Of Dancers and Doves
Chapter 1

Caution: This Science Fiction Sex Story contains strong sexual content, including Ma/Fa, Fa/Fa, Mult, Consensual, NonConsensual, Lesbian, Heterosexual, Fiction, Science Fiction, Space, Aliens, BDSM, Light Bond, Safe Sex, Oral Sex, Anal Sex, Petting, Exhibitionism, Body Modification, Violent, Prostitution,

Desc: Science Fiction Sex Story: Chapter 1 - Mack Wolf works as a manager for Treasured Petals, a strip-club owned by the Shroud Mafia. His life is turned upside down when a new player comes into town and he is left with no option but to leave the life he has come to love. Forced to reforge his life, he must navigate through the dangers of living in the corrupt and dangerous city with a vindictive powerful woman trying to make him her slave and slowly heal the scars from his past that he hid from by overworking himself.

“Boss, HEY BOSS,” a feminine voice yelled into the noisy and busy kitchen of Treasured Petals. The men and women in gray and navy aprons ignored the woman yelling but a young man with dark brown hair and a sharp blade looked up briefly from his cutting board in the back of the kitchen. While his hands deftly cut the vegetable with practiced motions as he scanned the kitchen for the person looking for him. The only things he could really see were pots and pans hanging from an overhead rack and the other cooks on the grill line.

“Boss, I know you’re flaming back here somewhere,” the female called again, slightly more annoyed this time, and the young man suppressed a smile. He recognized Cassie’s voice by her favorite curse. He and some of the other dancers had picked up her off world curses but no one quite said it like she did. Shaking his head he finished chopping the siziaya, a sweet and tangy spice native to Beorus IV, into cubes and scraped them into a bowl for the line chef next to him. Cassie continued to call for him and more than one of the cooks snickered or tried to cover up there laughing.

“MACK! There you are!” Cassie said and stomped down the line of grills to his corner of the kitchen. She wore an unbuttoned white blouse that revealed one her multicolored dancing pasties on her large white breast, barely covering her nipple, and the tight black synthetic panty-huggers from her last dance.

“Why hello Cassie, I didn’t hear you,” Mack said with a wide smile and grunted when she punched his arm, hard. It was hard not to like the brunette but he couldn’t help cursing her when her punches left bruises.

“I know you heard me you flaming twit but never mind, we’ve got a flaming ion licker trying to rough up,” the beautiful brunette started but when Mack heard the worry in her voice and “rough up” he quickly slipped past her, pulled off his apron, and put it on a peg above the sinks.

“Where and who?” Mack grated out as he quickly stormed up the line of cooks with Cassie trying to keep up in her 6” stiletto heels. He saw one of his cooks, Jeff, pick up a meat tenderizer and start to follow but Mack simply shook his head and smiled. Jeff got the hint and harrumphed before turning back to cutting the beef on his table. Mack loved his staff but sometimes they could be a little too quick to jump to his aid like he couldn’t handle something himself; it was a mixed feeling of pride and exasperation for him. He threw the clear disposable gloves in the trash as he waited for Cassie to catch up and tried not to keep his eyes where they should be and not on his employee’s barely concealed assets.

“Tiff is in booth three with the flaming pig,” Cassie said quickly and took off towards the back of the strip-club, hips swaying.

Mack’s eyes roamed over the club in a practiced sweep as he made his way to the back. He’d been in the back cooking for most of the peak hour times and saw the ornate bar and lavish dining area mostly full with patrons, with only a few unoccupied stools and tables. Mel was dancing on the color changing light-pole to Star Drop’s Dream, a new wave pop hit, in just her red heels and a wide smile. The dark room was flashing with multicolored lights to match the tone and beat of the song, something Mel requested for all her songs, and the crowd ate it up. Two distinct groups on either side of the stage were yelling and whistling happily but the two men in black dress suits caught his eye sitting a few feet back from the middle of the stage. There was a wide circle of unoccupied tables around the two men and one of his waitresses, in a low-cut top and g-string, was serving them drinks. The Shroud Mafia owned the club and brothel next door but he always hated they pushed paying customers out so they had the best view.

