Letters from a Stalker
- Gabrielle Burns
“How long have you been receiving these letters?” Det. Anton Judge asked the distraught woman seated in the visitor chair in his office.
“About three months,” she replied, clenching her fist and raising it to her mouth. “At first I thought that it was a sick joke from one of my idiot friends to celebrate Halloween, but after the second one I began to have my doubts and… these are the third, fourth and fifth ones. I threw the first ones away, but I’ve saved these. I spoke with two of my sisters in Italy and they advised me to either call the police immediately, or come home to Rome without further delay.”
“Three weeks ago would have been early for Halloween though. When did you get these?”
“A week ago; but my husband and I sent out our Halloween party invitations three weeks ago. I have been very busy working on the arrangements since then. My husband pays the bills, but he does not take part in the planning of these things in any way.”
“Three in one week? So why did it take so long to come in with them?”
“Look at them! Would you have been eager to show someone that you’d attracted the interest of a lunatic who could write something like this? It is downright embarrassing!” she said emphatically.
“I suppose not,” Judge agreed, taking the letter up from his desk to have a better look.
My Darling Avril,
It is I, your Master. My Darling, you will obey me, and use a laptop positioned between your legs, the camera focused on your naked, cum-filled pussy to confirm to me that you’ve had sex and that the man, the shameless shemale that I send for you, came in your cunt!
Judge’s eyebrows rose, but he said nothing. He turned to the second piece of paper, reading slowly to see if there was any clue there about the origin of the short missive.
My Darling Avril,
I am going to have you bring home a homeless shemale, who has not bathed in days, nor had sex in a long time. I want you to fuck him, plug his cum in your cunt, and keep it there until you reach the place of your torment to which I will send you. There you must pull out the plug, and let the cum drool down your long, luscious legs.
“Do you know anyone who might think this funny?” Anton Judge asked, glancing, casually, at the woman’s legs.
Judge turned his attention to the third letter on the table. He read it slowly and then re-read the contents carefully.
My Darling Avril,
You have me so worked up and you are so naughty and sexy and hot. I want to strip you and lead you into the kitchen, drape you over the kitchen table, spread your ass checks and fuck your asshole until you launch yourself into oblivion.
The woman moistened her lips nervously, and for the second time, Judge raised his eyebrows. A slight smile played on his lips and his cock stirred. Even by the very high Italian standards of her homeland, Avril Corletti was a beautiful woman, and she certainly stood out in the Jamaican social scene. Judge had seen her every week in the reports of the happenings in the party circuit, and she had caused quite a sensation when she walked into his station demanding to see the officer in charge. He took that as a sign of how desperate she was since he knew for a fact that she knew the Police Commissioner and his wife personally, and he knew also that any careless word, by even the most junior member of his staff, would lead to publicity of another kind for her.
“I don’t mind telling you that I’m afraid, Inspector Judge,” the woman’s voice cut into his reverie.
“Indeed, but don’t worry, I will do all that I can to help you find this lunatic. At the very least, his sense of humour is in very poor taste; and he should be
arrested for that.”
Detective Anton Judge had worked with the Jamaican police for several years and he felt that he could have been forgiven for thinking that he had seen everything: drug running, extortion, murder. However, he had never seen notes of the kind written to the hapless victim of this stalker. Stalking was highly unusual for the tiny Caribbean island. In all his years in the force, Judge had only seen such a thing on television. The notes reminded him of bad porn, except that the promise contained in them to meet Avril Corletti in person made him take them very seriously. It would not do for one of the most celebrated women in Kingston, admittedly more famous for her beauty than for anything else, to find herself caught up in something like this. Even the most sex-scandal-jaded members of the public would probably draw the line here.
“Do you know anyone with a name beginning with X?”
“Do not insult me, Detective Inspector! I have thought of that myself! I know no one like that!”
“What about anyone named Cross?”
The woman seemed startled at that. She actually blushed!
“Cross? You know someone named Cross, Sig.ra Corletti?”
