“Aren’t you going to get that?”
Evangeline’s eyes averted his angry stare, moving
from the cell phone hanging from his belt clip, and
reluctantly back his intense blue eyes. She was
holding her breath, trying not to seem nervous. But
John knew her, he knew her body, and when his hands
had moved over her hip he had felt it. John’s hands
had frozen on the spot, and for some reason she had
chosen to move away, chosen to shut him out. He
couldn’t know. John wouldn’t let it rest, and she
couldn’t ask him too. She had to steer clear of
He still hadn’t moved. He just stood there deathly
still; his breathing slow and steady. He knew
something was up, Evangeline could only hope that he
had not put things together yet. Suddenly in one swift
move he reached for his phone, and with one button cut
short the shrill ring that penetrated the silence.
“Tell me what’s going on, NOW.”
He didn’t raise his voice, but there was something in
the way the words escaped his lips that made her cold
inside. He was boiling from the inside, his eyes
As he moved towards her, she heard the knock on the
door sound loudly startling her.
But even as he spoke she was already at the door,
turning the knob, before a tall uniformed policeman
came into view.
“Lieutenant,” the tall blond nodded to Evangeline,
before averting his eyes over her head, addressing
“Sir, you’re needed at the station, we have a
John looked at the rookie, then down at the woman in
front of him. He knew it was important. Johnson
wouldn’t have come up if it wasn’t. He saw Evangeline
step aside, holding the door open. She had that look
in her eye, the same one she always had when he was
called away. But something was different, this time
she wanted him to go.
“Johnson, I want you to stay here tonight. No one
comes and goes without you checking with me. Got it!”
His voice raised several decibels; the young office
nodded his head in agreement, fear emanating from his
“John, I don’t need-”, she started in barely a
“Don’t argue with me.”
He walked past her, not looking at her. John had never
cut her off before, not like that. Instantly there was
an emptiness there, the warmth that shot like
electricity between them whenever they were close was
gone, and she felt alone.
“I’ll be back as soon as I can.”
Evangeline closed the door behind him after he left.
Her hands immediately moved to her side where the pain
had escalated. The tears she had fought back made a
path down her face. She stared at the darkening bruise
on her side, something was wrong, maybe broken.
Evangeline hugged her slender arms round her upper
body in effort to kill the pain. She had wanted John
to stay so badly, but all she could think of were
Sonia’s words, “You never know who might get hurt”
Evangeline wasn’t left to her own thoughts for too
long; the sound of her own phone forced her to make
her way over to the couch. Part of her wished it was
John calling, part of her wished…
“Evangeline,” RJ’s voice was unmistakable, the sound
of it made her want to throw up.
“Don’t hang up on me please,” His voice was shaky as
he pleaded, and for a moment she felt sorry for him,
at the same time her hands moved to her neck, the skin
still burned where he had sucked the life from her.
Before she could change her mind the phone was slammed
back onto the receiver. The sound of his voice made
her shiver, and for a moment she just stared at it
watching it as it rang and rang. How dare he! HOW DARE
“Call me again RJ, and I’ll go straight to the
“Evangeline please, please. I dunno what came over me.
I just- I just,”
“You just what RJ, just had an overwhelming urge to
end my life. You know John was right about you. You’re
so filled with hate all you know is how to hurt
people, even the ones who care about you the most. Do
you really hate me that much…”
The tears were evident in her voice, she was angry and
frustrated, how could she have been such a fool.
“…Van, whatever happened between us, whoever you’re
with, I have and will always care about you. I just- I
lost it when I realized how much you despised me, how
much you hated me.”
“RJ, you tried to KILL me! After everything we’d been
through, you actually laid you hands on me. You had no
right, RJ, no right!”
“Van, I don’t know what to say, except, I’m sorry, I
am so sorry.”
He sounded near tears himself, the strong stubborn
cynical RJ was gone and in his place was a guilt
ridden man who had hurt someone he truly loved.
“RJ”, her voice was still angry but lower,”I just
can’t trust you. And John, Oh God, I don’t know what
“You haven’t told McBain?” For a moment it was back
to same old RJ, she could read the envy in his voice
at the mention of John.
“No, thanks to your buddy Sonia. Stay away from him
RJ, I mean it. You and Sonia stay far away from John
or so help me God, I won’t rest till your serving life
in Sing Sing.”