Shaking his head he returned his attention to the back of the club where Guido and Jack stood with their arms crossed, underneath a holosign in red reading “Exotic Dances, blocking anyone from entering or leaving the booth section. “Guido, Jack, what’s going on back there?” he asked when he reached the two muscular men. Guido was an illegitimate bastard of one of the mafia lieutenants and Jack was a local boy from the 13th block. Both men had more muscles than any two or three normal men and unlike the stereotype of muscular men they were both intelligent as well.

“Boss, we got a newbie with wandering hands and a desire to hurt women to get his way. We got Starlight out when she hit the panic button but she’s got a shiner,” Guido sad sadly and pointed over his shoulder with his thumb. Tiff, or her dancer name Starlight, was sitting on the floor crying and holding a bruise-pack to her eye. Cassie squatted next to the hurt dancer gently rubbing her arm and looking worried.

“Boss, we’re not sure but we’ve never seen this moron before. He might be a spacer or someone that moved into the city recently but he looks like a normal bottom level Shroud enforcer. I ran him through the normal channels as soon as we pulled Starlight out but it came up clean. Normally we’d rough him up and dump him in a garbage bot but,” Jack said breaking off with a shrug. It was the owner’s rules to rough up any patrons that hurt or assaulted any of the working girls or boys and Mack had no problem with the policy. Guido nodded and told him he didn’t know who the attacker was as well from his connections.

“I’ll go back alone and talk with him,” Mack said as he pulled his gun from his shoulder holster under his dark jacket and passed it to Guido. The TE-SA110 was a civilian model slug-thrower that put a nice sized hole in anything in the path of the subsonic projectile and his favorite self-defense weapon. Guido took the weapon without comment and slid it into the back of his belt under his jacket.

Stepping past the two bouncers he walked over to Tiff and gently rubbed her shoulder. “Tiff, sweetheart, go with Jack into the dressing room and get the first-aid kit. The bruise-balm will help with the eye.”

Tiff looked up and sniffed trying to keep her composure. Her mascara had run leaving dark streaks on her beautiful oval face and her bottle-red hair was matted to the side of her face where she kept the wet bruise-pack. “I’ve got a dance in a few Mr. Wolf. I’ve got kids and,” she broke down in fresh tears.

Mack hated to see women cry and his bullshit meter wasn’t going off signaling Tiff was trying to play the situation to her favor, but he’d been wrong about pretty women before. Shaking his head he smiled and lifted the pretty redhead’s head up. “Tiff go ahead and get cleaned up in the changing room. If the bruise doesn’t go away after the balm we’ll take to across the way to Doc and he can clean it up before you go home to your kids.”

Tiff hiccuped and hugged Mack hard before nodding and slowly getting to her feet using him as support. Mack did his best to ignore the two very fleshy and soft globes rubbing against his chest. Once Tiff was on her feet Cassie stood and took Tiff’s other arm to support her and kissed Mack on the cheek. “Come on, Tiff. We’ll get you looking beautiful again and let Boss have fun with the ion licker,” the beautiful brunette said as she began to help Tiff towards the exit.

Tiff giggled through a sob and stumbled off with Cassie but not before Mack got a good look at her face, it wasn’t just a little bruise on Tiff’s face. Her eye was red and it looked like there might have been a cut on her skin because there was blood on the outside of her eye; he wondered if she could see anything out of the eye at all. Glancing back he noticed Jack had seen the same thing he did by the thunderous look in the large man’s eyes.

Jack moved closer and whispered, “We’ll get her over to docs right away to make sure nothing was damaged other than her beautiful face. Boss, you could let me in,” Jack started to say but Mack put a hand on his shoulder.

“Jack, take care of Tiff and I will take care of the shit stain,” Mack said and pointed at the retreating women. Jack looked once at the door to booth three and nodded once before turning around and hurrying after the girls. Guido glanced back at him as Jack ran after Tiff and nodded once before turning back and watching the floor.

Mack sighed and shook his head, it had been such a nice night so far and he hadn’t had a girl hurt in over three months. The last time one of the girls got hurt was when a new girl decided to try a new dance move on stage and had face planted onto the hardwood stage. Rolling up his sleeves he strode over to the third door on the left and pressed the unlock and open button on the panel. When the door slid open a man in a black dress suit sat on the couch with his arms folded across his chest.

