Moctezuma has been home for Ada for the pass three years but it was obvious things were about to change. At fifteen she was already developing her womanly curves and Jefe has made her pay for it. He beats her now more often than before. He hits her for growing up as if she could prevent her body from developing.
It was an open secret that he was already in talks with some brothel owners to sell her. Yes,her life has been hell this past three years but she knows deep within her that it will become worse if she gets traded to a brothel.
Last night Madam J a very good friend of Jefe came to town. Madam J is a renowned prostitution ringleader. She owns many brothels across mexico. The reason for her visit was that she wanted to established a new brothel in Ensenada and needed some girls from Jefe.
That very night a group of girls were lined up for madam J to inspect and she had chosen the ones she liked and negotiated and agreed on a price with Jefe.
They were having dinner to celebrate their agreement when Ada had walked in to serve them a special dish made by the cook. As soon as Madam J saw her,she told Jefe she wanted Ada to be amongst the girls she took to her new place. Jefe did not reply her but kept on eating as Ada placed the meal on the table. He only spoke when she left.
“If you want her then you have to pay more” he said
“But we are friends Jefe,why don’t you give her to me as a bonus”
“I will think about it”
“What’s there to think about? I know how you like your women and this brown girl is not your type. What do you say if I have two young ones sent to you in a week?”
“Two you say?”
“Yes two,and they are just how u like them”
“I say yes to that but I will keep wee Ada with me until those packages you talk of arrive”
“But you know I leave in three days time Jefe?”
“Then make sure your packages arrive then too. Enough of this nonsense, come let’s eat Cook’s linguini,believe me you have never tasted anything like this”
Ada who was standing by the door overheard their conversation. She wanted to wait and listen to more of their conversation but she saw flashlights approaching and she quickly snuck away.
As she went to bed that night,all her thoughts were filled with plans on how to leave.
She thought about Nick Dinero, he was the only friend she had. No one knows about their friendship and she was sure she could count on him to help her.
Nick Dinero was a very skinny and tall young man with a beautiful face and as such made him an easy target for bullies. His father was a Filipino man who used to work for Jefe until he died. His mother was a very smallish woman of Mexican and West Indian descent who works as a cleaner for Jefe’s bar. Since his father used to be one of Jefe’s trusted men,they had been allowed to stay in the compound tho neither Nick nor his mum did any of his illegal business. Nick currently works as a driver for a food distribution company and goes across the border everyday.
Ada was standing behind a tree from across a bar where the men usually went to get drunk and watch football. She knows Nick spends most of his time at the bar whenever he was back from his trips. The bar was not owned by Jefe so his men usually did not patronize it but he has a lot of people loyal to him and because of that reason she decided not to enter. She didn’t want to risk being seen by anybody. She didn’t know how long she will wait before Nick will step out but that didn’t stop her in any way. She stood there as the minutes slipped by.
Luckily for her,she saw Nick come out and he was alone. She whistled at him and he turn towards her direction and she waved at him to come over. He walked towards her direction but instead of stopping he kept on walking towards an abandoned building. She waited for a while before she followed him to the building. He was standing by the side so she walked up to. “Hey,its been a while” she said
“Yes,I have been busy” he slurred
“Are you drunk?”
“No,just a couple of beers. Nothing papi can’t handle” he replied with a wink
“Okay, I need you help, ermmm…I will like you to ermmm—” she hesitated for a bit because her plan was beginning to sound funny to her but she hurriedly continued as she saw the impatient way he looked at her “— I will like you to take me across the border” she rushed the words out. She was holding her breath waiting for him to reply. He gave her a look like she was out of her mind and crazy. “I will pay you,I have a little money saved up,I will give you two hundred dollars” he didn’t reply “okay how bout three fifty?” Still no reply from him “four twenty,please Nick I really need to go across the border”
He pondered on her request for a while and then he finally spoke ” what you are asking,is for me to risk my head and that of my mama too”
“No,no,no its not like that. I’m going to meet up with you somewhere, no one will even suspect you. I swear” she stammered
“It’s still a big risk” he whispered,as if he was scared someone will hear him
“I know but please you need to help me” she whispered back
“Fine but you need to make the money five hundred dollars.”
“That’s all the money I have” she begged but he didn’t seem moved “fine,I will give you the five hundred dollars” she said reluctantly
“When do you want to live?”
He looked at her for while and then said
“Meet me here very early tomorrow morning,in short be here by 5:30 am. Don’t be a minute late or I will leave you behind. You understand?”
“Yes,I do” she said nodding her head
“Now pay up”
She stared him like he was crazy. What did he take her for? A fool? She might be desperate but she wasn’t stupid “I will give you two hundred now and the remaining balance once I’m across the border” she dipped her hands into her pockets and brought out two neatly folded hundred dollar bills and handed to him
“Don’t play with me Ada,better have my money tomorrow” he said and walked away.
She stood still watching him head back to the bar and was confused. She used to think they were friends. She was surprised at the way their conversation had gone. Usually whenever Jefe beats her,he always consoled her and she in turn sneaked out food from the kitchen to give him. They were usually careful because Jefe did not like her talking to the opposite sex and once he had caught her laughing with a boy and he had beat her for hours and also had his men beat up the boy too. That had made the other men in the area to stay clear from her.
