Caution: This Sex Story contains strong sexual content, including Romantic, Gay, Humor,
Desc: Sex Story: Chapter 1 - Two men who appear to be on the opposite sides of the law are thrown together when a cop comes looking for his cousin's shooter. If you like action and romance, you will enjoy reading this.
The last thing he expected was to be woken up by a phone call at two in the morning. He had just been talking to Rickie the day before. He was so excited about his new job at the video store. Now someone had shot him.
At the hospital, his aunt and uncle came down the hall to meet him when he arrived. There were three uniformed cops waiting nearby.
"We haven't heard anything yet, Dino," his uncle said, giving him a brief hug after his aunt had kissed his cheek. "Since you're on the force, maybe you can find out something."
"I'll see what I can do, Uncle Luigi."
"The doctor hasn't told us anything about Rickie's condition," his aunt shook her head.
"I'm sure they will as soon as they can," Dino told her.
He and Rickie had been close growing up. They were only a year apart in age. Luigi was his fathers' younger brother. They had started a construction company out in LA and done very well for themselves.
A patrolman from the 34th division was making his way over to Dino now, having recognized him.
"Detective D'angelo," he said, shaking his hand. "Im Larry Edwin. Remember me?"
Dino was somewhat of a legend because he had made detective at a very young age.
"Yes, hi Larry," Dino ran a hand though his long black hair. He moved the man a little bit down the hall. "What in the hell happened to my cousin?"
"Rickie D'angelo is your cousin? Shit, sorry, I didn't make the connection right away." The officer looked apologetic.
"Ya, well there are a lot of D'angelos' in LA"
"Im sorry man. Seems like some fool ran into the video store and just started shooting. We have the suspect in custody. He's not talking."
"What about the owner of the video store?" Dino glanced over his shoulder at his aunt and uncle.
"That's just it," Larry shook his head. "He's disappeared in thin air."
"Which means he's probably involved," Dino told him. "Who is it? What's his name?"
"Ah," he checked his notebook. "A guy by the name of Vincent Delino."
"Umm," Dino said. "Sounds familiar. I've heard that name before. Was Rickie able to say anything?"
"Nothing yet," the officer snapped shut his notebook and gave Dino a perplexed look. "It wasn't a robbery because the suspect had nothing on him when we nabbed him. Seems like shooting your cousin was his main objective. Rickie have any enemies?"
"Not that I know of. He's never been in trouble," Dino shook his head. "I don't think the suspect was after Rickie."
It was almost dawn before they heard anything. Rickie was going to recover fully from his gunshot wound but it had been "touch and go" there for awhile. Dino left his aunt and uncle with a promise to check in on Rickie later that day.
Three hours later, he stood in Captain Howard's office at the 32nd precinct, downtown LA.
"Come on Captain, its as clear as the nose on your face. Vincent Delino is Gambini's Godson and the shooter is shitting bricks. His mouth is so sealed up, you'd need a crowbar to pry it open. What does that tell you?"
"And how do you know that?" The captain lifted an eyebrow.
"I..." Dino hesitated and then muttered, "happened to stop by. I mean I was in the neighborhood of the 23rd and..." Dino paused.
"Dino, you have no business going down there and interrogating THEIR suspect! Let them handle it and besides..." Captain Blackburn settled back in his seat and opened a file on his desk, "if this is mob related, then it's a New York police matter. Out of our jurisdiction."
Dino sighed. "Captain. Im sure Delino ran back to New York for protection. I know for a fact the shooting was not about robbery and so do you! What was Delino trying to cover up? Maybe it was a way to launder money from drugs. Maybe it..."
"Maybe... maybe. Listen, Im sorry about your cousin but let New York deal with the Gambini family and let the 23rd do their own investigation. Just be grateful Rickie survived and that the Gambini family is in New York. You are not going to New York City to find Delino and that's final."
Dino sighed. Fine, he thought but he wasn't just going to sit on his laurels either, not when Rickie was lying in a hospital bed. "You know, Captain..." Dino leaned on his palms across the desk.
