Vodka: Cherry & Chocolate by JimBob44
*Author’s Note: Any and all persons engaging in any sexual activity are at least eighteen years of age.
Disclaimers: This story has been edited by myself, utilizing Microsoft Spell-Check. You have been forewarned; expect to find mistakes.
John Hall pulled up in front of the once elegant Winley Apartments and let out a sigh. Parking in the space clearly marked ‘Visitors’ he tightened his face in resolve and got out of his twenty two year old sub-compact. He paused long enough to pop the trunk’s latch before shutting the door and hitting the lock button on the key fob.
The tools of his trade were in a nice leather bag; his mother had giving John the bag when he’d graduated from Capital Cosmetology College, five years ago. John slipped the leather strap over his head and slammed the trunk of his car shut. He pressed the key fob again and nodded with satisfaction as the car’s alarm gave the two chirp tone that let him know the alarm was set.
Again, John looked at the crumbling façade of what had once been an elegant, exclusive apartment building. Winley Apartments had been named after the architect Horace Winley. Horace Winley had designed much of Benhurst, Colorado in the 1970s and 1980s. This building was one of his finest achievements.
Horace Winley had once occupied the master suite in the basement level of the building. Now, Horace Winley occupied a tiny room at Stratton Acres Community, a senior citizens’ assisted living facility designed by Patrick Winley, Horace’s son.
Winley Apartments had once housed the young upwardly mobile professionals of Benhurst, Colorado. At the time of its completion, there was a waiting list for apartments. In time, though, many of those tenants had matured and bought homes, or had gotten divorced, or moved to Denver and beyond.
The area around Winley Apartments had been populated by stores that catered to the young, pretentious image conscious tenants of the building. Now, most of those stores were gone. In their place stood seedier establishments that reflected the decline of the building and the neighborhood. While not quite ‘skid row,’ the neighborhood was not attracting any new clientele.
Barron Blouchen, in John’s eyes, was indicative of the building and the area. John did not fault the artist for having severe agoraphobia and did not fault the man for his odd, eccentric whims, his often bizarre paintings. He did think that Barron Blouchen suffered from high self-esteem and had an over-inflated sense of self-worth.
Every so often, the temperamental alcoholic would call Coleman’s Barbershop and request that John come and cut his hair and trim and shape his beard.
“No good deed goes unpunished,” John muttered to himself as he entered the building’s lobby.
Barron Blouchen had been serviced by Bob Coleman himself, as well as Karl. Barron had not liked Bob or Karl. John had been polite to the point of subservience and Barron had liked that so now requested John every four to six weeks.
“Yes sir?” the doorman intoned as John entered the doorman’s domain.
Apparently, no one had told this employee that the Winley Apartments building was decrepit, a crumbling relic that had lost its sheen. This doorman dressed in the finery of a conscientious doorman and took his job with grave seriousness.
“Hello Wade,” John smiled. “John Hall, to see Barron Blouchen.”
“Mm? OH! Oh yes sir,” Wade nodded, checking his log. “Mr. Blouchen has sent word he is expecting you. Do you know which unit is his, sir?”
“Yes sir,” John smiled.
“Very good, sir,” Wade said, pressing the button to summon the elevator.
The elevator always had a very strong chemical odor. Just like Wade, the housekeeping crew took their job very seriously. John mentally readied himself for the task ahead as the elevator creaked and shuddered to the fifth floor of the five story building.
Outside of Unit 515, John said a silent prayer and pressed the door buzzer. A moment later, he saw the peephole darken. He nodded to the unseen person on the other side of the door. John heard voices calling back and forth before he heard the clicking of the deadbolt.
John stumbled in his step as the door swung open. On the other side of the door was a beautiful red headed young woman. John was used to seeing beautiful women in Barron’s apartment; after all, the man was an artist. What caused the stumble in John’s step was the woman’s attire.
She wore a black lace corset that left her breasts completely exposed. Her fat nipples were pierced with hoops of gold, each with seven pearls threaded around the gold hoops. The hem of the black corset did not meet the waist of her skimpy black lace panties. The straps of the corset’s garters were clipped to her stockings, black fishnet stockings that ended in her five inch black patent leather pumps.
John assumed the woman to be no taller than five feet, three inches; even with the five inch heels she was eye level with John’s chin. Her breasts, John assumed were about a 30C, with no sag. The areolae and nipples were a slightly darker shade of pink than her pale pink flesh.
Even as the attire was startling, sexy in a tawdry manner, the girl’s eyes were captivating. They were large, luminous blue eyes on a pale face. The way she looked at John, John wondered if she might actually be blind; she did not seem to see him.
