Title: Five by Five
Author's Note: This is a Stephanie Plum Fic, based on the novels by Janet Evanovich (that's my disclaimer). It takes place after Seven Up, Hard Eight does not exist in my world.
Five by Five
A Stephanie Plum Novel
Stephanie Plum, bounty-hunting badass, was crouched on the floor of her apartment attempting to coax her hamster out from underneath her couch. “Rex!” she whined, “Come on! I have to get Grandma Mazur to Stiva’s for the nine o’clock viewing. Please come out?”
Rex just twitched his whiskered nose at her and blinked his beady black eyes. She sighed deeply and got to her feet. “Fine,” she muttered and headed to the bathroom to get ready. She was feeling very much neglected. Rex wasn’t supposed to run away from her, he was like her baby, he was supposed to love her.
But right now he was acting like the men in her life. She sighed, okay, so she was being unfair. Ranger had been perfectly willing to get down and dirty just last month, but she had felt guilty and persuaded him to spend their “one night alone” drinking coffee and eating Pino’s pizza, which Ranger protested all the way through. His body was apparently a temple, and she was all ready to agree and worship him for the god of a man he was, but she wouldn’t give up her pizza and chocolate for him.
You may wonder what on earth she had had to be guilty about. She had a hot, young guy with a tight ass wanting to jump into bed with her, but there was that small factor…Okay, it was a pretty big factor really. What was it you may ask? Well, who was it really… Two words.
Joe Morelli worked vice. He was lean, primal, and unavoidably sensual. Stephanie had lost her virginity to him behind the cannoli counter at the Tasty Pastry when she was sixteen, and before that, as an innocent six-year old, had followed the eight-year old Morelli into his father’s garage to play train. And, more recently, he’d been her fiancée.
But that was over. They had broken up. He was probably seducing Terry Gilman in the back of his car by now. She snorted and grabbed a deep burgundy skirt and matching sweater set from her closet and threw them on, then she grabbed a black scarf and tied back her unruly mane of brown hair. Carefully she gunked on a lot of make-up, hoping to boost her now flagging spirits, but it wasn’t working.
She walked back into the main room of her apartment and scooped Rex off the carpet before he could scurry back under the couch. Plunking him in his cage on the kitchen counter and peeling him a few grapes. Then she took her gun from the cookie jar and stuffed it in her purse alongside her pepper spray and stun gun.
She had to be prepared, the newest FTA was giving her trouble, maybe even a little more than usual. Johnny Carlisle had been arresting on carrying charges and didn’t show up for his court appearance. Vinnie had given the case to her because he considered it “easy”. Hah. So far he had blown up her rented Nova, which had happened to her too many times to recall without painful feelings in her stomach, and she was back to driving the Buick.
Nothing ever happened to the Buick.
Please leave feedback, those of you who decided to read this fic. Thanks, bye!
[ edited 2 time(s), last at 20-Oct-2002 1:56:09 PM ]
posted on 20-Oct-2002 1:54:46 PM by dreamangel
She pulled the Buick onto the curb in front of her parent’s house. As she ascended the front path, the front door was open to reveal her mother, arms crossed, and her grandmother in the same position behind her. Stephanie gave a small smile, it had been that way since as far back as she could remember.
“You look nice,” her mother complimented as she walked in the door.
“Thank you.” She gave her a quick peck on the cheek and shut the door behind her. Grandma Mazur was eyeing her outfit appreciatively.
“Maybe I should get me a skirt like that, show off my legs.” Her grandmother hauled up her long floral dress, displaying her spindly white legs and knobby knees. Stephanie gave her a weak smile, and her mother rolled her eyes.
“I bet they’d look great on you Grandma,” she said unconvincingly.
“Don’t encourage her, Stephanie. It’s bad enough she carries that gun around, I don’t need her thinking she’s a teenager again,” her mother scolded.
Grandma Mazur scowled at her daughter. “At least I still got my figure. Come on Stephanie, don’t want to be late, I hear Stiva’s got Maury Martinez laid out real nice, can’t even see where his wife stabbed him in the neck. Least that’s what Bessy says, but you can’t always trust Bessy, not since her husband left her.” Grandma Mazur shook her head. “Damn shame that was, but we all warned her about that Bobby Brown, man had no brain, just a big dick.”
She hid a grin as her mother gasped, scandalized. “We should probably get going now. Bye Mom.”
“You’ll come back for dessert?” her mother asked anxiously, “I made chocolate pudding.”
Chocolate pudding…She hadn’t had homemade chocolate pudding for months. She should definitely try some, just to make sure it was still as good as she remembered… “I’ll come,” she told her mother.
She could tell her mother was still slightly put out, probably because she hadn’t made it to dinner. In the burbs of Trenton, New Jersey, dinner was served at six o’clock on the dot, homes were immaculate, and everyone was always up for company. Especially her mother, who came second only to Mrs. Morelli in the housewife department.
She followed Grandma Mazur out the door and waved good-bye to her mother before pulling away from the curb. “Grandma what are you doing?” she asked, as her grandmother attempted to wriggle out of her dress.
“Got some new red bike pants, they’re a pip of a fit, but your mother wouldn’t let me wear them out of the house. Woman’s a wet rag.” She shook her curly, steel gray head. “I says to her; How am I supposed to get a fellow when you won’t let me show off my attributes? And she says I shouldn’t even want a fellow. Can you imagine? Woman’s got needs after all…”
Stephanie sighed and let her grandmother do whatever she wanted. Her mother would spend tomorrow diverting callers, but no more than usual. They got out of the Buick and walked sedately to the front door of the funeral home. Constantine Stiva met them at the door, and he turned a little bit paler than his usual chalk complexion.
“Edna,” he said pleasantly. Her grandmother just batted her eyelashes flirtatiously.
“We’re here for the Martinez viewing,” Stephanie told him.
“Ah, yes, Mr. Martinez is in the Green Room.” And then he turned to greet the next arrivals, giving Stephanie one last warning glance.
“The Green Room,” her grandmother said disdainfully, “You remember when I told you I don’t want to be laid out in the Green Room?”
“Yes, Grandma, I remember.”
“Well, don’t forget it, awful lighting…What is she crying for?” Grandma Mazur demanded. She put her hands on her bony hips and glared at a wailing woman in black. “She’s the one that offed him, she doesn’t have any right to cry about it now.”
And with that she marched over to the widowed Mrs. Martinez, her red pants blazing, and proceeded to chew her out. Stephanie sighed, knowing she was going to have to interrupt it, knowing that she should have attempted to prevent it, but with Grandma Mazur, these things were inevitable.
They were going to be banned from Stiva’s one of these days.