Protecting David-The Brothers 20
The twins were sitting on the edge of my bed looking a little grim. Last night was, like it usually is when I’m leaving, a twin sandwich. They were going with me to the airport and were already dressed, whereas I, as usual, was running late.
As I pulled on my jeans, Aiden said, “How come you always wear boxer briefs now?”
I looked at him and just smiled.
He rolled his eyes and said, “Oh…Nick.”
Andrew said, “How come he’s gotta go back there, too?”
“He’s got a job. Dad needs him to work with some banks. He’ll be in Milwaukee…mostly.”
Aiden got a quizzical look on his face and said, “Madison is in Wisconsin too, isn’t it?” Then got a weird look on his face and said, “Oh…yeah, it is.”
Andrew looked at his brother like he was from Mars. He shook his head and said, “You’re so fucking stupid.”
“Don’t tell me I’m stupid, you asshole! I just forgot! How the fuck would I know anything about fucking Wisconsin?”
“You were just there a few months ago! Where did you think the plane landed, fucking New York?”
I said, “Will you two quit fighting!”
Aiden shoved his brother hard with his elbow and said, “We’re not fighting.” Then he laughed. “Besides, he just gets mad cause he’s got such a little dick.”
Andrew fired right back, “That doesn’t even make any sense, you jerk, because we both got identical dicks!” He looked at me. “He never even knows what he’s talking about!” They’re just fourteen, and sometimes it’s easy to forget that.
When I sat down on the edge of the bed to pull my socks on, Aiden poked me and asked, “How come the granddads gave us that stuff in Italy?” Christmas had been great and we’d gotten all kinds of normal Christmas stuff, like clothes and shit, but the Granddads had also told us that they were giving us the property that they had owned in Italy for years.
I was tying my shoe. I laughed. “Dad says it’s because they never go there. He said they’ve owned it for like a million years and they’ve only been there twice.”
Andrew rolled on his back and moaned, “That’s because it’s soooo boring! I mean it’s nice and all, but there ain’t nothin to do.” The twins had been there a year ago and had almost gotten in trouble with the father of a local girl who apparently was in the process of falling for the twins charms. The twins are always intense, and I can only imagine how they are when the full force of that intensity gets turned on someone that they’re wanting to screw.
“I might have an idea. Well, actually, it’s Mrs. Colby’s idea. She told me that those olive groves produce the best olive oil she’s ever tasted, but the thing is that Grandpa has always just sold it off cheap to the local olive oil people. Mrs. Colby said we oughta repackage it with some kinda cool name and sell it ourselves over here. And there’s the wine too. That farm produces like a ton of wine and they do the same thing with it.” I flopped back on the bed between the twins. “Anyway, the dads said that it’d be the perfect opportunity for me to put together a business plan.” I shook my head. “Like I’m supposed to know how to do that. But they said if it made sense they’d help do it.”
It seemed like the flight back to Madison took forever. Most of that was due to the fact that I was alone. Nick would be flying to Milwaukee on Wednesday and he promised that no matter what, he’d be at my apartment in Madison on Friday evening. Already the only thing that I could think about was his dick.
After landing in Madison, when I walked from the plane to the small terminal that’s used for private planes my lawyer Jamie Billings was waiting for me inside. My dad had told me that Jamie would meet me to give me the keys to the new apartment and show me how to get there. My car had already been moved from Milwaukee to Madison, although I had no clue how or who did it. Jamie was all dressed up in a suit, and tan overcoat, he grinned broadly and held out his hand.
“You survived Christmas break?”
I laughed. “Pretty much.” Did I ever mention how hot Jamie is? There’s just something about a straight married man that somehow makes them more attractive.
We walked through the little terminal and out the other side. Jamie led the way over to a silver Mercedes sedan. All around us the snow had been plowed and piled up in huge mounds.
Jamie laughed. “I keep thinking that Colorado sounds like it would be warmer, but I don’t suppose it is, is it?”
I slid into the passenger seat and said, “You know, I don’t think it feels as cold there as it does here, which is weird because basically, they’re both the same. I think maybe the snow is dryer there.”
“I hope you’re gonna like this apartment. It’s almost brand new. It’s a two-flat that the owner just finished. You’ve got the second floor, the bottom unit has already been rented too. You also get a garage with it, and as you can imagine, that’s a huge advantage around here during winter.” He laughed again. “My secretary basically got the department store here in town to send over some people to decorate the place. We weren’t too sure of what you’d like so they tried to keep it pretty middle of the road design wise, but if you hate it we can change it.”