“You must be Mr. Wolf, that took some time for you to grace me with your presence,” the older man said with a sneer. A scar went across his pasty white forehead and his unkempt black hair looked like it left a grease stain on the leather of the couch as it shined from the overhead light. His bulging muscles and tattoos were clearly shown as he sat up and cracked his knuckles.

Mack strode farther into the room carefully looking over the seated man again while the door slid closed blocking out the music and catcalls from the main room. The suit, attitude, and empty shoulder holster matched that of a Shroud mafia member and he shook his head. “You know Don Savino doesn’t like his girls roughed up under any circumstances. The problem I have is I don’t know you and more importantly, Guido, my bouncer, doesn’t know you either. Why is a Shroud member roughing up our dancers?” Mack asked as politely as he could.

“Where is Sibilla? She should have been here and told you the new rules.”

Mack shook his head and frowned. “I don’t know a Sibilla and I definitely didn’t get told about rules allowing shit stains to rough up girls when they say no.”

The suited man cursed in his native language and charged Mack from a seated position. A swift and hard front kick to the man’s face sent him sprawling backward into the couch. “I strongly recommend you don’t attack me. There may be management changes but until then Don Savino owns this club and his rules are law.” He watched as the Shroud member got to his feet shakily and got back into a defensive stance in case the idiot tried to attack him again.

“You won’t hear the last of this Mr. Dead Wolf. I don’t care who you are but Sibilla will make you pay for hitting me.” The larger man cracked his neck and flexed his fists to show his dominance, Mack was unimpressed. The bright red imprint in the middle of his forehead stood out against the white scar and the man shook his head again before looking at Mack with hate-filled eyes.

“Listen, get out, take your friends if you need to but you are barred from this club and the brothel next door until this can be sorted out,” Mack said shaking his head and keyed the door open behind him. The noise of the strip club filled the room again and he stepped aside to allow the man to leave.

“Brothel? There is a Shroud run brothel in this hell hole?” the man said confused.

“Don Savino owns almost everything on this side of the city. Torus may be a shit city on Beorus IV but there are rules and factions that govern the city. The quicker you learn them the quicker you don’t catch a slug for being an ion licker,” Mack said quietly and swept his hand towards the open door clearly dismissing the man. He didn’t strictly have the power or authority to remove a Shroud member but since he was a manager of the club and the man had cause harm to one of his girls he didn’t care.

“Fine, this place is a dump anyway,” the larger man said and strode out of the room without looking back or picking up his fancy hat from the couch.

Guido appeared in the doorway half a second after the man exited and Mack gave the order to have the man escorted out and banned until everything could be worked out. Without a word, Guido yanked the slightly smaller man up by the collar of his expensive jacket, ripping part of the jacket, and frogmarched him towards the front door. Mack did his best not to smile at the efficiency of his bouncer and went back into the booth to call his boss. Taking out his communicator, a small hand-held tablet, he hit the quick call contact number one and placed the communicator on one of the tables. The ringing sound played over and over while he cleaned up the small room and finally rolled over to an automated answering machine.

When the automated voice stopped talking Mack picked up his communicator again and spoke quickly, “Don Savino, we’ve had a problem with a possible Shroud member hitting one of the girls. I’ve had him removed and temporarily banned until you tell me what to do. He spoke of Sibilla coming and changing the rules, which is news to me, but if you know of any changes let me know. Thanks Boss, Mack out.” He turned off the communicator and tucked it back into his jacket pocket. The next call was to his opposite, Madam Yvette, who ran the brothel next door explaining the situation. Just as he was about to leave the room the door opened and Nilde came in with a rag and a sprayer bottle.

“Oh! Boss, I didn’t realize you were cleaning up already,” the extremely buxom blonde said and stuck out her lip in a pout.

Mack saw through the fake pout and had to suppress a laugh. “Nilde, I didn’t see you come in tonight. I cleaned up some but these booths always need a thorough cleaning if you’d like to do it now.” He bit the inside of his cheek to not laugh at the flash of revulsion on her face before she hid it behind a stunning smile. Nilde was a daughter of one of the local gang leaders and liked to work the “safe” clubs whenever she felt like dancing, much to her father’s displeasure. She wore a bright pink top that barely contained her enormous chest and a black g-string thong, leaving nearly nothing to the imagination. Nilde’s half New-Italy and Native Beorus ancestry made her look exotic. Her olive skin had streaks of blue veins all over her body that seemed to enhance her beauty rather than detract from it.

