Chocolate Cake

“I don’t make any noises. That was Liam’s way of saying it was my favorite.” I said.

Alex just nodded. “Eat.”

I did as I was told. All the other pieces except mine had frosting on it. Mine was just a fresh moist cake. I shoved my fork through the corner and then I stuck it in my mouth while Alex watched. I closed my eyes and groaned.

Alex laughed. “I see the entertainment value in watching you eat.”

I rolled my eyes, “At least I’m not drooling.” I ate another piece and Alex watched.

“So chocolate is your favorite?”

“Chocolate is the only sweet I indulge even a little in.” I clarified.

“So if I wanted to butter you up, bring you a Hershey’s bar would make your day.”

“No. I’m not big into candy. Ice-cream is my go to. I eat chocolate cake around my birthday. You’d do better bringing me a milkshake from Bonnie’s. But if you are trying to butter me up, a cup of fresh hot coffee is going to win more points.”

Alex nodded. “What about chocolate coffee?”

“That usually is filled with sugar and I don’t like the empty carbs. But as long as it’s more coffee than sweet you’d be pretty good I think.”

Alex grinned. “I know this really great joint that roasts the cocoa and coffee beans together and fresh ground. I don’t even have to give you any sugar, but it’ll be mighty bitter without it.”

“I trust your judgement.”

“Do you now?” He said.

I nodded and pulled my lips in and looked at my empty plate before, “Yes. Look…”

Alex lifted my chin and made me look up at him. “Let’s go for that walk.”

I pulled my wallet out and dropped a fifty on the table.

“Holy fuck!” Alex said. “Why do you do that?”

“What else do I have to spend the money on. It’s an expense for doing my job. Paying off informants.” I said.

“But he paid for the coffee.”

“He always pays for the coffee. It’s an expense for him, and he uses Dom’s card anyway.”

“So this was nothing more than a business transaction.”

I shrugged. “Yeah. Liam’s not my friend. Dom’s not my friend, we exchange favors. He pays for the drinks because Dom tells him to. Just like I cook for Ant and crew and don’t expect anything in return. Just a bunch of incremental favors and exchanges.”

“You don’t make a cent off of any of this do you?”

“The Venatori pay me and I use that money to pay for the information I need. What am I going to do with the excess money? It’s not a lot. But I don’t need it.”

“Take a fucking vacation Nox.”

I grinned. “I don’t need to save up for it. I can tell Dae’lin I want to go to Paris and she’ll find me an assignment there and I get a free vacation.”

“But you’d have to work.”

“I can’t sit on a beach and do nothing. I just can’t.” I smiled and pushed him out the seat. “I thought we were going for a walk.”

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