Chapter 43 (THIRTY days)
‘How the hell did you know about this party?’ Monty asked Danny as his eyes kept gliding over proceedings.
‘Followed the lady of the house here this morning. After that I had a talk with the house-keeper.’ Danny answered as he also scanned the room.
‘Why?’ Thought you were just keeping an eye on the Judge,’ Monty said again as the dog-handler gave them the thumbs up.
‘So okay, no bomb or other devices in the room or the restaurant or even outside.’ Danny said. Before answering Monty he responded to the dog-handlers, ‘Okay, thanks guys, now clear out, we don’t want someone spotting you. It will be embarrassing to try and explain you away to the guests.’
‘Well,’ Danny turned to Monty, ‘I saw the housekeeper come in and I pretended to deliver a package to a close-by address. First I asked for some directions and then, casually asked if she’s always comes in on a Saturdays. And why’s the people of the house look so busy, you know, that sort of thing.’
‘I take it she’s young and not to bad looking, otherwise it would’ve been a different kind of strategy, am I right or am I right.’ Monty looked directly at Danny, who was, like him, dressed in a dark suit, white shirt and bow-tie. Danny’s caramel-skin looked good against the white shirt and his curly hair was close-cropped to his head. The restaurant manager and caterer weren’t keen on the last minute arrangements, however, not wanting to end up with a dead Judge and collateral damage, they’d allow it. The personnel was informed that the three new people were the Judge’s body-guards. They were only allowed to give them short, medial jobs like carrying and fetching. Pretending that they were just part of the set-up. At six-thirty the heads-up came that Mirna de Wet was on her way. Nobody thought the “Ice-Cream Club” will use anything like a bomb but better safe than sorry.
Danny smiled, ’Yeah, she’s not too bad-looking but not my cup of tea. She’s very talkative, he said mimicking the housekeeper, ’“No, she’s not usually coming in on weekends. This weekend the lady was given her husband a party, so she came in this morning till ’leven. Just to help out with things.” And, “Maybe next weekend you and I could go somewhere?”
Danny gave Monty a smile.
‘I just had to ask the question and she spilled the beans. Won’t trust that one with any of my secrets!’
‘Bet you’ve got a phone number.’ Monty said laconic as his eyes scanned the beautiful decorated room again.
‘Yes, I have.’ Danny grinned, ‘she put it in herself under,’ his voice rose a few bars, “E for Emmeline, don’t you forget now!”’ He winked at Monty.
’And I bet you’ve said “How could I now?” He smirked.
‘You read me like a…holy shit…’ His eyes primed at the kitchen door.
Monty followed his eyes and saw the lovely Mae entered in a knee-length French-maid outfit, white cap and all.
‘Yes, sir, our Captain is a lucky man! What a sight for sore eyes!’ Monty said as he stepped forward and took her by the hands, ‘Hallo Gorgeous!’ He pecked her on the cheek, ‘Good to see you again. Are you feeling better? You certainly look like a million bucks!’
‘Hallo back Gorgeous, so do you. Danny! Wow, you boys clean up good! Watch out James Bond!’ She said with visible pleasure and gave Danny a peck on the cheek as well.
‘I have to fit in,’ she pointed to the dress, ‘because apparently all the waitresses have to wear these outfits, ala the caterers.’
‘Oi, and what’s not to like about French Maids!’ Danny looked around at four others coming from the same door, ‘What’s not to like!’
‘We attended a short briefing, I’m carrying and fetching with them tonight.’ Mae said.
‘Heads up,’ Monty said as he pressed his hand to his ear, ‘our poor unsuspecting wife’s out front.’
‘We still don’t know what we’re actually looking for, or who, do we?’ Mae asked quizzical.
Both guys shook their heads from side to side.
‘See you later,’ Mae said with a bright smile as she disappeared into the kitchen.
The place was stuffed. Not even the air-con could keep up. And the noise level! You had to shout if you felt the need for a decent conversation. Some or other rapper was rapping at deafening decibels from surround-sound speakers about his “bitch” and their “filthy love-making rituals”. The two red-heads – one with short hair and one with long – were nursing a drink each. They were sitting in a darkened corner on one of the little sofas, sipping and fending off a few guys looking to get an easy lay tonight. They’re not there for a good time or a brainless conversation. Talking had been done long before tonight. Tonight they’d just want to get over and done with.
They watched as a rugged looking blonde guy, with a maybe three week old beard entered with a girl hanging from his arm. He casually looked around, let his eyes rest on the two red-heads. He was not your typical student, somewhat older.
None really noticed or cared.
It had begun.