Mr. Klein was looking through my father’s ledger like Hanukkah had come early. I told him, in no uncertain terms that I expected him to give his word, in writing that the Evans family was off his radar. He gave it easily, having a secretary type it up with the normal inclusionary caution of adding the condition that I gave the evidence freely and fully. Simple enough. He knew, I know he knew, that there were pages missing, but he could see that he had more than enough without them to carry on.
“Another request, Mr. Klein?” He looked up at me, after I’d answered several more questions. “I want to be present when you give my father the happy news.” His eye brows rose in surprise. Perhaps a woman of my background shouldn’t have such a vengeful streak, but here I sat.
“You’d want to see me-”
“Arrest him?” He nodded. “I want to see his face when he realizes that I’m the one who helped put the lovely steel bracelets on his wrists, Mr. Klein. Will you agree to that?” Another nod. “Lovely, well, it seems I’ve been here quite long enough.” His secretary had brought my required proof of his promise, and I stood. “Don’t get up, Mr. Klein,” he hadn’t made a move, but I thought I’d be the one with better manners once again. “I’ll see myself out.” I pulled on my gloves in the elevator and was happy to see the car waiting nearby for me as I stepped out of the building. The driver had my door open as soon as I was within touching distance and I could see that he was relieved I’d come out within the time frame I’d given him. “Let’s head back to the resort, please.” I felt that Ike was no doubt ready to climb the walls, and I’d rather not put undue strain on the poor man.
He must have been watching out the windows of his office for the car or for me because Ike was opening my door before the car was completely stopped. And then my hand was in his and he was pulling me into his arms, in front of the hotel, arriving guests, and everyone.
“I haven’t been able to keep my mind on anything at all, Liz,” he was whispering into my hair. “You know what that man did to Judy.” I nodded, leaning into his touch, and smiling at how easily he was showing the entire hotel he cared for me. “Let’s head upstairs,” to the office, I thought, but he bypassed the actual stairs and took me to the elevators. “I want to be inside our own home when you tell me what happened.” He offered, his hand still holding mine.
Inside the penthouse, with the door barely shut behind us, he pressed me into the solid surface and kissed the breath out of me. Ike’s hands were curling along the curve of my backside as well as my bump, checking for what I wasn’t entirely sure, but with his mouth on mine, with our tongues touching, I truly couldn’t make sense of much.
“I hated having you out of my sight and in his clutches, Liz,” his breath fanning the dampness our kiss had left on my lips. “Trying to get anything done while I was waiting was a lost cause.”
He pulled away, and led me to the sofa. And then I was on his lap, his fingers pulling my gloves off, as I told him what happened. “I have his written vow to leave you and our family alone, Ike,” I pulled the papers from my handbag. “He’s agreed to let me accompany him to Ben’s arrest.” I felt Ike stiffen at the thought of another moment in Klein’s presence without him. “I’d like you to be there, if not in the room, at least waiting for me.” That helped him relax, and me as well. “Now, shouldn’t you get back to work, Mr. Evans?” I teased, looking into his eyes as his hands were sliding down the dress he’d put me in that morning.
“Work?” He squinted in thought. “I do have a very delicate job I want to do-” And then he was lifting me into his arms, and stalking to our bedroom. “I have to remind my future wife just how much I love her.”
And Ike Evans, ever the overachiever when it came to me, took the rest of the afternoon to make sure he did a very thorough job.