“Yes, I know someone named Cross, or rather Crossman. He is the man who runs my home.”
“He is the man who runs your home?”
“Yes, I don’t want to call him a butler. That seems too pretentious in Jamaica, but he takes care of things for my husband and me.”
Judge continued carefully through his slightly fading smile and slowly rising eyebrows. He was aware that he would have to think later if his sudden dislike for the woman was because he now saw her for the vacuous parasite that she and her friends were, or if it was because he was beginning to form a theory about the origin of the notes that she had been receiving.
“And how well do you know this man? Now that you think about him, would he strike you as someone who would do something like this?”
“No! My husband and his family have known him for thirty years! I have known him since I moved here fifteen years ago after my marriage.”
“So you’re not having an affair with him?”
“Detective Inspector!” She seemed to be genuinely outraged.
“I just need to be sure that he could be under no misconception about the nature of your relationship.”
“I don’t see how he could be.”
“Does this Crossman have a younger relative who may have seen you, and been tempted by your… personality?” If it killed him, he wouldn’t tell this woman that she was a “beauty”.
“There is a young man who has come to stay with him on occasion on his days off. I think I heard that he was a nephew.”
“Then that is where we will start, unless you have any ideas about these references to a shemale.”
Judge watched Avril Corletti as she left the building, striding purposefully toward her BMW, carefully oblivious to the fact that most of the men whom she passed on her way turned to look at her. Judge shook his head annoyed. Some people definitely had too much. He was surprised at his attitude toward the woman. He had only just met her in the flesh. The fleeting thought of the word “flesh” ricocheted through his mind and he felt himself stir again. He frowned. Hell! Was he missing Thalia that much?
He called his assistant, Hector Milner, to his office and showed him the letters. The man had been in the force for nearly as long as Judge was himself. They were friends, though to look at them one would never suspect this since neither man was given to smiling or socialising too often, and they usually took dipole opposite views on most issues.
“Do you think that the note could have been signed with a kiss? That doesn’t have to be an X” Hector Milner asked.
“Could be, but she denies having an affair.”
“She did.” It didn’t sound like Milner was asking a question.
“Well she said that she wasn’t having an affair with her butler, but one never knows about anyone else.”
Both men contemplated the possibility that Avril Corletti was not being as forthcoming as she could be with them in a morose silence. Each man had spent a lifetime studying the human mind, plumbing its depths for understanding; but for each of them women were still a mystery.
“She has a butler?” Milner snickered after a while.
“In any event that seems a little whimsical for someone who is otherwise so threatening,” Milner said, getting back to the issue at hand.
“Do you think that she could be lying about her butler?”
“No the one doing this seems to be a younger man. Look at the reference to her as being hot. If this man Crossman has been with the family for thirty years then he is no longer young.”
“Hmmm. He could still be in his forties. That’s not so old,” Hector Milner said, defensively. “And I still think of my wife as being…” He broke off the sentence belatedly. “Sorry…” he muttered.
“Mmmmmm. Forget it.”
“What about the husband? It’s always the husband, you know.”
“I’ll pretend you didn’t say that. This is real life, not a police drama on Masterpiece Mysteries.”
“I’ll try to bear that in mind. Are you sure that you don’t want me to take the lead on this case?”
“No man, I’m fine.”
“Any ideas about these shemale references?”
“Not at all! I‘ve been wondering about that myself.”
“Do we even have shemales in Jamaica?”
“I’ve been wondering about that too.”
The Corletti home was situated in the posh Jack’s Hill enclave. Security-guarded mansions with carefully laid-out and golf-green-like manicured lawns, the occasional peep of a private tennis court or swimming pool, quite often both in the same property, and the stable of SUVs and luxury cars parked in front of automatic garage doors proclaimed Judge and Milner’s unworthiness to be there. Neither man gave a damn. They paid their honest taxes, unlike, they surmised, some of the residents there. The actual house looked like something out of a magazine or television programme about the splendidly rich and famous. A tasteful blend of the traditional and modern spoke of someone who had both time and money being the decorator. Judge was impressed. He recognised class when he saw it.
