Anna Belle's Gallagher Gentleman's Club was doing very well. Even if every client did not seek the pleasures of the women of the house, they could find a place of peace and companionship. Whether it was a regular game of cards, an available bar to those with wives who still believed in the temperance movement, or just being among the who's who of men who frequented the establishment. There was an unsaid understanding of discretion. After all, almost everyone personally had something to lose, and together, they all knew they had a good thing going that greatly increased the quality of their lives.
That particular evening, Miranda, Anna Belle's red head known for her S & M talent, quietly came down the stairs and pulled Anna Belle aside. Without making any ado, Anna Belle followed her upstairs. There in Miranda's bed, was her client shackled to the head board, dead as a door nail. Miranda was calm but clearly upset. "Anna Belle, he was fine, he was enjoying himself, asking for more. Then he gasped, grimaced, and his head went back. By that time I was trying to hold up his head, but he was dead. What do I do?"
"You do not need to do anything. I'll take care of this."
Suddenly Miranda started sobbing, "It wasn't my fault."
Anna Belle put her arms around the distraught girl. "I know. I need you to calm down and stay up here while I get some help. As far as you are concerned, you know nothing about what happened tonight. Understand?"
With that Anna Belle stepped into the hall and picked up her phone. "Wade, don't say anything and don't show any emotion. I need you to come up the back stairs to Miranda's room. And bring Hank with you. I'll explain when you get up here. Make sure you leave the room without anyone taking notice."
"Oh, honey, I'm so sorry, I'm working a little late and I forgot our date." Wade paused. "I promise I'll make it up to you." He rang off and casually made his way over to Hank Jameson. Quietly he told Hank he needed him to follow him and act naturally, "like we are having a good time."
Hank smiled,"I'm always up for that." He turned, and followed Wade toward the dining room. No one found this odd since there was always a small feast setup on the buffet for any clients who were hungry. They moved from the dining room into the kitchen.
As soon as the kitchen door closed, Wade looked a Hank, "Anna Belle needs us upstairs. Follow me."
Without comment, Hank followed Wade up the back stairs. When they entered Miranda's room, Wade looked at Anna Belle, who motioned to the bed with the naked body still shackled to the head board. He saw Miranda standing in the corner obviously shell shocked. "Well", said Wade,"this is an issue."
Anna Belle looked at him and calmly asked, "What do we do?"
"Untie him, get him dressed and we'll get him out of here." He looked at Anna Belle,"I think we can do this without anyone knowing anything about it."
Before Anna Belle could say anything, Wade said, "Don't ask any questions, get him dressed."
Miranda and Anna Belle dressed the dead client. Miranda said, "What happens when his wife learns what happened here?"
"She'll never know." He turned to Anna Belle,"I need you to go down the back stairs and keep anyone out of the kitchen. Miranda, I need you to clean this room up so there is no evidence he was here. If you find anything of his, put it in a pillow case and store it in the closet until the place closes then give it to Anna Belle." Miranda nodded without saying a word. Wade continued. "Then I need you to change your clothes, go down stairs, act like nothing has happened, and if possible find another client to come upstairs into this room."
Anna Belle looked at Wade."Why?"
"Because if for any reason someone notices that he came up but did not come down, we need to have a live person who can say they were in the room with Miranda this evening and there was nothing amiss."
The body was dressed. Wade looked at Hank. "You take one arm, I'll take the other. We'll pull the neck of his coat over the back of his head. We are going to escort a very inebriated cohort out of the backdoor. If anyone asks, we wanted to avoid any embarrassment for him, given his sorted state."
"Gotcha," said Hank as he grabbed the man's right arm and slung it over his shoulder. Anna Belle assured Miranda it would be OK. Then she left to make sure the kitchen was clear. Wade pulled the neck of the dead man's jacket up to cover the back of his head.
"Let's go." They made their way down the back stairs. Their 'friend' was not a slight man, but Hank and Wade were strong enough to hold him up so anyone who saw them would not think anything more than two guys were helping their buddy in poor shape exit the club without embarrassing himself.
When they got outside, Hank asked, Now what?"
"That red sedan over there is his car," Wade said nodding to a car parked across the street. "Let's get him in his car. I'll drive it, follow me in my car." They put the body in the man's car. Wade threw Hank his car keys and they both drove away from the Gentleman's Club.
Hank was a little surprised when they pulled into the Baptist Church parking lot. Wade parked the car and turned it off. Then he and Hank carefully moved the body into the drivers seat, it slumped over the steering wheel. Wade wiped the steering wheel, then wiped the keys off but left them in the ignition. He stepped away, satisfied with his work. Then he and Hank made their way back to Anna Belle's.
Hank just shook his head. "What will they say when they find him?"
Wade chuckled,"I would imagine that the Baptist Minister was working late at the church, got in his car, and had a heart attack. The only issue will be his blood alcohol rate. I watched him drink at least three bourbon and cokes before he went upstairs. That will be harder to explain than him being found dead in his car."
Wade thought for minute."You know I really liked John Barker. For a Baptist minister, he was a good guy. He never judged my lack of religious devotion. Now his wife I did not care for at all."