They got out and approached the house. All the lights were blazing, and some kid they didn’t know let them in. The parties were usually downstairs and tonight was no exception. The huge basement ran the length and breadth of the house. There was a small bathroom downstairs she could change into. She’d brought her CDs, but sometimes the guys had music they wanted her to dance to. Monica found Blake. “Where’s the money?”
“Right here.” He fanned the money out so she could see it. She’d never seen this much money at once, except for her stash at home. She counted it, then handed it to Nick.
“I’m gonna go change. I’ve got my music right here. The CDs are in this order. Track one for the first song, track six for the second, track nine for the third, track two for the fourth, and track seven for dance five.”
Monica changed into her first outfit and shivered. She just wanted to get this over and done with as quickly as possible. When she was dressed, Nick, who was hovering by the door, asked one of the guys to cue the music. Monica strutted out to whoops and yells. Britney Spears’s “I’m a Slave 4 U” pounded out of the speakers. Monica had seen the video for the song, but hadn’t liked Britney’s outfit. For this particular routine, Monica wore a little black velvet dress, stiletto heels, and what looked like diamond jewelry. Sort of cocktail-party-meets-jewelry-smuggler. Underneath it all, she had the push up bra, panties, stockings, and garter belt. Strategically-placed zippers made it easier to get out of the dress smoothly. She made her way around the room, rubbing up against some of the guys, rolling around on the bar, and basically making use of whatever was in the basement to make for an interesting show. She threw in a few belly dancing moves, which was her own private joke. She’d studied up on the art form, and while the western world seemed to mistake it for pornography, Monica had discovered it was something women could call their own. It was empowering, and even though she didn’t need that, it was kind of a fuck you to stick an ancient art form that was created for women, by women in her routine. Besides, there was something about her belly roll, especially when she reversed it, that really got the boys going. Her first dance ended with her in the lap of a freshman, with her huge, perfect breasts rubbing his face, and her hands gently caressing his crotch. The song ended to raucous applause, and she bounced back to the bathroom to change for her number.
Somewhere around Monica’s third song, a Pontiac Grand Prix nosed its way carefully down Tim Goldworthy’s short street. A man, about 25, carefully studied the cars and stopped when he saw a late-model blue Mustang. He hopped out and noted the license plate. It was a vanity number, which read “George.” He counted the other cars parked on the street. Eighteen. Obviously a party. The man took a picture of the “George” plate with his cell phone, then pulled into the driveway of the house across the street, backed down, and drove off.
About twenty minutes later, Monica was done. Talking with Blake, she emphasized that the party be kept secret. “This cannot get out, do you understand me? It cannot get out.”
Blake smiled. “Uh huh. What’s with you? You used to be our favorite party girl. The St. Veronica Slut. Now you’re going undercover? What up?”
“I shouldn’t be doing this anymore. It took them a while, but the administration is coming down on me. I promised to tone it down. This is like the end. Seriously.”
In more ways than one. Blake promised to tip off Houlihan if he heard anything about Monica getting loose again. Blake was a fairly good student, but he was going to need help with the SATs, which were coming up. Houlihan promised that he would see a vast improvement. All he needed to do was to keep an eye on Monica.
“So, what’s my incentive?” asked Blake.
“Excuse me?” Monica didn’t like where this was going.
“What’s my incentive to keep my mouth shut?”
Monica was momentarily speechless. “Because I told you to keep your mouths shut. That’s why.”
“I think I deserve a little bit of money back to keep our mouths shut. Like maybe, all the money. How about that, bitch? It’s 30 against 2. If we want our money back, we can get it.”
A flutter of panic hit Monica. She’d never felt in danger, not even naked in front of teenage boys. They wouldn’t dare harm a princess like her. Would they? She gripped her bag with her outfits closer to her. She and Nick started for the stairs.
Blake cut them off. “What about it? What’s our incentive? It doesn’t have to be cash, you know.” The expression on his face made Monica queasy. She felt a little dizzy, like things were slipping out of control.
“Keep your fucking mouth shut.”
“Make us,” taunted Blake.
She turned around. “Nick.”
The hoody, tall kid reached under his coat, which he hadn’t taken off the whole time, and pulled out a Glock 19. Blake backed up and tripped on the steps. “Holy Shit! He’s got a gun!”
“You will keep your mouths shut. I will keep the money. And you will let us leave,” intoned Monica, sounding a lot more confident than she felt.
Blake scrambled up the steps. “Let them out of here!” He yelled. “Shows over! Get them out of here, now!”