The exotic girl stuck out her tongue in a seductive way and wiggled her chest. “Aw, come on Boss! I was just getting the cleaning stuff for you,” she said innocently and winked suggestively.

Mack bit the inside of his lip when Nilde’s breast fell out of her top and cut his eyes away from the huge dark brown nipple. It was his policy to never get involved with any of the girls in his club but damn if they didn’t make it hard on him sometimes. To him, it was one thing to see them dancing on stage for profit, which he watched with a professional eye, and another when they used their assets to try and influence him. It became almost a game at one point to see how far they could push him until he put his foot down a few years ago and stopped the shenanigans. He was only male and having forty or more beautiful women, between the strip-club and the brothel, parade around nearly, or completely, naked made it hard for him to concentrate on not wanting to screw their brains out. The rumor was Cassie won a huge bet saying he’d stick to his guns when the “game” started and Yidia lost the most money betting he would fall to her charms first. He saw the girls that worked for him as his children or family, even when some of them were older than him, and always felt uncomfortable thinking of them sexually.

He caught Nilde’s satisfied smirk on her face out of the corner of his eye and shook his head. She knew what she was doing and he was tempted to paddle her ass for it. Sadly, she’d probably even enjoy it, the kinky girl. “Nilde if you keep that up I’ll order you to clean all the booths tonight,” he warned and stared into her soft brown eyes.

“No thank you, Boss,” she said and casually put her large breast back into the tiny top, once more barely covering her nipple. “You want me to leave the cleaning stuff with you?”

Mack thought about it for a moment and told her to leave it so he could do a quick wipe down of the booth. She smiled and left the rag and cleaning bottle on the table before high-tailing it out of the room leaving him alone. He shook his head at her antics and sprayed the room’s surfaces down with the all-purpose cleaner and wiped everything off, including his communication tablet. A few minutes later he double checked over the surfaces to find them dry and left the booth. Guido was still standing there watching the club and Roxie, a tall blonde dancer, was pulling a pimply faced young man with a drunken smile into the second booth. Once the two had gotten into the booth Roxie winked at Mack and closed the door behind her.

“Anything else going on tonight?” Mack asked Guido as he stepped up beside the muscular bouncer.

“No Boss, just that issue so far. The night is still young if you wish to allow The Risen into the club again,” Guido said with poorly disguised laughter in his voice.

Mack cursed quietly thinking of the last time The Risen gang had graced his club. They were a pro-clone slavery and extremist hate group of natives to Beorus that had an alarmingly large following of Neo-Massiah religious fanatics. The last time they came into the club they attacked one of his bartenders, a sweet kid by the name of Tan, and broke his arm. Ti wasn’t a clone but they were drunkenly sure of it at the time and attacked him. After that, every person that came into the club wearing The Risen gang tattoos or colors was thrown out with extreme prejudice. After the incident, he made sure to keep the club as neutral as possible, requiring gang and organization members to leave any distinguishing clothing at the door.

Shaking his head, he turned his back to the crowded room holding out his hand. Guido dropped the gun in his hand and he made sure the safety was one before tucking back into its holster under his jacket. “Come get me if anything else happens tonight,” he ordered and strode back off towards the kitchens.

Mack loved to cook and spent every moment not dealing with the club or brothel cooking in the back with the other chefs. When he first started, he thought the head cook, someone he personally hired, was going to throw him out but the older man simply smiled, shook his head, and explained what went wrong and why; he had given the head chef permission to throw anyone out of the kitchen he deemed unfit to wear an apron when he hired him. During the three years, he had managed the strip-club he had become an accomplished chef and it was largely due to Chef Ty’s calm and careful instruction.

Just after he washed up and got his apron back on Jack came through the back door of the kitchen. “Boss, Tiff is alright and Doc is seeing to her now. There was a cut next to her eye but no damage to the eye itself,” he said quietly.

Mack nodded and breathed out a relieved sigh. “I’m glad, get her anything she needs within reason. The idiot was Shroud so I couldn’t do much but throw him out until Don gets in touch with me. I’ve left him a message with the situation as it stands but no idea what will actually come of this. I really don’t want to loose a damn good dancer over that flaming idiot.”

