The man across from me in the booth looked serious but not threatening.
“Okay, call me Alan and this is Tina.”
Tina had overstepped some boundary. Her eyes were down and her cheeks were red. Alan was damage control, but I still didn’t understand what damage he was trying to control.
“Look,” I said. “I don’t want any trouble, and I don’t want to get anyone else in any trouble. My name’s Marc…Marc Stevens.”
Tina looked up then. Her brow furled. “Marc Stevens? Why do I know that name?”
Alan also appeared confused, as he looked at me. Then his eyes brightened. “It’s the same name as that guy on the blog we’ve all been reading. You know, the Man in the Shadows?”
Tina looked animated. “Oh my god, you’re not him are you?”
I was kind of surprised. I didn’t think my little blog had reached that many people. I nodded.
“So, did that girl across the hall thing really happen like that?”
Tina seemed to have gotten a little off track, so I looked at Alan, but he just raised an eyebrow.
“Well, yeah…kind of.” This was something I hadn’t expected. “I mean, I’m a writer, so I might have embellished a little.”
Okay, there I said it. I am a FICTION writer after all.
“Anyway, getting back on subject,” Alan was all seriousness now, “we’d really like you to forget about the stuff Tina said.”
“You mean the points and posting and all that?” Could I really forget about it? Ideas were already swirling about what kind of place this was. The stories I could write. “I don’t know if Tina gave me any real information to work with. But I am wondering about it. I mean, where my mind is going now, would make for some great stories.”
Alan sighed and nodded. “Some things just can’t be undone.” He motioned toward the burly bartender. “Harvey, come over here.”
God, I thought I’d really stuck my foot in it. The guy was huge and he scowled at me as he ambled across the barroom floor.
“Harvey, this is Marc Stevens.”Alan said as the big man approached.
Harvey’s face instantly brightened. “The guy with the Blog?”
“Yeah,” Alan said, and Harvey held out his hand. I shook it, still expecting to be pummeled and thrown out of the bar. “You write fun stuff.”
Alan nodded, but he turned toward the bartender. “Tina kind of let the cat out of the bag.”
Harvey’s visage darkened. “Shit, you can’t write about what’s going on here.”
Alan held up his hand. “Maybe, he can. He writes fiction, after all. No one is going to believe it’s true.”
Tina all of a sudden seemed animated. “God, I’d love him to write about that night…”
And that’s how I joined the Points Club, an exclusive sex club hiding behind the facade of a shabby dining establishment.
I met quite a few of the members that night. All of them young, fit and good looking. A lot of them wanted to share their stories with me, but I promised Tina and Alan I’d tell their story first, so I’m working on that one now.
Considering what they told me, I don’t think I’ll have to embellish at all.