Blackburn groaned. "Why are you still here?"
"You're right," Dino repeated.
The captain eyed him. "But?"
"No buts. I think I should take a break and let the NYPD and the 23rd handle things."
The captain looked skeptical. "And?"
"Those few weeks I have coming... you know the four weeks... I think I'll take them," Dino stood up straight.
"All Four, NOW?" The captain stood up too, putting his hands on his hips.
Dino gave him an appealing look and said, "Id be out of the way."
The captain lifted an eyebrow. "Out of the way, where?"
"I don't know," Dino mused.
Finally the captain agreed. When Dino was half way down the hall, he heard Blackburn call out, "Dino, you are on your own in New York!"
Two days later, Dino was in New York. He had rented a cheap room downtown called the "Golden Arms." Not exactly a dive but rather a "dive with clean sheets and character." Didn't matter anyway, it was just a place to sleep. He didn't know how long he would have to stick around. Interrogating the shooter back home hadn't got him anywhere. He was sure that punk had been hired by the mob but by whom and for what reason, he wasn't sure. He knew that Delino must be running scared and who better to run to, but Gambini.
After checking into the hotel, he called his aunt. She told him that Rickie was sitting up and would soon be on solid foods. The doctors expected him to go home the following week. Dino told her to say hello for him and hung up. At least he was going to be all right.
Tonight, even though he would have preferred to go to the Village and check out the hot guys at the bars, he was attending the New York Symphony. He read in "The Times" that the Gambini family had season tickets and attended every performance. They even had their own private box. After the symphony, there was going to be a fundraiser for the orchestra, hosted by Sidney Gambini at the Plaza Hotel.
He had to go to one of those rental places and get himself a Tux. He also reserved a seat at the symphony. The tickets were very expensive and he wasn't a big fan of that style of music in the first place; but if it got him answers then it was worth every cent.
The man at the Tux Rental shop stood beside Dino D'angelo and adjusted the waist band of his trousers. He couldn't help admiring how handsome he was. He was six foot four, with broad shoulders and chest and a hard well toned body. He looked incredible in the black tux with the white ruffled shirt. His long back hair was tied back with a black velvet ribbon and he had an extremely handsome face.
After the tailor had finished, Dino asked him the price of the rental. His jaw dropped when he told him. He actually winced with pain when he signed the credit card receipt.
He jumped into his rental car, a silver blue PT Cruiser and drove the streets of New York City as if he had never left them. He had seriously considered putting in for a transfer and coming back to New York. New York was in his blood. He had been born here. New York was down and dirty like he was. He had made friends on the L.A.P.D but no one he couldn't bare to leave. He was used to be alone. He worked alone, and he lived alone. His last romantic involvement was over. He had decided that a relationship was too much work. He was resigned to being alone.
After finding a parking space, Dino gave his ticket to the usher at the symphony and walked into the hall. It was just beginning to fill up. He immediately looked above him and there was Gambini with his wife and their teenage daughter sitting in their reserved box. He would know him anywhere. His picture was always in the paper. He was a very busy mobster, sitting on city boards and committees in order to pass himself off as a legitimate businessman. Dino was sure there were bodyguards around somewhere but they wouldn't do anything to him in a public place. It was time to introduce himself.
Joey Costa stood in the shadows beside another man they called "Mannie the Iron Fist." He saw the tall good looking man stride into the box and march right up to Gambini. Who ever he was, he had balls, Joey thought. It wasn't just anyone who would walk right up to Sidney Gambini unless they had a death wish.
Cautiously, Joey and Mannie moved closer to Gambini who sat beside his wife and daughter.
"Mr. Gambini," the dark haired man was saying now, bending forward with a faint smile on his face, "allow me to introduce myself," he extended a hand. "My name is Dino D'angelo. I believe we have a mutual acquaintance."
"Oh?" Gambini eyed him with suspicion. "And who would that be?"
His wife and daughter regarded Dino with interest. Dino nodded at them in turn. "Good evening, ladies. I'm sorry to disturb you. This won't take but a minute."