Basil Crossman, the butler, was there. Once it was established that neither of his employers was at home, but that the police did in fact wish to speak with him, he was unable, he said, to account for his nephew’s whereabouts. Judge believed him somehow. The man looked too self-important in his servitude to these people to allow a small thing like kinship to ruin it for him. He would have turned his nephew in to the police if he really suspected that the young man were any threat to the Corletti’s, and by extension, his lifestyle. Judge did not think that there was any point in asking him if he had any inkling who it could have been sending the notes since he did not expect the man to say anything out of turn that would reflect badly on his employers.
A shot in the dark revealed that he could still be wrong about people though. Crossman was willing to point a finger at the hairdresser who roved the neighbourhood plying her trade to the neighbourhood wives. He felt that the girl had her eye too firmly on a chance with the gentlemen of the community and that she would stop at nothing to land herself one of them. Sig.ra Corletti was indeed an occasional patron of this woman but she had not used her services recently. The woman lived in the community at the foot of the hill from where the household help and gardening man came as well. Det. Judge would do well to make inquiries there. And yes, Basil Crossman did happen to have the address, and a warning that Ms. Earle was not what she seemed to be.
Sylvia Earle surprised Judge very much. She was a statuesque, fairly muscular woman with kind, gentle face and a low, sexy voice. There was something about her that appealed to Judge, however. This surprised him since Crossman had poisoned the well, and he thought her to be an interloper of the worst kind. He really didn’t like people who interfered in other people’s marriages.
For her part, Sylvia was horrified to think that Detectives Judge and Milner would suspect her of any impropriety. The six gentlemen from the community with which she had liaisons were all just good friends. No, she did not care to mention any names. The gifts that they bestowed on her for her company were tokens of affection, not appreciation. She had no need to usurp anyone’s wife since she received the benefits without the responsibilities of such an arrangement. She smiled sadly to herself as she said this. She only wished that the wives understood this fact some more. Marriage with any of these men was an impossible dream.
Judge had the uncomfortable feeling that she looked at him speculatively. He excused himself quickly since he found that despite his disdain for Sylvia Earle’s alleged lifestyle, he believed her when she claimed that she knew nothing about any letters, and he liked her. Her kind was not good at hosting large society parties. She specialised in throwing parties for one or two persons at a time. He suspected that none of Sylvia’s six friends had any use for her beyond their private sessions, and was happy to think that Sylvia knew this too.
Judge sat in the car and pulled out a cigarette. He thought about lighting it but realised that it would have been a reaction to his surroundings and the situation, and so managed not to. He was at a dead end; no closer to finding the stalker than he had been that morning when he had left the station. He figured that he could always investigate Avril Corletti’s husband, to see if he was one of Sylvia Earle’s clients and see if Sig Corletti had any motive to terrorise his wife.
This idea, once lodged in his head brought with it a more sinister speculation. Ignoring Milner’s wry smile after his comedown from the Masterpiece Mysteries crack, Judge drove back to the Corletti residence on his way to the station in search of Basil Crossman and his nephew.
Basil Crossman had been very cold toward Anton Judge and Hector Milner when the two detectives showed up for a second time. The police coming to the house once could be seen as “helping with an inquiry”, but twice smacked of “being suspected of something”. Again, neither policeman cared. Judge had been wrong about Crossman once today and was not too proud to imagine that he could not have been mistaken about the man twice in a single day.
As it turned out Crossman did know where his nephew was, and he knew that Avril Corletti’s husband was one of the clients serviced by Ms. Earle. Judge noted the frown on Crossman’s face as he related this fact.
“So much for loyalty!” Judge thought. The man had worked with the Corletti family for over thirty years, but his loyalty was with Sig.ra Corletti, a much more recent vintage. Judge wondered why this was. Not for the first time, Judge wondered at the mysterious ways of the heart. Why would Giancarlo Corletti have an affair with Sylvia when he had Avril at home? She seemed pleasant enough, but she was not the trophy that Avril would have been. His thoughts were interrupted by the entrance of a young man whose resemblance to Basil Crossman proclaimed his relationship to the man.
