“James is that you?”
“Justin, I don’t know what to do, tell me what to do.” James broke down crying as he curled on his bed. He sniffed and wiped his nose on his duvet, then pulled a face realising what he had done.
“Slow down baby. Start at the beginning. What’s happened?” Justin switched off the film so that he could give the Utopian, as he liked to think of him, his full attention.
“He.. he made me whip him. He was screaming Justin, I didn’t want to.” The small sound of sobbing drifted down the phone line.
“Baby, who made you whip who? Jamie you’re not making any sense sweetie.” Justin was really becoming worried about his casual lover. Propping his cell between his shoulder and chin he searched for Joey’s cell number in his phone book.
“Johnson, he… he. JC was screaming, and then he, he,” James sobbed harder
“James, honey, listen to me. Can you leave? I mean are you allowed to leave the bordello?”
“Yes, why? I’m not property you know. I work at Utopia, I’m not owned by it.” James felt around looking for something to wipe his face on.
“Do you have a car?”
Justin found the number he had been looking for and using the house phone began to dial. “Ok Jamie, there’s a motel on the interstate, junction 37A. Go there and wait for me, its going to take me at least three quarters of an hour to get there so you wait for me ok.”
James sniffled and gave a choked okay then hung up.
“Joe, its Jup.”
“What’s up Jup,” Joey giggled at his silly rhyme. “I’m a poet and I didn’t know it.”
“I don’t have time for this Joe. I need your wheels.”
“Not a chance.”
“Joeeeeey!” The Italian cringed at the whine in his friend’s voice.
“Joe I need to meet Jamie.”
“Who’s Jamie?” Joey asked confused.
“A guy I met.”
Joey went silent for a while and Justin could just see him wracking his brains wondering where he would have met a new beau. “We haven’t been out since we went to Utopia … Oh my god you scored with a whore.”
Justin groaned and pulled the phone from his ear counting slowly to five. “Can I borrow the car or not?”
“Not. I’ll drive you though.”
“Now! Dude its like ten thirty.”
“Utopia locks the doors at 9. Anyway where’s Chris and what does he say about all this?”
“Chris had an interview this morning, I haven’t heard from him since. Anyway what’s it matter what Chris has to say. Will you drive me?” Justin began to pace, formulating plan B if Joey said no.
“I’ll be there in 10. Dude you will owe me big time for this one.” The phone went dead.
Justin gathered up his wallet, checking that he had money before pushing it into his back pocket, then he went out into the street to wait for his friend.
James dried his eyes and changed into his street clothes. It would be hard to get out on a Saturday night but not impossible. The back entrance of Utopia was rarely locked as it doubled as a fire escape. The green-eyed prostitute sneaked out of his room, pausing momentarily and listening at JC’s door. He tried the handle finding that it wasn’t locked he peered in. Joshua had cleaned the rug where he had vomited and the dildo and duck tape lay discarded on the floor. The mound on the bed moved slightly then settled again and James knew that JC was asleep. “I’ll be back JC I promise you and I will bring help.” His whispered words went unheard as Joshua slept deeply having wheedled extra painkillers from the pimp that came to check on him.
Gently James closed the door and sneaked down the back stairs and out into the parking lot.
“So,” Joey turned, grinning at his oldest friend. “The green eyed beauty phoned you?”
“James called yes.”
“Is there something you want to tell me?” Joey wriggled his eyebrows jokingly.
“It’s not like that. Jamie is upset. He asked for help. ”Justin slumped back in his car seat and pressed the heels of his hands into his eyes, rubbing in half circles.
Joey filtered onto the interstate, “You like him?”
“Not like you mean,” Justin shifted, transferring his weight onto the left side of his ass so he could look at his friend with out having to keep turning his head. ”Sure he’s a great lay and he does this incredible thing with his tongue, but you know other than the sex we have very little in common.”
Joeys face split with a wide smile, “What does he do?”