They both smiled back.
"Your Godson," Dino returned his attention to Sidney Gambini, "Vincent Delino. I believe he has something to do with getting a member of my family shot in Los Angeles recently."
Gambini cleared his throat and pulled at his tie. "Who is this man?" He looked around nervously as Joey and Mannie stepped forward into the light.
"Oh, hello boys," Dino smiled at them both sweetly then turned to Gambini again, "Ah, how nice. You brought your errand boys. Do you have to wind them up or do they run on batteries?"
"Now, back to the topic at hand. I want to know where Delino is and..."
"Boys, " Gambini growled, turning to look at the two men standing at his shoulder. "I believe my conversation with this gentleman is about to end."
The two ladies looked at little frightened.
"Ah, that's too bad. Im so disappointed," Dino shook his dark head slowly. " and just when we were really getting to know each other. "
Gambini sighed in frustration. "I don't know any Vincent Delino... and I don't appreciate your brand of humor so if you... Mr... ah..."
"Sargent," Dino's smile faded, "Its Sargent D'angelo."
Just then Joey moved forward to put a hand on his forearm.
Dino gave him a cool smile.
"I think," Joey said, "Mr. Gambini would like you to leave."
"Ah," Dino backed up, his eyes on Joey's extended hand. "I wouldn't do that if I were you. I don't like people touching me, unless I give them a personal invitation."
Joey's eyes widened and then he slowly let his eyes trail over him. He smiled at him and let his hand drop to his side. "And ah... how does one go about getting invited?" He drawled.
Dino lifted an eyebrow, a little surprised that this man would flirt with him right out in the open like that. "It's a very exclusive list," he replied, thinking it was too bad a good looking young guy like that was mixed up with the likes of Gambini.
Joey sighed. "I see. Too bad."
"Get him out of here boys," Gambini hissed. "NOW!"
Dino threw up his hands with a laugh and said, "Well, I see I've overstayed my welcome. No need for an escort. Don't worry though we will have other opportunities to bond," he glanced at Gambini then bowed slightly to his wife and daughter. "Enjoy the concert ladies."
His daughter giggled a little. "He's a doll," she whispered.
Gambini gave his daughter an impatient look, then he eyed Dino. "I don't think we will have other opportunities, Sargent."
Dino sobered as he gave Gambini a look over his shoulder. "I know Delino ran back here to you for protection and I also know that he's involved somehow with that shooting. That means we WILL see each other again."
"I don't even know who you're talking about," Gambini replied stiffly. "Now, if you don't mind, the curtain is about to rise."
"Don't let me hold you up any longer, no pun intended," he smiled and left the box.
Gambini looked at Joey. "Find out what precinct he works for and don't let him out of your sight," he said. "I want to know his every move."
Joey nodded, thinking what a pleasure that would be. He was damn easy to look at. Joey watched as he took his seat directly below them. A cop from LA, a smart one too. He suspected Delino had been involved in something back in Los Angeles. Recently, he had come running to Gambini like a scared rabbit in the middle of the night. Now he knew why. It was too bad he couldn't help this cop but he would just have to lay back and let things play out.
Joey Costa was twenty years old and he had came to work for one of New York's most infamous mobsters almost by accident. Sometimes he feared he wouldn't make it out of this job alive. He had just barely joined the police force when he had been asked to "disappear". It was highly unusual. He didn't have the training. He didn't have the gold shield. Since Gambinni kept files on almost all the cops in New York, they needed a novice, a cop that Gambini couldn't possibly recognize. Joey hadn't been on the force long enough for the Gambini family to know about him. So they had picked him out of a list of new patrolmen, just like that. If he succeeded, he was on a fast track to making detective, if he failed... well... he was dead. He couldn't tell anyone who he really was. Even if he could get the goods on Gambinni, it was doubtful he would stay alive long enough to testify. He kept hoping they would pull him out but it would be a year on Sunday and he was still here. He hadn't seen his parents or his friends since he had started this job. And then when he met someone, like this gorgeous cop for example, it made it even harder. He couldn't tell this guy he was undercover even though he knew he wouldn't rat him out. Those were the rules. You told no one. In fact, there were only two people who knew, his Captain and an FBI agent. That was it.
