Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men, Part Five by Robert Gabe

  1. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men: Part One by Robert Gabe
  2. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men: Part Two by Robert Gabe
  3. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men: Part Two by Robert Gabe
  4. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men: Part Three by Robert Gabe
  5. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men, Part Four by Robert Gabe
  6. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men, Part Five by Robert Gabe

 

 

Part Five

In the morning we pack up our clothes and I grab Tana’s black book. We eat at a
Mexican restaurant called El Limon and afterwards check into the Red Roof Inn near
the airport. I take the car out for a drive by myself while Rose hangs back at the Red
Roof. I’m on I-95 and it’s raining again and from my passenger side I can see planes
taking off amongst a gray airspace. I look in my rearview and that’s when I see it. The
same black van from the film festival trailing me ever so innocuously. I get off at an exit
to see if the driver is following me and sure enough he switches on his turn signal and
heads towards the ramp. I pull up to a light. It pulls up behind me, The windows are still
tinted and I can’t make out whoever’s operating it, but I assume Jaques. To the right of me is a state trooper. I decide to follow him all the way to the police station and when we get there the van peels off speedily in the other direction.

I haul ass back to the Red Roof and let Rose know what happened. She gets
spooked and once again we change motels, only this time it’s the Days Inn. That night
Rose tells me the story of how she became a stripper as we lie in bed.

“I was nineteen.” She says “My home life was one of domestic violence. My step-father,
an ex-cop, was a real mean son of a’ bitch.” She continues “One night he kicks me out
as he claimed I disrespected by raising my voice to him during an argument. He trashed
the whole place and said if I came back he’d kill me. I had nowhere else to go and I was
walking the street I saw The Rabbit in Silk from a distance. I thought ‘What is that
place?’ the fancy lights flickered and from down the street I could see men going in and
out in and out. I went inside that night and did and interview and the next day I was
working. I made 2k my first week. Enough to put a deposit down on my own place. From
there it was a no-brainer. I was going to be a dancer.”

Pause.

“What about you Vincent? What’s your story?”

“I come from a single mother household.” I tell her. “My dad left when I was four. He
was a deadbeat. Wouldn’t work. Claimed disability yet it wasn’t enough to provide for
my mother and I. He started abusing my mom because she was hiding money to use it
for me to go to college with. I haven’t heard from him in years. Not sure I want to now.
We do fine on our own.”

“Does your mom know about Tana?”

“She knows the police pulled me aside and I left it at that, but she thinks I’m currently doing
internship stuff.”

“We should go visit her! I’ll introduce myself as your girlfriend and make her so proud!”
“Not now. There’s too much heat on us.”

Pause.

“Vincent, I am your girlfriend, right?”

I kiss her on the lips and we embrace under the blankets and I think to myself what a
a strange world it is that a beauty queen’s murder led me to find my first real girlfriend.
Before escaping the Pleasure Point, Rose managed to grab a book from Jaques
desk. The book, worn and dated, and seemingly of ancient greek descent was titled
‘The Pleasure Imperative’ written by ‘the board of directors.’ Multiple authors. Rose is
sleeping. I watch her snore ever so gracefully and turn my head when a floodlight of
high beams lights up our room casting a white glow over her. I run to the window to see
who it is, and I see a family of four exiting a mini-van with their dinner going back to their
room. I go to my desk and retrieve the book from my drawer. The first page reads:

Mission Statement:
Dream Rabbit embodies a set of consistent principles that align with human nature. When you are reconciled to the fact that every human being is out for his or herself, you will begin to understand our philosophy. Men seek one thing in life: Pleasure. Dream Rabbit seeks to optimize its ideology by focusing on sex as a transcendent act. Men are the buyers, and women are the sellers. That’s how it’s always been since the beginning of time. The family unit is blasphemous. Our true function as humans is to consume and copulate and spread our superior DNA far and wide.

In the shadows, exist another realm. One of never ending pleasures such as orgies, wealth and the taste of the finest wines. This place is called: The Outer Rim and it’s governed by its king, Mr. Henry. One day we will lead all young nymphets into said superior realm and cast our controlling hand over the rest of the country, and in time, the world, turning them into our serfs.

