Read an Excerpt
So If You can't Breathe ... You Might Be Hemmed In!
By BILL JONES
Trafford PublishingCopyright © 2013 Bill Jones
All rights reserved.
The room was filled with the stench of toxic chemicals and cigar smoke as the beautiful body of a fashion model was being massaged, by an equally gorgeous carefully styled and classy long haired brunette. The clothing of the corpse was neatly set aside on a marble dressing table top; a modest cloth covering her genitals as she lay on the slab.
'Gotta make sure, that nasty rigor mortis don't get ya,' she said as she bent and flexed the dead girl's legs, gently manipulating and kneading her arms and inner thigh muscles.
She then started to mix the disinfectant, measuring up the germicidal solutions at the same time. Looking up at the ceiling the dull thud of some inane singer had begun to irritate her and seemed to put her off her stride for a moment. She was not sure where the sound was coming from but decided to find out.
The soft sea mist caressed her cheeks as she leaned against the open door, a small group of Rasta men and women were down at the end of the beach with powerful CD players and portable speakers, having a marijuana beach party.
She blew a lung full of cigar smoke out toward the ocean; it was like playing a game she thought, a lung full of smoke out to sea in return for an earful of repetitive reggae music which wafted back at her across the top of the waves. Bob Marley music reduced her nipples to raisins and curdled her milk. Deliberating for a moment, she closed the door to the sea shutting out the music she hated most.
Stubbing out her cigar and in one well practiced movement turned the body of Shelley Danzig face down on the embalming bench, then switching on a portable paint compressor that chortled, coughed and chugged into life.
'This is the part you're gonna love,' she frowned as she sprayed a spot of red paint onto the dead girl's anus.
* * *
Landon Otter was a 55 year old retired architect, who by default had a penchant for fashion photography since he was a child, and was in the true sense of the word 'in the right place at the right time.
Landon, with his Nikon and gadget bag of equipment, cruised along the coastline for two years enjoying the tranquility of retirement, popping off a myriad of impressive photographs.
Out of the blue one summer morning Joey Garcia, the features editor of the Gainesville Gazette asked him to produce a fashion feature for the paper. In no time at all Landon was big news in Porta Bella and was hob knobbing with some 'high people in places'.
He'd purchased an old airport and double hanger at Greenfield Close about 15 kilometers out of Gainesville central, that once belonged to a long departed Woodstock rock star. Landon converted it into a high end 2000 square meter digital photographic studio, accommodating mega projects, the likes of photographing Super Lear Jets against green screen backdrops. He'd also built a large swimming pool that stretched along the edge of the landing strip. Most of Landon Otter's clients flew in to brief him.
'Make her face a bit softer Jed,' Landon shouted across the studio floor.
'But don't change the backdrop lighting; it has to be flat for the key.'
'How's that look, talk me through boss.'
Landon came up from the television playback.
'Backdrops good Jed, but soften her skin just a tad more.... Angie stop moving around Jed's trying to light you.'
'Sorry Landon I'm getting my period.' Angie replied, tears welling in her eyes.
'You're having your period and I'm having the clients attorney removed from my arse at lunchtime ... I'm a day behind ... Make up! Please powder Angie down, she's shining.... that's looking good Jed, make up! Where's makeup?' He shouted again.
'Do I still have an assistant or is he having a period as well ...?'
'Nick Boucher ... where are you, God's calling?' Jed hollered.
Landon put his arm around Angie as the makeup artiste appeared, powdering her down.
'Remember when you look up don't move too far to the left because in the edit I will be placing a five story Chinese Dragon towering menacingly over you, he will be moving around a lot, so only move within the area I've given you.'
'Cool.' Angie replied.
The makeup artiste fluffed Angie's hair and turned to Landon.
'Do you like the fringe Landon?' she enquired.
'Jane my darling ... I live on it?'
'Okay guys and girls, are we ready? Standby, let's get this shot before the director has another birthday on this commercial?'
'Nick Boucher you could have a very brief movie career.... Okay standby, let's go.' Landon clapped his hands dancing a couple of rusty steps from an Irish jig, as he headed for the camera.
* * *
It was pandemonium on the terrace deck at the Park Lane Hotel with guests and VIP's doing what they do best—mingling. A large bank of press paparazzi was pushing their way through security guards and barriers to get their final shot and interview for the night. It was the end of an exclusive fashion show, one of the most prestigious in Gainesville.
Malik Darnell the Master of Ceremonies was at the microphone trying desperately to be heard above the noise of the crowd.
'Well that's it folks, thank you for being with us as our honoured guests on a very cold and rainy evening. You have had the pleasure to experience an exclusive preview of Cortez Linn's beautiful up and coming summer range. I'm sure you will all agree that Cortez has once again scooped the Bianca Connatto award, his third season concurrently. Here they are ladies and gentlemen, a big hand for Cortez Linns and Bianca Connatto.'
The audience erupted into a wave of pride and loud applause, with some of the press breaking ranks to go in on close-ups.
It was followed suddenly by a second roar as they saw a radiant Leigh Robertson appearing through the curtains on the far end of the ramp, she was proudly holding the trophy high above her head.
