A blonde girl of about twenty-five, wearing tiny white shorts and a blue bikini top, was washing a red Jaguar. I stopped and watched. Would this be part of the job description? If it was, count me in. I realized that I'd been watching a bit longer than manners called for. This probably should have got me moving. It didn't.
"You enjoying yourself back there?" she said, without turning around.
She kept washing. I kept watching.
In a way we were in sync.
Okay, in a weird way.
I wondered if the front half would match the back half. Isn't it funny, how often you can see a fantastic back half, get all your hopes up, then, finally get to see the front half and it's like a major disappointment. It's like God purposefully mixed up his gorgeous girl mold with his plain Jane mold, just to keep us seeking that perfect one. In fact, lately I had been coming to the belated conclusion that God was even more cruel. My theory was that God never made a girl whose front half equaled or was better than a great back half.
I know, pretty deep stuff.
I'd had a lot of thinking time lately.
Whenever I was out, I had been putting my new found theory to the test. Yeah, I got a few looks but it was all in the name of scientific curiosity.
Then the girl turned around and shattered my theory.
"Can I help you?"
"Nice car. Yours?"
"No, it's my sister's."
"You're cleaning your sister's car? You feeling all right?"
She smiled. "I don't mind. She's busy this morning. Anyway, can I help you?"
"Is this the Wentworth place?"
"Yes, I'm Paige Wentworth. Are you here to see dad?"
"Yeah, apparently you have some butt-lazy sister here who needs some exercise?"
Paige looked me up and down. "Have you met Dad before?"
She shook her head. "This I've got to see."
I wondered if there was something wrong with my clothes? I looked down. I was dressed in my usual getup; flip-flops, purple singlet and my favorite tattered Levi's. Nope, I had that covered.
"Come on. I'll show you the way."
Paige rang the doorbell and it was opened in a few seconds by a stocky guy with a long, brown pony tail. I must admit I am a bit on the anti side where pony tails are concerned. Okay on teenage girls and horses, but grown men? Is it just me, or do you just feel like wrapping the damn things around their throats and throttling them with it?
Okay, perhaps it is just me.
What made it worse was that he was also wearing a bandana. I hated bandannas worse than pony tails. He wore black trousers and a black tee shirt with the words Elite Martial Arts on the chest.
I sighed deeply. This was really going to be hard.
Paige was grinning at me. "You should fit right in."
"Who's this?" the scary guy in black said.
"This is Brooke's new personal trainer," Paige said, still grinning.
"Has Mr. Wentworth met him yet?" said scary guy.
"This should be fun," he said, swinging the door open.
I felt like checking my back to see if Bear had stuck a sign on me before I left.
The inside was what I expected. You wouldn't know anyone lived in this place. There was not a newspaper, coffee cup or pair of shoes to be seen. The rooms were huge and airy with silver, metallic furniture. I could drive my Beetle into the living room, do several wheelies, and drive out again and not touch anything.
"What's your name?" scary guy in black said.
"I'm Chip Cox. I do all the security for Mr. Wentworth."
"Nothing. You didn't think of changing your name when you went into the bodyguard business?"
"What's wrong with my name?" Cox stared at me. I think I was supposed to be intimidated.
"Well, let's just forget the whole Cox thing. That's just too easy. Don't you think a bodyguard might need a slightly tougher, no-nonsense first name? Chip doesn't sort of cut it, does it? It's more like the name of the guy delivering flowers?"
Again, not a good quality in a bodyguard.
"If you want to work around here I suggest you keep your mouth shut," he said through clenched teeth.
"Yeah, well that's the thing, Chip. I don't really, but lead on."
Chip looked at me a moment longer, and then led me down a long hallway. The carpet was so deep I felt like I was walking through fresh snow.
"Why does Wentworth need security?" I asked Chip's back.
"He doesn't. It's just a precaution."
"What's that noise?"
Paige looked at me funny. "The tennis court."
"Does your sister play?"
Paige and Smith both looked at me like I was an idiot.
Perhaps there was a sign on my back.
The hallway came to a long glass door through which I could see a tennis court.
"You might say that," said Paige.
I saw her sister and sighed.
"What?" said Paige.
"Nothing. Just remembering someone I have to kill."