“David Crossman, I presume?”
Judge had never actually heard a man squeal, or see one turn on his heels, knock a chair into his path and run from the police. From the expression on his face, neither had Milner. Together, they managed to subdue the nancing man before he managed to leave the house.
A coward, David Crossman admitted without too much duress, that it was he who had penned the notes to the lady of the house. He did not know who it was who deposited money into his bank account to do this. The instructions came in the post from the Central Sorting Office in Kingston. He had never been asked to hurt Avril Corletti! He drew the line somewhere! In fact, he had decided to stop sending notes to his uncle’s employer’s wife when he received instructions to begin sending them to two other women as well!
Judge froze. He had been completely wrong about everyone involved in this case!
“May I see these instructions?” he asked.
“I’m not sure that I should show them to you, officer. Should I be retaining a lawyer? These would be my get out of jail free cards!” David Crossman said, slyly.
Judge glanced around the room and noted the various paintings, abstracts and tasteful male nudes mostly, and large mirrors. He wondered which of these formed a part of a discrete surveillance system. He thought better of beating the information out of David Crossman since, although there were no actual witnesses in the room, he doubted that he would get away with it; as these society types had a way of asserting their moral consciences at the most awkward of times.
“I should regard it as a favour if you would help us with our investigation, Mr. Crossman. As you can imagine, Sig.ra Corletti is very upset by the notes, but it seems that you have been unwittingly helping a very sinister person who has designs not only on this lady, but on others as well. Surely you see that it is your duty as a citizen to help us? Naturally, in return I can promise you that Sig.ra Corletti will never hear it from me that you were the person who sent the notes to her. I give you my word on that,” he said glancing at his partner, for a sign of endorsement of his plan.
Judge actually shook David Crossman’s hand to signify their gentleman’s agreement. David Crossman furnished the set of instructions about the other two women, and promised to advise Judge and his team if he got fresh directives.
“Can you believe him?” Milner complained, when they were safely back in their car.
“Yes, I can. But when you tell Sig.ra Corletti that it was he who has been stalking her, be sure to mention that he cooperated with us in our investigation.”
“Will do,” Milner said, starting the car.” Sylvia Earle’s again?”
Sylvia Earle confirmed that the husbands of the two women named in David Crossman’s notes were friends of hers. In the public interest, she then furnished the two policemen with the names of her other special friends, and confirmed that they knew about each other since there were certain special parties at her home in which they all met from time to time. She accepted police protection in return for her cooperation.
Judge shook his head sadly when he heard that Avril Corletti was seated in the front office, awaiting her appointment with him, patiently. He wished that she would make a scene so that what he had to do would be easier. As yet, she was guilty only of public mischief, but Judge and Milner suspected that if they did not step in quickly that she would be capable of murder.
“Sig.ra Corletti,” Hector Milner began, “we believe we know who has been sending you these nasty notes.”
“This is wonderful news, Inspector!” the woman beamed. “Please tell me so that my husband and I may confront this scoundrel.”
Neither policeman could look at her for a few minutes. They did not want to actually laugh in the woman’s face.
“We’ve sent for your husband and he should be joining us momentarily,” Judge was finally able to say.
“You’ve sent for Giancarlo? Why?”
“We believe that he has to hear this as well. We’re sure that he loves you and will take every step possible to protect you.”
Avril Corletti seemed startled. She smiled bravely as she sat up even straighter in the chair and pulled primly at the hem of her skirt.
“Are you saying that he sent the letters to me?”
“I’m saying nothing of the sort.”
“I’m happy to hear that because I can assure you that he did not!”
“We know that he didn’t, but we’re certain that you got them because of him. We believe that they were designed to attract his attention; to make him take notice of the fact that he was, shall we say, leaving his business unattended to?”
