Chapter 1: Casper
Five hundred days until she is free.
Five hundred days until I can escape the confines of these stuffy rooms.
Five hundred days until I can have my family back.
It all seems like an insignificant amount of time, but in Five hundred days a lot can happen.
In just five hundred days my life will change forever.
Every night when I closed my eyes I saw her. She haunted my dreams and made me want to do terrible things. Things that most women would never have the courage to allow you to do inside the bedroom. But not her, not the girl with the ivy tattoo. She gave me one night of unadulterated sex. The kind of sex that blew your mind and had you begging for more, but just as quick as she came, she was gone. She gave me the slip and I never saw her again. The only thing that let me know it really happened was the empty condom wrapper on the floor. My friends told me I made her up, that I was so drunk I would have fucked anyone that night. And they weren’t wrong. My memory was hazy and it was possible it could all have been a dream, but every time I closed my eyes I saw that ivy tattoo that stretched all along her sides down to her hips and those piercing green eyes.
Ever since that night girls have come and gone from my bedroom but none have compared. None of them have lived up to the expectations that I hold so high. I wasn’t a hard man to please. Any girl with a short skirt usually got me going, but lately I was having a hard time getting past the fantasy.
“Yo Cas, you ready?”
I met Greyson’s sharp eyes in the mirror. “Give me one minute.” That was all I needed. Just one minute.
“Make it a quick one, you know how these chicks get,” he said, throwing me a lopsided grin. I nodded and went back to fighting my internal struggle with reality. I placed my hand over the tattoo on my chest and took a breath. I had to get a grip. I stared back at the worn-out blue grey eyes in the mirror. I managed to convince myself she was just a dream so I could get my head straight. I was always nervous enough as it was before a gig, and I didn’t need some crazy chick clogging my brain. I shook my head and scrubbed my hands down my face. I adjusted my crazy wide Mohawk in the front, pulling some of the spikes down and to the side and pushing a few up. I stood up from the mirror and jumped up and down for a few seconds trying to pump myself up. When I was ready I met Greyson and my other band mates by the stage. Colton handed me my guitar and I strapped up, getting ready for the roar of screaming fans that were waiting for us.
“Don’t you just love this?” Greyson asked, slapping his hand on my shoulder. He got off on all the screaming chicks and the attention that came along with being in a band. I was in it for the music. For the rush you get when you sing your heart out and strum the strings of the guitar so hard you think they might snap.
“Check out the blonde with the tits in the front.”
“Which one?” Greyson laughed.
“Who you think? Cas’s number one fan. The chick that’s at all the shows.” Colton angled his head to the end of the stage on the left. There she was in all her glory, wearing a small, gray halter and jeans so tight they looked like they were painted on. I’ve seen her at almost every show and each one she wore something tighter than the last.
Greyson nudged me in the ribs. “You gonna hit that tonight?”
“Wait, you telling me you haven’t fucked her yet?” Colton fiddled with his drumsticks.
“He just didn’t want to scare off his number one fan by showing her he’s got more talent on stage then he does in the sack.” I flipped Greyson off as he took the stage, followed by Colton and then me. The roar of the fans pounded in my ears as I stood before the mic. Colton counted off with his drumsticks…one, two, three. He twirled his stick between his fingers and then slammed them down starting our first song.
We were just a small time rock band – popular on the local circuit. We played gigs all around town and were booked for most of the summer. We wrote our own music and sometimes did covers, but most of it was ours that we played. The crowd loved us and by the end of the night I was always drenched head to toe with sweat. I always brought extra clothes so I could change out of the sopping wet ones. The sensation I felt every time we played was unlike anything I could describe. I was on a natural high and I never wanted to come down, but when the lights dimmed and the crowd subsided I knew it was time to come back to reality.
By the time the last band played their last set, I had downed a fifth of Patron and had the cute blonde with the tight jeans secured nicely on my lap. She was the one feeding me the shots all night, encouraged by my friends. The tequila was slowly making its way through my system and I knew if I didn’t seal the deal with this chick soon, I would be too out of it to even function. I slipped my hand around her hip pulling her tighter against me while the other hand slid up her inner thigh. She turned to me with a lazy smile, letting me know she was probably just as drunk as I was. “You ready to get out of here?”
She bit her lip and nodded her head as she stroked the back of my neck with her long finger nails. I gave her thigh a squeeze before patting her on the behind. “Just gotta pay my tab first.” She stood up, allowing me to stand. I made my way over to the bar and waited to get the bartender’s attention. It was last call so I knew I would be here for a bit. I took a seat on one of the stools while I waited. I watched the girls as they rushed back and forth trying to fulfill everyone’s orders. One of the reasons I liked this place so much was because all the bartenders were girls and they all had to wear very small uniforms that showed a lot of skin. Half the girls were either dressed in black or red leather shorts that just barely covered their asses with matching halter tops. Others wore tiny white dresses that were cut so short that if they bent over you got full view of everything they had going on underneath, but most of the girls wore shorts. Everyone one of them had a different color wig on and so much makeup you didn’t know what was real and what was hidden behind the mask of colored shadow.