This cop was gorgeous but he would never be interested in him. No cop would become involved with a mobster unless he was undercover. When you did this job, your real life was on hold, no matter who crossed your path.
When the concert ended, Gambini reached out and grabbed his arm. "Remember what I told you Joey. Follow him into the can if you have to but don't let that cop out of your sight."
Joey nodded. "What did you say his last name was, boss?"
"D'angelo, Sargent D'angelo," he said.
Joey nodded, his eyes widening a little. He knew him. "Don't worry, boss. I got it under control," Joey said, ducking out of the box to make his way down stairs.
Dino D'angelo was a legend, a Native New Yorker who worked as an undercover street cop for the L.A.P.D. Everyone knew who D'angelo was. He had heard about some of his cases at the academy. So that was THE Dino D'angelo. He knew he was young but he had no idea how good looking he was.
Joey watched the people as they made their way down the huge spiral staircase towards the exits. He had to be coming down this way sometime. He couldn't of missed him. He waited. Joey swore under his breath. Where in the fuck did he go? When no one else came down the stairs, he realized that he had given him the slip. You bugger, he muttered, making his way out to the parking lot. He couldn't lose that cop. Gambini would be livid if D'angelo showed up at the plaza without him.
Joey ran over to his car and turned off the alarm. He jumped into the driver's seat and jammed his key in the ignition. He was just about to careen out of the parking lot when a blue PT cruiser pulled right in front of him, narrowly missing his bumper.
Poking his head out of the window, Dino D'angelo grinned at him, "Looking for me?"
Joey swore under his breath. "No... I... hey, Gambini said for me to keep an eye on you and that's what Im going do so... so, just get going."
"Two eyes are better then one kid," Dino told him, "and actually with me you just might need four, two in the back of your head. See Ya," He added.
Joey was just about to put his foot on the gas when he looked up to see a 47 special staring right at him.
"Bye," he said sweetly and squeezed off two bullets, both into his front tire. It instantly deflated down to the rim.
As Joey let out a howl of rage and punched the steering wheel, Dino pulled out of the parking lot with his middle finger extended out the driver's window.
Joey sat back in his seat and then after a few seconds, he started to laugh. Great. Not only did he finally get to meet the hero cop that he'd heard so much about, he got to be his adversary. The last thing he needed was to go up against Dino D'angelo, super cop.
He got on his cell and called one of Gambini's boys. "Joey Carosa here, I'm in the parking lot, west side of the New York Symphony, get someone over here to take me to the Plaza Hotel pronto. And bring someone to fix my tire."
He hung up and got out of his car. Five minutes later, Carlos picked him up. "What happened to your tire?" He said in his New Jersey Italian voice. "What cha doing out here in the parking lot?"
"Im supposed to be following this nosy cop from LA and the bastard blew out my tire."
Carlos laughed. "Why didn't you pop him?"
Joey grinned. "The boss wouldn't have liked that. Too public and he's a cop, Carlos. You want the entire LAPD on our backs?"
"What's he doing here... this copper from the Coast?"
"Looking for Vinnie."
Carlos nodded as he pulled up in front of the Plaza. "See ya, Joe," He called out and drove off as Joey rushed into the lobby of the Hotel. Speeches were already on the way. Joey craned his neck. Where in the hell was that cop?
Dino saw the guy Gambini had following him standing near the entrance now. He was looking around frantically. Dino laughed a little, folding his arms and trying to concentrate on what some big shot was saying about the need to fund the arts. Gambini sat up front near the podium looking like a respectable patron of the Arts.
Joey moved through the crowd, still looking.
Dino lifted his hand and waved at him.
Joey snarled and then pushed forward but when he got to where Dino had been standing, he was gone. He was playing with him. Joey stood still for a moment, looking around. Then he saw him further back, standing near a woman with a big hat. Again he waved at him, giving him a big grin.
