Sensing imminent danger based on his friend’s heated reaction to the sight of Cami flirting with another man, Mike-Mike instantly sprung into action by diving for Millsap’s feet.
Millsap went all the way down. But with the reflexes of a cat, he landed upon his hands and knees, avoiding damage to his face and torso. “Turn me loose, man,” he ordered the larger man holding tightly to his feet.
“Nope. Not ‘til you calm down,” Mike-Mike replied, using his full strength to hinder the progress of his friend. “You know we can’t have no bodies up in here. If you see that fool on the street, do what you feel on the private tip. But in our businesses, everybody’s safe, remember?”
Taking a deep breath, Millsap tried to force himself to calm down. It was so hard to do with flashbacks of that guy’s hand on Cami’s bottom constantly replaying themselves in his head. And to know that she actually smiled about that fondle instead of swatting the man’s hand away cut Millsap to the core. He started to struggle to get free again.
“Man, that girl got you straight trippin’,” Mike-Mike said, still holding onto his feet. “That’s why I’m firing her behind tonight.”
Millsap suddenly calmed down all the way now. “No. Cami needs this job for her son. I’m not gonna let you take it away from her.”
“You didn’t let me finish,” Mike-Mike replied. “I’m firing Cami so you can have her, man…as your main squeeze.”
“I don’t know about that.” Millsap shook his head, though the thought of Cami being his main squeeze didn’t repel him like before. Tonight it thrilled him to no end. Perhaps because he finally saw signs of her moving on and realized that he stood a real chance of losing her sooner than later.
“I told you she can’t be trusted in that position,” Millsap continued, still exercising caution in reference to Cami, despite the fact that he wanted her with every fiber of his being.
“I suggest you teach her how, because we can’t afford to have her around here no more. We got too much money tied up in this place and in other things for you to be catching a case right now,” Mike-Mike said, finally releasing Millsap’s feet. He also released a breath of relief now that the danger was past.
“Keep talking,” Millsap replied, forcing himself to invite the voice of wisdom into the picture on a larger scale.
“I figure if Cami is your woman open and clear, no one would dare try to step to her like that fool did tonight,” Mike-Mike continued. “Shoot, I’ll even stop watching her onion for panty lines myself.” He chuckled. “Plus, as your woman, Cami will get the financial help she needs to get things all the way together for her son. And you got enough houses that she can eeny-meeny-miny-moe from to stay in with her boy.”
“I’ll think about it,” Millsap said, moving to stand upright again. He extended a helping hand to his much larger friend soon thereafter.
“Do that,” Mike-Mike replied, receiving that helping hand. Falling down was much easier than getting up for a heavy person. “Now while you get your thinking on, I’m gonna handle a little business downstairs,” Mike-Mike added, pulling his cell phone from his pocket with one hand while he straightened his clothes with the other.
Righting his own clothes, Millsap listened as his partner called downstairs and told the head bouncer to remind Cami’s VIP customer of the club’s no-touching-the-help rule and to escort him out if he protested. Mike-Mike stood at the window and described the man to a tee in order to make sure there was no mistaken identity issues. Then he called Tonja and requested that Cami be sent up to the skybox in ten minutes.
“Why you calling her up here?” Millsap asked, going over to the round table. He didn’t trust himself near the window right now. He still felt too volatile. Murderous even.
“So I can let Cami know that her services will no longer be needed here. And so you can make her your main squeeze tonight.” Mike-Mike grinned, returning his phone to his pocket.
Millsap frowned. “I told you I was going to think about that.”
“And I let you.” Mike-Mike briefly looked down at his Rolex and added, “For a full five minutes.” He chuckled. “Man, stop fighting the feeling. You know you want this girl. Just take her already. I figure if Cami can do so much good around here in so short a time, maybe she can actually do you some good, too. In a way, I envy you. I would love for things to be so easily fixed between me and Tonja.”
“But all that
“Man, Cami did almost five years to the door for what she did to Dee and the old crew. She paid for her crimes and she kept her mouth closed while doing it. You and me both know she could have rolled over on a lot of people to get out early, including us. Give her a chance to show you and everybody else that she truly has changed,” Mike-Mike said, sprouting the best advice he could right now in order to keep the peace all around. As usual, he always chose peace first. But when war was necessary, Mike-Mike wholeheartedly embraced that, too.
Millsap took another deep breath and blew it out. “A’ight. I’ll give her a chance. That’s if she even still wants a chance with me. Cami might have found another high-roller by now judging from what I saw tonight.”
“Please.” Mike-Mike scoffed in disbelief. “From the way her eyes still follow you around this club, that girl will drop any dude for another chance with you.”
“I hope you’re right.” Millsap involuntarily licked his lips even as he began to count down the minutes to Cami’s arrival.
© 2008 by Suprina Frazier