“Well he kind of twists his,” Justin snapped his mouth shut. “I can’t believe I nearly told you that! Dude you want to know what he can do, pick him next time we are in Utopia.”
The dark haired man went into a sulk. “Spoilsport.”
Justin sat up straight. “Dude it’s our exit.”
Joey pulled his truck off the interstate and into the motel car park. James was already there, leaning against his silver blue BMW ZX. “Holy fuck, whoring really pays these days.” Joey stared totally impressed with the prostitute’s wheels.
They pulled up along side of him and Justin jumped out, hugging the blond to him.
“It took a little longer to get here than I thought,” he explained. “Have you been waiting long?”
Lance kissed Justin’s cheek, “not too long. Justin I’m sorry that I’m dragging you into this, but I surely don’t know what to do anymore.” James’ accent didn’t seem so pronounced out side of the bordello.
“There’s a diner just over the way. Why don’t we go get some coffee and something to eat,” Joey suggested.
Justin chuckled, “One thing you will learn about Joe … he’s always hungry.”
James gave a tiny smile “I haven’t eaten yet, so that sounds good.”
The three sat in virtual silence staring uncomfortably at each other waiting for their food to arrive. “So,” Joe said trying to start a conversation, “you didn’t drag us halfway across the state just to eat a burger with you.”
James flushed slightly and jabbed at an ice cube floating in his glass of coke.
“Jamie you can trust me, let us try to help you.” The sincerity in the younger blonds voice brought tears to the prostitute’s eyes once more.
“I didn’t plan this you know. To be a whore I mean. I used to go to school. I was going to be an astronaut, go up in the space shuttle.”
“What happened?” Joey asked.
“Life. I couldn’t keep up my payments , you know education, apartment, that sort of thing. A frat brother told me about Utopia and that he worked there part time, you know just to pay the bills. Only he didn’t tell me the kind of money you made there and that it sucked you in till you had to keep working because you didn’t want the money to dry up.” James took a sip of his soda. “Just because I’m a slut, it don’t make me a bad person.” Sadness filled his eyes as he stared into the dark caramel coloured fluid, swirling it around in the glass before taking another mouthful.
“No one said it did James.” Justin reached over the table and brushed his fingertips across the back of the prostitute’s free hand.
“Excuse me?” the two friends looked at the Utopian in confusion.
“My real name, its Lance. I use James as my working name.”
Justin smiled kindly, “it suits you better somehow.” He sat playing the waiting game, James … Lance had begged for help and now that they were here he seemed to be avoiding the issue.
Joey leaned back in his chair so that the little blond waitress could place his food in front of him. He grinned and winked at her before turning his attention back to Lance. “Lets cut through all this crap. You called Justin, why?”
“I think Mr. Johnson will kill JC if no one stops him.”
Joey took a bite of his burger. “Who’s JC?” he asked his mouth full.
“JC has the room next to mine in Utopia.”
“Remember Joe we were talking about him on the way home.”
“Ohhh the gorgeous brunette.”
Lance nodded. “He’s gorgeous alright, but for how much longer I don’t know. He’s not there because it’s his chosen lifestyle, he’s there through force.”
“And you need us because ….?” Joey asked not sure he really wanted to know.
“I wanna break him out.”
“You make it sound like he’s in prison,” Justin said worriedly, his food still sat untouched in front of him.
“That’s because he is. I don’t know if I should tell you this but if you are going to help me then I think I should. JC nearly killed a man.”
Joey stopped mid chew and Justin let out a long slow breath. “Whoa … I mean that’s heavy man.”
“It was self defence!”
Joey held his hands up, backing away. “I just said it was heavy dude.”
“How did it happen Lance?” Justin needed to ask if he was indeed going to help.
“I only know what Mr. Johnson told me. JC came to him begging for help. He had nearly killed a guy that tried to rape him. Johnson arranged for someone else to do time, but JC has to pay him the same amount of time back. He’s in prison, sure it’s a pretty place, but he is a prisoner all the same.”
