Thug's Night Off
Vinny Marlo felt stupid driving after a bike. It wasn’t too bad on the main streets of Galway, with all the traffic and the bike lane. But in the ‘burbs, there was just him and the bike. At eight p.m., the sun was still hanging over the bay. There was no way the bicyclist hadn’t seen him. Not that it mattered what the biker saw.
The biker, Tristan Kessler, owned one of the Gianni family’s fronts. The front was called The Goat Street Cafe. The boss’s girlfriend went there for yoga classes. As he passed the bike, Vinny glanced over at the man. He was pedaling hard, wearing little tight shorts, tiny sneakers, a bag and yoga mat strapped to his back. Blue helmet. that curved like a Volkswagen Beetle.
Vinny gripped the steering wheel harder as he passed Tristan Kessler. He hated how nervous he felt. He’d killed men and been less nervous about it. He swallowed hard and drove faster.
When the bike lane became the sidewalk of a residential area, Vinny pulled
off on the side of the street and waited for Tristan Kessler to pass him. A few
cars drove by. Couple school kids up ahead were playing with a basket ball in
In the rear view mirror, Tristan Kessler pedaled closer. Vinny noticed his reflection and messed with his hair, pulling it up and to the side where the gel failed to hold it. He looked like a thug, but the men at West Quae liked him enough. That was enough for Vinny.
Tristan Kessler though - Mr. G. called him a Grade-A fag while he generally referred to Vinny as a half-assed fag- Tristan Kessler was a good-looking man. Thin, tight muscles, pretty face, smooth skin softened with cream, the kind of guy who watched what he ate and brushed his teeth three times a day.
“Damn. Forgot to brush my teeth.”
Vinny leaned over to open the glove compartment. He felt around for Mr. G.’s bag of Wintergreen lifesavers with one hand and pressed the car’s papers down over the small handgun to keep it where it belonged. He found the bag and as he was picking out a mint, he noticed in the corner of his eyes a man stop outside the passenger side window.
Vinny jolted upright, knocking the car’s papers, the bag of lifesavers, and
the gun out of the glove box.
“Ah, shit.” Vinny took a longer look at the man outside the car, then ignored the papers and gun and rolled down the passenger window. “Hey Trist, how you doin’?”
“Great,” Tristan answered, leaning on the handlebars of his bike. “Should a tough guy be so jumpy?”
“It’s my day off.” Vinny smirked.
“Do they do that in the mob?” Tristan smiled, his beaming smile. Then glanced
down. “Is that a gun or are you happy to see me?”
Vinny leaned over and picked the gun up, checked the safety and the silencer and then stuffed it back into the glove box. He wasn’t quick enough to quip back, but staggered the attempt. “Uh, both?”
Tristan laughed and said, “is there room in your trunk for my bike or will we have to move the body?”
“I don’t have no body in…” Vinny stopped when he saw Tristan was joking.
“That’s not funny, Trist.”
Tristan lifted his bike onto the rack on top of the car. Technically, it was there for Mr. G.’s girlfriend, but she wasn’t using it tonight.
Vinny cleaned up the lifesavers and put them back into the glove box. He
picked one out for himself, suddenly self-conscious about his breath which was
just as stupid as tailing Tristan Kessler. He struggled with the wrapper- he
assured himself his trouble with small child-proofed items had to do with his
large hands and not his intellect- then popped the lifesaver into his mouth.
Tristan opened the passenger side door and sat down. “Nice of you to come and get me.”
“I thought I’d get to the studio, but I saw you biking and so I turned around,” Vinny said.
“A couple times. I thought you were going to follow me all the way to…”
Tristan reached into a pocket on the front of his biker’s jacket. “833 Rico
Vinny cleared his throat and took the car out of park. He had meant to follow Tristan all the way to Rico Street. “Wanted to be sure it was you.”
“Maybe if you looked somewhere other than my ass,” Tristan said, playfully. Somewhere in the car, the theme of The Godfather began to play. Tristan patted the tight shorts over his thighs, looking for the phone. “That’s our boss.”
Vinny kept his eyes on the road and tried to keep his attention away from Tristan’s crotch. The athletic shorts kept very little a secret.