“Ah, John, I see you’ve met Marianne,” Barron said, smirking.
“No sir; we’ve not been introduced,” John said.
“Hmm? Oh, oh yes. Marianne Appleton? This is John. John Hall’s a barber,” Barron said dismissively.
John rankled at Barron’s attitude, but shrugged it off. He could tell from the man’s slurred speech, Barron had already been hitting the bottle.
“I, I got a new drink, it’s a, I call it a ‘Dirty Marianne,'” Barron said, waving a squat glass. “Want one? See, it’s got…”
“Mr. Blouchen, I’m going to be holding very sharp scissors in my hand,” John reminded the drunk man.
“…Cherry vodka; you know, a fifth of that Nuloughs? It’s only five bucks; can you believe that?” Barron continued, pausing long enough to sip the beverage.
“No; I can’t believe they have the gall to charge that much for Nulough’s,” John quipped and Marianne let a small smile appear.
“…And then you take some Mark’s chocolate liqueur and pour it over ice and shake it up; sure you don’t want one?” Barron said, wobbling toward the highly polished liquor cabinet in the ornate living room.
“Again, Mr. Blouchen,” John said. “I will be having very sharp scissors in my hand. Perhaps afterward.”
“Oh, okay,” Barron said, putting his empty glass onto the low coffee table and almost toppling over with the movement.
Marianne hurried over and placed the glass onto a coaster. As she walked to the coffee table, John was treated to the sight of her sweet, compact backside framed by the thin strap of her black lace thong bisecting her buttocks, and the straps of the corset’s garter clipped to the back of her thigh high stockings.
“Mm? Oh, oh so, where, where you want do this?” Barron asked, swaying slightly.
John wondered if the man had been this intoxicated when Bob had answered the phone at Coleman’s Barbershop. Most likely; Barron’s alcoholism was a thinly veiled secret among service personnel and the art world alike. John had seen an interview one reporter had done when Barron was fairly sober. John had been surprised at how polite, how intelligent and thoughtful Barron Blouchen could be. Barron had even been charming and self-deprecating. This Barron, however, was the Barron Blouchen most people were accustomed to.
“We usually do this in your kitchen, sir; it’s the easiest to clean afterward,” John suggested.
“Hmm? Oh, oh yeah, the tile floor,” Barron agreed and made an exaggerated stumble toward the kitchen area.
“Hey, Marianne, make me another drink,” Barron ordered as he flopped down at the kitchen table.
“Really, sir? I, you’ll just get hair in your drink,” John cautioned.
“Hmm? Oh, oh yeah,” Barron agreed. “Never mind, Marianne. Maybe later.”
The eight chairs around the long table were wheeled, so John easily wheeled the drunkard away from the table. From his leather bag, John pulled out his cloth and draped it around the man’s neck. Filling a bottle with warm water, John carefully wet Barron’s long, unkempt hair.
“The usual, sir? Just a trim? Neaten up the edges?” John asked, pulling his comb and scissors from the bag.
“Yeah, and could you, could you, um, you know, um, kind of shape the beard?” Barron agreed.
“Of course, sir,” John agreed.
When John had graduated from Capital, he’d gone to work for Davenport’s, an upscale salon in Oakleaf, Texas. As he was decidedly heterosexual, John was very popular among the staff and clientele alike. He and Tiffany McMahon, a fellow hair stylist seventeen years his senior very quickly became an item.
A new client came in, requesting a coloring. John advised against it; he could tell the woman’s hair had recently been chemically straightened. The woman insisted that her hair had not been chemically treated in seven weeks and she wanted her hair colored. Miss Davenport signed off on the treatment and John did color the woman’s hair.
As could be expected, the woman’s hair reacted badly to both chemical processes and began to fall out in clumps. She sued Davenport’s and John Hall. She lost the case and lost the counter-suit. But John had decided to leave the estrogen heavy environment and go to work for Oakleaf’s Barbershop. And when Tiffany decided to move back home to Benhurst, Colorado, she begged John to come with her.
“Yep, no good deed goes unpunished,” John murmured, thinking of their recent break-up.
Barron started giggling as John worked. When John came around to the front, to work on the lock of hair that constantly fell into Barron’s eyes, Barron laughed happily and slapped John’s hand. John very nearly gouged Barron’s cheek; he’d been preparing to snip the ends of Barron’s hair.
“Got a treat for you,” Barron sang out. “Oh, you going love this!”
“Bar…Mr. Blouchen,” Marianne begged quietly.