an inquisition, but I have to stay strong.
“Yes, we know,” intones one twin in a deep bass. “I’m Casper Richmond, and this is my brother Clay.”
I shrink down in my seat, but then force myself to straighten. I won’t be cowed. I won’t be intimidated by the twins’ sheer presence alone.
“So how can I help you?” I ask with false cheer. Nicole makes to speak, but Clay interrupts.
“Miss Hass, do you know why you’re here?” he asks in a smooth tone, those blue eyes missing nothing.
I stammer, but I manage to say, “Um. No?”
The twins share an amused look, but Nicole looks put out as she purses her red lips. But it doesn’t matter what she thinks because my boss’s bosses are in the room. My heart pounds in my chest as the silence ticks. My confidence begins to wane because really, there’s no way this is a positive meeting.
Unfortunately, I’m right. Leaning against the wall, Casper shoots me an amused look.
“Well, Miss Hass,” he says. “It seems that you have something that belongs to us.”
My eyes widen but I make myself stay calm even as my pulse skyrockets. Oh shit, oh shit. Somehow, they must have found out about the candlesticks I took last night. But how could they know? I was discreet, and no one saw me. As a result, I try to fib.
“Um, I don’t know what you mean. Sometimes I take the cocktail napkins home, but that’s because I love the Club Z logo so much. It’s really artistic and I love looking at it when I’m home. You know, I do graphic design on the side though. Maybe I could put together a couple new designs for you? That would be cool, don’t you think?”