Chapter Seven (Part Five)
“What are you doing here,” Snow asks belligerently, sticking out her chin. “Fucking bitch thinks she can just come here and get up in our grill.” Some of the newer hookers look puzzled, but most of the older girls—the ones who didn’t like me because I was younger and prettier—are ready to back Snow up. It’s clear that Snow is hopped up on something—probably meth—and spoiling for a fight. “This ain’t your turf any more, China Doll, so beat it.”
“Where’s Mona Lisa?” I ask, refusing to let Snow intimidate me. I use to eat hos like her for lunch when I was hooking, and she knows it.
“That bitch is doing a trick,” Snow says, still not willing to back off. I’m about to teach her a lesson when Mona Lisa comes sauntering down the street.
“Hey, girl,” Mona Lisa smiles, her eyes glassy. “Who is this hunka hunka burnin’ love?” She tilts her head to get a better look at Mowgli who is doing his best to blend with the scenery. He isn’t succeeding, of course, as he’s big, gorgeous, and a male among whores. “Hey, sugar, you like Elvis?”
“He’s the king, isn’t he?” Mowgli answers easily.
“No, you’re the king,” Mona Lisa banters, licking her lips. After the scum she deals with, Mona Lisa must look at Mowgli as a starving dog upon a steak.
“M.L., I need to talk to you again,” I say, cutting short the flirtation. I don’t have time to deal with a strung-out whore’s ramblings. “Same deal as before.”
“Well, I don’t know,” Mona Lisa says. “Seems I should get more since it’s two-for-one this time.” The other hookers snigger.
“You tell her, Mona,” a tiny black hooker cheers, raising her fist in the air. “You ain’t nobody’s fool.”
“Let’s go, M.L.,” I say through gritted teeth. I hate a whore who’s on something because she can turn mean on a dime. I grab her by the arm and start herding her away.
“I can walk by myself,” Mona Lisa huffs, pulling away. I sigh and rub my forehead as we make our way to the Phoenix again. This is becoming a habit I don’t wish to endure for long. I hate reminders of my past with a passion. I used to get along with the girls even after I gave up the life, but I’m finding that I have less in common with them as time passes. Mona Lisa is stumbling on her heels, and Mowgli gallantly offers his arm.
“Madame, may I?” He bows theatrically, eliciting a giggle.