On this day, we shall rejoice as we have escaped the trappings of the world and created our own faultless utopia.
– The Board of Directors

The rest of the book went into detail about the early days of Mr. Henry. He was born in
Bulgaria, came from poverty, and in his college years had been a student at a
university in New York getting his masters in biology acing all classes with a 4.0 GPA. It
went on to detail the early days of the cult and how drawn its members were to Mr.
Henry, a man of charm and intelligence citing him as “Potentially not entirely human.” In
the early days, the team preyed on young runaways of “genetic superiority” and as the
organization grew larger they focused on modeling agency and runway models and
eventually, pageant queens. In the early days, Girls were threatened and blackmailed if they
tried to flee having provided collateral during their initiations. As the organization grew
more powerful, they began eliminating girls sawn as liabilities or threats to the
foundations of “Dream Rabbit.” These deaths were staged as suicides mostly. Most girls
were killed once they reached thirty. That was the expiration date.

In one of the stories, a young woman by the name of Erin Cunningham tried to escape
from a private brothel set up in the Philly suburbs. She escaped out into the street, but
was pulled back into a van by Jaques and branded and put in a cage for thirty days for
the failed attempt. Neglected, she died weeks later of starvation.

At the final page of the book exist a quote:

“It is only by way of struggle, where one
arrives at pleasure. Never give up.”

I close the cover and go outside where it’s raining and light up a smoke. When I do I
notice the power is out as far as I can see.

We need money so Rose dances a few nights at a place called Baby Dolls. I’m
watching from my seat as she dances to a new song by She’s Passed Away – Ritual. The man sings in Turkish “Kemiriyor Bockler. Direniyor Kemilker. Aciyi Hisset!” Rose slides down the pole. She claps her heels together making a loud clicking noise and does an upside down split prompting the crowd to wolf whistle. She pushes herself against the mirror and waddles her ass while pouting her lips. She shakes her hair back and forth as she grips the pole and from the sidelines a businessman throws a wad of twenties on the stage that flutters in the air like floating feathers.

Rose quickly collects them. Next to me is an older man attached to an oxygen tank who looks like he has one foot in the grave. A fight breaks out between two customers, a pagan biker and some frat boy so I signal to Rose it’s time to leave. She stuffs the cash
inside her bra, throws on her fur peacoat and we exit out the back door and stumble into the alleyway.

“How much?” I say.

“About nine hundred.” She shows me the cash.

“That’ll last us for the week.” I continue “Listen, I want you to take the car and go back to
the motel. I’m going to catch a cab to the Casino to see Rick Boyd, the owner.”
She hands me two-hundred dollars and tells me to triple it up, to which I smile at the
thought.

From across the way I see a dark figure emerge from behind the wall of a smoked out
sewer. He begins walking towards us and I see he’s wearing a fedora and long wool
trench coat, his face shrouded in mystery. Rose grabs my arm. I pull out my blade and
and raise it in defense. For a moment, I think it’s Jaques but when the mans comes to
me stepping under the alleyway light, I realize it’s not Jaques, but Tana’s father.
“Mr. Molnar.” I let down the knife.

Silence. His face is solemn and without any emotion then perhaps permanent grief.
“I ask you to talk to my daughters friend for information and I find out the two of you are
running around fleecing gentlemen’s clubs?”

“We needed more money.” I say “Mr. Monlar…. We are on the cusp of something big.”
“Go home and be with your wife. She needs you.” Rose says.

“You’re right.” He says slightly embarrassed. “I shouldn’t be out here. I just needed some
fresh air. I can’t seem to find it in this godforsaken dump of a city.”
I nod.

“I’m going home.” He nearly cries “Vincent, I am sorry for putting you through this. You
can go home too if you want.”He falls to his knees and immediately Rose gasps and goes to help him up. In a puddle on the damp street, his pant legs all wet, Rose and I escort Mr. Molnar back to a cab. I tell him to take care of himself and I’m on my way to the casino to see Boyd.

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