If you remember the scene in Don’t Look Down where JT Wilder comes into his hotel room and Althea is in his bed naked, which BTW, is the scene that convinced St Martins to go for the collaboration, this scene from Lawyers, Guns and Money sort of mirrors it.
Truvey, the woman in the scene, is turning out to be quite an intriguing character as I wrap up the third book in the series, Walk on the Wild Side, even racking up her own body count. And not that way.
This isn’t something they taught in Ranger School or the Special Forces Qualification Course. By the way, ‘breaking sheets’ is the term we used at West Point for the only night we actually got between the sheets of our beds, since the laundry went out the next day and we had to remake the bed anyway. Otherwise, we slept on top of an already made bed, using just our comforter. Time was precious.
Here is the excerpt:
MEATPACKING DISTRICT, MANHATTAN
Kane drew his forty-five when he saw the matchstick on top of the black iron gate. A note was taped to his door. He recognized his landlord’s scrawl by the glow of the street light, but didn’t holster the gun since he was having a bad twenty-four hours and didn’t see any reason for it to get better.
Kane entered, expecting to see Toni in the small sitting room, but it was empty. Kane went to the doorway to the bedroom. It was dark, but someone was in the bed. He flipped the overhead fluorescent, gun at the ready.
Truvey was in Kane’s bed, the sheet strategically layered along the upper curvature of her bosom. She lay on her side, head propped up with one hand held aloft by her elbow, a pose that was too perfect to be random. She looked pretty good despite the awful lighting.
“How come you didn’t ask if anyone wanted to kill me last night?” Truvey asked.
“Are you alone?” Kane asked.
“Am I not enough?” Truvey pouted. “Are you going to shoot me?”
Kane holstered the pistol. “You broke the sheets.”
“What are you doing here?” Kane asked.
Truvey raised an eyebrow. “Seriously?” She sat up, the sheet falling to her waist, revealing her prominent assets.
“Seriously,” Kane said.
“I didn’t ‘break’ your sheets,” Truvey said. “I got between them. The idea is—“
Kane interrupted her. “By the way, there’s a bomb under the bed.”
Truvey blinked hard several times as if that helped process the words. “You’re joking.”
“I’ve been accused by a number of people of not having much of a sense of humor and at this moment, I would trust their opinion.”
Truvey scooted out from between the sheets, revealing a pair of thong panties and a plethora of skin. Kane tossed her the sundress draped over the books on top of the dresser.
As she pulled it on, he told her: “Let me dispel with the possibility so we don’t waste time. I’m not interested in having sex with you. I’m more concerned with who attacked us last night and why.”
As the dress settled over her body, with some hard tugging, Truvey backed away from the bed. “The bomb?”
“It’s under the bed,” Kane said. “But it’s not armed. Technically it’s just the explosives. For it to go off it needs–”
“Why do you have a bomb?”
“It was on the boat last night.”
Truvey’s voice climbed a few octaves. “What?”
Kane indicated the sitting room. “Come on. I’ll explain.”
Truvey sat on the couch while Kane took the chair that allowed him to see the foyer and the couch.
“My apologies for my social faux pas last night,” Kane said. “Do you know anyone who’d want to kill you?”
Truvey shook her head. “No.”
“You sound pretty certain.”
Truvey spread her hands in innocence. “I’m a B-level actress trying to make my break. Who’d want to kill me?”
“That’s what I was asking,” Kane pointed out. “Why are you here?”
“I liked the way you handled things,” Truvey said. “I wanted to express my gratitude. I think it could have gotten bad if you hadn’t stepped up.”
“A thank you card would have worked.”
Truvey frowned. “You’re a weird man.”
“I’ve been told that.”
“You’ve a Vietnam Vet.” She said it in a way that could it could taken as a question or statement. Kane chose to go the latter route and didn’t respond. “A Green Beret. I deal with actors all the time. They pretend. You’re the real deal.”
“You also deal with people like Crawford,” Kane said.
“The hardest part of show business is getting the money,” Truvey said. “I’m surprised any movie is ever made given how difficult it is. Producers like to mix me in with their pitch to the money people.”
“The producer is a dear friend,” Truvey said. “I believe in his vision.”
“You’re talking about Selkis, right?”
“How long have you known him?”
Truvey frowned and Kane thought he heard little clangs as numbers moved. “About three months.”
“And he’s a dear friend?”
“Oh! Not like that.”
Kane had his own little mental clangs as he processed what she meant by ‘that’ which wasn’t what he had meant.
