Adam pulled the viper up to the address Justin put on his application and saw it was a gated community. He came to a stop by the driveway to look at the address again.
“You said he was a college student?” asked Patrick, who sat leaning his head down to look out Adam’s window at the two man guarded gated with a small but accommodating guard house.
Adam didn’t want to bring Patrick at first. He was going to take him to some place like a motel. But Patrick reminded him that the exchange was to take place in a few hours, and he would never be able to check out Justin’s place and returned to get him in time.
“Yeah, he’s in his first semester.”
“So, either his family is paying for this or you’re a generous boss.”
“Most likely family.” Adam placed his palm against Patrick’s chest and moving him back to his seat so he could unlock the glove box to collect his gun.
“Will you really need to use that?”
“This guy is dangerous, he’d killed before, attempt to rape you and almost killed me, now he has Justin. Yes, I believe I need this,” he said checking the magazine and finding it full. He placed the safety lock on and concealed his weapon in the compartment by his hip. He turned the wheel and approached the driveway to the guarded gate to the townhouses.
Patrick checked his hair and face in his visor mirror as Adam rolled down his window when the guard approached.
His uniform was baggy, and the hat shadowed his eyes as he looked into the car window first at Adam then towards Patrick, who was now smoothing his finger along his lips and chin in the mirror. The guard was still staring at Patrick when he spoke to Adam.
“May I ask your business here Sir?” Adam was annoyed that the man was ogling Patrick, who pretended not to notice him.
“I’m here to see Justin Shi.” Patrick glanced his way and flashed a smile. He blushed and slowly peeled his eyes away looking at his palm pad and typed in the name.
“Mr. Shi isn’t here he left an hour ago.”
“Well, that’s great,” piped in Patrick, who opened his seat belt and leaned across Adam’s lap. “We’re here to decorate for his birthday party.”
“Well,” started the drooling guard. “I have to have clearness from the owner…”
“Well then it wouldn’t be a surprise would it?”
“No—I guess not.”
“Can you tell me if Justin was alone when he left?” Adam cut in enjoying Patrick’s closeness across his lap.
“Well no, Mr. Rollins was with him.”
“Sure Adam,” said Patrick. “…you know him, Poe’s maker.”
“I guess it would be alright to let you go up so long as you both sign the visitor’s board.”
He handed the board and a pin to Patrick, and he signed both their names. He handed it back giving the guard another smile.
The guard like the attention as he waved to his partner to open the gate and allowed them to pass.
“Take a right then after two intersections take a left and its unit twenty-three,” said the guard as Adam blew his horn in responds as he sped off. After following the directions, Adam parked the car across the street as he stared at the two-floor house.
“Okay, I’m going in,” said Adam.
“I’m coming with you.”
“No, you’re not. You’re going to sit in front of this wheel, and if anything goes wrong…” Adam grabbed Patrick’s hand and placed the car keys in his palm. “…you’re going to take off.”
“How will I know if anything goes wrong if I’m here?”
“I’ll call you.”
“No cell phone remember—the police have it.”
“Okay, how about you just honk the horn?”
The car door slammed as Patrick ignored Adam, climbed out of the car and walked towards the house. Adam grabbed his gun and hid it in the pocket of his coat as he ran to catch up with Patrick. Patrick was about the ring the bell when Adam grabbed hold of his arm stopping him just in time.
“What the hell are you doing?”
“I’m about to ring the doorbell.”
“Why, the guard said Justin and the Harlequin left.”
“Cain,” Patrick interrupted.
“His name is Cain Rollins.”
“Fine—Justin and Cain left an hour ago.”
“That doesn’t mean there isn’t someone inside.”
Adam started to say something when Patrick pressed the doorbell.” The chimes echoed the house as they waited to see if anyone was home. When no response came Adam flashed an, I told you, look at Patrick, who shoved his hands in his coat pocket, not feeling beaten yet.
“We’re going to have to find a way in before we alert the neighbors.” Suddenly the door opened and to Adam’s surprise a robot that was a twin to Poe stood at the door.
“Hello,” it said. Patrick stared at him as if he was looking at a child.
“Hello, what are you called?” Patrick asked.
“I am called Dante,” it responded.
“Well, hello Dante.”
“Hello. What can I do for you?” asked Dante.
“Oh, just reboot alpha t-99urdone,” said Patrick.
Dante’s eyes flickered, and numbers appeared counting back from five. Then he stopped.
“What did you do?” asked Adam.
“I told him to reboot. That should buy us fifteen minutes. Now come on and help me push him out of the way. With no power, he’s pretty heavy.”
“Here let me.” Adam leaned against the steel body that came only to his waist and shoved him back into the house. It was like pushing a car with its emergency brakes in placed. Relieved the floors were hardwood as it helped him push the robot off to the side.
Patrick entered behind him and looked over the place. The entry hallway had a two-seater bench with two large, clay potted plants, one Rubber, and the other Jade. A double glass wooden panel doors stood open to the living room. Patrick entered and seemed fine with the décor oversized couch, pottery barn coffee table with knock off Pakistani rug. He walked over towards the couch and saw a riding crop on the floor. Adam entered the room and saw Patrick bending down to pick it up.
“No Patrick don’t touch anything,” ordered Adam. Patrick stopped and looked at him confused.
“But haven’t we touched the door knob and the Droid?”
“I’ll wiped them off but for now on, no touching anything.”
“Well, there’s a riding crop here on the floor,” Patrick said pointing down. Adam walked over and saw he was right. He stooped to look at it closer reaching into his coat pocket and removing a handkerchief; he kept for just these occasions and picked it up. Patrick wondered away. Adam saw no blood on the device, but it doesn’t mean Rollins didn’t use it on Justin.
“Adam look,” called Patrick. Adam placed the crop back on the floor and rose to find Patrick, not in the room anymore.
“Patrick where are you?”
“Down the hall on the left,” he called back.
Adam walked down the decorative hall and saw an open door. Stepping into the room, Adam didn't expect what he'd find. Tantra chairs, sex machines, harnesses, and swings. Wrist and ankle cuffs mounted on the wall dangling from the ceiling. Anything a sex dungeon would need was here. Patrick stood with his arms cross in the middle of the room by a half gymnastic horse with a protruding fake cock on the middle. Adam walked over to him taking in everything.
“This is crazy,” said Adam, who moved towards an exam table shaped like an X with wrist and ankle cuffs parted as wings. Patrick wondered again towards what looked like a closet door in the room. He used his coat sleeve to turn the knob revealing a surprise.
“Adam,” Patrick said staring at the contents. Adam walked over and viewed the same harlequin mask that Patrick damaged in Gavin’s apartment hanging on the back wall of the closet. “So it was Cain, after all,” said Patrick.
“I need to call A.J.,” Adam said turning his back to Patrick as he pulled out his cell and searched through his contacts for the detective’s number but came up empty. He forgot he deleted A.J.’s number. “Hey, do you have one of the detectives cards with you I need a number,” Adam asked turning back to Patrick but finding him gone again.
“Where the hell did he go now?” Adam sighed looking around the room and saw no sight of him. He walked out the room and continued further down the hall to a staircase to the second level.
He looked up the steps that were a straight climb to the top.
“Patrick are you up there?” he called waiting for a response but none came. He started to venture up when he heard sirens coming closer. “Patrick, come on we need to go,” Adam called out to him but received no response. He raced to the front door and opened it. To his horror six squad cars blocked both ends of the street in front of the Townhouse. Adam’s viper and Patrick were gone.