'Will you look at this ladies and gentlemen, they've been joined by our most beautiful Leigh Robertson; this deserves another big hand for Porta Bella's most stunning model, who will now present the trophy to Cortez Linns, put your hands together for our very own Leigh Robertson ladies and gentleman!' Malik screamed with excitement.
Television camera's travelled through excited audiences, revealing brief glimpses of local and international celebrities as well as Gainesville town officials, including Mayor Ruben Novac seated in the front row....
'A special thank you to Senator Wilkinson and his lovely wife Adele ... and of course Brennan Lieber and Jack Dell, oh my goodness there are just so many people to thank. Please join us for a cocktail after the show. It's a really bad night to be out so grab a Martini and mingle till the morning. God bless and good night.'
The foyer was buzzing with activity as the press pushed and shoved grabbing the last shots for the dailies.
Malik Darnell, Brennan Lieber, Cortez Linns and Bianca Connatto were in conversation when Leigh Robertson joined them smiling graciously.
Cortez and Bianca smiled as she hugged them both, with Cortez kissing her on both cheeks.
'As usual you did me proud my darling ... thank you.'
Cortez addressed Leigh Robertson.
'.... and I take it you've met Brennan Lieber he owns Perspective in Motion, by far the most innovative sculpture and art gallery in the state, as well as YOU AT A GLANCE, the world renowned fashion magazine ... is that not a fact my darling?'
Brennan kissed Leigh's hand repeatedly until she diplomatically withdrew from his grip.
'Ah Cortez,' he said winking at Leigh jokingly.
'Everything he says of course is true and he exaggerates so convincingly.' Leigh was unsure as when to say what, so playing it safe, she said nothing.
'You are also a very rich and successful man Mr Lieber, so I don't doubt for a second that anything is not true,' she said suddenly and quite convincingly.
'If I come as highly recommended as that Miss Robertson, how can I possibly question the integrity of Cortez Linns, oh my God, I suddenly feel a rush of ego overtaking me,' he said as Leigh giggling cutely dived back into Mix It on her mobile. Cortez excused himself.
'Would you join me for a drink at the bar? Let's have something to warm us up before braving the weather. It's simply appalling out there!' Brennan whispered with oodles of panache.
'Thank you kindly Mr Lieber, I would love to, but I dare not—I have a 4.00am call to be on set, so I have to get some sleep.'
'Oh my God no, not another Charlize Theron wannabee!' he muttered clutching his forehead.
'It's all too much my darling, but I do understand,' he kissed her hand again.
'Well, maybe some other time, it was wonderful meeting you.'
Brennon winced; he felt a headache coming on as he watched her exit with a diligent concierge trotting alongside with an umbrella, offering her cover from the incessant rain.
* * *
Donny Black and Leigh Robertson were surrounded by technicians in the make-up room at Ark Studios. They were being powdered down by make-up artists, dressed by wardrobe and wired for sync sound. Larry Porter was running a radio microphone through Leigh's panties and down the inside of her leg.
'If you touch my genitals you'll have to marry me,' Leigh gently remarked as he fumbled around in her panties.
'I don't normally do this on a first date,' he mumbled, finally getting the lapel microphone through.
'You're quite safe, I don't like them shaved,' he smiled as she showed him the finger.
Leigh flinched briefly as Larry fumbled with the microphone cable taping it to her stomach.
'Hey be careful, mind my gecko!' she muttered.
'I've never heard it called that before.'
Leigh reacted by slapping him playfully on his arm.
'My gecko is a ring through my navel ... arsehole!'
With a crash the door burst open as the big-breasted production lady, Whitney Brown entered waving a revised call sheet. Pausing briefly, noticing Larry with his hand down the front of Leigh's denim pants.
'Listen up, listen up! God has spoken and when God speaks, we usually go into overtime and make a shitload more money.' The chief make-up artist Sue Norman was applying eyeliner to Leigh. She looked up disapprovingly.
'Whitney, will you just put the call sheet on the desk, do you have to come bursting in like a fucking nymphomaniac on death row?'
She stopped and stared at Leigh and Larry again.
'Due to the pissing rain, he has moved sequences 19 and 23 indoors, and once you two have finished with foreplay, I suggest you read the changes; it might be quite important that you arrive bright eyed and squeaky clean.'
She chuckled, gesturing with both her hands.
'Because in case you didn't know, you're in the movie!' she exited giggling.
* * *
Brennan Lieber was standing next to a large superbly lit life size sculpture on the main exhibition area of Perspective in Motion in down town Gainesville.
One of Gainesville's most prominent business entrepreneurs Lawrence Jackson and his wife Althea were admiring this spectacular work of art.
People mingled amongst the exhibits; business was brisk for Brennan.
'Lawrence darling, this is just perfect for Boca Rotan, it's symmetric, has movement and is so divine, don't you think, darling?'
Lawrence agreed and interrupted Brennan, who was busy closing another deal.
'I assume it would be $150 000, Mr Lieber?' enquired Lawrence.
