When you come into my establishment, I guarantee that you will know that you’ve found someplace truly special. A bar, restaurant, and place to hold events like none you can imagine. It is the crowning jewel of all the years that I went through what I did. A legacy that I can leave to someone who I will know and trust. It will never be children. I can’t have those. But we take the knocks of life and deal with it as best we can. I haven’t let it slow me down. In fact, I have never been more active than I am right now. Let me tell you about my club – The Midnight Oasis. The haven for the wealthy and the criminal alike. Although, is there really a difference between those two groups? I’ll let you be the judge.
My road to owning this place started when I came into money. Growing up, I had lived in a part of the world that was poor, ignored by civilized America, and filled with crime. I had to be tough. Looking at me now, you’d never guess that I was one of the toughs who hung around in those gangs. Even when I was little, I was one of the guys. I wore tanktops and got into fights like them. Anyone who called me a girl was getting their ass kicked. Made the parents mad. After all, I was supposed to be in a dress and in church. I was supposed to meet a cute boy and then get married. There were a lot of things that were supposed to happen. Not one of them did. The closest someone will see me in a dress is when I’m in something kinky. I have no problem dressing up for sexy time. However, when you see me at an other point, I’ll be in a suit that I guarantee cost you more than your first car.
Everything changed when I joined the military. Technically, women couldn’t serve on the front lines. Now they can. Pussies. These new women don’t have to bleed for it the way I did. Now they just can request it. They call it equality. I call it something they are given, as opposed to earned. I earned it. When I showed my CO that I could match up with any of the guys, and was treated no different than the men in my unit, they realized that I wasn’t going to be some mechanic or some medic. I was grabbing a rifle and going out to fight. The reason I have the insignia of three different units tattooed on me is because I earned my place there. Saw some of the most violent places you can imagine, and all because I wanted to be there. There was a lot of violence in me at the time. More than you’ll ever know. It made me good at my job. The reason that the enemy died, and I didn’t.
Years of violence that I had built up inside ended up being spent in the years that I was in green. It all came to a crash in a desert town that no longer exists. After we finished fighting there, the entire area was completely destroyed. Returned to the sand, like most things in a desert. Part of me likes that. I remember sleeping in a destroyed building one night. It was full of sand. My squad was told to stay here and cover this part of the city. We slept when we could. So much sand. A couple years back, I got a jeep and drove out to that town, to see what had become of it. All the destroyed buildings. No one had returned. The sand was now filling up ever structure. How many dead bodies sunk into that sand, lost forever in time? It was the hardest night I’ve ever had, and once it was done, I no longer wanted to fight anymore.
Coming back from that, I found that work in my town was non-existent. This was a town that time had forgotten. So their attitudes on women were just as back in the day. My parents were on me about finding a boy and settling down. They kept talking about grandchildren. I hadn’t told them about the bullet wound in my pelvis that had destroyed one of my ovaries. The other one got a cyst that became infected and had to be removed. Thank god for VA benefits. It finally came up during Thanksgiving, when mom was drunk and decided to rag on me. My two brothers had families of their own, but I guess that wasn’t enough. Finally, I had had enough. I let them have it. A long diatribe of spiteful hate spewed forth from my lips, telling them the truth about how I would never have children, and never be some pathetic housewife that cleaned house and made her husband dinner. I told them that I hated this person they wanted me to be, and hated them for wanting it. Everyone exploded, and I was told to leave. So that’s what I did. Packed up my car and took off. If it hadn’t have been for a call I made to a friend, I honestly don’t know what would have happened to me.
As fate would have it, I made a call to an old friend of mine, who had left town. He told me about an opportunity he had with a man he worked for. Apparently, he was always in the market for new blood. I traveled all the way to the city and met with my friend and his boss. I loved this guy. A New Orleans charmer, with that smooth Louisiana accent and fine suits. This man was a friend to everyone he met. His voice and charming nature peeled the panties off women. Damn near peeled the panties off me. I got no qualms about men or women. People are weird about that. Why pick, when I can have it all? I learned it from this man. The days I spent with him were among the best I ever had. My mid-twenties were fun years.
But all good things must end. See, this man was a criminal. He trafficked in goods that had to be smuggled in. He owned the port and the air cargo offices of the city. All of them. Nothing came into this town without his knowledge. Getting things through customs was what he knew best. He took no sides. If someone needed something to come in, they paid his exorbitant prices, and he could get things through. He didn’t care who it was asking him. I knew for a fact that he brought in prostitutes, drugs, and guns into the city. You’re wondering – how did the cops not come down on him? Easy – bribes. He bribed everyone. He was in a first-name basis with the chief of police, six of the city’s judges, the mayor, the district attorney, and even the governor of the state. Anytime a legal effort was made in his neck of the woods, he would make calls and occasionally have “donations” to various efforts of different organizations. It kept people in law enforcement from getting too close.
The thing about getting things for criminals – they start thinking that you’re choosing a side. Despite his efforts to show them that he never did, people eventually thought he was working against them. Especially when the police were going after some of them. Eventually, there was a hit out on him. Two bullets in his chest. He assassin never got out of the building. I put a bullet in his head. My job was security, after all. One that I failed at. You’d think that that would have stuck with me, but then there was the reading of his will. And I found out that he left me something – a piece of his financial empire. At the stroke of a pen, I was worth more than some Supreme Court Justices. That was the first day of the rest of my life.
