Izzy pulled Pablo into the apartment, looking around to see that Marguerite was out of sight.
“Is she gone?” Pablo said smoothly in his rich Italian accent.
“Sim, yes,” Izzy said quietly, peeking through the slit in the door before shutting it. Izzy busied herself by tidying up the flat, which was a disarray of loose papers, and miscellaneous religious kitsch.
“So Bella, what are you going to tell your Officer Pablo today?” he purred, grabbing Izzy by the waist and pulling her into him. She turned around to him, and in a sweet, musky voice she replied.
“Nothing Pablo, darling. Nada.”
“You lie, Bella, don’t lie to Pablo. I am an officer! I uphold the law…” he said harshly as he grabbed Izzy and shook her by the arms.
“Maybe you are an officer in Italy, but here you are just a spy,” Izzy said, spitting on the ground.
“I am a detective! And I am going to find that Marco! You are going to have to cooperate! ” He shouted angrily, storming out of the flat and slamming the door.
Detective Pablo, if he even could be considered a real detective, his credentials had never been discussed, had barely made it down the hall before he stormed back, not even noticing the man hovering outside the door, and thrust his way into Izzy’s flat, bursting the door open.
“Bella!” He shouted, pulling out a small pistol, and grabbing Izzy from behind and holding the metal tip to her neck.
“Tell me where Marco is, tell me!” He screamed at her. Izzy held her composure, it was not in her nature to panic in these sorts of situations, she was a bold woman, and knew how to play her cards.
“I told you Pablo, your Bella doesn’t know of such Marco,” she purred, her lips grazing the rugged outline of his chin.
“Liar!” He shouted, turning her around and slapping her hard across the face, Izzy let out a small shriek of astonishment, and Detective Pablo thrust her to the ground, her body crumpled to the floor. Detective Pablo aimed the gun at Izzy, but before he could fire, he was knocked out from behind.
The whole scene was blurry for Izzy. Just as soon as Pablo had drawn the gun, he was lying cold on the floor with another man on top of him…but who? Izzy scrambled to her feet and watched as the man writhed on the floor. She had never seen him before but she guessed he may have been one of the neighbours.
“E voce aprovado? You okay?” she said shaking him. He blinked, almost dazed.
“Gun…he had a gun…” he muttered as he began writhing again.
“I think you hit your head, bonito,” Izzy said, dragging him off of Pablo and into the bedroom, and onto the bed, “But, its a good thing you did. Now stay here.” She ran to the doorway to take care of Pablo. He was gone, the only thing left behind was a trail of blood from where he had presumably split his head open on impact.
“Foda!” she shouted, shutting the door quickly and bolting it tight. She wasn’t sure what to do, the police wouldn’t help her, she was a foreigner…and one involved in a lot of trouble.
Izzy quickly began getting rid of the bloody evidence on the floor, her white skirt was soon stained with Officer Pablos blood, and she couldn’t help but wish she had been the one with the gun. She looked down at herself, and removed her skirt, the last piece of evidence, and stood in the middle of the room in her camisole and panties thinking about what to do next.
She had completely forgotton about the man in her bed until she heard a soft moaning. She went into the room and climbed onto the bed, hovering over him. She watched him twitch, strangely, and there was a growing lump on his head. He couldn’t have been much older than her, and Izzy found him slightly attractive in an unusual, old fashioned sort of way.
“Bonito,” she said, “Bonito, wake up.” She shook him by the shoulder, she didn’t want to wake him, but she wanted some answers. Now.
His eyes fluttered open and they darted from one place to the next, and he looked shocked at the fact that Izzy was awkardly positioned on top of him.
He was trapped, Izzy knew. He had that dreamy look on his face. The same look all the others had. Izzy prided herself on her amazing ability to lure a man and make him do whatever she pleased. Although, in the case of Pablo, she had failed, and this angered Izzy.
But this poor guy, starry eyed and bruised on her bed might just prove to be useful, she thought. He had already saved her from Pablo’s gun, what else might he do in her behalf?
“Bonito,” she said in his direction, “What is your name?”
“R-Renard,” he stammered.
“Perfecto,” she said, sitting up, cross-legged next to him, silently brushing the loose strands of hair from his forehead, “I am Isabella, Izzy for short, but you can call me whatever you want.” He nodded.
“Alright then, down to business,” she said, “I need your help. That man, the one with the gun? He is after me because I know a secret. A secret worth a lot of money. What I need from you is your protection. In return I will give you anything you want. What do you want Renard?"
He could have had anything.
But he only offered his help.
Never had Izzy heard a man say such a thing to her. She was impressed by Renard’s answer, and his strange, yet instant loyalty. She was willing to overlook his strange way of speaking and his sudden jolts of facial expressions. He would have to do, she thought.
“Its a deal,” she said, leaning over to kiss his cheek, a gesture she used in informal situations to show her appreciation.
“Now Bonito,” she said, standing up, and pacing back and forth on the bed, making the matress bounce up and down, “We need a plan. I will need you to escort me wherever I go. These guys lurk everywhere and will only strike if I’m alone, you got that bonito?” He nodded, or twitched, she couldn’t tell the difference, but continued nonetheless.
“Bueno. This is muito importante. Now, if anyone asks, you are my boyfriend, lover, whatever. Hmm. I’ll call you Ricardo. Sounds good no? That will get Marguerite off my back. And yes, most importantly don’t tell Marguerite.”
“Sim, yes, my friend. She’s louco.”
Izzy had no idea what Renard was talking about, but she smiled nonetheless. She felt like she had to.
“So, I bet you’re curious…about my situation,” Izzy said getting down to business yet again. Renard shrugged his shoulders as if leaving it up to her to decide whether to tell him or not.
“Fine, fine bonito,” she said rolling her eyes dramatically like her favourite heroine Maria Ignacio from her favourite telenovela, Desperdido. “So, I know this guy…a friend from Brazil. And, well…he got involved with ‘dis mafia, right? Well, they think I know where he is…and I do. If they find him, they will find what he stole from them.”
“What?” Renard asked, captivated by the dramatic way she told the story.
“Guns, cocaine, cash, prostitutes…the usual stuff,” she said with a shrug. Renard’s eyes widened.
“Que?! It’s not like I stole it! I just know the guy, and I know where he is.” Renard still looked confused.
She sighed, “His name is Marco. He is my brother.”