Jack nodded slowly and breathed out. “Boss, she’s already said she might put her notice in. This really shook her up and the fact our hands are tied will get back around to her. Better it comes from you than one of the other girls.”

Mack knew good advice when he heard it and thanked Jack again before sending him off to help Tiff for the night with the added order of telling him when Tiff was back in the building so they could talk. He’d be down a bouncer but so far nothing happened that night and he cared about his girls. Shaking his head he threaded his way down the line of cooks to the station in the corner, the prep station near the cooler, and looked at the next item on Chef Ty’s list to get ready.

Two hours later the orders started to slow to a trickle and the rush hour chefs were allowed to go home after cleaning up their stations. Mack had been pulled away from prep work twice to deal with minor issues but Tiff hadn’t returned from the doctors and Don Savino hadn’t called back. Sitting at the end of the bar with Tan he watched Holly Hotday, Tina, dance naked on the stage with a miner’s hard hat on, heavy work boots, and all but molesting the poor prop mining laser. Her ebony body glistened with oil that made her look simply breathtaking under the lights. The group around the stage was going wild and throwing colored of cloth on the stage. Each colored strip had a credit value attached and the dancers would make an extremely provocative display of collecting them at the end of the dance. Thankfully the cloth strips were washable as most of the time the strips found their way into the dancer’s body much to the delight of the audience.

“Boss, you want anything else?” Ti asked as he skillfully made the bottles of alcohol dance in his hands.

Mack looked over at the slender young man and shook his head. “I’m good Tan, I’ll probably clock out in an hour, grab a shower, and crash before the morning chefs and caterers come through.” Chef Ty brought up the idea of catering to businesses and important events because the strip-club had to keep chefs on hand around the clock for the brothel next door. A brothel couldn’t have a kitchen on their own, as it was classified as a sex service, whereas a strip-club was classified as an entertainment service and there for could sell alcohol and food. Each order that came from the brothel went as a charge to the strip club’s account for the food catered so the taxman wouldn’t have a conniption fit. The Shroud Mafia was very old school in its way of thinking but they operated almost completely legally, with the exception of a select few businesses they ran. Smuggling, extortion, blackmail, weapon running, and drug trafficking were some of the few businesses they kept illegally but for the most part, it made up maybe a sixteenth of their total income.

Mack spotted Jack waving to him from the kitchen shortly after Holly Hotday’s performance. The crowd was still extremely animated when Diva Rocket, Cassie, sexily swished her hips in a bright pink jumpsuit with the zipper already halfway down to her naval as she cat walked onto the stage to a popular spacer dance remix. The two small side stages on the other side of the club had a small group of men and a few women at each watching some of the newer talent dance with the song as well. Monica winked at him as he crossed through the dining area and blew him a kiss. He just smiled and continued over to where Jack stood to wait. “What’s the news?” he asked once he reached the obviously nervous bouncer.

“Tiff’s out back and she wants to talk to you,” Jack said hesitantly.

Nodding he walked past Jack and saw Chef Ty’s normally jovial and friendly face looking livid. Mack didn’t spot anything out of the ordinary from the other chefs but noticed Chef Ty’s dark hands turning almost white with the way he gripped the knife handle in his hand, showing how angry he was. A moment later he saw why as he rounded the corner and neared the back door. Tiff’s entire side of her face was one huge bruise and her eye had a cotton patch over it. She ran up and hugged him hard when she saw him and cried on his shoulder. Mack wrapped his arms around Tiff and let her cry for a few minutes just rubbing her back. The entire kitchen was subdued with barely a clang of a pan while Tiff cried.

A few minutes later, Tiff composed herself and looked Mack in the face. “I’m going to need to quit, Boss,” she said quietly and looked down at the tiled floor.

“Hey, I fully support your decision no matter what you do. It’s never easy in this business and worse when you’re dealing with scum. As your boss, I can give you a few days to think it over but as your friend, I’d urge you to follow what your heart says.” Mack hugged her and she cried for a few more minutes before finally pushing away from him gently.

“I’ll pack up my things. Can, can you have someone take me home?” she asked quietly and tried to smooth out a wrinkle in the oversized shirt she wore. Mack could clearly see she had nothing on under the shirt and made a snap decision. “Would you like Jack to take you home or would you rather one of the girls take you?”

