I CAN’T GET NEXT TO YOU
Rick Gardner never intended to visit one of Atlanta’s premiere strip clubs, but his fellow attorneys choose that venue to celebrate his latest courtroom victory. A born again Christian, Rick knows Dreamland is the last place he belongs. Still, he’s confident he can withstand the temptation. Until the beautiful woman sent to entertain them walks in …
The setup: Tamyra Allen needs $20,000 to open her store. A friend says she can make that in six months dancing in a gentlemen's club. She's never been to one of these clubs. This is her first experience. On Kindle: http://amzn.to/pouOZq Nook: http://bit.ly/q9Wd9o
I trailed him through the darkened club filled with mirrors, neon lights and a long bar with a small stage at each end anchoring the room. The sight of the floor-to-ceiling silver poles suddenly made me cringe, although I didn’t know why. Wasn’t that standard equipment in one of these places? What had I expected?
Deion escorted me to a table. “If you’d like a drink, I can send a waitress over.” He pulled out the chair for me.
“I would. Thank you.”
“Make yourself comfortable. I’ll go get Luscious.”
He had to be joking. Comfortable was the farthest thing from what I felt. In my twenty-seven years, I’d never been in a place where nearly naked women jiggled and swung their physical assets around while people were eating. The two women on stage definitely had a lot to jiggle and swing. The shorter one’s breasts had to be a DD. The taller one possessed a behind that rivaled Deputy Raineesha Williams on Reno 911. Fascinated, I couldn’t help but stare.
The waitress took my drink order. While waiting for her to return with my screwdriver, I examined the club’s flashy black and purple interior. With the exception of the poles, the interior looked much like any nightclub, a lot of chrome and swirling lights.
Since it wasn’t even eight o’clock, several men were seated at the bar. A popular hip-hop tune played through an awesome sound system. I willed myself to relax. My purpose in being there was simply to observe. No pressure. No commitment.
“Tamyra? Girl, I didn’t think you’d show up.”
My gaze went first to the silver gladiator stilettos that laced all the way up to her thick thighs then to the red kimono-style robe wrapped around her ample body. She seemed so comfortable. I wondered what she was wearing underneath.
Shanice took a seat. “You stirred up my curiosity, so I had to drop by.”
“Perfect timing. You met Deion, right?”
“Yes, he introduced himself. Does he personally greet all the customers?”
“No, just the women. I wish I could chat with you right now, but I’m fittin’ to hit the stage. The set is thirty minutes long. You can ask me questions when I take my break, okay?” She stood. “It’s show time.”
Several minutes later, I jumped when a voice from out of nowhere announced two dancers about to take the twin stages. The song changed, and the volume increased several decibels. As soon as the bass started thumping, Shanice removed the kimono and revealed a two-piece bikini that strategically covered the important parts. As she started to move, several of the men switched from their bar stools to tables located closer to the stage. Way more curvaceous without her clothes than she had appeared fully dressed, Shanice knew how to appeal to her audience. I was enthralled by the power she seemed to have over the men. Mesmerized, they took out their wallets and waved bills in her direction as she crawled toward them in a slow, cat-like move. One by one they used their only legal opportunity to touch her by tucking the bills into her top or bottom. My eyes immediately went to the wedding bands two of them wore, and I wondered if their wives knew where they were or had any idea how much of the household money they were giving away.
The instant her set ended, Shanice stepped off the stage. She returned to my table, picked up the kimono from the back of the chair, tied it at the waist then signaled the bartender. “So, what’d you think?”
“You didn’t take anything off.”
She laughed. “Ain’t nothing to take off. This is a bikini-club. There’s no actual stripping. The uniform can’t get much smaller than this. It ain’t about removing stuff. It’s all about the fantasy. The men want to see how you move your body.”
The fantasy? So I would have to do more than just dance. Shanice laughed again when I frowned. A waitress brought her a bottle of spring water. “You know, they’re imagining what you’re doing to them or they’re doing to you. I’m not responsible for their thoughts.”
“But you’re enticing them.”
“You got that right! And they know ain’t nothing happening. Tree is here to make sure of that.”
“See that brother over by the bar standing like a big ol’ California redwood?” She pointed a long, elaborately painted fingernail toward a fierce-looking man wearing a tight black t-shirt. “Tree is six feet six inches tall and weighs two hundred seventy-five pounds. He can drag most guys out of here by their collar without even breaking a sweat. Tree’s rescued me a coupla times.”
The idea of putting myself on display scared me. What Shanice said about the no touching rule eased my fears a little. In spite of what I had seen tonight, visions of drunk, sweaty men pawing at me made me want to throw up. Yet, I was still considering the opportunity to increase my loan collateral.
Doubts about my ability to turn myself into a sexy vixen warred against my desire to be an independent business owner. Granted, I loved to dance, but never had I performed for a man with the intention of turning him on. Even the idea of learning the skill in front of other women freaked me out. The thought of Deion laughing uncontrollably as I convulsed around the platform like Elaine on Seinfeld put knots in my stomach.
End of Excerpt
Contemporary women’s fiction/romance author Chicki Brown has published four Kindle best selling novels. An avid reader, her favorite authors are Beverly Jenkins, Eric Jerome Dickey, Lisa Kleypas, J.R. Ward and Suzanne Brockmann.
A New Jersey native, Brown and her family relocated to suburban Atlanta, Georgia in 1994, and she now proudly calls herself a “Georgia peach.”
Her many homes in cyberspace include http://www.chicki663.webs.com, http://www.facebook.com/chicki.brown and .Chicki 663 on Twitter.