woensdag 28 januari 2015

The Woman in Red: Chapter 14

14. To do or not to do

       ‘Excuse me?’ Jean-Pierre had jumped out of the bed, took his pants and wriggled himself into his clothes. It was the first time he was so aware he was naked. His thoughts jumped from one thought to another. Was it that sort of man he had seen with Frau Bertha Hofmeister? A refined gigolo who pleased rich ladies? What sort of a castle was this really? Now that he drew together all the points, he realized he didn’t even know where the castle was situated. France, yes… but even that was not for sure. He had slept in the limousine what was odd. Something wasn’t quite right here.
            ‘Katarina, you’re kidding, is this some sort of practical joke?’ He looked at her with questioning eyes, expected she would give him some explanation or that she would say he was a victim of candid camera.
            She shook her head. ‘No, my dear. I’ve never been so serious in my life. The things I’ve proposed to you are a pure reality. Think about it. You can be rich in a relatively short time. You have a beautiful body, and you know to use it. It’s your call to choose your future. A dull working life till you get retired and then, jaded, still enjoy a few years before you die or otherwise owning money, enjoying everything and further on lead a filled and luxurious life?’
            She also began to dress. Obviously she had made her point, and she would give him the time to think it over. Jean-Pierre’s first reaction was to turn this down, but couldn’t prevent himself to do the math. It was a lot of money. Has all this with Katarina been a play? ‘Have you seduced me with this objective, Katarina?’ He had to know the truth.
            ‘It was all real, Jean-Pierre. I’ve never said I loved you. We have had good sex. You can’t deny that. We got along very well. However, you are more than that; you… just have the talent to let a woman enjoy. There will be not many things to teach you.’
            Jean-Pierre eyes widened. ‘Teach? Is there a school for that?’ In his imagination, he saw a few students in a class and the mistress in front of them showing them position sixty-nine with a volunteer. He couldn’t prevent a smile slid on his lips.
            ‘Is that a yes?’ Katarina asked because she saw his reaction. Financially she would have to go deep if he accepted. But it was worth it and after all it would be calculated to the customers. Jean-Pierre didn’t realize what the ladies of the high society would pay to bring some color into their dull lives. Anyhow, there was still a beautiful profit on it for her.
            ‘I don’t say no, but neither am I saying yes. Katarina, come on, you do realize this is just crazy. That’s a whole other world. I’m only a simple accountant, not some… hustler!’ The word has been said. First, he hadn’t wanted to say it, but after all it was what it was. Still the sign of euro’s hung before his eyes. What would he make of his life? Had he to take account of someone? He was alone; his parents were dead and the only sister that he had, he hadn’t seen for years and lived in America. With the rest of his relatives, he had absolutely no contact. No, he had to consider no one.
            ‘I… I have to think this over a bit longer, Katarina. Does your mother know about this? Can you do this as a daughter of a Baroness?
            Katarina smiled. ‘My mother is president of the Board of Trustees of our enterprise. All the people, you’ve met this evening, are members of it. It’s custom with a new recruit for our team that every member is invited to give his opinion and approval. Of course, the recruit has also to approve, that’s obvious.’
            ‘What was the opinion of the Board of Trustees?’ Jean-Pierre liked to know.
            ‘I would never make the proposition if they hadn’t agreed. The vote was unanimous in your favor, Jean-Pierre.’ Katarina walked to the door of his room. ‘Just think about it for a while. Tomorrow morning you let me know your decision. Agreed?’ She waited for a moment with the door knob of the opened door in her hands.
            ‘Agreed,’ Jean-Pierre answered softly, already away in thoughts. They were thoughts about naked baronesses, nude minister wives and a lot of money.

© Rudi J.P. Lejaeghere


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