She was deadly serious and for the first time RJ was
afraid of her, if anyone made good on their promises
it was definitely Evangeline Williamson.
His voice broke off as Van heard voices and suddenly
there was a scuffle in the background, RJ was
exchanging words with some people, no someone. The
phone suddenly went dead, she knew that person, she
knew that voice.
Without thinking twice Evangeline rushed into her
bedroom. She changed into a pair of jeans and gray
sweater, wincing painfully as she did so. Five minutes
later, grabbing her cell phone from the charger and
her purse she was out the front door.
The uniformed officer was slouched in the lone
armchair that occupied the hallway. His movements
seemed automated as he jumped to attention when he
“Ms Williamson, I have strict orders from the
Lieutenant, not to let you out of my sight.”
He seemed nervous; no doubt John had put the fear of
God into him.
“Look, Johnson right? You can either come along with
me and keep an eye on me that way; or you can run back
to John McBain and have him chew your head off.”
“Either way I’m screwed,” he shrugged.
He was right; John being John would make his life hell
“Right, then that’s settled.”
RJ hadn’t heard the door when Agustico Santi had
entered Capricorn. Within moments his nightclub seemed
overcrowded, the bar dominated by Tico and his over
dressed cronies. He hated hanging up on Evangeline,
leaving things the way they were. He really did love
her in his own way, the scene from earlier that night
kept replaying in the back of his mind. It was like a
bad dream, he had never laid a hand on a woman before.
RJ was a lot of things but violence towards women had
never been his style. But Evangeline was different.
RJ’s thoughts returned to the matter at hand. He had
hoped to have a little more time to get his affairs in
order before Tico and his bull dogs came sniffing
around. Months ago, after introduction through Sonia,
he had quickly established a symbiotic business
relationship with Santi’s son. They dealt in
everything from import, exports, antiques, priceless
collectibles, the occasional real estate deal, all
mixed in with the drug exporting, money laundering and
Tico’s favorite, the political arena. With his rise to
power, Kevin Buchanan had become a pawn in their game,
he was the front man and they reaped the benefits,
keeping him in power for the price of his soul.
RJ was doing extremely well; he didn’t even need his
clubs anymore, although he was enjoying making Balsom
squirm over Ultra Violet. He had been getting a pretty
good cut so far but he also knew Tico was doing much
better and that just wasn’t going to do. So with the
help of Lindsey Rappaport the two had concocted a
scheme to embezzle what they termed “rightfully his”
from the Santi millions. But things hadn’t gone
according to plan, and now Santi Jr. was mad, and
looking for revenge. He was so much like his father,
with ice running through his veins. RJ was a dangerous
criminal but Augustico Santi was a different caliber
of criminal. Randall J. Gannon was a man who prided
himself on being able to get out of every bind, but
with this man he wasn’t so sure.
Augustico,” RJ nodded acknowledging the goon squad,
“this is so unlike the son of Manuel Santi. You bust
into my club, throwing around unfounded accusations, I
don’t know whether to be scared or flattered.” He
cocked an eyebrow playfully. RJ watched as Tico moved
about Capricorn, studying each aspect of the space
from the floor, to the furniture, a look of clear
disdain written clearly on his face.
“Mr. Gannon,” he said in that European drawl of his.
He then said, “My sources inform me you have been
rather unsatisfied with your share of the profits. It
seems you have been, how do the say, caught with your
hand in the cookie jar.”
“Now, now Tico, I assure you, my dealing with you- and
yours have been of the utmost-“
“I have to tell you RJ,” Tico said making his way
toward his side of the bar, “If there’s one thing I
don’t appreciate, its disloyalty. I trusted you
because my father trusted you. But something tells me,
I’m not the first Santi to fall victim to your greed.”
Tico’s eyes burned into RJ, and for a moment it was
like looking into the eyes of a ghost, the ghost of
“What do you want?” RJ had had enough of this small
If Augustico was anything like his father, this
insubordination would not go unpunished. He put on his
game face, the same face he used to win over the
competition and seal the deal. But this could prove to
be the biggest deal of all, he was bargaining for his
For a long time Tico didn’t answer, instead he walked
back behind the bar, closer to RJ. There he playfully
held, one after another, the three framed pictures
that sat behind the bar. The first was of his
daughter, Kerri, her beautiful smile beamed at him as
Tico flashed the picture towards him for RJ to see.
