Submitting to the Billionaire

By: Georgia Le Carre


Three feet away from me Andrei slaps his huge palm on his chest, effectively stopping him in his tracks. Well, well, who knew today was the day. I walk towards him, my face wiped clean of the joy and excitement surging in my veins. This is it. This is the moment I have been waiting for.

“You got my money?” I ask.

Nigel’s facial expression doesn’t alter. “I will. By tonight. I promise.”

I raise one eyebrow. “By tonight?”

“Yes, yes, by tonight. You have to let me play tonight and I’ll be able to pay you back.”

“You don’t have the money now.”

“No.”

I turn towards Roman.

“Wait,” Nigel shouts desperately.

I turn back towards him.

“You see, I had a dream. I dreamt that I would win big tonight, so I will. I will win it all back. I can feel it in my bones. You’ll get it all back, Mr. Smirnov.”

“Take him to the pit,” I instruct.

Roman and Andrei oblige by grabbing his forearms and shoulders. “Hey,” he screams in a panicked voice. He is still shouting when they quickly frog-march him down the hall to the cellar. I walk behind, keeping a small distance. Nigel pleads over his shoulder. There is nothing in the cellar but a badly stained pool table and a couple of chairs. They have already pushed him down onto a chair by the time I go in.

I close the door quietly behind me and stand for a moment looking at him. Every time I see him I am shocked by how unbelievably pathetic he is. I don’t speak, and he rushes to fill the dank silence.

“What are you going to do to me?” he asks, wild fear in his eyes.

I shrug. “Nothing … if I get my money.”

I watch him lean forward in the chair and shuffle his feet. “You’re going to get your money, Mr. Smirnov. I told you, I had a dream. It was so vivid. I was playing in this very club, and I just couldn’t lose. I won a lot of money. Much more than I owe you. You just need to let me play tonight. Please, I won’t lose, I swear. You’ll see.”

Sudden laughter erupts from my throat. Roman and Andrei join in. Our laughter reverberates around the carpetless, curtainless room.

I stop laughing suddenly and step closer. I remove my jacket and hold it out. Roman steps forward to take it from me. I roll up the shirt sleeve of my left arm, and then my right arm. It’s just drama. Adds nicely to the tension. Actually, I’ve never done this before. I suppose I could be a gangster. It’s not too bad if I only had to knock off whiney excuses for human beings like him. Nigel’s eyes dart anxiously from me to my men and back to me. His hands are trembling.

“I’ll pay you back. You know I’m good for it.”

“Do I look like a fool to you?” I ask pleasantly.

“No. Not at all.”

“You must think I’m a fool. You actually thought you could come here without my money, and I would let you play again.”

“I know you’re not a fool. It was an honest mistake.”

I raise an eyebrow. “An honest mistake?”

“Look, I won’t play tonight, all right? I’ll leave this club, get the money, and come here tonight.”

“How will you get the money?”

“I … have the money.”

“You have the money?”

“Well, not, right now. But, I … I … can get it. Just give me one day.”

“One day?”

“I’ll get it by tomorrow.”

I shake my head. “That’s not the deal, Nigel. The rules are clear. Every member has three months. Run up as big a debt as you want during that time. Then you have to settle in full. Your three months was up last night.”

“But I can settle it tonight. If you just let me play. My dream …”

“This is no dream, Nigel. This is your fucking reality.” I stare at him. “Put him on the table.”

Before the sniveling liar can say another word, he is thrown face down on the pool table.

“Hold his right hand out.” Roman takes one and Andrei the other. I walk slowly towards the wall cabinet and pick up a hammer. My staff have a sick sense of humor, there is blood still on it. I go back and hold the hammer close enough so that he can see the blood. His eyes bulge with terror. Ridiculous fool.

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