Secrets Kept, Lies Told
Secrets Kept, Lies Told
AJ couldn't believe
his eyes, the girl standing in front of him could've been his twin.
He dragged her off the dance floor and towards the table where Nick and
Kevin were sitting.
"Who are you?"
AJ asked bluntly.
"Damn, if you're going
to be so rude about it, I won't answer!" The girl retorted.
Plenty of attitude.
"Look, chick, I don't
have time for this. Who are you?" AJ asked again, loosing his
"My name's Alexa."
"Well, Alexa, I'm AJ,"
AJ said, holding out his hand.
"What, you make it
sound like I should be jumping up and down with joy now that I know your
name," Alexa said.
AJ dropped his hand.
"Look, Alexa, I'm having a very bad day and if you want to make it worse"
"What, you want to
start with a girl? Damn, and I thought Lenny was bad," she said,
the last sentence under her breath.
"Only the biggest sleaze
in the Northern Hemisphere," Alexa answered, crossing her arms. "But
I have to admit, you're coming very close to out-ranking him."
AJ's blood was boiling,
he hated it when people gave him attitude. "Look, you know what?
Take your attitude out of here before I have you thrown out," he said.
"How are you gonna
get me thrown out? What, do you own the place?" She asked,
"No, but I can get
you thrown out of here."
"And I can get you
thrown out of here in a heartbeat. Listen, asshole, I probably have
it a lot worse than you will ever have it, so stop belly-aching about your
horrible day 'cause I'm willing to bet the clothes off my back that my
day has been a thousand times worse," Alexa hissed, getting in AJ's face.
"Is that a dare?"
"You bet your sorry
scrawny ass it is," Alexa whispered back. AJ's
face was getting hot and he dragged Alexa out of the club. He pulled
her over to the side, away from the people on line waiting to get in. "You
know something, normally, I wouldn't even bother, but I'm actually rather
interested as to what you're going to say, so go right ahead."
"No, you first, big
shot, show your hand," Alexa said, relaxing into her stance of arm's crossed
and her weight resting on one leg.
"Ok, we'll start with
this morning. I woke up an hour late, couldn't find any clean clothes,
was late for a rehearsal, had a fight with my mother, had a fight with
my manager, got dragged to a signing, got writer's cramp, and then I found
out I was pick pocketed more than three hundred dollars worth. How's
that for a bad day?" AJ challenged.
Alexa's pretty face
screwed up in anger. "You don't know what a bad day is until you've
been chased all around Orlando by a pimp who considers you his property,
then chased by one of his friends insisting that you give him what he wants,
then have to hunt for food to live, and then have to find a nice place
to stay the night, praying to God that you won't die mysteriously at night
or be found by someone you wish not to be found by," she practically whispered.
"So don't you tell me about bad days, I out-rank you by far."
AJ stepped back, amazed
by what she just told him. "I... I'm sorry."
"Yeah, well, I'm sorry
too. I wanted to go out and have a good time, but no, someone had
to come along and ruin it all. Well, thank you Mr. McLean, I've had
enough. Good bye and good riddance!" Alexa exclaimed, walking
"Wait a minute!" AJ
said, realizing something. He grabbed her arm. "What did you
just call me?"
"No, you said Mr. McLean."
"No, I didn't, I said
"Wait a second, I saw
you outside of the record store this afternoon. You were walking
around with a walletâ?¦" AJ vaguely remembered seeing her
walking into an alley with a wallet, then returning without one.
"You're the pickpocket! You're the one who took my money!"
Alexa broke away from
him and started running. AJ started after her, not intending to stop
until he got his money back.
'Good going, Alexa,
just next time, why don't you just blurt out that you took all his money?'
Alexa scolded herself. She kept on running, holding her pocketbook
tightly. She didn't want to loose all the money she'd worked so hard
for. She darted down one street after another, taking the back route
to the church. She turned another corner and came face to face with
someone she really didn't want to see.
"Hey, whore, where've
you been? Getting ready for my guests tonight?" Lenny asked,
"No, you sorry ass,
I haven't," Alexa said. She started to run away, but Lenny darted
forward and held her around her waist.
"Oh no, whore, you
aren't going anywhere. You never give my guests what they want, but
you are tonight," Lenny said, running his hands over her body.
Alexa squirmed in his arms,
trying to break free. "Never, let me go, I'm not your goddamn slut,"
"Sure you are, come
along quietly or I'll make you quiet." Lenny was practically threatening
her. She kept on squirming and heard footsteps, AJ.
"AJ!" She screamed.
"AJ, help me!" She yelled.
AJ finally came around
the corner, breathing hard. He caught his breath quickly, seeing
Alexa. "What the hell... my day keeps getting worse and worse."
"AJ, help me here,
please!" Alexa begged. She had to get out somehow, she was
not going to be Lenny's toy tonight.
"Who the hell is this,
whore, your twin?" Lenny asked, gesturing to AJ.
"No, you ass-wipe, he's my
boyfriend, now let me go!" Alexa exclaimed, still trying to get out
of his grasp.
"Let her go," AJ said,
"Says you and what
army?" Lenny threatened.
"Me and him," some
one said. Alexa looked up and saw the two tall guys from the club,
standing in front of the short one she was dancing with. One guy
was blond, the other had dark hair.
"All right, you get
her tonight, but I will be back for you, whore, I promise you," Lenny said.
He threw Alexa on the ground and walked away.
"Hey, are you ok?"
The blond guy asked, walking forward.
Alexa remembered just
what she was running from before and scrambled to her feet, starting to
"Catch her, Nick, she
stole my money!" AJ cried out. Alexa ran as fast as she could,
but the other guy was too fast for her and he caught up with her.
"Ok, will someone tell
me what is going on here and why I'm trying to keep her from running away?"
The blond guy asked, carrying Alexa back over to where AJ was standing.
"I ain't saying jack
shit until you tell me who your goons are and why the hell you all followed
me," Alexa said, struggling against the blond guy.
"That's Nick, that's Kevin,
and that's Brian. Now, where's my money?" AJ demanded.
"I'm wearing it, asshole,"
"You think a homeless
girl could afford this outfit? Puh-lease, what planet are you living
on?" Alexa asked exasperatedly.
"You went out and spent
"Not all of it... most
"You goddamn bitch"
"Hey, hey, don't start
calling names now," the tall dark-haired guy, Kevin, interrupted.
"Alexa, right? Alexa, how did you steal AJ's money in the first place?"
"Easy, no one realizes
the quiet girl that sneaks around the back when there are a bunch of loud
ones in front of them," Alexa answered, finally stopping her struggle.
The blond guy, Nick, was too strong for her.
"You were at the signing?
You were the one who robbed all those people?" AJ asked incredulously.
"You make it sound
like I robbed a bank! I pick pocketed three people, then found your
wallet. If I'd found yours first, I wouldn't have had to taken anyone
else's," Alexa answered frankly.
"Give me the rest of
the money," AJ demanded.
"Tell Rambo here to
let go of me and I will!" Alexa exclaimed. Nick finally let
go of her and she backed away from him, reaching for her purse. She
made it look like she was busy opening it, then made a break for it.
She could hear them yelling behind her and someone running after her, but
she didn't look back. She got to the same alley as that afternoon
when Lenny was chasing her and climbed over the fence. She turned
and came face to face with Nick.
"Alexa, please, don't
disappear," he begged, out of breath.
"Sorry, baby face,
I gotta survive," Alexa said, softening. She remembered what she
was doing and ran out of the alley and to the church. She opened
the door with the key and locked the door behind her. She walked
quietly to her cot and replaced the key, then laid down and fell asleep.