He declined to say more despite Avril Corletti’s pleas. The woman seemed very interested to learn how he had managed to find the culprit so quickly. She wanted to know if it really was Basil Crossman’s nephew, as Judge had suspected.
Hector Milner offered the woman a cup to tea to keep her occupied. She declined prettily, and eyed the doorway nervously. Judge studied her covertly. The carefully manicured fingernails, the tailored dress that fit perfectly over what must be a beautiful body underneath, the long neck, the kissable lips, the strong nose, the doe-like eyes, the beautiful arch of her brows, the fantastic mane of hair cut into a trendy hairstyle; elegance personified, and yet her spouse needed more. Judge wanted to run his hands through Avril Corletti’s hair but distracted himself by wondering if it had been Sylvia Earle who had cut it for her. He doubted that very much. Crossman had said that she hadn’t been Ms. Earle’s client in a long time. Judge wondered if it was because she suspected a relationship between her husband and the woman.
Giancarlo Corletti arrived at the station and Judge’s eyebrows rose right into his hairline. He and his wife made a stunningly handsome couple and yet, it occurred to Judge that it was the first time that he was seeing the illusive Sig. Corletti. For all the wife’s appearances on the society pages of the Sunday Gleaner, the Observer and the Jamaica Herald he was very seldom by her side. In fact, Judge could not remember him at all, yet one look at him and Judge was sure that this was by design. Giancarlo Corletti obviously had no interest at all in his wife’s world of social engagements and hangers-on. Judge was sympathetic.
He was never one for counselling, but this couple needed it if any did. Judge did not think himself qualified to be giving anyone advice except that he had seen this kind of thing before up close and personal. He would spew the platitudes that he had been told when his own marriage was breaking down, and he hoped genuinely that this one would end up better than his did.
Corletti glanced at his wife, puzzled. She did not look at him at all. Milner and Judge looked at each other. Judge nodded.
“Welcome, Sig. Corletti. I’m sure that you’ve been wondering why we’ve asked you here today. It concerns a case involving your wife.”
Giancarlo Corletti glanced suspiciously at the woman. He turned back to Milner but said nothing.
“Sig.ra Corletti came to us yesterday with some salacious notes; very scandalous and very threatening in nature.”
Corletti turned to look at his wife again, and in truth he did seem to be more sympathetic, Judge was happy to see. Hector Milner continued.
“We believe that we know the origins of these notes, and we believe that you have it in your power to do something about them.”
“Is it a blackmail threat? Do they want money?” Giancarlo Corletti asked, annoyed.
Judge’s heart sank. It was obvious to him now that this was beyond the stage where Avril Corletti could retrieve her marriage. Her husband was clearly prepared to throw money at her problems, which was where they had originated in the first place he guessed. His annoyance at being bothered by his wife even though she was supposedly in jeopardy spoke volumes.
“I have no problem paying to cover up my wife’s indiscretions,” Corletti was saying.
Judge could stand it no longer. He interrupted.
“No, Sig. Corletti. It is YOUR indiscretions that are the problem here.”
“I beg your pardon?”
“You heard me! We believe that these notes were meant to frighten you into taking better care of your wife. Your affair with Sylvia Earle is a problem for her. Is this not true, Sig.ra Corletti?”
Avril Corletti jumped. She clutched her mouth trying to stifle a little scream.
“What are you saying, Detective Inspector?” Giancarlo Corletti was standing now.
“Please sit down, sir. What I am saying is that your wife had these notes sent to your home in the hope that you would see them or at least see that she was upset and inquire as to the cause. You have obviously done neither.”
“Why am I here?” Giancarlo Corletti snapped. He was clearly angry now.
“We wanted to tell you that your wife loves you so much that she was prepared to do something criminal to attract your attention, and get you to express some affection for her again.”
“Please stop!” Avril Corletti was clearly embarrassed. She obviously did not think that things would end like this.
“What he said is true, Carlo. I sent these notes to myself; or rather, I had someone send them to me so that you could think that someone wanted to hurt me and come back to my side as you were in the beginning of our marriage. All you do is spend time with that Sylvia Earle person! I don’t know why! What is Sylvia Earle doing for you that I am not?”
