Denise and the Banker Ch. 05

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Bob Franks rang the bell of Apartment A-13 and waited a moment. The door soon opened and a buxom 40-ish redhead stood before him, a quizzical look in her green eyes. She was dressed in a tight tank top and ragged denim shorts cut off to show maximum thigh. Her feet were in pink wedges at least 5″ high. Bob nearly gulped in spite of himself. She was a little on the cheap side but she was a hottie.

“Yes? What is it?” asked “Donna Steele.”

Bob reached in his jacket pocket and quickly flashed a phony gold shield before the woman’s face, putting it away before she could look closely.

“Sheila Jackson?” queried Bob, using the real name he had uncovered.

This rattled the woman. “Yes? She asked guardedly.”

“Jones. Vice Squad. I need to talk to you inside. Now.” Bob had been a cop for years and was used to acting the tough guy role.

The woman winced but backed into the apartment and allowed Bob in. He noted that the place was clean and exceptionally neat. A basset hound lounged on the floor, barely looking at Bob as he entered.

“What’s this all about?” asked the redhead impatiently.

“This is all about you and ‘Ronnie,’ the guy who likes crippled girls,” said Bob. “I understand you have a nice income stream from his little fantasies. A very illegal stream.”

“No…I don’t screw him. I really don’t”

“What do you do, then, ‘Donna’? You are ‘Donna Steele’ to him, right?”

“Yeah. Steele for the braces. I just play like I’m crippled for him. He gets himself off.”

]”He pays you, right?”

“Right. But, I swear I don’t do him.”

“Doesn’t matter. If he comes and you get paid, it’s sex. Sex for money is sex for money. Hooking is hooking, and I can arrest you and send you up tonight. Bob’s deceit was smooth but he was surprised at Sheila Jackson’s naiveté. But, I need your help. If I get it, you might find yourself ‘off the hook,’ uh, so to speak.” Bob rolled his eyes at his own terrible pun. “Want to talk?”

Jackson agreed. She spent quite a bit of time describing the variety of roles she had played for Ronald Cruickshank. She showed Bob the myriad crutches, braces, and built-up shoes she kept in a closet, all for her very kinky client. He was secretly amazed at the obvious investment Cruikshank had made in orthotic equipment for her. He also noted an extended selection of studded and revealing leather outfits hanging up and a pair of black leather boots with towering stiletto heels. A whip was neatly curled on the shelf. She had other clients, too, he guessed.

“And, I have video.” Jackson made this last statement nervously.

“Show me,” commanded Bob.

Sheila Jackson opened the entertainment center in her living room and pulled out a built-in drawer filled with video tapes. She selected one marked “crip” and put it in her VCR, sighing as she pressed the “play” button. The TV screen was suddenly filled with the image of her bedroom. Ronald Cruikshank was lying naked on the bed, masturbating, as “Donna Steele” walked back and forth in front of him. She was on forearm crutches wearing a calf-length leg brace. Snow filled the screen momentarily and then a similar image replaced it, this time with Donna limping around the bedroom wearing a pair of shoes with dramatically different-height heels. Then another break and an image of Cruikshank sitting in a chair in front of Donna. She was now totally naked except for full-length leg braces and high heels.

“I made these with a camera hidden in my ceiling. I thought if he ever stiffed me for the money I would have these to hurt him. I guess you want them?”

“I’ll take them all,” said Bob. And, I want you to be available if I need you for anything else. If everything goes according to plan he’ll be busted and we’ll forget you and I ever met.”

Bob decided to use information he had uncovered with some good sleuthing before his visit. “By the way, I know you have a prior for crack. So… ‘Donna,’… don’t go tell Cruickshank what’s going down to try to protect him. If you do, you’re toast. I’m watching you. Got it?”

Donna/Sheila agreed. Bob Franks left and called Carolyn on his cell to report progress. Carolyn was ecstatic and the two agreed that it was time to wind things up. After hanging up with Bob she made a call to a former client of hers who specialized in web design. Pornographic web design, Carolyn recalled with amusement. That activity was what precipitated the divorce she had helped broker. At the conclusion of the case she had just laughed when he told her to call if he could ever do anything for her.

