The Lucky Winner

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Chapter 51

DAD

“Can I come to New York with you? Never been to New York!” Misty smiled as if none of their previous conversations had taken place, when they arrived at the Delta Club Casino’s parking lot. “Then you can have both. Your family and me.”

He was literally at a loss for words. She just kept coming back, clinging to him like a bloodsucking leech.

“Come on. Don’t tell me you never had mistresses. Look at me. Don’t you want me?” She licked her upper lip with her tongue salaciously. Thankfully, it now only looked like a cobra’s flicking forked tongue to him.

It was time to end the rich-man fantasy. He didn’t care anymore. All he cared was to get back on the road and return to his real life.

He looked straight at her. “Misty. I’m not a stock broker. I don’t live in New York. I didn’t inherit the money. I’m just a truck driver.”

There was a pause.

Then Misty cocked her eyebrows with a sneer. “Nice try.”

He looked at her, stupefied.

“Don’t worry. I won’t be one of those nasty mistresses who constantly threatens to tell the wife.”

“You need to believe me! I’m just a truck driver,” he repeated, growing visibly agitated. That was the very first time he had to try to convince someone to believe that he drove trucks for a living. And the first time he really wanted one to believe it.

Misty’s expression changed. “Why are you lying to me?”

“I swear. I’m not,” he pleaded. “Not this time. This is the real truth. I’ve been driving trucks for twenty years. We live in an old house in North Dakota.”

Misty studied his face, narrowing her eyes. “Oh, I see… so it’s your wife’s money. She inherited the money. Is that it?”

“No. Nobody inherited anything.”

“Then how do you explain having tens of millions of dollars sitting in the bank?”

“What? How do you…?”

Oh, yeah… that hacker.

“See?” she tapped his nose. “Nice try.”

“My wife won the lottery. She won that money. It’s hers. Not mine.”

There was a pause. Then she said, “Let me see your truck.”

“Sure, it’s parked over there,” he said, pointing it out.

That’d do. Once she saw the truck, the fantasy would evaporate like a vial of spilled alcohol.

Good.

They stood in front of his truck. The load of lumber was tied down to the flatbed in the rear.

“Do you believe me now?” He asked.

She was silent.

“Take care of yourself, okay?” Having said that, he briefly wondered if she’d be safe there. Frank’s guys would soon grow curious about their boss’s whereabouts, if they hadn’t already. Then they’d come for her. What did he care though? She tricked him into the whole evil mess. He should have been angry at her, not worried about her safety.

He opened the door to the truck, and noticed that her face had paled.

“They’re here,” she whispered.

“What? Who’s here?” He looked in the direction she was staring at.

Two men in sunglasses were slowly walking in the lot, their eyes searching the area behind their dark glasses. They suddenly turned and saw Misty.

“Shit!” Misty ducked down.

The two men began walking toward the truck.

“They’re coming this way,” Dad said as he rushed to climb into the truck. He started the engine and grabbed the door handle to close it.

Just go! Drive off! He yelled at himself in his head.

The men were rapidly closing the distance. Dad could almost see their piercing, ice-cold stares behind those dark glasses.

Misty looked frightened for the first time since he met her. She must have known what they were capable of.

There was not a second to waste. He couldn’t just sit there, waiting for them to reach the truck. He had to get out of there.

“Get in,” he said as he yanked her into the passenger seat.

The two men now ran toward the truck, but Dad drove off before they got there.

He panted as he looked in the side mirror. The two men stood still behind him, their figures growing smaller as he drove away.

He breathed a deep sigh. Why did he do that? Why didn’t he just leave her there? Who cared if they killed her?

“They saw me. They know we were together,” he muttered, growing more paranoid inside.

“I know. I’m sorry…” She said with her face looking downward. “Thanks for saving me. I would have been dead by now if not for you.”

“Can I drop you off somewhere safe?” He asked.

“I know I can’t go back there. Now they know I was at Delta. I’ll be the prime suspect for Frank’s disappearance,” then she turned to me. “Where are you headed?”

“California. Near Bakersfield.”

“Okay, you can drop me off there. I actually know someone who lives in that area.”

“Really? Okay,” he shifted in his seat, feeling instantly relieved. What were the odds that she would know someone there? “That’s great,” he smiled.

Now everything would be okay. Frank’s man saw him, but what could they possibly do? Nothing—unless their sunglasses had cameras inside them and they recorded his face. Then they might have been able to use a facial recognition detection system to discover his identity. But that was so much less likely.

Misty would start her new life in California, and he would go home as if nothing had happened. All he had to deal with was the fake cyber theft, but that was nothing compared to other possible outcomes this whole disaster could have created.

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