Tiff thought about it for a few and looked around the corner where Jack was talking quietly to Chef Ty. “I like Jack but can one of the girls do it?”

Mack nodded and told her to wait a moment. He barely made it out of the kitchen when Tina, dressed in a t-shirt and booty shorts, nearly ran into him with her purse. “Oh! Sorry Boss, I heard Tiff was back,” she said in a breathless rush.

Mack smiled and shook his head before responding. “This place never ceases to amaze me. She needs a ride home and possibly a shoulder to cry on. You’re off for the night, completely paid, if you can help her. She’s family but I understand if you need to come back.”

“Say no more, Boss,” she said pulling her keys out of her tiny shorts. Mack had trouble imagining how a set of keys could have materialized out of those small shorts but shook that line of thinking off.

Tina was about to got to Tiff when he suddenly had an idea. “Hold up a second Tina,” he said as he dug his communicator out and pulled a blank credistick out of his jacket pocket. Plugging it in he transferred a few hundred credits to the stick and gave it to Tina. “She’ll need this even if she refuses. Leave it where she’ll find it later if she refuses outright.” Tina beamed at him and he felt his knees go a little weak.

“Holy void, she’s beautiful,” he thought as Tina all but floated to Tiff and wrapped the smaller woman in a tight embrace. Chef Ty caught his eye and nodded his approval before turning back to his work. Jack had wandered over to Tina and Tiff and stood awkwardly causing Mack to try and not laugh. The poor guy’s had it bad for Tiff since the first night she worked the club. Looking at the time he realized it was nearly four am Beorus Standard Time (BST) and stifled a yawn. He’d been up since eight am the previous day and expected to only get a little sleep today as well. Looking over the club one last time he was happy to see a fairly large crowd still and hoped it would stay that way until closing at five am.

He made his rounds to each station to double check everything was in order and was happy to see nothing else of note happened that night. He did notice the girls weren’t as happy as they normally were, understandable considering a girl was hurt, but was happy to see they didn’t blame him for the fiasco and understood the “rules” about the mafia, even if it was unfair. He went up to his office, turned off his terminal, put the code in for lock up on the wall panel near the safe, and locked the door before heading over to the brothel.

The Shroud Mafia’s territory expanded over most of the industrial districts and some of the warehouse and supply districts throughout the city. Treasured Petals and Eternal Doves, the brothel next door, was off a major road between the industrial district and the medium income housing areas. Since most of the city’s exports were minerals and metals the highest paying jobs came from the industrial districts and Don Savino was there to capitalize on it. The brothel and strip club were two different buildings on paper but in actuality, it was one building that made an “L” shape. Mack’s one room apartment was on the top floor of the brothel, all the way in the back. Most of the women lived on the top floor but the only males Madam Yvette allowed to live up there were Ty and him.

Stepping through the back door of the kitchen he breathed in the cold dusty air. The lack of sleep was catching up to him quickly and he yawned loudly as he looked around the back parking lot. Most of the hovercars he recognized but the two nearest the brothel’s backdoor looked too shiny to have been in the city long, or recently washed. The lingering smoke and crap that came out of the industrial district left dark smudges on almost the entire city. Shaking his head he walked over to the back door of the brothel and keyed the code into the panel. The door slid aside and a muscular Beorusian stepped into the doorway.

“Mr. Wolf, we wondered when you would retire for the day,” the blue and gray skinned enforcer said quietly but with a smile.

“Di’fen, I didn’t realize you were back and got the cushy job this month. How is the wife and little Di’ron?” Mack asked and stuck out his hand to shake the larger man’s hand. Di’fen had invited him to his son’s naming day a few months previously and he had learned a lot about the Native Beorusian culture. Beorusians one of the closest “alien” species to humans had evolved from a primate as well. Sadly, the government still saw the entire species as a sub-species of humans, despite hard scientific evidence otherwise, and treated them as the lowest class of intelligent sentient species on Beorus IV. A recent study discovered the Beorusians were probably descendents one of the ancient human colony ships sent out of Sol after the great purge in the hopes humanity would survive but the government didn’t want to acknowledge the validity of the study.