Dino waited then ducked behind a big wide shouldered man near the exit. He was laughing. The ceremony was so boring. He might as well have some fun. Besides, he hated being followed.
Joey was out of breath now, rushing through the crowd, searching for Dino D'angelo. He finally stopped, and leaned against the wall just outside the entrance in the hallway to catch his breath.
Suddenly he felt a tap on his shoulder. Startled, he turned around with a gasp.
Dino D'angelo was standing right in front of him, his head tilted, grinning at him.
"Jesus Christ," Joey snapped. "You scared the living shit out of me. You'll get yourself killed doing that."
"You're a very nervous fellow," he commented dryly. "I believe there is something you can take for that."
Joey scowled at him. "Very cleaver. Not very nice what you did to my tire."
Dino folded his arms across his chest and leaned into the wall. "I know. I can be pretty nasty sometimes. Just stop following me and I will be a good boy, promise. Scouts Honor."
Joey threw his head back and laughed. "I don't believe you were ever in the boy scouts."
He had a nice laugh, Dino thought. In fact, he was one hell of a good looking guy. If he hadn't of worked for Gambini, he might have allowed himself to get distracted. But he was a thug, out of his range of possible distractions.
"Not nice," Dino clicked his tongue at him. "Now, lets make a little deal, you and I," Dino met his eyes.
With eyes like that, Joey would have promised him anything but then he wasn't free to react to those eyes. "Umm... forgive me for being cautious. What little deal?"
"You don't follow me anymore and I don't shoot at your tires."
"Sounds good except there is one tiny problem," Joey replied softly.
"And that would be?" Dino sighed, giving him a half smile.
"My boss gave me an assignment and Im afraid, you're it."
"Aren't you the fortunate one," Dino told him without a smile. "Well, all deals are off. Are you planning on following me everywhere?"
"Even into the can," Joey nodded.
"Okay, that should be exciting," Dino met his eyes. "What about later on, when I go back to my hotel room?"
"I'll stay outside."
"Umm. Ok but you won't mind if I take off on my own sometime?"
"Yes, I will mind. Look, your best bet is to go home, Cop. There is nothing for you here," Joey told him sternly. "You could get hurt here."
"Im touched by your concern for my welfare, but Im a big boy and I can take care of myself."
Joey smiled, running his eyes over him. "You are a big boy, but I might as well stick around in case you need me. Besides, the view is phenomenal."
Dino nodded slowly and then winked at him. "Be still my heart." He gave him that smile and then walked back towards the lobby.
Joey wanted to laugh but instead he pointed at the door, "Hey, the exit is that way, cop."
"Yes I know," Dino replied, "but I just wanted to give you a view from the back."
Joey couldn't help but laugh as he disappeared into the lobby. Then he sobered. He wasn't going away. He sighed, closing his eyes. Suddenly he felt lonely. He never realized how alone he felt until he had set eyes on Dino D'angelo. How he would have liked to say, "Im a cop like you. Let's get together, have a glass of wine, talk about police work and then make love... or make love first, talk later." He was beautiful and he had this smile that did crazy things to his heart. He was a smart ass and he was cocky but it was attractive... very attractive, sexy. He had to keep his head.
D'angelo was close by, clapping to the end of some speech Joey knew he cared nothing about. He came to stand behind him. He knew he was aware of his presence.
After a few minutes, he heard Dino say in a hushed voice, "If someone grabs my ass, I will know its you."
"Could be the old lady to your left," Joey grinned.
"Naw," he replied. "She tried already."
Joey's eyes widened and he began to laugh.
"Ah, you're laughing at my jokes. Be careful, you might find yourself completely in my power," he said in that deep smooth voice.
Joey moved closer to him. "No chance of that. Don't worry, my hands are on the wheel. You gave me the slip once, it won't happen again."
Dino gave him a ferocious look then grinned at him. "You take your work way too seriously. Ah... shus... here's your boss. Im sure his words will be an inspiration to organized crime everywhere."
