chapter 1

Matt sat back on the sofa, stifling a yawn. His friends were rather more animated, groping about their lap dancers, trying to get in a feel before their hands were playfully smacked away. The group of guys, all in their mid-to-late thirties were out celebrating a stag night. It had been a quick affair, a few drinks at the pub, then a stop for kebabs and on to Helium, a strip club.

A very successful lawyer, Matt had done his share of partying, boozing and strip clubs all over the world. If he were completely honest, he'd much rather be at home watching the latest episode of Game of Thrones than in a mid-level titty club. He looked around the club lazily. The lap dancers were quite a varied bunch, from slender wisps who could well be budding glamour models to chicks with softer contours whom Matt preferred.

His eye was caught by a very skinny young blonde who had left a table and was walking back to the bar area. Matt was shocked at how bony she was, literally not a scrap of fat on her and he saw her lean against the bar and strike a pose. Then a tear rolled out of her eye and down her beautiful face.

As though propelled by a greater force, Matt found himself getting up and walking over to her. She tried to wipe away the tears and sniffed quickly, trying to force a smile onto her pretty features. She made as though to walk back with him, but he bade her stay there. "Let's just get a drink."

He ordered another gin & tonic for himself and she took the drink reserved for the lap dancers, a non-alcoholic mocktail priced at $15.

"What's wrong?" Matt found himself asking her quietly.
She shook her head, looked around furtively and let out a fake laugh.
"OK, what's your name?"
"Lov ely name. Where are you from?"
"Latvia" she whispered.
"Beautiful country, I love Riga" he replied.
"Mm hmm" she whispered, her eyes welling with tears.
"You obviously miss it"

Margarita turned on her heel and stumbled off to the inside area. Two other girls quickly ran up to Matt to fill the void but he brushed them away.
"I'll wait for Margarita" he told them.

A minute later a security officer hauled Margarita to Matt, his meaty hand clamped tight around her forearm.
"Oy, ease off dude!" complained Matt. "She's half your size."

The guy parked Margarita near Matt and moved back against a wall, his beady eyes fixed on the girl.

Matt leaned over to Margarita and whispered "I'm going to ask some questions. Just nod your head for yes, or shake it for no."
Margarita gave him a fake smile and nodded.
"Where you brought to the States illegally?"

Her eyes widened, she glanced around and the bouncer fixed his eyes on her.
She shook her head slightly.
Matt tried again. "I'm a lawyer, I can help you. Just tell me if you were brought here illegally."
Margarita nodded slightly, her eyes welling with tears.

Matt turned to the bouncer and said "I need to see the owner."

A few minutes later Matt and Margarita were up in the owner's office, a glass box that looked down over the club.
"I don't want any trouble" began Matt, "this girl is here illegally, we both know that. I'm a lawyer and can cause a lot of problems but I'd rather we settle this here and now. What will it take?"
"I spent a lot of money on that one, she's pretty. But useless, she just cries all the time and has no idea how to keep customers happy. So yeah, I can get rid of her."
"Well?" asked Matt.

Margarita's eyes flitted between the two men as they spoke, her fear palpable. The owner wrote a figure down on a post it and passed it along to Matt.
"Wow. That's a lot. Let's do half, and you'll have done well" replied Matt. "You didn't pay more than a third of that."

The owner nodded and turned away.

"I'll wait here till the bank opens in the morning" said Matt, "we'll need a quiet room."

Another bouncer led Matt and Margarita, who was now crying openly into a private room with a double bed and a sofa. It was clearly designed for cheap sex, with a bargain basement black and red d├ęcor with low lighting.
"Classy" said Matt and led Margarita to the bed.
"You sleep here, I'll take the sofa. Tomorrow we see about getting you home".

Margarita stared at him, confused.
"You don't want sex?" she asked surprised.
"No" and he took off his shoes before lying on the sofa.
After a few minutes he heard Margarita stepping close to him. She bent over him and asked "so how much did I cost?"
"Nothing compared to what you're worth" replied Matt sleepily.

The next morning they went over to Matt's bank, where he withdrew $10,000 and handed them over to the club owner. He then found himself driving along with Margarita near him, staring at him half scared and half angry.

"What do you want from me?" she asked finally.
Matt looked at her in surprise. "Nothing, we'll get you back home to Latvia" he said.
"But you bought me!" she replied.
"No I didn't!" he retorted. "I set you free from something that should never have happened."

Once at Matt's place he told Margarita to call her mum and Matt left her in privacy, not that he'd understand anything anyway.

After many tears of joy and explanations, Margarita explained that she was now apparently a guest in a stranger's home with no way to repay him. Her mum immediately told her to look after him, to do what she could around the house to help him. "Clean up for him. Feed him. Men are simple creatures and this one might have a good heart. But be careful."

Later on, Matt took her to a mall to buy a basic wardrobe of clothes and then to the food court for a burger. Her eyes widened as the meat and the crispy fried onions and the grease and the sauce all hit her taste buds. "You like to eat?" ask Matt.
"Mm hmm" agreed Margarita, her mouth full.
"Good. You need to eat, get some meat on your bones."
"Mm hmm" agreed Margarita, her eyes smiling.

"So now I will make contact with the authorities and arrange a passage for you to go home" said Matt, once they were done eating.
"How can I ever pay you back for all this?"
"You don't need to. I'm just glad I'm able to help."
"You really don't want anything from me?"
"But you're not going to report that asshole at the club."
"Ahh... I'm sorry Margarita. I wish I could but he pays off the police to be left alone. That's a much bigger fight for another day."

Back at his home, a large luxury penthouse, Matt installed Margarita in the guest bedroom and invited her to use anything she needed. The next day, Monday, on his return from work she asked him to take her to a supermarket. There she went wild, filling the trolley with loads of food that Matt didn't usually buy, such as pop tarts, crisps, salted nuts, biscuits and chocolates. Matt was only too happy to sponsor her appetite.

2 weeks later Matt came home from another long day at the office. He had found himself looking forward to seeing Margarita, and had even started leaving the office earlier. Organising her transport back home had proved more tricky than he'd thought. While the Latvian authorities had agreed to issue an emergency travel document, the USA were more inclined to see her as an illegal immigrant and initially wanted to arrest her. Matt had wielded his not inconsiderable influence to have her stay at his home against a security bond of $100,000. He didn't tell her that part.

Grateful for his generosity, Margarita had followed her mum's advice and sought to make herself useful to Matt. So he was now finding his clothes washed and shirts ironed, the floor and windows cleaned and even dinner at the ready, although she was not a very good cook.

"Bad news I'm afraid" said Matt as soon as he arrived, and tossed a letter to her. She looked at it in puzzlement then Matt explained "it basically says that your case will be reviewed later. That could be three months or six, maybe even a year."
Margarita burst into tears. "What I can do? What I can do?" she wailed.
"You can stay here as long as you like. No problem" he offered.
"But I cannot stay here living here off you. This is your house. I cannot pay rent. I must leave."
"Don't be silly. Where would you go. Please stay here as my guest."
"I am going crazy alone in here all day."
"Well you can't work of course. Not legally anyway. Do you want to study? Something you'd like to learn?"
Margarita thought for a second, then said "how to cook!"
2 chapters, created StoryListingCard.php 6 years , updated 6 years
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Ssaylleb 6 years
Thanks for the feedback, much appreciated. I love hearing that othets enjoyed my writing.

I've got more chapters ready can't figure out how to upload them!
Rstlne 6 years
I agree with td007!

By the way, is 007 a Bond reference?
Td0057 6 years
Very nice start. I like the detail you put into the background. Please continue.