Hazel in Pool room….(After She gets to Memphis- Several chapters skipped)
The juke box was silent and the only sound in the room was a June bug bouncing off the colored light panels of the juke box. Everyone was looking back and forth at each other. Ramone threw up his arms and let them slap against his blue jeans as he turned and left the bar, shaking his head. Hazel stood with her arms folded across her chest with one hip cocked out and patting her foot. Raoul alternated from staring at the table top and glancing back at Hazel. Words didn’t come as quickly as he had imagined they would.
“I don’t guess I really know what to say. I thought I would have something ‘cute’ or witty but for once I guess I feel lost. How have you been? That’s pretty thin but I really have wondered about it all this time.”
Hazel seemed to care less. Acting without emotion was a screen that she used quite often. “I have been Ok; nice of you to ask. Your concern these past years is real heartwarming. What am I doing here, and where am I going? You think you can send your goon brother and wrap me up like a package anytime you get a whime ? You might over power me but you will never win. As long as I can draw a breath, I will fight you. If you overpower me I will still not give in to you.”
“Causing you any anxiety has never been my intention, Hazel. Ramone promised me he would not harm or hurt you, did he? If he did, even my own brother will have to pay. You’re not here because I am trying to force myself back in you r life. I simply need your help. No one has the strength and determination that you have, someone I can trust. I can’t take any chances.”
“Why in the world do you think you can trust me, even if I agreed to help you in whatever hair brain scheme you might have working. You must think I have lost my mind. You packed up and left with no regard for anyone beside yourself. I don’t see any chains and locks because that is the only way you will keep me here, Raoul. You mean absolutely nothing to me. The Schlitz beer sign was reflecting in the pools building in her eyes. When I turn around a walk out of here, I hope I never hear your name spoken, much less see you again.” Hazel turned and started toward daylight.
Raoul knew Hazel well enough to anticipate her thinking. Before she had reached half way to the door, he put his hand on her shoulder. “Wait Hazel.” She turned and stood motionless, not daring to speak for fear of losing all control. “Wait, you can’t leave until you hear what I have to say.” His tone confused Hazel. The combative and condescending tone had left his voice. “I didn’t bring you here for me. You are going to help me and then you can go and do whatever you want too. Everything about me is depending on this operation I am working on, even my life. I have got to have your help and you are going to give it. This may be the most underhanded thing I have done to you yet, Hazel. You can’t win this one, I have Lucy.”
Raoul could easily have lost his left eye. Instantly before anyone looked in their direction, Hazel bolted toward Raoul with the fury of a mountain lion. The frequency of her high pitched scream echoed throughout the room burying her fingers into his eye sockets as he stumbled backwards, falling over a chair. A sickening thud resounded from the floor meeting the back of his skull as the air emptied from his lungs. For the first time he could remember, he thought that he was in trouble. Hazel dug her finger tips further into Raoul’s eye sockets while he made every attempt to loosen her grip on his body. Her legs were locked around his left leg and her teeth were latched firmly onto his left shoulder. Every attempt to roll his body into position to overpower her gripe, was met with an anticipated counter move that gained advantage for his assailant. She loosened her biting grip long enough to hiss a warning, “You son-uv-a-bitch, you have made a serious miscalculation. You will wish you had never ever known me. I have nothing to bet or loose, so I will promise you this on my soul.” Hazel took a deep breath and released her right-hand grip in order that Raoul would be able to look her in the eyes. “If you cause one scratch to come to be put on my baby, you can never imagine the terror you will experience. This I promise you, until I can no longer draw a living breath.” Hazel went limp and rolled onto the hardwood floor, flat of her back. Raoul, already on his back, fought to get his breath and hoped his blurry vision would improve. At this point, he was helpless.
Between spasms of fighting for breath Raoul rolled toward Hazel trying to focus on her image. “Lucy is Ok and is in no kind of harm. I didn’t know what else to do. I knew you would never talk to me but I have gotten into this thing and there is only one way out and you are the key to that. I had to have someone that had the courage and strength to follow through and if this was a test, I guess you passed. Are you ok now? I had no intention of hurting you. My estimation of your reaction may have been a little under-shot. If I don’t accomplish my goal, I will end up in the river so Lucy is my only wild card, so Hazel, you are going to have to listen and play along.
White hot hate radiated toward Raoul from Hazels ice cold stare. ”Let me hear it.”