“My son is strong and thriving after his naming day,” Di’fen said proudly and puffed out his chest. “Come in from the cold, sorry, Mr. Wolf,” the large man said and stepped aside smoothing out his black designer jacket.

As Di’fen stepped aside, Mack could see into the low light of the brothel’s staff room. Yun and Madam Yvette sat at one of the tables eating and talking quietly. So engrossed in their conversation neither noticed Mack walk up and sat in the open chair. They immediately cut off their hushed conversation and turned to look at the interloper at the same time.

“Why my boy, have you decided to take up young Ri’nil’s bed?” Madam Yvette asked with a saucy wink. Her wide smile wasn’t forced and she leaned over, revealing the tops of her milky breasts in her blue corset, while rubbing Mack’s arm.

“No, Madam Yvette. I think sleep is the only thing I could manage tonight,” Mack said with a small smile of his own. Madam Yvette’s ageless face always made him think of a friendly aunt or older sister despite the nearly ninety-year difference between the two of them. Yun took the opportunity to jump in with a light touch to his other arm.

“You can always borrow one of us to cuddle with,” she said with a shy smile. Her extremely slender body, pale skin, and light blonde hair made her look like a willowy ghost but she always got a lot of customers for her exotic appearance.

“Thank you, Yun, but I’m perfectly happy snoring alone,” Mack said with a grin. He knew he didn’t snore but he hoped she didn’t know it and would drop the subject. Thankfully, she did but left her hand gently touching his arm.

“Well you know where to find one of us if you do, sweetheart,” Yun said with a saucy grin and went back to daintily eating her soup.

“How is Tiff?” Madam Yvette said quietly after a minute of silence.

Mack was staring into Yun’s soup without really looking at it and started when the madam spoke. “Huh? Oh, Tiff isn’t doing great. The ion licker hit next to her left eye and it looked bad but Doc says there is no lasting damage, just a lot of bruising and swelling. I sent Tina, well truthfully she volunteered but still. She went with Tiff to get her settled in and last I saw Jack he was hovering over her like an angry go’let protecting her cubs.”

The older woman shook her head sadly and rubbed her right temple with a slender hand. “Kids these days,” she muttered and looked up. “What of the man who attacked her? You mentioned he was Shroud.”

Mack cursed under his breath, causing Yun to look up sharply. “Don hasn’t returned my call and I don’t dare call twice in one day. The man was expecting someone named Sibilla, whoever that is, to have changed the policy of the club. I don’t know anything more than the idiot had to be a Shroud enforcer, more by his attitude and aggressiveness than any skill, but no one recognized him. I’m wondering if there is a new player on the planet.”

Madam Yvette and Yun shared a look and the younger woman nodded slightly. Madam Yvette turned back to Mack with a small frown on her beautiful face. “One of the younger boys mentioned something about some changes while he was with Yun earlier. Seemed to be under the impression some major changes were coming in the future and wanted to have “a good time” before the boat got rocked. Now he didn’t say that directly but that’s what young Yun and I were speaking about when you came in.”

Mack grunted in displeasure, which caused Yun to gently rub his arm again. Ignoring the comforting hand he shook his head. “That isn’t good, not good at all. You have a plan if things go ass up?” he asked and looked around the nicely decorated room. He knew there were cameras all over the place but he didn’t want any of the other girls catching wind of possible problems before they may or may not be a problem.

Madam Yvette nodded once and knocked on the finely crafted wooden table once with her knuckle. Mack got the point and breathed out slowly. “I’ve got one too and Chef Ty and Guido know what to do.” Both the brothel and strip club were completely legal on Beorus IV and most of the Republic but there were factions that liked to cause trouble by doing “sweeps” for illegal goods, undocumented people, and banned weapons.

Pushing back his chair he got up and got an accidental good look down Madam Yvette’s corset as she stood with him. She was one of the few women he’d have a very hard time saying no to if she pursued him because of the kinship he felt with her but at the same time she was closer than family in his heart and that made him feel awkward. Hoping his sudden erection would go unnoticed he smiled at his friend and patted Yun on the back of the hand. “Ladies, please have a wonderful night and come get me if you need anything. I think I’ll ask my pillow for some head and my nice cool sheets for a little ass now.”

