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Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Chapter 18

Chapter 19

Chapter 20

Chapter 21

Chapter 22

Chapter 23

Chapter 24

Chapter 25

Chapter 26

Chapter 27

Chapter 28

Chapter 29

Chapter 30

Chapter 31





Chapter Two

            'I want him dead!' Rosarita Vincent Ralcon screeched, red in the face. 'Dead! Dead! Dead!' 'Lower your voice,' her father growled, his heavy-lidded eyes filled with disapproval at his daughter's petulant outburst. 'You want the whole fucking neighbourhood t' hear?'

            'Who cares?' Rosarita yelled. 'You own the fucking neighbourhood!'

            'Nice language ,' sniffed Chas Vincent , a large bear of a man with ruddy cheeks and a rough-edged voice. 'Is that what I sent you t' college t' learn?'

            'Fuck college! Fuck the neighbourhood! I want Dex fucking Falcon dead!'

            'A little louder,' Chas growled, sweat beading his forehead. 'The maid next door didn't hear you.'

            Rosarita stamped her foot on the thick pile rug. What was wrong with her stupid father? Why wasn't he getting it?

            At five feet four, Rosarita was bordering on anorexic, helped along by bulimic tendencies. She was twenty-six, with red hair worn in a shoulder-length bob, a thin pointed face, over-full lips (thanks to her busy plastic surgeon, who'd also helped out with a new nose, cheekbone and chin implants- not to mention the best boobs in Manhattan) and plenty of attitude. Especially when it came to her husband of eighteen months, struggling actor and sometime model Dexter Falcon. She'd married him because he was unbelievably handsome, had an enormous underwear billboard hovering above Time Square and was absolutely crazy about her.

            She'd thought he was destined to be a movie star. But no, the only acting job Dexter Falcon had managed to land was on an about-to-be cancelled day-time soap that paid shit and nobody watched. Damn him!

            Now Rosarita wanted out because she'd met someone else, someone of substance with an attitude to match her own and an even bigger dick than Dexter's -who was no slouch in the size department. Someone she planned to go places with.

            But how could she go anywhere with a loser husband trailing along behind her? When she'd brought up the subject of divorce, Dexter had freaked. 'Over my dead body,' he'd said.

            We..if that's the way he wanted it.

            'I thought you was so in love,' Chas said, swigging from a large glass of Scotch. 'I gave you the big fucking wedding with all the trimmin's -exactly like you wanted. I bought you a ducking house an' a fucking Nazi car. I thought you was all set.'

            'Sorry, I'm not,' Rosarita said, gritting her teeth. 'Dex is a deadbeat actor with no prospects and I want you to get rid of him for me.'

            'Just like that,' Chas said, wondering how he'd managed to get himself such a difficult daughter. Her year-younger sister, Venice, was a sweetheart with two kids and a down-to-earth husband who sold insurance for a living. Why couldn't Rosarita be more like her? I warned you about marrying a fucking actor,' he said dourly. 'They got bird crap for brains, not to mention fool tendencies.'

            'He's not gay,' Rosarita sniffed, insulted that Chas would think that any man who was with her might be gay, 'merely dumb.'

            'I could told you that,' Chas grumbled. 'Only you wouldn't listen.' He put on an exaggerated voice. 'Miss I-gotta have-everything the moment-I-want-it.'

            'Daddy!' Rosarita wailed, changing tactics because she knew how to play him like a violin. 'Please help your little girl. I need you.'

            Chas could barely resist Rosarita when she was sweet -during those rare times she remainded him of her dear departed mother who'd died giving birth to Venice, leaving him alone with a newborn baby and an infant to raise. In his opinion he'd done a good job- with the help of an army of girlfriends, none of whom had lasted more than a few months. Chas Vincent was not a one-woman man. He liked big tits and a closed mouth. Two or three months into the game and they got on his nerves with their whiny demands and money-spending ways.

