4 AM


It was 4 o’clock in the morning in a speakeasy bar when Charlie made the decision to go with a working girl back to her residence.  He knew it was wrong but he was drunk and in a horny state. He didn't care at this stage of the game- it was time to release some pent up energy.  This was Charlie's mindset, this was his mission, a friendly exchange of services - lust for money.

Earlier that day, Charlie arrived for the Holidays to spend some time with family and friends. In the daytime he caught up with his family to receive hugs, kisses and to get caught up in all of the family gossip, but in the back of his mind he couldn’t wait for his childhood friends to pick him up later that evening.  His chums were also in the same predicament-moved away from home for work only to comeback for the annual holiday visits. To Charlie, all of this family shit was too much at some point.

At 10 that night, his friends finally arrived and decided that the best way to catch up was going bar-hopping. One beer became a shot, a shot became three and so on and so on. Until, they made their way to the speakeasy bar that was Charlie’s favorite spot.  This establishment is never closed and is open twenty four seven (with the exception of Christmas morning).  After a beer and yet another shot, Charlie went outside to smoke a cigarette when a girl, who followed right behind him, asked if he had a cig to spare. Charlie gave her one and a conversation soon ensued.  Her name was Nicole and she told Charlie what she did for a living and that if he was interested in her services she’ll be in the bar for another hour. She went back inside as he glared at her figure.  He pondered her proposal for a brief moment and decided that it didn't sound all that bad to him. She wasn't that bad looking (some would say cute), she had an hour glass figure, smelled good and can hold a conversation. He took one last drag of his cigarette and said, “Fuck it!! I’m gonna get laid.”

He went back to the bar told his friends he was taking a cab home and then gestured to Nicole to meet him outside. As soon as Nicole walked outside, he asked, “How do we do this”?

Well my place is just a block away.”

Charlie wanted to make sure he heard her right and repeated, “So, at your place right?”

"Yeah, don’t worry ‘bout a thing. I’m gonna take real good care of you.”

This put Charlie’s mind at ease and they proceeded to walk towards Nicole’s place. Nothing much was said, just an uncomfortable silence that goes along with a nerve of anticipation of what’s to come. He was just glad he didn’t have to get a hotel room at 4am.

When they arrived at Nicole’s residence, they headed back towards the opened bedroom, she was on one side of the bed and he was on the other. She was disrobing and he quickly took off his shirt and pants. In the back of his mind, he wondered why they didn’t discuss the price.  Suddenly, he heard a strange noise.  A noise that sounded like somebody or someone was rolling something toward the bedroom door.  All of a sudden the bedroom door closed and a man in a wheelchair appeared. He said, “My name is Stanley and that’s my girl you’re about to get with and if you get with one of my girls you have to follow some standards.”

Charlie looked at Stanley and thought to himself that he’s getting punked by a wheelchair pimp.

So Charlie replied,  “Hey Man, I don’t know you and I don’t know where you came from, but if you don’t get away from that door I’m going to knock you off that chair.”

Stanley replied angrily, “You try to show me up?

Charile retorted, “Man, you better move away from that door. This interaction was between me and Nicole not you and me.”

"Well the situation change.”

Charlie quickly figured out that there wasn’t an impasse with Stanley so he picked up his belongings and kicked Stanley’s wheelchair over (with Stanley in it). He opened the bedroom door and bolted out the front door running down the street in his socks and boxer briefs with his pair of shoes in one hand and his clothing and personal items in the other.  When he had gained some distance from that unusual house of ill repute, Charlie stopped to catch his breath and quickly put on his shoes and clothes by the side of an abandoned church.

He made his way back to the speakeasy bar and was surprised to find his friends were still there.  One of them said, “We thought we'd wait for you because we know you wouldn’t be long.” Laughter filled the air and Charlie was hurrying his friend out of the bar knowing that Stanley or Nicole might soon be there. They quickly made it to their car and while driving away he saw Nicole eyeing the car as Charlie and his friends drove away.  Looking at Nicole from the safety of the car, filled Charlie with a sense of relief that he made it out in one piece.

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