Saige has had a horrible experience, but is fortunately no worse for it. Worried about her, Brodie decides she’s going to stay with him. However, after some discussion, they decide she’ll stay overnight with Stan’s sister, Suzie. Now, she has to call Romy and give him the bad news.
“What about that new boyfriend of yours?”
“He’s out of town, Mom. Believe me, if he weren’t he’d be here. But I’ve got Suzie and the guys. I’m fine.”
“If you’re sure?”
“I’m sure. I need to call Romy now, Mom.”
“Why upset the man when he’s not even in town?”
“Because he’d be more upset if I don’t and he finds out later from someone else.”
“You be careful, honey.”
Hesitating a moment, she made the call to Romy. She had expected to get his voice mail, but he answered happily.
“Hey, love. I was just about to call you. It was a bloody long flight, but I’m here safe. What’s up?”
She told him about the incident in the bathroom. There was a throbbing, resounding silence on the other end of the phone. She could hear him breathing. It was the only reason she knew he hadn’t hung up.
“But you’re all right, yeah?”
“Except for a headache, I’m okay. Don’t worry, I’m going to stay over with Suzie.”
“That’s Stan sister? The black belt?”
“That’s our Suzie.”
“Cool. Look I’m sending a couple of my mates over. They’ll watch your back tonight. They will identify themselves as friends of mine and call me by Romany. So that you can be sure they are who they say they are, I will give them very specific facts that only you and I know anything about. It’s going to have to be something rather private, I’m afraid.”
“How about details about that tattoo on your….”
“Never mind that one. I’ve got the perfect thing. You’re not to worry, understand?”
“Yes, I understand. And don’t you worry either. I’m fine.”
“Let me talk to Brodie.”
“Sure.” She handed her boss the phone. “He wants to talk to you.”
“Okay.” He looked puzzled, but took the phone. “Romy?”
“Look, mate, I need you to keep an eye on her during the day. Don’t even let her take a piss alone.”
“Kind of hard to do when we’re working.”
“Can you take the day off tomorrow?”
“Yeah, sure we can.”
“Okay, work from home if you have to, but I’m counting on you to keep her safe.”
“Who’s behind this?” Brodie walked away from the group, lowering his voice.
“Some very nasty blokes,” Romy told him. “I really can’t be specific, you know that.”
“Do you think they’re trying to kill her?”
“No, I think they’re sending me a message that I’m vulnerable. This relationship came at a bloody awful time, but God, she’s intoxicating.”
“Yeah, she is,” Brodie tried not to sound too disappointed.
“Sorry.” Romy chuckled weakly. “I feel so helpless. You know what to do if you need help.”
“Yeah. I’ve got you covered.”
“I better call my men. Keep her there til they show and call me as soon as they arrive.”
“Okay. Talk to you later.”
“Yeah. See ya.”
Brodie hung up the phone and sat down to his cold meal. He was so hungry, he didn’t mind that the meat was chilly and his potato barely warm.
About twenty minutes before closing, two large, intimidating men walked in looking for Saige. Suzie stayed close, all her friends circled her protectively.
“I’m Brent. This is Trevor. We’re friends of Romany.” They smiled, shaking Saige’s hand.
“You’re supposed to tell me something so I know you are who you say.”
The men exchanged a rather embarrassed look.
“Maybe you’d like to step apart,” Trevor suggested.
“It’s of rather delicate, personal nature,” Brent nodded.
Saige stepped away from her friends, over by the empty pool table. They didn’t want to look at her, but finally Brent spoke.
“He said to tell you that he enjoyed licking the lovely mole on your lower abdomen, not far from….”
“Yes, well,” Saige stopped him. “I believe you’re friends of Romy’s. I’m gonna make him pay for that little tidbit.”