Yun choked into her spoon as she was taking a sip of soup and glared up at him. “I see how it is, you need a frigged bit of cloth to get some sleep but you won’t let one of us hot blooded women keep you warm.”

Mack laughed at her obvious mock anger and smiled. “Sorry dearest Yun, but my cold black heart can only take the company of those colder than I am,” he joked and got poked in the stomach for his cheek. Yun giggled when he was surprised by the sudden attack and glared at Madam Yvette who wore a satisfied smirk.

“Off to bed you troublemaker. You’re going to give the poor girl a complex,” the older woman joked and winked at Yun who giggled harder.

Mack backed away from the older woman’s outstretched finger with his hands up in surrender. “Yes ma’am,” he said and quickly darted out of the room before something heavy could be thrown at him. Madam Yvette hated to be called “ma’am” and quickly disabused anyone who dared call her that. A metal utensil crashed into the wall next to his head as he made a hasty retreat, much to the merriment of Yun who was now laughing hard. Once he made it to the relative safety of the hall, he spotted two women poke their heads out of rooms down the corridor looking at him. Colleen shook her curly red hair and ducked back inside the room she occupied but Rina pointed a finger at him from farther down the hall.

“Don’t make me paddle you Mr. Wolf! No running in the halls except when I am chasing you with my strap-on,” Rina said with an evil glare and burst out laughing when he flipped her off.

“Good to see you, Firefly, and good night,” he said to the beautiful raven haired woman and made his way down the hall to the lift. Moans, curses, grunts, and screams of passion came from some of the rooms he passed but for the most part the place was quiet. Stepping out onto the 3rd floor was a walking nightmare of color after too many hallucinogenic drugs. Two of the girls had won last quarter’s contest and got the privilege of making the top floor any color they wanted. The walls were multicolored, often clashing with one another, and the floor had black and white tiles. The effect was jarring the first time he saw it, and truthfully was still rather jarring, but he found if he stared at the off-white ceiling he could make it through the wacky wonderland with relative ease. His favorite time was when Colleen and Helena won, they had the place painted like space and the floor was fake blue grass carpet so it was like walking across a bridge made of grass through the universe.

His room was all the way in the back of the corridor, across from Chef Ty’s, and didn’t mind the walk as he got to see most of his friends and acquaintances as he went down the long hall. It was an unwritten rule that if you kept your door open anyone could pop in and talk or look in on you. A few of the girls were very private but the vast majority kept their door open unless they were sleeping or had company over, even then sometimes they left the door open. He made sure to stop in at any of the open doors and say a quick word of hello or ask how their day went. He was honest with himself and knew he enjoyed the various states of undress he found the women in when he popped in but made sure nothing came of it.

Eventually, he reached his room and put in his ten digit code to unlock the door. The door slid to the side and a blast of cold air swept across his face. Smiling he entered his apartment and hit the light panel on the wall to light his spartan one room apartment. All his clothes fit into the top two drawers of the wide dresser and his good clothes hung on the bathroom door. Moving over to the table with his terminal on top of it, he sat down in the chair and slowly removed his shoes. The aching in his feet started as soon as he let them free of their leathery confines and his calves began to protest as well. He’d been on his feet most of the day and wasn’t surprised his feet and legs were sore. After undressing, he checked his clothes and found a spot of blood on his collar. He was still royally pissed he couldn’t have beat the guy to a pulp for messing with someone under his care. Putting the jacket near the front door for washing later, he went to the bathroom and finished preparing for bed.

The tiny room had one toilet, the shower, sink, and large mirror but was more than enough for him. Some of the girls complained about the small bathrooms but they could use the “special” rooms on the 2nd floor with permission if they wanted to take a long bath as long as the room wasn’t taken. He realized he was staring in the mirror blearily with his toothbrush in his hand after a few moment and finished his ritual. Mack’s hair was just on the edge of needing a trim to keep it a short length and his goatee was getting a little scruffy around the edges. As always his eyes were drawn to the long white scar on the right side of his face going from his jaw to his temple and unpleasant thoughts filled his mind as he remembered the accident that took his fiancee from him. Shaking off the unpleasant memories he finished brushing his teeth, turned off the light, tucked his gun under the bed, and crawled naked into bed. He was asleep before he could truly appreciate the cold sheets and soft pillow.

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