***

Denise was a little edgy as she parked her Z-4 in front of the brick-front warehouse building. It was a run-down part of town and two street toughs just a few blocks down were eying her güvenilir bahis expensive roadster as she drove by. She took comfort in the plain white van parked across the street and knew that Bob Franks would come to her rescue if anything happened.

It was exactly 10AM, the appointed time. Sure enough, at that moment Ronald Cruikshank pulled into the space next to hers in a Cadillac Deville and smiled at Denise leeringly. He got out of his car, looked into the Z’s passenger-side window, and grinned. He opened the door and removed Denise’s pink forearm crutches. Bringing them around to the driver’s side, Cruickshank opened Denise’s door and feigned a gentlemanly bow as he proffered the crutches to her. Denise got out of the car and hopped momentarily on her good leg as she took them from the banker and slid them onto her arms. He made a show of gawking at her dangling right foot, its tiny brown loafer pointing toward the pavement.

“Nice to see you, again,” said Cruikshank. “I hope you brought your build ups and brace. You know, I don’t even know your name. I only know you are one of the finest-looking gimps I have ever met. What should I call you?”

Just then a beat-up Honda with two people in it pulled up and parked next to Cruikshank’s car. “The bitch from hell,” said Denise.

The banker watched uncertainly as Carolyn exited the car deliberately. She was “Delilah Heath” once again, wearing her leg brace and heaving herself up on the crutches Cruikshank had seen her on just days ago. The banker was clearly confused and nervously watched Carolyn make her way toward him and Denise. A short balding man got out of the passenger side of the Honda, carrying a laptop computer in a black bag. Simultaneously, Bob Franks exited the van and walked across the street.

Cruikshank was becoming agitated. “What the…”

“Let’s step inside, Mr. Cruikshank,” said Bob, authoritatively flashing his fake shield and opening his jacket to reveal a holstered pistol. “I don’t think you want to conduct business with us on the street.”

In a daze Cruikshank pulled out a key and opened the door of his cavernous video studio. He entered and meekly invited the others to follow. He fumbled for the light switch before the door shut behind Bob, the last to enter.

Once inside, Cruikshank turned hostile. “What do you people want from me? You have no right to be here. Do you have a search warrant for something?”

Bob, Denise and Carolyn didn’t answer right away as they looked around the long, rectangular, windowless room. The walls were covered by enlarged photographs, drawings, and caricatures of disabled women. The back wall was dominated by a huge framed portrait of an elegant redheaded woman in an evening gown. Her hair was beautifully coiffed and she wore a tiara. She stood on Warm Springs crutches and wore braces on both legs. Her shoes were silver mary janes and the left was massively built up to compensate for a very short leg. Denise and Bob recognized the woman as Sheila Jackson. In one corner of the room was a life-size department store manikin, well dressed in a stylish blouse and short skirt. Full-length braces adorned both plastic legs and she leaned into a pair of black forearm crutches.

The group also noted three expensive cameras on tripods, one apparently digital, one 35MM, one VHS video. In front of the cameras was a large open area, 20′ square, estimated Bob. Against one wall was a twin size bed, made up with just sheets. A projection screen hung from one wall, its projector attached to the ceiling over their heads. Two desktop computers and monitors were on a large wooden table at the front of the room.

Carolyn handed the banker a sheaf of legal size paper. “Mr. Ronald Cruikshank, I am serving papers advising of a lawsuit being brought against First Security Bank by me, Delilah Heath.”

“On what basis?” demanded a flustered Cruikshank. He flipped briefly through the pages prepared the day before in Carolyn’s law office on her letterhead. “You and I have only met once, I believe. What in the world could you sue me for?”

“Sexual harassment in workplace recruitment. I was offered a job at your bank, clearly contingent on my providing you with sexual favors outside the office. We are well aware of your fetish for disabled women. At this, Carolyn removed her hand from one crutch and gestured around the room. And I have the audio of our interview. A jury will not be sympathetic to you, sir, I’m quite sure.”

The small man with the computer bag had been setting up his laptop while Carolyn was talking. He now motioned to her that the machine was ready.

“Come over here, Mr. Cruikshank,” commanded Bob. The group made its way toward the laptop.