Truvey explained further. “He’s, well, you know. Let’s say he prefers different delights.”
“Right. When did he ask you to meet Crawford?”
“Selkie, that’s what I call him, phoned me yesterday morning and we had lunch. He explained that a big money man he’d worked with before was coming to town and he had a project he thought would interest him and that there was a role in it that I would be perfect in and that I’d definitely be cast if it got greenlit so of course I said yes.”
Kane unpacked the run-on sentence and pronouns. “Why didn’t Selkis come along?”
Truvey appeared shocked. “That would have been weird, wouldn’t it?”
“I guess so,” Kane said, having used his quota of ‘right’ in this conversation. “Did an Indian named Yazzie talk to you this morning.”
“Oh, yes. Have you met him? So tall. His skin is so perfect. He could so be my leading man!”
Kane indicated the bedroom. “I thought I was going to be?”
She pouted. “I’m here, aren’t I?”
“You are indeed. Did he give you money? Or did Crawford pay you in the limo?”
“I’m not a hooker.”
“To not say anything about what happened,” Kane clarified.
“Yeah. Crawford did. Did he give you some?”
Truvey nodded. “Two thousand. Not bad for doing nothing.”
“Except for the getting shot at and almost blown up.”
Truvey frowned. “There is that.” She frowned further. “How much did Crawford pay you?”
“Two thousand. What did Yazzie want to know?”
Truvey gave him what Yazzie had told them in the meeting. When she was done, she pouted slightly. “He’s really handsome but there’s something missing in him.”
“He’s crossed the river,” Kane said.
“Seen the elephant.”
Kane moved on from the combat references. “Can I ask you something else?”
Truvey became wary. “What?”
“Did you bring the cocaine or did Crawford?”
“You won’t rat on me will you?”
“Selkie supplied it. I don’t use myself. I tried it a few times but I’ve seen what can happen. I want to have a career, you know? Not be here today, gone tomorrow.”
“Good plan,” Kane said.
Truvey changed the subject. “What’s with all the pictures?” She indicated the framed prints leaning against the wall, everywhere there wasn’t cinderblocks holding makeshift bookshelves.
“I like maps. They’re mostly of New York City and show the evolution and history of the city.”
“See? That’s part of what the movie is about. New York City. I think. At least Selkie said it was. He never really gave me the script. He said it was about the dark underbelly of the Big Apple. Did you see Taxi Driver? DeNiro? Wasn’t that some acting? Selkie said it was like that, thematically.”
“I haven’t seen the movie. But I think I’ve experienced that part of the city.”
“Anyways, it opens with a scene like that one in Godfather. Or was it Two? Kid on the boat seeing the Statue?”
“Haven’t seen either of them either.” He pointed at a book. “There’s The Godfather.”
“The book the movie was based on,” Kane said.
“There was a book?” Truvey leaned forward, her sun dress looser at the top. She suddenly spoke as if they were being listened in on. “You know there weren’t any storyboards, don’t you?”
“I kind of guessed.”
Truvey sighed, having exhausted small talk. “You obviously like to read,” she said. “What else do you like?” She walked over, settling on the arm of the chair.
Kane forced himself to remain in the seat. “Run. Go to the gym and workout and spar. Work the heavy and light bag.”
“You look like you’re in good shape.”
“I gotta do two hours every morning,” Truvey complained. “And I can’t eat much of nothing. People think it’s easy to look like this.”
Kane didn’t know what to say to that.
“I appreciate a man who takes care of himself,” Truvey said.
Truvey became inspired. “I’ve never done it with a bomb under the bed.”
“I doubt that’s an exclusive club many have aspirations to,” Kane said.
Truvey frowned. “What-da-ya mean by that?”
“I mean not many people have done it with a bomb under the bed. That they knew about.”
“Oh.” She reached for him and he flinched. “What’s wrong with you?”
“I got shot in the head,” Kane said. “Kind of messed me up. Plus, I’ve had a bad day.”
“We can work on that. And really, the head’s over-rated.”
“That’s an interesting take,” Kane said.
Truvey got off the chair and went to the light switch for the sitting room. Turned it off. Her body was silhouetted inside the sundress in the doorway to the bedroom, which strangely was more enticing than almost completely naked in the bed. “You know where I’ll be. Above the bomb.” She turned the bedroom light off.
End of excerpt: LAWYERS, GUN AND MONEY
If you want to read what came before, it’s on Wattpad.