“Hah!” Giancarlo Corletti barked, meanly. “This is not the place, Avril; but for your information she does plenty for me that you don’t do!”
“What, is it? Anal sex again? Is that what this is about? Is it that she likes to be tied up and spanked or is it that you do, Giancarlo?” Avril Corletti retorted.
Giancarlo Corletti, Judge and Milner all froze.
“I told you that this is not the place, Avril,” Corletti’s voice was steel.
Judge and Milner got up to excuse themselves and give the couple some privacy, but Giancarlo Corletti ordered them to sit down! Judge found himself sitting down again across the room from an apparently equally surprised Milner who was doing the same thing.
“You’ve heard enough to know that I can’t stand my wife! Do you have any idea what it’s like living with someone who is concerned only about keeping up appearances? There is no intimacy with her. We can’t even have a child because she wants to keep her figure! If she had said that she wanted to keep her career I would have been more impressed, though one can take even that too far! But her figure? Can you believe that? Would you tolerate that, either of you? Missionary with a condom after fifteen years of marriage!” he railed at the policemen. “Yes! Sylvia Earle is ten times, no one hundred times, the woman that you are Avril! She gives me plenty in bed that you’ve probably never even heard about. I’m in love with her and I’m going to divorce you and marry her!”
“Marriage! And did you say her? Don’t make me laugh, Giancarlo! Your Sylvia Earle is a common whore!”
“And what are you, Avril? You’re married to me because of my money and the social standing that that can buy you; so what does that make you, Avril? Sylvia has declined my proposal on three occasions already but I’m not giving up. Now that I can tell her that you know about us perhaps she will change her mind. I can tell her that I’m finally getting a divorce. That ought to settle things.”
“I’m going to take you to the cleaners!” Avril Corletti promised her husband.
“Who gives a shit, Avril? There is still enough to go around. For Sylvia and me even half of my holdings would be more than enough. Can you say the same thing?”
“What I can say is that I saw you! I saw you, Giancarlo! I saw you with this Sylvia Earle person! It was disgusting! In our bed too!” Avril Corletti burst into bitter tears. “She’s not even a woman!”
“Shut up Avril, I’m sure that these gentlemen do not need to hear details,” Giancarlo Corletti seemed shocked, and then curiously deflated.
“Buggery is a crime here in Jamaica!” the woman retorted. “I think that they do need to hear details.”
Both Judge and Milner looked at each other. This had got out of hand. They had obviously lost control of the situation, completely. So much for forty years of policing between them.
“Sylvia Earle is not even a woman!” Avril Corletti shrieked again. “She’s a man! She has both sets of body parts, you understand? My husband is in love with a trans-woman! I saw his hands on Ms Earle’s body the way they used to be on mine! I saw him playing with and tweaking Ms. Earle’s breasts and sucking her cock as if his life depended on it! I saw this Sylvia Earle person take him the way he keeps wanting to take me, and they were not using a strap-on! That cock was fully functioning! I saw Sylvia Earle spank him in the face… with her cock! I saw him give her a blowjob! Can you believe that? Do you want to know what they were like when she mounted him?”
“Keep your voice down, Avril!” her husband warned. “Everyone will hear you! Sylvia is not a trans-woman. She hasn’t had all her surgeries yet, but this is a free world, and she is not doing anything wrong. She’s a lovely woman, and I’m in love with her! You have to understand…”
“I don’t care what you say!” she screamed. She turned to Judge and Milner. “Aren’t you going to arrest him? He took a man’s cock up in his ass! He did it more than once! I saw him! I heard him groan with lust. I saw him ejaculate! I tell you, Sylvia Earle is a shemale! Just ask her! Carlo is more of a woman than she is!”
Judge looked at Corletti’s stricken face. It was clear that the man expected the worst kind of censure from him. He looked next at Avril Corletti, her beauty marred by the malice that she now felt toward her husband. Judge came to a decision.