The next was of little Jamie, Tico beamed at her head
shot, the same smile that he reserved for the real
“Ah, my dear niece, the Santi heir,” the words sent a
shiver down even RJ’s spine.
The last picture he paid much closer attention to. His
expression slowly moved from that of confusion to one
of clarity and finally his features settled into a
“Oh, yes. The famous Evangeline Williamson,” Tico
RJ felt his heart skip a beat. He scanned the room,
from where Tico was standing to where his henchmen
stood deathly still, awaiting their orders.
“Exactly what are you going to do?”
Tico was still staring at the picture of Evangeline.
He smiled one last time before replying.
“What am I going to do, indeed?”
Sonia Toledo had broken several speed limits as she
made her way back to Capricorn. Eleanor had informed
her of the latest development. RJ and Tico…
But why? Tico never met his business associates in
person, especially associates the likes of Gannon. But
if what the informant had reported seeing was true,
this thing with RJ was running deeper than she
thought. RJ had never once mentioned his meetings with
Tico, and from the reports it didn’t look like the
first time either. She knew RJ had worked for Manuel,
once, a long time ago. But who would have thought he
would pick up with the son.
Sonia had read her cards earlier that night, and she
knew tonight could only spell trouble. From the gala
to the incident with Evangeline. He seemed on edge
all night. Was he losing it? Sonia hated that someone
like Evangeline Williamson was caught in the middle of
all this. She seemed innocent enough, a straight laced
lawyer, how the hell she ever ended up with RJ was
beyond comprehension. But Sonia also new, that
wherever Evangeline was, John McBain was never far
behind. She couldn’t afford having him around. She
was up to her neck in this Santi mess and had given it
three long years of her life. The last thing she
needed was McBain and his girlfriend coming in to
screw things up for her.
As Sonia pulled up to the club, she immediately
recognized Tico’s car, partially hidden from view in
the darkness of the night. Exiting her car, she peered
into Tico’s car, making sure no one saw her. A few
seconds later she would be blinded by the headlights
that shot out from an approaching Police cruiser.
“Miss Williamson, you don’t look so good,”
Officer Johnson shifted his gaze from the road to
Evangeline and back to the road as he drove. She
didn’t feel so good either. Her body hurt even worse
then before, something was definitely wrong. But right
now she couldn’t think about that. All she recalled
were the few words she had heard RJ exchange with
Tico. Tico…How was that even possible. All this time,
they had been after Sonia, when the real culprit was
her brother Tico.
Once again Evangeline pulled out her cell phone, and
once again John didn’t answer.
“Damn it!” she cursed for John, but mostly for the
“Ma’am, I’m not so sure about this. I mean, we really
should get you to a hospital.”
“No!” she shot back; she hated hospitals, especially
“Just get me to Capricorn, and get a hold of
Officer Johnson seemed to want to protest, but instead
just nodded in agreement. As they pulled up to the
club they were just in time to see Sonia Toledo pull
“What the hell are you doing here?” Sonia spat, when
she realized exactly who it was.
“I thought I made myself very clear earlier. Stay away
from him Evangeline, just stay out of it.”
Evangeline made an attempt to ignore the pain and
Sonia, as she struggled to the club entrance.
But Sonia was there before Evangeline could open the
“Get out of my way,” she seethed.
“Evangeline, you shouldn’t go in there, we don’t know
WHAT’S going on.”
“Look, I think RJ’s in trouble, no thanks to your
brother, Tico.” Sonia didn’t hide her surprise, but
instead her hold on the door knob loosened.
“Ok, ok,” she raised her hands in the air, “I’ll check
it out, you stay here.”
“Ms Williamson,” they had completely forgotten about
“Find John!” she orders, her hand moving to her side.
“Whoa there,” Sonia watched her closely, “there’s no
“Just do it,” she retorted, watching the policeman
“I trust you, about as much as I trust RJ, at this
minute,” She stared Sonia down.
“Relax,” Sonia looked genuinely concerned, “you don’t
look too hot yourself.”
Evangeline just rolled her eyes and ignored Sonia as
she entered the building.