On cue from Carolyn, her former client, who had türkçe bahis asked to remain anonymous to everyone else, double-clicked to open an MP3 file. Windows Media Player launched and suddenly the screen was filled with the images Sheila Jackson had provided Bob. Cruikshank gazed at the screen in disbelief and tiny beads of sweat began popping out at his temples.

“I’ve seen enough. What do you people want from me?” asked the banker, his voice now quiet.

“Oh, there’s one more thing we have to show you before we’re done,” said the computer man. He had wiggled the mouse of one of Cruikshank’s desk top machines and when the monitor came to life he opened Windows Explorer. Carolyn’s former client quickly typed a lengthy series of commands into the address bar and hit the “enter” key. And as the group watched, the website for First Security Bank came up on the screen.

Cruikshank gasped as he moved closer to the monitor and saw the altered content on his company’s site. His picture was still there, professional and smiling. But, he was surrounded by pictures of “Donna Steele,” Carolyn, and Denise. The text under his picture provided a new bio, describing his specific tastes in crutches, braces, short legs, and the like. It referenced his “chicksonsticks” fetish website and provided a “hot link” to the site’s address.

“Oh my God,” muttered the defeated banker repeatedly.

Carolyn spoke up. “Before you go out and shoot yourself, you should know that this revision to the bank’s site isn’t live…yet. My associate here has obviously hacked into the site, though, and can make this special version available online anytime we choose. We will choose not to if you agree to our terms.”

“What are your terms?”

“Simply these. One, you take down chicksonsticks-dot-com for good. And two, you provide a personal check for the sum total of your historical membership revenue from the site. We estimate that to be around $12,500. That is the minimum amount we expect.”

“Made out to who? Why don’t you want cash?”

Carolyn looked at Denise and smiled. “The check should be made out to Memorial Hospital. It should be designated specifically for the new children’s orthopedic wing now being built. We think it’s only right that your illicit revenue should help fund correction of birth defects and problems that cripple young women.”

“I don’t have that money anymore. It’s spent. Come on! This is blackmail!” Cruikshank was becoming angry at the full realization of his situation.

“No, Mr. Cruikshank, it’s justice. And, you need to find that money. Get your board to approve a loan to you or something. If we don’t have a check within 48 hours what you see on that computer will be available to the world. Just think about all your customers tapping in to check their balances…won’t that be a nice little surprise! Think you’ll be working there long, Mr. Cruikshank? Think you’ll be able to explain it to your golfing buddies at the club, or your wife?”

“OK, I get it. I get it. I’ll write the check.”

***

Epilogue

Carolyn steered her Lexus into a vacant parking space outside the Daniels Orthotics shop. She got out into very warm and humid weather. She was dressed in a thin pastel blue sundress which made the most of her ample bust. On her feet were expensive sandals, each featuring a brass ring for the big toe and two very thin straps to hold the shoe on her foot. She had just invested in a paraffin-dip manicure and pedicure and sported bright red polish on her fingers and toes.

Carolyn opened the trunk. Inside were two Kinney-style armband crutches and a leg brace, all of which she removed and carried into the shop. Ron Daniels, the owner, greeted her warmly.

“I’m bringing all the hardware back, as promised,” said Carolyn with a broad grin. She liked Ron and his expression reconfirmed for her that he liked her too.

“How was the play?” asked the brace maker. He was alluding to the story Carolyn and Denise had used about a local stage production starring Carolyn as a handicapped woman. “Is your run over and done with?”

“Uh, well…in all honesty there wasn’t a production, Ron,” confessed Denise. I did play the role of a polio girl, but it wasn’t quite how we served it up to you. And I’m sorry for the deception. If you’ve got a minute I’ll explain.”

Ron readily agreed and for the next several minutes Carolyn had his rapt attention as she explained the whole affair with the banker, the website, the ruse, and the money. She did not mention First Security Bank or Ronald Cruikshank by name, but otherwise provided Ron with all the details.

“Wow…that’s an amazing story,” volunteered Ron. I do know about the devotee phenomenon, and I don’t think most fall into that guy’s class. He was güvenilir bahis siteleri way out there. Nasty…and he got what he deserved.”

Something about the way Ron said this made Carolyn sense he knew more about devotees than he was letting on. Throwing caution to the wind she decided to pursue this head on. “Are you a devotee, Ron?”