Tristan found his phone in his jacket pocket and cheerfully answered, “Why hello, Mr. Gianni. How are you doing this fine evening?”
Vinny could hear his boss angrily answering, though he could not make out the words.
“Whoa, Joe slow down.”
Vinny heard his boss lose it and frowned nervously. Bringing Tristan home was an incredibly stupid idea, but Vinny couldn’t help it. He had learned when he was young that he wasn’t the sharpest bulb in the crayon box. He was so used to doing what other people asked him, that when Tristan suggested they go to his place, Vinny hadn’t put up a fight.
“First of all, check your e-mail, honey,” Tristan said. “I sent you an
end-of-the-day report with everything you need to know. Yes, it’s coded.”
Vinny glanced over at Tristan when he mouthed an elaborate, but silent. “Oh my god.”
He went on, “Mr. Gianni, if you’re so worried about that why are you asking questions like that over the phone? Just saying.”
Vinny smirked. Very few people could get away with talking to Mr. G. like that.
“Second of all, Mr. Gianni, I’m kinda on a date right now, so…” Tristan
glanced over at Vinny and drew out the ‘o’ like a teenager. “I don’t - sure,
he’s a man. And what a man! He’d put all your body guards to shame, Mr. Gianni.”
Vinny grinned when Tristan said, “for example, the last time he fucked me-”
The memory brought on by those few simple words, shot through Vinny like a bolt of lightening. The last time he’d fucked Tristan had been in the upstairs storage room of the Goat Street Cafe. He’d torn Tristan out of his sweatpants and lifted him against the wall. He remembered Tristan’s legs wound around his waist, Tristan’s lips on his neck, Tristan’s ass tight around his cock. He pounded him hard and fast, like he was trying to nail him through the wall, and a bag of coffee beans had fallen. The bag had ripped and the beans spilled across the floor, rolling and spiraling out of control. Tristan had giggled in his ear. “Shrinkage.”
“Oh, Mr. Gianni hung up.” Tristan put the phone away. “Something I said?”
Vinny laughed, then shut his mouth to stifle the sound. The loudness of it surprised him.
“You’d think the guy would be more-”
Vinny’s cell phone rang and Tristan smirked. “Bet it’s Mr. Gianni.”
Vinny sighed and picked up the phone. “Hey boss, what’s up?”
“Is it your night on or Falcone’s?”
“Falcone’s,” Vinny answered. “Why? Is he not there?”
“No, he is,” Mr. G. said, then huffed out a petulant sigh. “Where are you?”
“Uh…” Vinny glanced over at Tristan. “Picking up some groceries. You need anything?”
“No.” The boss snorted again. Joe Gianni was a smart kid, younger than Vinny
and his father was the head of the family. But he was a moody man, was needy,
and had a raw temper. “You sure it’s Falcone’s night?”
Vinny drew in a long breath before answering. He had a lot of choice replies all circling around the fact that Mr. G. only gave Vinny one night off. “Yup.”
“Well damn it.” And Mr. G. hung up.
“What was that about?” Tristan asked.
“Just Mr. G. He forgot it was my night off,” Vinny said. “I just hope he
don’t see the car when we get home.”
Tristan leaned against the passenger side door turning his face and body toward Vinny. Vinny wondered what he’d said stupid now. Tristan asked, “you live with Mr. Gianni?”
“I…uh,” Vinny swallowed hard and shrugged. “Yeah.”
“I didn’t know that.”
“Well, it’s hard to guard someone in another house,” Vinny said, then less
defensively, added. “I live in the basement. I have my own room and kitchen and
bathroom and stuff. I just stay in the house.”
Tristan waved it off, “anyways, if I knew you lived with your boss, I wouldn’t have insisted on going to your place.”
Vinny was just turning into the driveway to 833 Rico. “You wanna go-”
“Holy shit, is this where you live?” Tristan leaned forward in the seat.
The Rico house was the Gianni family’s biggest house. It had three stories
and pillars like the White House. Once it was used by an Indie picture as a
mansion. “In the basement.”
“Can’t wait to see the inside.”
“Just the basement.”
Tristan smirked at him. “Just the bedroom’s fine, honey.”
The guy looked me up and down with great interest. "You could stand to put on a little weight," he said with a snicker. "But you've sure got a great looking cock."...
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