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Chapter 4

November 15, 2007

When she arrived home, the first thing she did was call Evan who seemed very worried.

“What happened?” he asked or more like demanded to know. Shane figured Evan was so protective of her because he had no one else in his life and they were close.

Shane was not inclined to go into detail about her promiscuous behavior, so she told the partial truth. This would be the first major secret she would keep from him.
“He just asked some questions about me then gave me his card and money then
said thanks a lot.” Suddenly she gasped remembering the driver’s license in
her jacket.

“What?” Evan questioned.

“Nothing ,”she lied. “I’m just really tired.” Taking out the identification, she
looked at the handsome faced man who she couldn’t believe just less than an hour
ago she had been engaged in a powerful lip lock like there had been no tomorrow
with. She could still smell him on her clothes.

“Are you there?” Evan halted his fussing for a second to ask. A lot of what he
was fussing about was how it had been a bad idea to let her go with the

“I’m tired,” she said yawning. “I’ll see you in the morning, Evan.”
Without waiting for him to respond, she disconnected the call and laid down in
bed to think more of her life changing night with Paul.

Instead of getting changed into her nightgown, which had been a habit since she could remember, she opted to sleep in her clothes, with his smell embedded into it.

Yes, Paul had awakened something inside of her. She was not the same old Shane anymore and didn’t want to go back.

This Shane had dreams of getting out. Leaving the past behind her and doing whatever it took to get what was owed to her. This Shane wanted to scream to the world that she was alive and that she did matter.

This Shane wanted more. Hungered for change with an unquenchable thirst to obtain happiness for her.

Feeling the urge to go to the bathroom she forced herself to get out of bed and relieve her bladder. Coming out her bathroom, she noted the building materials on the
far side of the basement just outside the walls that ensconced her room.

Going over to the materials she found a roughly drawn layout of the basement. Her thoughts were so filled with the night’s events; she paid little detail to the
materials on the floor and went to lie back down. Quickly she fell into a deep

The next morning, she checked her Tuesday schedule and noted she would be off of work for the next four days. She pulled out her planner and decided she would
call Aldridge to look into evicting the Meadows. Maybe Evan was right. Getting
them out the house as soon as possible would be best for her peace of mind.

Shane showered quickly and then did her usual routine of the morning by braiding her hair up in a tight ponytail and then wrapped the braid around the end tightly.
Binding her hair like this made it convenient for her not to get it done all the
time. She had learned how to cut her own ends and put perms in her hair
perfectly. Her dark brown hair came a little past her shoulder and the style she
chose for it went great whether she was dressing professional, which was a
requirement for most of her classes, or whether she was headed to work.

Before going upstairs past the kitchen and out of the side door, she listened for
anyone to be up. This had been her new routine since the other day. Hearing no
one, she left straight out of the door.

It was a shame she had to sneak out of her own house. On top of that she couldn’t enjoy her own home. Bethany was a horrible housekeeper, Bud was a pack rack and Trudy was just lazy and filthy. The only clean place in the home was the
basement where Shane slept and even outside the walls that enclosed her room,
was filled with dirty clothes the Meadows had just thrown down there and refused
to wash.

Sometimes in order to walk through the mess, Shane would wash the clothes and straighten up the basement, but lately with her schedule filled with school and work, she had been barely able to keep her own space clean.

With the twins to further destroy the house, Shane figured that once she evicted the Meadows, the place would need a major overhaul.

Still knowing that with Aldridge help she could probably legally kick her relatives out within thirty days, this thought gave her some tranquility.

With it being Tuesday, she had a full block of classes until six at night, and then
would stay at the library studying getting home no later than eleven by bus.
Shane had figured out a long time ago that if she left early and came home late,
she would have less to do with the Meadows. Keeping herself busy made it hard to
involve herself in the Meadows life. This was another reason she worked at
McDonald’s (besides the extra money in her pocket) and the part time hours
worked great for her packed school schedule.

Instead of going with Evan to school that morning, like usual, she went straight for the bus and caught it by herself. She wasn’t in the mood for company because she had so many things on her mind.

Getting the driver’s license out of her jacket, she stared down at Paul Watson. Many questions from the night before echoed through her mind. These questions would remain unanswered until she decided to see him again. Shane had two days to
decide if she would see him again and right now was not the time to decide.