"My boss is a..." Joey began.
"Save it," Dino remarked. "I've heard it all."
"So, your cousin... what happened exactly?" Joey asked him.
Dino met his eyes. "Do you really care?"
"Yes. Tell me."
"He was working in a video store owned by Gambini's godson and some guy came in and started shooting."
"Nothing was taken."
"Psycho?" Joey suggested.
"Maybe, except that he is not talking, scared to death."
"What makes you think that Vincent Delino had anything to do with it? Maybe your cousin put his hands in some one else's cookie jar."
Dino shook his dark head. "Delino ran, which makes me think that not only was he involved but that he was the target."
Joey nodded but said nothing. It made sense. He had heard a great deal about Gambini's godson. He was greedy and he thought that he was protected because of his relationship with Gambini. Joey knew that Sidney Gambini was fed up with Vincent because they had a hell of a fight the other night when he showed up. Joey wasn't sure who ordered the hit but Vinnie had stepped on some ones toes.
"You got quiet all of a sudden," Dino shot him a look. "Bored with my conversation already? Umm... doesn't make for a good marriage. What are we going to do when we get tired of the sex?"
Joey's eyes widened a little, then he shook his head with a laugh. "You are wild! Are you always such a clown?"
"Clown?" Dino echoed. "I completely object to that. Oh, listen... listen, here comes the donation."
"... that's why the Gambini foundation is donating $500,000 dollars to the New York symphony orchestra!" Gambini shouted into the mike, holding up the check. His wife and daughter stepped up beside him, hugging him.
"Isn't that the sweetest thing you ever saw?" Dino cocked his head at Joey. "Pocket change compared to how much he made off the Colombian drug trade last year. And here are the good citizens of my city applauding the guy who keeps the junkies strung out of coke and helps them commit crimes so they can pay the dealers... oh ya, lets not mention the kids who die from AIDS infected needles and... the one hundred thousand other social problems he gets rich from."
The bitterness in his voice was unmistakable. Joey wanted to tell him that he too would like to see Gambini behind bars but of course he couldn't. So he said, "The man pays my salary."
"Umm," Dino commented. "You don't have to see the end result, do you Joey? You just reap the rewards. How many people have you leaned on... or killed to protect this criminal who stands up there at the podium being applauded by the mayor?"
Joey swallowed. He had had to do a lot of things but not for the reasons Dino thought. But thankfully, Gambini hadn't asked him to kill anyone. He had been present during tortures and interrogations. He had seen people die. He knew what kind of a man Gambini was. And it was always others who got their hands dirty. He gave the orders, others carried them out. Joey knew that until Gambini dirtied his own hands, he'd be stuck, leading this double life.
"I don't want to talk about my job," Joey sneered at him. "You have no right to judge me. I do what I do. It's a job."
Dino nodded and looked away.
Joey sighed inwardly. Dino D'angelo probably hated him now but it was better this way. D'angelo was smart and that worried Joey, it worried him a lot.
As Gambini moved off the stage, Dino moved forward.
"Hey," Joey said, grabbing his arm, "Where do you think you're going?"
Dino yanked his arm away, giving Joey a warning look. "To toast the generous benefactor, of course. Why don't you come along with me?" Dino mocked. "Id be lost without you."
Joey rolled his eyes and followed him. "Gambini won't like you breathing down his neck."
Dino threw him a look over one shoulder. "Ask me if I give a fuck."
Joey shook his head as they neared the crowd that had gathered around the flowing champagne fountain. "I don't believe I'll bother."
Joey moved in closer too, their shoulders touched. The mayor was making a toast to Gambini, the press was taking pictures. A waiter passed around a tray of champagne glasses and Dino took one off the tray. Joey waved him away. He didn't like champagne.
Dino stepped forward before Joey could prevent him. "Mr. Mayor," he called out, lifting his glass. Everyone looked at the tall good looking young man with his glass in the air.
Joey sucked in some air. Gambini had pasted a smile on his face but his eyes went to Joey with a question. Joey shrugged some.