            Maybe Rosarita took after him when it came to living with someone. He couldn't blame her. Dexter Falcon was a white-bread putz with only a pretty face to get him through life. He had no balls - Chas could've told his daughter that the first time he met the dumb shit. Rosarita should've fucked him out of her system. But no, she'd had to marry the asshole. Her wedding had cost a fucking fortune. Rosarita demanded -and got only the best. Now Chas had a powerful urge to say, 'I told you so.' But his strong-willed kid didn't take kindly to criticism, so he choked back the words and patted Rosarita's bony shoulder as she tried to perch on his knee, tears streaming down her cheeks.

            They were actually tears of frustration and anger because she was having to fight to get her own way, but Chas didn't know that. 'What shall we Doctor, Daddy?' she sniffled. 'I'm ..so miserable. Dex is so mean to me.'

            'Get a divorce,' Chas suggested, sure that if Dexter was mean to her, he had good reason.

            'Don't you understand? He won't give me one,' she moaned. 'And that means I'll have to wait and go through lawyers and depositions and all that horrible, degrading stuff. He's threatening to go after half of everything I own. I don't want to wait, Daddy. It's not fair.' A pause for a few deep sobs. 'Besides, I've met someone else, and I can't have Dex getting in my way and ruining everything.'

            'Not another dumb actor, I hope,' Chas said, taking a second hearty swig of Scotch.

            'No, Daddy. This one's got money. He's a someone, not a nobody like Dex.' She narrowed her eyes. 'I hate Dex.' 'I'm getting' the picture,' Chas said, scratching his chin.

            Rosarita wriggled off his knee, which was good because he wasn't as young as he used to be, and last night he'd gone three rounds with a pneumatic blonde whose knockers alone must've weighed five pounds apiece.

            'Lemme speak t' him,' Chas said. 'he'll listen t' me.'

            'Talking won't Doctor any good,' Rosarita wailed. 'Killing him will.'

            'Enough of that crap,' Chas snapped, suddenly angry. 'I ain't in the killing business. I'm in construction, an' don't you forget it.'

            'Ha!' Rosarita said.

            'Ha, what?' Chas responded.

            Rosarita stared at her father, a malevolent expression on her sharp, pointed face. 'Whatever happened to that foreman you didn't like?' she said, knowingly. 'You remember, the one who stole from you. And then there was Adam Rubicon, your ex-partner, who mysteriously disappeared. And-'

            'Shut your fucking mouth,' Chas yelled, jumping up, red in the face. 'I never wanna hear you talk like that again. You hear me?'

            'Then Doctor it,' Rosarita said, all cool and collected and sure of herself. 'And Doctor it soon.'

***

            Unware of the ominous conversation taking place at his father-in-law's house, Dexter Falcon left the mid-town TV studio, where they shot the daily soap Dark Days, with a smile on his handsome face. His name wasn't really Dexter Falcon, it was actually Dick Cockranger - a name too ridiculous even to contemplate keeping, unless he planned on being a porno star, and when he'd first come to New York from a small town in the Midwest four years previously, that had not been his plan at all. Oh, no, Dexter Falcon had far grander aspirations.

            The name change was first on his agenda -Dexter, in honour of a good-looking character on his mother's all-time favorite night-time soap, and Falcon- because it was powerful and strong, and sounded very masculine.

            So Dexter Falcon was born. Again. It was a memorable day. He was twenty and ready for anything, and a few weeks after arriving in the big city he found 'anything' in the person of Mortimer Marcel, a French-born designer whom he bumped into while jogging in Central Park.

            'You a model?' Mortimer had asked.

            'Actor,' Dexter replied. He'd never acted, never even thought of it. But acting sounded like a far more exciting profession than washing dishes in a deli on Lexington - which was what he was currently doing.

            'You could be right for my new underwear line,' Mortimer said brusquely. 'I'll audition you tonight. My house. Seven o'clock.' And he'd fished in the pocket of his fashionable running shorts and handed Dexter an engraved card.

            Dexter had stood considering the possibilities while watching Mortimer jog out of sight. He was not naive. He knew what went on - especially in a big city like New York. Mortimer marcel was obviously gay. And Dexter was not.

            Mortimer Marcel was also obviously successful. And Dexter was not.