As she was changing to her third class of the day about noon, Professor Henderson’s assistant, Montgomery Peterson caught up with her and told her the professor needed to speak to her immediately. Professor Henderson was her career mentor as well and highly regarded her as one of his best students in real estate studies.
He had encouraged her throughout her bachelors and had got her accepted into
Wayne States Law Department with a wonderful recommendation for next year.

Arriving in his dim lit office, she wasn’t surprised to see him sitting behind his desk.
He was a short man – barely over five feet tall – but he knew real estate like
the back of his hand. He was good at what he did and wrote for several real
estate magazines and had his own feature in the real estate section of The
Detroit News.

Professor Henderson looked a little bit too excited to see her, but she didn’t allow this to faze her. They greeted each other as she sat across from him with the desk between them.

“I’ve come upon a wonderful opportunity and I wanted to speak with you first.” He took a sip of coffee before continuing. “An alumni of our department who
runs a very lucrative real estate company in the state has acquired a large
account with Bellini Enterprises. Are you familiar with them?”

“Of course,” she said eagerly. “They’re a top five ethnic real estate
company! Started in the sixties by Jorge Bellini, they have their hands in
everything from land, liquidation, business loans, resorts, hotels, apartment
complexes, timeshare villas, and international casinos.”

“They out source some property to be handled by our alumni’s firm and they require a research assistant. Would you be interested in meeting with him?”

Meeting them?! Hell she wanted to kiss him! “Yes!” she said excitedly. This
was an excellent opportunity.

“I know you need internship credit, plus you mentioned that your finances were
tight and I’ll grant you the credit you need once you finish the assignment he
needs you for,” Professor Henderson said proudly.

Without a car, it had been difficult to find someone who would work around the tight schedule of internship and school. She wouldn’t dare impose upon Evan to take
her around and she wouldn’t dare as Bud or Bethany. A paid internship was like a
Platinum American Express – Hard to get and invaluable to the holder. Even with
her high GPA, her family situation made it hard to obtain the internship she
needed. So this opportunity was a silver lining in a dark cloud.

Her heart soared in joy at this wonderful prospect she was being handed.

Professor Henderson passed her a note and a business card. 
The name on the richly embossed card was Andrew Watkins. She placed this
information in her planner.

“He wants to meet you over brunch about two o’clock today at the Marriott Hotel in downtown where he’s staying until the weekend. Considering your transportation trouble, I will excuse you from the your last three classes of the day since you have them all with me to meet with Mr. Watkins. Check online for any study
guides or notes. Once you know your schedule, please report to me, so we can
make changes in your schedule,” Professor Henderson instructed.

“Does he know of my transportation trouble?” she asked a bit hesitant.

“He’s aware of it and he said he should be able to work with you.”

Shane wanted to hug the professor. Her day was turning out to being the most perfect day. So excited about the meeting, she could barely concentrate in her next
class. She went to the gym to freshen up and even change into the extra Donna
Karen suit she kept in the lockers there for emergency. She had a good friend in
the maintenance person at the campus gym who allowed her to store things like
that in the locker for long periods of time.

“Looking good today,” Sadie said, moping up at a locker nearby. “Going on a hot

Sadie had to be about forty, but she looked almost sixty. She blamed her looks on the heavy drug and alcohol use when she was younger. Sadie had even partied with
Lila Keaton back in the day. Once Sadie said, “Once your mom got pregnant
with you, she kept to herself.”

When Shane was little, her mother often said having her daughter saved her soul. She called Shane her inspiration for making a better life for herself.

“No, Sadie. I’m going to meet someone for a possible internship. It could be a really good lead. Wish me luck?” she asked.

“Naw, I don’t believe in luck Shane. Everything has a purpose. I’ll pray for

She kissed Sadie’s wrinkled cheek and left out. “You do that. I know something
really good will happen, Sadie.”

Sadie waved goodbye to the girl and briefly wondered why no one ever told Shane who her real Daddy was.

*            *           

On the way downtown, she briefly listened to the news radio station in Detroit, WWJ on the AM dial on her MP3 player. Shane wasn’t a real music kind of person, but
more of an information person. Her seriousness stemmed from her life of
loneliness. She had hardly enough time to get out and enjoy life, so she
couldn’t relate to people who liked to party all the time or took life like a
used piece of toilet tissue and just flushed it all away.

