Madame Risha walked into the small room and shut the door behind her. This was her private office, her small little sanctuary. As she locked the door, the sun was just starting to break over the horizon, filling the office with light. The brightness of the dawn caused her head to hurt. She was in no mood for the morning to come so she swayed over to the window and shut the curtains. It had been a long night, and all she wanted to do was sleep. Running the house and protecting the girls was exhausting. She called them her girls, but being in her mid twenties, many of her girls were older than her. Her bed was calling to her but she knew that she needed to take care of a few things first. As she lit the candle that was next to her, she heard the chair behind her desk creek.
“Who’s there?” she demanded as a knife materialized in her hand.
“A friend.” Came a calm and soothing voice.
“My friends don’t sneak into my office uninvited.”
“I’m a new friend,” said the dark figure as he sat forward in the chair. “And I don’t know all the rules yet.”
“I will teach you the rules.” She said wryly, as she seemingly put the knife away. “Now what can I do for my ‘New Friend’?”
“I need information. Not anything in particular, just a constant feed; and because of your particular business, I could think of no better person that would have the kind of connections that I am looking for.”
“And what kind of connections are those?” She raised an eyebrow in apprehension.
“The kind that doesn’t discriminate based on anything.” Risha was satisfied with the answer.
“What are you looking for?”
“I just need to know…everything.”
“I see that you don’t want much. Anything else.”
“Only that any information that you do come across, comes to me and me alone.” His voice lowered into dead seriousness.
“What is in this for me?” She said as she considered his terms.
“I have connections with very influential people. Some of which could probably be persuaded to look the other way when certain things happen. Assuming that the dues have been paid.”
Risha considered this for a moment. Paying for protection was getting expensive. Information was cheap to come by and if this worked out like she hoped her pockets might be lined with more gold. She liked the prospect, but dealing in information and secrets had its own dangers.
“And who are these influential people?” She questioned, trying to see if he was lying about his contacts and to see if he might slip a name.
“If you think me a liar, then I will leave and you will never see me again.” The cloaked figure began to stand up.
“Wait.” She raised her hand to stay him. His tone caused her to believe his words. “I will take this deal, but I expect to be protected if things get out of hand with the information that I give you.”
She turned away from the desk. Curving her body as she walked, in the most seductive manner she could in her exhausted state.
“Should we shake on the deal or did you have something else in mind.”
“Madame, I prefer our first meeting to remain strictly professional, at least in my idea of professional.”
“And how will I get a hold of you? What do I call you?”
“I am always around. I will find you. And as for what you can call me…my friends call me Damian.”
As she turned back around, she looked in amazement at the empty chair that was just occupied a second before.
“Damien.” She let the word slid across her lips. She was intrigued by this mysterious figure. It was an odd meeting and she hoped that she had not just made a bad decision.