            Was there a choice about what he should Doctor?

            Yes. He should not pursue it. But he'd been handed an opportunity, and it was clearly his destiny to follow it through. Within six months he was the Mortimer Marcel boy -on television, the Internet, in print ads. Marcel even took him to Paris and had him strut the runway wearing the latest line of Mortimer Marcel men's leisure wear.

            And he didn't have to Doctor anything sexual. Mortimer had a live-in lover- Jefferson, a handsome black ex-model, who was as jealous as a wildcat guarding its young, so Mortimer never laid a hand on Dexter, leaving him free to sleep with whoever he liked. And he did. Every night was supermodel night, each girl more gorgeous than the next.

            For two years Dexter fulfilled every sexual fantasy he'd e Vernon had, but deep in his heart he wanted more than transient sex. He desperately craved a real relationship with a woman who cared about him. his main desire was to get married, have babies and be forever happy like his parents, who were still together after forty-five blissful years.

            One night be met Rosarita at a party. She wasn't supermodel pretty, but she was attractive and seemed to be caring and sweet and, best of all, she hung on his every word. Since he never had much to say, this was flattering. He liked it. He liked her. They started to date.

            Over several dinners she talked about family values and how she loathed the whole New York social scene. He couldn't agree more. She chatted about her sister's children, and how one day she hoped to have children of her own. Several. She was full of all the old-fashioned virtues he'd been searching for. What a girl!

            A month later he asked her to marry him and she said yes. Six weeks later they did the deed. And on their wedding night they had sex for the first time and it was quite something. Dexter was sure that marrying Rosarita was the best thing he'd ever done.

            After they'd been married a few weeks, Rosarita informed him he was far too smart to continue being a model, and she arranged for him to see an agent at William Morris. He did so, and the agent assured him they could make him a star and immediately began sending him out auditions.

            Dexter was elated. So was Rosarita.

            Over the next two months he almost landed a Clint Eastwood movie. Very nearly got cast in a Martin Scorsese masterpiece. Just missed being Gwyneth Paltrow's lover in a Miramax film. And then, on his agent's advice, after several months of no auditions at all, he signed for a one-year stint on Dark Days.

            'Do it,' his agent insisted. 'Once you get the experience behind you, they'll all be chasing after you.'

            From the moment he signed on for the soap, Rosarita's attitude changed. From sweet she turned to sour, complaining about everything, including the fact that they were unable to go out most nights because he had a five a.m. call every day. She nagged him continually. Nothing he ever did was good enough. Until finally, six weeks ago, she'd started muttering about divorce.

            Dexter could not believe it. Divorce! They'd only been married eighteen months. Divorce was unthinkable. Not in his family. For a start it would kill his parents. Besides, he was quite happy with the way things were.

            So after much thought he'd devised a plan to calm her down. When they were first going out he'd taken her home to meet his mom and dad - Martha and Matt. She'd loved them and they her. The only other time she'd seen them since was at their wedding, which had turned out to be an enormous affair. Fortunately, Rosarita's father had for the lavish event, and bought them a large apartment in Manhattan, plus a sleek Mercedes as a wedding present -which they hardly ever got to drive because it was difficult to find a parking spot in the city.

            Martha and Matt Cockranger were Dexter's secret weapon. He was flying them into New York for a surprise visit. He'd already instructed the maid to prepare the guests bedroom, and he'd booked a limo to meet them at the airport. They were arriving tonight, hence the smile on his face.

            If Martha and Matt Cockranger couldn't talk some sense into Rosarita, nobody could.

   


Chapter 32

Chapter 33

Chapter 34

Chapter 35

Chapter 36

Chapter 37

Chapter 38

Chapter 39

Chapter 40

Chapter 41

Chapter 42

Chapter 43

Chapter 44

Chapter 45

Chapter 46

Chapter 47

Chapter 48

Chapter 49

Chapter 50

Chapter 51

Chapter 52

Chapter 53

Chapter 54

Chapter 55

Chapter 56

Chapter 57

Chapter 58

Chapter 59

Chapter 60

Chapter 61

Chapter 62