“Hey sweetie!” I turned my head to the sugary sounding voice.
I smiled at the cheery face before me. “Hey Declan.”
She leaned in for a quick kiss on the cheek. “Do you need something?”
She rolled her big blue eyes and pushed on my chest. “Save it for the white trash you got waiting for you over at the table.”
“Declan I’m hurt. Really I am.”
She gave me another eye roll before setting her tray of shots on the bar. “When are you going to stop taking home all these skanks? I can tell you now, once she scrapes off all that war paint there will be nothing left but a whole bunch of ugly.”
I pinched her chin between my thumb and forefinger turning her head back and forth. “You’re one to talk.”
She slapped my hand away. “I have to, it’s my job. That clown does it because she knows she ain’t got nothin’ going on but a pair of tits and a tight ass.”
I raised my brows at her. She swatted my arm and narrowed her eyes at me. I laughed, putting my arms up in surrender. “I never said I was picky and you know I don’t take them to my house.”
“I know. You make them take you to their place or the fraternity house so that way you can sneak out on them or get one of the guys to get rid of them for you.” I shrugged my shoulders. She wasn’t wrong. “You know you’re a real class A piece of shit.”
“Yeah, but you still love me.” She crossed her arms over her small but perky chest, making them pop up even more in her low cut dress. I gave her my pouty lip causing the corner of her mouth to twitch slightly.
“Stop it,” she growled. I grabbed her and pulled her close to me. She squealed and tried to shove me away. “You’re going to get me in trouble.” I stole a kiss on the cheek before I let her go and caught a glimpse of the blonde who was waiting for me. Her eyes were narrowed into slits as she glared at me from the table. Shit.
“Hey, can I get my tab.”
“Yeah, just give me a sec.” She dipped underneath the bar and searched through the pile of receipts. Declan was the only girl who put up with my shit – besides my sisters – and gave it right back to me. I met her our freshman year of college and spent the first month trying to get in her pants. She’s a cute, tiny redhead, with killer legs, and smile that could bring any man to their knees. She’s beautiful and smart and the only girl I haven’t slept with. Declan claims she never slept with me because she was too smart to fall for my bullshit. But we both knew, given time, it would have happened. It almost did. The only thing that stopped me from bending her over my couch was because Colton, my best friend, pulled me aside and told me he had a crush on her. So out of respect for him I backed off. Declan was more like a sister to me and I would do anything to protect her.
I felt a hand slip across my shoulder. “You ready soon?” It was the blonde. I really should have gotten her name. She might have given it to me earlier in the night but by this stage she would be lucky if I could remember her face in the morning. With her this close up I was starting to think it was probably better if I didn’t.
“This might take a minute. Why don’t you go have another drink at the table and I’ll be there in a few.”
“Hey Cas, who is the tab under?” Declan turned around with several papers shoved in her hands. The blonde looked over her shoulder at Declan and gave her a nasty look before she turned back around to me. The look on Declan’s face told me if I didn’t get rid of this chick she would do it for me and I knew Declan was one broad you did not want to piss off.
I stood up and reached behind the bar, grabbing two beers out of the cooler. I handed one to the blonde and pushed her in the direction of the table with a warning that if she kept it up she would be going home alone. I cracked open the second beer and took a swig while Declan continued to search for our bill. “Try under Greyson,” I suggested as I took another swig.
I looked over my shoulder at the blonde who was sitting impatiently with Greyson. He had his arm wrapped around the back of her chair and she looked ready to hit him. Ready to get this night over with, I hopped behind the bar to help Declan find our tab. One of the bartenders rushed by knocking into me. “Sorry,” I mumbled. She was dressed in red leather shorts and halter top. Instinctively my eyes traveled down her legs. She was wearing fishnet stockings and red high heels that I wouldn’t mind having her dig into my backside. The short red wig that cropped at her chin made her face appear more round and soft. She wore tons of black eye shadow underneath her mask and blood red, glitter lipstick. She oozed confidence and what I wouldn’t give right now to have that lipstick all over my dick. She was sexy as hell, even with all that makeup on.
She narrowed her big, green eyes at me, eyes that looked so familiar. “You can’t be back here.”
“Have we met?” I couldn’t shake this feeling that I knew her from somewhere.
“I highly doubt it.” She stood there with her hands on her hips, waiting for me to leave.
“He’s fine Alex,” Gus, the owner said. She rolled her eyes and turned around to grab the empty bottles off the bar.
I jumped in front of her. “I’m Cas,” I said, extending my hand and giving her my most charming smile.
“I’m not interested,” she responded without even looking in my direction. I heard Gus let out a small laugh under his breath. I was ready to try again when one of the patrons started giving her a hard time.
“Look, I told you last call was twenty minutes ago. It’s not my fault you missed it.” The guy reached across the bar, taking her hand. He leaned in close and tried to seduce her into giving him another drink. I was about to step in when Gus held up a hand to me. She leaned closer to him and gave him a heart stopping smile of her own. She slipped her hand behind his neck and then brought his face down hard on the bar. His head bounced back up and he stumbled slightly before regaining himself. “I’m sorry, looks like you had enough.” She snapped her fingers for one of the security guards. He saw the guy stumble, making it look like he had one too many which I was sure he did. The bouncer swept an arm over his chest to steady him before he took him out. “Have a nice night, come again,” she waved, flashing the sexiest smile I have ever seen.
