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Monica decides to clear her name.  She questions if she is up for it.  When she looks at her choices, her decision is made for her.  Enjoy Part 9 of A Dangerous Game.  Thanks.   




MONICA SAT IN THE Ford Escape and waited.  She was in the back of the parking lot of the Pale Motel.  It was dark where she parked.  She had intentionally chosen that area.  It was quiet and gave her time to think things through.


She wore a black dress, stiletto heels, heavy makeup, and a red wig.  The wig was hers.  The rest of the clothes and the Ford Escape was what the FBI agents gave her to wear and drive.  The vial filled with liquid was in her purse.  It was in the passenger’s seat.  She checked the time.


In five minutes she was to knock on the door of room 106 of the Pale Motel.  Her target from the photo was in that room.  He was waiting for her to show up.  Not specifically her.  He was waiting for a woman to show up.  The man inside room 106 liked women who looked like Monica.  The FBI and Monica, decided while sitting at her dining room table earlier, that she would be that woman.


Monica had reservations when the FBI told her what she would have to do to clear her name of murder charges.  The reservations lasted for a few minutes.  Going to prison for life or being on death row was far worse than helping the FBI arrest this man.


Monica had asked the FBI agents how they knew the man would be at the Pale Motel.  The agents told her they could not give her that information.  She just needed to do her part and clear her name.


Monica put on a light coat and got out of the SUV.  She walked toward the end of the motel.  Room 106 was two doors from the end.  That corner of the motel was dark.  Monica looked up at the light pole located by the sidewalk.  The big light bulbs were missing.


Monica paused and wanted to glance over her shoulder.  But she did not.  The two FBI agents told her not to look over her shoulder once she was in the parking lot.  They were watching her every move.  They also told her to remember that someone else may be watching her too.  She was to show no signs that she was not alone.


Monica stopped in front of room 106 and knocked on the door.  Noises came from inside the room.  She waited and knocked again.  Scuffling and grunting sounds came from inside the room.


Monica pressed her toes down inside the heels.  It helped ground her.  That was all that kept her from running back to the SUV.  It occurred to her that the sounds she heard on the other side of the door may be someone getting rid of a body or something more sinister.  Maybe they were getting ready to do something to her.


She pushed back the fear and thoughts while she waited.  She hoped the door would not open.  But then, she did.  That man needed to be there.


It got quiet inside.  She leaned forward a few inches from the door.  The door opened a small crack.  Monica jerked backward.


The man in the photo with the wire-rimmed glasses was looking through the crack at her.  He stared at her without talking.  He looked up and down her body as if examining her.  She gave him a nervous smile.


He opened the door wider and motioned to her to come inside.  She hesitated and stepped inside the room.  She was looking the room over when she heard the door lock.  She glanced over her shoulder.  He had closed the door behind her and locked it.  He was putting the security chain on.


“I apologize for being paranoid,” he said.  “I just like to feel safe.  I hope I’m not making you nervous.”  Monica told him no.  She understood.  “By the way, my name is Harold.”  He put out his hand.  She shook it.  “And you are?”


“Cheryle,” she said.  The FBI had told her no real or last names.  The man would understand why.  Women like her who had affairs with strangers did not normally give real and last names in the beginning.


“I like that name,” he said.  “It’s pretty.”  She thanked him.  “Well, as you can see, I took the liberty to have dinner catered for us.”  Monica looked at the table ahead of her.  It had a white tablecloth and two large covered dishes and several smaller covered dishes.  “You like steak?”  She told him yes.  “Great.  I ordered the best the restaurant had.”


“You didn’t have to do that,” she said.


He looked at her with a frown and furrowed eyebrow.  He appeared as if his feelings were hurt.


“I don’t mean I don’t appreciate it,” she said.  “It’s just that men don’t go through all this trouble for me.”


“That’s too bad,” he said.  “You’re worth it.  You’re beautiful.”  He stared at her.  “Let me take your coat.”  He slipped it from her shoulders.  “Do you want to wash up for dinner?”


“Yes, thank you,” she said.


Monica went into the bathroom, closed the door and sighed silently.  Doubt rushed into her mind.  She almost wished she did not know what she knew.  She was not equipped to handle this man.  He looked like the photo—round face, glasses, round body.  Nothing was intimidating about him.


The FBI warned her not to let her guard down.  Men like him targeted middle-aged married women like her.  Women like her were easier to seduce and blackmail.  They had more to lose than just their reputations.  The FBI also gave her more information.  Sometimes, to pay off the blackmail money, these men had the women work off the payment through prostitution.  Not on the street.  But through their network of clients.


Monica gave herself a pep talk.  All she had to do was to pour the vial of liquid in the man’s wine.  Make sure he drank it.  It should knock him out in a few minutes.  She could then leave.  He would be out for a couple of hours.  The FBI would arrest him.  She looked at herself in the mirror and took a deep breath.  She could do it.  She went back out and joined the man named Harold.


He had the chair pulled back from the table for her.  She sat down and thanked him.  He took the bottle of wine from the wine bucket and popped the cork.  He allowed her to smell the cork.  He then smelled it.  “Nothing like a great bottle of wine to begin the night,” he said.  He poured her a glass and then himself.


He sat across from her and picked up his glass of wine.  “To a beautiful woman who just made my night better than I could’ve imagined,” he said.  They drank.  She was worried about drinking it.  What if he was drugging her?  But she had to take a sip.  He was watching her from over the top of his glass.  “I never thought the agency would send over a woman as gorgeous as you.”


He stood and walked to her side of the table and removed the cover from her chicken.  “This is delicious,” he said.  “I know you like chicken.  I did my homework.  This perfectly roasted chicken with red and white wine is to die for.  Enjoy.”


“Thank you,” she said.  To die for bothered her.  “You’re trying to spoil me.”


“You deserve it,” he said.


Monica was confused.  But she tried not to show it.  Agency?  Why had he said agency?  What was she supposed to be…?  Those FBI agents did not tell her she was supposed to be a prostitute.  That is what they meant when they told her to go as far as necessary to drug the man.  She was to have no limits.  They expected her to have sex with him if necessary.  She was not a whore, she thought.


For a brief second, she felt used.  She quickly turned off the thought.  Then she told herself to clear her name however she had to do it.


Monica began coughing.  She tried to control it.  She coughed harder and harder.  A piece of chicken had caught in her throat.  She could not believe it.


“Are you okay?” he asked.


She held up her hand that she would be.  But she kept coughing.


“I’ll be back,” he said.  He got up and ran into the bathroom with a cup to get her some water.



Monica is about to ruin the plan to clear her name.  I feel bad for her.  Nothing seems to be working for her.  Hopefully, she’ll get some luck on her side.

Thank you for stopping by this week.  I’ll see you on Monday.

Have a great weekend.


Stephen Wallace