I said, “How do I get to the main branch of Wisconsin National? My dad said it was downtown.”
He gave me a quick look. “You need to stop at the bank? We could run by there now, if you want.”
“No, no. My dad wants me to work there part time. I gotta go this afternoon. But I’ve never really went down there. Is it by the capitol?”
“Just south of it. It takes up like a whole block, one of those old fashioned bank buildings that looks more like a museum than a bank. About ten years ago they remodeled it, but they didn’t change the basic look of the place. It’s really beautiful inside in a kind of grand, old fashioned way. Lots of marble. When they built that building they were the biggest bank in town with tons of money coming in from the state government and they were owned by the best connected people. In those days there were no branch banks, no Chase or Citicorp, at least not in Wisconsin.”
“Is it a long way from the apartment?”
“No. Nothing is very far from this apartment. Basically you just go east from your apartment, then when you get to the capitol you go towards the lake. Like fifteen minutes or so. Do you need me to talk to anyone at the bank?”
I shook my head. “No. My dad wants me to just quietly learn something about how banks work.”
“How about moving your clothes from your old room? Need a hand with that?”
I sighed. “No, that’s more complicated. I gotta go sometime today and buy clothes. Maybe I can do that after the bank.” I still had clothes at my old room and for that matter the room was even paid for the rest of the year. But I would have to replace the clothes that Corey threw away.
“Well, when you’re in your apartment you’re only like a hundred feet from the campus, so commuting won’t be a big deal.”
We turned onto a quiet residential street and he said, “We’re right up here.”
The building was made of light colored brick with two large living room windows, one on top of the other. Next to the building on the right was a driveway that led back to the garage.
Jamie parked on the street and we walked to the front entrance. The front door was steel with a glass insert. Jamie put a key in a lock and turned it, it made a heavy clicking sound.
The apartment itself was beautiful, much nicer than anything that I had been expecting. The living room had a big butter soft leather sofa in a light chocolate color. The rest of the rooms were decorated in varying shades of that same color and it all felt very relaxing.
I looked at Jamie. “Your secretary did an awesome job.” I laughed and looked around. “My first apartment.” And it was. It really was the first adult place that was a normal place to live, not my bedroom at home and not just a dorm room, and it was mine alone.
He handed me the keys to my car. “I added the key to the apartment.” He reached over and picked something up off a table. “Here’s the remote control that opens the garage door, there’s also one in your car, but this little silver key will open it too. On the left side of the garage door there’s a small lock. Just put the key in and turn it clockwise and release it.”
He looked into my eyes. “You gonna be okay?”
I grinned and shook my head. “My first apartment and getting my first job. I feel like I should be scared.”
He laughed, then reached over and squeezed my shoulder. “I think you’ll be fine. Just remember, I’m only a phone call away.”
After Jamie left I went into the bedroom and bounced on the bed, then went into the living room and stretched out on the sofa. The leather was sooo soft. After five minutes I forced myself up and wandered into the kitchen. There was a big stainless steel refrigerator. I pulled open the door expecting it to be empty, but it wasn’t, there was a gallon of milk, a dozen eggs, butter, a loaf of bread and a package of sliced ham. I pulled open the door to the freezer, and it was filled with frozen pizza. I opened the cabinets and found dishes, canned goods, and three different kinds of cereal. The place was fully stocked.
I got my car out of the garage and drove towards the dorms. I needed my clothes and especially needed to get the money my dad had given me back. I wasn’t really sure whether or not I wanted to run into Max or Caroline. I was pretty sure I wouldn’t run into Adam, because he lived in a different building.
I let myself into my old room and found Max and Caroline sitting on the bed looking like they were waiting for me.
Caroline jumped up and came over and put her hand on my arm. “Chris, I’m so sorry.”
Max said, “We saw you pull into the parking lot.” He pointed at a stack of clothing in the corner of the room. “Adam brought that over earlier.” It was all the clothes that Corey was going to throw out.
I started to say something, but Max said, “He said he didn’t know Corey was gonna threaten you.” Max got an odd look on his face. “He also said he was sorry.” Then he shook his head. “I’m sorry too, sorry he’s such an asshole.”
I shook my head. “Look...it’s probably all for the best. I met a guy...it’s probably for the best.”
Caroline smiled and said, “How could you meet someone so fast? Where?”