Gus just shook his head, smiling, while I stood there. “I think I’m in love.”
“Get in line,” Gus said, patting my shoulder.
“Finally!” Declan yelled, holding the receipt in the air like it was the golden ticket. “You guys are a bunch of idiots.” She slammed the receipt on my chest. I took the paper and looked at the name on top – Dixie Normous. I shook my head and laughed. Fucking Greyson. I took my wallet from my back pocket and gave Declan my card.
“Who’s the new chick? I haven’t seen her here before.”
Declan leaned back and looked down at the end of the bar where I gestured. “No,” she said, handing me back my card.
“Just no,” she said, shoving a pen at me. I signed the slip and then kissed her goodbye just as the new girl made her way to the register. I leaned in, ready to put on the charm.
“You never told me your name.” It was lame, I know, but I was a little off my game tonight.
“I know,” she said, keeping her eyes on the computer as she punched in numbers. I caught a glimpse of Declan smiling and I narrowed my eyes at her.
“Casper, I’m ready.” The blonde from earlier was back at the bar now and getting impatient.
I leaned closer to the new girl. “I would love to take you out to dinner sometime.”
She threw a thumb over her shoulder. “Don’t want to keep your fans waiting.”
Clearly she was a tough one and I wasn’t going to get anywhere with her tonight, not in my condition anyway. I decided not to waste my time when I had a girl who was already willing and waiting. I grabbed another bottle of Patron before hopping over the bar.
“Casper, what are you doing?” Gus asked, slightly annoyed.
“Don’t worry. You know I’m good for it.” I threw two hundred on the bar at Gus. He swiped the bills and stuffed them in his pocket. The bartender rolled her eyes, not impressed, and went back to her work. I brushed her off and threw my arm over the blonde, dragging her out the door and into one of the many waiting cabs. I waited for her to supply the address but when she didn’t offer up any info I grunted under my breath and gave the cab driver the address of the frat house. Even though it was summer, I still had a few brothers who crashed at the house. It was cheaper than finding an apartment for the summer until school started up. It also helped when I needed assistance with my dates in the morning.
I finished the neck of the bottle by the time we got to the house. At this point she was now the one who had to help me up the steps. I placed the bottle on the night stand and fell back on the bed to try and keep the room from spinning. It didn’t take her long to climb on top of me and start to undo my pants. I closed my eyes to keep from getting dizzy. Not a second later I felt cool air on my dick which was quickly replaced by sticky, warm lips. I knew I picked this girl for a reason. She was like a fucking hoover vacuum. I was hoping she would let me finish so I could just go to sleep, but the crackle of a condom wrapper told me she had other plans. I guess I better put some effort into this.
I sat up and wrapped my arm around her waist, pulling her down on the bed and slipping her underneath me. I kicked off my jeans the rest of the way, followed by my shirt. I peeled off her super tight jeans and then made an attempt to take off her top, but it was one of those really weird complicated ones that tied in so many different places I just said “fuck it” and left it on. I slipped my fingers in between her thighs. They were drenched. This chick needed no introduction. I put the condom on and slipped inside of her. She let out a moan so loud I thought she was going to come right there and then. I was hoping I could get in and get out but she was so wet I kept falling out of her. It was like a god damn slip and slide.
Losing patience, she pushed me down on the bed and crawled on top of me. I grabbed her hips as she bounced up and down wildly. She made a few loud, strange noises and then shook, falling down on my chest. At first I thought she was having a seizure with the way she was flopping madly and the strangled noise that came out of her mouth sounded more like a dying cat than screams of joy, but the look on her face told me she was satisfied. Happy to know she was done, I flipped her over, and slammed into her a few times to finish. I fell back on the bed gratified. I turned my head. She was sitting there staring at me with this strange look in her eyes. Uh oh. I knew that look. I got up to grab a pair of shorts and my phone. “Yeah, I need a cab to 405 Chester Ave. There’s one already out there, great.”
My luck was looking up. I picked up her pants and threw them at her while I went into the bathroom. When I came back out, she was lying down on the bed, and still no pants on. Oh hell no. “Hey, the cab is waiting.” I grabbed a few dollars from my wallet and handed them to her. “For the cab.”
“Are you serious?” She looked at me not believing I was actually asking her to leave. “You want me to go?”
“You didn’t really think you were going to stay, did you? I mean, come on, I’m sure you’ve done this before?” She huffed, stuffing her bony legs into her jeans. “The cabs right out front. Just make a left at the bottom of the steps.”
“You’re not even going to walk me out?”
“Nah, I’m kinda of tired, but it was fun.” I gave her a pat on the ass. “If you don’t mind, can you close the door on your way out?” She gave me the look of death before slamming the door behind her. It didn’t faze me. I was used to it. These types of nights never ended well. I took a swig of the Patron to get the taste of her lip-gloss out of my mouth before I crashed back on the bed and passed out.