All of this money, I didn’t have to work a day in my life. But there was NO way I was going to just retire to some island somewhere. That sounds like Hell. I have to keep living. So, I knew that I was going to have to make my own mark. My friend went with me. He was left a chunk of it too. We decided to go into business together. He had an idea. Our boss’ problem was that he was too close to the criminal work. It made him a target. He was constantly having to keep the various organizations at bay with bribes and make sure he had all of his stories straight and the right documents destroyed. That was too much work for any of us. Besides, who wants to spend all day doing paperwork? That really is what happens in his line of work. Incredible pay grade. Boring beyond belief. Not the work I was going to do.
When we had been out with the boss, he made a off-hand remark about how the worst part about being in the crime world was making sure you have somewhere safe to talk. Somewhere that you could call your own. Most networks had them, but since the police would so often try and tap them in some way or another, they would have to change up. It is just one more frustration of the work that we did. That’s when it hit me – what if there was a place that could offer a safe refuge for anyone who wanted somewhere to talk to their business associates without having to worry about prying eyes or ears? The boss said that that was a neat idea, and that someone should try that out someday. That man’s a prophet.
Right as we are getting everything together to try and do this, I read that a building right in the center of downtown was closing down. Something about financial problems due to the owners not being smart with their money. My friend and I jumped on it. We easily outbid any of the other would-be buyers. Greased a few palms along the way, but it was worth it. This place was incredible! Big, open spaces for classy dining. A large floor for parties and other events for the movers and shakers of the city. Then there were the big back rooms. Quiet, removed, and easy to put in some neat tech to block outgoing cell and wifi signals. Absolute privacy. What’s more, we wouldn’t even need to do too much renovation! I sunk the bulk of my newfound fortune into this place, but I knew that I would be getting it back. With friends. Eight months of hard work, and The Midnight Oasis was open for business!
Come on in. The door is watched by our kindly security. A big, friendly-looking black fellow who has the nicest smile. But those arms of his are like tree trunks. Anyone who tries to fuck with him is going to walk away with some broken bones. If they can walk at all. In his clean, pressed attire, he opens the door and welcomes you inside. This place will take you back to the old clubs of days gone by. I came from a town that time left behind, so naturally my taste in things like what a high-class place should look like, and the music there was tainted. Call me a hipster if you like. I honestly don’t care.
You go to the coat-check, give them your jacket. For those who are less savory, you also give them your weapons. There are no weapons allowed inside the club. Aside from my security, of course. Not that you’d know. In-jacket holsters and all of them looking like the nicest professionals. Neat thing about coat-check, it’s in this little alcove, so if you have weapons to check in, people won’t immediately notice. She has a special drawer that has a key that only she can open. In there, your weapons are safe. If you are caught having a weapon in the club, you are barred from coming back. Ever.
You then check in with the guest list attendant, and then you walk in. The first thing you’ll notice is the live music. There is never a night that I don’t have it. It doesn’t always have to be big. In fact, that is pretty rare. More often than not, I try and get local talent to do work for a night. I pay them, of course. Not enough to get rich, but enough for them to know it was worth their while. And any tips they get, they keep. Seems fair. Being a good musician here can be a very profitable thing. Plus, it gets your face known to people who can make or break careers. Drink in the smell, and you’ll feel that there is power in this room. Every single night, there is power.
The tables are covered in red table-cloths. The waiters and waitresses (not table-servers. Fuck your gender-neutral language) have attire that is pressed, clean, and every one of them is going home tonight with a lot of money in their pockets. After all, the tips here are insane. Given the cost of the food and drink, that’s understandable. Speaking of, the bar is lit up with soft blue lights. Behind the bartenders are shelves of liquor that seem to glow in the light. Pretty girls and pretty boys are here.
Around the stage, there are the stairs. Those will take you up to another dining level, and to the private rooms. These have to be scheduled months in advance. Once they are scheduled, that’s that. I get so many would-be thugs who try and force my hand to give them a room the next day or so. That doesn’t end well for them. I’ve had crime lords apologizing to me for their associate’s behavior after my lovely man at the door is sending them packing out the back with their face looking like a jigsaw puzzle with some pieces missing. They learn their lesson. Those who don’t…well, I know of a thousand places to get rid of someone. Pray I never put that knowledge to use with you.
The private rooms have doors that are given a special kind of crystal. When the party is seated, a switch is pressed that makes it so you cannot see inside anymore. It’s really cool. If you have to use your phone, you leave the room. You can’t do anything on the phone in there. I take the business that gets done seriously. Just like my old boss, I have no sides. The difference is, because I’m just giving them a room to talk, they know I am serious. Plus, I know who the rival groups are, and I make sure to schedule accordingly. Any fights that get started end up people being ejected and not coming back. It has kept the peace, and law enforcement is none the wiser. Partly because I screen everyone who works here thoroughly. I know them all by name, and if someone doesn’t feel right, they are gone. I was trained how to spot informants. Never had a problem yet.
You go up the stairs another level, and you are at my office, overlooking the floor. I am here almost every night. I go down in my pressed suit and do some handshakes. Never in the private rooms. Only on the main floors. The private rooms would show preference. I will not go down that route. What people talk about, I never know. There is complete deniability. My people knock before entertain, so shop talk is ceased and no one is ever the wiser. I know nothing, aside from what my people tell me about the various criminals who come in to the Oasis. I do my homework. Gotta know who could be trouble, after all. But the cops don’t know that. As far as they are concerned, I’m just a pretty girl with her hair as short as a guy’s in a nice suit. Got the chief of police in here all the time. Along with judges, the District Attorney, and other people. I’m on a first name basis with them all.
This is my club. It is the best place for food in the city. And if you pay my price, I can make sure that you have the safest place in the world to do business. Come on by!
Until next time, a quote,
“Let the others have beauty. I got charisma.” – Corine Roitfeld