"I would like to toast Senior Gambini also and thank him for his generous donation to the Arts."
"Here here..." was heard throughout the crowd and some more applause.
"I believe we should take this opportunity to toast some of Sidney Gambini's other contributions to society at the same time."
The crowd grew quiet. Gambini nodded at Joey who moved forward and withdrew his revolver. He pressed it discretely against Dino D'angelo's thigh.
"Don't say anything that is in your nature to say, D'angelo. It would be unwise," Joey whispered against his ear, still smiling.
"Umm... hardware," Dino mouthed to him. "I didn't know you cared. Besides, to shoot me here would be oh so messy... but not to worry..."
The crowd waited.
Dino raised his glass higher. "The many social problems we face today in this country, well... Senior Gambini's contribution to those causes have been outstanding and may I say unique. His sense of responsibility when it comes to drugs and crime and indeed homicide... is unsurpassed. It just goes to show how powerful people can do more then their fair share in this world. The Italian community thanks you for building their reputation. And one day soon, I hope to see a memorial in your name."
Joey withdrew the gun, placed it back in his waistband. The crowd was applauding again. Gambini was red in the face but was nodding his gratitude.
"Do you know how much your life is worth right about now?" Joey asked Dino as people began to circulate.
"Ah... probably a cool million. Isn't that what a hit on a cop would cost today?" He lifted an eyebrow.
"You can joke," Joey met his eyes. "Damn, you got balls."
Dino laughed. "I should hope so."
Joey blushed a little. "You know what I mean."
"I do, yes. Never saw a mobster blush before."
Joey shook his head and followed him. "Tell me you are going back to Los Angeles now?"
"Im going back to Los Angeles now," he echoed.
"Yes. Im lying. Im on vacation," Dino told him. "And Im all dressed up with no place to go. So, rather then wasting this tux on the stoned desk clerk at my hotel, maybe I'll go dancing."
"Dancing?????" Joey cried.
"Ya, dancing. I hear there's a great club nearby called, "The Sanddune. Jazz is my favorite."
"Dino," Joey warned. "You're going to get yourself killed if you don't stop following Gambini. The Sanddune belongs to him."
"Is it a private club?" He asked softly.
"No but... Dino..." Joey said hotly, following him out the door.
"Why don't you come in my car?" Dino asked him innocently. "I assume you don't have yours."
"I have another. Don't concern yourself, sweetheart."
"Just trying to be nice. So, see you later," he replied, heading out to the parking lot.
Joey watched him go and then began to head to his own car when Mannie stepped out in front of him. "Hey, what's happening? The boss is pissed," he barked.
"Look, tell him Im on it, ok? No worries. He's heading to the Sanddune."
"Well keep him away from the boss," Mannie growled.
"How? You want me to shoot him?" Joey leered at him.
"No. The boss wants to know what you know."
"He's a cop from LA I don't know much more then that. His cousin got shot in Vinnie's video store. He wants answers. He wants Vinnie."
"Is he acting alone or with the LAPD?"
"I think he's on his own, can't be sure."
"Find out, stay close to him."
"I can't get much closer, Mannie. And shit, I got to go. He's probably at the Club already. Tell the boss not to worry. He can't do much damage at the Club. I'll be on him."
"Boss wants you on him twenty four, seven. You got it?"
"I won't leave his side."
"Go," Mannie barked.
Joey parked at the Sanddune and put on his short black leather jacket and tie. The Sanddune required formal dress so he always kept a tie in his glove compartment. Sidney conducted a lot of his business at the Club. He had been present during some of it. There were high class escorts working out of the Club but it was oh so discrete. One of them named Shirley was making a play for his cop friend when he walked in.
He wasn't buying into it so she pouted and went on to the next potential score.
Joey pulled up a chair at the table where Dino sat. Dino looked up from the glass in front of him and lifted a hand. "Hey, I missed you. What took you so long? I had more then enough time to ask Sidney Gambini to marry me."
