November 1, 2016
Payback is a powerful thing...
Actor and bartender, Tyler West experiences a sudden streak of luck -- winning poker games. Determined to change his life, he enters the World Series of Poker. His life is suddenly turned upside down when the Russian mafia fronts him 1.5 million dollars to play at the tables. And then...he losesâ¦
Now on the ride of his life, deceit and deception are his key to uncovering the truth. He must recoup the money, but will it come at a price? Can he stay alive long enough or will his time run out?
Tyler pushed his long, blond hair back with one hand and slouched. He knew she found him attractive. âIâll tell ya,â he began, hoping to make it last, keep her interested. âI pretty much need the start up money right now.â
Ah, too fast.
âStart up money? Now? You think I got a stash under my bed upstairs? We should go up and find out. My, my weâre in a hurry arenât we?â Elsie pushed Tyler into an oversized easy chair covered with brown mohair. A black cat with white paws jumped off it as Tyler slammed down.
âEasy kid. Thatâs the trick. You donât wanta look too desperate, know what I mean? Well, you are good lookinâ Iâll give you that,â she said. âWhat ya got there?â
Tyler gave her a certificate.
âMade this up on my computer. It kind of sells land.â
âBullwhippie,â Elsie said as she tore up the certificate and put it in a glass ashtray on the glass coffee table. âThe only thing that makes a lot of money fast is ass, kid.â
âOne point five million?â Tyler asked.
âYouâre good looking, but honey your egoâs getting away with you.â
Elsie sat in her chair, a plush, pink armchair with multicolor pink pillow and a foot stool in front. She leaned toward him.
âListen, baby. This is just between you and me, got it? Iâve been a madam longer than I can remember. I work on the sly sometimes, and my parole officer comes around, but he donât bother me. You know why?â
A still crestfallen Tyler looked at her.
âBecause I got the goods on all those assholes, thatâs why. I got the video. Donât ever do porn without a video somewheres in the bedroom. Ya got me?â
Elsie continued without noticing. âIâll never tell where I hid the original, but believe me I got plenty of copies. Got a friend on Grand that does the best photography in the city. I had a couple of tapes made and almost sold âem to TVâthe porn sites. So I been thinkinâ real hard about how I can re-establish my rep. And here you come.â
Tyler finally opened his mouth but it was only to use his tongue to wet his lips, they felt parched and he was sure they would crack it he kept his mouth closed any longer.
âYes, Maâam,â was all he could think to say.
âIâm gonna start up the biggest whore house in the state, sonny. This time? With men. You know how much a good male hooker can make? Two thousand a night. Now---depending on your staminaâ¦â
âYeah, I get the picture,â Tyler said.
He wasnât in to older women, but he had to admit, Elsie was beginning to look visibly younger with the excitement she was projecting. Some people love their work. Her gray roots were beginning to look more like silver blonde streaks and her smile was widening. Her teeth, perfect in what were undoubtedly caps, glistened.
âA male whore house. I donât think itâs been done before,â Elsie repeated.
Elsie was spry for a woman her age, but she had become overweight and as Tyler checked out the flat, it looked like sheâd just moved into the place. She no longer looked like a professional, but that was probably the point. On a small table next to Tyler there was a silver framed picture, a studio shot of a glamorous woman, her head tilted back, full makeup and blond hair, her fingers just touching her chin and a large, pearl necklace around her neck and thick jeweled bracelets on her wrists. Tyler realized it was an old shot of Elsie maybe forty years ago.
âWomen in their eighties still masturbate, you know that?â Elsie asked noticing him admiring the photo. She looked like she might jot down his answer in an interview. âAnd what a shame that is when guys like you are just running around willy-nilly.â
âNo, maâam, never really thought about it,â Tyler said.
âYou sure do look like your pa. He was a crafty one, but always good to my girls. You work out, huh? I got a boob job in my seventies. Hell, nothing stays up forever. Theyâre just starting to sag again now. Thinking about getting âem done again, so this is a good time we connected.â
âYes, Maâam,â Tyler wasnât sure where this was going, but he was pretty sure he didnât want it to go much further.
âThirty percent on my end,â she said.
âHuh?â Tyler realized his eyes had widened and tried to relax so he wouldnât look so stupid.
âThatâs a lot of money, Maâam,â Tyler said, when the hole in his stomach shrunk slightly. âI mean Iâm desperate, like you say, but thatâs a big cut.â
âListen, kid. A man looks like you, your age, your height, yourâ¦face, could make more than two thousand dollars a night, okay? Itâs not gonna last forever, so you better grab it while ya can.
About the Author:
Stefanie Stolinsky, Ph.D. is a licensed psychologist and forensic psychologist with a private practice in Beverly Hills, California. She specializes in trauma, adults sexually, physically and emotionally abused as children, and PTSD. She is an international speaker and has taught training seminars in overcoming the aftereffects of child abuse. She has also taught licensing examinations to candidates for both marriage, family and child counseling and for the psychology licenses.
She began her career as an actress in motion pictures, television and stage and created a unique therapy combining acting exercises with psychodynamic psychotherapy to help survivors of all kinds of trauma overcome the aftereffects of abuse. The first edition of "ACT IT OUT" was a top seller for over nine years. A second edition of the popular book was launched in April of this year and is available on Praeclarus Press, Amazon, and Barnes and Noble.
She is also the author of several award-winning short stories including her newest short story anthology, DATE NIGHT, and numerous comedy mystery. Dr. Stolinsky lives with her husband in Los Angeles.