I shrugged. “It’s someone from Denver. He liked me, but I didn’t know.” I sat down on my old bed. “Adam is okay?”
Caroline crossed her arms against her chest. “He’s with some blond chick. One of those skanks that used to ogle him at the matches.”
Somehow, him being with a girl didn’t really compute in my brain. “A girl?”
Max said, “It’s his fucked up family! His brother is living here in town too. I figure his old man sent him to keep an eye on Adam. He quit the team, too. Now he’s all about becoming a lawyer.”
Caroline came over and sat down next to me. “We’re glad to have you back.”
I looked around. “I got an apartment.” I shook my head. “I just came to get my stuff. I couldn’t come back here...you know?”
Max said, “You’re still down for the room. I saw it on the list.”
“I know, it’s paid till the summer, but I got an apartment, this place is all yours.” They looked a little relieved. “I was hoping I could get you guys to help me carry this stuff down to the car.”
They jumped at the chance to help and I gave Max my keys as he was headed out the door with a load of my shirts. When Caroline followed him, I quickly pulled out the bottom drawer of the dresser, tore the envelope off, and shoved it in my back pack. That made me feel better. It was like being reunited with an old friend that had been left behind.
I spent the next hour at the book store getting the things I’d need for classes and then I went to my apartment and put my clothes in the closet. I left a foot and a half of space in the closet and two drawers in the dresser for Nick. I figured since he’d only be here on weekends that would probably be enough. Then I took a shower and got dressed as neatly as possible for the bank. I didn’t really know whether they’d want me to start right away or whether they wouldn’t want me at all. But anyway, I wore dark blue Dockers with a white and blue striped dress shirt and a dark blue tie. In the end it looked pretty dull, but I figured with it being a bank and all, dull would probably be good.
It was a good thing I left plenty of time to get to the bank because it took forever to find parking. Finally, I parked a couple of blocks away and walked back. The bank was everything that Jamie said it was. It took up almost an entire square block, but when I walked in the main entrance I saw that the top two floors, the third and forth, were leased out to other businesses. From the names on the building directory, they sounded mostly like lawyers.
The first thing I ran into was the information desk, so I asked the lady sitting there where I would find Steven Tyler. She gave me the look that older people give to teenagers and said, “Do you have an appointment?”
Did I? “Ahh, I guess I do. I’m supposed to see him about a job.”
“Well, Mr. Tyler is head of Human Resources, but if you’re looking for a job you wouldn’t really see him. Someone else in the department would interview you.” She leaned forward and pointed off to the side. “The elevators are over there or you can take the stairs at either end. It’s room 214.”
Behind her was the banking floor and it was enormous, an oval space that looked like it was the size of a football field, only carved out of marble. Tellers were busy handling lines of customers and off to the sides of the building were the ground floor offices. At each end of the banking floor were dramatic stairways leading to the second floor which looked to be laid out exactly like the first and I could see people up there staring down at the activity on the banking floor.
I took the elevator, the stairs were just too dramatic, I’m not a dramatic person. The elevator opened onto a wide walkway that circled the view down to the banking floor. I went in the wrong direction at first and had to double back until I found the hallway the led me in the right direction.
Room 214 was stenciled onto a glass paneled door that had a brass plaque next to it that said Human Resources. The door opened onto a large waiting room that had a desk at the far end of it, but there was no one sitting at it. I walked over to the desk, hoping someone would come in, not having any idea what to do. Just then a door off to the side opened and a teenage girl came in.
She looked at me and walked over to the desk. She opened one of the drawers and pulled out a notebook. Then she looked at me again and said, “They’re all in a meeting.”
I shoved my hands in my pockets. “I can wait. I’m fine with waiting.”
She shook her head. “It’s gonna go on forever. You here for a job?”
I nodded yes. “I’m supposed to see Mr. Tyler.”
She said, “I’ll tell you what, lemme take you in back and turn you over to somebody who can get you started on the paperwork. No matter what, they’re gonna need that, even if you don’t get the job they won’t even talk to you without the paperwork.”
I grinned at her. “That’d be great.”
She nodded towards the door she had come through. “Follow me.”
We walked into a large space that was filled with cubicles and every one had someone in it doing something. It wasn’t loud, but it wasn’t really quiet either. I guess it sorta hummed. She stopped at a cubicle and gestured for me to go in. “Mike can help you. He’s been working with Mr. Tyler.”
The guy turned around and said, “Holy shit! What are you doin here?”