She wondered if she had done the right thing asking Nick for help. Was he going to help her or will he report her to Jefe. She dread to think what will happen to her if he reports her. She looked around to see if anyone was watching her and when she didn’t see anything suspicious, she headed home. She needed to hurry back and help the cook in the kitchen before Jefe returns and asked about her whereabouts.
Ada was standing at the designated point. She had a restless night and at such had hurriedly left the compound once she could sneak out. She had not carried any belonging with her not that she had much anyway but she thought it will be easier for her to lie her way out if she was caught. With no belongings on her no one could prove that she was running away. All she had on was her night gown and slippers she was wearing. She also had eight hundred dollars with her and she kept the money in her underwear,at least she was sure it will be save there. She didn’t have a watch with her but if she could guess,she will say it was almost 5:30am. There was no sign of Nick but she still stood there. She was so nervous,she was shivering not from cold but fear. A lot of things kept running through her mind.
She saw something moving towards her direction slowly. She wanted to run but her legs seemed rooted there,she wanted to scream but was scared of drawing attention to herself. Soon the figure was close and she could tell it was a man from his clothes. It was only when the person got closer she realised it was Nick. Seeing him helped her calm her nerves a little.
“Where is your truck?”
“Its not far from here,we will walk there”
He led the way and she followed,soon there were at truck. He opened the back of the truck and climbed in,he ask her to follow which she did. He led her to the end and pointed a barrel to her,he helped her into the barrel and placed the cover on top tho not tightly shut so she could breath.
It was very uncomfortable but she was ready to endure anything that will take her as far away from Jefe as possible. She felt the truck start and she let out a sigh of relief when she felt it moving.
Her whole body ached and she didn’t know how long she could endure the position she had been in for hours. Only the thought of freedom was still keeping her sane. She felt the truck stop and she wondered if they were across the border yet. She heard footsteps approaching and went still. She did not know if it was border patrol or Nick. The top was raised and she saw Nick. She felt relief immediately.
“Are we across yet?” She asked but he ignored her and helped her out of the barrel
“Lie down” he said with a very strange voice unlike his
“Answer me,are we there yet or” she never completed the sentence because he gave her a slap she had never received in her life and she fell backwards and unto the floor
“You are talking back at me b—h. You think because I’m so skinny,you won’t respect me” he screamed as he kicked her on her ribs over and over again. He stopped kicking her and started undoing his belt and shrugged out of his trousers.
“What are you trying to do?” She said but he ignored her and instead kicked her again before he grabbed her by the legs and pulled her to him and slipped in between her legs.
“You think you are too good for me huh? You think you are so precious being Jefe’s little toy but guess what? He is not here” he said as he slapped over and over again and then started to ripped her nightgown.
“Please Nick,just leave me alone” she begged but all she got was another slap and then he roughly tore her pants and her money fell out.
“What do we have here?” He said as he picked up the dollars bills “B—h I thought you said you only had five hundred?” And he slapped again and he grabbed her by the neck and started to choked her. She tried to struggle but he was so much stronger than she was and when she thought she will finally die and be in peace he let go and while she was catching her breath,he forcefully entered her and started humping on her. She tried to push him off but she had no strength left in her and when she tried to scream she couldn’t even make a sound. Her throat was sore and it hurts so bad she had to stop trying. She la!d down there as he continued hump on her and the sweat from his forehead was dropping on her. Soon he started convulsing and a shiver ran through him as he spilled inside her. He collapsed on top her heaving like he just carried out a chore. He stood up and pulled her by the hair to sit up. He held out his trunk and forced her to kiss it. “That’s right babe,kiss my gift to you. His name is Gift,don’t ever forget that LovePeddler.” And then he slammed her head on the floor.
Ada did not know for how long she passed out. She woke up feeling like she had been ran over by a truck. She could hear the sounds of cars passing by so it was safe to believe that she was close to a high way. She forced herself to her feet even tho her legs were shaking and her head was spinning.
Her nightgown was tattered and she tried her best to make herself look decent by wrapping it around her body. There was no sign of her money,it seems Nick had carried it with him. She began to stagger towards the sound of moving vehicles. She fell a couple of times but got back up,the fact that she was close to a road seem to give her strength.
When she finally got the road,she tried waving at vehicles to pick her up but no avail. Some of the drivers looked at her like she was crazy and maybe she did look crazy with her tattered gown plus all the dirt on her body. She got tired of standing and sat down by the road. She had no idea where she was nor where she will be going to so she might as well chill by the road.
She was adjusting herself to sit more comfortably when a van pulled over and a woman got out. She stared at the woman as she approached her
“Are you okay?” The lady asked
“Then why are you sitting by the roadside?”
“I got robbed”
“I’m so sorry to hear that” she said,then returned to the van to talk to someone and then turning back she said “where are you headed?”
Ada had no idea but said the first place that came to her mind “Albuquerque”
“Then you are in luck because we are on our way to las Vegas,you can tag along with us and we could drop you off”
Ada didn’t need any more persuasion because she was on her feet even before the woman completed her sentence and got into the van.