Justin sighed, saddened to learn that not only was JC being mistreated but he was not free to leave either. “I’m really not sure what we can do Lance, if he leaves we’ll hide him but apart from that.”
The blond shook his head, “no, he won’t leave he’s too scared to. He wants to be a lawyer. If he gets a criminal record that dream is gone forever. It’s the hold Johnson has over him. JC’s been at Utopia for about a year. If someone went to jail for him then there should be records.”
“What good will finding them do?” Justin wasn’t sure where this line of thought was headed, but to help the pale, slim prostitute he was willing to explore every avenue.
“Johnson said the guy got five years, so JC owes him five years of his life, but if the guy has already been released …”
“Then JC doesn’t owe Johnson anything,” Joey finished the green-eyed man’s sentence, grinning smugly at his deduction.
Justin stood up . “We’ll do some digging you go back to Utopia and keep an eye on things there. We will be in next Saturday.” Lance and Joey got up out of their seats and followed Justin back out to the parking lot. They drew their jackets around themselves warding off the fine drizzle of rain that had just began to fall.
The three man hugged, “find something, please. I have the feeling that Mr. Johnson will be calling on me as well soon and I’m scared.”
Justin held open the door of Lance’s sports car. “We’ll be in touch, drive safe.”
“You too Justin. It was nice to meet you Joe.”
Joey and Justin watched as Lance pulled out onto the main road then disappeared into the night. “What do you think?”
Justin rubbed his nose and leaned against Joey’s truck. He let out a long slow breath. “I think we could do with someone who knows his way around a courtroom.”
“Chris,” Joey said solemnly.
“Unfortunately he’s all we can afford, so …. Yes.”
Joshua examined the steel contraption locked unyieldingly around his most delicate bit of anatomy. He’d gotten over the panic that had gripped him when he had woken up and urged him to try to force the chastity belt off. First using a knife to try to loosen the Allen screw and then soap in an attempt to slide the hated thing off. Now all he was left with was acceptance. In different circumstances he might even like the hardness of the steel, wear it for pleasure and to please and turn on his lover. But these weren’t different circumstances. This was another form of torture. One devised to humiliate and degrade him. How he regretted the unthinking blind panic that had driven him to seek out Johnson and made him beg for help.
Johnson had seemed genuinely appalled to hear that he had been almost raped in the university locker room, and offered sympathy and support when Joshua had revealed that he had hit his attacker with a baseball bat that lay discarded on one of the many benches. Promising to fix it he had sent him to Utopia, telling him to hide out there with a promise to come and see him when everything had been sorted out.
He found out last night that that had been a year ago. A whole year as his former mentors slave. He had trusted the man that he had aspired to be like. Johnson was rich, powerful, connected, and Joshua had thought his friend. Two days later Johnson turned up claiming to have paid someone else to take the blame. Joshua had listened, stunned as the man he trusted reduced him to an owned slut. Demanding that he pay back the debt with years of his life, beating him into a near coma when he refused. That night Joshua became JC, as he lay bent over a bed, his hands twisted violently up his back as he was raped over and over. After Johnson left, Joshua lay chained by his neck to the bed. He cried and cried, helpless and battered. He cried until his eyes and cheeks were as sore as his abused hole and then when he truly thought he could cry no more he broke down again. By the time the sun was high the next day, he was numbed. The pain was still there but inside he was dead. He pledged that there would be no more tears. That he would never let Johnson make him cry ever again. It had been hard but he hadn’t shed one tear since and wouldn’t. Joshua trailed his fingers over the steel once more, he feared what it stood for. That he was unable to even relieve his sexual tensions. The very last pleasure he had, had now been cruelly snatched from him. Desolate and despondent Joshua pulled his quilt from the bed and wrapped it around him. This was his life now, and he had to accept that he was nothing more than a fuck toy to a brutal savage man.