She wanted to make something of her life. She wanted to become someone of importance and although she didn’t have the wealth, she had options and advantages, which she would use to accomplish this. Real estate would get her there.

“Tyrex Industries, which has caused an estimated two hundred million in damage to the upper lake region is in Senate hearings all this week to account for suspected illegal dumping of toxic waste materials.  If found guilty, Tyrex Industries could face up to one billion dollars in fines. Democrat Michigan, Senator Payne who heads up the Senate committee has declared war upon Tyrex Industries in an attempt to show just cause in pushing tougher laws for acts of illegal dumping for industrious companies in the State of Michigan.” The reporter went on, but she listened with half an ear. If it didn’t concern property she really wasn’t interested, but she still liked to stay up on the news and this station was a great source.

The dumping issue had been a big story for the past year. Many smaller regions that lived on the lake in the UP had become affected by what everyone suspected Tyrex Industries had done and Senator Payne who favored natural laws was out to get

She hid her MP3 player in her bag as the bus came to her stop and walked over to the Marriott. Noting it was forty-five minutes before she was scheduled to meet Mr.
Watkins, she decided to go up to the room anyway just to let him that know she
would wait for him at the bar.

The clerk at the front desk asked for her name and gladly provided her with Mr. Watkins’ room number. Her stomach did flips as she stepped off the elevator of
the fifth floor and knocked on his room door. After a couple of minutes of
waiting and there was no answer, she started to walk away and decided to just
wait at the bar until the correct time. Yet, the door was snatched open and she
faced the doorway to see a giant standing there in nothing but what seemed like
a small hotel towel wrapped around his waist.

He was dripping water all over his deeply tanned olive skinned body. His head was down trying to tie up the towel as hurriedly as possible.

Shane had never stood next to a man so large – let alone a half naked white man! He had to be about six feet five of pure muscle. With broad shoulders, thick
powerful long arms and a brawny chest, this man had to be a close relative of

When the wet dark head of hair looked up at her, he narrowed his eyes suspiciously, but she was struck at the beauty of the lightest green eyes. They were almost clear with a touch of mint.

I know you?” His voice was deep and soothing, yet filled with curiosity and
wariness. His face came all the way up as he clutched the towel with his hand
since he had been unsuccessful in getting it tied around his wide waist.

Now that she noticed, it was a towel, which would have fit around her just fine, but his brawny build and thick powerfully build, made it look like a hand towel.
Lawd, did this man know how absolutely fine he looked?

“We could stand here all day, or I could just call security to assist you,” he
said in a deadly serious tone of voice.

This jogged her brain embolism and she spoke, “I’m looking for Mr.

“I would be him. Are you from housekeeping?” he inquired. “A maid already
delivered the towels.”

She shook her head. “No sir, I’m the student Professor Henderson recommended for an internship. I’m Shane Keaton.”

He looked at her extended hand warily, and then surveyed her up and down as if that were going to change what he was seeing. “I thought you were a man.”

“I’m often confused. It’s a rare female name.”

“It’s not a female name,” he disputed.

She shrugged. “It’s a free country and you’re allowed to think whatever you
want to think, but that’s my name, Mr. Watkins.” To be so handsome, he sure
was the argumentative type.

“You’re early, aren’t you?” he asked.

“A few minutes,” she answered.

“How about thirty minutes?” he again disputed.

She sighed. “I just came up here to let you know I was early and would wait for
you in the bar.”

He smirked, showing perfectly white teeth and leaned against the doorway. Shane briefly wondered had she heard the wood creak in protest from his weight.
“You could have called from the lobby,” he pointed out.

This had not occurred to her and he was right. “I could have, but I
didn’t.” She started to turn away.

“Where are you going?” he asked with disappointment in his voice.

“To the bar to wait for you.”

He frowned. “Now that you’re up here, why don’t you just wait for me in
here?” he suggested.

“Because it would be highly improper and unprofessional of me to come in with your state of undress.”

“I insist Shane Keaton.” He moved away from the doorway and went into the room leaving her at the doorway.

Put Your comments at: Thanks

Chapter 4 Drawing The Line (c) 2007 Sylvia Hubbard

  1. Tori permalink

    Great Job. I am glad she got the intern.

  2. Deja permalink

    Man i am just drooling all the fine men so far in this book. Sigh, its nice to dream on lol 🙂 keep up the awesome work sylvia Deja

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