"Missed you too," Joey scowled. A waiter came over and put a coke down in front of Joey. Joey thanked him.
Dino watched him take a sip of the coke.
"You know," Joey said, slamming down his glass, "You are causing me a shit load of trouble."
"Ya, really. Im getting mad now."
"Oh no," Dino gave him a mocking look of fear. "What happens then?"
Joey grinned and shook his curly dark head. "You don't want to see me angry. What do you plan to accomplish by following Gambini around like this?"
Dino shrugged. "Maybe Im not following Gambini."
Joey narrowed his eyes as Dino lifted his glass.
"What do you hope to accomplish following me around like this?"
"I told you, its my job," Joey replied, draining his glass.
There was silence then Dino got to his feet. Joey got to feet. Dino sat down again and then Joey swore. "Stop fucking around with me," he snapped.
Dino leaned back in his chair, laughing. "Im sorry, I couldn't resist. Wanna dance?" he joked.
"No, I don't want to dance!" Joey threw back at him, hiding a smile. He sat down again.
Dino was looking over at Gambini's table then suddenly he got up and crossed the room.
"Oh shit, here we go," Joey groaned and followed him.
"Mr. Gambini," Dino said loudly, "remember me?"
"Say the word Sir," Joey interjected, "and I'll have him thrown out of here."
Dino raised his eyebrows at Joey. "And all along I thought you liked me." He turned back to Gambini. "You know as much as I appreciate you finding me a new friend and all, Im perfectly capable of finding my own friends. I even have a few of them back home that Id like to see if you would just tell me where Vincent is."
Joey moved toward Dino. "I think Mr. Gambini..."
Dino put a hand up to Joey and at the same time, he said, "Now, Mr. Gambini, you can call off your guard dog now. I didn't come here for you Sid, old buddy, I came to talk to Vinnie. Now if you could just tell Vinnie that Id like a few minutes of his time, Id have a little chat with him and then go home like a good little boy. That way, you could loan your boy here out to some nursing home or something."
"I told you officer, I don't have any idea who you're talking about." Gambini nodded at Joey.
Joey moved forward. He reached out for Dino's arm. Dino reached back, putting one hand on his throat, choking off his air and forcing him to his knees. "Reach for the gun, buddy. Reach for it," Dino told him, tightening the squeeze he had on his throat.
Mannie and two others moved in, withdrawing their weapons. People in the Club grew quiet. The musicians stopped playing.
Dino reached his hand quickly into Joey's belt and pulled out his gun. He flashed it around, making sure everyone who needed to, saw it. The two men froze as Dino pointed it at Joey's temple. "Now, make a move and he gets it. I promise you," Dino told them.
Gambini held up his hand, uttering a soft laugh. "There's no need for that. Put the gun down, officer. No one is threatening anyone here. Gentleman, put your guns away."
The two men put their guns back in their jackets. Dino lowered the gun he held to his side and released the hold he had on Joey. Joey fell to the floor, gasping.
"Now you listen to me, Gambini," Dino glared at him. "I know Vincent came to you after the shooting. I only want to talk to him if he's still alive. I swear to you Im not leaving this city until I find out why my cousin got shot."
"Then you may well be leaving in a box," Gambini met his eyes.
Joey got up off the floor now, rubbing his throat. Hell, he was strong. He'd almost killed him with one hand. He didn't remember learning that move in the Academy.
"Well then so be it," Dino replied. He threw Joey's gun on the floor and it slide under the table and then he walked out.
Gambini swore loudly. "Play," he yelled to the jazz quartet on stage. "Drinks on the house, no problems ladies and gentlemen, its all over... all over," he called out and the music began to play.
"Joey," he said, motioning to him. "Are you alright, kid?" He slapped Joey on the back. Joey nodded. "Have a drink."
"No, Im fine," Joey cleared his throat, rubbing his throat.
"Listen to me, if you want me to put Mannie on it... I..."
"No, no. It's fine. I will watch him, boss," Joey insisted.
"Go then. Call me the minute he makes any move to come near the house. Is that clear?"