Ron looked intently at Carolyn. He saw no disgust or malice in her eyes or her expression. He had never been confronted so bluntly by a woman. Nonetheless, somehow he felt it was safe to answer truthfully.

“Yes,” he confessed. “I’m afraid I am. My attraction to disabled women was what originally led me to study Orthotics and eventually get into this business. That, and a desire on my part to compensate for what I thought was a terrible deviancy…by actually helping disabled people keep their mobility. Over the years the latter motivation has been very much gratified. And, quite honestly, I rarely think of orthotics in sexual terms any more. Most of my business caters to the needs of 75-year-old stroke victims these days.”

“Two questions, then,” responded Carolyn.

“Shoot.”

“One: Do you still think you have a ‘terrible deviancy?’ and two: What did you think of me wearing these?” Denise pointed to the crutches and brace leaning against a counter.

“Wow…you’re a tough questioner!” exclaimed Ron nervously.

“I ain’t a top divorce lawyer for nothing,” returned Carolyn mischievously.

“OK. To your first question…yes, I do think the deviancy is a problem. I’ve battled guilt and shame all my life. And, as a Christian, I believe that there is definitely a conflict between my desires and the ‘sexual purity’ the Bible says we are to pursue. That said, I also know I’m not alone. But, I believe that most devs—like me, and unlike the banker jerk—would go out of their way to protect the feelings and sensitivities of the disabled. We’re basically admirers and admirers don’t hurt those they admire.”

“And to my second question,” taunted Carolyn.

Ron drew a deep breath. “I thought you were fabulously exciting and attractive.” He paused. And, as Carolyn smiled he continued, “and then when you put on the brace I could barely contain myself.”

Carolyn was caught off guard by this. “What did you just say?”

“I said I thought you were absolutely incredible the second you walked in my shop. The rest was icing on the cake.”

With that, Ron pulled Carolyn to him and kissed her passionately. She in turn responded like she had not responded to a man in years. She knew she wanted to pursue this relationship more than anything. They agreed to have dinner the next night.

**One Week Later**

It was a busy night at the Garden Patch Restaurant. At a large table in the dining room sat Denise, Bart, Carolyn and Ron. They had just ordered a bottle of good chardonnay and raised their glasses in toast to the success of what had become known simply as “The Sting.”

With a flourish, Denise produced a check, drawn on First Security Bank, in the amount of $13,250, signed by one Ronald Cruikshank, and made out to Memorial Hospital.

“Chicksonsticks.com is now just an error page on the worldwide web, she intoned. Ms. Sheila Jackson donated all of her orthotic equipment to the Rotary Club for their polio programs in India and is now focused exclusively on whips and chains.”

The group laughed at this.

“Mr. Cruikshank has agreed not to operate any website, for profit or otherwise. He believes we are monitoring him somehow, which we’re not, but that’s OK. The poor man is still shaking in his boots at the prospect of being outed to his family and peers.”

At that moment a man with graying hair and green eyes walked by the table. It was the guy who Denise had met at the restaurant two weeks before. Their eyes met and recognition registered in his. This was the man who had shown interest in Denise until he realized she was disabled. He had then feigned an emergency to get away.

“How’s your sister’s baby?” asked Denise. “Was it a boy or a girl?”

He nearly choked. “Uh…it was a girl. Beautiful little girl.”

“Everything OK…healthy baby, healthy mom?”

“Oh, yeah…everything’s great. Everything’s normal,” responded the man, obviously very uncomfortable and eager to get away again.

“Good…good, said Denise with a slight smirk. Glad the baby’s normal. I’ll bet you breathed a sigh of relief that that was the case….you know, no birth defects or anything.”

At that the man nodded weakly with embarrassment and strode rapidly toward the door.

“What was that all about?” asked Carolyn.

“Oh, just a little ‘in your face’ to a guy who, unlike the fabulous men at this table, doesn’t seem to appreciate the finer, intrinsic qualities of smart, gimpy girls.” We’ll leave it at that.

Denise raised her glass once again. “To gimps everywhere. God bless us all.”

The group clinked glasses to this odd toast and then settled down to a nice dinner.

The End

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