Brennan excused himself briefly, apologizing to his client and turning towards Lawrence.
'.... please excuse me, that is correct, its $150 000.'
'My wife loves it—I'll take it.'
'A wise decision Lawrence.'
* * *
'It's an old and tired cliché but life is about choices, I chose to be a model and you chose to do drugs and sleep with trash!' Juliana Crane ranted at her twin sister Monique, over a bottle wine on the terrace of the Angus Tavern on Highway 12, in Morrison Wetland. It was a superb Indian Ocean day with 4 metre swells speckled with every surfer from kilometres around.
'This is exactly what the problem is between you and me my darling sister, you've always considered yourself to be more alluring, more sexy, mysterious and of course with perkier tits.' Monique laughed aloud, turning strangers heads at other tables.
'We're identical twins for Chrisake Monique, we know when either of us are ill or dying, or for that matter taking a pee.' Juliana interrupted.
'Ever since we were kids you were hitting on my guys, hooking them and laying them right under my fucking nose—you're a bitch girl, and sometimes I hate you!.'
'Thanks for those endearing words. Just look at us! We meet once a year to catch up and compare war stories and we're at each other's throats within the first five minutes—I don't know why we fucking bother.'
Monique suddenly burst into tears, with Juliana handing her a handful of tissues.
'We're a mess Julie; we're both wafting around bouncing off people and places, not knowing where we are, where we come from, not a clue about our parents, no fucking childhood memories—we don't even know who our mother is.' She sobbed quietly.
'We might not want to know Sis.' Juliana said almost in a whisper offering another round of tissues.
The silence that hung between them was abruptly jarred back to reality by the sound of a drummer, tapping out a rhythm on a wooden table, encircled by four violinists who commenced with their rendition of 'The Typewriter.' an old pizzicato hit from the fifties.
After barely a minute, the quintet turned heading towards Juliana and Monique.
'Beautiful Senora's eeet iz such a luvaley day, ve are coming to fiddle weeeth you!' said the smiling drummer.
They both sat in silence as the band now in full swing gathered around.
'When last were you plucked?' Juliana joked.
An hour later, a chilled Juliana and Monique waded through the incoming moonlit tide, their arms embracing each other.
'I was hoping we would find time alone Sissy, I've got a huge problem,' she said hesitantly.
'Something happened to me last week and I have no one on this planet, except you, that I trust enough to tell.'
Juliana said suddenly sitting on the damp sand.
'Snap babe! I've been having an affair with Gainesville's 'uno numero' gynaecologist for the last six months.' She said winking at her Julie.
'This baby is dripping with gold and diamonds sister, oh shit! I clean forgot to mention all the properties my darling! Ever heard the name Dr Hymie Traub?'
Juliana stared in disbelief at what Monique had just said, the humid sea breeze suddenly bringing in a chill, a shiver running through her veins.
'What's with you; why the look?' asked Monique with a puzzled expression.
Juliana sat gormlessly looking at her, realising what she was about to divulge, was something so personal, sensitive and fucking difficult to discuss even in a good environment—how was she ever going to divulge this to her sister!
'Hey, are you still with me, why are you looking at me like that?'
'There is no easy way of telling you this—so here goes I'm sorry!'
'Last week I was raped by Dr Hymie Traub in his consulting room, I went for a checkup and he hit on me without taking no for an answer, I fought as hard as I could, he was incredibly strong, eventually overpowering me.' There was a long grueling silence that felt like a decade.
'Christ Julie! What the fuck are you telling me?' Monique yelled.
'When he'd spilled his jollies, I got dressed and he threatened to have me taken out if I reported him, he made it quite clear that he came from the most powerful and influential families in Porta Bella. The little Israeli fuck was pointing his finger at me when I managed to punch him in the face smashing his nose—there was blood everywhere as I ran out the door.'
Enraged by betrayal, anger and blinding jealousy, Monique fumbled through her bag removing a mirror compact and cocaine.
'I can't do this ... shit! My fucking nerves.' She screamed out at the ocean.
'Jesus Julie you've done it to me again—as you have done your entire life!' Monique said 'schnaafing' a line with a $10 note.
'What do you mean by I've done it again, are you suggesting I went to this arsehole to be raped, just to get at you?.... maybe you're suggesting that I've been fucking him at the same time you have—a threesome maybe, but what a good idea! I'm sure that piece of Israeli shit would've loved it ... you need help girl and when you realise it—don't head in my direction!'
* * *
It was an early misty morning at Greenfield Close on the Thompson Valley border. It was 7.00 am as Landon Otter in the throes of leaving with a contingent of crew, 4 X 4 Jeeps loaded with equipment and scantily dressed models, was heading for a 'fashion' shoot deep in the picturesque but daunting region of the Urban River Wetlands.
Detective Keeley Harrington and Detective Barney Corvette were sitting opposite Landon on a large camera case that was ready to be loaded onto the convoy. They were peering at a laptop with images of some of the missing girls.
Excerpted from HEMMED IN by BILL JONES. Copyright © 2013 Bill Jones. Excerpted by permission of Trafford Publishing.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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