“I doubt that Sylvia Earle would confess to anything of the sort, but truthfully, even if she would, it would be none of my business, and frankly, Sig.ra Corletti, personally I can’t see a crime in loving someone, but it is a crime to blackmail people here in Jamaica. You seem to have spent a long time looking at something that you claim disgusted you. How else did you see so much of your husband’s relations with Ms. Earle?”
“What are you talking about? Aren’t you a policeman here to uphold the law? Sylvia Earle is a shemale! She taught my husband the ways of men making love to other men. Isn’t that wrong?”
“I doubt that Sylvia Earle did that, Madam, but hear me out. I see absolutely nothing wrong with this. I believe that whatever your husband does in the privacy of your home is his business. I do not plan to do anything about him and Ms. Earle; though,” he turned to Giancarlo Corletti, “I am not sure that remaining here in Jamaica would be your best option though. Some people will think that Ms. Earle is a gay man. I do not think so myself. I know that the situation is more complicated than that, but I do not think that everyone will be so understanding; and I agree with you wife, it is in very poor form to take your lover, man or woman, into the matrimonial bed. That was not nice of you, Sig Corletti. I have no doubt at all that you hurt your spouse deeply.”
He turned back to the distraught woman seated in front of him, “I don’t plan to tell anyone about this at all. I am sure that Detective Milner agrees with me that this whole sordid affair is better left alone. Let your husband divorce you, you’re probably better off in the long-term if he does not really love you. Take what you can get, and keep your mouth shut. Your situation with Ms. Earle being a pre-operative transsexual is new to me, but I know that people discover that their spouses are unfaithful every day. They survive. Your pain will fade in time, and with the help of good friends. Life is too short to spend it moping about a lost love. Move on! If I hear about this I will know that it was you who told. I’m just trying to get the images that David Crossman described in those letters out of my head; so you won’t hear me talking about this, ever.”
He glanced at Milner to see if he had his agreement. Milner was having a very difficult time not laughing. Judge frowned. This was no laughing matter in a place like Jamaica. He would have to tell Milner to work on his poker face some more for the future. The world was becoming a complex place and they had to change with it.
“I will have justice!” an incredulous Avril Corletti declared. “I know the Commissioner! I know his wife!”
“If I were you, I’d shut up, lady!” Milner interjected, suddenly very serious.
“How dare you speak to me like this!” Avril snarled.
“Listen to me you spoiled little bitch! You will say nothing about this to anyone or we will make sure that the media gets hold of your little notes and your part in the story behind them. I will see to it personally! Believe me, no one is going to believe that your husband ran off with a transsexual, and even if they thought that it might be true it would not reflect well on you to have people know that you could not keep your husband and that he left you for a trans-man” Milner was angry, and as frightening as a Rotweiller about to attack, and Judge, understanding it, was thankful for his support.
“I cannot believe this! Perhaps you are the same!” Avril Corletti said, unwisely; jumping to her feet in a rage. She had no way of knowing that she was appealing for understanding to a man who had also lost his own marriage because of a taboo relationship; between his boss, the Commissioner of Police, and his now ex-wife, Thalia; and this man’s only real friend.
“Sig.ra Corletti, get out of this office before I arrest you for public mischief,” Milner snapped. “Remember that it is a crime to report crimes that have not happened and you did that when you came in here claiming to receive a series of letters from someone sick. You are the only person in this room who is sick!”
Avril Coreletti looked at the three men in the room. All of them looked back at her coldly; a first for her. She got up with as much dignity as she could muster and looked straight into her husband’s eye.
“My body is a temple, Giancarlo; your Sylvia Earle’s is a market! Remember that.”
She spat in his face and walked out; her head held high, and again ignoring the appreciative stares of everyone around her.
Judge offered his handkerchief to Giancarlo Corletti. He sighed. Perhaps his therapist would find it a sign of progress that he was actually able to side with a man who was having an affair with someone undergoing gender reassignment surgery in Jamaica.
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